“BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP…!!”I jump out of bed and start smacking the alarm, that isn’t mine.  “SHUT UP” I think, as I look over and see the time 5:45 flashing in the dark. 


It wasn’t working.  I started ripping cords out of the wall, and then realized the annoying sound was coming from a phone.  A phone.  That’s what I get for letting my daughter sleep with me when dad was gone.  I start pushing buttons…”why don’t all phones work the same???”

Finally quiet.

I turned to look out my skylight and saw darkness floating above me, the promise of one more hour sleep.  Sometimes I wake up on purpose too early just to trick myself into thinking I get “extra” sleep time.  I flip over like a piece of bacon and slip into some dream state almost definitely because the temperature is pretty perfect, the light isn’t too obtrusive, and my kids are all snoozing. 


No more sleep.  Not a chance. 

I roll out of bed and check to see who was awake.  Kinley sent the expected text before she left.

“I love you mom, I’ll see you after school and I made lunch for the kids.”  What a sweet heart.  I used to worry about that girl when she was young.  There was the time I found a beautiful “CTR” ring on her finger that stands for “Choose The Right” and asked her where she got it…needless to say, truth be told that she STOLE the CTR ring.  Yes that’s right, she STOLE THE CHOOSE THE RIGHT RING. 

We had to take it back and explain that OBVIOUSLY she didn’t get the whole point of the CTR ring. 

I walked lazily down the hallway and find two kids already getting ready.  Handsome and Halle Bug ran to me and I told them a secret, “Don’t tell the other kids, but we are going to Hogle ZOO today to see lions, tigers, and BEARS! SHhhhhhhhh…”  I walked back to my room to begin to get ready.  The next thing I hear?

“MOM!!! WHY ARE YOU GOING TO THE ZOO WITHOUT US?  You promised us that we could go before it got cold this year and you didn’t keep your promise.”  I hate it when they remind me of my lies and failed promises.

“Well kids,  (I started in my best practiced Jim Fay voice) You are the ones that know if you should be taking a day off of school.  You know if you have homework you can’t miss, grades you need to bring up, or things you need to work on.  Take a minute and let me know what you think.  It was quiet for a minute, and then…


Well I tried.

The uniforms came off and the most comfortable outfit was put on.  Clothes were a flyin’ everywhere, and every kid agreed on one thing in that very moment.  I was the best mom in the world.  “GET IN THE CAR” I hollered as I turned off 15 lights on the way down the stairs.  We jumped into the car and started driving.  I called Camille and Emmy to make sure they were on their way.



Look at these cutie kids!  

Look at Miss 13!  She is growing up and turning into a beautiful young lady.  On the way home she was reciting a memorized poem and I could help but tease her because she has her new braces on and she talks so fast that I have to strain to understand her.  She is a lot better than at first, but that girl can talk fast and she has a mouth full of metal.  I asked if we could please record her so I could share it some time, we shall see!

We walked around that zoo, and around and around, especially because there is major construction and nothing is where it usually is.  The kids had a grand ol’ time, and so did the mommies.  It was a perfect fall day with a chill in the air, mixed with just the right amount of sun. I decided that I will visit the zoo on October 18th every year!

On the way home, the littles fell asleep and I stopped at a piece of land that I dream of building a house on someday.  In my mind it is dreamy, but every time I show someone they give me a sort of sideways look with a tilted head.  In reality, the lot is a mess.  The house that sits on it should be torn down, complete with ivy growing through the kitchen like on “Jumunji”  Yes, Freaky.  Every time I visit different doors are open and shut.

But when I look at the lot I see something totally different.  I see potential.  This has always been my problem…or strength, seeing the potential instead of the mess.

I see 5 acres of land that backs up to a 2000 acre horse riding refuge.  I see HUGE trees all over the lot in varying shapes, colors, and sizes.  I see the natural springs and the option to build a waterfall and stream someday.  I see the rolling hills and plenty of space for endless grass and tents pitched on my lawn when the grand kids visit.  I see back yard parties and lots of wedding receptions.  I see having access to horses someday at the neighbors with an access gate to the mountain from our yard…..

Anyway, we stopped and I got “the look” again from my kids when I showed them “our lot”.  Funny part?  Jon loves it too.  We both agree it is a piece of heaven.  All but the price tag.  It was take some wheelin’ and a dealin’ at some point, hopefully.

Eventually we made it home and I hung out with Kinley for a while.  We talked, and laughed….she laughed because she thought it was so funny that she kept tickling me and now she is the same size as me…and I was so annoyed but couldn’t get her to stop.  We had staring contests and looked at pinterest together.  Yes she is fun, all growing up and fun.

Next, Handsome massaged my feet while Halle massaged my back and Ella talked me into massaging my legs for money, and dang it all…it felt SO good I didn’t want her to stop.  one dollar, two dollars, 3, 4, …and finally 5!! She asked to go to bed and I wouldn’t let her.  I ran yesterday and she said, 

“Mom, your legs feel like grandpa’s garden with bumps and stuff”  Yes Ella…thank you very much for that visual of the knots in my legs.

and mom, do you have to rub butt’s when you are a professional massager?


“Yuck, then maybe I’ll work with animals.  How much can I make working with monkeys at the zoo?”

and that was my day.