Friday, July 31, 2009

Where Did We Leave Off?

Ah yes, the lizards.

And heat.

Have you ever been wilting outside on a 115 degree day then suffocated by a steaming, wet terrycloth robe?

As someone who starts to feel comfortable when the fahrenheit hits 90, I can appreciate a good heat wave. I don't ever think I've been too hot, and I've been to some warm places.

Phoenix in July.


Northern Costa Rica.

But beneath an unassuming little shelter somewhere south of Cancun, I met my heat match.

The blood stopped moving through my body, my eyelid blink became slower than a garage door closing, and I started to mumble.

All in the name of seeing some alleged ancient ruins by the "Mayans."

First things first: I am not a sightseer.

Maybe in my pre-children vacation days (but probably not).

If I went to Paris, I'd be much more concerned about what I would be eating three times a day than seeing the things like the Eiffel Tower and That Fancy Art Museum.

Me: "I've seen Mona Lisa on the internet, so can we call it quits and go find some gelato?"

Brad, however, would have befriended the museum docent, scheduled a private tour, and set up a time for us to go make snow angels in Leonardo da Vinci's ashes.

Meanwhile, I'd be hightailing it down the street, with baguettes under each arm, dinner reservations at 3 different cafes, and a local shopping discount.


Being less than eager to view the craftsmanship of the Mayans and their big bricks, the heat that covered me like a wool blanket in hell wasn't really helping.

(As you can see by our smiles.)
But hey, now at least we can tell our kids we've seen the Mayans and their buildings that fell apart (much like our modern house.)


PRAISE GOD that this amazing ocean was on the other side of the pile o' rocks.

Do you know the best thing about the ocean?

The breeze.

Do you know the worst thing about the ocean?


But I would've drank an ocean full of poison just for the relief from the heat.

However, I didn't consider taking a nap.

After counting, there were over 20 mini-dinosaurs within a few feet of him.

And an ocean.

And he was covered in sand.

At least it made us all laugh.

At which point, we decided to take some pictures.

So we could remember this fabulous day forever.

Josh & Karen almost got carried out to sea.

(Which might've been a better alternative than hiking through the inferno to get back to our car.)

{We forgot to take pictures, but there were six Big Americans in a Ford Comfort.

Which, if I'm being generous, is approximately the size of a mo-ped.

Just ask Brad...he curled up in the fetal position and rode in the hatchback.}

Walking back from the ruins and the ocean in THE BLASTED HEAT, I thought I saw a Mexican mirage:

But luckily, even the toastiest place on this earth had an oasis.

And for me, there is nothing a Blizzard can't fix.

{I didn't even question the lack of peanut butter cups on their Blizzard menu. I didn't care. I would've eaten ground up iguana in a Blizzard and died quickly, but happily.}

After all that fun, the boys still wanted to have MORE FUN that involved MORE sightseeing.

However, we needed a Pool Guard, so I lathered on the sunscreen and laid incredibly still on a float for five lizard-free hours.

Meanwhile, the guys worked on their reverse can-openers.

And then we had dinner.

*coconut shrimp
*crab cakes
*tuna ceviche
*seared tuna filet
*halibut steak


I *LOVE* that man.

The End.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Enough Already

I'm only posting this picture because I feel asleep in this exact same position a few times in Mexico.

Gut hanging out and all.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

More Deliciousness

Captain Handsome and I have been bonding more and more each day.

What really connects us is a genetic condition referred to as "Galanos Thighs."

Brandon appears to have chunk-a-licious thighs, cankles, wrists, tummy, and cheeks.

I should also mention that another notable family trait is the ability to out-sweat a sumo wrestler in a steam room...couple that with all the chubbiness and it makes us sound like a real delightful bunch.

{Hold on a minute while I go nuzzle my nose in his amazingness.}

Unfortunately, our people do not breed scrawny little waifs.

Just ask Lilly.

Yes, those are suntan marks in the creases of her elbows and forearms.

And upper arms.

And her thighs have two incredibly distinct sections.

I can't help but think of the XXL Turkey Drumsticks at the Texas State Fair when I look at that leg of hers.

And this one makes me think of a package of Jimmy Dean sausage.

Today, against all good judgment, we dressed up the kids and their cousins for family pictures outside.

Have I mentioned that we are in Dallas?

Where even the crickets sweat in their sleep?

And the best light is at 7 o'clock p.m., when even my shins spontaneously sweat as I move closer to the door?

But I don't notice because I'm frantically drying the sweat that's drizzling down my back and into my underwear?

So anyway, brilliance on our part!

The photographer came to my parents house where the scenery was beautiful, the kids were bribed with fudgesicles, and I think we've got ourselves a winning photo if we were going for the look of "our-family-just-held-hands-and-walked-through-Niagara-Falls."

Sunday, July 26, 2009

62 and Fab

Guess whose birthday was yesterday?

My mom is amazing and I am hoping to look half as good as she does when I turn 40. 

{In hindsight, all of that sunbathing in my teens was probably not such a good idea.}

We had a great day celebrating and she had lots of helpers when it was time to eat cake.

The troops wanted to put 62 candles on top of the cake, but we opted for a smaller amount.

By the way, the cake is my new fave. And I do not say that lightly about chocolate cakes. This will be my new go-to recipe for special occasions and afternoon cravings.

(In fact, the reason there is but a slice left on Mom's actual birthday is because we ate the rest of it the night before. Um...could. not. wait.)


I have someone I want to introduce to you.

He is delicious, soft, kissable, and his even his knees are chock full of chunky goodness.

I got to meet Brandon, my almost 4 month-old nephew, for the first time!

He and I have already become very close.

Do you see something he has in common with Lilly?

{No...he does not armpit fart with a straw.}


My favorite moment of the whole time (so far) has been when Jackson sang "Amazing Grace" to him...complete with "My Chains are Gone."

I think Brandon loved it.

In other news, we have been swimming approximately 9,000 hours a day.

Because of the HEAT.

That's why Brandon wore his surfboard attire.

He loves a theme! 

Just like his aunt...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

You Can't Spell HOT without M-E-X-I-C-O

Not that I need an excuse for barely posting on my own blog anymore, but I've been traveling a bit.

Think smothering humidity, inhaling saltwater, and swine flu.

I know! The place of dreams!

Actually, it was the place of dreams, and being a dweller of the mountain desert, I don't even mind mixing in humidity for a week here and there.

Especially when humidity involves amazing friends, beautiful water, and FOOD.

This could likely be a 7 part mini-series (or more realistically, I'll start off strong and then never finish the rest), but while I have five minutes, I'll upload a few pictures at random and comment on them.

By the way, I didn't actually take any of these pictures...I just mooched them off some talented friends with fancy cameras.

Oh, and one more disclaimer...just know that I feel completely foolish having so many pictures a trip. 

If Brad & I were newly married, I'd relish the pictures of togetherness and feel joyous about dropping off my roll of film to get developed (in an HOUR!) and then I'd bring those pictures home (wondering, just wondering(!) if I'd gotten any good ones) and frame them in some ridiculously shiny silver frames we got for our wedding.

But now, these photos have been edited, and cropped, and fancified, and digitized, and put on the blog to go down in infamy.

Like Ethan's sweaty knees:

Did I mention it's balmy with a chance of sweltering heat in Mexico?

People keep asking where we went and I'm embarrassed to say I'm not really sure. Somewhere south of Cancun or Riviera Maya or Playa del Carmen and the resort was called "Dreams." 

I'm still deciding if that's more or less cheesy than Sandals or Secrets.

But I don't care...they gave us bathrobes, comfy sheets, a fancy shower, and a chocolate dessert in my room before bed.

Also, the ocean "breeze" was...strong.

Oh, look! It's us again! Posing by the lovely marina! With atrocious tan lines!

A sweet friend let me borrow her maxi (pad) dress. I tried to block out from my mind that she uses this as part of her maternity wardrobe.

And look--the gold sandals before they kissed fire and lived to tell about it.

I--the one who knows a negative amount of information about photography--am loving these pictures in natural light.

I know they are "noisy," but they look so warm and cozy. That bright ol' flash tends to draw attention to the fact that I only get my hair highlighted twice a year.

See this?

That would be the adults only pool. My sweet home away from home. 

On the other side of the resort, loud music drowned out the pool scene and kids were *shudder* splashing around and having the time of their lives.

Over here, we settled for "I Will Survive" every ten minutes in Muzak. Also, at one point, there was a 20-minute jam session of "Hotel California," complete with the Mexican version of Don Henley (who sounded suspiciously like SkippyJon Jones).

Now, I know this next shot looks like a bunch of vagrants at a bus stop...

...but alas, it's just us getting ready to recreate one of our favorite Mexican memories in the lobby of the hotel.

I love that the hotel staff doesn't call us names (in English) when we request a photo op of the Large American Pyramid in the very nice hotel lobby.

But in homage to 2006, it had to be done.

Now, next we have this cute little gazebo, indicated as a "romantic spot" by a heart on the resort map.

And nothing says 10 years of passionate romance like Nicole & Brad in their tattered, grey pajama pants by moonlight.

(Thank you for allowing me to spelling "grey" with an E...I like it that way best.)

Ok, so my amazing mom has finished my pedicure and I will continue Part Dos manana.

As a teaser, I leave you with this:

and the title for my post: The Hottest, Sweatiest, Lizardiest Day of My Life.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Can I Get an "Om, Om"

For those of you who aren't "Kung Fu Panda" devotees, Lilly is emulating Master Shi Fu.

I think.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Great Pink Tissue Pom-Poms of Fire

Continuing my life theme of having zero original ideas, my friend, Amy, and I stole several from the Hostess for a whimsical garden baby shower.

We can't wait to meet baby Harper in a month and since she has an older brother, we decided it had better be pretty girly.

Actually, I'm not even sure what a whimsical garden is, but it sounded good.

Whenever I see pictures of cute pregnant people, like Harper's mom, Kari, I want to superimpose my head over theirs and create a photo album featuring myself as a cute pregnant girl instead of the Impossibly Gigantic Neanderthal Theme my body chose to embrace.

Oh, and by the way, since I hate uploading pictures (may have mentioned it a time or two) these are in no particular order...just be glad they're all here.

This was my favorite...the outdoor concession stand on the deck:

Have you seen those adorable found wooden Coca-Cola crates? One might be tempted think they're a bargain at $24, but I got mine for FREE right out of my mom's garage.


We drank (I don't hang out with "sippers") out of these adorable mini-canning jars, wrapped up with ribbon.

Probably the best part of the decor were the tissue pom-poms. They are a great Martha Stewart invention, found at Michael's, shamelessly copied from every other blog out there.

Note how beautifully and non-fiery they seem. (I'll get to that in a minute.)

The hummingbird cupcakes (and most importantly, the cream cheese frosting) were fab.

And the brownies weren't too bad, either.

Amy made these amazing skewers covered in Oreo dirt. YUM.

And lastly, here is the scene looking into the kitchen before the tissue poms caught ablaze.

Amy already blogged the wild sequence of events so beautifully, but here's my two cents anyway.

After the shower, as I leaned with my back to the island, the largest, light pink tissue pom apparently dropped from the sky and landed on a votive candle.

Turning around, we couldn't help but notice it was en fuego in a big way.

Not like a cute little smoldering s'more.

More like a gigantic pink tissue puff with huge orange flames in my very kitchen.

Here is my thought sequence for the following 30 seconds, that actually seemed like 30 minutes:

I'm going to stomp out the flaming pink puff.


Brad will be upset about the hardwood floors.

And I'm wearing amazing gold flip flops and white pants--they'll singe!


I'll take the puff with ever-growing flames outside.


I'm pretty sure a wood deck is highly flammable.

That would be bad.

To the sink!

I don't think stainless steel burns.

We'll find out and see.

(At this point, with all of the waving around of the tissue puff like a Chinese dragon, and lack of coherent and immediate decision-making, the air had fueled the fire and flames were huge. A literal fireball.)

(Also, the smoke alarms were going off throughout the house and I was screaming for Brad, who was upstairs in the playroom).

I got out the sprayer and, with ashes flying, sprayed that puff right out.

Amy had bravely dashed outside to grab the cute green pitcher and was going to dump approximately eight remaining ounces of water on the puff to douse the flames.

Luckily, I had extinguished it with the ferocious vegetable sprayer and things were calming down.

(Other than the smoke and alarms, which were still sounding loudly.)

At this point, Amy and I were laughing so hard that we couldn't talk. 

Couldn't breathe. 

Couldn't even stand up straight.

So, of course, this is the time Brad arrived on the scene.

Alarms were piercing, smoke filled the kitchen, and Amy and I couldn't even explain ourselves or much less speak to him.

For at least five minutes.

Then, when Amy noticed the black ash on my face and clothes, things started all over again.

Brad just jumped right in and laughed with us, thinking, "My sweet, lovable, and occasionally careless wife is at it again."

Um, no.

He was running around waving towels, trying to get the smoke outside, attempting to make the alarms stop, and continually asking us what on earth happened.

Unfortunately, we still couldn't speak...due to the laughter and all.

The kicker was the next day at the gym, when I was retelling the story to a friend who had been at the shower, but luckily, left before her life was jeopardized.

At which point, she noticed a significant lack of arm hair on my right arm.

I am a hairy wildebeast, so I actually considered this a blessing in disguise.

Unfortunately, it's a little bit patchy and my other arm could be made into a wig.

But still.

After a few natural home disasters...flood, avalanche, hail, and fire...I'm just wondering what's next.

And Brad is considering buying a trailer for himself and the kids to live in out front.