Saturday, November 29, 2008

Goings Ons

Wait, what? I have a blog?

It's been a nice holiday vacation with not much goings ons, but I specialize in elaborating on not much.

Last week J's assistant at work, died in his sleep. It seems kind of morbid to sort of start a post with that information, but it is a fact and it did factor into our "nice holiday vacation." He was 56 and he died in his sleep, and we kind of can't help but feel glad for him because that's how he wanted to go. To say the least, it was a very hectic few days for J and while he wasn't wailing and wearing sack cloth to work, he said he felt awful posting the position to replace this man.

Bo had Wednesday off from school and I thoroughly enjoyed my day of puttering around with the three kids. Somehow, that brings me joy. Except when they want things. Or whine.

Bo gets in trouble for saying, "I don't care" in response to something someone tells him. I think it's rude and unkind and unnecessary. And there are like, 500 more creative responses than that--and he will learn to use them. Avee has gotten in on my lecturing Bo about this kind of a response. Usually in the lecture I talk about how it feels when someone says that to him, and about the said 500 other options he has. Well, Avee took matters into her own hands and told Bo, and later, happily reported to me, "If you say 'I don't care' one more time I am going to punch you in the face." It was a matter of fact. It was a necessary form of discipline. And maybe a little bit of a threat. I have to admit, it's pretty funny to hear a teeny little, sweet-faced girl wearing dress shoes (all.the.time) and a dress ( issue this warning.

On Thanksgiving day, J brined the turkey. Get it, get it, he brined it? It was SOOOO good. I may be partial to brining, but it was probably the best turkey I've ever eaten.

We had friends over and it was very relaxing and enjoyable to hang out with everyone. The food was delicious.

One of my friends was gung ho about Black Friday shopping and I had never done it. I got caught up in the moment and decided to do it and then totally got cold feet. I had a really hard time picturing Nobody running down any kind of aisle for any kind of reason. I mean, REALLY hard time. So I chickened out. Then decided to do it. Then chickened out. Ultimately, I decided to do it. But I had worked until 1 am and had to get up at 4:15, without an alarm clock. So it was a fitful 3 hours. Another friend and I made our way to The Walmerts to brave the crowd. It was not as crazy as I thought it would be. First of all, this one was open, so people just came and gathered around whatever electronic item they wanted. So there were random patches of large crowds. Then at 5 am (we got there 10 minutes before) they cut the black plastic wrap off. The best part? The two things I wanted to get (for us and for a friend) were both still available at like 3 pm that day. WOOHOO. I am a rock star. It was totally fun to just check it out and see how completely crazy the residents of this great city are.

I also went and saw Twilight with our 13 year old babysitter. Originally I was going to go with J because this conversation TOTALLY took place in our home, a few days prior:|
Beautiful & Caring Wife (me): Hey, let's get a babysitter and go see Quantum of Solace.
J: You know? I'm not really sure I want to see it, I think I'd actually rather Twilight.
B & C Wife: Really? Wow. Hmm. I guess I wouldn't mind seeing it.

fast forward 2-3 days

Still Beautiful & Caring: So, let's go see Twilight!
J: Mmmmmmmmm, yeah, about that? Not so interested. Sorry.

So I found me a less fickle date.

I enjoyed it. I think I enjoyed it for the very reasons I didn't enjoy the books as much as most of my friends pleasedon'thatemeforsayingthatoutloud.

I thought the books were drawn out and Edward's perfect chiseled marble chest liquid eyes hotness was just annoying to read about over and over. Basically, Bella's thoughts annoyed me. So, since the movie couldn't really dwell on that---I totally enjoyed it. I mean, you gotta admit, the premise of this story is pretty awesome.

So, just a few words of my impression.

Bella: See Tori's post re: Neve Campbell, looked as I expected, no chemistry
Edward: Could have chemistry with tree trunk, speaking of trees, sitting in one made me LOL, eyebrow-wow! Cool eyes, good acting
Jasper: How does it look when a vampire pees his pants? Same expression as Avee when she's waiting to be busted, pretty boy mussed hair--so played
Emmett: oooh baby, the truck jumping also made me LOL (I'm so gonna hook J with that reference, now he'll HAVE to see it. And I'm gonna make him go alone. To a girly movie)
Rosalie: she got some junk in her trunk
Alice: How does one pull off "Pixie Vampire"? She's just likable though. I loved her pitching.
Dr. Cullen: Hi, I'm Dr. Pointy Chin, if you ignore the chin, my acting and other features are quite charming
Esme: I didn't like her in Grey's, I was disappointed to see her here. Although, she was a good actress.
Charlie: Thought he'd be frumpier. Have more of a diner-eating, beer-drinkin' belly.
James: He had dirty fingernails
Victoria: Perfectly evil, beautiful too
Laurent: Whuuuuuu? I didn't expect the dreadlocks. But, I likey.
Jessica: Hilarious
Mike: Annoying (mostly just the bad acting)
Angela: Perfect. Always. Get it, get it? Perfect.

The end.

Now I'm going to go give 100% attention to Bo showing me how fast a snail goes. In real time.
Joy, I tell you---perfect joy.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

"Aw Maaaaaaan! You Caught Me!"

That was Bo's response this morning when I saw him and said, "Hey! What's all over your face!?"
He was genuinely congratulating me on my astuteness.

Because I can't ever take a picture of one child, and not the other, Avee insisted I take this picture. I always get the biggest kick out of her "posed" pictures.
How come I never noticed before what a sad little orphan face she has? Sir, more pho please?

The other day I took this picture of Avee holding Danyo because I think it's hilarious how he totally honors her attempts as though they are legitimate. My favorite: How he swings his legs around her waist. Just a few short inches above the ground.
And of course, Bo wouldn't stay out of the picture. I find it interesting that this is the same boy who made the babysitter close her eyes while he walked by in an Elmo night shirt. He can't bear the shame of being seen in Elmo, or without pants and there he is, pantsless, in a night shirt, playin' a foo'. Don't make no sense 'tall

And this. The smile that launched a thousand heart-melts. This view makes so much worthwhile. I think she knows that. The little stinker...

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Things That Have Made Me Laugh This Week

1 This morning I helped out at the YMCA childcare center.
Avee came up to me about 2 hours after we got there and said sharply, "Mom, I'm POOR!"
Me: How come?
Avee: Because I YAM. I'm not sixteen o' free, i'm POOR.
Me: But you haven't had your birthday yet, don't you want to wait until your birthday in March?
Avee:I'm not having a March, I'm poor NOW!

She was/ really worked up and pretty rude about it all. I tried to talk her into a great party with cake and "sparkles" on her cake, etc. She wanted nothing to do with this too far off birthday. She was four now. Finally I gave in and said, "Okay, you are four, Avee. And you also just might be the first 3 year old in the history of mankind to change the 12 month calendar year to fit your liking." She pretty much had me convinced.

A few minutes later I look over and see her contentedly coloring with markers.

And suddenly, I realize....

This childcare center has a stupid and completely arbitrary rule of only kids over the age of 4 being allowed to use markers. She has always hated that rule and well, so have I. She finally figured a way around it. When another teacher said something to me about it I put up my hand and said, "It's okay, she's poor."

2 This morning, I have no idea what time Bo got up. He and Avee had a great breakfast of cookies and pink lemonade. Bo made his own drink. He announced matter-of-factly, "Dad did 7 scoops, so I did 7 scoops.

Difference: Dad made 2 and a half quarts. Bo made 5 ounces.
He didn't once mention that it tasted awful. He did however ask J later to give him some "just plain watoh" to drink.

Avee and Bo were playing together when it inevitably ended in Bo laughing maniacally and Avee crying about him...well, laughing maniacally. While I held her on my lap, I pulled Bo close to me and explained that she is his baby sister and it is his job to always be kind to her and to make sure she never gets hurt. Especially by him. Avee interrupted my lecture and says with complete sincerity, "Bo! Can I touch your eye!" Of course Bo realizes why this is funny and starts laughing, which makes Avee laugh, because she loves to think she's funny, and then I wonder why I even bother.

3 This is how Avee fell asleep the other day. I thought about leaving her because I mean, really, falling off of the back of a couch is funny no matter who it happens to.

The beautiful marking on her face is her own brand of a makeup job. She's really only ever watched me put makeup on, so I guess that might tell you something. I dunno

4 This pretzel

got put in the microwave for 2 and a half minutes instead of 30 seconds and resulted in this:Causing THIS BOY to be devestated.
It was altogether very funny for me. Bo decided that the first 30 seconds didn't cook it enough. The reason being, "it was still hawd". It was hard because it had been overcooked. So he put it in for another 2 minutes. I was in the bathroom putting on makeup when I heard him start talking very casually about how much it was smoking. I called out, "Well stop it!" and he thought I meant for him to stop talking. When I ran into the kitchen smoke was pouring out of the microwave. I mistakenly said, "Why didn't you stop it Bo!?" and he completely lost it. He started sobbing and wailing, "I didn't knoooooooow, I didn't knoooooow!" Well of COURSE you didn't know. I was not mad for one single second. In fact, right when he lost it, I started laughing. I had never seen him react like that. He was terrified that he had almost burned the house down. I didn't learn that until later. In the meantime, he left me with yet another gross thing to clean up. When J came home he wanted to know why on earth someone would do that in the microwave. Of course he was joking, but it only induced more panic and wailing in Bo.

5 This picture of Avee talking on the phone to her not-quite-two, cousin. The clutter behind her isn't all that funny. But I enjoyed the picture.

Learning about my husband's choice of extracurricular activities in high school still tops the list.

7 Finding this note that my friend brought me the day after I wrote THIS POST. It made me laugh all over again.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

An Unfinished Post

When Bo was born, there were long nights, early mornings, exhausting days. We struggled for a while to figure out the parenting thing, and to know our roles. There were times when I didn't know what he needed or how to soothe him. My body ached from delivering him, it throbbed from feeding him, it was weary from caring for him. Everyone said it was just a phase, and before we knew it, he wouldn't be a newborn anymore. It felt like forever when I was in it.

I remember telling someone he was 13 and a half weeks old. I actually knew that at one point.

Suddenly he wasn't a newborn and he was a little human being crawling, walking, communicating.

When he was learning to talk he got frustrated a lot when I couldn't understand what he wanted. Like the time he was asking if he could go pee in the grass, even though he wore a diaper. And we wondered if he wanted pineapple. Or salsa. It was just a phase though. He learned to say anything he wants to say, and some things he shouldn't.

When he was 2 and a half we were in a car wreck and spun out of control across the freeway. In his carseat in the back he felt the car spin around several times and then crash against a guard rail. It was terrifying for all of us, but he couldn't get over it. For months, afterwards he screamed and clutched his carseat anytime a corner was turned sharply or he heard any kind of loud noise while we were driving. It broke my heart that he had been traumatized and I thought he'd never go back to feeling safe and secure driving with me. My mom told me it would be hard for him, but it was just a phase and he'd get over it eventually. He did.

When he was in diapers and I was dying for him to not be, it felt like an eternity before he was ready to be done with them. I waited and waited for him to say when. Everyone said to give it time, he'll give up diapers and never go back. That brief period of training can be rough, but it's just a phase. Now, he thinks it's a joke when we tell him that he used to wear diapers.

When he was 3, in the backseat of our car he practiced counting to 100 over and over and over. What comes after 24? 27? 38? 42? and how about 56? I thought I would lose my mind hearing those numbers over and over and over. It's just a phase, I reminded myself. Soon enough he'll get it, and he'll move on. Now he counts to 1000 and doesn't even think about it. Except to brag that he can, once in a while. Oh yeah, and to stay up 2 and a half hours past his bedtime, counting to it.

There were days when I just wished I could get through it without having someone crawling all over me. Wanting a drink, needing a nose wipe, sharing a kiss, craving comfort, reading a story...

Moments when I wished for the good ol' days of solo bathroom visits.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Something New Every Day

A couple of months ago the 11 year old neighbor boy came over and told J he was scared to go to college because of hazing. Without thinking about it, they started talking about hazing, in detail.

In front of Bo.

Bo got sick with worry. Literally. He started crying and panicking about getting hazed at college. He had probably just completed his first month of kindergarten.

J talked him down from that ledge, and I heard minor references to it a couple of times in the next week or so, but not much.

Said neighbor boy was here again tonight for dinner (PBJ boy's brother, if you're curious) and somehow hazing came up again. I think I heard Neighbor Boy say, in an effort to calm the fears he'd rustled back up in Bo, "If anyone tries to haze you at all, you just call me Bo, and I'll come help you out."

The conversation was brief and I was distracted and didn't think much of it. I think Bo asked a question and both J and I shot down the whole discussion of hazing.

I can't believe we have to discuss hazing with our 5-year-old.

Anyway, about a half an hour later, Bo is in the bathroom and calls something out, a question to Neighbor Boy. I said, "Hey, Bo? If you are going to the bathroom, why don't you just focus on that and then come out here and start a conversation when you are done."

He came out a few minutes later and his eyes were glassy and I immediately assumed he was getting sick. He came over to me on the couch and just laid against my legs. I even made J look at him. "He's getting sick, look at him," says I.

J searched Bo's entire face, looking for measles, mumps, rubella, pox, plague, or the palsy. I impatiently said, "just look at his face, you can see it, can't you just see it?!"

No, he did not see it.

I harumphed with the burden of being the only parent who knows anything.

Bo came back and rolled around on my legs, looking for comfort on my kneecaps.

I got reabsorbed into my book when I felt him tugging on my shirt. He was looking up at me with tears in his eyes, and in a barely audible voice that was fighting hard not to sob, he said, "Why do there have to be clubs? Why can't there be clubs where they don't haze in college?"

I couldn't believe it. My poor baby wasn't sick, he was still worried and had been crying all by his little lonesome in the bathroom. That's why his eyes were red and his face a little discolored.

I pulled him up into my arms and started my spiel.

You know the one you memorize before you have kids, in the parenting class you take, that teaches you what to say when your 5 year old starts to worry about things that will happen to him in college if he happens to be a stupid drunk who looks for other's approval before using an ounce of comment sense?

Yeah, that spiel.

I say, "Oh Bo, I went to a college where there was no hazing, and so did Daddy. You can totally go to a college where there isn't any hazing. The only clubs that have hazing are clubs full of dumb people, and you are a very smart boy. You will hang around with other smart people and you will be in clubs with other smart people. There are lots of clubs that are fun and good that you can join if you want. There are clubs in high school where the high schoolers go to elementary schools and help the younger kids with their school work. There are clubs for people who get good grades. There are clubs for people who like to act, it's called drama club. There are so many great clubs that don't have anything to do with hazing, and those are the kind of clubs you'll belong to."

And then I said, "Hey Dad, what kind of clubs have you been in?"

At which point, the love of my life, turned to our precious, impressionable, sweet, yearning for something, anything positive to replace the horrible thoughts of hazing son, and said,

"I belonged to the Andy Griffith Rerun Watchers Club"

"Ha ha, that's funny J, I'm serious."

"I am too."

(clickety to biggify)

If you call me tomorrow, and I don't answer, it's because
I have died laughing.

Monday, November 17, 2008

As If You Don't Already Know Too Much

A while ago Sketchy, my personal comment mentor and humorist, tagged me for a 7 things about me kind of thing. I don't think it was too long before that I had done 200ish things about me, and well, even I'm not that narcissistic. Even though I do love myself and this is my blog. :)

So, now I'm going to do it. I've been thinking long and hard for something new to share.

1. I am not a neat freak, by any stretch of the imagination. But there are certain things that I absolutely have to have in order and organized. Paperwork/bills, where the kids toys go (when they aren't strewn across the house), and the kids drawers, to name a few. Even J's drawers, actually. In fact, the only dresser drawers in this house that don't have any semblance of order, are mine. Hmmm...

2. I am prone to exaggeration like most people when I say things like, "Ohhhh, I was up all night with the baby." I may very well have been up 3-4 hours, but that's not technically "all" night. Or I can say, "Oh my gosh, you've asked me that like 52 times already!" and it will really have only been 3-4. However---and here's the random thing: When people say it to me, I totally believe it, without any regard that they may be exaggerating, just as I do. For example, at work the other day I went to a girl's desk and said, "The doctor for room 8 is ________" and she said, "Oh my gosh! You are the SIXTH person to tell me that!" And I walked away, trying to think of who the 5 people before me were that told her. I was seriously trying to recall why anyone besides me and the actual nurse assigned to the room would know or care to tell her. But I didn't once consider she might be exaggerating.

3. I value sincerity pretty much more than any other attribute in a person. I would rather a person ignore me, give me the bird, tell me they think I'm pond scum, then ever ever ever be insincere with me. I can spot it a mile away and I loathe it. As a result, I cannot force myself to be insincere, I have tried and if I'm speaking, the words literally get caught in my throat and won't come out. So, if you are ever talking to me and I suddenly go silent, it's because I think you are being insincere and I can't talk. Or I'm choking on my tongue. And in that case, please help me.

4. There are some people's voices that sort of lull me into daydreaming. I don't know if I can describe it, but there are a few people I've met or know, who when they start talking, I'm almost immediately distracted. It's not a lack of interest in them, or even what they are talking about, but I swear it's their voice. In general, most conversations are a competition with the ones I have going in my head, and there are just some people who can't be heard over my head. Yeah, I think I made that clear.

I'm sorry, what were you saying?

5. I am a sucker for a sad story, but that doesn't mean I believe it. Sometimes people will start to tell me a sob story and I will feel very sorry and then I'll get the distinct impression that I'm not getting the truth or the whole story, and I'll continue to feel very sorry. But I won't believe it. I'll mostly feel sorry that the person feels they have to lie.

6. I love name meanings. I did not pick Avee's name. I liked it okay, but really didn't want to name my child "Avee". J was dead set on it and since I didn't hate the name, I couldn't rightfully veto it. But everywhere I looked, her name meaning was "ruler of elves" and I just couldn't willfully give my beautiful daughter such a lame meaning. When she was 4 weeks old, I found a little framed art piece that said her name meant "Noble" and read "she succeeds in establishing her considerable importance---her priceless smile rewards her attentive subjects---her pursuit of excellence will court favor in high places---she will maintain stately presence and poise".

I hoped that this would be fitting. I had no idea that they had tapped into my 4 week old baby's brain and written an EXACT description of her. I could probably link to about 50 posts that are evidence of each of these statements. One summer, when she was a teeny tiny 15 month old, she tried to push my 14 year old niece off the pew at church. She just decided she didn't want another pretty girl there, and went to work pushing her off. We laughed about tiny little Avee being such a bossy thing and then Erica leaned over and said, "I guess that's what Ruler of the Elves means---she's a tiny little Elf who thinks she rules everyone". Suddenly, I liked BOTH name meanings.

7. I'm kind of lazy.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Wicked Times Two

So, many of you may know I saw Wicked at the end of July. I fell deeply, madly in love with it. We listened to the soundtrack for Wicked from about April until about a month ago when our beastly car CD player started scratching and skipping and Galinda started singing "Gonna make you pop- as me!" Kids repeat everything they hear.

The show goes off stage in January, so I was pretty set on going one more time with J and possibly Bo. Well, last night, we did. It was great. I sat in a different place and it was nice to see a different perspective.

A couple of times I got really caught up in the music and the story and I would turn to see if J was enjoying it as well and be struck by the sudden realization that I had just dragged my husband to a musical. I've turned into one of those wives. To my credit, I did resist whispering in his ear, "don't you just love the costumes" and other such femmy things.

We got Bo out of school and picked up two of his friends who were meeting their grandparents there and headed out of town.

We had decided to take J's rice grinder for the good gas mileage and because all three boys fit nicely in the backseat.

20 minutes down the freeway I turned to J and said, "Next time, we take the van and make the boys sit in the very back." They were so talking so loudly to each other. I'm sorry, but if one of my friends yelled in my ear like that all the time, they probably wouldn't be my friend anymore. But they all yelled everything the said. The louder and more unfunny it was, the better received it was. I have completely different standards in my personal relationships.

Since we did a lot of driving two summers ago, we got kind of strict with Bo asking "are we there yet"? We told him, "we'll get there when we get there, so stop asking." Somehow, that worked. As I write it out I'm wondering how and why.

Well, the two little guys traveling with us hadn't been indoctrinated like Bo and so they started asking about 20 minutes into the 3 hour drive. Which I thought was funny. Finally J told them, "When you see skyscrapers instead of cornfields, we'll be there." Suddenly large barns became "highscrapers" and a long discussion on what makes a skyscraper and also some of the details around 9-11. The eight year old said several times, "how stupid to fly a plane into a building on purpose, I mean--you're going die doing it---why would to be so dumb." I think sometimes 8 year olds might be a lot smarter than many adults...

Anyway. We got there in time to have a fun dinner at a place called Ed Debevics. It's one of those places where the servers are expected to be loud, rude, and obnoxious. I thought Bo would like it. He was sort of in shock and we had to tell him several times that they were supposed to act silly and say crazy things. 45 minutes later he figured he "got it" and climbed under the table and started smacking our waiter's leg. I would have loved to have been in on his thought process. Whatever process got him from wide-eyed, silent, wonder to crawling under tables and striking strangers HAD to have been a good one.

Interestingly, that is one of the very few things he's talked about today.

We walked a brisk 8 blocks or so to the theater because we found free parking by ol' Ed's.

About 30 minutes into the show Bo had made his way to my lap. About 10 minutes after that he said he was thirsty, and then subsequently complained of a headache. I was sure he was dehydrated and told him to hang on a few, and we'd load up on water at intermission. We bought a $3, 8 oz bottle of water. Be very clear that I felt immensely stupid doing that.

We guzzled and then refilled at the water fountain a couple of times.

Back in the theater, the story line got more interesting and Bo seemed to be following with more interest. Then he just flopped back on me and started telling me his brain hurt. He also kept trying to smell the hair of the lady in front of us. Aaaawkward.

About 10 minutes before the show ended, he was just so tired, I figured he'd gotten the most of the experience and I turned him so he'd rest against me and potentially fall asleep.

He did not fall asleep.

He yakked ALL over me.


It was so disgusting, I can't even begin to tell you how disgusting. But believe me, I'd like to, because I do not like to suffer alone. You probably already know this about me.

If he had been trying to smell hair, or lolling about in his chair sideways like he had been most of the night, it could have been HORRIBLE. I cringe just thinking about how horrible. How would you ever recover from that? Sorry about your hair ma'am. And your mom's face Ricky.

So, J grabbed Bo and bolted and I sat there smelling like vomit and feeling a bit bewildered. I suddenly remembered I didn't want J to miss the end so I grabbed all our vomit-laden jackets and my vomit-laden self and ran after them. I ordered J back into the theater. You can imagine how unwilling he was to leave us to our vomit and go back to Oz.

An usher caught up with me and said, "go in there please" and pointed me to a private bathroom very close.

Inside the bathroom Bo chatted about how gross it all was and how he knew he was going to do it and how disgusting my shirt smelled. His ability to completely disassociate from what he's done--to me, astounds me.

I tried my darndest to do what needed to be done. But without my face shield, I was powerless.

I threw up too.

I'm only telling you this because....well, I guess because I can.

Bo had the nerve to tell me I was really gross. I didn't tell him I had never even been within a MILE of gross my entire life, until I had children.

I basically had to hose my shirt down, ball up my sweater to keep most of the nastiness concealed, and spot clean my pants. I took off Bo's shirt and made him wear his coat out.

We took a cab back to our car. I really wonder what that cab driver thought of our scent. I don't care, but I do wonder.

Bo was asleep within 6 minutes of being in our car.

I got a Chicago t-shirt for $9.99 at Walgreens. I walked in there, covered in "cleaned up" vomit because that's how very little I trust my husband's ability to not walk out of the store with a tie-dyed, x-small shirt for me to wear. Interestingly, Mr. Tightwad suddenly got all free with his money when he realized we were right next to a Hooters and I was in need of a shirt. I told him the shirts were like, at least $25, mostly likely twice that. He didn't care.

I do not get that.

Even though I got a new shirt and bagged up all the vomit clothes and washed my arms and legs with Sweat Pea waterless sanitizer, I still smelled faintly of Ed Debevic's cheese pizza on a bad day, the whole way home.

It's all good now. I had a nice shower at 2:30 am. I'm pleased to report, the vomit I smell now is just my brain playing tricks on me. Seems 3-4 hours subjected to a horrible smell like that, it gets planted in your brain.

I'm also not ever taking Bo to see Wicked again. He's a high-risk vomitous ingrate.

Whom I adore.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

What I'm Up Against

Avee: What's in this box mom?
Mom: It's a present, please don't open it
Avee: But I want to open it
Mom: I'm sure you do, but please don't open it, it isn't for you, leave it alone.
(a few minutes later, 6 inches away from me, I notice her carefully pulling the tape off of the box)
Mom: Avee! I just said don't open that, what are you doing!?
Avee: I'm opening it.
Mom: I said no. You heard me say no!
Avee: What? Nooooo, I hode you say yes.
Mom: No, you didn't Avee, I said don't open that box and you know that.
Avee: Well, Mom it sounded like you said yes. I hode you say, "Open that box Avee, yes you can!"

Avee: Mom, can I watch Le'maid?
Mom: Yes, but you can't eat that popsicle in the living room, go in the kitchen and finish it and then I'll put on Little Mermaid.
Avee: What? This popsicle? It's not mine, it's yo's. Here you go!

While holding Danyo in a headlock, as he screams, she strokes his hair with her free hand and coos, "It's okay, it's okay sweet boy."

Um, no it's not. You have him in a HEADLOCK.

Avee:Mom, be sooooo carefo, I'm sitting on your head and I don't need to fall off and get hurt.
I said be careful!
Mom: What exactly would you have me do Avee, not move at all, just sit perfectly still so you can sit comfortably on my head all day?
Avee: Duh, yeah.

unrelated sidenote: I have always been hesitant to respond to comments in my comment section because there are two things I don't really like to do alone. Laugh and talk. But I love the dialogue that comments can sometimes create, so I've decided to make it standard to respond to comments. I do, when I read them, so now I'll share. In an effort to avoid talking to myself and thus feeling dumb, I'll respond to whatever comments I have in one fell swoop. I'll probably do it anywhere from 12-24 hours after posting. So, if you like having your comments responded to (I love it!) now you have a time frame. If you miss the cutoff, I'm sorry. No refunds or exchanges. Just outright rejection.

related sidenote:"duh" is not really a word I let the kids say, but I have learned with Avee, ignoring it is the best approach with the less offensive, obnoxious words. Just in case you thought I was a bad mom or something. I have much better evidence of bad parenting besides that. Give me time.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


When J and I were first married, we were pretty in love with the idea of being married and living together and being husband and wife and all that great stuff.

We didn't live together before we got married, so there was an adjustment period. Nothing major. Unless you count the part where I was completely psychotic because of some hormone altering preventative medication I was taking. But other'n that, nothing major.

I was in love with the boy. Nothing like I am now---but I couldn't have been happier to be married to him and I pretty much thought everything about him was adorable. I knew I was in deep smit when we were dating and he gave a talk at church. He referred to some bad guys from the scriptures as "total fetchers". I remember my sister and friend turning to me, wide-eyed, in shock that he had just said that from the pulpit. I remember grinning and saying, "Isn't he cute?" at the same time they turned toward me in shock.

Before too long, I did become the typical wife and didn't find anything endearing about toilet seats left up and dirty socks on the floor. But I think the very first time I was completely grossed out and I couldn't find the cute side of it, was actually right after we got back from our honeymoon.

We got up one morning and had breakfast and set off to run errands. When we got home, several hours later, I went to the refrigerator to find some refreshment.

Inside the refrigerator was a bowl of disgusting gray sludge sitting on the top shelf. I stared at it, wondering what my husband had been making with paper mache that I hadn't noticed, in our studio apartment, why on earth he hadn't finished what he started, and what in the world it was doing in our fridge. I turned to ask J what it was, he grabbed it out of the refrigerator as I was mid-sentence, plunged a spoon into the bowl and noshed away.

To say I wanted to projectile vomit right then and there until I had nothing left to give, would be an understatement.

The answer to my questions were: It was his cereal. He hadn't finished it, and naturally put it in the fridge to save for later. It was later, and he finished it.


Do people actually do that? I mean, real people, besides my husband?

I'm not sure I have ever recovered from this incident. But I guess I'm a little better because not much surprises me anymore. At least not---in the fridge.

So yeah, when I saw these---of course I had to take photos for posterity the blog, but no---it didn't surprise me.

I know that one little measly bowl of ice cream put back in the freezer isn't really that big of a deal.
But really?
You can't finish one little bowl of ice cream in one sitting?


The day after Halloween.
Because there weren't 53 more tootsie pops in his bag.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Let's Get Ready To Raaaaaaaamble!

Recently I was meandering through the grocery store and came upon "Classic" Wonder bread. I had just been thinking about it, wondering if that kind of bread was still sold, and wondering if I, a healthy 30-something adult who actually enjoys vegetables and whole grain, would still think this kind of bread was crack with a crust. So, you can imagine my delight when I saw it displayed, and available to me for a mere $2.89.

I was not prepared for all the emotional baggage that would come with this loaf of bread. Growing up, if it wasn't sturdy enough to sprout legs, and well---had sprouts in it----we didn't eat it. My mom made "cookies" that were basically a list of every Health Nut's wonderfood,(lecithin, bone meal, buckwheat, alfalfa...etc) mixed with honey and a handful of chocolate chips, and baked. They are intense, to say the least. While my friends licked the creme out of their Oreos, and I raised my hand for the lunch monitor to come help me lift up my "cookie" to take a bite. I did notice Mrs Hall's biceps getting more and more toned as more and more Smiths passed through that school...

So, here I am, with my loaf of white bread, the devil's own appetizer, in the privacy of my own home, and no one even KNOWS what I have done. My heart is racing; and my eyes are darting from side to side. Did I just see someone walk by?! I draw the blinds, but that doesn't help. I really wanted to try this bread---I really wanted an adult perspective. I thought about buying some processed American cheese, you know---the kind that is wrapped individually and the neighbor kids ate at will, pulling apart the "cheese" from the plastic and then tearing off pieces of beautiful, processed, untouchable by me, "cheese". But I knew my pounding heart could only handle so much at one time. Plus I got embarrassed just thinking about how me and my siblings used to try and bum sliced cheese or whole pickles off of the neighbor kids. "Please, just one spear? Pleeeeeeeeaaaaase? I'll give you 12 of these hamburger slices for just one little spear!?"

I haven't gotten over feeling like I'm doing something I shouldn't. It's pretty yummy, but in no way filling or even any kind of excuse for real food. In an effort to get through the loaf of bread in a timely manner (I won't feed it to my kids and I hide it from J), I have resorted to eating it under the computer desk, behind my knees, sometimes under my shirt. Right next to Avee with her Halloween candy contraband. It works for us.

A Few Things That I've Learned or Have Been Reaffirmed This Week:
I am not the boss of Avee. I'm not sure if anyone is.

Odor Shield trash liners are no match for what Danyo can do with a diaper.

Mastering the Rubik's Cube just
might be J's greatest accomplishment in life, thus far. According to him. Not me.

Avee is no respecter of persons or locations when it comes to stripping down.
Apparently everywhere is just too hot for her anymore. Probably a side effect of having no boss. When I went to pick her up from her church class, I couldn't find the cute little redhead in a denim dress. I did find the cute denim dress hanging on a door knob though. Her teacher looked at me a little sheepishly and said, "It's reeeeaaaaaalllly hot in here." Yes, I know. It's hot everywhere she goes. She wore her dress out like a leisure jacket.

A 17 month old baby burping loudly, three times in a row, will still make 2 grown women laugh like a couple of 8 year old kids.

Spending time with friends is definitely one of my favorite pastimes.

Things are not always as they seem. Case in point: A person came into the ER and I pulled up her demographics sheet to go into her room and register her. All I see is a very basic description of what is "wrong". On that portion of her sheet it said, "Cannot stop sn**zing" (I don't want any part of this story google-able). That's two e's, not two o's. So when I see it, I immediately roll my eyes and thing, "Dude, GET A LIFE!" Then I put on my pertiest smile and go into the room. When I walk in, she is sitting up and looks like she is breathing/panting quickly, as though in labor. I immediately think that I've gone into the wrong room, and start to back out, when I hear a very strange noise emitting from her facial region. It sort of sounded like a cat coughing up a hairball. Over and over and over and over. It was CRAZY and unreal, and a little bit hilarious. I got the information as quickly as possible, me scribbling madly on the paper, she hairballing madly on the bed. I exit as quickly as I can, and go sit at my desk. I put my head down in my hands and start laughing almost uncontrollably. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not a heartless wench. Much. I was laughing at myself for judging what was on her form. I had no idea it was possible to do that. One of the nurses saw me laughing and asked if it was because of Sn**ze Girl. I nodded, guiltily. And he says, "Oh---she's faking---she's always in here doing that." That just about done me in altogether. I am no stranger to hypochondria. Believe you me. I am quite certain this takes the cake. Plus, what a lot of work!!!

I ask you---who else do you know can start a post with Wonder Bread and end with a whole new brand of hypochondria?

That's what I thought. Nobody.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

I Don't Know What That Means

Today I voted.

I don't mean no disrespect to those lovely volunteers. I do appreciate that there are people willing to do it. But there should be some level of....uh....ability to see and comprehend. And maybe an ability to talk without yelling. Maybe it's just me.

The lady looked at the page with my name on it for a good 90 seconds before she spotted it. And then she double checked that I was in fact Nobody P. Whirl. Like 5 times. Double checking five times = infinity. It was painful to watch. And anytime someone said something, no matter where they were or who they were talking to, she stopped everything, pencil suspended in air, to follow the entire conversation. J was waiting at home with the kids and there was a really long line of people trying to vote before rushing off to work.

Plus, I'm the dork who had an absentee ballot and didn't use it, but in fact lost it, and then showed up at the polls thinking the world would stop, just for me and my unorganized lifestyle.

Twas not so. Every old man with a cell phone was riled up and yelling at some poor unsuspecting soul at the downtown precinct. "SHE LOST HER ABSENTEE BALLOT. LOST IT. NO, NO I DON'T KNOW WHAT THE HELL AFFIDAVIT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT, SHE'S HERE NOW....WHAT? Sonofa...I think he hung up on me!"

Could be because you were yelling at him, sir.

J handed me my absentee ballot a couple of weeks ago and said, "Do this, I've got it all ready for you." And I glared at him and shoved it away and said, "You're not the boss of me." And he shrugged and walked away.

Sure enough, it got lost and thus the above scene at the polls ensued. I confessed to J last night that I hadn't completed it and couldn't find it. He said, "It's okay. Your vote won't matter anyway."

I took Bo with me because he is pretty fascinated with this whole election thing. He wanted to know the names of everyone I voted for on the ballot. So much for privacy.

I'm watching my friend's kids and they're pretty funny. I always love car conversations and there were some good ones this morning.

Bo is obsessed with Barack Obama right now. It's kind of funny to me. This is obviously, entirely of his own volition.

So in the car he announces that he wants Barack to win and he's pretty sure he will win. The other kids ask him why. Which is a smart question. And Bo answers that it's because he's taller and he's skinny and he has brown skin and he's taller.
7 year old boy answers, "Uh, being skinny really doesn't make you be a better president."

Amen to that. In fact, I think the opposite of that is true and I do believe I'd be the best president known to man.

Later, 7 year old boy said that he didn't believe leper fish existed.

His 9 year old sister said, "That is not a fact (7yearold)! You can't prove it, so it's not a fact!"

Here's a fact. When I was 9 years old I did not ever argue that intelligently. I believe there was a lot more "butthead" and a lot less "facts and proving".

His Father's Son

Here's what I don't get: Simple question about presidential candidate and he "doesn't know what I'm talking about". And yet, he can repeat information he heard once, about Yushchenk0.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

I Don't Repeat Gossip

So listen closely...
Just kidding. This has nothing to do with gossip.

My new job is at a hospital. So really---nothing to talk about. Well, actually LOTS to talk about---but I can't. Too bad for you.

I will say this however, there seems to be a remarkably high correlation between hospital employment and hospital visits/admissions. I'm not sure if I should be worried or not.

The first time I ever even went to a doctor, I was 20 years old. The only time I have ever gone to an ER, for myself, was when I was 28. I had a gall bladder attack that started at 8 pm on a Saturday night and I went to the ER at 6 am Sunday morning when I finally figured, that much pain, for that long, couldn't be a good sign. Anyone who's ever had a gall bladder attack, knows how very near death I was, going that long without morphine.

And that was the first time I met morphine. Let's just say, from that experience, I get addiction. Oooh baby, I loved that stuff.

Anyway, now I work at a hospital and everyone seems to have ailments and getting admitted to the ER and observation left and right. Even if it is for constipation---they are getting themselves checked in. Shhh, you didn't hear that from me.

Lately, I haven't had many evenings with the kids. As tedious and annoying as the bedtime routine can be for me, I do miss it. Tonight I got home in time to lay with Bo and Avee for a few minutes. I really enjoyed it. Until just before I got up to come down here and Avee said, "Smell my hand" and even though I know to never ever ever do that, no matter who is asking, I did it. And then got to hear her graphic detail about what I had just smelled. I won't make you throw up, but I do need some sympathy. Disgusting little girl.

Before that, she had totally been cute and very Avee-esque. She planted a kiss on my cheek and said, "You're my cutey girl." Well, actually she said, "Yo my cutey goh". And I was touched by the tenderness and said, "Here Avee, let me hold your hand." As I reached my hand out she plunked her foot in my hand and generously offered, "You can hold my foot mom, I need my hand."

Little did I know...

I can't believe I just blogged about that. My kids need a HIPAA of their own to protect them from me. Oh well, I figure as long as I'm smelling things I don't want to, wiping things I shouldn't have to, and bribing for actions that should come naturally---then I can blog what I want.

Then when they are smelling, wiping, and bribing me---they can write what they want. I think that's fair.

Note to self: Make sure children never learn to type.