Writing about the day to day mysteries of life.
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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Spring and Swaps

I really don't think I should say it out loud, but there is a slight twinge of spring in the air.  As we all know time flies, so it is already March.  Ellen turns 12 in March and Ian 9 in April.  It goes by in a blink.  Ellen told me, "she is getting curves."  They are the cutest little curves, a different landscape on a body I know so well.  Sorry, I was talking about spring and not that my kids are growing up so fast.  March is a tease, but closer to spring thank goodness.  We still have snow from the round of storms, but it is melting and if you look carefully the daffodils are pushing up.  Day light savings is in 14 days, but who's counting.  That added daylight means the wild ones can tear around the yard and not in the house. 

My friend came over to sew for awhile last night.  We had dinner, watched Olympics and worked on different projects.  It was nice.  Ellen was at a sleepover (what are they sleeping over) and the boys played Club Penguin with only a small amount of rabble-raising. 

I entered two swaps with the magazine "Cloth, Paper, Scissors".  Anyone can enter, if you pay five dollars, no special talents needed.  I made and sent in a postcard and a pendant and I will get one of each in return.  Here are the pictures, I take really bad pictures.  The post card swap had a theme of inspiration.  I will post the ones I receive, it isn't until April. 

HAPPY ALMOST SPRING!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Cativity and Fact or Fiction

I read that cats sleep on average 19 hours a day.  I have been home a lot lately and have discovered that my cat is quite busy.  A lot of cativity goes on around here.  Juno is busy investigating, chasing, terrorizing and plotting.  He has been stuck inside more than usual and so I think he is thinking up evil plans to capture and mutilate all the voles that live near here.  I think he practices his moves on Ellen.  He is always sneaking about, to jump out on her.  I think he appreciates the shrieking she does.  We call him the "gray flash", he is a whisper in the shadows.  A friend called my cat intrepid.  I think that is the perfect word for cats.
 

The kids often ask me if a book, movie or story is fact or fiction.  That is a good question. I think we should assume things are fiction until proven definitively.   The facts I have might be different than the facts you have, so is something fiction?  Fact and fiction is often a matter of perspective.  How much of this blog is fact and how much is fiction?   Just because you know me and can hear my voice, do you think I am telling the truth?  Reality tv is total fiction.  Pieces of stories are snipped together and presented as real.  Do we really believe the housewives are all friends?  In a round-about way I am saying all this because your version of the truth is probably not the only version of the truth.  Fact or fiction?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Mendenhall Glacier

Teri sent me this picture of the Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau, AK.  This is one of my favorite places in the world.  I haven't been to that many place, truthfully, but I love this spot.  I didn't ask if she found the pieces like this or if she did it.

Chicken, Donuts and a Series of Events

Monday afternoon Ian told me he needed chicken for school the next day.  His class is reading a book and chicken noodle soup is central to the story.  The kids are going to make soup as a class.  After dinner, I drive to the grocery store for chicken.  I get it ready and then receive an email that the chicken isn't needed until Wednesday. 

Tuesday morning Ellen wakes up LATE and tells me she is supposed to bring donuts in for advisory.  It is 7:30 the bus comes at 7:40 and it is my work day.  No way is that going to happen.  I ask her the obvious question.  Could you not have told me this last night when I was AT the grocery store buying chicken?  She tells me, quite truthfully, "but I didn't need them until today."  Does she think I am going to cough up donuts like a furball?

Tuesday evening my friend calls, because she has a quiet evening to herself, but realizes she is supposed to send in chicken.  She asks if her son can share our chicken.  I tell her no problem, I will divide the DAMN chicken in half, but she owes me big.  Ellen is sitting next to me and says, "ooohh, you said damn."  After our conversation I get up, re-package and re-label the chicken.

Wednesday we leave the house early, because Ellen's donut day was pushed back.  We are at Dunkin Donuts trying to order donuts from the Indian family that speaks NO english.  There is a huge line and Ellen is itemizing which donuts she wants.  One blue, two pink.......I thought I might lose my mind!   The boys of course want to take in donuts, since Ellen gets to.  So 24 donuts and 100 munchkins later, we make it out off the premises.    We get to school and it hits me, "we left the chicken at home."  Ellen says, "no, you left the damn chicken at home."  I drove home, got the chicken, returned it to school.  No lie, I go in the house putter for a few minutes, grab my keys and glasses, go back out to the car.  Chicken is on the counter!  The other part of all this is that Ian doesn't even like chicken.  He will choke it down, smothered with Old Bay, if I play mean mom and make him. 

Monday, February 22, 2010

February Quilt and A Happy Day

My February quilt is finished.  Of course the big thing this month was snow.  That is what my quilt is about.  It is quite a cute quilt in real life.  In this picture I took, it doesn't look like much.  The picture is January and February on the refrigerator.  I was so happy the kids wanted them to be there and not up on the tackboard in my sewing room.
I had a very happy day - so far.  It was so nice to be back at school!  I had not been there since February 2nd.  It was great to chat with my co-workers and see the cute 2's.  My kids are still cuddly, fortunately, but cuddling with a toddler is something special.  I watched one of the 2's while his mom had a conference.  We snuggled into a chair and he sat and sang the ABC's.  It was nice and soothing, I miss my children as babies.  I feel lucky to work in the pre-school.  We finally celebrated Valentine's Day.  The class gave Jen and I dinner for tonight.  It was such an unexpected and completely thoughtful gift!  Happy, happy, happy!  They also included chocolate - whoohoo!!

I came home and did some quilting as shown above, and just puttered on misc. quilt stuff.  My house is freezing, but I have a little space heater and a labrador in the sewing room with me.  It is cozy.  I look out at a bird nest and remember hearing the baby birds from the summer.  I hope they return this spring.    It is starting to rain, which will hopefully wash away a good portion of the remaining snow.  It isn't pretty anymore, it is just annoying, especially down in the city.   A guy came by spray painting a line in the snow, I am assuming to point out what needed to be removed.  Well, that is just a big DUH!  You can see what needs to be removed, even the untrained eye. 

Rain, rain come today
and wash all the snow away

Ian has been working on vocabulary.  He got my attention to say, "Mom, I am going to doff off my clothes."  Doff off is funny!!    I think the men's bob sled teams need to doff off those bodysuits they are sporting.  It isn't pretty, actually downright embar-ass-ing,  and why is the camera at backside level as they are bending over to careen down the track?  We are right at the exact height of the butt slap that each one gets from their coach.  Heh, heh.  It ranks right up at the top with football players dumping the water container on the coach, after every game.  They laugh every time.  Every time!

Sloopy got his new lacrosse equipment.  If I had let him, he would have worn the cleats to bed.  He took them in for show-n-tell today, which happens "every seven days".  Which I hope meant Monday. 


Ellie B. had a field trip to see the Science Center and an IMAX show on Lions.  Well, El is extremely squeamish.  She had her head ducked down as she watched an hour and a half of lion kills.  She was not a happy camper! 

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Fessing Up

All my remote issues - a bad battery. 

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Holden Caulfield and Snow

Everything this week comes down to the snow.  If I had been on my normal routine I may have forgotten about J.D. Salinger passing away.  Since I am bored and trying to hide from the kids, I decided to look for "The Catcher in the Rye".  I have read this numerous times, but truthfully probably not in a decade or more.  This is my original copy from 9th grade.  It has all my notes written in the margins and just looking at it made me hate high school all over again. A kind of sock to the gut feeling.  I loved this book. Related to this book.  Idolized this book.   And am rereading it with trepidation, I don't want to ruin it for myself.  It is harder now to separate the book from the author knowing what a nut he was.  I want this book to be just as good and hope I don't disappoint myself. 

I have been way too domestic.  I dusted for no reason, no company coming over.  I think dusting is pointless, there is always dust.  We all know there is dust, dust is on everything, so why bother.   I cleaned my desk.  I vacuumed out the spice drawer.  I organized the paper sacks from the grocery store.  I paid Ned to match up all the tupperware type containers.   I have lost my mind and as evidence I present the pumpkin pie I made with no sugar.  Absolutely revolting.  Now the kids won't try anything when I make something delicious, but they all tasted the gakky pie. 

I have been so happy to have up-graded cable service, but we have a faulty remote - for real life.  Half the time we can't change channels and the 0 doesn't work.  You have to use the remote, because the comcast guy programmed it that way.   Are they trying to help me go insane?  I can't watch HBO, because of course it starts at 300 and I can't type the 0.  It keeps getting stuck on channel 1, which is a channel to tell you what all the other channels are showing.  All the other channels I cannot watch!  If there was not 48 " of snow they would actually send a technician out.  I have to tell you I feel really lame having a tech come out to help with the remote.  Loser with a capital L.  You know that guy is going to get back to the break-room and entertain his cohorts with the stupid lady who couldn't work the remote.  I think it really is broken and not just user error, because Ellen can't get it to work either. 

Tomorrow is day number six of no school due to snow.  Monday is a holiday.  We have had a lot of quantity time together.  I live in a big house and yet we are all in the same room.   Maybe I should be flattered that the kids and dogs want to be in whatever room I am in, but why do the kids and dogs always have to be in the same room I am in.  Someone is always putting their feet on me. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

SNOW and More SNOW

These blizzards have reaffirmed my convictions that I can never home-school.  I don't have the required discipline, I am much too "oh, well."  I have had the valentine stuff out for two weeks and not one of us has completed them.  Valentine's Day is going to be buried in snow at this rate anyway. 

We got out of the house yesterday and met friends at the movies.  We saw the "Tooth Fairy" and if you go in with low expectations.....it can actually be better than you thought.  We are all really excited to see "The Lightning Thief".  If you haven't read this series then you should.  It is a great series for kids and adults.  Riordan really
brings greek mythology to life!

The Lightning Thief (Movie Tie-in Edition) (Percy Jackson and the Olympians)

I have almost finished a quilt I started at MAQ in 2008.  It is called "Ned's Redemption".  I had been sewing on it steadily and got to the bottom corner and a block was missing.  I marched downstairs and gave the kids "the I don't care who did it, just return it" rant.  Of course, they all vehemently denied seeing the fabric.  Later I caught Ned pinning the fabric to it's spot.  The cheeky little bastard actually said, "mom, you should thank me for finding your fabric."   It is almost done, but I have goofed it up and think I may have to cut the border off.  The entire quilt is on the bias and so the border really stretched.  It is frustrating to be almost done and have it looking ratty.  I am pondering this dilemma. before I do anything.  I think I am going to stick to small quilts, by the time I finish a large one, I don't like it anymore.  This quilt isn't even that big.

I made a batch of cookies, a day stuck inside is a day that requires chocolate chip cookies. 

Monday, February 8, 2010

Hill Cows and Aliens

I was talking to the wild ones about a boy we know who is undergoing treatment for a bone cancer.  He had surgery just below the knee and then had surgery on the other leg to make sure his legs will be the same length.  Ellen piped up, "luckfully, he won't be like a hill cow!"  Sometimes it makes me wonder what planet my children are from? Quite truthfully we should look at our children as aliens.  They haven't been on our planet long.  They haven't had a chance to study our ways.  They make connections that don't make sense, but work,  because they are higher beings.  It is only after we wear them down to conformity that we call them human, which seems to coincide with them going off to college.

The mid-atlantic region was hit hard with snow this weekend.  It was quite a wonderful storm.  It came on Friday, so most people could stay home to enjoy it.  The sun came out on Sunday and it was very beautiful.  It was amazingly quiet, no cars or planes.  There was a woodpecker out in the driveway making a terrible racket.  His red head really stood out against all the white.  Unfortunately, there is no-where for the snow to go and so many roads are still not passable.  We are supposed to get another storm tomorrow, understatement of the year, that will not be great at all!  You may not see any of us until March.  Schools might be in session until July 4th.  

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Spiders and Orange Feathers

I ran a load of laundry today, miracle of all miracles.  I was transferring clean clothes to the dryer and had a major scare.  There was an absolutely enormous, big-ass, black spider in the washer.  I bravely bent in closer assuming it would be dead, since it had just completed a wash cycle and realized it was a rubber spider.  One of the wild ones must have had it in their pocket - woowee! 

An older friend (her son is my age) was telling me about the time doing laundry that she found a condom in her son's pocket.  She told me that she had no idea what it was.  She thought maybe it was one of those thumb protectors that secretaries used to wear.  I cannot look at her son with a straight face anymore.  I am sure no guy wants his appendage to be small enough to be covered with a thumb protector.

Teri informed me that some dinosaurs may in fact have been covered in orange feathers (tails anyway) and not leathery type skin as assumed.  I just can't picture this.  What would their environment have had to look like to provide them camouflage?  Is it possible that James Cameron read this report before making Avatar?  It just makes me think of drag queens, large and flamboyant!

I think my vampire addiction is in fact a mental illness.  I had a lot of garlic for lunch today and actually thought, "It is a good thing I am not dating a vampire."  I wonder if weretigers mind garlic?

Not only did I do laundry, but I went to the grocery store.  I was dying for some fresh fruit!  The shelves were bare.  My question is, is this a storm preparation thing or an economy thing?  Are the stores keeping smaller inventories?  Am I going to need to start stockpiling Diet Coke?  Which I do have enough to keep me through the storm of 2010.  I hope this is something the news is just hyping up and then will be wrong about!  The cable guy (he stood me up last week) better come tomorrow and I hope my Amazon delivery arrives.  Diet Coke, movies and good books - let it snow, let is snow, let it snow.