I Am T-Monnie DAMMIT!


A framily member and her daughters are going to rent 13700.  Because of the logistics of school and whatnot, we moved things around so they could start staying here earlier than I was prepared to leave since I had to figure out where we would be living down South.  Having someone living in my home that I know, love and trust, has removed such a monumental burden from me because I've heard horror stories about renters and, even though we probably won't live here again, we have extremely fond memories and want the place to be maintained properly.  And...we want our investment to be protected.

I remember when the renters moved out of Shelly's house, I was HORRIFIED by the things they did to her house.  Half of the things they did didn't even make sense.  They ruined carpets, countertops, broke doors, all kinds of things I can't even figure out HOW they did it.  It took her a minute and a whole lot of money their deposit didn't cover to be able to move back into it.

I couldn't imagine.

Having the girls here has been a challenge for me because well...I'm not used to being around kids 24/7.  Sure...I get to have my Godson, and Coley, etc. spend the night and even short lengths of time...but yeah...constant kids?  


And let me tell you...kids can be the sweetest and smartest and still drive you BAT.SHAT.CRAZY.

Now...I love these kids and they know it but sometimes...I am puzzled that they can even walk around without injuring themselves.  They are just doody...doody...do...la-la-land...all about me...no I didn't see that...I forgot...I didn't mean to...I don't know...

The most surprising thing is what I find myself saying to them.  Things my parents said to me that makes me wonder if it should ever be said at all.  A neighborhood child came by to get the little one to come outside to play.  When I noticed which child it was, I told the little one, "Don't you tell that child nothing that goes on inside this house cuz she tells everything that goes on inside hers so know and believe she will tell everything you tell her."

The little one was like..."Okay T-Monnie" and then she rolled out.  I realized, once she left, that it's the same thing my mother told me once.  Hmmmmmmmmmmm...

The big one has a boyfriend.  First time.  She was telling me something about how she texted him and he didn't text her back so she texted him again and I damn near took her phone from her.  

Me:  Um...ma'am...we don't sweat men.  No way...no how.  WE are the prize.  If you text or call a young man and he doesn't return the text or call then you hit straight radio silence until he does so and then...he'd better have a good damn reason why he didn't respond.  People ALWAYS have their phones with them.  Especially yall teenagers.

Like...I got mad about that and she could see it all over my face.

Then...I questioned myself fifty ways past Sunday if that was appropriate to do.  I mean...she's a kid.  Is it important for her to understand the principles of RADIO SILENCE already?  Should that be something she figures out on her own so she's better equipped to deal with certain things or was it okay for my evil azz to impart that knowledge on that child?  Will that create a diva-demon?  AAAAAARRRRRGGGGGGGHHHHHHHH!!!!!  I AIN'T NO ROLE MODEL MAN!

Clomping in heels?  No.  Not on my watch.  Put on your highest heels and here's a book.  Heel-to-toe, heel-to-toe...smaller steps....turn...do it again.  Thirty minutes a day for a week should be enough.  You will not be the girl who has to take off her shoes and walk barefoot.  NO.  

I was left alone with them for a weekend while their mother attended a family function and we were ripping and running getting the big one ready for a big dance.  She and her friends got dressed in the basement.  They were loud and noisy.  Having all of the fun they should have.  A lot was going on.  I forgot children's names.  I stared at a few of them as they were talking not understanding the words coming out of their mouths.  Jaru went upstairs to our room and took a nap.  Mothers of kids came by.  In and out.  Noise.  Laughter.  Fun.

Me:  What's your name again?  What does your mama call you?

I just watched it all thinking to myself...man...my life would have been so different if we'd had kids because honestly...it's all about them all the time.

And I wondered how yall (parents) dealt with that ALL.THE.TIME.

I wanted to make it all quiet.  To have some good music playing.  To have everything neat and dress right dress.  All impossible to do with a house full of kids.  Cute kids, fun kids, smart kids...kids.

I stayed out of the way as much as possible and said as little as possible.  I only objected when the big one asked if her girlfriend could put makeup on her.  I was of the mind that um...no.  I don't know if that lil' girl knows how to put on makeup without making you look too grown so yeah...no...not comfortable with that AT.ALL.  Pretty girls don't need a lot of makeup.  Enhancing your natural beauty ONLY.  That over made up clown-face look with the drawn on eyebrows I see teenagers sporting...that ish AIN'T cute.  Only person who can do that contouring stuff right is a professional makeup artist and child...some people think they are professional and I seriously want them to think again.

My saving grace is, as always, the following:  

Me:  Call your mother and ask her.

I'm not making those decisions.  Call your mother.  If she says it's okay...fine.

Oh...you want to sleepover at some kid's house whose parent's none of us are familiar with?  Well...if it's up to me...HELL NO.  But it's not up to me so ask your mother.  If she says it's fine...then so be it.

But we all know your mama is going to sputter like you're crazy cuz lil' girl please.  She don't  know them people.  o_0

It's like they are brain dead.  They take a lot.  

When their mother returned I told her that I see why she takes naps whenever she can.  I'm always puzzled by her naps.  She gets home from work and she takes a nap.  Then she gets up and deals with them kids.  I sit back in the cut or go to Boobie's house where we work or go see a movie.  Or...dinner with friends.   

I've determined that it's in my best interest to always be the fly T-Monnie who flits in and out with hugs, kisses, gifts and money folded up in the palm of your hand.  I'm good for shopping and enhancing your ensemble.  I specialize in being fly without looking hoochie AND SO WILL YOU!  If you need help with math or science...I'm your girl.  I'm good for talks about boys and I'm good to get you right in the head when you're popping off to your parents.  I'm good for special treats when your report card is awesome or when it's simply been too long since I've treated you.  I'm good for hair care advice.  I will always tell you to ASK YOUR MAMA!  DON'T TRY AND GET ME TO LET YOU DO NOTHING YOU KNOW GOOD AND WELL YOUR MAMA WON'T LET YOU DO AND I'M TELLING YOUR MAMA EVERY.SINGLE.THING.  

I am T-Monnie.  Aunt and Godmother to amazing kids.  That's it.

I was exhausted yesterday and messed around and hurt my back.  I took some Advil PM and slept it off.  When I woke up around 9:30...I was surprised to find that Jaru wasn't awake yet either.  We were exhausted from the weekend alone with them kids.  

I'm sitting here at 11:00am right now typing this after doing my morning "Monnie-business" and a panic just clutched my heart.  Why?  It's 11:00am.  They start coming home from school at 2:30.  I only have 3.5 hours of quiet time left.  I gotta get outta here.  Imma see if Boobie wants to go see "Addicted" after practice today and then write until their bedtime.  Then I'll come back home.

Cuz yeah...I'm T-Monnie.  I love the kids I love with all of me.  I want them to do well and grow up to be happy and successful.  I don't want to screw them up.  Too much pressure man.  Might be best if I just see you on the holidays bearing gifts.

Teenagers man.  WHEW!  Any tips for T-Monnie?  I have 16 more days with them.   16 more days of them knowing everything.  16 more days of them having the buttface for no reason at all walking around like they got real problems and ish but not talking. 16 more days of them forgetting to wipe the crumbs off the counter when they make a sandwich.  16 more days of wanting to love up on them one minute and lump up on them the next.

And yall know I ain't hitting people chirren.

How to Take Fun Homecoming Pictures!

Shooting Mode:  Av     Aperture:  F5.6       ISO:  Auto D+     Lens:  200mm       Focus:  Auto

Shooting Mode:  Av     Aperture:  F5.6       ISO:  Auto D+     Lens:  200mm       Focus:  Auto

My Goddaughter went to the Homecoming dance on Saturday with her girlfriends.  They all got dressed at 13700 and she asked me to take pictures of them.

I am not a photographer but I can play one on TV since I have groovy camera equipment.  I said yeah because I hadn't taken pictures in a while and hey...I couldn't mess it up too much ya know?

Taking pictures with a DSLR camera can be kind of daunting for people who are used to camera phones and point-and-click cameras.  This is why a lot of people with fancy cameras tend to shoot in straight auto mode.  Nothing is wrong with this...I guess...but just knowing the power your camera wields should make you want to do more with it.

Shooting Mode:  Av     Aperture:  F5.6       ISO:  Auto D+     Lens:  200mm       Focus:  Auto

Shooting Mode:  Av     Aperture:  F5.6       ISO:  Auto D+     Lens:  200mm       Focus:  Auto

The main thing I wanted to do with them is take some fun pictures that showed their personalities as well as some pictures that perfect young ladies should take.  There are so many duck lip / booty pictures shared by young women online these days that making sure we took some classy pictures was important to me.  They've since seen their pictures and I loved the reactions from them.

I took close-ups of each girl, mid-shots of each girl, full body pics of each girl and then small group pics and full group pics (some including their mothers).  It was a cloudy and overcast day so that was good.  Little known fact by novice photographers is that shooting on a cloudy day is actually ideal.  The sun can mess you up man!

Sunset was around 6:30pm so we walked out of the house at 5:45pm for almost perfect lighting.

This is a blooper pic of them almost falling down wearing heels in soft dirt (it rained the night before) on a hill!  LOL!  Who would take a picture of a group of poor girls about to fall?  That would be me!  LOL!

So, here are a few tips I've learned along the way by just doing it.  I have books and read photography sites but honestly...they are all snobby with the information.  They talk to you like you should know other stuff already.  They seriously need to know how to explain stuff mo'betta.

There is seriously so much more, of course, but that's pretty much all I did to take these pictures.  You can scour Pinterest for different poses and just keep a list of the shots you want to take.  Prepare for the super giggles from the girls because they are in super extra awesome mood.  LOL!  Have fun!!!!!!!

Share your tips too so we can all learn!