Category Archives: who is ememby


The title of this post is ironic because I am so not a keeper of my house. It’s just not on my list of priorities. I’d much rather read, watch TV, spend time with people I love, blog or even do laundry. It is the way it is, but I digress…

Really I just wanted to let you know I updated some images and the “About ememby” section of the blog – I was rather remiss in making those changes since it said Liam was looking forward to turning five (um, last August) and also noted (with great chagrin) that I had typos in my about page. Whoops. I may work with a bunch of editors but I was a communications/art major so clearly you cannot learn new tricks.

Liam and I went to the dentist Tuesday, aptly named Smiley Family Dentistry (the dentist’s actual last name is Smiley – also ironic, and perfect). Anywho… we went to the dentist. Liam loves the dentist. Like feels-sorry-for-his-brother-who-didn’t-get-to-go-but-was-playing-with-friends LOVES to the dentist. I don’t hate the dentist, if anything I’m apathetic to the dentist in general and quite like our current dentist. The staff is amazing and actually remembers details about our family, I’m not sure if it’s because they review notes before we come back or if my husband’s accent burns things in people’s memories when he says them, either way, I like that personal touch.

We both got our teeth cleaned at the same time in adjacent rooms, I also like this about our dentist because how efficient is that? Though I am not sure how Liam’s hygienist was able to get his teeth checked and cleaned because the kid NEVER stopped talking. And he was cracking us all up with his little quips, observations and general enthusiasm for life. And I was again reminded that his kindergarten teacher is a saint.He gave her a very detailed recounting of how often he brushes his teeth and uses his fluoride, he asked about every instrument and piece of equipment in the room, he requested sun glasses to block the light, he talked all about his brother and how he is sometimes a pest but “that’s okay because he’s only three and learning to share,” he detailed his escapades on the Wii and talked about what he was learning at school. He also managed to get a free toothbrush for his brother, along with two reward toys for a good check up and a tattoo for Jack. Both of our hygienists commented on how sweet he was and he really is, despite the nonstop chatter. We also booked our next appointment for six months from now (which, yipes, Liam will have started back at school and will be in FIRST grade – hold me!) and added Jack to the list since it’s about time he start going to the dentist. Sometimes tells me our next visit isn’t going to be as lovely, though I’m perfectly willing to be proven wrong on that one.

Later in the day we went with some friends to Meijer Gardens and when we were getting in our car, Liam asked if he could give them the prizes he got for a good check up and I told him that it was a nice gesture but that he had earned them for a good checkup so it was okay if he wanted to keep them. He responded with, “We have more than enough toys at home, I want to give these to my friends because I love them.” My heart swelled two sizes bigger (unthwarted by Jack trying to kick me in the face as I buckled him in his car seat).

Liam may often test my patience and I might not keep a super clean house, but I have to be doing something right for him to be growing up into such a great kid. And I think maybe I have some friends who need reminding of this (not about my kids, but about their own; and not anyone specific, just in general) we are all doing great because our kids are happy so don’t worry about the rest. Don’t worry about all the things you’re not getting done, just celebrate all the things you are getting right, especially if it has to do with your kids because happy kid trumps clean house any day of the week!


All about me…

Another fun meme to post for the weekend, won’t you join me… And you’ll have to forgive me if my answers are rambling but Laura promised a Starbucks gift card to whoever entertained her most and you know how I love coffee (plus, I sort of ramble normally)!

1. What is your favorite Girl Scout cookie?
Samoas – nothing (in my book) beats the combination of caramel, coconut and chocolate. But I try to avoid buying girl scout cookies because I will open that box and in no time the cookies will be gone and they are decidedly NOT good for you. But if you eat them with a friend, it doesn’t count, right? (And because everyone says this, it for sure makes it true.)

2. What is the one item on which you always splurge?
Coffee. My parents use those big canister, low quality coffees at their house and when we go for even the weekend, we bring our own because we are coffee snobs. I hate taking a sip of coffee and immediately feeling my nose scrunch up from the awful flavor.

3. What’s the best book you’ve read in the last 10 years?
The book I loved and always recommend to people: The Time Traveler’s Wife. I just LOVED it and had nothing bad to say about it. There is a book sitting on my bedside table, waiting to be read, that my SIL sent me two Christmas’ ago, Room: A Novel, and I’m quite certain it would be the best book I’d read but I haven’t been able to get myself to read it because I know it’s going to wrap me up and not let me go and I need to be in the right frame of mind for that kind of intensity, especially when the story centers around a mother and her son.

4. What is your favorite summer drink?
Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy – beer with lemonade. I love Leinie’s and have even toured their brewery in Chippewa Falls, WI because it is only 25 minutes from my aunt and uncle’s place. Just don’t try to take photos during the tour, you will get in trouble, just ask my cousin’s wife (the rebel).

5. Spring or fall?
No question, fall all the way. I appreciate the new growth of spring but I really hate mud and spring comes with an abundance of mud. Fall has some (mud), but typically not so much and the leaves are just gorgeous in our neck of the woods. Michigan in fall is my favorite.

6. If you are not doing your dream job right now, what would it be?
My dream job would be to be a philanthropist but that really isn’t something one applies to be (though, Bill Gates, if you are looking for someone to train, sign me up!). I would love the ability (and funds) to not work a “normal” job and be able to work on causes, promoting worthy non-profits and attending fundraisers. I love a good cause, something I can get fired up about but don’t have the freedom with time or money to support all things I feel deserve my attention.

7. Is there a better movie role model than Maude?
This might put me out of the running, but I have to confess to not having ever watched Harold and Maude, but a quick visit to wikipedia gave me a general description of Maude as a 79-year-old free spirit who lives each day to its fullest. She sounds great to me but I’d have to say I’d rather go for Marissa Tomei’s character in My Cousin Vinnie (words I never thought I’d say) she’s pretty, vivacious and smart – that’s a winning combination – plus she doesn’t kill herself at the end.

8. If you had $100 to spend at Target, what would you buy?
Probably the same thing I buy [nearly] every time I’m at Target: a random pair of shoes, a cute top, a variety of snacks and a collection of gems from the Dollar Spot. I’m a sucker for the Dollar Spot… I have oodles of patterned notebooks, treat boxes and toys for the boys to use as rewards good deeds.

9. Have you ever tried boxed wine? If it was good, what was the brand?
Nope. But right now I’m loving Cupcake’s Sauvignon Blanc – it is delicious and fruity without being too sweet and definitely not dry.

10. If you could meet one blogger who would it be?
The Bloggess because she is wickedly funny and wonderfully flawed – just like all good people should be. Though I’m quite certain her anxiety would keep her from wanting to meet me in person, I think we’d be great Twitter friends. I’d totally hang out with her and Wil Wheaton with the ponies (or monkey butlers).

11. If I could photograph you doing anything, what would it be?
Spending time with my kids – I’d love to catch those little moments where we are all having fun and laughing and loving on each other.

Here’s a question for you: If you could travel to one city for a day, where would you go and why?

A to Z of Me

Something a little fun because I actually love filling out questionnaires (like for real; and also, talking about myself, which is why I have a bloggity blog) via Jive Turkey and agirlandaboy.

A. Age: I will be 34 at my next birthday, which is something I absolutely cannot remember and then have to do math in my head when someone asks me how old I am and apparently I cannot do math fast enough because not only do I keep telling people I’m already 34, I’ve also said 32 and 33 recently. But not 35, I know I’m not that old 🙂

B. Bed size: Queen, but in my heart I want a king size, in our next house, we will have one! Darn it!

C. Chore that you hate: Cleaning the bathroom, and I know I will grow to hate it even more when I have three boys who [try to] put their pee in the potty

D. Dogs: George, the 9.2-pound miniature black poodle, he’s turning into even more of a barking little pill than he ever has been

E. Essential start to your day: Coffee. Coffee. Coffee. After my shower.

F. Favorite color: Sunsets

G. Gold or Silver: Silver

H. Height: 5′ 9″ – though for a while I shrunk because my neck was screwed up, I don’t look forward to osteoporosis

I. Instruments you play: I have taken lessons for violin, piano and guitar, currently I play none of these.

J. Job title: Business partner, mom, blogger

K. Kids: Two boys + one manchild of a husband (never grow up he says!)

L. Live: The best city ever

M. Mother’s name: Donna

N. Nicknames: My dad always called me pumpkin dunkin’ and my friends call me Chelle/Shell and when they want to annoy me, people call me Shelly (notable my brothers and my college friend, Matt)

O. Overnight hospital stays: When I had my babies and when Jack had RSV at 3 weeks old, I wasn’t the patient but I didn’t leave the hospital once in 3 days.

P. Pet peeves: People who are not problem solvers, who instead whine about what is happening to them but don’t do anything about it.

Q. Quote from a movie: [this one stumped me, which is odd because I LOVE movies] I’d love to say something that really touched me, but instead I’ll go with something from The Princess Bride because it’s the one I quote most often: “Wuv. Twu wuv.” (Love, True love…)

R. Right- or left-handed: Right.

S. Siblings: Two aforementioned brothers, Mike and Marty (or Michael and Martin if we’re being formal) my parents liked the “m” names though they do argue that they were going to name me Robin Renee until I was born (thankfully they came to their senses, I much prefer Michelle)

U. Underwear: Always.

V. Vegetable(s) you hate: lima beans, always have, always will. Vegetables I’ve hated but come to love: asparagus and brussel sprouts

W. What makes you run late: See aforementioned two boys and manchild (though, really, just the smaller children and even more honestly, we are seldom late, we are annoyingly early)

X. X-Rays you’ve had: sprained pinkie (pinky?) finger in middle school (injury gained while swimming – laughably possible); random knee pain in 20s; head CT when I had a five-day headache (to check for a brain bleed, you know, after I might have already had it for 5 days); and ultrasounds for children and gall bladder.

Y. Yummy food that you make: pulled pork tacos, chicken enchiladas, lentil barley stew (for Jesus), pesto, cheesecake bars, caramels, peppermint patties, cake balls

Z. Zoo animal: A swimming bear or a kangaroo that I can feed.

Want to play along?

Top Ten Things That Might Surprise You About Me*

1. My toenails have had polish on them approximately 51 out of the last 52 weeks.

2. I find Joel McHale very attractive. My husband supports this attraction; mostly because it allows for his attraction to Chelsea Handler.

3. I’m relatively new to texting and I LOVE IT! It completes the teenage part of me that used to love talking on the phone AND the adult part of me who hates talking on the phone (except to my parents – still love talking to them).

4. I love talking to my parents on the phone. Seriously, they are great people and good conversationalists.

5. I have no desire to take a cruise or visit Hawaii. None. I’m sure they’d be pretty but there are just other place I’d rather go.

6. I cannot use squatty potties properly, I have to completely undress below the waist and this is not really a best practice. Of course I had to use them before I found Google, perhaps I could have researched the proper way.

7. I miss MacGuyver – I thought he was pretty awesome. And Murdock freaked me out. (Any other MacGuyver fans out there?)

8. I was not an English major. Ironic since I work for a company that primarily does editing and writing. I’m the token business/graphic design major.

9. I had the entire last season of House on the DVR that I never got around to watching and finally let Simon delete it a couple of weeks ago. Too many weeks went by and I couldn’t get started and let it overwhelm me. I was bested by a TV show and I can admit it.

10. I’m an introverted extrovert. Sometimes I’m totally on a roll when I talk with people and other times I leave a conversation and wonder how I have any friends.

*(or not)

Top Ten {Tuesday}This post is linked to Oh Amanda’s Top Ten Tuesday.

Things I Love Thursday: Delegating

Yesterday was a trifecta of things going wrong. First, our phones stopped working at the office. Next, our email stopped working and kept telling me my ID didn’t exist. Then our brake lights on our one-year-old van wouldn’t go off as expected and twice while I was driving the accelerator/engine acted like it slipped into neutral but would correct itself when I would release and then press on the gas again. Perfect.

The good news is, I have people I can call for these things and I can make my problem their problem to handle. I call this delegating, something I’m trying to be better at doing in the rest of my life and having problems I can’t handle myself means I definitely have to hand the job off to someone else. Do you think God knew I needed some practice?

So two phone calls and technician visits later, my phones get dial tone again instead of only static. One trouble ticket filed and my email is functioning again. And a visit to Toyota service and hopefully I’ll be driving the van to work in less than 30 minutes (keep your fingers crossed).

Not only did I get practice in delegating, but I got to experience how easy and stress free it can be to have someone else do things instead of trying to do it all myself. Now if only I can remember this and apply it to the other areas of my life because I’d rather not continue to have things go wrong so I can “learn” my lesson.

Also, I tried to make the Oreo pops I wanted to try for Liam’s birthday (linked to here) and they were an epic (but tasty) fail so I delegated the boys to eating the crumbled, half-dipped cookies. See, I’m learning already.

This post is linked up with Jill at Diaper Diaries.