Monthly Archives: March 2009

Today I Choose To Be Wonder Woman…

Have any of you ever left a comment on a Blogspot blog? Am I the only one that gets tickled when the instructions say to “choose an identity”?  

Sigh. I probably am.

Notice that I didn’t choose to be FlyLady in the title (I love it when a segue comes together. I also love the word “segue.”) So Day 1 of FlyLady Wagon Ride is complete. How’d we do, peeps? (It’s almost Easter, so I can call you that.) Did I complete 100% of the FlyLady tasks that I wanted to complete? No. Did I have a much more productive Monday than I have had in many Mondays? Yes, Alice, I did. (Thanks to the eleventy ten of you who called me Alice in the last post’s comments. You’re all so very cute.) And really, that’s the beauty of this program for me. You’ll always have room for improvement, but there’s no room for beating yourself up when you fall short of your goal. I am still trying to tweak my schedule to find out which things work better when. It’s a process, people.

Just a couple of tidbits….If you’ve never ever flown with the F.L. before and you haven’t already done so, check out the Beginner Baby Steps section at  first. It takes you through the program in 31 glorious days, adding a little bit each day so that you aren’t completely overwhelmed with the system the first week.

Also, if you’re a more advanced flyer but you’re signed up for the individual emails, you’re setting yourself up for failure. Some people can handle the individual emails. We, my peeps, can not.

“Wait a minute!” I hear you say. “How does Whimzie Alice Snoodle-whatever know what I can and can not handle? Who does she think she is?”

Let me tell you how I know. You are a blog reader. You don’t need any enticement to come to the computer and check your email compulsively throughout the day. For many of us, the computer you’re staring at right this minute is a big part of the reason you need FlyLady in the first place. Am I right? Are you feeling me? G.P., are you with me? Can I get a witness? So, here’s what you need to do. You need to sign up for the daily digest email. They send it at crack-of-dawn-thirty each morning. Until I get a handle on things, I’m skipping right down through the daily digest until I see the Flight Plan for the day. That’s all my sweet little brain can handle for now. The only thing I didn’t see in that Flight Plan that I want to use right now is the Riley Challenge for the day. That’s a daily mission for the Little People. FlyLady has a whole little section on her webpage for kids but we’re just going to start with the Riley Challenges. Oh, to switch over to the daily digest emails, click on the link at the bottom of one of the millions of emails you’ve already received this morning.

P.S. Delete the emails on a daily basis. You don’t need to go back and read the testimonial about how FLYing reunited two long lost sisters or the one about the sweetest thing one FLYBaby’s daughter said about how cleaning the toilet was like giving the world a hug. Don’t go there. You’re not ready yet. Start slow and go. We are just babies. Sweet, marshmallow soft, beautifully colored, little Peeps.


So, go forth and FLY with whatever identity you have chosen for today. Just be sure and tell me which identity you’ve chosen so I’ll recognize you in the sky! 😉



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Family Secrets Revealed….#2: The One(s) About Alice

I’m going to let you in on another family secret today. This one involves family friends we had when I was younger.  I don’t really remember when my mom and Marilyn became friends, but once they did it was as if her family had always been part of my family. Marilyn had three teenaged daughters and I was about five or so years younger than the youngest daughter. Our families spent huge amounts of time together and I have very special and fun memories of that family.

The dad of the family makes the best homemade ice cream on the face of this earth. Even if he gave you the recipe, you’d never be able to make it like Jake can. He’s also deaf as a post. (I know that’s not much of a segue, but I thought I’d start off with a compliment before I just laid the ugly truth out there.) Jake truly is one of the nicest, funniest people you’d ever want to meet, but if you do get to meet him, he probably won’t understand a word you say. But he’ll repeat to you what he thought he heard you say. Which is never what you said. But it’s almost always funnier.

Let me give you an example. Once upon a time, Jake and Marilyn walked into our house and Dad was on the phone. Mom told them that Dad was talking to Kay Wharton (she was a member of our church). Jake’s response? “Game warden? Why in the world is he talking to the game warden?”

One of Jake’s misunderstandings is so legendary that it has taken on its own persona. I’m not exactly sure why this gaffe became such an integral part of our family fiber, but to this day, if you are around any of us for any length of time, you will almost certainly hear us utter this phrase. So now, as the late great Paul Harvey would say, the rest of the story…

Jake and Marilyn were on their way to somewhere to do something and Mom and Dad weren’t going. As they were leaving, Mom jokingly said, “Don’t have fun without us.” Jake immediately asked, “Alice? Don’t have fun with Alice? Who’s Alice?” So even today, if you’re going to do something without one of us, we will almost always say, “Don’t have fun with Alice!”

There’s an addendum to the Alice story. Apparently Jake had Alice issues. Shortly after the “fun with Alice” incident someone said something about outer space. Jake said, “Alice’s face? What about Alice’s face?”

So, I’m off to do productive things. Today’s my first day back on the FlyLady wagon, you know. I’ll have to let you know about my first day back on track. I didn’t expect any of the rest of you to actually want to do this with the CPQ and myself, but I’m glad for those of you who are. But like I told Tiffani, this isn’t like the time I turned you on to Popcorn Crack so I don’t want any of you throwing timers or control journals or feather dusters at me later this week. You’ve been warned. Now go forth and FLY, but whatever you do, don’t have fun with Alice!


Filed under Family, Family Secrets

I’ve Fallen in a Purple Puddle and I Can’t Get Out

FlyLady's FlyToon


I have a dysfunctional relationship with that little purple fairy lady. Do you recognize her? Do you know what it means to be dressed to the shoes? Is your sink shiny? Have you ever heard of Purple Puddles? Do you know what it means to live in CHAOS? Have you identified your Hot Spots? Have you ever divided your house into Zones? Then you might be a FlyBaby.

For any of you who do not have any idea what I was talking about in the previous paragraph, FlyLady is the alter ego of a lady named Marla Cilley. She has a program that helps you declutter and organize your house and life. She sends email reminders to keep you on track with her program. I have fallen off the FlyLady wagon so many times I have permanent road rash.  But I have better results on her program than any others that I have tried over the years. I’ve also read some of Peter Walsh’s stuff. Know him? He’s the guy from Clean Sweep and he’s on Oprah from time to time. He’s helped me understand a lot of the “why” behind my clutter.

Anyway, lately I’m struggling with maintaining an actual routine in my everyday life. I feel like I’m not being a good manager of my time and I don’t spend my time where I say my priorities are. I clean the same areas of my house and never seem to make any progress. I’m frustrated with my lack of discipline and order. I also know that we’re looking at a move in about three months and I don’t want to spend my last few weeks here obsessing about the junk I need to organize and pack. I need a system and a plan.

CPQ and I were IMing about our struggles in this area and we decided that…sigh…we’re climbing back on the FlyLady wagon starting this Monday.  I’ve changed my email delivery to daily digest so that I can’t be enticed to be on the computer every five minutes under the guise of “looking for my next FlyLady assignment.” We’ve decided that our daily email digest will be our marching orders for the next day, so technically we’ll be one day behind the rest of the FlyLady World. That seems about par for me. I hope that having an accountability partner will help me stay on track. CPQ has plenty of practice in motivating me to do what I’m supposed to be doing. Let’s hope I can be more of a help than an anchor to her.  

But let’s clear from the start of this new adventure. I will not refer to my husband as DH. I will not cry myself a purple puddle. I will not wear a vest to hold my cleaning supplies. I will not “bless the world” with the dust from my feather duster. But hopefully I will get a grip on my routines so that I can be more present in my own life and in the lives of the ones who mean the most to me. Anyone else want to FLY with us?



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A Snoodles’ Bible Addendum…

I completely forgot about one of my favorite Snoodle Bible stories when I wrote the earlier post. I’ll blame that on my foggy rhinovirus brain.

When they younger two were just little babies, FirstBorn was admiring them one day and he looked up at me with the sweetest smile and said, “Aw, aren’t they the cutest little Hebrew babies?”


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If the Snoodles Wrote a Children’s Bible

I love bedtime for the Little People and not for the reasons some of you are thinking. My husband usually does the bedtime routine and he has since FirstBorn was a baby. Usually he hasn’t had an opportunity to be with the kids all day and some days I’ve had more opportunities to be with them than I really feel like I needed at the time. It’s a win-win for both of us. After pajamas are donned and teeth are brushed, Dad settles the Little People together and reads a book and a Bible story and they all pray together before he tucks them into their beds. Sometimes I like to sneak in and listen to the discussions that sometimes ensue during Bible story and prayers. I think the Little People are their truest selves in these moments at the end of the day. Sometimes they  utter truths that are wise beyond their young years. Sometimes they spout out the funniest things I’ve ever heard.

I was telling my mom something the Princess Diva said the other night before bedtime and she jokingly said, “They need to write their own version of a Bible story book.” Yeah, that’s not going to happen, but I did think it would be fun to share with you a few gems I’ve collected along the way. 

When FirstBorn was barely three, story/Bible time was his one-on-one time with his dad. One night, Mr. Snoodle (I really need to settle on pseudonyms for these people!) came in the room after tucking in the FirstBorn and he looked like he’d been through the wringer.

“What happened to you?” I asked.

“I was totally unprepared! One minute we were talking about how God created everything. ‘Did God create all the animals?’ he asks. ‘Yes,’ I say. ‘Did God make all the bugs?’ he wants to know. ‘He did,’ I tell him. Then he pauses and asks, ‘So did God create evil?’ ”

I asked him how he responded and I honestly think he had no idea what was said for the rest of that conversation. FirstBorn’s questions aren’t any easier five years later, by the way.

I was with them the night my husband told FirstBorn the story of  Adam and Eve. After he heard about the snake and the fruit and the consequences of their actions, FirstBorn gave a sideways glance at me before he looked his dad in the eye and said, “I hate to say this, but Eve should’ve sat down and shut up.” He wasn’t sure if he’d get away with that one because we don’t say “shut up” in our house, but his father and I were too busy picking ourselves off the floor to fuss.

A couple of nights ago, we were talking about heaven. The Little People have a vested interest because their daddy’s daddy already lives there. The younger two never met him and FirstBorn wasn’t even a year old when he died, but they’re very interested in knowing all there is to know about Pap and what he’s doing these days. BabyBoy was saying that Pap can’t ever get sick in heaven because there’s no sickness. I agreed and said that no one ever was sad or mad or afraid in heaven. FirstBorn said something about the devil not being in heaven and I affirmed that we wouldn’t even sin in heaven.

At this PrincessDiva sat straight up in bed and said, “You can’t sin in heaven?! But I want to sin!”

“What do you think ‘sin’ is?” I asked her.

“You know,” she said, “like when we send Papa cards and Ruby Jane pictures. I really love to send.” And she truly does.

So I tried to explain the difference between “send” and “sin” and we pondered whether or not heaven has mailboxes. BabyBoy is pretty sure no one can actually mail letters from there to here but he’s not sure if people who are already there can mail stuff to each other.

Just tonight we had one of those special moments that I’m so glad I didn’t miss. Since my husband’s out of town, I’m in charge of the bedtime routine this week. Tonight we read the story of the women coming to the tomb after Jesus died and was buried.  

I read from the book, ” ‘A voice said, “He’s not here. He is alive. He came back to life just as he said he would.” “He’s alive! He’s alive!” the woman shouted to her friends….’ ”

PrincessDiva sighed and whispered, “I love that part.”

Oh, little PrincessDiva, me, too. And I love these precious little Snoodles He’s entrusted to my care.


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Pray for Stellan…

My Charming Kids
Prayers Please

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I’m Really Ever So Not Well…


Only moms will recognize the title of today’s post. I love Charlie and Lola. More than my kids do, even. I think it’s the accents. I don’t know that I’d ever be able to discipline my children if they had British accents. 

But I didn’t come here to talk about Charlie and Lola. I really AM really ever so not well. I think I caught FirstBorn’s cold. I’m not sick enough to go back to bed but I feel too sick to want to do anything. Too bad for me. First of all, I can’t leave the Little People unsupervised. I’m trying ever so hard (I’ll be channeling Lola for the rest of the day, I’m sure) to finish a few projects around here before my husband gets back to town. The Little People could undo everything I’ve done before I could even find a Kleenex to blow my nose.

I think one of the dumbest ideas I have ever had was when we’d had a week of sickness at the Snoodle house. We don’t have many weeks like that. Apparently the theory that exposure to dirt builds kids’ immunity is true. Anyway, all the children had passed around the same germs to one another  and I was worn out from the wiping…whatever you’re imagining I was wiping, I wiped that week. By Friday, I was “wiped out.” I thought to myself, “I wish I could catch this next just so I could lie down for a minute.” Oh, you’d better believe I caught it. But there was no lying down. That week I realized the sad and cruel truth of motherhood that isn’t in the What to Expect books. “Sick mamas” get to do all the same things “well mamas” do, they just feel lousy doing it. 

So don’t get too close to your computer screen. I’d hate for you to catch my cold. Don’t worry about me. I’ll make it…somehow. Seriously, maybe I’ll push myself to finish my list today so I can collapse in a heap on the couch this afternoon….after we finish school. And swim lessons. And I figure out what we’re going to have for supper. And work on my continuing education credits for my nursing certification that expires in five days. Right after that, I’ll lie down.



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