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:

September 11th, 2014

Old School Blogging

I read a beautiful blog called “An Inch of Gray” which is authored by a mother who lost her 12 year old son a couple of years ago in a freak accident. Weston was the exact same age as her son, Jack when the accident happened, and the horror of that event really stuck with me. Anna has handled the whole experience with more beautifully honest and raw grace that I could have mustered in the same situation.

Today she linked up with this blog to do some:

Since I am feeling too lazy and perhaps still anesthetized from my procedure yesterday, I decided to play along.

What is the last thing you watched on TV?
So embarrassing, but it was “The Real World: EX-plosion”. Yes, I am in my mid-forties and still watching reality television on MTV. The premise is so good, though! They did the whole, “seven strangers, picked to live in a house…” and let them do their thing over a 6-week period. Just as they started to bond and of course – hook up(!!) – the producers brought all of their ex-girlfriends/boyfriends back into the house! DRAMA! Just as the title promises, when you put a bunch of horny 20-somethings with limited brain-power and penchants for making bad decisions together in one house….EX-PLOSION. My life is pretty mundane – I gotta live vicariously somewhere. Might as well be on MTV. Read the rest of this entry »


August 27th, 2014

Camping With Grown-Ups

Camping humor. Classic.
For the last several years my camping trips have all involved our RV and a bear named Yogi.

Over the Memorial Day weekend however, I went camping with grown-ups. In a tent.

When friends of mine from the gym invited a bunch of us to crash their annual Memorial Day camping trip I was all in. Until they mentioned it was an “over-21″ campground. Read the rest of this entry »

July 21st, 2014

Summer With Kids

Raising kids at different ages and stages is a challenge…and no matter what people say, it does NOT get easier as they get older and kids do NOT grow out of tantrums!

This is how I begin every single day….and how I end almost every single day.

I start with good intentions and a plan — a plan which is quickly derailed by the kids.  Sometimes it’s a change in schedule or a missed alarm. Sometimes it’s an impromptu playdate.  Most of the time it’s the fighting.  And bickering.  And whining.  And bickering.  And fighting.  And whining.  ((SIGH))


This is what the garbage can looks like after a weekend.  My boys have chosen to opt out of living life in the outside world and have chosen instead to exist in the basement with their animated world and online friends.  I have truly given up.  I’m so tired of the battle that ensues when I try to get them to do anything but “game” that it’s just easier to ignore them.  That’s probably a bad tactic but it’s all I have right now.

Not one “natural” food product in the lot.  This photo depresses me, actually.  Let’s move on.


Both of the girls are really into shopping right now.  We had a couple of hours to kill while Kellan was at nature camp the other morning so Eliza asked if I would take her and a friend to the outdoor mall nearby.  I had barely parked the car when they disappeared into the nearest Aeropostale.  As soon as Larissa set eyes on Justice, she insisted that we go inside.  She really gets into the whole process of picking out and trying on clothes.  It’s like watching a model walk at Fashion Week the way she works the mirror.  Eliza just outgrew her Justice addiction a year or two ago, and Larissa is picking up just where she left off.  UGH.

I play on a really fun sand volleyball league every Sunday night.  It’s my second year of playing and I love it.  The younger kids love coming with me, mostly because there are always other kids to play with and they can spend most of the time doing this.  (Did I mention, Sunday night is always bath night??)


Every now and again our wonderful babysitter comes and relieves me.  One hour without kids feels amazing.  Of course I miss them…but they are always just a selfie away ;)

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 »