Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Sleeping with the Fishes

I thought it was such a safe choice. What did I know?

As we strolled through the Halloween carnival last October, my animal-loving 6-year old spotted the neatly-lined rows of fishbowls containing goldfish and he lost his heart forever. He paid the man at the booth a crisp one dollar bill and proceeded to chunk ping pong balls at the orchard of shiny bowls only to come up empty handed with each toss. So, being the oh-so-gullable Mom that I am, I found myself perusing the aisles of PetsMart the next day helping Jacob find the perfect aquatic pet.

Little did I know at the time how involved and complicated fish ownership can be. Do we want a goldfish or a betta? Then there are the tanks and filters and the food and the chemicals and the rocks and the plants not to mention the education on water temperature, tank size, feeding schedules, pH balances and so on. What I had assumed would be a quick trip to the pet store quickly turned into a crash course/ Masters degree in Aquatic Chemical Engineering. What had I gotten myself into?

Having selected the red and blue betta fish and a tank where we could keep them separated and unable to eat each other (huh?!), we headed home with the new additions to our family-- Spike and Henry. Spike lived up to his name with his feisty swim patterns and bold electric blue color. Henry, on the other hand, was a much more docile fish with a deep red color and a reserved demeanor. Jacob instantly fell in love with his new "fishies" and, surprisingly, kept up with his every other day feeling schedule and took great delight in his new responsibility.

Then things started going downhill for poor little Henry. Somehow, Spike made it through a small gap where the rocks and the tank divider met and he tried his best to take out Henry. He successfully chomped part of Henry's left fin leaving him to list on one side most of the time. Valiantly, Henry still ate and swam around but it was clear his war wounds left a deep psychological scar. (You can't be too dramatic when it comes to the mental wounds caused by your brother trying to eat you.)

That's when we began Death Watch 2015. Poor Henry. That was one month ago. This morning, Jacob awakes me to tell me that Henry is face down in the rocks and looks like he's sleeping. (Oh no. Here we go. The DEATH conversation is here.) I go upstairs to find Henry indeed nose-down in the rock but breathing. "Look, Mommy, his little cheeks are puffing in and out. He's breathing." GREAT. Just great. What am I supposed to do now? I can't go all Finding Nemo on the thing if he's alive. Flushing him into the unknown while he's alive would haunt me forever and my child would think me a monster. So, what's a girl to do? The Manual on Dead Fish Protocol clearly states:

1) Fish is toast if he's floating at the top of the water.
2) Scoop and flush.
3) Alternate: place his tiny little dead fishy body into a matchbox and bury him with a little ceremony that honors his contributions to the family and how he was such a special little fishy, blah blah blah.(Personally, I think option 2 is much better)

But, NOWHERE does the manual say anything about a fish trying to off himself by sticking his little fish face down in some rocks. WHY ME? Why can't I just flush the sucker, sing the theme song from Free Willy 2 and be done? 

Oh well, the Death Watch continues......

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

When October Goes

Yes this video is from the 80's and does not catapult me to the top of the chart of People That Post Cool and Trendy Videos-- but I could care less. I love every lyric of this song. Every single delicious word.

I miss you, October.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

All I Dream Is You

El Mulrooney is a very talented long distance pal in Canada. 
This is his original song and it's beuatiful.

"All I Dream is You"

Take me back to where we started,
Take me back to where we end;
I was alone and empty hearted,
All I needed was a friend.
There was you.... there was always you,
To guide me through my darkest day;
Such a fool.... I was such a fool,
To watch you walk away.

With words left unspoken,Promises broken;
I had but one thing to lose,
Now all I dream is you.

Sometimes I sit and wonder,
Where would we be today,
If our hearts weren't torn asunder,
If we hadn't gone our separate ways.
All this time.... all this precious time,
Moments sinking in the sand;
I was blind.... why was I so blind,
To let love slip right through my hands?

If I could go back to that moment,
Then I would hold you close to my heart;
And I would let fall those paper walls around us,
And we would never be apart.

These memories hold me like a prison,
But there ain't no bars around my cage;
Though our story may be written,
I can't turn the final page.
In this heart.... in this foolish heart,
There's a place you can run to;
Worlds apart.... though we're worlds apart,
I'll always keep a place for you.

Words left unspoken,Promises broken;
There's nothing left I can do,
So all I dream is you.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

A Need for Nature...and a Taco

The branches of the oak tree drooped precariously
Above my cracked windshield
Each one of its burnt umber leaves
Dangling as they danced in the breeze

This spot suited my need for nature
Ironic as the cars and buses on the highway
Buzzed by just feet from the nose of my car
The perfect place for my hurried fiesta

Crunchy taco in hand, I delighted in this little haven
A solitary spot in an otherwise urban landscape
A lone tree in an empty parking lot
Providing a pastoral backdrop to my lunch on the go

The dark clouds on the horizon brought with them
A strong breeze and, dare I say, a nip in the air
A far cry from an unseasonably warm yesterday
A signal that my autumn had finally come?

Windows rolled down, I follow a leaf now detached
As it swirls in the air, finding its resting place
Atop a slightly ajar manhole cover nearby
Others dangling above watching, anticipating their fate

Crunch, crunch goes the salty taco shell
The breeze whips through my hair, I exhale
An unexpected respite in an overly scheduled day
A caravan of school buses hustle by

All too soon my time here is finished
The car rider line beckons, I am soon on my way
I will recall with fondness my time here
A cool autumn breeze, the dance of brown leaves

And one crunchy taco
With just a dab of sour cream
Licking the salt from my lips
As the world rushes by

--kt  10/29/14

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Autumn Leaves

Never has a song nailed it like this one. Each image. Each lyric. 

Monday, October 06, 2014

New Camera... New Pictures

I love the camera on my new phone. My boys? Not so much since I turned an outing Saturday into an impromptu photo session. :)

Jacob absolutely adores his big brother

One of my favorite signs of Fall... MUMS.

My little water bug enjoying the waterfall at Stars Mill

Daniel being very patient with Mom snapping his picture :)

My Toothless Wonder

"Look what I drew in church, Mommy! I drew things that God made
like the trees in the Fall, our house, the sun and the stars."

Thursday, October 02, 2014


After months of using a little bitty phone that had a fondness for swimming, I have finally gotten a new phone. It actually works and it actually takes pictures and, although it feels a bit like I'm holding a laptop up to my ear after using that tic tac of a phone, I love it.

Needless to say, I have a lot of picture taking to catch up on. :)

Sunday, September 28, 2014

James David Carter-- More Than a Memory/ Making Memories of Us

JDC performed his Voice performance "Nobody Knows" at church tonight. There were less than 100 people there so it really felt like one of those intimate CMT performances. He is simply amazing. I've always loved his worship style but now his voice transcends that and is one of my all-time favorites.

Actually sat a few rows behind him at the Garth Brooks concert Friday night and could see him singing along...I'm sure he got plenty of performance ideas because it was a phenomenal show.

Here are a couple that both happen to deal with memories. Hope you enjoy as much as I did discovering these...

More Than a Memory (Garth Brooks)

Making Memories of Us (Keith Urban)

Friday, September 26, 2014

Big Al's Job Is Safe...

I have marked one job off my list of potential careers...mascot. As Pounce the Panther in yesterday's homecoming parade, I learned first-hand what it's like to have throngs of kiddos dancing from each leg, the sun beating down on your furry 100 pound head and viewing life through the mesh of an open animal mouth. :-)

But, dont tell anyone but I actually had fun dancing and high-fiving and posing for pictures. And Jacob loved walking through downtown holding my hand as the official mascot of the mascot.

But, as fun as it was to be Pounce for a day, I can assure Big Al that I won't be clamoring for his job anytime soon!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

I Bless the Rains

As I was riding through the back roads that lead to my house this morning, a song came on the radio and I realized that it is quite possibly my favorite song. I have approximately a thousand that have earned that distinction throughout my life but few songs have the effect on me that "Africa" by Toto does.

As I rounded a curve it came on the radio and a smile instantly crawled across my face. The opening chords so familiar and comforting, I sang along as the cool, refreshingly fall-like breeze whipped through my hair. So many of the lyrics are favorites...
"her moonlit wings reflect the stars that guide me towards salvation..." 
Maybe it's the poetry of the words and the way they dance on the beat of the song. I have always felt something when listening to "Africa" though I've never been quite sure I've known exactly what that something is. Other lyrics simply strike a chord with me:
"I seek to cure what's deep inside, frightened of this thing that I've become..."
And then, of course, there is the comedic relief I feel each time I listen to the main chorus:
"It's gonna take a lot to drag me away from you. There's nothing that a hundred men or more could ever do..." 
For some reason, I had this vision of a slave ship steaming toward Africa and all these strong men rowing as the lyrics sang "there's nothing that a hundred men ON BOARD could ever do..." Why a slave ship? Heck if I know. It just seemed to fit the cadence of the song and, well, I still giggle each time I think about how I have belted out the wrong lyrics since I was in elementary school.

Of course, there are many other contenders for this top title. "Fields of Gold" by Eva Cassidy moves me with its subtle, almost angel-like melody. Sugarland's "Fall Into Me" is one of those songs that is both soothing and soaring and there are others by rock bands and country singers and even a few rap artists that I crank up whenever they're on evoking a range of emotions. But few have matched the timeless "feel good feeling" that I have by listening to "Africa."

And here is one of my favorite covers:

"There's nothing that a hundred men OR MORE could ever do."

Not quite as funny but still an amazing lyric all the same.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

James David Carter-- Nobody Knows

So excited that the worship leader at our church got a four-chair turn on The Voice last night! He is an amazing performer and killed this song (which is a favorite of mine anyway). He chose Blake as his coach...I can't wait to see him progress through the season.

Monday, September 08, 2014

We Interrupt This Blog...

I know this breaking news will surely be on TMZ within the hour but I'm taking a break on Ye Ol' Blog for a bit. I know that seems somewhat funny considering I'm not churning out life-changing editorial pieces on here daily or anything. But, to quote one of my favorite bands, "everybody needs a little time away...."

Sunday, September 07, 2014

A Visit With the Devil

Written Sat. Sep. 6

The Devil and I had a little chat today. The fiery furnace blazed all around us and the waves of heat singed my brows as rivers of sweat cascaded down my neck. I squinted my eyes before snapping to as the strains of the fight song began. Where am I? My thoughts swirled like the crimson and white shakers all around me. I realized I was not in Hell but attending a college football game in the deep south at 11am on a 97-degree day. Guess it's hard to tell the difference.

The first home game of the year was a scorcher for sure both in temperature as well as yards of offense for the Crimson Tide. With 621 yards, Bama nearly broke its all-time record set in 1973. But Mother Nature took pity on us and decided to open up the skies causing the game to be called due to weather with just over 7 minutes remaining.

Now it's back to Lake Lurleen, an ice cold shower, more football and a golden retriever to snuggle with. Roll Tide.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

A Little Night Music

Had an impromptu girls-only date with my pal Mel tonight at the Jennifer Nettles concert. It was such a fantastic concert and, because I didn't know much of her new stuff, I now have at least five new favorite songs. (I'll have to find them online and post them here--they're amazing.) Mel and I had a great time hanging out and spending time just the two of us... it was a great evening!

Swimming Lessons

I learned a hard lesson today. You should not go swimming with your phone tucked inside the front of your bathing suit. Electronics are not very fond of swimming and don't seem to take to the water well.

I am so angry at myself for tucking my phone in there while loading up towels into the car before heading to the pool. Forgetting it was in there, I dove into the water and swam a good 5 minutes before realizing what I had done.

I'll be without phone for at least three days while it takes a nap in a bowl of rice. I don't hold out high hopes of its recovery.

No phone for three days?  Insert sound of hyperventilation here.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

REO and Chicago

Had a great time being silly with my pal Meldrop singing 80's songs tonight at the REO Speedwagon & Chicago concert. REO reminded me a lot of Foreigner in their energy and how their sound matched what I remember from when I listened to them years ago. Take It on the Run and Keep On Loving You were my favorites by them tonight and Chicago's horns blew me away. The trumpet and trombone combo was pretty amazing-- like two beautiful voices harmonizing together. They did a lot of new stuff but still squeezed in their classics including ballads I belted into my hairbrush as a teen.

I did video my favorite of the evening..."Hard to Say I'm Sorry" and loved that they did an extended-extended version with those horns. I will try to post that tomorrow but right now it's 12:30am and I'm ready to hit the sack.


Thursday, August 21, 2014

A (Much-Anticipated) Riveting Update on My Day

So much random stuff to blog about but none of it particularly interesting.

Had such a good time with my sis last night. We needed that time to just be sisters and talk. So wish she lived closer.

PTO craziness continues. We hosted the First Lady of Georgia today as she read to the pre-K and Kindergarten classes at our school. Today I had a meeting with the school council and tomorrow is the Back to School Dance for 3rd - 5th graders (and it's from 3 - 5pm. Coincidence? :)

It's been a blessing to share kid-duty with my friend Cindy since school started back. We have car tags to pick up each other's kids so it's comforting to know we've got each other's backs... especially since our schedules intertwine so much. Her son Caleb actually asked if I was like a second grandma to him. GRANDMA??? Aunt would be a little better, dontcha think?!

At some point before the boys graduate from high school, I will hold my yard sale. Things keep coming up causing a delay but I have a basement full of things that need to go bye-bye so hopefully the first weekend in September will work? Maybe.

I was in and out of the car all day. Music keeps me going. With that in mind....

Today's playlist:  Possum Kingdom --The Toadies
Nothing Else Matters-- Metallica
Love Runs Out--One Republic
The Drumming Song--Florence & the Machine
Separate Ways--Journey
OK, off to make signage for the dance tomorrow. Goodnight all, K

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Much-Needed Evening

Sitting at the best booth in Maggianos in Buckhead with my sister (in town for a conference) enjoying what feels like a private concert by the pianist/trumpet player.
Even though I have to be at a school council meeting at 7:45am, I'm spending the night with her at her hotel so we can spend as much time together as possible.
A pomegranate martini in my hand, I listen to the lyrics of "Never My Love" and let the night slowly soak in...

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Bedtime with my Fellas

Treating the boys (and truthfully myself!) to a slumber party in my bed watching a movie. Love snuggling with these boys...

Monday, August 18, 2014

The Straight of What???

I'm tired. Bone tired. Today has been one of the oddest, most roller coaster-ish days I've had in a very long time. It's 10:20 and I've just gotten my boys in bed because we had late homework to do. Why late homework? Because we had a Spirit Night fundraiser for the PTO tonight and I was at The Frigid Frog for nearly 6 hours. And, because Keith is traveling the next few nights I had the boys with me the whole time.

And, let me tell you, my first "event day" as PTO President was nothing short of exhausting. Serious conversations, walking the halls of the school delivering labels to every single classroom for the kids to wear home as a reminder about tonight and then 4 out of the 6 hours spent in the broiling sun meeting and greeting with the families that came. (I must admit that even though it felt like I was perched on the 3rd realm of the sun's surface, meeting all the new folks was my favorite part.)

When 8 pm rolled around, the sky darkened, lightning bolts raced across the sky and the bottom fell out. Since this was an outdoor event, I raced around the grassy area gathering all the hula hoops, bubble containers and trash I knew had been left by some of the kids that attended. Always fearful of being struck cold-hard dead by lightning, I exceeded an all-time land speed record for myself in the way I hustled to the car. I jumped in the front seat drenched like a wet dog and proceeded to the house. That's when it began......





The demands on the 5 minutes of pre-bedtime time we had left were swirling about and all I wanted to do was fall into my bed and crash. As I was doing sight word flashcards with my first grader, my seventh grader was calling out geographical locations at the top of his lungs so I could help him identify them on a map. Israel! The Gaza Strip! Egypt! The Suez Canal! My efforts to encourage him to look them up proved futile and then he threw me a curveball... the Strait of Hormuz???

Now you take me to Trivia Night and the subject is Geography...I'm your girl. Trivial Pursuit? I'll pick geography every time. But the Strait of Hormuz? I'm clearly slipping in The Advanced Stages of My Fading Youth. We found it right there attached to the Persian Gulf and then I promptly sent the children folk to bed so Momma could breathe, pack a lunch or two, and get ready for another busy day tomorrow including our Middle School Open House.

I recently turned down a fantastic job offer so that I could stay home and have days exactly like this. It's my first week and I'm questioning my sanity already.

And, if you knew where the Strait of Hormuz was without looking, I don't wanna know. :)

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Kudos for the D-Man

So proud of Daniel. His first full week of school and he comes home with this:

Maybe, just maybe, something I've said along the way has soaked in. Maybe. :)

Friday, August 08, 2014

Ask and Ye Shall Receive

Yes, I did post last night the directive to Let It Rain. Mother Nature must have been paying special attention to me because the storm I'm in right now is pretty rough to say the least.

Driving up into Atlanta on a Friday afternoon is challenging on the most perfect weather days. But torrential rain, lightning and flash flooding has bumped up the difficulty level 300 notches or so.

I left an hour and a half ago and an just now at my destination. Fire trucks, hydroplaning and tidal wave splashes from oncoming traffic have made for a less-than-relaxing trek.

I guess next time I'll be a little more modest in my challenges to Mother Nature. If you need me I'm in the green CX-9 curled up in the fetal position.

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Let It Rain


Driving on country roads.

Rain beating on the windshield.

Lightning streaking across the sky.

Music playing.

Let it rain.

This Has to Be My Biological Offspring

I have finally been granted a glimpse of my would-be biological daughter.

Or it's me as a child. The thighs certainly match. Lol.

CLICK HERE and enjoy.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Back to School -- 2014

Lately I've been living like a pioneer woman with no internet or email at the house. Between being sick as a dog last week and trying to get the boys ready for school, I haven't been able to camp out in a parking lot and write on my blog. Until now. So here goes....

I have never seen a child as excited about going to school as Jacob was today. He bounded out of bed and by the time I had roused Daniel, J was running down the stairs fully dressed. Daniel on the other hand was not quite as, um, jubilant. When asked what my oldest was looking forward to the most about this school year...he answered "summer."

Lovely. :)

I took on the role as president of the PTO at Jacob's school so I think it's helped that he's been up at the school getting to run around and learn the lay of the land (or at least the playground!)

Here are a few obligatory pics from this morning :)

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Memories of Tampa --July 2014

http://flipagram.com/f/G2gye8e4Jy Tampa July 2014 #flipagram made with @flipagram ♫ Music: Guitar Solos - House At Pooh Corner

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Saying Goodbye to Tampa

After a fun week playing with cousins, it was time to say goodbye. :(

Friday, July 25, 2014

Gonna Miss This Girly

Leaving Florida tomorrow and am sure gonna miss this little girl. It's been nice to do sorta girly things and play with that beautiful red hair :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

My "Mini Me" Strikes Again

We discovered this video on my sister's phone and were amazed at my niece Alden's lip sync to the song "Problem" by Ariana Grande (with pal Zachary in tow). I clearly taught her everything she knows (LOL).

You won't believe the rap portion starting around 1:44. LOVE this kid.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Rainy Night at Stone Mountain

Decided to join our friends the Waldrops for a rain-soaked night at the Stone Mountain laser light show.  The cool temps and the light rain actually feel pretty good...

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

The Boys of Summer are Back

After an arduous local move,  the boys and I are trying to resume some semblance of summer normality. This includes a daily trip to the pool and today's beautiful weather made for one happy poolside mama.

After playing a game of tennis ball keep away with the boys in the water,  I found solace laying in the sun with a cool breeze making me (dare I say it in mid - July) almost chilly! Crazy talk, I know.

Although I will relish the quiet time when school starts back,  I love the cadence of summertime.  Can't believe it's flying by so quickly.

Now that we see the countdown to school on the horizon,  we're trying to make the most of each day. And even in the face of moving boxes and furniture assembly, unpacking and reorganizing,  I still have to soak in each moment... each fleeting, memory-making moment with my Boys of Summer.