Wednesday, June 29, 2011


Just a lazy moment at the park.
  This picture was taken after Ethan got toothpaste all over his brand new shirt I designed last night but before I threaten to make Brennan sit with his nose in a corner at Megan's house while the rest of us went to see Ramona and Beezus at Rave for free.
It's lazy little moments that I want to remember.  Not the frustration, yelling, back talking, crying, and whining.  So, I blog about the good moments and leave the bad ones to fade away...only to be recalled when my children call me as adults and complain about how naughty/disrespectful/whiny their children (I hope I get a couple grandDAUGHTERS for them to complain about!)
But don't be fooled, there are tough moments when I want to pull my hair out and run for the hills (which, with all the flooding, might not be such a bad idea...).
But, for now, I will stick around.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Sleeping Beauty

Bart took the day off today.
We were supposed to go to Fremont Splash Station (man, we are so fancy, right?) for the day. rained last night.  And brought with it some glorious lower tempertures (can we say mid 70's, I'm guessing because we don't ever watch local t.v. to know for sure)...those lower temperatures were great for the fat old shirtless men (and the non-fat kind as well) who want to cut their yard every day.  Not so great for playing in unheated water with the Nebraska winds.
So, Bart's off day was wasted on sleeping instead.
And a trip to McDonald's...because while the boys were kind of sad about missing a fun day of water, they were devastated at the thought of not getting to get a crappy Pokemon toy and card  nutritious well balanced meal processed chicken bits and of course I was a kind and loving mother lazy and obliged, even let them get a free cookie in Hvyee (which, by the way, did you know they give you FULL SIZED cookies there?  Score!  Ghetto WalMart only gives tiny bite sized small you can't share with Mama.).
After all of this crazy excitement (Bart took them to get free balloons at Hyvee while I used their post office!  2/3 balloons now live on Hvyee's ceiling) of the morning, it was nap time.
Ethan wanted none of it and kicked and cried and threw a terrible two's fit.  I may or may not have laughed at him.
It got quiet around 2:15.  Bart says, "He's not asleep.  He's probably looking at books or being destructive quietly." 
I said, "He is EITHER plotting how to rip off the second bed railing OR he is asleep."
Well, when I went to check on him when nap time was over, I noticed a chubby little hand hanging out the gap in the door.
I grabbed the camera because what was laying on the other side of that door was too funny not to remember forever.
Mr. I'M.NOT.TIRED fell asleep as he was plotting his escape.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Brennan Turns Eight with a Mustache Bash, AKA the MAN Party

If I could work on one skill for fun right now, it would be "party styling".  I am not great at this, and there are so many great blogs doing awesome jobs of making all of the other mother's jealous of their parties.  We all know that if you throw the kids some cake and kool aid, they will be happy campers, but still...those pictures of perfectly fashioned parties make me swoon from time to, without further ado, here is my very weak (and cheapish) version of a "stylized birthday party" without all the talent, money, and resources to use.

Brennan had a MAN party...Mustaches are such a big deal right now that I played on that.  We had a "photo booth" (READ:  Fabric I bought to make ties out of for my etsy shop tacked to the wall, mustaches I cut with my Silhouette, and dowels I used for another project.  The glasses came from the Dollar Spot at Target).  Total cost for Photo Booth (Not including fabric b/c I already had it and you can use anything you have, even a sheet or quilt):  $1.50 (1 piece of paper, glasses)
Like E's shirt?  I made it using a freezer paper stencil and fabric paints I had left from last year's party.
Brennan did not think his friends would like the photo booth.  He thought it was going to be "too babyish"...he was VERY wrong.  They had a blast (Well, 3/5 did, the other 2 are very shy and didn't want to).  The boys kept coming back asking to take more pictures!  I emailed the cute ones to their parents.
Brennan dug out some fun accessories to use as well.  In the above picture he said he is Mario shooting a fireball.
Even Bart got in on the action ;)
Silveware holder I fashioned.  I used a plastic cup...because after all, the party was for 8 year old boys and I did NOT want them breaking my cool square vase.  Total cost (including ribbon):  fifty cents, lol.  I got a BIG sheet of vinyl for VERY cheap from a great scrapbooking friend (Hi Amber!)
Cups:  Cheap-o clear cups from Walmart with vinyl mustaches on them that I cut.
Goodie bags:  I am not a huge fan of a goodie bag full of just candy (though I won't refuse it, either, lol).  I started out with BIG dreams for these bags:  neck ties, hair gel, etc, etc.  It ended up as a tie tack (mustache shaped) made out of shrinky dink, trial sized bottle of Dove Men body wash, and sample spray of Hugo Boss (Ebay, $6 for 6).  Total cost:  $12 for 5, plus we have a cologne sample for Brennan.
Games: Well, I went into the morning having no clue about games, other then "pin the mustache on the man" which I drew ghetto style on our peeling siding (getting new siding Thursday!) with chalk.
As I was in the basement I saw the walker from last summer.  (They probably want it back but it was rented for as long as we need it.  I am scared to give it back, fearing if I do, he will need it again)
And that walker gave me a great idea:  We'd play MAN games.  First, we played baby basketball...because even as babies, the boys were men deep down ;).  Then we did pin the mustache on the man, with Brennan in charge of the spinning ;)  Like our blind fold?  See, KIDS play pin the tail on the donkey.
After that the kids played basketball, like COOL teenagers and college kids (they actually said COOL teenagers played Bball, lol).  While some were doing that, we played OLD MAN GOLF.  Funniest thing ever.  Here is what you do:  Get a walker, golf club, baseball.  Instruct boy to push walker and play "golf", trying to hit the ball into a target you drew on the ground.  Why a baseball and why not a hole?  1.  OLD MEN have vision lose so they need a BIG ball to see it.  2.  No hole...well, I didn't want to dig one in my yard and also, it would be a lot harder for an OLD man to hit a TINY hole, so they need a BIG target to hit instead.  Just ask the boys ;)  They absolutely LOVED it.

The food:  Simple, grilled cheese, cheetos, string cheese, and strawberry kool aid.  All picked by Brennan.  No veggies or fruit in sight.  The desserts were cupcakes, chocolate covered mini pretzel rods, and mustache cookies.  Cupcakes and pretzels had homemade gumpaste mustaches cut with the Silhouette and green sugar sprinkles I made using sugar and food coloring.  The mustache cookie cutter is from Urban outfitter.  Order in their store for free shipping.
Food total cost:  $18.  Plus $10 for the cookie cutter that I just had to was life or death after all. The cupcakes.  It's a shame that Brennan did not want a CAKE...I mean, that is what I do, kwim?  But the cupcakes were very easy so I didn't mind.
Real men eat their lunch while watching t.v.  In this case, Phineas and Ferb.
All the kids, happy, full of sugar, and ready to be sent home to their mothers.

The birthday boy and his mama.

I can't believe Brennan is EIGHT years old.  To some, eight is just another birthday, nothing too special.  But to an LDS family, EIGHT is the time of choices.  Of baptism.  Of responsibility. 
Brennan has decided to get baptized in Natchez, MS, where I was baptized as an eight year old, along with my brothers and sister (I think they were all baptized there?).  My youngest brother's wedding reception will be July 16 and he will be baptized the next day after church, surrounded by family who loves him dearly...and friends who my family has known since I was a child. 

It's so exciting for me to see Brennan growing up.  I have these moments of AHHHHHHHHHH why is he being so _____________ (naughty, smart mouthed, argumentative, etc)  But then there are moments of  Ahh, this is why we had enjoy them and love them and get to have the honor of being their parents, helping them learn and grow, mature and develop and grow into wonderful people.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Worlds Of Fun, Kansas City, MO

End of the day (but first picture).  We had a great time at Worlds of Fun in Kansas City, MO.  Big thank you to Megan for the discounted tickets!  Next time we are sneaking food in, though.  They didn't even give our stroller a second glance.  We did bring LOTS of water and drank all of it, too!

Planet Snoopy was just perfect for Jackson and Ethan.  Bart took Brennan off and they rode every big ride they could!  The little boys enjoyed the plane, carousal, ball house, and more.

Jackson, the junior dare devil...This ride was actually a tiny bit scary, for the 48 inches and under crowd!

The Mamba...WAY WICKED SCARY.  I rode it once after lunch, when we met up with Bart and Brennan, Megan and Tom and Carson.  Brennan kept yelling at me, "KEEP YOUR EYES OPEN MOM!"  I think Bart and Brennan rode it 3 or 4 times on this trip and want to go back again this year!

After lunch (and my turn on the Mamba while Tom and Megan watched the little boys for a few minutes), Bart took Jack on some "big kid" rides.  He really liked the water ride.

Jackson might have loved the other big boy ride, but the Spinning Dragons were a bit too much for his 46 inch self.  When I rode it with Brennan, I'd have to say I totally agree.

Ethan catching an afternoon nap.  He slept for about an hour!

We went back to Plant Snoppy while Bart went to ride the Patriot (Bren was too short)...needless to say, after having all that adventure in their lives, these rides were VERY baby-ish....

Brennan's least favorite ride, but I forced him to ride it b/c he forced me to ride the Mamba.

Leaving Planet Snoopy.  It might not be Disney World, but it was really fun, anyway, esp. for the younger two boys!
FINALLY HOME!  Bart managed to leave his wallet and cell phone, so we had to backtrack, adding an extra two hours to our trip!  At least we still got to eat Chick Fil A for supper, and really, let's be honest...that's what this entire days events were all about.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Out Of The Mouths Of Babes

Today while the vet was examining Lexie, Brennan was a constant stream of gibber gabber.  He is always a little chatter box, but today he was in rare form. 
And the best part is he is hilarious even though he totally doesn't mean to be.
The vet said something along the lines of "he's just the uncle he doesn't have to keep birthdates straight".  Brennan responds with, "Yeah, my uncles don't get their life.  I mean, the things they send in packages are just, weird.  They totally don't get life at all.  I mean, that (video) game Uncle Will sent.  What was he thinking?"
The vet, vet tech, and I all sort of look at each other and laugh.
Good thing Brennan is not like Ethan...otherwise we'd have had an almost eight year old rolling all over the floor screaming and crying because he did something to entertain us.

(There will be no picture of Lexie and the boys at the vet because GROSSNESS, poor rent a dog got a nasty infection, but she will be fine after 2 weeks of hot dog flavored antibiotics.)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Sneek Peek at Brennan's Mustache Bash

Favor bag:
Mustache tie tack (made by me with Shrinky Dink, for sale in my etsy shop if you want one)
Dove Men+Care Body and face wash (because the Axe stank and this one has the word MEN in it and this is a MAN party!) travel sized
self adhesive backed furry mustache (6 pack from Target Dollar Spot with their carnival items right now)
Hugo Boss cologne sample (6 on ebay for less then $10...thanks for the idea/link MK)
Brennan is having a small party this year, so I only have to make 5 favor bags.  I am really loving how they look, too!

Today I also made vinyl stickers of mustaches and attached to clear plastic glasses.  They are really fun and Brennan went wild over them when he saw.  He said, "Can we PLEASE use those at my party?"  As if I would just decorate throw away cups to have hanging around the house.

Just a few more days.  I am trying to be as low key as possible but also have fun with a fun and unique (at least to me, I think it is ;-) theme.  Brennan's Mustache Bash MAN party!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Brennan is turning EIGHT so we are going to celebrate (with an etsy sale!)

see his fabulous mustache tie tack?  awesome, right!
Brennan loves my bow ties more then anyone else I know.
In fact, when I prepared a polo shirt for him to wear today to church, he was very upset that he could not wear a bow tie or neck tie with it.  :)
He turns eight next Sunday.  In one week.
Turning eight for an LDS kid is kind of a big deal.  See, they can get baptized when they turn eight.  Brennan has been working hard to prepare himself and make sure he wants to get baptized and he feels (and we do and the bishop) he is ready to do this.
But, I digress....
for now, we are talking about me ;)
See, Brennan is having a MAN party for his birthday, inspired first by his love of dress up neck ties and bow ties and my love of mustaches right now (fake, NOT real).
Since he loves the ties so much, I am having a sale in my etsy shop from now until Saturday at midnight.
ALL neck ties are $8 each, plus shipping, the very few bow ties I have left are $4.25 plus shipping.
Considering other then that very rare % off sale I just had, I don't lower my already REALLY low prices, I'd say this is a great deal and I'd encourage you to hop over to my etsy shop right this second and order some.  If you want more then 1 of any size, send me a convo and I will set up a listing.
OH, and I almost forgot the best part....EVERY SINGLE NECK TIE you buy comes with a FREE mustache tie tack!  Yep.  Awesomeness!  Or you can buy them separately for $3 each.
AND, if you tweet (@jessremington and include a link to the shop, ) or post on Facebook about this sale (make sure you @ Confetti Creations AND click that little UNlock button so I can SEE the comment on Facebook on my Confetti Creations wall), I will give you a top secret code for 10% off your total purchase price as well as those sale prices!  I will ask that you please not share the code as it is SO easy to get it sent directly to you!

One TIme

You might not believe it, but this innocent, sweet, peas and chicken-n-dumpling eating boy is not always so cute and innocent.
As a matter of fact, lately he's been down right rude!
The biggest infraction he has is his response to anything he doesn't want to do is "NO" in a super bratty, brings my blood to a boil in a nano second tone of voice.  Seriously.   Then, when you ask him to please respond nicely, the tone gets ever worse, he gets a "like hell am I going to do what you want" manner.
Since I am trying to teach the boys GOOD manners and to be polite and kind, this little bit of impulsive extreme defiance...didn't sit too well with me.
So, I reached way back into my memories...and remembered an old stand by that always worked on my brothers, sister, and myself if we were back talking, saying naughty words, etc.  Now, I only remember this actually being used (on me) maybe one or two times total, but if that is all it was used, the threat of it was enough to nip future offenses in the bud if this punishment was mentioned.
When I happened to have a bottle of the stuff in the kitchen.  I pulled it out, showed it to Jack, had him smell it.  I told him it did not taste nice and that the next time he said "NO" in that tone of voice he'd just used, he'd get to see what hot sauce tasted like.
Well, he sort of laughed but didn't say "NO" again.  The next day he said it (this had become a frequent habit of his) and I gave him one last warning.  "Jackson, if you can't talk nicely, I will let you taste something that is as yucky as your words."
Well, the next time comes.  He says his "NO" and throws a fit over whatever it was he thought was worth throwing a fit over.  I calmly approach him, let him know he had lots of chances to change his ways.
I open the bottle of hot sauce, put my finger on top of the bottle and turn it over.  He is watching me..."is she really going to do this?  I bet not" is what he is thinking.
I turn to him, rubbing off almost all the hot sauce I had just put on my finger (it was a teeny tiny drip so this made it miniscule).  I ask him to open his mouth or his punishment will be much worse.  Surprisingly, he opens.
He tastes.
He cries.
He spits.
He now no longer says "NO" in a sassy tone of voice.
AND...if he does start to slip back into that form, all I have to do is hold up a bottle of hot sauce (thank you Popeye's wicked chicken for providing us with enough to store all over the house, car, my wallet, etc, etc) and BAM, he and all other children in the room are suddenly good as gold.

I wonder if this works on 8 year olds who think they need to have the last word???

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day

I am a big believer in a lot of holidays being "Hallmark" holidays...invented by the card companies to make a buck and make you feel like crap for not going all out (think did you buy a card, heart of flowers, and stuffed animal for Valentine's Day?)  I kind of believe this about Mother's Day and Father's Day as well....I think it started out as a day with good intentions, then the stores say, "Ah HA!  We can make money off of people's guilt at not thanking their parents enough through out the years!"
So, we are all left feeling like schmucks that we didn't do enough for our fathers, who are obviously wonderful and amazing.  We wonder, what in the world can we even get our father (or mother, feel free to see this as my view of both holidays) to express our deep and heartfelt love and appreciation for them?  I mean, those tulips I ordered my mom are for sure dead by now, cards get thrown away, and chocolates, well, while that is good in theory, my dad is a diabetic.  Tools?  He's got 'em?  A book?  He's got a room of them.  A picture?  (Maybe...I am still thinking this through)

Bart was easy.  He wanted a video game.  I told him too bad, he had a $25 limit.  He bartered some other stuff and got the difference.  Done deal.  I didn't even have the boys make him cards.  Isn't that their Sunday School teacher's jobs?  That is sure my nursery lesson for tomorrow!  LOL
I have been thinking about what to do for my dad.  He and my mom recently visited and this the ONLY picture I got of the visit!  They did SO much for our family, and we are so grateful for them and their skills and knowledge.  My dad took the boys to a ball game which they all (even Bart) really loved and he created a great memory.  My mom took me shopping (we found her some fabulous wedding event dresses and one for me, too!).  My parents are letting us "borrow" their dog for a month so we can see if a dog is a good fit for our family (note, it is not really for the parents, and our votes equal 99.9% of the total voting powers :) )
So, what is a girl to do?  Steal her future sister in law's idea of course!  Take her daddy on a date to show him how much she cares!  Oh, yeah, I think I will totally rock this Hallmark Holiday!!!  (We will schedule this soon)

So, here I will publicly thank both Bart and my dad for being such great dads.  One day I think Bart should let me write him out a guide on how to do it even better (HAHAHAHA) and I will let my dad edit that book and add his own forward as well...but overall, Bart is a great dad to the boys and a great support to me.

As for my word for you folks (because we all know what  a sentimental sap I am)  awesomesauce.
(Did you think I was serious about being sentimental?  I just told you I think this nice holiday to honor our parents is the brainchild of "big business".  Oh, and in 1998, when I was watching Titanic for the first (and only all the way through) time, I totally laughed during the Rose/Jack/freezing water/dying people "NEVER LET GO" in the movie theater)  Anyway, thank you.  For being a good role model to me (and my husband).  For working so hard and letting the boys be your shadow whenever we visit so they can learn to work hard.  And for being a supportive and loving father.

And to Bart, thank you for the video game parties, bug collecting, and smoking lessons.  I know the boys will remember those moments (and if not, they can read my blog and learn about them...or see them in scrapbooks....just doing my parts to seal the deal on how awesome we are as parents...that is why I don't scrapbook the hot sauce moments, the parent fails or the melt downs ;) ) and feel the same pressure as I do to find an awesome present...and fail as I do each year.