Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Flip Flops

No, this will not be a post about the upcoming Presidential election.

Instead, it will be about my daughter's 7th birthday. She said she wanted a cake that looked like a pair of flip flops.

I, on the other hand, had no idea the "flip flop" concept would end up meaning so much more.

About a week before her birthday, she informed me that she wanted a HUGE birthday party with all of her friends. Now for one thing, she hasn't figured out that I'm WAY too uptight and get myself far too stressed out over something like throwing a big birthday under a week.....for 20 kids. There's themes, party favors, games and creativity involved. Not to mention, there wouldn't be enough time to get a refill of valium. So, I talked to her a few times about how it would be better to wait until next year so we would have more time to think about it and plan. I even used it as a teaching opportunity by introducing her to words like "ettiquite" and "neurotic".

On Monday, she mentioned to me that she told her friend that it was her birthday on Wednesday. Her friend told her she HAD to have a party. They decided that each of them would go home and make 10 invitations to be handed out the next day.

Again I explained to her the proper ettiquite of party invitations and that one day's notice was simply not enough. She was still intent on making her own invitations and sat herself down at the table for the rest of the evening busy at work making her own invites. She had my husband write on the inside "Come to my party at 7 pm." He thought he was just humoring her. Surely she wasn't REALLY going to hand them out. She was so very proud of her finished product. I remember making a mental note that I needed to make sure to check her backpack so that they didn't end up at school the next day. Of course, that thought disappeared as fast as it came.

She came home from school and said that one of her friends said that she couldn't come unless she got a "real" invitation. Lauren, of course, got upset with me for not telling her about making "real" invitations in the first place. ( I am now banging my head against that same wall that I must have been talking to during my hundred conversations about this very thing ).

I had two moms call and inquire about "the party". That's when I think I realized this was not going to end well. No, there is no party. Yes, I would have sent out a "real" invitation that would say more than just "come to my party" and crayon pictures of flowers and hearts written on a torn out piece of spiral notebook paper. Those of you reading this who received one, maybe you could loan yours to me so that I can post a picture.

So Wednesday night came and so did this:

You should have seen my husband and I run into our bedroom wandering aimlessly saying things like, "Freak!/What the freak?/What are we supposed to do NOW?/What the heck?" How could we come up with a few extra kids on such short notice? I started thinking of the families I knew who had a bunch of kids. "Call the Seeleys. They have four. Then the Booths. They are just down the street and have a good 4-5 that I'm sure they would loan me for an hour or so. That would be enough to make it look legit, right?" I finally had to face the reality that it was just too late. The next door neighbor friend mentioned she even wore a shirt with flip flops on it. Somehow that just made it all even worse.

Lauren was all grins that someone showed up to her party and Jack said something like "I wonder who else is coming to our party?"

Great. I was already starting to take inventory to make sure I had enough clean forks in case some more unexpected guests showed up.

So, she got to hang out with us and a few grandparents. I sure know how to put the "flop" in flip flop. Thank heavens I don't have to do another birthday until next March.

What lesson did I learn? To never underestimate the determination of a child.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

I would imagine

that the looptape of a two-year old's idea of a knock knock joke would go a little something like this:

2 year old: "knock knock"
me: "Who's there?"
2 year old: "nana"
me: "nana who?"
2 year old: "knock knock"
me: "Who's there?"
2 year old: "nana"
me: "nana who?"
2 year old: "knock knock"
me: "Who's there?"
2 year old: "orange"
me: "orange who?"
2 year old: "knock knock"
me: "Who's there?"
2 year old: "nana"
me: "nana who?"
2 year old: "knock knock"
me: "Who's there?"
2 year old: "Boo"
me: "Boo who?"
2 year old: "knock knock"
me: "Who's there?"
2 year old: "nana"
me: "nana who?"
2 year old: "knock knock"
me: "Who's there?"
2 year old: "knock knock"
me: "knock knock who?"
2 year old: "Who's there?"
me: "I don't know. Who's there?"
2 year old: "knock knock"

me: initiate distraction and redirection tactics

Monday, August 27, 2007

Funny for the day.....

I asked my little kindergartener if he has made any new friends yet at school. He said, "Yeah."

I said, "Well, what are their names?"

His reply? "I don't know. I can't read."


But he can do super awesome cheer moves.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

My current read....

Well "current" read is actually a little deceptive. That would imply that I get to read often and have a library of books at my disposal.

I honestly can't remember the last book I read. I used to read all of the time. Grisham, Clancy, Crichton, the newspaper.

And then I had kids.

I grew tired of reading and re-reading pages because I would go days in between chapters and forget what was going on. My short-term memory is shot. ( see my previous entry: )

My husband, on the other hand, has a book on his person at all times. Somehow he can tune out the chaos around him and read anything. And if it's not a book, it's the latest Popular Science or National Geographic magazine. He can disappear for 10-20 minutes at a time reading in you know where.......uninterrupted I might add.

So, I thought I'd try picking up a book again. I started to read a book that my dad gave my husband for father's day one year after we had boy #1 called "So you want to raise a boy?" by Cleon Skousen.

And of course, we continued the trend by having boy #2 and boy #3. I figured I could get some pearls of wisdom from the book myself. I grew up being the only girl with four brothers. You'd think I should know how to raise boys. I shouldn't be shocked to see them sit so quietly while their favorite tv show is on then instantly turn my family room into a WWF match when it goes to commercial. I should expect that I will be alternately used as a human rock wall or a trampoline. I shouldn't be at all surprised when I see rows and stacks of the most unlikely objects around my house. And I certainly shouldn't be alarmed at the constant state of the "boys" bathroom.

So I guess what I'm hoping to get out of this book is some reassurance that all boys are hyper, squirmy, rambunctious balls of energy. They are little experiments in the laws of physics. For example, I've learned a new meaning to the theory E=mc2. It really represents a child's energy level.
E (Energy) =m (mass) X c (curiosity) squared.

And I'm convinced that all boys contain the make up of both potential and kinetic energy. Potential energy in the form of "Look at me mom. I'm about to take your good dinner fork and go out to the sandbox and use it as a shovel".
Kinetic energy having to do with the mass and speed of an object ( the boy ) as they see how many times they can spin around before they get dizzy and smack each other on their way down to the ground. And of course there is spontaneous combustion. Not the literal bursting into flames kind of combustion, but the one minute I can sit still and the next minute I'm pretending to be a rocket ship kind of spontaneous combustion.....or think it's a good idea to wear milk boxes.

I'm only on chapter 5 where he talks about the two year old boy. And at my pace, I'll finish the book by the time they go on their missions.

Monday, August 13, 2007

More pictures as promised:

Here is the front.
We added black shutters on the 2 large windows and painted the popout on the right window black. Under that window is a wrought iron window box that looks like this:

It's hard to see but we put new light fixtures on the outside. There is a hanging wrought iron lantern on the porch and 2 wrought iron fixtures on the sides of the garage like these:

Just to the left of the front door is the formal dining room. I painted the top part of the walls the beige color. On the white parts will be wainscotting. We also put in a new chandelier. I really like it!

To the right of the front door is the living room. We'll put trim around the windows.

Straight ahead from the front door is the large family room. I still need to paint the red wall.......back behind that wall to the right of the french doors is a nook where we will put built in shelves and a corner desk.

This is looking into the family room and into the kitchen eating area from the hall. All of this space including the living room and dining room and down the hall will have the teak wood laminate floors.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

House demo update:

We've taken out all of the tile and carpeting in the areas where we will be laying wood laminate floors. Tonight, I'll go over and start to paint.

We've also added shutters and a window box to the front and painted the front door. I'll post some more pictures later................

1st Day of School!

Jack started Kindergarten this week. I feel like a bad mommy because I wasn't as nervous or anxious about it like I was when Lauren started school for the first time. It could be that I've clued in to the fact that fewer kids at home = I can get things done.

Jack gets to ride the bus to school. Let me tell ya....I'm loving the bus idea. Not only does Jack think it's cool, but it saves me from living in my car during the day with school pick-ups and drop-offs. Oh and it also adds an extra hour that he is gone in the mornings. It's a win-win situation all around.

Lauren started 2nd grade this year. Her teacher is about to have a baby so it should be interesting to see how this year pans out. At dinner after her first day, she said to me, "Mom? Did you ever have an embarrassment when you were my age?"

I had to think about it and just responded something flipant like "I think so."

I noticed she was scooting her food around on her plate as if she was deep in thought. I realized there was something behind her question so I decided to dig a little further. I said, "Well. I remember when I was about your age, I accidently went into the boys bathroom instead of the girls bathroom! Luckily there were no boys in the bathroom at the time but I really felt silly! Why? Did something happen to you today at school?"

She said quietly, " have to promise not to laugh. But after I went to the bathroom you know down the hall from the classroom.....I accidently went to my 1st grade classroom instead of my new one."


I said, "What happened? Did your old teacher see you?"

Lauren timidly replied, "Yeah. She said, 'OH! Hi Lauren!' "

I tried but I couldn't hold back the laughter. Which was good because it helped her laugh about it too. I could tell she was really embarrassed about it.

So....that was her first day of school. One I'm sure she will remember.

And some random pictures of the other cute kids hanging out at the bus stop:

Monday, August 06, 2007

I stand corrected....

I spoke too soon when I said playing hangman with my 6 year old wasn't much fun.

That is until I went to "Meet the teacher" night at my daughter's school. On the board in her classroom I noticed a cute little sun with sunbeams sticking out from the center. On each of the sunbeams, a soon-to-be second grader could write what it was they liked to do.

I want to remember never to play hangman with the child who wrote this little gem:

"I lick too rid my bick"

Those darn silent "e"s.

I seriously can't stop giggling.......

Speaking of my "What were you like in High School" post:

I realized my 20 year High School reunion will be coming up next year. Holy Cow! 20 years??? I have friends my age who have kids graduating from High School this year.

As I was doing some cleaning the other week, I came across some oldies but goodies. I thought I'd share my keen '80's fashion style with you. Big hair, mullets and all........

Oh yeah....and you aren't allowed to laugh out loud.

First, I'll start out with my Sophomore year. This is me. I learned to play the marimba in the Marching Band. Yes. I was a band geek for a season. I had actually never played a marimba before in my life and one day, my twin brother came home from marching band practice and mentioned they needed a marimba player. So, me being the type who loves a challenge, I took home the music and made myself a "marimba" using folded up napkins on the dining room floor. I practiced my "marimba" all weekend and when Monday came, I showed up to practice after school and played along. With 2 mallets in each hand no less. I remember the two girls who played the bells next to me being totally jealous when I told them I learned to play over the weekend.

And here's me at my Junior Prom. Would you believe the guy I went with was 14? I was only 16 and two years in the whole scheme of things really isn't a huge deal. But he was cute and played football and that's all that really mattered back then.

Then we have my Senior year. This is me in our Madrigal choir group. My guy friends all had competitions our senior year to see who could grow their hair the longest by the end of the year. This picture was taken in May so as you can see, the hair growth is quite impressive in this picture. My Senior year boyfriend is they guy sitting on the right. He was a total preppy boy and drove a black Saab with a moonroof. I thought it was cool. we are at the Senior Prom. Me and my Madonna-esque gloves.

20 year reunion? Bring it on!