Friday, June 26, 2009

Amazing what a Little Sunshine will get ya

Yesterday about midway through my horrific day of insanity, this yellow orb in the sky came out. It made all the gray go away, and then something amazing happened....The rain stopped, and the skies turned blue, and lo and behold, I no longer wanted to crash my car into people who irritated me for no apparent reason!

Apparently I am deeply affected by the Vitamin D that the sun so readily hands out to me. We have had two straight weeks of rain. I would try to sit and write my blog and have my sense of humor, but somehow, I would start typing and this steady stream of surliness came out instead, I realize that would have never made it Noah’s crew…I don’t care how Godly he may have been, I would have been tossed overboard after the first two weeks.

Once the sun came out and I started to calm, I realized that the past few days all my sentences were ending in Dammit. As in: I have to feed the cats again Dammit? or, you want me to drive you to day camp Dammit? I don’t care that you are only 10, can’t you drive yourself Dammit? Here is your dinner Dammit.

OK, so maybe I wasn’t that bad, but I was starting to resemble an old man sitting on his front porch yelling at everyone and being boorish about the way life is now that the Ark was making its resurgence. At one point I may have even tried to pull my dentures out and throw them at someone.

But alas, the sun came out…just in time for me to leave for North Carolina. Now the slugs can really enjoy my strawberries as there will be no one to stop them, and no one to pick them.


But this morning, as I actually hear birds singing again, and while it is cloudy, I have hope that the big yellow orb in the sky may once again shine upon me, I can relax a little as I try to pack for 5 people to go to NC. And really? I shouldn't complain that I am headed out to a beautiful beach for a week in nice hot weather! I am looking forward to blogging a week with out any other demands on my time...just an umbrella drink and grandparents to find, and parent my children...

PS I now have blight on my tomatoes from the incessant rain, any tips on how to get rid of it? Or am I destined to not have tomatoes again this year because of it???

Thursday, June 25, 2009

New Style for Henry

I wrote not long ago about Caroline's amazing sense of style. Have I mentioned that we fully believe that Henry is Caroline's twin that I lost? (for real)

It started out innocently enough, A head flashlight that he got for his birthday became fashion wear. I get it, it is kind of cool, and frankly, I wish I had one...however, I had to wrestle it off of him to go anywhere. Finally when I told him the battery was going to run out and I wouldn't replace it, he stopped wearing it everywhere, and just as in a nice tie, he chooses the best places to don his "headlight."
Then we got into the dress ups, which is no big deal, I thought it was kind of cute, a little flower bra never hurt anyone, though my husband did not think that I should encourage this, because he was in no way prepared to take him to Shaws with THAT on.
THEN, he found the goggles...and it all went down hill from there! Since I have been packing and trying to get ready for our trip to NC, Henry has had a lot of...well, free roam the house unmonitored time. Which is scary in and of itself, but some of the outfits little man has come up with are even scarier! He walks around the house with these goggles on and since they don't fit tightly, he still tries to breathe through his nose, creating a sort of science fiction Darth Vader effect. I can hear his breathing coming down the hall. But they are now the centerpiece of all his new outfits...
I think that the Thomas the Tank Engine underwear and the pedometer complete this ensemble with flair. However, I am not sure that people would want to walk next to him in his race....
Then came this, I am thinking that somehow he has broken into my I-pod and decided to become a member of the White Stripes or something...

Either way, he is rocking the earphones, birthday hat, and his new favorite, the mask.
Yeah...High School is NOT going to be kind to this one!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Coffee Vs. Parenting

I am starting to wonder if my parenting abilities are becoming obsolete to my need for coffee...I believe that this has been a real cause and effect relationship. For NEED for coffee increased as the NEED for me to be a parent increased.

The other morning I was in such a foul mood when I got up. Just plain exhausted from life and work and kids, that I am pretty sure that the breathing my family was engaging in at the breakfast bar was the most annoying thing that had ever existed in my life time…

After my very rational rampage on family life where I simply pointed out that I was the only one who ever did anything, and politely let my husband know that rinsing out his sink (and only his sink) did NOT constitute cleaning the bathroom, I then proceeded to inform the rest of my family that their arms would not break off if they attempted to actually put the new toilet paper roll, ON THE HOLDER. I further educated them on the fact that I was no longer going to pack snacks for them because there was no need. With so many crumbs under the breakfast bar, they could simply shake their socks out and have at least a full granola bar on their plate so why bother packing extra food.

I believe it was when the froth started forming at the corners of my mouth that my oldest daughter stood up and looked at me with big scared eyes and said:

“Mom, can I make you some coffee?”

I realized that perhaps my need for coffee could be taking the place of my patience... or maybe just replacing it...either way, my kids are so shell shocked that they are looking to see if the coffee pot has coffee in it before they open their mouth now...hmmm

Monday, June 22, 2009

Happy Anniversary

So tonight is my 13th anniversary. Yeah I know, awww. But like I said, it was number 13. Thus the flowers and sappy cards have since turned into Board meetings and laundry folding.

I took off work thinking that maybe we could sneak out for a glass of wine or something. Yeah, then my board scheduled a meeting and Jamie had to go to the Gorham town board meeting, so now I am paying a babysitter so that my husband and I can go to board meetings and not see each other. I know, right?

All was made good as my meeting went smoothly…which was just SHOCKING, and my friend Pam took me out for a glass of wine to celebrate my anniversary.

But as I sit here, pleasantly surprised at the ease of my meeting, and a good friend’s effort to make my day better, I am reminiscing about the actual wedding itself.

I am guessing that right about now I was trying to comb out the birdseed that my cousin-in-law ground into my 90's Rave Hair-sprayed bangs as we made our final exit from our reception. This was not on our own accord, but very typically my husband had to get me away from the party and convince me that we had places to be. (13 years later, it is no different. My go-go- gadget mouth just keeps on going until Jamie gets me to recognize that not all people are extroverts and may actually tire of my party energy.)

It was the hottest day of the summer that year…in Virginia, and I kept going into the kitchen of the farmhouse and getting more ice cubes to dump down the front of my dress…it was so wet my mother had to hang it to dry.By the time we reached Williamsburg VA, we were so ravenous because no one told us that you never get a chance to eat at your own wedding, dove into the basket of food that was packed for us. With crab dip dripping down our chins as we ate through the entire basket of food was truly a romantic moment.

So here is to 13 years, and many fond memories, still getting dragged out of parties, and eating less than gracefully when I am hungry.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Play Dates With Cousins

As I have often written, Margo and Henry have interesting play dates...many times ending in the explanation that clothes aren’t optional or the ins and outs of appropriate behavior.

The funny thing, is neither one of them seem to have these problems with anyone else…they just save it for us, and I think secretly they are trying to drive Dan (Margo’s father) to madness…

The other day I was at my sisters house and I could hear them playing in the other room...they were pretending to pee on each other. Margo would squat on Henry’s head and make a “shhhhh” noise…then Henry would stand up and pretend to pee on her head…

Now, I can remember having some weird make believe play as a kid...I do remember playing a game where I was stuck in the woods and sprayed by a skunk and all the gnomes were running away from me because I smelled... or even playing Batman and Robin who turned evil and fought each other over bubble gum. (I remember that one because it ended in screams and my mother locking me in a bathroom after an unfortunate placement of a “mountain” that robin stood on, which happened to be a wasp nest. I rocked the pink pin cushion look for the rest of the summer from all the calamine lotion it took to coat the 4000 bee stings I had…)

But peeing on each other???? I don’t even KNOW where to start with that one!

I informed them that, that was kind of gross, and they went upstairs to play. Yeah…where the monitor was on…they were playing house and were serving Pee for dinner…

I am so glad that they listen…and a little concerned about the potty talk…and serving of potty material…honestly, what the hell?

I am waiting for Dan to come home…”Margo…you have lot of splainin’ to do!!”

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Scenes from the Trellises

It's amazing what a month will do! We have already had our first harvest of radishes, which I just put in a bowl of water in the refrigerator and my eldest and I just keep plucking from them out of the bowl and pop them in our mouths like candy. Loving the radishes.

Last night we had our first lettuce from the garden too, and had a nice salad...too bad the carrots don't come up at the same time!

We are also getting some red strawberries too, so I am looking forward to some good tasting jam soon! If I can keep the kids from eating them as fast as they ripen.
Our bush beans as you can see below are doing really well.
The Cabbages below are starting to head, and our potatoes behind them are already starting to bloom. I got such an early start this year because of an early spring that things are really coming earlier than usual....which makes me realize the need for a hoop house or greenhouse...that is my next big project. Making a frame to fit over some of my raised beds so that I can get an earlier start, and a later finish!
Apple trees have a zillion apples started...I love the way they look, especially on a beautiful sky like the Maine blues...

I have discovered, only one other soul in our house that loves my garden as much as I do......
Yeah, he looks miserable doesn't he!
So there it is! I am getting ready to put a thing on the side to keep track of what we planted this year, because I am totally copying some of my other blogger friends who do that and I love to scroll through what others are growing....I know...I am a big copy pants.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

A Ditty

I know that most of you have heard this a thousand times, and if so, you may skip it...yes, you have my permission... But another person sent it to me this morning, and after a few days of running around like a crazy lady, getting all my meetings in, conversations with gran in, trying to find astronaut men for Henry's cake, I sort of had been humming the tune of the William Tell Overture in my head. (Why, oh WHY do stores not carry astronaut men? Don't they know that little boys STILL LOVE SPACE?????)

I am pretty sure that this music is a theme song for moms of multiple aged children. I have found that having them spread out is proving to be a real task. I go from making dinner at 4 to get my eldest to softball on time, to wiping a rear end. It just seems my world is always split three ways. (I am not one of the three by the way)

So is the Mom's Overture, for those of you who have not heard it, you will laugh... I got quite reminiscent when she said "I'll give you something to cry about" I believe that was my dads mantra through the parenting adolescent girls years.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The Escape to Boston

In a much needed escape from home, my friend Jen and I decided to head to Boston for the night.

There were many lessons learned on this trip not the least of which was, as much as we both love "The Amazing Race" It is NOT for us! In fact in some strange turn of events I am pretty sure that we would cause a national incident and end up in a prison somewhere sharing bread and water and fighting over the burlap sac blanket.

The other big thing I learned was that, no matter how mature amongst our peers we seem...when we get together, we still point to random people and say "There's your boyfriend,” and we still sneak up behind the unsuspecting and snap our pictures with them, although we are not nearly as brazen as we were, we still managed to scare off a colonial re-enactor. The greatest part about this trip was watching our husbands, both the ultimate planners and type A’s squirm, when the week before we hadn’t solidified anything but the night we were going. I think that Jens husband finally slept well when I assured him that we did have a hotel room and that we weren’t going to be sleeping in a dumpster behind Faneuil Hall. True to our style, Jen and I had no plan and we just took it by the seat of our pants and had a ball.

North Station was the beginning of our many debacles of travel. It was like watching two people from another planet try to ask where the bathroom is, when we were trying to figure out buying T-passes.

Jen puts in a 20 and a bunch of “tokens” came out with her ticket. Her face fell, “Well there goes 20$ I didn’t know we would get change in tokens.” We turned to walk away when I realized that her new gold treasure trove was actually those gold dollars that you get at the post office.

Needless to say with 18$ in coins, Jen proceeded to pay for drinks, meals, and tips in change. When waiters would pick up their little black ticket holder, inevitably gold coins would spew out all over the floor, and we were trying to escape as fast as we could frantically pressing elevator buttons. They clearly were not as amused with our lack of common sense as we were.

There was also the issue that we hadn't been out of the house in a while, and this seemed to have impaired us greatly in our communication skills. I spent the first hour winking at our waiter unintentionally when ever he would ask if we needed anything. When Jen pointed it out, I got in such hysteria that we had to leave before we got locked up. It’s ok, because apparently it was catching and she had to actually move seats because she kept staring at someone unintentionally and he kept staring back. It was like we had no social skills at all...that’s what happens when you are trapped in a house for long lengths of time with toddlers...all social etiquette goes out the window! We did finally; however stop the incessant nervous winking and staring after we settled in to our normal selves again. Thankfully.

We met a friend from High School that we hadn’t seen in 15 years that is currently living in Boston. She took us to a great bistro with Jazz music which we finally left at 1 in the morning when we realized that we were the only ones left in the restaurant and the cook actually came out sat on a step and looked at us with that look of “Please Please Please go home silly girls with a camera”
The next day we walked about 400 miles around Boston never really knowing which direction we were going in, because as we found out, we are both seriously directionally challenged…as in we really should have been in remedial radar classes when we were in school. Our direction challenge became even more keenly obvious when we got on the wrong train to go to North Station. (Luckily we figured it out before the next stop, got off, laughed at ourselves and got on the right one….besides it was less crowded.)

We did make it to the North End where the owner of the restaraunt basically harassed us on the street until we went in...although Jen did tell him that he "had her at Sangria"

Much to our family members chagrin, we will probably do it again…and we may even adventure in other towns or cities, or God forbid, countries. We ate our way through Boston, and fully intend on getting lost somewhere again.


And Now....

Monday, June 8, 2009

Adventures in Caroline-Wear

Caroline my middle child has always marched to a different drum…(preferably to her, one that she designed, made out of lots of sticky tape and paper, makes a really loud noises and she stores under her bed.) In other words, this child has a mind of her own.

I always want to encourage that, it is something gravely missing from our kids today…and while adults seek this quality out in their employees, children, and even in themselves as they are older, it is the very quality we want to squash when they are little… The very idea that your kid might be singled out because they are different is a pain similar I can only imagine, to having your heart ripped out of your body and played rugby with. Ultimately we want our kids to fit in.

My little Bean, does not…for the most part. It has been a source of much joy, perplexities, and angst for all of us for almost 8 years now.

One of her “things” is her dress code. I have had to learn to just let go, because the battle was far worse than the embarrassment of having to take a kid in a cow costume with a tiara on to the grocery store.

Every morning, her father and I wait with baited breath to see what concoction Caroline will come up with to go to school in.

Most of the time it is as simple as “purple day,” which is a day she finds all the clothes of various shades of purple and wears them all together resulting in a sort of modern art of atrociousness effect. Or the constant skirt over jeans, pants, leggings “Juno” effect. I have to say the Cowboy boots with yoga pants and a down vest on a 78 degree day was a little puzzling.

So the Sunday after Easter my church had a “Holy Humor” Sunday where we were supposed to dress a little whacky etc… Jamie and I figured we didn’t even have to tell Caroline, if we just let her figure out an outfit it would probably work for this day.

Yup, You guessed, Caroline walks into our room, with a perfectly matched outfit, hair brushed down, and even had matching shoes…no cowboy boots. Refusing to change, I just plopped one of my late Aunt Ida’s crazy church hats on her head, realizing that this child, will never, do what we expect, and in the end, I guess that is why I love her so much!

And Yes, this would be her, taking a self portrait while out bikeriding in her purple dress, boots, and red fairy wings...

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Permanant Parking

I seem to have a little problem with my car...apparently Jamie and I both have a bad Car Karma God after us this week.

The other day I get in the car to drive the kids to the bus stop, I go to put my car in drive, and hmmmm, it wouldn’t budge.

I started doing the whole freak out running behind schedule, lots of choice words that ended in “Girls, you better run your tails off to the bus stop”

They dutifully started running with their 800 pound backpacks bouncing on their shoulders. (The 800 pounds really is more a description of Caroline’s backpack. It is packed solid with sweaters from January, papers from September, books from her bookcase (for emergencies,) marbles, lip gloss, small animals, random neighborhood children, and perhaps her lunch. But if I am honest, most of the time I come home to find that on the counter because she forgot to shove it in to her overstuffed back pack. If I sound unconcerned, just know that I have washed my hands of her disaster area after nearly getting engulfed in gross the last time I tried to clean it.)

Needless to say, some time goes by, and my car slides easily into drive. So I think…huh, must have been a fluke.

Yeah, that wasn’t smart. I went to get gas, at a busy time, and got stuck in park at the gas tank. I am pretty sure that the guy in the big truck behind me did not find this amusing. After the third time that he laid on the horn and yelled “come on” I threw my hands up in a sign of despair.

One would have thought he would have figured out there was an issue…most people don’t just hang out in their car at the gas tank…what did he think I was doing? Sniffing fumes? By the time he was completely distressed and coming toward my car…yup you guessed it, it slid right into drive, making me look like a complete ass.

We are still trying to figure out what in the world is going on, because it works fine most of the time…but then…at the worst moments decides to stick…

Then today, Jamie ran over a knife blade on the turnpike and blew out his back tire… He is fine, but uh…what are the freaking chances of that?

I am wondering what Car Gods I have pissed off, and perhaps should contact Click and Clack to see if they can call them off. Because after the 500$ it is going to cost us to fix these issues we are going to need some time to recoup!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Little Mans 4th Buffday

So today is the day...The day that life as I knew it before June 3rd, 2005 ended...for good...with a slamming of the door!

Yes, It is Henry's birthday.

I was awoken by Henry in bed singing "Happy Buffday to MEEEEEE, Happy Buffday to MEEEEE" Not a bad way to wake up I would say.

In my normal torturous parent mode, I said, "Guess what we got you for your birthday?" Excitedly he jumped up and down and said what?

“Lima Beans!”

There was a long moment of silence where he sized up the situation. I am guessing he was trying to figure out if I was joking or not, but then again, he may have been trying to figure out where the nearest projectile blunt object was…

He laughed a little tentatively and said “Nooooooo”

“Of course not” I said, “I got you a tree!”

Then he got the jist of this game. “Noooooo”

“Well then, what do you want?”

Now let me say here, that this is the downfall of many a parent. You don’t ask this question because ultimately they say something that isn’t what you got.

At this age, they can beg for Legos all year, and then the day they are to open their beloved Legos, they have changed their mind to a Power Ranger…or even better, a pony.

Now that’s not something a quick run to Target can solve!

“A ROCKET SHIP” He jumps up and down. (While I was thankful he did not say bunnies…I think that we may be past that land mine…) I thought about the bike in the garage that we had gotten him and got a little nervous.

As we walked downstairs to take a look, He said “I am so excited to be 4, it has been a long time since I was 4!” I am pretty sure that this solidified my thoughts that he was a Norwegian warlord in a past life.

Alas, we got his new bike out, and in a stroke of good Karma…guess what? (Take a look at the name of the bike in the picture!)

Happy Birthday Henry!