Thursday, November 13, 2014

And I Still Have Them....

Throwback to that one photo that sums up the relationship my sister Kristy and David and I have. 

Sisters: Shenaniganry 
Husband: Reads his paper. Nothing to see here.

Also? Those aren't just overalls. They are overalls with Eeyore embroidered on them. And that shirt is not your average 1998 shirt but a bodysuit. A mock turtleneck bodysuit.

Nothing will ever be more awesome than this.
You're welcome.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

For Lips are the Only Things That Touch

Nathan walks in as I'm watching an episode of Gilmore Girls....

"What's going on?"
"They are having a dance contest to see who can stay dancing the longest."

Young teenage couple walks into frame, sits down and begins making out.
"Oh, I bet they are doing that to make people throw up and stop dancing."

Yep. That's what kissing is for.

In other news: Gilmore Girls! Hooked!!

Saturday, November 08, 2014

Clothing Optional

There is a mountain of laundry taking up a lot of space on one of my new couches.
It's a new pile of laundry so I guess it kind of deserves to be there. 

Friday, November 07, 2014

This Week's Post Script

 .......... streaming .......... 
Gilmore Girls, Pocoyo and The Hungry Caterpillar

 .......... pandora-ing .......... 
Brooke Frasier Station, Yo Yo Ma Station and Oh Hello's Station

 .......... googling .......... 
Shortbread Cookie Recipes

 .......... youtube-ing .......... 

and a bunch of poetry including this and this and this. 

 .......... reading .......... 

 .......... eating .......... 
Well, there's been a lot of shortbread in the house this week.

 .......... thinking about .......... 
sleeping, babies, Sunday Morning music line ups

 .......... anticipating .......... 
Irish Dance competitions, more photos shoots this weekend, a good night's sleep

Thursday, November 06, 2014

Am I Blue?

If blue fingernail polish were currency, all of you would be invited to my giant house for the biggest and most amazing party with iPads and a daily change of socks for the rest of your life as party favors.

You can see by this rational statement that when all paper currency is converted to shades of blue nail polish, it shall behoove you to remain my friend.

I will accept bribes in the form of Starbucks.
Green Tea Latte
No Classic.

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Something Under the Blog is Drooling

I graduated high school the same year Bill Watterson stopped drawing "Calvin & Hobbes." It was a big deal in my house when the last comic strip appeared. My sister and I were die hard comic strip readers and my dad just fell hard for the comic timing, simple and complicated drawings and the deeper meanings and life lessons Watterson brought to the world (often with a tear or two, Baby Raccoon, anyone??)

I was on the Yearbook Staff the year before the final strip and I wanted desperately to fill some empty space on one of my pages with a section of Calvin and Hobbes dancing. My yearbook advisor helped me find where to write and ask permission. I was delighted to receive the "Okay" from the magical grown ups at the other end of my letter! I remember not being surprised. It felt like "Bill will think it's cool. He knows me!" (He doesn't. And I am sure he never even saw the letter.)

My dad "owned" all of the Calvin and Hobbes books that existed in our house. They often weren't on a shelf but instead open to a page near someone's bed or on the couch. You could always count on at least one copy in the bathroom magazine rack next to my mom's Good Housekeeping. (The Shumates are Bathroom Readers.) However, when I got married, I managed to bring quite a few of the books along with me. One of my favorites being the 10th Anniversary Edition where Bill Watterson picked out his favorite or most notable comic strips and talked about their inspiration, origins or arguments they brought about with his editors. I learned so much about the Art that Watterson felt he was creating with something as "throw away-able" as a newspaper.

The books I pilfered from my own dad were added to as I would find deals on the C&H books I had left behind. A nice collection accumulated and I often kept one or two in my own bathroom just as when I was growing up. Nate the Great came along and began reading and discovered a Calvin and Hobbes book one day. He was in: hook, line and sinker. He has read every book we own and every comic strip at least 3 times and he still reads the funny ones out loud to me which drives me crazy because I am not a fan of listening to people read out loud AND duh, I know. I have read them 3 times more than he has. One of my favorite memories of Nathan's 1st grade year in school was how he got busted by his teacher for retelling a punch line from C&H during class. She felt the joke was inappropriate. I thought it was hilarious. We had a hard time seeing eye to eye after that.

As I added to my household, more hands clamored for the books. I have lost a few books to overuse and I figure if a book is going to die, it's better to go that way than the way of the bird cage liner. I remember finding a page out of my beloved 10th Anniversary Edition that had become separated from the binding. I was upset-more than I should have been-and all Calvin was removed from the Zablets hands for a spell but not for too long. As soon as they would see a book left out when I had been reading, they were all back in trying to read while putting their shoes on in the morning or sneaking a book into bed with them along with a flashlight.

I am happy to sum up this little stroll with the news that I have repaid my dad for the swiped comic books when a two volume hardback edition of the Complete Collection was released and my sister and I went in on the purchase together. I may have made her promise that I get it when he dies. He may have said he's taking it with him.

But when we are over at his house, where will you find my kids? Dragging those big books off the shelf to read until we make them come to the dinner table. And even then no one wants to make them stop. We'd rather pull up a piece of carpet and join them.

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Fully-ish Functional

Since all of the hullabaloo and chatter from me about my hearing loss, surgery and inability to use my hearing device, Bone Anchored Hearing Aid or BAHA, I feel like a little update is in order.

After some minor surgery at the end of May and a visit to audiology, we confirmed that I am still "half deaf" and that my BAHA was not working properly. It would be a hefty amount to fix but after having a hole drilled in my skull 4 years ago, it seemed silly to not give it a try. 

Charlotte and I drove out to the doctor's office today and picked up the freshly repaired BAHA and I have been back to Bionic since this afternoon. 

The results always amaze me every time I hook it up. I drove home with my finger in the good ear and told Charlotte to talk to me. I could hear her! Of course, later  I also was reminded of my frustration with the device when I suddenly started experiencing the clicking and ringing of feedback that sometimes occurs. 

I will wear the device for a few weeks and then follow up with audiology who can make some tweaks with the programming of the device. I will have to live within the confines of this technology. Nothing will ever replace God's creation as perfect as He created it. I will have to remind myself that the ability to hear on my left side is a special gift despite its limitations. 

And with a cheering section this cute, it's hard to stay down for long!

Monday, November 03, 2014

Leaves are Falling, Right?

It's Fall in Southern California....

Children head off for school in long sleeved shirts and flip flops. 

Housekeeping is done with all the windows open in the morning to let in the crisp, fresh air and closed up in the afternoon before the heat comes rolling in. 

Pumpkin, Ginger Spice and Apple Cider Candles are lit and their cozy aromas fill the home in place of baking because it's just too hot to turn the oven on. 

You can shop for a coat and a swimsuit in the same store, usually on racks next to one another. 

Facebook posts from friends complaining about the wind and falling leaves are "liked" with just a little bit of jealousy...but it's okay because orange, red and yellow maple leaves can be purchased at the grocery store: two bundles for six dollars. 

It rains for two days and it's called a Storm. News logos are created. Stories are exchanged of BBQ's being rained out. 

Red Starbuks Cups with steaming and delicious drinks are enjoyed with the air conditioning in the car at full blast. 

I have decided to assemble an "At Least It's Fall on My Playlist" Playlist and it includes selections from Eva Cassidy ("Autumn Leaves") and Kate Davis ("September in the Rain.")
What else should I include?

Sunday, November 02, 2014

What So Amazing?

David and I have been watching The Amazing Race for many years. Easily one of our favorites. We discuss how we would approach each Roadblock and challenge. We laugh how David would eat anything and I would starve and lose it for us because I don't even like to eat a different brand of peanut butter. We were overwhelmed with jealousy when a friend ran into Phil Keoghan in the airport and took a pictures with him AND got the Phil Eyebrow arch!

In reality, I would be a terrible partner for David to race with. And he don't have sort of personality that makes good TV. But since us being on the show isn't a reality, we still talk through the race and how we would approach it. IT's fun for us and anyone who happens to be over on Sunday nights. Because that's when it is on: Sunday nights.

But it isn't Sunday nights this season! It is on FRIDAY nights. And so, thanks wholly to the DVR and the stubborn nature of two long time viewers, we get to see The Amazing Race and Phil on Sundays. Right where it should be.

*Daylight Savings Bonus Fact: Because of a way too late bedtime last night, DST change and a full afternoon of photo shoots, this blogger is very tired and actually fell asleep while composing this blog. When she awoke, the letter "b" had been typed over 100 times. It was not a ghost, it was sleep blogging. And that, dear readers, is when the blogger realized how today's blog was incredibly boring. Full refunds will be issued in the morning.

Saturday, November 01, 2014

Train Up a Child

I really hope you exit this time of Daylight Savings with the peace and knowledge that you have raised children who know how to turn on the TV, get their own breakfast, get their baby sister out of bed, help solve each other's problems and generally LET MOMMY SLEEP IN. 

(I have. And this is one of my crowning achievements of parenthood.)

Friday, November 08, 2013

God Bless the USA

David was given the chance to shoot a homecoming today....... what a gift it was! And what beautiful shots he got! Here are just a couple of the 300+ photos he took!

Thursday, November 07, 2013


.... sometimes, you have your Mom over for dinner and go out for dessert with your best friend instead of blog.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013


Dear Family,

I know you want banana bread.
I know that when the weather gets cold, banana bread always hits the spot.
I also know that you (aka Nathan) were disappointed when I made pound cake last night instead of banana bread.

However, choosing to not eat ANY of the 10lbs of bananas that I purchased is NOT the way to get what you want.

I will, if I have to, win this battle of wills by eating every single banana in the house which will not only provide me with a victory but also fill me with a ton of potassium that your own bodies will be lacking. That, dear family, is called a Win-Win.

(Some of you forget that I am raising you and that I always win the Battle of the Will.)

So it is up to you. The ball is in your court. Either start grabbing those bananas in the morning on your way out the door or see your mother/wife have the ability to keep a normal water balance between the cells and body fluids (according to Yahoo Answers) before your very eyes!!

Love all of you,


Monday, November 04, 2013

I Like Nate

Tonight I am a Campaign Manager and poster designer for Nate the Great!!

Sunday, November 03, 2013

Sprechen sie Deutsch

I woke up this morning and my eyes are puffier than normal. It is like the skin above my eyelid was resting on my actual lid...I have felt it all day.

I am so aware of my eyes that it makes me feel like I am a different person. Like I should style my hair differently or have an accent. 

German maybe. 

Saturday, November 02, 2013

One is Silver and the Other Gold

What is your definition of a friend?

Is it someone with whom you have a lot of activities in common? Do you guys run in the same circles? Attend the same events?

Maybe you like the same movies and books. You both love food but hate crab cakes.

Sometimes friends are people that have been around for so long, they know everything. You keep each other's secrets and you're too old to teach all those secrets to someone else.

Ella has recently made a new friend and it has been so lovely to see the relationship grow. They are both new Kindergartners and even though they aren't in the same class, they spent the first 6 weeks of school together after school. There was a lot of giggling, laughing and games I couldn't understand. If they walk somewhere together, they do it hand-in-hand and their standard greeting and farewell involves a long hug and one of them trying to pick up the other.

The friendship has given Ella such a confidence and helped her transition into Kindergarten. And anyone that knows Ella wouldn't be surprised to know that she has a very time leaving me to go to new places. So these first months of school for her have been very difficult!

While I was talking to my sister about it, I found that summing this relationship into one thought was difficult. I couldn't really put my finger right on it. What was so great about this friendship for Ella?

It was the next morning at drop off that I saw it. We got to school and Ella's friend was already there. Their two classes meet in the same classroom in the mornings. Ella's friend waved to her. "Ella!" As Ella unpacked and got ready for the day, another girl walked over and tried to sit down next to Ella's friend.

A small, 5 year old hand moved from the lap where it rested and was laid flat on the floor. "I'm saving this seat for Ella." A smile crept across Ella's face (slowly, from one side to the other.) Ella's friend had a fierce look on her own face and the other girl knew she meant business.

And there it is.
We want to be able to walk into a room of people and know there is a place to sit. And not just sit but sit with people we care about. Someone who will stand up to others to protect that space. Someone who desires our company.

We all want a friend who will save us a seat.

Friends like that don't come along every day, and I am thankful my Ella Girl has found one.

Friday, November 01, 2013

Quoth the Salad: Nevermore.

I was pulling into the store and it was just laying there in the middle of the road: one lone Price Club Cesar Salad, perfectly preserved, completely sealed.

I thought about grabbing it. I mean, the top was on. It was clearly something someone put on the roof of their car and drove off. David LOVES the Cesar salad! I don't have to tell him how I got it!

But I was on the wrong side of the road. I was in a hurry and had people behind me. I moved on. I smiled as I imagined what a flattened salad might look like if someone hit it with their car.

20 minutes later, on my way back out, the salad was gone. Not flattened.
To whoever grabbed it and enjoyed it for their dinner:

Well Played.

PS: It's NaBloPoMo time. Remember that?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Wax On. Wax Off.

That moment when you are thinking about the happy times when you were little when it suddenly hits you:

You used to collect candle wax.

Meaning, you would break off the dried drippings of wax off your mom's candles and store them in a box.

But wait, there's more!

You also had a constant stream of dinner guests coming through your door and you would show the collection to them. As in, sit them down and tell them about each piece of wax. Every. Time.

And the fact that your parents just let you be you without telling you to put the silly box away, amazing. And my parents really are.

Monday, November 05, 2012

Love Song From a Savior

A friend shared this on my FB wall today and I share it with you partially because I know it came at the right time for me but also because I want to have it saved in a place I can get to easily.........

My Child ~
You may not know me, but I know everything about you ~ Psalm 139:1
I know when you sit down and when you rise up ~ Psalm 139:2
I am familiar with all your ways ~ Psalm 139:3
Even the very hairs on your head are numbered ~ Matthew 10:29-31
For you were made in my image ~ Genesis 1:27
In me you live and move and have your being ~ Acts 17:28
For you are my offspring ~ Acts 17:28
I knew you even before you were conceived ~ Jeremiah 1:4-5
I chose you when I planned creation ~ Ephesians 1:11-12
You were not a mistake, for all your days are written in my book ~ Psalm 139:15-16
I determined the exact time of your birth and where you would live ~ Acts 17:26
You are fearfully and wonderfully made ~ Psalm 139:14
I knit you together in your mother's womb ~ Psalm 139:13
And brought you forth on the day you were born ~ Psalm 71:6
I have been misrepresented by those who don't know me ~ John 8:41-44
I am not distant and angry, but am the complete expression of love ~ 1 John 4:16
And it is my desire to lavish my love on you ~ 1 John 3:1
Simply because you are my child and I am your father ~ 1 John 3:1
I offer you more than your earthly father ever could ~ Matthew 7:11
For I am the perfect father ~ Matthew 5:48
Every good gift that you receive comes from my hand ~ James 1:17
For I am your provider and I meet all your needs ~ Matthew 6:31-33
My plan for your future has always been filled with hope ~ Jeremiah 29:11
Because I love you with an everlasting love ~ Jeremiah 31:3
My thoughts toward you are countless as the sand on the seashore ~ Psalm 139:17-18
And I rejoice over you with singing ~ Zephaniah 3:17
I will never stop doing good to you ~ Jeremiah 32:40
For you are my treasured possession ~ Exodus 19:5
I desire to establish you with all my heart and all my soul ~ Jeremiah 32:41
And I want to show you great and marvelous things ~ Jeremiah 33:3
If you seek me with all your heart, you will find me ~ Deuteronomy 4:29
Delight in me and I will give you the desires of your heart ~ Psalm 37:4
For it is I who gave you those desires ~ Philippians 2:13
I am able to do more for you than you could possibly imagine ~ Ephesians 3:20
For I am your greatest encourager ~ 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17
I am also the Father who comforts you in all your troubles ~ 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
When you are brokenhearted, I am close to you ~ Psalm 34:18
As a shepherd carries a lamb, I have carried you close to my heart ~ Isaiah 40:11
One day I will wipe away every tear from your eyes ~ Revelation 21:3-4
And I'll take away all the pain you have suffered on this earth ~ Revelation 21:3-4
I am your Father, and I love you even as I love my son, Jesus ~ John 17:23
For in Jesus, my love for you is revealed ~ John 17:26
He is the exact representation of my being ~ Hebrews 1:3
He came to demonstrate that I am for you, not against you ~ Romans 8:31
And to tell you that I am not counting your sins ~ 2 Corinthians 5:18-19
Jesus died so that you and I could be reconciled ~ 2 Corinthians 5:18-19
His death was the ultimate expression of my love for you ~ 1 John 4:10
I gave up everything I loved that I might gain your love ~ Romans 8:31-32
If you receive the gift of my son Jesus, you receive me ~ 1 John 2:23
And nothing will ever separate you from my love again ~ Romans 8:38-39
Come home and I'll throw the biggest party heaven has ever seen ~ Luke 15:7
I have always been Father, and will always be Father ~ Ephesians 3:14-15
My question is ~ Will you be my child? ~ John 1:12-13
I am waiting for you ~ Luke 15:11-32

Love, Your Dad, Almighty God

Sunday, November 04, 2012

Heinz 57 Adventures

I am trying to figure out how to tell you the story of the time I sat down on the toilet and, for two seconds, thought I was dying because somehow a ketchup packet had gotten between the toilet lid and the toilet bowl and when I applied gluteus maximus pressure, the packet exploded red all over my legs and the cabinet of Real Simple magazines that sits across the bathroom from the toilet. (Longest blog sentence ever written?)

 I am not quite sure how to explain that it was only when I smelled the ketchup that I realized I was not mysteriously dying.

 And I am dubious that I should tell you that, before I cleaned it up, I called the kids in to see the condiment carnage.

I will tell you that my sister laughed really heard and immediately asked of she could tell her husband Kris.

And I will tell you the completely fantastic fact that upon pondering the bizarre event, it actually made a little bit of sense.