Celebrating Dad.
Thursday, June 17, 2010







The kids and I will be out of town visiting family in Oklahoma this weekend.....

So we're celebrating Father's Day Early!  










The kids made a fabulous, colorful banner that runs the length of our living room wall:


Amazing what they can do with some watercolor, yarn, and tape.  They want to leave it up until Sunday, "so Daddy will know we're thinking of him even thought we're not here."

Jonathan is a great Dad.  I really can't overstate his love and devotion to his family; none of us are left with even a teeny bit of doubt that we're the most important thing in his life.  He's enamored with us and lets us know!

Happy (early!) Father's Day Jonathan!





There's only one other man on the planet who's loved me longer than Jonathan has (and finds me nearly as charming), and I'll get to see him this weekend!  Love you Grandpa, and Happy Father's Day to you too!








"putting my face on"
Tuesday, June 15, 2010

I'm not sure where I picked up that phrase, but that's what I've always called my make-up application process. Example:  


"Are you ready to go?"  

"No.  Give me a minute to put my face on."

Anyhow - I have a couple more product suggestions for you.  A few weeks ago I recommended  Loreal Double Extend Beauty Tubes Technology Mascara, and I still love it.  My hearty endorsement still stands.

This is my new favorite product:


 Neutrogena 3-in-1 Concealer for eyes. 


Find it at your neighborhood drug store for under $10 bucks.  The "3-in-1" product name is because it's a concealer, as well as eye cream and spf 20.  But the part I really like is that it's a great concealer!  Covers some serious tired-mama dark circles.

Here's what prompted the sharing of this product with you:  One day this week I was struggling with allergies, and my right eye was continually watering.  At the end of the day I looked in the mirror and thought,

"Holy Cow! When did I get punched in the face!?!"  

Then I realized that the concealer under that right eye had simply been removed as my eye watered all day long and I wiped away the tears.  My right eye was showcasing my tired-mama dark circle, and the left side was being nicely concealed with this product. Huge difference.   


This next product isn't for your face, but rather for legs that haven't seen the sun yet this season:

Neutrogena Build-a-Tan

I've always been terrified of self-tanning lotion.  It came to popularity when I was in Jr. High, and my memory is of girls walking the halls with horrible, streaky orange legs.  The fear of looking like an oompa loompa has always scared me away.

But this year I decided I give it a try and I've been happily surprised with this product.  You can "control your shade";  the directions say "sheer color builds from a healthy glow to a deeper tan with each application."  I only use it once every 4 or 5 days.  (I'm not really going for a "deep tan" look; I just don't want my legs to match the color of raw chicken.)  No streaks, easy to apply, and dries quickly.  Less than $10 bucks at your local drugstore. 

Who else has product recommendations to share? 


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Discrepancy.
Friday, June 11, 2010

Moms get it.  It's hard to describe to anyone not blessed to be in that particular club.  But we get it.  The natural discrepancy that happens in the love between moms and their children.  The peaceful knowledge that my kids will never, ever feel the intense and all-encompassing love for me that I feel for them.  Of course they love me, yes, (on my good days, adore me even!); but they won't even begin to comprehend that THIS particular brand of fierce and devoted love even exists...until they have their own children.


Their first week of Kindergarten, I think of them every day, all day.  I know they don't think of me beyond the first few nervous minutes.  As it should be.

I know when they go on their first date, I'll bite my nails, pray fervently that they act wisely, and think of them constantly until I hear they've arrived safely back home.  And during those first dates, they won't think of me once.  As it should be.

When they grow up and leave the nest, I know the emotion of that season will nearly consume me.  I'll fret about what my home and heart will be like without them under my roof.  I'll think about them daily as they navigate real life without me.  And except for those rare moments of homesickness on particularly hard days, they won't give home (or mom) more than an occasional passing thought.  As it should be. 

Even now when I watch them receive awards or reach exciting milestones, they have no way of knowing the ridiculous, embarrassing, tear-inducing pride I feel in them.  No way they can understand how my heart swells with more emotion and pride in them, than anything I ever felt when receiving accolades for myself.  They don't know, and wouldn't understand if I tried to explain it.  They don't think about the pride I'm feeling in them; in fact, beyond catching my eye and giving me a grin, they don't think about me at all in those moments.   As it should be.

It's so strange to reflect on my own childhood, through the lens I now have as a parent.  To think about my Mom sitting in the audience all those many times, watching me have my "moments". Countless awards assemblies, talent shows, plays, graduations....Of course I knew she was proud of me, but there is no way I could have really understood her pride and love back then as I understand it now.

How ironic that when we tell our kids "I love you", that they won't (indeed, can't truly know what we mean by those three little words until years later.  When they've told their own kids.  When they've loved in that way that only a parent can.  

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It's the following video that inspired these thoughts, and has me feeling so reflective.  If you are a parent, please watch it.  (The part where she talks about the gallon of milk made me start bawling uncontrollably.  Watch it and let me know when the tears start for you!)

 

ht: Strategic Dads








The Fabulous Miss E
Thursday, June 3, 2010

Allow me to introduce my adorable two month old niece, Miss Elizabeth Faye!  I do believe she's waving at you: "Hello!  Please feel free to ooh, ahhh, and otherwise adore me!"


I made Elizabeth some bibs and matching burp cloths, and her mom was kind enough to pose her in each and every one of them and send me pictures.  Warms my ever-loving Auntie heart.  Can't wait to get my hands on this Oklahoma-dwelling baby girl!  Just a few more weeks until we get to meet her.


 Isn't she a sweet baby to happily tolerate all those "wardrobe (bib) changes"?  

Equally adorable big brother Connor had to get in on the posing-for-the-camera action.



Such cuties!  I hope to persuade their parents to bring them to West Texas for a visit sometime this year!  (Grandparents can bring them too.  Whoever is willing!) 


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Girls: Cooties, or Not? It's a split decision.
Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Last week Ryan had a birthday party.

As 11 eight-year-old boys were sitting around my table eating chocolate cake and ice cream, Jonathan teased,

"Where are all the girls? We should have invited the girls to this party!!!"

He made that same kind of joke last year, and it was met with a resounding "NO!!!" from every boy at the table.

Oh how a year changes things.

This year, about half the boys booed and yelled no...while the other half cheered a hearty approval at the notion of having girls at the party!

Not only that...the conversation then turned to which girls they would like to invite, which girls they would not like to invite, and why. (In the opinion of 8 year old boys, "talking too much" seems to be the number one undesirable trait in girls, by the way.)

My Ryan didn't contribute much to the conversation.  Neither a boo nor a cheer.  He just sat listening with a smile on his face.










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I'm Starr Cliff. A domestically-challenged mom, climbing over mountains of laundry to bring you my stray observations and amusing stories about my kids. (more)

 

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