Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Elf on the Shelf



We started a new tradition along with half the country. We got an Elf on the Shelf. St Nick delivered our Elf and the book and the kids LOVE it. I really like it too, except when I'm tired and want to go to bed and remember our Elf hasn't moved.

If you are unfamiliar, the elf visits your family, goes all big brother on you and tattles to Santa. Its a little disturbing but try not to think of it that way. It gives you a way to say, "HEY! STOP IT! THE ELF IS WATCHING!" And the kids get a kick out of finding him each day. The one rule is that you are not allowed to touch him or he loses his magic. Seems easy enough, unless you are Heidi, 2 and have no clue what is going on. Or he falls off a lamp shade and is behind the couch. We decided it was ok to touch his hat if we had to touch him at all. And Raph decided he has a mask on and that is why his face looks plastic so really its ok. Sure, we'll go with that.

Anyway, you have to name the Elf right away. The boys decided on Tecky. Um, what? The started chanting TEH-KEE! TEH-KEE! TEH-KEE! Crap. Ok, so parents get veto power if the kids pick stupid names. We tossed around other names and Harry Potter Jr was discussed. ::rolls eyes:: Mike told them about Puck from Midsummer's Night Dream. They were sold. YES! So Puck it is and he's mischievous as his name would lead you to believe. Here's Puck in action and the kids think its hilarious and sometimes embarrassing. Even better :)
Puck lived up to his name the first night and took the kids' stockings and replaced them with their underwear. The boys had to go check to make sure they still had underwear in their drawers and Raph was totally embarrassed. Mwhahahahahaa


The next night he stayed up late watching A Christmas Story with some buddies and eating Candy Cane Joe-Joe's.


Pilfering the candy jar.

A lot of my Facebook friends thought I wrapped my tree in gold ribbon. That, my friends, is a roll of toilet paper.


Puck took up residence next to my favorite Christmas Kitsch ornament.



I thought Puck organized a parade but the boys seem to think its an army. Maybe he's guarding the Christmas tree from the Nazi's....that's another story but Raph and Colin were wrapped up in one of their elaborate imaginative games of "Guard the tree from the Nazi's". Yeah, no idea where that came from.


Even baby Jesus got in on the action and took a sled ride to fight off the Nazi's.

Puck has ended up other places but I haven't always taken a picture. He hung from a lamp, rode a dragon and climbed our snowflake decorations. I'm not sure what he's doing tonight but we shall see!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Oh So Crafty

I survived my first craft show. For weeks, actually months, I've been obsessing over my first craft show for You Fascinate Me So. I've been pouring over craft blogs and Pintrest and anything else I can think of to figure out how to display hundreds of feathers in such a way that none of them get damaged and they are eye pleasing...yet not too distracting. Tall order right? Plus make enough product to accessorize a small army. Then you, know, sell the stuff. If you ask Mike he will say I was a complete basket case last week. Then the morning of the event I was calm, cool and collected. It was as if all that planning paid off and I knew what the hell I was doing!

I chose to enter my first show for a local mom's group. It was small and that's what I needed. Better to learn on a show that only has a $25 entry fee than to have everything fall to shit on a $250 two day event. Right?


It took me forever to set up...b/c you know...OCD. Then after I'd been setting up for an hour the ladies next to me got all shifty in their seats and redid their table. But it worked well for them and looked much better. I was fortunate enough to be seated next to a lovely woman and we chatted when we didn't have customers. This, unfortunately, was quite often. The other vendors all told me it was very very slow so I shouldn't make any assumptions based on that one experience.

Lessons learned:

*lots of preparation helps. Lots. I have everything sooooo agonized over in my head that it was pretty easy

*pack the car the night before. In the morning I had to get myself ready and hop in the car. If i had to pack the car as well I would have been crazed and sweaty before I got there.

*speaking of sweating...wear layers. I had a short sleeve silk shirt on under a blazer. It was cool but I got hot unloading the car. Then it was stifling in the room until the air kicked on as the show began. Had I worn long sleeves or a sweater I would have been miserable

*Have stuff on wheels. I was jealous of all the fold up dollies people had. I had a small drawer organizer on wheels that I kept my cash box and wrapping supplies and things to work on. That was my only wheeled item. I wish I had more.

*have something for the kids. I had a bowl of chocolates with my business cards in it. One adorable little boy wanted a hair flower in the worst way. His mom was NOT going to buy one for him. I offered him a chocolate in exchange and he happily put down the hair clip and took his candy. Smile from mom. Excellent.


*Bring a hand mirror if you sell something you wear. I bought a pretty mirror at Home Goods the day before on a whim. My first client asked if I had a mirror. Almost every person that came up asked to look in the mirror.

*Wear your own product and ask if they want to wear it out or have it wrapped up. If someone sees the beautiful hair accessory walking around the show they might want to know where it came from...over here!

*Have a wrapping station. I had my wrapping supplies and cards and promo codes and everything I needed to wrap up a purchase neatly laid out and easily accessible but not in sight.

*have a trash bag out of sight. Where the trash came from I have no idea but it did. I just tossed a plastic grocery bag in the garbage on my way out the door. Easy.

*Buy interesting pieces to display your product. I went to Goodwill and found almost everything I used for my displays. The rest were household items I already had at home. I got many compliments on my interesting display. Anything that catches your eye is good and draws people to your booth. A black table cloth is boring and so is your product...probably.


*Rather than clutter your table and make it overwhelming don't put everything out. If someone doesn't see what they like, pull out more but keep a minimalist (sort of) table. If something sells fill that spot with something new. I say this and there was nothing minimalist about my table but I didn't fill every nook and cranny with product.

*Go vertical. As I labored over my booth and made the vendor next to me nervous they realized something. Putting a box under their table cloth made a huge difference. Bringing the product UP to the shopper is good. Draws the eye around the table and you can show more product without being overly cluttered.


*Have a receipt book. I didn't tally anything until I came home. I keep the carbon copies for my tax records.

*Have a discount for second items. I had my flower clips priced at $9 or 2 for $15. I sold plenty of the 2's b/c of the discount.

*Take credit cards. Who knew? I didn't. I lost 3 sales b/c I didn't have a credit card swipe. NEXT show I will accept credit cards. I suppose, though, a craft show is the quintessential place for impulse buying. I'm all for an impulse buy if its MY product. I should be prepared for the person who has already spent all their money.

*Think about ALL age groups. Turns out old ladies love the flower clips but not for their hair, but a lapel pin. Next show I will offer to sew a brooch pin onto the back for just such a lady.

*Talk to other vendors. I found that everyone was very nice and willing to offer suggestions or recommendations for other shows. There is a whole other subculture of craft show people that I never knew existed.

*Good signage is important. Most people don't want to ask how much something costs. If you have it clearly marked they are more comfortable. I hate searching for prices. Oh and build sales tax into the price. Who wants to mess with pennies when you can deal in even dollars?


I didn't exactly make out like a bandit but I did well enough, especially considering it was very slow. I have high hopes for the next show!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Candy. Its what's for dinner.

The Warner Brothers and their Sister too!

I love Halloween. I wish I could wear a costume every day. How fun is that to separate from reality and wear something funny? Sadly we did not have a party to go to this year and stupidly I didn't think to have one.

Nonetheless my kids had 6 parties between the 3 of them. Colin had 2 at school, 1 at Sunday School and Heidi and Raph had their classroom parties plus the big mother of them all on Halloween night. I've noted before that our neighborhood sucks so we go elsewhere. You know...where there are street lights, flat streets and high density housing. More bang for your buck, yo?

Raph has gotten older and things like costumes have taken on whole new meaning. What if other kids laugh at you? Saturday night he was all tearing saying he didn't want to be Yakko at school. In his defense, most kids his age have never heard of the Animaniacs and his costume makes WAY more sense with his Warner siblings in tow. So, we ran out to the costume store and bought some clip on devil horns. He wore last year's vampire cape backwards so the red was showing. Phew, mortal humiliation was narrowly averted!

Their costumes couldn't be more perfect for them. They really are Yakko, Wakko and Dot.

After forcing a little bit of real food into my bouncing, excited kids we were off to fill our pumpkins. It was interesting to see who knew who they were and who did not. I will say this, those who "got it" were so excited and exuberant. Those who didn't thought they were cute nonetheless. I mean, look at Dot? How could you not thing she was adorable even if you have no freakin' clue who she is?

St Louis is unique in that you are often asked to tell a joke before you can get your candy. I'm not really sure where this tradition came from but the kids can usually barely get the joke out because they are laughing so hard at their own made up, incomprehensible jokes. Usually Halloween themed puns are used but in our case Raph had a great one. When someone asked, "What's your joke?" He was just say, "The Cubs." Fabulous, no? (Go Cards!) And another funny thing about Trick-or-Treating in the Lou...beer. We went to one house that had a bowl of candy for the kids and a cooler of beer for the adults that had a sign that said, "Treats for Dads." Only in Beer Town, USA. Same for preschool soccer games with pitchers of beer and Margarita machines. ::shrug::

Nom, nom, nom

And as always we sorted candy and filled the Pumpkin-O-Death and let the kids eat a lot but no so much that they barf in my car on the way home. We drove past the Halloween House and yelled, "Jerks!" out the window (They are jerks and start putting up Halloween/Christmas decorations in mid-August...I shit you not) and left a pumpkin filled with candy for the Great Pumpkin. This morning they found their pumpkin filled with Animaniacs Happy Meal Toys from circa 1995 and a Super Mario Bros Show DVD. Kickin' it old school!

And, as expected Heidi woke up early, Colin cried for a full 20 minutes about nothing and Raph growled at me because he couldn't find his jacket when he was ready to catch the bus. The candy hangover is a bitch sometimes.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Strong Daddy


I'm not going to talk about physical strength, though it would be true that virtually EVERY daddy in the world is stronger than me, but the other kind of strong. Strength where it really matters. Strength of character, self and family.

It seems pervasive now to make a caricature out of grown men. They are all bumbling idiots, or at least one would think so if you watched any sitcom or commercial. I find it offensive to see those repeated images. Who do they think they are fooling? I, as a woman, am just going to nod my head and say, "Yep, that's right men are idiots and I'm this super smart hot thang." Riiight, I'm not stupid enough to fall for that nonsense. I cannot get on board with any type of behavior that has one group excel at the expense of another. Women can be smart and put together...and so can men. Crazy right?

Anyway, I hate seeing it on tv but then I look around and I see it in public too. Where are all the strong daddies?

I was picking up Heidi at school I saw a dad picking up his son. He looked like a bumbling idiot. He seemed to have no earthly idea what to do with the boy. Things got worse and he ended up carrying a screaming, flailing kid out of the building.

I know what you are going to say, "Yeah well I've had that happen too. They are 2 yr olds after all."

Yes, I've had my fair share of meltdowns but it seemed more than just the typical tantrum. He was so awkward in every movement, interaction and very distant. He was not present at all. I saw him a few minutes later taking the boy to Mc Donald's for lunch. I was in the drive thru and I saw him take the boy out of the car and fumble around and go in to restaurant dragging the boy behind him.

Then the next day I was out again and saw another dad caring for a child in a way that screamed out, "What the fuuuuuck do I do with this kid!?" Since then its been grating on me and I've been noticing this epidemic of sorts. Daddies who are only "Daddy" because they made a specific sort of deposit. Not because they are present in the child rearing process.

I think there are probably 2 main reasons for this:
1. Mom's won't let them do it because they know better and he will just do it wrong any how.
2. They just don't care and haven't stepped up to the daddy plate.


I think there will always be some sluggy parents out there who do the bare minimum and get through it. But I think a huge problem is in the mom. I have seen mom's snatch babies from dads because they aren't holding a bottle right or didn't put the diaper back on the right way or countless other trivial reasons. Men do things, in general, differently than women. That's the beauty of our very nature. We are not two of the same but we compliment each other. Dads play differently, sing differently, bond differently, and discipline differently. That's not a bad thing.

Countless studies have shown that single moms need to have a positive male role model in a child's life. Not that a woman on her own couldn't raise a child well, but it certainly helps to have a MAN around to help that child grow. Everyone brings something different to the table and that helps form a well rounded kid.

And what if you have a little boy, and he sees you telling your husband that he's always doing it wrong and his work doesn't matter. How do you think that will translate to a teenager? Possibly negatively towards other girls? Or negatively to his own self worth? He's just a stupid boy anyway and what does he know? It teaches him to sit back and let everyone else take care of everything for him because he couldn't possibly know enough to do it himself.

And what if you have a daughter? That she will see that its OK to demean the boys around her. They are stupid after all and can't do it as well as she can. Or her brothers, what of that dynamic?

I just know that Mike and I do things differently and that's a good thing. Sure a diaper may have leaked and someone cried along the way but you know what? I've learned much from him and I've had my own share of failures. There have been many times in the last 7 and a half years that Mike has been able to handle the kids in a way I was not. He has the Dada Bounce that works miracles on a crying baby. He can talk the boys out of a fight and plays way better than I do. We all bring our strengths to the table, its just a matter of being able to see each others strengths for what they are. As parents we are teaching our kids what is acceptable in terms of how to treat and be treated by the world. How is your example?

Dads, step up to the plate because you are missing out on so much.

Moms, take a seat and see what happens.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Who's got their shit together?


I never feel like I do. Ever.

Well, that's not entirely true, some days the stars align just so and if you squint a little it looks like its juuuuuust right. Kind of like how if the lights are dim, I turn my torso just so and I'm not wearing contacts it looks like I have a six pack!

Anyway, as I bumble around I look at these other mom's who really seem to look like they have it all going their way. Their hair is fixed and make up just so, kids neatly groomed and walking holding her hand. Meanwhile, I haven't showered, Heidi has yogurt sculpting her eyebrows, Colin's wearing mismatched, non-weather appropriate clothes and Raph is picking his nose. We will loudly make our way through the grocery store and someone comments on just how many children I have. Huh? I only have 3, that's not really very many and they are widely spaced at that.

So it really confounds me when someone asks me how I do it because I always seem to have my shit together.

::picks jaw up off the floor::


Whaaa? I wonder why that is. I mean my kids are generally clean, healthy and CPS hasn't taken them away from me so I'm not terrible but I don't think I'm something to look up to in the slightest. Yet people ask me for advice. I just have no idea what to make of that sentiment.

I spoke to some other mom friends once and we've all decided that you see your worst and everyone else sees your best. It only seems effortless from the outsider because they aren't doing at that moment. What they don't see is that you have cramps that make you want to cry, your 4 year old has spent the last 15 minutes screaming in the car, you have a mess of a house, your 2 year old hasn't slept in 3 days and your 7 year old failed a spelling quiz because you didn't help him with his homework, you are late for a doctor's appointment and your car has a funny smell that you just can't locate. What they see is a woman walking into school with her three kids who bounce around behind her. What they don't know is that the screaming stopped because a cookie was promised and the other two are dejected or exhausted so there's no fight left in them. Then you walk around the grocery store trying to piece together a quasi-healthy dinner that no one is allergic to and most everyone will eat. Its either that or throw in the towel, go to McDonald's and fix a large vodka tonic at home.


There's always more to everyone's story. I think some people project it more than others and I seem to keep up a pretty good facade whilst in public. So my advice to you, since you asked, was to help out the lady in the store with a screaming kid. If she dropped something pick it up, smile and say, "I've been there too." Don't feel superior that your toddler is currently happy looking at stuff from inside the shopping cart because as soon as you round the corner she will start screaming she wants OUT and will promptly knock over a display.

And the mom who always looks perfect? Maybe that's the one thing she does for herself that day. For all you know the dog threw up on her yoga pants and she cried while putting on trousers because all she wanted to do was wear yoga pants and a tshirt. And the mom with the charming, cheery children who are so polite and outgoing? Yeah turns out that kid won't eat food. There is a constant daily struggle to have a complete meal without a fight or gagging or hysterics and a fight with her husband.

Everyone has their burden, you just may not be able to see it at first glance. Ask her, though, and you will find out that everything is a wreck just like you. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or not, a world with parents who can't get their shit together, but I do think to a certain degree that is true. Everyone has their moments where life seems to glide by without a hitch and then there are those days where all you want to do is get a hotel room for 1 so you can sleep uninterrupted for at whole 5 hrs!


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

T-R-O-U-B-L-E

There's a reason God made babies and small children cute. If they weren't so damn cute you would surely drop them off at QuikTrip. Seriously.

And you know how they say, "It only takes a minutes ______" They ain't freakin' lyin'! This is what Heidi did today in just a minute of *coloring*.


And she looks remorseful until you see the next picture I took.

I honestly don't think she could be any cuter.


I keep going back to that first picture and thinking to myself, "This is motherhood: A train wreck but at the same time you can't help but just smile and laugh to yourself."

I was mad when I saw her brand spankin' new outfit and her skin because those stupid dobbers do NOT wash off. But then again, how undeniably cute is she?! Then I went out and someone gasped and asked how she got a black eye. Damn kids...

By the by, the number one reason people found my blog last month via google was because of "Tape On Child Mouth". AWESOME. I swear I did not put tape on Colin's mouth, Raph did. Cross my heart and swear to CPS!
This was Heidi trying to sneak into Colin's gymnastics class. If she hadn't had a *black* eye and a tutu I'm pretty sure the coaches would have kicked her out.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Growth

Everyone who is ever around kids will at some point say with astonishment, "You are so BIG! When did that happen?!" As if its a surprise to anyone that small humans get bigger. In the defense of the general population it is astonishing at times. You may not notice your children have grown a little each day until you put their jeans on for the first time of the season. Then, by golly, they don't fit after sitting in a drawer for four months! Crazy right? Or the jeans you bought 3 weeks ago are suddenly too short. THOSE are the moments I'm talking about. Or how last year Raph skipped size 7. Yeah that was a real pisser. I updated his jeans twice last year and they still never really fit. Plus all his new shirts left his wrists exposed. Sometimes it reminded me of Chris Farley singing "Fat guy in a little coat"

Look at those teeth. Poor kid can barely eat he's losing them so quickly.

That's the thing, these damn kids never stop growing! And sometimes it happens all at once. You can see it coming because one week they will consume a third of their body weight in one meal. Repeat for at least 7 days and then they become really emotional, crabby and a joy to be around. Fall asleep sitting up, in the car and in the middle of the living room. Next thing you know your kid that wakes YOU every day has to be shaken awake so they don't miss the bus. Those are the signs of a new wardrobe on the horizon.

It can be remarkable to see kids' physical growth but the more subtle changes can be even more impressive. Raph, for example, has grown immensely over the summer. He's my timid and cautious one and borders on anxiety riddled at times. Early in the summer we found out that he was no longer allergic to milk or egg. This is HUGE and terrifying. He couldn't hide behind his allergies any longer. I think he generally had legitimate fears of foods. If you've been told your whole life that food can make you very very sick its understandable to be wary. He took it to the next next level though. He refused to try new foods. He would literally mutter to himself, sigh, whimper and wriggle around in his seat for an hour or more if you wanted him to taste one bite of mac'n'cheese. For real. He was so distraught and would cry and get so worked up over one little bite. Its fine when you are home and in a controlled environment but if you ever want to go somewhere else? Oy.

He was on a horse for the first time ever. LOVED it naturally.

After spending 2+ weeks in Texas I had had enough of this nonsense. I was tired of worrying if there was anything Raph would eat, or making special arrangements or whatever. Plus Colin, who idolizes his big brother, stopped "liking" foods he used to happily eat because Raph didn't want to try them. That shit was not going to fly.

We told Raph that on no uncertain terms, he would try a new food every day. Period. I could be something small like bread with butter on it. Or a ::gasp:: chicken taco. Or a piece of string cheese. Something. Every. Day. He was so crushed at the prospect and overcome with anxiety. It was difficult for the first 2 weeks. He began the process as he always did. Whining and furrowed brow and fast breathing and wringing of hands. There may have even been some gnashing of teeth in there too but I tried not to watch or speak much. Just ignore it and continue on with my meal.

We started to use analogies. You know that water park we went to? Yep. Well, you were nervous about going down the big slides because they were new and you weren't sure what they were going to be like. Then you went down them and it was SO MUCH FUN! You loved it and wanted to go again. Then it wasn't so scary and you tried a different slide, and another and another. Some were more fun than others and you didn't go down the ones you didn't like. It was exciting wasn't it? YEAH! Food is the same thing. There are so many surprising combinations and you just never know what they will be like and what you will like. Some you may love and others are ok. Every meal doesn't have to be your favorite food, but sometimes you eat things that are just so-so but its ok. Other things you won't like, but now you know.

You know what? After about 2 weeks he got over it. He would come up with things he wanted to try.Heidi helps me cook frequently. This is tilapia sprinkled with paprika
and all three of my kids ask for more. My how things have changed.


Once he was on board we would talk about food differently. You like bread, you like cinnamon and sugar so how about we try toast with butter and a sprinkle of cinnamon-sugar? Yum! We made homemade pasta sauce from tomatoes in the garden. Raph said he liked bread so maybe he could dip a piece of bread in his sauce. He loved it. He knew he liked sauce and he knew he liked pasta so he put sauce on his pasta! Then we had a baked pasta dish. He knew he liked saucy pasta so how about saucy pasta with cheese and meat? Not his favorite but he did eat some of it and liked it well enough. Oh and he discovered the wonder that is garlic bread!

Yesterday he tried an appetizer I made. It was a crostini with feta and lemon and topped with cucumbers and sea salt and pepper. That was a little much and he thought the feta was too sour (fair enough) but proceeded to eat about a half of a cucumber topped with sea salt. He was so confident and self assured fixing his own cucumbers. We had a dinner guest and Raph said, "Oh yeah, I'm just making some cucumbers with SEA salt." My little chef in action.

We still have nights where he isn't thrilled about our dinner options and starts to complain about how many bites and all those annoying things kids do when they don't want to eat. Generally, though, he will willingly try something without fuss. He gives food an honest try before he decides if doesn't like it. If he doesn't love it he will continue and eat it anyway because that's what we are having. I cannot tell you how happy this makes me. Finally we are on the road to normalcy. And if only Heidi wasn't so limited we could go to restaurants more often. They are all old enough to sit in a booth and wait for food without to much issue and it would be nice to do that every so often.


I don't know if his new found confidence with food has spilled over to other areas but Raph is gaining in all areas. He now has ridden a horse, fed a horse, pet numerous dogs and even LIKES dogs. Raph has always been terrified of dogs. He's allergic to them (even now after a few years of allergy shots) so we just stay away from them. But, other people have dogs. Lots of people in fact. You'd think they were man's best friend or something. Anyway, a screaming man-child of a boy who tries to climb on top of a car if a dog comes anywhere near him is a little much. In the last month he's been forced into situations where there have been dogs. Nice dogs, no barking or jumping, just tail wagging dogs. Repeated exposure, not unlike the daily food tasting, has made the world of difference. Know how I know? He loves a mastiff. Yes, a mastiff. Have you seen those suckers? I think they are more horse than dog. We left the party with the mastiff and Raph wanted to say bye to him one last time because he wasn't sure how long it would be before he could pet him again. Wait, whaaa?

Heidi seems to be a dog lover on the other hand. She was an infant sitting up and getting balled over by a group of lab puppies and laughing her little butt off while her older brothers were screaming and climbing the backs of couches. They were PUPPIES. Like, hold in one hand puppies just old enough to be adopted out puppies. Terror or joy for my kids. Heidi loved the "BIG doggy" this weekend too of course but also another smaller breed. She had the death grip on this poor dog and told everyone, "Mine doggy." Then later on she got to hold a puppy and she had a look of sheer joy on her face and she squealed, "I GOT A PUPPY!!!" She's a very different temperament than Raph so it doesn't surprise me that a dog 5x bigger than her is her favorite thing.

He ate cheese pizza at a ballpark, and tried nachos. Willingly.

After all this repeated exposure to new and different and scary things I have a 7 yr old who talks about the day when he's not allergic and can have his own dog and is always looking for the next thing to taste.

That is the kind of growth that takes your breath away.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A Big Girl Me


Seems she does like people singing "Happy Birthday" either.

My Little is 2! Can you believe it? It might be hard to believe because she is so, in fact, little. But if you were to witness her tantrums, back talk and independence there would be no question in your mind. For real. Today, she pushed against my legs and said, "NO! Out!" All this because I wouldn't let her run up a stair well in Colin's school and away from me.

So, my wee little baby is all grown up...at least she thinks she is anyway. She is fiercely independent and always trying to keep up with the big boys. She never quite catches up but it never stops her from trying. Today she did get one step closer to those big kids. She went to school! I had enrolled her in a 2-3 year old classroom but she had to actually be TWO prior to starting. Yesterday she turned 2, today she's in school.


Oh was she excited. She donned her backpack and marched her way into that classroom! As is typical for most early preschool classrooms there were a few crying kids, one completely losing her shit and others quietly looking at books. Heidi walked right in, hung her backpack in her cubby, put her name tag on the board and gave all the screaming kids the stink eye.

I can only imagine what was going through her little head as she glared at those snotty noise makers. I tried to take a picture of her sitting on the carpet with a book but she glared at one shrieking girl. Once she was slightly calmed another screamer came in. If she knew how to roll her eyes I think she would have done it. I left her glaring at screaming kids and went home, alone.

When I went to pick her up there is a huge picture window that overlooks the playground. I and several other moms watched our little ones run and play. Then a kid spotted a mommy and it all fell apart. I herd of sweaty faces were smashed against the window. We all made a quick exit and waited outside the classroom...which naturally has windows that the kids can see out of into the hall. When they came in the room the screamers started screaming, non-screamers got scared by the screamers and started screaming and Heidi glared at every last one of them.


When I went in to pick her up she was all red faced and smiles, "I go slide! I wike it! A BABY!" Then she was off to look at someone's little brother and she was done with me.

She's so big all of the sudden and not a trace of baby is left (unless you count her fat rolls on the insides of her thighs). Yesterday I told her Happy Birthday and she told me with a smile, "A big girl me." Yes, you certainly are a big girl.



Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Its the first day!

YEAH!!!! I have 2 kids out of the house! Uh, I mean, the boys are excited to go to school and see their friends!!!!


Heidi was so mad that she didn't get to go to school. She wanted to wear her backpack too and all morning kept asking where the boys were. Then when Colin came home, 'Where Raph is?!" I think she will miss her brothers this fall.




Raph was particularly excited. You see he's in SECOND grade. That's almost more than I can handle right there! He's grown up so much over the summer and now second grade? I drove him to school and walked in with him so I could take pictures. He did that run-walk down the halls of the school. You know the one they do at the pool in order to fool the lifeguards into thinking they are walking? He raced down the hall and Colin skipped and jumped around behind him with as much confidence as Raph.



His adorable teacher said, "Would you, perhaps, like a first day of school picture with me?" Bless her! Why yes I would like that picture! He's not totally embarrassed by pictures yet but I think next year there might be some eye rolling involved.

Walking Colin into school was totally different. He was no longer skipping and jumping around. He hid behind my back and didn't want to sit on the carpet. Its so baffling to me that this wild and crazy boy can sometimes be so shy. He's got one of the same teachers as he had last year and the same routine. They each have to pick a plastic circle on the floor and sit down while one teacher reads a book. I asked Colin where he wanted to sit and he said, "I don't know what I want." I asked him to start by picking a color and we moved on from there. I took one last picture of my coy little boy and was out the door...dragging Heidi away. Don't worry little one, you get your day next week!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

I only want it so you can't have it

See, the ALL have the same thing so no fighting.


I think my kids have had just a wee bit too much togetherness. I distinctly remember this point last summer and they all went ape shit on me. Well, the boys did, Heidi was still a delightful baby. This year Heidi is approaching that glorious 2 year old mark and all its tantrumy glory.

She's cute right? Will all my brand new blush scraped out of the compact and on her face.

What I have found, though, is that no one wants a damn thing unless someone else looked at it sideways. Everything must be fair, equal or just ALL MINE SUCKA!

It doesn't matter if its a cup, a snack, backpack or a freakin' spot of water on the back seat of my car (true story, the boys were fighting over water they spit onto the spot between them in the car. You know, you don't want someone else stealing YOUR spit-water to draw with!) they can fight over it. If we all survive the next 3 weeks it will be a miracle.

Yesterday Colin busted into the bathroom as I got out of the shower. His mouth was taped shut.

Let that sink in. Taped. shut.



It wasn't duct tape but scotch tape. CPS only investigates if its duct tape right? I swear I didn't do it but I would have liked to at times.

Yesterday I took Colin to the ENT while I had a sitter at home for the other 2. Colin cried because he didn't get to stay with the sitter. Yeah but you get to go to the hospital for a doctor's appointment! Yippee! It was nice, though, because I got to spend some alone time with Colin. We talked about policemen and cars and bees and how he wishes he had wings and could fly. He was sweet and gentle and kind...you know when there are no other kids around for him to feed off of or pick fights with. Today, in contrast, I had all three on a shopping trip. They just can't keep their hands off each other and fight over things they will never get in the first place. (Damn you grocery store designers who put toys and candy at eye level!) Then we came home and Heidi got whacked between the eyes with an spring loaded light saber that has been the once forgotten, now coveted item du jour. It currently resides in the trashcan.

Anyway, the-crap-toy-check-out-lane-fight reminded me of my friend Erin's post. Proof positive that kids can and will fight over anything...loudly and incessantly.