March 30, 2014

The Tooth Fairy

Losing a tooth is like a childhood rite of passage - it shows you're graduating to "big kid" status, thus earning the right to brag about it at the lunch table while holding straws between your teeth like voodoo magic.  It also means a visit from a certain tutu-ed night caller with a rather impressive bankroll.

If you believe, as I do of course, in Santa Claus, Sasquatch, and the Tooth Fairy, I just wanted to give you some virtual fist bumps!  If only we could have an AMAZING New Year's party with these guys, AMIRIGHT?!  That's all, you can toddle along to another blog about rainbows and marshmallows and if you find any rad unicorn photos, please pass them along!


For everyone else, this is a tale of parenting failure in it's greatest form.  Our daughter, Lainey, has been losing teeth faster than an outmatched MMA fighter.  She currently has three gaping holes in her mouth, the most recent which occured last week.  For the 5th time, while I was at work, I received a text from my husband about another tooth biting the dust (because apparently Lainey can only lose teeth from 5-8pm), and so I assumed that he would "take care" of notifying the proper tooth authorities.  I came home from work later that evening, tiptoed into her room to give her a goodnight kiss, and went to bed.

"Mom, the tooth fairy didn't come..."  This is what I woke up to the next morning, along with a face so sad you would think that her favorite My Little Pony had accidentally fallen into the garbage disposal.  I'm not used to thinking much that early in the morning, so the first thing that came out of my mouth was, "Are you sure?"  Duh, mom, of course she's sure - The Tooth Fairy paid out $5 last time she lost a tooth, that's the equivalent of a million in adult money.  I'm pretty sure she can tell the difference between a gross bloody tooth and a million dollars.

"Yes, I'm sure..." my heartbroken child uttered as she started to walk out of the room.  OK mom, think of something, QUICK!

"Sweetie, The Tooth Fairy is very busy, do you know how many kids loose teeth every single night?  I'm sure she's on her way, just leave your tooth there so she doesn't have to hunt for it."  My daughter smiled and said ok, and I mentally gave myself a pat on the back.  Saving the day, and it wasn't even 7:30am yet!  I RULE!

About an hour later I found myself in my bedroom directly adjacent to hers while the kids were engrossed in a game on the Kindle.  Here's my chance, I thought.  I dug through the spiderwebs in my wallet and pulled out a was a sad little dollar, compared to the five before, but the economy is tough on fairies too and it WAS a bill, whereas last time she got it in coins, so would she really know the difference anyway?  Besides, whatever, I AM SUPERMOM!  So I snuck into her room and made the great exchange, taking care to haphazardly open the blinds/curtains and knock a couple things over near her bed for "proof" as well as leaving behind a glittery note (that was scrawled on a notecard while hiding in the bathroom).  The note read:  "Thank you Alaina for your tooth!  I'm sorry that I was late, bad weather in Canada!  Love, The Tooth Fairy".

Smiling, I went back to folding laundry, purposefully not drawing any attention so she could just happen upon the scene later the day and be utterly amazed.  Yes, the plan was fullproof now!  About ten minutes later Lainey walked into my bedroom right as I pulled my cell phone out of my pocket.  Much to my dismay, it also happened to be the very same pocket I had stashed the baggie with the tooth.  My reflexes, while very cat-like at that moment, could not compare to the questioning glance of a suspicious kindergartner when she saw the bag fall onto the bed, and she immediately went into interrogation mode.

Lainey, with the eyes of a thousand red hot pokers:  "Mom, why do you have my tooth in your pocket?"

Me, with the eyes of a confused and anxious rabbit:  "No I don't."  (I'm not a very quick thinker, what can I say...)

Lainey:  "Yes you do!  It just fell out of your pocket!  It's in that baggie you're holding!"

Me, CRAP! (that part I said only mentally...).  I picked up the bag upside down and at just the right angle for the tiny tooth to slide out of  the baggie and onto the floor before attempting to sell the Biggest Lie in All of Parenthood.  "NO I DON'T!  SEE?!  This bag is EMPTY!"  And then I shook the bag a rather excessive number of times to prove my innocence, the whole time praying that she didn't look down into the carpet.  Thankfully, she didn't.  But I did get a suspicious sideways glance as she slowly backed out of the room to confirm that her tooth was where it was supposed to be.

I breathed a long, deep, hard breath and wondered why in the world we do things like this?  Why do I subject myself to such an intricate web of lies instead of just saying, "Hey kid, nice job on knocking your tooth out, here's a buck."?  Where is my manual for these sorts of situations?  WHY MUST PARENTING BE SO HARD?

A few moments later Lainey comes running out of her room with her dollar and the note that looked like it had been written by a hobo, joy radiating from her face.  "Look mom!  I got a DOLLAR!  And a note!  Did you know my curtain is messed up?  I can't wait to show Owen!" and then she ran down the hallway.

I guess that's why we do this.  I'm still not positive which story Lainey believes, and I guess it doesn't matter at this point.  Next time though, I sure hope The Tooth Fairy beats that Canadian storm...

February 11, 2014

Pleasant Funny Stuff

I love this blog for it's therapeutic benefits and ability to make me feel somewhat productive, despite the fact that it only garners a readership of about 5 (love you mom!).  It's sort of like talking to yourself - it makes your ideas more exciting when you hear them out loud.  So most of the things I write here, I write regardless of whether or not anyone reads them.  But I recently discovered a folder of "unmoderated" comments that I never knew existed.  And boy, have I been missing out!  There is a wealth of insightful and supportive comments by a tremendously loyal follower who goes only by "Anonymous" that I've been missing out on...

On my blog where I presented Lainey's first book, my mystery fan left this wise little gem: "You cannot judge a tree by its bark."  I'm not exactly sure how it pertains to a random assortment of preschool drawings, to be honest.  And also, I'm pretty sure you can, in fact, judge a tree by it's bark - it's species, it's age, if a bear has peed on it recently.  Lots of info.

On another post, there was this: "each time i uѕeԁ tо rеаd smaller poѕts which aѕ well сlear theіr mοtіve, and that is also hapрening with this ρost which I am reading at this place."  And if anyone knows about clarity and motives, it would be THIS person!

This compliment was found on my post about Owen and the strange underwear: "fantastic post, very informative. I wonder why the opposite experts of this sector do not understand this."  I'm trying to figure out just who, exactly, would be considered the opposite experts of the sector - people who advocate for clean underwear with a very specific location of origin?

"Every weekend i used to visit this web site, for the reason that i wish for enjoyment, since this this site conations in fact pleasant funny stuff too."  Pleasant funny stuff, get your pleasant funny stuff here!  All that you wish for enjoyment!

"What i do not realize is in truth how you are not actually much more well-favored than you may be now. You are very intelligent. You already know thus considerably with regards to this topic, produced me in my view believe it from a lot of various angles.Its like men and women don't seem to be fascinated unless it is one thing to do with Girl gaga! Your personal stuffs excellent. At all times deal with it up!"  I was really warming up to this person, with their obvious good taste in finding me well-favored and intelligent, but then they started talking about my girl gaga and my personal stuffs and it got. really. awkward.  I guess I will try to deal with it up, though.

"A role-playing game (RPG) is a game by which players assume the roles of characters in a fictional setting. This is mainly because you may be playing in a level, doing very well, convinced you will be conquering the video game, you can all at once obtain a combination of Tetris pieces that will not work well collectively. The gameplay other than the ghost piece is basic with two modes in the marathon and 40 lines timed for single player. If the blocks reach the top of the screen, then the game will be over."  Um.....what?  I saw the word Tetris and, being a child of the 80s, thought perhaps if I read it again I might be able to comprehend.  Turns out...still no.

"These are genuinely enormous ideas in about blogging. You have touched some pleasant factors here. Any way keep up wrinting."  First my personal stuffs and now I'm touching pleasant factors?  I sure hope this isn't the gamer nerd from the last comment, because I saw a Lifetime movie like that once and it was *super* creepy.  Also, for the record, the genuinely enormous idea in blogging that they were referring to was my photo of Owen's string of drool.  I guess baby spit has the power to change the internet.

I'm glad that Anonymous enjoys my "wrinting", but unfortunately I have no desire to follow the link to their websites about pet insurance and miracle pills, so I have declined to publish their helpful comments.  Plus I feel like I need to be more diligent about safeguarding my girl gaga from here on out.  But everyone else is welcome to continue enjoying my pleasant funny stuff - maybe you have some enormous ideas of your own to share that I wish for enjoyment?

February 3, 2014

Blame the Groundhog

I was already over winter way back in November, before Mother Nature went all "Day After Tomorrow" on, I have a snow drift that looks like the Swiss Alps in my backyard and my kids have used up all of their days off school on account of it being -245 degrees outside.  And we aren't even halfway through yet...  Sometimes, when I hear the weather forecast, I feel like I'm Bill Murray and I keep waking up to the same thing over and over and over again.  "Okay, campers, rise and shine, and don't forget your booties because it's COOOLD out there..."

Ahh, but today IS Groundhog Day!  Maybe that squirrel-looking pillow pet will bring us some relief, right?
Sigh.  Groundhog Day.  Of all of the holidays - and I'm using the term "holiday" VERY loosely here - Groundhog Day has to be one of the most pointless.  International Waffle Day?  That just makes sense.  But I don't generally rely on rodents to predict anything except the likelyhood that the crackers in my pantry have been eaten.  Come on, the thing is scared of it's own shadow, how smart can he possibly be?  But regardless, today, in front of a crowd of around 20,000 people who have absolutely nothing else going on in their lives, "Punxsutawney Phil, the most famous (and, I would argue, the only...) groundhog in history, emerged from his burrow early Sunday morning and with the help of his handlers declared that he saw his shadow."  Yes, you read that right - he declared he saw his shadow.  If you imagined that declaration being spoken in a chipmunk voice, you aren't alone.  But how, exactly, do we know if he saw it?  Did they teach him a secret squeal or growl or whatever the heck noise groundhogs make?  Does he push a "YES" or "NO" button?  He probably just came out, saw the giant piles of snow and the swirling polar vortex of coldness and said "To hell with this, I'm going back to bed!"  That's exactly what I did this morning, except my audience consisted of a 4 year old who had his pants on backwards.  And unlike P Phil, I have to work more than one day per year so I had to get up regardless of the winter-that-never-ends.  I read somewhere that in the 128 years that they have been holding this groundhog ceremony, only 17 times has the critter ever not seen his shadow.  That's like...some really small percentage, which only proves that the groundhog doesn't really know the secret squeal after all and just wants to be left alone for another 364 days.  Obviously, the fame has gone to his head.

So, six more weeks it is.  We will continue driving our cars on an ice skating rink and trying to find our mailboxes while Phil sits in his nice warm luxury burrow with toasted chestnuts and lettuce.  Yes, such a great holiday indeed... 

January 8, 2014

And this is why...

Anyone who knows me should know by now that I'm not a cook.  To me, walking in to the kitchen with a recipe is like trying to navigate a chaotic airport in Berlin with no knowledge of the language, no concept of where anything is, and no idea what that electronic thing on the wall is supposed to do.  And you have to find your terminal in an hour, or else you will miss your flight and then your family will be mad at you and will have to eat Cheerios.  Also, the Germans hate you.

Take, for instance, this angry German, aka kitchen appliance, that attacked me yesterday:

I mean, Crock Pots aren't supposed to do that, right?  I'm pretty sure that my recipe did not call for a tablespoon of shattered Crock Pot lid...  And all I did was turn it on low, put my food in, and put the lid on.  I was following directions, directions that even a kitchen moron like myself can handle, and yet still I failed.  It's like the mere idea of me trying to make a decent dinner from scratch made the Earth rotate on it's axis and my Crock Pot implode on itself.  That, or the kitchen Gods are having a good chuckle at me over a glass of Chardonnay and a Williams-Sonoma catalog.

As if I didn't hate cooking enough, turning it into some new daredevil sport of dodging flying glass shards makes it five times more likely that I won't engage in it.  Well, that, and I have no Crock Pot lid now.  In retaliation, I went out and got Chipotle today.  A delicious, safe, and (hopefully) glass-free burrito that I did not have to pick up a single utensil to enjoy.  Take THAT, kitchen Gods. 

January 2, 2014

The Ubiquitous Resolution Post

Well, it's officially 2014 now.  New Year's and I aren't exactly bosom buddies, having been blessed with such fond memories such as pulling someone out of a freezing river, having my heat go out with no one to fix it, and children with projectile vomiting.  I figure it's the Universe's way of saying, "Welp, it can only go up from here, right?"  So when I woke up the morning of New Year's Eve, I was not surprised to find my throat sore and my nose stuffed up.  The pressure in my head continued to build throughout the day until the ball finally dropped, my eyes watering and my head pounding as I suffered through commentary by Carson Daly (truth be told, it's possible that his horrifically dull personality had brought on those...hard to tell, really).  Happy New Year's, y'all!  Pass the Zicam...

But in between Kleenex runs I did have a little time to ponder my resolutions for the new year.  Diets are out, since I have the willpower of our lab mutt when someone drops a piece of bacon on the floor.  I could learn a new language, but I am already fluent in English and toddler, and I know enough Spanish and Italian to ask where the bathroom is and that's probably all I'd retain anyhow.  I should read more, I should paint more, I should exercise more, I should clean more, I should cook more, I should play with the kids more, I should sleep more...there are so many things I need to do more of.  But still, that's not where my resolution lies.

My thoughts went back to the day after Christmas.  I, unfortunately, had to be one of *those* people in the return lines thanks to a shirt miscalculation I had made for my husband.  Upon first glance, the line at Kohl's was like looking up from the base of Mount Everest but to their credit, Kohl's was pushing through those returns at a furious pace.  Everyone, that is, except for a mother-daughter duo who both had their faces contorted into the same hideous scowl and were screeching at the miraculously well-composed customer service rep behind the counter.  Their tone seemed to imply that this Kohl's rep had personally murdered someone in their family, but I arrived at the summit just in time to hear Scowly Mom hiss "Would you just shut up and listen?" followed by Scowly Daughter saying "You need to retrain your employees!".  Turns out, the pair were upset that they were being issued a gift card rather than cash and were livid that the cashier had not informed them of this upon checkout (because, you know, retail employees generally have oodles of free time near Christmas and should somehow anticipate that you don't actually want to keep whatever trinket it is that you purchased...).  I wish I had the power to give out Emmy awards because this rep delivered such a magnificent performance when I know that, inside, she just wanted to high five them in the face.  This scene was such a stark contrast to the week prior, when everyone was full of love and laughter - excited for Christmas, delighting in their gift choices and Rum Chata.  There were stories of strangers helping people out to their cars with their Christmas treasures, of lay aways being paid in full as if Kmart actually had Santa Claus on speed dial, of 5-digit checks landing in the Salvation army kettles, of thousands of people showing up to sing Christmas carols to a little girl with cancer.  And then, bam, the day after Christmas and we are fighting over clearance items and screaming at innocent store employees.  What sort of weird black Christmas void have we created that in a matter of only a couple days we go from wanting to reach out a hand to help our neighbors to wanting to push them into the hole and then fill it with dirt?

My 2014 resolution is this:  I want to spend the entire year as if it were Christmas.  Not just a few weeks, not just after I've eaten turkey, but all 365 days.  I want my year to be filled with that warmth, laughter, goodness and generosity that - for some odd reason - we usually only see around the holidays.  I do not have the money to change someone's life, but I have my words.  I have my actions.  And perhaps most importantly, I have two very impressionable young people watching me and learning from me.  Cheesy?  Yes, Wisconsin-quality I'm sure.  But I would rather be cheesy than be that ugly customonster at Kohl's.  Offering kindness is not a seasonal thing, it should be a daily thing.  Each day I get, each person I interact with, I want to try to see them all as Christmas gifts given to me to fill some need that I may not have even known I had.  Sure, I could just shove them in a closet and forget about them, but I could also smile and interact with them, and enjoy them for whatever unique thing that they are.  It's going to be hard on days like today, when my nose is running like Niagara Falls and it's possible I might get mistaken for an extra on The Walking Dead - but I'm going to try.

Wishing you the happiest, cheesiest, and most Christmas-filled year ever!

UPDATE:  I went to the store the way the other day, armed with my resolution.  Let me tell you, you would be amazed at how differently you are treated when you carry a smile on your face.  But I had an experience that showed me I'm on the right path.  The checkout lines were so long, and the best I could do was to get in behind two giant mounding carts and wait patiently.  Anyone who knows me knows that patience is not one of my strong suits, but I smiled anyway.  A woman got in line behind me with her own giant cart and she let out an exasperated sigh.  I made a joke about how I had hoped to be home before 2015 and she smiled.  We chatted while we waited, friendly small talk.  As I finally got to the check out, someone this woman knew snuck in and started talking to her.  The woman I had been chatting with told her friend that her dad was just admitted to the hospital in Iowa City with a mass in his l lung and she was there stocking up her fridge for her kids so she could spend the weekend with him there (yes, I eavesdropped, hard not to do when you're crammed in a tiny aisle together...).  As I finished checking out, she stopped talking to her friend and turned to me and said "Happy New Year!" and smiled.  I wished her the same.

You never know what struggles people are going through.  Be kind, take in these gifts.  Be the smile that breaks up someone's stressful day.  I can't say I've ever left Walmart feeling happy and encouraged before, but I did that time!

December 5, 2013

4 Years, 8 Days, and 4 Hours Ago...

It's hard to believe, but 4 years, 8 days, and 4 hours ago (along with some odd number of minutes and seconds I'm not going to bother calculating, because I'm a right-brainer and we don't do math) we welcomed a new person into our family.  He actually came out looking like a small toddler and already had rolls you could hide your cell phone in, but he was perfect.  There is nothing in the world like a brand new baby, and no joy you can compare it to.  And here we are, 4 years, 8 days, and 4 hours later with a handsome and charismatic little preschooler.  His rolls are gone, but he still can find places to hide our cell phones.  And he is still, and always will be, perfect.

I know that maybe this isn't the word most doctors would use to describe Owen.  My first unofficial medical publication entitled "The Idiot's Guide to Owen" outlines some of the reasons why, though the list seems to grow almost daily.  In fact, here is a recent diagram of Owen's anatomy: 

Ok ok, I lied - it's just a fingerpainting my daughter did. But if I could see inside Owen's system, I'll bet it looks a lot like that painting does.  But you know what?  He is still perfect.  He is every bit as perfect as any child could possibly be, and no amount of flattened tracheas, food aversions, or vascular anomolies will change that.  He is exactly who he was born to be and he shows me each and every day why we are the luckiest people on earth to have been given such a beautiful and yes, perfect, child.  It's been a challenging, yet wonderful 4 years.  This post may be 8 days and 4 hours late, but I hope when he turns 18 and reads this he won't hold that against me.  After all, I also posted pictures of him in diapers so he'll have better things to complain about anyway.

I love you, Big O, Happy Birthday!

November 25, 2013

"And finding a Christmas tree..."

Yes, it might be true that we have had Christmas lights up outside of our house since Halloween.  And yes, it might be true that we put up our Christmas tree two weeks ago.  But, my friends, it wasn't until today that this got real.  Today, November 25, it happened - I heard "12 Pains of Christmas" on the radio.

There is a local radio station that has been playing Christmas music for weeks already, maybe since July even.  This station is the one we have the pleasure of listening to at work.  All night.  Every night.  For hours.  The problem is that there are really only about 6 true Christmas songs, so within a span of about 60 minutes you get to hear various renditions of "Winter Wonderland" sung by Berl Ives, Martina McBride, that lame backup guy from N'Sync, and your neighbor's dog.  Every once in a while they will sprinkle in a little original holiday gem by Jessica Simpson, but that's usually the point where my ears start bleeding and I have to leave the room.

But the "12 Pains of Christmas"?  That's the true sign of impending holiday season.  It isn't going to make your heart overflow with spiritual awe and wonder like "O Holy Night" (I think this photo of Jesus inside of some bird doo even does a better job of that).  It doesn't possess the harmonious vocals of Whitney Houston or Josh Groban (in fact, I think they just grabbed some people off the street and handed them note cards...).  No, "12 Pains of Christmas" is a classic because it speaks the truth about how this crazy holiday has become, well, crazy.  It marks the turning point where you go from the lovely fantasy of "let's-sing-Christmas-carols-and-then-snuggle-up-by-the-fireplace-and-have-some-hot-chocolate" to the frenzied "crap-I-forgot-to-buy-Christmas-cards-and-I'd-rather-stick-a-hot-poker-in-my-eye-than-risk-my-life-at-Walmart".

Certainly you've heard this yuletide melody, right?  

"The first thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me
Is finding a Christmas tree 
(This isn't so much of a pain to us, since finding it simply means unearthing the giant box from beneath the staircase.  Perhaps, in our version, it would be "and assembling the Christmaaaaaas tree!"   But, I suppose that doesn't have the same ring to it...)

The second thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me:
Rigging up the lights
(True Story:  My husband has been attempting to rig up the lights that encircle our living room window for 3 weeks and counting.  The final string is on some sort of Union Strike and despite having been replaced three times, it refuses to cooperate until it gets promoted to first string or moved to the cozy indoors.)
And finding a Christmas tree

The third thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me
(Well, I don't really get hangovers.  I can barely even use a corkscrew.  But I do live with two loud noise machines who stumble into things a lot, and I work late and they wake me up early meaning I survive many days on >5 hours of sleep, so I guess I can relate to this one after all.)
Rigging up the lights
And finding a Christmas tree

The fourth thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me
Sending Christmas cards
(Ah yes, the Christmas cards.  Each year I vow to amaze people with my Martha Stewartesque card making skills.  And then I wake up and realize I have like, a week?, to get cards in the mail before they become New Year's cards instead so I make a run to CardMart and sort through the ransacked piles of loser Christmas cards with polar bears drinking eggnog).
Rigging up the lights
And finding a Christmas tree

The fifth thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me
Five months of bills!
(Shopping tip:  If you are paying for a toy longer than your child will actually play with it, that was not a fiscally responsible purchase.  Toys in our household have a general lifespan of about three months before it is put away in a closet and unearthed the following Christmas as though it were a brand new toy.  This way, you get much more mileage out of it.  It would also explain why my son is currently enjoying an infant bead maze situated on the floor in his room.)
Sending Christmas cards
Rigging up the lights
And finding a Christmas tree

The sixth thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me:
Facing my in-laws
(Don't have too many complaints on this one.  In fact, most years all we have to do is show up and eat - which, if you know of my cooking skills, is nothing short of heavenly.)
Five months of bills!
Oh, I hate those Christmas cards!
Rigging up these lights!
And finding a Christmas tree

The seventh thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me:
The Salvation Army
(I cannot image ringing a bell for more than, say, 5 minutes.  On the one hand, I respect those darn bell ringers for their loyalty to the cause but I imagine their ears ring while they are sleeping.  In fact, they probably wake up in mid-February having nightmares about the bell growing teeth and trying to tear their ear drums out.)
Facing my in-laws
Five months of bills!
Sending Christmas cards
Oh, geez!
I'm tryin' to rig up these lights!
And finding a Christmas tree

The eighth thing at Christmas that such a pain to me:
(My sweet little almost-4-year old would be happy with a jar and a box for Christmas, but the older one has got a serious case of the "gimmies" right now and can turn into a bloodthirsty lunatic in the presence of a certain robotic toy dog or anything with a horse/princess/cat on it, which means we are currently limited to the safety of the mop and toilet bowl cleaner aisle.) 
And whataya mean "YOUR in-laws"?!?
Five months of bills!
Ach, making out these cards
Honey, get me a beer, huh?
What, we have no extension cords?!?
(We have used two, or maybe three, in addition to borrowing one from my inlaws to try and assuage the Christmas Light Strike of 2013).
And finding a Christmas tree

The ninth thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me
Finding parking spaces
(If there is not a parking spot open in the lot, I do not want to go inside.  Period.  The NASCAR wannabes can continue their parking lot laps, I am going home to put my PJs on and shop online instead).
Facing my in-laws Five months of bills!
Writing out those Christmas cards
Now why the hell are they blinking?!?!?
And finding a Christmas tree

The tenth thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me:
"Batteries Not Included"
(The single most disappointing thing a toy retailer could possibly do to a child on Christmas is to send along a beautiful and long-awaited gift with Santa, only to have it unable to spin or scream or dance or whatever because mom and dad do not own size E3D batteries.)
No parking spaces
Get a job, ya bum!
Facing my in-laws!
Five months of bills!
Yo-ho, sending Christmas cards
Oh, geez, look at this!
One light goes out, they ALL go out!!!
(It's in their contract...)
And finding a Christmas tree

The eleventh thing of Christmas that's such a pain to me:
Stale TV specials
(Everything I've ever seen on an infomercial I've wanted to buy, from overpriced microfiber rags to the 14-in-one drill bit set with matching lipstick case.)
"Batteries Not Included"
No parking spaces
(This is *SO* Owen.  Also, he waits until my shopping cart is full and we are at the farthest point in the entire store from a bathroom.  It's a sixth sense, really.)
She's a witch...I hate her!
Five months of bills!
Oh, I don't even KNOW half these people!
Oh, who's got the toilet paper, huh?
(Why are people stealing toilet paper?)
Get a flashlight...I blew a fuse!!
And finding a Christmas tree

The twelfth thing of Christmas that's such a pain to me:
Singing Christmas carols
(I'm a mom.  A a mom, you are required to sing Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer at least 18 times prior to Christmas.  It's in the manual.)
Stale TV specials
"Batteries Not Included"
No parking?!?
Gotta make 'em dinner!
Five months of bills!
I'm not sendin' them this year, that's it!
(Just call them New Year's cards, remember?)
Shut up, you!
(I wonder if there aren't actually people out there who hire out their services as light-riggers.  If so, I wonder if my husband would consider it.  He becomes a little bit more Clark Griswold-y each year, I bet he'd make some decent money.)
And finding a Christmas tree."

The song is every bit as heartwarming as a leftover fruitcake from two years ago.  I hope, this week, as Black Friday shoves its way into Brown Thanksgiving, that we take a moment to consider how ridiculous we look celebrating Christmas and how all we really need this holiday season is some time with our families.  And maybe a massage.

November 19, 2013

Whose Underwear is That?

"There's never a dull moment".  I don't know who wrote that, but I'd be willing to bet that that person was a parent.  Of preschoolers.  Take last Thursday, for example - I picked up the kids at school and we headed home.  As usual, once we got home Owen requested to play on the tablet (and by play, I mean he will accidently click on ads until he manages to find a raunchy Miley Cyrus video on YouTube).  Maybe 20 minutes after we get home, Owen goes to use the bathroom and comes back out requesting jean-buttoning assistance.  I oblige, and it wasn't until I kneeled down that I noticed something...unusual.  Owen was wearing someone else's underwear.

I sat there for a moment, trying to sort through his sock drawer in my head in order to convince myself that at some point in time, we had in fact purchased these and maybe I just hadn't seen them in a while.  But it was no use.  These definitely were not his.

Me:  "Owen, why are you wearing someone else's underwear?"
Owen:  (silence)
Me:  "Owen, where are YOUR underwear?"
Owen:  (silence)

Ok, I get it.  He's pleading the 5th.  That's fine, it's ok.  I'm no Mariska Hargitay but I've watched enough Law & Order to know that if you're going to get them to talk you have to pull out the big guns before they ask for a lawyer, or start screaming for graham crackers.  Then they are as good as gone.

Me:  "Owen, you need to tell me whose underwear that is or I'm going to put the tablet away."  (add this to my list of sentences I never expected to hear myself say...)
Owen:  "But it's ok, Mom, they're clean."

Wait...what?  Call me naive, but it wasn't until RIGHTTHATMOMENT that it occured to me that these strange underwear may NOT have been clean.  :::shudder:::  All sorts of bizarre endings to this mystery started swirling in my head, I think one of them involved a standoff at the lego table?, until I realized the absurdity of this whole situation.  It's pretty obvious what happened, and so I decided to just lay it all out there so that he knew that I knew that he knew.

Me:  "Owen, did you steal those from Bear In Underwear's backpack?"

Slowly, his deer-in-the-headlights look transformed into a mischevious grin and he started laughing.  I laughed, too, because standing in front of me was a tiny person who was throwing his head back like an evil overlord who had just captured his arch enemy...and then stole his underwear.  How is that not funny?  It was ridiculous, and hilarious, and confusing, and every kind of thing I should be used to by now as a mom.  Eventually I discovered his real underwear crammed into the bottom of his backpack along with a handwritten note from his teacher explaining that she keeps backups, "just in case".  I guess that's relieving (pun intended). 

Never a dull moment...


November 18, 2013

The Resurrection

Well, I guess that's enough procrastination and apathy for now...I'm back, and I'm ready to blog again.

When I stepped back from my blog, I somehow got the impression that doing so would miraculously create another 5 hours in my day.  I'm here to tell you - it didn't.  Instead, I filled my free time (all 20 minutes of it...) watching Friends reruns and doing Google searches about weird diseases and how to make a snowman out of cottonballs.  It wasn't until I downloaded Candy Crush on my phone that I realized I was in trouble.  I needed to get back to writing, and FAST, before I started lining up the kids' Halloween candy in sets of three.

So, if you're one of the four people who used to read my blog, welcome back.  If you found my post by Googling "cottonball snowman", you have my apologies - all I did was just read about crafts, I didn't actually *do* any of them.  But stick around, if you want, I might have an upcoming tutorial on what you should do if your child comes home in someone else's underwear.

Until then...

October 2, 2012

Lainey's First Book

Below is the first publication of Lainey's first official book, titled "The Girl and the Moonstone", as it was read to me last night before bedtime. Enjoy it now while it's still in marker-and-notepad version, it's sure to become a new #1.

Once upon a time there was a girl named Lainey...

(Lainey has some incredible upper body, wouldn't you agree? That girl could probaby bench press me!)

Lainey was outside in the garden when she saw a beautiful flower...

(That grass looks a lot like our new yard, complete with cactus weeds that drive spikes into the sensitive undersides of your bare feet. Ask me how I discovered them...)

The flower had a caterpillar on it! He was scrunching along...

(I think "scrunching along" is my new favorite phrase.)

And then he built a cucoon and wrapped himself in it (but it didn't have any yucky things hanging from it like the one in our classroom). He turned into a BEAUTIFUL butterfly with rainbows on his wings...

(Lainey is really concerned about some "yucky thing" that is hanging from the bottom of the caterpillar cucoon in her preschool classroom. She tells me about it two or three times a day. Also, the caterpillar's name is Frederick.)

And the butterfly said "Follow me if you want to see the rainbow!" and so the girl followed him and on the road was a juggler clown who was juggling oranges. The girl was hungry and said "Mmmm let me have an orange!" and the juggler wanted to see the rainbow so he came with...

(I'm really thankful to live in an area where I don't find random clowns sitting around juggling on my way to work. That would really disturb me...I do like oranges though, so...)

They walked and they walked and they walked and all of a sudden it rained magic rain and it turned the butterfly into a unicorn! But the unicorn was also a giraffe. It was called a girafficorn.

(Best. Animal. EVER.)

And finally they walked and walked and got to see the rainbow and it was beautiful!

(Whew, that rainbow can barely contain all of those colors!)


(Where - and what - is the moonstone, you ask? *shrugs* I feel like maybe she hit a creative block and decided to plagarize from the Tinkerbell movie she had just watched. Or perhaps she is saving that for the exciting sequel. I sure hope the Girafficorn makes an encore appearance).

November 15, 2011

Ode to Owen

Owen, my child, so innocent and sweet,
why is it that you must puke when you eat?
Do you not care for tonight's entree?
Or was it too chunky to call a puree?
You really should try a cracker or two,
you might be surprised at what you can do!
You can "chomp chomp" your teeth and mash it to bits,
instead of screaming and throwing big fits.
Pick up a spoon, just like your big sissy,
and shovel it in! No need to be prissy.
I don't care if you're covered in cake,
most kids would be thrilled, for goodness sakes.
That kid in the booth there beside us is one,
and she's munching and crunching and having such fun.
You're missing out on the pizza and pie,
I know that you'd like it, just give it a try!
You were born with some things out of place,
and I'm sure you just wish that we'd give you some space.
But I am your mom, and as you may know,
that gives me the right to run this whole show.
Bananas, carrots, peanut butter and jelly,
I promise they all will feel good in your belly.
I can't guarantee that you will not gag,
and I'm sure that the feeling must be a real drag.
But even those times when you feel kind of yucky,
let's face it, kid, you are still pretty lucky.
You have a small army that's cheering for you,
and wishing to see you just bite down and chew.
We'll get there, someday, with a little hard work,
and maybe we'll celebrate with some Caribbean jerk!

November 4, 2011

Abandon Ship!

I can't help but notice that I've lost a couple subscribers recently, and that I've only received maybe one comment in the last few months and I won't lie - it sort of makes me feel like that kid in the junior high cafeteria that always smells like stale cigarettes and pork roast. You know, the one you kept scooching away from to avoid having to make awkward conversation? I suppose I can contribute this loss to the fact that subscribing to something that's only updated once every third full moon is probably not very exciting. Plus I never give away free stuff, besides the occasional pearl of "be careful what your kid shoves up their nose" wisdom. Actually, the longer I think about it, the more surprised I am that I have any subscribers at all. Man, I need a wine cooler...

The mental block I've had lately has become an enormous time sucker, causing me to spend hours searching Google for absolutely nothing in particular and then wondering where my entire night has gone. Granted, I can also blame a little of that on the constant stream of Law & Order: SVU episodes we have DVR'd. But honestly, I've just felt like I have had nothing noteworthy to write about. For example, the recent topics I considered blogging about (but ended up staring at Elliott Stabler instead) are as follows:

1) The family that got lost and called 911 from a corn maze. There were almost TOO MANY ways to make fun of this, and I just couldn't narrow it down enough to come up with a full, coherent blog.

2) Halloween in general. I had a little harder time celebrating Halloween this year, given the tragic ending of the holiday last year. Also, trick-or-treating lost it's fun with a toddler who didn't understand that you couldn't knock on every single door. After about the fourth house with it's light off, the throw-your-bucket-on-the-sidewalk-and-scream tantrums got old. I mean, it's not like the kid is going to eat any of those stale Tootsie Rolls, so who were we really doing this for anyway?

3) And speaking of not eating, that brings me to Owen. The giant feeding mystery wrapped up in a cute little toddler body. Seriously, kid, it won't kill you to munch on an animal cracker without yakking, I promise. We were told today that it is likely due to his anatomy and he will either A) outgrow it or B) live with it forever and have to learn how to deal. Basically, we will either win the lottery or we won't. The drastic differences between those two possible scenarios is not a heart-warming confidence booster, and the whole ordeal has been so frustrating that it's hard for me to write about it in the witty and satirical fashion that all three of you reading this have come to know and love.

4) The mullet I saw today. I never climbed on to the "Epic" bandwagon, but believe me when I say if ever there were a place and time to use the word epic, this woman's femullet would have been it. The party in the back continued all the way down to her waist in a lovely natural shade of brunette, yet the business in front was bleached and slicked back. If some dude from the cast of Baywatch had a baby with Michelle Duggar, you would have gotten this lady. It. Was. Awesome. I regret only that I did not have an inconspicuous view for which to take a cell phone picture.

However, in all of this grump and sigh, I do have a positive note to end on: My daughter's donation today to the University of Iowa Children's Hospital was spectacular. 20 Color Wonder sets, 20 Matchbox cars, $40 in iTunes gift cards, a stack of board and coloring books, and over 20 other toys and games will surely bring a smile to a few of those kids who - let's face it - have a lot bigger problems than what to blog about. I'm very proud of Lainey not only for helping me shop for toys that weren't going to end up in the bottom of her purse, but for being genuinely disappointed that she was not going to be personally handing out these toys to the kids themselves. It took 15 minutes and a package of M&M's to calm her down and convince her that the toys would, indeed, get handed out and that the kids would, indeed, have great big huge smiles on their faces. Lainey, you warm my heart.

And minus the two of you who abandoned ship, I do appreciate anyone who stops in to read what I have to write every so often. Say hi once in a while, would'ya? I already feel a little crazy as it is, the last thing I need is to start "talking" to myself...

October 18, 2011

A Lesson from Charmin

Today, I'd like to talk to you about toilet paper.

If you have watched TV at all in the past three years, chances are you have seen the Charmin commercials. You know, the one with the cartoon bears? The first time I ever saw this, I was a little horrified. But mostly I laughed, hard. I never realized that leaving pieces behind when you wiped was such an epidemic that it required it's own Public Service Announcement. And then three questions came immediately to my mind: A) Why don't the bears just use leaves like nature intended? B) What sort of mother would subject her offspring to such a humiliating full backside inspection? and most importantly... C) Who wipes so aggressively that they turn their toilet paper into sticky confetti bits in the first place?

I remember repeatedly scoffing at this commercial and it's ridiculous message. Every time I saw that little bear cub behind shaking at me on the screen, I couldn't help but wonder how someone would go about shredding toilet paper with nothing but their own two cheeks. But slowly, over the past few months, a humble enlightenment has come over me. You see, I have a three year old now. Anyone who has a three year old can just stop reading now, because you understand. However, if you do not, in fact, have a three year old, let me explain...

Three year olds are not gentle creatures. They run hard, they play hard, they scream hard, and apparently - they wipe hard. I never once equated my daughter with that obnoxious red bear, but then the pieces started to appear. At first there were just a couple white flecks on the ground. I didn't know what they were at first, so I just picked them up and disposed of them. But then those couple turned into a few, and then those few started showing up multiple times during the day. What ARE these little paper snowflakes? Do we have a bathroom fairy?

Then one night as I was helping my daughter get ready for bed, I watched her shred that paper faster than an Enron executive, and it dawned on me. She IS that little cub on the Charmin commercial! The sandpaper butt is not a myth afterall. And before I could stop myself, I did a visual check of her behind to make sure she had not, in fact, left any pieces behind. And it was right then that I realized I had come full-circle. I had gone from a person who snorted out loud at the thought of toilet paper dingleberries to a parent who takes toilet paper strength very seriously.

Such are the joys of parenthood. Charmin, you have my apologies.

September 29, 2011

Bear in Underwear

You may probably think that I went out of my way to come up with a clever and humorous title for this post, but it's really just the name of a book. Yes, a real book. And not just any book, but Owen's favorite book.

For those of you who haven't read this classic, allow me to summarize for you: A bear is playing hide-and-seek with some creepy woodland creatures with gigantic eyes when he decides that his friends suck at hiding and that he wants to omnomnom on some cheeseburgers. On his way to eat cheeseburgers, he trips over a backpack and decides to steal it. He makes it back home, where his wild animal posse greets him (I thought they were playing hide-and-seek?) and decide to bully him into sharing the backpacks contents. But we aren't talking about iPods or school books, we are talking about underwear. The backpack is full of underwear. Dirty underwear, girly underwear, itchy underwear. My first thought would have been to call Benson and Stabler, because finding a bunch of used underwear in the woods has been the premise of more than one episode of Law & Order: SVU. However, the bear instead decides to try each pair on. If that weren't creepy enough, his forest friends decide to join in the fun, leading to an awkward underwear scene which is quite possibly illegal to view in some states. But in the end, bear is happy, because his tighty whitey's look "DY-NO-MITE!".

Owen is enthralled by this story. He literally giggles when the underwear come spilling out of the backpack. Considering that Owen has never worn a pair of underwear, and I'm not even sure he knows what they are, the fact that he giggles at this just proves that men are simply predisposed to bathroom humor and Adam Sandler movies. And he isn't the only one - apparently, "Bear in Underwear" was so popular that it inspired sequels such as "Bear in PINK Underwear" and "Bear in Long Underwear".

So hit up your local Borders before they lock the doors, you may be able to score yourself a cheap copy. Just be forewarned that on about page six there is a very clear illustration of naked bear buttocks. You know, in case you are sensitive to that sort of thing...

(An older photo of Owen enjoying his book - this was taken about 6 months ago, just to further prove how much of a staple this book is in our household):

September 22, 2011

Confessions of a Common Goddess

I confess that I am addicted to Q-tips. I could very likely win a prize for having the cleanest ears in the world - or at very least, the cleanest ones on the block. I think my obsession stemmed from a traumatic episode of "Untold Stories of the ER". I would elaborate, but I'd hate for you to run out to the store and buy up all of my Q-tips.

I confess that I swell with pride when I throw some egg noodles and chicken into a pan and stick it in the oven. As you may well already know, I am at least three light years away from being Rachel Ray, so I have to take my kitchen accomplishments when I can.

I confess that even though my cats are among the most lazy animals ever to have walked this Earth, I still feel safe when they are near me. The logical side of me knows that if an intruder ever came in my cats would either A) yawn, B) get startled and fall off the couch, or C) rub up against them hoping for food, but I still can't help but feel comforted by their presence.

I confess that I have an unhealthy fear that all spiders can actually leap into the air, Michael Jordan-style.

I confess that I have never seen Star Wars, have no desire to ever see Star Wars, and could not care less how un-American this might make me.

I confess that I also have never seen the TV show "Glee". Go ahead and take my social security card away.

I confess that I miss the days when you could just wear plain 'ole jeans without them being the skinny or pajama kind. Seriously, those are just...unnatural. People aren't meant to look like they are walking on tooth picks. And men wearing skinny jeans? Wrong on many levels. The only plus is the entertaining mental image of them getting stuck trying to take them off - Ross and the leather pants, anyone?

I confess that I am not nearly as witty and articulate in person. My brain has to write and rewrite things numerous times to achieve something that is, in my mind, acceptable for posting. In person, it would be more like, "Wow, that was really swell!"

I confess that I wish more people used the word swell, because I think it is...well...really swell.

I confess that I just saw a car commercial that involved dancing robots and hamsters wearing parachute pants, and it made me really sad for the state of our country.

I confess that I convince myself to buy junk food at the store to use as treats for my daughter, only to hide them and then eat them myself once the kids are in bed. Along the same lines, I confess that giving my son vanilla wafers to "play" with during mealtimes should be a crime, since they always end up getting smashed and broken. Each time I vacuum up pieces of vanilla wafer, a small part of me dies inside.

I confess that I just got up and ate three vanilla wafers because my last confession made me hungry for them.

I confess that I go to Walmart once a week, and I'm not the least bit ashamed by this fact. Every single time I go down the clearance aisle hoping to discover some diamond nestled among the dog crap. And I almost always grab at least two things that I never intended on buying upon walking in to the store. Yes, I confess I'm a Walmart sucker.

I confess that I started this blog to avoid having to wash bottles, because I would rather scrub a toilet out with a toothbrush, blindfolded, while listening to Michael Bolton, than wash bottles by hand. But, my son deserves to eat out of something that doesn't have crusty vanilla formula stuck to the inside, so that's all the confessions you get for right now.

September 13, 2011

What An Itch!

What's more annoying than sitting next to that guy on an airplane who blows his nose 187 times? Mosquitoes, that's what.

We were out at the park last night, enjoying a warm late summer breeze and totally minding our own business, when out of the blue I felt a tiny presence on my ankle and looked to find that it was being sucked dry by a little winged vampire. I'm more allergic to them than most, so the left side of my foot now looks like I've contracted some grotesque skin disease. And if the inability to wear my sandals for fear of being labeled a social outcast isn't enough, this mosquito bite also just happens to be at the right level for my work shoes to rub against. All day long. Just to give you an idea how wonderful this felt today, imagine wearing your grandmother's wool sweater outside in 90 degree weather. Now imagine it's full of fleas. Now take that feeling, condense it onto a small section of your ankle, and multiply it by 10.

If you're looking for me, I'll be the one with her foot in the bucket full of Cortizone.

August 24, 2011

"I Don't Know"

Today I bring you a little tale of irony. About a month or so ago, my son Owen was referred to the Early Intervention program for his behavioral feeding issues and his speech delay. Side Rant: For some ridiculous reason, even though he acts like eating food is the most awful torture that any human being should have to endure, they would not consider him a candidate until he was behind in his speech as well. (So if your child physically cannot eat, but they possess the language skills to say "I'm not eating that crud", apparently your child is SOL). Anyhow, in order to even qualify for the speech part of it, it was required that he be greater than 30% delayed. The only thing I've heard come out of his mouth since he was born 21 months ago have been screeches, grunts, and "Ooooh!", so I thought we had this evaluation in the bag.

This morning, the therapist comes by and unloads some toys on the floor and we begin to discuss Owen's strengths and weaknesses. Naturally, our discussion orbits around his communication and I explain to her his speech pattern, or lack thereof. She jots down some notes, rambles off some psychological mumbo jumbo, and pulls out a floor puzzle for Owen to use as a weapon....uh, I mean, to test his critical thinking. It was a simple puzzle - circle peg on one side, square peg on the other, triangle in the middle. All Owen had to do was put them back in the correct spot. He did an amazing job the first go-round when they were all lined up perfectly where they should be. Then the therapist took the pieces out and mixed them up and set them in front of Owen. He stared at them for a few moments, trying to figure out what he was supposed to do with them and if he really even wanted to humor us any longer. Or perhaps he was deciding which one of the pegs to throw at the cat. The therapist points to the space where the triangle should go and says to Owen, "What goes here?"

Owen paused, looked down at the sad little empty spot, and said "I don't know."

Don't get me wrong, I was THRILLED that he said something remotely understandable. But his timing, during an evaluation geared to help him with a significant SPEECH delay, was impeccable. Thankfully, the therapist registered my surprise and said "You didn't expect that, did you?" Understatement of the year. I would have predicted the earthquake in Virginia before I predicted a full, logical sentence out of my son. And, as you can probably guess, he has not said another thing since the therapist left our house this morning.

Motherhood is always full of surprises.

August 16, 2011

The Clumsy Dragon

This blog is brought to you by my daughter, Lainey, and her imaginative storytelling (as well as her creative ability to stall bedtime at all costs). I would like to title this story "Pink the Clumsy Dragon." Enjoy.
Once upon a time there was a dragon named Pink. And one day she was playing outside in her garden and she fell down and she got a boo boo on her hand and her face and her eyes and her nose and her elbow. So she went inside and said to her mom to get her some bandages for all her boo boos. And then Pink went back outside and tripped over a log. And there was a bee, and the bee flew down and started to eat the dragon because he landed on her arm and the bee said "I'm gonna eat you!" and Pink the dragon said "No don't eat me! Shoo fly!" and she chased the bee away. And bees like honey and they eat it and they buzz around like this "BUZZ BUZZ BUZZ". And then Pink was running away and she hit her arm and she said "OW OW OW!" and ran around and had to get a bandage on her arm. And they lived happily ever after...THE END.

Get this kid a publisher.

July 30, 2011


This morning I was awoken by the pitter-patter of tiny feet - except this time, the feet belonged to my cat instead of my children, and those feet weren't running down the hallway, they were trying to knead my face like a 5-day-old lump of dough. The only time I am woken in this manner is when my cats are out of food, so I knew if I didn't get up and feed them soon they would swarm me on the stairs or cough up a hairball on my work clothes.

So I shuffled to the basement, dished them up a hefty serving of the best dry food crap money can buy, and headed over to the sink with their water dish. As I grasped the handle of the faucet, my finger got caught in a cobweb - no big deal, it's a basement, it's to be expected, right? What I didn't expect, though, was to see a spider the size of Mongolia racing towards my hand at top speed. Suddenly, every fear I have had since my first viewing of "Arachnophobia" was playing out in real life. Thankfully, I maintained my bladder control and yanked my hand back quicker than you can say "GETITOFFME". As I did, it spun around and raced back to the firey pit from whence it came, obviously not in the mood to take on this giant wuss and her big bowl full of water.


That experience alone is enough for me to have nightmares for a week... But this evening, as I was heading back down to the basement to switch out a load of laundry, I saw a dark black object scampering across the floor. Could it be? Is it the same man-eating spider I encountered earlier? I watched carefully as it crossed the floor, afraid to move in fear that it would make a flying leap towards me. But as it began to come more into view, pure horror washed over me. This was definitely not the spider I saw earlier, oh no - this was Bubba, his giant older cousin. He was no Mongolia, he was the entire continent of Asia. This is the kind of spider that eats those other spiders as a mid-morning snack. Obviously, given the fact that I haven't seen one of these in my basement in nearly a year, I should take these two sightings as proof that they are forming some sort of arachnoid militia and plan to invade the second I close my eyes tonight.

Sleep is overrated, right?

July 20, 2011

Just When I Couldn't Get Any Weirder...

Sometimes it's hard for me to imagine that there is a level of weird that exists out there beyond my daily "norm", but I think I went there today. First though, I have to air a confession. I have never - ever - made rice krispie treats. Not when I was a kid, not in college when it's all I could afford to eat, not even now when it's practically written in to the parenting manual. I sure do love them, don't get me wrong, but even the complex "melt marshmallow and stir in krispies" recipe goes over my head. If you're one of my fairweather readers, you may already know about my crippling kitchen ineptness...

Anyhow, as I was in the store today I was overcome with the desire to bond with my daughter over some krispie treats, so I scooped up a bag of marshmallows and dropped them in my cart. I was feeling pretty good about myself and my clearly superior parenting as I checked out and got the kids home in time for bed (ok, ok, I did venture to WalMart at 7pm, so that was a slight parenting fail on my part...bear with me). After they were tucked in, I hopped on to the internet to Google rice krispie recipes (yes, really - I told you, it's a foreign language to me). And the more I thought about that white, gooey marshmallowy sweetness, the more I concluded that if I stole one or two as a late night snack, it really wouldn't be the end of the world. Right?

But after thieving three delicious little pillows of sugar from the bag, I decided that eating them plain just wouldn't do. They needed to be CAMPFIRE marshmallows. The crispy-on-the-outside-gooey-on-the-inside-let's-sing-a-song-and-tell-ghost-stories kind. But how?

A LIGHTER, that's how! I retrieved my honorary incense lighter from it's typical resting place and settled down on the sofa with it, along with my marshmallows crammed onto the end of a butter knife. And I proceeded to set them on fire as the show "My Strange Addiction" played on in the background - ironic, don't you think? I haven't had toasted marshmallows in years, and despite the fact that I broke my lighter and burned the tip of my finger trying to keep the flame lit long enough for that perfect crispy shell, I enjoyed three of the best campfire marshmallows this side of Cub Scouts.

[After proof reading this whole thing, I'm a little embarrassed at just how weird it makes me seem. However, I spent half an hour writing it and since I have so little free time anymore I refuse to call it a loss.]

Side note: I also realized that in my cloud of parental superiority at the store, I actually forgot the Rice Krispies for which to make my rice krispie treats. I'm guessing they are a rather important ingredient. So unless I happen to remember on my next store outing (slim chance), there may be more campfire marshmallows in my future.

Side note #2: Despite being ridiculously anal about spelling, every. single. time. I typed out "marshmallows" in this blog, I spelled it "marshmellows" and was autocorrected. Never has an "A" been more unwelcome, I say.