About our blogger: meanboys

Typically I can be seen at local Targets, Walmarts and other super-centers hissing veiled threats at a cartful of children while simulaneously appeasing them with Slurpies, popcorn, soft pretzels and gum.

I am a first grade teacher and mother to four (soon to be FIVE) children who I find delightfully clever, funny and adorable (when they are not being exhausting, persistent and pesky). Although I am driven to distraction by too much noise, it seems I function best in chaotic situations with tight deadlines. I am passionate about reading and writing, and consider myself witty and well-read (the people at Borders would be happy to verify this). When it comes to hard news, I choose to get most of my information from People, US Magazine and In Touch Weekly. I am currently working on my Master's, my sanity and watching every single episode in the Law & Order SVU and CI franchise. If you are a person who sneezes more than three times in a row you will be asked to leave my blog.

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Posts by meanboys:

May 22nd, 2014

Coffee + Me = wheeee!!!!!

I used to make fun of my grandma and grandpa who were as religious about their coffee as my grandma was about Jesus.  When we would go on family road trips, fueling them with coffee was as essential as fueling the car with gas.  There was always a pot brewing in their kitchen – or ours when they would visit.  Their love affair with coffee was cute, yet hard to understand when I was younger.

Life has since schooled me.  I get it now.  Like – I reallllly get it.  Coffee is my BFF.  Just like that graphic says, I would still be in bed were it not for coffee.  The invention of the Keurig stands as the greatest invention in the history of mankind.  I say coffee is more important than the wheel, for without coffee, I would not be able to spend as much time in the car as I do.

This is what my coffee area looks like mid-day.

Some may say I have a problem.

Me?  I say I have found the solution.


May 5th, 2014

The Waiting

Last weekend after 2 bright, warm, sunny days, I boldly put all of our winter coats and accessories away.  By Tuesday, we had 2-3 inches of snow on the ground.

Today I am soooooo tired of cold, windy, grey weather.  I am soooooo cranky.

So let’s just pretend that it looks like this today.

May 4th, 2014

Friday Five: Sunday Edition

I’m not really sure where the weekend went, except to say it involved a lot of kids’ activities, spring cleaning and driving.

1) Speaking of driving, I’m fairly certain that Kellan and Riss have spent at least 78% of their lives in the car.  From birth, both have been shuttled around to every practice, event, activity and game that their older siblings have partaken in.  I told the older three that I will make them plane, train or automobile it from wherever they are living when their younger sibs finally start performing in their own events.

To keep the littles happy, and reward them for their endless patience, we have frequent ice cream cone parties.


Read the rest of this entry »

May 2nd, 2014

Pizza Night

Let’s just pretend this is me, shall we?

Some days I spend hours looking up recipes and slaving in the kitchen only to find that when dinner is served I get a whole lot of “ick”s, “eeeews”, and “I’m just going to have some cold cereal”s.  It’s basically the most depressing part of my day.

Other days, I wait til the last minute to decide what’s on the menu, briefly panic, and then somehow pull together a meal using whatever I can find in the fridge.  Miraculously, these are usually the nights where dinner somehow turns into a modest success.

All five of my kids love pizza, but as we are developing an uncomfortably close relationship with the Domino’s pizza guy (I actually think that their delivery number is ahead of 911 for who the kids would call in case of an emergency), I’ve been trying to cut down on takeout as much as possible. Read the rest of this entry »


April 24th, 2014

When in Doubt, Bake it Out

I’ve had a lot on my mind lately: personal stuff, household stuff, kid stuff.  It’s a heavy burden to feel responsible for the well beings of so many people and things.  The way my head works, it’s far too easy for me to get caught up in the moments and feel immediately overwhelmed.  I have a tendency to feel like I have to solve the problems of the world in one fell swoop, but as we know, pulling the tablecloth out from underneath a fully set table is far harder than it looks.  Most of the time you end up with a lot of broken glass.

Being in the kitchen has always been therapeutic for me, but lately I haven’t spent much time there  The last several days have been especially draining, so this morning I decided that after I dropped Larissa off at school I wouldn’t race off to work out or run errands, I would come home and do whatever I felt like doing, as long as it wasn’t cleaning or laundry or worrying.  I decided that I would try a recipe that I printed out weeks ago.  It’s been sitting on my desk for ages – every time I would see it I would pick it up and scan the steps and then put it down deciding that it just seemed like too much work.  Sounds kind of like what I’ve been doing with my thoughts.

This morning I picked up the page, turned Spotify on my phone and got to work.

Turns out, I need to bake more often.  I have forgotten how relaxing it is when I take the time to do it right.

Today I took time pulling out everything I needed.  Typically I run around my kitchen Read the rest of this entry »

April 16th, 2014

The First Cut Is the Deepest – My Messy Beautiful

Brutal starts, beautiful outcomes.  Kellan and Larissa: 5 & 7 years later.

Originally posted, July 2009


A week ago I was sitting at the edge of the pool holding Larissa and watching the other kids swim when I caught a glimpse of a silvery thread on my arm. I thought it was maybe a stray hair that had settled there until I tried to brush it away and it wouldn’t budge. It was then that I noticed there was more than one. As I laid my eyes closer to my arm to get a better look I suddenly realized what those barely-there lines were. They were the shadows of my former scars; I was startled to see them. Maybe it was the angle of the light, maybe it was the contrast of the white of them against my summer-tanned skin. Or maybe it was just my imagination. Because just as suddenly as the lines appeared, they disappeared and I couldn‘t see them anymore no matter how hard I looked.  Seeing those lines made me realize it’s been a long time since that Very Bad Time™ and for that I’m very grateful. I basked there in the sun, surrounded by light, counting my blessings. Read the rest of this entry »

March 28th, 2014

Friday Five: What you don’t need

Lately I’ve been surrounded by people either getting married or giving birth to their first child.  Watching these events through the eyes of experience makes me realize that sometimes the enormity of life gets in the way from appreciating its simplicity.

With that, here are five things that you DON’T NEED:

1)  A big house.

So many people put “having a big house” as the summit of their goals.   Read the rest of this entry »


March 25th, 2014

Waking Up To the Garbage Truck

garbage truck photo: Task 20 - Identify correct vehicle - Garbage truck TASK23Trash-Truck.jpg
I’m not gonna lie…the last couple of days I have felt stretched to my limit.  I may have had a few minor meltdowns.  I may have left a note on the kitchen table informing people that I was going to shut off their phones and close my chauffeuring business if they didn’t start helping me clean up around this joint.  I may have envisioned a few times swerving off my intended kid pickup/drop-off route and high-tailing it to some remote location.  Alone.  With a radio station of my choosing playing the entire time.

Instead I have kept plugging away and increasing my use of under-eye concealer at the same time.  I would dream about Read the rest of this entry »

January 13th, 2014

Favorites Lately

Here are a few things I’ve been loving lately:

1) If you are tired of Pinterest boards that make you feel depressed, inferior and utterly despondent over the lack of chevron in your home decorating, check out this board. It’s called “My Imaginary Well-Dressed Daughter.” It’s penned by a mother of boys who finds the craziest child fashion photos and turns them into hysterical musings about her imaginary daughter, Quinoa. I read every single pin in one sitting and laughed my ass off.
Here’s a sample:

In what could only be described as an existential crisis, Quinoa had some tough, pointed questions about what happens to clothes after they go out of style. #MIWDTD

In what could only be described as an existential crisis, Quinoa had some tough, pointed questions about what happens to clothes after they go out of style.

2) Adam Pally on “The Mindy Project.” “The Mindy Project”, as I’ve already told you Read the rest of this entry »

December 12th, 2013

The Competitor

Eliza is a natural born competitor.  Unlike me, who suffers immediate gastrointestinal distress from the mere words, “contest”, “competition”, or “race”, Eliza gets excited and focused. Excited. Even if she admits to being a little nervous, once it’s game on, you would never know.  She steps up to every challenge with the same happy smile and quiet determination.  If I were a true Tiger Mom, (or even Tiger Woods’ dad), I would be all over this action trying to finesse my child into the next, great champion (insert sport here).   Fortunately for Eliza (but unfortunately for the sake of endorsement deals), my competition induced anxiety exists even when I’m not the one competing. which means I’m only good for holding her coat, nervously overspending in the vendor area, and choking out a shaky “Good Luck”, before she departs my company.


Eliza’s cheer season ended with a final competition a couple of weeks ago.  I’d missed the first one due to a conflict in scheduling, but let me assure you, ONE cheer competition is all anyone really needs to endure see in their lifetime.  If I thought one super-peppy, high-octane, mega-talky 11-year old was more than I could handle, imagine trying to endure a 6-hour day inside a stadium filled with them.  And their crazy, super-peppy moms.

I was never a cheerleader.  To begin with, at Eliza’s age I was shy, nerdy and totally into my Charlie’s Angels Barbie Dolls.  I was also super uncoordinated, kind of a tomboy, and not very popular.  Now….flip ALL of that, and you have my eldest daughter.  She is everything I aspired to be as a young girl, and the kind of girl that I envied.  At 11 Eliza is athletic, poised, popular, outgoing and mature beyond her years.  She is also gracious and kind and big-hearted and a hard worker.  If she weren’t my kid, I actually kind of hate her a little bit… Read the rest of this entry »