Tough Stuff

We had a rough weekend here at the McResidence.

When I returned home from dropping the boys off at school on Friday morning, I noticed things were awry in Lulu’s cage. Her bedding was strung out all over the cage, and she was all sprawled out like she was stretching, only she wasn’t moving. She stayed that way for an hour or so and I knew something was up. She has always been a creature of habit, sleeping in her “nest” through the day and waking around 10 PM. While it wasn’t odd for her to be “up” getting a drink, it was way odd that her bedding was anywhere other than her “sleeping corner”.

I moved her cage beside of the couch so that I could watch her and sure enough something was definitely wrong. As I watched her struggle to move a tear ran down my cheek. I hated to think of her being in pain. That day, I watched her very closely, making sure she was still breathing. I tried to give her water, and even prayed for her. Around 6 PM on Friday evening, Lulu passed away in her sleep.

It was so tough to explain her passing to our boys. They took it much harder than I expected, and it was heartbreaking watching big tears stream down Stevie’s face. He cried several times over the weekend and all I could do was hold him, cry with him, and tell him it was okay to cry.

I learned that losing a pet is tough stuff.

R.I.P. Lulu. We miss you!

Now what did YOU learn?


50 Things I Will Never Do

Just for fun, here are 50 perfectly random things I will never do.

I know. Like you have anything better to do than to read about things that I will never do?

1. Eat an olive (Why would I?)
2. Go whitewater rafting. (My first and only whitewater rafting experience resulted in my falling out of the boat and getting trapped underneath it. I just knew I was seconds away from meeting Jesus.)
3. Allow a snake in this house.
4. Eat spaghetti without getting sauce on my shirt.
5. Enjoy change.
6. Ignore Legos all over the floor (OUCH!)
7. Choose Direct TV or DISH over my beloved TiVo.
8. Grow tired of holding little hands.
9. Or McDaddy’s hand.
10. Be a morning person. (Sorry McDaddy!)
11. Like to have my feet tickled.
12. Be completely caught up on laundry (UGH!!!)
13. Understand why adults don’t always do the right thing.
14. Quit using Q-tips.
15. Turn down a chance to spend a night away with McDaddy.
16. Be the “quiet” type. (Hard to believe, I know!)
17. Admit that it’s none of my business.
18. Enjoy clipping nails.
19. Be a Kathy Griffin fan.
20. Buy anything that smells like patchouli.
21. Get a spray tan.
22. Be all gung-ho to drive in snowy, icy weather.
23. Decide I don’t want a Saturn Sky.
24. Not smile when I walk in my front door.
25. Choose a Pepsi over a Coke.
26. Look forward to going to the Dentist.
27. Be a Kardashian fan. (I don’t get it!)
28. Understand the Kardashian fame. (I don’t get it!)
29. Have too many pairs of shoes.
30. Drink buttermilk (I’m not sure why you’d drink anything that smells like that).
31. Be able to walk in HIGH heels all lady-like
32. Get tired of staying in a hotel.
33. Lose the desire to buy one. more. purse.
34. Be good at math.
35. Sit through another friggin’ time-share pitch. (I’d rather have a tooth pulled!)
36. Not freak out at the sight of a huge bug.
37. Believe in astrology.
38. Be a great cook (I guess there’s still time…)
39. Be a bird lover.
40. Understand the whole Twilight business.
41. Forget what it was like to be pregnant.
42. Miss an opportunity to go out with the girls.
43. Eat cottage cheese (Holy smokes, HOW can people eat that mess?)
44. Ask “Do you know what you’re having?” ever again. Because sometimes the only thing people are having is too many Little Debbies.
45. Be too embarrassed to ask. (After all, the Bible says “Ye have not becuase ye ask not!)
46. Like sour candy.
47. Watch a UFC fight. (Seeing two people fight makes me physically sick to my stomach. It is beyond me how anyone could watch two people beat the snot out of each other till they bleed. I saw enough of that in Jail.)
48. Quit wondering if OJ really did it.
49. Ice-Skate (I can’t even walk straight half the time. Why would I put all this mess on two medal blades?)
50. Eat shrimp. (YUCK!)

How’s that for random?

Now it’s your turn? What will you NEVER do?

Our Year In Review

Reflecting back on 2011, my little band of four was blessed beyond measure.

Here’s a look at our year…. in pictures!


You know who had to shovel MORE snow than she’d like to talk about, which is still NOWHERE NEAR the amount that McDaddy shoveled.

I attended Becky’s second annual soup swap.


Stevie competed in the Pinewood Derby.


Our sweet boy made the decision to be baptized.

McDaddy and Stevie placed third in the Father/Son Cub Scout Bakeoff.


Both boys played Little League Baseball for the first time ever.

A certain little boy registered for Kindergarten.


Alex graduated from Pre-School.

And of course, Mother’s Day.


Swimming lessons for both boys – BOTH are now swimming! YAY!

Stevie had a bad bike wreck while we are on a camping trip that resulted in his passing out in the middle of the road and causing his mama to spazz out a trip to the ER which resulted in our discovery that he has an extra speen.

And of course, Father’s Day.


Although I hadn’t planned on it, I ended up being a den leader at Cub Scout Day Camp. It turned out to be a wonderful week even though it was hotter than all get-out.

The boys couldn’t have cared less about the heat.


McDaddy sold his beloved Heap, ahem, I mean, JEEP Cherokee, and we bought this much cooler Jeep.

I finally got a fancy DSLR. I decided on the Canon Rebel.

We spent two weeks beach bummin‘ in Florida with McDaddy’s family.


FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL. Alex starts Kindergarten and Stevie in third grade.


 Both boys played Fall Ball Baseball.

Alex got some sweet new glasses.

And we adopted Lulu!


My sweet boys enjoyed Halloween!

The blog went berzerk and I was at the mercy of my bloggy friend, Cathy to get it up and running again.


 Alex turns six and celebrates with a SONIC birthday party.

Basketball season starts for Alex. His first time playing.


December is my birth month (as if it’s not already busy enough), as well as Stevie’s birth month.

Julie turns 38! (Sorry, no pictures available) on December 11th.

Stevie turns NINE on December 12th.

Alex learns to ski!


My sweet boys all dressed up in their Sunday best for their handbell performance at church.

And, sadly, I still don’t have one of these,


Still, it was a wonderful year that I was blessed to share with my family. Believe me when I say I could have posted about 42,371 more pictures. I just figured y’all might have something else to do today besides sit and stare at pictures of my year in review.


I’m busy preparing for a house full of folks tonight, which means I’m cleaning and swarping and hiding stuff in closets.

For now though, I’d like to bid farewell to 2011 here on the blog, and say how much I appreciate you stopping by my little corner of the blogosphere each day.

See y’all next year! 


This post is linked to Mama Kat’s Writing Workshop and 12 things 2011.

Behind Bars – Like A Caged Animal

I have often talked about my time in jail here on the blog.

Recently, it dawned on me that another member of our household spends the bulk of her time behind bars. 

Like a caged animal, she gets out ONLY when one of us I let her out.

As you might imagine, she loves to be ON THE LOOSE, in that ball, rolling around the house.

[This is the point in the post where a picture of her in her pink exercise ball would have been a marvelous idea. That would require quite a bit out of me at this point, and well, I've been tearing down the Christmas tree all evening, and haven't the energy or the patience required to do that.]

 As you might imagine, she LOVES to be paroled.

We assumed custody of Lulu in September.

It is safe to assume I had a moment of weakness. And a very strong feeling from the Lord that we were supposed to take her. (Because y’all know I am deathly afraid of rodents.)

As strange as it might sound, I have come to care about Lulu.

When we first picked Lulu up to bring her home, I was nervous. And hopeful. Nervous that she would get loose, and hopeful that I read enough on The Google to keep her alive. And caged.


It’s been three months, and I am happy to report that Lulu is alive and well.

Even though there was an accidental dropping of the recliner on her ball that resulted in her first escape from the exercize ball, and even though she has somehow wiggled the lid off of that stupid exercize ball, not once, but THREE times.

I am quite proud of myself.

I thought it might be fun to share some of what I’ve learned along the way about hamsters. You know, on the off chance that one or two or ten of you are considering a hamster as your next family pet.

1. Hamsters are nocturnal. [Lulu wakes up around 9 PM. She can often be heard going about 312 MPH on her wheel. At 4 AM].

2. Putting your hamster in an empty bathtub is a great way for your children to be able to watch her walk and play without the fear of her getting loose in the house.

 Because IF she gets loose in the house, she has been told, that IT. IS. ON.

3. If you place your hamster in an exercise ball while cleaning her cage, you might want to place a rubber band around the ball, OR ELSE, you might turn around to discover she is ON THE LOOSE. IN THE HOUSE.

4. A small piece of paper towel can provide lots of entertainment.

5. Hamsters love carrots and celery.

6. If you place your finger in front of the hamster’s face, she will assume your finger is food.

7. The hamster cage will need to be cleaned every other day, or at the very least every three days.

8. When your hamster fills their cheek pocket with food for the first time, you might think it is a tumor.

9. Hamster pee is nothing more than a squirt of liquid. [Gross, yes, I know.]

10. It is not necessary to bathe your hamster. [Thankfully, Lulu bathes daily.]

11. It takes very little food each day to feed your hamster.

12. It might be necessary to check the metal bars from time to time, especially if your hamster likes to gnaw on them.

[She reminds me of the guy on Shawshank Redemption. I often wonder if she is gnawing on those bars with the thought that one day when we least expect it, she might escape from her cage.]

 13. If there are steps in your house, you should always block the steps before putting your hamster into her exercise ball and onto the floor.

I never thought I would say this….

14. It is possible to care for a three pound (?) caged animal rodent with crazy eyes.

15. It is also possible that I’ve lost my ever lovin mind.

Happy Thursday, y’all!

A Question. Or Ten.


You might ask me today.

1. Have you lost your mind?

Funny, I asked myself that same thing several times today. I haven’t quite lost it, BUT, I’d love it if this head of mine wouldn’t swirl and make me feel like I was going to pass out SEVERAL  times a day.

2. Why in the heck were you up at 5:00 AM?

Um, because a certain hamster was going to town on her wheel and the squeaking woke me up.

3. Have you had the top off of the Jeep lately?

Um, that would be a big fat NO! BUT, it has been very warm the last few days.

4. How are you liking the iPad?

For starters, it has a great battery. Unfortunately, I haven’t had a whole lot of time to play with it.

That sentence makes me all kinds of sad.

5. Is your Christmas shopping completed?

Um, no. I’m behind on everything. Laundry included.

6.  Have you picked out a cookie for Becky’s cookie exchange yet?

Oh yes ma’am. And with a little luck, it will be the WINNING COOKIE and I’ll bring home the cookie crown on Tuesday evening. Y’all keep your fingers crossed.

7. Are the kids excited about Christmas?

They are nine and six. What do you think?

8. Who the heck is Louis Hamilton?

Louis Hamilton is our “Elf On The Shelf”.

 9. Why do you have silver Sharpie on your hands?

Because apparently I don’t have the sense to decorate ornaments without getting ink all over myself.

10. What is the red splotchy place on your face?

Don’t I wish I knew.

Cold air + crazy wind + 38 year old hormones.

Need I say more?

Have a great weekend, y’all.