Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Little Boy's Special Gift

Little Boy, my four-year-old, received a present at a holiday party packed in a gift bag.

He removed the decorative paper from the top of the bag and asked me, "What's this?"

"That's tissue," I said.

He looked at it, puzzled, and wandered off.

I heard him ask another woman at the party, "Is this tissue?" She confirmed that it was. Then he came back to show me the paper, and he asked me again, "Is this tissue?"

I told him it was, and he left again.

A few minutes later he was back. He handed me the paper. "Is this tissue?" he asked.

I took the paper and said with exaggerated patience. "Yes, Little Boy. It's tissue."

"Good," he said. "Because I sneezed in it."

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Is There an Award For This?

Little Boy came out the other day in this outfit he'd apparently made himself.

ET says we could win the White Trash Clothing award with this one.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Boo's Birthday Cupcakes

I took cupcakes to Boo's class for her tenth birthday earlier this week.

Incidentally, this is the first place we've ever lived in which such things were not prohibited. According to public schools in most other states, it's not fair to the other kids if some kids' moms acknowledge their birthdays with in-school treats, and besides, sugar is EVIL.

Hawaii really is paradise, I tell you. Perfect weather, beautiful scenery...and the schools allow CUPCAKES!

(image from

Anyways, after the treats had been passed out and it was time to leave, there were three lone cupcakes left in my plastic tray, which I had to transport to the car through a sea of children who'd just been let out of school.

I could hear the news rippling through the crowd as I walked:
cupcakes, cupcakes, cupcakes, cupCAKES, CUPCAKES!
Kids gazed at me longingly. I heard random cries of, "I want a cupcake!"

I held tightly to my tray. I knew that if I even cracked the lid I'd be mobbed. I felt like a tourist right off the cruise ship, cluching my purse while beggars swarmed around me. There were only three cupcakes, after all. If I tried to give them out a riot might ensue.

I walked on, looking resolutely ahead, trying to get to the parking lot. A boy came up and began walking along directly beside me, looking sadly down at my tray as we moved along. He sighed deeply. I ignored him.

The boy sighed again. I walked faster. He kept up. After a moment, he finally said, "You know why I'm so sad?"

I didn't say anything. He went on anyways. "I'm sad because there's a kid in my class and her name is Boo and she brought cupcakes to school and I didn't get one."

This got my attention. "What?!" I said. I called Boo back (she was of course walking nowhere near me and my forbidden treasure tray) and asked her, "Is this boy in your class?" She said he was.

"Did he get a cupcake?" I asked. Boo looked at the kid, and said, "No." I asked why not, and received a long explanation from the boy that began with "I accidentally forgot to..." and didn't really make much sense.

Apparently he'd been in trouble for some reason and the teacher had gone Cupcake-Nazi about it. ("No treat for YOU!")

(image from

Now, as I've said before, I support my kids' teachers and their right to enforce classroom rules as they see fit.

Still. These were my daughter's birthday cupcakes. They were intended for the whole class, even kids currently in disgrace for whatever reason.

I ducked behind my van and slipped the boy a cupcake.

Happy birthday, Boo.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Recorder Incident: A Story Told From Two Perspectives

I woke up one morning to see Little Boy in my room taking off his pajamas, informing me nonchlantly "There's pee on these," as he kicked the PJ pants across my room. As I dragged myself out of bed, he cheerily returned to his room and brought in all his soiled bedding as well, adding the blankets to the pile of wet clothes.

While I was stuffing all of that into the laundry basket, ready to wash, Little Boy went rummaging in his room and emerged with a recorder.

Remember the recorder? That piercing, shreiking, whistle-like instrument they teach you to play in elementary school? The twins each received one on their last birthday from a nice neighbor. (I'll get her back one day...)

Anyways, he came out playing the recorder at top volume, "Tweet! Tweet! TWEET!" Repeatedly. As I may have mentioned, the sound of this instrument has an icepick-to-the-ear feel to it.

I decided to ignore it and continue to get ready. At this point in my life, I'm getting to be a master at ignoring annoying sounds, by the way. Could that be my superpower? I went into the bathroom so I could get dressed.

I could still hear the recorder blasting outside the bathroom door. "Tweet! Tweet! TWEET!" Over and over. Then I heard another door forcefully opening, stomping feet coming, and Little Boy yelling.

"ET hit me!" he said. I figured his 16-year-old sister had come out of the other bathroom where she was getting ready for school and had popped him on the head to make him stop playing.

He kept playing of course. "Tweet! Tweet! TWEET!" "Tweet! Tweet! TWEET!"

A minute or so later I heard the door-slamming-open/stomping-feet-approaching combo again.

Little Boy yelled, "She took my whistle!" I wondered why she hadn't done that in the first place, to be honest.

So silence reigned momentarily.

ET's story:

ET was in the bathroom putting on her makeup when she heard the recorder starting up. "Tweet! Tweet! TWEET!" "Tweet! Tweet! TWEET!"

She tried to ignore it. "It's okay," she told herself. "Mom will make him stop soon."

But the high-pitched, earsplitting noise just kept on.
(image from

Finally she stomped out of the bathroom and saw her four-year-old brother, compleltely naked in the hallway, crouching down and aiming the recorder under the bathroom door as he played the same sharp note over and over and over.

She took the recorder from him, conked him on the head with it, and went back into the bathroom, slamming the door behind her.

Only a moment later, she heard the sound again. "Tweet! Tweet! TWEET!" "Tweet! Tweet! TWEET!"

"WHAT?!" she thought. "He's got another one?!"

(Remember my well-meaning neighbor? An instrument for each twin!)

So ET slammed her way out of the bathroom again and took the second recorder away.

...And silence momentarily reigned.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

This Year's Christmas Card Photo

I asked my husband and the kids to brainstorm ideas for this year's Christmas card photo.

Since last years's photo was creative and fun, I thought it would be great to do it again. The main reason it had gone so well then, was because the kids had helped come up with the idea.

(As opposed to moaning and groaning and complaining the whole time because Mommy was making them take a family photo, as in previous years.)

At first I thought I'd made a big mistake though, because they had some pretty wild ideas:

1. Make a snowman out of red dirt and pose next to it.

2. Take all our furniture outside and sit on it like it's our living room.

3. Pose in front of the neighbor's house, pretending to peek in their windows.

4. Go up on the roof and take a picture.

5. Walk out into the woods where we'd "planted" last year's plastic tree and stand next to it again.

Fortunately, we didn't end up going with any of these. In fact we didn't do anything weird at all!

Well, maybe just a little weird.....

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Games Mommy Plays

Today I played a full round of that fun game called “Where the Heck is That Awful Smell Coming From?”

I’m very experienced in this game, having played many times. It can be performed in different locations throughout the house or car; today’s edition was held in the twins’ room.

Last night I tried playing only the short version, but the removal of a sippy cup full of curdled chocolate milk and the slimy ooze-covered book it was resting on (both extracted from under Little Boy’s bed) failed to produce the desired end-game result.

In other words, the twins’ room still really reeked.

So today I attacked the problem in earnest. I picked up absolutely everything from the floor, then vacuumed and shampooed the carpet. I also moved all the furniture, vacuuming and shampooing underneath, concentrating especially under Little Boy’s bed. I went over every inch of that room.

The twins’ room looks really clean now.

Unfortunately, IT STILL SMELLS BAD!

Come to think of it, this game isn’t really all that fun….

(image from

Saturday, December 1, 2012

I'm not above stealing someone else's story for a laugh

This didn't happen to me. It's still funny.

My neighbor's seven-year-old son came in from playing outside with his ear streaming blood.

He was upset because he had broken...another neighbor's car!

That's right, (after bandaging up her child) my friend had to go and knock on her neighbor's door and say, "I'm sorry, but my son smashed your tail light...with his FACE!"

So now she's on the hook to pay $50 to $100 to fix someone else's car.

But at least she's honest. I mean, you couldn't make that story up!

(image from

Monday, November 26, 2012

Elf on the Shelf

The Elf on the Shelf (Light Skinned - Girl)
So all my friends with small children are doing this "elf on the shelf" thing this Christmas.

In case you aren't familiar with the Elf, here's the description from Barnes and Noble, one of the many retailers selling it:

"Every year, Santa sends a scout elf to each home to report on whether its little boys and girls have been naughty or nice. With this tradition-in-a-box activity kit, families will be able to search each day for Santa's secret helper. A game that builds anticipation for Christmas."

So the idea is, you buy the book (elf included!) and explain to the kids that the elf is watching them and reporting on their behavior to Santa. Then you place the elf somewhere in the house so that it can observe the children. During the night you move it to another location, so they can see that the Elf has been off to the North Pole for debriefing while they were asleep.

Does no one but me find this whole idea just a little creepy?

I mean, it's bad enough that Santa "sees you when you're sleeping" and "knows when you're awake," but now he's placed a MOLE in your HOUSE?!

Now I do get the fun of the kids finding where the elf is hiding every day and all that.

And to be completely honest, the creepy-stalker-ish-ness of the lyrics to "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" never dawned on me at all as a child. I was as excited about Santa coming as the next kid.

But, from an adult perspective, that Elf on the Shelf just FREAKS ME OUT. I want to throw a towel over him when I go to my friends' houses.

Just in case he really IS watching......

Saturday, November 17, 2012

The Pet Wars Are Back On!

At the fall festival last week Boo won a pair of goldfish in a plastic bag.

Don’t get me started on the dubious wisdom of giving elementary school kids LIVING ANIMALS as fair prizes without their parents’ permission. Suffice it to say, I dislike the idea on many levels.

Anyways, I figured, like all fair goldfish, these poor creatures were not long for this world.

Need I remind everyone what happened to Darla’s fish in “Finding Nemo?”

(image from

But, much to my surprise, a week later Dorothy and Stanky (as Boo named the fish) are still alive.

However, they may no last much longer. They have been discovered by The Cat.

This morning I came downstairs and found our kitty up on the kitchen counter looking into the fishbowl. The fish were swimming around like crazy and there was water all over the place.

Obviously Kitty had been unsuccessfully fishing. He ran away as soon as he saw me, but first he gave the fish and “I’ll be back” look.

I’m afraid Dorothy and Stanky may not enjoy the land of the living too much longer.

The Pet Wars have resumed!

(For the history of the pet wars click here. Also HERE.)

Monday, November 12, 2012

Snowballs in Hawaii?

At the elementary school Fall Festival this weekend, Boo's class sponsored a snowball fight.


But since we live on the island of O'ahu, where the temperature stays unvaryingly around 75 degrees, the snowballs were made of flour.

Boo's fourth-grade class made over 2000 snowballs--which consisted of 1/4 cup of flour wrapped in a kleenex and secured with tape.

Boo and I personally made 125 of them.

Oh, it was a grand mess!

But the kids all had a great time, in any case. Selling the snowballs at four for a dollar, our booth ran out in less than two hours.

I helped with the sales, but fortunately was allowed to disappear at cleanup time....

Friday, November 9, 2012

Three TV/Movie dudes I want to come to my house for coffee

#1. John Goodman.

John Goodman
(image from

I LOVE him! I loved him in "Roseanne" a zillion years ago, and I just saw him in the movie Argo. He was excellent!

And my favorite character he played:

(image from

Don't you just want to hug that guy?

Also he would make me look quite svelte if he stood beside me...

#2. Spencer Shay from "iCarly"

File:Spencer shay ha ha.jpg
(image from

I love this guy too. And it's the character I love here, not the actor. I think Jerry Trainor, the real person, is a Serious Actor. Which I have great respect for. However...

Unfortunately a Serious Actor would not be as fun over coffee as the Spencer character, who makes giant sculptures of pants and does the best pratfalls this side of John Ritter. Also he does this baby puppet bit that's hysterical.

(image from

Well, I guess you have to see that one on TV to get the full impact.

#3. Griffin, That Psychic Alien Dude from Men in Black 3.

(image from

Aw! Isn't he sweet?

You have to see this movie to know why I love this guy. Once you have, you'll want Griffin at your house too.

By the way, to everyone that thinks this is a weird collection of dudes....You're right!

Were you expecting photos of Fabio here?

Sorry, wrong blog for that. I like weird dudes. Ask my husband....

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Now that the election is over...

Let's talk about something else.

Something important, you ask? Newsworthy? Something that makes a difference in this world?

Nah. Wrong blog for THAT.

I only write about random useless FUNNY things.

I have a short list of questions to get you all talking amongst yourselves:

Two general, maybe philosophical, questions:

1. A burning question of housekeeping: How can dust cling to a vertical surface?

2. Jesus has a facebook page. So does God. Who does the status updates for these things?

And one personal question.....

3. Who took the onions off their Whopper and hid them in the back of my van? Because it really smells in there now.

Thank you for reading this post-election post.

Friday, November 2, 2012

My house vs. Pinterest house

On pinterest they have lots of ideas to make your home beautiful and organized.

One idea is to have places for each person to put their things in each room. I do this, but because we have a lot of people, it doesn't quite look as nice as it should.

For example, here's pinterest's organized entryway.

Pinned Image

I actually do this. I have labeled places for each child's school bag, and a shelf, et cetera.

Except in my house, it looks like this:

Not bad. But not Martha Stewart quality, by any means.

Now this idea, for the laundry room, using an individual basket for each person's clean clothes, which they will then (theoretically) put away in their rooms.
Pinned Image

Again, this is actually an idea I use at my house. Only my version doesn't look so great.

Yeah. Not so much with the putting away....

Okay, one more. Pinterest organized bathroom:

Pinned Image

Now my kids' bathroom:

Oh well. At least we can find stuff, right?


images from

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Birthdays are like opinions...Everyone's got one

So I turned 41, which means I'm squarely IN my forties now.

I'll pause for you to all say how I don't look a day over 39.

Aw, thanks!

So, as is customary for birthday celebrations, I received some cards in the mail.

I thought it would be fun to play a game with them.

Sing with me: "One of these things is not like the other. One of these things just doesn't belong..."

Did you guess which thing was not like the other, before I finished the song?

Yes, I received three lovely cards with pink flowers on them...and one card with an ugly old man and a joke about my age.

That's okay, my prankster sister-in-law! Your fiftieth isn't too far away, my friend....

(Click here to hear the Sesame Street "One of These Things" song, if you're interested.)

Monday, October 22, 2012

You Can't Play That Here

My four-year-old son is getting in trouble at preschool for playing a forbidden game.

I asked the teacher about it, because he kept getting a frowny face in his take-home folder, and for two days in a row she had written down "gun."

The teacher said, "He's been taking a block and pretending it is a G-U-N. He was even making the sound with his mouth! Also another child began to imitate him!"

(image from

I tried to look suitably shocked. Little boys pretending to shoot guns?! Oh the horror!

She explained further. "I redirected their play, and I showed him that the block can be a tower or a house, but that it is inappropriate to use it as a G-U-N. But then a few minutes later..." She paused here and added very gravely, "He was doing it again."

Again I tried to match her grave expression. Well, I mean, I tried to keep a straight face.

It was difficult.

I understand the school's policy is against violent play. I really do, and I will back the teacher up 100% on that. (Little Boy didn't get his being-good-at-school-treat that day.)

However... I can't really get all that worked up about it. Maybe it's because I'm from Alabama.

Also, here's the thing: Little boys pretend to shoot guns. Kids play war. They just DO, okay?

And, let's get real here: Most of the kids at this preschool are from military homes. Their families' livelihoods are actually BASED on war.

So excuse me if I'm not at DEFCON ONE when my son aims a block at someone and says, "Pow! Pow!"

Sorry, folks!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Ma'am, is that your son?!

This is a phrase I hate to hear when out in public with the twins.

Also, "Ma'am, is that your daughter?!" Just as bad.

I really really REALLY want to say "No" when I am asked that question.

Because that question (either version) means I am about to be reprimanded by some random adult.

(image from

I could be remembering wrong, but this never used to happen with my older kids. However, it happens all the time with the twins.

Here's a partial list of all the people who have scolded me in public about the twins in their brief four years of life:

1. Security guard at the zoo (Your daughter is chasing the peacocks!)

2. Security guard at the children's museum (Your son is running!)

3. Security guard at the mall (Your daughter is yelling too much!)

4. Other mommy at the park (Your son just bit my son! [This one I actually don't think he did.])

5. Other mommy at McDonald's (Your son spit from the top of the play structure! [Now that I believe!])

6. Lady at the next table at Arby's (Your daughter spit on me! [Unfortunately also true.])

7. Lifeguard at the pool (Your son is climbing on the decorative boulders!)

8. Lifeguard at the beach (Your kids are in the ocean! [Actually I didn't know what he was upset about, but I looked appropriately contrite.])

9. Principal of the Middle School (Your toddlers are too loud for this school concert!)

10. Security guard at the library (Your twins are having a tantrum! [See blog post on that one here.])

I would close with a phrase about how persecuted the twins are, but honestly, they probably deserve it.

Except the one from the library security guard. She was just mean.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Creative Cooking

I made a new recipe for dinner.

And I guess I mean that literally, because I didn't have several of the ingedients it called for and I made a few substitutions.

The question is, When does it stop being a "subsitution" and start being a whole new recipe? I mean, out of the eleven ingredients I used.... three of them as directed.

It still tasted pretty good. Here's a photo--unfortunately, it's of the leftovers.

Yeah, it looked better last night.

If you're looking for great pictures of food, this is not the blog for you.

Here's a link to the real recipe, if you're interested:

Here's what I did:

Instead of "1 medium onion, chopped" I used some dried onion flakes.
Instead of "3 garlic cloves, pressed" I used some garlic powder.

(Can I just point out that I think pampered-chef includes both of these just to get you to buy the food chopper and the garlic press?)

"2 tsp (10 mL) olive oil" This one I actually had on hand. Hooray!
But that wasn't very much. I added 2 Tbsp of butter just to be safe.

"(1) Finely chop onion using Food Chopper. Combine onion, garlic pressed with, Garlic Press and oil in Deep Covered Baker. Microwave, covered, on HIGH 2 minutes."

(You see what I mean? In step ONE of the directions, no fewer than THREE pampered-chef products are mentioned.)

"1 1/2 cups (375 mL) uncooked orzo pasta" Check!
"3 1/4 cups (800 mL) chicken broth" Check!
"3/4 cup (175 mL) dry white wine such as Chardonnay" Um....I didn't have this. I threw in some more chicken broth.

"(2) Stir in orzo, broth and wine. Microwave, covered, on HIGH 14–16 minutes or until orzo is tender."

By the way, I used a ceramic dish I have that has a glass lid. It worked just as well as the $70 covered baker they used at the pampered-chef party I went to.

Using the microwave for a whole dinner was pretty cool, I have to say.

Real Bacon Bits, 3-Ounce Pouches (Pack of 12)Okay. Here's where I veered way off course from the recipe.

"1 jar (8 oz or 210 mL) sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained and patted dry" I didn't have that, and the jar costs like nine bucks. I threw in some bacon bits instead. They're also red, right?

"1 head broccoli (about 2 cups/500 mL florets)" I steamed some frozen broccoli on the stove.
"2 oz (60 g) Parmesan cheese" I didn't have this at all. Not even the icky powdered kind in the can. So I skipped it.

"(3) Meanwhile, thinly slice tomatoes using Santoku Knife; set aside. Cut broccoli into small florets. Grate Parmesan cheese using Microplane® Adjustable Grater; set aside. Carefully remove baker from microwave using Oven Mitts. Stir in tomatoes and broccoli. Cover; let stand 5 minutes."
Philadelphia Cream Cheese Recipe Collection in 3-Ring Binder
"6 oz (175 g) mascarpone cheese" Again, I did not have this fancy-schmantsy chesse, and it costs like ten bucks a pound. I used Philadelphia cream cheese, which is good in pretty much anything.

"Chopped fresh parsley (optional)" As if! I threw some more bacon bits and some shredded cheese on top.

"(4) Add cheeses to baker; mix well. Let stand, covered, 2–3 minutes or until almost all of the liquid is absorbed. Garnish with chopped parsley, if desired."

This was an easy meal. It was all in one dish and I heated up some garlic bread to go along.

Everyone liked it, and as you can see, there was still some left over for later.

(all images from

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Way-too-realistic animal T-shirts. I don't get them.

These new T-shirts that look like a real animal popping out of your chest....

Does anyone else think these are going to look super weird on a real person?

I mean, especially on a woman?

I'm just saying.
image from

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Getting the Clunker to Pass Inspection

Here in Hawaii we have to have our cars inspected yearly.

I don't know how many other states do this --I know we had to when we lived in Texas-- but I do know Alabama (where I grew up) isn't one of them. So I don't have a lot of experience with the process.

I just recently had to get the van inspected, and then had to replace a lightbulb in order to get it to pass. But that's our "good" car.

(image from

Getting my husband's car to pass is a whole other ball game. His car is...special.

One of its main problems is the fact that the windows don't go down. Well, actually, the mechanism is broken so that the windows have to be permanently stuck closed.

This an annoyance on a regular basis, since we live on a gated military post, requiring a checkpoint stop every time you come in. And he works on a separate post. So that's at least two times a day to have to open the door  a little and snake your hand out of the crack for an MP gate guard to look at your ID. And hope nobody thinks you're going for a weapon when you unexpectedly open the door instead of the window.

Worse than the everyday annoyance was the time when his air conditioner broke, turning the car into an unventilated death-trap of a sweatbox if you parked in the the sun.

That was a bad bad scene.

Anyways, last year when my husband had his car inspected the guy wanted him to put the window down.

My Husband: Sorry. The window doesn't go down.
Inspector Guy: It has to go down for the car to
                        pass inspection.
My Husband: Okay. Hold on.

He got out a screwdriver and took the door panel off, loosening the mechanism holding the window in place so that the pane fell down inside the door. He put the panel back on and showed it to the inspector.

My Husband: Okay. The window is down.
Inspector Guy: (making a mark on the inspection sheet) Check. You pass!

So when the time came to have the car inspected again this year, the plan was to have the windows already down when we brought the car in, therefore avoiding the whole problem.

I volunteered to take the car in for him. Which meant my husband took my car and I spent the whole day driving a car with the windows permanently open.

I'll let you take a guess as to whether it rained that day.

Yes. Yes it did.

But did the car pass inspection? Yep. On the first try!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Sick Mommy gets no sympathy

I was sick this week.

I know, I know. Mommies are not allowed to get sick. Well, I guess my immune system didn't get the memo, because I got the flu.

So for about two days, when I wasn't busy driving everyone to all the various places they had to get to, I was lying on the couch or my bed, alternately shivering and sweating, and periodically croaking instructions to the kids.

Did my pitiful state make the kids more or less likely to listen to me? No.

Did seeing poor Mommy felled by the flu inspire them to be more helpful and considerate? No.

Did they even try to go easy on me or leave me alone for the duration of my illness? Um... Not really, no.

Example Scene:

Mommy is lying huddled on the couch wrapped in a quilt while the twins alternately sit on her, jump on her, shove each other on/off her, et cetera, and various inane cartoons play on Netflix.

Banging noises come from upstairs. Mommy pulls the quilt over her head to block out the sound as the thumping increases. Finally a long scream starts.

The scream continues, growing in volume as it gets closer, all the way down the stairs. Finally the screamer appears. It is Boo.

Boo: Mommy Mommy Mommy Mommy MOMMY!!!!!!!
Me: (weakly) what.
Boo: GG put my RECORDER in her PANTS!

Yamaha YRS24B Soprano RecorderI'm going to pause this scene for one minute here to point out: I AM NOT MAKING THIS UP.

One kid actually put another kid's musical instrument in her pants. GG's defense was "She wouldn't stop playing it and it's annoying."
Okay. I'll admit that the recorder is not the most melodious instrument on earth; in fact, it sounds a lot like an icepick in the ear, even when properly played. Still, to put it down your PANTS? Come on! Honestly, I was stymied as to what to do here.

(recorder image from

Me: Okay. What do you want me to do about this?
Boo: (long pause) Make GG live somewhere else?
Me: That's not really an option.
Boo: Please?
Me: Boo. I'm sick. Can you two just please try to get along for today?
Boo: (obviously unhappy with this) I guess.
Me: (as one of the twins body-slams me) Ow.
Little Boy: Mommy I want JUICE!
Little Girl: Me too me too me too! I want JUICE!
ET: Mom can you proof-read this paper? It's due tomorrow.
Me: (groans)

The good news is, once my husband came home I was allowed to crawl upstairs and sleep for a while.

And after a couple of days, it became apparent that I would not in fact die.

Which was good, because everyone wanted dinner and the sink was full of dirty dishes.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

My Kids' Grocery List

Wow. Think maybe they want me to buy bacon?

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Twins are Cute. Sometimes.....

The twins got haircuts on Monday.

I even went all out and let Little Girl choose hairbows from the overpriced selection they have at "Pigtails and Crewcuts," where you pay extra to get your kid's hair cut because the place is so darn cute.

And they have a train table to play with, which can be worth its weight in gold if there's a long wait.

So Little Boy and Little Girl came out looking pretty cute.

Okay, all together now:


"They're SO cute!"

Until we got into the car and they started fighting.

I don't know who started it, but they basically pummelled each other all the way home while I yelled, "Stop it!" ineffectively from the front seat.

It's not that long of a drive. But it sure felt long.

When we got home both of them were crying, their hair was mussed, and the lovely handmade hairbows were on the floor with suspiciously large amount of curling blonde hair still stuck in them.

But at least they were cute for five minutes, right?

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Remember to stay humble

I did a favor for a friend the other day. It wasn’t a big deal, but she thanked me profusely and I left her house feeling pretty darn good about myself.

I got in my van and flipped on my iPod, blasting some nice-girl Christian music and heading out to get the twins from preschool. I’m doing pretty well today, I thought.

Then I backed into a ditch.

I’m not even kidding. I wish I was. I backed my minivan into a DITCH and got it STUCK.

I tried to get the van out of the ditch and my tires spun uselessly on loose gravel. My dashboard gave me a helpful “low-traction” warning light to let me know this was happening, as if the combination of vroom/SCREECH, vroom/SCREECH along with the continual NOT moving forward didn’t give me a clue that there was a traction PROBLEM.

(image from

I got out of the van and looked. Yep. Stuck in a ditch all right.

I tried going backwards. Which was good until I ran into something short behind me. So I tried going forwards again and got stuck in the same spot.

I tried not to panic. I tried again. I got out again.

A guy, attracted by my lovely vroom/SCREECH, vroom/SCREECH sound, walked up.

“I seem to be stuck,” I said inanely.

He walked around my van and agreed with me. “You’re probably going to have to call someone to pull you out,” he said. “You got TripleA?”

I was getting really upset. “I don’t have time for that!” I said. “I have to pick up from the preschool in ten minutes!” I think I actually stamped my foot.

The guy raised his eyebrows at me in an “Okay, Crazy Lady,” way and I realized I was acting like a nut, and alienating my only visible source of help with my nuttiness.

Fortunately at that point two other guys walked up and surveyed the scene. This kept Guy #1 from abandoning me on my own Crazy-Lady-Island, which I likely deserved.

Guys #2 and #3 discussed putting something under the back wheel and/or pushing the back of the van. Guy #1 looked skeptically at all of us.

The pushing plan was decided upon. I asked Guy #1 to drive while I pushed, because I felt bad that he’d gotten roped into this, and also because he weighed less than me. Plus I was terrified of accidentally backing over all three guys, since I‘d already proven myself to be a complete moron as a driver. I’m just being honest here.

Guy #1 got in the van and put it in low gear. He gunned the motor to make the vroom/SCREECH, vroom/SCREECH really crescendo while the three of us shoved on the tailgate as hard as we could.

The good news is, the van moved. The bad news is, I fell facefirst into the ditch.

But the van was out! I got up, saying cheerily, “I’m okay! I’m okay!” and limped away. I thanked everyone profusely and drove off. I hope they all were feeling good about helping me.

Probably they were thinking, “Wow. What a nut.”

Amazingly, I was only about ten minutes late to the preschool.

But I arrived humble.

Friday, September 7, 2012

I'm Such a Rebel

I was making a cake, and I happened to see this directive on the cake mix box:

What?! I can't eat raw cake batter?!

Well, guess what, Betty Crocker! You can't push ME around!


Monday, September 3, 2012

Preschool Gymnastics

The twins go to a preschool gymnastics class on Friday afternoons.

They really like it, and I really like having them tire themselves out while somebody else has to watch them. This is why I'm willing to pay for a college student "coach" to do things like teach them the hokey-pokey and let them jump on a trampoline for forty-five minutes.

A couple of weeks ago, however, there was a little problem. I was sitting in the nice quiet parents' waiting area working on my laptop and the twins appeared in front of me yelling, "Mommy! Mommy!"

I looked up in astonishment as the coach came running behind them. "They want you to take them to the bathroom," she explained, slightly winded from chasing the twin terrors.

I raised my eyebrows at her. The twins jumped up and down yelling excitedly, "Mommy! I have to go POTTY!"

Correctly interpreting my expression, the coach said, "I can take them myself, but they want you."

"We want YOU Mommy! We want YOU!" the twins echoed.

I looked at the coach. "I can watch your laptop?" she suggested helpfully. I gave in and took the twins to the bathroom, but I wasn't happy about it.

After all, I did the math. I'm paying almost fifteen bucks an hour PER KID for this class. For that amount of money, the coach should be able to take them to the potty and LEAVE ME ALONE. But I let it go for the moment.

Then it happened again the next week. I had been sitting peacefully at my laptop less than five minutes before they appeared in front of me again, bouncing and yelling. They didn't even use the potty excuse this time; they just yelled ,"Mommy! Mommy!" and looked pleased with themselves.

The coach came puffing up behind them. It was obvious they had escaped without her knowledge this time. I thought to myself, "Oh, HECK no! This stops right now."

There followed a charming scene in which I dragged the twins back into their class in full view of all the horrified moms and dads. Little Girl in particular screamed and cried in protest most convincingly. The coach followed us, looking on in round-eyed shock. I set my face grimly and deposited the shreiking, struggling pair in class where the other kids and the assistant coach also stared at us.

I shut the gate to the preschool area and marched back to my laptop, ignoring Little Girl wailing behind me as the coach tried to cheerily cajole her back into the circle. Everyone in the parents' area tried to pretend they hadn't just witnessed Horrible Mean Mommy Drags Twins to Gymnastics Class and avoided my eyes.

In my defense, Little Girl quit crying almost right after I disappeared from her view and it was no longer to her advantage to appear traumatized. And they both STAYED IN CLASS.

I groused to myself about the coach letting the kids escape like that. But the truth is, I can't keep track of them either.

Here's Little Boy escaping from the backyard. I can't take my eyes off the twins for a second!

Unless I'm paying someone ELSE not to take her eyes off them....