Thursday, May 31, 2012

Homey Don't Play That

First, a little housekeeping!  For those of you who read my blog regularly, hello to those three people!  My goal for this blog is to post twice a week.  However, this does not always come to fruition.

Why?  Well, LIFE happens.  I like being on the computer (especially Twitter) but there are more important things going on here in the Mossey household.  Things like building train tracks, making dinosaurs out of Play Doh, digging in the sandbox, and going to the pool.

So, this summer I will try to uphold my end of the bargain but please be understanding if I don't.  I promise what I do post will be entertaining, enlightening and life changing!  Okay, well maybe not ALL of those things, but it should give you a few chuckles anyway.

On to the main course....


Now that I am a parent, I can break my life into two categories:

BK - Before Kids

AK - After Kids

Before kids, you only have to worry about you.  What I mean is you only have to worry about how to spend your time and with whom to spend it.  You decide if someone is your caliber person, therefore someone with whom to spend your time.

After kids, you worry about your children.  You worry about the character of the people that influence your kids.  Why type of person do you want your children to have relationships with?  Is that particular person going to be a positive or negative influence on your kid?

In looking back over my brief almost four years as a parent, I can see how I have started "separating the wheat from the chaff" so to speak. I see things differently as a parent.

AK: Disrespectful

BK: Selfish
AK: Poisonous 

BK: Quirky
AK: Crazy

BK: Mean Spirited
AK: Heartless

BK: Manipulative
AK: Bullying

If one of these adjectives describes you, now that I am a parent, sorry! Homey don't play that.  Now that I have kids the rules have changed.

After kids, my tolerance for BS dropped, like to almost zero.  Things that were important before kids seem silly after holding that sweet little baby in your arms. With sudden clarity, you realize you will to do whatever you can to love and protect them.  Sometimes this means "trimming the fat" from your relationships.

My kids are just that - kids.  They are young, innocent and impressionable. They are discovering the world and their place in it.  I want to give them the best advantage possible and try to keep them from negativity as long as I can. 

Jeff and I are trying to raise our boys right.  What does that mean?  Well, it certainly doesn't include any of those negative adjectives listed above.

Not sure if I can sum up what "raising our kids right" means to us but I'll give it a shot. To us, it means using your manners, showing compassion, being respectful, loving God, working hard, not giving up, thinking before you act, don't say anything if you don't have anything nice to say and treating others as you would like to be treated.

It doesn't matter if you are related to me or not.  If you are not a good person, then you are not a good person.  It's as simple as that.  

Am I being harsh?  Am I being to hard-headed?  Maybe.  But since God lent these two wonderful little people to me, it's my choice as to how to raise them and with whom they can interact.

So if you are acting a fool or not a nice person, just know, Homey don't play that.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Angel Nugies and Eating Watermelon

Growing up, I remember Papaw had a huge acre garden.  In the summertime when we'd visit, he would have all sorts of fantastic things for us to eat.  Tomatoes, squash, onions, lettuce, corn, green beans and watermelon.  Oh the watermelon!

I remember grilling out and eating outside on the picnic table with all of my cousins. We would have homemade ice cream and watermelon for dessert. (My friends, if you have never had homemade ice cream, you have not really lived!)

I remember Papaw would chase us around the yard with a Super Soaker drenching all of us kids. We would cackle and conspire to take Papaw by surprise and drench him. And drench him we did!

I remember Papaw never gave us hugs.  He would give us nugies.  Nugies!  For those of you not familiar, they are when someone puts you in a headlock, takes their middle finger knuckle and rubs the top of your head.  I hated this. I mean it was the 90's people!  I worked hard on my big hair!

I remember Papaw would refer to us grandkids as "House Apes" or "Imbeciles". He'd say something like, "Michelle!  You imbecile!  Didn't you hear what your mom just said?!"  Then, he would laugh and laugh like he told the funniest joke ever.

I remember at Christmastime, Papaw would show up in his huge truck that was filled to the brim with tons of toys for us kids.  He was just like Santa! (If Santa used pomade, wore a plaid flannel shirt and drove a ginormous pick-up truck!) Papaw, and only Papaw, was the one to hand out gifts to everyone.

I remember when Jeff and I got engaged.  Jeff came out to Papaw's for Thanksgiving dinner.  Papaw is a great cook and really enjoyed it.  Jeff is a good cook as well so I told him to go and help Papaw.  When Jeff came back into the living room, I asked him how it went.  He said, "Well, he called me an imbecile."  I said, "That means he likes you!"

My Papaw was as country as they come. He grew up in Eastern Kentucky and he was proud of it.  Papaw lived in the same place all of his life, and he had one job all his life, working for CSX railroad.  He was a man's man, but he also loved to cook and to shop.  He was as stubborn as the day is long.  Sometimes we would butt heads because I am also a teeny bit stubborn. (Okay, fine!  A lot stubborn!) He wasn't perfect (who is?) but I loved him.

This past March, Papaw lost his battle to bone cancer.  He fought a long, hard fight, but ultimately, cancer won out and Papaw was called Home.

Papaw, I love you and miss you.  I know you are in Heaven giving angel nugies and eating watermelon.  You are in the best place imaginable and I know one day we will meet again.  See you on the other side.

Mom and her dad, Papaw

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Fisticuffs With Grandma

One day while out running errands, I decided to swing by Target and grab the boys a few t-shirts and an Icee. Yes, the Icee is paramount to a trip to Target to keep the young ones entertained.

When I was turning into the parking lot, I made my way to the corner for a parking spot. There was a lady leaving so I put on my blinker and waited patiently for her to back out.

After she backed out, a little blue car came from the other side to cut me off to head towards the spot.  MY SPOT.  The one that I had been waiting patiently for so I could get a prime space close to the door.

To add insult to injury, this lady, who must have been close to 100 years old, jabbed her finger at me and shook her head with a scowl on her face.  Jabbed her finger at me?  Shook her head at me?  Who does this old woman think she is?!

I was waiting patiently for the space with my blinker on so I could pull in and not have to wrestle too much with my kids before we got into the store.  And this lady assumes that I was trying to take her spot, that I was just bulldozing my way in.  Oh. No. She. Didn't.  I'm 'bout ready to have fisticuffs with Grandma in the Target parking lot!

I just have to tell someone about this injustice so I call my mom.  In the middle of the story, she says, "Oh Michelle! The insurance agent is calling on the other line.  I have to take this.  I'll talk to you later." *Dial tone.*

Cheese and biscuits! At this point, my blood pressure must be off the charts!  I am so fired-up that as I head into Target I am thinking, "I am going to track this lady down and give her a piece of my mind."

At this point, J says, "Mama, can I have an 'Icing?  A red one?"  "Sure", I tell J.  I go and get him an 'Icing' as he calls it.  He holds his Icing and takes a drink.  J smiles at me and says, "This Icing is so so good, mama.  Can we go see the toys now?"

As I look at his little smiling face, lips stained red from the 'Icing', I can feel my anger fading away.  Sweet baby LT starts babbling and pointing at things, and, suddenly, there is no room for anger in my heart anymore. I am thinking, "Forget about it, Michelle. Just let it go. It's not worth it."

So, we continue on our quest for t-shirts and toys!  Not to be deterred by some crazy spawn of Satan disguised as a harmless old woman!

I am taking the high road and going to let it go.

But next time, fair warning, it's going to be fisticuffs, grandma.

Friday, May 18, 2012

The Ugly Truth

I am a mom.

Everyday, I cook, clean, serve, wipe, rub, zip, button, lace, velcro, scrub, run, chase, scoop, hug, kiss, cuddle, pull-up, pull-down, discipline, rescue, save, stop, help, lift, lower, play, skip, laugh, buckle, wash, dry, turn-on, turn-off, reach, grab, answer, ask, speak, carry, make, discover, grow and love.

This is the role I play and I accept it gladly.  I am honored to be called a mom and I am honored to be the mom of my sweet J and sweet baby LT.

I love my babies with all that I am.  They are my whole heart (along with the Hubs).  If I need to go all Chuck Norris or kick a baby goat to protect my kids, then THAT'S what I'm going to do!

I am not perfect. (You can pick your jaw up off the floor now.)  Each day, I struggle with being the best person, best mom I can be.

Here is the ugly truth: Sometimes I yell.

What's the big deal, you say?  Every parent does it, you say?

Well, first of all, just because everyone does it, doesn't mean it's right.  (Remember, when your mom used to tell you "if everyone jumped off a bridge, would you do it too?") 

And secondly, it's a big deal to me.

Sometimes I yell because I am frustrated or because I am tired.  But, you know what? It doesn't matter the reason.

I don't like the way it makes me feel.  And I don't like the way it makes my kids feel.

And so sweet boy J and sweet baby LT, here is my promise to you:

I promise to treat you as you deserve to be treated and as I would like to be treated.

I promise I will stop and count to five before I speak if I feel like I am going to yell. If I need to, I will give myself a "time out" so I can cool down.

I promise the only time I will yell is when you are in physical danger.

I promise not to make you feel bad.  You are the loves of my life.  I would never want to be the reason your feelings are hurt.

I promise I will always be there for you whenever you need me even if it isn't convenient for me.  Being your mom (and Daddy's wife) is my top priority.  All the other stuff is just noise.

I promise to never make you feel insignificant or that you don't matter.  You are a blessing and you are important to me. YOU MATTER.

I promise that nothing you could ever say or do will make me stop loving you.

I promise to make time to listen to what you have to say so please always know you can talk to me about anything.

I promise this is not going to be easy for me but I am committed to it. Please be patient with me and understanding if I mess up.  Right now, you think I hung the moon, but there is so much I do not know.  Life is a journey and I am learning more everyday.

I love you sweet boy J and sweet baby LT. I am proud to be your mom.  And you two make me want to BE BETTER.

read to be read at

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Easiest Dinner You Will Ever Make: Take 2

Begin Scene:
Kitchen. Kids running around playing. Yelling, "Mom, I'm hungry!" "Mom, what's for dinner?!" "Mom, he's looking at me!" "Mom!" "Mom!" 
You - the mom. Looking around the kitchen wondering what the heck to have for dinner. Thinking "I have to make another meal? Didn't they just eat?!"
End Scene.

Sound familiar? Ever have days like this?

I previously posted about The Easiest Dinner You Will Ever Make. Well, that one IS the easiest dinner you will ever make but this is a close second. I mean this requires a tiny bit of effort but not much.

Are you ready for it?!  (Drum roll please...) It's PASTA!

Wait! Wait! Don't go anywhere?! Just hear me out! (And to be fair, I have previously admitted that I am no Rachel or Giada, but I CAN do easy meals.)

Okay, it's not just ANY kind of pasta. It is Buitoni pasta. 

What is Buitoni pasta you ask? It is a yummy brand that makes fresh tortellini and ravioli, as well as sauces. They carry all kinds of flavors but my favorite is the Mixed Cheese Tortellini and their Pesto with Basil sauce. So, so yummy! Here's a glimpse:

Make this and throw together a salad - Boom! Nice Italian dinner.

I like this dish because it is something different from regular pasta noodles and marinara sauce. Plus, the Pesto is outstanding! Just the right amount of spices and not too much garlic.

I always get the Mixed Cheese Tortellini, but on a whim, grabbed this yesterday instead:
It is amazing! Even Jeff who will eat anything said, "This is really good." Like make you wanna smack your mama good. I'm kidding! Joking! I would never smack my momma (unless she tried to take my Wild Mushroom pasta). Ahem.

So there you have it! Something new AND easy to make for dinner.

Eat your heart out, Giada!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Don't Touch Me There!

Remember being pregnant? (For those of you non-moms, just go with me.)

You are going to be a mom.  A mom!! 

You cannot believe you are so blessed to be carrying around this little person, this little life inside of you.

You rub your belly unconsciously as your thoughts drift to what will the baby look like, who will this little person be.

You giggle with joy when you first feel the baby move.

You also miss eating fish because the smell makes you want to yack.

And, you have to stock up on Tums because, even water, can apparently give you heartburn.  Who knew?!

Also, at night, you turn into a giant mouth breather and snore so loud, your husband has to go into the room down the hall to sleep.  Or maybe that's just me?

Ah, good times!  Good times! Great memories!

When you are pregnant, random people will say and do things to a pregnant woman that they will not do to anyone else.

This one day, I remember working in college admissions and an female applicant came in to apply for the upcoming term.

Me: Hello there!  Welcome to XYZ College.  How can I help you?

Applicant: Hi. Yes, I would like to apply for X term.

Me: Okay. I can help you with that.  You simply need to complete the application and pay the application fee.  Will this be your first time at college or have you attended college before?

Applicant:  I went one semester at ABC College.

Me: Okay, we will need an official transcript from that college before... (I stop mid-sentence as she starts to rub my 35 week swollen belly AS I AM ANSWERING.  All the while, she is nodding her head looking at me...while rubbing my belly.) I look down at her hand.

Applicant:  Oh sorry!  I just love babies. (And apparently pregnant women too.)

Me: Okay.  As I mentioned, you will need to submitted your official... (AGAIN!!  She is doing it again!) I look down at her hand again.

Applicant:  Oh, I am so sorry!  I didn't realize I was doing it!  Sorry!

(Now it is awkward, as if it wasn't before!) Placing my hands on my belly, Me: Do you have any other questions? (In a less friendly tone, I might add.)

Applicant: Ahem. No, thank you. I think I've got it.

Oh no you don't, girlie?!  Apparently, you DON'T have it because you kept rubbing my belly even after it was obvious that I was uncomfortable with it.

Don't touch me there!!  I don't even know you lady!  At least have the decency to ask before rubbing some random lady's pregnant belly.  Cheese and biscuits!

If I hadn't been at work, I would have used more, ahem, colorful language.

Scratch that!  I should have just started rubbing her belly.  What?  That would have creepy?! 


Monday, May 7, 2012

Pack-N-Play: Best Invention Ever

"What is the best invention of all time?"




Smart phones?



While there can be great arguments for any of these listed above, this list does not include THE best invention.

No, my friends.  The 'best invention ever' is the Baby Cage, er, I mean Pack-N-Play. Wait! No seriously!

What?  You disagree?  Then you are obviously 1. Not a parent. or 2. Your kids did not like the Pac-N-Play.  

If you are in the first category, if you ever have children, you will undeniably come to know the awesomeness of the Pac-N-Play.  If you are in the second category, then my heart goes out to you.  Quelle horror?!  (Pausing for a moment of silence....)

J in Pack-N-Play Two Years Ago (He's got a little bump on his head. Poor guy!)

When you bring that sweet little baby home, all you want to do is hold your baby, cuddle with your baby, and be near your baby.  Then, after two weeks of no sleep, you realize you have to put the baby down for just a few minutes to accomplish X, Y or Z.

This is where the Pack-N-Play comes in!  You can put the baby in the Pack-N-Play where they can nap there while you eat dinner or watch the mobile while you load the dishwasher.  Genius!

Then, when they can sit up by themselves, you can put them in there with a few toys, and Voila!  They can entertain themselves for a few minutes while you take a shower! Brilliant!

Then when they get older, you can encourage them to want to go into the Pack-N-Play by saying, "Look!  It's a lion cage!  Looks at the baby lions!  Are you hungry baby lions?  Let's get you some food!"  (Hubby and I tried this once and BOTH boys love it!)

J (who is now 3 1/2) will say, "Mama, can I go into the Pack-N-Play and pretend to be a baby lion?"  (I know.  You hate me a little right now.)  So both boys will go into the Baby Cage, er, Pack-N-Play to play 'baby lions' where we feed them 'lion food' (i.e. Goldfish).  We pretend to be scared while feeding the baby lions and they laugh like it's the funniest thing ever.  Too. Stinking. Cute.

Now, before you go hating, I will say that while this is wonderful when they are playing in the Pack-N-Play, it does not happen very often these days. Nor, when they would actually stay in there would we leave them in there for hours at a time. 

Today, the boys would rather be running around the house like the tiny tornadoes that they are, but they do occasionally request to go in there.  (Side note: L climbed out of the Pack-N-Play this weekend.  I was in the bathroom, heard the Pack-N-Play move, then the pitter patter of little feet.  Scared the crap out of me!)

Bottom Line: The Pack-N-Play keeps your baby safely contained while you get some work done (at least until they climb out). Ahem.

I rest my case!  This is why the Baby Cage, er, Pack-N-Play is the 'Best Invention Ever'.

Pack-N-Play, I salute you!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Dear This Past Monday...

Dear This Past Monday,

First, let me say that I am aware at how some people loathe Mondays.  I hear people grumble things like "Oh no! Not Monday again!" or "It's Monday already?!" or "I hate Mondays."  I am not one of these people.

Secondly, I love all the days of the week.  I hold no prejudice or bias towards any particular day of the week.  All days of the week are considered equal. (Be quiet, Saturday!)

Good things can happen on any day of the week! You could get an extra order of fries for no charge on a Wednesday.  That nice lady could let you go ahead of her in the check-out lane on a Sunday.  Or you could win the lottery on a Tuesday. You just don't know!

However, you, This Past Monday, were incredibly mean spirited.  Not only were my two babies sick with 103 degree fevers the day before, but I was up with the littlest the night before.  Once I stumbled out of bed, I proceeded to go through the motions of getting ready for the day.  All the while, I'm thinking of J's first dentist appointment this morning, playing out every scenario in my head and hoping things go well.

But, you, This Past Monday, you see that I am having a difficult morning.  So, you think it will be fun to toy with me and kick me while I am down.  And I end up backing into my mom's car as I am leaving for J's dentist appointment. (Crap fire and save the matches!!)

I am so upset that I end up cursing in the car (Expletive!  Expletive!  Expletive!) and I hardly ever curse.  Okay, I hardly ever curse around the kids. I think we all know that tomorrow J is going to be running around the house yelling, "Expletive, Mama!" *Sigh.*

My poor little car!

And, the creme de la creme, I realize that mom's birthday is Wednesday. As in two days from running into her new car. Happy Birthday, Mom!  I got you a thousand dollars of auto body work!  Just what you always wanted.

But, you know what, This Past Monday, I see what you are trying to do!  I am watching you! (Making the Robert DeNiro motion with my fingers from 'Meet The Parents'.) You are trying to get me down.  Steal my joy. Make me sad and weepy.

Guess what?!  It almost worked.  I was almost ready to throw in the towel.  Almost ready to cave and say, "I hate Mondays too!  Monday's stink!"  But you know what happened?  LIFE.  Yep, I spent Monday morning with my sweet little J.  Just the two of us.  J went to the Dentist for the first time and he did such a great job!  Then, we went to McDonald's where he had his favorite, pancakes and sausage, and he played in their huge play area. We had the best time together!

Such a big boy!

On the way home, you tried to wiggle doubt into my mind. Out loud, I even said, "I am so mad at myself." To which J replied, "Why are you mad at yourself?"  I answered, "I am mad because I ran into Nina's car."  J replied, "It's okay, Mommy.  It was an accident."  Schooled by a three year old!

But, you know what, he's right!  It was an accident and accidents happen.  We can let the bad things that happen steal our joy or we can decide we are going to claim that joy for ourselves and cling to it, no matter what happens. I am going to claim that joy for myself.

So, This Past Monday, and every Monday hereafter for that matter, bring it!!

Keeping It Real,