Sunday, June 29, 2008

Now What?

This is the life. Sitting outside in the warm sun watching my daughter play countless numbers of softball games all weekend. Nothing else mattered. They played their hearts out, but ultimately came in at second place. It was a bit of a bitter loss as the team that beat us in today's Championship Game was the only other team to beat us over the course of the whole weekend. It may have been the most competitive game we have ever played. I kept jumping out of my seat, screaming at the top of my lungs along with almost every other parent there.

Now that this tournament is over, I'm not sure exactly how to return to normal life.

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Saturday, June 28, 2008

All Star Weekend

We're more than half way through Ashley's All Star Softball team's weekend tournament. She played two games last night, two more today and the team is currently in first place. She and her team play again tomorrow afternoon. If they win their first game tomorrow, they'll play one final game for the championship!
Ashley and her teammates warm up between games today.

Ashley and one of her best friends.

The heat and sun must have been the cause for this side track during warm ups. Whatever works to keep you motivated.

Ashley's friend almost got rolled over!

Ryan had to be part of the action, too. He was the only boy up there with them.

Kid almost ran me over here.

Rolling, rolling, rolling....

"Umph," says Ashley as she tries to get up while her head is still rolling.

Back to business. Ashley is definately one of the best players on both of her teams this year. (And that's not just a proud mom talking.) She must have gotten it from Bret, because I always dreaded when it was time to play softball during gym class in school.

"Just try to get past me!"

Dunlap All Stars - 2008

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Who's Chair?!

While out shopping with Bret and the kids last night, we came across this chair and little matching table that I just *had* to have. I love to sit out on the deck on a nice sunny day and read or just relax. I didn't need anything expensive or fancy - just comfortable and easy enough to put away if it rains.

However, it may be a little harder than I thought to actually get my chair out the door. Someone had other ideas.

Yes, those darn wires are still hanging there, my picture is crooked and the plant needs watering. Kind of fits in with the patio chair in the living room theme we've got going on here, doesn't it? Ha.
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Monday, June 23, 2008

Pool Day

While Ashley has been to the pool numerous times with her friends, this was the first trip to the pool this summer for Ryan and myself. After swim lessons, we drove over and pulled my niece Brooke out of day care and took her with us to the pool with my friend Teri and her daughter, Skyler. It didn't get very hot outside today, so Teri and I never quite made it into the pool, but the kids didn't seem to mind and had a great time.

Ashley figured out that the secret to staying warm is to stay covered in the water.

Ryan has no fear this summer. His swim lessons are paying off and he's got a lot of confidence in the water now.

Ryan and his cousin, Brooke.

Ryan on one of his many trips up to the water slide.

Now we're off to Ryan's baseball game...

Sunday, June 22, 2008

80's Child All The Way

Ever since joining the iPod era last year I've been uploading my collection of a million plus Cd's a little bit at a time. It would be overwhelming to do it all at once as I've never gotten rid of a single CD. In fact, I still have all of my cassette tapes in a box downstairs somewhere but we won't get into that.

So every now and then I pull out the big Rubbermaid container that holds my CD collection out from under our bed. It takes up probably a third of the floor space under our king sized bed. I needed something to motivate me while I attempted to clean bathrooms with only one functional hand. (Pain is better, but we still have a long way to go there, by the way.)

So I'm skimming the titles of Cd's - cringing as I skim past artists such as Joey Lawrence, Dino (what teenage girl wasn't in love with him?), Belinda Carlisle and The Heights Soundtrack - when I come across my old Debbie Gibson and Tiffany Cd's (which I also own on cassette somewhere as well).

When I think of my childhood, particularly back when I was ten or eleven, the first thing that comes to mind are these last two Cd's. They were my prized possessions. I remember lining up heavy duty plastic milk crates and covering them with an old Ramada Inn carpet to create my own personal stage downstairs. Hairbrush Microphone? Check. Broomstick Stand? Check. I was ready to be a pop star! I spent hours down there - sometimes with friends, sometimes by myself. I'd have my cassette tapes lined up, all fast forwarded to the song I wanted so my "concert" would run smoothly.

Yes, I was a big dork! But that was me and I wouldn't trade those memories for anything. To this day, music is still a huge part of my life. It motivates me and can pull me out of a bad mood every singe time.

I needed the motivation yesterday. All week my wrist was in bad shape. The pain pills had me back in bed every afternoon last week. My daughter and husband both have had to help me wash my good arm in the shower. I've continued to help Bret's Grandma get up out of bed and dressed every morning while only using one hand and now I have a very much neglected house that needs cleaning and we are quickly running out of clean clothes. I guess you could say I really needed the motivation.

So I grabbed my Debbie Gibson and Tiffany Cd's and uploaded them into iTunes and onto my iPod. Twenty years later, I still know every lyric to every song on those Cd's. (My mother probably does, too with how often I played them twenty years ago.) The bathrooms got cleaned and the laundry got a good start.

All that remains to be cleaned is the kitchen and then there's tons more laundry. Hm, what should I upload to my iPod today? All I need now are my old white roller skates with the pink wheels and a roller rink!

Friday, June 20, 2008


Ryan had a baseball game tonight and had a really good hit during his first at bat.

While Ryan and I were at his game tonight, Ashley and Bret were at her first All Star game. (Yes, for some crazy reason we let her try out for TWO teams. It's insane.) This is a video I took with my digital camera at last night's practice game. It should have been a home run, but the umpire called her out since we were demolishing the other team. They won 28-4. They weren't so lucky tonight, and still have two games tomorrow.

Guess Who?

Ryan made it on the front page of the local section of the Peoria Journal Star this morning! My interview, unfortunately made it on the 5:00 news and then was posted online today. Could they have zoomed in on my one handed hair and make up day head any more than they did? Yikes! We won't even go there in regards to someone being put on camera and having to come up with something intelligible to say at the last minute.

So. Anyway. Ryan graduated from his week long camp today and we've already been outside running behind his bike twice today. He's making the adjustment from the camp's bike to his own right now, so he's still a bit wobbly. He's riding in straight lines without help. We still need to practice turning as well as taking off and stopping on his own. Next week I'll take the kids out to Bicycle Safety Town and a big empty parking lot somewhere to get him some more practice.

OK, I can only type with one hand for so long. Going to go take a break.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Proud Mama Gets 15 Minutes Of Fame

Ryan has one more day of his Lose The Training Wheels bike riding class left tomorrow and he's doing great! Yesterday he graduated to a regular two wheel bike and by the end of today's class, his spotters were barely able to keep up with him.

I'm not sure I could have run along behind him for an hour straight each day - definitely not with this whole wrist injury thing.

Tuesday night we went out and got him a new bike and brought it with to his bike riding class yesterday. He should be able to get on it tomorrow during his last class.

The news media showed up during his session today and talked me into doing an interview on camera. Ryan got plenty of coverage out there while he was riding his bike so we'll see what shows up on the nightly news tonight. There's a chance it could be on their website, too and if I find it, I'll share it so we can all laugh at me together. Ha.

My wrist is still pretty painful and the stupid pain killers make me sleepy and out of it, so I'm limited to when I can take them. I have no idea how this happened. Two weeks ago I started noticing numbness and pain in my right hand. This week it tripled in intensity. Painting Ryan's room probably made it worse, but I was stubborn and determined to get it done before breaking down and going to the doctor. Unfortunately, I can't move my wrist or hand at all now (and typing with one hand is testing my patience) so Ashley's room is going to have to wait. I have a nerve conduction study scheduled for July 10th, but am hoping it will get better on it's own by then if I don't use it. (Ashley had to help me wash my arm in the shower last night and with putting my pants on this morning.)

There must really be a curse out there that gets us every time we schedule a vacation. We're one month out from our St. Pete's Beach vacation. Last year at 6 weeks out from our Disney vacation, I tore 3 tendons in my ankle. Here me now - it didn't stop me from going and having a great time last year and it won't stop me this year, either!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


So I somehow managed to get a really severe case of carpal tunnel syndrome with pinched nerves. It's been coming on for two weeks now and I put off going to the doctor until I got Ryan's room done and did more harm than good. I can no longer move my right hand AT ALL. Now I'll be looking forward to a nerve conduction test to see if I need surgery. Wonderful.

Monday, June 16, 2008


After 4 days of squeezing in time to work on Ryan's room, it's finished. Here's a before picture from earlier in the year...

Here's a now picture, minus his new bed. I ran into a problem with his new bedding last night. I tried to wash the comfortor and the darn thing ripped so now I need to return it and determine if I want to replace it with something else or chance it happening again. That's just fitting seeing as I decorated the room around his bedding. Regardless, I'm happy with the way it turned out and he loves it.

Father's Day was spent at Bret's brother's house with good food and family.

Ryan is doing very well in baseball. It's his favorite sport and he's working hard at it.

Speaking of working hard - Ryan started his Lose The Training Wheels class today. It's an adaptive bike riding class where the bike teaches the child how to ride. He rode that thing for the whole hour and fifteen minutes! He goes everyday this week and they guarantee that he'll be riding on two wheels by Thursday or Friday.

And the best part of the whole class? I don't have to run along side him!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Almost Done

After four hours of painting, vacuuming and carpet cleaning, all I have left to do in Ryan's room is to paint his toy box and shelves. Then I can bring everything back in and set up his new bed. He is super excited. I did have to tell him that the color of his walls are "baseball diamond sand" colored after he asked why I hadn't painted them dark red and navy. That seemed to appease him for now.

That blue paint is worse than I thought.

"Baseball diamond sand" colored walls. So much better. All we need are some red and navy accents. Oh, and some furniture might go a long way, too.

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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Room Renovation Update

The following is a free tip on how to know when you can no longer put off washing that kitchen floor. Sadly, I was more upset at losing my large diet coke from McD's than I was about the mess.

Tomorrow is the big day! Ryan's room is empty, the trim is all taped and the paint is purchased.

But first we have to make time for a little mattress surfing. What? Don't tell me you would have passed on an opportunity like this!

Two hours later and he's still at it!

Honestly? I knew these colors were a mistake before we were even out of the store 5 years ago. Ryan had insisted on blue and green - the super dark kind. This was our way of compromising and keeping his room from looking like the bat cave and scaring the hell out of him at 3am!

His new bedding is again sport's themed in a navy/dark red/tan color scheme. Tomorrow the walls will become tan. Next the shelves and his toy box (not pictured) will be painted navy and dark red.

For the time being, Ryan's room has currently moved into our room and he's taken over my half of the bed. He's tossed my pillows out into the hallway and replaced them with his own! Guess I'm sleeping elsewhere for the next couple of nights.
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Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Legos - 3, Lynda - 1

May I present to you, the unfinished Lego Room. It's still a work in progress - needs more shelves added and the bed switched out, but Ryan loves it.

Unfortunately, this isn't even all of his legos. There are more that we had to put back into the boxes due to lack of room in his bedroom. Hence, the need for more shelving.

This bed will be swapped out with Ryan's twin bed. We're going to set it up as a daybed so that Ryan will have more space to play.

This was just the first phase. Next I have to deal with their messy bedrooms.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Scorecard: Legos - 3, Me - 0

I've got a new project here at home. After breaking it to my mom that she is losing her "bedroom" downstairs to her Grandson's Legos, I've decided to redo both kids' bedrooms.

Ryan has had this bad habit of climbing into bed with us at night and you would think the three of us would fit in a king size bed, but no, we don't thanks to a certain 7 year old that seems to think he requires 2/3 of said king size bed.

You'd also think that we'd come to our senses and put him back in his own bed, but no, we don't thanks to a total lack of any functional brain cells at 3am. Instead I end up in his little twin size bed because it's easier than trying to get my husband to carry the kid back to his bed.

So my solution? Give me a bigger bed to escape to the kid the bigger bed (Ashley already has a bigger bed) from the bedroom downstairs and move the nightmare Lego mess to it's own room downstairs. My mom can take one of the kids' beds when she visits and we'll just move whatever kid is left me downstairs to the twin bed.

I did manage to find new bedding for both kids today. As soon as I get cracking I'll take before and after pictures. It's going to take awhile since painting is going to be called for and time is already at a minimum. I must have a screw lose in my brain to be adding more to the month of June, however the Lego situation has been driving me to the brink of insanity!

And hey! Guess who passed the six month mark of nonsmoking and didn't even realize it until she looked at the ticker to the left?

Check It

I haven't laughed this hard in quite some time. This is for all of us who keep tabs on our Site Meters. Enjoy.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Chief's Game

While Ashley and I stayed in and rented a movie (don't bother) last night, Bret and Ryan took in a Peoria Chief's game. Ryan was really excited because he got there in time to win a Derek Lee Bobble Head. He must have played hard, because he was exhausted when he got home. However, the day must have been harder on me because I was in bed before all of them last night.

This morning I was up early and out the door before everyone else was awake. I thought I had a hair appointment for 9am, but realized it wasn't until noon so I spent the morning shopping and treated myself to lunch out at Panera Bread. I've never sat and eaten lunch by myself before, but it was oddly calming and relaxing.

By noon I was back for my appointment with Shawn and got the works done. It had been a year since I had last gotten highlights and I was much over do for a cut. My last haircut had been at one of those cheap places and I've found that it's usually either a hit or miss experience - my last one being a total miss.

So now I'm ready for summer and can tuck my awful ponytail holders into the back of my bathroom drawer.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Summer At It's Best

Summer is in full swing and busier than ever over here. From busy mornings of swim lessons and sports camps to evening baseball and softball games, the only other thing left to squeeze into our summer days are lazy afternoons at the pool - which hasn't happened yet due to all of the crazy storms that keep rolling through the midwest. Enough already. Bring me a hot sunny pool day!

Ashley's softball team won again tonight. It was by far the most fun game to watch yet. They were tied in the last inning and only needed to score 1 run to win the game. Ashley was second up to bat with a girl on second. She hit a double and the rest was history! That puts them at 4 wins, 1 loss. (That 1 loss doesn't really count though, because that game didn't count for their conference.)

Ashley's team in royal blue, warming up before the game starts.

Ashley's second to last time up at bat.

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