Saturday, May 31, 2008

Connor's Revenge

Tyler started harassing Connor the minute he got up this morning. Just picking on him, pushing, nudging and a random tackle here and there. After a while, Connor had decided he had enough, so.....

What do you get when you have a 12 month old that has been pushed to his absolute limit by his 3 year old brother?


And then, Tyler didn't even touch Connor for the rest of the day!

Friday, May 30, 2008

The Pacifier Gnomes

I swear to God there are Pacifier Gnomes that come into our house, and take EVERY STINKIN' PACIFIER WE HAVE! I have literally bought probably 50 pacifiers for my two boys. Tyler never took one, so everything I tried, was a waste. Connor loves them now, so I try to keep at least one, or three - or preferrably 10 within sight at all times.

I swear those things disappear out of thin air! Tonight, in our entire house, I can find 3, that is 3 TOTAL pacifiers of the kind he will take. I have about 15 different kinds that he won't that I might as well throw away, but hold on to just in case (I'm strange).

I think we will be finding random pacifiers in this house for years. (Go to bake a cake, find one in the pantry - go to wear some old shoes, find one tucked inside, etc.) These things can't get up and walk away - unless you believe in the Pacifier Gnomes.

A few years ago, South Park did an episode on Underpants Gnomes. The boys friend, Tweak, on the episode, explains to his friends that these gnomes come in to his room every night and steal his underwear - and of course no one believes him. Ah, the humor of South Park!

Maybe I'll have to end up getting a dog to finally take care of these darn gnomes!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

"Mommy, I love you"

Sitting next to me on the couch eating popcorn, watching Diego. That's how Tyler and I spent the last part of our evening tonight. He was fascinated with this Diego because it had a magician in it - he had never heard of a magician before.

As we're sitting there, out of no where Tyler leans over, grabs my hand and says, "I love you Mommy".

After all that happened tonight (which may be an entire post for another time), that just made my day!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The Drive

4:37pm. "I need to get going", I say to myself. I have learned that if I don't leave my office by that time, that I hit 5pm traffic in town before the interstate, and it takes me FOREVER to get home. I also have learned that chances are the second I am walking out of my office, our department, down the hall, or out of the building, someone may catch me. I have to plan for these things now since I'm picking up the kids from daycare.

I work about 30 miles north of where I live. In Iowa terms, that means I have about a 30 minute commute one way. No biggie. I actually kind of like it - especially in the morning. I look forward to the silence, just me and my XM Radio, which I swear is a gift straight from heaven...Prince, Sir Mix-a-Lot, and The Go-Gos at 7am - what else could you ask for!?!?

I don't exactly like the drive on the way home. Traffic is a mess, the interstate is packed and the drivers are idiots! I have made this drive for nearly 8 years, and have said that I don't like the commute coming home for nearly all 8 of them. Then I had kids...

Our daycare is in the town where we live, so I have to make the entire commute home in order to get to them. While at work, I am so distracted and just kept moving, so I don't dwell on the boys. But when I get into the car, it's all about getting to them. Getting back to them so I can hug them, smell them, take care of them and be their sole provider for the next couple of hours before bedtime, even though I paid some stranger nearly peanuts to watch my children for the last DAY! (guilt guilt guilt guilt....)

That half hour on the way home though has always been interesting. I'm able to think about the day, reflect on what happened (and what didn't), what I need to do tomorrow, what I need to do at home, but mostly, how are the boys. It's during that time that all the guilt that I was able to avoid during the day, just drapes over me. I also dwell on the fact that I haven't seen my kids for nearly 11 hours at times, if at all that day yet. I feel my blood pressure rising, my foot is a little bit heavier on the accelerator, and I cannot get there fast enough. I pity the person that gets in my way, especially in that last half mile. Wild dogs could not keep me away from that place.

Tyler spelled his name for me tonight...and I didn't teach him that. Actually - I haven't taught him most of what he tells me because I have never thought he would be READY for that yet. They taught him sign language at 18 months, then the Itsy-Bitsy Spider, ABCs, and now he's writing letters. All things that I wouldn't have taught him at home because I wouldn't have known that he would be ready, or even more shameful, the patience to teach him. With 2 there is always something ELSE to do - laundry, cleaning, bills, a stiff drink, etc. By 8pm I am barely functioning myself and feel teary-eyed and weak with the mere thought of reading the Dinosaur Book one more time, or 5 more times, but we do.

I'm very thankful that he has 20 or so other moms that help him, teach him, and love him, but during that half hour on the way home, I'm the only one that could exist for my boys in the world, and I'm pretty sure I'm the one that needs them. I snatch them up, give them a hug, and truly enjoy the conversation Tyler and I have on the way home. They have the patience and knowledge to teach my kids things that I couldn't, but at the end of the day, when I walk in to their rooms, my boys know exactly who I am, and come running to me. Their mom.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Pay It Forward Friday

In honor of the first "Pay It Forward Friday", I would like to post that my favorite blog that I follow religiously is.......... (insert drumroll here)


I love Loren's sense of humor, real attitude (and by real, I mean honest), and I swear her posts can make me cry, or have me rolling on the floor laughing! Loren has triplet 3-year-old girls, is a full-time student, and is doing her best to remain sane in this insane world!

One of my favorite posts: Loren is taking a poll by calling her mom and sister at 10:30 at night to see if they should have more children!

Also - the differences in parenting between moms and dads!

Check back to An Iowa Mom to see the results of Pay It Forward Friday!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Best Babysitter in the World....

Well, okay, so he's not a babysitter, but our 11-year-old neighbor boy. Every once in a while he sees us pulling into the driveway at the end of the day, and jumps on his bike and comes down. I LOVE these nights because then I don't have to bribe Tyler to come inside while I change my clothes, but can ask Chase to watch him for a couple of minutes while Connor and I run inside.

Yeah, okay, I wouldn't leave him with Tyler for hours, but he's PERFECT for when you need to just run inside and do dishes, or give Connor a bath, and to chase Tyler down when he takes off towards the golf course or something.

And here's the BEST part.......he wants to be paid in CANDY! Seriously! A bag of Skittles or Starburst are like GOLD to this kid! He LOVES it! Last night, I found a box of "Junior Caramels" that I bought a few weeks ago, and put a bunch in my pocket. "Chase, can you watch Tyler for a few minutes while I give Connor a bath?" (slide him a handful of chocolate caramels...). "Chase, can you get Tyler to get off his big wheel and stay in the backyard?", (a few more caramels in the hand...).

It is awesome. And even better, here's a snippet of the conversations I heard last night:

Chase: "Tyler! Stop doing that! Your mom paid good money for that!"

Chase: "Tyler, you can have the stick back when you stop banging it against the tree!"

After having 2 children, I learned quickly that I needed to use every resource at my disposal when offered. Tyler is at the age when he would literally LIVE outside, and you can do all the negotiating you want, but he DOES NOT want to come inside at times, even for ice cream. Having this "back up plan" works wonders!!!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Our new favorite...

commercial! We watch a lot of Discovery Channel in our house - mostly because I like it. =) Man vs. Wild, and Deadliest Catch are among our favorites, but I've been known to climb into bed and watch any show on that channel, including shows about Killer Jellyfish and people that have 7 babies at a time. I guess I'm just curious....

Here's our new favorite commercial. Tyler asks for it by asking for the "tornado" show. He's fascinated with them, so we'll have to find a tornado show now!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

80s Band Impersonations

They're baaaaaaaaacccck!

It's DEVO! Check out the impersonation...

By the way, do you remember this video? I just watched it for the first time in years, and this is the most sick and twisted video I've seen, I think ever....

Sunday, May 18, 2008

...and then a miracle occured...

Both boys are asleep, in bed. This happened at 7pm tonight...

(Insert 15 Hallelujah Choruses here)

I can't believe that actually happened, although we did pay for it all day and are reaping the benefits of 15 tantrums, fits, screaming and fighting. Tyler did not nap today, and Tyler that does not nap is similar to an injured and angry dog. Lots of yelping, jumping around, bouncing, screeching, and rolling around. He finally walked up to me at about 6:30 and said "Mommy, I'm ti-ured, hold me." So I did. I think he was out in about 2 minutes. I got him to bed, then put Connor to bed. This may just be the easiest evening I've had all year, and really don't know what to do with myself.

I do have 2 more loads of laundry to fold, because I've done 47 billion loads this weekend - the aftermath of "Poopfest 2008". I have never seen so much poop in my life, and I don't want to brag, but I've seen a lot of poop. Daycare said Tyler was the second worst pooper they had ever seen, and usually about every other week I was called to pick him up because he had reached his two blow-out limit for the day. To this day, he could still win awards.

Connor has been a bit more normal in his life, until Friday. Holy Lord. Today, he has had 4 baths alone. About every couple of hours there was such a massive poop that it was everywhere. I have cleaned poop out of the carpet, out of clothes, out of blankets and sheets, off the kitchen floor and off myself. I stopped using baby wipes this morning, and either just took him to the kitchen sink or the tub for a hose down instead. (Yes, I used a lot of bleach in the sink).

So, we graduated from puking which stopped at about 4pm Friday, to pooping his own weight every couple of hours. And do you know how nice that is in an overnight diaper? Real Pretty.

Regardless, it's been quite a weekend, but now I have a couple more hours to do whatever I want. I'm watching The Office reruns right now and eating mint Oreos.

Does life get any better than this?

Friday, May 16, 2008


I have a good friend that reminds me frequently, "When the student is ready, the teacher will appear." The teacher appeared last night.

I went to bed at about 9pm, exhausted. I'd been catching puke in my hands for hours after Kyle picked Connor up from daycare at 3pm after he puked twice. He's puked everything I think he had eaten in the last week, all last night. By 8pm, I finally got him to bed, and then got myself ready for bed as well.

For some reason, I turned on ER as I got into bed. I haven't religiously watched ER in years, but it used to be my favorite show. Then all the good people left, then came back again, then left again, and then I gave up. If I want soap operas, I'll tape them in the afternoon...

I'm laying in bed watching it, and there is a part where one of the doctors is working in a Hospice home, and is having a conversation with an older gentleman. The older man is telling the doctor to just suck it up and go back to his family, and get over whatever he was upset about. The old man told him...

"I wish I would've had kids. I never did and I regret it to this day. Kids make you strong. They give you strength you never would've otherwise known you had."

Holy Cow. This could not be more true. After having kids, everything comes into perspective, and you learn so much more about yourself, like:
  • You can survive on little to no sleep.
  • You can sleep sitting up, in a chair, in the middle of the day.
  • If ready and willing, you can nap within 30 seconds.
  • You will eat a cold supper so your kids can eat first.
  • You can go without eating after you realize that you forgot to feed yourself.
  • You can watch Elmo on TV for hours at a time (this requires a lot of strength for me).
  • You can handle meltdowns for anything (i.e. a shoe is tied wrong or the cookie has a chip out of it).
  • You can wipe poop, off of everything - making yourself wait until last.
  • You can catch puke in your hands.

Although these seem like little things, on a daily basis, they become a part of your life that years ago, you never would've even realized could exist some day. I remember being pregnant and saying "I can handle poop, but NEVER puke", until I was spit up on when Tyler was 2 weeks old. I've run 5 loads of laundry in the last 24 hours because everything has been puked on - including Kyle, Connor and myself, at least a couple of times.

I guess there's something about what children can do for you. They make you stronger so you can raise them, but at the same time, make your heart turn to mush every day. A smile, a hug, or a first "ma ma", is enough to reduce you to tears at times.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

The Fun Man

Last night I felt sorry for Connor. He had 4 shots at his doctor appointment that day, plus blood taken out of his finger, and the doctor pointed out that his molars are coming in - which explains the miserable baby that gags himself with his fingers. He's just plain sore. As bedtime approached last night, I decided to actually rock him to sleep just for that extra couple minutes of comfort that he likely needed. As I'm sitting in his room, I hear the front door open. "Uh oh", is my first thought. "Tyler has figured out how to open the front door!".
As I've posted before, I pity the person that has to get out of our house if there is a fire, because you cannot. We basically go into lockdown when we are in the house, because Tyler is an escape artist, and until yesterday, had not mastered any of the baby-proof door handles. (Heck- my parents can't even figure these things out!) Life is now over.

I quickly go to the front door, which is open, and see Tyler running down the sidewalk, across the street, with the neighbor chasing him. Our neighbor, Ron, was watching TV in his living room and noticed Tyler running around outside. That, in and of itself wouldn't surprise anyone, but because Tyler was ONLY WEARING A T-SHIRT AND UNDERWEAR!, Ron became concerned and came outside to help.

Luckily, I got Tyler in the house without much trouble, but much to my embarrassement. "What kind of a mother do they think I am?", I wondered all night. They either see me chasing Tyler out of the street, my son running around with half his clothes on, or throwing dirt clods into the street. We are classy neighbors.

I thought it couldn't get better after last Friday night....

I'm getting both boys out of the bathtub because they actually took a bath at the same time. I'm getting Connor dried off and the bathroom wiped down from its "bath" it also received during this time. It's then that I hear a familiar voice in the kitchen.... I could hear Mike, our neighbor and good friend. I knew Kyle wasn't home because he was working, so I wondered what Mike could be doing.

I walk into the kitchen and greet him - "What's up Mike?", I say with a smile on my face. Mike can hardly hold back the tears as he is laughing so hard.

"I just found Tyler running down the sidewalk, naked!" Mike told me.

Mike was rounding the corner on his way home from work, and sure enough, I hadn't put the stick in the backdoor which keeps it closed from the outside so Tyler can't get out. While I was cleaning up the bathroom, Tyler had snuck out, COMPLETELY NAKED. Running around-our neighborhood.

Last weekend as we were sitting with friends, Tyler ripped out his shirt and loudly proclaimed "I'M A FUN MAN!". What a proud mother I was at that moment... I have myself a stripper and a streaker.

When our neighbors think of us, I'm sure the first word that comes to their mind is class, I tell you, pure class.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Happy Birthday Little Man!

Exactly 365 days ago you came into this big world and blessed our family as our second son. We knew within the first 5 minutes of your life that you were different than your brother. I think you cried once in those first couple of minutes, even laying sprawled out on the table, and rarely cried thereafter. I finally had a baby that only cried, when he needed something.

It was almost as if you could see into my soul, right from the start. Like we were still connected in some way, and continued on that way. We did everything together until I went back to work, and you loved it - but so did I. We shopped, we went for walks, we hung out, and you cuddled with me. After Tyler, I think I said 100 times "My next baby will want to rock in the chair with me!", and that is you. To this day, you can cuddle with us just right in the rocking chair, and just hang out. Tyler, on the other hand, was done rocking the second he was done eating. During those moments it's hard to not just melt away. It's just wonderful. Anything frustrating that has happened during the day or the week, just slides off our minds. During those moments, it is just us in the world.

At just under two weeks old you gave us your first official smile, and you haven't stopped. You smile all.the.time! I see you in the morning, and you're smiling - and the last thing before you go to sleep at night, you're smiling. I swear you just light up whenever we walk in the room.

The year has gone so fast, and there are so many things going on at one time sometimes that I miss the basic things you are doing, saying and accomplishing. You started walking a couple of weeks ago, and I think we clapped and said horray, then chased your brother out of the street.

You are also going to be one of the strongest boys ever if you survive your brother. He's tough, but I, for some reason, think you are tougher. You have a quality that is deep within you, that doesn't let little things bother you, like they do your brother. It takes quite a disturbance to get you ruffled, whereas your brother can crumble at just about anything, depending on the day. You will be strong, both mentally and physically, and also have a driving force to accomplish whatever you put your mind to, but only when you're ready.

Your first year wasn't without challenges though. You got your first cough when you were 1 week old, and at 4 weeks old we ended up in the hospital getting chest x-rays because it had not gone away. This continued on and off, and still happens today. At 8 months old you ended up getting tubes finally, after a few horrible ear infections. You have been a different kid since then, and although you continue to fight the viruses that go around daycare, you seem to get stronger every day.

We also learned, the first year, how much a baby can fight sleep. Holy cow, are you a sleep fighter. If you aren't ready to go to sleep, you won't, and can survive on such little sleep sometimes it amazes me. You sleep less than your brother does now, and sometimes, less than us!

It's just amazing how fast the first year goes. You go from completely dependent on us to do everything, to wrestling with your dad and brother on the floor. You will play with your toys for hours now, and just throw them and crawl to them and giggle and laugh. You have such a good time. You also went from nursing every hour and a half, to eating handfuls of lasagna - your favorite!

Happy Birthday Little Guy! The years to come will just be that much more fun!

(Some past pix!) and more pix!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

School Lunch

Dozens of white bench-style tables, all lined up in the school gym. The familiar smell of gym shoes, and the climbing rope suspended from the ceiling. The plastic, pastel-colored trays with the various "sections" to put food in, including the square that your milk just perfectly fit. I also remember that on pizza day, the rectangular-style piece of pizza fit just perfectly into the "main food" section of the tray.

That is what I remember about school lunches. I also remember on Valentine's Day one year, a girl one year below me, puking up what seemed like gallons of vomit during lunch - and it was pink - how ironic. We all moved as far away as we could, but continued to eat our lunch. But - that is neither here nor there.

I have very fond memories of school lunch. I'm not sure why - maybe because I have always liked to eat. Food doesn't give me a high or anything, and I'm not obese, but I love my meals. I don't think I've skipped one in my life, except by accident. I religiously ate breakfast, even though college, when my friends were eating their first meal at 2 in the afternoon.

I remember the days when you could have your parents visit and eat lunch with you. I loved those days. I was so proud when I could show my mom or dad where I ate my lunch, and how to "do it". (Being the bossy person I am...), "You go through the lunch line, this lady punches your ticket, this lady gives you your food, etc....."

Today, Tyler's daycare had a Mother's Day Lunch for all the Moms. We were to bring lunch for our kids, and we could eat outside and have a picnic. Last year I was unable to attend, because we were at the hospital getting all sorts of bloodwork done because I was having my c-section the next day to have Connor. Tyler was without a mom, but I'm not sure he even cared. This year, he had been talking about it for days. "Are you going to come eat lunch with me? Are we going to have a pic-um-ic?"

As I mentioned before, I'm not much of a planner. I opened the fridge this morning and figured he could either have an empty burrito, or some cheese on a slice of bread. So - fast food it would be.

I left work - grabbed some Steak and Shake, and then headed to daycare. On my way over there, I got a glimpse of myself in the rearview mirror..........It was me he was waiting for. It was me he was so excited to see so he could show me his daycare friends, his teachers, and his cute Mother's Day project he made just for me. Just like when I was little - he was so excited to see me.

It was then - that I realized that I was the most important person in the world that this little boy right now. And that, was the Happiest Mother's Day gift I could have had!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Days of the week

One of the things that Kyle has not yet figured out, is that you cannot tell Tyler you are doing anything unless it happens in the next 24 hours. He understands today and tomorrow. That is it.

In order to get Tyler to stop doing "something" at times, Kyle will remind him of something that is going to happen in the future. Last night, Kyle took Tyler to Wal-Mart to get some stuff, get a haircut, and order a cake. They accomplished 2 of the 3 goals of that trip, because Tyler was in a "mood". Kyle said he chased him through the store a couple times, and gave up on ordering a cake after a while. In order to get him to stop, he told him Carley and Emily were coming this weekend.

First off- Tyler doesn't know what a "weekend" is. All he knows is, "Is Daycare Open or Closed?". Seriously. He asks that every night. "Is daycare open tomorrow?" No, means a weekend, and yes, means mommy and daddy have to work. Pretty simple.

Now, I have answered the question "Are Carley and Emmy coming tomorrow?", approximately 100 times. Maybe 200. Or 300. I tell him that they'll be here Saturday, and that means nothing. So 5 minutes later, he asks again.

Kyle - PLEASE don't tell Tyler he's going to do anything unless it happens in the next 24 hours, or even better - within the next 4. Apparently this boy has inherited his mother's planning ahead ability - which does not exist.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

First Birthdays - Then and Now

Approximately 364 days before Tyler's first birthday, I started planning it. I think I invited everyone we knew - literally. Every friend, every co-worker, every neighbor. It was crazy! I bought him a personalized "I am One" t-shirt off the internet, that had his name across the back. I had everything planned - down to the tee. Printed out pictures and hand-made all of my invitations, and sent them out approximately 6 weeks before the party. I think I took about 100 pictures in order to find the "just right" one for the invitations.

The party was a hit - tons of people, tons of kids, and I think everyone had a good time. Come on - who wouldn't have a good time - all the cake you could eat and beer you could drink! My idea of a good time! (No- we didn't give beer to the kids - at least on purpose!)

Fast forward to today... Connor's first birthday party is Saturday. We have invited family. My parents, sister and her family, and Kyle's parents and siblings. As far as a "theme" goes, I picked up some frog invitations at Wal-Mart during a shopping escapade - thus a frog theme for the party. Connor doesn't have a thing for frogs, but I think they're cute.

So, it's Tuesday night. We haven't ordered a cake. We haven't bought any food for the party. I decided against party favors for the kids today. Seriously - who needs a bag full of candy to take home. I did go to Factory Card Outlet today and picked up some tableclothes and silverware, and also a Happy Birthday sign to hang outside. I don't want Connor to feel totally slighted being the second child. Honestly - he won't remember any of it, only pictures will remain as proof of this obvious favoritism we have shown towards Tyler! (I actually worry about that - will Connor ever think that!?)

Tyler is now planning his next birthday, which is about 5 months away. As of yesterday, he was going to have a Pirate and Hawkeye birthday party. Obviously, if we placed as much emphasis on the birthday parties that they will remember, won't that be so much more fun?

I love summer!

Now that we finally have some decent weather and don't have to worry about building an ark - we are taking advantage of it!

Last night we got home, walked into the house to change into outside clothes, and went outside. We sat outside, played outside, ate supper outside, and Tyler even did some landscapeing for us around the house! (A little dirt here, a little dirt there!)

I had almost forgotten how nice those nights are like that. Tyler ate supper at his picnic table - and I drug Connor's high chair on the deck as well so he could eat outside too. We finally went inside when Tyler was almost unrecognizable because he was so dirty. I should've taken a picture - he was a mess - but I think loved every minute of it!

I can't wait for this weather to continue!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Hand, Foot & What???

So I picked up Connor yesterday from daycare with a fever of 102. The poor guy was miserable, and when we got home and I checked his temp about a 1/2 hour later, it was at 103.5. Daycare said they have Hand, Foot & Mouth Disease going around. Tyler had this once when he was almost 2, but didn't get it that bad. My nieces on the other hand, who played with Tyler that weekend, came down with it horrible, and couldn't eat or anything. I think Connor has a more severe case of it than Tyler did as well.

I think Connor's high fever broke last night. He woke up at 2:30, and just stunk to high heaven - whenever Connor is sick, he sweats it out, and it just stinks! I finally got him back to sleep, and he woke up without a fever this morning, but now has the rash that I was expecting.

The only place I can see the rash is around his groin around and his mouth. He won't eat anything today but milk, because his tongue has sores on it. They look horrible! Ibuprofin seems to help a little, but he still can't eat anything.

It's amazing the stuff you learn about illness and virus' when you have kids. Hand, Foot & Mouth sounded like something that cows get - but I learned just how contagious and painful it can be to little ones. Such a simple virus, with such horrible symptoms.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

I did it!

I'm not much of a bragger (okay, maybe sometimes I am), but think I owe it to myself to brag this time. I did it! I actually did it! And it was wonderful!

If we could compare this to anything, I won the Masters. I was Miss America. I had won the lottery! It was awesome!

I had been nominated to host our Annual Supplier Conference back in October, and it took 6 months to pull off, but I did it - and the best part of it- I actually spoke in front of 500 people! That was the most nerve-wracking part of it all.

If actually given the choice, and this was Fear Factor - and they asked me if I wanted to speak in front of a crowd of people or lay in a pool of spiders, I would actually have to think about it. Seriously. I hate talking in front of people - for the first 2 minutes. After that - I could speak all day. And I made it through the first 2 minutes!!!

Okay, I'm actually just so proud of myself, for once. I have busted my butt to get to where I am, and yesterday I was introducing Vice Presidents of our company, and they knew who I was. I was actually complimented by one, he remembered me from years ago when he was my Vice President. Again, it was awesome.

I actually felt so lucky today. Everyone was telling me "You did a great job!", and although I could feel every quiver in my voice, and every pound of my heart, they said they couldn't tell. Maybe they were just being nice, but it made me feel great! Maybe I was good?

A few years ago, I attended a "Women in Business" event at the University of Iowa. At that seminar, they had a Vice President of Kimberly-Clark there. She was incredible - so poised, so sharp, and so put-together. She spoke to us about women in the businessworld, and as a token, she gave us a keychain that I have on my keychain to this day. It says:

"The Harder You Work, The Luckier You Get"

I look at that every day as I'm walking in to work. It's so true. I have worked so hard to get to where I am, and yesterday and today, I felt like the luckiest person in the world!