Friday, June 30, 2006

"Here comes the sun...and I's alright"
- George Harrison

The forcast this morning shows a bright, smiling little sun on each day, and most importantly NO RAIN for several days. Thank goodness, because the girls and I are stir crazy. We've done more artwork than you could imagine and had lots of stuck-in-side-can't take-it-anymore outbursts, too. Here's one of India's Jackson Pollock-eske works (minus his alcohol-induced rage). She's sure got an eye for color:

Yesterday was a day of fun social engagements. We were "ladies who lunch" with our friend Susan, the girls' surrogate grandmother. She brought birthday presents for India as well as some for Kate (what grandmother doesn't spoil her grandgirls?) and we indulged in a little ice cream, too. Susan, I know you check in every now and then, so thanks for such a wonderful visit. The girls LOVE all their loot and they have been talking about you all afternoon. They want to know when they will see you again and "Mista Arthur" too.

After lunch it was nap time. Evidently dessert during the day does not agree with me because I felt like somebody slipped me a mickey; I napped along with the girls like R.V. Winkle! Then up and ready for my friend Meredith and her girls for dinner. Thursdays are late meeting nights for Tracy and Meredith's husband just generally works all the time, so it breaks up the monotony to eat together and let the kids destroy the house. The girls were WILD by the end and the house looked like a toy factory gone haywire.

Kate was up at 5:50 this morning. I had gotten spoiled; the last two days she and India slept until 6:30! The first morning it happened I woke up in a panic that was reminescent of the first time your baby sleeps through the night. Are they sick? Did they stop breathing? Mind you, I was not concerned enough to enter her room; didn't want to startle her into actually waking.

My friend Janice (Hi, Janice!) and her sister Lois and I have been exchanging "Bad Mom" stories via e-mail. "Bad Mom" stories began with a discussion about the "Hard Out Here For A Pimp" song that apparently lured Lois and Janice in with it's catchy tune; they found themselves singing it covertly in fear that their children might pick up the lyrics. "Bad Mom" then delved into the realm of liquor store visits and children who play waitress and offer "white or red" beer (that would be my child). My latest Bad Mom story is that both girls love the song "Willin'" so India has been requesting it in the car. Suddenly I realized both girls are warbling along to the chorus "...and if you give me WEED, WHITES and WINE, and you show me a sign...". Oh no! What's next, Bad Company's "I Feel Like Makin' Love"? This I distinctly remember belting out from the back seat when I was a kid, and I don't think I have fallen into depths of depravity (no comments from the peanut gallery).

Mom and Dad are coming for a nice, long visit tomorrow morning and there is lots of boating, beaching and fishing in our future. Have a great weekend, everyone!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

This is fun. Clare posted this on her "My Space" site and suggested I try it. Play along!

Pick your band...Choose a band/artist and answer ONLY with their song titles:

1. Artist: Lucinda Williams
2. Are you male or female: Lonely Girls
3. Describe yourself: I Lost It; Drunken Angel
4. How do some people feel about you: Concrete And Barbed Wire; Sweet Side
5. How do you feel about yourself: Satisfied Mind
6. Describe your ex-girlfriend/boyfriend/spouse: I Asked For Water (He Gave Me Gasoline)
7. Describe current girlfriend/boyfriend/spouse: Goin Back Home, Still I Long For Your Kiss
8. Describe where you want to be: Bus To Baton Rouge
9. Describe how you live: Happy Woman Blues
10. What would you ask for if you had just one wish? World Without Tears
11. Share a few words of wisdom: I Envy The Wind
12. Now say goodbye: Can't Let Go

Monday, June 26, 2006


Red is the font color today because I am seeing it. Kate is making me CRAZY(You can always tell when I am feeling extreme; all the font options are paraded out)!!!!!!!

Either I've blocked it out ( distinct possibility...Kate was 6 months old when India was Kate's current age), or India was a much easier toddler. My recollection is that India was a typical 2 year old, but she DID NOT hurl things with fury. She did not scream with a loud and high pitched shriek that gives our dogs seizures. She did not yell "FINE!" with the intensity of a teenager. She did not hit or bite. She did not scowl so frequently that she developed furrows in her brow (yes. already). SHE DID NOT.

Where is this coming from? Before my grandmother died she claimed that Kate possesses some of the "damn Huling"; an infamous genetic strain of bitchy females (No, I don't have it; thank you very much.). Oh, god I hope that isn't it. A phase I can weather, but a lifetime of this fury I just cannot.

More importantly than "where" is the "what", as in "What the hell do I do with her?" I know, I know, firm and consistent limits; that's my mantra. But oh, my goodness her behavior is at times so appalling! Today has just been a rough day. Good thing she's cute and knows how to make up really well ..."I sowwy, Mommy. I be nice now [big kiss on the lips coupled with tight hug]. Wuv oo".

Let's hope for an improvement tomorrow. Otherwise, I may seek pharmaceutical (or ABC store) mood enhancers! Sometimes the therapist needs a therapist. Thanks for listening; bill me later.

Sunday, June 25, 2006


We had a heck of a storm here in the afternoon just as I needed to take the girls to a haircut appointment. I rushed them out the door a half hour early thinking I was beating the deluge, but drove north right into a MESS! Cars were veering off the road, hydroplaning, parking on the roadside and driving like maniacs without paying attention to the rest of us. We sat outside of the salon for 15 minutes waiting for a break while Kate repeatedly yelled "I don' wike fundah!" then finally made a break for it. As we entered the salon the power went out and the girls were treated to a colonial-style haircut by candlelight as the sirens raged outside. Cars were flooded in parking lots, there were accidents EVERYWHERE and there was a lake in our front yard. The lightening was so bad that we sat in the car for 30 minutes waiting for the storm to ebb so we could safely enter our home (yet another moment where I felt slightly embarrassed and a lot grateful for the car DVD player)! Dex and Judy arrived safely, getting across the Bay Bridge Tunnel before the storm, and thus began our busy weekend.

"Somewhere...beyond the sea..."
India's party, though forced inside for part of the time because of rain, was a lot of fun. Mostly everyone just ran around like maniacs, but we had a few games, including a pinata that was made of tempered steel.

Tracy surreptitiously ripped it in a few places, or we might still be waiting. I foolishly assumed that my friends opted for the pull-string variety because they are less violent, but I think I understand that it is really because the pinata actually has a chance of opening with the pull-strings. Lesson learned.

Another lesson learned; blue-green icing is not stain-friendly. I am still finding little icing blobs in bizarre locations (how does icing end up in the bathroom or a doll's hair?). Oh well, better than the bright red Ladybug cake from last year. Everyone left with full bellies and hands full of pinata candy, ocean tattoos, sailor hats and a CD of beachy songs.
Kate is coveting one of India's gifts, a princess doll which she calls "Seeping Booty"...I feel strongly that we should consult Web MD about this doll's serious health condition! I hope Kate doesn't repeat this phrase in public.

One of the other popular gifts was a dress-up bridal veil, ironically a gift from William, who is the boy India plans to marry if things with Joe don't work out. Kate is also enjoying the veil, as you can see.

We saw Dex and Judy safely back to Stuart after breakfast. Thank you, thank you for all of your help this weekend! The girls are missing their Pops and Gigi.

For the rest of the day we tried to recover by all taking naps, then had our friends John and Susan and their girls, Ellie and Anne, over for a potluck dinner. A nice way to wind down another very busy weekend.

Friday, June 23, 2006

How many Christians does it take to change a light bulb?

Charismatic : Only 1- Hands are already in the air.

Pentecostal : 10 -One to change the bulb, and nine to pray against the spirit of darkness.

Presbyterians : None -Lights will go on and off at predestined times.

Roman Catholic : None Candles only.

Baptists : At least 15. One to change the light bulb, and three committees to approve the change and decide who brings the potato salad and fried chicken.

Episcopalians: 3 -One to call the electrician, one to mix the drinks and one to talk about how much better the old one was.

Mormons: 5 -One man to change the bulb, and four wives to tell him how to do it.

Unitarians: We choose not to make a statement either in favor of or against the need for a light bulb. However, if in your own journey you have found that light bulbs work for you, you are invited to write a poem or compose a modern dance about your light bulb for the next Sunday service, in which we will explore a number of light bulb traditions, including incandescent, fluorescent, 3-way, long-life and tinted, all of which are equally valid paths to luminescence.

Methodists : Undetermined -Whether your light is bright, dull, or completely out, you are loved. You can be a light bulb, turnip bulb, or tulip bulb. Bring a bulb of your choice to the Sunday lighting service and a covered dish to pass.

Nazarene: 6 -One woman to replace the bulb while five men review church lighting policy.

Lutherans: None -Lutherans don't believe in change.

Amish: What's a light bulb?

I figure this is an equal opportunity joke...I'll offend everyone. Thanks, Clare, for forwarding this; I laughed so hard I figured I would share it. My favorites are Episcopalians for obvious reasons, and Unitarians, because they most closely fit my own beliefs. Very funny. Really, all of them are good, and us Southerners can especially appreciate the reference to potato salad and fried chicken in the Baptist reference! Enjoy, and have a great weekend.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Feelin' HOT, HOT, HOT!!!!
- Buster Poindexter

My lord, the heat is just appalling! The only way to cool off is in the water. We can't make it to a beach every day, so here's the Turman pool:

Since we were first married Tracy has informed me that he is radically opposed to owning either horses or a pool. His reasoning is based on the significant amount of maintenance they both require. I am completely in his corner on the horses, but here lately I have felt some desire to have a pool (not that we can afford to put one in, mind you). I think it's because we have very little pool access on The Shore. There is one community pool but I hear it is crowded and a bit crazy with errant teens and tweens (probably like my childhood community pool), and there is a country club very close to our house but it is EXPENSIVE and I also wrestle with how I feel about country clubs. Maybe if we were golfers/tennis players I would feel differently, I don't know. Anyway, I keep thinking that a pool would be so nice to have in a few years when the girls are older and it's not such a safety issue. We have 3 acres to fill, so it's not like we don't have the space. 'Til then, plastic kiddie pools are our friends!

It's been a busy week. I had meetings Tuesday and Wednesday nights and Tracy is at one tonight. To add to the chaos, the mad scramble to get ready for India's (rescheduled) birthday party is on. I am baking the cake as we speak so I have lots of time to decorate it...lots of ocean-related candies and other sugary goodies. We are keeping our fingers crossed about the weather...not a big deal if it rains except for the pinata. I have the old-fashioned/violent/take out your neighbor's head kind of pinata instead of the more PC pull-string variety and the idea of six 4 or 5 year olds weilding a stick in the house does not thrill me. What the hell was I thinking?

Adding to the frenetic pace of the week is Kate's increasing interest in "doin' to da potty". This is great news for my long-term sanity, but 6 trips to the toilet in a half hour is frustrating. One of the more difficult aspects of toilet training in this house is that our living room/toy containment area is in the front of the house and the bathroom is in the back. To alleviate accidents I have a potty chair in the living room. Great, except that with each success I have to walk through the dining room and kitchen, up a small flight of stairs and go around a corner to dump it. I suppose it counts as exersize, right? Just so I don't have a spill.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Off to the beach with friends! Wednesday's beach was brought to us courtesy of East Point, a little bayside town where my friend Susan is living temporarily until their new home is finished. East Point has a small beach for it's residents; small enough that pines shade most of the sand, keeping eveyone cool and protected. Like most bayside beaches, the water is shallow, calm and warm; just right for little kids! This is the first summer I've been able to sit and watch the girls rather than staying in the water and frantically preventing each girl from drowning as India and Kate swam in different directions. Even nicer, Kate seems more content this year to play in the sand than to swim. I know it won't last, but I'll enjoy it while I can. Below are some photos of my bathing beauties from last year. I just realized that so little has changed that they are even wearing the same swimsuits this year!

I wasn't sure if we would make it to East Point; the girls and I came downstairs this morning to pack a lunch and depart for the beach when I discovered that the dining room table was covered with water. I was more than slightly puzzled until I looked up and discovered that the chandelier looked like an elaborate fountain...water gracefully cascading from the many arms of the fixture. After a flurry of activity that included moving the table and chairs, placing plastic sheeting and a bucket beneath the fixture, and turning off various water sources upstairs, we discovered a BIG leak under a sink. Hopefully the plumbers will come soon.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Okay, not sure what happened to my last post, but the fonts are crazy and one paragraph is so miniscule you need a microscope to read it. It WILL NOT change, no matter what I do. I should count myself lucky that the post even took me 12 hours to get it to publish and even then is vanished for a little while. So now I will attempt to finish:

Father's Day, Part II

I paid homage to Tracy, but I want to also honor my Dad. Hope you read this...I think you occasionally check in. What a wonderful role model you were and continue to be. Your example helped me understand what I wanted in a spouse: kind, generous, caring and always willing to be an equal partner. I learned a lot from you, and not just how to make good Bloody Marys, trout fish and find shark's teeth! Happy Father's Day to Daden from me and your girls.

Also a big Happy Father's Day to Dex, who is half responsible for raising my wonderful husband. Pops, you are a wonderful grandfather and we are looking forward to celebrating both Father's Day and India's birthday with you this weekend.

Yesterday was a big day in the Turman house; it was The First Ballet Lesson. India was so excited she could barely stand herself, nor could the rest of us. The rest of the evening India twirled and leaped until we were all dizzy. I think our birthday gift was a success! So here begins a looooooooong childhood of carpooling, dress rehearsals, recitals and costumes. A familiar life, since I danced from elementary through high school. Kate behaved quite well as we waited in the green room, armed with Color Wonder markers (I thank god every day for their invention) and My Little Ponies, only trying once to enter the studio and "dance wif' Aheenya".

A vacation is what you take when you can no longer take
what you've been taking. ~Earl Wilson

After being sick so frequently in the last few weeks (months) a trip to Ocracoke Island was just what the Doctor ordered. Not that it was necessarily relaxing...what trip with 4 kids is...but it was medicine for the soul. I feel so much better after some fresh air, sun and salt water, Tracy was able to escape the stress of work (minus a couple of phone calls) and the girls enjoyed themselves immensely.

Most of our time
was spent, of course, on the water. Our girls love it as much as we do, and cried as we left. Although we live in the middle of the Bay our beaches are nothing like the Outer Banks and we sure don’t hit the surf every day! They especially enjoyed having Joe and Gus to share their adventures with, and are already asking when they will get to see them again.

e had the added benefit of docking Pat and Janice’s boat in the channel behind our house, so we were out to some pretty remote places. Our first night what started as a simple boat ride turned into docking in 2 feet of water and swimming fully clothed. Portsmouth Island, accessible only by boat, was a special favorite (despite the biting flies) for the shelling and the solitude. The fellas had great success fishing and crabbing so we had some wonderful meals supplemented by the 5 dozen clams some local clammers sold us for $12.
Each family also brought our 4w drives so we could easily reach some great spots, like The Point on Ocracoke. Driving on the beach is one of my very favorite things in life…if only I could drive on the edge of the water REALLY FAST! The coastline changes every year but this summer there is a great tidal pool on The Point that is perfect for the kids; never any higher than Kate’s thigh and the temperature of bathwater. Perfection.

The shelling was good this year, too (an obsession of mine – I love nature’s treasures of all kinds and drive Tracy crazy with my collections) and I finally found an elusive Scotch Bonnet. Several of them, actually, including one that I found halfway across the kitchen counter this morning…still with a tiny hermit crab inside. So sorry, little guy!One of the most amazing parts of our trip was the wildlife. The Great Egrets would gather behind the house as the fellas cleaned their fish. They were so tame that they would almost take fish from your hand. There were river otters living in the channel as well (salt water…not sure how that works); they were persistent enough to board the boat and open the latches on the live well and cooler as well as cleaning out our crab pot. They made their appearance after dark so sadly no photos. They were little pests but so cute that we almost encouraged them in their scavaging.

Not that the vacation was all sweetness and light; there were some moments. Four children in one house can create some insanity. One if those moments occured when, just as we were sitting down to dinner, Tracy discovered that Kate had broken into a jar of Vaseline. To Tracy's credit he cracked up (not the reaction I would've had) and, after calling for me to bring the camera, cleaned her as best he could. She looked like a member of Sha-Na-Na for a couple of days.

On our last night after the kids were asleep we saw a meteor shower with the largest shooting stars I have ever seen. Fantastic! A wonderful way to end a great trip. Thank you, Pat and Janice, for sharing the trip with us...ready to go again?


Once we arrived home it was time to celebrate Father’s Day. We unfortunately had unpacking, cleaning and laundry to do and Tracy was inundated with homework, so it wasn’t the Father’s Day I would have liked for him. But he did get to take a nap, we had flounder he caught on Friday, and I put both girls to bed so hopefully we made the best of it! Happy Father’s Day to the best Dad (and beer-getter) I know.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

I see sick people.
What is up with my family? Evidently we are "germ-magnets", emitting some pheromonal welcome call to all viruses and bacteria. Since my last blog Kate has "dot diaweeahs", which she has shared with her father and me, and I contracted pink eye from a friend. These are no mean feats, considering I have only left the house 4 times in two weeks (twice to go to the doctor), but if there is an illness out there we will evidentially find it.

On a positive note we seem to be recovering, and my task today was to start getting us packed for the beach. As some of you know I am a compulsive organizer (doesn't mean I am clean) and I had already generated lots of lists: "What To Pack"- broken into subcategories of "food", "nonperishables", "for the girls", "for us", "for the beach"; "What To Do" (arrange pet care, hold mail, etc.), and "What To Buy" (diapers, Bloody Mary Mix, etc.). Janice and I (she is also, thank god, a list-maker) have even "assigned" various items to each other; for example I am responsible for flour, spices, dishwashing liquid, onions; Janice for sugar, cereal, laundry detergent, snacks. Thanks to my supreme list-making skills Tracy should be able to help finish packing least that's my hope.
Today driving down our driveway I really looked at this tree for the first time in a long while. You would never know that we lost about a third of it during Hurricane Isabel and WORRIED so about whether we might lose it! It actually came back better than ever. I have no idea how old this guy is, but just compare it to the house to get an indication of it's size. The front part of the house was built in 1835...could the tree be that old? I don't know; I kind of doubt it. I love the ivy draping down from the branches. It's home to many birds and the occasional snake.
Have a great weekend and week and we'll see you soon, tan, rested and HEALTHY!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

June 6, 2006

It was difficult getting you here and for your first six months difficult keeping you here, but you are so happy and healthy now and every effort to have you was so worth it. We are sooooo proud of you, my kind, sweet, funny, beautiful girl. Happy, happy birthday!

Poor India's birthday did not happen as planned; her party was scheduled for last Saturday but because I've been so sick we had to postpone it. I know that India doesn't really understand the difference and feels no deep-seated, life-scarring resentment towards me, but I feel so guilty. Tonight we went out for pizza and cake with her friends, Ellie and Anne, and had a great time. The girls are 5 (Ellie), 4 (India), 3 (Anne), and 2 (Kate)...almost had them in order for this picture!

India is most excited about her gift from Tracy and I...leotard, tights and ballet slippers AND ballet lessons this summer. She's been wanting lessons for a long time and is twirling and spinning all over the house with anticipation. I'll have to take Kate along, and the biggest challenge will be keeping her from charging into the lessons with the big girls.

June 7, 2006

We spent most of today outside with me trying to conserve as much energy as I can, which of course meant that both girls were need-machines! There was a lot of arguing, getting the Gator stuck which requires me "towing" the vehicle to safety, and Kate's demands to "schwing me, Mommy!". They did sit with me in my chair for a while and I was struck by our "girl feet", hence the photo below.

We are slowly trying to get ready for our trip to Okracoke Island next week. The house is a wreck, the cupboards are bare, and the dirty laundry is piled up to the ceiling. I'll try to get in one last post between now and Saturday.