mandyholbert

A glimpse into our family – the good, the bad, and, of course, the funny

Why I am Late for Work – Excuse # 76 September 30, 2012

It was already “one of those” mornings.  I was running behind schedule and nothing seemed to be going right.  I still needed to pack lunches, feed the kids breakfast, get them both ready, and I hoped to have time to fix my hair and put make-up on for the day…

Kendra ran into my room with a terrible look on her face.

“What’s wrong?” I asked.

“I don’t want to tell you because I’m afraid you’ll be mad,” she answered with a trembling bottom lip.

“No, I won’t,” I said, even though I knew there was a distinct possibility that whatever she was going to say could very easily make me mad.  I started running through possible scenarios in my head.

“My hamster DIED!” she wailed and immediately started bawling.  “I.  went.  in.  to.  feed.  her.  and,” she explained in between dramatic sobs, “she was DEAD!”

RIP little guy

“Oh, honey, I’m so sorry.”  I pulled her into my arms and tried to comfort her as she cried.

Then, Max walked in.  He looked at his crying sister then at me then back at her.  He shrugged his shoulders and said, “You should have been more responsible.”  I glared at him as fresh howls came out of Kendra.

“Maxwell Trenton!  Get out of here!” I yelled.

“It’s all my fault,” Kendra kept crying.

Arg.

I tried to comfort her and still get things done since we did have school and work to try to get to on time.  I sent her to brush her teeth.

I rushed around the house like a wild woman, throwing lunches together and banging things around.  I could hear Max singing in the back of the house, but it didn’t register exactly what song he had chosen for the morning.

Then, when I heard Kendra start yelling, I realized what that little rascal was singing at the top of his lungs.  That’s right.  None other than “Another One Bites the Dust.”

How fitting.

If that’s not a reason to be late for work, I don’t know what is.

it was fun for a while…

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Our Own Terabithia September 25, 2012

The king made the decision – they would seek refuge for the night high in the trees.  And so the royal family made preparations to camp perched in the branches of a towering poplar.

They climbed into her branches and peered through the leaves into the enchanted forest.  The queen and her two small children settled in for the long, cold night while the king scavenged for firewood with their trusty Boxador.

He returned with a cart full of freshly chopped wood and built a fire high above the forest floor.  The family huddled around the small fire and roasted their dinner, keeping the aroma of sweet meat in the leafy canopy in the growing darkness.

When the stars began peeking through the leaves to get a glimpse of the royal family, the queen prepared pallets upon which they would slumber.  The king stoked the fire and the queen tucked the small boy and girl into their downy blankets.

The poplar embraced the family with her giant limbs while they gave way to sleep.  The ever-attentive dog kept watch for the wild things of the night…

We had a true Terabithian adventure last weekend – we spent the night in the tree house directly under the stars.  It was all Ronnie’s idea, and the kids were understandably thrilled about the plan.

I, on the other hand, wasn’t really what you would call a happy camper.  It was cold and windy and I was miserable.  We only own two sleeping bags, so the kids naturally got those, so Ronnie and I covered up with rather inadequate (for the circumstances) blankets and froze our butts off.  The cool breeze chilled me from every angle – it had the unique advantage of even being able to get us from underneath since we positioned ourselves in a tree.

Ronnie tried so hard to make me comfortable.  He was really sweet.  He moved my cot closer to the fire and told me he’d be fine if I went to the house.  I couldn’t sleep at all.  I swear every time I closed my eyes, the fire went out.  We spent all night trying to keep it going.  All I could think about were Copperheads.  And when I did manage to doze, I dreamed of fighting off the bears that were trying to eat us.

Sometime in the middle of the night, Ronnie and I were lying there, freezing and resigned to the fact that we weren’t going to sleep, and he said to me, “At least you’re being a good sport.”

“I am?” I asked, a little surprised, but proud of myself.

“Not really,” he answered, “but at least you’re doing it.”

And that kind of summed up the night for us.  I wanted morning to come so badly.

Then, to our surprise, we heard Kendra’s sweet little voice.  “The stars in the trees look amazing.  This is so cool.”  I looked over to see her sleepily enthralled by the view above her.

That changed everything.  Even when she needed to walk all the way back to the house to use the bathroom and get more socks, it didn’t bother me.  I didn’t even notice the cold while we walked.  Well, while I walked and she skipped and chattered about how cool it was to walk in the dark and how amazing nature is.

When we got back to the tree house, I zipped her back into her sleeping bag and she went right back to sleep.  I checked on Max.  He was snoozing happily even though he was completely uncovered.  I felt him and he was  somehow warm as can be.  I zipped him back up, too.

I climbed back in my cot.  Even though we had hours left until dawn, we were out of firewood, and it was getting colder and colder, it was somehow not quite as terrible knowing how much fun the kids were having.

I think they’ll remember it forever.  And we will, too.  And I think we all might remember it as the royal family on an enchanted adventure…

 

Six words never to say at school September 19, 2012

Filed under: children,family,humor,Max,parenting — mandyholbert @ 6:30 am
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Max is figuring this kindergarten thing out.  Last night, when Ronnie tucked him in, Max told him a few things:

“There’s six things you can’t say at school.  You can’t say poop at school.”  He raised a finger. “You can’t say bomb at school.”  Another finger.  “You can’t say guns at school.  You can’t say foopy-bo-poopy at school.”  Still counting on his fingers.  “You can’t say fart at school.  And you can’t say weirdo at school.”

This is very serious.  How will he manage not to say “foopy-bo-poopy” for an entire school year?

He also told Ronnie, “I cried on the outside at school today.  Most of the time I just cry on the inside, but today I cried on the outside.  My leg hurt and it was bleeding so my teacher gave me a Band-Aid.”

Did it really happen?  We’ll never know.  But, he has mentioned several times that he’s struggling not to cry at school.

The other day he told my mom that he cries on the inside all day at school because he misses me.

Last night, he told me he needs to go to the doctor because something is wrong with his eyes.  Of course, I thought he could be having vision problems, so I asked him what was wrong with his eyes.

“They keep wanting to burst into tears,” he answered.

He’s melting my heart.  We’re encouraging him and making school sound exciting and fun.  He’s doing great in school – he has been a good boy, he’s making new friends, and he loves his teachers.  He’s still just struggling with doing it all on his own.

For being such a tough little guy, he sure has a sweet, tender heart.

 

It’s never too early for Max September 12, 2012

Filed under: children,family,humor,Max,parenting — mandyholbert @ 5:52 am
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Sometimes I get a nice warm bath ready for one of the kids before I wake them for school.  Yesterday, it was Max’s turn to be gathered from a warm cozy bed and be put straight into a soothing bubble bath.   Those early morning moments before they’re really awake are so sweet and special.  And who wouldn’t enjoy being pampered like that?  What a great way to start the day.

Three rubber ducks in foam bath

Three rubber ducks in foam bath (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I was in the bathroom getting ready for work when Max stood up in the tub.

“Mommy, will you wash my back for me?” he sweetly asked in a still sleepy voice.

Will I wash his back?  Of course!  He’s starting to need me less and less as he’s becoming a big boy, a kindergarten boy, so I happily took the washcloth and lovingly started scrubbing his back.

He looked over his shoulder and smiled.  It was early.  I didn’t interpret the smile as anything but sweet.

“Mommy, will you just do my bum, too, since it’s right there?” he asked.

I smiled.  “Of course I will, honey.”

His timing was impeccable.  As soon as I had his little heinie covered with a sudsy washcloth, he blasted an exaggerated wet-cheeks fart and immediately started cackling.

I should have known better.  But, like I said, it was early.  Oh, dear.

Well, he woke me up, anyway.  I let him finish his bum himself.

somehow I don’t believe he’s only the 10th funniest boy in his class like he claims…

 

September 11, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — mandyholbert @ 6:05 am

In honor of back to school, here’s one of my favorite moments from last school year.

mandyholbert

I’m not a fan of profanity, but I am one of those people who rate it.  In the hierarchy of cuss words, there are a few that are totally off-limits.  We don’t say them, so naturally, our kids don’t know them.

The other day when I picked Kendra up from dance, she got in the car and told me rather dramatically, “Mom!  So-and-so called So-and-so the f-word.  That is really bad!  And I don’t even know what the f-word is!”

Hmmm….

“Yeah, that is really bad, Kendra.  She should not have said that.”

“I know!  It’s so bad!”

We continued our ride in silence for a few moments.  And then came the question I hadn’t really considered how I would handle yet: “Mommy…what is the f-word?”

This was one of those moments for which you can never really be prepared.  Do I tell my little seven-year-old what that awful word…

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That’s all I need! And this remote control…and this lamp. That’s all I need! September 9, 2012

Remember that scene from The Jerk– the “That’s All I Need” scene?  Steven Martin is leaving his fancy house and his fancy life, and he doesn’t need to take anything with him, except an ashtray.  And a paddle-ball game.  And a remote control.  Then a lamp. A chair.  His dog?  Each time he added another item, he declared it was all he needed.

Cover of "The Jerk (26th Anniversary Edit...

Cover of The Jerk (26th Anniversary Edition)

Ronnie and I cleaned the garage yesterday.  It was a mess.  A big mess.  We did it, but he reminded me of Steven Martin the whole time, grasping on to junk like he somehow needed it.  I don’t even think he can explain why half of the stuff in there is even there at all.

Seems to me he could be dealing with some hoarding tendencies, and he of course is in denial, so I took the liberty of finding a diagnostic test and taking it on his behalf.  This will, naturally, be scientifically accurate and utterly indisputable.

DURING THE PAST WEEK.
0                  1                                    2                                       3                             4
Never  Rarely   Sometimes/Occasionally  Frequently/Often Very Often
1. How often do you avoid trying to discard possessions
because it is too stressful or time consuming?

We put off cleaning the garage for several months because of all the stuff.  We knew it was going to be an all-day ordeal, which it was.  3
2. How often do you feel compelled to acquire something
you see? e.g., when shopping or offered free things?

All I can say about this is that I found lots of merchandise still in the bag from the store that he bought for projects that he plans on getting to one day.  3
3. How often do you decide to keep things you do not
need and have little space for?

me – Ronnie, why do you have this kitchen sink faucet?

Ronnie – Because it’s a perfectly good faucet.

me – Then why did you replace it in the first place?

Ronnie – Because it’s a piece of junk.

me – Hmm…3
4. How frequently does clutter in your home prevent you
from inviting people to visit?

Our clutter problem is restricted to the garage, but we have had the strict rule for the past couple of months to have the garage door closed when people are over. 3
5. How often do you actually buy (or acquire for free) things
for which you have no immediate use or need?

see number 2; 3
6. To what extent does the clutter in your home prevent
you from using parts of your home for their intended
purpose? For example, cooking, using furniture, washing
dishes, cleaning, etc.

You mean to tell me that some people can actually park their cars in their garage!? 3
7. How often are you unable to discard a possession you
would like to get rid of?

me – Ronnie, what should I do with all of this stuff?  I don’t even know what it is!

Ronnie – Just throw it away.

me – Okay.

Ronnie – Wait!  Just let me look at everything before you throw it away. 3

I think it’s safe to say that he could have a proclivity towards hoarding.  Thank goodness he isn’t too far gone and we were able to haul a bunch of junk away yesterday.

Our garage is clean as can be!  He only kept what he needed.

“This gas can, this wrench, this watering can, this boat oar, and my dog.  That’s all I need!”

Disclaimer: This post is intended to be tongue-in-cheek.  Ronnie is not really a hoarder.  He is a very hard-working man who puts in long hours and understands that the little free time he does have is better spent with his family than separating the 42,000 different screws in the garage.  All four of us contributed to the mess in the garage, and all four of us cleaned it up.  But, he is a pack-rat, and I did enjoy teasing him about it when I found some of his odder stashes of junk.

 

September 6, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — mandyholbert @ 6:22 am

mandyholbert

This month marks eleven years that Ronnie and I have been married.  Nowadays, that’s quite the accomplishment for a couple our age.  Lots of marriages don’t make it, and many people are on their second or third at this point.

We are still going strong.

I thought I’d share some keys to our successful marriage, since statistically speaking, we’re practically experts in the area.  So, without further ado, here are the Holbert tips to a happy, long-term marriage:

1.  Remember when all your married friends and family gave you that great advice when you were about to tie the knot? – “Never go to bed mad at each other.”  Well, forget that.  Sometimes, all you need to work things out is to get a good night’s rest.  You can always re-evaluate in the morning.  Maybe you’ll still be mad.  Maybe not.  Just sleep when you’re supposed to sleep.  There’s no…

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