Watch You Say?

The following is a true story.

Yesterday, I went to the mall in search of a dress watch for McDaddy. I bought him one several years ago, but it decided to slow down a few months ago. And slowing down is a bad thing when you’re a watch.

I had about two hours in between Valentine parties, (which isn’t a lot of time) but I was sure I could find one that I liked.

Except that I didn’t.

I was looking for a dress watch, but I didn’t think McDaddy would want one with a huge face on it because he is not all about the flash and the oversized shiny objects dangling from his wrist. And I wasn’t going to buy a watch just to be buying a watch.

Y’all. I am serious about my shopping.

So. I left the mall, drove all the way back to the school to attend Alex’s party and then headed back to the mall for a second go-round. This time, I had an hour. My first stop was Reeds. I immediately saw a watch that I really liked. I asked the salesman if I could see it, and he made the comment that it was on a great sale today. He handed me the watch, grabbed a calculator, punched some buttons and said thirty-two fifty.

I was sold.

As I was digging through my purse for my wallet, I commented that thirty-two fifty was a great price for that beautiful watch, and I knew McDaddy would love it. Before I could get the money out to pay, the salesman said, “That is a great price. It is regularly six thousand.”

With wide, surprised eyes, I said, “Oh, you meant thirty-two, as in thirty-two hundred?”

I could barely get the words out.

“Yes. Yes ma’am. This watch is regularly six-thousand dollars.” he said.

Sweet holy Moses.

I laughed out loud because if ever there was a time that I was out of my league, this little trip to the Reeds was it. And also because if I were going to drop six grand in a jewelry store, you better believe there would be diamonds involved.

The salesguy looked at me like I had lost my mind.

I couldn’t stop laughing.

I laughed even harder when salesguy asked his salesman friend to show me the case with the “more affordable” watches.

Needless to say, I did not buy that fancy, expensive watch.

But I did purchase a nice watch. A fancy, nice, affordable watch.

And I could have bought 19 more of them for the price of that one.

My Name Is Princess Julie

This is the point in the evening right before bed where I get comfortable on my big, blue, bloggy couch and let the contents of my brain fly off the tips of my fingers. It is a time I look forward to because it generally means the kids are in bed, and the TiVo is going strong. Which coincidentally means I will not be summonsed to wipe a bottom or break up a fight between Sonic and Knuckles.

On Friday, we loaded up the truck, hooked on to the camper and picked up the kids from school. We travelled an hour down the road to meet up with several families from Stevie’s cub-scout den. It was, I guess you could say, our last hoo-rah of summer. There are few things that excite me more than a good camping trip with great people.

This is the point in the story where I could go into great detail about all the fun that we had, the raccoon that was all up in our trash, or the fact that after six or seven hours of fishing, the folks that were fishing only caught ONE stinkin’ fish, but really, all of that is not nearly as important as what I’m getting ready to share with you.

Late Saturday evening I was hanging out with Stevie, his friend Levi, and Levi’s two-year-old brother, Noah. Stevie and Levi were hard at work playing Legos, and Noah was eating a banana and saying funny things that made me giggle. I had forgotten how much fun a two-year old can be mainly because the last time I had a two-year-old in my everyday life, I was constantly deciding between pulling my hair out and pulling my hair out. (I love you, Alex and I’m so glad you’re five now!) Noah has a sweet voice and I adore him because he cracks me up. I was sitting beside of him when I asked if he knew my name. He drew his eye-brows down and said, “Uh, no”. I looked that sweet boy square in the eye and I said, “My name is Princess Julie”.

I had no idea he would believe me, but low and behold, he repeated it about twelve times, and each time I laughed harder. As one who knows me might expect, I spent the rest of the weekend asking him my name.

And each time he would say, “Princessss Julie”.

We returned home on Sunday and began the task of unloading the camper, sorting the laundry, and getting things ready for school. In the midst of the unpacking madness, I received a text from Noah’s mama letting me know that Noah was prancing around their living room with a bucket on his head saying, “I’m Princess Julie, I’m Princess Julie”.

Y’all.

After twenty-some years of being a self-proclaimed Princess, I’ve finally convinced another human being that I am, indeed, a Princess.

Never mind that he is two.

From this day forward, you may refer to me as Her Royal Highness, Princess Julie.

Speaking From Experience

What this girl:

 Would have told this girl:

Thirteen years ago….

  • McDaddy is not a big fan of the nagging, so stop it!
  • Nor does he like whining.
  • Cooking will be a lot easier if you plan out a menu. AND LEARN TO COOK.
  • McDaddy is methodical in thought and behavior. The quicker you understand that, the better off you will be. No amount of “nudging” will speed that process up.
  • Finish that thesis or else you’ll be kicking yourself years from now.
  • Your first year of marriage will come with lots of changes, so hold on tight! The next twelve will be better than you thought possible.
  • You have NO need for a formal living room and formal dining room, so that should not be a requirement when searching for a home. You will let lots of wonderful houses get past you for that very reason.
  • McDaddy is of the opinion that you should not eat or drink in a vehicle one can never have too many vehicles. He does not drink or smoke, so you should just go with it.
  • Those few business trips each year are nothing girlfriend. Get over it and prepare yourself for many more!
  • Do not buy all of that junk. In thirteen years, you will be wondering where it all came from.
  • The word deployment is scary. You can and will get through it.
  • Pick your battles, girl. Pick your battles.
  • You think you love that boy now… just wait till he becomes a daddy!
  • I’m sorry goes a long way.
  • Just say no. TO PERMS. Your hair will thank you later.
  • Sleep now. There will be a day when you will pay money for uninterrupted sleep.
  • You might as well get used to spelling your name when you say it. People will botch it up daily.
  • Keep a running record of what you do with your time. Once the kids come along, you will ask yourself what you did with all of it.
  • Just because you write check amounts in a different column in the checkbook, that doesn’t necessarily mean you have more money.
  • You will be approached by a gal in 2001 about buying a basket. I wouldn’t even get that started if I were you.
  • Remember that McDaddy is methodical… the whole checkbook register thing will drive him insane, so you should pay close attention to what you are doing.
  • While he may not be big on buying extravagant gifts for holidays, he will, at various times knock your socks off – with surprise trips and twenty dollar bills strung out all over the house for you to find – for no good reason.
  • He is a good man. Remember that the next time you roll your eyes behind his back!
  • That career in corrections won’t hold a candle to motherhood. Just wait and see what I tell ya.
  • Lay off the Little Debbies.
  • I know you love the house, but that hill will make you crazy in the winter.
  • One of these days, I will tell you I told you so!

Enjoy your Friday, y’all!

Top Ten Things I Learned At Santa’s Workshop

Sometime last May I received a phone call from the PTA President at Stevie’s school asking me if I’d be willing to run for PTA President. Only, the whole “run for PTA President” thing is a little much because it actually involved no running.

And no competition for that matter.

The fact is that there wasn’t one single soul willing to do the job.

Except for me.

Pardon me if this post seems vaguely familiar. I know I have referred to *the phonecall* in several posts. The phone call that I SHOULD have had the sense to not answer, or at least think about before I agreed.

Anyway, like I was saying, a phone call came. I answered. And accepted.

End of story.

NOT!

Along with the title of PTA President, I inherited a consolidation mess, fund raising attempts, a few PTA meetings, and Santa’s Workshop.

If you are not familiar with Santa’s workshop, let me take a second to explain. A fund-raising company sends you a list of items and the head of your workshop (or last year’s President) picks about 50 items from the list. A week or so before the workshop, the items, plus a cash register are sent to your school. Parent volunteers will then unpack and display all of the items. Then, throughout the week, the children will make umpteen trips to the workshop to spend every. last. dime. they have. The workshop will make a tad bit of money for the school and the children will learn valuable lessons about budgeting, giving, and patience.

First, I need to say that for the most part, I enjoyed working Santa’s Workshop. The children were polite and excited and particular about choosing gifts for their loved ones. In addition to that it was fun meeting other moms and several teachers I had not yet met. With that being said, I sure learned some valuable lessons this week that will be a big help to the poor soul who inherits the workshop next year me.

1. Invest in some sort of change counter. And by some sore of change counter, I mean a device that does not include human hands separating the silver from the pennies in a pile of loose change in an attempt to round up $7.00 for the AVON silver hearts bracelet that “mommy will just love!”  The money in most cases will be sticky and hot and gross.

2. Invest in some sort of loose change wrapping device. – And by some sort of wrapping device, I mean something that will make rolling six rolls of pennies each day easier than it is if you do it by hand.

Something like these from Office Dot Com.

Seriously, the rolling of the coins was enough to drive me insane.

[Note to self: Order these immediately!]

One would think the bank would roll the change in their fancy, shmancy coin rolling machine but that would be way too easy. (Ahem!)

3. You should schedule someone in Santa’s workshop as soon as the school doors open. You know what they say about money burning a hole in the pocket. The children are eager to spend their money and will do it at 7:00 am if permitted to do so.

4. Have a giant calculator on hand. – And by giant calculator I mean a calculator that will be easy to see and easy to operate because before you ring up 97.9% of the children on the cash register, you will need to add their purchases up on a calculator to insure that they have enough money or else you will use every last inch of register tape ringing and voiding orders of over-zealous children that bring $17.00 worth of merchandise to the counter with about $3.00 worth of dimes in a ziplock bag.

5.  Bring some hand sanitizer. – And by hand sanitizer I mean a big, honkin’ bottle of it that can be used by the hundreds of hands that will make their way through the workshop.

6. Ditto for the tissues. – Only instead of hands, they will be used for noses. Runny, wet, slippery, sneezy, snotty noses.

7. Wear some comfortable shoes. – And by comfortable shoes, I mean some shoes that will allow you to jump up, check a price, grab a cheaper item and have it back to the table before the next child in line shoves that child out the door.

8. Dress in layers. – And by layers I mean about three of them that can be quickly and easily peeled off once the maximum capacity of the workshop is reached and the library begins to feels like a sauna. Beads of sweat will be rolling off of your forehead within minutes and you will be having an internal struggle about whether to pass out or ring up this one last order before collapsing right here in the middle of the library. Even though it is about 19 degrees outside,  you will need to stick your head out the door often for some fresh cool air.

9. Order some trinkety stuff from Oriental Trading. – And by trinkity stuff, I mean stuff that you can sell for $0.25 because every single $0.25 item that you have on hand will be gone by Thursday becuase kids want to spend every. single. cent. they. have.

10. Tape one of every trinkety type item to the table and put the rest out of reach of germy littly hands. Otherwise a pencil within reach could have up to a million germs on it before it is claimed and purchased.

11. If your Santa’s Workshop features little plastic poppers (like these from Fun Express Dot Com), you should totally triple your order. Because if you have 500 of them, you will sell 500 and wish you had 100 more.

10. Remember your blood pressure pill. – And by remember your blood pressure pill, I mean, remember to pack an extra two or three in your purse on the off chance that you need an extra one by 10:00 am. And trust me, the odds are in your favor.

Now, wasn’t that a fun experience?

Head over to Musings Of A Housewife for more Things people learned this week. Most of which probably have nothing to do with Santa’s Workshop.

Thirty-Six

Thirty-Six years ago today, I made my fabulous debut into the world.

Thirty-Six years later, I try to spread fabulosity wherever I go.

— 

Thirty-Six years ago today, it was a Tuesday and it was snowing.

Thirty-Six years later, it is a Friday and the wind is blowing like mad.

Thirty-Six years ago, I immediately became a little sister to twin brothers.

Thirty Six years later, I am raising two boys who have no desire to have a sister.

Thirty Six years ago today, I was born in a Charleston Hospital about two miles from the house I would call home until I married McDaddy.

Thirty Six years later, I live about fifteen miles from that same hospital and pass it almost daily.

Thirty Six years ago today, I came out screaming.

Thirty Six years later, I am much more subdued (ahem!)

Thirty Six years ago today, my mama got the daughter she was hoping for and my daddy got a daughter whos name he forgot so he referred to me as “what’s her name!”

Thirty Six years later, I am close with my mama and daddy and am thankful that God gave me to them.

No doubt I will be asked over and over how I feel about turning the Big Three Six. Rest Assured that with the exception of a sore leg, an itchy ear, and a heel spur, I feel fabulous!

I know without a doubt that I am living the best years of my life.

I have two sweet boys who I adore and I feel blessed to be their mother.

I have a husband who adores me and longs to make me happy.

Thirty Six Years ago, my parents felt blessed by me.

Thirty Six Years later, I am counting every single one of my blessings!

Happy Birthday To Me! Here’s to another 36!