Off To The Races

Another summer weekend has come and gone and I am so sad because that means that June is almost a memory. Summer is racing by. The weekend temperature here in West Virginia wouldn’t have been any better if I could have handpicked a temperature because it was approximately 80 degrees (my IDEAL temperature) with very little humidity.

I’ll give you a minute to let that sink in.

An ideal temperature with very little humidity is a rarity around here and don’t you think I didn’t praise the good Lord for giving us a break from working up a sweat just by walking from the front door to the car. Now, if I could only get rid of this runny nose, itchy eye allergy fit, I’d be doing good.

I’m ready to poke my eyeball out.

With a fork.

I am debating whether to race to the medicine cabinet take a little something for relief but fear I’ll be all jacked up on Sudafed half the night.

Desperate times, folks.

Hopefully, my west-coast Words With Friends friends and my midnight shift working Words With Friends friends will be up to help me pass the time or else it might be a long night for this girl and her racing mind. Which is unfortunate because I am tired after a jam-packed weekend full of the thing I love the most.

My fellas.

To start the weekend off, McDaddy’s brother Dave and his family drove up (or is it down? I never know) so that Dave, a distance runner, could compete in the WV 5K Championship race on Saturday. And for those of you who aren’t up on your K measurements – 5K is actually 3.1 miles.


I don’t know about y’all, but if this girl had to run 3.1 miles, it would take a first repsonse team and three days.

One day for each mile.

Dave however, WON THE RACE with a time of 15 minutes and 4 seconds.

(Picture Credit: Huntington Herald Dispatch)

And not only did he NOT need a first response team OR three days, he actually jogged the course BACKWARD before the actual race.

Oh, and just for fun, he woke up on Sunday morning and ran 20 miles.

Which translates to pure craziness.


Forget the response team. Just order me the mahogany casket right now.

Unless, you’re talking about the Rat Race. Now that’s a race, I might be able to win.

Congrats, Dave, we are so proud of you!

After waiting for more than five years, can you guess which race we watched on Saturday?

We went to see this little gold mine race car,

Which reminds me a great deal of this little beauty,

Holy crap, I want one of those suckers.

To finish the day off, we hit a nearby race track for some monster truck madness.

And speaking of madness, what would you call a $10.00 sno-cone?

I’d call it craziness.

Or madness.

It was a weekend full of racing for our family.

What did YOU do this weekend?

You Capture – Pretty

This week’s You Capture challenge is pretty. This will be a fun one.

It was a pretty [hot] day for celebrating field day. (And I have a pretty little sunburn to show for it!) The kids had a lot of fun, especially doing the limbo. 

It was pretty scary to watch my boy play pitcher during his last baseball game. I was praying the whole time that he wouldn’t take a ball to the face.

And speaking of pretty… look how pretty these bright colors are. In preparation for CARS 2 coming out on June 24th, Alex lined McQueen (five of them, in fact!) and his posse up for a reunion.

 And I couldn’t pass this one up, because the blooms and colors are so pretty, especially in pink!

And if you’ve spent more than a minute around here, you know what’s coming next….

The beautiful, classy, sexy Saturn Sky.

Ain’t she pretty?

Yes, I think so too!

Sorry. I just had to do it.

Now, head over to I Should Be Folding Laundry for all manner of pretty.

My Favorite Things {A Giveaway}

My day started with a mile-long to-do list.

Topping the list was reaching the peak of Mt. Washmore and going to the grocery store because we were out of milk, juice, pop tarts and Dr. Pepper. I know, I know. We’re talking emergency here, folks.

I got Alex ready and dropped him off at school. One of my preschool mommy friends asked if I’d like to join her for breakfast and just like that, I abandoned my grocery store plans and we headed for the iHop. We enjoyed a wonderful breakfast and I had about an hour before it was time to pick Alex up from school.

I decided to hit Target.

I am usually a Wal-Mart girl because I am on a budget and quite frankly I haven’t been able to beat their prices at our local grocery store. It’s been months since I’ve shopped at Target because I choose to steer clear of three-mile-long holiday lines in November. But I was in rare form this morning and thought I’d shake things up a little bit.

One thing I love about Target is all the coordinating merchandise they offer. I have not a need in the world for blue, orange and red striped plastic plates, cups and serving platters but those brightly colored sets catch my eye every single time I go in there. It takes all the discipline I can muster to pass the stuff up. On top of that they have the best selection of bedroom, bathroom and kitchen stuff of any store around. As I perused the aisles, sans kids mind you, I couldn’t resist going down the CARS aisle just to see if there were any new CARS out. Sure enough, I found a Color Changer Snot Rod, which I immediately picked up for a certain little boy for Valentine’s Day.

From there, I headed to the make-up department. I found my favorite mascara and rounded the corner to see an entire display of Sharpie pens with bright silver lids.

In my head, I imagine a group of Sharpie big-wigs sitting around a table asking, “How can we improve upon the widely popular Sharpie?”  And then in my head, I imagine a woman, a classy woman, calmly stating, “You put a bright shiny silver lid on it!” 

That silver cap sealed the deal for me because hello? It’s shiny! AND it’s a Sharpie AND it won’t bleed through my calendar! So, how, I ask you, was I to pass up the new shiny sharpie? I say it all the time around here folks, it’s hard to stop a woman with a strong will and a Sharpie. 

As I was gushing at all of the Sharpie awesomeness, a thought hit me and before I knew it, I got all wild and crazy and began throwing some of my favorite things into my shopping cart because GUESS WHAT? Valentine’s Day is coming up and I love you all so much I thought it might be fun to GIVE AWAY SOME OF MY FAVORITE THINGS HERE ON THE SHOW TODAY!

And the crowd goes wild!

Just imagine that I am working my way around the stage to tell you about each and every item, just like Oprah does. I would gush and clap and holler because I am a holler’er.

I’d be all crazy as I announced, “Up for grabs is a package full of some of my favorite things!”

I’ll tell you now that my FAVORITE thing is the Saturn Sky, but sadly, I am not including one because I couldn’t find a box large enough to ship it. Included in the package are: my favorite candy – Peanut M&Ms, Lady Speed Stick deodorant, Wild Strawberry and Tangy Citrus Trident Layers gum (Because I am wild!), Softlips Pearl tinted lip conditioner, Bath & Body Works Festive Vanilla Fig antibacterial moisturizing hand soap, Cover Girl lash blast volume mascara (it’s the bomb, folks!), Classic Ivory Neutrogena mineral sheers powder foundation with SPF 20, Kleenex travel tissues, Cello sponges (because they have a cute design), Arbonne Virtual Illusion Lash Enhancer, Microfiber hair wrap, and a “tree-free, acid free, made from all natural stone journal set.”

To enter, simply leave a comment telling me one of your FAVORITE THINGS!

That’s it.

If you’re feeling wild and crazy, you can mention the giveaway on Twitter and/or Facebook and then pop over here and leave another comment for another entry. Add one more entry if you “Like” From Inmates To Playdates on Facebook. And don’t forget to stop back over here and leave another comment.

The contest is open to US residents only.I’ll choose a winner at random on the evening of February 1oth.


In the interest of full disclosure, I purchased these items myself and am not receiving any sort of compensation to host this giveaway.

This post is linked to WFMW over at THAT Family.



Random Integer Generator

Here are your random numbers:


Timestamp: 2011-02-15 22:03:00 UTC

On February 4, 2011 at 11:43 pm Frances (who does not have a blog but has a yahoo e-mail address) left the following comment: “My favorite things (besides the husband and kids, so cliche right? but the truth) are Sunflower Seeds, Tropical Punch Kool-Aid (weird, I know), your blog and the Bible. Your blog brings a smile to my face daily”.

Congratulations Frances! I’ll be in contact with you via e-mail shortly!

Alex Ryan

This sweet boy:

  • loves Fruit Loops cereal
  • is a fast runner
  • has an extra tooth
  • stands 46 inches tall and weighs 46 pounds
  • wears glasses (and has since he was three)
  • has more Lightning McQueen cars than any one child needs
  • wrestles with daddy any chance he gets
  • has a love for shoes
  • would rather be outside
  • is sleeping in his brother’s bottom bunk tonight
  • has a nut and egg allergy
  • wears a size 11 1/2 shoe
  • operates the TiVo like a pro
  • proudly climbs to the highest point of any piece of furniture when no one is watching
  • hates broccoli and peas
  • has a knack for making himself gag (and possibly puke) when eating broccoli or peas
  • is a good back-scratcher when he wants to be
  • shifts gears in the Jeep when he rides in the front seat
  • weighed 10 pounds 5 ounces at birth
  • received a red Mario Brothers DSI XL for Christmas 
  • loves stuffed animals more than any other toy
  • names each and every one of his stuffed animals
  • watches Tom & Jerry daily
  • will pick McDonalds every. single. time.
  • can count to 100
  • likes brown sugar and “cimmanum” pop tarts best
  • has an over-active imagination
  • strings toothpaste from one end of the bathroom to the other in a matter of minutes
  • enjoys playing with his older brother
  • snuggles with his mama daily
  • always chooses strawberry syrup at iHop
  • has really good manners
  • can’t wait to be six
  • just like Bounty, he’s the quicker picker upper
  • would rather be the line leader at school than the flag holder
  • crawls in bed with me when McDaddy is out of town
  • orders like a big boy at restaurants
  • will start Kindergarten in the fall

And makes me smile daily.

What I Learned This Week

This week I learned a few tidbits of helpful information.

As always, I am sharing because that’s just the kind of gal I am.

It’s been a doozie of a week here at the McResidence. We’ve been away more than we’ve been home and we’ve been waiting on the Board of Education to make a decision regarding the first day of school at Stevie’s elementary school. It is frustrating, especially when you recall voicing your concerns to the school board that the plan they were proposing had about a 9% chance of actually happening the way they said it would happen.

And by 9%, really what I mean is slim to none.

They ‘proposed’ the closing of a neighboring school, and subsequent move of those children to the school that my son attends. The school where I am again, PTA President. And they claimed to have it done by the time school started back for the fall.

The school grounds have been dug up, there are construction trucks everywhere, the contractor has until August 25th to finish up the work and the first day of school has been moved from August 20th, to August 23rd. Still, I have no earthly idea how they think children will be able to start back on the 23rd.

I didn’t mean to launch into a tirade about the school system except to say that I’ve learned that my views reagarding the School Board are usually correct.

But I’m not one to say ‘I told you so!’ so I won’t say it.

Instead, here are the things I learned this week.

1. While shopping at the annual consignment sale –  hyped up on all manner of adrenaline and competitive clothes shopping – it is totally possible to inadvertently purchase three of the exact same shirt in sizes 5, 6, and 8.

2. There is a 90 day warranty on Crocs. That means that even if your rougherthanacobbchild tears up his month-old Croc (and loses his Spiderman jibbitzin the process), the company will replace the Crocs for a new pair.

3. I learned the hard way that it is never a good idea to shed your hot, sweaty clothes before going into the bathroom.

4. When making a verbal business deal, it is absolutely imperitive that each person understands what the other is saying.

5. When purchasing transformer t-shirts at the beach, you should go ahead and purchase shirts one size larger than what you actually need because one run through the dryer and they will pretty much disappear.

6. Ants are very clever creatures. For instance, if your child drops a crumb of brown sugar and cinnamon poptart on the floor under his barstool, the ants will come out of crevices you didn’t even know existed for their piece of the poptart pie.

7. If you spend the better part of thirty-six minutes killing and cleaning and disposing of dead ants, you can pretty much expect to spend much of your REM sleep that night dreaming about ants.

8. After spending thirty-six minutes killing and disposing of ants, then dream about them all friggin’ night, your first task of the day will be heading to the Dollar General in search of something to rid your house of them.

How’s that for some learning?

Linking up for the first time? Click here for the complete long-winded version of the carnival rules or just read the shortened version, here.

1. Any time this week, publish your What I Learned This Week post on your blog and link back to my blog. The button is optional, but so cute, so you might as well.

2. Link up with the Mr. Linky form below this info. Please remember to link to your actual WILTW post, not the frong page of your blog.

3. Then, visit the other participants to learn what they learned this week. And, for added excitement, leave a comment or two. Or twelve.

Ok, I think that’s all.

I’m Feeling Particularly Rowdy!

It’s Monday again and that means it’s time for another edition of Not Me! Monday, brought to you by MckMama. And because I’m feeling particularly rowdy, I’ve compiled an uneven numbered short list of thing I most certainly did not do this past week…

1. I have not spent the better part of two weeks buying and returning swim goggles. As you might (or might not for all I know) recall my sweet boys completed a session of swimming lessons earlier in the summer. Stevie is now swimming and can’t stand to have water in his eyes or to be splashed in the eyes while trying to swim. And so began my quest for a pair of swim goggles that don’t fill up with water the second they hit the water. Why is it that we can put a man on the moon but I can’t find ONE SINGLE PAIR of swim goggles in the Tri-State area that do not leak.

2. I am not! at 11:09 P.M. EST sitting in my big, blue, bloggy chair eating a Snickers bar while writing this post. I’m telling you people the late mid-thirties and their hormones mean business.

3. I am not already dreading the 14-16 hour drive to Florida for a family vacation with McDaddy’s family later this week because I am a great traveller who never complains or whines in the car that she is tired, bored, hot, or sleepy.

4. I did not start a list of stuff to pack three weeks ago for the aforementioned Florida trip because three weeks? Who can keep up with a list for three weeks? Not me!

5. It’s not me who has assisted a certain four-year-old boy for the past seven days in his quest for finding white-wall Lightning McQueen which has apparently been taken hostage in our home. Nor did we find nineteen (19!!!!!) other Lightning McQueens while searching  for White Wall McQueen.

6. I am not of the opinion that the airlines are out of their blame minds for charging outrageous fees for carry-ons, checked baggage, seat assignments, and bathroom visits for goodness sake.

7. I never ever roll my eyes when my boys watch Sonic the Hedgehog because I just adore Dr. Eggman, Knuckles, and Tails. And because I’ll take Sonic anyday over that idiotic voice on Thomas The Tank Engine.

How about you? Is there anything particularly interesting you haven’t done this week? I’d love to here from you lurkers.

Come out, come out wherever you are…..

Some Last Minute Stuff

I’m packed.

The itinerary is printed.

I attempted (unsuccessfully, mind you) to complete the online personality instrument required for our strong-bonds marriage weekend.

Power-cords, laptop bag, and iPhone are packed.

Clothes for the boys are laid out.

Lists are completed for medicines, and breathing treatments.

The boys’ Valentines are packed and ready to take to Sunday School.

I am ready to spend an entire weekend with McDaddy. A glorious weekend.

A weekend free of wiping bottoms. A weekend free of taking someone to potty in the middle of the meal for pete’s sake. A weekend free of the words, stop, no, zip your lips, and yes, you have to eat your vegetables.  A weekend free of Lightning McQueen and his posse.

A weekend of learning more about myself and my sweet McDaddy.

A beautiful Valentine’s Day weekend with my Valentine.

See y’all on Sunday.


A Fly On The Wall

Our home is a joyful place.

Except when two of its members are squabbling over the same version of Lightning McQueen.

Or the youngest of its members forgets that his teeth are only for chewing food.

Even then, the McResidence is a great place to be. Things seldomgo awry. The situation rarely escalates to a point where an adult is required to step in. Everything is so tidy, that no one ever loses anything or leaves toys lying around. Every member of this house is eager to pitch in to do his part, leaving very little work for me. And, as you might of guessed, this place runs like a well-oiled machine.


And if you were a fly on the wall, YOU WOULD NEVER hear the following statements in our home…

“Can someone please wipe my bottom?”

“Daddy” (times about 4,329)

“Mom, where is my [insert item here]”

“Mom, can I play the Wii?”, “Or the DS”,”Or the computer”

“Mom can we please watch a show?”

“Are these clean or dirty?”

“I don’t want to!”

“I can’t”

“Is it bedtime?”

“Can this be a play bath?”

“Ew, what is this stuff? Well, I don’t like it!”

“Did you remember to call the insurance company?”

“If toys are left out again, they will be put up and you won’t see them for a month!”

“Is it time to pick up Stevie?” (at least 14 times a day!)

“Mom, why do we need fingernails?” Um, good question, I really have no idea!

“Do you want me to get the spankin’ spoon?”

“Mom, are you in the bathroom?”

“Do I need my aggerly (allergy) pill today?”

“Can we take the JEEP?”

“Mom, can I wear my snow boots today?”

“I’m mad at myself!”

“Can I have a brown sugar and cimmanun poptart?”

I suspect I answer approximately 3,281 questions each day.

And, if you were a fly on the wall in our home, you would not have heard the following conversation take place three nights ago…

ME: “Alex, do not put that booger on the couch, you need to get a tissue – Alex, what are you doing with that booger?”

ALEX: “Putting it back in my nose!”

Seriously, you would NOT have heard that from my 4 year old darling boy because he always wipes his nose with a tissue.

Oh, and FYI, McDaddy and I most definitely did NOT spend another Friday night in the ER because of my stupid blood pressure.


Visit MckMama’s place for more Not Me! Monday posts!

Thursday Thirteen – Courtesy of Stevie

Stevie has been asking me for weeks when he could “Take more pictures for Thursday Thirteen on your blog” and for weeks I’ve been putting him off.

You know, because of child labor laws and all.

But lo, last Tuesday was a snow day and after his limited amount of time on various electronic devices, he was bored out of his mind and posed the question again. The snow day provided the perfect opportunity to take 13 pictures of random things in our home that he wanted to tell you about.

Each caption is a direct quote.

Are there Child Labor Blog Laws?


Okay, I didn’t think so.

Off we go.

1. I like my DS because I got two new games for Christmas and I like the new Transformer case because it can hold two games at a time.

2. I love my mom because she is sweet. She lets me do Thursday Thirteen stuff. She lets me take the pictures and tell her about the pictures.

[In my defense, it was a snow day. I haven’t the first bit of make-up on and I was caught off guard and didn’t have the wherewithall to hold my head up to hide that second and third chin.]


3. This is mom’s nightstand. I like the lamp because you touch it to make it come on. If you touch it after it goes the brightest, it goes off. I like the clock because at night, it shows the time up on the ceiling.

[I should take this opportunity to say that I also had a box of kleenex on the nightstand prior to the shooting extravaganza. For some wild reason, my nose has ran for two weeks without a break.]

4. I like the snow. I was hoping I could go outside someday and clear our block off with my gator, but we have not got a chance to. I like the snow because it looks nice with its white, shiny color. The step on Dad’s truck is icy and the truck looks pretty snowy as shown.

5. This is a map downstairs in the basement. It has flags on each state that mom and dad, me and Alex have been to. Some of them are from when we weren’t born yet. And mommy said she was behind on a couple of them because we are out of flag pins.

[Seeing this picture reminds me how far behind I am on mapping our adventures. Must. get. flag. pins.]

6. Daddy has two computers beside of his computer because he is working on Cindy G’s computer. Dad has been working down here a lot now. He used to be working away from the house a lot instead of downstairs, but now he is starting to work downstairs more.

7. I like my 4-wheeler but one thing I do not like about it is that it is one-wheel drive and if you get that one wheel off of the ground in the field and your back is facing the hill, then you are gone unless someone helps you. It has two gears, training and normal. The training is for small places and for people who are just learning how to drive it. The normal is someone who knows how to drive it already and its for wide-open places.

[I did not get to vote on the giving of this thing. McDaddy’s siblings went together and purchased it for Stevie’s birthday this year. Hearing my sweet seven year old say the whole line about the one wheel being off of the ground and then you are gone unless someone helps you, makes me aware that I need to  have a very long talk with McDaddy regarding this thing.]

8. This clock may have Chick on it, but it has two cars on it because it is a 3-D clock and it turns from Chick to McQueen. It has a different sentence on the top of each car. I cannot remember the sentence above McQueen. The sentence above Chick is The Challenge is on!

9. These are our Wii games. I have lots of fun on them, but my favoritist out of all of them is Monster Jam because I have won almost every single one and you can even move a bus out of its spot with your truck in freestyle. I have unlocked one of my most favoritist trucks ever which is El Toro Loco.

10. This is Alex and Dad. I love both of them and they are playing on mom and dad’s bed. The whole family has lots of fun together. Me and Alex like both mom and dad. Daddy works in the Air Force and he is gone of course today, and we miss him very much. One time he had a deployment for six months. We missed him but the very last day he was gone, when he came home, we showed our posters to him and we were glad that he came back. He has had to leave again but just for a few days each time.

11. This is our toothbrush and toothpaste basket. Me and Alex have Spiderman toothbrushes that can brush our teeth for us. You just press a button and the toothbrush brushes your teeth for you. We can tell them apart because mom wrote an “S” and “A” on the bottom of them.

12. Me and Alex are a big fan of Jimmie Johnson. This is our cool car turned into a Jimmie Johnson car. I was the one that got this plan. We printed the “48” and the “LOWES” and the “Lowes Racing Team Sign” from the computer and then the first 48 I cut out, I accidentally cut the eight off, but we printed another one and I kept both of them together that time. I used tape to put them on the car. Alex was pushing the car once and pulled the Lowes Racing Team sign out of the tape and now it flies up when we go real fast with it.

13. This is the table behind the big couch. You think it might look beautiful with just that, but there are two things that didn’t fit in the picture. It is a vase and a picture of  me in gray (black and white). The real big picture in the middle is a picture of the whole family’s feet and it has a verse written in cursive at the bottom.

Now, wasn’t that fun? Yes, I thought so too!

Bag Lady

We’ve had an exhausting, albeit fun-filled week here at the McResidence.

There is a seemingly endless stack of CARS memorabilia and can you believe that Alex received TWO MORE STINKIN’ LIGHTNING MCQUEENS THAT HE DID NOT ALREADY HAVE?

I would have bet the ranch that he had every Lightning McQueen known to man, but, hark, those very sneaky people at Disney added a green ‘tree like’ streak to the side of one of the boogers and called it Christmas McQueen. Also, they added a black streak to him and called him Burnt McQueen.

Genius, I tell you.

They pull innocent kids right into proverbial their trap because for some reason, these kids Alex think he actually NEEDS every Lightning McQueen known to man.

Transformers have replaced Thomas the Train in the Christmas loot this year. Just when I learned the names of Thomas and all of his rowdy friends, I have a whole host of Autobots and Deceptacons to learn. 

Sheesh. It’s enough to make one crazy crazier! 

But it was not me! who Googled the words remove & plastic & bag & from & stove & top on Christmas Eve.

No way was that me because surely to goodness I have more sense than to place a plastic grocery bag on a hot stove top that had not completely cooled.

And since it wasn’t me who typed all of that in, there is no way that I read the information and quickly summoned McDaddy to fetch some WD40 and a razor blade from his lair garage.

Thirty-six minutes later there is no way I was still using the razor blade to scrape plastic bag off of the stove top because me and the patience are not real close friends.

I can assure you that if I had put that stupid bag on the stove top that I could say with 100% certainty that I WILL NEVER make a dumb mistake like that again because the task of scraping that stove top is ridiculous.

Trust me!

That’s it for this week, folks.

Head over to MckMama’s place for more things that people didn’t do!