#girlmom

One day I will regret sharing so much on a public platform. But it won’t be today! First and foremost, I just warn you about the following. Some may find it entirely too revealing, others may gasp in shock. Still you may even laugh uncontrollably. Just remember, you’ve been warned.

I say again…

As most of you know by now, I have a toddler daughter. She’s incredible in every way, bright, ambitious, caring, and, notably, funnier than I am (which is saying something). Affectionately referred to here as Mini Me, or Mini, the stories she tells will soon be infamous. But, for now, allow me to share a few she doesn’t usually remember and a few she may never want to see in print. Most revolve around feminine-specific issues; again, I warned you.

Before having children, one never considers the amount or type of questions they may be asked as said children blossom into adulthood. Being female and having a female child, I was confident I’d know what to say. Although I was a little taken aback at having to explain to males, in great detail, how to care for a young lady’s needs. Extending grace and all that, I took it in stride. Until the day my twonager yanked on my tampon string. To be frankly clear, it was inside my body! The yell of shock emitted from my lips served to reinforce how hilarious the situation was as Mini began to laugh hysterically and chase me around the bathroom. Assumedly to repeat the action. Because when there’s a string, what’s the harm in pulling it, right?!

Fast forward to age three. Pretty sure her third year of life was the most eventful. Digging in a cabinet, I find what I’m looking for and move onward with the day. As I approach the kitchen, the tiny light of my life asks “Mommy, what you doin’ with those? Those your running sticks?” Before I go any further, can we all appreciate how creative this is?! I run, therefore tampons must be considered running sticks. From now on, I will refer to them as such. Glass half full, you know.

– when in Rome –

Biological differences notwithstanding, I wasn’t quite sure what to say, or how much to explain, when implored to show her how to pee whilst standing up. This was definitely not in the brochure. Believing I had done the best I could with an explanation of ‘we’re not designed that way’ and that was the end of it, time went on without mention. Then life came back to haunt me. Apparently she didn’t believe it couldn’t be done because she had clearly seen the male figures around her be successful at exactly what she wanted to do. I applaud her dedication to cause. Upon returning home from work one day, the following story was shared with me –

paraphrasing : she entered the kitchen sans undergarments and shorts; when asked where her clothes had gone, she explained they had gotten wet when she went to potty. Probably seeing the look of confusion, she further explained she had also used a towel to clean the bathroom floor. More questions later, she proceeded to demonstrate how she forward-faced the toilet and attempted to pee standing up “like you do, Papa”. Perhaps I suck at truly sharing why we can do some things but not others.

For sake of space and what little sanity is remaining, I shall allow you to draw your own conclusions. Why do we not share stories like these with other generations? Do we deem them embarrassing or otherwise? Why? Hello, natural parts of life.

Personally I think we aren’t doing ourselves any favors by not being forthcoming with others. At least in all those books they give us at the hospital. You know, when it’s too damn late anyway.

____________________________

I ask you –

Did I scare you off with the many warning signs?

I’m curious how males raise their sons – did you give lessons on potty training or just let them go for it?

Story time! Dare to share?

Infamous History and such

Took another shot at the downtown Farmer’s Market. It appears okra and squash are still growing strong. Get it, get it. Busy as ever (clearly I mean the market, not me), I knew exactly what I was looking for this time so no wine samples. Oh the travesty.

Courtesy of The Odd Duck Coffee Co. and BCocoa

Since it was a beautiful 80° out, coffee in hand, I walked around some in search for other treasures.

Chocolate shop silliness

Wichita Falls has much history and artifacts to be explored. Trains are fascinating to me because, much like ships, it’s hard to understand their magnitude until you get closer.

Unidentified tourists (with permission)

Unbeknownst to many, WF is home to the world’s littlest skyscraper. Could be worse, I guess. Standing an astounding 40 feet tall, built in 1919, the story behind this ‘skyscraper’ is quite fascinating. Knowing my own storytelling abilities, I’ve included a link so you can read for yourself: https://www.timesrecordnews.com/story/news/local/2018/06/19/wichita-falls-story-behind-worlds-littlest-skyscraper/715470002/

Officially on the map

I also stumbled upon not one but two local shops to return to with my mini love. Peddling their wares of cupcakes and gelato, respectively, October is sure to be an exciting month!

_____________________

I ask you –

Anyone else have a vested interest in downtown character?

Is your city/town known for such an obscure reason?

Name your favorite local coffee shop!

Remember the Apple and Tree?

It’s been awhile since I regaled you with tales of the 4-year-old princess who rules my home. Home?! Haha you mean your whole life, Kel. Below are just a few more examples of the hilarity that ensues when I’m on a 50/50 work from home schedule. Please take a seat. Grab some tissues, too.

A true princess

So she overheard a television program use the phrase “salty as hell” and I can only wish she’ll wait a few weeks to share this gem. Namely when she’s with her dad. Because I know she will use it properly, I almost can’t wait.

Her nose was running and a green, yellow-ish mucous was emerging from her left nostril. After many tissues and a dose of Zyrtec, a miniature piece of popcorn (kernel and all) was extracted. I was secretly appalled yet impressed.

Her love for fishing and ability to be completely impatient are equally charming. 5 mins – no fish – I’m out.

For about her whole life, she won’t eat the breakfast I make. It could be her favorite things; she will only pick at it and tell me she’s full. Finally the truth was revealed when she said these exact words: “Mommy puts stuff in (whatever we’re having)”. When her Papa asked what kind of stuff, he received this answer: “Yucky stuff, like peppers and spinach”. Then they both had a good laugh. Truth of the matter is I do put those things in eggs (come on, I know you’ve read my blog); however, I don’t put them in hers! Never have! Yet somehow this is the reasoning behind her not eating what I cook. At least I have a reason now. My feelings weren’t even hurt. From now on, cereal is a safe bet. Clearly I’m the baker. And that’s the extent of my cooking skills, where she’s concerned anyway.

At least we agree on ice cream

AND THEN!!!! I was offered a sugar-covered butter cookie (which I don’t love, but I try them every single time). Since I didn’t eat the whole thing, I graciously gave the remaining portion to the very fruit of my body who then crinkled her nose and said “No, I want a whole cookie because I don’t want slobber in my mouth.” Freaking unbelievable!

Where has the love gone and when will it return? Her sense of humor, eye for design, and personal space issues are just a small reminder I’m paying for everything I’ve ever done. Ever done. Seriously. Ever. Most days I believe the look she gives me is this: You’re supposed to know these things, lady. Geez.

I give up.

***Hope you all have a safe and enjoyable Labor Day!***

___________________________

I ask you –

What are my chances she will use the “salty as hell” phrase with her dad? Batting 70/30 here.

Do you think she’ll get funnier as time goes by or will she become obnoxious and angry?

Your best children’s story of WTF. Go!

Why Thank You! Love, a Clown

A great friend said this: “You’re a fun writer. You lend your voice and perfect brand of sarcasm to your writing and it makes me laugh a lot.” What a compliment to receive! Of course anyone who reads this blog would think I’m funny. I’m basically Betty White. She said drinking wine, not taking shit from men, and making people laugh are what keeps her young. I think that’s what she said. If I was Betty White, that’s what I would say. I was also recently told I was agreeable; they stated it was refreshing. The disagreeable list is extensive. Regardless, another compliment in my book!

I flipped off my boss the other day and didn’t get fired. Hey, I did it with a smile and my smile melts hearts. Or at least it helped me keep my job. Then I had the period from hell and burned the holy f-word out of my hand whilst making cookies to curb the cramps. Not sure if you know this – you’re about to – but ladies who had a period during August experienced the worst headaches, cramps, mood swings, and (insert other PMS symptoms) than any other month. I took a poll. Believe me!

Cookies and aloe vera – an unlikely combination

Since we’re on the subject of complaining, since we are now, these migraines are getting worse. A headache every day for at least 5 days is not normal. For some reason, antihistamines seem to lessen the pain but they make me exceptionally sleepy. Surely the heat doesn’t help – makes me want to find a cold, dark place to hibernate. Wake me up when it’s fall.

But because I can’t leave this post on a sour note, it is slowly getting cooler during the overnight hours. Mostly mid-60s, but there’s been an occurrence of low 60s…I couldn’t be happier! Not one to let opportunity pass by, I got up and finished a run long before the sun rose.

Only the shadows, and fabulous tan lines, accompanied me

I sent an email to the marathon race organizer: no response. In the meantime, I’ll continue half-ass training because I have nothing better to do. My sweet mini will be gone in September so time is irrelevant. Train, eat, repeat.

Supposedly there are people who live vicariously through my writings. Though flattering as it is, may I remind you, I’m just a clown with a platform.

____________________________

I ask you –

Do you know any famous quotes?

Have you ever been fired for insubordination? No, but I probably should have been!

Tell me about your fall plans!

Flora y Fauna y Comida

I considered writing this post in Spanish, but figured no one but me would appreciate the work. How ungrateful!

As threatened, this is the post of vacation food, flowers, and whatever other randomness I can find. Because if I don’t memorialize it here, what kind of blogger would I be? Don’t answer that.

All the flowers

The above are all phone photos – apologies on the quality. Below are from my camera. Keep scrolling, you’re not finished yet!

My dearest mother in law (affectionately referred to as Nanners) would have chopped off her right arm to be able to transplant these back to N. Texas. Fat chance. With nightly rainfall, 148% humidity, and sandy soil, these flowers are best suited to their current conditions. Besides, it’s less for me to kill.

_______________

I ask you –

Do you speak other languages? Bonus points for pig latin and smartassery.

How many photos of flowers do you have on your phone?

Coffee v Alcohol. Pick your poison!

Vacation Takeaways

Hello, Gulf of Mexico

The humor mini me imparts on every situation is too much. Example numero uno (with many more to come), upon seeing palm trees for the first time in her long lived 4 years, she proudly proclaimed they were coconut trees. Later she conceded to their proper name and adopted the term “coconut palms”. Not every battle fought must be won.

From angry mosquitoes to the forever walk – the extent of my exercise regimen involved using the stairs to climb 3 flights multiple times a day and running away from tiny hell creatures bent on sucking my blood.

I attempted to eat my weight in crustaceans. Surely the scale would agree.

And cake, too

The Gulf of Mexico has some of the warmest waters I’ve ever encountered. The sand bars are my favorite because just as soon as you lose sight of your feet they suddenly reappear again like magic!

“surf board”

Homemade tortillas and the hottest salsa on the planet. I could eat it every day.

As I re-tell these short vacation blips and use my photograph collection as a handy reminder, I believe I may have to write a separate post on just flowers and trees, as well as one on just food. Skip it if you care not.

There was alcohol, too!

Gabriella’s

On that note, I will be here reminiscing seven, short days in paradise. And nursing my sunburn.

______________________

I ask you –

Did you vacation this year? Where? Staycations count, too!

Did you take vacations as a child?

Name your best sunburn remedy.

Grassy Colors

Just as often as I crave sweet treats, my body craves vegetables. Ok, maybe not “just” as often. I enjoy my workday lunch of grilled chicken salad. Really, I do! But as it continues to heat up outside, I find myself seeking out new recipes for Brussels sprouts, green peppers, and fresh corn. If I didn’t love meat and fish, I would find it easy to subscribe to a vegetarian way of life. The more colors the better! There’s very few I don’t enjoy; then again you can fry anything and I’ll most likely eat it.

Shades of green

Perhaps it’s way off, but I once had a headache for a month while on a long underway. 30. Straight. Days. Sure, the Navy isn’t known for being relaxing, but no amount of rest, ibuprofen, or caffeine helped. Eventually diagnosed with migraines, I thought for sure that was the end of it, but it took some time to realize my nutrition played a large role. Onboard the ship, the availability of fresh fruits and vegetables begins to lag as time goes on. Naturally things spoil. And no matter how much iceberg lettuce I would eat, the headaches would return. Much research has been done on the link between what we eat and migraine triggers, although I’ve heard more about chocolate and some “-hypnols” than anything else. Maybe I’m on to something.

Veggie Scramble

Call it what you will: placebo effect, wishful thinking, whatever you like. However, intuitive eating is possibly more important than anything else. When my body has had enough cookies, I know. And when it says hold up lady it’s time for greenery, again, I listen. Thankfully I was raised with a deep appreciation for fresh-from-the-garden wares (although I suck at gardening). My parents would spend weeks cooking and canning fresh salsa, okra, and pickled everything. Oddly enough to me, many children aren’t exposed to this natural, live off the land upbringing now. Even then it was becoming obvious this way of life was falling by the wayside. Long gone times.

On a lighter note, my strengths include shelling purple hulled peas and endlessly complaining about ants. But…if you need some help pulling weeds or over-watering your plants, I’m your girl. Pay no attention to me stealing your vegetables.

____________________

I ask you –

On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you love vegetables?

Name your favorite veggies!

Did you have a childhood garden or know someone who did?

Solid Work Takes Time

I like to manage projects, but I don’t always complete them in a timely manner.

Background: I bought an old chest approximately 11 months ago. Completion time: 11 months. Difficulty level: 2. Same issue, different project. Background: My dad custom built a shadow box for my Navy memorabilia. Completion time: (him) 1 month, max. (me) 24 months. Difficulty level: (him) 4. (me) 1.

Moral of the story: if you expect me to get things done in a hurry, please lower your expectations. But, on the bright side, I completed 2 projects this summer! For past information on the chest renovations, you may visit this post: https://wordpress.com/block-editor/post/running-on-fumes.blog/776.

Now I have the utmost pleasure to reveal…..Ta-Da!! He completed it and I (finally) filled it. Better late than never, right?

As for the chest, in my defense, I was solely responsible for the stripping, sanding, painting, re-assembling, and decorating, among other woodworking things. I didn’t want to rush it lest I mess something up. And when I started it, I was working a million hours a week so naturally the time I could devote was a small fraction of what is available to me now. I mean anything can be an excuse, right? Overall, I’m super impressed by my own work. The simple understatements of the chest serve my purpose. My mini aptly refers to it as a treasure chest and our next project is to find and paint a miniature version just for her.

Stand by to stand by.

_______________

I ask you –

Who built it better: dad (shadow box) or me (chest)? My feelings won’t be hurt. I’m blessed to have a dad who is both handy and creative. He made my vision come alive.

On average, how long does it take you to complete a project?

Ideas for my next project(s)?

Matters of the Heart

Quite possibly there may be nothing more difficult than repairing a friendship. Even running very long distances doesn’t compare. Physical work can be trained for; emotional work requires time and patience. If it was so easy to chalk it up to a simple misunderstanding, perhaps we could do the I’m sorry routine, hug, and all would be right in the world again.

This is us

Adult human relationship just aren’t this easy. Or if they are, I have not located them. Believe it or not, I don’t share everything here. If you thought I did, so sorry. Long story short, my best friend of over 15 years and I disagreed on some fundamental beliefs. Now before you wonder how these belief systems could have never come up in all the years before, rest assured they did. She and I agreed to disagree; best friends are like that. As with any strong relationship, we vowed to support the other while remaining true to ourselves.

Upon moving back to Texas, I began to see things I wasn’t comfortable with and I felt impacted the small girl I am responsible for raising into a strong, capable, independent woman. I believed her fairy godmother was on a path impossible to continue overlooking. In all fairness, I have also been down some troubled paths and was never truly confronted about them. For this I’ve asked much forgiveness.

Maybe unforgivable though was my best friend was facing a complicated, unfair time in her own life. One I promised to be there for her through. Instead, I bowed out ungracefully. Be kind. I’m no saint. And so this brings you up to speed on the last 10 +/- months.

We may be clowns but guaranteed we have the most fun

The repair part of this discussion is slow going. We have short bursts of conversation and try to leave the past behind. Our tone is guarded. As to be expected. Will we ever find a new path, together? I honestly don’t know, but I have hope. One doesn’t quit a decade long relationship without giving everything they’ve got to make it successful.

Best night of our life

I realize this isn’t the post many of you are accustomed to; however, on the off chance my best friend finds it, maybe it will serve its purpose. Love finds a way.

____________________

I ask you –

Words of advice?

How long have you and your best friend been a part of each other’s lives?

Tell me how you and your friend met. She and I worked together. I was responsible for training her (I think) and she got in my face to demand why I was “talking sh*t about my family”. I hadn’t said anything about her family, my ex-husband had but you know how small towns are. From then on, we were inseperable.

Fickle Life

Literally nothing but net

I didn’t realize how short this post was until I got ready to publish. As much as I debated on editing this to make it longer, nothing came of it. Better luck next time.

Bad news. The mud volleyball tournament is cancelled. Well, rescheduled to Labor Day. Still gonna be hot so what’s the difference haha I was disappointed for a minute, then I remembered this past weekend’s long run went to hell within 2 miles so now I need to ensure the next long run doesn’t do the same. And if I was playing volleyball all day the chances of running anywhere except to get snow cones was nothing short of nada. It works out.

I’m just filling the time with activities until my mini comes back from her Tennessean summer with her dad. Typically we alternate months but after the stay at home order radically changed our plans we had to make up for it on the back end. Happy to report she’s healthy, happy, and spoiled. And she’ll be home in a few weeks, just in time for vacation!

Physiology, not pictured

PSA. Did you know the average person can’t answer 5 random questions on 5th grade anatomy? I made up the stat; thought I’d join the club. Seems par for the course lately. But this is clearly true because the amount of people who don’t know the nose and mouth are connected is staggering. Otherwise why would their mask be covering the latter and not the former?

Stay tuned for a post on things that annoy me, currently in development.

_________________________

I ask you –

Name your favorite flavor of snow cone! Dragon’s blood, I think.

Submit your thoughts on things that annoy you so I don’t sound like a complete ogre when I make my own list.

Should I go play volleyball by myself this weekend or run? Don’t answer that, I’m easily swayed.