Tiny Dancer, in my car

A couple days ago I wrote this Tiny Dancer slice. Today, I was inspired to write more.

I typed the letters in the Amazon Prime search box: t.i.n.y. And up pops up “Tiny Dancer” by Elton John. A big smile spreads across my face when it says that it can play the song for free instead of only for unlimited users, which is always a huge drag. This means, I can play it for my tiny dancer in the back seat right now like I wanted.

I press play and the piano introduction begins to play. I peek back at my daughter. Business as usual. Elton and I begin to sing, “Blue jean lady, LA lady…” I peek again. She continues to look around the car, in her own little world. He sings a few more lines. And then it happened. “Ballerina, you must have seen her…” I look at her, and in an instant, joy washes over her face. Her eyes sparkle. She smiles wide. She doesn’t have to say a word. She knows it’s her song now. She begins to sing along with me. And Elton. She continues to smile and sing and smile. I sing through some welling up tears.

Mommy, can we hear it one more time?

It’s been a bad day

It’s been a bad day. Overwhelming pain and exhaustion. Hardly being able to get off the couch.

I always feel like this is a pretty close representation of what it feels like during one of my fibromyalgia flares. Both the quote and the visual.


And it is this and other chronic pains that I suffer with that cause this.


It’s not until I read something like this (especially on a day like today, when it’s right here in my face) that I realize how true and how indescribably devastating that is.

Bye for now. That’s all I have in me for today. See you tomorrow.

P.S. At least it’s Dairy Queen free cone day.

Tiny Dancer

Tiny Dancer comes on Pandora. I call out to my daughter, “This is you. You’re my tiny dancer. This is my song for you!”  The verse continues, and I sing louder and look at her as Elton sings “Ballerina, you must have seen her dancing in the sand.” She smiles. On the verse goes, and she goes about her business. She may be dancing, she may be playing. But as the song begins to crescendo to the chorus, I run to her as I’ve done dozens of times before, pick her up in my arms, and sing to her, “When I say softly, slowly…” I hold her closer to my chest and she rests her head on my shoulder. I sing again, “Hold me closer tiny dancer…” and we sway and dance around the kitchen as if we’re all alone in our own little world.

When the chorus ends, she leans back and smiles, “You should sing that at bedtime.” I pull in her again, kiss the top of her head and say, “Of course sweetie.” And that night I do. The lyrics weren’t quite all there, but my daughter still delighted in the song anyway, and I cherished the special time spent singing the song to her. As I was laying her into her bed, she softly whispers to me. “Maybe you should dream of the song tonight so you can learn the words a little better.” I’ll do that little one.

Happy Birthday Steve

Steve Ryan side by side

I took the picture in the middle of my 7 year old son yesterday. It immediately made me think of my late father-in-law and these pictures. He was a 5th degree black belt in karate, which means he could kick your a$$ six ways to Sunday before you even knew he was in the room. And today…is his birthday.

I’m sure birthdays are always hard for anyone who has lost someone. For us, it is especially hard because his birthday is also only 2 weeks before he died. And it was on Good Friday. Now, Good Friday moves around each year, but it doesn’t matter. That year, it was Good Friday, so every Good Friday is a reminder. So there are these three big reminders of our loss that hit us in the gut one right after the other every year. It doesn’t help that I still have this insurmountable, overwhelming, and devastating guilt that we didn’t see him on that last birthday. I was pregnant and in a lot of pain and trying to limit travel. We “thought” we’d see him on Easter (which was April 4th that year), so we decided to just make one trip instead of two. Needless to say, he only made it to Good Friday…

But on the 8th birthday without him, I try to find something happy. That the grandson he came so close to meeting but never did, may carry a little piece of him inside (even if that grandson is too stubborn to try karate!). And that grandson looked at this picture and said, “I look just like him!”

Happy Birthday Steve. We miss you.

Trust me mommy, I’m a makeup artist

As I was sitting here trying to figure out to write about, I rested my chin on my hand…smiling when I realized that I was smudging the “gorgeous” face paint that my 4 year old daughter applied earlier today.

She began with some bright blue antennas and dark green swirlies that seems playful and whimsical. Okay, this will be fun!

Then she got REAL. The orange she chose for my lips really brings out the blood shot in my eyes from always being tired no matter how much sleep I get. I love how she picked a beautiful shade of purple for right under both eyes to accentuate my natural dark purple circles. And it really needed to be a nice, thick coat of it. Nice nice. Gray lines to foreshadow some future wrinkles on my chin and some others on my forehead to highlight ones that are already there. Awesome awesome. Good times.

She really knows how to make her mommy feel special! She was so proud 🙂

No matter what it looked like, it was still a cute, memorable little experience with my little girl. Thanks little one.


Cuddles, Part 2

My little one. My baby girl. My force to be reckoned with who came into this world whether her mama was ready or not. My 4.5 year old going on 18 big girl. My little one who says things like:

  • “When can I have honey? How do bees make honey? Does it come out of their butts? (sticks butt into the air and shakes it) I think it comes from their Butts! Do they sting you with their butts?”
  • “Why are they catching those fish in nets? Fish need to be free! They need life!”
  • “Of course I sweep! Fairies sweep. And I’m a fairy. So I sweep!”
  • “Well…I didn’t know where the math books were for so long, so I forgot about them annnnnnd now I’ve turned into a crafty girl.”
  • Daughter: “Why shouldn’t we let cats go outside?” Me: “Because if she gets outside, she might get lost and animals outside could hurt her.” Daughter: “Oh, (totally serious and adorable innocent) like dinosaurs?” Me: “No, there aren’t any dinosaurs anymore.” Daughter: “Tigers then?”
  • Daughter: “I know! We can just hang toilet paper over the scratchy parts on my ballet costume!” Me: “That’s a great idea…we’ll see if we can figure out any other ideas too….” Daughter: “(rolling her eyes and sarcastically speaking) “Well, that’s the only my idea I have.”
  • “Do mermaids have butts?”
  • “Is the sun hotter than fire? (yes) huh…good to know.”
  • “Why did God make ducks to not like being held?”
  • “You know why I love peanut butter and jelly? Cause it’s sticky. And sticky rhymes with dizzy. And I LOVE being dizzy!”
  • “The song “No” (by Meghan Trainor) is not appropriate. She keeps saying no. No is a bad word. Like when you say no when your mama wants you to do something.”
  • Daughter: “Vamanos!”  Son: “What’s that mean?” Daughter: “It means….get out of the way!”

My little one. My big girl. How different she is from her brother. By the time she got the neck strength to pull it away from my shoulder (which was pretty stinkin’ early!) she refused to hug and cuddle. What the heck? A 3 month old who doesn’t want to nuzzle against her mommy or daddy’s shoulder? She constantly had that little head pulled away, looking out at the world. So eager to soak it all in. It’s probably why now at 4.5 years old she can probably teach her preschool class, she’s so darn smart. But mommy just wanted to cuddle her baby! I would often cry because I knew she wouldn’t be a baby for long and that little stinker just wouldn’t hug me!

It took until she was almost 2 before she finally started giving in, lol, and would rest her head on us every once in a while. And if we left the house or at bedtime, she would finally start accepting hugs, though only semi-willingly. Sometimes, we would make a game out of it, and then I would get lots of hugs! She would as run as fast as she could across the room, almost tackle me, and wrap her little arms around me. It was awesome, and I treasure that.

As the years have gone on, she has slowly warmed up to hugs and cuddles. But it still has to be on her terms. On the couch, SOMETIMES, she’ll come lean against me, and inside, I’m the happiest mama in the world. But I don’t dare say anything for fear of spooking her!

At night, when I would LOVE to lay with her and sing, like I do with my son, it’s a no go. But she does have her own special way of wanting me to sing to her. And honestly it’s still pretty snuggly. Just her kind of snuggly. She wants me to sing to her in her chair…while she lays on my lap. It’s actually pretty great. But try to lay next to her in her bed, and she might just shove you out! “you’re on my leg! I have no room! (probably because the giant bunny is taking up most of the room, but the bunny takes precedence over mommy) I don’t have enough blanket!”

The Monday after daylight’s saving, she actually was still sleeping when I had to get my son up. That never happens. So I could actually sneak into her bed and snuggle with her!! It was AMAZING!!!! Unfortunately, I was running late, and I had to get my son’s breakfast ready, but I soaked up every incredible moment of that mommy daughter cuddle. Annnnnnd, the next day, she told me that she waited in her room for a little bit to snuggle, but I took too long to get there, so she came out of her room! I was so bummed, so I said, well let’s go back in, and she let me!! And the next day, I made sure to get out a couple minutes early so we could do it again, and she did!! So maybe, just maybe, she’ll start sharing her bed with mommy a little more.

Cuddles, Part 1

My big guy. My baby. My first born. My 7 year old who is growing up too quickly. My guy who says things like:

  • “It sure is special to see a rainbow on New Year’s Eve.”
  • When I asked him where he got such a big leg, “I don’t know, you?”
  • “Hey sister, do you want to lay on me? It’s really comfy.”
  • “Remember sister, I can get my own snacks. You aren’t my servant.”
  • Baby got back comes on the radio “Mama…they said butt (hahaha).”
  • “Today was the BEST day of my life! Instead of eating snack at our desk, we got to eat it on the floor on our beach towels!”
  • And not to be forgotten. He came and told me his sister called him dumb. I told him to use his words. He runs away, and I hear in the distance “POOPOO HEAD!!!!!!” Problem solved.

(Now obviously those are the cuter, nicer things he says. I tend not to write down the less than desirable things that come out of his mouth 🙂 )

That guy. He is my cuddlebug. From the day he was born to still at 7.5 (only 4 months til my birthday!) years old. Almost every night when I sing to him at the end of our bed time routine (and that song is a MUST), he asks me to “lay lay.” Sitting up is not an option. So I lay and sing. While I sing, I softly stroke his hair, his face, his hand. If I move my hand back to my side or his, he often moves it back to where he thinks it should be, which is usually either wrapped tighter around him or on his face 🙂

After the song is over, I very often hear “can we cuddle for a little bit?” How can you resist that? I did once 4 years ago. It was way past his bedtime, and I just…left. I closed the door behind me, walked into my room, and tears started to softly roll down my face. How could I tell my son I couldn’t cuddle with him??? I can still feel that awful feeling even today.  From then on, I always cuddle, even if only for a minute.

So each night, he gets cuddles. You may think to yourself, he’s playing her. He’s stalling. But not him. He’s never been a bedtime staller. (that will be in Cuddles part 2!) He just likes cuddles. And with those cuddles come conversations that he won’t privy us to any other time of the day. During that night time snuggle, I get to hear about what was fun about his day, what wasn’t so fun, and what he’s actually doing in school! Then it’s a hug, a few kisses for him and from him, and he’s off to sleep.

My big guy. My baby. My first born.


Disappointment in what never really was

My husband will be away, and I was looking down the barrel of a whole weekend alone with the kids.

It’s not like I’ve never done it before. I am their mother. I can take care of my own kids. The rate of care may get knocked down a peg or two, but they’re still alive by the time my husband arrives home on Sunday, telling me he’s so tired because he’s been up so late the last two nights, as I look at him with murder in my eyes.

But this weekend, I just needed a break. Our family is struggling. All of us. And I really thought it would be good for all of us to get a break from one another. The kids could have fun at grandma’s and hubby would have fun at his friend thing. And me? I could relax, be semi-comatose, and attempt to move as little as possible from my place either on the couch or bed. Whilst on said couch, there would, of course, be multiple episodes of my obsession show, The Vampire Diaries (see yesterday’s slice for a little more detail on my love of the show and my crush) watched, along with many, many movies that I have already seen 137 times each.

Before I had the details of getting my children’s whereabouts taken care of, I started looking forward to all of the above and getting a little excited. This should have been my first clue that the other shoe was about to drop. My mom had already told me they weren’t going to be home most of Saturday but that my sister-in-law could likely take them for that time as long as she was free. She’s ALWAYS free. She never does anything. But the moments leading up to the phone call to her, my stomach begins dropping slowly towards my feet. By the time it was hanging out around my knees, she picks up. Within about 2 minutes, my fate was sealed. SHE WAS BUSY that day. My stomach has now taken a U turn and is heading north, ready to unload its contents when it gets to the end of the road. Tears get caught in my throat as I try to keep cool while trying to get her off the phone. I hang up, and it’s all too much. I let the tears out and cry.

I just need a break. I am fried. FRIED. And so weary. Physically and emotionally. And no break will come.

I’m strongly considering holing myself up in my bedroom for the whole weekend…telling the kids to forage for food, to play without killing each other (and to keep it down!), put themselves to bed before the sun comes up, and not to bother mommy in her room unless the house is burning down (and even then, that’s what 911 is for, right?) or mommy.will.go.crazy. KTHXBAI.

(for anyway ready to call the cops on me…I’ll make them sandwiches and call 911 for the fire)


Suck it Trebek

A short trip down memory lane to Saturday and one of the worst migraines ever…that lasted all day. But nevermind that. Let’s take a look at the poem!
M issing the birthday party at the not so quiet trampoline place. You know, cause that sounds like the PERFECT place for someone one with a raging migraine, right??? We’re at a friend’s house for their son’s birthday party. We got there early to let our kids play. We’re getting ready to leave. I’m in my shoes and coat. I’ve been thinking all day about telling them I’m going to stay behind but figure I’ll just go anyway. Then the friend mentions staying home and says I just should and my husband agrees. They didn’t have to twist my arm! I yell good bye to my kids, do a 180, and head right back inside! I kick off my shoes, throw my coat on the ground, head upstairs to their bedroom, and pass out in their bed.
I mitrex can suck it. What a tease. You work twice, give me incredible hope, and then on the day when I have one of the worst migraines ever you decide to take a vacation? Not cool man, not cool.


G et me a saw and just take the top of my head off. Or find me Sylar from the TV show Heroes. Zachary Quinto needs to just come do his super human finger laser/saw thing and rip off the top of my head. He can even take some of my powers because at this point all he’s going to get is chronic back pain, the desire to tear his own head off, and the strong urge to throw up. Have fun with that, psycho.





R emote. Can I figure out how to work this remote?? After I wake up from the my nap, I know that everyone won’t be back for over an hour. But my friends have a weird way of controlling their tv. It’s a computer mouse. And then once you turn the TV on, I have no idea, if I’ll be able to figure out where anything is on the computer or however their tv is organized (they don’t have cable). But thankfully, I turn it on, click one thing and the choir of angels sing!!! There’s the Netflix Logo!!!!!! Now I just need to search for Vampire Diaries. I find the search button. But there’s no damn keyboard!!!! All I need to do is type in a flippin’ V!!!!! That’s all!! I start to panic. Sweat is dripping down my forehead. And then…I see a little keyboard icon in the corner! I click it…and it’s the tiniest damn keyboard in the history of the world. I don’t have the keyboard memorized, so I just click. It’s a c. Crap! So I get my phone out and look at the keyboard. I’m one letter off!!! I go back and find the V. Success! And the angels sing (maybe angels don’t sing for Vampires??) again!! My precious Vampire Diaries pops up!!
A pple pie. They all got back from the party, and it was loud as hell. I was thinking of putting ear plugs in. Or going back up to that comfy bed. But then someone came in with apple pie. So there’s that.
I an Somerhalder. Yep, that’s right. He doesn’t cure my migraines, but he certainly doesn’t hurt either! Staring at my current man candy obsession’s (and I MEAN obsession… I recently bought a VIP package to meet him in August…SQUEEEEEEEELL!!!!) face for an hour while I rewatch The Vampire Diaries (yep, I just finished watching all 8 seasons in 4 months in October, and I immediately started watching them again) is definitely a nice distraction from the hell I’m going through with my migraine. Hey, a girl’s got to do what a girl’s got to do to survive, right?



N apping. I was hopeful that it would make the migraine go away, and it didn’t, but at least that was 90 minutes I didn’t have to feel that mind searing pain. And who doesn’t love a good nap?
E xplode…3…2…1…BOOM.
S eriously…get.me.a.saw.