Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Brides-Don't forget THE boy.

The wedding is all about the bride, right? Wrong.  She usually gets to pick everything, but that means she is responsible for everyone else (get used to it ladies....that's what wives do). Bridesmaids get parties, gifts, and a new dress.  Groomsmen have parties, cool ties, and boutineers. Mother of the Bride, Father of the Bride, Mother of the Groom, Father of the Groom are all titles that divide your attention (the Bride).

 My dear Bride, you are overlooking the most significant part of the wedding....the diamond!  The flower girl's dress has more layers of tulle than the sky has stars...but all she does is throw pedals on the isle for you to walk on.  The true hero of the day is the Ring Bearer!  He is carrying the rock.  You are trusting him with symbols of love worth thousands of dollars.  Let's hear it for the boy!  Let's not neglect him.  He needs to look just as cute as the flower girl-ringlets and all.

This collection is dedicated to that young man.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

nICE isn't it?

So guess what?  I don't live in Michigan anymore.  The hubs finished all of his law school learning and now we are back in the desert.  I'll admit that moving to Mesa, AZ in the middle of August is pretty bad planning.  We had to get the kids back in time for school and besides, the weather surpasses the 100's well into September.  And once it gets past 105 degrees, it's just hot.  So hot is hot and if you're gonna move when it's hot, you may as well move when it's convenient for you and not let the weather dictate scheduling.

There are so many differences between Michigan and AZ that I could write a book on them.  I doubt anyone would really be interested in them.  But, as an Arizonan (by transplant from Northern CA) there is one difference that has really stood out int he last month or so.  That difference effects me everyday. The difference is the ice and the value of it.

Michiganders take ice for granted.  Can you believe that at the soda fountain some people don't even put ice in their cup.  And if they do, it's maybe 1/3 full of ice.  Blech.  They may as well be drinking coffee.  I can understand where they are coming from.  I haven't always been an "ice" person.  But for the last 10 years I have  been observing and learning the value of the perfect beverage.  The perfect beverage is in a Styrofoam cup (sorry tree huggers), crushed ice filled to the very top, with a sturdy straw about 5 millimeters across.  The liquid placed inside has little to do with the quality of said beverage.  The major component is the ice, the rest is just filler.

In this heat, the local convenience store is the suburban watering hole.  It is here that one can usually determine the perfect ice for themselves.  Usually, the options are either "crushed" or "cubed".  The variations among each category compare to the variations of the word "snow" in the Eskimo languages.  The variations usually drive different folks to different watering holes in order to find the perfect genus of ice.  This picture of  "cubed" ice may demonstrate what I mean:
Yes, we desert dwellers care that much about our ice.  I am personally a fan of crushed ice (preferably Sonic) because it cools the drink quickly, and also melts at the perfect rate.  It waters down my drink just enough.  

Friday, December 7, 2012

In the interest of the holiday I have decided to educate the world on why ties are the best gift to give.  You may consider this to be a shameless advertisement for the greatest ETSY shop on earth: kellybowbelly.etsy.com - and you are right.  

Top 5 Reasons Ties Are Ideal For Gift Giving

1. Inexpensive shipping costs.
Being away from loved ones during the holidays is bad enough.  There is no need to make it worse by adding large shipping costs to send your heart felt gift across the U.S or the world.  Tie weights vary but most can ship for as little as $1.64 via the USPS... and up to $ 5.50 going to Canada.  

2. A gentleman can never have too many ties.
Ties are to men, what hair accessories are to women.  You can never have too many.   Some are expensive and some aren't.  Some you like to wear for a night on the town, and others for a casual lunch.  Some you wear to church, because you know your kid will end up playing with it and will get "kid goobers" all over it.  When you are tired of the same old suit, an appropriate accessory can give it new life.  Certainly, all of us know someone who has everything.  These people are impossible to shop for....unless you buy them a tie-of course.

3. You can find them on the cheap.
I love the beautiful silks and fabrics that ties are made from.  Ties are costly.  If you want to go on the cheap-head to Ross or T.J Maxx.  You will find beautiful ties that can go as low as $8.99 for brands like "Kenneth Cole" "Tommy Hilfiger" and the like.  Another fun way to go on the cheap is to visit your local thrift store.  Often times you can find them with tags still on.  Last year I went to the "Volunteers of America" on 1/2 off day and purchased a $79.00 Italian silk tie for $3.50.  It still had the tags on.  
You can also find vintage gems at the thrift store.  Classic ties that last forever.  It's not gross to buy a used necktie.  The previous owner most likely did not get armpit sweat on it, or taint it with farticles (particles from a fart).  You can dazzle it up by with a bow and a nice gift tag.

4. kellybowbelly.etsy.com
I told you this was a shameless plug for my shop.  But seriously, Etsy has a large selection of ties to choose from.  Many shop owners will make custom orders if you contact them.  So, you can get something original, at a decent price, and a great feeling for supporting handmade!

5. There's something perfect for everyone.
You can please the sports fan with a "BYU Football" necktie.  Make that professor giggle with his very own bowtie.  Fabrics in all colors and styles to match the personalities of those you know.  You can give one to your boss because it's professional.  You can give an UGLY one as a gag gift to your brother-in-law because he is a jackass and likes that sort of thing. You can give a tiny one to your daughter-in-law who is about to have her 1st baby boy.  The possibilities are endless.

To conclude, I would like to wish you all happy gift giving and getting.  I also want to wish you a Happy Holiday and New Year.  May God bless us all, and may you always find the perfect tie for any occasion.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

The Do's and Don'ts of Attending Your Mother's Wedding

Do take orders from the Groom.

Don't stand on a shaky ladder with no shoes on.

Do catch up with old friends.

Don't miss the chance to make new friends.

Do enjoy the artwork.

Don't get hairdo ideas from the artwork.

Do help the bride get ready.
Don't call the bride "Grandma"

Do have fun and make people laugh.

Don't dress up as a clown cuz it freaks Jeffy out.

Do use "kellybowbelly" flowers in the bride's hair.

Don't neglect to use them in the bouquet.

Do eat cake made by Jenny.

Don't expect the bride to eat any.

Do look forward to the future.

Don't forget the past.

Congrats to Mom and George.  
Married June 2, 2012



Friday, January 13, 2012

Cold Creates a Kinder Community

Nap time is a special time for Mommies. Today, instead
of curling up on the couch and watching a DVR'ed episode of 30 Rock, Grey's Anatomy, or Desperate Housewives, I was compelled to do something else. Henry was put in his crib, and I bundled myself up. I shoveled my sidewalks so that strangers can walk their dogs around the block, and inevitably stop at the bright yellow fire hydrant on my corner to urinate.

Why would I do such a thing for the sake of some neighborhood pets need to expel waste? I don't know. All I know is that in the frozen north this is what people do. And we all know the old adage, "When in Rome..." My husband, the future Lawyer, would say that we need to shovel the walk, because we are liable for injuries that an
yone would incur on our property. But, I think, there is really no reasonable reason (my attempt at lawyer talk) for a human to be outside and on my sidewalk in this weather. I realize that
my opinion may not carry much weight, as I am from the west and am accustomed to the self serving characteristics within the desert communities I have lived.

So, people shovel the walk in 20 degree weather here. They also are very cautious and polite drivers in the snow. Road rage could lead to horrible accidents. At
4 way stops, what seems like hours pass by due to people flagging each other to take the
right of way.
"Oh, nonono, it's my right of way, but let's ignore that law so that you can go first. I insist, no really, I insist."
Michigan is a no fault state, so people are responsible for their own damages if they have an accident. Maybe that's because EVERYONE gets in an a
ccident at one time or another. It's impossible not to. Even a cautious driver of a 4x4 can skid into a parked minivan while taking a slow turn.
"Eh, no big deal....we all do it. Maybe I'll be running into you next week...literally...running into you."

Winter mornings are dark and the cars need to be warmed up before you take them out on the rink. The older the car, the longer it takes to warm up. After being a member of this community for a year, I no longer fear that someone will jump into my running vehicle and take off while I am in the house helping children find boots and the one lost glove.
"It would be so easy. All they need to do is
get in and drive off," I used to think.
Now, I know better.
A. Not even a criminal goes outside unless they have to
B. You can't peel out in the snow
C. The walk is clear, it's impossible to steal from someone so thoughtful

Someone in this neighborhood has a snow blower. He or she, snow blows the whole sidewalk along his side of the street. Now, that's nice. He must really be an animal lover. I live on a corner lot, so that means I get to do twice as much as most people do!
To make this even better, people show appreciation when driving by. They honk, or wave, or nod or whatever. And I take additional time in the cold in order to wave, or nod back.

"Yes, I am miserable. That makes me a nice person. In AZ I wouldn't even know you or your dog, and now you wave at me while I make Buster's toilet more tolerable. You are welcome, my cold, northern, stranger/friend."

What I am doing is considered a common courtesy, like holding the door open at the store for the person directly behind me even though, if he walks fast enough, I wouldn't have to hold it.

The cold makes me crabby. I will reword that, so as to take responsibility for my feelings: When it's cold, I choose to be crabby. Despite my decision to be crabby, I recognize the kindness that is fostered by freezing temperatures does spill over into the spring and summer. Northerners thaw out and are just as kind as the Popsicle they once were. Grocery lines become similar to the 4 way stop..taking hours to get to your turn. The checker takes his/her time chit chatting with every person who comes thru. It's annoying until it's your turn, and then it's very pleasant.

In the spring, on Pattengill Ave, the animals have free reign. And those beasts that I detest serving during winter months, come to thank me by watering my trees and grass. They play with the kids, then run off to mark their territory else
where. An old lady with a walker makes her way to the turn around at the entrance of our neighborhood. She finds a nice spot to sit on the public side walk and begins to weed. I suppose she does this to make up for the fact that she can't shovel her walk anymore....or maybe she's just nice. So I drive by and honk, and wave, and smile.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Peopleofwalmart.com will make hypocrites of us all.

I am a hypocrite. In many ways, this is fact. I am not going to bore you with all of the ways...but I will tell you why this is relevant in my life today. I have 4 kids. The oldest is 7. Any person who has endured at least seven years of child rearing already knows the ill behaviors that are natural to children. As a mother, I do my best to curb the farting and poop jokes. I catch newly learned phrases and words that are inappropriate and
explain why they are not used in our home. It is my job to teach them these

Most of the time, my family and friends get a healthy belly laugh when I recount the absurdities that my children make me endure. My hubby and I write down these things. Someday, when I am no longer accountable for their behavior, I am going to show my kids all the crazy stuff they said and did. I imagine we will laugh a lot. I know we will laugh a lot. I know
this because my kids are like me. The stuff they say-that I tell them not to-is the stuff I say in my head. It's like they are reading my mind. And the poop jokes are hilarious.

Over the years, I have become a master at masking my amusement. It makes me wonder what things my parents found entertaining as I grew. During my junior high school years, I was sent away from the dinner table every night for my behavior. This is no exaggeration....ask my mom. My mom, whom I never heard curse, purposely, until I was 27 years old. Is it possible that she had been cursing in her head, instead of out loud, the prior 26 years, in order to prevent my use of such profanity? If so, I am just like her.

I recall catching my father smirk or even laugh out loud (LOL) at some
thing I KNOW I should not have said or done. And, I am sure, my kids catch me doing the same. So, I am obviously a hypocrite.

The suddenly popular website peopleofwalmart.com, is the ultimate test of how well we can mask our hypocrisy. It is humanly impossible not to get sucked in by pictures of scuba divers, muscle men in Speedos,
and old
ladies with pink hair walking around with a grocery cart. Honestly, who hasn't gone to Walmart looking terrible? It's not like you're going to the Blue Bar at the Algonquin Hotel in Manhattan. It would be a bold lie to deny my multiple ventures to Walmart, sans bra, in white stretchy pants. I don't understand why Internet surfers are so shocked by the appearance of (us)Walmart patrons. People spotlighted on the website even pose for the pictures because they are aware of how ridiculous they look.

Just cuz he looks cute at the grocery store, doesn't mean I do!

There are pictures that just make me sad.
I doubt a balding woman or an extremely heavy man, wearing ill fit clothes, wants a cell phone snap shot of her/him placed on the Internet. They aren't playing dress up and they probably didn't give consent for someone hiding beh
ind the bread isle, to take a picture of them from behind. Such behavior is not like farting at the dinner table. It's not really funny, or nice. Farting at the dinner table is funny. It is rude, but still funny.

I can't expect my kids not to giggle at the Square dancing Walmart couple. I wouldn't blame them for staring. I can imagine my Camille wanting to know how old she must be to get one of those square dancing dresses. And, deep inside I w
ould be wondering the same thing....."How old do I have to be before I can get one of those dresses?"

I am hopeful that I never hear my kids poke at someone less fortunate than they are, or even someone who is more fortunate than they are. Should I ever catch them, I REALLY hope I am not thinking the same thing. After all; I am a hypocrite.

Now, that's funny!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Toilet Intrigue

My Henry is disgustingly interested in the toilet. Should anyone leave the door open to the bathroom, he gets there in record time. Sometimes, I don't even know he is in there until I hear the splashing. Gross, right? Yes, it is gross. Gross, to you and me. We know the purpose of the toilet. But imagine being 2 ½ feet tall. The things at eye level are not that interesting. What do you see? Baseboards and ankles. On some occasion, one might get lucky and find an old fruit snack dropped by an older sibling. Fruit snacks are exciting. They have colors and flavors, unlike those boring doorstops and stool legs.

The draw to the bathroom makes perfect sense when I put myself in his little shoes….well feet, he doesn't really wear shoes. And he has chubby feet. So, when I put myself in Henry's dimpled feet, I can understand why the bathroom is so alluring. You crawl in and the walls have TILE, Whoa. If you make any noise it echoes. The tub is perfect to pull oneself up from the floor, to get a better look around. A plunger, a toilet bowl brush….so fascinating compared to the Matchbox cars in the living room….already tasted them. And don't even get me started on the toilet paper! AWESOME! It's amazing how something so white and clean can make such a mess! And if you get it wet, it sticks to everything. Most of the time, there is at least a little bit of water close by. Could this count as a crude form of paper mache? Could putting a stop to this activity stifle my child's creativity? He could be the next Michelangelo, Salvador Dali, or Charmin Ultra cartoon artist.

The coolest part about the bathroom is the toilet-no doubt. It always has water in it. It can always make splashing noises. Everyone thinks a 2.5 footer is adorable when they splash around in the tub. So imagine being that 2.5 footer and trying to understand why it is wrong to splash around in the toilet. Why isn't THAT cute? It's just as fun as the tub, and you can get your clothes wet while they are ON. The toilet is popular with everyone in the house. Someone is always playing with it. Sometimes, two or more people race to see who can get there first. Why should a 10 month old be any different from anyone else? Well, mine isn't. The minute that door opens, he books it! The determined look in his eye says it all, "I'm gonna get there, and I'm gonna splash in it before anyone can stop me! I will succeed."

The human need to use the bathroom is undeniable. Just because someone is in Huggies doesn't mean we can expect them to resist the draw of the water closet. Please, don't misunderstand my stance on the subject. I now clearly declare-PLAYING IN THE TOILET IS YUCKY. I'm just saying the bathroom is hard for anyone to ignore. So, as parents, we can put ourselves in the fat feet of our crawling offspring and have a little compassion for the vertically challenged. There is no way to teach a baby not to splash in the toilet. We can just keep the door closed (if possible) and double flush as a courtesy (no floaters).

The bathroom: A toddler's in home, theme park.