Thursday, August 31, 2006

Medically Speaking

We just got back from the Doctor's a few moments ago. Hurricane is passed out in his room because the whole thing was just exhausting. First flirting with the secretaries, then the waiting room ladies, and the nurses. Then there was the running from the Doctor followed by the biting of the Doctor (which Girl is so jealous of because all she ever did was kick the Doctor in the face and why didn't she think of the biting because that can leave scars and how awesome would that be?).
Since Hurricane was 2 months old he has had a really nasty recurring diaper rash. Yea, I know. I know. Diaper rash, big deal right?
Well, yes. It is. Or it is when it causes your ass to bleed and will not just please to go away thank you very much.
It would fade to a pale pink only to return to it's angry, scaly, bleeding self in a week. We threw out the wipes, slathered him in Nystantin, some other prescription cream and triple paste. We let him run naked which left Cat hating us even more than he had before we brought this thing that likes to pee on him home. We sacrificed goats to the Gods of Diapered Asses. We talked to the rash, trying to convince it of the absolutely amazing places it could go if it would just get off of our son's ass.
Still, it stayed. It ate away at his skin until finally Hurricane just began denying the poop.

Most mornings he would greet me with a smile, then promptly stick his diaper-clad butt in the air and yell "Sstttiiiinnnggkkkeeeeeeeeeeee!!!"
But on those mornings when he would quickly hide his hands behind his back and declare "I no poo-ey", I knew the rash had returned.

There are claw marks on the walls of our hallway where tried to stop the inevitable march to the changing table. Our neighbors asked in concern and not at all hoping to need to call CPS if we were perhaps beating him and wouldn't that explain the screaming they heard?

No. What would explain it, and what would have been nice to know 18 months ago is monumentally simple.

He is allergic to the gel in the diapers.

I left the Doctor's armed with 2 new prescriptions to hopefully (oh please God!) get rid of the infection that has taken over his allergic reaction and the suggestion that we begin cloth diapering.
Yes, we will.

I am annoyed, endlessly, that it took as long as it has to know what was going on. We have been to the Doctor for this very rash 9 times. Each time we were given a prescription for some antifungal ointment and told it would clear up if we just gave it time. It would clear up if we just used all the ointment. It would clear up if we let him run naked for awhile. It would clear up if we stopped using wipes.

But it didn't. And now we know it never would have.

I blame myself more than anything. I should have been more insistent. I should have known that it was something more given his skin issues and mine. I should have sacrificed a chicken instead of a goat.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Actual Things Recently Stated In My House

Oh the pages I could fill on this one! But for the sake of my laziness, for oh how I love the laziness, how about if I just stick to this week?

-"Oh God please don't eat that slug! Please don't eat that slug. Don't eat that slugdonteatthatslugdonteatthatslugewewewew...... How many times am I going to have to pry dead slugs out of your mouth before you learn that crickets taste better?"

-"No Hurricane. I no longer put the cookies on the counter. If you want them you will just have to climb up on top of the refrigerator."
(Which, yes. He did. For I am a dumbass.)

-"I have no idea what his mom said but I'm pretty sure it was something about my going to hell. Because it's always about my going to hell. I love her."

-"You have the most hideous feet I have ever seen. I love you but I think I may hurl if those things come any closer."

-"But I don't like peas! They taste like green."
(I have no idea what green tastes like but Her Royal Highness, Queen of the Prepubescent Cheerleaders swears it is perfectly vile. Also lame. Yes. Very lame.)

-"Shut up! Ketchup is so a vegetable. It has to be because it's the only one your son will eat."

-"The only way you are getting me to go camping is if you kidnap Johnny Depp and have him chained naked to our tent. Just make sure he's made up like Jack Sparrow, 'k?"

-"Did that dog just eat poop?"
Yes. Yes she did.

-"Look! I can do a cartwheel!" *crash* "Um... Mom? Hurricane broke your side table."

-"Mahn an teese?" "No. No manatees for breakfast." Long pause with that unnerving glare that only toddlers are capable of..... "I want MAHNANTEESE!!!!!"
"And I want non-possessed type children, Linda Blair. You're still not getting manatees for breakfast. Here, have a cookie."
(Because only in my head is a cookie more acceptable for breakfast than mac and cheese.)

-"That John Wayne painting is going to be worth something someday!"

"Why? Is there going to be a desperate need for and shortage of ugly felt?"

-"Pshaw! I would so have made a kick-ass Rainbow Brite and she would have eaten Garth Vader for breakfast!"

-"No, He-Man was way hotter than Optimus Prime but I'd take Lion-O over either of them anyday."

-"Hurricane! Stop biting the dog. Cat is right there."

-"You're just excited that school is starting because then you can take Hurricane to the movies all day and then watch cartoons and eat ice cream while I'm being tortured!"

-"Just remember while you're pressing that forward button 17 times a day, I get to choose your nursing home."

"Yeah well, Girl gets to choose yours and it might be good to remember that she likes her grandparents. Now shut up and read."

(screamed by angry toddler to Mishka which utterly confounded her as she had been sound asleep across the room at the time.)

-"Canada is still only a few measly hours away."

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

The Scourge of the Soccer Mom Network

If you see the words 'Soccer Mom Network' and have no idea what I'm talking about (which I swear, half of what I write? I write thinking 'no way anyone is going to get this let alone think 'ha!funny' but oh well' and I write it anyway) go here and scroll on down to trouble in paradise.
I laughed when I read it because I so got it! It was the same thing when Girl was in T-ball and sort of the same thing with Cheerleading.
Then today I got really excited because I discovered something that terrifies soccer mom's more than bad highlights and and full calorie dressing.

I was leading cheer practice under the covered pavement of one local elementary school. It was raining. It was chilly. The Soccer moms took over one end of the shelter which was totally fine. It gave the girls an idea of how loud they had to yell to be heard over the blaring sirens of a thousand ambulances.
Or it was totally fine until a few parents decided their boys should practice kicking the ball at the girls.
Finally, after the youngest had been bowled over, yet again, in the midst of their favorite cheer, I spoke up.
"Excuse me?"

Heads spun around but the bodies, oddly, still faced forward.

"Could you boys please practice elsewhere or maybe at least not use the girls as target practice?"

The Soccer Mom Network as a whole sighed. I've never before seen synchronized sighing and eye-rolling.

One over high-lighted Soccer Mom stepped forward.

"I suppose the boys could practice out there. In the rain."

And before I could retort with a 'Well gee, we wouldn't want to let the preshus little Hunter-William-Landon's get wet! They might melt!', 4 little heads turned in sync and gave the most frightening glare I've ever born witness too.
Thunder clapped and the Heavens cut loose a torrential rain of fire and those Soccer Moms were instantly burned to ashes.
For there is nothing more frightening than pissed off prepubescent cheerleaders who know how to Huerky.

The boys quickly picked up their ball and ran to the field. The remaining soccer spectators decided it would be safer to observe practice in the rain.
All 4 girls smiled angelically and turned their attention back to performing the perfect pencil jump.

I highly recommend getting your very own prepubescent cheerleader.
Think of the possibilities!
Your boss won't give you a raise?
He will after one quick round of "I've got Spirit!" involving a left side hurdler and a right diagonal.
Mechanic ripping you off? Not after little Janie shows him her Liberty with a dismount he'll be feeling for months.
Neighbor dumping his garbage in your yard (please tell me we're not alone!)? Just have sweet little Susie pay him a visit with her poms and megaphone. He'll be mowing your yard in no time.

Monday, August 28, 2006

I Was Due

Every now and then I disillusion myself with thoughts of being graceful, non-klutzy, able to walk 5 feet without falling on my face.
And then gravity kicks in and knocks me back to reality.

I am still trying to train Mishka (the 2 and 1/2 month old husky that snores louder than my husband). I had her outside to do her thing when she took off for the neighbors lovely green yard.
Our yard is sort of green. Here and there. In between all the patches of brown and then there's the bare spots that have yet to recover from those damn moles (and I would totally link you back to that whole saga if Blogger weren't being such a bitch).
So, off she ran and I followed just hoping they wouldn't notice that she was eating their lovely flowers. She is slippery and it took at least 4 devoured peonies before I caught her.
I started to carry her back over to our house when it happened.
We had our driveway extended a few months ago and when we did it left this little step up from the neighbors lovely yard to our driveway. A 6 inch step that I forgot all about until my foot found it and my chin met the sidewalk.
I skinned my knee, my shoe went flying off behind me. I caught the brunt of the fall with my hands and arms and cracked my chin on the pavement.
I laid there cursing gravity while Mishka chewed on my hair.
One of the neighborhood kids, I think she's maybe 4, stood over me slurping her popsicle.
"Whatcha' do that for?"

"It's fun. Why don't you try it?"

She didn't take me up on that. I'm almost sure I would've stopped her.


Thursday, August 24, 2006

Because I Can't Believe I Forgot..........

In making my laziest post ever, I totally skipped over the part that still haunts me. And everytime I see this picture, I feel a little ill but........

Did you know that some fish have teeth. Like, an underbite and everything?

Fucking teeth!

Picture Day

Never mind that it's been a few weeks of me trying and Blogger being a little bitch. Or that they are entirely out of sequence. They are posted. Except I don't remember half of what I had intended to say, so let's skip the boring parts and I'll hit the hightlights. Yes? Woo-hoo!

First up is proof of Hurricane's inherited feelings about feet.

He? Absolutely against them. Except, perhaps, for his own which, he has informed me and I concur, taste quite yummy.

One of the Lime Kilns at Lime Kiln Point. There was a point to this picture but I'm not entirely sure it's interesting anymore. Maybe because I don't remember the whole story. I do remember that this is just north of Dead Man's Bay, so named because well..... duh. Lime, in it's powdered form, it does not like the water. Workers would load this powdered lime onto the boats but because that area of the coast is so rocky, it would frequently get wet and burn up the entire ship.
Pretty. This is a favored point for whale watching. It's my favorite spot on the island. The lavendar fields. Really great place to go, take a deep breath and relax, if you like the smell of lavendar. I do not. 3 seconds after taking this picture and seeing the long expanse of lavendar planted before me (which was about 5 seconds after getting out of the van), I returned to the van and attempted to not throw up.

I almost succeeded.

While he desperately hates feet, he is hopelessly in love with frogs. He would not leave this damn guy alone. The guy would move on to greet another kid and there was my son, tugging at his leg in awe breathily bleating 'rrriimmiihhhttt?'
Meet Spot. Spot does not Baaaa as a normal sheep would. Spot burps. Loudly. Spot burped every time Hurricane turned his back. Hurricane was utterly confused by this noise because he was certain it came from this animal but it didn't even blink when he looked at it. Finally, he stood with his back turned slightly and caught it mid-burp.

Hurricane burped back and laughed.

They burped back and forth at eachother for 10 minutes before Hurricane's father rolled his eyes and carried him away.

This trip also began Hurricane's obsession with Dance Dance Revolution. I am certain this will lead to a fulfilling life touring the country in order to dance in competitions. Oh, you didn't know people did that? Well, yes. They do.
Then there were the chickens. Chickens my children felt the need to chase, much to the amusement of our friends, the owners of said chickens.

Girl would run after them, her arms flailing at her sides, yelling "Chicken nuggets, fried chicken, buffalo wings, chicken soup! MMMM!!" Proving only that she is my child, demented and lovely.

Hurricane simply bent over, his arms behind his back and "bawk, bawk bawk". Smiling as though he knew exactly what it was he was saying to them.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


In the past few weeks, Hurricane has become more and more verbal. He has happily slapped "paw-paw's bebly" and ran from "Bama's bad fee!"
As with the signs he learned from us, most of his words have to do with food.
"Mama. Diiinnnna?"



"Ok, I'll make you dinner."
As I start compiling the makings of grilled cheese with his hummus dip, he frowns and tugs at my pant leg.

"Man and teese!"

"Mac and cheese?"

"Man and teese! Man and teese!" He claps his hands pleased with being able to express his wants.

In the morning I am woken to his pleas for 'ceeerrreaahhhllll!'
In the afternoon it's 'ha dog' or 'peeba and ehhllly'.

My favorite is his hopeful request for a cookie.
Recently after being handed one cookie, he looked mournfully at his empty hand. He then turned his ever wanting face to mine.


I was so pleased that our practice with counting (which consist of me repeating the numbers 1 through 10 over and over again while he ignores me and shoves blocks into Cat's face) that I happily handed him another.


But not that pleased.

One night as we read together he put his hand to my mouth.
"I go nigh-nigh?"

I was shocked! Normally he regards his bedtime as a joke his father and I play on ourselves. As if he would actually go to sleep when there are so many far interesting things to do and climb.

As he still had 5 minutes before we commenced his normal, and laughable, bedtime routine, I gently told him not yet.

That is the precise moment my child was possessed.
He lowered his sweet face, stuck out his lower lip, raised his eyes and in his most growly voice to date replied,

He was in bed within 2 minutes.

Today, again, I was given the opportunity to question the wisdom in teaching him to speak.
We were waiting as the mechanic finished up the oil change on our van.
He spotted a pretty woman in the corner and smiled.

She smiled and returned his wave.

Feeling brave, he moved closer.
Before I could fully realize what he was after, he had begun to lift her shirt.

The woman laughed and managed to keep her shirt down but my face is still red.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Number Pain

I have always had trouble with math. I took Pre-algebra twice in high school and again during my brief stint in college. I just didn't get it. English, History, Science, lunch? No problem.
Math? Bah!
It possibly didn't help that I found it much more interesting to explore the inner recesses of Tommy Milford's* mouth than to solve for y, but not the point.
I took the kids to the library yesterday and as I scanned the stacks pretending that it was not my toddler singing Elmo's World at the top of his lungs, I found it.
The Complete Idiot's Guide to Algebra.

I thought that applied rather aptly to me. Yes. A book written just for me. It even had my name on it (see: idiot).
How hard could it be?

I read the whole first chapter, happily making notes in the notebook I bought just for this. Girl sat next to me and shook her head for I am lame.
I did the chapter problems and checked my answers so certain that I had it all right.

I missed one of the possibly categories in the first question and got number 4 completely wrong. I still don't know what I did wrong on number 4.
I thought maybe I read it wrong but....
When you see this 6+2(5+8) you would add 6+2, 5+8 and then multiply the answers. Right?
Good grief. I can't believe I'm asking the internet to help me with math. And I'm almost 30 (*whimper*).

I took the book outside with Mishka, our overly hyper Husky puppy. As I was walking back into the house I caught my hip on the railing off of our deck. My hip swelled and there is a giant, hideous purple and black bruise. I couldn't even sleep on that side which meant, of course, that that was the only way I wanted to sleep.

As I sniffled and applied ice, I googled my 9th grade Pre-Algebra teacher.

Dear Mr Pocket-Protector,

You lied. Math is painful. Enclosed, please find picture of my very tender hip, injured while studying algebra.

That Girl Who Was Always Attached to
Tommy Milford's Face

*Name has been slightly changed to protect, um... me.

Monday, August 21, 2006

One Step Forward

I am so ignoring my illiterate little troll and moving on. After, of course, a round of thank yous for the comments and e-mails.
Mostly it just made me roll my eyes and curse the writer for not paying attention in school.

Sunday I took Girl to see The Barnyard. It was just what a kid's movie was supposed to be and it felt good to sit there with her in the quiet theater and laugh. Just the two of us.
I threw popcorn at her and she knocked my elbow off our shared armrest.
She rested her head against my arm and I smiled. She didn't pull away when I kissed her head.
When the movie was over I asked her what her favorite part was.
We both agreed it had to be Wild Mike. She said it reminded her of her brother. She envied his 'no-fear' approach to everything.
His 'no-fear' approach terrifies me.
We laughed and talked on the drive home.
I sighed when we pulled into our driveway as she ran off to play with her friends.
She yelled 'Thanks mom!' over her shoulder.

For the first time in months I feel like we can do this.

I'm not saying that everything is ok, that I no longer worry about who she is and how we can relate.
Just that hope isn't lost.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Bite Me Very Much

I read my posts about girl and my problems with her twice. Carefully. I pored over every word just to be sure and now that I am I have to tell you (hateful e-mailer) to kindly kiss my ass. I'll even mark off which acre is all yours.

Not once did I say that I didn't want her or that I hated her.

I admit that I may have read your e-mail wrong as I speak English and by the looks of your e-mail you don't. What else could possibly explain what this 'an u d evn no cuz u d car 2 no is ur fawl' is?

Quite simply, I love my daughter. Yes we're having some problems right now. I'm finding connecting with her a challenge while she changes. But we're working on it.

And if all else fails I'll just leave her at the zoo.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

The Day I Became "Lame"

Yeah, ok. I know I already was but at least my kids thought I was cool. Or maybe just pretended too. But now Girl has crossed that invisible line between "My mommy rocks" to "Who me? I'm an orphan."
I know I've made a little stink about this whole coaching thing (I am so going to end up kicking myself in the ass and possibly breaking my foot) but I was also kind of excited about it (aside from having to deal with Annoying Woman). I thought that maybe if I was involved in the things that she was interested in it would help with some of the problems we have been having. And also during those teen years when she really hates me and starts saying how I don't care I can say "Ha! Don't you remember when I was your coach and I ended up in traction? This limp isn't for nothing kid!"
We arrived at practice a little early. I was nervous but ready. Girl ran off to play until practice started. All the other coaches and some of the parents were standing around talking. I noticed Girl's coach from last year and we talked for a minute. It almost seemed normal.
Girl came over to get a drink and she looked at me kind of funny. Her ex-coach asked her if she was excited to start the year and she nodded a little.
I smiled and ruffled her hair.
"She has been asking for weeks now when we start."

And then it happened. You could feel the shift and the other moms looked over at us because it was that palpable.

"Oh My Gosh mom! You are so lame!"

And with that she was off to play and my jaw sat on the pavement.
The other moms quickly turned their heads to ward off of my errant 'lame-mom' germs.

Later on the way home I let her know that talking to me that way was never going to be ok. She apologized (while rolling her eyes) and I sighed.

I don't know that I'll ever get a grip with her. I don't know how to transition from the relationship we had to one that we can both live with. I worry. This is certainly not what I imagined motherhood to be like.

I look at her and I see the girl in pigtails who wouldn't take an oatmeal bath when she had the chicken pox because the water was 'dirty'. I see the girl who would touch her cheek to mine and sigh. I see the girl who would fall asleep in my lap while watching movies.

But that isn't who she is anymore.

I think our children's independence is harder on us as parents.

Does letting her grow really mean letting her go? Do I really have to give up a good bond with her in order to maintain authority? I'm still trying to figure that one out.

As I tucked her into bed tonight (one of the few things she still lets me do), she smiled, a little.
"I'm glad you're my coach mom."

I kissed her forehead, turned off the lights, went into the kitchen and cried.

More Proof of My Stupidity

It has been several months so I have been able to block out that horribly stupid thing I did. But now it's come back to bite me in the ass.

Tonight is the first practice for cheerleading. Practice for which I am supposed to teach them things like cheers. And I'm thinking that teaching them dirty cheers will be um, frowned upon? Yes?

To make this season just fabulous, I've learned that the town's most annoying woman had her daughter placed on my team.
Anything you can do, she can do 20 times better. She knows everything and will happily tell you just how wonderful she is. It is going to take every last bit of restraint to not stick my coach's handbook up her right nostril.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

And Now For Another Round of "Oh Holy Hell People!"

Oh Lord. Really. I know I've mentioned before about the surprising number of people who have found me while searching for "she had worms in her" (damn TLC and google) but enough already!
13. 1. 3. Recently. 13 people searching for worms or earthworms.

This I could maybe shake off as whatever but the next one on my list, I just... I.... *bangs head on desk and dies a little*.
"Mother in law accidentally saw penis." "What to do?"

And now I'm left wondering just what happened to bring this about. And why it had to be brought about to my blog. What did I write that put me at #11 for this search request?
Seriously? #11? I'm not going to be satisfied until that one reaches number one.

Monday, August 14, 2006


When Girl was a toddler, she preferred her two feet to be firmly planted on the ground. She found destruction at her eye level to be most enjoyable and much more of a surprise for me.
So it was incredibly disconcerting to me to watch Hurricane master his climbing skills on the beds, the table, my bar stools (which should be too high for him but whatever), and the Ikea corner shelving unit that seemed so useful at Ikea but we so don't have a corner to stick it in.
Still, none of that prepared me for this weekend. Saturday to be specific. Saturday I walked into his room knowing he had woken from his nap, fully prepared for a rousing game of Chase-Mommy-Around-the-Kitchen and Pinch-the-Nipples-Watch-Mommy-Cry! I was, instead, treated to the sight of the apple of my eye sitting in his dresser drawer. Pardon, his top dresser drawer. Yes. Well.
I tried my best not to faint (ha!) and instead removed his sturdy self from said drawer and firmly said 'No. Naughty.' Too which, he crumbled. And then naturally, so did I. He was so proud of his monkey-like ability and certainly I should find this skill useful! Perhaps when I throw my car keys on the rooftop in an effort to dislodge a Frisbee (give me a break. I was so wiped out and really, was it so much to ask the 5 year old neighbor boy to get his own damn Frisbee and while you're at it, I think Mr X perhaps left his hat up there and oh don't cry!). Surely then his shimmying up the rain spout would be a life saver. No?
Truly, it was the manner in which my would-be Everest toppler that had me proclaiming his genius status to the entire neighborhood (Please, they all think I'm crazy anyway so what difference could one more bout of insanity make?).
First, he had pulled out his bottom right drawer. Then his middle left, from there it was a simple matter to climb to the top.
Yes. Genius. Or more aptly, enfant terrible.
Since then he has happily displayed his ability to ascend every standing piece in the house.
His current favorite? The kitchen drawers. Even with the child safety locks (ha! They don't even slow him down. I'm the one who ends up pinching her fingers) it is a matter of mere seconds before his on top of the counter, merrily searching for cookies. Or french fries. Or whatever other assortment of goodies I seem to hide up there on those glorious counters he could never explore before.
I may not survive his childhood. He, no doubt, will be fine. But I think my heart will not handle so many of these ever increasing surprises.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Sunny Day, Chasing The Clouds Away....

My siblings and I were unholy terrors as children. We set the oven on fire the first time they left us alone, we conducted scientific experiments involving condiment packets in the kitchen (note: Mayo doesn't travel far, mustard and ketchup are the stains that keep on giving and relish smells really bad after 3 days), we fed the dog baked beans for the sheer joy of hearing my parents gag at 3 am, we made balcony jumping an art form and shoved beans in our ears (when bugs bunny did it, it fell out the other side. When we did it... it... did not really fall out so much as required a Dr to dig it out. Hee!). We were the Malcom in the Middle of our neighborhood.
My parents never knew what to expect from us, or which neighbor would be calling to ask if they knew what we had done in their yard that day.
But there was one hour a day that they knew where we would be. One hour a day that they didn't have to wonder what we had gotten ourselves into.

Sesame street was on and nothing short of Evel Knievel himself asking us to perform stunts with him was going to tear us away from the overstuffed couch in our living room.
Back then Big Bird was the only one who knew about Snuffleupagus. Every one else just thought he was Big Bird's imaginary friend. I would yell at the screen every time they missed him. Snuffy has a baby sister named Alice and wears 65 GGG shoes (how's that for useless trivia?).
There was Oscar, my favorite muppet, with his seemingly sour disposition but I knew better. Look how sweet he was with Slimey, his pet worm! Did you know that in the first season Oscar's fur was orange?
Cookie Monster, whose first name is actually Sid, taught me letters while The Count taught me to not be afraid of vampires. Oh, and how to count of course.
Grover, with his distinctive speech patterns and many talents fascinated me.
Bert and Ernie felt like family to us. We knew all the words to Rubber Ducky.
(From Wikipedia:)
Bert: "Hey, you've got a banana in your ear!"
Ernie: "What?"
Ernie: "What? I can't hear you; I've got a banana in my ear!"
Comic genious!
I remember when Mr Hooper died as it was the first time I ever experienced loss.
I remember Maria and Gordon as adults who could be trusted.
My parents took us to Sesame Place one year and it felt like Christmas. I had always wanted to live on Sesame Street and this was the next best thing. In my jewelry box on my dresser is the Big Bird pin my dad had bought for me that day. I smile every time I see it.
My parents took us to the drive-in to see Sesame Street: Follow that Bird. I cried when Big Bird ran away, afraid he'd never find his way home. But he did.
Time went on. I went to school. Summer break rolled around and suddenly I was too old and too cool to be watching Sesame Street anymore. My siblings had long since given it up.
But for those few (all too brief, according to my parents) years, my siblings and I were bonded over our love for furry muppets.

When I was pregnant with my daughter I smiled knowing that it wouldn't be long before I could introduce her to the great love of my childhood. And again, when I was pregnant with my son.
Now there are some new muppets on screen.
This season we will get to meet Abby Caddaby ( her name alone is reason to love her).
But it was Elmo, who always refers to himself in the 3rd person, who captured the heart of my son. He can spot him from 3 aisles away in a store and happily calls out for "la-la", his name for Elmo taken from his theme song. Elmo, who gave me moments like this which will make me smile when I'm old and gray. Elmo was the reason I ended up repeating his Number 5 rap in front of my son's playgroup.
Certainly there are moments where just the thought of one more minute of that high-pitched laugh will make me go bananas, but then I see my son laugh and dance.
I see him clap his hands and call out for more "Ma Noonle!", and how can I complain about his pure happiness?
(From Wikipedia:)
Elmo is the only Muppet to ever testify before the U.S. Congress. At the request and with the assistance of Rep. Duke Cunningham, he testified before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services and Education in April 2002, urging support for increased funding in music education.
Elmo is meant to be a pre-schooler. He has a pet goldfish, Dorothy, and a natural curiosity that has taken hold over my son.
It tickles me endlessly when I hear him trying to sing along or counting. I love when he chooses a book at the library, knowing it will be one from Sesame Street. I love seeing him sleeping at night, his stuff Elmo tucked under one arm.
More, I live for the moments like I witnessed this week. My 8 year old daughter helping her brother put a band-aid on his Telly beanie baby because Telly got hit on the head on the show. I see compassion.
I am in awe that on Monday, they will be kicking off their 37th season. 37 years of providing educational entertainment to children. I hope they'll be around for my grandchildren so I can share it with them too.
Sesame Street is the one hour each day that I don't have to worry about what he is getting into. It's the one hour a day I know where he will be.

I wrote this piece as part of The Lovely Mrs Davis' celebration. I hope you will click on over to her blog on Monday to get a chance at reading other's posts. And better still, write one yourself.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

The Puppy That Ate Seattle

Mishka has been with us now for a little over a week. In that brief time I have had to pry the following things out of her mouth:

2) grass
4) sticks
5) a dirty diaper
6) Hurricane's socks
7) Hurricane's pajama bottoms (and only the bottoms but she has gone after them many times)
8) The Cat
9) a chair
10) the recliner
11) the highchair
12) her bed
13) a flip flop
14) the carpet
15) the pantry door
16) her leash
17)the sliding glass door's blinds
18) a stair
19) a DVD (Nanny Mcphee, I'm not sure if this is a comment on the movie or she just really likes the taste of DVD's)
20) several slugs
21) flowers
22) stones
23)my bed
24) the pillows
25) my abdomenizer stretchy workout thing (Yay! Go dog!)
26) my husband's lunchbox

And each time I've caught her with one of these things in her mouth, she looks up at me with those ridiculous raised eyebrows and waits to see what I will do. Occasionally, if the forbidden treat is especially good (as those slugs must be given the way she would lock her jaw), she will run.
Prying slobbery dead slugs from this dog's mouth is most definitely not on my list of favorite things.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006


At some point in the last 2 years, my daughter has become a new person. Someone I don't really recognize. I hate admitting that I am finding it increasingly difficult to maintain some sort of connection with her.
Before Hurricane she was my sole focus.
Sure she had friends she played with and I had things that had to be done each day and hobbies outside of being her mom. But there was no one else to take the attention away from her.
We still spend time together, just the two of us. But it isn't as often and it's certainly not the same.
I don't think it's a direct result of having her brother. Naturally there is a bit less time to focus on playing with her dolls or letting her 'braid' my hair. It can be exhausting keeping up with both of them. Spending quality time with each alone and making sure things around the house are taken care of and no one loses an eye has harried us a bit.
Still. It seems to me that somewhere between the ages of 6 and 8, she became someone else. Someone more.
Someone separate from me.
She is beginning to push her limits, making more and more of her own decisions. Who she plays with, what she wears, what she plays. She no longer seeks my opinion and has taken to rolling her eyes if I make a suggestion.
I know it's something that I have to learn to adapt to, her as her own person. But I can't help being a little bit sad for the little girl being left behind, and a little bit afraid of this new person rolling her eyes at me.
It wasn't that long ago that I was admiring her for being braver than I was as a kid. Now I'm longing for the days when she was content to let me help her with her dresses.
I know it sounds so stupid but when she was a baby I never thought about the fact that someday she would grow up and ask me to be her a tube top (which was met with a "over my dead body").
I have no idea what the rules are here, only that I have to set them and give her enough room to learn who she is, yet stay close enough to help her when she gets hurt. It's a tedious balancing act and I am sucking at it.
Not a day has gone by this summer that she hasn't back-talked and I haven't wanted to run screaming from the house. I could run to the left and be in Canada in 3 hours.
I love her. Period.
I just miss being able to connect with her the way we used to. And it's terrifying to think that it could always be like this.

Monday, August 07, 2006

I Learned A Lesson Here (But I Probably Won't Remember It)

I finally get up enough energy to post one giant recap and be done with it and the stupid picture thingy isn't working. So. Damn it.
Instead I will tell you the very stupid thing I did today for I am so very damn stupid.

Today I thought it would be fun to walk half a block to get the mail. With Hurricane. And a puppy.
A puppy who does not understand this whole 'walking on a leash' thing. A toddler who thinks is perfectly acceptable to help himself to neighbor's garages.
It started off well enough. Hurricane held my hand and smiled, chattering mindlessly about what I am certain involved quantum physics and why that means he is owed exactly 4.6 cookies to date. I half dragged Mishka in the other hand while carrying a plastic bag (for poop. ew. except that yes, because I am naively hoping that a certain neighbor will see me cleaning up puppy poop and realize that it sucks to have her dog poop in my driveway everytime he gets loose) and mailbox key.
2 houses away, Mishka realized that we were away from the house and there were lots of interesting new smells to sniff and flies to eat (and ohmygod can we discuss this eating thing in a bit? Because seriously! Damn!) and she ran in between my legs knocking me on my ass (1).
Hurricane laughed (and that's why you're not getting those 4.6 cookies you little bugger) and I pretended I had some dignity as I pried my ass off the sidewalk.
I gave Mishka my best withering sneer.
She panted and wagged her tail.
We continued.
Mishka did not.
I tugged on the leash and she simply stared at me.
I started to walk towards her and she took off running. So now I have one arm stretched out in front (who knew a puppy could be so strong?) to the point that I think I may have gained an inch and I'm leaning over on the other side a bit so I can hold onto Hurricane. Great. I look like a fucking hobbit.
Mishka decided to change course and ran full circle behind me, cutting Hurricane off at the knees so that he fell flat on his diapered butt (2).
I now owe him 4.6 cookies.
We finally made it to the mailbox where I realized that I am even stupider (it's a word now, shut up) than I originally thought. I had to let go of Hurricane to get the mail out. I also had to figure out how to carry the mail, the keys, the bag of poop, the leash and Hurricane back to the house without dropping anything or ending up on my ass, on the bag of poop.
So I thought I'd just let Hurricane walk with me without holding my hand.
He took this to mean that it would be perfectly fine to run into a stranger's garage and fondle their riding mower.
Prying him off of that thing while begging Mishka to please not eat through the bag of poop was not exactly the way I had imagined meeting these people, but I really should not have been surprised.
I tucked the mail under my arm and prayed that it wouldn't end up all over the street, slid the loop of the poop bag over my wrist (please don't let me fall on it!), shoved the leash and the collar in one hand and continued hobbit walking home with Hurricane in the other hand.
I made back to my side of the street and 5 feet away before Mishka took another pass at my legs. I freaked about the poop bag and threw my arm out thereby scattering my mail all over the street before landing on my ass (3). Again.
I told all of this to a friend who asked me why I didn't also take Auggie, wonder-mutt extraordinaire. Yes, because nothing could have made this excursion better like taking my pissed off cone-wearing snob of a dog.
We are no longer friends.

Warmed Honey

Yes, recap still owed. I know. Still, this is far more important. No really, it is.
Because, although it took 24 years, I finally got to see BB King in concert on Saturday and it was amazing!
BB King has this incredible spirit that just takes over the moment he steps on stage. He has a fantastic sense of humor and we laughed through much of the evening.
He is 80 and had to sit in a chair as he played but it didn't matter. That man can move.
Maybe it helps that he loves music, loves touring.
When we left that night my husband, my reluctant date, said the three little words every woman wants to hear.

"You were right."

He's never been to a concert before, he's not a music lover in the same vein as I am. But he loved Saturday and has converted to at least being a fan of BB's.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Note To Self

As you have been told many times in the past 4 years, you have developed an allergy to latex. It eats your skin. It is painful. It takes many weeks to fully heal.
Most band-aids contain latex. Remember? This is how you found out about this whole 'eating of the skin' thing?

So why the hell do you keep forgetting?

This is 2 weeks later.


Also? ow.

Friday, August 04, 2006


Baxter, poor tortured Cat, has decided that we are simply evil Cat-haters who live only to torment him.
In the past 20 months he has lost his space in our bed, been peed on, jumped at, had his tail chewed on by one teething baby, his eyes have been poked, ears yanked and chased around the house on a daily basis.
Then we bring in new dog. Just when he got used to Auggie and found a way to torment Auggie without being eaten, we bring in Mishka who does not care about boundaries.
Too add insult to injury.........

...... we allowed him to be shaved. Yes, he is sporting last season's lion cut.

My stomach still hurts from laughing.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Day One: Zoo

Ok so not exactly day one because really day one was when they got there and then day 2 we went grocery shopping and what is there to say about comparing cheeses in the market?
So technically day 3: Zoo.
Still boring.
I thought it would be great to spend the day walking about staring mindlessly at animals and maybe making some animal noises and such.

Sadly for us we went on the day that all the animals decided to have a napping contest.
Except the hippos and some of the monkeys.
All the rest? Nothing. Not even a sniffle. The orangutans took one look at us and put a burlap bag over their heads. I am fairly certain that given the option they would have preferred the bags on our heads.
And just to make sure that I understood how much this was a bad idea, the day decided to be much colder than it was supposed to be and I had to buy the kids overpriced sweatshirts. My credit card hates me. Deeply hates me.

From the petting zoo where there were no animals to be pet so we had to settle for petting a fly that wouldn't go away.

The hippos which actually are hippos and not plastic things stuck in the water in a lame attempt to fool us that we were looking at real hippos as I had always assumed because they have never moved before. (Your welcome for the endless sentence).

Even the butterflies took the day off.
As we walked the trails in search of some non-snoring type animals, we kept hearing this 'whoop'. Loud and obnoxious.

Then suddenly very fast.

And all too familiar.

Much like the noise I used to pretend I wasn't hearing as my parent's room shared a wall with mine.

Pointing this out to parents proved to be too much and I spent the rest of the trip trying to forget that my parents ever had sex. Ew.

The whooping turned out to be the monkeys. Monkeys which fell asleep just as soon as came over to see them.


I thought we could maybe salvage the day by taking the kids over to the zoo's new playland. Except that it was closed for the day. I guess playlands need their sleep too.

To make the day just perfect, Girl decided to show off her newly honed snarky skills.

I'm still amazed that she didn't somehow end up becoming part of an exhibit.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006


I am truly in no mood for recaps and pictures which will surely take several posts in order to truly capture the events of my parents visit. All culminating in our fully understanding what it means when our heating vent is directly connected to our daughter's room. Because that is where my parents slept. And sound travels.
I am feeling particularly sour as I have also begun to fully understand that the next several years are going to leave me in breathless anticipation of the Girl's moving out. Perhaps even more so now that she has informed me of her intention to move as far as she possibly can from wherever I stand.
She is 8. She has hit the 'tween' years. She has found out that I have buttons and oh how she loves to push them.
This morning was a fairly typical sampling of an average day with her.
I wouldn't let her wear her brand new skirt to play outside with Mishka. So instead of simply throwing on some shorts and having fun, she marched around the house in her underwear yelling at everyone to not look at her.
I directed her to her room where she upended the clothing her grandmother had generously folded for her.
Reason does not exist when she gets like this.
Instead, it is much more satisfying to throw a book at me. So she did. And I threw it in the trash (and in the trash it shall remain!).
My natural instinct to throttle her is always overtaken by reason and I walk away. But I cannot deny that innate urge to slap that snotty smug grin.
No, I won't cross that line. Instead I sigh. Count to a bajillion and ground her happy little ass.
The cherry on top of my pie tonight was when she turned to me and said "I guess you're happy now that you've ruined my life!"
Damn skippy, kid. I consider it my privilege and my grandest achievement to ruin your life on a daily basis.