August 15, 2016

This Is Why We Don't Have Nice Things

Our favorite family saying....this is why we don't have nice things. It seems as though every time we buy something new it's only a matter of time before something is spilled on it, or the dogs chew it, or it breaks.

As Ryan and Rylee are becoming more aware of money and our mixed matched furniture,  they have questioned the lack of fine furniture and decorating in our house compared to others.

This is why we don't have nice things....we traveled as much as we were able to when the kids were young.  I knew that they would remember and enjoy a trip or vacation more than a brand new bedroom set.  By the age of 10 and 7, Rylee and Ryan visited Disney World twice; Cocoa Beach, Florida; Corpus Christi,  Texas; Hershey, Pennsylvania; California multiple times, and too many other states for wrestling to list.

Rylee explained that she always thought kids traveled as much as her.  We traveled so much it that was never a question to try out a new adventure.   I love looking through old pictures and laughing at the good and bad times we had.  Even getting soaking wet in a rain storm at Disney World has become a hysterical family discussion 10 years later.

When I actually realized how much we saw in such a short amount of time, I felt accomplished and satisfied with our choice of prized memories of possessions.  One day we will have nice things when the kids move out, or we no longer risk things breaking or being spilled on. Yeah....probably not, then Anthony and I would have to give up traveling.

July 17, 2016

Not Just A Table

  On Mother's Day, we tried to expand our dining room table and it officially broke beyond repair.  I knew it was getting weaker and expected it to happen soon.  It was "old" by today's standard of furniture.  For some reason, I can't recall exactly when it was purchased, but I know it was around 14 years ago.

  I left the table (upside-down) in our dining room until just last week.  The thought of throwing it out bothered me.  I would measure and analyze it to see what I could do to make it usable again.  It wasn't until this past week that I recognized the real reason why.

  You see, it is not just a table, it's a piece of furniture full of memories that make up most of our family's life.  It was the first piece of furniture that Anthony and I bought for ourselves.  Not a hand-me-down, not a gift.  I was very particular when choosing our table.  It had to be sturdy, light in color and with clean lines and with a limited budget.  After a few weeks of window shopping, I almost threw in the towel.  But, I had a discussion with Muggy and she promised to keep an eye out in the sale ads.  She was very particular to detail, so I thought it might just work. 

  A few weeks passed and I got a phone call.  When Muggy called,  she either greeted me with "Jennifer?  Oh good your home!"  or "Jennifer, I didn't wake you-did I?!", depending on the time of day.  I vividly remember the conversation of this amazing deal and the oddity of Lowes selling furniture.  Luckily, she called when she did.  Anthony and I had to go to 2 different Lowes.  Once we found one with it in stock, they realized there was a major pricing mistake.  They honored it and I was happily on my way with a brand new dining set with buffet table. 

  I'm not one to get attached to material things.  I don't like clutter or chaos.  But, when I thought back on the history this piece of wood carried with it, I couldn't let go. This table was the center to everything that occurred in our home.

It has seen first and last meals with friends and family in Virginia and California.
It's seen food fights and formal dinners.
It was the first table that I hosted a holiday meal at after my mother had passed and we changed our traditions.
Enough birthday candles were blown out at it to start a large bonfire.
It held homework and school projects from preschool all the way to college.
Gifts were wrapped on it, crafts made on it, and cookies decorated on it.
Family board games and drunken card games were played at it.
Major decisions, like buying our first home and car were made at it.
It has had many heartaches and triumphs dumped out on it.
It helped me through many sleepless, pregnant nights with puzzles while Anthony was deployed.
It had paint, marker, egg dye, crayons and pencil markings to prove that it was very well loved, much like a child's security blanket.

Everyone that stepped through our door was welcome at that table, and more than likely sat at it.  Not one other piece of furniture of ours has held so many memories.  So, I will take time in selecting our next dining room table, the same way as the first.  In the meantime, the broken one is being made into a desk to salvage what I could.

January 15, 2015

Out of the mouths of babes

We have had kids down for the count for what seems like a month!  Cruz has spent the most time at home.  Fortunately, Anthony is off during the week and I'm off on the weekends, so that leaves us with only 2 days not covered.  Those days home with dad are.....we will call them "different" than with mom.  It's what you would expect - naps, TV watching, video games, and the little crazy stories we hear from time-to-time, like the one at the dinner table last night.

I was half paying attention to what Cruz was saying. I think I was in the middle of a conversation with Anthony.  Then, something odd caught my ear.  He was talking about someone smoking.  This can't be good.  So, I listen.

Cruz proceeds to tell us about watching football on TV while they were supposed to be napping.  "This guy was smoking a taquito".  Whhhhhhat?  At this point, I have NO clue where this one is going.  I'm concerned, upset, curious...........

We begin to analyze the situation.  Many questioned followed.

Was it an ad?
Where was dad?
Did they use a lighter?
What did it look like?
Are you SURE it was a taquito?
It was on fire?
Were they cooking the taquito?
What color was it?

Now, I'm really starting to get worried.  We are getting no where.  I asked again, "What did it look like?".  Cruz says it was brown, they poked a hole in one end, shows the size with his hands, and then says they lit it.

Logic should have told me to assess the situation a little better before I really concentrated on the word taquito.  I mean, what else would a cigar look like to a 6 year old?!

Don't worry Ma!  It's only a taquito!