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Stuttering Shell: October 2009

Saturday, October 31, 2009

BOO, y'all!

Happy Halloween!

Just a few favorites from over the years...

I hope all of you ghosts & ghouls enjoy your day! Stay safe & don't eat too much candy!

Psst...and don't forget to 'fall back' tonight. Yes, that means we get an extra hour of sleep to recover from tonight's sugar high {'cause you know it's not just the kids who are gonna have one!}.


Friday, October 30, 2009

quirky. the finale.

  • I have bangs now. I'm still not sure if I like them {which is why you guys haven't seen a picture yet}.
  • Listening to my son tell me he's a bad boy in Cantonese makes me giggle.
  • As frustrated as I get with my daughter {because even at 8 years old we're already butting heads}, I see so much of me in her...and that scares me.
  • When I get really nervous, my tongue gets all tangled up and I can't seem to speak English very well. I'm sure this will happen at tonight's bloggy meetup.
  • Alternative rock from the 1990s makes me very happy.
  • isn't my favorite thing, but I adore cookbooks. And, speaking of cookbooks, if you're interested in winning a copy of the Pioneer Woman's cookbook then you need to go visit Rachel's blog. Hurry...she's choosing a winner on Monday.
  • Unwelcome {& unexpected} guests make me just a wee bit angry...don't worry, this only applies if I really don't like you.
  • I am really diggin' this gray nail's apparently the 'IT' color for the season.
  • I'm 4" shorter than my younger did that happen?


Thursday, October 29, 2009

do you hear what i hear?

Well, I don't hear a damn thing. Sort of.

A long time ago, someone said 'silence is golden' and I concur. Especially after how loud my late afternoon/early evening was. I did a lot of hollerin' at my kids and I even threatened to cancel Halloween. Oh, the horror of it all.

It was just one of those days, people.

I want to bang my head against the wall all day while I'm at work...only to come home and feel the urge to bang my head against the wall even more. It's not always like that, but holy cow I think the puberty hormones are starting to come a lil' too early in this household {and there is only room for one Miss Crankypants in this house and that - it should come as no surprise - is moi}. But, after the "I have no problem sending you to bed hungry" speech, hiding the television remote & casting my vicious {some say it's evil} stare...well...things turned out quite well.

And now...nothing...nothing at all.

It is vewwy, vewwy quiet {did you get my Elmer Fudd impersonation? ha!} in the house right now. *le sigh* Well, except for the fact that a certain puplet {*cough*Frisco*cough*} is whinging in his crate. He's a-tossin' & a-turnin'.

I suppose I need to take advantage of the peace & quiet. Especially considering that I am supposed to be baking these for tomorrow night's din-din plans with her, her, her, her, her, her & her. And, if time allows, I really, really, REALLY want to paint my fingernails this and my toes this...just 'cause.

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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

a thousand arms.

Aidan informed me yesterday during dinner that he sometimes wishes he had a thousand arms {don't we all?}. He said that if he had a thousand arms then he could help with things like:
  • doing laundry
  • washing the dishes
  • cleaning the house
  • picking up toys
  • making his bed
  • pick up after the dog
  • dust the shelves
  • take out the garbage

Blah, blah, blah...

I don't know whether I should feel flattered {because he knows that I do so much} or insulted {because sometimes I just don't do enough}.

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two wheels & a tooth.

The weekend was pretty eventful for Mr. Aidan.

He lost his first tooth {he's 6}. It was one of his bottom front teeth & it was loose for what seemed like forever. On Saturday morning while playing at the kitchen table it just 'popped out.' At least that is what he told me. He wanted to put it under his bed straight away -- I corrected him and told him that the tooth fairy looks under little children's pillows and not their beds for teeth.

On Sunday morning, he woke up to find two crispy $1 bills under his head. He felt like the richest man in the world {oh, to be that young & carefree again!}. My parents happened to be in town {love them!} and the conversation he had with my mother - about the tooth fairy - went something like this:

A: "Yeah, the tooth fairy is pretty cool."

My mom: "Why? What does the tooth fairy do?"

A: "She goes around collecting teeths. She brings you monies, too."

My mom: "What did she bring you?"

A: "Two whole dollars. Yeah, she's pretty cool."

{I am embarrassed to report that Aidan has since lost one dollar - that's what he gets for showing off to his friends - and we found the pup with the other dollar - fortunately, it was salvaged and still in one piece.}

Later in the day on Sunday, Aidan finally learned how to ride his bicycle without the training wheels. According to the hubs, the trick was putting Aidan on his sister, Malia's, bicycle - which has a wider seat & different handlebars (she's got a mini beach cruiser) - and he immediately got the hang of riding on just two wheels. Now, all he wants to do is ride is bike. It doesn't matter what the weather is like {it's cool & drizzly today}...he just wants to ride his bike!

What a weekend -- he lost two {teeny} wheels & a tooth!

A picture of Aidan's goofy grin will be added later on tonight. Promise.

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Friday, October 23, 2009

keep out!

For those of you who have children, you'll appreciate this.

I remember the birth of both of my children. Vividly. Well, I may not remember much about the pain {God bless the anesthesiologists...I was not going to go through childbirth 'au natural'}, but I do remember my labors & deliveries.

With Malia, it was long. Long & intense. I was induced {I was young, easily swayed & had an aching back}. The contractions started immediately. My contractions were having contractions. The next day - because, yes, I labored through the night & most of the next day - my water was broken. My contractions were still having contractions. Nearly 24 hours later, it was time to deliver my daughter. After almost three hours of pushing, Malia was born.

With Aidan - who came along 27 months later - my labor was short. Short & sweet. Again, I was induced. However, this time it was because Aidan was late. A week late. Besides, my poor body could not tolerate the swelling or the nearly 70 pound weight gain any longer {I gained about 60 pounds when I was pregnant with my daughter}. Not even an hour after I was admitted to the hospital, my water broke. On it's own. What an embarrassing feeling that was. I wasn't even in the hospital for 5 hours when I gave birth to Aidan. His delivery was a breeze. There was a lot of laughing. Laughing & comments about my smooth legs because, yes, I just HAD to shave them before "D day."

But, the point of this post isn't what my children's births were like. It's about who was there {my mom, sister & Adam}...and, more specifically, about Adam being there.

Malia's birth was pretty uneventful, but he's lucky he made it out of the hospital alive after I had our son. He nearly missed the delivery because he was in the drive-thru at Arby's. The man ate curly french fries while I was pushing out our son. Seriously. Since when does laboring & delivering a baby call for hors d'oeuvres?! Besides, I had not eaten since the night before and I was ready to KILL for some freakin' curly fries.

I guess you could say that I was more concerned about trivial bullshit {i.e., those God forsaken curly fries!} than I was about my husband being in the delivery room. I mean, being naked from the waist down & spread eagle for all to see was the least of my worries. I just wanted those damn french fries. For me, childbirth made any sort of modesty {and rationality} fly right out the window. I was not a woman who was embarrassed by the process of childbirth. I didn't care if I let out the longest fart of my life while pushing my child out. Oh, and did I blush when the nurse said to 'bear down like you're having a bowel movement?' Nope. I just pretended I was on a big toilet trying to take the dump of my life.

I suppose I'm not the norm when it comes to birthing babies.

Some women are actually quite apprehensive about having their spouse or significant other in the delivery room with them. And, it's not all about the nerves either. It's been suggested that deliveries may be easier & faster if said male was NOT a part of the delivery room crowd. Hmm...had Adam not been there - with those effin' curly fries - maybe, just maybe....nah.

My friend, Jenny, wrote a fun piece about men & the delivery room. It's hilarious. I urge you all to read it...even if you don't have kids. Let me know what you think. Even better...let Jenny know what you think.

Seriously...READ IT.

For those of you who don't click on links or haven't taken my three hints, the website is this:

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

the date.

We slept in on Sunday morning. I normally don't like to spend my day asleep, but waking up at nearly 11am on a cold, drizzly Sunday was nice. Very nice. It was extra special nice because the kidlets were at Adam's mom's house & the puplet was still snoozing, too.

We decided not to spend the rest of the day in bed. We were childless. We needed to take advantage of it. We woke up. Got dressed. Grabbed a bite to eat. Then, we headed out. Just the two of us. Alone.

The hubs was sweet enough to take me by Bath & Body Works to pick up some Wallflower refills. After that, the rest of our day went like this...

We strolled aimlessly. Sometimes we held hands. Sometimes the hubs had his arm around me. But mostly we walked side by side. Slowly. We chatted. We pondered. We spoke to one another about our ideas. Our dreams. We discussed current events. We talked about our week - the one that had passed and the one that was coming. We called his mom to check on the kids. I even got a kiss.

Three and a half hours later, we walked out of Wal-Mart armed with a cart full of groceries.

So much for wining & dining {although that happened the night before when we went out to celebrate a friend's birthday}...when you're married & with children sometimes it's the littlest things - like grocery shopping - that mean a lot. Especially when you get to go with your spouse...sans children.

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hush, little baby.

My favorite time of the day is bedtime. Not my bedtime, but my children's bedtime. I'm not a mean mom {well, it depends on who you ask}, but I absolutely look forward to that magical time of the day that is 8:30pm {give or take 15 minutes}.

Once 8:30pm hits, the whole house sort of "sighs" and things return to a slower pace. My blood pressure drops to a more normal level. The cats come out of hiding. The dog calms down. And, the television resumes to it's regular programming of all things Food Network or HGTV related.

Order is restored the household.

Most importantly, their 8:30pm bedtime means I do not have to witness another conversation like this - well, at least not for the remainder of the night:

Let me preface this story by saying that the kids were playing in Aidan's room - laughing, giggling & carrying on {a sure sign that something 'bad' is going to happen} - when all of a sudden his bedroom door swings open, I hear Aidan crying & Malia squawking...

A: "Sissy made my tooth bleed!" (Aidan has a loose tooth.)
M: "No, I did not!"
A: "Yes, you did!"
M: "No, I did not!"

Adam jumps in and asks what happened...

A: "Sissy kicked me in the face."
M: "Well, he wanted me to!"


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

quirky. partie deux.

  • i prefer green grapes over red grapes. but, if you have black grapes, then move on over green & red grapes!
  • don't give me any yoplait yogurt {sorry, yoplait lovers!} - i want the greek stuff. preferably this, this or this {not necessarily the honey flavor, though}.
  • i heart cashmere sweaters. i do. i also heart v-neck sweaters & cardigan sweaters.
  • it's time for me to break out my birkenstock boston's {all five pairs of them}, but i really need to 'update' my fall - casual - show wardrobe; therefore, i am coveting a pair of these and these.
  • dinner isn't dinner at our house without some sort of veggie or veggies. really.
  • my car is in serious need of a good wash. most people drive around with "wash me" written on their cars...i'm going through town with my son's name on my car {i caught him writing his name on the car door the other morning...there's that much gunk on my car. ew.}.
  • i eat tripe. only when it's in pho or at dim sum. remember, it's that asian in me. *wink*
  • speaking of tripe, we got our son to try a piece of it a few weekends ago when we went out to eat {pho, of course!}. he thought it was calamari. he he he.
  • my mornings usually start with me breaking up some sort of tiff between the kids. ugh.
  • while most of my friends are getting into the holiday spirit, i have a tendency to be more of a scrooge. bah humbug.
  • i want to finish my masters degree. well, i do, but i don't...
  • i am very good at wasting time. especially my own!

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it was a good year.

My son is six years old. He likes to talk {hmm...I wonder which parent he inherited that from?!}.

Here lately, he's been chattering non-stop about all of the things he's done so far. You know, "in his whole life."

Apparently, the age of three was good to him because all of his stories start off, "When I was three..." or "I did that when I was three..." or "I remember being three..." -- and, trust me, he's done a lot of reminiscing lately.

Indeed, three was a magical year in my son's eyes. Here's hoping that as he continues to grow & mature that he has many more wonderful memories of other years besides being just three.

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Monday, October 19, 2009


That was the title of last week's Grey's Anatomy episode.

I'm not so sure I like this whole merger thing. I'm a creature of habit...change doesn't set well with me. I'm just not sure about those Mercy West peeps.

Fellow Grey's fans...

What do you think about the season thus far?

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Friday, October 16, 2009


  • I sleep with three pillows - one for my head, one to lay against and one to put over my head. Don't ask. I've always covered my head when I fall asleep.
  • I have a semi-ridiculous addiction to these.
  • I mess with my nose a lot. A lot. I don't like that whole 'booger in the nose' feeling. I actually had someone ask if I did cocaine because I mess with my nose so much. Really? {Don't worry, I listened to Nancy Reagan in the '80s and I 'just said no.' Oh, and I do wash my hands & use hand sanitizer...}
  • Punctuality is not one of my strong points.
  • I haven't been without an eyelash curler since I was 14.
  • Organization? What's that?!
  • My daughter is so much like me it's scary - just ask my mother.
  • I fell of the 'no soda' wagon a month ago - some people turn to booze when they get stressed, I just happen to turn to Coca-Cola. Ice cold. And, in a can, please.
  • I can be pretty damn dense sometimes. I was told by a friend once that I am "the blondest half-Asian" he's ever known. {many apologies to my blonde friends...}
  • The hubs made a comment recently about my legs & how smooth they were. Um, those bad boys haven't seen a razor in about a month {around the time I fell off that 'no soda' wagon}. Good thing I am half-Asian, but, yeah, I know...TMI. Sorry.
  • I really like ketchup. And mustard. And mayonnaise. Sometimes I like to mix ketchup & mustard. Sometimes, it's ketchup & mayo. Yep. I love condiments.
  • Sometimes I wish I was single & childless. Is that selfish of me? No. I think this thought crosses every mother's mind at some point.
  • I nap only on Sundays.
  • I hold the Wii Fit super hula hoop record in my household. Really.

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Virginia is for bloggers.

I am quite excited about an upcoming event that has been planned by the lovely Lis of Lis Loves.

Pretty exciting stuff, huh?? Lis & I had the opportunity to meet earlier this year when she won one of my bloggy birthday giveaways. Because she & I live in the same city, we decided to meet at Starbucks {where else??} in the mall and I hand-delivered her prize! It was such a fun time...we chit-chatted non-stop.

Anyways, she's been busy planning a little get-together for us Southeastern Virginia {and Northeastern NC} gals. It looks like Friday, October 30th is the date. The time & location has YET to be determined, but one thing is for certain...Virginia Beach's Town Center is not going to know what hit them when the ladies of the blogosphere descend upon it's sidewalks!


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worry & cuppycakes.

you wouldn't be surprised if i told you that things have been quite stressful lately. just when things seem ok, they get worse. but, whatever. i can't do anything about it except to try not to worry about it, right? {did that even make sense?}

i watched dave ramsey the other night and he was quoting dale carnegie. basically, what i got out of the program {which happened to be on bankruptcy - not something relevant to us...i just like to listen to dave ramsey talk about finances} was this:

80% of what we worry about will never happen.

so, where am i going with this? absolutely nowhere. well, except for the fact that i have it drilled into my sweet little head that i have to stop worrying. because, honestly folks, worrying could be considered one of my talents.

therefore, in light of the stress & the worry, i decided to treat myself to something sweet. i would just like to say that i had every intention of only getting ONE cupcake, but i left the store yesterday afternoon with a DOZEN.

of course, there are a couple missing in the picture...

during lunch, i ventured over to just cupcakes. i went for a pink ribbon cupcake {they call it the cupcake for a cure}. i got one four {they were done two ways - vanilla with pink ribbon sprinkles & chocolate with pink sugar}. oh, and two pumpkin spice. and two frankly scarletts {a.k.a. red velvet}. and two m's cupcakes. AND, two choco-coco. they are delicious. such a sinful treat for someone who is watching her budget and is perfectly capable of baking her own yummy goodness at home.

but, who could resist?

of course, now what am i doing? worrying. i'm worried about how i can justify having a cupcake at every meal. yes, even breakfast. i'm staring at a pumpkin spice cuppycake right now.

oh, boy.

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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

I ♥ jet noise.

It's Fleet Week here in Hampton Roads.

The almost two week long event {which also happens to coincide with the Navy's's 234 years young!} is drawing to a close this weekend & what better way to end the fun than with a good ole air show.

Yes, boys & girls, it's that time of year again...bring on the NAS Oceana's air show. Even though the weather is seriously crappy {it's gonna be a wash out this weekend}, the planes are still flying around & practicing their funky maneuvers. Roads are closed {joy} and traffic is terrible {double joy}.

But, at least seeing the Blue Angels flying by makes for some fun driving around town {and, no, I normally do not take pics while driving nor do I text while driving for that matter either}!

Please excuse the crummy quality of the camera on my Crackberry.

We live maybe 10 minutes from NAS Oceana, so it's gonna be a noisy weekend. But, when you've lived in this area for as long as I have, you don't even flinch anymore when a jet goes screeching by. You also know to wait for the jet to fly by before placing your pumpkin spice latte order at the Starbucks drive-thru.

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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Cards for the Cure

It's October.

While it might be time to stock up on miniature candy bars & think of the most ghoulish costume to wear this Halloween, it's also time to "save the ta-ta's" and think pink!

In honor of BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH, Hallmark was a FREE card {available in Hallmark stores only} that you can pick up {as many as you want} to send to all of the special people in your life.


I picked up one today & I plan on sending it to my Mommy -- who just happens to be a breast cancer survivor.

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Thursday, October 8, 2009

What do you call a fish with two knees?

A tu-knee fish!

Get it...a tu-knee, er, tuna, fish.

Har har har! My kids told me that joke.

Anyways, that's what the hubs is grilling right now. Yes, at nearly 9:30pm. We've still got a ridiculous amount of yellowfin tuna vacuum sealed in the deep freezer and he decided that we will have tuna fish salad for lunch tomorrow.

The celery, onion and other deliciousness is already prepped & waiting on the kitchen counter.

I just hope I give myself enough time in the morning to actually make myself a sammich.

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Monday, October 5, 2009

funky fresh.

I'm snapping out of my funk.

The hubs & I had a talk.
The 'rents & I had a talk.
My sissy & I had a talk.
My friends & I had a talk.

The friends & I also drank a lot of wine.

I'm sure it was the wine that helped the most.

At any rate, today is a new day.
This week is a new week.

I get absolutely nothing accomplished when I worry about things that I may or may not have any control over. So, this week I've decided to relinquish control to the one constant in my life -- God. I like to think of Him as my personal assistant of sorts. He keeps me straight & I will let Him figure things out for me.

In the meantime, while He is busy seeing things through, I've been trying to keep myself busy:
  • I made a date with the washing machine - boring, I know, but so necessary.
  • I napped.
  • I drank some of this (Barefoot's Cabernet Sauvignon):
  • I painted my toes this (OPI's Big Apple Red):
  • I went to lunch with a friend.
  • I drank my fair share of pumpkin spice lattes.

And, the plan is to stay busy:

  • I get to see my sister, brother-in-law & their dog, Moxie, this weekend.
  • I'm looking forward to a Peking duck dinner on Saturday night.
  • I plan on painting my bathroom...finally!
  • I am looking forward to getting crafty & welcoming the fall season.

It's very hard for me to give up control. Very hard. But, I'm learning how. I'm not a 'go with the flow' kind of girl. I don't think I will ever be. However, I'm certainly going to make a more conscious effort to be less demanding, less controlling and not so hard on myself.


Sunday afternoons are always lazy afternoons in our household. Needless to say, there is a lot of television watching, couch napping and pantry raiding that happens, too.

Yesterday afternoon the boy & I were watching Harry Potter & the Sorcerer's Stone {again!} on the Disney Channel and - out of nowhere - this conversation came about:

Aidan: "Mom, you should get one of those exercise things that Po Po has."

{sidenote: Po Po is Cantonese for maternal grandmother}

Me: "What exercise thing?"

Aidan: "You know, the one she has in her living room!"

{my parents have that Gazelle thing}

Me: "Oh. Well, why do I need something like that?"

Aidan: "So I can do my exercises...I don't want to get weak."

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Friday, October 2, 2009

i'm trying...i really am...

i'm really sorry for the 'debbie downer' posts lately. it's just been a very stressful week...month...year. the doo-doo hit the fan today. i don't know what i am going to do. i've been asked not to give up, but it's too easy to do when you've been let down in so many ways.

i don't forgive easily. i don't easily forget.

but i truly hope that this situation i've been thrown into fixes itself soon. or else.


Thursday, October 1, 2009

Thorns & Petals

Sweet Whitney sent me an email today that I really needed to read. I needed the encouragement. I needed the reassurance. I needed a friend.

What she shared with me in that email really touched me & I'd like to share it with you all. It all started with this verse {from the Daily Devotions that she reads}:

"The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life's worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature." Luke 8:14 (NIV)

I am that seed. I am surrounded by thorns. I'm trying not to be choked by life's worries, riches & pleasures. But, I am maturing {at least I'm trying to!}.

For more on Thorns & Petals, please click here.

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i'm alive

this song warms my .

not only because it's two of my faves singing a duet - kenny chesney & dave matthews - but because it's a very meaningful song. especially for me right now. of course, i'm not quite at the point where i can actually breathe a sigh of relief, but still. i'm slowly getting there {i really am trying to learn how to just "let go"}. i just feel that it pretty much sums up the feelings swirling inside of me - especially the verse that is in bold {see below}.

So damn easy to say that life's so hard
Everybody's got their share of battle scars
As for me I'd like to thank my lucky stars that
I'm alive and well

It'd be easy to add up all the pain
And all the dreams you've sat and watch go up in flames
Dwell on the wreckage as it smolders in the rain
But not me... I'm alive

And today you know that's good enough for me
Breathing in and out's a blessing can't you see
Today's the first day of the rest of my life
And I'm alive and well
I'm alive and well

Stars are dancin' on the water here tonight
It's good for the soul when there's not a soul in sight
But this boat has caught its wind and brought me back to life
Now I'm alive and well

And today you know that's good enough for me
Breathing in and out's a blessing can't you see
Today's the first day of the rest of my life
Now I'm alive and well
Yeah I'm alive and well

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