Saturday, September 28, 2013

Football Players Don't Smile and Crazy Mama Drama.

Football Season is going pretty in, my boys are having a good time playing football. If you asked them what their team's win/loss record is...well...then it's a different story. Saturday after the games it's not uncommon to see little 9 and 10 year old boys crying because their team lost..again. Not my boys though. They could really care less if they won or lost and that's fine with me (though on the inside I'm just as torn up about my boys losing!) There's more to this life than sports though and as another mom put it today, they are too young to be so torn up over anything. Good point. 

This Saturday I got to take team individual pics of all the boys. I learned a lot this morning that's for sure. I sure wasn't expecting the sun to be so bright but I think the shots turned out rather well. I had to brush up on shooting outside with a flash which I hadn't done in a while. 

I couldn't convince Yip or Yap to smile though...or quite a few of the other boys. I kept telling them this picture wasn't for them but for their moms. 

I don't know what I did but Yip's picture is the only one that turned out awful. He was the first one so I was fine tuning with him. I guess I just didn't fine tune enough. Well, I'll have to drag him out to the football field for another photo sometime soon. THAT should be horribly fun!! 

I have to tell you about a side effect of taking these photos that I wasn't expecting. There's 23 boys on our football team and I'm Facebook friends with some of them but not many. When I was done editing I put all the pics on Facebook and tagged some of the parents. Then I get a friend request from one of the other moms, after I gave her permission to tag my photo. (Can you feel the Facebook drama building??) 

I declined her Facebook request. (No feedback yet, cross my fingers.) See here's the thing, I have a problem with people wanting to be my Facebook friend when I've only ever talked to them three or four times. I have a problem with someone wanting to be my Facebook friend just because our kids are in the same class/football team/time zone. Just because our kids hang out with one another, sometimes against their will, doesn't automatically make us "besties". And I REALLY have a problem when one of these moms wants to be my Facebook friend and she's. just. crazy. The mom I friend declined just dripped drama. 

Is it just me or do other people have to deal with these "drama mamas"? Is it getting more prevalent? Have there always been crazy moms or is it just my generation? I haven't seen drama like this since I taught middle school and really, I could see some of my crazy moms going back to junior high right now and fitting right in!

I'm getting better and identifying crazy mama drama. I didn't use to be. I used to be too dang gullible and these CRAZY moms sucked me into the whirlwind of nutso. It's exhausting to climb your way out of someone else's crazy. It's like climbing out of a hole of peanut butter. So I'd rather just be known as the unfriendly mom rather than to get sucked into all that. 

If I didn't have family 1000 miles away to talk to, I would give up Facebook in a heartbeat; they're the only ones keeping me on. As soon as my family is off Facebook I am too.

How do you deal with Mrs. Crazy Mom? 
(Unless you are one? Are you? ARE YOU?)

Right now my dealing with crazy mama strategy is avoidance, the buddy system (always attaching myself to a normal mom) and avoiding eye contact with the crazed beast. So far so good. 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Painting Party Success!!

Yesterday was a day that marked a lot of "firsts" for me. It was my first time teaching an adult art class. It was the first time I taught a project that was finished so quickly (2 hours). It was my very first time leading a painting party. Every one of those "firsts" was a wonderful experience. 

As I headed into the library yesterday morning, what a cozy place to have a painting party, I was very nervous. All of the women I was about to teach were more mature and had more experience in life that I had. I was very worried that I would have a difficult time communicating with them. After all I am used to dealing with children who, for the most part, are content with my simple instructions and explanations. I don't like to talk much because as one of my favorite art teachers always said, "Keep it simple stupid". 

I was pleasantly surprised at how working with adults in an art setting was very similar, and also polar opposite, to working with children. These wonderful women were very open to my instructions and asked questions and I felt a sense of complete trust from them. Trust that I knew what I was doing and would successfully lead them through the painting process. I wasn't about to let them know that most of the time I feel like I don't know what I'm doing. I'm kind of a bull in the china shop person, I just charge in. 

On the other hand, as I suppose was to be expected, most of these women were very critical of their work. They wanted it to be "perfect", whatever that means because really what is perfect to one person isn't to another. Or what is flawed in one person's view is perfect to someone else. 

I told the ladies at one point that I wish I had a hidden camera to take photos of their facial expressions as they evaluated their work. Some were so screwed up in concentration or contemplation that it was interesting to see. 

Overall success! I think they were all pleased with the outcome of their paintings. What was very interesting as I watched the women paint was, I thought, their paintings perfectly expressed each of these women's personalities. We had so much interest in our art class that the Library has already scheduled another Painting Party for next Tuesday morning to paint the sunflower again! 

I finally felt like an art teacher again, even for a couple hours. I'm secretly hoping that there is a huge interest in Painting Parties and it's something that I can make grow because leading people in creating and expressing themselves makes my heart happy. I could definitely see myself doing this as a full time job, ha, but I'd have to move to a big city for that! 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Train of Blades

Tonight we had football practice at 6pm and the field is right next a train tracks. During a normal practice a train will go by a couple times. But tonight we got quite a surprise, a train load of windmill blades were going by. 

There were well over a hundred blades, and nothing but blades, on this train. They were heading to Garden City, KS to a windmill staging area. 

Those blades aren't small are they? Even though I've been around a lot of these blades the size never seems to amaze me! 

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Come to My Party!!!

Are you ready for Christmas?? You know, there's only 94 days until Christmas!! It will be here before you know it. Hey, I'll help you out. 

I'm hosting an online 31 Organizing Bag Party!! 

And, they have a great deal for the rest of September. For every $35 you spend you get 50% off one of their two large organizing totes. Watch the video! 

I've bought six bags for Christmas gifts and I wish I could keep them for myself. 

My favorite 31 Bag, belief it or not, is my lunch bag tote that I take with me when I substitute teach. 

It's nice and big and holds plenty of food, maybe too much! It has long straps so I can carry it like a purse and it's pretty too! 

If you'd like to attend my "party" then go to this link; 

Click on MY PARTIES on the lower left, then you'll see my name (Heather Wise Eslinger). Click on the link SHOP NOW to the right of my name and have fun shopping!! 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Football Season is Here Again!

Tomorrow we'll be traveling an hour, yes an hour, on a Saturday morning for the boys' third football game. One thing I've learned living in Kansas is you have to drive to find people to compete against. Living in Kansas makes Warsaw, Indiana look like a booming metropolis! 

I forced the boys to pose for me before their first game. Hey, I'm the MOM!! Photos of "firsts" are my right!!

Don't they look impressed?? Ha! 

This is their first year in tackle football and they love it, even if they might not really understand what it is they are supposed to be doing. Heck, I don't even understand exactly what they are supposed to be doing on that football field. (Basketball will be a whole different story! DR says I can only attend basketball games if I'm gagged!) 

This year we have #30 Yip and #9 Yap. 

I've got lots of shots where Yip is blocking and he's made some good tackles! 

Yip blocking...good job!! 

Yip blocking while Yap #9 is looking on. Yap doesn't quite get the whole gist of football yet. He's not quite as willing to jump into the mix as Yip. I have yet to get a good photo of my #9 in action. 

Of one the dads told me not to worry about Yap though. He said as soon as Yap realizes that football is nothing more than legalized fighting then he'll be right in the middle and be just fine. HA! 

Two games down and 4 to go!! Wish em' luck tomorrow...they need it! 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Tampons and 9 Year Old Boys.

Have you seen this commercial for Hello Flo floating around the Internet? Take a 3 minutes to watch it (I'll wait), it's super cute and a really neat concept....I wish I had thought of it. 

Wasn't that funny? DR actually told me about it a couple days ago and pulled it up one evening for me to watch. This particular evening was like any other evening. Dinner was done, dishes washed and the kids were just hanging out around the house until bedtime. I was in the kitchen, on the laptop, trying to watch this three minute video without interruption. (right) Yip more than once came wanted to know what I was watching.

"It's a girl thing that you don't need to know about!! Beat it!", I snapped. Which he would respond to by immediately sneaking around the corner to watch the video behind my back. I kept pausing the video and shooing him off because really, explaining a period to a 9 year old boy just wasn't on my to do list for the day. 

As we were getting the boys ready for bed that night Yip just wouldn't let it go. "Mom, what was that video you were watching?" 

Of course that got Yap immediately interested, "What video? I want to see it!" *SIGH* The whole time the boys were badgering me DR was in the background telling them to drop it, shut up, just leave it alone and vainly trying to convince them that they didn't want to know anything about the video I was watching. 

But they just. Wouldn't. Drop it!! 

Fine!!! I caved! They wanted it, so I was going to GIVE IT TO THEM! 
May God have mercy on their souls! 

I broke out our handy dandy sex ed book....which DOESN'T explain periods...

....and found a uterus....

Now we've talked about sperm and eggs and where babies grow and they've looked through this book until it's ragged, not that they've read much so they know the black and white of the birds and the bees. Periods and sex haven't come into the discussion yet. 

Before I even started talking DR told them this, "Boys, Mom is going to tell you something you won't want to hear." 

"Yeah we do!!" heads nodding emphatically. 

"So...", DR continued without missing a beat, "tell her to stop talking when you've heard enough." Boys heads turn to me and the book enthusiastically waiting to hear the "big secret". 

They asked for it. 

"Women are born with eggs, here." I referenced above picture. "Once a month one egg travels down these tubes to here." Once again pointing at the illustrated uterus as I gauged my boys facing trying to decide how to proceed. Simple and straightforward was my best guess since they still looked interested. 

"Blood lines the walls here that will feed and keep the baby safe as it grows." I continued, still no reaction from my boys..they'd heard all this before, pretty black and white biology. 

"But, if a mother and father decide not to have a baby then the egg, which is very tiny, passes out of the uterus.....along with all that blood." I glanced warily at my boys faces and noticed they both wore slightly alarmed expressions. "That happens once a month to older girls and women." 

I was going out on a limb with my next sentence but, hey, they asked for it. "I have a period every month too." 

"STOP!!!" they both declared in unison. Well, I guess that was the tipping point.They didn't even remember to ask what the video was about. I hope I haven't emotionally scarred them too much! 

About that time DR was behind us giggling, pointing and saying, "I told you so!!" That was my first experience trying to explain what a period was to a boy, and I only got partway finished. Did you notice how DR didn't jump it at all to help? That's probably because he's just as confused by "women things" as the boys are. 

Okay, so all you mothers of boys out there....have you ever had to explain this to your sons? Or did someone else take care of it? Any horror/humorous stories to share? Any tips for me when/if I have to finish their education of periods, pads and tampons? 

Monday, September 9, 2013

Montezuma Monets - A Painting Party!

I am soo very excited because we have a date set for our first painting party!! And I GET TO TEACH IT!! Yay for me!! 

Seriously, this is going to be so much fun. Would you care to come join us in our creative party? 

The Montezuma Township Library in Montezuma, Kansas will be hosting this first painting party on Tuesday, September 24th from 9-11 am.  We are calling ourselves The Montezuma that name, wish I could take credit for it...ha! 

Photo: My one hour painting.  Normally I don't paint nearly this fast but there's a reason to this madness that will hopefully come to light in a couple more months

Our first painting will be this Sunflower! A very appropriate theme for Kansas I thought and it shouldn't be too difficult for anyone. I'll lead everyone through painting this flower. 
Are you thinking you don't have any artistic talent and couldn't possibly embarrass yourself by trying to paint in front of people? No worries!!! Everyone will who comes will be newbies and we are here for FUN!! And what's more fun than making a mess with paint?? 
 Anyone interested in signing up for the class can contact Angie at the Montezuma Library (620)846-7032. There will be a cost for the class but I don't know exactly how much, I'm thinking it should only be $20 or so but that fee will include all supplies and a snack! Cost for the class is $.... which includes all needed supplies (brushes, paints, canvas, snacks).You may want to wear an old shirt or bring an apron and a FRIEND.

Yay!! I can't wait. This will be so much fun for me. I'm hoping that this is the first of many parties for the Montezuma Monets!! 

Saturday, September 7, 2013

The Milo is Looking Good.

The first time I ever saw a field of milo was when we moved out to Kansas three years ago. Seeing as though SW Kansas has been in a drought since we've lived here meant that all the milo I've ever seen has been bad, but I knew that. What I didn't know was what a good field of milo looked like until the past few weeks. 

With all the rain we received in early August the milo is "good" but not "great" as DR described it to me. Good is better than bad.

The plants are definitely taller and the heads are much bigger than I've ever seen them.  There's nothing to complain about from what I can tell. 

I take that back. I can complain. With all this good milo DR is predicting a long harvest. Last year's harvest started in August, that's what you get when you have no rain. DR and the grain elevator is just preparing for harvest right now, it's still hasn't started but he's expecting farmers to be in the fields in the next couple weeks. DR's even thinking that harvest could last till late November or December. 


Well it is that time of year again, time of the Harvest Widow! 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The Reason You Can't Go Barefoot in Kansas.

Since little Miss Yahoo is in preschool every morning now I've been enjoying running outside again rather than on a treadmill all the time. I really enjoy running in Kansas. There may not be hills or trees to enjoy but the sense of incredible spaciousness (and wind) can be exhilarating! 

I finished a morning run just the other day where I had ran through town, through a few ditches and dirt roads....overall a great run. But then I went to untie my shoes. 

This dear friends is the reason no one ever goes barefoot in SW Kansas. This is the reason why so many people out here wear boots. Burrs. Folks, these aren't anything like those sweet little burrs you'll find in Illinois or Indiana. Those little burrs that grab onto your clothes after walking in the Indiana woods, you know, the ones you easily brush off.  Nope, Kansas burrs are downright NASTY!! 

They are big and their spikes are HARD and painful.They sting even if you try to pull them off gently. So much so that I won't touch them with my bare fingers. I pulled these off my shoes with toilet paper. They stick to everything! 

I even found some securely stuck onto the sole hard soles of my running shoes. 

I've heard these called "goat burrs" and "sand burrs". I'm not sure if there's a difference between those two names or exactly which burrs were stuck all over my shoes. I have my own special name for these burrs "*#$&*@@# BURRS!!!!!" 

Burrs are also the reason you don't sit or lay down on the ground either. Yip learned that the hard way the first year we were here. We were out in the country at a friend's house and he lay down in their yard and came up with his back covered in these burrs!! He's never forgotten it either! 

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