my mama told me so

13 Things My Mama Taught Me (TT#9)

1. My mother taught me to APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE.
“If you’re going to kill each other, do it outside. I just finished cleaning.”

2. My mother taught me RELIGION.
“You better pray that will come out of the carpet.”

3. My mother taught me LOGIC.
“Because I said so that’s why.”

4. My mother taught me FORESIGHT.
“Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you’re in an accident.”

5. My mother taught me IRONY.
“Keep crying and I’ll give you something to cry about.”

6. My mother taught me about the science of OSMOSIS.
“Shut your mouth and eat your supper.”

7. My mother taught me about STAMINA.
“You’ll sit there until all that spinach is gone.”

8. My mother taught me about HYPOCRISY.
“If I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a million times. Don’t exaggerate.”

9. My mother taught me about ANTICIPATION.
“Just you wait until we get home!”

10. My mother taught me MEDICAL SCIENCE.
“If you don’t stop crossing your eyes, they are going to freeze that way.”

11. My mother taught me GENETICS.
“You’re just like your father.”

12. My mother taught me about my ROOTS.
“Shut that door behind you. Do you think you were born in a barn?”

13. My mother taught me JUSTICE.
“One day you’ll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you!”


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Dressing on the Edge or "Frump Fighters"


As a stay at home mom of three who also homeschools, I really have to fight the urge to live in sweatpants and sloppy tee-shirts because, well…they’re comfortable. And if I ever decided to work out, then I’m already dressed for it, right?

But something about my Southern upbringing totally resists actually leaving my house in said attire. It’s just not me. My mama taught me that you always clean your house before going on a trip, just in case you don’t come home; You always wear fresh underwear; and you must never, ever be caught alive outside your home in a plain old tee-shirt. Ever. Fashion sense. She has it. I just wish I could get me some…I’m trying, really I am.

But the Fashion? It takes a little something called “money”. Which I currently do not have a large dispensible amount of. I’m more of a classics kind of girl myself. I love things that stay in style because they are so basic that no one notices whether they are new or twenty years old. Not that I have anything twenty years old in my closet (sadly, I no longer wear a size 10).

I have noticed a trend with women my age – they are trying too hard to “stay youthful” in their dress. Their clothes are too small or they wear the oddest combinations. I mean, who wants to see a 38 year old woman dressed like this?

frumpymuffin top

Instead, if it is a more youthful approach you desire, might I suggest something that covers the tummy in a more flattering line? And these jeans are from Old Navy and are to die for – of course, I’m tall at 5’11-1/2″, so I can get away with an outfit like this without looking squatty, which is what it might to do someone a foot shorter than me. But here is my take on the Fashion:

mom fashion An outfit that looks “put together” and not thrown together. I am a thrifter in every sense of the word, and there are so many stores to choose from where I live — I can get something very close to this look for under $20 – a steal of a deal. That’s how I fight frump. How do you do it?

Edited to add: I had a total brain fart (is that acceptable on a Family Friendly blog?) and completely forgot to link back to Fussypant’s blog! Click on the button at the top if you want to see how others are fightin’ the frump!

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Jack Frost folding all my clothes…

There are some things I just don’t have the time to waste my energy or resources on. Like laundry. Just kidding…laundry is a necessity. Unless you’re a nudist…which I’m not – and since Jack Frost has officially moved into the Northeast corner of Texas, I’m more of what you’d call a “bundler-upper”.

I remember when I was a kid growing up in Alaska, every time I’d leave the house for school, my mother would call out from under her down comforter lap throw (while seated in her leather recliner), “Bundle up honey, it’s cold outside!” Which would have been all fine and dandy. But it was the middle of the summer.

The winters were another story, however. I DID develop the habit of “layering” my clothing. Luckily, it was the 1980’s and layering was in high style. Leg warmers over skin tight leggings under an oversized sweatshirt that was over a tank top (a la “Flashdance”). I was HOT…but in a cool sort of way. I still have a tendency to want to dress in layers (sans the leg warmers), even though it’s over 80 degrees here most of the year. What can I say? 20 years of buying Eddie Bauer has me totally dressing like a Northerner. People here just don’t get me.

My own kids resist wearing coats and want to wear shorts and t-shirts year round…which I would understand if we lived in say…Florida. However, we don’t…and I consistently worry that people will think I’m a terrible mother when I go the the grocery store in freezing weather with my kids dressed in shorts and me looking like I just stepped off the pages of a North Face ad.

(This blog entry has been composed in an attempt to avoid folding the pile-o-laundry that waits ever-so-patiently for me on my bed.)

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The Post In Which I Discuss Everything and Say Nothing…

At a Loss for Words

My blogging has become sporadic, at best. I’m finding my summer days are full beyond measure…making phone calls, shuttling kids to and fro, swimming parties, softball season, church activities. I think I’m ready for school to start just so I’ll have a reason to stay home from 9-1 every day to teach the kiddos.

My mom and stepdad left for Alaska yesterday. Their flight was delayed about 30 minutes leaving T-Town and when they arrived in Dallas, apparently the weather was so bad that, after sitting on their plane to AK for 3 hours, they were grounded indefinitely. So I’m thinking they spent the night in Dallas, but I don’t know for sure, since I have no way of contacting them. Mom’s cell isn’t on unless she needs it when she travels, so I’ll just have to take a wait-and-see attitude.

I’ve been really concerned about this trip for many reasons. Neither my mom or stepdad are in the best of health. In fact, he is still recovering from two falls he took earlier in the year in which he compressed his ribcage and whatever else is in there. She is so frail and on the point of mental exhaustion. Everything wears on her now…she is irritable without even knowing why. Of course it is the stress. It wasn’t supposed to be this way. So I pray daily and leave it in God’s hands, because Lord knows I can’t do anything at the present time to help the situation.

It has rained almost every day for the past two weeks. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love rain and thunderstorms and all that, but really…enough. already. I’d kind of like to know if there’s any dirt left under all the water. I’d also like the ground to dry out enough to mow my yard, which isn’t going to happen anytime soon. And yes, Lulu, we are going to bring your mower back! (thanks for letting us have it for so long)

We are leaving Friday at a most unpleasant hour (4 am) to drive to Baton Rouge for some specialized training for our business. We are staying here and we are rooming with our friends, because neither of us can really afford to pay for our hotels at the present time, so we’ll save half off the price of our room, which should pay for our gas. I know it sounds crazy, because we should be at the point in our business where we have extra money, but we don’t yet. We pretty much use every thing we have just to live and the Lord helps us with the rest. I pray He always helps us with the rest.

I really need to do some filing. Oh. my. word. Do I ever need to do some filing. What I really need is the shoemaker’s elves to come in and do it for me, because I don’t even know where to begin. But I’m going to just start somewhere and work my way through it from there. Have you ever noticed things are MUCH easier if you do them a little at a time instead of letting them pile up? Like laundry. It’s so easy to throw one load in a day and fold it and wash it. Do I do that? Why, heavens no. That would be far too simple.

Floy and I rented two movies for my birthday last Friday. There was nothing at the theatre we wanted to see and besides, it was cheaper to rent. We popped our own popcorn and had a date at home without the kids (thanks again, Lulu!). It was so nice. We watched a Denzel Washington movie, “Dejavu”, which was surprisingly good. We also watched a Will Ferrell movie, “Stranger than Fiction”, which was exceptionally good…except it had way too much swearing in it. I could hardly believe it was a PG movie. And believe me, my husband noticed every. single. swear. word. I got “the look” every time one would come out of one of the character’s mouths, and I would gasp in shock myself. I’ve worked with sailors who didn’t talk like some of those movie characters talk. Frankly, I don’t really see how swearing could possibly improve a story line or plot. I’d be deliriously happy if all swearing were banned. Everywhere. Forever. And if you’re thinking I’m old fashioned…you’re right. I am. Thank you very much – I’ll make no apologies for that one.

My mother used to tell me that people who used swear words were incredibly unimaginative and didn’t know how to express their truest heartfelt feelings. I mean, seriously, how could one word possibly describe the flood of emotions one feels when one brings the hammer down squarely on the thumbnail? Or when your youngest child drops your absolute favorite-been-in-the-family-for-40-years glass serving dish on the steps of the fellowship hall?

But I digress. I’ve gone on far too long with nothing to say and covered far too many topics to make any sense. So I’ll end with this:

“When the well is dry, we know the worth of the water” – Benjamin Franklin

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Only boring people are bored, dear.

When I was 14, I was complaining one summer to my mom that I was “so BORED”. Her friend, Mickey Clause (her REAL name) looked me up and down and stated to me, “Only boring people are bored, dear. You need to find a good book to read.” I was shocked, of course that ANYONE would dare call MOI boring, but I took her advice to heart and found more than a few good books to read that summer to help while away the many hours where I couldn’t think of anything better to do.

Flash forward 23 years and now I have kids of my own. My kids are 10, soon to be 5, and 2-1/2 and they have never been the kind of kids who wanted to play outside for hours upon hours like I did at their age. BUT…they know better than to tell me that they are bored, because they know that the first thing out of my mouth will be Mickey’s words. So to keep them in a ready supply of good books and videos, we make a trip once a week to our local library, where for $15 a year, we can check out up to 25 things at a time. Books, books on tape (for the car – Henry and Mudge’s adventures are our current favorites – keep ’em quiet on the about town jaunts), videos, and magazines…all great ways to beat the boredom that those lazy days of summer can bring.

Plus, our library has summer reading programs for the kids as well as events on a near-daily basis the kids can attend if they want to. We signed K up for Terrific Tuesdays (arts and craft) and also for Intro to Sign Language on Thursdays. It has only been one week, but I think she’s enjoying it so far…and the little ones are content to be read to while her events are going on – it counts for their summer reading program and gets them an hour closer to a free lunch at McDonalds!

This is what works for me! If you are looking for more ways to beat the boredom of summer with your kids, head on over to Shannon’s at Rocks in My Dryer for this week’s themed “Mom, I’m bored” WFMW.

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