Saturday, October 30, 2010

It's almost time...

for the Great Pumpkin visit our house. Woo-hoo! I think it might be my favorite part of Halloween. I blogged it last year here so I won't blog it again, but this year I've managed to get great gifts for less than before. Thank you Ross and TJ Maxx! Woo-hoo! Bargain Great Pumpkin. Even better!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Peace and Quiet

Curly is in love with peace signs. She wants practically everything she owns to have peace signs on it. As a result, Peanut is very aware of peace signs but has no actual concept of what peace is. If you know Peanut you know this is true because that child talks from sun up to sun down and she is NOT the quiet type.

Not too long ago StinkyMan was angry about something and he just needed to be left alone. Peanut, who also doesn't understand the concept of leaving her brother alone, was in his face, asking him why he was angry.

"Baby, he just needs some peace and quiet." I told her.

"OK." she said and she ran off. Pleased that she understood, I turned my attention to a tearful StinkyMan.

A minute later Peanut was standing next to us. "Here are some peas, StinkyMan" she said, helpfully thrusting a bag of frozen peas at him. See around here, we put a bag of frozen peas on owies. She was helping. (I know, so cute, right?)

I took the peas and thanked her before her brother could clue her in that she'd made a mistake and she happily ran off, pleased with her helpfulness.

Then yesterday she was using the restroom. I won't lie, we call it going potty, a term I swore I would never use before I had kids that I now use without a second thought. So she was going potty and was in there for a while, singing a little song. When she came out I asked (because I am a mom and we ask these things) "Did you go poops?"

"No." She answered cheerfully "Just pees. I was just in the bathroom having some pees and quiet."

No wonder she doesn't quite get her sister's obsession with "peace."

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Peanut is...

just over 30 boxes of chocolate tall.

I know. Say what now?

Husband was on a week long trip to Hawaii. He brought the kids t-shirts and jewelry. This is what he brought me:

OK, they aren't ALL for me. He'd already given 2 to a coworker who picked him up at the airport and some are for family, but he shipped all his laundry home and packed his bag full of chocolate!

We stacked them into one tall tower and discovered that Peanut is just a bit taller than all 30 boxes together.

The kids think they hit the candy lottery and next week is Halloween! Let the sugar high begin!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Confessions of a Bad Mommy

I have never claimed to be perfect. Not once. This past week I was a bad mommy lots and lots of times. Examples (with counterbalances to keep me in the average mommy scoring range):

Bad Mommy: Lets BabyGirl have chocolate milk once a day
Good Mommy: it's just a droplet of chocolate in a whole cup of white milk

Bad Mommy: Let StinkyMan eat a Lean Pocket Pepperoni Pizza Pocket for breakfast
Good Mommy: denied BabyGirl a bowl of homemade butter cream for breakfast

Bad Mommy: Let Curly buy school lunch 2 days in a row, when 1 day is generally all that is allowed. That stuff is so junky.
Good Mommy: Packed very healthy lunches the other days AND some fun Halloween jokes from here for good measure.

Bad Mommy: Let the kids go to bed a smidge later than they should have most nights this week
Good Mommy: is crazy strict about bedtimes, so even going late, there were still all asleep by 8:30ish.

Bad Mommy: accidentally said "hate" in front of Peanut
Good Mommy: bit her tongue and stopped herself from swearing in front of Peanut when she rammed her toe into a wall (don't ask)

Bad Mommy: still hasn't gotten out the Halloween decorations
Good Mommy: is getting up in the morning to decorate instead of sleeping in.

A solid grade C for the week, and you know what? That's was just going to have to be good enough. It was a loooooooong week.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


I never liked math. I remember not having any confidence in my math skills as early as the first grade. I just never believed that I really, truly knew what I was doing.

I watch Curly struggling with the same issues. She cried tonight because she "just can't do it." The thing is that she CAN. Instead she messes around, talks in baby voices and, in general lacks focus. And then when I ask her to get serious and get it done she claims that it's too hard.

This is frustrating. For me and for her. I want to help her, but I want her to help herself too and TRY to do the work.

If I had known at 6 years old that 30 years later elementary school math would still be frustrating me I'm not sure I would ever have bothered to graduate to 2nd grade.

UPDATE: She came home from school yesterday and told me that her friend M had helped her figure it out. I thought "We'll see about that." But indeed, math homework was a breeze last night and a lightbulb seems to have gone off in her head. Apparently M, in all her 7 years on the planet, possesses something I, with a degree in Education, do not: the ability to teach math. All hail the Mighty Miss M for restoring peace and mathematics ability to our homework table!

Monday, October 18, 2010


Curly: I bet I know what StinkyMan's favorite word is.

Me: Oh yeah?

Curly: I think it's "hideous"

Me: StinkyMan! What's your favorite word?

StinkyMan: Hideous!

Me: That's a good word.

Peanut: My favorite word is "Razzle Dazzle!"

Me: That's a good word too.

Peanut: Yes, it is! (pause for 3 seconds) What's a Razzle Dazzle?

Me: I'm not sure but it's fun to say!

StinkyMan: No, it's not. It's HIDEOUS!!!!

Cue peals of laughter.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Diaper Duty

To appreciate this story, you will have to use your imagination a little bit. I'll try to draw a little, but I have no computer abilities AT ALL, so it's lame, but it's the best I can do.

Pretend this is some of the downstairs of my house.


I know. It's good, right? You can totally see it, I'm sure. S is for StinkyMan who was in the family room. C is for Curly, who was in the dining room doing her homework. M is for Me, in the pantry area, overhearing their conversation across the length of the house.

So StinkyMan is watching Husband change a rather smelly diaper and says, wrinkling his nose "When I get married I am not doing that. I will let the mom do it."

To which Curly says "When I get married and have a baby I'm going to let my husband change all the diapers." Then she thinks for a minute and says "Mommy, it's a good thing StinkyMan and I can't marry each other or our kids sure would stink!"

Yes. Yes they would.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


I bought pears. Lots and lots of pears. 65 pounds of pears to be exact. The plan? Can them. Make pear sauce and can that too. And anything else pear related I could think to make and can.

Except my stove seems to be on the fritz, which is really messing with my ability to can anything. We had a cleaning crew come the other day for a "once over" fall cleaning. When the gal was done cleaning my (gas) stove it was making a weird clicking sound, like the kind of sound it makes when you turn it on but not far enough to ignite the burner.

Cleaning gal was perplexed. This had never happened to her before. A quick internet assured me that was normal, that sometimes when all the parts get wet during cleaning it will click nonstop. Best thing to do is unplug, let dry for a while, then plug it back in.

Worked like a charm.

Except that 45 minutes after the plugging back in part I heard a hum, followed by a POP, a spark and a smoking stove knob. I quickly unplugged the stove again and haven't dared to plug it back in. Husband will look at it when he comes back from his trip.

In the mean time, anyone want some pears? Because I've got them. Lots and lots and lots of them.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Toilet Paper Pumpkins

It's Fall Y'all.

Or so the calendar may say. The weather says something else entirely around here. But I love the idea of Fall. I love the colors and the cool air and the impending arrival of jack o'lanterns and trick or treaters. I even have certain foods I only fix in fall and winter, so autumn's arrival brings out menu items we haven't seen in a while.

And Fall always makes me feel crafty.

Two years ago StinkyMan made the cutest pumpkin in preschool. "I can totally make that!" I thought and then never did.

Last week when Peanut brought home her version of the same craft I thought "Why didn't I ever make one of those?"

So now I have.

Supplies for Toilet Paper Pumpkins:

1 roll tp
orange fabric
some kind of brown material, fabric, paper, cardboard, etc
something to make a leaf or some fake leaves or heck, real leaves if you want.
some raffia to finish it off nicely.

Step 1:

Put your orange fabric face down on your work surface. Put your tp roll in the middle.

I had WAY TOO MUCH fabric there. You don't need quite so much. What you need is enough to tuck all your ends into the middle without any of the fabric falling out.

Step 2:

Gather your ends

This doesn't have to be perfect. It's OK if your fabric isn't perfectly smooth or even or unwrinkled. No pumpkin is perfect!

Step 3:

Tuck it all in.

Step 4:

Roll your brown paper, empty paper towel roll, fabric or whatever you've got into a stem shape. You can glue the end down if you want. I didn't feel like waiting for glue. I used Zots.

I used green felt to cut out a leaf shape. It's all I had. You could use brown (I likely would have if I'd had any. Brown is more Autumnish after all) And then I just tucked my leaf in.

Add some raffia for extra cuteness and you are done!

I KNOW! Super cute, right? What about a whole fabric pumpkin patch?

Curly had a playdate over and each girl, plus StinkyMan and Peanut and myself made toilet paper pumpkins. I want to get some hay and lay these on the bales. How fun would that be?

I love Fall. Now if only the weather would cooperate!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Holy Moly

Friday morning I called the elementary school, asking when and where the talent show list would be posted, so I could be ready to congratulate or console as needed. The lovely school admin lady told me that the panel of judges had decided not to cut anyone after all. That instead, they would have the talent show, as planned, and then also an open mic night, so everyone would get a chance to shine.

I felt so much better after that. I mean, now, no matter what, Curly and her buddy would get a chance to do their thing. And I knew, if they got the open mic night assignment, I could spin that to not seem like a consolation prize.

But, amazingly enough, no spinning was required. Their hoola hoop routine earned them a spot in the talent show! Curly is ecstatic and I am so proud. November 4th is the big day, and there is much work that needs to be done before then, but the biggest hurdle has been cleared and the rest is just fun.


Thursday, October 7, 2010


Today was Talent Show Tryout day. I thought Curly and her friend did a pretty good job with their hoola hooping routine. Imagine my dismay to see the act trying out immediately after them was, not only also a hooping routine, but a hooping routine to the same song! And acts are getting cut. When the kids were initially finished with their routine I thought they had a good shot. Then I saw and heard the other kiddos' routine begin and I knew our chance of being cut had gone up exponentially. What are the odds of the kids choosing the same random talent to the same random song? Blah.

Then, all day long, I'd really been looking forward to the school photographer putting Peanut's school picture proofs online so I could see them. I couldn't wait to scroll through them again and again trying to decide which I loved most, which picture best portrayed my lively little sprite.

Except I don't like any of them. I'm so sad and even a little bitter. I wanted to order a bunch and frame them up as Christmas gifts and I just don't see spending the money on these shots. They aren't reflective of her at all. Another blah.

So tomorrow I will schedule portraits and hold my breath until the list of acts is posted for the Talent Show. Then we will either console or celebrate.

This mom business is hard work. Blah.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


Tomorrow are school talent show tryouts. Curly and her friend want to do a hoola hoop routine they have been working on in hoola hoop dance class.

I just saw their work for the first time. It's, uh, rough. Very, very rough.

I'm not sure they will make the cut and for that I feel sad.

If you could keep my Curly in your thoughts and send positive vibes I would appreciate it. They could use all the help they can get.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

He likes her! He really likes her!

This morning, a bit after Curly had gone off to school, StinkyMan and Peanut were watching Sprout and laughing like crazy at Grover working on his rhyming. Suddenly StinkyMan got very sober and said "I wish Curly was here to see this."


Monday, October 4, 2010


I took the kids to the doctor last week. I was a smidge late with check-ups this year. Oops.

Curly, who has always topped the charts, is now roughly in the 80th percentile. I think she will be like her dad and I...she'll hit junior high and be done growing. She's tall amongst her friends for now, but I think some of them will ultimately pass her.

StinkyMan is exactly even steven, dead center of the growth chart. He has always been in the 50th percentile. I do not foresee him being my future NBA player. He was so, so brave getting his shot. He didn't cry, protest or flinch. He never even said ow. What a trooper. I was really proud.

Peanut stole the show. She is in the 40th percentile for her weight, the most she's ever been, but in the 90th percentile for her height. Tall and skinny, we may have to consider changing her nickname, as she is no longer a peanut. I think she may be my future supermodel, because her feet are HUGE and one can only hope she'll grow into them. She also, as she says "got shot" at the doctor and seems to think her last name is "Foo" because of a nickname she has here at home. Let me assure you, our last name is not "Foo" but that didn't stop her from telling the doctor that it is.

And finally, my little bulldozer, my BabyGirl. Coming in at only 4 lbs less than her slightly older sister, she is in the 75th percentile for height and weight. She was also a trooper and only cried a little after her 2nd shot. She said "Ew" in this tiny little squeak when the first one went in, but the 2nd one reduced her to tears. A lollipop was the cure for that.

They are all just getting so big. Too big for me. But, no matter what I do, they won't stop growing. And so I blog it all, to hang on to these young years, just a little longer.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

The first line of defense

It's good to know that if someone ever wages war on the front hall from inside the kitchen, the Transformers are ready to defend it. And I take great comfort in the fact that their secret weapon, the soccer ball, is there as backup.

Don't you wish sometimes you could get inside their brains? (Your kids that is, not the Transformers.)