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Tuesday, June 30, 2009

My Trip to the Farm

I'm such a jerk! Last Wednesday night while hanging out around the pool with Mom, Dad and Janice, hubby calls to tell me that we have to leave in the morning for Colorado. His grandpa is in the hospital and the doctors are only giving him 24 to 48 hours left to live. We had already planned to go for a visit later in the week but under the circumstances needed to get there ASAP. To be honest, I wasn't looking forward to the trip and although I had nothing planned, I was not at all excited about leaving early.

The thought of his parents, Great Grandma, the kids, hubby and I packed like sardines in my van for 12 hours straight just didn't appeal to me. In fact, I was convinced it would be nothing short of pure torture. And how we were going to get every one's luggage plus Great Grandma's wheelchair in the back would be a feat in itself. Knowing that most of the family would be flying or driving in, I was also worried about the sleeping arrangements. I asked hubby's parents a couple of times if they knew who all were coming and if their house could accommodate everyone. They didn't know and weren't all that concerned. All I could think about was that they'd pretty much be at the hospital around the clock and I'd be stuck with the kids and great grandma at the house. On top of it all, I'm still having stomach issues from Mexico. Needless to say, I was NOT a happy camper.

I asked hubby and grandma a few times "Wouldn't it be better if I stayed home with the kids and great grandma," praying they'd have mercy and let me off the hook. To me it only made sense, the kids would have their toys and I could babysit great grandma in the comforts of my house while they said their goodbyes and made funeral arrangements there. How self-centered can you be?

Last summer, they all went for a visit and had a blast. I didn't go because mom was in the hospital trying to get through her last few radiation treatments. I rationalized it out that with Great Paw Paw on his death bed, this trip would not be the same as the last. No one saw it my way, so I gave up and started packing.

We all piled in the van along with all our stuff Thursday morning and drove straight to Colorado. It really wasn't too bad. The kids watched TV while I started a really good book, Barbara Walters life story Auditions. Listening to the radio sometime that morning, we heard that Farrah had passed away. I couldn't help but worry about Mom and how she would take the news. I checked on the Colon Club to see what they were saying. Like so many, she fought so hard to live. Later that day a couple of hours from Maw Maw's house, we heard that Michael Jackson had passed away. I couldn't believe it!

When we made it to Maw Maw's house, 7 other family members were already there. We loaded up pretty quickly and headed for the hospital. He was in ICU hooked up to a bazillion tubes and wires. He came to when we walked in the room, recognized everyone and carried on a conversation. Even with life support, his breathing was labored. It was hard to watch hubby and his dad standing by his bed. Maw Maw had the doctors keep him hooked up until all the kids could be there. Although it all could be seen in their faces, they only made small talk pretty much about nothing.

That night back at Maw Maw's, we slept on the hideaway bed in the living room giving his parents and Great Grandma the only bedroom left. The kids slept in sleeping bags on the floor. The next morning I felt terrible. Although I slept good, I was still tired and my stomach was really upset which had me in and out of the bathroom. Not wanting to go back to the hospital, hubby and his parents decided we'd go sight seeing. So after driving 12 hours here, we all loaded back into the van to drive up the mountain. We left about mid-morning and with the exception of a couple of bathroom breaks and lunch, we did not get out of the van until we made it back to Maw Maw's around dinner time.

They all love to take drives, I don't! I'd rather fly than drive any day of the week. Anyway, there I sat in the back of the van with the kids winding up the mountain trying to pretend to "sight see" but truthfully getting sicker and sicker with each curve of the road. When we finally made it to the top of the mountain, I literally had to run for the bathroom. Oh and while the temperature was in the 80's at the house, it was raining and barely 40 at the top. We about froze in our shorts and t-shirts. Luckily, I grabbed jackets for me and the kids before we left that morning. Coming down the mountain, I didn't even try and pretend to sight see but put my head in Little Man's lap and fell asleep.

For the first few days, I didn't feel good, stayed grumpy and pretty negative (if only in my mind) about everything from the relatives and their small talk to the huge pile of manure dumped right behind the house. They pretty much have a farm here with cows, pigs, chickens, ducks and a garden. The manure is fertilizer for the garden, why it's dumped right out back rather than down by the garden, I have no idea! The house does not have air conditioning which is no big deal at night but pretty miserable during the heat of the afternoon sun. The windows have to stay open all the time. With the big pile of manure directly behind the house, well you can imagine the smell inside and out. YUCK!

I guess I've not given it much thought but when you are with all your family the conversation usually turns to your past. With my family, that would be music, church, and old friends and family. It's gotta be pretty boring for my husband being that he wasn't raised in church, his taste in music is a far cry from the country, old rock, and church hymns we usually wind up singing and he doesn't know most of the people who end up in our conversations. Now the shoe's on the other foot as I sit watching and listening to them.

After a few days, I started feeling better. I noticed how much fun everyone was having. Paw Paw entertained Baby Girl outside with all the farm animals. Uncle George was a hit with both the kids. Now get this, he's a graduate from the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Clown College, where ever that is. His clown face is trademarked so that no one else can wear the makeup like he does. He's also retired after serving 20 years in the Air Force. He entertained Baby Girl off and on this week by singing and playing the guitar to John Denver songs. Little Man was entranced by Uncle George's magic tricks. He even taught Little Man to do a few.

The adults socialized on the patio in front of the manure during the day and played cards at the dinner table each night. The kids, hubby and Paw Paw went to the rodeo. Uncle George's kids flew in from San Francisco on Sunday. His son is a really cool kid. He's 19, loves the outdoors which automatically impressed Baby Girl and loves video games which won Little Man's over. He and Baby Girl caught a little bunny yesterday out front and today Little Man stayed by his side playing DS Gameboys all day. I'm not sure how much fun he is having but he's being a great sport and the kids are having a blast!

And the biggest shocker of all, I'm having fun and would gladly come back. We went shopping in Estes Park (a little resort town an hour from here), enjoyed the sights and didn't get sick while riding back up the mountain (well at least half way), went to the rodeo fair, rode in the side car of Uncle James' motorcycle, and even enjoyed the company of my relatives out in front of the poop pile. Uncle George performed a gob of amazing magic tricks, he's really good. I thought being family and all, he would share some of his secrets with me, NOPE. Sure, he'll teach my son a few but not me.

Yesterday everyone went to the hospital while Baby Girl, Great Grandma and I stayed at the house. Baby Girl watched TV, I grabbed my laptop and Great Grandma dosed in the chair next to me. When she woke up, she insisted on taking a bath. She can't do anything but thinks she can do it all by herself. I told her, "No, you can't take a bath," but she just kept on and on. She kept getting out of the chair and I'd make her sit back down. Finally, I made the chair recline to keep her from getting up. This didn't deter her one bit. Not able to figure out how to push the chair in, she started sliding out of the chair to the floor. Lord, she about tipped the whole thing over on herself. Giving in, I took her to the bathroom, stripped her down, and got her into the shower. Great Paw Paw's chair was in the tub which made it easy. I took the hand held shower head and gave it to her. When I turned my back, she aimed the water right at me. Not only did I get soaked but also the bathroom. My question is this, "Is the joke on me or is she really totally out of her mind?" About that time, everyone returned and Grandma came in the bathroom. She said that she gave her a shower this morning. I explained how determined Great Grandma was to get a shower and get this. With a straight face Great Grandma said, "I didn't want to take a shower." That stinking liar! Like bathing her was at the top of my list that afternoon. Geez!

Great Paw Paw is still hanging in there. Today, they are moving him to hospice and then will take him off everything. The doctor who gave him 24 to 48 hours is now giving him a week at best. Little Man asked to go see him. Reluctantly, I let him go with Daddy and Paw Paw. Great Paw Paw looks pretty bad but I guess it went well because Little Man only had good things to say about the visit.

If nothing changes, we'll head for home tomorrow. Tonight I'm with the guys, the kids and Great Grandma while the rest have gone to the rodeo. Hubby just got grossed out sitting next to Great Grandma. Evidently, she went to the bathroom earlier (not on my watch, I might add) but didn't get her pants up right. With her depends up her butt like a thong and her pants down, he totally got mooned. See what I mean, maybe she's bored and needs a good laugh. Hubby was NOT laughing. But he did laugh when the cow started mooing and I thought it was Great Grandma snoring beside me. While there's no doubt I'm no farm girl, I have enjoyed the visit here.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Great Grandma

I'm in Colorado listening to Baby Girl run through the house yelling the alarm, "Great Great Grandma, Great Great Grandma is getting up!" I'm in the next room and feel responsible for checking on her but just plain don't want to. More times than not, I try to help Grandma with Great Grandma.

Like tonight after dinner, everyone was sitting around the table talking. Great Grandma can't get up on her own but does anyway and thus falls alot. She started trying to get up from the table wanting to go to the living room. Maybe she wanted to watch TV, have a change of scenery, or like me, had enough of the table talk.

Just before she made her move out of the chair, everyone started talking politics. Lord help us. One asked if we'd heard the North Koreans are going to test their nuclear weapons on us 4th of July. Tribulation is next week and I haven't even got a fallout shelter or rapture beans, beer and Band-Aids ready. Another said that scientists say the year 2012 will be the end of the world or close to it. The moon, sun and earth are gonna line up in a way it's never done before causing all sorts of disasters such as tornadoes, earthquakes, hurricanes, fires, floods and more all at the same time!

All agreed that of course, Obama will not be able to handle it. In fact, rumor has it that Obama wasn't even born in the U.S. but instead in Kenya so by law, he can't be president. Also, he paid people to vote for him, therefore McCain really won. In fact, everyone they know either voted for McCain or didn't vote at all proof the election was rigged. Obama didn't even have money to afford a campaign until that Oprah threw all her money into it, damn her! And you know, both her and Obama are not even Christian but "Mooselums." And worst of all, can you believe that the President of the United States is named Obama, that's just not American!

Yep, that was about the time Great Grandma made her move and I literally jumped at the opportunity to take her anywhere she wanted to go. Her walking is getting really bad. She won't stand straight but instead bends over and shuffles side to side. It almost looks like she's trying to do a jig the way she takes little bounces not actually moving forward just side to side. She reminds me of E.T, she walks just like him. As we shuffled towards the living room, Hubby is standing in the kitchen just watching me struggle with her. I told him to come help, it's his grandma after all. You know he doesn't even seem to feel an ounce of responsibility, so why in the world do I?

Great Grandma has been left in the living room while everyone else hangs out on the back patio. Thinking she's missing out on fun, Great Grandma tries to get up and is busted by Grandma. Grandma's stress level is climbing so I give in and go see if I can help. I wish I could say my motives are completely genuine stemming from a feeling of responsibility and need to help Grandma but in all actuality, tonight I helped out of guilt for not being social. Maybe they won't think I'm a total snob and computer addict if I help with Great Grandma so they can continue their discussion outside.

Sitting with Great Grandma, she asks where her husband, Stephen, is? Her husband has been dead for over 40 years but trying to move past the subject I just say he's home. It's not quite the truth but it's not totally a lie, he's hopefully in his heavenly home, right? Besides if I can get her off subject, she won't remember in a few short minutes. Hubby comes in to help. He tells her "Grandma, he's dead and has been dead for over 40 years!" She's upset and thinks everyone is lying to her. Now, Grandma comes in upset as well and begins yelling.

The fact is Great Grandma is not in her familiar surrounding and just wants to go home and back to her normal routine. So sad, her mind is totally gone. The other day when talking to grandma, she was saying that getting all her doctors and medicaid lined out has been a struggle. Great Grandma has lived with hubby's parents for 4 years. She's been sick on and off, was taken to the doctor for medicine and got better. She takes all sorts of pills each morning to stay "healthy."

With all the medical advancements in medicine and technology, doctors keep bodies alive long after the mind is gone. Grandma is concerned about keeping Great Grandma healthy but tonight in frustration said, oh the party she's gonna throw when Great Grandma passes. I know it sounds terrible but literally Great Grandma can't do anything therefore Grandma does it all. She can't walk, bathe herself, wipe her butt, feed herself, get dressed, she can't do anything! Grandma and Paw Paw get so frustrated with her. I get aggravated too the few times I watch her.

Last night around 3am, Great Grandma tried to get in bed with me and hubby. She somehow managed to get out of bed, go to the bathroom and shuffle without falling to the living room where we slept on the hideaway. I took her back to the bed she's sharing with Grandma and Baby Girl. Paw Paw is on an air mattress on the floor. I then went to the bathroom and stepped in a puddle of pee around the toilet. As she's done before, she didn't pull her depends and pants down far enough so when she peed, it went everywhere. I went back to their room, informed Grandma of the incident and to check Great Grandma's pj's which are soaked and then began a search through the house for bathroom cleaner. I got it cleaned and made it back to bed where my husband snores oblivious to all the excitement.

I didn't know her before she lost her mind so I don't have any history or connection with her. I use to think it would make a difference but now I'm not so sure. It doesn't seem to make a difference with the rest.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Protective or Paranoid

There's a fine line between protective and paranoid when it comes to your kids. Baby Girl wanted to play with a little girl from school this summer. This girl's mom does not come to school functions so I haven't had the opportunity to get to know her like some other moms. However, her daughter seems nice enough so before the school year ended, I got their phone number.

I called last week and invited the little girl over to swim. I hoped her mom would hang out too so I could get to know her, but no such luck. She dropped her daughter off and left. When I took the little girl home, her and her husband invited Baby Girl to spend the night. I made up some lame excuse and said maybe next time. Baby Girl was furious! The mom said to give her a call and next time the girls could play at her house.

Yesterday, after listening to my daughter beg for hours, I called the mom and set up a play date. I should have stayed and took the opportunity to get to know her but I was suppose to meet Grandma. After only a few minutes and making sure that she had my cell number, I left. Like the great mom that I am, at Grandma's I left my phone in the car. When I made it back to the car, I noticed that I had missed a call from her almost an hour earlier, Yikes. My heart picked up speed as I called her back. It was not an emergency but . . .

She informed me that the girls wanted to go swimming and she was calling to get my approval. Since she couldn't reach me, she went ahead and let the girls go. Okay, here's the kicker. Her 18 year old daughter and a friend took my six year old to a public pool in the city. In shock, I was like "Oh, okay?" and got off the phone with her. Kicking myself for not having my phone on me and freaking out that my daughter is with an 18 year old somewhere in town, I began driving home.

While in route, I called my husband who got onto me for not having my phone but said don't over-react, she's fine. As I got closer to home, I began to panic. I called a couple of friends who said listen to your gut instinct and go get her. So a half a mile from home, I turned the car around and flew into the city as fast as possible.

Husband said that if you let the kids go to some one's house than you must trust their judgment otherwise you don't let them go. There are friends whom I trust and wouldn't think anything about Baby Girl going to town with or without my knowing but for starters, they are NOT 18 years old. I left Baby Girl in the Mom's supervision, not the 18 year old's. We don't even have teenagers, or single people for that matter, watch our kids. If family or close family friends can't babysit, we don't go. And as far as yesterday goes, if the girls were at my house wanting to go here or there and I couldn't reach a parent, the answer would have been NO!

All the way to the pool, I was thinking of the top three things that could go wrong.

1. Car Wreck - I know how I drove at 18.

2. Intentions - What are the teenagers talking about, are they meeting boys? (Once upon a time I had a teenage step sister who I don't keep in touch with now. I would tag along as she went out with friends and boyfriends. Needless to say, I got an earful and eyeful before I was ready)

3. Supervision - Are they watching the girls? Baby Girl is an awesome swimmer so that's not so much my concern as someone taking her. Kids are abducted if not every day at least each week where we live. Our city has the Amber Alert signs on the interstates coming in and out of the city. I don't think of myself as a fearful parent and the kids even play unsupervised out front but regardless it stays in the back of my mind.

I made it to the pool and spotted Baby Girl with friends playing in the shallow end. I walked over and squatted down to talk to her. The scary, wild teenager came forward and politely introduced herself. She was in the pool directly behind the girls. Everything was fine. She appeared very responsible, there weren't any boys or wild friends hanging around and Baby Girl and her friends were having a blast.

I took Baby Girl home with me anyway. She wasn't as upset as I thought she'd be. I called the mom again with a lame excuse of why I had to pick Baby Girl up. I will invite the little girl over to play at my house but for now, will not let her go back over there. At least, not until I get to know her mom. Lesson learned if only for my peace of mind and sanity, my kids will not go to some one's house if I haven't got much passed introduction with the parent.

I texted my best friend last night and said hubby thinks I over-react, ya think? She texted me back and said, "You're a little overprotective and that's ok, I am too! There should be more moms like us." I agree, sister. As a concellation, I let Baby Girl spend the night with Grandma last night. She was happy.

Off the subject, Little Man about talked my ear off last night. The subject turned to a story that he'd seen on the news at Grandma's house. With a serious face, he said a drunk driver hit some people riding their bikes on the elbow of the road. I laughed so hard I couldn't talk for several minutes. After such a stressful afternoon, that was perfect. Not knowing what was so funny, I explained to him it's the shoulder not elbow of the road.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Gift from Mexico

I have NOT spoken much to the other two couples who went to Mexico with us. I have NOT done much of anything this week. Honestly, I feel like crap. Serves me right for such immoral, irresponsible, immature behavior. I complained some to my husband of stomach issues but would NOT whine to my friends who had to put up with my drunk, stupid ass in Mexico.

We met my husband's parents and one of the above couples for dinner tonight. She brought up that they both had not felt well this week. She went on to describe the same symptoms I had. I called the other couple after dinner to find that both she and her husband have also had the same symptoms all week long.

On the way home, I did NOT go to the minor emergency. The nurse did NOT ask if I might be pregnant, God Forbid. I told her, "NO chance, my husband is fixed." She did NOT proceed to tell me that a former patient had it done, his grew back and his wife ended up pregnant. Wondering why the hell she's telling me all this, I reply, "Well, as on most vacations, I had my period and besides if I'm pregnant, so are 5 others who went with me, 3 of which are men!"

The doctor did NOT come in the examining room, listen to my symptoms of stomach and bathroom issues and ask, "Did you use any protection?" With an "OH MY GOD" look on my face, I whispered, "Uh, my husband is fixed. I think we are (Gulp) protected." He gave me a weird look and said, "Did you take any medication before traveling to prevent sickness?" Of course that's what he meant, how embarrassing! But What would you have thought if asked that same question?

My friends and I do NOT suffer from Montezuma's Revenge! I do NOT have to fast a couple of days only drinking clear liquids and take antibiotic to get better. Well I guess, there's the proof . . .

I went to Mexico after all.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

I did NOT . . .

A friend in the blogging world will sometimes write posts simply titled, "I did NOT . . ." I love reading these posts and think it's the best way to blog about certain events that did NOT take place on my trip to Mexico.

I'm not sure I really even went to Mexico but if I did I most certainly did NOT spend 8 days and nights in a beautiful villa in Puerta Vallarta living the lifestyles of the rich and famous where the likes of Mel Gibson, Vin Diesl and Wynnona Ryder stayed. I'm sure it's just all an incredible dream. I did NOT sleep in the same bed as the gorgeous Vin Diesl and speaking of dreams (no worries honey), I definitely did NOT even once have a dream about that Fast and Furious Heart-throb.

I did NOT have breakfast with fresh fruit, eggs, toast, bacon and fresh squeezed orange juice served to me each morning and a beautiful dinner cooked for me each night. I did NOT have a personal waiter whose sole purpose was to continually bring me Mango Margaritas, chips, salsa and guacamole while I sunbathed next to a gorgeous infinity pool overlooking the ocean and scenic rocks of Bandaras Bay. Like that's NOT hard enough to imagine, but even more ridiculous, NOT having any dirty dishes, loads of laundry or house to clean for an entire week, are you kidding me? If I truly went there, I'd not only remember but never come back, I'm NOT stupid, you know!

I did NOT get drunk after several margaritas and a couple of shots of tequila on the beach in Mismaloya and pay good, hard-earned pesos for temporary works of body art commonly referred to as tattoos. So,how ink stains got on my bikini, why a butterfly flutters above the crack of my butt, why a little frog is stretched out sunning near the top of my shoulder or, what the heck, an ugly bug-eyed toad is doing squatting on the fat part of my gut, I just don't know . . . but I'm sure there's a perfectly good explanation.

I did NOT get sun poisoning within the first 2 days there and have bumps resembling acne covering my chest for the remainder of the trip. I am now NOT peeling and looking like a cross between a lizard and a leper. And those crazy acne looking bumps have NOT migrated north to my face making me a prime candidate for Pro-Active. Trust me, it's so very attractive!

I did NOT have multiple massages on the beach for $25.00 per hour, get real. If that were the case, I'd still be on that Mexican Beach. There'd also be some kind of lasting side effects from numerous "spa treatments." For instance, I'd be relaxed this peaceful evening sipping a glass of tea oblivious to my dog barking and my kids screaming, whining and fighting around me instead of with tension in my neck and shoulders, pounding in my head, and the paddle in my hand demanding silence or else, So Help Me . . . Some One's Gonna Get Hurt!!!!!

I did NOT enjoy Puerta Vallartan Art and Sculptures and even pose with said displays. Let's face it, the only art I've enjoyed over the past few years have been crayon masterpieces drawn by chubby, little orange Cheetos' covered fingers and art designs created from macaroni noodles, various colored pipe cleaners and cotton balls. I could NOT have leisurely strolled from shop to shop for days on end. The highlight of my shopping experience most generally takes place at Walmart, Target or Sam's. Besides, for any leisurely shopping to have occured, I would have been without kids, yeah right!

I did NOT para-sail high above a remote beach, zip line through a dense jungle, hold a slimy jellyfish, pet a crocodile, sorta smoke a cigar (of course like Clinton, I did NOT inhale), snorkel around a reef with schools of fish surrounding me or relax in a boat while watching a herd of dolphins jump all around. That could NOT have been me because the extent of my adventures nowadays center around running errands with the kids, cooking for family functions and wiping Great Grandma's Butt. Besides as a Mom, I must always maintain the epitome of all things cautious, responsible and sensible, as seen from the minivan I drive to the clothes I wear.

Okay, so all the did NOTS have so far been fairly mild. Beware, the following is Rated R for Mature Audiences containing questionable content including brief nudity, an extreme lack of morals, and over-indulgence of alcohol. Turn Back Now or forever hold your peace.

I did NOT do 3 shots of Tequila after drinking a couple of loaded Margaritas the last night in Puerta Vallarta. I did NOT repeatedly dance with our waiter at the restaurant who, I might say, looked just like a young Mel Gibson only Mexican.

I should soooo stop at this point but here's a few more things I totally did NOT do.

I, with my best friend, did NOT moon my husband, friends and driver in the taxi behind us on the way up to our villa. That taxi driver did NOT flash his bright lights and lay on his horn in appreciation of the show. I did NOT invite the taxi driver inside to swim, (good thing he knew little English) and was NOT so drunk that I couldn't walk but had to be carried like a sack of potatoes from the taxi into the villa. I was NOT embarrassed of my actions and did NOT swear to NEVER do tequila shots ever, EVER Again!

I am now NOT depressed, I am NOT going through a mid life crisis and have NOT spent the last few days looking on-line for houses for sale in Puerta Vallarta. This afternoon, I did NOT give my husband the go ahead to put our house up for sale, declaring I would seriously move if he wanted to. I am NOT really considering home-schooling my kids, that would be cruel and unusual punishment for all parties included! I am NOT truly planning on deserting my life here stateside with all it's stress and worry from the daily grind and rat race for the promise of a better life in Mexico, now that would be crazy!

By the way, if you haven't already, go see the movie, "UP" it's awesome!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

How Would You Introduce Jesus?

Dad forwarded this email to me. I've now watched it several times. It's awesome! It's Steve Harvey, the comedian, at the end of his comedy routine. The subject is: "How Would You Introduce Christ to a Room Full of People?"
For a moment, you'll forget he's a comedian and not a preacher, and
this is an audience and not a congregation. It's really powerful, check it out! It's at the very bottom of my blog. (You'll have to stop my music to hear him)

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Another Day in Paradise

This is the life. I swear, I could get use to this. We've had breakfast made for us each morning. Maria, our cook, is awesome. She's made huevos rancheros, french toast and a huge bowl of bacon and fresh fruit. All of it is sooo good, but I pretty much concentrate on the Kiwi, Strawberries, Bananas and Pineapple. Oh, and the fresh squeezed orange juice will totally spoil you too.

We've spent the days on the beach drinking margaritas and eating chips, guacamole and salsa. Friday afternoon, Sam saw the ocean for the first time and together we stuck our feet in officially kicking off the week of fun. Saturday and Sunday, we stayed on the beach in Mesmolya which is just down from our villa. Ramone was our beach bartender last time we were in Puerta Vallarta. He's not there anymore so we found a new bartender or I should say, she found us. Brenda took us to Margaritaville with Mango and Strawberry Margaritas and even a couple shots of Tequila. Sunday, yo estoy muey borracho. How drunk was I, you ask? I'm not sure. I didn't throw up or pass out, but I did pick up a jellyfish (luckily it didn't sting me) and took a picture with an iguana on my head. (I'll post that pic later) Sam and I had massages on the beach (totally awesome and priced right at $25.00 per hour), got a couple of tattoos (it's a real beauty . . . how it got here I haven't a clue) and all in all had the time of our life.

Today, Brenda and her husband took us south of Mesmoyla by boat. They have a fishing boat with the motor at the back which you use to steer. We started the day snorkeling at the big rocks directly across from our villa. Hubby pulled some hermit crabs off a reef for me to see. One was in a purple looking shell, it was so pretty. Afterwards, we headed south for Yulapa. About halfway there, we ran into a school of dolphin. There's no telling how many there were but I'm not kidding, they were jumping out of the water all around us. They even swam next to the boat for a while. I could have reached out and touched them, they were so close.

Both Sam and I agree, the beaches south of Mesmoyla are awesome. There's no road, you must travel by boat to get there. Those beaches have better sand (Mesmoyla is rockier) and the water is crystal clear with a shade of aqua near the shore and a deep blue further out. Hubby and I para-sailed at one of the beaches. It was exhilarating soaring like a bird over the beach and ocean. Everyone on shore looked like ants. It was a little scary coming in for the landing because for a moment you are directly over the huts on the beach rather than the ocean.

We've hit town to shop and hang out several evenings as well. Some nights we took a taxi but the last couple of times, we rode the bus. I'd say both are equally interesting. All of the taxi drivers here could qualify in Nascar races, no lie. They zoom up and down the streets like their being chased by the Road Runner. The bus drivers are just as fearless. Even though their mode of transportation can't go as fast as the taxi's, they push it to the limit and amazingly cut through the crowded streets of Puerta Vallarta with only inches to spare from cars, street signs and pedestrians. I love to watch, listen and sometimes even talk to the locals. My Spanish is pretty weak but it's fun trying anyway. Tonight, we ate at my parents favorite restaurant, Daiquiri Dick's. The menu has changed from the last time we were there, but it is still good.

After breakfast tomorrow, we'll go back to the beach for the majority of the day. We are going on the zip line tour in the jungle on Wednesday and plan to do the Rhythms of the Night Boat Cruise later this week.

Puerta Vallarta

Hola, from beautiful Puerta Vallarta! It's almost 1am, everyone is asleep and I'm stretched out on the sectional in the living room. The front side of this room is completely open with the infinity pool and ocean in perfect view, couldn't get away with this at home, we'd be attacked by June Bugs and Mosquitos. The waves are crashing into the rocks below like soft music playing as I type on my laptop. I can see the shadows from the alter of rocks emerging from the ocean with soft lights of the city way off in the distance. There's a dive boat that's been puttering around for the last hour. I watched the diver's flashlights cutting through the water from our room's balcony for the last hour. Year's ago, I scuba dived in Florida during the day but never at night.

We arrived here just after lunch today. I had major anxiety the first time I experienced the airport here. I wasn't expecting that reaction, but the realization of being in a foreign country away from the security of home hit me hard. Just before we landed then as today, the flight attendants brought around papers for us to complete before going through customs. Three years ago, we did not pull directly to a concourse but unloaded by taking the stairs down onto the runway. All the passengers were crammed onto an old bus like sardines. There weren't any seats just poles here and there for us to cling to. All the windows were down, there wasn't any air conditioning. When the bus pulled up in front of the airport, we all were marched off and herded into the building. Customs was weird. Everyone standing in line nervously waiting for those in uniforms to inspect our passports and documents to decide if we can continue on. our journey.

This time was different. I must admit, I was a little disappointed. I wanted our friends with us to have that same experience. I'm not sure why, maybe so I could sit back and watch their reactions as first timers. As any other airport you've been in, today the plane pulled up to a newly built concourse. Different from last time, there was a nurse standing with a thermometer checking each passengers temperature before allowing them access to customs. I guess remnants of the Swine Flu. None of us had fever and were permitted on through customs, we found the baggage claim and then the real fun began. As we searched for the van sent from our villa, we were bombarded by what seemed like hundreds of people offering to "help" with our luggage and offer taxi rides but mostly trying to sell time shares. These people have the high pressure, hard sell down to a tee. But I've been here, done that so we said "No" firmly and kept moving till we found our guy.

As we got into his van, he offered us beer and water from the cooler. The guys took him up on the Mexican beer and the girls the water. Ron was a little nervous about drinking the beer while sitting in the front seat rolling down the road with open container law in the back of his mind. He felt the urge to hide it between his legs when not drinking. We drove away from the airport, passed some big resorts, into the newer and then older part of downtown cruising on cobblestone streets and finally up toward our villa in Mismaloya. The villa we stayed in three years ago (Casa de los lomas) was awesome but this one is just incredible. I can't even begin to describe it, pictures are best. Our villa is called Casa Azul Profundo. Check out their site; http://www.casaazulprofundo.com/principal.htm

We met the host, the maid and then as I was entering the kitchen hubby grabbed my arm and said, "Look, it's Maria!" I couldn't believe it, our cook from the villa three years ago will be our cook this week. She remembered us from the time before and gave us great big hugs. How cool is that!

There's so much more I want to say but it's 2am and breakfast is at 9am. Tomorrow is Ron's birthday. I think it's safe to say, it'll be one of the best birthdays EVER! More later. . .

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Ode to Melancholy

When pulling up my blog, Carlton Pearson started singing. I wish I could go back to those Higher Dimensions days if not but for 1 service. What an amazing church, probably won't ever be another like it. It's kinda sad, I think I attended the best church of my life as a teenager. I totally dug the praise and worship but unfortunately tuned out for most of his sermons and when I was listening, I was too young and dumb to get even half of his jokes. The memories I do have are great. Now those days, just like that song, is gone and Rod Stewart is singing "You're in my heart." Gotta love the irony.

Tonight, Little Man watched the new James Bond movie with daddy while I painted Baby Girl's nails a glittery purple color that she picked out at Walmart. I stink at painting nails I guess due to lack of experience. I've bit my nails for the majority of my life. As I painted trying desperately to smooth out the clumps at the tips of her nails, she offered encouragement by saying "You're doing really good, alot better than last time." Ouch. After I finished her sloppy manicure and pedicure, I started making cookies, I'm great with the kind that you just pull apart, stick on a tray and slide in the oven. When Little Man saw the package on the counter he said, "You're making cookies at 11:06 at night, you're the best mom EVER!" I needed that! I packed there clothes to go to grandparents tomorrow. Daddy and I will finish packing our stuff and leave on Friday for Mexico. Loretta Lynn is now singing. I remember every time she'd come on the radio when I was young, Dad would excitedly chime in "Get Back, Loretta!" I'm not sure why?

I took dinner tonight to a friend from church. She's had all sorts of painful health issues. Right now, fibermalagia causes most of her pain. She brought dinner to Mom a couple of times last summer. At that time, Mom was in alot of pain but refusing to take her pain meds like she should. Wren was able to talk and connect with Mom concerning it all better than anyone. She's such a wonderful person. God, I pray the treatment she's receiving works so she can get back to living life.

Now, Heidi Newfield is singing Johnny and June. Man, Hubby and I really need this time away together. You know, there's times when we are more perfect together than Johnny and June and then there' s the other times when we don't see anything eye to eye and struggle around every turn. I'm sure its nothing a few hours on the beach with friends and couple of margaritas can't fix.

Well now it's 12:46, Ray Charles is singing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," the low battery light on my laptop is blinking and I'm dosing.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Not Just Sports

Growing up, I played ball. What I lacked in natural ability, I like to think I made up with in heart. Still all those basketball, softball, volleyball and even football games compares nothing to watching Baby Girl play, that tops it all.

In talking with friends tonight as our kids roasted marshmallows for smores (Baby Girl kept calling them snores) around a campfire, he said that he never could imagine one of his kids not being athletic. He got a athletic scholarship in college and now is a coach. His wife also got a athletic scholarship and is still active today. How would either one of them enjoy or even relate to a non athletic child?

Welp, they got the chance to answer that question after the birth of their first child. The second child is a natural athlete but not the first. Shocking him, he quickly learned that he would feel no difference between the two. He loves watching one excel in sports but feels the same pride and adrenaline rush when watching his first performing in musicals and plays.

I know exactly how he feels. Baby Girl is a natural born athlete. She's so much fun to watch when playing basketball and softball. I'm hoping to get her into tennis this summer and maybe gymnastics at some point. Little Man is on the other end of the spectrum. He's not athletic, competitive or physical. But when he won the Spelling Bee this year, well it was every bit as exciting as the best game Baby Girl ever played. When he got 1st in the Science Fair, I was beyond proud as when Baby Girl hit her home run at the end of the season.

Although there aren't competitions for building (or none that I know of), when Little Man builds with his Lego's, hot wheels tracks and Knex stuff, it's amazing. He spends hours creating in his room scrutinizing over each piece. He can follow manuals to a tee to create all sorts of creatures and machines. Then, he can turn around and create something equally as cool straight from his imagination. I'm astonished with both. I couldn't do anything like that on my own or by following directions. He also loves to write and can draw like you wouldn't believe.

While he's not naturally athletic, he loves the comradery of being on a team. Right now, the only team activities offered centers around sports. But in the future, I can so see him doing academic bowls, debate teams, in book clubs and participating in a science clubs. Maybe he'll be one of those science kids on the David Letterman Show. Dad mentioned that he might try golf. It's a team sport but is not physical but extremely mental. I'm thinking about putting him a summer program like Hook a Kid on Golf which teaches him the basics of the game and he'll walk away with his own clubs, golf bag and such.

I know those activities are not nearly as popular as sports, but for me, there's no difference. I watch the softball championship and dream of Baby Girl there one day. When I see Little Man lost in a world of Lego's, I dream of him as an engineer or architect. It's funny, after he won the Spelling Bee, he mentioned that he thinks it increased his popularity, maybe kids, like me, are beginning to appreciate things other than just sports, at least for a few days.