Sunday, February 7, 2010

About My Husband's Love

Saturday night was coaches appreciation night. I was asked to write something about Howard's coaching career to read before the games. He was just a bit surprised. Below is what I shared.


Howard Main began his coaching career in 1997 as an assistant coach to Steve King. He coached under Steve for three years and when Steve pursued his coaching goals with Special Olympics, Howard stepped into the role as head coach in 2000. His love for the game and for the kids he has coached is apparent to anyone who knows him well. Howard has served in the capacity of boys coach longer than any other in New Hope’s history. He more recently spent two years as athletic director and has coached in summer basketball programs with local area high schools. He was instrumental in the gym floor project and the fundraising for it. Howard has worked very hard to build the basketball program over the last 13 years, not without significant sacrifice at times. Howard has gained so much from his coaching opportunities at New Hope. He has developed a great rapport with many other schools and counts several of the coaches he competes against as his friends.

His proudest moments of his coaching career are not measured by score alone and often come after the games are over. Weather being approached by spectators of the opposing teams who thank him for the great attitudes of his players or the restaurants who stay open late on road trips and express how well mannered the kids are while eating at their fine establishments! He feels blessed to have the opportunity to coach such outstanding young men. Our three boys were born during the time that Howard has coached and all of them could call the New Hope gym their second home. He appreciates how well our own boys are cared for and loved by the basketball players and their families.

If I had to choose some of Howards fondest memories, they would most notably be the dangerous game of fossil ball, being left behind while using the restroom in Bandon (it only took and hour to figure out Howard wasn’t on the bus!) trips to Paisley complete with shooting range and hot springs, convincing some na├»ve boys that Northlake HS actually had a mechanical bull in their gym, the week long time spent at Lake of the Woods in the Colvin’s cabin, tearing out the orange rug to make way for a new floor, the sage rat hunt in Eastern Oregon with his current coaching staff of Josh and Darren, countless super bowl parties and the annual overnight practice.

Howard has been fortunate to be a part of some wonderful things as the product of his efforts, in most recent years three consecutive state playoff appearances and the schools first ever state playoff victory for basketball. The basketball program has also received several academic honors from the Oregon Dairy Farmers Association including the top award in 2007 for the highest grade point average of any boy’s basketball program in the State or Oregon. Additionally, he had the honor in 2009 of co-coaching with James Ellis for the All Star Tournament. The team was comprised of the top athletes from among the Skyline and Mountain Valley leagues, and included one of our own, Noah Cunningham.

Howard has experience difficult times as a coach, including losing players to injury, bus trips ending up stuck in the snow, our third child being born with severe medical complications during the season 4 years ago, and missing baker City by 4 points last year with a loss to Mohawk. But the hardest moment by far was when his coaching partner and friend, Gary Heater, passed away during basketball season 5 years ago this week. He loved Gary and the level headed consistent demeanor he brought to the court. Gary balanced out Howard’s often excited coaching style and Howard carries with him many memories and coaching tips from his good friend.

As his wife I often find more entertainment in watching Howard coach than in the actual game, his animated movements and pacing of the sideline has simmer down, but he still makes me nervous on occasion. I also witness the amount of time and dedication spent behind the scenes preparing for each game and each season. Its apparent in the coaching books and magazines stacked up on the book shelves, the water bottles in the dishwasher, the laundry room full of uniforms and towels, the couple time spend folding all that laundry, the fogged up bathroom mirror with plays etched in it and the familiar voice of the newspaper reporter who calls every weekend late at night for the final scores.

I suppose there are many things I have missed trying to reflect over the last 13 years but the one obvious thing is his love for the players and the life lessons and character building that speak louder than a score board ever will and go farther than the court will ever take a player. In Howard’s own words “no worthy pursuit is without challenge and sacrifice” and I believe he would call this experience a worthy pursuit.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

2009 Christmas Letter

Dear Friends,

You’re holding it in your hot little hand! It’s the Main Family’s Fashionably Late Christmas Letter….it’s how we roll these days! I figured your mail box would be lonely after Christmas and would need a little cheering up, so I delayed in getting our card out just to be considerate of your mail box and its feelers.

Let’s get down to business, we have lots to share. Leading the team this year in Christmas letter news is Howard. Howard is plugging along in his college studies and doing quite well. He is planning to graduate with his associate’s degree on June 12th, with ten credits over the required amount. We will spend this summer having fun and then Howard is slated to enroll at Southern Oregon University in the fall to pursue his bachelor’s degree in Mathematics. Howard is in his second year at New Hope teaching High School science and math and Junior High PE. Basketball season is in full swing as is customary this time of year, making it his, um, let me think, 13th year coaching. It’s starting to run together a bit. Howard is managing to do quite well juggling his work load and homework load. He is a great daddy to our three not-so- little boys and always manages to get them out the door in the morning with lunches packed, homework done, clothes matching (for the most part) and on time for school.

I have been dispatching for emergency services for almost 3 years now and have been working graveyard for way too many months. I get home around 7:30 in the morning just in time to see the boys as they walk out the door. I have more than enough work hours due to short staffing issues and find myself trying to find the balance between being grateful for a job when many others don’t have one and being frustrated with working too many hours and missing out so much on my kids lives. I enjoy my job but it really does take a toll on my energy level and my family time. To combat some of the work stress I joined the gym for the first time ever and changed my eating habits greatly. Sure I still eat junk food on occasion but in the last 3 months I have lost 20 pounds, 2 pants sizes and am actually starting to have a figure again! I feel good and have a few more goals to reach, namely loosing 15 more pounds and running in the famous Pear Blossom run in April with my sister, Katie. Lastly, I have succumbed to the peer pressure and have joined the Facebook scene. My mom told me I had to and in a moment of weakness I listened to her, broke down and opened an account. Now, I can’t help the darn habit.

Jordan, 10 years old, is our super active, super boy. He loves science and anything related to space. He is playing saxophone, enjoys his piano for fun, still rides mountain bikes on my dad’s race team, joined the fun sport of BMX racing this year and played baseball for his 2nd season. He has done quite well as a left-handed first baseman and has tried his hand at the catcher position. He is very athletic and loves physical fitness. He also eats 3 times the amount of food I do and is wearing a size 8 men’s shoe! Need I say more about how much he has grown this year?

Grant, 7 years old, and sweeter than ever, is taking after Grandpa Steve more and more. His imagination and day dreaming are at their peak (especially in the classroom and on the baseball field). He comes up with the funniest stories and characters and keeps us laughing with his ever evolving mind. He has a very best buddy named Adam who shares many of his same interests and imagination and they love spending time paling around, fighting bad guys and building Lego creations. Adam’s house is way more fun than ours ever will be and I’m pretty sure Adam’s parents will serve us with adoption petition papers soon, as they would love to have Grant for a son.

Carter, who just turned 4 years old this month, started pre-school this year at New Hope. After asking every 3rd day last year when he was going to get to go to school, we decided we shouldn’t stifle his interest in school any longer, even though still only 3 when he started in September. He is writing his name, knows his letters and loves to sing! He has learned so much in the few short months he has been in school and is so excited every day to go. He asks every night at dinner, “Is tomorrow a school day? “ and when we answer yes he says, “YESS!” and when we say no, he asks “How many days until it is? “ He loves his teacher and his friends. He is so enthusiastic about life and his brothers and everything we do and everywhere we go. He is happy all the time and loves monster trucks and candy. He is terrible about sneaking candy under the bunk beds when we are not looking and hiding the evidence of wrappers in the far corner!

Lastly, Warren, the other boy in the family, is enjoying his promotion to “inside dog” this year. Although he thinks he is a lap dog, forgets he isn’t supposed to sleep on the couch and has snatched more than his fair share of whole loaves of bread off the kitchen counter when we were sleeping, he’s hasn’t been demoted to “outside dog” yet.

Collectively as a family we spend lots of time at the basketball gym cheering for Howard and the New Hope Warrior’s boy’s basketball team as well as sitting at the ball parks watching Jordan and Grant practice and play baseball. This last summer we took our first ever “real” family vacation to California and visited all of my family, spent three days at Disneyland and one day at Newport Beach. We also visited Diamond Lake, Crater Lake, Lake of the Woods and the Oregon Coast while camping this summer. While having fun with the previous listed activities we also spend many of our days cheering for the Oregon Ducks. Howard and I made it to Autzen Stadium this year to watch the Ducks play twice! 4 out of 5 in our family are Duck fans and are excited they made it the Rose Bowl! The lone Oregon Beaver fan of the family will remain anonymous for his own personal safety! It’s hard enough being a Beaver fan these days without your mom throwing you under the bus in a Christmas letter.

Having all the boys at the same school where Howard teaches is a huge blessing. It has eased our stress with my ever changing work shifts and just this last week all three boys were in the same Christmas program at school. Jordan played his saxophone in the school band and Grant had a speaking part! Carter was just plain cute in his little tuxedo and just after getting into his dress clothes for the event, said to his brothers, “Go ahead….touch me….I’m SHARP!” Where do my kids come up with stuff like this?

As a whole we haven’t done too badly this year with medical events. All the boys’ breathing issues appear to be subsiding as they grow up. Only a few routine visits to the ER for rowdy boy behavior requiring x-ray confirmation that nothing was actually broken! Leave it to their mother to end up with the worst injury of the year after falling off a quad at the sand dunes and subsequently having my leg run over by it. Compared to years past we really did well staying away from doctors. I’m sure it’s because of that AFLAC policy I got roped into at work!

Merry Christmas to you, albeit somewhat late. We hope you enjoyed time with those you love as you celebrated the gift of Jesus Christ our Savior. May all His blessings be yours in the coming year.

With much love,

Howard, Mandy, Jordan, Grant, and Carter (and Warren Sapp, the inside dog)

Friday, November 20, 2009

It's My Birthday!

Happy Birthday to me. I am 31 today.

Can't wait to find out what the day holds.

I still get excited about birthday's, even though I am...

31.

Mandy

Monday, November 16, 2009

Resurfacing

Holy Hanna it's been a long month! Finally slowing down from the mayhem and getting into a new normal with basketball season kicking off last week. Here's what's been going down in our busy boy household....

1) The aforementioned basketball season is once again upon us. Howard is busy with coaching every night and games on the weekends starting in two weeks. The season will carry on through the beginning of spring.

2) We all shared a good round of the flu! Glad that's over with.

3) I managed to squeeze and extra 83 hours of work in this MONTH! Not by choice. I'm sure I have a few more lines in my face after that last round of overtime.

4) My work schedule has changed to a full graveyard shift so now I am home with the boys longer in the evening. Tuck them into bed and then head for work at 11pm. In the morning I come home to help them get out the door for school and then I hit the hay. Seems to be working well so far.

5) Grant is losing teeth like a madman.

6) Jordan did a great job carving his own pumpkin this year.

7) Carter learned to buckle his own seat belt. Small victory in this house!

8) Howard and I left the kids with grandma at the beginning of October and set out on a date to the Oregon Ducks home game in Eugene. Freezing cold and lots of fun.

9) The boys and I took a day trip to the sand dunes and did some fun quad riding while Howard went back to another Ducks game without us!

10) We took family photo's in the park of which I will post separately when I find an extra moment.

11) I have lost 15 pounds and have been making the gym a part of my new routine! Not so rigid on the healthy eating anymore. Need to get back on track with that. Have 15 more pounds to go!

That's the highlights.

I will get busy blogging again here soon.

Love, Mandy

Friday, October 2, 2009

Not Feelin' It

I'm going to take a little break from my blog. Just not feeling very inspired to write much these days. I have several brutal weeks on the horizon with overtime and mandadated shifts and frankly, my job just takes it out of me sometimes.

As an update to my raw food eating. I'm doing pretty well. I have ventured off course a bit and added in some vegan meals and learning a whole new world when it comes to healthy eating.
I've dumped the dairy, meat and processed foods and am really enjoying fresh veggies, fruits, nuts, seeds, sprouted grains, etc. Sure I've cheated a few times with food I just couldn't pass up one little bite of (like mint chip ice cream) but for the most part I'm staying on track.

As a bonus I've also lost 10.5 pounds so far and my tummy troubles are completely gone. I also joined a gym and have been excercising regularly which is an entirely new concept for me.

Takin' a breather.... I'll be back to writting again soon.

Mandy

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Good Friends

Last November I turned 30. In appreciation to my dear friends I rented a beach house on the coast and took all my friends for a few days of fun. We ate great food, scrapbooked til late at night, and had a fun girls weekend playing on the beach. I wrote them this letter and read it aloud to them during one night of our trip. Other than those friends that night, I have never shared it with anyone. Too honest I suppose. Or too deep. Either way, I think enough time has passed that I feel I can share without too much embarrassment. Pride is a difficult thing. Not easy to handle, not easy to face. In re-reading my own letter to my friends I can see progress and pain in so many areas of my life since that time. Still so much room for improvement. So much room for growth.

I wrote it as if I were talking, not as if I were going to publish it, as that was never the plan. You will have to excuse the grammar and punction flaws. Here it goes:


November 2008
Why I invited you all to celebrate my 30th birthday: Yes, you all are skinnier than me but you are all older than me too….so we should be even right?

First of all, you each possess certain qualities that help a person, who is afraid to bear their soul for fear of judgment, get through life. At some point in time I took a huge leap of faith and confided in you that life wasn’t as great as it appeared on the outside. The days I told each of you were some of the most freeing days of my life. After Carter’s less than perfectly planned birth and the huge medical bills that followed, doubled with the sudden screeching halt of income from the housing market decline, the death of a close friend, the mortgage payment’s doubling and me going from being a stay at home mom of 6 years to now supporting my family with an extremely stressful new job, an intense training program as a 911 dispatcher (only then to face layoff due to budget problems)… I realized that at some point in time, I couldn’t keep it all inside anymore.

However, good came out of this experience that has taught me more than I could ever have hoped for. What I realized was that even though I lost my home, my car, my security of a steady income, my ability to be a stay-at-home-mom, and all that we had worked so hard to attain… I still had my children, and one little miracle baby that God chose to heal from a tragic medical problem. I still had my Husband and I still had my God. I had my parents, grandparents, sisters and friends. I still had Hope. I believe that without each of you, I couldn’t have the perspective I have today….what I’ve become during these last few years I hope is for the better. I’ve learned to be satisfied with much less. I’ve learned to pray, even for the very small things, I’ve learned to trust that life isn’t always going to go the way we hope for it to and that just about the time you get used to the new normal, it changes again. I hate change. I’ve come to understand that about myself. I hate not being in control of my life, and everything that I lost I couldn’t control. I think that I handled the time of Carter’s illness better than the loss of all my possessions. I wonder why I trusted God with my son more than I did with my stuff? It seems as though I had more faith during our time in the NICU then when I walked away from our home for the last time. I hope someday I can understand my “less than logic” on that. The learning process is certainly not over. There were days when I scream to the sky why? Why everything we own? Why not just the car? Is this lesson in humility over yet? Do I have any pride left in me to rid? What was God thinking? God why won’t you just call me on the phone and tell me, please?

For the first time during all this I heard God’s voice. After 3 years, really heard it. A few weeks ago I was laying in bed, trying to sleep, very frustrated about a situation and praying and asking God the 20 questions I usually do, most beginning in “why can’t you?”(no wonder I can’t hear him) I was laying very still and suddenly I heard Him say two words, and two words only.

"Allow me".

I almost fell out of bed.

What? Allow me.

Is that all your going to say?

Whoa..I think that’s all you need to say. Point taken. I think I’m tired now.

For days…those words replayed over and over and over again in my head.

Allow me.

Have I been so wrapped up in every painful event over the last few years that I couldn't even allow Him to help me bear my burdens? Allow him to handle the tough stuff? Allow him to show me the why when I asked? Allow him to take control? I still don’t think I have allowed him. Instead, I cry out for Mercy. I plead with God that this is all I can handle. Please don’t give me one more hard thing. Not right now… or my next home will have padded walls. Why can’t I just roll over and submit? I think I’m still afraid of losing more and that somehow if I allow him, I will lose more. I never promised any of you I was logical! This is clearly a journey I have not finished.
My job has changed me also. I have evolved from a naive person to a very thankful, but eyes wide open person. Ironically during my time of own personal crisis, I helped people with their bad days. I’ve talked to elderly people when their spouses have just died, parents whose child just might be Satan himself, people who have witnessed tragic car crashes or found someone who has just committed suicide. People who have nothing left, not even their minds, because they have made such poor choices they have ruined themselves. I’ve talked to people who think they hate me even though they don’t know me. Broken hearts because of terrible home life, and people who could care less about anything but themselves. These stories change a person. These stories live in my dreams and cause me to be mindful of just how much worse life could be and thankful for the life I have. Mindful of what life would be like without God. This job has made me question my faith and my God more than I ever have before. To look hard into why I believe what I do. Again, a journey I have not finished.

I wrote something about each person I invited even if they couldn’t attend this weekend.
Here it goes…

Katie…Just because were sisters doesn’t make us friends, were friends because we choose to be. Your selflessness is inspiring to me. I love how you love my boys and what a help you have been in raising them. There’s obviously a reason why Jordan’s first word was “Katie”. Every good kid deserves a great mom and I’m glad Titus picked you. (Don’t worry, I’ll teach him his first word!) Your level headedness, patience and discipline are admirable traits I only wish I possessed half of.

Michele…You make me laugh. So. Hard. But more than that you saw me on my cranky days, my happy days, my tired days, my sick days, my bad mom days, my messy house days, my filthy house days, my clean house days (let’s hope that’s the one you remember) my “I’m pregnant” day, and my decorate for Christmas days. ….and you didn’t put your house up for sale even after all those days. You are the best neighbor I have ever had and loved living next door to you. Not a day goes by that I don’t think about the friendships we made while living on Trinity and being friends with everyone on the block. Well, except maybe for the pink house!

Susie..my other neighbor. We met when our world’s were crashing down around us. Except that you could smile and I could not. Our hearts can only handle so much some times and even though it’s hard for you to smile now, the day will come again. He promises it will. I wish I could say what the outcome will be but just know this…God is God, and we are not, and He is the same today and yesterday no matter the circumstances. Hold on to those hopes.

Cara…While you are my friend I have know the longest, It’s been a while since we have spent time together. Yet every time we do we fit right in. Watching Jordan and Owen grow up is only reflective of how long we have been friends. It’s exciting to watch Owen grow to be such a great kid, with opportunities most kids don’t have. Thanks for always keeping in touch by email, Christmas cards and mutual sporting activities, and for always sending a kind note and a Birthday e-card!

Monica… better known and as Moniqua…and another mother of three boys. Thank you for being such a great second mom to my kids, if only you could have breastfed them, darn. You have done more hours of babysitting than any friend should and always with a smile on your face. I appreciate you for the time you spent at the NICU and the time you spent at Applebee’s listening to the worst thoughts I’ve ever shared with a friend. I cherish the good times, when we laugh so hard, you snort and the tears flow uncontrollably. I wish I could say I love the late night scrapbooking with you...but dear friend 8pm is not late.

Vicki…You have to be the most gracious person I have ever met. You love deeper than anyone I know. You wear your heart on your sleeve (and that’s not a bad thing) and you appreciate friendship wholeheartedly. Your visit in the NICU proved how strong one can be during such an uncertain time. What a difficult day that was for you, even years later, to visit Carter and yet you and Wayne still came. To have a friend who knew right where I was because you had lived it before meant the world to me. You brought groceries when I was locked up in the house with a very sick newborn, mastitis with a fever of 104 and a flooding backyard irrigation canal threatening to flood my house all while my husband was out of town and I couldn’t lift sandbags because of a c-section. My favorite memory of you was our last scrapbook trip 4 years ago when you tried to hang yourself with the seat belt.

Kristin…where do I begin? The bible study group with LeaAnn and Jen, eggs and toast and a friendship was formed. The day Jeff cut Emma’s hair and you called and cried…and I told you to take a picture because it wouldn’t last forever and one day you would laugh. The day Jordan buzzed his hair to the scalp with clippers and I called you crying. .and you laughed and told me to take a picture because it wouldn’t last forever. The day Michael shaved your hair because of chemo treatments and you were bald and you called crying, and I told you to take a picture and email it to me, because it wouldn’t last forever and praise God it didn’t. One of the strongest, most determined friends I have. You have been dealt more than your fair share of physical pain and illness and you still smile, that huge smile. Your faith in God and unwillingness to be bitter about the hand you’ve been dealt is notable and praiseworthy. I look forward to picking out a room to share with you at the nursing home when we are old.

Amy….I was 7 months going on 11 months pregnant. Running through the airport…. barefoot…a plane with no breaks or steering….a twin bed to share between the two of us….full of ants, and my baby in utero kicking you in the back. The worst rain storm of our lifetime put to eighties music. Dinner plates bigger than my belly and cheep internet cafe’s linking us back to life as we knew it. Who better than to spend it with than you. Thanks for enduring the journey to Costa Rica even though hit-on by more than 1 tico every hour! Thank you…for allowing me to be a part of your life, the good and the bad and the great. Who can forget your 30th birthday, your bridal shower or the rain on your wedding day. Or the “who’s Paul?” question. And most importantly, for making me, in almost every conversation…tell you something good that happened for that day. Congratulations on your expectant child…let’s not try to reverse the twin bed scenario, k?

Rue….My newest friend, you are one not afraid of ugly words and an ugly heart. Thank you so much for the always encouraging words and the prompting to seek counseling during the ugliest time of my life. I feel like I should reassure you that I’m not entirely mental! You met me at a vulnerable time and caused me to think in a perspective I never have before. It helped me crawl out of a hole and make life go on…even if it’s not the same as it once was or what I want it be. I appreciate your insight, your willingness to ask the hard questions and sympathize with a situation you didn’t have to. For reaching out and caring more about me as a person rather than just a client with a sore neck. I hope I can someday return the favor. Although, I probably shouldn’t touch your neck! And a big congratulations to you too on your soon to arrive baby. You will be a great mother!

Naomi…..I’m thinking it was the infamous Main/Imel camping trip that sealed our fate as “friends that can survive anything”. We look back and laugh, only because it really couldn’t have been any worse, or so we thought. We have both been hit with real life disasters since that time and oh, how I wish we could laugh at them the way we laughed then. In spite of this, you have been an immense joy of a friend… your humor, candid words and gracious heart. Your wiliness to add my three kids to your four and call it “a fun weekend” so Howard and I could get some much needed time away. Always remembering our birthday’s and anniversary, always checking on us after a hospital stay…the beautiful letter to Carter for his scrapbook and last years Christmas thoughtfulness. My nickname for you…"Tell it like it is Naomi"…because I can always depend on rough cut honesty and no-hold’s barred opinions. Hang in there my friend. We can only look up!

Michelle…another mother of 3 boys…our Road trip to Disneyland. Another pregnant trip for me. All our boys and two of us on the teacups. Those were the days we became friends. What I never saw coming was the loads of time you put into our family when Carter was born. You organized meals for a whole month! Your family visited us in the hospital and you called nearly everyday to check on us. You printed off every email update and later I was able to scrapbook the whole event because of it. You give so much of yourself to others in such a practical way. I appreciate all the hand me down clothes for my boys, they really do help. Thank you for everything you have given our family. You have a great laugh and a great heart!

Lastly Jennifer…how can I forget my birthday buddy. Of course you were not invited. Seems like your celebration is far better than ours will ever be down here. I still miss you. Just when I think it gets better another birthday comes around and I think about sending you a birthday card and I’m sure Jeff doesn’t want one in the mail like last year. So instead I’ll pay tribute to you here among friends and selfishly wish you could have been here to, but how nice it is not to have to visit you in the hospital every November. And how nice it will be when we can visit again, on a November day in Heaven. I am so thankful for the opportunity I had to curl up next to you in bed during your final days on earth and cry and visit and laugh... and talk about Heaven and how you were almost there, knowing full well it was just around the corner for you. I hugged you and you told me you would watch for me there. On the day you died I brought a meal to your family, and Hope met me in the driveway with tears in her eyes and said, "My mom couldn't come to my swim lesson today because she was too busy dying." And I picked her up and held her little body and wished life didn't have to be that hard.

Thanks for reading.

Mandy

Monday, September 21, 2009

Out of the Mouth of Mom, vol 1

Phrases actually uttered by this mom this week in this house:

"Stop doing that, NOW! I don't have time for a broken elbow today."

"For the 4th time today, put the couch cushions and pillows back on the couch."

"Please don't pour your puke bowl over the top of the dirty dishes."

"Please don't leave your puke bowl on the living room floor for the dog to find."

"Stop jumping into the pile of clean laundry"

"Why did you take my freshly washed, very clean sheets off my bed and put them on the dog bed? I don't want to sleep in dog hair."

"Keep your pee in the toilet."

"I really don't want your second grade school picture to be a picture of you with a dent in your forehead. Don't jump off the top bunk."

"Stop jumping on the couch cushions."

"This is my bath, not your bath, please stop playing in it and go find something else to do."

"Yes, the 3rd fish just died. I put the first one in the freezer so we can exchange it. The second one I flushed because it wasn't all the way dead, just mostly. That one... I'm leaving for your dad to scoop out."

"Take off your seat belt now, take off your shoe now, and kill that spider NOW before it comes near me, I don't care if the car is moving."

"Please eat your hot dog before eating that cookie. They are both bad for you. "

"Nice job buddy. You did a great job building that skeleton castle."

Stay tuned for more "Out of the Mouth of Mom" quotes. With three boys the fun never ends.

Mandy