Moose’s Lodge

Raising a Moose

Thanksgiving December 2, 2008

Filed under: family — valben @ 2:27 pm
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We went home to Charleston (Goose Creek, SC) for Thanksgiving weekend and it was awesome.  Some of the highlights:

  • Seeing ALL the family – I really miss my cousins and wish I could have spent more time with them!!
  • Swimming in the new pool at Ben’s parents house
  • Getting a Watsu massage from Ben’s mom
  • Shopping with my mom
  • Clemson whipping Carolina’s ass on Saturday
  • Doing our now traditional movie-mommy time-out with my sister
  • Going to see Carlos Mencia live at the last minute (thanks Joe and Kelly!!)
  • and of course, eating and eating and eating…



We did Thanksgiving at my parent’s house on Thursday with the big family.  We had turkey and some other odd items that were still yummy.  On Saturday, we did a Lowcountry boil with some fresh steamed oysters with our immediate families at his parents house.  I was so sad that we did not finish the oysters 😦  But there will be more come Christmas time!!


Moose and the Family October 18, 2008

Filed under: family,Moose — valben @ 1:57 am
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My parents, sister, bro-in-law and nephew came up this weekend.  Grandma spoiled the Moose the best she could, loading him up with clothes and toys.  We ate tons of good food and went to Maple Lane Farms to check out the hay ride and pumpkin patch.  They also have a corn maze, but we didn’t think it would be fun to get lost in a maze with two babies!  Overall, it was a fun weekend.  The only downside was Moose passed his cold on to his cousin, but like I’ve said before, its unavoidable!!


Happy Birthday to Me! September 3, 2008

Filed under: family,Moose — valben @ 3:00 pm
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Its birthday time again!  Well, actually it was yesterday.  Over the years, I haven’t been getting excited about my birthday, and half the time I forget how old I am.  Not because I am in denial, but simply because its not that big of a deal for me.

This is my first birthday as a mom.  And I have noticed I look – older.  Finally.  I see the little bags under my eyes in pictures.  The uneven skin tone.  My inability to keep makeup on or even apply it correctly (okay, I’ve never been able to do that!).  But on this birthday, I feel more secure and happy in my life than I did 10 years ago.  Part of it is the Moose, but most of it stems from the experiences I’ve had. 

Since the Moose came along, my marriage hit its lowest low, what we refer to as our “rough patch.”  But we recovered and we are stronger and happier today than we ever were.  I have accepted my new life as a SAHM, something I thought I would never wanted to do, but now I can’t imagine doing anything different.  I have an amazing husband and a gorgeous little boy.  Here’s to turning 32!!! 

Moose and his mommy and daddy

Moose and his mommy and daddy


Domestic Mommy Moose September 2, 2008

Filed under: family,Moose — valben @ 2:45 pm
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This weekend I realized how different my sister and I are in our “mommy” styles.  My sister is a super-mom.  My nephew, Zach is 8 months old.  My sister has been working full-time for the last 5 months, and she is still able to pump and supply him with breastmilk.  She has dinner on the table every night, makes lunch for her hubby, and keeps her house immaculate (although she thinks otherwise).  She keeps Zach dressed to the nines, right down to his little matching shoes and socks.  When we went out to lunch with the family, she busted out the diaper bag which contained a bottle of formula ready to go, baby food, snacks, a snack mat, diapers, toys, and tons of other baby necessities.  She started planning their first birthday party two weeks after Zach was born.

On the other hand, I stay at home, yet struggle with the “what’s for dinner” dilemma weekly, and typically end up whipping something up right as hubby gets home.  Most days, my house looks like a tornado ripped through it.  Moose rarely gets 3 square meals of baby food – he still gets 90% of his nutrition from me.  The Moose hasn’t had anything on his feet (socks or shoes) since before Mother’s day.  I’m not even sure where my diaper bag is.  I have a traveling diaper cover thing that sometimes has diapers in it.  I am that mom that has had to buy diapers bc I didn’t have extras in my car.  I will sometimes remember to throw in a bib, spoon, and baby food into my purse before we go out to eat.  And birthday planning?!? Yeah, there’s a reason we are having a combined party for the boys…

A good friend of mine was once told she shouldn’t worry about having kids because she is not the domestic type.  But seriously, who is?  Compared to my sister, I most definitely am not.  But we are both doing a great job raising our kids – they are happy, healthy and learning every day.  If only “domestic” types had babies, ther world population wouldn’t be rising exponentially.  My mom said it doesn’t matter what you are like before kids, if you are a good person, your mother instincts will kick in.  And I think that is true.  I think my friend is going to be an AWESOME mom.  She is great with Moose and every other kid I have ever seen her interact with.

I don’t think being “domestic” has anything to do with being a good mom.  Sure, I would love to be a Martha Stewart-type mom, but I don’t have the energy for it.  I love my TV and computer too much for that.  I type this as Moose is screaming for me to finish… oh well..


Moose in GC August 30, 2008

Filed under: family,Moose — valben @ 10:16 pm
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Here we are.. back home.  Its funny how Goose Creek will always be home.  Moose handled the drive well last night, but he was not ready to go back to sleep at 1 AM when we actually got to the house.  I couldn’t get him to sleep in the nursery (yes, my mom has a nursery in her house!), so he slept with us last night.  But between Moose’s and hubby’s body heat, it was a freakin’ furnace.  So none of us slept very well.  Luckily Moose is having a good day.  He had a 2 hour nap this morning and just went down for a late afternoon nap.

I have recently been complaining about the excessive weight loss.  I have no clothes to wear because my butt is disappearing.  Not in a good way.  It is sad when I have saggy butt in every pair of shorts/pants that I own.  But gotta love my mom, she is helping me put the weight back on 🙂  Since Hubby was joining his friends tonight for dinner and some Clemson football, my mom decided she would make lunch.  “Lunch” included about 10 pounds of snow crab legs, some awesome marinated beef tenderloin, kare-kare (a peanut butter base filipino beef stew – yumm!!), rice, and corn (Dad threw that in as our “vegetable”). 

Who knows what’s in store for dinner tonight.  But tomorrow Moose gets to play with the WHOLE family.  Yup, the aunties, uncles, some of the cousins and some other folks are coming over for a little gathering.  All for the Moose.  Gotta love Goose Creek!!


Intro – The Riggs August 25, 2008

Filed under: The Riggs — valben @ 11:46 pm
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My family is made up of 4 people – me, hubby, Moose and The Riggs (aka the cat).  The Riggs has taken to vomiting VIOLENTLY in front of every doorway in this house.  I fear walking through the house at night for stepping in a warm puddle of hairball.. ugh.  Then comes the cleaning.  ‘Cause this house we are renting has carpet.  Lucky for me, I have found something to remove those blasted stains!

But we love The Riggs.  Even though he wakes up and starts MEEEEE-OOOWWing loudly every time I get up to tend to the Moose.  Even though he takes secret poops in our closet sometimes.  Even though he is the messiest eater I have ever known in my life.  Even though he likes to lay on everything dark in the house to show off his lovely white fur.  Even though he loves to jump on our bed when we are in “the heat of the moment”. 

At the end of the day, The Riggs is the OGB – Original Gangsta Baby.  We raised him as a little kitten and he has been with us through our entire relationship.  So through poop and hairballs, we love him – damn little hemorrhoid.


The Moose and the Bear

Filed under: family — valben @ 3:29 pm
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We went hiking with the family this weekend at Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains.  We did a short but fun trail called Abrams Falls.  Every time we hike, the hubby is always on bear lookout.  He really, really wants to see a bear.  I really, really don’t. 

So we are driving back after the hike through the Cades Cove scenic loop, a one-way 11 mile drive that kind of feels like a redneck amusement ride at times.  At one point, all the cars come to a dead stop.  We were trying to get to a rest stop at the middle of the loop, so we were a bit annoyed.  Finally, the cars moved and we approached the rest stop.  “Got alot of traffic today cause of that bear in the field”, says a man as we walk up.

Ooooh!  A bear!  So hubby and I run over to look.  We are staring out in the field, not seeing anything.  Suddenly, I notice – the bear is not in the field, it is walking along the fence not 10 yards from us!!  There are people driving by in cars within 10 feet of the bear, and even bigger idiots walking along the fence right next to the bear.  Then the bear casually hops the fence, taking no notice of the crowd. 

Next someone mentioned it was a mama bear, and the cub was in the tree right in front of us.  At that point, we hightailed it to the car. 

I must say though, people are idiots.  Entire families, with their kids, were walking up toward the bear.  This is why people get attacked, and its not the bear’s fault.  People are so used to watching nature on TV, they have no fear when they see these things in real life.  They think the camera or camera phone they are holding up will protect them when the bear decides to charge.  So far, I haven’t found any news articles about a bear attack this weekend.  And to think, the Moose slept through the entire thing!