Sunday, February 28, 2010

Peace be with you...

It’s almost 9:30, Sunday evening, and once again I am staring at a blank computer screen. It’s not that I have nothing to say, on the contrary, I have so much going on right now but it’s a mish-mash of stuff-some has to do with my kids, some has to do with me, some is just plain weird. I also received a few awards a little while back and I need to somehow get a post about this done too… I didn’t want to do a post in a mixed up fashion, writing whatever pops into my head about the last few days, so I decided to focus on one major event of the weekend, and once again I’m going to let humor lead the way.

I thought I would write about our church outing Saturday night and the events that followed, because laughing about it makes it much easier to deal with, but first a question-what is it about going to church, and church itself that brings out the devil in my kids? My husband and I were in two different areas most of the day Saturday, I had my daughter and he had my son, and we decided (or more like I decided and my husband reluctantly agreed) that church and dinner out might be a calming end to our day. But as soon as I mentioned church, my son screamed (yes, screamed), “No!” Now I remember mumbling and grumbling to my mother on occasion before we headed to church, but I never yelled out in protest. And who wouldn’t appreciate a dinner out?

Well, the protest continued, so naturally my husband stepped in to “handle” the situation, except his handling always leads to more yelling and final ultimatums before everything is peaceful again. Then my daughter, who is always looking for ways to “help” parent, chides in, and then my son and daughter start arguing as our ever-loving family piles into the car. A couple more threats and peace is finally restored, but then my husband decides that the ambiance is too peaceful and he cranks up the radio and begins to switch between stations so that each song heard is just a blur. That is until my daughter yells from the back, “I LIKE THAT SONG! GO BACK, GO BACK!” And because my husband is switching the stations so fast he isn’t sure where the song is, once again we have the blur of tunes before reaching the right one.

Now, you would think that things would become peaceful again, you know because we are playing a terrible pop tune that the kiddies like, but my daughter’s latest habit is to sing along, oblivious to how it may sound to the rest of us. My husband and I ignore it-hey if she’s happy we’re all happy, right? But my son can’t seem to tolerate her singing.

“Mom, tell her to stop.”
“Please stop.”
“Mom, tell him that I can sing if I want-it’s a free country.”
“She’s right, just ignore it.”

The song ends, and since we are almost at the church I decide to turn the radio off, and now my husband is grumbling as he parks the car. We all file out, and once again we resemble one big happy family.

The service starts a little late (thanks guys!), but all is well because my son has snuck a book into church and is busy reading. Now normally I just let him be, because just as everyone always warns you never to wake a sleeping baby, my husband and I know that a bored little boy can wreck havoc during a church service. But when I glanced his way, I noticed that the book of choice was a comic book-of all the books he has, he has to bring a book where super heroes are punching out villains, and I am getting a few not so approving looks from the little old ladies sitting around us. So, instead of just letting this one go, I decided to “wake the baby,” and I took the comic book away from him.
At least I did it toward the end of the service, but those last 20 minutes or so were pure torture.

First he decided he was tired, so he tried to lean on me with his feet up on the pew, and he kicked the lady next to us a couple times as he struggled to get comfortable. I hurriedly apologized then sat him back up. Next I felt something tapping on my shoulder-he had taken my gloves out of my jacket pocket, put them on, and was now tapping me incessantly on the shoulder. I ignored the tapping until he realized he wasn’t getting the reaction he had planned and I felt the gloves go back in my coat pocket-phew!

We were standing now and I was confident that he would just give up, but I slowly realized how wrong I was as soon as I felt my coat go up in the back and a small hand start to tap on my back. I turned and gave him my best death stare, so he donned his coat drawing his hood way down over his eyes, and tried to “hide.” Now my husband was giving me the death stare, and when I tapped my daughter to have her move a little, she leaned over and whispered quite loudly, “Stop it Mom!” Man, can’t I get a break here?

After communion, my son was now sitting with my husband, and peace was finally restored. We all filed out and headed to our favorite little diner a mile or so from the church, but when we pulled into the parking lot it seemed everyone else decided that this was the place to go on a Saturday night, and with no second choice on hand, we were forced to head back towards town to find something. My son started whining and then my daughter and him were back at it again. I was trying to tune them out when my husband started in with his commenting, and honestly by this time I was wondering if I really was related to all these people.

My son: “Mom, I think I’m going to be sick if I don’t get food.”
My daughter: “You are not going to be sick, you’re just faking it.”
My son: “I am not faking it. You don’t know how I feel, right mom?”

I ignored them but now it was my husband’s turn.

“Hey, there’s the little airport I flew out of.”
Now I become like my kids. “You have never flown out of that airport.”
“Yes, I have, you don’t even know. I was doing some air sightings from a helicopter.”

Ok, so maybe I am wrong every now and then, but then my husband starts squinting in the direction of the airfield.
“Hey kids, I think there’s a plane coming in. Is that red light a plane?”
Now that red light was just that, a red light on the airstrip-my husband is still not wearing the new glasses he got to, um, help him see…

My son continues to talk but I really don’t know what about, and my daughter starts telling him to be quiet, that he’s annoying. I tell her she’s being mean and ask which is better, being annoying or being mean. Her answer: mean. I’m almost ready to lose it when my son interrupts- “We should eat at that chimpanzee restaurant over there.”
We are all silent, and I start to look around. What is he talking about? He starts to spell, “J a p a n e s e…” My husband and I start to roar, “You mean Japanese, not chimpanzee.”

The chimp saved the night, but in the words of George Carlin, "Just cause you got the monkey off your back doesn't mean the circus has left town," but that's for another post… Goodnight everybody!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Fobes Speak 101

I wasn’t sure I would be able to post today-my daughter has had a stomach bug for the last couple days and I’ve got one of those headaches that won’t go away. (I am hoping it has nothing to do with a new storm that may be heading here late tonight, but I have a terrible feeling that it might…) Anyway, I started having “post withdraw” (a temporary condition associated with the lack of quality posting time and the inability to have my say) so I thought I would try a little humor this evening.

I’m going to offer up a few of the funny things my kids, especially my son, said over the last couple days (yes, there are always funny moments), so without further ado, I give you my first installment of Fobes Speak 101.

This is from my son when my daughter was in her room with stomach pains:

“Do you think she vominated?”
“What did you say?”
Vominated, you know, in the toilet. Did she vominate?”

After running around all day, trying to put dinner together for myself and my son (my husband was working until 9), and going back and forth to my daughter’s room to check on her, this struck me as extremely funny, especially since he said it with such a serious expression. I had to bite my tongue to keep from laughing!

“You mean vomited? No, not yet.”

My daughter stumbled into the room just as I said this and she added this little tidbit:

“I’m going to take my temperature again because I think the nurse was wrong.”

Well, there’s no harm in that so I dug out one of the many thermometers we own-this one was an “under the arm” model. We positioned the thermometer and waited, but my son gave me more information about the nurse and her supplies.

“You know mom, she has one of those old fashioned thermometers that go in your mouth.”
“You mean the mercury thermometers.”
“I don’t know but it’s old and goes in your mouth for a long time.”

The thermometer beeped and my son wanted answers.

"Is she the same?"

“Is her degrees the same as yesterday?”

There it was again-humor at the most unlikely times, and the kid was total deadpan with his delivery! I grinned slightly but held my composure because this was an interesting question that deserved some sort of answer.

“If you mean does she have a fever, no she doesn’t.”

Well, despite this fact, my daughter was soon in and out of the bathroom several times that evening, and I was finally able to eat dinner myself around 7:30 so I more than appreciated the small bits of humor my son was able to provide. Needless to say, my daughter stayed home today, and my son, being the clever boy that he is, decided that he should get this ailment as well. I made the mistake of asking him how he was feeling this evening and this is what I got:

“Well, my stomach hurts sometimes.”
“It only hurts sometimes not all the time?”
“Well, it hurts only a little in some parts of the day, and then it hurts more in other parts later in the day.”

“Oh, I see,” not really, but I’m going with it. “But you didn’t get sick.”

Now here I must warn you that the conversation is about to take a bad turn, so those who don’t favor “potty” talk, move on ahead.

“Well, I had a couple bad poops today. They weren’t diarrhea or anything, just…”
and he paused for dramatic affect, really, bad poops.”

Diarrhea is my son’s word for pretty much all of his bowel movements lately, so unless I have personal knowledge of a “bout” I don’t really worry about it. I decided to just nod my head in agreement so I wouldn’t be blessed with an in depth description of just what makes a “really bad poop,” and although this saved me from an explanation now, I can see this coming in the near future-lucky me!   Whoa, I just touched my nose-did my daughter get on this computer today?  Wish me luck...

Friday, February 19, 2010

Reality at its best

Today I received a shocking confirmation of the reality that is my life right now. Now don’t get all worried on me because I’m not about to lose it or anything- I just realized something that should have been obvious, but because of many different reasons, I forgot. Now I know you must be biting your nails in anticipation, wondering what could be that important but so easily forgotten, and I’ll keep you in suspense no more... I totally, indisputably, undeniably closed my eyes to the fact that my children, especially my daughter, are still small.

Now I can hear you all going, “What the _____,” and thinking that I have really gone and lost it, but I swear to you that I am more sane today than I was yesterday just for admitting this fact. You see, I work with “the big kids” as my daughter often puts it, in that pubescent dominion otherwise known as high school, and when you work with this age bracket all day, you tend to look at your kids differently, to expect more. Believe me, it’s not consciously done-there is this voice inside you that says things like, “The students at school may not be listening to me, but my own kids better think twice before they ignore my request,” any time there’s a confrontation at home. And even though there is a giant age gap, this age comparison never comes to mind at the time.

Then there is the fact that I wear so many different hats during the day: wife, mother, teacher, adviser, leader, employee, and co-worker that I forget which role I am playing. My husband will occasionally take me aside and say, “Remember teach, you’re at home now.” Unfortunately, that doesn’t always stop me from lecturing on and on about topics ranging from the ins-and-outs of time management, to my favorite, you need to show respect in order to get respect.

But I’m getting off topic-I haven’t told you about the life changing event that helped remind me about my children's tender age. It was a small incident today when my daughter called me on my cell phone. (She now knows her daddy's and my cell phone numbers because we had an incident not too long ago when her school let the kids out early and the automated call did not get through to my husband’s cell phone-I’ll spare you the details, but she was at home alone and at 10 ½ she thought it was wonderful since she has never been left alone before, but I was a basket case!) And for a girl who shies away from phone conversations with her relatives, she certainly doesn’t feel the same when it involves calling my cell. Today she actually called me while I was sitting in our car, in our driveway, waiting for her and her brother to come out of the house so we could go pick up our movie rental. My phone started ringing so I answered and the conversation went like this:

“Hi mom.”
“Hi dear.”
“How are you?”
“I would be better if you were in the car. What’s taking you so long-I thought you were on your way out?”
“The boy “ (my son) “couldn’t find his shoes and now he's going to the bathroom.”
“Just hurry him up and come out.”
Click. Why do I ever think that if I get in the car first, my children will follow?

I quickly get out of the car, enter the house, get my daughter to stop bossing her brother and actually leave the house, and help hurry my son out the door, but it wasn’t until we were actually in transit that I started to think about my daughter’s phone conversation-it wasn’t what she said that had me lost in thought, it was more like how she sounded on the phone. I listen to her every day excitedly tell me about something at school, or whining for me to change the radio station because she doesn’t like the song, or being miss “know-it-all” with her brother, but even though I am listening to the content of our many conversations, I am not really hearing her. She tries to act all grown up with her insistence about how she wears her hair to the new wild style of her clothes, but on that phone reality sinks in and there is no mistaking the fact that she is still a little girl, my little girl, and I’m loving that fact right now.

She’s already in bed because we have a busy day tomorrow: practice in the morning, I have to fill the vending machine, and then team and individual pictures after practice, but thank goodness she’s opted out of the ballet training on Saturdays following practices... I went in to rub her back, something I have done since she was a baby and something she still has no objection to me doing, and I told her she was the subject of tonight’s post-I think she uttered, “Oh, great,” but I quickly reassured her that it was all good as I closed her closet door (you know, the boogie man's hideout), left her room door open a crack, and walked away smiling...

Monday, February 15, 2010

Many questions, no answers...

My get-up-and-go has got-up-and-went due to a variety of reasons. The cold weather and the 3 ½ feet of snow we have on the ground is too deep to go sledding because it actually stops the sleds, and too much of a chore to walk in. We left the house at 6:30 yesterday morning and returning at 4:00 yesterday afternoon-we spent four hours sitting in the car and four and a half hours sitting at my daughter’s gymnastics meet. Since we haven’t had school since last Tuesday and every night feels like a Friday night, I have been staying up later and later but still getting up at the same time because my kids don’t sleep in. And I haven’t had a decent workout in a while-it’s an endless cycle because I have no energy for exercise, and because I am not exercising, I have no energy…

So here I am, staring at my computer wondering what the subject of tonight’s post should be. I could talk more about the snow and how we are getting another 1-3 inches by tomorrow, but just typing that is depressing. I could psychoanalyze my reasons for staying up to watch sappy old love stories, but I might watch another tonight so what would be the point? And I’m sure you wouldn’t want a play-by-play of yesterday’s meet, although my daughter got another second place on the beam and fourth overall, so it was totally worth it.

Well you’re in luck because I decided to do another round of Sunday Sage'ness (lucky you), I also received another award from Girl at The Girl Next Door Grows Up , but since I have to award this to ten other bloggers, I will do a post about it in a couple days.

Now onto some of my newfound beliefs and reflections:

The dog is just like us-what goes in must come out- the coming out usually follows the going in, so someone needs to “get him out” so we don’t have any special surprises.

Why am I getting white hair only on the left side of my head? Does the left side age faster than the right if you’re right brained?

Maybe I am a little funny when it comes to bathroom etiquette, but I feel the door should be shut when you are doing your business-I also don’t want to know what you’re doing in there, so don’t ask me to “come see…”

And speaking of the bathroom, what comes up must come down, and in this case I am referring to the toilet seat!

My daughter’s resemblance to her aunt is almost uncanny-we’re talking everything from appearance to personal habits, and because this was the one sister I fought with constantly when I was younger, it’s driving me crazy because in an odd sort of way I am still fighting with her!

The living room couch is made for sitting, but why is your stuff“setting” there?

Soap and water are your friends-come let’s get reacquainted.

The dog doesn’t know the difference between your stuffed animals and his stuffed toys, so your stuffed monkey paid the ultimate sacrifice. (We can get a replacement eye in the craft store I’m sure…)

Well, that's enought sage'ness for one evening. Besides, I have to round up the kids and get them to bed. Goodnight everybody!

Friday, February 12, 2010

My Funny Family

Today I am a guest blogger on Diary of a Mad Bathroom . Swing on by DG's site to read about one of my funny family moments, and don't forget to comment... I will be back here later this weekend.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


I don’t know why, but I have never really handled change, good or bad, very well. As a child, I could hardly wait until the Christmas holiday, but when it came, I was often disappointed-not about the gifts I received, but because my other toys were now my “old” toys, and my new toys were the replacements, and I remember being depressed for a good part of the day. What makes this even worse is the fact that no one I knew ever felt this way-I was definitely a loner in this department.

Now I don’t feel the same as I once did about holidays, thank goodness, but I still am not a big fan of change. For example, I rarely ever rearrange my furniture because I get used to things being a certain way and it’s comfortable, but when things have to change (like when we got our new living room set), at first I begrudgingly go along with it, but in the end I’m happy.

On a more personal level, I am not happy with the changes I see in my mirror every day, and even though I know that getting older is just a part of life, and the alternative is so much worse, the woman that looks back at me is so different from the girl who still resides in my mind-except for the occasional ache and pain, I still feel like that young girl. Does everyone else feel the same way?

And when it comes to putting myself out there and moving beyond my comfort zone, even if I know it’s for the best, it’s downright nerve racking, and sometimes I can be hard on myself. I just take a deep breath and with a little bit of faith I tackle my latest “adjustment.” Whether it’s developing a blog, entering a new writing competition, or trying something new, deep down I know that each and every change is truly a learning experience, and learning is not such a bad thing.

Now you might be wondering about my topic of choice for this evening’s post, and I will keep you waiting no longer. I am once again trying something new in the writing arena-I will be a guest blogger on Diary of a Mad Bathroom this Friday. DG was looking for some funny posts about nutty family members that she could host on her sight every Friday in February. Well I jumped at the chance for a boatload of reasons: I am a big fan of DG’s very witty writing style (her blog is always a "must read" for me), I have more than my fare share of unique family members, and I was looking for a new writing experience. I chose to recount a story involving my husband, my in-laws, two dogs, a camper and myself-I will have a link to DG’s site here on Friday, and I hope you all can come by.

Well, I might have to get up early to help my husband get out of the driveway tomorrow-we don’t have school, but he’s going to try to make it in to work, so goodnight everyone.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

No more snow!

I didn’t believe all the hype and hoopla about a snowstorm predicted to hit our area Friday afternoon, and I think I said something like, “I’ll believe it when I see it”- well I see it, lots of it (snow that is), and I am now a believer. We got a little over two feet of snow in a little under 24 hours, so much snow in fact that you could hardly see our van in the driveway-the snow came up to the passenger windows!

My husband is a superman when it comes to snow removal because in only two trips he dug out the van, dug out the driveway, dug a path to the front door, dug a path to our back porch, then dug a path to our backyard where he leveled out an area so that our dog could do his business in comfort. Yes, he did it alone and I’m a wimp, but we are down to only one shovel, so… (I tried to thank him by making chicken, egg, and cheddar breakfast wraps, served with fresh orange slices and homemade muffins covered in melted butter and cinnamon sugar-yum…) He’s a bit stiff today, but I am hoping this will finally convince him to get a snow blower-after every big snow he says we need to get one, but then when things warm up again he’s convinced it’s a waste of money.

Our dog isn’t a big fan of deep snow either- this is really the first big snow he has experienced, and he can walk in the path my husband made, but he sinks so low he can’t see anything around him, and that means it’s not safe to do his "duty". We’ve had to literally drag him outside to get him to go, and I’ve kept him cooped up in the kitchen until there’s proof enough outside to let him run around inside. I don’t want any surprises, so I've learned to take this seriously, and the past couple of days have revolved around the snow and whether or not the dog took a poop-I feel like I’ve regressed back to the days of toilet training. I’ve had such stimulating conversations with my husband: “Did he poop?” “No, he didn’t poop.” “Do you think he has to poop?” “Well, he only had one poop today, and he usually has three.” “You're right, he needs to poop.

But besides the dog and his bathroom habits, the wet floors and clothes, and the literal pain in the neck a big snow can cause, I really didn’t mind being “stranded” for a day because everything literally slows down, and there is time to bake some muffins and read that book-the neighbor girl ended up sleeping over so my daughter and son had a blast, I got caught up on laundry and my blog, and my husband and I actually sat on the couch (away from the children) and talked about things (yes, we talked about the dog too, but it was still nice.)Maybe a stranding every now and then isn’t such a bad thing if it helps you slow down and appreciate those around you.

I was also shown some blogger love recently from Tesa over at 2 Wired 2 Tired when she awarded me The Beautiful Blogger Award. I'm supposed to list 5 things I like to do then pass this on to 5 other deserving blogs, but I'm also going to include things I would like to do. Here we go...

1. I like to lose myself in a good novel, but don't always find the time.

2. I would love to write a good novel some day.

3. I like the silence after a snow storm, and I find myself looking out the window a lot because everything looks so magical covered in white.

4. I love spending one-on-one time with each of my kids.

5. And when I'm old and gray, I would like to live closer to the ocean. Our vacations always involve some beach somewhere because it's the only place where I feel totally relaxed.

And the winners are:

Nicole from A New Normal

Janie B. from Life Not Wasted Or Lost

Mom from Mom of the Perpetually Grounded

Naomi from Organic Motherhood with Cool Whip

Flory from A Woman's Life Stages

And, since I didn't follow all the rules, and because I like the number 7 more than I like the number 5, I thought I would add two more recipients:
September Mom over at My Voice My View

And Magic Momma from Mommyhood Exposed

Now when was the dog out last?. Goodnight everyone.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

What makes me tick...

I know I haven’t been around too much lately, but I am the new “vending” mom at my daughter’s gym, and I have to fill the snack and soda/water machine at least three times a week for the month of February. This also means my husband has to start dinner for at least two of those nights until I can get into some sort of rhythm with this new chore.

Thank you for commenting on my last post even though it’s a bit old now, and know that I am trying to get back to my former blog-posting schedule. I was surprised and touched when I checked out my site and September Mom over at My Voice My View gave me a Gorgeous Blogger Award. (Tess over at 2 Wired 2 Tired gave me an award too, but it's after 11 and 5:30 comes on really fast, so I'll do that one soon...)
As a recipient for the Gorgeous Award, I am to tell you 6 things you may not know about me, so without further delay, here are my 6:

1. I am a former cat person. I say former because we currently have no cat (my 19 year old cat passed away two years ago, and because she was definitely one-of-a-kind, I can’t bear to replace her) and I have fallen in love with our scruffy little Havanese. I don’t know if that makes me a full blown dog person or not because I still love cats, but I definitely enjoy the company of dogs a lot more than I used to.

2. I have seriously considered becoming a vegetarian. I know that protein is a must for a healthy body, but I also don’t like thinking about how my meat got to my table. If I had to live back in the days where you killed what you ate, I don’t know how I would have survived. As some of you already know, I can only kill flies and ants, and I even occasionally feel guilty about that!

3. I enjoy mowing the lawn. Now I didn’t say I like to push mow-I mean I like to mow with a riding mower. All I have to do is follow the tracks cut previously, and this concentration keeps me from going over my latest to do list, and I am at peace. I guess you could say I become “one” with the grass, but my husband is very particular about his lawn, so I don’t often get the chance to do this.

4. I can tell you almost word for word what someone said in a conversation. I am not a detail person until it comes to remembering a previous conversation. My husband is constantly telling me to just give him the facts, while I feel that revealing everything said is essential to understanding everything said. Women are from Venus?

5. I love Cream of Wheat. I don’t know why but this one just popped into my head. I have always loved Cream of Wheat, but I could never get my kids to eat it, and my husband will only join me in a bowl if it's covered in brown sugar-not the healthiest. I put very little sugar on it because I prefer it bland-that does sound kind of peculiar now that I see it in writing.

6. I hate wearing dresses. Now I will wear a dress on special occasions such as weddings or fancy parties, and my husband always says how nice I look wearing one, but I am never comfortable. (Isn't it funny that my daughter is the exact opposite?) First there’s the question of hose or no hose, and since I grew up in a time when wearing pantyhose was a must with a dress, I feel my outfit is incomplete without it. Then there’s the problem of wearing the pantyhose. I cannot for the life of me wear a pair without getting a run-it either happens just as I am putting pantyhose on or sometime during the event.

Well, there you have it-a good combination of the strange and the quirky. I am now supposed to award this to 6 other gorgeous bloggers, and though I only visit blogs I love, these six consistantly make me laugh, ususally out loud, and laughter is definitely something I need more of! Plus, if I don't do this now, I know I'll forget, so here are my nominees:

Jing Lejano from hypermom

Molly from I'm a Sleeper Baker

Amo from Where a Woman Shakes her Tablecloth

The girl from The Girl Next Door Grows Up

The girl with the flour in her hair from Peeling and Orange with a Screwdriver

And Nancy from If evolution really works
Keep up the good work ladies!  Goodnight everybody.