The Charming Tyrants

The Charming Tyrants

Good Words

God didn't promise days without pain, laughter without sorrow, sun without rain, but He did promise strength for the day, comfort for the tears and light for the way. - Anon

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

A Nostalgic Hodgepodge

It's Wednesday again and I hope you remembered that means it's time for a little bit of hodge and a little bit of podge.  So read on my friends.

1.  Do you think the world became a more dangerous place on Sept 11, 2001 or did we just become more aware of the danger?  How has your own life changed as a result of that day?

Life has alway been fraught with peril.  I think we just became more aware of it, before that day we felt fairly secure here in the U.S. because an attack on our home soil seemed so unrealistic, because we are separated from most of the rest of the world by two oceans.  Unless we went to war with Canada or Mexico it was unlikely that we would ever see an invasion on our soil the likes of which the European, Asian or African continents have seen.  September 11th changed all that.  As a result we have seen an erosion of our personal freedoms, especially when traveling either here in the U.S. and/or abroad, so too has the U.S. been viewed with seemingly more hatred and vitriolic slander and derision than I think ever before.  Historically there has been a rise and fall of all great civilizations and sometimes I think that with the current state of affairs, we are on the downward side of that slope.  Scary thing to think about.  I wonder what the future will bring for my children and their children.  Will I live to see that day?

2.  Do you think your parents were too strict when you were growing up?  How about in hindsight?

No, I was and still am a rule follower (mostly).  I am also an introvert and was a very introspective child and sometimes I think I grew up in a fog of my own making. My siblings talk of things that happened and that I was a part of but I have little or no memory of the event.  Mostly what I remember are the one on one times with my parents or with one of my siblings.

In hindsight I would still say no.  I would be interested to know how a few of my siblings might answer this question.

3.  Share one random but candid fact about yourself.

See #2.  Read this article about being an introvert awhile back and found myself nodding in agreement through the whole thing.

4.  Would your nearest and dearest describe you as simple or far too complicated?

Yes.  Again, what would my siblings say?

5.  What is your favorite stadium or carnival food?

Not sure I have a favorite and you certainly couldn't call cotton candy food, but that was the one thing that my parents would treat us to when we went any place like that.  So I have fond memories of sticky colored spun sugar on a paper stick.

6.  Tornado, hurricane, earthquake . .  how many of these natural disasters have you experienced?

I live in a mountainous desert so tornados are rare and hurricanes are nonexistent but we are sitting along the wasatch fault line so I have felt my share of tremors and we did have a tornado come through the center of downtown in 1999.

7.  Labor day weekend is approaching so a work related question seems appropriate.  Growing up, did your parents assign regular chores?  Were you paid for doing those chores?  If you're a parent do you assign chores to your own children?  Why or why not?

Yes we had chores and no we weren't paid for doing them.  Our payment was room and board, not that our parents would have kicked us out.  We did get an allowance for a while, but it wasn't based on whether or not we did our chores and ended sooner than I would have liked.

At 4 and 1, I have not assigned specific chores to my kids yet but I do make them help clean up the messes they make.  They have been nicknamed "Mr. Twister" and "Dr. Destructo" for good reason.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Since we are reminiscing . . .

This is a picture of one of my brothers, me and my only sister the summer before she started kindergarten and my earliest memory is one of me standing on the couch with tears in my eyes watching through our big picture window as my mom walked my sister out to get on the bus to go to school.  I didn't want her to go and wondered why I couldn't go with her and I remember my younger brother trying to console me and my pushing him away in disgust.  When my mother got back into the house she found him on the floor in a puddle of tears and me sobbing into the couch cushion.  Why is it that first memories are often traumatic ones?

Anyhoo . . .

I hope you all remember to leave me a comment and then head on over to Joyce's place for little more hodge and a lot more podge.

Friday, August 26, 2011

HT's Camera

Two Christmas' ago I bought HT a Fisher Price camera and today I decided to see what kind of pictures he's been taking. The quality is what you'd expect from a toy camera and the shots are about what you'd expect from a 3 - 4 year old. There are a couple of pretty good shots mixed in among the others.

An early shot of HT's feet.

Early shot of Papa.

More recent and better shot of Papa

Me - the instigator of this infamous blog and his favorite Auntie.  =)



Starbucks friends

The tree next door

His trains

His Grandpa

The neighbors

His favorite cup.

There are many more pictures of half eaten banana's, the stairway, the floor, the tv, his portable dvd player, and the people in his life. It's actually pretty amazing the shots this kid takes with a crappy little camera. I think he wants to take his mama's job as the blog photographer one day.

~Charmings Auntie

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig

I'm back.

Did ya miss me?


Is it because you didn't even know I was gone?

Ah well . . .

I came back to over 100 blog posts waiting for me in my reader. I am not going to get them all read, just so you know.

Bet you're just dying to know where I was. If I tell you, you'll just get all jealous and we wouldn't want that now, would we?!

But I can tell you we didn't buy a fat pig.

Nor a fat hog.

I will however show you a few of the pictures I took.

Had a lovely visit and brunch with family in Minneapolis.
Relaxed in Grandpas hammock.
Watched the clouds roll through the late afternoon sky.
Played "King of the Hill".
Hitched a ride.
Read stories with Grandma.
Watched a dragonfly play in the lilies.
Caught up with old friends.
Went to the races.
Managed to get one photo of the four of us together.
Found a comfy spot to watch cartoons.
 Enjoyed a garden in full bloom.
Pontoon boat ride, fishing poles and one on the line.
Flittering butterfly in a field of daisies.
Afternoon spent reminiscing over times past.
Went fishing.
And went fishing some more.
A summer vacation at the lake never disappoints.
Hated to say goodbye.
But home beckoned.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real


Evening light filtered through Japanese Maple tree in the back yard.


The delight in the face of my son as he watched a dragonfly dance overhead.


Sometimes a bucket makes for a nice hat.


The reality of not getting my boys to cooperate and sit still long enough for me to take a picture and having them both looking into the camera and smiling, not such an easy thing to do.

round button chicken

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Lazy Day Hodgepodge

It's Wednesday again, must be time for the Hodgepodge, and I'm sure you know by now that it's seven questions and one random thought and I figured I wasn't too lazy to participate today so here goes.

1.  If you could work for any one government agency which would you choose and why?  (If you're in the US here's a helpful list.)

I took one look at that list and was appalled.  No wonder our government is so deeply in debt.  And I was too lazy to look at the whole thing and pick something, probably because I have no desire to work for our government.

2.  How difficult is it for you to forgive someone who refuses to apologize?

Gosh, if I refused to forgive I would be a mess.  I have known plenty of stubborn people who have hung on to a hurt for years and it has made them a not very nice person.  Forgiveness frees me from anger, pain, resentment, bitterness and all the heartache that comes from holding a grudge.

3.  What is your favorite meatless supper?

Growing up if there wasn't meat on the table and a dessert to be had my father said it wasn't a meal.  However there were those rare occasions when we would have coffee cake and/or popcorn for supper.  Mom usually let us make it ourselves and I have fond memories of doing so.  

Today I would have to say macaroni and cheese ( I'm not talking Kraft here people) with a side salad or better yet a fresh picked garden tomato still warm from the sun on a sandwich with mayonnaise, a little salt and pepper, maybe lettuce, a slice of cheese and a great big dill pickle.  Yum.  Now if only I had me some bacon.

4.  Wednesday August 10th is National Lazy Day ... will you be celebrating?  If so, tell us how so we can be lazy too.

Really, I never knew there was such a thing.  Somehow I think that many of us don't need an excuse to shirk our responsibilities.  Must be run by a government agency.  Anyway if I had the time and money I would love, Love, LOVE a spa day.  Pretty sure that won't happen so I guess I will have to settle for a pedicure.  But. . . can't really afford that either.  So maybe I'll just sit on the couch, eat bon bon's and watch soap operas. ;~)

5.  As a child did you have any special back to school traditions and if so, what were they?  If you're a parent did you carry on those traditions with your own children?

I can remember going shopping with my Mom for new jeans and fabric so she could make me new clothes, other than that I think she was just glad to get us out the door (there were 8 of us).

My boys are still little and not yet in school.  Well, HT is going to go to preschool again this year but only for 2 1/2 hours, 3 days a week.  At this age he really doesn't need much.

6.  Write a summer tongue twister.

I'm too lazy, you write one.

7.  Would you be interested in observing a surgery or do you turn away when the nurse brings out the needle?

I have fainted at the sight of my own blood.  Does that answer your question?

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Even though I made light of working for the government above I have a very beautiful, intelligent niece who is working as a liaison for the state department in a place that is anti-American and no respecter of women.  Please say a prayer for her.

If you're not feeling too lazy leave me a comment then click on the button and go see what laziness everyone else is up to or not as the case may be.

Okay for some reason I can't get the button to work and I'm too lazy to figure out why so click here instead.

Monday, August 8, 2011

What's "UP" With That House?

Every year our local HBA (Home Builder's Assoc.) hosts a parade of homes throughout the valley and this year was no different.  Lots of homes in lots of neighborhoods with lots of differing price tags.

I have always enjoyed going and seeing all the new homes and trends in building and decorating, but I haven't been in the last couple of years.  I guess I kind of got tired of traipsing all over the valley and with the price of tickets and the price of gasoline and having to cart around one, two or three sometimes unwilling family members on my whim seemed more than it was worth.

But this year . . . well this year, they did something different, something unexpected and something that had me completely charmed and I just had to go.  One of the builders built a replica of the house from the Disney/Pixar movie "UP".

The attention to every little detail was amazing, every thing about Carl and his personality was felt in his chair, his lamp, his end table, the masculine squareness of it all.

It was equally evident in Ellie's things, soft rounded corners, her tall wing back chair, round lamp, round end table, oval picture frame, teacup and saucer.  Just like what you saw in the movie.

Really very sweet, like Carl and Ellie themselves.

Really loved the kitchen.  It had a decent sized pantry and the turquoise blue appliances were all new and energy star rated.  So bright, so cheery and welcoming if a bit on the small side, there wasn't a whole lot of counter space.  The retro styling really seems to be "in" right now.  

Even though I loved the house and found it charming and whimsical the rooms were on the small side and I wasn't a big fan of the layout.  The house itself was narrow and the lot small.  The back yard though small was fully fenced and had a covered patio just outside the kitchen door.  The master bedroom was on the second floor and the two other bedrooms were in the basement, no bedroom on the main level.  It did have plenty of storage and a very, very small room just off the master that had been decorated as a nursery, but could also be used as a small office.  You might be able to fit a twin bed in the room, but not much more than that.

The builders worked very hard to make the floor plan livable in today's market while maintaining the charm and authenticity of the house in the movie and the house had already been sold prior to the the opening of the parade of homes.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Got Boys?

If you do then I want to tell you about the M.O.B. Society blog.  M.O.B stands for Moms of Boys and it is written by moms of boys for moms of boys and they are all about giving encouragement and sharing stories and ideas about raising our boys to be godly men.  I have been lurking reading for a while now and have found it to be just that.

They are having a boy mom blog hop until August 3rd for all of us boy moms to get to know each other.

So for those of you who found me through their website, welcome.

I am a mom of two boys age 4 and age 1 and they are  . . .  well, they are boys in every sense of the word.  They love cars, trains, trucks, tractors and pretty much anything that goes vroom not to mention that they are energetic, rambunctious and sometimes unruly.  The only time they pick up something soft and cuddly is to throw it out of their way.  Sometimes I wonder why I keep all the stuffed toys around.  But they can melt their mama's heart with a smile.

This is HT.  The reason my sister started this blog and the reason she used the name "charming tyrant".  You see when we went in for one of our ultrasound visits, in one of the images it looks as if he is smiling.  Charming because he seemed to be smiling at his mama before he ever even looked her in the eye and tyrant because infants are of necessity demanding and selfish and impatient.  (You can see that ultrasound image here.)

Three years shy of one day later EM joined the crew and we were delighted to add an "s" to the blog title.

As of yesterday my husband and I have been married 7 years and we are still honeymooning despite the twists and turns, ups and downs, and detours that have been thrown our way.  And just so as to not make you too jealous I will tell you how we celebrated our anniversary.  My hubby got up early and played 9 holes of golf with one of his buddies, then he came home and we all went to church.  After church we all ate lunch at one of our favorites steak joints.  Came home had a nap . . . well, some of us napped and some of us played Super Mario.  Then we visited some friends had pie and ice cream, came home ate a light supper, put the boys to bed and were in bed and asleep ourselves before the 10 o'clock news.

Isn't that soooo romantic?!

But you know what, sometimes with the circumstances of this life, if that's the way it is then I'd be a fool not to count my blessings.  It truly was a very pleasant day, unhurried and unfettered by expectations and disappointments.

If you do have a boy or two in your house why not check out the M.O.B. Society for a little bit of encouragement and inspiration and "meet" some of the other moms out there and share in the journey.  And if you would like to play along for the boy mom blog hop click here and add your link to the list.