Sunday, May 31, 2009

Free Water Does a Body Good

Don't you love when people surprise you in a good way?

This weekend, we went to Kings Island in Cincinnati, Ohio. The kids had a ball. And so did we. Being seven plus months pregnant made it a little challenging. It was also very hot there. So, in an effort to stay hydrated, I told my husband that no matter what the cost, I had to buy water and keep hydrated for my health and the baby's.

So, I grabbed his wallet and headed to the nearest drink stand. While waiting, a Kings Island worker came up to me. He mumbled something and I had no idea what he was saying. I looked at him confused and he repeated his original sentence. He said "You can get free ice water at any of the places that sell food." My jaw dropped open. "Wow. Thanks, that's great to know." I was thrilled. This is going to save me a ton of money! As he walked away, I thought what great customer service this is. Wow. I am impressed by the level of customer service at Kings Island.

I was also impressed by the cleanliness of the park. The bathrooms were very clean and the I swear I never saw one piece of trash in the entire park on the ground. I didn't feel gross like I sometimes do at amusement parks. The children's section has quality rides and the kids loved the characters that were always around. Kyle ran up and hugged Patrick, Dora, Spongebob, Sandy and even Scoobie Do. The workers were very patient with the children and so polite.

I can't say enough good thing about our trip to Kings Island. My only complaint is that they don't allow pregnant ladies to ride roller coasters. Picky. Picky. I can't wait to go back when I can ride their amazing roller coasters.
So if you don't live near this park, don't forget to use this Indy tip at YOUR local amusement park. Don't buy bottled water. Ask for ice water for FREE! You'll be doing something good for the environment, your wallet and your body.

Indy's camera and computer are involved in a lovers' spat. They are temporary separated. We are busy working on a compromise. Last week, it was very bad and the only posts written required some photos that went with the post. So, I apologize for the lack of posts. You probably thought I was out shopping for girl's clothes! Hopefully, we will get the computer and camera working together soon. Stay tuned...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

She Lost Her Sheep?

I did the unthinkable for a Stay At Home Mom (SAHM). I willingly went on a preschool field trip. Now, some SAHM's will go if is their baby's last field trip. Maybe they will sign-up if their child begs. Or maybe they will sign-up if they feel guilty. Most of the time, they don't go because they hate to lose precious free time to get things done.

I went today to the Cleveland Metropark Zoo and we had a great time. I really did. It was an absolutely perfect, gorgeous Ohio day. Being pregnant made me more aware of my size, my swollen feet and my thirst. But, the kids were great and I enjoyed spending time with Kyle and his class.

Jokingly, I told OHmommy on my way onto the school bus that I needed blogging material so I was going on the trip. As I ate lunch, nothing seemed to be blog worthy.

But then, bingo. I found it.

We saw a woman/man dressed up like Little Bo Peep. We were at the zoo. There were no story telling programs for fairy tales going on. She was with her family. It was a hot day. She/he was wearing a wig, long ruffled socks and a HUGE bow on her head. This is the best picture I could take without getting beat up.

Anyone have a guess why he/she was dressed like this? Not talking, just saying...weird.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Finding Answers

I reached a new low today as a Stay at Home Mom (SAHM). I have read on other people's Facebook pages that they have found their calling as a SAHM. They wouldn't trade it for the world. Wait, I think I wrote that on my Facebook page. Anyway, I hit rock bottom today. I was completely bored. Bored. Bored. Bored.

I feel like one of the kids who complain to me that they have nothing to do. Like them, I have a bunch to do. I just don't feel like doing much of it. How much can you clean? How much can you be online? How many times can you play Uno with your child before you feel like you are going crazy?

Lack of funds and lack of energy has been keeping me close to home. A friend asked me today if I was "getting out." I wondered what she meant. I am still wondering. How much can a pregnant mom who has to watch her child all day be getting out? Big day tomorrow! I am going grocery shopping. And if I am feeling crazy, I might go to two stores.

I know all moms whether they work or not feel a little stir crazy at times. I ended up spending the day, between playing Sorry with Kyle and cleaning, looking at birth announcements. I got through it. Days like this make you wonder how long can you stay home. But a recession like this helps answer the question. Somehow, you have to figure out to stay home, do what you need to do but entertain yourself so you don't go crazy. It has been six years and I have usually been too busy to even worry about trying to stay sane. Today make me wonder. What do I have to do? In nine weeks, I am sure I will have to table this discussion for awhile. But, I am still searching for the answer at this point. Not sure where or when I will find the answer.

Thursday, May 14, 2009


I sat and watched my son Kyle play. I was bored and cold watching him play at a local McDonalds. But, he was happy and entertained. So, I put down my book and decided that since I was pregnant (aka calories don't matter) and didn't see hot tea on the menu that I would go with their new hot chocolate. Hot, chocolate and something to do to pass the time. Sounded like a good idea.

So, I searched through my purse for a couple of bucks. Couldn't decide on sizes but went with the smaller one due to the price difference. I watched patiently as the McDonalds worker slooooooowly created my hot chocolate. I wanted to grab the can of whip cream and do it myself. How can she move so slow, I wondered.

I took my hot chocolate back to the table and continued to watch Kyle play as I blew on my hot chocolate. There is nothing worse than a burnt tongue and that was not going to happen to me. So, I finally sip their new creation. I am not a coffee drinker but I had noticed their new ad campaigns. I was really expecting something yummy. So, I sipped it and was shocked. It is not good. Not good at all. It is very chocolaty. But, not in a good way. It was what I'd like to call gross.

I immediately did what any experienced blogger does. No, I didn't pull out my camera. I didn't have it with me. But, I did have a pen to write down exactly how I was feeling. I have of course lost that piece of paper (napkin) but the memory of that nasty hot chocolate has not left me. I didn't drink more than three sips. If you know me, you know that I would NEVER throw away anything chocolate unless it was down right bad. It was.

Take this as a public service announcement. Save your hard earned dollars and do not order the hot chocolate. Maybe their new coffee is amazing. My mom used to love their coffee years ago before it became fashionable to sell coffee. As I threw away my hot chocolate, I saw a mom with hot tea. It must be available even if it is not on the menu. Good to know, right? Next time I will skip the fancy drinks and just go with my old standby, a Coke.
And for readers outside of Ohio, I know it must seem strange to be ordering a hot chocolate in the spring time. Here in Ohio, one day it feels like spring, the next day is gloomy and chilly. Today? Warm (for us) and a light rain. Feels great.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

What Happens At Walmart

When I land in Vegas, I like that I feel normal. No matter what I wear, do, say or act, I am normal. No one judges you there. You will always find people that are freakier or funkier than you are. Your wildest is nothing there. I love that.

Walmart is a lot like Vegas.

1. No matter what you wear. You are fine. Stain on your shirt. Fine. Ripped sweater. No problem. Shoes not matched. Betcha no one notices.

2. Your kids are better behaved than most others. No matter how your kids are acting, there is a kid acting worse a few aisles away.

3. Whatever you put in your cart is nothing to be ashamed about. Little Debbies, frozen pizza and tons of pop. Feel no shame. Someone is eating worse than you.

4. You hate Walmart and are ashamed to be shopping there? So is everyone else. Get over it.

5. Don't feel like bringing your cloth shopping bags? Not really encouraged or accepted. Don't feel bad. Plastic is fine and easier for the workers.

6. Like Vegas, the price seems cheap. But somehow, $150 later, you leave and wonder how you blew so much cash. Too bad Walmart doesn't serve alcohol while you shop.

So in this economy, we might have to skip visiting Las Vegas. Plan yourselves a date night and head to your nearest Walmart some late evening entertainment. I am sure you will find some people and stories that would rival a night in Vegas. And don't worry, what happens in Walmart, stays in Walmart.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Forever Going Postal

Dear Postmaster General,

You are making me crazy. Really, you are. See, you keep increasing the prices of stamps. I don't really care about the pennies. My problem is that I have a million stamps that need penny stamps attached to them. Do you know how annoying that is?

I am a busy and lazy stay at home mom. I do my best to keep on top of things. But, I am not always organized. I have about 12 stamps in my junk drawer and countless ones throughout our desk. Some are so old. Very old. Some have no price of the stamp on them. I have no idea how much they are worth. I looked it up once. So annoyed that I nearly threw them all away. But, I am too cheap. So, back into my junk drawers they went.

Hey, I know. It is my fault. You started selling the Forever stamps. But, really. They are ugly and I hate putting them on Christmas cards. So, I went against my own judgement and bought Christmas and Hanukkah stamps. I told myself that I wouldn't do it. And here you go raising the prices again. And I haven't used all of my holiday stamps from December. I will have to buy more penny stamps. Ugh!

I know you will continue to do this to me. I must resist the holiday and love stamps. I must ignore any special stamps you release. I must go with the ugly but necessary Forever stamps. I must but I am not happy.

Forever yours,


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Wish I Had to Buy a Card

I can't remember what I bought my mom for Mother's Day last year. I have been wracking my brain all week and I just cannot remember. I do remember that I never liked buying Mother's Day cards. Every year I dreaded it. My mom wasn't a cookie cutter mom. None of the cards really matched our relationship and they all felt fake. I would just pick out the best choice and make myself give it to her.

Yesterday I was in Walmart and I could barely walk by the card aisle. There were so many people almost on top of one another looking for that perfect card for their mom. I wish I was one of them. So many thoughts came rushing at me. How much I missed calling home and hearing her voice. She was so excited about the new baby. And how many times I have almost called home to ask her a cooking question and realized that she was gone. It just doesn't seem fair that someone only 59 passed away. I know I was there for the whole event but it is very hard for it to sink in. I just doesn't seem possible that she is really gone. It just cannot be true.

So I continued to avoid the Mother's Day card aisle and concentrated on my task at hand. I kept thinking that I know that I could pick out a card a little easier this year. As I became more of a mom, picking out my card got a little easier each year. I understood more. I forgave. I know she did her best. I can't imagine being so sick her entire life, trying to work and take care of three girls.

At the beginning of the week, I didn't think that Mother's Day was bothering me. I am a mom and I thought that I just needed to think of it as my day. For my whole life, it has been about my mom on Mother's Day. I just needed a paradigm shift and it all would be OK. But, in Kohl's yesterday as I was looking for something decent to wear for our Mother's Day brunch, their announcement about Mother's Day threw me into a fit. Tears came to my eyes and all of the sadness came right back to me. I could barely get out of there fast enough. Who knew? I never imagined how grief would come and go so quickly and when you didn't expect it.

So this year, I bought my mom (really for my Dad) a stone for her garden that I know she would have loved. I bought myself one too. I will always remember what I got her this year. And while I will skip the card, I know that she will be very close to my heart this week and especially on Sunday. As a mother, it can be so hard to share your Mother's Day with your mom and your mother-in-law. I know I have griped about it before. But I would give anything to have to share it one more year. And to have to buy her one more card.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Camp Indy

I just realized that preschool ends in three weeks and kindergarten ends in four. Ugh. I love school and even the hectic running around that comes with it. It keeps me busy, gives me a schedule and makes me get dressed before 10 a.m. So, now that I realize summer is only weeks away, I am starting to plan. We do a lot of parks, picnics and zoo trips. But sometimes, you just need air conditioning and a break from the running. That's when I turn to the movie theatre.

Have you ever heard of movie theatres showing children's movies throughout the summer at a very inexpensive ticket price? All of the chains do it. Every week, they show children's movies that have been previously released. Ticket prices are about $1 per person and they are usually on a Tuesday or Wednesday morning. And most have children's snack deals at this time. You can buy tickets, all of your kids goodies, feel like a wealthy mom and not even break a $10 bill. Even better, the movie theatre is full of moms, dads, babies and kids. Noise is expected and no one really cares. Go ahead and bring that toddler!

So here are some links to the national chains. I just printed out schedules for each of the local movie theatres in the area so I can plan on making it to some of them. Different chains show different movies so be sure to check around if you are looking for a special movie. My kids were dying to see Space Chimps. I. Was. Not. But, for $3, I can nap through that one with them.

Cinemark Summer Movie Clubhouse

Regal Cinema Family Film Festival

Showcase Cinemas

AMC Summer Movie Camp

Just visit the site, plug in your zip or state, and local theatres will pop up. And if I missed any chains, please be sure to let everyone know in your comments. We can get through the summer if we all work together. And with a big tub of popcorn, Goobers and a Coke, I know I will at least entertain myself until school starts again in August.

I'm Not Talking About It, I'm Just Saying...