Monday, November 30, 2009

i have so many things to tell you, mah peeps

But I have neither the energy nor the brain power to recount all of the fabulousness that was last week.

Here are the things that will happen this week:
  1. ERGObaby review. Here. On this little bit of the blogoslovakia.
  2. Sleepy Wrap review and coupon code. Also here.
  3. Guest post at The Hotfessional. Link forthcoming.
  4. Pics of my new three year-old.
  5. Pics of my former maple trees.
Oh-- we got our pig today. HB calls it our Pig-Gi-Let. I call it DINNER. And it came to my house the only acceptable way: chopped up and wrapped in butcher paper. Our bacon and hams are in the smoker, and we'll get them as soon as they're done.

Fresh. Bacon. There's nothing like it.

And now I'm all distracted thinking about bacon.

Monday, November 23, 2009

this is how today went.

Miss O's stupid evil God-awful black cat, Sully, slept on my head last night. It wouldn't have been so bad if he hadn't just acquired THE FLEAS, and if I didn't have a hair appointment this afternoon. Thanks, cat.

Wee Man's preschool class celebrated Thanksgiving today, which involved short people sitting in three rows of 10 chairs, and sometimes singing a variety of preschool songs. It was exactly the same program we saw two years ago when Miss O was in preschool cute. Wee Man has been having a growth spurt of late, and is either eating, sleeping, or acting like a wackadoo. Naturally, during the "celebration", he chose wackadoo. Good work, kid.

The Electric Company sent the Asplundh Tree Service to our house today to remove the two enormous maples in our front yard. This is a happy/sad thing. I'm happy the trees won't fall on our house or vehicles, and The Mister is sad because he's a sentimental fella, and those trees have been there forever. Sorry, babe.

Sweets has discovered The Art of The Head Butt. And I think the bridge of my nose is broken. No, really. He performed the kind of move with his head that the fancy karate people use on boards when they want to bash them in half. I am in SO MUCH FACE PAIN right now that not even the lortabs help. You're advanced, karate-headed babeh.

I got a haircut tonight, because I was looking like some crazy, frizzed out, poorly dyed, bastard child of a mushroom and a loaf of bread. Now I'm looking nicey. Thanks, Tiff.

Whist sitting in the chair at the salon, because SALON is so much fabber than HAIRDRESSER, which makes me sound like an old lady or something, the junior salon girl pointed the hair dryer at my right ear drum and fired away for an hour, burnt both of my ears with the flat iron, also burnt my forehead with the flat iron, and sprayed me in the eyes with the spritzy stuff at least half a dozen times. You rock, junior salon girl.

But... I did get the diapers all washed and dried, the house is mostly cleaned, I remembered to make my contribution to the MOPS breakfast tomorrow, also baked a batch of bread, and The Mister and I made a grand pot of some seriously bad-ass bean soup.

And by BAD-ASS, I do not mean the kind of bean soup that gives you a bad ass.


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

in which i refer to glee, church, gays, and love. and no, you don't need to brace yourselves. i think.

So I turned on the television and watched Glee. And meh, or not-so-meh, it was okay. Some of the singing is amazing, but really, the auto-tune is over.kill. The people are all very clean, and pretty, and even the bad boy with the poser mohawk is clean and pretty. So meh.

Obviously, I am going somewhere with this. Because I ALWAYS go somewhere with my intensely clever posts.


Pretty blonde cheerleader girly's parents found out she was knocked up. And being the good, happy, always chipper Christian family, cheerleader girly's daddy kicked her out of the house after saying kind words like, WHO ARE YOU, and I DON'T EVEN RECOGNIZE YOU, and walking away from her when she said she needed her daddy to hold her and tell her everything was going to be okay.

We have a little portion of our church service where we share our joys and also things we would like people to pray about. For example, one time when Auntie Teff was visiting, someone asked for prayer for a man who had been kicked by a cow for the second time, and she just about wet her pants laughing. You can never tell when those cows are going to go all rogue...just look at the former governor of Alaska. That cow went ALL KINDS OF ROGUE, and got a book deal.*

Mooooo-ving on. Yes, people, that is one smoooooth segue there.

So a guy stood up and said he would like prayer for a member of his family who "has decided to go and join the gay community" and he then went on and on about his views of homosexuality, and on and on... and on and on... and he said a number of things that were not really very nice.

My stomach was in a knot, because sitting right behind me were the parents of one of our openly gay church members. Every comment about "the gays" felt like the stab of a knife, and he wasn't even talking about my child. I can't even imagine how it would have felt to listen to him talk if my child was one of "the gays". I was hurt when that stupid old man said my kids were bad last weekend. And that stupid old man wasn't slamming my kids, he was attacking my parenting. I can't imagine how it would feel to listen to someone bash my child.

The gold star goes to me, for making this about me!!!

It is so incredibly frustrating to be around people who claim to love the God who teaches that we should love our neighbors, and with their next breath preach rejection to people who are different from them. I am reading a book by Philip Yancey called What's So Amazing About Grace?, and one of the chapters is about his relationship with a friend who is gay. It's actually about way more, and way deeper points and ideas and stuff, but just try to stick with me on this one. Some Christian media outlet is interviewing the friend's mother, and asks her a question (totally paraphrasing here): You're a Christian, don't you find your son to be an abomination? She replied, He might be an abomination, but he's still our pride and joy.

We all are some sort of abomination, yet each of us is someone's pride and joy. Everyone has some sort of failure going on in their lives, and I'd wager that more often than not? We all suck in way more ways than we're willing to let on. I'm not sure when the free passes to overlook our own abominationosity were handed out, but there's a certain group who received too many.

If we did nothing but treat every person as a person of great value, this world would be a completely different place. Each of us is important. Each of us has worth. Each of us is someone's pride and joy. Never forget that, not even for a second. Act and speak accordingly.**

*In light of my own position in this post, I apologize for mocking the former governor of Alaska. I'm sure she's someone's pride and joy.

**You know I love a healthy debate, but so help me, if any of you are rude, I will delete your asses and close the comments so fast your heads will spin. Even if you are someone's pride and joy.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

kids are not at all like a box of chocolates.

Because when I buy chocolate, I get exactly the kind of chocolate I want. Every. Single. Time.

With short people?

Sometimes they crap their pants and hide the evidence. Sometimes you find them cuddled in a heap with their siblings, each proclaiming the others' bestness.

And that is not at *ALL* like chocolate.

Monday, November 16, 2009

i yelled at an old man.

My favorite shopping event of the year was Saturday, the World-Wide Christmas Fair at a local church.

Let me 'splain... no, that take too long. Let me sum up.

Amazing artisans from third world countries, fairly-traded gorgeous things. And also, egg-salad sandwiches and yummy soup for lunch.

I was there with the three boys, and we had successfully navigated the fair, and had successfully consumed our lunches, and Wee Man and HB had very nearly successfully put their booster seats away. You see, they were eating soup, and boosters are essential for cleanliness in soup eatestry. And by VERY NEARLY SUCCESSFUL in putting their booster seats away, I mean that the seats were pretty much where I asked for them to be put, and the boys only sounded like one 2 year-old and one 4 year-old, not a bazillion.

I call that a win.

The old man at the adjacent table? Want to know what he said?

You're absolutely right I'm going to tell you anyway.

He said to me, looking me straight in the face:

Did you happen to notice that little girl sitting next to you is just eating her lunch and being quiet and so good, and well, your boys are not being good. I shouldn't say NOT GOOD, but well, they're not.

I looked back at him. I believe my eyes were as wide open as they have ever been, and a lady from the kitchen ran out to give me a spatula to SCRAPE MY JAW UP OFF THE FLOOR.

He was looking for an answer, and also, I'm guessing his version of THE ANSWER did not have the word asshole in it. Also probably not fucker. So I took a moment, gathered my thoughts, and translated them into the vulgarity-free version.

There are some things that you should just never say out loud. And THAT WAS ONE OF THEM. My boys are two and four. They are acting like 2 and 4 year-old boys. Do you think I haven't noticed their behavior? Here's a little suggestion for you: THE NEXT TIME YOU WANT TO TELL A MOTHER WITH THREE LITTLE BOYS ABOUT THEIR BEHAVIOR? BITE. YOUR. TONGUE. SIR.

I admit, I said SIR in the calling-him-an-asshole-voice.

Oh, well, I was just teasing, don't take it so seriously, he said, clearly uncomfortable. AS WAS APPROPRIATE FOR HIS SITUATION.

No, you weren't teasing, nobody says things like that and is really, honestly kidding. You were being mean, and I don't appreciate it. My children are acting their age. There was no need for you to say mean things about them, and infer that I'm a bad parent.

I gathered up my sweet boys who were looking more than a little surprised that I had just chewed out Mr. Curmudgeon Pants McGee, and we left.

I think he got the message.

Friday, November 13, 2009

i love interwebs search results

I love when the Googles and the Yahooligans send me traffic from people in need of assistance. For example, this poor lady.

38 weeks pregnant and farts stink.

Let's all sigh in a most sympathetic fashion with our poor, poor friend. On the count of three... ONE. TWO. THREE.


Seriously. You're 38 weeks pregnant and only now your farts have begun to stink? For real? Oh, honey. It will be okay. Here's what you should do: blame the baby daddy. But only for two more weeks. Then you can blame the baby.

Thursday, November 12, 2009


We have been sick. And by *WE* I mean Miss O, Wee Man, HB, and Sweets. The doctor believes they had The Wicked And Evil H1N1. And really? It's been unpleasant, but that is all. They are not short people who have a pre-existing health conditions that make The Wicked And Evil H11N1 a threat to their lives, and for that I am thankful.

It is not easy to have four small people sick at the same time. They're mostly nice when they're unwell, except for HB who is about as belligerent as a bull with a bee in his bonnet when he's under the weather.

Even so, between wiping noses and butts and pouring drinks and the occasional thermometer in the keister, it is easy to forget to eat your lunch or make coffee and drink it, or shower. It's much easier to throw a great big pity party just for me.

I was standing outside soaking in the gorgeous autumn air when it occurred to me... I am here. I am present in the lives of my precious short people. I am the arms they fall into when everything is wrong, when they are delirious with fever, when they need something, me, anything. Everything.

I took a few more deep breaths of the warm air and headed back inside, unexpectedly refreshed.

I am the mama.

I am here.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

friends in need

This post is being featured on hundreds, possibly thousands of blogs today, to show support to the Spohr family and to raise support for their foundation Friends of Maddie. Today I pray for the parents of a child I did not know, because I cannot imagine being able to breathe again after suffering a loss like theirs.

I don't think there are too many people reading this who didn't have their heart broken on April 7th of this year. That's the day we learned that Madeline Alice Spohr, whom we all knew as Maddie from The Spohrs Are Multiplying, was suddenly taken from her parents, Heather and Mike, when a respiratory infection coupled with a collapsed lung was more than her 17-month-old body could fight. Thousands of people across the country mourned with Heather and Mike, and thousands came to their support by donating to the March of Dimes in Maddie's memory.

Since then, the Spohrs, along with family and friends, have created Friends of Maddie, a fund dedicated to supporting families of critically ill or prematurely-born infants during their stay in the Neo-Natal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) with supplies, help finding temporary lodging (because the NICU isn't always within commuting distance
of home), and by creating a network of support. Friends of Maddie uses your donation to put together Support Packs for families who find themselves overwhelmed with the care of an at-risk newborn. The packs include items such as reusable water bottles, snack bars, tissues, mints, and most importantly, a tri-fold binder with a note pad and accordion file to keep track of paperwork.

"We're hopeful it will make it at a little easier for parents to keep track of everything," Heather says."You get SO many papers, business cards, etc., every day, and it's hard to keep track of everything."

She should know, she lived the experience. Maddie's sixty-eight-day stay in the NICU is chronicled on Heather's blog and her husband Mike's blog as well. Readers across the country followed every setback and every victory. What message would she like to pass on to parents in the same situation?

"Patience. Take things a day at a time and live in the moment. Don't look down the road or things will get REALLY scary and overwhelming," shared Heather.

The reaction to the packs has been terrific, according to Heather, "We've been getting a FANTASTIC response from everyone! We weren't expecting such a big response so we are really behind in getting back to everyone, but it's a
good problem to have!"

By now, you are all wondering how you can help, right? I knew it. You people rock. Your options:
* Donate! I know, the economy is bad right now, but every little bit helps. Or...
* Let your local NICU know about Friends of Maddie, or...
* Do you work for a company that might bring a valuable service to NICU parents? Contact FoM! Or...
* Just spread the word! Write a blog post! Send out a tweet! Y'all know how this works!

Mike and Heather's loss is unimaginable. In spite of their grief, they have found a way to pay forward all the love poured out from thousands of hearts across the internet. Tell your friends about Friends of Maddie.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

a little ranting for a tuesday.

I'm so over hype. SO. OVER. I'm exhausted by the media dictating the next crisis, I'm tired of hearing about H1N1, if I never heard the word immunization again, I'd be totally fine.

Seeds. Tiny little blips on the radar of our minds, dripping like Chinese Water Torture. It's ridiculous. The drips and blips put chinks in the armor that is our sanity, our reason, our common sense; first one, then two, then four, then the deluge opens and we are drowned in a deluge of scary sensationalization.

Yes, I said sensationalization. Blogger does not think it is a word, but I do. So there.

Whether or not you get your family vaccinated for the seasonal flu or H1N1 is your business. There are people who really, truly should have the vaccines. But really? People who are scared shitless because they believe every last word they hear on Fox News or CNN or in the Batavia Daily should take a deep breath and dig a little deeper. You owe it to yourself and your family to read as much as you can from as many sources as possible. Read. Learn. Try to understand both sides of the argument.

Our culture is espoused in fear. Have you seen the news? It's all murder this, armed robbery that, people dying here, terrorism there. Media governs culture. Not to go all conspiracy-theory on you, but really? When we're all on the Fear Wagon, we do what the media tells us to do. We get the shots. We hate. We protest. We purchase. We don't always exercise our independent thinking.

And that is not good, people.

Learn. Think. Study. Then act.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

love etsy in times of cholera swine flu

Hello, friends, and welcome. Today, in an effort to escape the vile germage in my own home, I am going to take you on a fun, fun trip. And it is called WINDOW SHOPPING ON ETSY.

I know there are still a few of you who live under a rock haven't perused the glorious wonder that is Etsy. Some of you haven't even pulled your heads out of your keisters heard of Etsy.

For shame.

Once you discover Etsy, you will never need to shop at the local Tarzhay again. Especially when this happens. Except for, you know, toilet paper and borax.

Let us begin.

The top.

And also? I would like to know where that girl purchases her undergarments, because them's some perfect breasts, people. And that flat, flat belly. Someday, maybe she'll have four short people running around coughing like they have the consumption and will turn to the interwebs to sigh over the flat belly of some lovely young thing.

The skirt.

Except I can't have this skirt, because it's a reserve listing for someone else. I hope she loves that skirt. And also? I hope her ass looks just as smackable as the one on the girl in the picture.

The knee socks.

And also, I will take a pair of those calves. Just in case I ever purchase a pair of tall boots that don't fit over the ones I already have.

The boots.

I really like these, however, I really, really really reallyreallyreally like boots, and wish I had tons and tons of them, so any boots would have done quite nicely.

The necklace.

In sterling silver, not gold. I never actually wear gold. Yellow makes me look like a cadaver.

The bag.

I may have actually already purchased this bag. The Mister will tell you I have a problem with bags. But I haven't purchased one since my super amazing trip to Trader Joe's with my friend K from Philly, who some of you know as The Well-Read Hostess. She wrote a post the other day called I Kissed A Girl, and sadly, it wasn't about me.

Was that enough to distract you all away from the fact that I bought that bag? No? Dang.

The outerwear.

It's a babywearing poncho. Who knew there was such a thing? I totally need this thing because, hello, people, I am always tying that little fella on, and one of us ends up chilly. every. single. time.

Oh, Etsy.


Friday, November 6, 2009

an open letter to my son

My dearest, darling HB,

You are the biggest surprise I've ever had in my entire life. Who knew a nine pound twelve ounce baby could arrive after only 22 weeks of being pregnant?!?! You've added to my life in so many ways, I can barely keep track.

The dimple. In your right cheek. Yes, the one on your face. It kills me. Your big, blue eyes, your gape-mouthed-full-of-teeth smile, that laugh that causes people to stop in their tracks and join in your fun and merriment.

You are so adorable, I can't even stand you. You are going to turn three soon, and you'll probably be hell on wheels, because that's what three year-olds are. We learned quickly that the Terrible Twos was a total misnomer, coined by someone who thought two year-olds were slightly taller and a teensy bit more well-spoken than they really are.

But here's the thing: YOU ARE NOT THREE YET. So dispense with the constant screaming, and I swear to the Almighty Maker of our world if you call me STUPID STUPEY POOPEY one more time I just might start acting all stupid stupey poopey just to show you how good you really have it, buster.

And while we're at it? I really, really, really do not enjoy sliding my half-asleep self under your bed in the middle of the night when you have lost your binky. Maybe if you shouted at me a little less and kept your saucy mouth closed, you wouldn't lose your binky. Just a suggestion.

One final thought: Candy is not a meal.

Hugs and kisses,
aka Stupid Stupey Poopey Head

Thursday, November 5, 2009

apparently there was this situation with our water, or, i saved lives by spending $40 at the StuffMarts

Last Friday, I called my friend K from up the street because her family was planning to join my family for our Friday night tradition, Pizza And A Movie. This is neither here nor there, but I was surprised that instead of talking about olives and mushrooms and peppers and stuff, she wanted to talk about water.


I was bracing myself for the sort of conversation that The Mister and I had after he finished reading the Comprehensive History of Salt a few years ago, and he was just so taken with salt that he would talk and talk and talk and talk about it until I wanted to bury my head in the salt shaker and die.

It seemed that our village had the bad kind of e Coli in the water. And to make life superamazing and ultra-awesome, we had a YOU MUST BOIL YOUR WATER OR SPEND THE REST OF YOUR LIFE (or week) POOPING YOUR BRAINS OUT WITH THE POISONING.

That's so odd, I said to me, you'd think the Village People (and yes, that does include the Phone-Conversation-About-The-Goat Lady) would have told us we need to boil our water.

And also not wash our dishes.

Or laundry.

Or bathe.

But maybe I was just over-thinking the situation.

Nobody came knocking on our door. Nobody came around with a letter, or information of any kind. What *did* they do?

THEY LEFT A NOTICE ON THE DOOR OF THE GAS STATION. That's just what they did. Somebody mentioned that they might have seen something about some sort of water issue on the news.

The gas station. And the only reason I know this is because before I could go to the StuffMarts to BUY WATER SO WE DIDN'T DIE, I had to put gas in my supersweet mini-Coopervan.

Village People = FAIL.

I loaded up the short people, and bought 20ish 2.5 gallon jugs of water for us, and my in-laws, my friend K from up the street, her parents, and the three elderly people who live on my street and who don't really get out much.

The more I thought about the situation, the more infuriated I became. There are maybe 100 houses in my village that have municipal water. And that's a stretch. The Village People couldn't get their act together for one itty bitty problem, run to Max, pay the $7 to get 100 copies made, and drop by those 100 houses to inform us?

It gets better. The notice on the gas station door said that the Village People had known FOR AN ENTIRE MONTH that there was e Coli in our water. Since October 1, 2009, the notice read. Must be we just had the COMPLETELY NORMAL KIND of e Coli, that is until October 28, when THE ACTUALLY BAD KIND of e Coli showed up. AND THEN!!!!! They waited two whole days before not telling us our water was dangerous.

Not enough?

It gets more better. When the time came that the water was deemed fit for human consumption? They also kinda sorta forgot to tell us. I consulted the Googles yesterday, after dinner, and the Googles told me my water was safe, and had been safe since at least 10 o'clock that morning. THANK YOU, OH GREAT AND POWERFUL GOOGLES!!!! I got a text message tonight from a neighbor asking if I'd heard if the water was good. It had been deemed safe for a day and a half, and they had no idea.

What the bloody hell, people. I hope nobody got sick, but if someone did? I hope they sue the pants off the Village People.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

wordless wednesday: all of us, all together.

For a not-even-remotely-wordless Wednesday post, check me out at He Read/She Read today. Jim Styro, of speaking in CAPS, and I discuss Yann Martel's brilliant novel Life of Pi.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

lesson of the week.

We were putting the boys to bed tonight, The Mister was standing on the bottom step of the bunk bed ladder cuddling Wee Man, and I was sitting next to HB. The Mister's hand was dangling between two of the steps of the ladder, practically begging to be bothered.

Hey, HB, I said, tickle Daddy's hand.

So he did, obedient child that he is. The Mister rested his hand on one of the steps, hopefully out of reach of HB's tickling.

HB, tickle Daddy's hand again. Yes, I am five.

HB obliged, and started messing with The Mister again.

Get your hand off my pec.ker. The Mister was not happy.

Nice vocabulary lesson, Daddy, I said. HB, do you know what a pec.ker is?

Yeah, it's a bird and it bonks things with its nose and eyes. It's blind because it bonks things with its eyes.

So now you know, people. A pec.ker bonks things and is blind. Little ones speak only the truth.