Friday, December 30, 2011

Time. It's short.

So, when nothing funny happens, or I just plain have nothing to say, what am I doing with my time? Well, make stuff. Lots of stuff. Lots and lots of stuff. Stuff like this:


Squash soup

Garlic Knots

Pumpkin Pie

And also, stuff like this:
Buttercup Bag (free pattern from Made by Rae)

Angry Birds toys (modified from Obsessively Stitching)

Hair thingy holder thingy
Zippered Pencil Case

But now you want to hear something funny. Ok. Little Viking would.not.stop. throwing dirt at his brother today and stray cats keep showing up in our yard to talk to Philosopher Child. No, I'm not kidding.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011


Philosopher Child is very clever. Very clever. Sometimes, too clever for his own good. He will refuse to do homework and schoolwork, or do it half-heartedly, because he just doesn't see the point. That gets him in trouble.

(My mother used to say, "Someday, you'll have a child just like you, and I'm going to laugh!" Somewhere, she is having a fit of giggles. I didn't see the point of schoolwork, either. That also got me in trouble.)

Oh, the things that come home. "His handwriting isn't good enough." "He's being disruptive." "He's being disruptive again." "He won't color his worksheets." "He doesn't want to do his Reading Counts tests."*

Right before school break, the teacher sent me a note home, asking for a conference. A conference? Now? Well, since conferences are usually held at the beginning of grading quarters, and as this was just days before the end, it had to be important. Heart pounding, feeling panicky after some stressful, but unrelated, days, just about to lose it wondering what happened that warranted a conference, I called.

"So, you wanted to have a conference?" the teacher asked me.

Wait, what? "No," I said. "You sent a note home. You wanted a conference."

"Oh. Well, the holidays are coming up. It can wait until after. It's not that important. He did well on his reading tests. I send notes home about the bad stuff, but I don't mention the good stuff. He's good on his reading. The whole class was. We can meet after the holidays."


*Reading Counts tests are a whole other can of angry worms entirely.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Mountain Rose Herbs giveaway

Yep, it's been a month. I suck. But look at this! Mountain Rose Herbs is giving away this fantastic natural lip balm DIY set! If you've been reading here, you know that I'm all about aprons, crafting, all-natural skin care, and DIY.

I love MRH for so, so many reasons. Earl Grey, Orange Spice, and herbal teas are just a few things I love about them. The hardest thing about ordering them is the wait, as they are clear across the country from me!

Make sure you take a look around this awesome business if you drop by their giveaway!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Superhero in Sensible Shoes

Have you ever sat down and watched any superhero shows with your kids? I have. And seriously, something needs to be said here about the female of the superhero species. See, I've decided that supervillains must be stupid.

Really stupid.

Because, well, superhero gals generally have huge *ahem* upper parts and itty, bitty waists. A smart villain would, were they not so stupid, merely tap the superhero girls on the shoulder. Due to their wildly disproportionate frames, the small tap on the shoulder would cause them to fall over, snapping them like a twig in the process.

But, you know, villains are morons. That's why they're villains, I guess.

And seriously, what is up with their SHOES??? If I'm going to be running around, jumping from rooftop to rooftop, kicking bad guys in the face, I want a good sneaker. Or, at least a ballet flat with a decent sole. What I don't want is a knee-high boot with a freaking 6-inch heel. You're not a go-go dancer, sister! Nor are you a fashionista or a cowboy with questionable taste in footwear.

Over the past 24 hours I have made 3 loaves of bread, a tray of cookies, 3 pizzas, cleaned the bathroom, done a bunch of laundry, gone back and forth to school, broken up fights, and located lost items all while wearing sensible shoes. I am a superhero.

And I bet I could still kick a supervillain in the face.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


Habithate: noun. A habit that makes you part of who you are, but annoy people who don't get it.

I love Crocs.

There. I said it.

Are you angry with me? I think most of the people who read this blog either have a pair themselves or don't give two flying flips if other people do. Or, they at least tolerate them. But some people hate them on levels that are unimaginable to my mind. Shoe-burning hatred. A hatred so deep that they not only don't want them themselves, they can't tolerate seeing anyone else wear them.

But why my love when others hate them so? Well, I can't find shoes that fit me right. Seriously. I've had one pair in the past several years that were awesome, but I've never been able to find another pair like them. I can't explain it. Maybe my feet are shaped funny or something.

My point is this: Crocs sort of mold to my feet. Therefore, they fit. Also, since as a mom of two young children I'm on my feet quite a lot, kneading bread, picking up toys, cleaning, so on and so forth, a pair of shoes that fit are extremely handy to have. So there.

For the rest of the world, that means sometimes you'll see me wear them when I pick my kids up from school, particularly if I'm in a rush. You may see me wear them when I run out to do an errand. You won't see me wear them in church, or to an important school function. They are merely my here-to-there-to-back-again shoes.

And I'm not getting rid of them.

But mostly, I don't get what makes people angry about them. Because they're ugly? I think neon colors are ugly, but they don't make me angry.

Sunday, October 23, 2011


Factoad: noun. A fact applied in the completely wrong place. (Like when people call a toad a frog. Get it? No?)

Ah, my boys. The sponges. They absorb seemingly massive amounts of information. You know, when they want to. Lately they have been all about nature and animals.

I'll be honest, I don't remember which little monkey this statement came from, but I think it was Philosopher Child. Either way, it goes right up there with other epic statements.

"Did you know that you would stay warm in winter because you have a layer of fat?"

I explained that I'm not a bear, but deep down, well... ouch.

Monday, October 17, 2011

More Statements of Epicness

Ah, construction vehicles. An endless source of fascination and entertainment for countless children. It's no wonder kids love them. They're big, they're loud, and they make things.

Little Viking wanted to explain one he saw but didn't quite have the vocabulary. "I saw a mint truck. It poured out oil."

"A mint truck that pours out oil?" I asked. At this point I was picturing some sort of candy truck that dispenses mint flavored oil. Well, that can't be right, I thought.

Philosopher Child patiently intervened. "He means he saw a cement truck."

"Oh," I said. That made more sense.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


I know the layout right now is a hot mess.  I'm working on it.

Meditation and Other Hazards

I've had tension headaches nearly daily for 10 or 15 years. Yep. As a teen, if I didn't take a Tylenol before leaving for school, whether I had a headache or not, by the time school let out I'd be at migraine levels. Have you ever had a migraine? They

So in this manner, I was able to curb the headaches as much as possible. Eventually they nearly disappeared, but lately they are back with gusto. I have been taking ibuprofen 1-2 times a day, every day, for the pain. Doesn't sound healthy? It's not. It's actually a really bad idea. But, for the most part, it was a choice of dealing with ridiculous, blinding amounts of pain, or taking some ibuprofen.

Recently, as my headaches got more and more out of control, I turned to some specific stretches, using better posture, and meditating. Not the trying to attain enlightenment on some astrophysical plane sort of mediation, but just sitting quietly, eyes closed, and just breathing. And you know what? It helped. A lot. I went 3 days without having to take anything. That was huge for me. (I admit over the past 24-36 hours I've been really stressed and last night and this morning I had a lot of trouble just breathing the stress away. I took some ibuprofen as the pain got worse.)

This afternoon I put on an episode of Voltron on my computer for Viking Child to watch (Philosopher Child is at school), brewed some herbal tea, and was going to go and just sit and meditate as the next round of headaches was creeping up.

As soon as I was going to sit, Viking Toddler ran in, asking to watch something on the TV instead. I explained to him that I really needed him to go watch Voltron, for just a little while, and I would call him in a bit. He went back pretty easily. I was on my way to go sit, but the dog had to go out now. Fine. Take the dog out. Go back to sit. As I am, Viking Toddler runs in with another demand, and while my attention is focused on him, I back into a bucket that Husband had used to fix some plumbing yesterday. Ick all over the back of my pants that I had just put on. Go to change my pants. Go back to sit to find that Viking Toddler had gone behind my back and put something loud on TV. In a last bit of frustration, I simply shouted, "I GIVE UP!"

And then I came here to vent.

And now my tea is ready.

Monday, October 10, 2011


Robots in disguise!

If you are around my age, you probably now have the theme running through your head. If not, sorry. But anyway, I think we are all at least aware of Transforms now, yes? If not, go visit wikipedia for a minute. It's not important that you know much about them, only that they are giant battling robots that can transform into objects like vehicles and such. OK, you don't have to visit wikipedia. I just told you what they are.

Anyway, we've had crazy weather here over the past few days. Powerlines are down all over the place. Trees are down, there are branches everywhere, and we were a little shocked to see the sun.

During all this nonsense, there was suddenly a very, very loud BOOM!

"What was that?" I asked Husband.

"Sounds like a transformer," he replied. Of course he meant transformer as in electrical equipment, not the giant robots.

"Transformer?" said Little Viking.

Do you see where this is going?

"A Transformer battling?" he asked in that adorable little voice.

"No, not that kind of transformer, honey," I said. "A different kind."

"Oh," he said. "So it was like Iron Man?"

What's really sad is after being immersed in all this boyness, I know exactly why his mind jumped to Iron Man when I said a different kind of transformer. *Sigh*

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Celebrity Context

Celebrity Context: noun. The knowledge that celebrities are, in fact, human.

I was reading an article in an online newspaper, minding my own business, when I happened to notice the sidebar. You know, where they keep all the bits about other articles they think you should read? Anyway, as I looked, the sidebar was full of celebrity nonsense that I don't understand why anyone would be interested in. And really, when you put it in a different context, the "news" is downright dull. I mean, the kind of dull that if a friend told you the same story about themselves, your mind would wander. If a stranger told you, you'd think they were narcissistic.

Let me give you an example. Let's say your next door neighbor went to the beach. Is that interesting? No, not really. Let's say that neighbor took his or her kids to the beach. Is that interesting? Nope. Unless, of course, you have some sort of hand in raising their kids, I guess. But, if that is not interesting then why on earth would someone care if a movie star went to the beach?

So, say a married friend of a friend of a friend is pregnant. Interesting? Not really. Maybe in a good-for-them kind of way, perhaps. What if said person was having pregnancy cravings. Would you seriously care to ask what kind of cravings if you've never even met the person? No? Then why do we care what kind of cravings a celebrity has?

This the part where many of you may stop and say, "But this has nothing to do with child-rearing. You have left what the core of the Mom-tionary." And this is where I say, "Nope, I'm getting there. Pay attention."

I don't want my kids falling over themselves at the sight of some star. I don't want them thinking that they are somehow under them because a celebrity's name is known farther. If there is some person in the limelight that has done something truly noble and they want to respect that person, that's OK with me. But really. I think enough is enough. That is why I will be teaching my kids that a movie star is nothing more than someone who is good at their job, their job being an actor.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

It's happened

It's finally happened. I've started to say it. The dreaded, "When I was your age..."

I used it today. And not in a very nice way. I just wanted the kids to *help* pick up the mess they made. That's all. Just *help*. But they wouldn't. And then it happened. In my angry mom voice, I said, "When I was Little Viking's age, I had to clean my entire room by myself! By the time I was eleven, my mom made us clean the whole house every day, including moving furniture, and our house had three stories! SOMEONE TELL ME WHY ASKING YOU TO PICK UP A FEW BLOCKS IS A BIG DEAL?????"

And honestly, I don't feel great about my mom tantrum. It was not the most mature thing I've ever done. And, in case you are wondering if all the things I said to my kids about my childhood are true, then yes, they are. Mostly. I might have exaggerated some of it a little bit. We only cleaned the main level of the house, plus the couple of flights of stairs. But we did have to move the furniture.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Dosaster Part II

Part I

Dosaster: noun. A domestic disaster.

For those of you who have been with me for a while, you may remember the horrible $700 plumbing disaster. (For you newbies, or those that don't remember, click the link at the top of this post.) Well, we had to call the plumber again. Thankfully, it wasn't an issue of leaky pipes this time, just a clog that we couldn't fix ourselves (easily). We are all about DIY here, snaking pipes and all that jazz, but for this we needed either a professional or a professional (read, ghastly expensive) tool and professional know how. So, with water from the washing machine backing up into the kitchen sink, I called the dreaded plumber.

The plumber we used last time was very impressive, friendly, and with the exception of a small snafu not of his making, timely. Seemed like a good company to call again. Unfortunately, this time around it was not the same guy.

Not even kind of.

Loud, rude, obnoxious, and a bit angry, this plumber did not impress me. At all. It started off with him calling me to ask if he could come 2 hours earlier than his original time. Fine, no problem, I'm here anyway. About 10 minutes after his call, he shows up, and this is where it gets fun.

Point the first: He's a loud talker. I mean, practically yells when he talks, and I can't stand loud noises. But, not necessarily his fault, and I do my best to overlook it.

Point the second: I had been instructed by Husband to approve work of around $100. The estimate the plumber gave was $140 for the job, plus $50 for BioClean which he insisted that we needed if I didn't want to be calling him back in a few months. So, $190 to fix a clog. (On an itemized list from our last plumbing job, the job itself, excluding the service call fee, was $20.)

Point the third: Although the job was going to cost nearly double what we thought, that is hardly his fault. However, since it was more than we thought, I needed to discuss it with Husband first. I told him I was to spend $100, and since this was quite a bit more, I would have to talk to Husband and call him back. Now, here's the part where his company lost our business. The plumber got upset. He didn't like the idea of having to leave to come back. It had been my experience with this company that they give you an estimate, they let you think about it, and you call them back to approve the work. There are even separate parts of the forms for estimate and the actual work. Apparently he didn't want to do it that way. I was getting more than a little uncomfortable, so I told him I would call Husband now and see what I could do. Only, Husband didn't answer his phone, so I had no answer to give. This hardly amused Mr. Plumber. He was not about to just LEAVE.MY.HOUSE. He said he was going outside to call his boss to see what he should do.

Um, what? YOU SHOULD LEAVE, like I told you to. But whatever. I was getting nervous and agitated. Then Husband called to tell me to go ahead and have it done. So I approved the work and he started.

End of story? Hardly.

Point the fourth: Mr. Plumber told me to fill the washing machine. I have an HE front loader (that I hate), so there really is no way to just fill the washer. You have to run a cycle, and the water doesn't go in all at once. As a plumber, I thought he should get that. He didn't. He was a bit annoyed by it.

Point the fifth: He made a comment about how much money he thought Husband made. Awkward, at best.

Point the sixth: He made a comment that he thought Viking Toddler is small for his age. Actually, Viking Toddler is in the 90 percentile for height, meaning that he is taller than 90% of children his age. Mr. Plumber went on to tell me that his boys are huge and are varsity quarterbacks and whatnot, and his 15 year old is 290 pounds, and isn't that just fantastic? Well, unless the child in question is about 6'5", no, although I'm not saying he's not.

Normally, a comment about size doesn't bother me. I've heard many about how tall Viking Toddler is, to the point that some thought he was starting school when he was three-and-a-half. But with everything leading up to that point, I was less than pleased.

Point the seventh: *If* I ever use this company again, it will not be with this particular plumber. I will make sure of that.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Statements of Epicness Part...whatever this part is

Just today, I heard from my darling boys two gems.

Viking Toddler: "Nuts are icky. Pee nuts. It's their name. Pee nuts."


Philosopher Child: "I want to watch Star Trek. The one with Shreck."
Me: "You mean Spock?"
Philosopher Child: "Yeah, Spock."

Thursday, July 7, 2011

No, my name is MARTIN.

Wow, it's been a long month. Notice the lack of posts last month? Yep, there's a reason. Here it is.

The in-laws took Philosopher Child and Viking Toddler for 3 weeks out of state to their home. Awesome, right? I was so excited for the quiet. But, having never been without my kids for more than over night (and that was only one of them, not both), as we got closer to the time, I got anxious. Then I started getting panic attacks. In short, was sick to my stomach for much of that three weeks. Sucked.

But, they are home now. We flew out to get them and we all arrived back in our little but well loved house late last night.

But you know what's fun? Airport security. More specifically, going through airport security with children with imaginations. See, our kids have been watching Wild Kratts lately (warning, there's music when you open that link), and Viking Toddler has been telling everyone that his name is Martin, as in Martin Kratt. Hint, it's not. So, as we got to the entrance to security, a TSA agent was scrutinizing our licenses very, very close with a very suspicious eye. He looked at Philosopher Child and said, "Is your name [Philosopher Child]?" Philosopher Child dutifully nodded. The agent then looked at Viking Toddler and asked, "Is your name [Viking Toddler]?"

And then our dear, sweet Viking Toddler said, "No, my name is Martin." When I'm watching toys get removed from babies' hands and grandmothers patted down, this is not the time for that sort of humor. But, funny in hindsight.

Friday, May 27, 2011

No Girls Allowed

After dropping Philosopher Child off at school one day, Viking Toddler and I were walking home. We passed a bus stop where two elementary age girls were waiting for the bus to take them to the private school.

Viking Toddler suddenly took an interest in this sight, even though we see them EVERY DAY. Still, he blurted out, "Those are two girls."

"Yes," I said. Good observation for being a 3-year-old, I suppose.

"We don't have any girls in our house," he continued.

Wow. Thanks. Excuse me while I swallow my pride and try to tell myself that by girls, he meant sisters. That would be true. We don't have any female siblings in our house (unless you count me as I am a sister, but that's just stretching too far).

It reminds me of an old show called Ed, Edd n Eddy that I used to watch when I was a teen, as I found it amusing. In one episode, the boys are trying to figure out what girls like. Ed (the very simple minded one) declares a list of things that his mom likes. After a moment, he pauses and asks, "Are moms girls?" This is answered by a volley of "Well...I don't...technically...maybe..."


In other news, I've rejoined a certain women-only gym. I'm approximately 7-10 pounds over where I should be (for health, not vanity), and have been for a long time. In fact, I've been losing and gaining the same freaking 5 pounds over and over for the past year. I figure it's time to go back and slim down a bit for health reasons. High blood pressure and heart disease run in my family, so it's time to do something about it.

Ok, maybe a little for vanity. I have a really cute bathing suit.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Eating solid foods!

Yeah, you thought I was talking about a baby, weren't you? Nope. I mean me. Remember when I talked about waterfall illnesses, as in illnesses that go through the whole dang household? Guess what? Stomach flu does that, too. And let me tell you, my friends, it is not awesome. Not even a little.

The night following the slumber party I let Philosopher Child have for his 7th birthday (and a big happy birthday to my little man), Viking Toddler came down with the nasty bug. The next morning, I came down with it. That afternoon, I had to send Husband to pick Philosopher Child up from school. A short while after getting home with him, Husband came down with it. Viking Toddler and Philosopher Child, who have never seen their father get sick in this way, thought it was a source of great entertainment.

Within two hours, Philosopher Child had it. He didn't think it was funny any more.

It was a rough week. The kids were ill for less than 24 hours each, but it hung on to Husband and I. It was two days before I could eat anything, and a full day before Husband could eat anything but crackers. It was close to a week before we felt decent and human.

But, we are all back now. Back to blogging. And the real world. And laundry. Whatever comes first.

Monday, April 11, 2011


Wakemare:noun. A dream that a child thinks happened and you can't convince him otherwise.

Lately, Viking Toddler has been having some really crazy, vivid dreams. He wakes up and tells me about them, but he talks like whatever he dreamed really happened. He's pointed to areas of his room where he left his new toy. Except, he doesn't *have* a new toy. He's recounted a trip he took that never happened. He talks about when he was sick the night before, only he wasn't. Right now, I'm working on helping him distinguish dream from reality. I've explained to him that dreams are just something your brain thinks about while you are asleep. If you have a better explanation than that, I'd love to hear it.

This morning, Viking Toddler told me all about me putting a tent over his head. I was more than a bit confused. He's been telling me about it all day, and I've been telling him all day that it didn't happen. He even said that I did it because he said a bad word. Again, I told him that I didn't put a tent over his head, nor would I do that. He doesn't seem convinced.

But I think there will be no more snacks before bed.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Why baby names are not fun

First off, let me say that I have no idea what's going on with the font size below. I tried to fix it. And tried. And tried. Blogger is not listening to me, apparently.

I've got babies on the brain. I'm even dreaming about babies. It's confusing, so I will be asking my uterus in the next few days why it's sending the rest of my body baby signals, seeing as we've decided not to have any more kids.

But anyway...

So, you're pregnant. And you get the same freaking question for hundredth billionth time:

Have you picked a name yet???

Some people just say no, when they really mean, "Yes, but I'm not going to tell you because you won't like it and I really don't care if you like it in the first place, so HA!"

But when I was preggers with Viking Toddler, when Husband and I said, "No, we haven't picked a name yet," what we really meant was, "We've gone through just about every name in the freaking baby books and can't agree on ANYTHING."

I thought picking baby names was supposed to be some kind of awesome? Wasn't it supposed to be on of the most fun things you've ever done?

Well, whoever said this lied. We spent weeks. WEEKS. Finally, out of desperation, we called Husband's Mom. One of the first names that fell out her mouth made us say, "Yes! FINALLY!" Ok, maybe it wasn't quite so dramatic, but still.

But that was the male name that we had selected. We had decided on a girl's name long before that. Elsie. Her (if it turned out to be a her) would be named Elsie.

Until someone pointed out to us that the name sounded like the name of a cow. I don't mean a mean name for a large women. I mean a literal cow. We shortly thereafter changed it to Elise. Close enough.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A letter to my washing machine

Dear Nearly-New, Front Loading, Expensive Washing Machine,

I've had you for about 3 years now. During that time, your service has been questionable at best. I should have seen problems coming when your brother, Dryer, arrived not being able to dry beyond 30 minutes. At that point, I called in the repair technician, who eyed me skeptically. He didn't appear to believe that Dryer had arrived broken. After a while with his computer in front of Dryer, he finally announced with triumph that it was, in fact, broken. Why do I remind you of this, Washer? Because you came as a set and you are known by the company you keep.

Now, Washer, you and I have had several issues that has nothing to do with Dryer. I'd say the first inkling I had that you are, in fact, a complete idiot, was the day I dared to try to put bleach in the bleach tray while the washer door was open. The bleach ran out and onto the floor. Don't you think you should wait do dispense bleach until you are washing something? Just a thought.

Further, when I tell you I want you to clean something, I'd like it clean. It's to the point that even when I put soiled clothes on a rinse first, and THEN a wash, they are STILL not coming out clean. Let me point out that cleaning is your JOB. I should not have to run clothes through the wash twice in order to get the same results that I saw with my ancient old Washer before it died. Even as it was dying, it did a better job than you.

Here's something else, Washer. I've noticed that every now and then I find small holes in my clothes. No, I don't have moths, so don't give me that nonsense. We both know it's you. I have proof. I looked you up online. I'm not the only one with this problem. Stop it. You've put holes in shirts, pants, and Husband's Great-Great Grandmother's quilt that she made for us. This is unacceptable.

Also, STOP TANGLING THE CLOTHES. This not good for the clothes, my stress level, or your likelihood of continued existence. This is one of the ways things get ripped, or at the very least spend some quality time with Iron. Pant legs should keep to themselves. Sheets should keep to themselves. Stop it NOW.

Now, about the hand wash cycle. I was psyched to see you have one, as I have many handmade articles of clothing. Here's the thing, though. The spin speed for this cycle is low. This causes clothes to come out completely and utterly dripping wet. So wet, they can't go in Dryer. I was glad to see you allow me to manually set the spin speed to high, in order to get clothes that are not dripping wet. This is what that "Spin Speed" control on your face is for. But, even though I tell you I do NOT want sopping wet clothes, you choose to ignore me. This causes me to have to run it through an ADDITIONAL drain and spin cycle. Uncool.

I'd love to leave it there, but here's something else. You are ALWAYS OFF BALANCE! For crying out loud, Washer, if I say, here, wash these towels, what I don't want you to do is use them to cause yourself internal haemorrhaging by allowing your drum to bounce violently around your body. This, also, is unacceptable.

I want to tell you one more thing. You know how I said I have to put the clothes on a rinse before wash to get them clean, and even then it doesn't always (or even usually) work? Your stupid design makes it so I have to physically open the door before I tell you I want you to go from rinse to wash. But you are designed in such a way that the clothes fall forward when I open the door. One time a pair of pants got caught and I didn't notice. You, in your infinite stupidity, decided it was ok to go on your way. That's how you ripped your gasket that cost us over $100 to replace, and that was just for the part.

I won't even discuss the times you didn't spin the water out of the machine.

If this behavior continues, I'll have no choice but the next time you go off balance to just let you beat yourself to death.



P.S.: Dryer, I've noticed that you aren't drying clothes until dry, neither when I use the presets, nor when I manually set the time. You also seem to ignore heat settings sometimes. Low means low, high means high. Your manual says if the clothes come out damp I should just put them away like that, because it's greener or something. You're supposed to be energy saving, but that kind of energy saving in this climate gets you moldy clothes. My eyes are on you, buddy.

Saturday, March 12, 2011


Pomergency: noun. Any sort of potty emergency and/or annoyance.

We went to an air show. Hazzah. I'm not crazy about them (I don't exactly dig loud noises), but Husband and the Boys like it. I'm the moral support. Or something.

Anyway, the kids have this really annoying habit of calling "I have to go potty!" whenever we are out and they are bored. Do you know how to tell when they really, actually, have to go? Me either. Generally, unless they JUST went, I dutifully take them.

And so we find Viking Toddler and I standing in line, and by line I mean a roughly assembled mass of people standing impatiently in front of a row of portable toilets, each little toilet hut roughly the size of a linen closet.

Finally, it is our turn to try to fit ourselves in these awful little things. First off, we should have kept walking to find some toilets that were NO WHERE NEAR the beer tent. But I didn't think that far ahead. I just saw LOTS of toilets, and that, to me, meant fast.

Well, we got inside, and some (possibly drunk) guy had missed the toilet. I mean, clearly wasn't even facing the right direction. But Viking Toddler has to go, and I have hanitizer at the ready.

And then we go back to our seats. That's the point when Philosopher Child has to go. Husband takes him. About 45 minutes later, Viking Toddler has to go again. So we go back to an ever growing line and try not to touch anything once inside. This time, he decides he doesn't have to go after all. We go back to our seats. A little while later, he has to go again. And then Philosopher Child. I just want a drink of water from being out in the sun all day. Except someone has drank all my water. Big suprise.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Statements of Epicness Part II

Part I here.

You know what's fun? Kids (Sometimes. OK, often. Most of the time. When nothing is breaking and no one is yelling at you). You know what's even more fun? When kids don't know what to call something and they try to use descriptive terms to get the point across.

The other day, Viking Toddler was tired and he yawned. Only, as really odd as it may sound, he didn't know the word, "yawn." Clearly, I have failed. He's got a nice vocabulary, but apparently I've neglected to teach that one.

Anyway, he wanted to tell me he yawned, but not having the word, he instead said, "I have tired in my mouth."

Makes sense, I guess.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Poof Behavior

Poof Behavior: noun. Behaviors that can be linked back to a source, and once the source is eliminated, the behavior goes poof.

For weeks, Philosopher Child was getting into trouble almost everyday at school. Not big, principal's office things, but small things like talking during work time, playing when he should be working, and being generally disruptive. Now, although some of it is attributed to boredom (he's shown to be far above his peers in certain subjects), it didn't seem to be all of the problem. And why was he only in trouble in the afternoon?

One day, as I was doing some work in the kitchen, he told me that his sandwich in his lunch had been soggy and he hadn't been eating it. He'd only been eating the fruit/veggies I put in, and even then not always.

"How long has this been happening?" I asked.

"A long time," he replied.

Hold it. He hasn't been eating lunch? And he's only in trouble in the afternoon? Oh, for crying out loud.

I rearranged his lunch box so that his sandwich wouldn't be soggy and encouraged him to eat. His behavior magically improved.

But wait, there's more! If he hadn't been eating his lunch, what had he been eating? Enter Little Hyperactive Friend. For the sake of simplicity, let's call him LHF. Now, LHF, it would appear, brings a donut in his lunch quite often. I don't know if it's every day or not, but it does appear to be often. First off, I don't know why you'd send donuts with LHF at all, as he is LHF (or at least, he appears to me, but I'm no expert). But as I'm not trying to start an argument over parenting/food choices, let's leave it as I don't understand. Anyway, LHF has been giving Philosopher Child his donut. So, he's been going all afternoon with little more than a sugar-covered fried pastry in his system.

Gee, I wonder why he's been getting in trouble?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


Pocksinket: noun. (A combination of "pockets" and "trinkets." Get it?) A random or out of place item found in a child's pocket.

Items I have found in the boys' pockets include:
broken pencils
nut to a real race car (no, really.)
bits of asphalt
bits of concrete
restaurant menu
pockets full of sand
broken bits of shells
a green fish tank marble
half a tennis ball
a hair tie (WHY????)
bits of paper
grocery store receipts
small toys
rubber tubing
corn kernels
plastic counting blocks
small snack-sized raisin boxes
a small star hair clip (again, why???)

Monday, January 31, 2011

Phibia Part II

Part I here.
noun. A childhood or long ago fear that you tell yourself you are over, until the ugly truth comes out.

Recently, Husband and I took the boys on one of those humongous ferris wheels. I mean, not the normal sized ones. This thing was HUGE. The boys were really excited, but I was less than amused. I don't do heights, but put on a brave face.

As we waited in line, I was in a hurry to get on that wheel. Maybe just to get it over with. I certainly didn't really want to get on it. At any rate, we were on it in about 10 or 15 minutes and slowly cranked up and back down.

And then, the wheel picked up speed. What seemed like a nice, gentle roll while standing at a distance now felt like pure horror. I found I couldn't manage to look up or behind me without getting dizzy. I noticed just how rusty some of the bolts were.


Was it supposed to make that sound? Was I seriously putting my life in the hands of a stranger?

And if that wasn't bad enough, I then saw this under the roof of our little gondola:

But finally, slowly, the wheel ground to a stop so that the could switch passengers. And at the final stop of the wheel, we were at the apex, hanging there, a potential 125 foot drop above the ground.

What was that news story from years ago about the lady that fell from the ferris wheel, I wondered. How did that happen?

At last, our gondola came to the end of the ride and I was so happy to be on the ground again, where cautions about dropping weren't necessary.

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Earthworms and Me

The Earthworms and Me, or, How I Came to be Standing in My Backyard in the Dark with a Flashlight and Pot of Worms

Let me tell you a little story. A few days ago, we attended the Pinewood Derby at a local park. While I stood with Philosopher Child, Husband took Viking Toddler to another part of the park to try his hand at fishing. They returned with no fish, but not for lack of trying. They also returned with a near-full container of worms.

Fast forward. The day after, I asked Husband what his plans were for these worms, as in, did he plan on going fishing in the next day or so? He said no and to go and set the earthworms free. I did.

Enter Philosopher Child. He scooped them back up and put them in another container, then created what he called an exhibit so that everyone could see.

"That's fine," I told him. "But make sure to put them back in the dirt when you are done."

As I put him to bed that night, he asked if I had put his worms in the dirt.

"No. Did you?" I pretty much knew the answer.

"No. I wasn't done with them."

"But now they have no food to eat and no way to get warm," I said.

This thought caused him to burst into tears. I asked him what was wrong and received a resounding, "I love them!"

As patiently as I could muster, I explained to him that earthworms aren't pets in the same way that a dog or cat are.

Our compromise of this situation was that I, in the dark, go out with a flashlight and release the worms into the wild.


Sunday, January 23, 2011

Statements of Epicness

You saw a few days ago when I wrote about a rather lovely epic statement that Philosopher child made. Now here's some more STATEMENTS OF EPICNESS (picture me saying that in the weird echo-y voice of Pigs in Space).

Philosopher Child: "Look at the size of this WORM!!!"

Viking Toddler: "He's trying to take my brain!"

Husband: "I want some egg nog."
Me: "Don't they have any at the store this week?"
Husband: "No. It's made of unobtanium."

Viking Toddler: "I'm walking like a talking fish!"

Me: "Your teacher says you're mumbling. She can't hear you when you read or when you try to talk to her."
Philosopher Child: "I don't mumble."
Me: "Yes, you do." (This is just a fact.)
Philosopher Child: "There's something wrong with her hearing."

Viking Toddler (while holding up some apples): Look! I'm an apple tree!

Thursday, January 20, 2011


Adultness: noun (I think? A noun is a person, place, thing, or idea. This is an idea, I think. Noun, right? Let's go with noun.) The level and number of adult behaviors experienced in a given time.

I just got done reading another blogger's account of trying to be an adult and then getting worn out to the point that she rebels. Sometimes I feel like that.

As of the time that I am writing this post (Wednesday, January 19th, 1:31pm), I'm struggling with that myself.

Today, I have folded laundry. Then I washed more. Then I explored the different uses of "green" cleaners and scrubbed the white grout of my kitchen counters. I did the dishes. I picked up toys. I made breakfast and lunches for everyone.

This afternoon, I'm going to make dinner. Like an adult. Dinner is usually Husband's area because he is better at it than me and doesn't mind it. (Although, I am one awesome baker/bread maker. Just saying. Look, I'll prove it.)
(See? I make bread about twice a week. From scratch. Look how responsible I am.)

Anyway, today I'm going to make a duck. Yes, a duck. A raw one. I'm going to cook it. Like an adult. I'm going to have to touch *gag* the raw duck. Like an adult.

And I'm about to clean up some more because another adult is coming over to talk about schooling. Two adults. Talking. Talking about adult things.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Night Confusion Part IV

Night Confusion: noun. The state of mind of a child that wakes up only partially.

Picture it. Middle of the night. I was dead asleep, when I was woken by a blood curdling scream coming from the kids' room. I scrambled out of bed, lost my balance and hit the relentless, fridgid terrazzo floor. I got to my feet, and tried to get to the boys' room. My mind was a whirl trying to piece together what was going on. My still half-asleep mind settled on "intruder in the kids' room" as the most likely scenario.*

I was in their room in under ten seconds. Probably closer to five. I flipped on the light, ready to do my motherly duty which may involve beating the tar out of someone who dared mess with mama bear. However, that proved to be unnecessary. The screaming was because Viking Toddler chose to try to take off his shirt in his sleep and it got stuck on his head.

*It's probably pretty strange that this is the first place my mind jumped, but let me explain. Family lore, as passed down by Older Sister, states that when we were young, someone had tried to enter our home by coming through the window of the bedroom that my two sisters and I shared. She recalls that the next day our grandfather came by to promptly screw our window shut. Whether or not that was a good idea is not the point. It is, however, why I keep a very close watch on the boys' windows.

Saturday, January 15, 2011


Deflacomment: noun. A comment that completely deflates that second of accomplishment you had.

So maybe you finally got around to mopping the floor. Maybe you ran that errand you've been meaning to for weeks. Maybe you rearranged the closet and now you can see floor. Maybe you got a bunch of laundry washed, folded, and put away, despite having to have a "talk" with the washing machine. (By "talk," of course, I mean kicking the 2-year-old machine that never works right and is now out of warranty.) You are feeling awesome. The day is going well and all is right in your little bubble. You are in a better mood than you've been in weeks. YOU are SUPER MOM! (Or Super Dad. Or Super Grandma. Or Super College Student. Whatever.)

Afternoon is closing in, and you go to pick up your child from school, or dog from the groomers or whatever it is you do with your day.

And then you hear it. That one little remark that pops your happy little high-achieving bubble. You know what that comment is.

Here's mine, via Mrs. Teacher of my darling 6-year-old boy: "[Philosopher Child] is not working up to his potential and is not finishing his school work again."


And then you have to go explain to your highly intelligent and philosophical child why he has to do his work, even if it is boring or he knows it already. Again.

Friday, January 14, 2011


Epicness: adjective. Description of an action or quote that is fantastic or unbelievable, either in a good or bad way.

A quick search of google right before I typed this let me know that I did not, in fact, make up this word. But I think I can still claim that I came up with it organically. Can't I?

You may now applaud the fact that I digressed in the FIRST paragraph, before I even got to my story.

Anyway, Philosopher Child has been getting in quite a bit of trouble at school lately. He has decided that he doesn't necessarily need to finish his school work, and sometimes he doesn't even need to listen to the teacher. (I suspect he needs to be tested for gifted, the teacher suspects an "inability to pay attention." Long and complicated issue and not the point of this story.)

When I picked him up yesterday, he announced, "I was good in school today. No, wait, no I wasn't. I got all the way to orange!"*

"How did you get all the way to orange?" I asked.

"Apparently it is something called defiance."

Yeah, it's probably bad if I laugh at that. I sent him to his room instead.


*Our school uses color coded discipline. If you are on green, you are a-ok. Yellow is warning, orange is relatively serious, red is principal's office.

Sunday, January 2, 2011


Randomare: noun. A nightmare about something random or out of the blue.

The other night, we found Viking Toddler in his bed yelling, "I need new toys!" He wasn't quite awake, but we got him to settle back into bed and go to sleep. In the morning we asked him what he was dreaming about.

"My toys were on fire," he said.

OK...I guess, yes, that would be a reason for new toys. But dreaming that your toys are on fire? Where on earth did that come from?

A night or two later, he had a similar dream.

Last night, I told him to dream about something silly instead.

"Can you tell me something silly to dream about?" I asked.

"The window," he replied.

"The window?"

"Yes," he said. "That's so crazy!"

Uh huh...crazy. I know the feeling.