Showing posts from May, 2009

All Over The Place

Has no one noticed that I have been without a working dishwasher for several weeks now? Do I receive no kudos for not even complaining about this situation? Does anyone even realize how many dishes I have washed by hand in the past month?

I think I'm needing a little pat on the back right now.


I'm not sure whether I've ever addressed this issue here before, but Larry tends to be a very thorough person. Whatever he does, he does to sort of an extreme (I mean, let's face it, he's got 6 kids). So when we bought this house 2 years ago and decided we needed to install ceiling fans in several rooms, the man went into hyperdrive. Whereas most people would have moseyed on down to the local Home Depot and come home with some fans that same day, Larry devoted a good 2 weeks of his life deciding which fans to buy and where to buy them.

He researched. He Googled. He compared and contrasted. There were spreadsheets, people, comparing various fans and their …

Repairmen And Pinkeye And Naps, Oh My!

I'm still here! There's been a mutiny of sorts by the labor-saving appliances in this household - both the dryer and the washer joined the dishwasher on the endangered species list, so I've been too busy beating our clothes clean on a rock by the creek (and, boy, did that piss off the golf course people - who knew they considered that to be trespassing?) to find time to blather on about my woes here. Fortunately, the repairman showed up yesterday and fixed the washer for free and the dryer for almost free, plus gave me a long lecture on the maintenance requirements for both machines - requirements which render the moniker "labor-saving" just a tad inaccurate, I believe.

Anyway, he looked at the dishwasher also and extricated a 50-cent paintbrush from its innards. He took the time to point out to me what I already knew - that throwing out the dirty paintbrush and buying a brand-new one might have been more cost-effective than replacing the now jammed dishwasher …

Why Bad Things Happen To Skinny People

You know, I think now would be a good time to just sit back and enjoy a bit of poetic justice. I mean, who amongst us would have dreamed that showing off our bods in skinny jeans could be so dangerous?

And - while we're busy asking questions here - who says that life is unfair?

Not me. Not anymore.

Title Currently Unavailable

Today was Susie's birthday and I've decided to spare y'all a picture of the cake. You're welcome. She received several presents, among them a pack of M&M's, a Hershey bar (with almonds), and a small carton of iced animal cookies. Also, a plastic pail and shovel and a coloring book, all from the dollar aisle at Target.

I know, I know, we spoil her. She is, after all, the baby of the family.

The bicycle from Grandma and Grandpa has not yet materialized. I couldn't bring myself to buy the Dora the Explorer model. I haven't sunk quite that far yet. Give me another day or two, all right?


It's raining again. I don't mind the rain so much, but I do mind Susie peeing in her rainboots. It gets old.


Remember Larry's plans for a flagstone patio? Apparently, one of our neighbors complained to the local housing association that our backyard has been an unsightly mess for a year now. I wish I knew who it was, s…


Susie's birthday is tomorrow, and Grandma and Grandpa want her to have a bicycle. Simple, right? I went to Target this evening after Susie went to bed, but all they had in her size was a Dora the Explorer bike. I couldn't deal with that, so I moseyed on over to KMart and found a simple pink bike complete with training wheels. Mission accomplished!

Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha! I crack me up!

I came home and woke up Larry to assemble the bike. Ever the dutiful husband, he complied while I went out to take care of some other things. When I returned, he was crawling around the den floor searching for a missing nut. The bike was completely assembled except for the seat, and I waxed ecstatic over the pink pedals, agog with anticipation of Susie coming downstairs in the morning and discovering her BRAND NEW BIKE in the middle of the living room. It would be the best present ever!

"Can you help me look for this thing?" asked Larry.

"Sure! Maybe it fell in the box! Let's…

Word To The Wise

Our home school clubs got together at a park yesterday afternoon, where the kids played happily and we moms chatted and shared my chocolate. (And when will you people figure out that this homeschooling thing? It's all about us moms. If the kids were in school, we might have to get full-time jobs or something. And what fun is that?)

Where was I? Oh, yes - I noticed that one of my friends had 2 of her fingers taped together and asked what happened. Turns out she had broken one of them (pay attention now) by tripping over a vacuum cleaner cord. Who knew that cleaning your carpets could be so dangerous?

Ladies, I believe this leads us to an obvious conclusion: vacuuming is an activity that should only be undertaken by a trained professional. Spread the word.

Home Sweet Home

Whew! There seems to be a bit of prepublication interest for my How To Talk So Kids Will Shut Up. Do you hear that, oh mythical agent who lurks on my blog and dreams of getting me a big fat book contract? I'm still working on chapter titles however. And a good blurb for the back cover. How about...

For all those parents who regret ever teaching their child to communicate their needs and desires, this book is for you! Forget about "improving relationships" or "opening avenues of communication." Instead, this book provides a realistic guide to finding a little peace and quiet so that you don't go crazy and frighten the children. With chapters such as "Humming as a Noise-Blocking Tool," "Threats For Every Occasion," and "The Teenage Years: Not The Age of Reason," any beleaguered parent will learn savvy methods of gaining the peace and quiet so craved by experienced moms and dads. The author has interviewed experts on every…

How To Blog So Ducks Will Listen

Life with a clean refrigerator has been so fulfilling and busy that I haven't had time to blog. That, and Larry is still gallivanting around the world whilst neglecting his carpooling and bedtime-story responsibilities here at home. There had better be some good chocolate in this for me, that's all I have to say. Ahem.

Of course there are benefits to having a traveling husband: I haven't been woken by snoring in over a week; I can waste time playing Scramble on Facebook without anyone threatening to pull the plug, as it were; and I can call plumbers, electricians, and assorted other fix-it men to repair assorted household problems without a certain someone lunging for the phone and yelling, "I said, I'll get to it!"

Don't worry, Larry - I still want you home. Bearing chocolate, of course...

Has everyone seen this ducky video yet? Aren't those West Coast people so cute? I don't think that would have happened in New York; some joker would have le…

Edible Art

Oh, people, I have been busy here. With Larry away, the refrigerator situation quickly deteriorated to the point where extreme measures had to be taken. And they were, as evidenced by the shining picture of refrigerated perfection that you see to the right. Admire that clean crisper drawer at the bottom. Take note of the single(!) jar of opened applesauce at the top right. And don't forget to gasp at the homemade goodness of the fresh coleslaw on the bottom shelf.

How did I do it? It was simple really. I took all the other stuff out of there and piled it on my counter. In fact, I think I have some photographic evidence available somewhere...

Aha! Here it is:

I know! I have outdone myself! You are gasping in amazement at the veritable cornucopia of expired foodstuffs that I have managed to amass within the confines of a single household appliance. I will point out some quick highlights:
I don't drink diet Pepsi. No one in my household drinks diet Pepsi. The presence of…

Random Thoughts

The other day I made the mistake of trying to throw something away while David was watching. You'd have to click on that link to understand why his body seized up with panic at the sight. I told him, "You know, waterboarding wouldn't even be necessary to torture you. The interrogators could just tie you up in a chair and wave an empty toilet paper tube in front of you and say, 'Talk...or it's going in the trash!'"

It only occurred to me later that this was, perhaps, a strange thing to say to an 11-year-old. Too much intake of news coverage on my part, I guess...and too many years of childrearing...


I haven't finished up at my bookstore job yet; and the management is making my last 2 weeks there memorable by not having the store's air conditioning fixed in a timely fashion. How bad is it? It's so bad that the customers are complaining, even though they're free to leave the premises (unlike us hapless employees). We'…

This Just In...

In the health community's ongoing effort to confuse us typical fat consumers, I present to you this article from The New York Times. Essentially, vitamins can be good for you, unless of course you exercise (or diet...or do anything else healthy, I guess), in which case they can be bad.

...antioxidants in general cause certain effects that inhibit otherwise positive effects of exercise, dieting and other interventions.Of course, now I have to wonder why Weight Watchers tells us to take a vitamin every day. And they tell us to get some exercise. Are they trying to stay in business by keeping us coming back? Is it all a big conspiracy to keep America fat?

And can we just take vitamins instead of exercising? Wouldn't that be cool?

If A Tree Falls....

That slacker of a tooth fairy finally made it to our house last night with her lousy quarter. Sheesh.


In yesterday's comments Jillybean waxed philosophical about dieting and eating in general. As she informed me, "...if you go ahead and eat the sundae and nobody actually sees you eat it, I don't think you need to count the points."

Which advice reminded me of a T-shirt I saw a gentleman wearing at our local Farmers' Market this past Saturday. It asked (rather plaintively, I thought)

If a man says something in a forest, and his wife doesn't hear him, is he still wrong?

I think I'll get that for Larry for Father's Day. I mean, if he bothers to return from his travels by then...

Post Titles On Vacation

Larry's away again, meaning I got home from work last night, did the dishes, and went to bed with no time for blogging. I woke up this morning, rather pleased with myself for holding everything together despite my husband's absence. This feeling of self-congratulation lasted a full 5 minutes, at which point a sobbing Rachel presented herself in my bedroom. Seems that, um, a certain tooth fairy neglected to leave a gift under her pillow last night - you know, that much-anticipated gift for the very first tooth that Rachel finally managed to lose.


In other news, I have been offered an editing job on a contract basis. I have always wondered how someone gets to be an editor, and now I have my answer. She has a friend who finds her a job. It's who you know, folks; it's all who you know.

The e-mail offering me the position stressed that I would have to set my own hours and could work as much as I want from home, so long as I use up the assigned monies. It also men…

Chocolate And Nuts And Flowers, Oh My!

Okay, especially for Mother's Day, I present to you one of the more pathetic Mother's Day gifts I've heard about, courtesy of Carpoolqueen:

[My husband] went golfing with the guys one Mother's Day weekend. Brought me a gift - a golf was wrapped in the plastic bag from the pro shop. I do not play golf.
Doesn't reading that anecdote make the words "justifiable homicide" flit through your brain? Get 12 women on the jury, Carpoolqueen, and I guarantee that you wouldn't even have to serve jail time.

Fortunately for my husband, he does not play golf. He did himself proud with some potted flowers, delicious chocolate and nuts from Trader Joe's, and an honest-to-goodness grown-up umbrella. I believe he picked up that last present just so he wouldn't have to endure another rainstorm hearing me complain about the Hello, Kitty situation.

The only other thing I would like is a nap; but, seeing as someone had the dubious wisdom of scheduling Anna…

A Whole Lotta Nothing

Today was notable in that it didn't rain. Also, I found where the ants were pouring in through the outside brick wall of our house and thence up through the walls and through the floorboards of my computer desk. I sprayed the heck out of the entry point. Emptied the bottle, really...

It felt good. Darn ants...

Our dishwasher has not yet magically fixed itself. What's up with that?

The kids are all excited because the ice cream truck with the free samples will be parked in front of Harris Teeter tomorrow. We are making a special trip just for that. See how important it is to keep their expectations low? This event is way cheaper than taking them to Disneyworld. And a lot less hassle...

Larry's fixing to leave me again next week. So you can bet I'm going to milk this Mother's Day weekend for all it's worth. Suggestions?

Suggested Syllabus

Shelley weighed in on yesterday's post with a comment too good not to share:

Awesome. If teenage girls could major in Getting a Clue, just think of the required courses:

GAC 101 - An Intro to Life
GAC 102 - An Intro to Life, Part II
GAC 110 - Money Really Doesn't Grow On Trees
GAC 112 - Getting a Job
GAC 140 - Not Only Doing Your Homework, But Actually Turning It In. On Time.

GAC 201 - Navigating The Mall Without Spending $100
GAC 205 - Intro to the Dollar Movie Theater
GAC 230 - Makeup and Clothing - How To Not Resemble a Whore
Thank you, Shelley, for the laugh today. Anyone else out there care to play?

Let's Dish

It's raining. It's always been raining, as a matter of fact, and it will continue to rain for the foreseeable future. Why not? After all, there is so much to do indoors in May; why go outside?

We can wash dishes by hand, for instance, and dry them and put them away. Again and again and least until we repair our dishwasher, which will not be until I pay off the car. Because I'm stubborn that way.

We've been washing the dishes by hand for several days now, but Anna just figured out this morning that the dishwasher was broken. I relayed this piece of information to Larry, who said, "Gee, maybe she needs to take Getting A Clue 101. Maybe she should major in getting a clue. Do you think they would have advanced courses, like Getting A Clue 302 - It's Not Just About You?"

I think the past 3 years are starting to wear on him, don't you?

They Say Ya Gotta Stay Hungry...

It's been raining, oh, 4 days straight, or maybe it's 8 days...

Actually it could possibly be 2 weeks. I don't know. No end in sight, though, and we are UNO-ed out. I don't know how Noah survived in that ark for 40 days. Oh, wait, yes I do - there weren't any kids on it.

Plus, this weather is seriously screwing with my diet plans. It's easy to munch happily on salad and fresh fruit and sorbets all the livelong day when the weather is nice and warm. But these cold rainy days have me yearning for steaming mugs of cocoa and toasty grilled cheese sandwiches and such. I did manage to lose 3 pounds this week, but only by starving. I kept having those stupid dieting nightmares where I dream I'm eating a whole bunch of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies and then I realize I've ruined my diet and I cry.

Everyone does that, right? Or is it just me?

I keep thinking of that stupid joke we told as kids:

1st guy: Last night I had this weird dream that I ate a h…

Hello, Humiliation!

It has been raining the proverbial cats and dogs around here lately, and of course both umbrellas which I bought myself in the past year are nowhere to be found. Neither is my raincoat. Tell me - are the myriad ravages of middle age - the wrinkles, the sagging, the extra belly fat, the being regarded as hopelessly old by my teen daughter - not humiliating enough without my being forced to go to church yesterday wielding only a Hello, Kitty umbrella for protection against the elements?

It belongs to Susie, and she was quite upset that it was me and not her that used it. Hey, it's sauve qui peut around here, baby...


Dear Ants,

I hate you. You are everywhere. You will take over the earth, I know. But for the time being, please get the heck out of my kitchen, my front hall, and my computer desk. Thank you.

Put Your Blog Post Title Here

Well, judging from the comments yesterday, it seems that most people are in the neglectful/squeamish camp when it comes to pulling baby teeth. It's nice to know that I have company. And now Michelle knows that she can abandon her tooth-pulling duties, if she so desires. C'mon, Michelle! Stop making the rest of us look bad, with all that diligent dental attention you lavish on your children.

Oh, and near the end of the comments, "Anonymous" left a link to a video that I "must see." I was scared to click on it, in case it was gross. Anyone else care to be brave enough to check it out and let me know if I want to watch it? Please?

Today was a good day, until I discovered ants invading my kitchen at 9:30 this evening. Larry ventured outside in the dark and sprayed the foundation of the house. Wasn't that nice? You'd think we were still dating or something.

Once, soon after we met and he was still besotted with me, he dashed out in the pouring rai…

The Tooth Of The Matter

I was intrigued to read in Scribbit the other day that Michelle pulls out her children's loose baby teeth. She was, in fact, complaining that this job has fallen to her because her husband is too squeamish.

Let me add that I am with her husband. Just reading her post made me want to vomit.

But here's the thing (as I wrote to her): In all my years as a parent, I have never even considered pulling out a loose baby tooth. Did I miss something in the parenting manual? Are we supposed to do this? It's true that Anna managed to swallow not one, but two of her baby teeth - is it because of my neglect of this essential duty?

(We had Anna write an explanatory note to the tooth fairy, by the way, and she still received compensation. Whew.)

Michelle explained to me that her dad always pulled out her baby teeth when they were loose. She never even considered that there could be another way. The let-'em-wiggle-it-until-it-falls-out-way, say...the please-don't-even-show-…

This Little Piggy....

Now here is a helpful website, for any of you fellow hypochondriacs...

Enjoy your (maybe last) weekend!