Friday, September 28, 2012


Guys, it's almost October.  Every August I think about Halloween and how I should get going but then I decide I'm jumping the gun and then September comes and I think "Man, I better Hurry up! Oh, wait Halloween is at the end of October.  That means I still have 2 months." and the procrastination goes on from there.

Anyway, I don't think I'm in too bad shape this year in spite of not having started yet.  I got a good Joann coupon in the mail that becomes valid Monday so I'm going to plan out exactly what I need and tackle it hard core in the coming week.

The Mr's been out of town this week.  Totally lame.  He's oh his way home from the airport this very minute. I think one of the worst things about having him gone is cooking dinner.  All motivation to cook good food flies out the window when I realize everybody at the table but me is probably just going to complain about eating it.   I did actually come up with two dinners that they ate happily.  I think that's something to be proud of.  Then one night I gave up and made pumpkin pancakes and tonight they had pizza at a church activity.  So, I guess we made it through.

This evening I went to the dollar store and bought candy corn.  I have no intention of allowing any of it to be eaten.  I'm going to hot glue it all to a wreath. Hopefully I can get it to look good.  Ziz begged all week so I got the Halloween decorations out today. I guess her enthusiasm rubbed off on me, thus I purchased wreath supplies.

Someone just walked in the front door so I'm out.

See you Monday

Thursday, September 27, 2012


I was sitting here trying to come up with an alternate post idea to the one that's been brewing in my head all day. That one is rather insensitive. Poking fun at a person with whom I cross paths with regularly but have never met. It's poking fun in a very "bless her heart," kind of way but in the end I decided it would be in bad taste.

 If bad taste is your style ask me in person and I'll totally tell you.

 So anyway, sitting here with my laptop and inner struggle when a nasty thing comes darting from my back door headed for shelter under the very sofa on which I sit.

 The first name by brain landed on was "cricket" because it was the right size and color to be a cricket. Then I recognized that there was no hoping involved, just streaking across the floor...and that's when I saw the pincers. Those awful pincers, sinister and gleaming dangerously in the partial light.

 I searched around for something, anything to hit it with. That thing was fast I had no time to run for a shoe.

As luck would have it, (Or was it karma? I did pass on the mockery post after all) I found a flip flop close at hand. It took four strong direct hits but I felled the beast. It was a full two inches long.

Ten minutes later and my toes are still clenched.

 May I never meet another like it.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Thrifty, Yo!

Guess what I did yesterday!  You'll be so proud of me.  I'd recently read somewhere about how to save money on groceries.  Then I ran into the store for milk and a thing or two exactly like you're not supposed to do if you want to stick to a strict grocery budge,t and the milk I buy when I can't get fresh. ( Dang mama cow had a baby now we have to buy milk at the store and wait for the baby to wean) was on sale 50% off!  The down side was it was sold out.

So here's where I get awesome.  I asked for a rain check.  Oh yes I did, and I was all "Look at me being so milk shopping savvy and all that."  Meanwhile I had to buy more expensive milk cuz we were clean out.  Then later it hit me.  Walmart price match!  I didn't need to buy that more expensive milk, I should've just stopped at walmart on my way to school, only not lose track of the time this time. Aw man! Thrifty fail.

So today I went to walmart on purpose just to try this price matching business only what do you know? They didn't have the milk either. Actually, I couldn't find a single drop of organic milk in the whole place.  What's up with that?  The whole reason I started going to walmart is because they have the best price on organic milk and today there wasn't even an empty spot where it should be. In other words Walmart might be regaining it's "dead to me" status.  Price matching is great and all but what's the point if they don't have what I want to buy?

So, to sum up.  I have a rain check for milk at Fry's burning a hole in my pocket.  Meanwhile my attempt to price match (and thus double my cheap milk purchasing because the rain check is good for a whole week!) failed.  But I tried so you know, A for effort or whatever.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Happily accidental

Moo requested pancakes for breakfast Saturday.  I, being a big fan of pancakes, was happy to comply.  I started with the old standby recipe out of the Red and white better Homes and Gardens cookbook. You know the one;

1 cup all purpose flour
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 Tablespoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 cup milk
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil

Or something close to that. (I'm going from memory here) The thing is; I've turned my back on a good few of those ingredients so I made substitutions as necessary.  Freshly ground whole wheat instead of all purpose flour, Maple syrup rather than sugar and coconut oil in place of vegetable oil.

When you use coconut oil in a recipe like this you have to be careful that it doesn't have prolonged contact with the cold milk before being mixed into the other ingredients or it will solidify and how will you mix it then?  It's extra tricky since when you're using the muffin method, as you do with pancakes, you want the mixing to be at a minimum all while keeping the dry separate from the wet as long as possible.

I generally measure all my wet ingredients into one large cup, mix them in the same and then introduce them to their dry counterparts once my griddle is hot and ready.  When using coconut oil I do things a bit differently.  I mix the other wet ingredients, pour them into the dry, mix a stroke or two and then add the oil.  Usually it works like a charm, except on Saturday it didn't

Saturday I guess there was a big cold milk pool right on top of the sloppy mixture as I poured in the coconut oil and it seized up like a tired engine on a February morning. I did not have time for that kind of nonsense.  I skimmed out the cold oil, broke it into pieces as small as I could quickly manage, threw it back in and mixed it all up.

The result was a marriage of the pastry and muffin methods.  Utterly delightful.  Those little shards of cold coconut oil melted as they met the griddle leaving my pancakes light, glorious and beautifully golden crusted.  I'm telling you, it was divine.  You should try it  sometime. 

Friday, September 21, 2012


Enzo came home Monday with a note and a concern. The note said that to celebrate the letter of the week (H) Friday (today) would be "hilarious hair day."

 I thought that sounded like fun but Enz was glum.  He said he didn't want hilarious hair, he wanted his hair to stay just the way it was.

Ziz caught sight of the note and had all sorts of ideas of how to make Enzo's hair hilarious. Slowly as the week progressed he became more open to the idea of hilarious hair.

 My original suggestion to him after I read the note and he declared his devotion to his current hairstyle was that I could make him a false beard to sport in honor of the occasion. He said "no," that day, but as Ziz worked on him about the whole concept he adopted the beard idea.

 First he said he wanted one "Just right here,(scratches chin)like Pop used to have," by the time Thursday rolled around I was able to talk him into a full beard. I pointed out that a goatee would have to be glued on and would thus itch. To that he said yarn whiskers on his cheeks "would be fine,"

 Notice I didn't post yesterday? Yeah, I was busy crafting this glorious piece.

What do you think? Hilarious?

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

And The Classroom Was My Stage

I think we've established that I was a drama geek in Jr/High School.  Right?  I really should have linked to all of my previous posts mentioning my theatrical experience but let's be honest, I'm not much for tagging, I've got eight-hundred-and-sixty-some-odd posts to sift through and I'm not a fan of the search function in this latest version of blogger so If you missed those posts you're out of luck unless you want to search for them yourself.

Finding a good monologue can be tricky.  There are a lot, and I mean a LOT of lame-o monologues out there.  When you're in ninth grade Drama class and students are selecting their own material you tend to be exposed to a good percentage of them. Though, the class assignment pieces were generally less awful than student selected audition pieces for high school musicals.  That was rough.

Ms Green, the Drama teacher at my jr high liked to assign one monologue per year and then round things out with plenty of lip-sync assignments. Obviously she held a pretty high standard when it came to the art form known as Theatre.

She chose the top students from among her classes and assembled them into what she called the "Traveling Troupe" When you were a member of said troupe you were excused from your classes for an entire day during which time you sat in the "Little Theater" and preformed your lip-sync over and over.  Other teachers were invited to sign up to bring their classes in for a bit of theatrical entertainment.

I was a star.

I was a member of every "Traveling Troupe" Ms Green got up during my years at the school.  I also played "Ma" in the school play "Mountain Madness" which was everything you'd imagine it to be based on its title and the fact that the director thought of lip-syncing as the ultimate among the theatre arts.

That is to say, it was crap.

Anyway, there was the matter of the monologue assignment lost and forgotten though it was among all the lip-syncing. Around the time the assignment came up my mother brought home a new book.  "Purple Green and Yellow" By Robert Munnsch.  I loved it.  I memorized it and I preformed it in Drama class.  By that time Ms Green had stopped organizing troupes for works as lowly as monologues so I never got the chance to preform it to a packed audience.  I had to settle for just the one day in class.

That is...Until today!

Zizza's class is studying Mr Munsch's work and writing him letters.  Ziz came home last week and told me when she learned that he'd written "Purple, Green and Yellow" I emailed her teacher almost immediately to ask if I could come and recite for the class.  She said yes.

It was fantastic, my favorite parent volunteer job to date.  The part where Zizza, who was holding Duke at her desk while I preformed, filled his hands with pointy pencils pointy side up(of course) and tried to douse him with hand-sanitizer was tricky, but since there wasn't an actual stage for me to stand on I was able to work a maternal intervention into my blocking without much trouble. So it as pretty much perfect.


Tuesday, September 18, 2012


I've been thinking lately about how I can fit sewing back into my life. I did alterations on a wedding dress a few weeks ago.  All of that work was done at my kitchen table after the kids were in bed.  

I've been telling myself that what I need to do is finish the organization project I started in my sewing room while nesting (yes, Duke is 16 months old) Once that was done, I was sure I'd be able to sew some everyday.  

That project is now in it's final stages.  Not done by any means but the framework is in place and I'm siphoning off the clutter bit by bit as I put things away on the new shelves.  

After completing that last alterations job I got to the point where I could put my machines (both of them!) back on my table.  I thought that meant I'd be able to sew in there while I continue to order and organize.  I forgot something though.

My second and third babies both shared rooms with the older sibling.  Ziz slept through Enzo's night time noise and he in turn slept through Moo's.  Now we have the girls paired and we thought the boys would be paired as well but Enz lost his ability to sleep through any baby noise since Moo moved out of his room.  As a result I made up the pack n' play in the walk in closet of the sewing room and that has become Dukes room.  Once he was sleeping with minimal night time noise we tried moving him back to the crib but he wasn't having it. So where does that leave my sewing room?

Well, he is in the closet so sometimes it has worked for me to sew while he's sleeping because I can close his door.  In the dead of summer though, the closet has to be open so the A/C will reach him.  Now things are starting to cool down a bit but he's learned to reach out of his bed and open the door.  If I leave the door closed he can reach the knob and he'll open and close and open and close and open and SLAM on and on instead of sleeping.

So anyway, my sewing room has been taken over.

I'm hopeful that the ever increasing darkness of winter will prove helpful in transitioning him into his crib.

Today I was working on another alterations job.  (The only time I sew anymore is when it's for someone else.  How sad.)  I brought my machine down to the dining room table and worked while I oversaw homework time.  It was fantastic!  I got my work done! They got their work done! Everybody wins! What a discovery!

I've set a goal for myself.  One sewing project a week.  This will be good for my creative soul, good for my general productivity levels and will hopefully ensure that I get a bit of sleep during the last week of October.   

Monday, September 17, 2012


I had a pretty mellow morning.  Moo was looking for things to scream about so naturally she found some but we managed to get through without getting too ruffled.

We stopped at Wal Mart on the way to pick up the kindergartners.  We needed milk, plants and a dinosaur. While we meandered through the store I lost track of a few minutes.  I checked the clock and realized I should have been mid-check-out if I were going to make a prompt appearance in the carpool lane at school.  I headed to the check out accepting the fact that I'd be cutting it close.  I hate to be late.  I really hate it.

At the front of the store I saw that all four self check-outs were busy.  Also, Duke was done with sitting in the cart.  On every shopping trip he reaches a point where he's had enough, stands up and lunges into my arms.  He repeats the process as fast as I can sit him back down.  Today he reached the lunging point right as I started to hurry.  I can't use a self check-out with a lunging baby, so their busyness didn't give me pause, I surged on by to the regular lanes and picked one with not much of a line.

Sadly, when it comes to check out lines looks can be deceiving. Ahead of me there was one person paying and one person waiting.  Apparently there seemed to be some kind of hold up with the person paying.

Of course.

That always happens when you're hurrying doesn't it?  I looked up and down to see if there was a faster line I could switch to but there wasn't, and with my luck I'd switch to a line with a longer wait.  That happens a lot when you're hurrying too.

Finally the cashier moved on to the next person in line.  She was a price matcher.  Also, she had a question about lay-away.  She asked the question and the cashier stopped to consider, decided she didn't know the answer and moved to call someone to find out.  As she reached for the call switch she got a paper cut from one of the adds taped to the checkout stand.  This did not help with her speediness in scanning groceries.  Then the layaway authority arrived and consulted with both customer and cashier about layaway policies.  At length they all turned back to the task at hand.  This is where I learned that the second half of the grocery order was made up of WIC items. So the customer paid her first bill and then they delved into her second order.  If you've used WIC in the past you know it's not the quickest of processes under which to check out.  I took a few deep breaths.  Finally it was my turn.

The cashier didn't see my plant on the conveyor belt. She tipped it over.  The plant was very dry, dirt everywhere.  She had to stop and clean it up.

20 minutes from the time I noticed I should be leaving I finally made it to my car.  School had been out for 10 minutes.  Once I drove there, 15 minutes late for pick-up, I had to unload my littler two and go inside to fetch the kinders from the library.

How neat is that?

A whole day's allotment of stress squeezed into a 25 minute window. 

Friday, September 14, 2012

What did I do today and why was it interesting?

I'm thisclose to done preserving all the fruit that's been sitting here all week.  Somedays I was waiting for it to ripen, other days it was waiting for me to have the time.  A few days I found we were both ready and I made jam and stuff.  Today I got through the last of it.  Tonight not a single fruit resides in a cardboard box anywhere in my home.  I do have a batch of pear butter cooking down in my crock pot that will have to be processed tomorrow but that's no big deal.

While I peeled and sliced sweet slimy things today Moo and her friend watched show after show on Netflix.  Or, as the friend called it they "watched a woovie"  Nothing like ignoring your children and the children you've agreed to babysit to make you feel like a responsible person.

Once I finished my fruit wrangling we headed to my sister in law's house to swim.  The weather was perfect for being outside and not in a pool.  It was crazy and fantastic.  September never feels this good.  Meanwhile, my children chattered their way, blue lips and all, through an hour or so of playing in the pool.  Lucky for me Duke agreed with my assessment that the water was cold and we were better off on the deck enjoying the cool breeze.  

Tired kids are easy to tuck into bed.  Well, at least they were tonight.  

There, that more or less is what I did. You'll have to excuse me for not answering the second half of my question.  I simply don't know.   

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Friends to know, and ways to grow, a reading rainbow

So, six months or so ago I grabbed Artemis Fowl book one while at the library.

I love cruising the library throwing books into the bag with reckless abandon. Anything that looks interesting. The sky's the limit. So much better than the book store where you have to consider and weigh choices and think about your budget.

Total downer.

Anyway, I checked out Artemis Fowl.  It was completely different than I'd expected.  What did I expect?  Well let's see, all I knew was that it was about fairies and the main character was named Artemis.  I may also have knows that Artemis was a genius. What do you think I was expecting?  What would you expect diving into a book with only those clues as to it's content?

I thought Artemis was a young girl who stumbled upon the world of fairies and proceed to deal with/ embrace the idea that magic was real.

Have you read Artemis Fowl?

Are you laughing?

In case you're not familiar with this series of books I'll just tell you that my assumed summation couldn't have been more wrong.

I'll also tell you that I've absolutely enjoyed these books.  I'm currently #22 on the waiting list at my local library for the final edition.  I have a whole stack of other things checked out right now.  I've had them for a week but I haven't cracked a single one, I'm too caught up in Artemis to bother with other stories.

Let me tell you what both irked and intrigued me when I read book one.  The title character, the hero of the book, as the antagonist.  I don't mean just a criminal like in so many fantasy novels where a corrupt government rules with an iron fist but honor is found among thieves existing outside the law.  I mean the actual bad guy as the hero.(but not in a save the day kind of a sense)

Meanwhile, the protagonist is a genuine likable character.  A character with whom you become more closely acquainted than her calculating and aloof counterpart.  Its aggravating and fantastic.

In other words, I'm a big fan.

Now I've reviewed a book and used the term "local library" I can't seem to close the post without including the words "But you don't have to take my word for it!"

Seriously though, you don't.  Read it yourself and then tell me what you think.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Mappy Hirthday Boo

Here it is. The first time I've managed to get a birthday minute picture of Moo. I looked it up yesterday, she was born at 3 AM.
I spent the morning remembering when she was a baby how I watched her explore the house safe and content and wondered to myself how and when she would feel that level of security again once it all hit the fan. I still don't have an answer beyond "not yet" but we're getting there.

Moo greeted her birthday with low expectations. I asked her last night what she'd like for her birthday breakfast. She picked oatmeal ie:the same thing we have every morning.
Any guesses what she asked for at lunch time?

 Peanut butter and jelly.

 I am not making this stuff up.

 I didn't fill her request for lunch. I hadn't bothered to thaw any bread since I was planning to give her a wide open choice of lunch options and figured we'd wind up with fast food of one kind or other.

 So she requested pb&j I looked at her, nonplussed for a beat or two and rephrased the question. She still didn't grasp that she could be thinking beyond the pantry. At that point I gave up, considered her preferences and drove to Chick fil a.

A request I did fill? She asked for a strawberry birthday cake. The Mr and Ziz were both worried when they heard her say it. Thoughts of processed pink strawberry flavored cake mixes haunted their minds as they brought up alternative suggestions. I saw what was going on and calmed their fears. Moo could certainly have her request for strawberry cake filled without subjecting the family to such horrors. Real berries, plenty of whipped cream and not a drip of synthetic anything made everybody happy, most of all Moo and that's what we were after.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Hair cuts

The other day we did this:
Ziz got her hair cut a few months ago. Since that time, Moo has been wishing for a hair cut whenever the thought occurred to her.

Because she wasn't consistently vocal in her wishing I went ahead and ignored it all summer.

Then I got my hair cut and she started wishing a bit more fervently. Soon thereafter we had a particularly rousing fight over getting all that curly hair combed. Once we composed ourselves I asked her if she wanted her hair cut and she said yes she did. So I made the appointment.

 I showed her different options by folding her hair at different lengths. At one point she said she wanted it like mine and I had to distract her real quick before she caught hold of that idea and stuck with it.

For one thing, can you imagine all the work it would take to style bangs on a squirmy curly headed four year old? I can imagine it and my imagination tells me it ain't pretty.

For two things, I am not a fan of my current length. Indeed, for me any thing longer than my jaw but shorter than my shoulder blades is hairstyle purgatory. Not that I find that range of length unattractive. Plenty of people look fantastic with medium length hair. The styling is what drives me crazy. Its simultaneously too long and too short for everything I like to do. This is why I currently wear a ponytail approximately 80% of the time. I'm getting close though, my hair is a bit past my shoulders now so soon I'll be out of this awful phase.

 I've been super tempted to cut lately. First I saw pictures of Anne Hathaway's new cut and I almost succumbed. On Saturday I read the delightful book Dotty and had to remind myself repeatedly that even if I got the short cut my hair still wouldn't look like Ida's as her's is painted on, and really, I've come so far. To give up now would be a waste of these past 2 years in which I've suffered through the hated growing process.

So I endure.

When I need to, I give myself this little pep talk "The braids," I say to myself "Think of the braids!" This is encouraging because I am a great braider and there are so many interesting braid variations happening right now.  I'm anxious to join in the braiding full force.  I can manage a few braided styles with my current length but I still can't do everything I'd like to try.

So anyway, I glossed over the medium length options with Moo and focused on either getting just a trim, or going short like Ziz.  Her answer was that she wanted it like Enzo's.  Then I nearly passed out at the thought of how cute she'd be with a pixie cut.  She stuck with that for about an hour and I was getting all kinds of excited about it. At this point I showed her our family picture on the wall and asked her whose hair she wanted it to look like, mine (Pixie) Zizza's (bob) or her's as a baby, Then she said she wanted it like Zizza's and she stuck with that.

Incidentally, here are the before and after photos of Zizza's recent cut that I never posted.

And now you're up to date on the status of our hair styles.

Monday, September 10, 2012

long day

I got up this morning, sent Ziz and Enz off to school, dressed Moo and Duke, went for a run, came home and showered.  By then it was time to go pick up the kindergartners (early release day) so I did that, stopped for gas on the way home.  Brought an extra five year old home with me to stay for an hour while I whipped my kitchen into shape so I could make three batches of jam before feeding my kids a late lunch and starting on a peach pie because I pealed more peaches than I needed for my three batches of jam.  Is it any wonder that at two thirty as I tried to convince Duke that his waking up after only an hour and a half of sleep (he usually naps 3 hours) was a mistake I found myself snuggled up with him in the pack and play? It was really quite comfortable.

(I actually wrote that on Friday.  Today I made another 3 batches of jam plus one simmering pot of pear butter and managed it without finding myself cocooned in infant bedding of any kind.)

Friday, September 7, 2012


It's the time of year when toy catalogs begin to be delivered more and more frequently.  I have to sneak them into the recycle bin right away or the kids will get attached to them and we'll be up to our ears in toy catalogs.  Actually, if I'm being totally honest, the immediate recycling of the catalogs is as much to keep myself away from them as the kids.  I love toys, at least I love the pretty heirloom quality toys featured in the catalogs I get.  I'll leaf through them time and time again.   If I don't watch it I'll end up wading through stacks of them by the time December rolls around.

We got the first catalog of the season this week, American Girl.  Zizza is entranced.  She's read every word in the entire thing.  She's considered every accessory and contemplated every doll, making comments as to which would be best suited to each of her friends.  Then she chose the doll of her dreams and declared herself saving up for it.

She picked "McKenna"girl of the year for 2012 "She looks just like me mom! Plus, I love gymnastics and she has gymnastics stuff!" Then I pointed out that she could save up for an 18" Madame Alexander doll like the one Moo got for Christmas last year.  They are nearly identical to American girls and she may have a chance of actually raising the amount of money one of them costs.  No, no, she told me those dolls won't do as they don't come with talents.  I then suggested that she make up the talent stuff  for her doll on her own.  The look she gave me made it clear she didn't think that idea was any good.

So, Ziz has decided to save up $185.00 for the McKenna starter collection.  If she takes the initiative to actually start earning some money I will be glad to help her find ways to make progress toward her goal.  For the time being though, she's counting on birthday money to make her dream come true.  I should probably remind her that she's never banked anywhere near that amount in birthday cash before.   Sometimes being the parent means being the party pooper.  In the mean time, if you're near by and have chores you're willing to pay a seven (almost eight) year old to do let me know.  We'll see just how serious the girl is about this doll buying business. 

p.s. My month of daily posting is up.  I'll be taking weekends off now.      

Thursday, September 6, 2012


My dog is suffering from an infected anal gland. He's here on the couch all drugged up and sleeping after having it lanced. He'll wear a cone on his head for 2 days.

Last time he had to wear a cone was when he got fixed.  I took him to work with me until he felt better and he sat in my lap while I sewed.

He is a 9 year old dog I spoiled him for the first year of his life, then Ziz came along.  He was still fairly spoiled.  Once Enzo entered the picture I was frazzled and didn't have any nurturing energy left to spare.  He went from feast to famine attention wise.

Just so you know spoiling your dog for years and then ignoring him is not a great way to have a healthy pet/owner relationship. The amount of guilt I associate with my pet is weighty indeed.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

School and fruit

Today I volunteered at school.  I got to hear Enzo answer a question about...Ok, I don't remember what question he answered but it was a good one.  Then later I got to watch his teacher show everyone his math page as an example of how to properly show your work. Do you think she picks the kid whose mom is in the classroom on purpose?

In Zizza's class I filed a mountain of math worksheets and I got to go with her to the library where she picked out which Nancy Drew she'll check out next week.  She couldn't check it out today because her current school library book is lost somewhere in the house. Wanna know where her home library book is?  Lost somewhere in the school.  Yeah, she left it in the hallway outside of specials yesterday.  Awesome right? She checked 3 different lost and founds today to no avail.

Today was also the pick up day for our big yearly fruit order.  The Mr picked it up bright and early this morning and I found it here waiting for me when I got home from school.  I shooed everybody into quiet time right away so I could get busy but I've discovered that I'm missing a few key ingredients for my jam.  I've never made jam before.  I'm not very preparred.  What this all means is that when the little folks wake up we've got to go to the store for juice (I'm going the sugar free route) and pectin and then tonight when I'd normally be posting I'll be getting my jam on.

Wish us luck, me with the jam and Ziz with the book finding

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Pre school girl

Moo's been waiting, dreaming of this day for months now.  Every night when I'd tuck her in she'd ask how much longer she had to wait.  Finally today she had her first day of preschool.  Tonight when I tucked her in she asked me when she'll get to go back.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Palm Frond

Think about a palm tree.  The tall tall trunk, the tuft of leaves at the top.  They're pretty thin, as trees go, what with not having a spread of branches and all.  Even so their trunks grow to have a pretty respectable diameter.  It's just that the height and lack of branches make you think the trunk is really skinny.

Looking at a palm tree it's obvious that it's leaves are larger than those of your average branchy deciduous, but just how big are they?  I'll answer that for you now: bigger than I thought.

This happened a while ago, May sometime.  We (Enzo, Moo, Duke and myself) were on our way home from my morning run at the park.  Maybe there had been a storm recently or something because when we passed the house on the corner with the palm trees Enzo found a dry palm frond in the yard.  He thought it was the coolest thing ever.  He loved the palm frond and he wanted to take it home with him.  Oh, and by the way it was as big as he was.

It was a hot morning and Enz was on his bike. He asked me if he could keep the frond and I told him if he could get it home himself he was welcome to have it until trash day. (confession: I didn't for a minute think he'd be able to drag that thing all the way to our house)

Enz shouldered the frond, climbed on his bike and carried it home.  The journey was not without it's challenges.  The Palm frond was unwieldy and Enzo didn't have much experience with steering his bike one handed. He stuck it out though, proved me wrong and kept that palm frond in the back yard until his father spotted it and tossed it on the fire. Enzo was sad when he noticed it was gone but his sadness was assuaged by his father's description of the fire ball it had made when it burned.


Sunday, September 2, 2012


Lately Ziz hasn't been very interested in choosing books at the library. She made her way through all the books in all the series she knew she liked and now she's in a bit of a book choosing slump.  At first I was pointing out books I thought looked interesting but I got tired of the blank stare she gave me in response so I quit suggesting and just started checking things out for myself.  If I don't say anything but she finds an interesting book sitting unobtrusively in the library bag she'll eat it up. Her desire to read hasn't slowed at all, it's the book selection process that's got her, so this is working.

Here are some of the books we've both enjoyed with this system.

Mr and Mrs Bunny--Detectives Extraordinaire  By Mrs. Bunny

The Runaway Princess By Kate Combs 

The Runaway Dragon By Kate Combs

The Little Secret By Kate Saunders (Actually I don't think Ziz read this one)

The Magic Half By Annie Barrows

Thora: A Half Mermaid Tale By Gillian Johnson

I'm now reading Once upon a Marigold by Jean Ferris I'm only 2 chapters in but I dig it so far.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

I may have shifted to an alternate universe

Reality as I knew it has shattered.

These thirty one years I've held with the notion that one can't have too many pairs of socks and underwear.  I've certainly believed in such a thing as having enough.  This is what has kept me from becoming a compulsive buyer of underpinnings.  Too many though? That's something I always viewed as unachievable.

I recently bought organizing boxes for the collective underwear drawers of my offspring.  Underwear drawers are the bane of my clothing storage organization.  I fold and stack and arrange but after one batch of clean laundry my work is undone.  I bought these boxes at Ikea.  The underwear drawers of all underwear wearing children are now subdivided to keep underpants apart from socks and socks out of the way of jammies etc.  I hope against hope that the problem has been solved.

As I addressed the bureaus of my girls I had to adjust the size of box needed for each category again and again.  The sock and underwear piles grew and grew.  I found panties in Moo's drawer that I haven't seen in months.  And socks?  Dear me the socks! The frequency with which my girls wear socks contrasted against my laundry rotation will tell you that each girl needs approximately one pair.  That number will certainly rise as temperatures (eventually) drop and they start wearing shoes apart from flip flops and jellies but for the time being one pair would more that suffice.  Ziz is required to wear closed toe shoes for school but she goes sockless in slip-on flats.

As I pulled pair after pair of socks from those drawers my view of the world shimmered at the edges.  "It can't be," I told myself. "There's no such thing as too many socks.  Everybody knows that.." but the walls of my reality shook, cracked and sparked until they fell and I was left sitting on the floor next to moo's bed with a lapfull of socks facing a new world.  A world in which my girls have way too many socks.  Even when winter does come and they wear socks everyday (Who am I kidding, they'll never wear socks everyday.  Not even in January) the top layer of their sock pile will be laundered and back in the drawer before they ever come close to reaching the bottom.

Too many socks.

I never would have guessed.

I did Enzo's drawer last.  He's got quite a plentiful supply of underpants.  This is largely owing to the fact that every pair he's ever owned since the dawn of his underwearing is still in his drawer.  The elastic has started to leave marks around his middle but he insists that they're still the right size and wears them without complaint.  On the sock front he's sitting comfortably at the plenty mark.  He actually wears socks to school everyday and every pair is in regular rotation. Still, we haven't had any incidences of no clean socks to put on. It's a perfect balance.

 I'm glad I finished with him.  Imagine if I'd started in his room and then was left at the end of the job with the disillusionment I found in the girls' sock drawers?