Mountain View Mommy: Sand, Trucks and Testosterone

December 23, 2007

Santa’s watching you!

Filed under: Stuff — by mvmommy @ 7:28 am

He sees you when you’re blogging.
He knows when you’re awake.
He knows if you have updated your feeds…
so do it for goodness sake.

Have you updated your feeds yet?

Mom Without A Map

What about those blogrolls?

Mom Without A Map

I don’t want to be lonely at Christmas time… so don’t forget about me! I promise to keep the posts coming as my 2008 New Year’s resolution. In fact, it will be my one year anniversary… the perfect time to spice things up and have a fresh outlook!


December 21, 2007

I’m leaving you.

Filed under: Stuff — by mvmommy @ 7:18 am

Mountain View Mommy, I am sorry… but it’s time to go.

It’s been fun. But we never really clicked. It was your name that bothered me. It might be petty, I know. But I have to be honest.

No please don’t cry. I am not leaving, I am just moving. I am taking my writing & moving to:

Mom Without A Map

She’s much more exciting, and I think has the stamina to keep up with me. I hope you are not offended. It’s not you, it’s me.

You will be always my first blog love.

Oh and by the way, please remember to tell my readers to update their feeds and their blogroll too! Come visit me at my new home you can subscribe once you’re there!

December 7, 2007

The count is in…

Filed under: Stuff — by mvmommy @ 7:29 am

Officially 8 hours, 22 strands and 3000 lights later… the 8 1/2 foot tree has been lit.


No, the tree is not leaning, that was just me and my obvious prowess with a camera. And yes, there are millions of ornaments & a beautiful hand-made tree skirt to add; but I thought I would revel in the lights for a day before the ornaments get thrown on.

My sister says that I am obnoxious, and asks if I was trying to light the tree so that people could see it from outer-space?

She’s just jealous because her tree looks like the Charlie Brown Christmas tree, and I turned her down when she offered to pay me to put up her Christmas tree lights too.

December 5, 2007

Let there be light!

Filed under: Stuff — by mvmommy @ 3:13 pm

I love the holidays.

My joy starts about September when I can start decorating the outside of the house with Fall things. I have lots of fall decorations, wreaths, candles, etc. When it gets to Halloween, I put up cobwebs and big spiders. There are hay bales with lots of pumpkins on our front porch. There are scarecrows and ghosts throughout the house. And then at Thanksgiving, we just add turkeys and Pilgrim hats. The brining of the turkey, the meal planning, the smells – it all makes me happy. But that is nothing compared to Christmas.


The minute Thanksgiving is over, I kick it into gear and take down about 20 boxes of decorations from the loft. There might be more, but I stopped counting. Every corner of our house has something holiday-ish in it. My sister likes to say that “it looks like Santa Claus barfed all over my house”.  However, I love it.   The banister is wrapped in red ribbon like a candy cane. The front porch has HUGE poinsettias on either side of our door that boasts a HUGE wreath. The icicle lights are hung, and so are the special lights I have around the house.  And of course there is the nativity placed in a special spot.

We have lots of handmade decorations given to us by great-grandmothers, grandmothers, mothers, sisters, and even our kids. Our most prized decorations are the handmade stockings from grandma…. it’s a special design that only the women of the family know, and each family member has one.

And then there is the tree. The tree is the only source of stress out of the whole entire holiday season. I love to get it early. Dec 1st is my ideal date. My husband couldn’t care less if we got it the week before. It doesn’t seem like a big deal until you take into account ‘my light strategy’. I like a lot of lights. No that is not true. I like an obscene amount of lights on my tree. I love it to sparkle.

And I don’t just drape them on there like someone put the tree on a lazy susan and strung the lights while spinning it. I weave it in & out of each branch so that the strings can’t be seen… and that every nook gets a light.

So far I have about 10 strings of light on my tree… and I am only 1/2 to 2/3 of the way done. It’s taken me about 4 hours so far. Thus, that amount of effort is not worth getting a tree a week before. If you are going to put in the time, you need to start early.

This year my husband was on board. We hung the outdoor lights the weekend after Thanksgiving. I even bought a new timer so that they come on automatically at 5:00… right before it gets dark. And turns off at 11:00, right after I go to bed. I actually am so excited everyday at 4:50 that I wait to watch them turn on. That is how much I love them.

AND, Nathan even went with us on Dec 1st to get a tree. It was a new record in our house. The boys picked the tree themselves, and even hung the star.  But that is not the thing that pleases me the most during this holiday decoration process.

The thing that makes me skip for joy every day is my remote controlled Christmas Tree light switch. Yup, you read right. I have a clicker to turn on my Christmas Tree. I no longer have to climb behind it to get to the plug. I don’t have to get dirty from the sap, or tree branches. I just take my little clicker and press ‘on’… and voila…. let there be light.

I only have the tree 1/2 done with lights, but I must have used that thing about 10 times already. Completely worth the $9.99 at Target. Merry Christmas to me.

November 7, 2007

To my most loyal fan

Filed under: Stuff — by mvmommy @ 4:05 pm

Dear Shawn,

I must sincerely apologize for leaving you high & dry over the past month.

Honestly, blogging has become…. how do I say this….. boring.

It was fun for a while. I liked sharing my stories, irritations, laughs, and personal embarrassments. But now, I find that I am holding on to them and keeping them for myself. Why? I don’t know. I guess I am selfish… or maybe just lazy. Frankly typing it all out on the computer seems like so much effort these days. Maybe the daylight savings thing is screwing me up. I mean seriously…. how come it’s practically dark at 3:30 in the afternoon? What is a girl to do with that nonsense?

I digress.

I came to the realization that I was really being unfair to you Shawn. My most loyal reader, and probably my only reader. How could you survive without hearing more about my kids bodily functions? How would you get through your days without seeing gratuitous pictures of my kids on the Internet? How would you last One. More. Second. without me blogging for 1000 words about something that could be said in 5? How Shawn? HOW?

Well, today I have broken the silence to tell you how much I appreciate you and your readership. Though you are silent, I hear from the whispers of others that you find me hilarious. I think that you might be mocking my situation in life… but I am grateful that you find me funny and will choose to think that it is my wit that you are laughing at… not just simply me.

Please forgive my lack of appreciation of your readership. I will do my best to make it up to you. Just don’t expect me to be banging out posts like in the ‘good ol days’. Those days are gone Shawn. You will have to let them go.



PS> Joel, I know you are my other reader… but it’s too much pressure to live up to the expert writing that you expect from me. You will just have to settle for the crap that I write, and know that it comes from the heart… not the English classes I took back in college.

PPS> Shannon, don’t get all pissed off just because I mentioned Joel & Shawn. You know that I am trying to suck up to the men.

September 15, 2007

Biting the bullet

Filed under: Stuff — by mvmommy @ 2:40 pm

I have been complaining for days weeks months about a half a year about exercising.

Not because I am doing it, and it’s too time consuming. And not because I am hurting, because my muscles have been worked to the bone. And not because my husband won’t support me, and let me find time to work-out.

Nope, I have been complaining because I have come to the realization that I need to exercise to help balance me – but I hate to exercise unless I am in good shape. Do you see the problem? I don’t want to be the lame person who can’t keep up, but I need to exercise in a group setting to motivate me. I am in the middle of my own personal battle of wills.

I had convinced myself that I had to go because I had gained some weight. But then I was too embarrassed to be in my gym clothes and look fat. So then I lost the weight, and had no excuse.

Next it was that I couldn’t go to the YMCA because the hours conflicted with the kids schedule. Then the kids schedule opened up, but I didn’t want them to get sick from daycare. Then my husband offered me morning workouts so the kids wouldn’t have to be in daycare (before he went to work). I didn’t want to get up that early, so he said he’d let me go at 7:00 and he’d go in late one day. There went my excuse.

I had a million more excuses… all whittled away…until this week. This week I got over it – the stars aligned – for some reason I was ready – and I went.

I had decided to join a morning swim team. So I got up early and snuck into the pool trying to go unnoticed by my fellow swimmers. I quietly asked the the coach how it worked. And I tried to shake the dust off my brain, and remember how to count intervals and figure out the timing of it all.

I stayed in the slowest lane with the retirement community, the visiting guy from Europe, and the pregnant lady. And I held on.

Sure there were some low moments:

* like the time that everyone had stopped to listen to the coach, but I didn’t notice & kept swimming an extra lap (or two). Yeah, that was humiliating.

* or the time that I did a flip-turn off the wall and snorted water up my nose. I guess I didn’t judge the person in front of me,  and the waves coming off her flip. Of course, I didn’t come up sputtering for air like I should have. I coughed underwater and took a breath every other stroke until I could get myself back together.

* or the time I forgot to put my goggles back on my eyes before starting to swim. Thus making it impossible to see. But I was too proud to stop in the middle of the lane and embarrass myself… so I just kept swimming with one hand and tried to fix it on every other stroke. Yeah, that was silly.

* or when I tried to get out of the pool at the end, while talking to two of my lane-mates.  I couldn’t lift myself out & kept falling back in, looking like a beached whale.  When I finally heaved myself out with one leg hanging over the side… someone pointed out the ladder about 5 feet way.  Duh.

But honestly, all in all, it was great. I didn’t drown (a major plus). I made it through the workout (an unexpected miracle). And I felt good all day long! I am actually looking forward to going back next time. In fact, next time I am going to move up a lane! I guess I am not the slowest person in the pool…. whew… what a relief!

September 8, 2007

Tag – You’re It

Filed under: Stuff — by mvmommy @ 2:11 pm

Well I guess it was bound to happen. This is the first time I was ‘tagged’. Yup, I am obligated by blogging law to play Scattergories because I was tagged by Not Just a Working Mom (that tricky little bugger).

So I too must relate the rules of this internet Scattegory game (for which I think I have played once about 10 years ago):

You use the 1st letter of your name to answer each of the questions. They must be real places, names, things! If you can’t think of anything, skip it. You cannot use your name for the boy/girl name question.

Brought to you by the letter “M”… and trying to be as boring as possible. (wink wink)

Famous Singer: Melissa Etheridge
Four letter word: Moan
Street: Main
Color: Magenta
Gifts/Presents: Money
Vehicle: MDX
Things in a Souvenir Shop: Magnets
Boy’s Name: Michael
Girl’s Name: Michelle
Movie Title: Manchurian Candidate
Drink: Mojito
Occupation: Manager
Celebrity: Micheal J. Fox
Magazine: Mad Magazine
U.S. City: Missouri
Pro Sports: Major League Lacrosse
Fruit: Mulberry
Reason for Being Late for: My kids
Something You Throw Away: Magazines
Things You Shout: More Beer Please
Cartoon Character: Mickey Mouse

I am not tagging anyone because all the bloggers I know would shun me into oblivion. So it dies with me… sorry friends… I am horrible at this stuff.

August 18, 2007

Breaking Blog Silence

Filed under: Stuff — by mvmommy @ 4:04 pm

Yes, yes… I know I have been silent for a month now. I have a myriad of excuses to bore you with:

* summer has been too busy to blog
* every time I find something funny to blog about, I don’t have the time
* we have had out of town guests
* my kids have been sick for a week
* I have been sick for an additional week
* I have been too wrapped up with So You Think You Can Dance to focus on anything else. (Okay, this last one is not ‘necessarily’ true, but I do feel Pasha got robbed.)

In any case, after such a long silence, I didn’t want to write about the mundane. I wanted to find something good. Which stunned me into more blog silence.

Until last night.

We had just trudged ourselves upstairs to go to bed, and were closing our bedroom window when we heard a racket outside. Police cars sounded like they were screaming by. We live near a major street; so we often hear that sound. However this time our blinds were lighting up like the 4th of July. Blue and red flashes illuminating our room. Nathan peeks out the blinds and whispers, “hey, there are a ton of cop cars piling into the hotel.”

(For the record: our backyard shares the back fence with the parking lot of a small hotel. Most nights we don’t hear anything from our hotel neighbors, because it’s a typical silicon valley business traveller hotel. On the weekends the parking lot is typically dead empty. So cops pulling in on a Friday night in full-force is exciting stuff. Well, I guess to us it is.)

I asked Nathan what he could see, but he is no good for juicy gossipy stuff that would involve cops and ‘perps’. So I immediately take my curiosity and jump onto the bed to peer out the window myself. My husband and I are pushing and shoving for the best position to see the action, like two teenagers over the last drops of beer at a keg party.

Giggling we turn off our lights, so the police can’t see us gawking out our window at them. I think this was the only time that I have been pissed that we had big pine trees planted along our fence, blocking the view of the hotel. Honestly, reality TV doesn’t get better than this.

About 5 police cars had pulled in. Cops were running every which way back and forth across the parking lot. There were about 4 men getting pat down. And there were flashlights darting here and there all over the parking lot. Then the police started running back and forth from their cars to one particular area: an area we couldn’t see from our secret stealth hiding spot.

So of course Nathan & I jump into action. We are literally running like elephants around our house trying to find a window upstairs where the trees aren’t blocking us. Mind you, it’s midnight and our kids are about 5 feet from the hallway which we had decided was the best vantage point.

The only window to give us a suitable view was right outside the kids doorway, in the hall, and it was a vaulted sky window: meaning 1 foot by 1 foot about 10 feet off the ground.  So there we were, both perched on-top of ONE white wooden children’s chair (that I have had since I was about 4 years old… so you can imagine how stable it is).  Again we are jockeying for position and cracking the window so we can hear.

The fireman have shown up at this point and are crouched around that same area that the police have been gathering around. I am sure that someone got stabbed. Nathan is convinced it’s a drug deal gone bad. Of course the canine unit is now involved too. It’s all very exciting. But nothing tops the moment when the police start unrolling the crime scene tape and Nathan & I almost pee our pants from excitement of watching Mountain View’s finest in action.

The young ‘perps’ have been carted off. In my mind I know they are busted and I have no idea what they have done. I am really getting into our free Cops episode. We have still not seen anyone that has been injured, and no ambulance or stretcher was involved. So I think we can safely say that my ‘knife attack’, while exciting, was probably not true. Probably a good thing. Too much reality could have quashed our excitement.

The police cars pull away, and then the CSI teams come in and take pictures of evidence on the ground and start bagging it all. We watch them until the last bag has been put in the cars and then we crawl off our stool and close our tiny little window and giggle all the way to bed. Clearly it was some sort of teenage drug bust.

I think some of the highlights of the night might have included:

* As we are trying to decide what has happened, I whisper excitedly… “well you know it wasn’t a shooting, I didn’t hear any shots.” For goodness sakes. This is Mountain View. The cops were probably out trying to bust a littering ring.

* When we finally find the perfect vantage spot, Nathan disappears downstairs for a moment and comes back with something in his hands. No, it is not what I think it is. Yes, it is. It’s his camera. He is taking pictures out our window, outside our kids door, of the hotel, and the cop scene outside. Not pictures of our adorable kids. Pictures of a crime scene in which we have no idea what crime had been committed.

* And then when the pictures weren’t coming out… does he drop it like a grown man in his 30’s? No. He gets his tripod. YES, HIS TRIPOD!

* And when that isn’t working, what do we do? We go outside to our backyard and peer over the fence like two nosy old ladies.

I think you can safely assume that we are total dorks. We have nothing better to do on a Friday night than act like star-struck-teenagers and ogle out the window at the policemen doing their job. Clearly our babysitters went back to college already, and we need some new ones. Either that or Fall TV had better start real soon. Because this is getting pathetic. Ridiculous and pathetic.

July 5, 2007

Gone Fishin’

Filed under: Stuff — by mvmommy @ 2:17 pm

The family has been on vacation and basically been ‘doing’ summer for the past few weeks. There is so much to report and funny things to share, but who wants to take the time these days?

I haven’t wanted to miss a moment playing with the kids in the sun, or eating ice cream in the hot weather, or hosing down things just to keep cool. It’s been fun being a kid again. And it’s the first time for my children, so it’s like starting over for me.

In the past few weeks we have take rides in speedboats on lakes, and have watched the joy in my children’s faces as they realize that the water sprays out from under the boat & makes waves. They were googly-eyed over the wave runners that were racing us. And the call of the drawbridge bell, was almost too much to take. We HAD to see the tall sailboats go under, and HAD to watch the cars wait until the bridge went down. And honestly, there wasn’t anything I wanted to do more.

I have spent an inordinate amount of time snuggling my children during naps or bedtime, because we have been in odd houses and condos and hotels. In all this change, one thing is certain: my boys love to snuggle with mommy. At one point I had both boys tucked into the nook of my arm sleeping up to me… and I thought, this is heaven. This the moment I dreamed of while being a mom. I laid there for an hour hoping they wouldn’t wake up.

In the past few weeks I have introduced my kids to the East-Coast side of my husband’s family. We had a reunion/wedding to attend, and the kids put on their best show. They pretty much charmed everyone with their enthusiasm and excitement for everything. Andrew was the ring-bearer in a wedding, and he did beautifully (for an almost 3 yr old). Definitely took the ‘long route’ down the aisle. Later after the obligation of carrying the rings was over, he fell in love with the flower girl and decided to give her a whirl. Believe me, watching him voluntarily dance with this little girl had me in tears. I was just seeing him 20 years from now getting married and moving away. Seriously, I bawled like a baby, it was embarrassing.

And Justin…. that kid could wrap you around his finger with his smile. He had all the old ladies crooning over his bald head and little mini blue suit. He mastered the art of peek-a-boo to a form of flirting. And he used his honed skill endlessly to capture the hearts of all the women on the plane rides, airports, parks, and beaches. He is still trying to use it on me. And despite the fact that I know he is ‘working me’, I cannot help but fall in love with him over and over again.

Summer vacation with my kids has been just what the doctor ordered. It’s time to slow down, enjoy the little things. It’s been time to look at them through other people’s eyes, and realize what AMAZING kids I have. It’s been a great time to just let them be kids, not expect the world from them, and love them… Love them… LOVE THEM.

June 20, 2007

Self-Fulfilling Destiny

Filed under: Stuff — by mvmommy @ 6:37 pm

Today I was made painfully aware of some of the things I like to brush under the rug. The things that I know are there, but I do nothing to change them.

It started with the dentist. For many people, they hate the dentist. I actually LOVE to go have my teeth cleaned. I schedule it 6 months on the nose. Who knows why, I just like it. However, I hate to floss. So every time I go, I get the ‘floss discussion’. In recent years, I have been actually working on flossing. But not so much in the past 6 months. So when the nurse asked me how my teeth were, I summed it up by saying, “You will like my brushing. My teeth feel fine, My gums are swollen due to the fact I haven’t been flossing. I not trying to make a statement out of this, I just know that is what you are going to say… so I am summarizing for you”.

I figured maybe she would skip her lecture. However, I was wrong. And she made extra sure that I felt the fact that my gums were swollen by poking them around a lot. It was the first time I actually hated going to the dentist. And to add insult to injury, the dentist came in and told me that I had a cavity. The cavity is in a place that cannot be repaired because it’s between the teeth. It can only be created due to lack of flossing.

Great. Lesson learned. Self-fulfilling Destiny Moment #1.

Later I was talking to my girlfriend about a wedding I am attending this weekend. We were lamenting over the fact that we are back to our pre-two-births-weight… we still look ‘fat’. That our body type is no longer the same. I then resolved to help out my situation by going to the nearest department store and buying “SPANX”. I have a few nameless friends who have been swearing by them, and thought why not!

So I left the kids with a sitter and before my hair cut, I ran to the store. I had ten minutes and I crammed my body into these teeny tiny lycra suctions of death. They did a good job. But not nearly the Jessica Alba look I was hoping for. But a tad better than the post-birth version of myself. So I bought one.

I then had 2 minutes to find something to eat before my hair appointment. MacDonalds was the only thing close by. So I slammed back a Quarter Pounder as I raced to the salon. It was at that moment with my Bloomingdale’s bag swinging from one arm with SPANKX in it… and my cheeseburger in the other, that I was faced with the irony of it all.

Disgusted at myself, I resolved to rectify the situation soon (after I finished the burger). Self-fulfilling Destiny Moment #2

Let’s just hope that when I am at the wedding this weekend… people will focus on my recently highlighted, lovely hair. That part of my day went very well. I will attempt to hide the puffy gums and protruding belly by distracting folks like they are 3 year olds … “Hey everyone … look at something shiny… look at my hair!

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