Friday, October 31, 2008


I took my bike out for a ride this morning
The path was hilly and not completely paved

At times, it was a mundane ride
Just pedaling away and moving straight on my path

At times, I was so tired that I just wanted to quit
But I knew I had to get home eventually

And at times, it was exhilarating - flying down hills with little control
Feeling the wind against my face and loving every second of it

As I parked my bike back in my garage,
My body ached but my soul felt refreshed

I realized that such is life
Ups, downs and straights

And through it all, if we just keep pedaling
At the end of our ride, our souls will reflect all we’ve done

Thursday, October 30, 2008


All in all, I would say my wedding day was a beautiful day. I was so incredibly happy all day that even all the mishaps couldn’t stop me from smiling. Almost my whole family was there to be with us and it wasn‘t for something sad or terrible for once. And in the end, we accomplished what we set out to do: to become husband and wife.

But looking back now, I wonder what I spent that year of my life on. The planning and DIY tasks - they really didn’t consume as much time as I like to think. I spent that whole YEAR planning a party that was over in a few hours. I spent a whole year making plans and decorations that never even got used. All that time just for a few hours? I regret putting my life on “hold” to plan this thing when it obviously wasn’t needed.

And then, of course, there is the money thing. I promised myself we would not go into debt over the wedding. I promised myself (and my mother) that I would be more careful with this credit card. I knew we’d carry a little bit on our card until Mike got his tax return, but I wasn’t going to over that! Then little by little, the credit card added up. When I had my brother and sister caring for the kids and my grocery bill just wasn’t going to be gracefully extracted from my bank account any more, I charged it. Anything we needed (or, admittedly, wanted) but couldn‘t quite afford, I put on the card. And it added up to a lot more than Mike will be getting back. We are making HUGE monthly payments but it doesn’t seem to make a dent. I regret spending too much money when I know I should have been saving. I regret emptying my savings account to make a credit card payment instead of demanding that the church coordinator give me my deposit back NOW.

I have my little regrets over the wedding - waiting until the last minute to do a lot of stuff, being so stressed out and busy the day of, doing pictures before the ceremony but not getting that private moment with Mike when we first saw each other, letting people who didn‘t know what they were doing run my music when it was SO important to me. But really, those are very trivial things when I think of the time and resources that were piddled away on the whole deal.

And now. Now they are more than just regrets. They are mistakes. Because I lost my job yesterday. I have no money in savings. I have a huge credit card debt that is going to start accruing interest at the end of this year. I effectively screwed myself - which I SWORE to myself I would not do. I put my blog - the one thing I love that could actually bring in some sort of funds - on hold for so long that I lost my reader base. I put my family in jeopardy by spending my money frivolously.

Last month, Mike and I sat down and took a long hard look at our finances. We cut every corner we could in an effort to pay down our debt faster and hopefully get our savings going again. I finally got smart again, but it wasn’t soon enough. And now that our funds have been cut, we are going to have to do more than just cutting the unnecessary, we are going to have to make sacrifices.

I wish so badly that I could look back on my wedding with fond memories of “the happiest day of my life” like so many other brides. But for now, I look back on it with regret. Not in the marriage, of course - just in what it took to get there.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Here's the church...

And here's the steeple...

But if you opened those doors, you wouldn't see any people.
We did pictures before the ceremony. ;)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

October 15th

It seems like I just posted this. Has another year really gone by?
"On September 28, 2006, House Resolution # 222 was passed in the House of Representatives supporting the goals and ideals of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day."
And thanks to the congressmen who passed the resolution and the many people who called and wrote their congressmen asking for their support, October 15th is now nationally recognized as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day.

Last Year

Monday, October 6, 2008


My photographer is running behind in getting me my pictures, so I asked her to at least email me our "Thank You" pictures so I could get some cards printed up. She embedded the pictures instead of attaching them, so the quality isn't good enough for Shutterfly. But, it was good enough for blogger. :)

It was a fun idea - but I wouldn't recommend doing it to anyone unless their photographer could ensure they'd have a high quality edited picture available soon after the wedding. I'm now one month past my wedding and haven't even started writing my thank-you cards, much less ordered them. :

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Very fast Chicago/Honeymoon recap

Thursday - Caught the Amtrak to Chicago at 7:50 a.m. Almost missed the train. Srsly - we were the people running with all their luggage at the "ALL ABOARD!" call. Train ride was lovely - the food was not as bad as expected. Arrived at our hotel around 4:30 (GREAT service here, but they charge for internet service and that almost killed me) and got acquainted with our room. Had dinner and a show at the 20's themed "speakeasy," Tommy Gun's Garage (good food, actually, although they almost sent me to the hospital with the surprise almonds in my green beans - show was great, too).

Friday - walked down to a shoreline park, then up through Navy Pier. Walked though downtown, rain started. Saw the Marilyn Monroe exhibit at the Cultural Center. Got a little freaked out. Walked around a lot more. Lunch at Buddy Guy's Legends (I know I sold myself short going here for lunch over dinner, but I am cheap and didn't want to pay the cover) where we enjoyed deep-friend okra, gumbo and a shrimp po' boy (for Mike). Walked around a lot more. Finally bought a Go Card for the following day so we could go IN places. Walked around some more. Then Volare for dinner. (Excellent. The place was packed at almost 10:00 and we still had great service.)

Saturday - it poured. And poured. And poured. Weather people said, "If you have plans, cancel them." We walked anyway. We walked for an hour to get to the Sears Tower, where we were told there was zero visibility. We went to the Art Institute and practically ran through it to have time to see other things. Caught the free trolley to the Field Museum where, again, we hurried through. Got done and had time left for one more activity. Left the museum campus to take a trolley to Navy Pier to do a shoreline tour on the boats. Was severely disappointed when nobody was there (after I called to make sure we could do it. I was mad. Very, very mad.) Defeated and feeling ripped off, we tried to find the Hershey's store to drown our disappointment with chocolate. That was another disappointment. I demanded that we go back to the hotel where our day picked up very well with the aforementioned pizza (from Gino’s East) and Iron Chef. Mike said we could go to Lincoln Park Zoo and Millennium Park Sunday morning before we left.

Sunday - It was still f%@!&* pouring outside so the outdoor activities were cancelled. We enjoyed our room until check out then caught a cab to the car rental place - the cabbie suggested finding alternate routes out of town as rain and flooding was causing some exits to close. Got to the car rental place to find a line OUT THE DOOR. Amtrak cancelled trains out - O'Hare was cancelling flights (No line bumps for people who reserved their car a week ahead, either). FINALLY got our car and then spent over an hour trying to get out of town. We were at the Illinois border around 5 when we realized we had not eaten or drank anything (besides the Starbucks my wonderful husband(!) went out in the rain to get while I waited in line earlier) ALL DAY. Finally found a Chili's. The rest of the night was spent driving home with Mike demonstrating his amazing skill of really getting lost. :)

So, it started out fun and ended up frustrating me a bit. But the frustrations and disappointments helped to remind me why we were there in the first place - that no matter what the situation, we were there together and we could be happy together even when things weren't going the way we had hoped. And we can still laugh with each other when we're soaking wet, aching tired and insanely frustrated. And in the end, we still had four kid-less, jobless and responsibility-less days to just enjoy each other's company. And that we did.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Oh, rain.

Our last vacation, we left and the Wisconsin Dells flooded. It rained on my wedding day. It rained almost the ENTIRE time we were in Chicago and made for a rather ugly exit.

But it was okay. THIS hotel (unlike the last few hotels we've stayed at) had the Food Network.

Oh sweet Food Network. Oh sweet Iron Chef.

Couple that with some hearty, bacon-rich pizza

and I call that one hell of a honeymoon.

Monday, September 8, 2008

If it rains on your wedding day...

It's supposed to mean good luck.

I think the rainbow we got (and the hopefully awesome pro shots along with it) could count as that.

I'm officially a Mrs!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

And one of the family

Props to my photographer allowing us to use some of our engagement pictures as family pictures. And props to my brother for keeping the kids [mostly] clean while they waited to jump in.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

One of Us

We did our engagement pictures a little late and I just got the disk in the mail today - two weeks out from the wedding. :) This is my favorite:

Monday, August 18, 2008


Miss Patti and me at my bridal shower over the weekend.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Mr. T

My new nephew - Born June 27th

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Friday, August 8, 2008

Thursday, August 7, 2008


I officially have less than one month until my wedding.

Because I'm well aware that discussing my ever-present wedding dramz would get tiring (currently? getting the girls at the banquet hall to WRITE ME BACK. Or call - I'll even take a call!), I decided that the only way to liven up my little pink blog o'happiness before my *return to normal* was to post some pictures (at random, of course. How else?).

Feel free to comment still (I do love it so), but understand if I don't have time to answer any questions you may have, like, "Amy, why is there a picture of a monkey playing with himself here?" (srsly. I have one.)

Also - nothing like driving something deep into the ground, right? ;) My post Hunted was published on another collaborative blogging site. Check out Bloggers Annex if you get a chance - in addition to mine, there are other REALLY good posts there by some bloggers you may know. If you feel so inclined, you can also join and submit your posts for publication.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Answer You Anything! Part Two.

What did I tell ya? I knew better than to declare a date that these would be done!

More questions from Ask Me Anything now answered!

Worker Mommy:

What scares you?
Excellent lead-in Worker Mommy! Aside losing people I love which at one point was a nearly debilitating fear for me – I am also scared of falling, thus I do not like being up high when there is even a remote possibility that I may not stay that high. Bugs also get the best of me. For the most part, I’ve been able to “man-up” and squish my own bugs since I’ve become a mommy. But some bugs I just can’t get over – like ticks. Of all bugs – ones that bury their heads in your skin to suck your blood are the worst. Says me. I have also had very traumatic incidents involving ticks. Okay, probably not traumatic sounding, but they definitely felt traumatic.

What is your most embarrassing moment at work?
Up until a couple weeks ago, I couldn’t think of an answer for this question. Time solves everything, doesn’t it?

So, my gal Patti and I went for our somewhat-weekly walk in the park on lunch. I came back and settled in to my desk when Mike called. I was leaning back in my chair talking on my cell when I felt a stray hair tickling me from inside my shirt. So I discreetly lifted my shirt to find said hair but instead found myself a tiny disgusting wood tick.

I shrieked. Loudly. A high-pitched undecipherable “TIIIIIICK! THERE’SATICKONMEEEEEEE!”
My boss (who now shares a thick fabric wall with me since the flood relocation) asked over the wall, “Amy…is everything alright?” Mike was still on the line asking “What’s going on?!” And I was standing with my shirt half up trying to take the tick off with the same hand that was holding my shirt up. I tried to calm down enough to tell both men that, yes, I was fine. Yes, I am slightly crazy. Yes, I’ll be okay. I let Mike go and went into the bathroom to remove all my clothes and shake them furiously in case Mr. Squished By A Highlighter had any travel companions.

But the really embarrassing part came a bit later. When I realized just how loudly I had screamed. In a large room with hundreds of people quietly working at their desks. Score one for my professionalism, eh?

What makes you roll on the floor laughing?
I have an odd sense of humor. I really appreciate a good "thinking" joke - especially ones that are more funny the next day because you get it more. But the things that get me rolling are simple jokes. Like, "Why does the gorilla have such big nostrils? Because he has big fingers!" Also? Funny animal pictures. LOLCATZ still rock my world.

What do you do when you get really angry?
It depends on why I’m angry and who I am angry AT. I can keep my cool for a while, but once I get to a certain point I am screaming so loud that I almost lose my voice. I have been known to spit when I yell like this. (Not pretty. Especially when my face is all red and I’m all up in the person’s grill.) If I cannot scream or hit something (heh, I’ll face it – or someone), I cry. I cry like a big fat baby. Like the strong emotions have to get out SOMEHOW. Luckily, I don't get that mad very often. :)


What was your favorite Halloween costume as a child?
I’m pretty sure I was a “Princess” of some sort almost every year. I was not a very creative child.

Also, can I be a flowergirl?
Becki, I’d be down with this if there weren’t one tiny problem. See, the flower girl dress is a small version of my dress. If you matched the other flower girl, you’d be wearing the same dress as me. And I guess it is typically frowned upon to wear the same dress as a bride to a wedding. (Oh, The Knot teaches me so much!) You are welcome, however, to give me flowers whenever you please.


I want to know more about when you donated your hair two years ago.
At the moment, I was completely horrified. But that was because the stylist was a moron and did everything I asked her not to do. Overall, it was really rewarding. I’m looking forward to doing it again at my normal salon next spring. (Email me if you want pictures.)


Who would win in a fight between a human ninja and a monkey ninja and why?
This is a really tough call. Monkeys are very quick and agile creatures. Train one to be a ninja and they are quite certainly going to be lethal. But I’m going to have to say the human ninja would win because even if the monkey was really badass, the human ninja would probably have a gun, too. I don’t think ninja monkeys carry guns.

Have you bought any clothing items in the past two weeks?
Another question that benefited from my tardiness. Last night I bought a cute dress at Terrgit for seven dollars. And it’s not black! (I don’t know why I felt the need to stock up on black dresses/skirts at the beginning of summer). I’ve also been buying the eco-tees that Wal-Mart has been clearancing out. Organic sustainability + Cheap = So mine.

Would you rather have no elbows or have no knees?
This took a lot of thought. I think I’d rather have no elbows. Because if I couldn’t walk, I may as well just wear a shirt that says, “I can’t believe it’s not butter.” But I would no longer be able to drink wine with you unless you helped me out a little.

If you could only listen to one album for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Morning View from Incubus. It’s been like six years since I got that album and it’s still one of my favorites.

What do these stand for (best guess):

BHIMBGO – Beat Him If My Bacon Gets Overcooked
WAFB – Women Are Fecking Beautiful
SITD – Sometimes I Think Dirty
ANFSCD – Amy Never Forgets Some Crazy Dreams

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Family Vacation

We took the kids to the Wisconsin Dells last week. It was my first time there (even though I grew up in Wisconsin) and now I'm really grateful I went when I did! I know a lot of us have had a lot of rain lately -Lake Delton flooded and reconstructed (and emptied) itself.

Anyway - on to the pictures!

We took the long way there and stopped for a tour at Niagara Cave before visiting with the grandparents for a night.
Once in the Dells, we rode horses at Canyon Creek Stables.

The stables had a cool petting zoo with a llama/alpaca (I can never tell the difference) who hissed a lot.

And a baby goat that loved Alyssa almost as much as she loved it.

We took a ride on the Original Wisconsin Ducks.

And played some mini-golf at Pirate's Cove.

We had a yummy lumberjack breakfast at Paul Bunyan's Cook Shanty.

And toured the Ripley's Believe It or Not! museum.

Our KidCabin Suite at the Great Wolf Lodge was totally worth the money.

Their waterpark was fun, too! The family (mostly Mike) ran to get dumped on by The Giant Bucket every five minutes.

By our second night, the rain had started in so the camera started getting left in the car. Our Lower Dells tour excursion into Witches Gulch was the last time it made it out for a while.


So it seems that beautiful sandy beaches and vast oceans are not in my near future. Ideally, that would have been what my honeymoon was like. However, even when we thought we might kinda sorta be able to maybe afford such a trip, we realized our prime honeymoon time was also prime hurricane time. No thank you to that.

We then decided that we would cozy up in a nicer-than-usual hotel in Duluth for a long weekend. Until a horde of in-line skating enthusiasts trampled my second-rate-dream honeymoon by stealing all the hotel rooms. (B&B’s are adorable, they are…I just can’t bring myself to stay in one.)

So we were left with about five days to go pretty much wherever we wanted. We wanted a place we’ve never been to but didn’t have to travel a long way to get to. We came up with…Chicago.

This is where you come in, my friends. I need advice. I need places to eat (fun, but not too fancy), places to stay (nice, but not “independently wealthy” nice), things to go see and do. Even a pointer to which area I should stay would help me narrow my search a bit.
I went nuts and almost cancelled our last vacation – which was only to Wisconsin Dells – because I had to figure it all out on my own with no help or input. I don’t want to risk that again.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Empty Handed.

Sometimes writing is my therapy. It helps me get out all my feelings – good and bad. And usually, I’m proud of the feelings I’ve put onto the paper. I’m proud of the way they poured out of me and I’m proud to share them.

But lately, I get something written and even though I feel good to have gotten it out – I don’t feel good about what’s on the paper. I’m not proud of the emotions. I’m not proud of the points I’ve made. I don’t feel like I’d be proud to have my friends share in it with me.

So there I sit: An empty-handed blogger. With nothing of substance to share.

I have a feeling this has more to do with my perspective than my writing skills.

I’m working on my perspective, I promise.

And if you’re missing me, you can bet I’m missing you, too!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Answer You Anything! Part One.

I have to break this little party up into separate posts. I had no idea you (Worker Mommy) would have so many questions for me! You (Worker Mommy) must really miss me. ;)

Questions from Worker Mommy:

Ok...what's your favorite childhood memory?
I’d have to say that it would be collective memories of being on my grandparents’ houseboat on the river. Almost all my great memories are there.

Have you ever been in a fist fight?
……Yes. A few actually. What can I say? I have a big mouth. Sometimes you have to be able to back it up. Haha – the worst fight (with the most punching) I’ve ever been in was with Mike’s older sister, actually (completely unprovoked – I swear!). But the one I was most injured in was when I was fighting with my ex-boyfriend and we ended up at the bar. I spent the night [underage] drinking and the fight escalated. The night ended with me trying to hit him, him ducking into a car and a large Amazonian woman stepping up in his place. Since I was, after all, ten feet tall and bullet proof, I tried to take a swing, but my *dear friend* Eric stepped in and grabbed my arms. So I kicked her. And she punched me in the eye. I kid you not – I STILL see that black eye some days.

What drives you nuts about people?
Arrogance. I’m all for self-empowerment and self-confidence, but there is a line. And one you cross it, you’re pretty much just a d-bag and no longer exist to me. There is actually one person on our guest list that we’re debating over because I don’t want him at our wedding due to his flagrantly arrogant attitude. (That’s my argument line.) (If you watch Hell’s Kitchen – he is a LOT like “Jason” who was fired last night.)

Questions from Kelly (who is rocking some new digs!):'re 26? OK That's my first question.
Not yet, actually. I will be on May 6th.

And...where you been?
Well, I went to LaCrosse a couple weeks ago.

And...What's up with the wedding stuff?
Easy: Vendor prices.

And...where you been?
Ooh, I went to IKEA finally, too! (Not as great as I had hoped.)

Questions from Momma’s World:

What are your plans for the summer?
Since my “dear sweet *BFF*” called me on Easter to tell me to find new daycare, our summer plans are a bit up in the air right now. We’ve been busy converting my office into an extra bedroom (leaving one of the three computers/desks in there and moving the other two into my bedroom) so that my teenage brother and sister can take turns staying with us and helping with the kids during the day. (At home, they aren’t allowed outside when they are home alone because my mom fears that they will drown in the lake or be eaten by bears and coyotes. They will freaking LOVE this, trust me.) That leaves a week at the end of the school year that my kids are out and my siblings aren’t yet, so we’re thinking of taking a trip with the kids during that time. Not sure where yet, just somewhere in driving distance. Good recommendations, anyone?

Have you made any decisions on your lists of to do for the Wedding?
Yep! Let’s see if I can remember everything I’ve booked: Church, Hall, Photographer, Florist and Baker. I still have a lot to do – my next thing will be starting my playlists, which I’m actually looking forward to doing. I have some DIY stuff in the works, but I’ll post about that another time.

Has the Man made any requests/demands about anything he wants at the wedding?
No pink. And a top hat. And also that we spend the extra hundred something dollars to get Buttercream cake.

(I'll be back with the rest. I am not going to go promising dates because we all see how great I am at that.)

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Ask Me Anything

This is a popular little game on the message boards I've been haunting lately. Trust me, it's a thousand times more interesting than the bulleted list of "What's been going on with me lately" that has taken me almost FIVE WEEKS to write.

So, go ahead. Ask me anything. I'll answer all questions next week.

Friday, February 22, 2008

I'm sittin on mah bed...Postin' on mah blawg.

Finally got myself a laptop.
Finally got caught up on reading blogs.
Finally posted about March for Babies.
Finally posted on the family blizog.
Feels good to be back.
(And bloggin' in bed)

Marching On

The March of Dimes has done away with WalkAmerica!!!!

Well, that was a bit dramatic. They actually just changed the name. It is now March for Babies.

I love the new name. I think it's very To-The-Point and goes well with March of Dimes.

I always wondered why the March of Dimes got to have the "WalkAmerica" when there are so many other walks IN America. I found out that it was because the March of Dimes pretty much invented the Charity Walk. That makes a lot more sense, then. This move was smart for them, but it helps me out, too. Now I won’t have to explain what the walk is for all the time. (That got just a little bit old.)

Help Team Bella Save Babies!

April 27th, Team Bella will be “marching” for their third year. So far in our walks, we’ve raised over $1,200 that went to help save babies. This year, I’m setting our goal a little bit higher. I’m going to muster up a little bit of courage and be just a little more outgoing when asking for donations. This year, I’m not going to wait until the day before “bank day” to put the change jar in the office kitchen just because a little red tape is in my way. I’m also going to talk about it a LOT more. Because it is something I feel very strongly about.

There are a lot of choices that we will make for our children. Unfortunately, we really don’t get to choose the way they are born. I am proof that a perfectly normal pregnancy can last almost to the end…but can’t guarantee a healthy baby. I don’t want more women to go through what I have. I believe in this charity and I hold their hope that one day ALL babies will be given the opportunity to start life healthy.

So it’s time again to ask that if you can spare a dollar, would you consider donating it to my cause? If you can spare a day, would you consider joining the walk in your own area? If you can just spare a minute or so, will you tell someone about the cause?

Contributions of all kinds help out in big ways.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


Something about that Sunday was odd. Our grocery shopping was completely done. The house was picked up. It was still early in the afternoon and we were bored. Never has there been such a quiet Sunday in this house. We're usually scrambling to get things done before the long week is upon us once again.

But this Sunday was different. We opened our new Game of Life and sat to play it. We talked Daddy into playing with us instead of playing his game on the computer. Everything seemed so oddly peaceful.

But then we got the call. A hysterical sister telling us we needed to get over to Mike’s step-dad’s house. Mike’s sister Staci was in an accident. That’s all she knew.

Staci was just at our house the night before. She ran an errand for us and stayed for a family dinner. She stayed kind of late. We had a chance to talk about so much. About how hot their work (she had just started working with Mike’s company) was going to be soon. About how she was going to get her GED. About how hard it was to keep her house clean with her new puppy (She worked so hard to learn to be a good homemaker when they moved in to this house – something I never thought she would do). We talked about the wedding and how we wanted her to take a part in it.

When we go the call, we panicked. I called my mom and asked her to come get the kids. We ran through the house and tried to pack a bag for something unknown. Cell phone chargers, magazines, HOW LONG WILL WE BE THERE??? Snacks, tissues, overnight clothes for the kids…just in case. I stopped randomly to pray.

Before my mom got there, Christy called again. Staci was killed. She crossed the median and was hit by a truck. She was dead. She was only 22.

We spent the night trying to find answers. Trying to find comfort. Trying to find some saving grace in the tragedy that had found our family again.

The last week has been somewhat of a blur. I’ve tried to write several times, but felt like it was a bid for sympathy. I wanted to memorialize her but didn’t want the attention.

Not that I could put the right words together, anyway.

I wasn’t ready to say goodbye to her. I’m still not. So many times this week, I’ve thought, “I should call Stac…” “I wonder when Staci will be...” “I bet Staci would like to...” And I am forced to remember that she won’t be here ever again.

Slowly, our days are growing to be “normal” again. There is less crying and more laughter in each day. But there will always be an empty place in my heart for the girl that I called “sis” long before I knew I’d be marrying her brother. There will always be a ready tear when I think about the wonderful person we lost. The beautiful girl who spread so much love in this world.

Your eyes are filled with love.
They glow with life.
They shine with laughter.

Your smile tells me everything is wonderful.
That your life is what you want it to be.
That you want to share your joy with everyone around you.

I look at these pictures
And forget that you're gone.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Weddingy Goodness

You know you're a neglectful blogger when people begin to email you questions that you normally would have answered months ago without prodding.

I'm not trying to keep my wedding stuff a secret at all. But it really is the reason I haven't been blogging. Not that I'm actually here working or something!

But even when I DO want to post about it, I'm reminded of a card from someecards - "Your wedding sounds so interesting to you." People say that to me with their eyes quite often.

HOWEVER! Seeing how I have gotten more than a couple emails asking me about my plans, I have decided that you will hear about it whether it is interesting to you or NOT. So pffflt if it isn't. (Or YAY if it is!)

First - Things I have decided on (Pictures hiding in the links).

My theme - Black and White and lots of pearls.

Why Pearls? It started with The Dress. The dress has pearls beaded throughout, as does the veil. We decided that my bridesmaids would wear a strand of pearls to match my dress and it just spilled over into everything from there. But really, the theme all comes down to classics.

You might notice that Alyssa's dress is a tiny wittle replica of mine (the straps were too loose on mine and had fallen back in this picture). I did NOT do this on purpose (I've heard some "bridezilla" remarks about trying to dress them like your clone). I actually had a very frilly white dress with black embroidery picked out, but she saw this one and realized it was like mine and had to have it. I'm not complaining. I'm also not cloning. So Haters can just eff off. I think it's adorable.

The bridesmaid dresses, I think anyway, are my #1 proof that I am nothing close to the reptilious (like my new word?) beast they love to compare brides to. Kristina can vouch for me – I said, “You need a black dress.” She found one she liked and that’s the one they got. However, the only picture I have of them in the dresses, it looks like we hate my lovely sister-in-law or something - or she hates us – so instead, I’ll link to a picture of Katherine Heigl’s sister’s wedding. Where Miss Katherine wore the same one.

Ceremony - We will be having it at the UCC church like I planned. I asked my 'grandpa' if he was willing to officiate and he gladly accepted. I'm really excited to have it here now. We went to church last Sunday and I felt like it was just the right place for it to be.

Reception - We chose a golf course near the church. It's actually very pretty as compared to the other one we looked at. Their shining moment was when the coordinator offered me the smaller banquet room since my guests would fit. This room not only has a fireplace in it, but the deposit was also $400 less and the minimum was $4000 less. I'll TAKE IT. We have yet to attend a tasting and select our menus, but I hear the food is at least all right. :D

Photographer - I actually only met with one photographer. But I did do a lot of online research. I figured if I didn't like their "show" folders - or couldn't afford them - why bother meeting them? I'm a busy lady! But the photographer we decided to use is close to the location, is very nice and has an eye for a great picture (which I based off the pictures on her walls as well as her portfolio). And did I mention she has great prices??

Flowers - I haven't chosen my florist yet (but may just go with the one I met if the other one doesn't get back to me soon), but I have officially decided that my bouquet will be white roses with pearl-adorned stephanotis wrapped in black satin with pearl straight pins. Bridesmaids' bouquets will be white hydrangeas and stephanotis. (Kind of like these). The flowers were really funny to me because up until an hour before I met the first florist, I had absolutely NO idea what I wanted and after searching through hundreds of examples, I was able to settle on these easily.

Things Coming Up To Do:

Cake - I don't know where we're getting the cake done yet, but I do know what style I want (something sorta like this) and the flavor will be easy for me to choose. I'm pretty excited to go eat cake, though. Probably next month.

Paper - I am LOVING some of the DIY Invitations I'm seeing so some other engaged friends and I are going to check out the paper place soon to see if this is feasible.

Centerpieces - Going with candles...I have a lot of deal-shopping to do for this job before I know exactly what it will look like, though.

And that, my lovelies, is as much Tulle-related information that I will force down your throats for one day.

(To those that asked...thank you! Not many people let me talk about it!)

Friday, February 1, 2008


Boss: "I can hear you over there talking to yourself, Tim."

Tim: "I like to talk to smart people."


(That's all I've got guys. Hi! Miss you!)

Thursday, January 24, 2008


Do you ever have moments where you think, "I just can't do this any more. Fuck it. Fuck it all. I'm done."??

And then you get better and feel bad for wasting all that time swearing and being down?

But most importantly, does it make you a quitter to quit quitting, or were you already a quitter to begin with?

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Hair Pricks

I got my hair cut...finally. It has been since I donated it in the Spring of '06. (Luckily, my hair stylist can't add well and only scolded me for waiting a year.)

I had to cut off quite a bit in order for it to be really healthy again. At least four inches.

I was ecstatic that my hair was finally healthy again. It finally looks GOOD again. I can finally STYLE it again.

Not one damn person noticed.

No one at my mom's house Sunday night.

NOBODY at work over the past two days.

Not my daycare girl.

Not even my kids.


I have no camera for "after" pics - or any "Before" pics for that matter. But you can tell me it looks nice anyway - just to make me feel better.


I hope you can all find the time today to say a little prayer for WhyMommy. (Find my post about her here.)

She's going in for a double masectomy today.

Just the next step in kicking this cancer's ass.

We're thinking of you, WhyMommy! Show 'em how it's done!!!

(Thanks for the heads up, Judy and Amy!)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

I'm Coming Out.

My secret identity has been compromised.

I leaked sensitive information about my family two posts ago.

Sure, Worker Mommy pointed it out and I got it fixed up. But I have no way of knowing who saw the information before that.

I had to make a choice. I could track the IP addresses of anyone who visited my blog from the first publishing time to the second and blackmail them to keep quiet (or, you know, just kill them). OR! I could just not do anything. Or I could come clean.

I have decided...The jig is up.

To tell you the truth, I was getting a little sick of the Blog Names, anyway. I had reasons for each one of them - the main being to protect my family from any weirdos that might want to come steal my babies in the middle of the night. But the more I think about it, the more I convince myself - they're never going to find them solely because they know our names. Because, really, we all have extremely common names. Not like my mom or sister - whose names will never be mentioned on here.

Without further ado, I give you the Butrfly Family Breakdown:

The Man = Mike
Sunshine = Alyssa
Ninja Boy = Nicholas
Butrfly = Amy (Me) (Oh, wait, you knew that one.)*

From here on out, we give up our Uber-Secret Identities and will stick with not letting our last names out.

So. There you go. Merry Late Christmas. I got you Information! Hope it fits.

*(Or did you? How would you feel if I told you that was NOT my real name??)

Friday, January 11, 2008

I'm Locking Her Up.

The first time, it was cute.

But if I see one more love letter come home from school, I'm locking the girl up and not letting her out until she's thirty five.

CPS be damned! My baby is being courted in first grade!!


Daddy's on the verge of a breakdown himself. I just hope Shane and Austin know to stay far away from this house.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Rambling, Ranting and Making Excuses

Or…the origin of my SR.

When I replied to my Brilly-Poo’s (;p) comment yesterday, instead of quick email back, I ended up with a whole blog post.

Brill said that she used to be very outgoing but now she’s more of a homebody.

And guess what…I used to be that way, too! I used to HATE sitting at home. I worked retail and LOVED my job. My favorite part (besides the free or very cheap shoes) was interacting with people all day long.

As I moved from my “Party Girl/Single Girl/Hot Shoe Store Girl” persona to the “Mom/Office Worker/Wife” persona I’ve taken on, my need for that interaction faded. But it wasn’t until Bella that I began to dread meeting people so much that it actually prevented me from leaving the house.

Because any time I have a conversation with someone new, the subject of kids comes up. “Do you guys have any kids?” I usually explain that The Man has two kids who live with us. I used to "avoid" this situation by saying "we" have two kids. Then I wouldn’t have to explain the custody thing. But then, the subject can turn to, "So the kids with Grandma?" I could LIE (most of the time, sometimes they are with Grandma), or tell them that they are at their mom's. [Weird look] Then explain that they are The Man's kids and not “mine.”

Inevitably, the conversation always turns to me. Or, more accurately, my baby-making. It's either, "So do YOU have any kids?" or "Are you guys ever going to have kids together?"

And in that absolutely inevitable moment, I have to make the choice: Do I lie or tell them the truth? If I tell them the truth, the conversation - and the 'relationship' - go sour. Always. It goes a little something like this (these are actual things people have really said to me!):

"So do YOU have any kids?"
"Um. Yeah. We had a baby girl in 2005 who was stillborn."

The Idiot:
"Oh. Huh.'ll have more."

The Prodder:
What happened? Are you going to try again? Why NOT? Oh, don’t worry about that! Being a mother is the greatest thing you can experience! Giving birth, that’s the most beautiful moment of a woman’s life. [Me: I HAVE given birth!] That’s not the same! It’s not the same, you see, that baby did not live. It’s just not the same. [Note: Conversation aborted, Prodder’s life depended on it.]

The Suicide Promoter
Oh, my God! Seriously? That must be TERRIBLE! How do you go ON? Oh, I just don't know how I would live if one of my kids died! No, really! I would just KILL myself! Oh. My. God!

The Weired Out Person:
"Oh, really? That's really...bad." [silence]

Those are the basic reactions. Somehow, the conversation always turns to this and ends with someone (or both) feeling uncomfortable. Or sometimes they really upset me and sometimes no matter how hard I try I can’t hide my newfound hatred for them and their giant thoughtless mouths.

But as painful as it is to drudge it up every time I meet someone, it’s a thousand times more painful not to. Because as easy as a “No.” would be to throw out, in my mind and in my heart saying that is denying Her. It’s lying about almost a whole year of my life. Pretending that a child never existed. A child that grew from a microscopic seed into a six pound baby girl in my womb. Who I spent twenty minutes pushing to see. Who I held on to as long as I possibly could. Who I’ve cried over for two and a half years.

As easy as it would be, I just can’t do it. Rather, I choose to stay home – away from new people who want to know how my ovaries are working.

But, like I said in the last post, I’m working on it. I’m trying new things with my “Conversating Skillz.”

Saturday night while we were out, an old friend whom I haven’t seen in years, asked The Question: “So do you have any kids?” I smiled and said, “The Man has two kids who live with us.” And she smiled and ended the conversation. So, thank you, J, for knowing your personal conversational limits. Thank you for not needing a status on my uterus. Thank you for letting me enjoy my evening and thus, allowing yourself to enjoy yours.

Click HERE for a Public Service Announcement (aka “a rant”) from The Butrfly Garden (well placed in the Complain Room).

Monday, January 7, 2008

Overcoming SR

Some of you may remember that I am inflicted with SR.

Social Retardation can come in many forms. Common symptoms include: inability to RSVP, fear of the telephone, diarrhea of the mouth or sudden loss of speech, telling horrible jokes, other speech impediments, fear of crowds and much, much more.

Mine is not the most severe, but it does cause problems in my daily life. I don't hang out with friends very often - sometimes I even wonder if I really have friends (you know, "I.R.L."). When I DO actually push myself to set up 'dates,' it takes every ounce of my being to make me follow through. Or sometimes I just cancel at the last minute. If my phone rings and we don't know who's calling, there is often a quick Paper, Rock, Scissor game between The Man and I to see who has to answer it. If someone comes to our door, (after our initial shock wears off) we downright argue about who has to answer it and then chant on our way to the door, "Be for the kids, be for the kids, be for the kids..."

It's not that I don't like people. I just don't like interacting with them. And about half the time I do push myself to "interact," I'm reminded of why I don't. The other half of the time, I go home with a smile on my face. Not only because I had a good time, but because I'm proud that I pushed myself to do something that scares me and it turned out well.

This weekend can all be chalked up in the Good Half. Since The Man had to work Saturday morning, we spent Friday night at home eating pizza and wishing we were Jason Bourne. Saturday, I played Grinch and walked through my house tearing down my Christmas decorations. Sunshine was at a party down the street from us so after the party, she came home for a bit before we dropped her off at her mom's again. Then we headed to my old stompin' ground, where we went out for dinner and then met friends.....AT A BAR. And even though The Man felt out of place, we hung out there for over an hour. Add an impromptu visit at another friends' house and I have THREE HOURS to check off on my "GET OUT OF THE HOUSE!" list.

Sunday, Kristina and I battled CROWDS (another SR trigger) - Crowds of BRIDES (something anyone should be scared of) - to visit vendors at a wedding fair.

So despite the fact that I'm really tired today (when your idea of a night out is going to Chili's for dinner, actually going out really wears you down!), I'm proud of myself for getting out there "making" myself have a good time. Because I needed it more than I knew.

Social Retardation: [roughly] 700

Amy: 1

(Hmm, well, it's a start.)

Friday, January 4, 2008


I don't really care much for most of the guards at work. They seem either too crabby or too self-important or both. But there is one older man, Leo, whom I've always liked. He's friendly and has a wealth of stories. He took this job in retirement to give him something to do after working at the brewery most his life. We usually exchange pleasantries as I head out the door three nights a week.

As I was leaving last night, I couldn't shake the feeling like I was forgetting something.

Did I leave my cell phone on my desk? No, I had that. I went over my mental checklist and couldn't find anything missing.

I passed the guards' desk and turned to say good night to Leo.

"You look like you've forgotten something!" He warned.

"I feel like I forgot something!! How did you know that?!" I replied.

"You just have that look on your face like. Bill, in there, he always has that look because he forgets his cell phone. Do you have yours?"

"That's what I thought I was missing, but I grabbed it!" I was astonished.

"Well, you just make sure you didn't forget anything and have a great night!" Leo said with a wave.

I waved back and told him to have a great night, too.

Either he can read minds, or he's really good at his job.