Monday, May 23, 2011

They let me eat cake...

Hello friends - Mercer's in 'da house!  Mom is passed out on the chaise lounge after 3 martinis.  So, I took it upon myself to log on and rap at ya about everything that went down in the 304, today.  It was crazy.

Apparently, it is my birthday.  I looked up "birthday" on Wiki and it told me that it's the celebration of the day I was born.  And since I'm pretty awesome - the celebration of that day must be equally as awesome - and it was.

Our house looked so cool - there were rainbow colors everywhere.  Mom made this awesome centerpieces out of lollipops and gumballs!  She's so crafty.  Daddy strung streamers in the dining room.  And there were balloons all over the house...even attached to my high chair!!!!  My balloon said, "Happy Birthday Rock Star"...and that is how I felt with all the attention on me...just like a Rock Star.
Eat your heart out Willie Wonka
Mom really went overboard - I'm not surprised
Accessorizing my high chair with my own BALLOON

I even got a special piece of wardrobe for the day - a new shirt with my name and the #1 on it.
So freakin' cool!!!
Customized Wardrobe - I'm stylin'

A cake was delivered and it looked like a giant lollipop and then there was a little cake made, JUST FOR ME.  I didn't have to share - it was all mine.
My first cake - YUMMY
The cake that fed everyone else

Mom's rockin' cake table
Then some of my favorite people showed up....Bryan & Rachel, the Hens, Tommy & Ray (and their parents).  I think I was most excited to see DEATON....he's so awesome.  I was also so happy to see one of my favorite daycare teachers...Miss Jamie...what a surprise to see her (and her new pink hair) out of school.  She's so cute (oops - I shouldn't have posted that).

While I made the rounds entertaining everyone with my winning smile and charm, people feasted on fried chicken (which was awesome - thanks Schnucks) and some salad and dips that Mom made.  Then it was time to cut the cake.

See...I didn't understand this experience and now that I know the routine, I'll be more prepared for my role in the cake festivities this weekend.  I sat in my chair and everyone gathered around me.  I really thought that I was in trouble.  Then they lit my cake on fire...I was so mad...who puts fire on a perfectly good cake?  Then instead of putting it out...they started SINGING to me...OFF KEY (there are no Idol candidates in this crowd, let me tell ya).  Then afterward, they started hooting and hollering and scared the living sh*t out of me (and my friend, Baby Ray).  Finally, they got around to putting out the fire on the cake and placed the cake in front of me.
The cake is on fire...I can't look!
This is where the confusion sets in.  What the hell am I supposed to do with a cake?  So, I put my finger in the icing and again - everyone cheered and I got scared.  It did taste delicious.  And I eventually got into snacking on it.  Mom and Dad cut the big cake for everyone - which was strawberry flavored with a strawberry buttercream and all my friends were commenting about how good it was....I can't wait to see what next year's will be!
Loving some icing - just like Momma'

i hate hats

My parents, me and my cake

I was high on sugar
After I made a total mess of myself, Mom changed me into my PJ's.  She helped me open my gifts and as it turns out - I got a RED WAGON.  Dad put it together for me and I look like the Prince that I really am riding around in it - smiling at all the passersby who don't have wagons as cool as mine. 
My Little Red Wagon...

I was so tired, I fell asleep in Mom's arms in the kitchen with all the commotion going on around me.

What a way to celebrate my first year.  And I hear it's only going to get better.  Apparently, I get to go to NEW JERSEY this week to see my POP-POP!!!!  I wonder if cake pairs well with Budweiser.  I guess I'll see!!!!!

Oh nuts, Mom's up...better end this....MY THANKS TO ALL WHO ATTENDED..  I LOVE YOU GUYS and I know my parents do too.

XOXOXOX - Mercer Benjamin

Friday, May 20, 2011

Random Cuteness

I apologize for not writing more frequently.
The job that pays my bills gets in the way sometimes...and so does the pro-bono work that I put in on the Mercer Benjamin project.
But to all of Mercer's fans out there - I hope the video and pictures below, make up for it!

Mercer speaks from his high chair...we listen.  Click link below, to listen, too.

Chillin' on the swings

Dining Out

He really loves this ball - it's his favorite toy

Our big boy

Passed out after a cold one...just like his Momma

Tonght I'm Gonna Party Like it's 1999

Tomorrow is the first of Mercer's 1st Birthday parties.  And as he stated in his post to the Blog-o-sphere, he doesn't even know what a birthday, I will confess that I'm just slightly more excited about it than he is.  I am also more excited than Mark, as he didn't know there even was a party until he asked about weekend plans on Wednesday night.  Yea...Dad of the Century! 

All of the planning is coming together.  The party has a theme - LOLLIPOPS.  The house will look like a Party Store advertisement after I'm done decorating.  The cake, which is being made by the fabulous Courtney, will be lollipop-shaped and strawberry-flavored.  In retorspect, I think may be sub-consciously,  throwing MYSELF another 1st birthday party.  Although unlike my own real 1st birthday, I will not have Mercer sitting in a high chair with a lit cigar in his mouth...THANKS, GRANDPA UPDIKE.

I know that I'm making a big deal over this.  And after some introspection, I realized that this means so much because it's representative of the culmination of all of the hard work that we've put into raising this child over the past year.  It's a celebration of our family as much as it's a celebration of Mercer.  So, I'm going to drink my lollipop-flavored martini and wear my party dress and whoop it the f*ck the up because Mercer deserves it and WE deserve it.

And to think that we get to do this all over again next Saturday - Love it.  Here's to celebrating every milestone...big and small - CHEERS!

A Confidential to my husband...We made it through Year 1 without going into intensive couple's shock therapy!  Can I get a high five?

Monday, May 9, 2011

Happy Mother's Day

"The real religion of the world comes from women much more than from men - from mothers most of all, who carry the key of our souls in their bosoms."
~Oliver Wendell Holmes

Mark got up with the baby and the dogs and started to make breakfast.  I wanted to hunker down in bed and catch another hour of sleep but, you can't make breakfast and keep an eye on a very active 11-month old at the same time.  You'll be frying bacon and in a blink, you look over and Mercer is smiling at you from across the room while precariously balancing on one foot on the top of Lu's head.  The child has NO FEAR.

It take a village to raise a toddler and that is the exact place that we're at right now.  As I lay there under the covers bargaining for one more "Z", I could hear Mercer rifling through the stuff on Mark's bedside table and before he could purchase a $4 App for Mark's cell, I fell out of bed, swooped him up and plopped him in his high chair in an effort to start the day. It was at this moment that I realized that it's no longer "All About Me"...I am no longer Queen of my Castle; I am the wet nurse to the future King.  
Momma & Mercer - Mother's Day 2011

And this is what Mother's Day is all about, right?  It's the celebration of all the women who have made sacrifices to make us who we are today.  So, Mermie just remember all of this when you're choosing my Assisted Living facility.  Please err on the side of extravagance - because I deserve it.

In all seriousness, I really had a great time celebrating my first year as a Mommy.  I received lots of well wishes from all sorts of people - some a total shock, even.  My son sent me tulips and my husband is sending me to the spa.  I was prepared a fabulous breakfast of my favorite indulgences (cinnamon buns, bacon and champagne) and got to have dinner at PF Changs (my favorite).  As I type this, I have to say that the downtime I'm enjoying right now may be one of my favorite gifts....LOL.  It's ironic - I wanted children for so long and I absolutely adore my son.  He makes my heart expand every time he smiles.  Yet, after a day full of Mermie, the peace that one finds in quiet is utopia.  And I'm enjoying utopia with a side of Blue Moon, as I tickle the keys of my laptop.

Mercer's Tulips & Card

So, Happy Mother's Day to Me!  

But, enough about me.  Below are "Confidentials" to some of the women in my life - mothers or not.  Thank you for being you and loving me for being me.  XOXOXOXO

To my Mom - who reminds me every time I see her, although not directly, that I should NEVER take myself too seriously.  It's not that I'm not important.  It's just that life's too short to walk around with a stick up your ass.  I love you for your compassion, your outgoing personality, your uninhibited free spirit, your faith and your dedication to your family (especially your Grandson). You would think that the15 years of my childhood that I spent looking for your keys, glasses and purse would have somehow imparted a need in me to be organized with my own things.  And yet, here I am, following in your footsteps and just  like you - annoying my husband in the process.  Love ya!  PS -  TURTLE SANDBOX

To my Grandmothers - two completely different women whose influence on me as an adult cannot be denied.  June taught me that if the shoe fits then I should buy it.  And Fran taught me that there's nothing in the world that can't be talked out over a good bowl of (tomato) soup.  I find it totally adorable that they used to bend down to hug me when I was a child and now, as an adult, I have to do the same to hug them! 

To my Fairy Godmother - Yes, I have a Fairy Godmother...and by definition I'm spoiled.  Nuff said.

To Mercer's Bubby - Thank you for raising a son who is man-enough to be a "Mom" when he needs to be.  The love you have for your Grandbaby is undeniable and amazingly sweet.  It brings me such joy to watch you together.  Grandparenting looks good on you - you beam with happiness!

To my Nannie - I know you're there…you're the devil with the halo that sits on my shoulder and makes sarcastic remarks…I know that's you and I can hear you laughing….

To my Platoon-mates in the trenches of Motherhood (Heath Bar & Knickerbocker) - thanks for making this adventure in parenting that much more tolerable.  With you, I never have to question whether I'm normal.  I know I"m not, and I know you aren't either.    I love that we are always armed for battle with wine, sarcasm and hugs (awkward or not).  Our kids are so awesome - and I know it's because of how awesome we are.

To Mom T - Thank you for being such a wonderful friend and role model. I feel like you know better than anyone, the trials, tribulations and rewards of  having a career and raising a family.  You raised a good man, who is a good friend.  And I'm lucky to regard both of you as family.

To the Hens - I can only sum up you all by saying this:  Have you ever had a private medical matter that you're really embarrassed to talk to the doctor about it?  And once you get the courage up to explain it and the words tumble out of your mouth, you look up and the doctor is totally un-phased?  That Doctor is you.  I know that no matter what I'm going through, in the illicit pasts of you 5, atleast one of you has been there and done that.  It's a good thing to ride your coat tails.

JenStar and her boy enjoying the lush landscape

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Happy Birthmother's Day - Saturday, 5.7.11

To the woman who made the hardest and most selfless decision of her life to afford me an opportunity of a lifetime. Thank you for my first Mother's Day.
Mermie & Me - FL 3/2011 - Photo Credit - BUBBY!!!!

I don't know if you will ever know how truly grateful I am for you.  It's amazing the amount of joy that I've experienced in Year 1 and I'm anticipating exponentially more in years to come.  You are my hero and I love you.
Happy Birthmother's Day

And to the woman who helped make it all happen...ALICIA @ Abby's One True thanks to you.  You helped calm the nerves of a neurotic future adoptive Mom (the JenStar).  But what I am most thankful for is the love and respect that you've given to our Birthmom.  You have such a positive energy that radiates from you and I only think that it's due in part to the amount of love you bring into people's lives everyday.
Happy Mother's Day to you, the person who helped make me a Mommy. 


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Mercer takes to the Blogosphere...

Dear Blog-o-sphere:

It's Mercer - or "Mermie" (what a stupid nickname, really).   I commandeered my Mother's laptop to tell you about some of the fun I had when she and Dad abandoned me last weekend. 

Since my parents checked me out of prison (daycare) for the week, me and my Grands took the opportunity to impart on some pretty exciting adventures.  I have to ask myself how I lucked out with such cool grandparents, considering that my parents, are not cool - at all.  Yeah - Mom and Dad - I said that on the INTERNET - for EVERYONE to read...How do you like it?

My days with Grandmom and PopPop were jammed pack full of activities.  We went to the park and I got to swing on swings, slide down slides and play on the jungle gym for the very first time!  As you can see in the pictures, my Grandmom is a big kid, herself.

"Better get used to these bars, kid"- Back to the Future

We went shopping together and they bought me my first pool and cell phone (Hannah Banana - return my texts).  They also showed me how to compose a tweet - because that's what I wanted.

I was trying to text my parents....
PopPop and I  sat on the deck with a couple of Buds and shot the shit for hours.  It reminded me of this song...
"This old man and me, were at the bar and we...
Were having us some beers and swappin' I-don't-cares
Talking politics, blonde and redhead chicks
Old dogs and new tricks, and habits we ain't kicked
We talked about God's grace, and all the hell we raised
Then I heard the ol' man say
God is great, beer is good, and people are crazy" -
Billy Currington

Canned Breastmilk...(baby did not imbibe booze)
I helped PopPop mow the acreage.  I loved riding on the tractor, but as you can see, I'm still a little too short to operate it on my own.  Maybe next year, when I'm bigger....

"She thinks my tractor's sexy" - Outfit Credit:  (Grand)MomT
And I even made my Mom her very first Mother's Day gift - Poppop taught me how to garden! We picked out some really pretty and VERY hearty plants for Mom because PopPop said that she had a "black thumb".  I don't know what that means, but it doesn't sound healthy.

"I'm helping"

Dirt  = Delicious

Grandmom and Poppop taught me how to do "So Big" and how to blow kisses (look out, Ladies).  I can also make some giant raspberries - which makes PopPop laugh really hard. All in all, I had a ton of fun on MY vacation and I'm a little miffed to have to go back to daycare.

Me & my Grands - Livin' the High Life

As for my parents, well, they missed a good time doing God knows what with my Uncle Melvis and his friends.  Apparently, it was Uncle Mel's Birthday…what the hell is a birthday?  Anyways, I found some of these pics of their camera and thought that they deserved to be posted.  Apparently, they can have a good time, even if I'm not there.  Does anyone else think my mother is a ham?  A gorgeous ham, but still a ham..nonetheless…I'm just sayin'….

Parents on the lose at the Predisio

Cheesy Smiles on a Cable Car

Mom & Uncle Melvis - "They're ON A BOAT!!!!"

My Mother, the ham and my father obviously not amused by her

Dad, Mom & Uncle Mel - Blurry-eyed and Blushed from a day of wine "tasting"

I can't believe they're still standing - this was the last stop of their NAPA tour. 
Who are those pretty people in the pic with my parents and Uncle Mel?

Uncle Melvis & Mom - schnuckerd

She just loves that camera, doesn't she?

No one brought me any bacon home...I was disappointed

Wow Mom, how many glasses had you had when you took this shot?

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

We do what we can...

Since taking over the India desk, I feel that my creativity has been blocked.  We're a team made up of firefighters, prepared to jump into any multitude of tasks at a moments notice.  Which means my brain in going in 1000 different technical directions and leaves absolute no room for creativity or daydreaming.

*****************Edited to include:  I LOVE MY JOB!!!!  :)

So, while I want to write amazing posts about all the funny things that happen in my life, sometimes it feels that I don't have the wherewithal to "get 'er done".  And some days I think, "Why did I get myself into writing this's just an additional task on my never ending to do list..."

That was my attitude this morning...driving into work like a God damn mad woman trying to make an 8'oclock meeting that was scheduled at 7am.  I was running through my "to-do" lists for work, the house, the baby and the blog and  I realized that I have at least three blog posts that I need to get on paper.  Now, if had the life of leisure that I dream of:  sitting on my deck in Napa, wearing my straw fedora and sunglasses, looking out on miles of vineyards, drinking wine and writing all day (note - I'd be much funnier if I drank wine all day); this wouldn't be a problem - I could blog in "real-time". 

But, I just don't have that lifestyle (yet) and just like any good addiction, I just can't give it up (the blog, not the wine).  I get some kind of crazy high from what is created when my fingers type out the gibber-gabber from my brain.  And I press forward.

So, my craziness was reassured this morning, when I looked at my desk calender and saw's a keep going...that it's worth it.  YEA!