Tag Archives: sleep

The First Trip to the Beach, 2014

Good morning, Everyone!

We went to Panama City Beach for the weekend using a Groupon for the Edgewater Beach Condominiums.  While we were hoping for good beach weather, and were led on by the various forecasts we observed until we passed the cancellation date, we ended up with cloudy skies, a brisk wind and a high of 69.

However, it was the beach, so we managed to have fun anyhow.  We had invited a friend of Kayla’s to go with us, so Kayla was happy from the beginning.  She loves having a buddy with her!

We got a late start on Saturday.  For some strange reason, the two girls, ages 11 and 12, weren’t exactly eager to get up in the morning – I think it had something to do with the talking and giggling that occurred once we finally made it to the condo Friday night and after Mark and I went to bed.  Once the two girls had showered and done their hair (here you can add another hour!), we went to Another Broken Egg Cafe which has fabulous brunch dishes.  After that, we decided to go shopping at Pier Park.  I gave each of the girls a little spending money, and had the best time watching them shop.  They would enter a store and just start wandering through the racks.  They would then find something they liked, check the price and then decide whether they could afford it, and, the more difficult decision, whether the item was something they wanted enough to spend their money on.  Kayla’s comments on the prices of things were pretty funny, as were her comments on the multitude of T-shirts whose messages she found offensive in a few stores.  Miss Priss announced that there was no point in buying a T-shirt that you couldn’t wear to school!  I agree with her, but would get embarrassed when she would point to a T-shirt and talk at the top of her voice about how inappropriate it was.

Kayla was also afraid to buy anything because there might be something else farther down the line that she would want more.  She agonized over the Vera Bradley purses (until she found out what they cost!), over these hair twister plastic thingies that would have cost her $30 for 4 (essentially all of her money), and several other items.  She finally decided on a souvenir cup from the retail shop at Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville Restaurant, and it took all of the sales person’s helpful comments about the lifetime warranty on the cup to for her to keep her resolve.

On the way into the shopping center, we had gone by a kiosk where a man was selling children the opportunity to jump up and down on a trampoline-like thing with harnesses and bungee cords that would let them reach much higher heights than normal.  With the unerring eyes that children have for such things, Kayla saw it on our way in and kept commenting on how much she wanted to “bungee jump.”  Mark hadn’t seen the trampoline outfit, and thought that Kayla was talking about bungee jumping for real, so he was getting very aggravated because he knew that there was no way that she would climb up a high tower and then jump so she could be bounced up and down on an elastic cord.  The situation was not improved by Kayla’s mentioning bungee jumping every 5 minutes or so.  However, as her friend observed, at least it had taken her mind off going to the beach, which had been mentioned every five minutes or so until Kayla saw the trampoline.

Once Mark and Kayla  finally got the resulting word tangle smoothed out, Kayla and her friend got to jump on the trampoline – $10 a child for four minutes of jumping.  I think the kiosk person should have given us a discount – he had no-one waiting to do the jumping until my two girls started, after which he had a line about three families deep.

We returned to the hotel room, where both girls insisted on at least going to the pool.  The pool immediately behind our unit was large, beautifully landscaped and not heated.  They both said that was the one they wanted to try first.  I told them to go on to the pool and try dabbling their feet or their arms in the water until I got back with the towels from the car and let me know when I got back if they still wanted to stay in that pool, or instead find a heated one.

It took much less time than I expected.  They greeted me at the door leading to the unheated lagoon pool expressing a decided preference for the heated pool.  It was only behind the next tower, so it wasn’t far.

The heated pool was a big success with them! I sat pool-side and read while they played.  Late, late in the afternoon, the sun burst through the clouds for just a little while, and they both begged to go to the beach.  We only had about a half hour left anyhow before we had to return to the room, so I took them on down.  My child’s friend tried the water at various depths, announced it was too cold, and returned to play on the beach but not in the water.  Kayla kept insisting the water wasn’t that cold and spent about 20 minutes in it, after which she too finally came out.  She said you got used to the water after a while; I’m convinced that her legs just went numb from the cold.

We finished our night with a wonderful dinner at Captain Anderson’s, a fabulous restaurant, and mini-golf, which was a  lot of fun.

We had to get up early the next morning in order to return home, so we sent the girls to bed about nine.  I’m fairly certain they didn’t sleep until a long time after that, but at least we tried.  They spent a fair amount of time sacked out in the car as we drove home.

The forecast for Sunday, when we had to leave by 7,was, of course, sunny and 75.  It looked like Panama City Beach was going to reach that and more when we left.

I hope all of you had a Happy Easter!  Have a great day!


The Stuff That Dreams Are Made Of

Good morning Everyone!

Have you ever wondered where dreams come from?  Im not talking about the “Be President/Travel the US in a RV for One Year” type of dreams, but the crazy jumble of facts and fiction that parade through our heads every night.

My husband and daughter rarely remember their dreams – although there have been one or two Saturday mornings when Kayla asked for just a few more minutes of sleep to “finish off her dream.”  What dreams my husband remembers, he controls.  He has the capability to tell his subconscious, while he’s still asleep, how he wants the dream to end.  My subconscious, however, wanders footloose and fancy-free, taking me wherever it wants to.  Maybe in part it’s rebelling against the control I place on it during the day.

I have one or two recurring dreams.  I groan every time that I have to dial a number two or three times in “real life” before it goes through, because that means that the “I need to make a phone call but I can’t ever get the phone to put in the number correctly” dream is sure to pop up in the next week.

After over 20 years, I finally figured out that the “I forgot to attend a class for an entire semester and now the exam is tomorrow” dream occurs when I am under an intense deadline.  Usually the dream includes the certainty that I have made an F in at least two subjects that semester and I am trying, in my sleep, to figure out what that does to my grade point average, can I somehow get around the F’s or will they matter and why on earth I didn’t drop the class before the drop/add deadline passed.

Most of the time, my weird dreams are simply curious to me, even the recurring ones, but I still can remember the dream I had 28 years ago when someone broke into the house and was about to kill me.  A man was pointing a rifle right in front of my face while I was lying in bed.  I woke up with a start as I heard the gun click as he pulled the trigger.  I have one truly beautiful dream I dreamed back when I was about 15 that I also remember, for a couple of reasons.  The first is that it was in color, one of the rare dreams I remember being in color.  The second is that it was set in a radiant meadow where an absolute stunning mare and her foal were grazing.  I don’t remember what happened in that dream, but the scene has stayed with me for more years than I care to count.


Photo Credit: http://www.clickartonline.com
My horses and meadow were even prettier than these!

Scientists have been studying dreams for a while and are still speculating as to their biological function.  What they do know is that the crazy night-time peccadilloes that our subconscious engages in are essential to our health.

Indian Dream Catcher

Photo Credit: http://www.clickartonline.com
Indian Dream Catcher

Do you have any crazy or recurring dreams?  Can you remember your dreams?  Have you every kept a dream log?  I’d love to hear what you have to say on the subject!

Have a great day!


Adages that Aren’t plus Other News

Adage –  a proverb or short statement expressing a general truth

1)       Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.  – Not really; it just makes me sleepy.


From ClickArt Online, by Broderbund

2) Don’t count your chickens before they hatch. –  If we didn’t, how on earth could we ever buy a dozen eggs at the grocery store?


3) Handsome is as handsome does. – Nope.  By any standard of conduct, Pierce Brosnan, George Clooney and Sean Connery are handsome.

geese and gosling AJKoops

4) A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.  – Not if you’re a birder seeking to win the big year, or participating in the World Series of Birding in New Jersey!


5)  Out of sight, out of mind.  – Obviously, whoever made this one up never had a pressing problem to worry about.


From Print Shop Professional 2.0

6)  There is no such thing as a stupid question. – Well, yes, yes there is.

United States coinage penny

7) A penny saved is a penny earned – unless you owe back taxes, then it is a penny paid to the government.

Prisoner Costume

8) Practice makes perfect. – No, imperfect practice perfects imperfection

Sticks and Stones:  From Clip-Art Online

Sticks and Stones: From Clip-Art Online

9)  Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.  – Really?  Wounds from sticks and stones heal relatively quickly but word wounds will sting for generations!

USDA Food Pyramid

10)  An apple a day keeps the doctor away.  Not according to the USDA food pyramid or plate or whatever it is they are using these days.

Newspaper, news, magnifying glass

Breaking News!

And in other news –

(Dedicated to the Jefferson Davis High School “get-by” class of 1986, working its way through to a new generation!)

The following conversation repeated verbatim from yesterday.

Mom, in response to an e-mail from a teacher:  Kayla, what is this about you not having your study sheet in social studies today?

Kayla:  Mom, she told us to take it home last night.

Mom:  So?

Kayla:  She didn’t tell us to take it back.

Mom:  Kayla, it’s implied!

Have a great weekend everyone!


Six Words and The-House-Formerly-Known-As-Clean

Good morning Everyone!

We’ve made it to Wednesday (or at least those of us on my side of the International Date Line have made it to Wednesday; some of you lucky souls out there have already made it to Thursday!), but I’m having one of those weeks when it feels like it should be Friday. It will be kind of depressing when I go into work tomorrow feeling that it is Saturday. That Friday feeling is not helped by the fact that I have today off from work, with intentions of completing several errands and chores, which will push me even further forward, giving me the impression today is Saturday.

I'm so confused!

When I first scheduled today off, I was planning on at least getting the chance to sleep in, but that plan was scotched by 6:40 a.m. Monday, when Kayla started with the words, “Mom, I forgot to tell you…..” Any parent knows two things about those six words: 1) Your blood pressure begins to rise immediately upon them being uttered and 2) They never are followed with things like “my science teacher gave me a 100 on my test and says I could be a physicist some day.” The words “Mom, I forgot to tell you…” are used by children at convenient times of day or night such as 7:00 p.m. the day before a major project is due, or, as in this case, at 6:40 a.m., 10 minutes after she should have already left for school, when the announcement was “I have traffic duty this week, which means I have to be at school by 7:10, so I will have to be a car rider this week.” (“Car rider” is the local elementary school term for children who do not ride a bus or a day care van, but whose parents drive them to school and pick them up from school. In the elementary school world, “car riders” seem to have an elevated status over bus riders and day care riders.) That was doable, but due to the mechanics of when Mark needs to be at work, that meant that I would be dropping her off at school all this week. Hence, the sleeping in this morning, on my day off, was wiped out, for the most part.

What I did NOT get to do this morning!

What little hope of sleeping in at least another 15 or 20 minutes that I had were wiped out by Bad Dog (Mandy) who insisted that I needed to get up and feed her. She kept jumping up on the bed and licking and pawing me to get my attention. She was unable to jump on my hair, because I recently got it cut very short, but she tried every other trick in her arsenal. About the 8th time, I gave up trying to kick her off the bed and get her to leave me alone, and got up. At least she was happy! Darwin and Tyra seemed to appreciate her efforts on their behalf, also.  All three dogs, now, having been fed and let out, are comfortably asleep in their location of choice, but I am not too very bitter!

One sleeping spot, preferred on warmer days.

For the rest of it, I have a full day. One of my tasks is to pick up the-house-formerly-known-as-clean in preparation for my father stopping by this evening on his way through from Florida to Illinois. (Let me hasten to add here that the only homo sapien in our house NOT responsible for its current disheveled state is Mark; it’s Kayla and I that manage to leave little trails of stuff throughout the house, kind of like bread crumbs to help us find our way home.) I also, as part of that same process, have to convert the craft room back to the guest bedroom. That won’t be too bad, although I have since Christmas been a little lax about storing craft materials back up. I don’t think it would be wise to open any closets in my house for a couple of days, though, once I’m finished.

If I finish all that on time, maybe I can sneak in a little nap – but just in case, I intend to consume large quantities of caffeine throughout the day!

Lots of caffeine!

Have a great day everyone!


Sink and Sleep (or the Lack Thereof!)

Good morning Everyone!

  • Sink

Sunday evening, as I was working on supper, Kayla walked by the kitchen and announced, “Mom, you don’t want to ask what I’m doing in the bathroom.”  I, of course, gave the only logical response, which is, “What are you doing?”  Answer:  “Mom, you don’t want to know.”  After two more rounds, I did the only thing a parent could do, which was to enter her bathroom to see what was happening.

Kayla’s sink was full of water, and she had one of her big bath towels in it soaking.  I started to have a conniption took a deep breath and looked at her for an explanation, and she, grinning proudly, announced that she had decided that she was going to help me out by washing her own clothes.  Her plan was to wash them in the sink every night, then hang them on her shower rod to let them dry.

I told her I appreciated the thought, but that it would work out better to use the washing machine to clean her clothes.  Then I had to figure out how to transfer the completely saturated towel to the washing machine without getting water all over the floor.  At least she was trying!

  • Sleep, or the Lack Thereof!

Sunday night, I only managed to get about two hours of sleep.  I really don’t know why, but I just couldn’t get to sleep.  Needless to say, on Monday, I wasn’t exactly full of sweetness and light but I did try to muddle through without being too terrible to be around.  After supper though, I started to clean the kitchen, snapped at Kayla about something, snapped at Mark about something, and then dropped a TV tray on my foot.  It fell sideways where its thin edge fell directly on the bone on the top of my foot and it hurt.  I yelled something like, “Ouch!” or “Verily, verily, I hath dropped a tray on my foot and it hurteth” except on a grander scale, and Mark, coming into the kitchen to check on me, told me to leave the kitchen until tomorrow and sent me to bed, 10 minutes before Kayla’s bedtime.  I didn’t argue, either.

Have a great day everyone!


Wake-Up Call, Lunch Money and Funny Bone

Hi Everyone!

The Best Alarm Clock in the World!

  • Wake-up Call

I confess that I hoped to be writing this much later than I am, since, as a working mom, I had a rare opportunity to sleep in on a weekday, but Mandy had other ideas.  Mark got up at his regular time, and then after about fifteen minutes, Mandy jumped up on the bed and stood there quietly behind me for about 30 seconds.  (It is even odds as to whether this was her own idea or whether Tyra was egging her on.)  When I didn’t pay any attention, then she took her nose, and touched it gently and sweetly to my ear.   I continued to ignore her, so after another pause, she deliberately stepped on my side with her front paws, took another step so that I was between her front and back paws, finished walking over me with her back paws and jumped off the bed and circled around to the other side.  I still continued to ignore her, so she repeated the walk-over.  However, this time instead of circling around to the other side of the bed, she escalated by turning back to where she could reach my face from the floor , waited another few seconds and when I still didn’t get up, she started licking my face furiously, at which time I really had no choice but to start laughing and get up.  If I had rolled over to ignore her yet again, her next step would have been to jump up on the bed and walk on my hair.  That hurts!

  • Lunch Money

Kayla was worried this morning – she might miss second breakfast.  Let me explain.  The school sends home each Thursday the amount of lunch money remaining in her account.  This Thursday, she did not have a balance, but we owed the school 10 cents.  If you owe the school or have a zero balance, you cannot have breakfast until money is posted back in your account.  Although I am sending a check with her today, it won’t be placed into her account until right before lunch, so breakfast at school will not be available.  She explained all this to Mark, who came out to check if I had lunch money to send with her.  As Mark said to me, “She told me she gets first breakfast (at home), second breakfast at school, lunch at school, snack at school, snack at Learning Lodge and she says you’re usually good for a snack right when the two of you get home, but she is worried she about missing second breakfast in case they have cheese grits!”  I gave her a dollar just in case the school was serving cheese grits and sent her away smiling.  Mark was buying her breakfast at McDonald’s, so she was getting extra food for first breakfast, too.  It reminds of the time when, a young and inexperienced couple with no children, we took our nephew, who was about Kayla’s age at the time, to the Kennedy Space Center, and he told his mother after the trip, “It was fun, but they only fed me three times a day!”

  • Funny Bone

I was walking by our kitchen desk area and hit my funny bone hard on the chair in the kitchen.  It was not, as anyone who has had this experience knows, funny at all.  It was one of those self-censoring moments – right when I hit, I started by saying “Gawww….” and remembered to shift streams to finish with “lly gee whilikers!” 

Have a great weekend everyone!


This and That

  1. I forced a very sleepy little girl out of hibernation this morning and into the cold, cruel world of getting ready for school, and she did NOT like it!  Her latest fad is to get up, grab her clothes, turn on the fireplace in the den and huddle in front of it while she gets dressed.  (No, it is not that cold in my house – well, sometimes it is, but not right now.)  It looks quite pitiful and Dickensy – I keep waiting for her to bring me her empty cereal bowl, look at me with mournful eyes and say in a tiny voice, “Please, ma’am, can I have some more?” 
  2. Wednesday is our busiest day, because Kayla has dance after school, which finishes up at 5:50, and then I have to feed her, get her home to change into her sneakers and then be at the church by 6:15.  We usually are home by about 7:45 p.m.  Unfortunately, homework does not regulate itself according to our schedule so on Wednesday nights when she has homework, I am trying to cram her head full of (usually) math in 15 minutes and still get her to bed on time.  It can be quite a drama filled experience.  Last night when we entered the car, I asked if she had homework, and Kayla said yes.  Once we were on the way to the church, she announced that she didn’t have homework after all; the teacher had decided to keep them from pulling the homework page out of their book after all.  The dilemma:  Should I double check the homework file to investigate the mysterious disappearing homework, or just take the statement at face value and hope for the best?  I’ll let you decide what I did…..
  3. Isn’t it nice to see families doing things together?  Last night the three of us participated in a joint parking project.  I was driving and trying to swing into the garage without hitting the other car.  I got advice from both Mark and Kayla (Mark:  Cut it as hard as you can to the left; Kayla:  You’re okay on my side!)  Of course they were sitting on the same side, so the instructions were a little conflicting, but I decided to go with the more experienced driver :).  Regardless of whose advice was better,  since everyone participated, it qualified as a group project.  Everyone was still speaking to everyone else when we finished, too!
  4. I have now seen about five tulip trees in full bloom.  They are so beautiful!  I really hope we don’t have a killing frost this year.  The Bradford pear trees buds are starting to get full, but they’re not ready to bloom yet.  It would be too early for them, anyhow.  I still haven’t seen any yellow bells, which is sort of odd for this time of year here.  If anyone has seen some, I sure would like to know about it!