Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Hub Fest Hotties

Its always nice to go out with the girls. ALTHOUGH... I have to second guess a bunch of prego's taking their children to Hub Fest... It SOUNDED like a good idea... until we got there and were surrounded by a million people, their pit bulls, and Great Dane dogs. We had to wobble single file with our strollers and even then we were moving like snails. I don't know that we even got CLOSE enough to the booths to see what was for sale inside of them... but we managed a little fun anyway. The SHED had a great big jumpy thing that our girls LOVED.
They didn't exactly understand the "wait your turn" part (bc only 2 kids could jump at a time) but they were pretty patient.
We had Alayna, Brooklyn, Layla, Elyse, Gabriel, and then all the Mommies... Nancy, Katie, Stephi, Jessi, and me.
FINALLY the girls got to jump. And BOY was it fun!
We also found every pregnant woman's dream... FREE PICKLES and water at the Salvation Army or Red Cross Booth... I didn't pay too much attention to the name... just the WATER that we were DYING for and the crunchy pickle that was MARVELOUS to my taste buds. I did go prepared (I thought!) with Brooklyn a sippy full of water and my GIANT Chic Filet cup full of water. However... I'd drank all of my water on the ride from my house TO downtown Hattiesburg. (I'm like a dang camel filling up... I need a LOT of liquid).
We told our girls we would take them for snow cones or ice cream or ANYTHING other than Hub Fest... So we went to leave. AND we saw a giant water fountain and couldn't pass it up. We sat around the fountain and stuck our feet in. (I know. VERY sanitary. DON'T JUDGE). The ICE water was WONDERFUL. It numbed my throbbing feet and lowered my entire body temp down to BURNING HOT instead of FIRE ABLAZED.

Our little ones begged for snow cones ALL the way back to Oak Grove. When we FINALLY got to Connie Cones... guess what? ALL crashed babies snoozing away. We debated rather or not to wake them because truthfully... us moms wanted to eat the snow cone more than the kids... BUT I felt bad about telling Brooklyn I'd get her one and then not coming throuh... SO I woke her. Disoriented and wobbly she popped up at the sound of "snow cone" and devoured it quickly. I had the lemonaide snow cone. SOOO good. I could get a giant SONIC cup full of that and drink it for the rest of the summer. I'm actually making my mouth water thinking of it... and that's not good bc Connie Cones is already closed for the day. Country Time will have to suffice.
THEN I took Brooklyn to my parents house for a cook-out and ate enough food to stuff a horse. We listened to my Dad and Uncle Jack tell us of their childhood discipline stories. And BOY did they have some good ONES! I guess all of our granparents would be in jail if they'd had the same laws back in the day as they do now. But I do like the idea of birthing your own labor force... If I actually do keep my word to Starling and suffer through THREE more pregnancies... I could get a lot of housework done if each kid had tons of chores... although I don't know how much money you save growing your own maids and landscapers... they cost alot in FooD and ClOtHes... But its a THOUGHT! Brooklyn IS a good little helper...the only problem is all the messes she cleans up SHE made. AnD she always asks for my HELP. She's a little OCD. Today she said, "Mommee... I need a nap-tin... Sketti O's and Beep balls made a mess." AND boy HAD they! Those little sticky things had attacked Brooklyn's face, arms, legs, stomach, booster seat, floor, Charkley's HEAD... And she HATES being dirty. She was not content until it was ALL cleaned up and she'd had a bath. (She gets one everytime she eats if she feeds herself).
ANYWAY- it was a fun day. AND I slept good... once I got back home. I fell asleep at my parents house and Starling said I was chewing him out for trying to wake me... SO what does he do? Keeps Karoake Singing then lays down beside me until I wake up at 1:30a.m. wondering WHY in the HECK I am crammed between my husband and some body pillow thing (which was the back of a futon) and wondering where on earth I was and why Brooklyn wasn't kicking me in the stomach. So we gathered our child and I drove home in probably the most ORNERY mood I've been in this month. I was SO mad that I was awake and even more mad that I'd fallen asleep and still the mOST mad that Starling didn't take me home at a reasonable hour. (Of course... he would have had to CARRY me down stairs and stuck me in the van WHILE being kicked and punched and chewed out.. so I KIND of see his reasoning in choosing NOT to take that route. KIND of).

USM Baseball Game

After Brooklyn played all day with Colton, Boston, and Gavin, I dressed her in her USM outfit (Starling's orders) and we met him and his classmates for tail-gating.
Here she is playing in our side yard waiting for Gavin to be picked up.

We visited with Starling's class for awhile. THEN we walked to the OTHER side of the baseball field (OPPOSITE the bathrooms) when Brooklyn announced, "MommAY... i need to go potty!" So I start WALK/JOG/WABBLing ACCROSS the world to get the child to the toilet. The entire time she is coaching me, "Hurry! Go FASTER!" I am panting like an elephant (I guess elephants pant) and huffing,"I'm...going... as fast..as I can.." People are looking at me like I just escaped the zoo.

I FINALLY get her into a bathroom stall and start to take off her diaper and she says..."umm... don't want it. all done." ERRRRR.... "Well, you stand THERE then, little miss. After hauling your tail accross North America, "I" have to PEE."

We went back to our table and ate. And ATE. And ATE. Then we went to another table and ate The Shed BBQ and all the fixings. (When we started eating there I did wish I hadn't just devoured an entire pepperoni pizza by myself...but no need to dwell on regrets). Then we let Brooklyn run around in the grass and play with random kids that approached her. She got friendly quick with some of them. I tried to get Starling to video her while I was taking pictures. OF COURSE everytime I looked over at him he was video-ing the stupid BASEBALL game instead of Brooklyn. (I didn't watch the game the FIRST time; I hardly want to watch it on video a 2nd time).

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Okay. Sooooo... you'd think one family can only have SO much of ONE problem, right? Right. WRONG.

I took the little van to the DMV to get a tag for it (YAY! I can finally stop being a fugitive and have a TAG!) and the DMV lady told me she couldn't give it to me because Starling was on the title, not me. OKAY... minor set back. SOOOOOOOO STarlING went to the DMV to get the tag. He came home and I said, "WOW! It sure feels good to have a TAG, huh?" He gave me this little uncertain look and said very SLOW-LY and CalmLy... "Now... I don't want you to panic..." to which I panicked. AND then decided he was trying to prank me back for all the times I've pranked him. "I KNOW everything went fine because they told me we had all the paper work, you just had to do it. SO I'm not being fooled."

"WE-LL.. actually, there was a little problem... but its not un-fixable." Then I hit the roof with both hands and clawed scratch marks in it, as Starling informed me that BOZO the CLOWN, aka the dealership we bought the van from, did not SIGN the dang TITLE in the RIGHT place! SERIOUSLY?! REALLY?! I mean, COME OOOOON! How many delinquent people can exist in one measly state? And its a DEALERSHIP... don't they do titles EVERY day?? WHAT-EVER. I quickly cooled down to negative 10 degrees and my emotions went completely numb because they are too exhausted to maintain any kind of rise (which is working wonders for my monthly mood swings because I have no energy to SWING).

So Starling mailed the title BACK to the dealership to fix and hopefully they get it back to us PRONTO because I'm tired of having a heart attack every time I see a cop. Cops are supposed to scare bad guys, not little hopped up hormone cases that are trying to do everything by the book. But such is life. (At least MY life).

Jesse and I both had our doctor's appointments yesterday and so we traded off the girls. For some reason Brooklyn decided to have a melt down over OAT MEAL moments before Layla arrived. So when Layla walked through my front door excited to play with Brooklyn and Brooklyn was still hyperventilating because she wanted to eat the oatmeal that was practically still ablaze and I was BLOWING on it and making her FURIOUS, Layla immediately FREAKS and starts crying to which Brooklyn starts crying. Jesse and I are having NuRsErY flashbacks. So I try to attend to LAYLA so Jesse can leave and Brooklyn completely forgets about her oat meal and wants "my MOMMY! es MY MOMMY!" Jesse looks a little worried to leave her child screaming and clinging to her leg, but I assure her she'll be fine. After a few moments I take each girl's hand and say, "Who wants to ride in the wagon?" Both girls say through their sobs, "Want.. wag...on..." So I open the back door and the tears dry up IMMEDIATELY and both girls squeal as they run to the Little Tyke cars (NOT the wagon). FEMALES... I hope our boys are less DRAMATIC.

Then Jesse returned, in record time I might add, and picked up the girls so I could go to my appointment. Everything went well at the doctor. I weighed in at 139. I have officially gained, on the DOCTOR’s record, 31 pounds. WITH TWO MONTHS TO GO. BUT… I’m not sweating it. (However I am CERTAINLY FEELING IT! My stomach has to weigh 30 of those pounds and I feel like I’m going to topple over every time I stand up). My sweet GIRL doctor, Dr. Andrea Carter, told me I look good and not to worry about my weight. I assured her I couldn’t care less if I weighed 210 pounds if I could comfortably WALK. Or ROLL OVER. Or SIT UP. OR MOVE. I don’t have some skinny chic weight complex…. I’m just in physical AGONY!!! And Brighton is OBVIOUSLY uncomfortable. He acts like he has no room in there, always sitting straight up and stretching out. At any given moment I can look down and see two pointy hands sticking out the left side of my gut and two pointy feet sticking out the right side of my gut. AND let me tell YOU- THAT is NOT a NATURAL position for my poor stomach to conform to! IT HURTS!! And he is EXTRA responsive to Brooklyn’s voice. When SHE talks to him, I promise he tries to claw his way out to get to her. Brooklyn squeals in delight as my stomach lurches forward and starts ROLLING and cutting flips. I squeal in anguish! I’ve considered forbidding Brooklyn to lift my shirt every night and talk to him before going to sleep because he gets so wound up… (this could REALLY be a sign of the future….) but I never can tell her no when she says, “wanna see Bright-on, Mommee.. He-ey, Brighton! I lub you Brighton! Su-weeet Brighton…” as she lays her little face against my tumbling belly and gives her little brother kisses. So I bear it. With gritted teeth. And a lot of Tylenol.

Anyway- when I went to pick up Brooklyn, they were squealing and running in and out of Layla’s giant cardboard house that Aunt Mimi got her. We asked the girls, who were already IN their swimsuits, if they actually wanted to go swim. They did so Jesse and I got indecent and went and laid out on a blanket while the girls splashed around in a giant inflatable whale. (Well- when they weren’t jumping on top of US like little frozen ice cubes). Then they “took turns” (I’m kind of STRETCHING that phrase) on Layla’s “boown boown” electric four-wheeler.

Starling called to remind me that we had to be at a baptism for Eli Grover, our nephew, at 6 and needed to leave our house at 5 (since it’s an hour away). I looked at the clock, had a small panic attack, and made Brooklyn leave even though she didn’t want to. She told me, “Bye Mommee!”
Driving the van so Starling could practice the guitar all the way to the baptism, I felt like a pilot flying a helicopter. I got to experience Emily Boover’s 470 hair she told me about Sunday. (4 windows down at 70mph). By the time we arrived, I’m pretty sure that EVERY strand of my hair had encountered my mouth and was swooped into a knot. AND I did nothing about it. I was too busy waddling down the embankment of the Grover’s Farm because we were running LATE, as usual.

It was a mighty sweet baptism and little Eli was a sport getting baptized in the FREEZING creek! He did pop out of that water with quite a bounce. The girls sang, “I am a Child of God” which was precious. Brooklyn and Alayna, who BOTH know the song all the way through stared at the audience like to petrified trees. But when the song was over Brooklyn exclaimed, “YAY!”

Starling had to leave after the baptism in quite a rush because he had a night class at EIGHT which he failed to mention BEFORE HAND… hmmm… I wonder why. So I rode home with Stephanie. Alayna and Brooklyn were sitting in the back and Brooklyn said, “STOP it ALAYNA!!” and then we heard a thud. Alayna said, “Uh-oh… Brooklyn… You’re all WET…” And Stephi said, “ALAYNA… are you pouring water on Brooklyn?” A moment of silence then… “Well… I’m not SUPPOSED to be…” and she continued to beat around that bush until I finally took the drink away. (GIRLS learn to be sneaky at an EARLY age).

Today was pretty terrific. I had a little girl’s day at my house. We made YUMMY Brazilian lemon aide. (which… has ZERO lemon. It has lime). I bought some little glass goblets for the occasion. (I decided the beverage would taste a little better in a nice glass instead of a plastic Chic Fil A cup…). Emily brought nachos and Stacey brought a Brazilian cake (which is like taste bud CRACK… SOOO good…). Luckily Jesse has every fancy kitchen gadget known to man (or woman) and brought her turbo blender. (I don’t know how mine would have fared grinding whole limes…) And I baked a pizza. (Store bought because I can’t COOK).

Starling earned 2023 brownie points because he cleaned the kitchen for me while I ran to Wal-Mart to buy all of my stuff. He started the mower for me so I could mow our front yard but he was watching me like a hawk and micro managing my mowing techniques until finally I gave up and let him finish mowing.

Steph, Jen, Emily, Stacey, Jesse, and I were in attendance at the Girl’s Day… hopefully the rest of our girl friends can quit their jobs soon and join our club. And we want to do it every week so ANY of you stay at home moms are welcome to join us! The more the merrier, especially if you know how to cook!

Alayna, Layla, and Brooklyn played (if you call screaming “NO!!” and “ES MINE!!!” and pushing and shoving playing…) while little Taelyn, Preston, and Ellie played sweetly NOT fighting. (BUT YOU JUST GIVE ‘EM TIME).
We girls had a great time chit-chatting. It’s amazing how I never tire of talking. (ObVIOUSLY).

Starling came home to start the mower for me and take Brooklyn with him to show some houses. I mowed the side yard and headed to the back. The mower died as the back yard is a flippin JUNGLE. I yanked and YANKED and YANKED the cord and amazingly it started. I mowed a small patch and the dang thing ran out of gas. I filled her up and, feeling proud that I cranked the mower earlier, yanked and YANKED and YANKED and yelled at and kicked and YANKED and got a running start and YANKED and QUIT. I went inside panting like an old hound dog, drank some water, and tried AGAIN! I grunted and screamed at the mower to start… I pumped the little chokey button… and about pulled my arm out of socket trying to pull the darn cord. At that point… even if the lawn mower WOULD have started, I would have been so tired and puckered out from TRYING to start out, I certainly wouldn’t have been able to PUSH it. So I called Starling to tell him, “I WANT A MOWER I CAN START!” to which he laughed and said, “You’re going to have to hit the gym before you can start a mower. That mower is NOT hard to start… only to the weak.” Ha. Ha. I’ll laugh at your little remark when I can CATCH my BREATH.

And now I’m walking around with a gimp stomach muscle or something… It hurts to stand up straight or MOVE. Did I mention I am SO over being pregnant? This pregnancy has flown by… I am 31 weeks. WHY does time have to stand still NOW when all my pants cut off my circulation, all my dresses hike up to Never Never Land, and my belly is hanging out the bottom of all my maternity shirts? I can not last NINE more weeks! That’s like an entire SEMESTER of SCHOOL! And trust me… I haven’t been graduated too long to remember how THAT is a LIFE TIME!!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Serene Sunday

Sunday was splendid. I woke up on time, got dressed on time, got BROOKLYn bathed and ready, and LEFT on time. I picked out a cute dress for Brooklyn to wear and matching shoes and hairbow. I forget that my ONE year old is already independant and very choosy about her style and informed me that "No, Mommy, don't want it that shoes... Book-lyn wants this one shoes." I tried to distract her and then to convince her and then I gave up and let her wear her brown shoes. On the wrong feet.

We sat in front of Jesse, Layla, and Jesse's mom. The girls LOVED it (but its AWFULLY difficult to pay attention when you have two girls squealing "O' Mac Don-uld had'da farm ee-ii-ee-ii-o" or saying, "Layla- you wanna color?" "Tank you, Brooklyn" "You weltum, Layla" and "tum 'mone, Brooklyn" "I'm tummin, Layla" and then of course both of them going to the isle where EVERYONE can see them and Layla doing her "trick" which consists of her balancing on her head and kicking her foot in the air.. and of course Brooklyn had to do it TOO). They were so darn polite to each other and cute that I could barely NOT watch them. But I did take a few notes. One note I took, "FORCE Brooklyn to play the violin under any and ALL circumstances." Starling got wind that our new missionary could play the violin and bought one off Craig's list. So, naturally, new talent in the Ward... we couldn't wait to hear him play. Of course, when Starling brought the violin home and opened it up, Brooklyn squealed with delight, "Es Book-lyn's git-tar!!" and she was THRILLED because it was JUST her size!

And I told Starling to let her fall in love with that thing because it is the prettiest instrument on the planet. And after hearing Elder Garner play and looking around at everyone with tears in their eyes (even my HUSBAND), it SINCHED it. I'm ready for her to start lessons.

Well after I led the closing song, and the closing prayer was said, Brooklyn realized with a panic that it was time for nursery. "don't want it nursery! Want go potty!" So I took her to the toilet thinking, "she REALLY doesn't want nursery to want to go potty..." But then when she finished up she said, "Want MOMMY go nursery and pway." So I went WITH her and she didn't cry. She played and had fun. Emily had all the kids on a blanket singing under an umbrella so I snuck out to go to relief society bc I wanted to witness Jesse's first time teaching.

Brooklyn was brought to me almost immediately and I told her she had to sit very quietly. "yesh, ma'am." And Layla came in with Jesse's mom (those two girls and nursery... the only ones that have issues with it). Jesse gave a wonderful lesson and I have no idea why she was nervous. She did GREAT! Layla and Brooklyn, reunited again, began where they left off. When we were singing a hymn Brooklyn said, "Layla wanna da-ance?" And Layla giggled and started swaying and twirling and Brooklyn copied every move she made. When we finished singing they exclaimed, "YAY!" and started clapping. Then they both sat on their little bums, folded their arms, and Layla squinted her eyes shut and had her head completely tilted over for the prayer. Brooklyn doesn't do good with putting her head down during prayers OR closing her eyes, but since Layla was doing it, Brooklyn attempted it, although she was peaking at Layla through her squinted eyes. They both exclaimed "AMEN!!" at the end of the prayer and were ready to go home. I just love our girls... they never cease to amaze me or to crack me UP. I'm glad they'll have each other when they get the boot in a month or so when their little brothers arrive. I can't even imagine what that is going to be like.

Starling and I had a fish fry with the missionaries after church and then we went to take a family nap. We slept until SEVEN and then went to eat home-made bread and cobler at the Blalocks. Now THOSE are some funny people. I always leave laughing (and feeling a little bit more normal) after hanging out with them. Autumn, having 12 children, makes me feel a little more sane. (She doesn't really have 12 children. She has 5). Then we went to my parents house and exchanged our vacation stories. Starling and MY story- dreadful North Carolina car story... My parents: Cruise to Jamaicca, the Cayman Islands, and where-ever else they said... I was lost in my envy at the first part that I stopped listening..

Starling assured me that we'd take a cruise soon to which I asked, "Oh really? With a two year old and a newborn? THAT should be fun." My mom said she could watch them while we went... "A newborn? For a week? I can't just leave a boob with my parents to feed the runt while I go off to get mastitis in my other one trying to vacation." The way I figure it... I won't take a COUPLES vacation until I'm at least 30.. THAT's if we don't have any trouble getting pregnant every 2 years until we've successfully popped out 5 rug-rats. PLUS, I think I'd kill over dead to leave Brooklyn for 7 days. Everytime Starling and I DO go places ALONE, the entire time we are saying things like, "OH! Brooklyn would LOVE THIS!" and "I miss my little Brook Brook.." But I'm sure we'll be saying, "WHAT A RELIEF!" once she hits the terrible two's. For now... we just can't get enough of her (except when I've HAD enough of her).

Anyway- Brooklyn and my dad have been practicing balancing SMARTIE candies on their noses and catching them with their tongue. (my child is so well rounded). Brooklyn wanted Daddy and Mommy to try this. Starling couldn't do it and said he needed to practice in front of a mirror. I told him, "You're going to have to grow a longer tongue and a shorter nose to do this." And so he said, "Well lets see YOU do it." So I attempted it. AND THEN GOT made fun of for THIRTY minutes because my tongue is 3 feet long. (BUT that is what makes me a great kisser- so laugh all you want short tongued people who can only flick your tongue at your partners TEETH)! We then had a catching SMARTIE contest which we were having great fun playing until I realized I felt very much like a dog awaiting a treat. Starling, Bradley, and I were lined up in a row with our mouths open like baby birds and Brooklyn would say, "Want Bladly to tatch it!" And my dad would throw it and he'd catch it and then so on and so forth. After about 8 packs of smarties sitting in my stomach, I felt nauseous and didn't want to play anymore. We MADE Brooklyn leave at 11:30 pm knowing my mom had to be up at 4:30 in the morning and that Starling and I were going to be VERY busy, also.

I went straight to bed with Brooklyn and Starling stayed up to clean our floors. He swept and mopped and earned 1500 brownie points on Wendi's Good Boy List. And then he woke me up when getting into bed after he was finished and lost 1200. Sigh... poor man that lives the life of Wendi's husband.

Today was FABULOUS. Boston came and played with Brooklyn and they didn't stop giggling for 3 hours. Everything Boston says or does is hysterical to Brooklyn. She thinks he is the cream in the center of an oreo. He would "fall" down and say, "OUCH!" and Brooklyn would fall over clutching her side giggling so hard tears were falling down her cheeks and she'd say, "ah..man... Boston es silly!" And everything Boston says he wants to do she is ON BOARD 110% and she is getting me up and hopping to it IMMEDIATELY. And he's so sweet to her. She was fussing a bit, which is unheard of when he's here so I glanced down the hall to see what was up, and Boston was trying to hold her hand and she kept saying, "STOP IT! NO!" And I said, "Brooklyn! He's trying to hold your hand! That is SWEET" and she looked at him and said, "O. otay, mommy" and held hands with him while they walked back to their toys. I NEVER catch those moments on vIdEo!

And then I talked to Starling who gave me GREAT NEWS!! He got a nice raise at his RealEstate Brockerage. He got a 10% commission split raise PLUS they restructured how they do commissions so after you make a certain amount you get another 10% and then so on until your getting a 90% commission split. The house he is in the process of buying (well his CLIENT) is a BIG PRICE (I'll just say that. I don't know that talking numbers is allowable or something... I don't know what realtor code of ethics are so I'll just say he'll probably never sell or buy a house this much again) and he'll be getting 10% MORE than he thought PLUS it'll put him into the second bracket which means the rest of his sales this year will be even MORE! (and THAT, my friend, is SERIOUSLY wonderful because we SERIOUSLY need some money! especially with this new baby coming and Starling having to do an internship starting in May). He's basically working PART time with all this school stuff and then ME... miss NOT working and should be cooking and keeping a clean house and NOT doing that either. (Although I did do laundry today and vacuumed and started unpacking... kind of).

Well my mom is here to get us so we can go see my cousin's new baby! I need to get out of my sweat pants!

Home! FLIPPIN sweet HOME!

SOOO I left off my story at going to buy the mini van... WELL- we went and picked it up. We paid $1500 for it. (and no. it was not a steal. it is definitely WORTH $1500). They had cleaned it up nice for us and sprayed some febreez in there, after finding out I was pregnant. The smell was bearable to me... kinda like a wet shoe.

Brooklyn LOVED the van! (She couldn't care less about the looks of something... it was just REALLY roomy to her and she was running around like a loose monkey in there- and sneaking chocolate out of our ice chest- SO much like her daddy, it kills me). The van is a maroonish color (and Starling has named it the Purple Panther. I wanted to name it the Quaker because it shakes and quakes if you go above 75mph). It is a 2000 Dodge Caravan with NO power locks or windows and, after the guy put 4 cans of whatever makes the air go cold in, NO airconditioning. ALSO when I sat in the drivers seat and tried to sit the seat up a little straighter, I discovered the handle to adjust the seat was missing. Gone. So I faced the challenge of driving the car 13 hours in a RECLINED position. (I didn't meet that challenge. I sighed and told Starling he'd have to drive the whole way).

But, at this point, I would've sliced off Starlings hand if he'd tried to back out of getting the van bc I wanted to leave North Carolina THAT bad. I didn't care that one of the sliding doors had a huge dent and shredded paint. AND I loved the built in car seats. (Almost as much as Brooklyn who buckled herself in and said, "WEE! Lets Go BYE BYE!"

So Starling drove the van. I drove my Altima. We parked the Altima at a DIFFERENT place, the Honda dealership where, upon searching for vehicles, met the owner who is a pretty big wig in the community and agreed to help us get the title work done correctly through his dealership. (BUT it will take several months of paperwork and changing the title into several differnet names). I was ready to SALE the car, but Starling is NOT willing to give up on it, especially when we found out we were getting 30.5 mpg. And truthfully I LOVE my car and I WANT it back! The guy tried to get us to stay through the weekend and try a couple more things but I put my foot down FIRMLY and said, "NO WAY IN-" and STarling said, "OKAY-okay... we'll try to work it out from MS."

We drove the van back to M&M Motors in South Carolina to give Rick, the owner a bunch of paper work that he'll need to help fix this mess. Upon arriving, and I must note it is after 6p.m. (Rick closes at 5 and has been waiting on us) Starling spots the same mini van we just bought in Rick's salvage yard. Starling runs over to it and offers Rick $100 bucks for the driver's seat and the side door. Rick accepted and Starling borrowed some tools and got to work. He brought the old sliding door home with us so he could change out the locks.

Brooklyn was loving the salvage yard. She told her daddy, "Me wanna help." And so I gave her one of the tools that unscrews things and hooked it up to a random screw in the front of the salvage van and she set to work unscrewing all the bolts. She was giggling and excited, "Mommy I DID it!" She is SUCH a little Starling. I told him for her second birthday we are going to buy her some coveralls and a tool set and let her go help Starling work on cars and motorcycles because that's what Starling loves to do for FUN and so does his DAUGHTER. When we FINALLY left the place around 7 or 8 or later Starling said, "Man... THAT is a cool job right there. I think all of this happened so I could recognize my dream to open a salvage yard." I snorted and choked on my drink. "Your dream. My worst NIGHTMARE!" But it seems to be a pretty lucrative endeavor according to Rick who informed me they've pulled in over a million in the last 3 years. (And I'd merrily spend the money as long as I don't have to LOOK at the mess... as long as there is nothing in my YARD or my DRIVEWAY...)

We drove straight through the night only stopping for gas. Brooklyn "talked" on my cell phone for over an hour to her Mia and PiPaw... then to her Daddy... then to Jesse... then Stephi... then back to Mia and PiPaw.. (the phone was locked and I was playing all the voices to whoever she said she was calling). Then I quit talking because I got bored with it and she kept on talking for another 15 min. until she fell asleep telling Mia about "eat more chich-en."

Starling let me drive so he could sleep and couldn't have gotten a wink of sleep for all the PASSENGER seat DRIVING he was doing. Oh yeah. The CRUISE control is ALSO broken in the van. I ATTEMPTED to stay at 75mph BUT the gas petal is pretty hard to press and my leg kept cramping up so I'd push a little harder or take a rest and every time I looked at the speedometer it was between 58 to 90. And luckily the van would start shaking if I got over 75 to let me know to slow back down... but I tended to speed up and slow down with the mood of the radio. And STARLING didn't even give me a chance to slow down before he was popping up, "WENDI! WHAT are you DOING?? Can you not feel the van SHAKING? We know NOTHING about this van. You can't just TRUST vehicles not to break down. Until I've fully examined this thing, you need to keep it at 70mph." I'd roll my eyes and say, "GO TO SLEEP or DRIVE!" and then I'd wait for his eyes to close and try to level out at 75 again.

I got really excited when I saw a sign that said Laurel. That is the first time I've ever been EXCITED to see Laurel. I said, "STARLING! I think we're in MS AGAIN!!" He swiped his eyes and said, "UH- we've OBVIOUSLY been in MS for a while." But I never saw a sign... I was too busy trying to watch the speedometer.

We drove straight to Krispy Cream, but they didn't open for another 15 min, so I drove to WalMart and picked up everything I needed for Jesse's babyshower (that was 11a.m. Sat. the same day that we got home). Starling picked up a dozen doughnuts while I finished shopping and then picked me back up. We went home, ate ALL dozen doughnuts (don't worry we gave Brooklyn one) and I put all my babyshower goodies together and texted Jesse for her favorite salad recipe. My eyes were blurring and trying to roll back in my head so I decided to take an hour and a half power nap. Our clocks said seven a.m. so I set my phone to 8:30 and laid down. Well as soon as I fell asleep my alarm went off! And then I realized that we hadn't changed our clocks for daylights savings time and I'd just taken a 30 min nap. TOO BAD. I showered my nasty hair, looked at the time, had a panic attack, woke Starling up, well TRIED, he wouldn't budge. I shook him and smacked him and finally I got a "hm" out of him. "I need you to go buy all this salad stuff! I bought the wrong lettuce and didn't know about all this other stuff! HURRY!! I need it NOW!" He didn't move. I got a little violent (I won't go into detail) but he got out of bed, took the list, and returned in record time. Unfortunately he didn't buy bags of lettuce, bags of brocolli, or bags of anything. He bought stuff I had to chop up. (And I do NOT know how to chop ANYTHING). I needed to be walking out the door, but my hair was still wet and I was shredding the lettuce with my fingers. Starling was doing the broccolli, realizing sleep was out of his immediate future. I cooked the almonds, butter, and roman noodles, and he picked out all the lettuce that wasn't supposed to go in the salad that I didn't know and put in.

Finally I left, went to the shower, ate until I was stuffed like a pig, and played the games I brought. The first one, "Diaper race" to see who could best diaper their team member out of toilet paper, went well. It was pretty hilarious. The second one, where Jesse had to put a marshmellow in her mouth and read a baby word, then another marshmellow, then another until only one person was still understanding what she was saying... didn't go so well. Apparently Jesse hates marshmellows anyway and was literally GAGGING on them to the point everyone was saying, "MAke it STOP!" and then I felt really bad. But I bet some good pics came out of it!

I went home after laughing with the girls for a while and laid a blanket in the yard and fell asleep. When I woke up I saw my neighbor, who is nine, playing on her swing set with two little girls and no adults. "That's sweet." I thought. Then when I started walking inside I saw Eric batting bees with a tennis racket and Starling shampooing the van. Then I realized that those two little girls were Alayna and Brooklyn. "Starling? are you keeping an eye on the girls?" a rhetorical question that was obviously NO. While I am asking him this Alayna and Franja, the 9 year old, walk into our house. I stop them and ask, "Where is Brooklyn?" Franja shruggs and says, "She said she was coming."

I go to find my child who is by herself playing in the road. I say to Starling, "STARLING! It is GREAT that Franja plays with the girls but you are NOT to use her as a SITTER! She is NINE and an only child... she isn't used to being in CHARGE of a ONE year OLD!" He nods, still busily consumed with the van. "UGHGH. I need you to keep an eye on them. I feel like a walking pile of lead and I'm going to bed." He nods again, "We're going to take the girls to play at Chic Filet." I thought that sounded like a swell idea. At least there are other adults there if our children escaped from the playroom.

I slept until I heard Brooklyn crying and CRYING saying, "Daddy! Daddy!" I got up, more disoriented then I've ever been in my life, and almost walked out of my room indecent, but thought better of it and put on a robe. I looked at my clock. It was 9:45. I walked into the living room and pulled Brooklyn onto my lap. "Where IS your daddy?" I didn't even have my contacts in and they wouldn't have helped anyway because my eyes were still shut. Some blurry dude walked into my kitchen and said something like, "oh, you got her. k" and walked back out. I said, "WHERE is Starling? And what is going on?" I was utterly confused. The blur popped his head back in and said, "Starling went to Sonic. He'll be back in a min. He told us to keep an eye on Brooklyn since you were asleep." I nodded ready to murder my husband. I closed the door that was WIDE open while all the guys were outside playing ping pong. A cuZiLLION bugs were aLL over my house. I felt my way back to my room, found my phone, and called Starling. He had a good explanation but he needed a SUPERB EXPLANATION to suffice. He got home QUICK and I laid into him for about 30 min. until I was too tired to keep yelling. Missionaries are ALSO not BABYSITTERS!!! I am so scared what will happen to my child if I die. He does things like that and then says I make him nervous letting her climb stairs and jump on trampolines. We are both SUCH good parents. Good thing Brooklyn is one going on 12 because if I had a "hand-ful" child... I don't want to imagine what would happen to that poor kid.

Friday, March 18, 2011

New Day- New Attitude! (kind of)

We slept like BABIES last night so cuddly in a NICE big BED. I didn't have any more insane nightmares. (that's why I can't watch that show Fatal Attractions or whatever where ppl are obsessed with wild animals and reptiles that end up killing them...) We got on the local Craig's list and looked at several really NICE vans... not that I can get excited about a mini-van.. I do NOT have a DREAM van in my head.

Starling saw my indifference and decided on a secondary plan. We get a junker van that can be a third vehicle for when I NEED extra seating or when we carpool with our friends and stuff or he needs to haul lumber or tools. AND then I can just get another decent car with good gas mileage that I can drive around town. And we found one and are about to leave the hotel and get it. The man who's selling it is detailing it for us and then we'll be on our way to drop off our car with the dealership so that they can sell it for us.

Brooklyn broke my heart this morning... she said, "I wanna go home, Mommy. I wanna go ho-ome. I want Charkley... I want Cha-ance." (She STILL doesn't get that we gave Chance away... poor dear..)

I just can't wait to see whatever state comes after south carolina. I'll savor that moment like the last piece of Dove chocolate...

MS here we COME!!!


Ok. My emotions have been yanked around like a sling shot for the last week and I THINK I'm out of them. (But amazingly- I KEEP saying that nothing else can surprise me and nothing else can upset me... and SOMEHOW i keep being WRONG!!)

Well- I SAID that we were leaving yesterday. AND WE DID. We left North Carolina and made our way to South Carolina where we bought the car to see what our options were with the dealer. (like- WILL YOU BUY THIS DANG THING BACK!?!) Well. The dealer talks to HIS DMV and the lady there ASSURES him that she'll take car of the situation. SOOO we just need to wait ONE more day and ALL will be well. And she gave him a WINK. (which to him AND to Starling MEANT it was a done deal). Well let me tell you what it really meant. Wink Wink- PSYCH!!! I'm FULL of CU-RAP!

So we slept last night in our CAR because I rEFUSED to sleep in the tent again thinking my comfy seats would be less wretched on my back and butt than the two inch wide sleeping pad. WELL... that MAY have been the case if I didn't have legs. or a HUGE belly. OR a Brooklyn that refused to sleep in the back seat and INSISTED on sleeping on TOP of BRIGHTON which was already squashing ME. SOOO we ended up moving everything to the front seat and Brooklyn and I crammed into the backseat. Amazingly... she STILL turned sideways and I woke up when I FELL out of the seat onto all of the food in plastic chip bags and walmart bags. The falling didn't hurt or anything... but the loud noise it made scared the FIRE out of me... probably because I was having a nightmare about a huge anaconda trying to EAT me and I was trying to run upstairs but he was catching up to me. And then, BWOOSH!! (or however you spell crinkly dorita bag EXPLODING under 130 pounds of shocked flesh)... I thought the snake had either caught me or Starling (who I was SCREAMING at in my dream to SHOOT IT!! SHOOT THE SNAKE!! and in my dream Starling kept saying, "Well- I can't shoot it INSIDE... run outside so he'll follow you out there. We'll ruin the carpet.") had FINALLY shot it as it was clamping down on me. Anyway- I couldn't really fall asleep again after that. So I went and peed outside in the grass, which I've gotten QUITE good at. In fact, since we started this little venture, I've peed outside probably 60 times. I thought it was so easy when I was little. I can still squat down easily enough, but coming back up is an entirely different story. And Starling has an incredible talent for pulling over on the interstate where there is road construction or people LOGGING... and each time I was DOWN before Starling would say, "oh dang... there's people over there."

Anyway- the lady didn't come through for us... and then Starling got a WONDERFUL call from this inspector from North Carolina. "Get your [bum] back here and I am PERSONALLY going to take care of this entire thing. I've got it all taken care of." Starling said, "Well we've already left." And the guy says... "COME BACK- I'll give you your title for FREE right now." So Starling and I REJOICED merrily, said prayers of thanksgiving, and ate Dairy Queen on a high that we weren't driving 13 hours empty handed.

WELL- we drive a couple hours, arrive, tell the dude up front that we are there to see Ken Cassidy and WHAT DO YA KNOW?? He comes out and says, "uh.. well... i'm really sorry to tell you this but uh... I actually got overrode and can't help you." You know that show called "SNAPPED"? Well. I almost made that show. Luckily the very SANE Starling was there to hold me back. And then I pulled out the water works (well- not PULLED OUT- they were EASILY there and I didn't bother holding them back because I wanted him to SEE the pain and AGONY his STUPIDITY and ARROGANCE caused us). And little Brooklyn, in her sweet little voice, complete in cute little pig tails climbed on the bench beside me and said, "Mommy... what's wrong... why are you Cu-rYE-ing?" And then she started wiping my tears for me. AND do you know what that THING said?? "Well... I'm sorry ya'll drove all the way back... but.. and I don't want to say it in front of her because she's upset, but I just got to say it... you're car is scrap metal."

LUCKILY for that man Brooklyn announced she had to go Potty. I seriously saw RED and had a moment of out of body experience where I was attached to the man's face digging his eyes out of his sockets with my fingernails... but Brooklyn's insistancy made me turn away and haul her to the bathroom.

I said a couple of "PLEASE help me control my temper" prayers in the bathroom, and walked back out. Starling met me and held me by the arm all the way to the car. (Maybe he was the answer to my prayer?) So THEN we discussed our options. The KEN CASSIDY said that they put a hold on our vin number because they are building a case against the company we bought our car from (which makes NO sense because they did nothing wrong and we think they have their company confused with the company 20 mi away with the SAME name- but he wouldn't LISTEN to us). He basically told us to go SUE our dealership in South Carolina and get all of them thrown in jail. Well... we would never do that because they did nothing wrong and have been helping us with everything.

SOOoO we decided we had to go car shopping and we did. We ran out of time and have to stay ANOTHER NIGHT (this time in a Hotel). I came in, took a hot bath, shaved every part of my body (which needed a lawn mower more than a razor), and ate a bunch of pizza. I now feel much better. We are leaving the car in South Carolina at the dealership where we bought the car for him to sale for us (bc he isn't willing to BUY it back. UGHGUGH. But WHATEVER- as long as he gets our money back). We have been looking at cars on ebay with CLEAN titles (you can only GUESS why) and hopefully we can rent a car to one of those towns to buy a VAN. WHATEVER we have to do at this point.

So my word of upliftment to all: Be grateful for the lessons you learn for FREE. Because SOME lessons are FLIPPIN EXPENSIVE!!!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Mind. Lost.

Ok. It is now WEDNESDAY. Guess where I am. You know what? I'm not the DMV of ANY state so I won't MAKE you guess. I'll tell you AND I won't change my mind by the end of the blog. I am STILL in North Carolina and I am about half an inch from having a full blown, put me in a straight jacket, lock me up in a padded room, nervous breakdown.

Basically, the DMV people told us wrong information on Friday. Then Monday. Then Tuesday. Then said we had to have the inspection done by their HWY patrol man. So we called the Hwy Patrol man and he said he couldn't get to us because he was booked. And he couldn't do it Wednesday because he had training. WELL, Starling's cousin Johnny is friend with the inspector's boss. So Johnny told his friend what was going on and the friend said, "What training? He's full of it." So the inspector's boss called up the inspector and called him out on his little fib and then told him to get over and inspect our car. WELL you can IMAGINE the JOY that dude had about coming to us. He was an absolute JERK and RUDE and made Starling give him ALL of our paper work, not just the documents he needed. Well he took ALL of our paper work WITHOUT asking and made copies of it all and then PLOTTED against us, I guess out of SPITE for getting caught in his lie. When we called today to see if he filled out the inspection form, because our car is perfect in its condition and should have passed with flying colors, he had opened a CASE against US! He is threatening to prosecute us because Starling signed something saying he never bought the car (so that the dealership could cancel the title to us and sell it to his North Carolina resident cousin) and a bunch of other junk.

If that man could only HEAR the thoughts going through my mind right now directed at him... well its good he can't and I really should not dwell on those thoughts... (the evil man is a child of God... a child of God). Honestly, I would like to SHOVE the paper work down that man's throat and when he starts choking on it... I want to WACK him over the head with our rightful TAG. But I don't know how an orange jump suit would look with my pasty complection and baby bump. I'd be willing to find out for a month or so, though... if I could guarantee that's all the time I'd have to serve. SURELY the jury would side with me and think to themselves... "that sweet girl... she should have run him over with that pretty little white car she bought..."

SO. I don't know Starling's game plan. I know we're leaving here... what choice do we have? MY plan is as follows: PUT A BIG OLE FOR SALE sign in the car window and buy myself something else. I'm about to have two car seats anyway. I don't need a nice car. I've had it parked in my driveway looking at it long enough to realize I just need to DRIVE a vehicle to and from places. I'm ready to embrace... the... mini-van...(uh.. that's hard to say out loud...). I'll have a Mom-mobile... and I already cut my hair off to have the Mommy-hairdo. All I need is my cape (a nice flowery APRON) and a weapon of choice (probably a spatula... my fingers are fearful of knives) and I'll be all set and completely turned over to being a mom.

Thank goodness we've had Johnny and Margarite to be so hospitable and welcoming through all of this. They've fed us and given us a place to stay and given us great conversation. Brooklyn is so in love with Margarite its unreal. The child is normally attached to me like a witches wart, but yesterday when I told her it was time to go bye bye, she said, "No! Want to stay with Martin" (which is what she calls Margarite). I said, "Ok.. give me bye hugs and kisses" thinking she would freak out and change her mind. NOPE. She ran to me, hugged and kissed my face and said, "Bye BYE!" and went back to the rocking chair where Margarite was sitting and hopped back up with her. I walked to the door and Brooklyn waved bye! I was in shock. The only people she has EVER wanted to STAY with over me has been my mom and dad. I'm glad that Brooklyn has had fun. She made neclaces with Margarite, they put puzzels together, played trains, learned colors... and ultimately has NO idea that her mom and dad are almost bald from pulling out their hair and the few hairs left are gray.

I'm going to pack the car for the FOURTH time (and hopefully this time we'll make it OUT of the DRIVEWAY)...

WHO wants a shiny 2006 white Altima!?? Its for sale! If you ask nicely I'll sale it to you for a STEAL!

Monday, March 14, 2011

North Carolina: another blistful blunder

Starling and I loaded up the car after Starling FINALLY finished his to-do list on Thursday night. It was nine or later. My parents had Brooklyn and were attempting to pack for their cruise, so I didn't want to leave Brooklyn at their house ALL night. She of course did NOT want to leave, she did not want Mommy and Daddy, and she CERTAINLY didn't want Night-Night. She wanted Mia and PiPaw and she made it WELL known in a high-pitched erksome screech that lasted until she fell asleep. Then WHILE driving hours on end, Brooklyn woke up, like she does EVERY NIGHT, and guess what? She did not forget that she STILL wanted Mia and PiPaw... so we got to hear about it for ANOTHER hour until she fell back to sleep.

The PLAN: Starling drive a few hours while Wendi sleeps. Then we switch. WELL... Starling popped a couple Aderol or whatever he takes, and he drove.. straight. For 10 hours while "I" got to STAY AWAKE TOO and take notes on EVERYTHING that came into his head (which is a LOT OF CRAP in the middle of the night!!)First, we went through his To-Do list for the following day. THEN we went through our To-Do list on finishing the INSIDE, the OUTSIDE, THE YARD, A GARDEN, both properties in the works of being bought, and our future GOALS, our family DREAMS and Aspirations, and I'm sure I'm leaving out some of our lists. THEN we got to break down EACH category into HOW, WHEN, WHY.

I have to say... Starling is normally the most UNORGANIZED, FORGETFUL person on planet earth. And distractable like a dog trying to go through obedience school with a bunch of squirrels jumping around. HOWEVER, I'm going to go ahead and call them MIRACLE MEDS because for literally 10 hours I told Starling EVERYTHING I wanted done or ever DREAMED of doing and he not only listened, he made out plans to accomplish each thing. (And I don't mean in the BROAD since... I mean down to minute details). AND he was responsive with his ideas and a joy to listen to. I guess I need to make him take a pill before pillow talk... of course we'll have to start pillow talk at eight in the morning...

Anyway, eventually his meds wore off and he was exhausted so I took a short nap and drove for a bit. Almost immediately his phone started ringing off the hook when it was his turn to sleep and so he just started working instead of snoozing.

We finally reached our destination in North Carolina.
PLAN: Starling and his cousin Johnny were to go to the DMV (or whatever they call it in NC) and get the car title thing worked out so that we'd have a clean title to take back to MS so that I can get a TAG in MS.

Starling made sure to get EVERYTHING prepared that NC said they needed. EVEN on the way up there, instead of taking a nap, he was on the phone AGAIN triple checking that everything was in order. (BECAUSE at this point we wouldn't get there until 1 in the afternoon and its a FRIDAY and we don't want ANYTHING to go wrong).

WELL... it DID. Of COURSE when Starling and Johnny get there and the lady reviews all the paper work she says, "WELL... this is signed Starling Johnson instead of JOSEPH Starling Johnson. I'll need a notary to verify this person. AND I need a notary to sign for the South Carolina dealership where you bought this car. (WHICH is HOURS from where we are).

SOOOOOOooo guess what... instead of getting to leave North Carolina, we got a definite STAY plan until Monday.

LUCKILY Johnny and his wife Margarite are SOOOooOO welcoming and hospitable and just the nicest people on planet Earth. They prepared their guest house for us and told us to stay as long as we like. Starling and I felt like giddy little kids going into the guest house because we felt like we were staying in a giant tree house! (You have to see it to understand! Its just the coziest, but roomiest, cabin you've ever entered).

And my favorite part about the guest house? THE BED... a nice, giant, sleep number bed. (The one with remotes where you control the firmness or softness). WOW. TALK about COZY. Brooklyn, Starling, and I crashed like a derailed train and slept completely sound. After the busy day we had.. no wonder. Then I woke up at 5 a.m. because Brighton was jumping up and down on my bladder and Starling was already up on the computer catching up on realestate stuff. So then, naturally, BROOKLYN wakes up to join us. SOOoo we finally have a chance to get an amazing sleep after NO sleep and we SQUANDER it! But, since we were up, we planned the rest of our visit. We decided to visit the beach! (Niether of us have ever been...). So before we left we walked down the road to visit some more with the family.

Brooklyn played with her twin cousins Karl and Alex. They jumped on the "Bouncy" Brooklyn called it, swung in the swings, rode tractors,

sipped lemonaide,

played with the dogs,

and played "Bad-Mitton-Birdie" (says Karl,4).
Starling TRIED to teach Brooklyn to HIT the birdie. She kept looking in the sky for a birdie and when Starling tried to tell her it was the hot pink thing in her hand she informed him, "Es a FLOW-ER, Daddy." and she had NO intention of hitting her flower.

We picnicked outside and ate yummy sandwiches. I had to eat SEVERAL only because Brighton is a little piglet... (and that's being my excuse until the day he comes out of me... nah... til the day he's weaned off the tit... that gives me another year and 2 months). We had tons of fun. THEN we left to go to Wrightsville (which is close to Myrtle Beach but not as crowded).

We met up for dinner with Starling's cousin Meg and her boyfriend Mike. Immediately after meeting Mike, Starling said, "And you're Victor, right?" Mike. Victor. VERY similar. I can see why Starling got confused. We ate some yummy food from Panino Bread or something like that. Then we ate chocolate chip cookies that were bigger than our heads. (Yes Brooklyn ate an entire cookie and so did I and so did Starling. We are a VERY healthy family).

Then Starling and I decided that, since it was after 10 p.m., we didn't want to pay to stay somewhere just to SLEEP. SOOO we scouted out a nice big field and set up our tent in the glare of our headlights. After sleeping in the glorious sleep number bed, the camping pad that holds about a breath of air was ANYTHING but luxurious. Brooklyn and I sat in the tent watching our camp savey Starling. He looked like a magician pulling a million things out of a backpack. He pulled out three sleeping pads, two pillows, two sleeping bags, and we were waiting for the rabbit to come out when he said that'd do for the night. Brooklyn had her own pad, but felt no need to sleep on it. She wanted to climb into MY sleeping bag that fits me like spandex at the moment. I bundled her in HER blankets and tried to keep her in her space still touching me. NOT good enough. When I woke up the FIRST time I was sideways kicking Starling in the gut, and Brooklyn was still coming towards me. The second time I woke up, I was kicking Starling in the face and Brooklyn was still RIGHT at my head. We'd done a 180 turn. When I woke up the THIRD time because my head kept getting wacked by Starling's knees, and snot was running down my face, and I had to pee... I just sat up and GAVE up. Starling sat up, too. "I can NOT sleep like this." I said. "Me neither. Lets go watch the sunrise on the beach."

It was 4 or 5... I never did get the NC time down and then daylights savings time hit... This is the first time I've actually been awake to SEE daylight savings time happen.

We parked at the beach and Brooklyn joyfully exclaimed, "uh RAIN-BOW, mommy!" as the colors developed. Starling took some pretty pics...(he kept getting ppl in the pic and said we'd just tell people that they are us. So those birds are us. lol

It was freezing at five in the morning and I am NOT bigger than Starling! I'm just wearing a huge down jacket. (had to make that clear).

We left from the beach and went to get breakfast. I was craving DOUGH NUTS! So we found us a Dunkin Donuts. Now, I can't be certain because I could only smell out of one nostril and even that ability was going in and out, but I think it was pretty good. It LOOKED like it tasted good.

Then we took a nap in the car in the parking lot (and despite the uncomfort of wadding my body in half to sleep in an awkward position... it was still better than the tent). I can only imagine all the looks we got from other donut customers.

When we woke up we went back to the beach. Brooklyn could not WAIT to find more sea shells. In Destin, where we normally go, you MAY find three decent shells.... but in North Carolina there were PILES and PILES of shells that looked like they'd come straight from the store. (Like- I JUST paid five bucks at Hobby Lobby for a tiny little bag of them... and the ones here are WAY cooler...).

We didn't get burned on the beach.. except for our lips. I can't move mine now.. and it doesn't help that I have to breath out of my mouth because my head is officially so full of snot that I can hear the slosh in my ears if I turn my head. It was a beautiful day to be on the beach, though.. a nice 76 degrees with the wind blowing. We laid out a blanket and poured all of Brooklyn's dishes on it and she fed us sea shells. (They look better than they taste). She WOULD NOT get off the blanket without asking to be carried. She didn't like the sand to touch her AT ALL. (such a wierdo). BUT! Something intervened. She LOVES seagulls and there were plenty of friendly ones on the beach. We were eating wheat-thins and three birds landed close by and started begging for food. I mean that in the literal since. They were barking like Charkley barks when he's asking for spagetti o's. Brooklyn recognized it for what it was. "Tum'mere, bird. Lemme hold you, bird. Wanna bi-ite?" And the bird was skiddish of Starling and me, but once we laid down and played dead the bird came right up near our blanket. So Brooklyn had to make a choice rather to stay on the blanket or get her feet dirty to catch a bird. She chose the bird. She walked on tip toe, holding out her cracker for the bird. She dropped it by her feet and the bird snatched it up. She squealed and ran back to the blanket. Then we tried to feed them orange peel bc I didn't want them eating ALL our wheat thins. (They didn't really appreciate that). And then Brooklyn exclaimed, "MOMMY LO-OOK! A KI-YITE!" a kite? When has Brooklyn EVER seen a kite? But sure enough a group of people were flying those HUGE chinese kites. I guess she saw it on Calliou (or cry-u as we refer to the whiney child on that show).

We left the beach and drove back to Johnny and Margaret's for a cookout. All the nearby fam came and it was fun to catch up with them. We turned in, greatful for a comfy bed again.

So toDAY Starling left bright and early to get the two things notorized that the lady at the DMV told him had to be done on Friday. It should have been an hour tops and everything should have been taken care of. So while Starling was off "finishing up" I packed the entire car, cleaned the cabin, and watched helicopters practice landing. (some kind of military base nearby I suppose). Brooklyn watched with EXTREME enthusiasm and got so excited that she ran to my stomach yanked up my shirt and said, "BRIGHTON!! LOOK, BRIGHTON!! You see DA AIR-uh-planes!!!??" He kicked a crater into my stomach at her voice, so I suppose he was frustrated he couldn't see. He wants out of that cramped space and the feeling is MUTUAL. I'm SOOO ready for him to be out... not so ready for a newborn baby, though...

Anyway- 1:00 rolled around and I hadn't heard from Starling. I called and did he tell me he was almost done? NO. What does he tell me? The lady Friday made a mistake. WOOPSIE! APPARENTLY the HWY patrol has to inspect the car afterall- though Starling SPECIFICALLY asked that like 100 times to 10 different people who ALL told him it did NOT have to be inspected by the Hwy patrol. It could be inspected by any random mechanic. (10 ppl FROM the DMV!) I asked nicely, through gritted teeth and smoke shooting out my ears, "AND did you see the lady from FRIDAY, dear? And did you SMACK HER INCOMPETENT FACE and tell her she is an IDIoT!!??" Starling laughed and said, "I saw her. And I didn't use YOUR wording, but I definitely raised a rucus. And all she could do was apologize for the inconvenience." The inconvenience??? Ok. I really don't want to dwell on the negative BUT I'm gonna for a second. IN THE MEAN-TIME of us getting delayed here in North Carolina, Brooklyn's ears have started running, indication of an ear infection, she's running a fever, her nose is a snot faucet, I feel like the living dead and didn't bring my iron pills and prenatals so I have ZERO energy (especially to deal with a sick baby), and we only brought clothes for two days.. not a MOVE so we are RE-WEARING our grimy clothes, and Starling is missing work and school and has NIGHT-CLASS TOMORROW that he can't miss, and I have a doctor apt on Wednesday. AND here is the topper. SO-WHY couldn't we just take the car to the hwy patrol today and get it inspected?? We aren't allowed to DRIVE our car there or they will give us a citation for NO TAG, NO INSPECTION, and NO INSURANCE (even though we have insurance from MS, and are trying to get it INSPECTED so we can get a TAG!!) AHHHHHHH!!!! This wasn't a good week to miss church.

SOOO the plan for TOMORROW as in TUESDAY as in going on 3 days longer in NC when we should have been hOmE... is that Starling is going to LOAD our car on a TRAILOR to HAUL it to the Hwy Patrol and get it inspected. Then haul it ALL the way back to Johnny's house. THEN drive it off the dang trailor to the DMV and pray that EVERYTHING is honky dory or I'm going to go POSTAL on some DMV people. THEN I have to go to a notary to have the car "sold" to me again from Johnny. And I just found out my license still says Wendi Brown... after almost 5 years of marriage. OMGEEZ I hope my license isn't expired! It probably will be and I'll get arrested trying to get my title.

At this point absolutely NOTHING would surprise me. NOTHING. But on the bright side, we are getting whatever paper work they normally charge $75 bucks for at the DMV for free because of Starling's uproar about their stupidity. (Unless that changes tomorrow bc the same lady made another mistake. WOOPSIE, sorry for the inconvenience...) And we have a comfy place to hang our hats until this junk gets sorted out. And we've played two games of scrabble and I beat Starling both times. That in and of itself is a reason to smile. (but-again- i can't move my lips).

WISH us luck for tomorrow!!