Once upon a time there was a little mutt puppy named Lucy.Â She was beloved by her owner named Katie and all was right with the world.
Together, Katie and Lucy explored the world together.
It was a happy time, even if Katie did often insist on dressing Lucy in ridiculous outfits.
Lucy loved Katie so much that she even forgave her for The Hat Incident of 2003.
And then Katie married a boy named Chris and though Lucy needed some time to adjust, she eventually came to love Chris, too.Â He let her sleep in the bed with him.
And when they went boating…
…Chris dove in and saved Lucy when she forgot how short her legs were and she jumped out of the boat.
Yes, Lucy came to love her little family of three.Â But then, unexpectedly, they became a family of four.
Katie and Chris brought Molly home one snowy, winter day and Lucy was none too pleased.Â No one had asked her if she wanted a furry canine companion, after all.
Now, Lucy began to notice there was less room for her on the couches during nap time.Â This would not do.
And then Molly began to make friends with Lucy’s favorite Baby.Â No, this would not do at all.
But when Molly began to claim her place on the bed, Lucy had had enough.
And so Lucy began to assert her dominance over the silly black Labrador mutt puppy.
But eventually, Molly grew bigger.
And she got stronger.
Until, finally, Lucy realized that she could no longer beat Molly up and so Lucy reluctantly accepted that they had become a family.
Even though no one had asked her.
Years went by and Lucy began to tolerate Big Molly.Â And just when she thought she had accepted the unwilling expansion of the family, something odd began to happen to Katie.
And Lucy’s world, once again, changed.
Today, Lucy lives a much different life.Â Gone are the days of sleeping in Katie’s bed.Â Gone are the extra long belly rubs and table scraps eaten right off the plate.Â Gone are the quiet hours of solitude and leisurely strolls through the park.Â Now, Lucy’s days are filled with loud shrieks from The Wee One and the occasional playful harassment from Big Molly.Â Now, Lucy climbs to the highest point in the house to escape the waving golf clubs and the violently wagging tail of Big Molly.Â Now, Lucy crawls into a dog bed at the end of the day.
Like an animal.
Occasionally, late at night after everyone has gone to sleep, Katie will pull Lucy into her lap on the couch and the two of them will curl up watching Top Chef and The Real Housewives while Katie absentmindedly rubs Lucy’s belly and ears.Â And as they sit there together in the quiet of the house, it is almost easy for Lucy to pretend that life is like it was before.
…Until she wakes up to Big Molly’s big wet tongue on the side of her face and The Wee One throwing Cheerios at her.
Reality is such a rude awakening.
This past weekend, Chris’ mom, Jackie, came to town with her boyfriend, Charles, to celebrate Chris’ sister’s birthday.Â We had such a fun weekend.Â We went out for hibachi on Friday night for Annie’s birthday dinner.Â Bean had been to hibachi once before and he really liked it, but on this night he was a little tired and little squirmy, so we spent most of the dinner walking around the restaurant looking at the koi ponds.Â But, it was late and he was tired so you couldn’t really hold it against him.
Saturday afternoon and evening Jackie came over to our house to spend some time with Bean Man.Â We had a great time.Â He taught her how to play golf and he showed her how to play in his school bus.Â He also shared his dinner with her and she shared her pizza with him.Â All in all, it was a great afternoon.
At bedtime, Jackie helped with Bean’s bath and she laughed with us as he enthusiastically brushed his teeth.Â Then, we all piled into the living room and Bean snuggled with his Grandmomma while we watched Ratatouille.Â When it was time for Bean to head to bed, I asked if Jackie wanted to put him down and she, of course, jumped right up.Â I gave her his current favorite books and Jackie and Bean headed off to his room.
About fifteen minutes into the bedtime routine, Chris and I started to hear giggles coming from back in Bean’s room.Â And then we heard toys banging around.Â And then we heard squeals.Â And more giggles.
“Doesn’t sound much like bedtime,” Chris laughed.
Twenty minutes later, we heard little bitty feet padding through the hall and whose face should pop back into the living room, all smiley like?Â Beanie.Â Followed by Grandmomma, who insisted that Bean wasn’t ready for bed yet.Â Even though it was way past his bedtime.
So, the two of them sat up for another half an hour, playing in the living room, reading books, and tuning in and out of the movie Chris and I were watching.Â When Bean couldn’t keep his eyes opened any longer, Grandmomma Jackie took him back to his room and put him to bed for real.
I think that’s what Grandmomma’s are for.Â They make sure you’ve hit your fun quota for the day before bedtime.Â Luckily, when Grandmomma Jackie comes to town, it’s easy to reach that.
I first got to know this month’s Reader of the Month because for some reason every single one of her comments on my blog gets filtered to my spam folder.Â I have no idea why.Â And she comments A LOT.Â So every day I cruise through my spam folder and save Megan’s comments from the pits of pornography and diet pill advertisements.Â She just doesn’t belong in there.
Then, Megan got on Twitter and I started to get to know her a little better through her Tweets.Â And it was through her tweeting that I found her sweet blog, Red Dirt and Crazy.Â The first thing that I noticed was that Megan had been through a moving funk very similar to mine when she and her family moved and I loved how determined she was to pull herself out of it with her 52 Week Happiness Project.Â And the next thing I noticed was her adorable daughter that she calls Q-Tip.
I hope you’ll have fun getting to know Megan and her family, just like I have…
Blog:Â Red Dirt and Crazy
What is your name?
My name is Megan Elizabeth.Â Most of my friends and family call me Meg.
Who lives in your house? (Names and ages, please!)
Me – Iâ€™m 25 + 5 (I donâ€™t say the 3-0 word yet in regards to me. It sounds so grown up and responsible and I try not to be as often as possible.)
Farm Boy – Heâ€™s 30 (apparently heâ€™s at peace with grown up and responsible)
Q-Tip – 21 months.Â Yes the month thing.Â Weird I know.Â Do you say 1?Â Cause she seems so much older than she did when she was 1.Â But sheâ€™s not 2â€¦so I canâ€™t say sheâ€™s 2 making her older than she is.Â Iâ€™m tired of the month thing and people look at me funny like they are doing math in their head when I sayâ€¦21 months. But what do you say?
Dolly â€“ She is 4, she is a dog.Â We have to remind her of that often.
How long have you been married?
Farm Boy and I have been married for 5 years.Â We just celebrated our anniversary on June 25th.Â There are moments when I am absolutely stunned that it has been that long.Â The time has flown.Â But on the other handâ€¦it seems like there was nothing before I knew him.
How did your husband propose?
Being the Farmer Boy that he isâ€¦he took me out into an alfalfa field on a cold and rainy day in November.Â He was home visiting from North Carolina.Â I missed him so badly that I would have gone to hell with him to stay by his side while he was home so a muddy alfalfa field was nothing.Â He said he just wanted to check out the fieldâ€¦nothing unusual for him.Â Once we got out there he sort of hem hawed around a littleâ€¦and then saidâ€¦Megan, I need to ask you a questionâ€¦will you marry me?Â He pulled a little tiny gold (I wear silver) ring out of his pocket.Â It had two small red stones and one small blue one in a straight line.Â It sort of resembled something that would come out of a cracker jack box.Â But heyâ€¦I would have worn a band-aid at that point.Â We had been apart for 6 months at the time.Â He kept asking if I liked itâ€¦of course I was cryingâ€¦I kept saying yes, yes, yes.Â He said greatâ€¦so I can take this one back then?Â And then he pulled the real thing out which was much more my style.Â And then the flood gates really opened.Â It was amazing, very surprising andâ€¦so us.
What is your favorite part about being married to your husband?
I could go on and on and on with this subject.Â But if I have to pick oneâ€¦it is probably knowing that no matter what, he is here for me and wants to be with me.Â No matter how scary I look in the morning or how much bigger my hiney isâ€¦he loves me unconditionally.Â We are a team in everything that we do and there is nothing in the world like being able to depend on someone like that.
What is the hardest part about being married?
I would have to say the hardest part of being married to me is the responsibility of it.Â Sometimes the pressure of having a marriage, a child, and a home to take care of is insurmountable for me.Â Every now and then I have to step back and sayâ€¦I am not aloneâ€¦weâ€™re a team and we can do this together.Â Itâ€™s tough sometimes though.
What do you think is the “key” to your success in marriage?
I think there are three keys to the success in our marriage.Â Well there are probably several but I think the three most important things to us is our faith, steady communication and lost ofâ€¦.hmmm mmmâ€¦â€actionâ€ in the bedroom.
Itâ€™s sometimes hard for me to feel like my former non-mom, more sexy self but I try to remind myself of his unconditional love and get over my insecurities.Â I feel it gives us a connection we canâ€™t get any other way.
We also realize that neither of us can read the otherâ€™s mind.Â As much as I would like for him to sometimesâ€¦it ainâ€™t gonna happen and I know this.Â I have to tell him how I feel and what I need.Â By not telling him and trying to make him guess I am doing nothing but setting him up for failure and vice versa.Â Although itâ€™s not always easyâ€¦we talk everything out.Â We know have to.
Did having children change your marriage?Â If yes, then how?
Yes it did.Â In many ways it made us a stronger team.Â But it also made things a little more challenging for us.Â We never really had to work much at our relationship until we had Q-Tip.Â It came very natural for us.Â But after we each had more responsibility and less time with just the two of us.Â And having some issues with PPD and quite a lot of anxiety didnâ€™t help matters.Â But, we work through it because she has made us threeâ€¦and we feel forever blessed that we have her.
When did you start your blog?
My goal is to blog Monday through Friday.Â I take off on the weekends so that it doesnâ€™t interfere with family time.Â I wish I could be better and write posts during the week for Saturday and Sunday but I tend to do better when I write spur of the moment.Â For some reason I have more of a block if I try to plan ahead.
My blogging time is during Q-Tipâ€™s nap time in the afternoon.Â Iâ€™m not sure what in the world Iâ€™m going to do when she quits napping.Â I pray to the good Lord she continues on until Kindergarten!Â Because most generally if I donâ€™t get to blog during naptimeâ€¦I donâ€™t get to blog at all.Â And if I donâ€™t get to blogâ€¦I start twitching nervously.
Why do you blog?
Initiallyâ€¦I started blogging as a way to hold myself accountable to my friends.Â I was deep in the throws of a Moving Funk and I knew I had to get out of it.Â I wasnâ€™t sure how I was going to be able to when all my friends were so far away from me.Â And I have learned that asking Farm Boy to hold me accountable for some things doesnâ€™t work out so well.Â I thought if I started blogging about what I was doing to get myself out of it I would be more motivated to do it.Â The more I thought about blogging though my motives started changing.Â I started feeling like I could use it to channel my creativity as well.Â And then I started thinking that maybe I could help other people that were in some kind of funk.Â Help them by making them laugh.Â Help them by letting them know they werenâ€™t the only one in a funk.Â Help them to know by reminding myself that perfection in motherhood, in marriage, and life in general isnâ€™t possible.Â This really is a loaded question for me.Â I could probably go on and on with reason after reason.Â Itâ€™s simply amazing though how putting feelings or situations youâ€™re in into words can help ease your mind.Â Itâ€™s been very liberating for me and I hope it has helped someone else along the way.
What are your top three favorite blogs?
Now Katieâ€¦Iâ€™m gonna have to get a little unruly on ya for this one.Â There is no way on this green earth I can pick just 3.Â I hope you donâ€™t fail me on my questionnaire but it is what it is.Â And itâ€™s probably a good thing that my computer time is limited or there would be no way I could narrow it down to the 8 that I did!Â And honestlyâ€¦Iâ€™m scared to death that narrowing down to the 8 that I did is going to hurt someoneâ€™s feelings.Â Butâ€¦for time purposes and because Iâ€™m already breaking rules and praying not to get an Fâ€¦Iâ€™ll spare you the 20 or so that I think are great!
So here we goâ€¦in no certain orderâ€¦
Confessions of a Young Married Coupleâ€¦of course!
The Pioneer Woman – www.thepioneerwoman.com
Iâ€™m Gonna Kill Him – http://imgonnakillhim.com/
Best of Fates – http://bestoffates.com/
Big Mama – http://thebigmamablog.com/
Redneck Mommy – http://www.theredneckmommy.com/
Mamaâ€™s Losin It – http://www.mamakatslosinit.com/
Mommy Wants Vodka – http://www.mommywantsvodka.com/
What’s in your purse right now?
I have a purse that I rarely use.Â Itâ€™s too much for me to carry a diaper bag and a purse.Â I have a flap on the front of the diaper bag thoughâ€¦itâ€™s my little pocket of stuff I probably donâ€™t need.Â But I like to be prepared see.Â Prepared for such things as dry lips and germy hands.Â Soâ€¦in my effort to be prepared the contents of my pocket are as followsâ€¦
1 coin purse
1 tube of Burtâ€™s Bees chapstick
1 package of Orbit gum
1 roll of dental floss â€“ dental hygiene is of the utmost importance
1 Washington DC pop out map
2 pair of sunglasses for Q-Tip â€“ I have no idea how 2 pair ended up in there
1 ink pen
2 double A batteries â€“ for the camera I always forget
2 outdated coupons for Victoriaâ€™s Secret
1 old grocery list
1 small bottle of germ x
1 small bottle of lotion â€“ to battle the dry skin from the repeated use of the germ x
1 pony tail holder
1 bobby pin
1 toothpick holder
Ohâ€¦and a couple of unmentionable girly things.
When Chris and I first started working with Flosites, the web design company who is designing our new website, the first thing we had to do was answer a huge questionnaire on our style, complete with pictures.Â That way, the web designers could get a feel for what we liked and preferred and what would work for our new site.
I knew right away what style I wanted.Â I wanted my whole website – no, my whole being – to emulate Anthropologie.Â It’s one of my favorite, favorite stores.Â I love everything in there.Â I love their oddly chic clothes, their old fashioned and still hip home accessories, their trendy and yet classic hobo bags.Â Everything about that store’s style makes my heart sing.Â I could spend hours in there redesigning and redesigning every compartment of my entire life.
But after spending more time getting to know us through our blog and the rest of our questionnaire, the Flosites designers came back with a harsh reality.
Anthropologie wasn’t really my style.
At first, I wanted to argue.Â To insist.Â I WAS THAT STORE.Â If I was a style, that would be the style I was.Â But when I thought harder about it, I sort of saw where they were coming from.Â And the glaring fact that brought me back to my senses was that no matter how much I loved that store, no matter how many catalogs I dog-eared, or how many imaginary shopping carts I filled online, I had never bought anything at Anthropologie.
Well, that’s not really true.Â One time I bought one little black dress because I was out of town for a bachelorette party and I realized that my dress for our big night out with the bride looked more like a church dress compared to everyone else, so I splurged and bought a brand new dress there in Anthropologie while we were all out shopping.Â But I only wore it that one weekend and since then it has hung in my closet, untouched.
(That’s me on the far right with the green clutch.)
Maybe those web designers knew what they were talking about after all.Â Darn it.
It ended up being the right choice by Flosites because the look they came up with instead was spot-on perfect and I can’t wait to launch the new site in the next few weeks.Â If I were a website, this is the website I would be.Â It fits me perfectly.
But, alas, it is very much not Anthropologie.Â Nevertheless, I continue to shop their website and occasionally browse through their stores.Â And when the cute, trendy, hip counter clerks ask if they can help me, I will still say, “No, thank you.Â I’m just browsing.”
I wonder sometimes though what it would be like to free my inner Bohemian.Â Hopefully this year we’ll be buying a house and moving again and while the idea of packing up and unpacking again makes my skin crawl, I secretly have been harboring this plan to completely change the style of my house when we move this time.Â No more country rose floral rugs.Â No more paisley and gingham.Â Maybe it’s time to explore the possibilities of brighter colors and flashier prints.Â Maybe it’s time to be a little bolder.Â Maybe after 27 years, it’s time to change my style.
Though, I do wonder how chic this table cloth would look with spaghetti stains all over it…