Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Life Lesson #8765

I have learned that when someone says they want your advice, they're usually lying. They don't want any advice. They want to explain their side, then defend it when you give another opinion. It's pointless.

The next time someone comes to you saying they would like your advice, RUN.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Party! Party!

I am one of the first people to agree that parties are great! Truly they are. Several weeks ago the recent high school graduate next door decided to have a party. Friday night. Saturday night. I figured she's about to graduate and so let her have her fun. It's one weekend. And it seems the parenting over there is sort of loose and I figured the parents were home. Um. No, they weren't*. They partied until almost 3:00am.

I let it go. Then the next weekend came around. More parties. Yippee! My patience had long since gone and I wanted sleep. At this point in my life I have realized that teens are idiots and my tolerance level for them is low. Thanks to my local police department for wrapping it up for me.

A few days later I ran into the step-father of said high school graduate. I asked if they were out of town the last two weekends. They sure were! So I let them know of the recent activity going on. They had no idea**. He apologized and we went about our day.

Later on there was a knock on the door. It was the teen actually apologizing. Then she totally wiped out her apology when she asked, "What about it bothered you? The noise level**? The amount of people or the late hours?"

What does it matter which it was? It all bothered me. Hubby and I pay good money on the  mortgage to have to put up with your idiocy. I already have to deal with your step brother peeping over my fence****.

 I'm fine with people in this hood wanting to be left alone. But include me in that bunch and we'll all get along just fine. We'll just wave high when we occasionally pass each other on the street and forget this ever happened. 

*I didn't know this til later.
**Now you do. Doesn't every parent know that when they leave the teens at home, nothing good is going to happen?
***Not only loud music, but idiot kids screaming and yelling in the backyard. Has society really stooped to this level? I'm watching my kids like a hawk and I'm expecting my friends to help me.
****Asking him relentlessly to stop doesn't help. Yes, there's a higher fence in my future and it won't get here soon enough.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

What We've Done This Summer. So Far.

We're practically at the half-way mark of the summer. Here's a run down of things we've done so far:

Trip to NYC.

Child One went to church camp.

We took a tour of Lucky Layla Farms and saw them milk the cows. Even walked away with some tasty butter. I didn't have the nerve to buy the raw milk. I know it's supposed to be good for me, but maybe in time.

Summer reading programs rock! I'll provide our book lists in another post.

Hawaiian Falls.

We went with some friends to the Federal Bureau of Engraving. This was a very neat trip! We learned how money was printed*. This trip is free and if you go during Spring Break or the last week in June and July they have demonstrations for the kids. I couldn't take any pictures. The security there is like I imagine it would be at the Pentagon or White House. Just pretty much leave everything in your car. Unfortunately.

On the way home from the FBoE we visited the Fort Worth Water Gardens. That was pretty neat. This was the first time that my girls and their friends had seen it. This day was so much fun because we hadn't seen our friends in a while and it was just neat! 

Swimming galore!

That's it so far. It's been nice! 

*This trip was so neat we're going back in July. I have to take Hubby because I know this is right up his alley!

Monday, July 8, 2013


That feeling you get when the person you're with is texting non-stop. But when you're not together and you text that person it takes what feels like forever to get a response. Kinda makes you not want to spend time with that person anymore.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

NYC 2013-Day Six & Seven

What a way to spend Fathers Day! Hubby can say he spent FD in NYC. Today was check out day from the hotel in Brooklyn and head to the hotel in Jersey because our plane was leaving at 6am. We wanted to be at an airport hotel so we wouldn't have to worry about being too far away and traffic.

I had gotten my hopes up temporarily that we'd be able to catch a flight home today, but with only 1-5 seats available we didn't want to chance getting stuck w/out our luggage*.

So off we go to the hotel. They were nice enough to let us do an early check in. Once we got to our room at the airport hotel (in Jersey) we looked out our window and we had a better view of Manhattan than we had from our hotel in Brooklyn**. This was the view we longed for while in Brooklyn.

Once we got our bags settled it was lunch. Good grief. We debated on whether to order from room service or go to the food court at the airport. So we hopped on the airport shuttle bus to catch some grub. This lunch was the closest we got to Tex-Mex. It was a restaurant somewhat like Chipotle. After lunch we ended up walking back to the hotel. We waited quite a while for the airport shuttle to come back, but gave up after about 15 minutes or so. We walked back to the hotel. It wasn't really that bad. We didn't have to cross any major highways or anything that scary.

Once back in our room it was movies on demand for us. First up, Oz The Great And Powerful and The Croods. Dinner came from room service. I had a burger and it was actually one of the best burgers I think I've had.

Bedtime was upon us. A little bit closer to home.

Day Seven

I guess we're a glutton for punishment. Or we like to make sure we get on flights. Hubby and I woke up at 3am. It wasn't that hard since neither of us slept all that great. There was a plane to catch at 6am and we were gonna be on it.

The kids did great. We got out of the hotel by our goal time. But it went downhill from there.

This may be the reason I just start advocating we drive on our vacations, TSA. It's 5am and we're shuttled through the TSA checkpoint. The girl with a chip on her shoulder tells everyone that electronics need to be in their own bin. The Momma Bear in me is trying to keep up with my kids and what they might be going through, our ten million bins of stuff and whether it's being confiscated and then I hear, "Ma'am, take off your flip flops and sweater around your waist"***. God forbid, I got scatter brained and forgot to take my sweater off and flip flops. Plus, one hand is holding my boarding pass and drivers license. I didn't want to set that down anywhere, HELLO! So she's there rolling her eyes****.

So I'm throwing flip flops and my sweater in yet another bin. And she's still reminding me she needs to see my boarding pass and drivers license. When I put my hand out to get my DL and boarding pass back from her she kept my DL. She's still holding on to it. When I say "witch" I mean with a capital "B"*****. She had nothing to hold me for and no reason to suspect.  Then she accused me of snapping at her. I ain't got time for that. Please.

We finally got on our flight. It was a flight going from Newark to Houston. It's never good to get to your connecting flight just to hear that flights are delayed because of major thunderstorms in your home city. It took everything I had to hold back the tears. Once we found out one flight was full, we went to another gate. On the other end of the airport. For roughly five hours. We even debated renting a car and driving back******. Back and forth til one of the nicest gate agents EVER finally started putting people on the wait list on flights. I think the flight we finally got on was filled with more wait list people than scheduled people. Fine with me.

Spending the day at the airport after spending the day before in a hotel just sucks. Crap happens.

Home sweet home!

I have to give major kudos to my kids. They kept up with us the whole vacation. They never complained. They fared better than me at times. I'm thrilled that they'll have this memory. Vacations were never a priority when I was growing up and we all got to see it together for the first time. My kids make me proud. Proud that God chose me to be their mother. I an one lucky woman!

*When you're ready to be home, you're ready to be home.
**There was NO view in Brooklyn since our hotel had no windows except for the skylights.
***On flying days I dress comfortably. I had a cute little dress on and flip flops. Plus a sweater in case I get cold. Plus, I don't want to have to deal with socks and shoes through TSA. Just get a bomb sniffing dog for goodness sake, you morons.
****If you don't like your job or you can't do it professionally, THEN FIND ANOTHER JOB. YOU HAVE NO BUSINESS IN THE PUBLIC SECTOR. Find a job where you can just sit in an empty room and not have to deal with people.
*****I was vindicated when I heard one of my favorite radio talk show guys talking about the same TSA.
******But we waited it out since our luggage would be waiting for us at the airport.

Monday, July 1, 2013

NYC 2013-Day Five

Today started off like all the others. At a leisurely pace. A reservation at Top of the Rock was waiting for us at 2pm. After breakfast we headed off in that general vicinity.

We reached the Brooklyn Bridge and decided it was the perfect opportunity to make our trek across one of the most well known and beautiful icons of the city. The weather couldn't have been more perfect! With a bottle of water and a hot dog in hand we set off for the other side. Along with 5,000 of our not so closest friends.

The loves of my life.
View of the Manhattan Bridge from the Brooklyn Bridge.

The views were amazing. People, cars and bicyclists packed on this monstrosity of engineering wonder.

On our way to Top of the Rock we made pit stops into Sephora, American Girl, and Coach. My living dolls got an AG NY t-shirt for their dolls and Coach was just Coach. The Sephora store is worth visiting for the architecture alone. Just go in and look.

Right outside Rockefeller Center is the iconic statue of Prometheus. This is quite a site. Everybody's seen it on tv or in a movie, but when you see it in person, it's a little majestic, with a little bit of over the top. 

When you get inside the Rockefeller building for the TotR you go through a tour of pictures of the people behind the building. Pictures of the people whose name is on the building and pictures of the people who were actually doing the hard labor. The elevator that takes you to the top has a clear ceiling to see all the way up the elevator shaft. It's one of the fastest elevators that I've ever been on. But it didn't feel like we were going that fast.

Nothing could beat the views from Top of the Rock. It's a complete 360 degrees of NYC. There are three outside levels of observation decks. Hubby was good with standing close to the building. Nor did he go to the third level.
View of Central Park from Top of the Rock.


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View of the Empire State Building and lower Manhattan.

After TotR we set out for Bloomingdales. I had wanted to see it since the one in Dallas closed over 20 years ago. As soon as we walked in I was overwhelmed*. Each brand had their own "shop" within the store. I'm not a fan of that. If I want to go look for a certain color skirt, I want to see all of them in the same place. I don't want to have to venture through every brand in a different area of the store.When we realized that Bloomies was 7 floors of high falootin' brand names and snotty salespeople, we decided to go straight out the opposite door. We at least made it through the first floor.

When we came out the other side of Bloomies we happened to come across Magnolia Bakery. This was on my list of things to visit**.  Sure enough it was time for a sweet treat! Well, the cupcake wasn't any better than ones I've made in my own home. But we can say, "been there done that" now.

After another full day in the bag we decided to head back to the hotel. Off to the subway. Right train. Wrong direction. After we realized we were going in the wrong direction we got off to get on the train going the right direction. Child Two had to go to the bathroom. We came across Enzo's. A great Italian restaurant. We found our excuse to go potty. It was called dinner.  We were in another nice area of Brooklyn and the restaurant had tables spilling out into the street. When you go to the back it had a courtyard with tables as well.The people here couldn't have been any nicer.

Too bad we didn't notice the "Cash Only" sign outside the door***. With the tab paid and bellies full it was time to head back to the train. In the right direction. Once we got back to the hotel it was a fun-filled night of laundry and to get our stuff ready to head back home****.

Stuff we saw on the subway train:
-People going to work
-People going home
-A girl with a safety pin for an earring

-A girl with a blue streak in her hair
-A girl with all pink hair
-Couples going on dates, with about 100 of their not so closest friends
-A quartet singing Rockin' Robin

All in all, not so much different than people that would ride the DART or that live in my general area. It would be nice if there were more quartets, though.

At this point we're missing home. Here are some specifics:
-Elbow room
-Being able to just get in the car and go(it seems that if you have somewhere to be at a certain time, there is uber-planning involved!
-My own not-so-small corner of the world in Texas
-Blue Bell ice cream (what they call ice cream is not ice cream)

Some things we didn't like about NYC:
-Smokers everywhere
-Sensory overload
-Nasty dirty

-Scaffoldings seemed to be on the outside of every building we wanted to see 
-NYC people, in general are not nice

*No need to wipe your eyes or check your glasses. You read that right. I was overwhelmed and intimidated.
**Yes. A cupcake was on my list. We had come across one at Grand Central Station, but I think we had already reached our sugar high for that day and I just couldn't.
***Yes. We carry cash. But who carries a vacation's worth of cash in their pocket? Thankfully we had it covered.
****This is where I totally ruined my new NY jacket. The red color ran onto the white and I haven't been able to get it out yet.