Archives for September 2010

The Window

The sun beats through the water spotted window. Dust floats and dances in the stale air, settling gently on the coffee table cluttered with crusty dishes, food wrappers, and spilled juice. A fan buzzes and rotates in the corner, wafting hot air throughout the quiet room.

The boy wakes from his nap. He stretches and rubs his eyes. He wiggles his legs over the side of the bed. His dirty feet touch the floor. He walks sleepily into the living room and feels the stagnant air envelope him.

The creamy, rough smell of alcohol immediately hits his nose. He knows that the smell is coming from his mother, who is sleeping in the old, torn recliner. Her fingertips still grasp the bottle that they went to the corner mart to buy last night. It is empty now. She is snoring gently. A lit cigarette is slowly burning in the ash tray, which tells him she hasn’t been sleeping long. He puts it out and takes the bottle from her hand, setting it on the table next to the chair. He wants to touch her, but he know that he won’t. Good things never come when she wakes up after drinking from the bottle.

He can hear laughter from the street below. He goes to the table and pulls one of the chairs over to the window to see what’s going on. He climbs onto the chair and his knees stick to the vinyl. He puts his arms on the window’s ledge, and rests his chin on them.

The kids below are running around and squirting each other with hoses and water guns. Somebody has pulled a large plastic pool onto the sidewalk and the kids climb in and out of it. They dunk each other under the now-warm water and splash so much that a lady pulls the hose over and refills it.

Moms are sitting in lawn chairs watching the action, gossiping. Dads stand in the street talking about the upcoming football game and drinking beer, while making sure that cars slow down when approaching the impromptu pool party and that the little ones don’t try to dart into the middle of traffic.

The boy wants to go down and play, but he knows his mother won’t be up until dark. It will be too late to play in the water then. He looks down and sees a mom chasing her little boy around. The little boy is laughing and running. The little boy stops, turns and chases his mom around the sidewalk.

The boy looks over at his mother. He looks back out the window, up into the sky and the slowly moving clouds. He wishes that just once, his mother would take him down to the street to play. He wants to run and laugh and feel the cool water hit his face and soak his clothes. But his mother says “Those women are whores and the men all just come up here to drink my liquor and use me. They get me to do the things their whores won’t do. We are not going out to sit in the heat and play nice with those assholes. If those whores knew what there fat husbands were up to, they might not look down their noses at me everytime I walk out of this hell hole to get some fresh air.”

The boy looks back down to the street. The mom is chasing the little boy again. This time, the mom catches him. She picks the little boy up and swings him overhead. The boy is laughing as a neighbor sprays him with the hose. Then the mom pulls the little boy to her chest and kisses him. He kisses her back and hugs her. She sets the little boy down and smacks him playfully on the behind while he runs away to go play in the pool with his friends.

The boy wishes that just once, his mother would love him like that, too.

I wrote this fictional piece. It was inspired by this week’s writing prompt over at the red dress club. I was also featured there this week! You can check out my feature post here.
And so it goes…

Coffee Fanatic

Yes, I am a fanatic. A coffee fanatic, I mean.

Hot, cold, cheap or expensive, I love it! There aren’t too many mornings that pass that I don’t have a big cup of coffee. No fancy, flavored creamers and no sugar. Just coffee and cream. And since I am being honest, I’ll tell you that I love heavy whipping cream fat-free half and half.

So when I was given the opportunity to sample two of Gevalia’s newest coffees, I jumped at the chance! Royal Vinter and Royal Vinter Spice are available once a year, only during the winter season and in limited quantities. I was excited to try them and see just how tasty they really were.

Jason and I tried the Royal Vinter first. As it brewed, it smelled heavenly! I tasted it first without adding cream. It was rich and full-bodied. Then I added my cream, ahem, I meant fat free half and half. It felt comfy and tasted smooth. It wasn’t bitter or over-powering. We both loved it, and finished off the entire 8 ounces within a week!

Just over this past weekend, we tried the Royal Vinter Spice. As this one brewed, you could smell cinnamon in the air! It reminded me of Christmas. Again, I tasted this one first without adding cream. I could definitely taste the vanilla and a touch of cinnamon. My husband tasted cloves, too. Neither of us are a fan of flavored creamers, and this coffee tasted like it had vanilla creamer in it, without adding anything to it!

Because we don’t like flavored creamers, we both preferred the Royal Vinter to the Royal Vinter Spice. That was the only reason, though. I think that if you like flavored creamers in your coffee, you’ll probably love the Royal Vinter Spice.

You can purchase both of these coffees directly from the Gevalia website. You can select from whole bean or ground and decaf or regular. Pricing for regular is $8.95 for an 8 ounce box, and decaf is $9.75 for an 8 ounce box. Remember, they’re only available during the winter season and in limited quantities, so hurry and get yours reserved! And I’ll let you in on a little secret…Gevalia gives exclusive online offers to their Twitter and Facebook fans, so follow them on Twitter or fan their page.

But I have a surprise for you! The good people over at Gevalia are giving me an AMAZING reader giveaway package! One lucky reader is going to have this package delivered right to their door!

  • 1 box of Royal Vinter
  • 1 box of Royal Vinter Spice
  • 1 pack of Gevalia coffee filters
  • 1 pack of Gevalia coffee cleaner
  • Set of 2 Brabantia canisters
  • Set of 4 Guggenheim mugs
  • Gevalia robe

I know…WOW, right?! So go ahead…leave me a comment and you’ll be entered for a chance to win! That’s it! If you would like an additional entry, you can tweet about this giveaway on Twitter (make sure to include @Gevalia and @mommyofamonster in your tweet). *Please leave a separate comment for each entry*

This giveaway will be open from Thursday, September 30th and will close at 8:30 p.m. (PST) on Wednesday, October 6th. I will announce the winner on Thursday, October 7th.

And for another chance to win, head over to visit Gigi at Kludgy Mom! She’s hosting the same giveaway…tell her that you’re visiting from Mommy of a Monster!

Good luck to you!

And so it goes…

I received free Gevalia coffee for hosting this review and giveaway. All opinions expressed are my own and were not influenced by any other source. I was not compensated to provide an opinion of Gevalia products. This giveaway is open to US residents only. It begins on September 30, 2010 and will end on October 6, 2010 at 8:30 pm. One winner with a valid entry will be selected at random using random.org. The winner will be announced and must respond with a current mailing address within 48 hours to claim. Otherwise, another eligible entry will be chosen.

Project Smile – September

My wonderful friend Alicia over at A Beautiful Mess had the most fantastic idea…do something to help us find and appreciate our smiles. What are the things that happen everyday that make you smile? It could be something as simple as watching a hummingbird dance around a flower. Want to know more about her wonderful idea? Read her Launching Project Smile post.

There’s no right or wrong way to do this…simply jot down things that make you happy. I chose to do one a day for the entire month. It was a way to remind me that it’s the little things that are the most important, and to find something to smile about each day (especially on the bad ones!).

Now, start jotting down your smiles and link up the last day of every month!

During the month of September, I smiled everyday. Here are some of the things that made me happy…

September 1st – Had a doctor appointment. I had to wait 45 minutes, but I got to read Mockingjay for the entire time and I didn’t mind the wait

2nd – An impromptu get together with neighbors to watch USC’s first game of the season. Lots of beer, wine, and laughs

3rd – Shopping with my mom…sans kids

4th – Our first home-grown avocado makes it’s appearance

5th – Got a pedicure for the first time in months! Also, brother made a surprise trip home from Hawaii (where’s he’s living and working). Family all got together last minute for a celebratory barbecue

6th – Breakfast, Bloody Marys, and bowling with the family, followed by dinner and football at our house

7th – Tater slept all night without waking up (a rare occurrence)

8th – Our first ghost pepper finally sprouted

9th – First “real” NFL game of the season…pizza and beer outside for dinner…perfect weather

10th – Had the most fun I’ve ever had on Twitter with Nichole from In These Small Moments, Cheryl from Mommy Pants, Roxane from Days, and Kris from Pretty All True. We laughed so hard I cried over Kris’ post Ass-Tronomy….if you didn’t read it before, go read it!! And read all 200+ comments too. And yes, it is that funny!

11th – BBQ with friends while watching USC make their first win of the season

12th – Beautiful weather. Sat outside and enjoyed the day with just hubby and the kids

13th – Tater was asleep by 7:30 pm, babies sleeping by 7:00 pm, and hubby at work. Had the whole evening to myself. Peace and quiet

14th – Stayed up late to wait for hubby to get home from work so we could watch some TV together and alone

15th – All of the kids were good, all day long!

16th – Sisters both came over with their kids for a play date

17th – Went to bed early and Tater didn’t wake me up at an unGodly hour the next morning

18th – Enjoyed a quiet day at home with just Jason and the kids

19th – Started my first ever “real” craft project – a cross-stitch for my mom!

20th – Had a long conversation with an old friend

21st – Our 8th wedding anniversary

22nd – Made a big pot of chicken tortilla soup for our first cold, dreary day of the season

23rd – Had a play date at my sister’s house – kept the kids busy and out of my hair for almost 2 hours

24th – Got to watch TV…all by myself, a rare occurrence

25th – Ms. L’s belly laugh caused me to belly laugh too! Laughing feels so good.

26th – Hubby let me sleep in and did breakfast dishes…without me even asking!

27th – Reorganized my pantry, fridge, freezer, and closet… clean feels wonderful!

28th – Sang Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star with Tater and watched the girls dance

29th – Tater and I watched rabbits eating grass in our back yard, and quail having a quiet breakfast on the hill behind our house for about 15 minutes. It was a sweet time to share with him

So what are you smiling about these days?

Make sure to check out my newest giveaway…it’s a Gevalia coffee giveaway with tons of cool stuff!

And so it goes…

A Really Bad Combo

What two things should never be put together?
Spaghetti and toddlers learning to feed themselves.
Why? It’s a food fight in which mom loses even though doesn’t even know she’s participating.
Ms. M
Ms. L
You know you’re a mom when…you will not feed your kids something simply because it is too much of a mess to clean up!
And, this is also for Wordless/Wordful Wednesday. Hope it made you crack a smile :)I’m excited to say that I’m the featured blogger today over at the red dress club! Please check it out!

Random Randomness – Tater Style

This is the second time I’m giving Post It Note Tuesday put on by Only Parent Chroniclesa shot! PINT is a weekly meme that uses…you guessed it!…post it notes to convey your thoughts and ideas. So check it out and link up!

That One Mom
This story is called “A Fishy Tale” and it was a guest post I did over at In Pursuit of Martha Points
Also, be sure to check out my current giveaway for your chance to win The Rattles new CD! The Rattles are a children’s music group and their music is cool enough that you’ll listen to it too!