Sunday, June 29, 2008

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Who Said Dads Can't Have Barbie Cakes Too?



Friday, June 27, 2008

My Little Monkeys




You Can Dress Her Up...

What can I say...I am who I am ... I'm not ever going to wear designer clothes or carry designer hand bags...in fact, I own a Kate Spade (purchased from a thrift store) that I am too embarrassed to carry so I let my daughter use it for dress up (oh the horror!).

Every now and then though I might surprise you...might dress up, might curl the hair and get all fancy on you...but that doesn't mean I will be anyone different...take last night for instance...I needed my girl time...so I went to my friend's, Rockin D I'll call her, for some fun.

We exercised while watching the first episodes of Sex and the City. Now, let me explain Rockin D to you...Rockin D...she's a girlie girl...she's all pretty and smells good and has pretty hair. She's always trying to get me to get all pretty like her but again, I'm just me...I run with the crowd but I'm always a little out of place ya know? So anyway, there's Rockin D lookin all pretty in her silk shirt and SKIRT while we are exercising...and I'm doing my best not to pee my pants watching her lift 2 lb weights in her living room. This is why she is my friend. Because she can make fun of my clothes and hair and oh, pretty much everything about me and I can make fun of how cute she looks lifting weights in a skirt...we spend almost all of our time laughing like little girls when we are together.

Usually when I go over to her house, I'm wearing my pajamas or I'll have my jogging shorts on from running over there...but last night...woohoo I actually looked all cute in my shorts and tank top...got all prettied up for her and even had on mascara...she's mighty impressed with my attempt to beautify myself for the evening so as I'm leaving her house and walking down the drive way she says...."By the way, you look really hot tonight" ..... JUST AS I TURN TO GIVE HER THE MISS AMERICA WAVE GOODBYE, I SIMULTANEOUSLY TRIP ON THE INVISIBLE CRACK IN HER DRIVEWAY LIKE THE FOOL THAT I AM AND GRACEFULLY STUMBLE ALL THE WAY DOWN HER DRIVEWAY (usually I've had at least two glasses of wine before I can accomplish such an award winning act)... She says... "Every time you come over its like being in my own Seinfeld episode".

Yep, folks....don't let my smooth talking fool you....I'm just as dorky as they come!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Me Jane

Littlest child and I went to the Erie Rec Center for a swim today. This was our first visit. Thought we'd try something new. Very cool indeed. They had one of those Tarzan ropes so you could swing halfway across and above the water before letting go and landing in the middle of the pool. It was quiet compared to our other rec center so I was able to start a new book and actually read several chapters in peace while she played with some kids.

Older child gets home from camping today. I'm sure she had a blast! She's a nature lover and enjoys writing about nature in her journal. I think it was a really nice weekend for sleeping under the stars in Colorado...especially with the full moon.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Effortlessly in Love

I've been reading a lot of poetry by Rumi, a 13th century poet. His teachings and poetry are known and popular for teaching the highest state of a human being — a fully evolved human...a complete human is not bound by cultural limitations; Rumi touches every one of us with his love and idea of being in love. This morning as I woke, words and thoughts were in my head as usual...here's my attempt to Rumi!

You grieved for me while my heart shattered
Into a thousand pieces
Scattered across the wasteland of my soul
Before you came to nourish me

You knew that the magnificence and beauty
The pain, pleasure and splendor
The healing and the resurrection
Would be a rebirthing of our love

Seducing each fragment of my heart
To scintillate with passion
You led me on a crusade
Through my own revival

I yearned and ached for you
Before my eyes ever caught glimpse of you
I wanted and needed you
With the shards and broken pieces

I loved and desired you
With my whole vigorous beating heart
And now I tenderly and affectionately
Abandon my heart to your will

I give it willingly and eagerly
To be ravished or ravaged
To be filled or broken
My heart beats only for you my sweet love

You are the essence of my spirit
With vitality you inhabit my soul
Light of my days you guide me
Effortlessly in love


©2008 – Michelle Hix

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Wonderful World of Sid and Marty Krofft

Growing up I was obsessed with most of the productions of the whacky and brilliant team of Sid and Marty Krofft. My most favorite of all...Land of The Lost! It was about a father, son and daughter who go camping but then go through a portal that sends them to this new land. It's not the past and it's not the future. There, they camp out in a cave where the dinosaurs can't reach them...it is really their only safe place except for when they are inside the Pylons. The Pylons are these small weird shaped buildings from the outside but when you go in...whoa cool...much larger on the inside...and that is where the time, dimension, and entrance to the Land of the Lost is controlled. But it seems like when they would come out of the Pylon the Sleestaks were always there. Run Holly and Will run! The Sleestaks were bad but thank goodness they were light sensitive and could only stay out of their tunnel for a short period of time. Holly and Will made friends while lost, like Cha-ka...totally cool little cave-man like dude. In the end, production of Land of the Lost was cancelled before Holly and Will could make it home! Man I miss that show! Here's a clip...don't even think about making fun of it...this show was so cool...you don't even know.



So even if you weren't a LOTL fan like me, I promise you that you have been a fan of something that the Krofft's did at some time. They are responsible for really brilliant stuff like HR Pufnstuf...remember? I can still sing that whole song, and actually do sing it regularly to myself! There was a boy who discovers a boat that takes him to a magical island where the mayor is HR Pufnstuf. But Wilhemina Witchiepoo owns the boat. Oh and then there's a flute that the boy plays named Freddie. Wait, here it is...damn, you can't just make this stuff up anymore...



And then remember Sigmond and the Sea Monsters? Please please tell me you've seen it? Two boys playing on the beach near Dead Man's Point...they catch themselves a sea monster and hide him in their special hide-out.



Man, those were the days to watch television...sitting on the floor, eyes glued to the tv on Saturday morning...

Thursday, June 12, 2008

EatPlayLove and Chaos...I Know You Gals Saw This One Tonight!


I Am Officially An Embarrassment To My Children

Being that I only work outside the home part time, my summer months are spent doing a lot of kid stuff. But I'm already sensing that no matter what I do, I have reached the age, or yet my children have reached the age, where I now look totally uncool to them. Just today alone I could give you many examples...

The Trampoline...while I do enjoy showing the kids my super mom jumps and air splits...I can't seem to jump longer than 10 minutes without having to pee...so not cool.

And then our Cartwheel Contest...yeah, younger daughter almost pees her pants because my underwear shows when I do a cartwheel...at least they were clean....can my 7 year old say that? Yeah, take that one little girl! Go home and cry to your momma...oh wait, that's me...anyway...

Playing Card Games...while my 7 year old usually beats me, this morning I actually kicked her butt at UNO...so while I was dancing around displaying a big L on my forehead with my fingers so that she would know that I am the Queen of UNO, my older daughter had to chime in with "you're not a very good sport mom". Oh whatever kids...don't hate the playa...hate the game right? But again...apparently not cool.

Then, this afternoon, I put the DVD player in the car on headphones only so I could rock out to my MOM music while the girls watched their movie and apparently I was singing too loud for them to hear their movie...so my oldest says "up yours mom"...and I'm like "what? up yours????" and I'm thinking "no, up yours" but I don't say that but then I made her clarify that what she really meant was for me to fade my music to the front and spare their ears in the back of my MOM music.

I might be uncool, but I did join in on their spit bubble blowing contest this morning...when's the last time you blew a spit bubble? Gum is so overrated!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Just Watching The Sunset That's All


I like to walk down the street to a park by my house to watch the sunset. Last night's sunset wasn't particularly great but I did have my camera.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Jam Packed with Stupid

When I was in junior high school, my sister and I got into a fight (one of many). Rarely were our fists the weapon of choice. Usually it was a phone with a cord that could be retracted after it hit someone in the head...kind of like a boomerang...it always comes back so you can throw it again. But on this particular day we were armed with Sharpies and as we flung the potent permanent little suckers at each other, we never stopped to notice that we were marking up mom's curtains, walls, sofa...oh boy...it wasn't pretty. My point being, that we were mad. Consequences never entered our minds until it was too late.

I just read an article in the LA Times about people wanting to make it cool to "pack" in public...you know, carry a firearm in the open on your hip, across your chest, on your rear...in your hand??? Who knows.

Here's one guy's take: "What we're trying to say is, 'Hey, we're normal people who carry guns,' " said Travis Deveraux, 36, of West Valley, a Salt Lake City suburb. Deveraux works for a credit card company and sometimes walks around town wearing a cowboy hat and packing a pistol in plain sight. "We want the public to understand it's not just cops who can carry guns."

Okay dude...yes, it is possible that a normal person might want to carry a gun as an accessory (for the love of God just buy yourself one of those huge cowboy belt buckles with your initial on it and call it good). But here's the problem...normal people carry guns....really weird psycho, utterly deranged, mentally ill, crazy people who USE guns to shoot your ass for no reason. Yeah, those people.

Do you really want people who can't control their Sharpies to have guns? How about those people who can't refrain from stepping on a package of ketchup in the McDonald's parking lot just to watch it squirt across the pavement, landing in front of my car door where I am going to step? Do you want those people to pack guns?

Monday, June 9, 2008

Fade

Sleeping like a ghost by your side
You don’t see me
But I am here
I have a pillow
So I must be here
My tears are wet
I must be here
You don’t hear me
But my screams wake me
From my own sleep they take me
Shoving pain in my throat
Muffling the sounds
You don’t feel me
But I feel…
Numb
But I feel
Crazy
But I feel
Like I fell asleep
And life is a sleeping pill
That never lets me sleep
I think there’s a picture somewhere
That shows that I once was
Someone to know
Holding a baby
No maybe it was a dog
Or maybe I was alone
But you could see me
Opaque, standing
I was laughing
Yes, in the picture
I was laughing
And you backed out of the frame
And I stood there alone
Falling asleep
Silently
Disappearing
Do you have that picture?
What was I holding?
What was I laughing at?
I want to remember

©2008-Michelle Hix

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Hello?

As most normal kids do, my kids love to play telephone. Just about anything in the house can be a telephone. Today a banana, tomorrow a telephone. Is this a remote control? No, it's a telephone to a kid. I've seen staplers, cups, and hair brushes used for making the most important phone calls placed by very serious children who like to also talk with their hands while talking into the inanimate object (where do they get this from...certainly not me!).

Today however, I had to question my youngest's ability to think clearly as she walked around the house having a very heated discussion into my husband's shoe insole. That just isn't right. I told her to hang up and call them back on a landline.

Dinner With The Fam


Friday, June 6, 2008

On My Mind Today...Guantanamo Bay

I’m going to attempt to talk about something that I have little historical knowledge about…hey what’s new right? But also something that I feel is critically important for the citizens of our country to understand.

The right to formally and legally question, test or challenge being detained, in front of a judge or a court, is to me, one of the most basic and primal defenses against subjective detention and the violation of fundamental rights as a human, but especially a human living in America. Habeas Corpus makes me proud to be an American and proud that our founding fathers understood the importance of continuing Habeas Corpus even though other writs were specifically abolished from our early law practices that were taken from England.

To me, it is one of the things that say “we are a civilized people”. It’s just that simple.

That is what scares me I think about Guantanamo Bay. It seems like we are sending a very clear message to the world that we are not civilized and that we do whatever the heck we please, when it pleases us and how it pleases us. How can we be leaders of the free world, how can we call ourselves a free world, when we are selective about when to extend basic civil liberties?

I know that many people think we are talking about a few detainees…but just so you know, over 700 men have been detained at Guantanamo Bay without ever being convicted of a crime.

In 2004, The Supreme Court ruled in the case of Rasul v. Bush that the men being detained in Guantanamo do have access to the federal courts. Since then, hundreds of detainees filed writs of habeas corpus, challenging the conditions and basis of their detention. However, Bushco has been working to keep these habeas cases from happening. Then in 2005, Congress passed the Detainee Treatment Act (DTA). The DTA robbed Guantanamo detainees of the right to file habeas cases in federal court. But then in 2006, in the case of Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, the Supreme Court held that the DTA was not retroactive and therefore did not affect the hundreds of habeas cases in federal court. But then in October of 2006, The Pres signed the Military Commissions Act (MCA) into law which is a bill that robbed Guantanamo detainees and others of fundamental human rights, including the right to habeas. Since the bill was signed into law, courts have dismissed cases and others have been stripped of their chance to challenge being detained. This law will also potentially affect the rights of legal permanent residents here in the US.

To try to fix all this and reverse damages caused by the MCA (although how can you give a man back 5 years of his life that has been taken?) the “Habeas Corpus Restoration Act of 2007” was introduced.

Now we must focus on closing Guantanamo and restoring our reputation as being civilized people.


According to the ACLU website:

At the prison at Guantánamo Bay, convictions can be based on evidence derived from torture, hearsay and secret evidence. Many of the accused have been held in secret prisons, denied access to lawyers for years and even tortured.
The Guantánamo military commissions are a serious mistake. It's time to shut down Guantánamo Bay, and move proceedings to a civilian court of law or a traditional military court operating in accordance with the Uniform Code of Military Justice where constitutional guarantees apply. We must also end indefinite detention without charge. Detainees who are not charged or convicted must be sent to countries where they will not be tortured or abused.


Guantanamo Bay is not civilized and not American…not even close.

To read more and to sign the petition go to Close Guantanamo.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

And The Magic 8 Ball Says....

I'm a nice mommy!

My youngest had to spend a little time cleaning her room today (I'm so evil aren't I?) and I walked by as she was lying on her bed asking her Magic 8 Ball... "Is My Mommy Mean?" ha ha... apparently it said "NO" because she kept asking it!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Gotta Love Colorado Weather



This picture was taken after I read the weather report telling me it was going to be 75 degrees today but prior to actually looking outside at the clouds rolling in from the west. I was getting ready for field day at the kids school...you know, sunscreen, water balloons, visors to keep the sun out, bottled water...CLEARLY DIDN'T NEED ANY OF THAT! It's cold outside!!! I had to run back upstairs and throw on sweats!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Who's Ready to Celebrate? Where's The Party At?


St. Paul, Minnesota

Obama's Prepared Victory Speech: (my comments in red)

Tonight, after fifty-four hard-fought contests, our primary season has finally come to an end.
Sixteen months have passed since we first stood together on the steps of the Old State Capitol in Springfield, Illinois. Thousands of miles have been traveled. Millions of voices have been heard. (thank you for listening to the people!) And because of what you said - because you decided that change must come to Washington; because you believed that this year must be different than all the rest; because you chose to listen not to your doubts or your fears but to your greatest hopes and highest aspirations, tonight we mark the end of one historic journey with the beginning of another - a journey that will bring a new and better day to America. Tonight, I can stand before you and say that I will be the Democratic nominee for President of the United States.

I want to thank every American who stood with us over the course of this campaign - through the good days and the bad; from the snows of Cedar Rapids to the sunshine of Sioux Falls. And tonight I also want to thank the men and woman who took this journey with me as fellow candidates for President.

At this defining moment for our nation, we should be proud that our party put forth one of the most talented, qualified field of individuals ever to run for this office. I have not just competed with them as rivals, I have learned from them as friends, as public servants, and as patriots who love America and are willing to work tirelessly to make this country better. They are leaders of this party, and leaders that America will turn to for years to come.

That is particularly true for the candidate who has traveled further on this journey than anyone else. Senator Hillary Clinton has made history in this campaign not just because she's a woman who has done what no woman has done before, but because she's a leader who inspires millions of Americans with her strength, her courage, and her commitment to the causes that brought us here tonight.

We've certainly had our differences over the last sixteen months. But as someone who's shared a stage with her many times, I can tell you that what gets Hillary Clinton up in the morning - even in the face of tough odds - is exactly what sent her and Bill Clinton to sign up for their first campaign in Texas all those years ago; what sent her to work at the Children's Defense Fund and made her fight for health care as First Lady; what led her to the United States Senate and fueled her barrier-breaking campaign for the presidency - an unyielding desire to improve the lives of ordinary Americans, no matter how difficult the fight may be. And you can rest assured that when we finally win the battle for universal health care in this country, she will be central to that victory. When we transform our energy policy and lift our children out of poverty, it will be because she worked to help make it happen. Our party and our country are better off because of her, and I am a better candidate for having had the honor to compete with Hillary Rodham Clinton.

There are those who say that this primary has somehow left us weaker and more divided. Well I say that because of this primary, there are millions of Americans who have cast their ballot for the very first time. (amen sister!...I mean brother) There are Independents and Republicans who understand that this election isn't just about the party in charge of Washington, it's about the need to change Washington. There are young people, and African-Americans, and Latinos, and women of all ages who have voted in numbers that have broken records and inspired a nation.

All of you chose to support a candidate you believe in deeply. But at the end of the day, we aren't the reason you came out and waited in lines that stretched block after block to make your voice heard. You didn't do that because of me or Senator Clinton or anyone else. You did it because you know in your hearts that at this moment - a moment that will define a generation - we cannot afford to keep doing what we've been doing. (my children thank you) We owe our children a better future. We owe our country a better future. And for all those who dream of that future tonight, I say - let us begin the work together. (my sleeves are rolled up) Let us unite in common effort to chart a new course for America.

In just a few short months, the Republican Party will arrive in St. Paul with a very different agenda. They will come here to nominate John McCain, a man who has served this country heroically. I honor that service, and I respect his many accomplishments, even if he chooses to deny mine. My differences with him are not personal; they are with the policies he has proposed in this campaign. (really? mine are personal!...but you are the better man)

Because while John McCain can legitimately tout moments of independence from his party in the past, such independence has not been the hallmark of his presidential campaign.
It's not change when John McCain decided to stand with George Bush ninety-five percent of the time, as he did in the Senate last year. (no you are called an accomplice when you stand with George Bush)

It's not change when he offers four more years of Bush economic policies that have failed to create well-paying jobs, or insure our workers, or help Americans afford the skyrocketing cost of college - policies that have lowered the real incomes of the average American family, widened the gap between Wall Street and Main Street, and left our children with a mountain of debt.
And it's not change when he promises to continue a policy in Iraq that asks everything of our brave men and women in uniform and nothing of Iraqi politicians - a policy where all we look for are reasons to stay in Iraq, while we spend billions of dollars a month on a war that isn't making the American people any safer.

So I'll say this - there are many words to describe John McCain's attempt to pass off his embrace of George Bush's policies as bipartisan and new. But change is not one of them. Change is a foreign policy that doesn't begin and end with a war that should've never been authorized and never been waged. I won't stand here and pretend that there are many good options left in Iraq, but what's not an option is leaving our troops in that country for the next hundred years - especially at a time when our military is overstretched, our nation is isolated, and nearly every other threat to America is being ignored.

We must be as careful getting out of Iraq as we were careless getting in - but start leaving we must. It's time for Iraqis to take responsibility for their future. It's time to rebuild our military and give our veterans the care they need and the benefits they deserve when they come home. It's time to refocus our efforts on al Qaeda's leadership and Afghanistan, and rally the world against the common threats of the 21st century - terrorism and nuclear weapons; climate change and poverty; genocide and disease. That's what change is.

Change is realizing that meeting today's threats requires not just our firepower, but the power of our diplomacy - tough, direct diplomacy where the President of the United States isn't afraid to let any petty dictator know where America stands and what we stand for. We must once again have the courage and conviction to lead the free world. That is the legacy of Roosevelt, and Truman, and Kennedy. That's what the American people want. That's what change is.
Change is building an economy that rewards not just wealth, but the work and workers who created it. It's understanding that the struggles facing working families can't be solved by spending billions of dollars on more tax breaks for big corporations and wealthy CEOs, but by giving a the middle-class a tax break, and investing in our crumbling infrastructure, and transforming how we use energy, and improving our schools, and renewing our commitment to science and innovation. It's understanding that fiscal responsibility and shared prosperity can go hand-in-hand, as they did when Bill Clinton was President.

John McCain has spent a lot of time talking about trips to Iraq in the last few weeks, but maybe if he spent some time taking trips to the cities and towns that have been hardest hit by this economy - cities in Michigan, and Ohio, and right here in Minnesota - he'd understand the kind of change that people are looking for.

Maybe if he went to Iowa and met the student who works the night shift after a full day of class and still can't pay the medical bills for a sister who's ill, he'd understand that she can't afford four more years of a health care plan that only takes care of the healthy and wealthy. She needs us to pass health care plan that guarantees insurance to every American who wants it and brings down premiums for every family who needs it. That's the change we need.

Maybe if he went to Pennsylvania and met the man who lost his job but can't even afford the gas to drive around and look for a new one, he'd understand that we can't afford four more years of our addiction to oil from dictators. That man needs us to pass an energy policy that works with automakers to raise fuel standards, and makes corporations pay for their pollution, and oil companies invest their record profits in a clean energy future - an energy policy that will create millions of new jobs that pay well and can't be outsourced. That's the change we need.

And maybe if he spent some time in the schools of South Carolina or St. Paul or where he spoke tonight in New Orleans, he'd understand that we can't afford to leave the money behind for No Child Left Behind; that we owe it to our children to invest in early childhood education; to recruit an army of new teachers and give them better pay and more support; to finally decide that in this global economy, the chance to get a college education should not be a privilege for the wealthy few, but the birthright of every American. That's the change we need in America. That's why I'm running for President. (and that's why I'm voting for you!)

The other side will come here in September and offer a very different set of policies and positions, and that is a debate I look forward to. It is a debate the American people deserve. But what you don't deserve is another election that's governed by fear, and innuendo, and division. What you won't hear from this campaign or this party is the kind of politics that uses religion as a wedge, and patriotism as a bludgeon - that sees our opponents not as competitors to challenge, but enemies to demonize. Because we may call ourselves Democrats and Republicans, but we are Americans first. We are always Americans first. (we are human first too)

Despite what the good Senator from Arizona said tonight, I have seen people of differing views and opinions find common cause many times during my two decades in public life, and I have brought many together myself. I've walked arm-in-arm with community leaders on the South Side of Chicago and watched tensions fade as black, white, and Latino fought together for good jobs and good schools. I've sat across the table from law enforcement and civil rights advocates to reform a criminal justice system that sent thirteen innocent people to death row. And I've worked with friends in the other party to provide more children with health insurance and more working families with a tax break; to curb the spread of nuclear weapons and ensure that the American people know where their tax dollars are being spent; and to reduce the influence of lobbyists who have all too often set the agenda in Washington.

In our country, I have found that this cooperation happens not because we agree on everything, but because behind all the labels and false divisions and categories that define us; beyond all the petty bickering and point-scoring in Washington, Americans are a decent, generous, compassionate people, united by common challenges and common hopes. And every so often, there are moments which call on that fundamental goodness to make this country great again.
So it was for that band of patriots who declared in a Philadelphia hall the formation of a more perfect union; and for all those who gave on the fields of Gettysburg and Antietam their last full measure of devotion to save that same union.

So it was for the Greatest Generation that conquered fear itself, and liberated a continent from tyranny, and made this country home to untold opportunity and prosperity.
So it was for the workers who stood out on the picket lines; the women who shattered glass ceilings; the children who braved a Selma bridge for freedom's cause.
So it has been for every generation that faced down the greatest challenges and the most improbable odds to leave their children a world that's better, and kinder, and more just.
And so it must be for us.

America, this is our moment. This is our time. Our time to turn the page on the policies of the past. Our time to bring new energy and new ideas to the challenges we face. Our time to offer a new direction for the country we love.

The journey will be difficult. The road will be long. I face this challenge with profound humility, and knowledge of my own limitations. But I also face it with limitless faith in the capacity of the American people. Because if we are willing to work for it, and fight for it, and believe in it, then I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment when we began to provide care for the sick and good jobs to the jobless; this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal; this was the moment when we ended a war and secured our nation and restored our image as the last, best hope on Earth. This was the moment - this was the time - when we came together to remake this great nation so that it may always reflect our very best selves, and our highest ideals. Thank you, God Bless you, and may God Bless the United States of America