Saturday, December 11, 2004

It's been fun

But I think it's time to end it, don't you? In the beginning, whenever I saw you, my heart would beat so hard, it felt like it was coming out of my chest. But I quickly learned just how unreliable you can be. One day, you'd be there, but then you would leave at the most inopportune of times. People were continually warning me against you. Pointing out how unreliable you really were. For a long time I wouldn't listen.

But then...I was introduced to another. We took the relationship slow. I was shown what I was missing. I tried to stay loyal, but you kept screwing up. So now it's time to say goodbye.

Goodbye Blogger. I have a new home now.

To all my friends. What are you waiting for? It's time to party. Come on over and see my new digs!!!

Friday, December 10, 2004

The Talk

Hey, where are you going? Don't make me superglue your butt to this chair. If I have to suffer, so do you. If you haven't already done it yet, you KNOW you are going to have to do it soon. You know. The talk. The birds and the bees. Part A to part B, and the heavens opened up (and swallowed you so you wouldn't have to have the talk) and Jesus wept. If only Eve wouldn't have been such a bitch and ate that damn apple, maybe God would have been softer on us, enabling our children come into the world with no pain, talking, no need for diapers, and complete knowledge of that whole "how baby's are born" thing. Oh, impeccable manners and a belief in Santa Clause would be a plus. Well, maybe that would be asking for too much. Ya think???

I was over on Key's blog, I saw she had posted this very thing. Ok. That's where I got the whole idea for the post, I admit. It brought up an interesting and sometimes touchy subject that parents face during the life of their child. Go on over and take a look at the post. Let her know your opinion (leave a comment). And don't forget to tell her that Moogie said hello (in your comment)!

Body parts

Some things are better left alone, ya know?

My six year old and I were in the garage last night. She was sitting in the rocking chair, facing backwards, rolled in a ball, head resting on her knees.

SYO: Mommy, push me so I can rock!
Me: Ok
SYO: Keep doing it Mommy!
Me: Honey, why don’t you sit up, turn around and do it yourself?
SYO: I can’t.

(don’t ask, don’t ask, don’t ask, don’t ask)

Me: Why not? (I had to ask, I couldn’t stop myself)
SYO: Because my head is the heaviest part of my body and if I sit up, the rocker will tip over and my brains will fall out.

Alrighty then!

That could only mean a few things. Her head really is heavy (that would explain a lot of things) and she’s in danger of losing her brains (if she has any left). She was invaded by a body snatcher (probable), and it is now sucking up all of her excess energy (this could take a while). Or, she has a headache.

Given that I didn’t feel like cleaning up brains or battling alien creatures, I opted for the latter.

Me: Did someone put sand in your head? (Translation: Does your whole head hurt?)
SYO: Nooooooooo. I got achy eyes. (Translation: My eyes hurt and it feels like my headband is too tight)

Who says I need to learn a foreign language? I already know one now, and it’s spoken every day in my house.

You do know what the cure all for achy eyes is don’t you? Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Ice Cream of course. Come on over. We’ve got plenty. Just see if it doesn’t make your achy eyes go away.

Optical Illusions

I saw this over at the Grouchy Old Cripples site. Pretty cool. If you stare at it long enough you will see a giraffe.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Veterinarian Bill - sigh

I'm beginning to wonder if it would be too expensive to get another dog/cat/animal. If the food bills aren't enough, the price of a veterinarian these days is enough to make me want to eat brussel sprouts instead of flinging them at ungrateful little mini me's running around in my house shouting "I'm gonna give you a wedgie!!!" Just read about this woman's story if you don't understand.

A woman brought a very limp duck into a veterinary surgeon. As she lay her pet on the table, the vet pulled out his stethoscope and listened to the bird's chest. After a moment or two, the vet shook his head sadly and said, "I'm so sorry, your pet has passed away."

The distressed owner wailed, "Are you sure?" "Yes, I'm sure. The duck is dead," he replied. "How can you be so sure", she protested. "I mean, you haven't done any testing on him or anything. He might just be in a coma or something."

The vet rolled his eyes, turned around and left the room. He returned a few moments later with a black Labrador Retriever. As the duck's owner looked on in amazement, the dog stood on his hind legs, put his front paws on the examination table and sniffed the duck from top to bottom. He then looked at the vet with sad eyes and shook his head.

The vet patted the dog and took it out and returned a few moments later with a beautiful cat. The cat jumped up on the table and also sniffed the bird from its beak to its tail and back again. The cat sat back on its haunches, shook its head, meowed softly, jumped down and strolled out of the room.

The vet looked at the woman and said, "I'm sorry, but as I said, this is most definitely, 100% certifiably, a dead duck."

Then the vet turned to his computer terminal, hit a few keys and produced a bill, which he handed to the woman. The duck's owner, still in shock, took the bill. "$150!" she cried. "$150 just to tell me my duck is dead?!!"

The vet shrugged."I'm sorry. If you'd taken my word for it, the bill would have been $20. But what with the Lab Report and the Cat Scan, it all adds up."

Hey....I didn't say it was a true story!!!!! Happy Thursday everyone!

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Ask Me Anything - The final installment

And here is the final installment of Ask Me Anything. To all who participated, I thank you. From those of you who refrained from commenting about "40" I'll put in a good word for you with Santa. (I haven't been that age for all that long). Me and the jolly fellow...we're tight. Why are you laughing?

vegemite asks:

1) Why did you call your blog "Moogie's World?"
2) Is that your nickname that you had growing up?
3) If so, why and who gave it to you?

Answer: I'm going to lump these three together when giving my answer. When I put my oldest daughter into daycare when I went back to work, there was a little girl who could not pronounce her name. It always came out "Moogie" (with a soft 'g'). That nickname stuck with her, and is still with her to this day. When I needed a screen name, I chose that one because it seemed to fit at the time. I've just never bothered to change it, and quite frankly, I'm not sure what I'd change it to.

4) How would you describe yourself in ONE word?

Answer: Content

5) How would your family describe you in ONE word?

Answer: I would hope they would say "caring", though I would imagine it's more of a "at the time" type comment. Last night it would have been "screaming banshee."

6) How would your friends describe you?
Answer: Perfect. Next question?

7) What is your impression of "vegemite", Australia's favorite spread?

Answer: I really don't know what it is. If it has anything to do with vegetables, you won't find it touching my tongue. But now you've got me curious. I'll have to go look it up.

Gopher asks:

1) If you were to have another wondrous child, what would you prefer? Another girl or a boy.

Answer: Um. I.don' Two is good for me thanks. BUT, if I were suddenly to go on a wild drinking binge and hook up with some intrepid fireman with a reputable hose, I would probably say boy. Only because I don't have one. But then again, I don't have to worry about playing "let's pee on the cheerio" while potty training.

2) Chocolate chip cookies or brownies?

Answer: Chocolate chip brownies. I think that about covers it.

Genuine asks:

1) What do I get my wife for Christmas?

Answer: A day at the spa (biting tongue, biting tongue)

Melonie asks:

1) How did you meet your husband?

Answer: Through a mutual friend who is no longer speaking to me. Long story, but the gist of it is, he called her to ask for my number. When he called and asked me for a date, I called her to make sure she didn't really like him. She told me he was just a friend. So I went out with him, which led to a relationship, which led to her terminating any and all further contact with me. Go figure. The funny thing is, when I first met him, I thought he was too geeky. He still is, but it sort of grows on you.

2) Did you own Shaun Cassidy's Born Late album?

Answer: You mean this one?

I actually didn't own that one, but I must confess to having had most all of his other albums, and any memorabilia I could get my hands on.

3) What branch of service are you in?

Answer: I'm a civilian (I work for a defense contractor) but work on a base. I've worked for the same company for 22 years, but it took me 15 years of that time to find my place. I'm a Financial Analyst and I love it.

That's it folks. I think I've covered all of the questions. I hope you have enjoyed this as much as I have. Thanks for participating!

Ask Me Anything - Part II

Kurt asks:

1) What foreign language would you like to learn, if any?

Answer: That's a really good question. When I was in high school, we were not required to learn a foreign language (that changed after I graduated) and to this day, I regret not doing it. When I lived in California, there was a heavy concentration of the Hispanic population, so back then, I guess I would have said Spanish. I suppose now I would like to learn German. I remember my grandmother teaching us prayers in German. It's part of my heritage and I would like to learn the language.

Sharon asks:

1) If you could go back and relive any one year of your life, which would it be?

Answer: This one made me think. I have a lot of fond memories, so it's hard to whittle them down to just one year. If I had to choose, I'd pick the year I turned 40. That was the year I graduated from college. My family and friends were so proud of me, but that's not the real reason I did it. I did it for myself. I did it to feel good. To feel proud. Ok, it didn't hurt the career, but that wasn't my main reason. I have been taking care of people and doing for others for half my adult life (step children, then children, husband). I decided to do something for me. It gave me a much needed boost in the, self confidence, and self esteem. A lot of things happened that year, that brought me to where I am today.

Anonymous asks: (he needs a Scooby Snack)

1) If you were a cartoon character, which one would you be, and why?

Answer: I would like to be the Tazmanian Devil. Can you imagine how fast I could clean my house, run errands, etc? Besides, he's kind of cute. Or, I wouldn't mind being Tweetie Bird. I've always loved her, and besides, she's the color of my car.

2) What is the most embarrassing album in your music collection?

Answer: Um, any one of the Partridge Family albums I still have. Take your pick.

Ok, that's it for now. I've got to get back to work. I'll answer some more later on tonight. Same bat time, same bat channel!

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Ask me anything answers - Part I

Here it is folks, the first installment of "Ask Me Anything." Well, the answers anyway. I'd like to thank all of those who submitted their questions. Now I just have to answer them. So, on with Part I.

Zoot asks:

1) If you could live ANYWHERE in the world, where would it be?

Answer: I would have to say here. When I made the decision to go for this job, it was because I wanted to be closer to my family. That was a big part of it but mostly I wanted an area that was good to bring up my kids in. It's not fast paced, but I can get that by driving about 30 minutes down the road. The way I figure it, I have the best of both worlds. I have semi-rural living...lots of space, safety, close knit community. But a big city very close. To top that off, the girls love it here. I think I made the right choice. If it was a different country I would have to pick, I'd say New Zealand. But that is just based on the pictures alone.

2) If you could only eat ONE food the rest of our life, what would it be?

Answer: Pizza, hands down. Next question.


1) What made you live where you live?

Answer: I think I answered that in the question above, but I want to go into more detail. Most of my family lives in the Cocoa Beach, Florida area and I wanted to be closer to them. Flying four people across country was expensive, at best, and my dad has health problems. We wanted to bring our kids up in an area where life wasn't so fast paced and the cost of living wasn't so high. I began looking for a job further east and let it be known that I was looking to move. A manager of our proposal group got word of a job opening up...the one I have now. We love the area. I have finally come to the realization, AND belief that I made the right choice.

2) Do you like to travel.

Answer: Yes, very much so, but haven't had much of a chance to do so. I have been to Canada, on my honeymoon. We plan to do more of that when the girls are older.

3) How many states have you been to?

Answer: That's a tough one. We traveled a lot (driving trips) when I was a child. There were many summers we would travel across the country for family reunions (Indiana, Florida) and my folks would take side trips. I will say though, that I've not been to any of the northeastern states. I really want to do that, especially New York and Washington, DC to name a few.

Suzanne asks:

1) Would you rather win the lottery or work with a 7 figure salary?

Answer: How about both? I wouldn't mind winning the lottery but I would have to do something. I love to work. I suspect that winning the lottery would let me do something I really wanted to do. I believe I would probably set up a literacy program. When I was in California, I volunteered for a literacy program through our local library. I loved it. It's something I believe in, strongly. It would either be that, or win the lottery and sit around watching soap operas and eating bon-bons. I wouldn't mind having the choice, though I do love my job.

2) Dog person or a cat person?

Answer: Dog person...though, now that we have the land for it, I wouldn't mind having a cat. (and what about fish????)

That's it for tonight. Stay tuned for the next set of answers. Right now, I'm headed off to the bed time routine. For the kids that is. Take care all and be sure to drop me a line by comments or email. I love to hear from you.

3 Guesses

First two don't count.

Guess who found out that snails don't do well when put through the washer and dryer cylcle in a pocket?

That would be me.

Carry on.

Monday, December 06, 2004

Glitches and other stuff

As some of you witnessed, Moogie's World suffered from some glitches this weekend, mainly when you tried to comment. First off, I'd like to apologize for the difficulties, and secondly, I would like to thank Sharon and Melonie for emailing me a few times to inform me about it. A couple of you tagged me on my DoodleBoard as well. It was much appreciated.

This is one of the reasons I am working on moving off of Blogspot in the near future. I get frustrated at the number of times that it's down, or has glitches such as this. Suffice to say, my patience level for things such as this is at a minimum.

My main problem was that I couldn't devote the time needed to sit down and analyze it. My youngest, whom you know as Meelie-No, was sick this weekend, beginning Friday night. We ended up keeping her out of school today and took her to the doctor. The diagnosis was Strep (sigh) she won't be able to go back to school until Wednesday. The timing on this bites, as this week is benchmark testing. Most likely I will have to go in and offer up my big toe for penance because I had the audacity to keep my child from school during this time. If things keep up the way they are, I soon will be walking on my kneecaps.

Now we have to decide which parent will go and watch my eldest, Moobear, in her Christmas concert, which is, of course, tonight. I'm not sure what I'll do about that. Inevitably, things like this (illness) seem to happen at the most critical of times.

That being said, I'll be a bit tardy on the answering all of your questions on "Ask Me Anything." I'm hoping to get to them by Tuesday.

Other Notes

Speaking of notes, have you gone over and listened to Sharon play the piano yet? Go here and here to get the latest.

Friday, December 03, 2004

Friendly reminder

Don't forget to post your questions over in Ask Me Anything. You still have time. I'll be answering them later on tonight or sometime this weekend.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Kids can be so simple sometimes

Authors note: I actually wrote this post last night, but was unable to post it until today. Blogger was having a psychotic episode I guess. That would explain the inordinate amount of posts for today. Carry on....

Mr. OWW is off visiting the neighbors right now. He works some strange hours so he eats lunch later, and is generally not hungry at dinner time. Well, I'm cooking the kids dinner tonight. They, of course are starving because they haven't eaten in the last 12 minutes. I have a serious headache (I don't do headaches...I'm fortunate, so when I have really knocks me down) and I don't have the energy to fight. So I get creative.

" guys are at a restaurant. A Mexican restaurant. Remember the one we used to go to when we were in California? Well, here are your chips and salsa. Dig in while your dinner is getting ready. "

People...they went for it. Hook, line and sinker. They sat down and are happily munching on chips and salsa while their Macaroni and Cheese is cooking. Of course, I had to add to the whole thing by giving them special cups for their drinks.

I know that macaroni and cheese can't be classified as Mexican food. But hey...we are flexible here at Chez Moogie. My kids are happy. They are not complaining which would increase the pounding in my head. This is a good thing. I believe and live by children's menus.

Of course, no dinner would be complete without raw baby carrots, served with ranch dressing, and apple sauce. We here at Chez Moogie aim to please. For the applesauce, I offer chunky or smooth. Am I awesome or what?

If you'd like to come to's best if you make reservations. Oh..and don't forget to bring your lap. I have a couple of terrorists who would love to occupy the space.

Can you relate?

Look out for cars!!!!!! This is said when child is barreling down the driveway on her bicycle into the street.

On that same note, Get out of the middle of the street!!! There is a car behind you! Did you leave your brains in your pocket??? I can't tell you how many times I have washed brains.

Zip up your pants!!!! Good Lord almighty, if I had a dollar for every time I've said that...well, you get the picture.

Did you flush? I won't expand on this one.

This only touches a few of them. What about you? What do you find yourself repeating. I'll collect them all and made a post. It will probably be called "Why parents talk to themselves" or "The rising cost of Prosac" or something like that.

Answering Machines

Why do they call them answering machines? I mean really. Some things don't make sense, know what I mean. They all have a message on them, telling you why the occupants of the house are not picking up the phone.
"Hello, you have reached the residence of Henry Lipshitz and Wilma Throckmorton. We are unable to take your call right now because we are in the process of reading about Aussie Mama's budding romance with James the dashing fireman (gotta love a man with a hose), and her battle with battle with a Blonde Big Breasted, bet they're implants, Bimbo Whore. Please leave a message and will get back to you."
Come on people, stick with me here. It's not like the machine is telling you anything. It doesn't tell you where they are (except if you are Henry and Wilma) or when they'll be back...nothing. Nada. So how can that be classified as an answering machine?

I dunno people. What do you think would be a good name for it?

Wednesday, December 01, 2004


Quite often, I help the kids with their homework. Mr. OWW generally gets the honors as he is home when the kids get back from school. When I'm here, mostly on "dance" nights (one takes ballet, the other jazz), I help the girls. They get to slide on their homework until it gets dark and they can no longer play.

So, I'm helping Moobear with her homework. This time it's math. Those of you who know me, know that math is my subject. I'm a financial analyst, and I love numbers. Yes, this explains a lot. When I help Moobear with math, she loves it if I do the problems with her. So, dutiful mom that I am, have my sheet of paper and a pencil, working out the problems as she does them. Don't tell anyone, but I really enjoy this.

So, anyway, back to my point. I do get sidetracked, don't I? I was helping her do her homework and we were on this particularly dicey long division problem. "Whooops...sorry my love, it seems you have it wrong. Try it again." She does it over, and gets the same answer. I quickly review my work and discover "I" was the one that made the mistake. Sigh..I will NEVER live this down. The teacher will be informed first thing in the morning I am sure.

There is something that can be said about overtime.


I received an email from Moobear's math teacher this morning. Seems that Moobear shared this story with the entire class. The teacher was "tickled." I'm ruined. Before you know it, the entire school and PTA will know this. My career in finance is over. But that's ok. I have a back up plan.

Do you want fries with that??? Tell me, does this uniform make me look fat?

Side note: I may be away for a few days if the police find the body of Mr. OWW. I had to do it. He was laughing so hard it pissed me off. Besides....I wanted the last piece of pumkin pie.

Bouncy, bouncy, bouncy

Don't mind me. I'm just watching my youngest move through the house. She doesn't walk. She literally bounces of the walls, ceiling and floor. The game of the moment is "Where can I shoot my headband?" (it's elastic) Don't try this at home folks. Especially if you have ceiling fans.

Come to think of it. Do you know why kids can't walk anywhere? And why is it that they choose the most difficult path to get from here to there?

I was just wondering.

Blog Explosion and other stuff

First off, I want to thank all of you that have posted questions in "Ask Me Anything." Keep them coming. There are a lot of good ones so far. I'm going to try to answer them this weekend, so you still have time. I'd like to make this a regular feature, but perhaps use a different theme each time. I haven't really thought it all out yet. Do you have any suggestions?

I was reading Sharon's blog in which she told us that she had just signed up for Blog Explosion. I did that about a month or so ago, in hopes of bringing more traffic. I do get a lot of traffic, but not a lot of comments. Zoot and I were chatting about this very thing last night. We both are of the feeling that it's not about the traffic really. Yeah, you want people to read your blog, but it's even better when you get a comment. Getting feedback always makes me feel good. Even if it's negative, it can help me learn how to write better. I love to write, but am just learning how to express myself. I am hoping to get better as I go. Blogging is a good way to do that. It's also a great stress reliever for me. So if someone reads my blog, and leaves a comment, it really makes my day.

In some ways, Blog Explosion may have helped that. But mostly, it's the fact that I read a lot of different blogs, and if I read something I like, I tend to comment myself. Not just commenting for commenting sake...but a well thought out comment. Ya know what I mean? That tends to bring others to my blog. I like that.

I still tend to go over and look on BE from time to time, to see if I have been rated, or if anyone has left a comment. It feels good to be rated. It really does. But what I like the most, is hearing from folks like you. You know, the one's who take the time to read my blog, and leave a little note. And for that, I thank you. You make my day.

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Ask me anything

I'm hoping, depending on the interest, that this will become a weekly, semi-weekly, monthly type of an entry. It involves participation of my readers and this is a good thing....I think. I've seen this type of an idea on several blogs, one of them is Genuine. He has an advice column. I wanted to do something like that, only with a different twist. So, here goes. We'll try this as an experiment and work from there until we find something works. I'm counting on you to come up with the questions.

So go ahead. Ask me anything. There are no boundaries. Well, at least until I see the questions. Oh, let's get one thing straight ahead of time. I wear briefs.

Monday, November 29, 2004

Forrest Lawn

Ok, so, most would say I'm an easy going, kind of go-with-the-flow kind of gal. Wait, please don't ask my husband about that or the midget terrorists but there comes a time when a mother must stand up for what is RIGHT! Can you say RIGHT? Let me hear you! I mean really. I have a wicked sense of humor but this does not extend to teaching my children songs which would be inappropriate to sing in front of one's parents, or in-laws, or neighbors, or the neighbor's dog. We've already passed the Brittney Spears saga, and Madonna's "I'm a Virgin..touched for the very first time," which both of my children sang, from start to finish, in front of my parents, wearing nothing but panties. Ok, I taught them that one but that's not the point. Let's not confuse the issues with facts here.

So people, I was in the garage with my husband, He, Who Must Obey She Who Must Be Obeyed (SWMBO). Hey...I've got a sweatshirt that I got from my mother-in-law that says that. Heh..yeah, like THAT's gonna happen.

Anyway...I'm veering from my point. Probably shouldn't have had that second glass of wine. My husband and I were in the garage talking about John Denver. Why? I have no clue. He broke out in a rendition of John Denver's "Forrest Lawn." I've heard it before, it's funny and all of that, but, that's about it.

Mr. OWW has this sort of shit-eating grin. Come on! You know what I'm talking about. The kind that just reeks of "ooooh, I have a great idea, and I know you aren't gonna like it." I hate it when that happens. Well, if I'm not the one with the grin, that is.

So, Mr. OWW, the one who will sleep with the dog tonight, offers to go get the girls out of the tub and get them ready for bed. My friends, THIS should have immediately clued me in that something was amiss.

As it was, he made it through the kitchen, and the dining room before I took him down. Not an easy task for a woman who is only 5'7" vs a man who is 6'3". I'm getting slow in my old age, but I managed to get the kids in bed before he was able to carry out his plan. He loves to do this. Teach the kids songs that would embarrass even the most brazen of women. Ok, this one isn't really all that bad, but tell me. Honestly. Would you want your children belting this out in the middle of the produce aisle?

Oh lay me down in Forest Lawn in a silver casket,
Put golden flowers over my head in a silver basket.
Let the drum and bugle corp play taps while cannons roar
And sixteen liveried employees sell souveniers from the funeral store.

I want to go simply when I go,
They'll give me a simple funeral there I know,
With a casket lined in fleece
And fireworks spelling out "rest in peace."
Oh take me when I'm gone to Forest Lawn.

Oh lay me down in Forest Lawn, they understand there.
They have a heavenly choir and a military band there.
Just put me in their care, I'll find my comfort there
With sixteen planes in a last salute they'll drop a cross in a parachute.

I want to go simply when I go,
They'll give me a simple funeral there I know:
With a hundred strolling strings
And topless dancers with golden wings!
Oh take me when I'm gone to Forest Lawn.

Oh, come, come, come, come,
Come to the church in the wildwood,
Kindly leave a contribution in the pail.
Be as simple and as trusting as a child would
And we'll sell you the church in the dale.

To find a simple resting place is my desire;
To lay me down with a smiling face comes a little bit higher.
My likeness cast in brass will stand in plastic grass
While hidden weights and springs tip it's hat to the mourners filing past!

I want to go simply when I go.
They'll give me a simple funeral there I know.
I'll lie beneath the sand
With piped in tapes of Billy Graham.
Oh take me when I'm gone to Forest Lawn.

Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
For a slightly higher fee!

Oh take me when I'm gone to Forest Lawn!

Again, not a bad song. I'm just pissed I didn't think of teaching it to them first.

School days, school days, wonderful golden rule days...

Sharon wrote this touching post about her youngest son, Bam-Bam's, first day of school. I thought about her a lot today. I remember what it was like when my kids went to school for the first time. Both of my kids were so very different in the way they handled it. So I guess this entry is really for her. I do not have a special needs child, so I can't really be of help for her. Except to tell her, that in my own way, with my own child, I've been there, and I wanted to share. And I wanted her to know that I, as well as a lot of parents, are routing for her.

When Moobear was going to her first day of Kindergarten, she was so excited. She has always been the child who has had NO problems with going to school. She loves it. She is friendly and outgoing and makes lots of friends easily. She has the self confidence that I wish I had (and still do). She tried out for chorus this year and made it. I have been told that if she continues to work on it, she will have a really wonderful voice. Considering I can't carry a tune if you handed it to me in a bucket, this is wonderful news. I thought she had a good voice, but I am biased. To be told otherwise, is a wonderful feeling. She ran for class president this year, but lost. It didn't even phase her in the slightest. She told me that all she wanted to do was run and campaign. For her, this was the height of fun. We made campaign posters, and flyers, and she was in her element. She came home and told me excitedly that she had lost, but she had so much fun she was going to do it next year. Go figure.

Meelie No, on the other hand, had a difficult time from day one. She cried on the first day of Kindergarten. It was worse when we moved across country, and she had to go to a different school. We 3 girls (not Daddy) were the only one's here at the time, and luckily I took the day off from work. They started the Monday after Thanksgiving. A year ago today, as a mater of fact. I sat in the room with her for 2 1/2 hours on that first day, and she rarely left my side. She is such a shy child and takes a long time to warm up to anyone. Conversely, she is the one with a temper. Stubborn as a mule. Must get it from her father. Anyway, for most of the rest of the year, either her dad or I would walk her to her classroom. She was so sensitive. She cried a lot. At the end of the year it improved, but only marginally. She would drive the teachers crazy because she didn't pay attention, therefore, didn't follow directions. And she had difficulties working in groups. She read very well (at home and one-on-one with the teachers), but when she was forced to read out loud, her brain shut down completely, and it was if she had no clue what it was all about.

We bought a house here in February, and that following August decided to put the girls in a school that was in the new neighborhood. On a side note, this was blessed by both the girls and met with the boundless enthusiasm that the young so often show when faced with something new (if you are lucky).

Moobear, of course, walked right into her class on the first day and didn't even look back. Typical. I mean, couldn't she have even waved at Mom, and offered a trembling smile? Sniff. I looked down at my young child, thumb firmly entrenched in her mouth, lips trembling. She looked up at me with big, tear filled eyes and said "my turn now Mamma?" I nearly melted, but remembered that I needed to show her just how exciting this could be. I said "yes, it's your turn Little Bit, and you are going to do great!" I walked the halls with her to take her to her classroom, and she timidly stepped in the door. Her teacher, who I am in love with, said "and who do we have here?" When Meelie No stated her name, the teacher exclaimed "oh, I've been waiting for you! I am so excited to have you in my class! Come with me. Let me show you the desk I set up just for you!" Mind you, the woman clapped while saying this, and made my child feel as if she was the most important child of the school year. That was all it took. She looked up at me, took her thumb out of her mouth and said, "bye Mamma, I love you." She took another step forward, and then, ran towards her teacher and took her hand. And never looked back. And never has.

They take the bus to and from school. It comes and picks them up right at the corner, two houses away. They love it. They have made more friends than I ever thought was possible. They are doing much better than I expected in school. I think perhaps, this whole thing has been harder for me than it has for the children. I worried. I fretted. But I can honestly say to myself, "look at them now."

And I do. And they make me so proud.

Share your stories of your children, and their first day of school. What was it like for them? How did they react? How did you handle it?

Sunday, November 28, 2004

It's just another Sunday

It's a bit nippy here today. Well, nippy for our area at any rate and I'm finding it difficult to get used to the warm weather not being here any more. Apparently, so are my children. I had arguments with both children about what they were wearing before they went outside this morning. The youngest first started out by putting on a good dress and shoes. Um, I don't think so my love. Luckily, the tornado didn't hit, and she agreed to change without much whimpering, but then she came out in shorts and a tank top. Sigh...I mean, really. Ya know? We compromised, and she is now wearing shorts, a long sleeve shirt and a sweatshirt, with tennis shoes AND SOCKS thankyouverymuch! Man I'm mean. Or so she says.

Speaking of World Wars and the Great Depression, I then braced myself for the next battle. In comes my eldest, wearing pants that I could fit 12 homeless people in as well as herself. These were part of a pile of clothes that she received from her cousin (who she worships) and were in her "these are too big for me right now" drawer. One would think I would have learned by now. Put the clothes away in a box. Up in the attic. Somebody shoot me. So, after telling her, in no uncertain terms "you are not going outside in those clothes, no way, no how, period" she proceeded to sulk, go back to her room and slam the door. This was accompanied by muttering something along the lines of wishing for a different mom. Hah! Little does she know that any other mother would make her eat her vegetables on a regular basis. She doesn't know how good she has it.

The next attempt at the runway faired no better. She was wearing a sundress, a pair of my work sandles, and...nothing else. Sigh. I tried the practical approach. "Aren't you going to be a bit cold in that?" (notice, I've not brought up the shoes yet?) And of course she answered "no." Well, that didn't work. What it boils down to is she is in her sundress, but is wearing shoes, with socks (thankyouverymuch), and wearing a winter coat. Did I forget to mention that she was at first wearing MY leather jacket when she went outside? Probably best not to mention that. My blood pressure is still on the high side.

My youngest now has a new friend, The Rogue. They just moved in next door. First there was Little Man, which I could deal with. He is a quiet child, or, so I thought. Now the three of them run around together and I am no longer sure I want her to have any friends. I have two girls. My oldest has two buddies, Prince Charming, and The Instigator that she hangs out with on a regular basis. Boys are so much different. Perpetual energy with a massive dose of loud. When Meelie No and her two friends get together it reminds of a hurricane. Well, at least that's what her room looks like after they leave. I guess I should be thankful that my children have so many friends right on their own street. Most of the time they are outside playing when they aren't inside telling me that they are starving. It's a good thing right?

How many more years do I have until they move out? Remind me. I need to see that light at the end of the tunnel. What really scares me is that I haven't even reached the teen years yet.

Saturday, November 27, 2004

Dishwasher Clarification

Recently Kurt posted on his blog about the dishwasher issues I have with my husband as well as posting about your spouse on your blog if they read it. (Thank you Kurt for linking to me by the way).

First off, the post was merely written in humor as I've been married for 16 years and it's been an ongoing battle with us for years. I agree, it's not brain surgery, and I'm so very thankful that he does load the dishwasher at all. It's one of the things I can easily deal with. Luckily, I'm not so anal that something like this would put me over the edge. Sorry..just needed to clear that up in case any of you thought I was actually dead on serious about this.

I will post humorous things about my husband from time to time on my blog. Funny things that happened, or what have you. I'm not uncomfortable doing that because so far, I haven't posted anything bad. I'm not sure I would feel right about making personal problems public. It was an interesting question he brought up though.

What about you folks? How do you feel about posting about your spouse on your blog? Does your spouse read your entries?

Deck the Halls

"Deck the halls with thousand dollies, fal-le-la-le-laaaa-le-la-le-la" (as sung by Meelie No)

Thanksgiving is over, the leftovers put away, the company gone. It was a wonderful time. My brother arrived last Sunday and played endlessly with the girls. They adore him. My folks came up on Wednesday. The week was filled with an endless whirlwind of activities. It is wonderful to have a house big enough to hold all of my guests, be it family or friends. The laughter and the memories we shared were never ending. I smile when I think of my 47 year old brother playing hide and seek with the girls for hours on end. I believe every nook and cranny of this house was explored for the best possible hiding places anyone could ever think of. The nights were filled with playing cards and talking about growing up.

But I feel relieved now that they are all gone. It doesn't make much sense does it? I look forward with growing anticipation of the visits. But am still glad that's it's over. I miss them terribly when they are gone, but look forward to the next time I'll see them. I think it's a sense of being able to get back into a routine. The girls are used to it. I need it to keep order in my life. Don't get me wrong, we are seriously flexible as a family, but adding others to the mix makes it, I don't know, more difficult maybe.

Even though I see my parents more regularly now that we live closer, I'm still saddened to see them getting older, and slower. In my mind I keep envisioning them like they were when I was growing up. You know, immortal. Always able to leap tall building in a single bound...stuff like that. You know?

Surely, there is more stress on me when I have visitors. I think I just don't want to admit it though. I even feel relieved to get back home when we are the ones doing the visiting. Do you ever notice how your bed feels so wonderful?

It's so quiet here this morning. I'm enjoying it. I've had a couple of cups of coffee and soon will go hop in the shower and then tidy up around the house. The girls are enjoying a lazy morning, waking up slowly. I have the time to post an entry to my blog and catch up on some long overdue correspondence.

I'm trying to ignore the "C" word but find myself beginning to get caught up in the festivities. My neighbors across the street have decorated their house beautifully. The girls want to put up the Christmas tree this weekend and I'm inclined to do it.

Hopefully, everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. It's times like these that I realize how fortunate I am to have grown up in a close knit family. I know this, and fully admit it. I am blessed. Luckily, I am smart enough to realize it, and I hope that I can raise my family with same kind of love and never ending acceptance that my parents showed us.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

In and out

As I was going through and doing the last minute cleaning to finish up before my folks arrive, I told all of the kids they needed to go outside for a bit. I wanted to vacuum and then mop the floor. At this time, there were only 5 of them.

They all went outside to play, only to come back only 10 minutes later. This time, there were 7 of them. And they were hungry. And they were thirsty. I felt like shouting "and they came in masses." Or some such. Anyway, I told them that they had food at home where they could eat. They told me that their mom was cleaning and sent them back outside to play over here. I wish I could just turn them all away, but it's not in me. So I popped up some popcorn, and set them up outside to have a snack and something to drink.

That should buy me about 15 minutes. I told them to eat slow.

Face painting

Last weekend we went to the Catfish Festival and one of the big attractions for the kids was the face painting, done by a clown. Her partner made balloon animals and he was dressed as a clown as well. I went ahead and took some pictures after we got home. Some of the paint had come off already but you can get a good idea of what it looked like. Moobear was the Grinch, and Meelie No was Sunshine...or something like that.

I have issues

I have issues with my dishwasher. I have issues with my husband. Actually, I have issues with my husband loading the dishwasher. Verily I say unto you, please, don't put the plastic bowels in there. Those things tend to fly around and gather water on their travels. This is generally when I forget to check them before taking them out, and all of that water hits the floor.

Let's talk silverware. I load the silverware in a certain manner. I have loaded it that way since the beginning of our marriage. I will always load it that way. I load forks together, handles up. Same thing with the knives and spoons. It minimizes the time I have to spend unloading it. Plates go next to plates...etc.

Now some folks say that I'm the one who has issues. Some folks are probably right. But still. I load a mean dishwasher and can unload it faster than you can say "Sally sells sea shells by the seashore" 10 times fast. Of course, I can't even say it once, so who am I to judge?

Cabbage Patch Kids

When your house is silent, you have the time to come across some interesting blogs and some of them are some good finds. Velociworld is a site that Mr. OWW visits regulary, and he pointed out this Precious Moments post to me, once he started breathing again. I don't normally read his stuff, but this one does make me wonder. I think this guy has some serious issues.

Back away from the barbeque and no one gets hurt. Good stuff!

I was going to sleep in today

Well, that was the plan but my dog had different ideas. Oh well. It was a good idea anyway. The bummer of it was that the girls were (and still are) asleep, as well as my brother (who is visiting). I'll just enjoy the silence instead.

My brother arrived on Sunday evening and we've been having a great visit. Being the adoring sister that I am, I took the week off so that I can be with him. We've taken him around the town, showing him points of interest and he was even brave enough to weather on of my marathon trips to Walmart. Is that a sign of brotherly love or what?

One of the advantages of having company come to visit is your house gets cleaned. To most people, that would mean that you clean the house before the guests arrive. Hah! Fat lot you know. If you are really smart, you get the guests to help. Like I did. Really.

I had most of the house picked up but not cleaned before my brother came. We spent most of Monday out and about, and then on Tuesday, he needed to do some work. So, in anticipation of my parents arrival later on today, I figured I needed to at least try to do some cleaning. I got all of the laundry sorted, and things picked up and was working on the kitchen when my brother came in and asked me if I wanted him to help. Goodness no, I replied. You just take it easy and relax. Ok, it really didn't happen that way but I thought about refusing. Honest. I did. Well, ok, not that much.

To make a long story short, which is virtually impossible for me, he took the girls and basically, went on a mission. That mission was to clean the bathrooms. It was hysterical actually. The girls were both eager to help and I imagine the whole job took about 5 times longer than it normally would have if he could have done it alone. Bless him. Not only for making my bathrooms look stellar, but for including the girls. My girls. They absolutely adore him. The flip side to this is that you know they are going to tell everyone that they helped their Uncle clean the bathrooms. And I'm sure I'll then get those "how could you do that to your guest" looks. Hey, at least my bathrooms are cleaned.

Today I just need to vacuum, and wash some sheets. The normal stuff. As wonderful as Grammy and Papa are, I don't think they want to share a bed with crumbled potato chips. Oh, about the chips. I asked my daughter how they got there. She told me it was my other child. The one I haven't met yet. "I dunno."

Saturday, November 20, 2004

Words of wisdom from the youth

[Meelie No]: "It is never a good idea for you to try to hide an ice cube in your pocket."

Now, I'm not saying that any of you would try to do that. Really. Honest. I'm just sayin......

Questioning abilities

It's too quiet in my house this morning. My kids are both off with a neighbor, riding on a float at the Catfish Festival going on this weekend.

Here I am, sitting at my computer, trying to convince the blogging community that I am an interesting person who has many deep things to write about, only to realize that I must suffer from delusions of grandeur. This doesn't surprise me as I'm constantly thriving for a dose of self confidence that seems to continually elude my grasp. I'll often talk myself up in my own mind, which temporarily makes me feel better. Generally though, reality hits and I realize that what I write is most likely only humorous only to me.

I don't have any particular talent that makes me shine above all the others. I played the piano for a short time as a child but didn't stick with it (I wasn't very good). I'm not an athlete. I can't sing. I'm no artist. What makes me think that people would want to read what I have to say?

So I sit. And I wonder. And I contemplate. Then my children walk through the door, filled with excitement about the parade and the float. My eldest daughter yells across the house "Lucyyyyy, I'm hooooooome!" I respond "You got some splaining to do!" (I don't know why or how this started). My youngest runs up to me in the office and kisses me on the cheek. I can't resist, so I reach over and give her a big hug and rub my cheek on her hair. I ask her if she had a good time and she nods her head vigorously, squirming to escape the confines of my arms. Then she burps loudly and I smell the familiar scent of a grape lollipop.

Things suddenly fall into place. As both my children clamor for my attention, I realize that there is something I do well. All I have to do is look at my children. They think I am special, and that is what really counts.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Calling all parents

I need to ask you a question, ok?

Are you ever able to tell what activities your child participated in at school, as well as what they ate for lunch by the condition of their clothes? This is done by a quick visual inspection, and no verbal communication.

Today, my youngest did some art projects involving paints in many different colors. I believe she must have chewed on the brush as well, if the color of her face is any indication. She had tacos, juice (I believe it was grape), and she must have had some salad because there is one spot on her lap that looks suspiciously like Thousand Island Dressing. She played in the playground because when she took her shoes off, she deposited the sand on my newly cleaned kitchen floor.

And people wonder why I have so many miles on my washer and dryer.


I only wanted a little bit of popcorn

Picture this. It's Friday, the school bus pulls up at the corner. I'm not home very often when this happens so I'm looking forward to seeing the little midget terrorists and getting to spend some time with them.

Just to back track a little (oh, and like THAT'S something new here), there are two little girls who are on the same bus as mine and they come and stay at our house until their dad comes and picks them up (within a half hour). Today, he was going to be a little late, so I would have them for longer. This is NOT a big deal to me. Things like a house full of children don't phase me. Perhaps it's because I used to wear rubber bands around my neck when I was a child, which often times cut off the blood circulation to my brain that did it. I'm not saying that's the reason or anything...but it could be. Ya know?

Anyway, The Instigator and Prince Charming both came over (boys, aged 11 and 10 respectively) and they all wanted (you guessed it) a snack. Good thing I stocked up on popcorn last weekend. I made the kids each their own bag (nukeable kind) and then decided it smelled so good I wanted some. I wasn't hungry enough to want a bag of my own, just a couple bites. Do you think those little wieners would share with me? Not a chance.

As they stuffed their mouths with the delicious smelling popcorn (they all had chipmunk cheeks), I shamelessly continued to beg. It's worse when I drool. It humiliates my oldest daughter to no end and I'm evil enough to find that amusing.

Me: Please, just one bite? Please?

Moobear: hrfpd slijst (she muffled through the popcorn in her mouth)

Me: Awe, come on Prince Charming! You are my man. You'll share, right?

PC: silxlospft lsot

Me: Please, I'll be your best friend. (I have no shame)

All: slif slkeeke timtlkee nsidlds!!!!!!

I took that as a no. I decided to resort to drastic measures. While casually walking by The Whisperer, I bent down, grabbed her bag of popcorn and took off running like a bat out of hell.

Unfortunately I had forgotten that I am old, and cannot run fast or last as long as the young nubile children, who were quickly gaining on me. I finally collapsed in a heap on my bed, and they all did an impression of Kamikaze Pilots, and their target was anywhere on my body. Dog pile!!!!! I was proud. I held on to that bag of popcorn for a good 30 seconds before they were able to take it away. Happy that they had conquered yet another evil mother in their world, they skipped off to go finish watching the movie, and eating the popcorn they would not share.

The bad part of this whole thing was that after all of that, I never did get any popcorn. Of course, I probably wouldn't be able to eat it anyway. You see, it's difficult for me to chew now. An elbow connected with my jaw during the intense scuffle.

My breathing is returning to normal. After 12 Ibuprofen, the pain is starting to dim...somewhat. It's difficult for me to sit for long periods of time so I am laying on the floor, one arm stretched towards the keyboard, typing.

Will someone bring me a glass of water please?

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Hey, it's Friday

Since yesterday was S.H.I.T. day, that means I got today off. Good yes? Well, ok, facts such as these are important only to me, especially when one forgets they have the day off. It's even worse, when one is in the shower at 5:00 in the morning, covered in suds, and the little bell goes off and says "you're not the brightest egg in the basket, are you?"

Hey, I'm not saying it happened to me or anything because I'm fully scrambled. Maybe that's the problem. I should have stuck with sunny side up.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

This weeks Blog It Forward Winner

The choice was a particularly difficult one for me as there are so many good blogs out there. This particular blog kept coming back to be over the past week. Her humor and wit will warm even the most cold hearted.

I get the impression she has gone through, and is still going through, a lot. Yet somehow, through her words, she manages to convey the positive side. She shares with us her thoughts on a variety of subjects, some of them, quite candidly. You would think she is an open book, yet I suspect she has just scratched the surface.

Out of all the entries I have read since I was first introduced to her, this one touched me the most.
"When a psychologist tells you that your child has autism -- well, no, I won't generalize it. I'm sure everyone experiences it differently. But when the psychologist said my son had autism I argued with her and told her she surely didn't get enough information to make the diagnosis; that he was just out of his usual environment and it couldn't be correct. The psychologist is a kind woman who obviously cares about children and has heard this all a million times before, so she just nodded patiently and told me gently that it is what it is. And I am still fighting to make the diagnosis not true."
One can only imagine what goes through the mind of a parent when hearing something like this.
"I strongly believe that our children choose us; that people come into our life for a reason and we learn from each other, whether by choice or by force. I strongly believe that anyone can do anything if they want to deeply enough -- even more so if they have a good support system."
With that in mind, I would like to introduce you to the writings of Adventures of a Domestic Goddess.

What is your phobia?

Mine is acrophobia, the fear of heights. I get nose bleeds on curbs. I've always had it, but it's gotten worse as I've gotten older. Neither of my kids have it, and for that I'm grateful. My husband doesn't have it but he does have an aversion to most amusement park rides. Moobear hates them as well, as a matter of fact.

Not being one to want my youngest child to miss out on something as fun as riding Niagra Falls in a barrel, I go with her, fool that I am.

I'm here to tell you that hot dogs do NOT taste better the second time around.

What about you? What's your phobia?

Sunday, November 14, 2004

50 Rules

A different take on 100 things (only in this case, it's fifty rules). How many of you would like to make your own rules, and stick them on the refrigerator? The question is, would it do any good?
  1. Clothing belongs in one of four places. Your body, your dresser, your closet or the dirty clothes hamper. In no circumstances, should it be found on the floor.
  2. Shoes belong on your feet, or in your closet. If they are the shoes you plan on wearing outside once you leave the house, you may leave them at the door leading out to the garage.
  3. My shoes are only to be worn by me.
  4. Eating is only allowed in the breakfast nook, except for when we sit down to dinner, and then you will all stay seated at the table and not ask for desert until everyone is through. Absolutely no food is allowed in the living room.
  5. The same rule that applies to #4 applies to drinking, unless you are getting a drink of water from the bathroom.
  6. Only one snack will be given after school. I don't care how hungry you are. If you have eaten within the last 24 hours, I don't want to hear about it.
  7. All toys must be put away at the end of the day. This does not mean that you throw them in your closet in a half hazardous manner. If I find any laying around on my nightly sweep, they are mine for an indeterminate period of time.
  8. If you get something out, put it away when you are through.
  9. Keep all chewing gum inside your mouth.
  10. Do not, under any circumstances, draw on yourself with a permanent marker. I don't care if you want to pretend to have the chicken pox.
  11. It is not acceptable to belch loudly at a restaurants.
  12. Do not sit on the dog. She has enough issues.
  13. Do not ask me if you can shave your legs unless you are in middle school. Only then, will I be willing to discuss it.
  14. Anyone who uses the toilet, must flush it.
  15. When I go into the bathroom, please do not follow me. There are some things a mom must do on her own.
  16. If you have used the last of the toilet paper, do not leave the bathroom until you have put on a new roll.
  17. There is no need to get a new glass each time you want something to drink.
  18. Do not climb on top of the car.
  19. Do not jump on the furniture.
  20. No hitting, pinching, biting, scratching, kicking, or otherwise maiming your sibling or any other human being.
  21. When you are at the opposite end of the house from me, do not yell "MOM" and expect me to come running to you to see what you want.
  22. You may not jump on the trampoline when it is raining.
  23. You may not eat or drink on the trampoline.
  24. Do not put clean clothes in the dirty hamper
  25. Yes, you must brush your hair before you go outside.
  26. When I ask you to wash your hands, I mean with soap.
  27. Before drying your hands on the hand towel, rinse them. Please do not use the guest towel.
  28. When I say no, I mean no. Do not keep asking me.
  29. Do not put empty containers, cartons, or boxes back into the pantry or refrigerator. Throw them away.
  30. If you miss the garbage can, walk over, pick it up and try again.
  31. You do not need six band aids to cover a wound left by a small thorn.
  32. Giving me a hug, kiss, telling me you love me or any other sign of affection is acceptable at any time.
  33. Just because I bought your sister something, but not you, does not mean I love her more. It all evens out in the end.
  34. Please do not dawdle when getting in the car. I would like to get to wherever we are going before midnight.
  35. The volume of your voice does not always have to be set to loud. I am old. Not deaf.
  36. Scotch tape is not meant to be wrapped around your arm so you can pretend it is broken and you are wearing a cast.
  37. Please do not bring toads or tree frogs inside the house. I don't care how cute they are. I am more than happy to come outside and look.
  38. If you are watching TV, turn it off when you leave the room.
  39. Please do not paint your nails while sitting on the living room carpet or the leather couch.
  40. If you spill something, clean it up or if you don't know how, come and tell me. I'll be glad to help.
  41. If something is bothering you, tell me. I might not be able to help, but I'm always willing to listen.
  42. If you want to organize the video tapes and DVD's that is wonderful. But don't pull them all out and then decide you are bored and leave them in disarray, for me to clean up.
  43. When you are done playing games on my computer, turn the volume back down to where it was.
  44. I will tell you when I think you have enough "up there" to fill a bra. I don't mind checking on it for you every night, but it's probably not a good idea to keep asking our father as well.
  45. You may not watch Mad TV.
  46. Do not lie to me. I will find out and it will only make the punishment worse.
  47. Every once in a while, I like to go somewhere by myself or with a friend. Do not whine to me about how I never take you anywhere, or complain that I don't get you something when I return.
  48. I do not love one of you more than the other. You each are my favorite child in your own way.
  49. Unnecessary tattling lowers my tolerance level and tends to make me not listen to the real stuff.
  50. This is the most important rule of all. I will always love you, even when I am mad at you. When I make you angry, it is because I am making a decision I think is best for you. If you tell me you hate me, that's ok, because I love you enough for the both of us.

My dog is a serial killer

We adopted Tiny when she was about 4 months old. She was a shy, timid dog at first. That soon changed with all of the love she received from my kids, husband and I.

She took the move across country well, but was confused with the size of her new yard. At first, we lived in corporate housing, and there was no yard, so to speak. We would walk her several times a day, and she would be in heaven. After all, it was nothing different than what she was used to in California.

Then, we moved into our new house, complete with one acre of land. She didn't know what to do at first. She wouldn't go outside unless we went with her. It was best if she had a leash. This was what she was used to. This was, for quite sometime, the only way we could get her to go in the backyard.

Over time, she got used to the space. She was now on her own turf. When she was out front, she would fiercely protect our house by barking at any car that drove by.

She was, at this time, Mom's dog.

And then, she changed. I don't know what happened. It pains me to admit that I didn't notice the signs. Stalking flies and becoming so good she'd catch 9 out of 10. It didn't stop at the flies. Oh no. She moved on to every insect imaginable. She was out of control. But wait, it gets worse. We have a lot of toads and tree frogs. She couldn't resist. This was when I made the mistake of asking my husband why Tiny had foam coming out of her mouth.

I've tried reasoning with her (don't you realize that that toad most likely had a wife and 12 children he supported and you just killed him?). I've tried threatening her (back away from the spider or all of your dog treats will be given to the cat next door). All to know avail. Lord have mercy my faithful readers, I have even tried appealing to her maternal side (awww...look at this cute little tree frog. Isn't it adorable?) CHOMP! Guess not.

She hasn't gone after the snakes yet, and for that I'm grateful. I don't know what I'll do when she tackles the alligators that sometimes are seen meandering through the neighborhood.

She is now Dad's dog. I should have stuck with the fish and called it a day.

Wow...would you look at this

Those of you who read my blog, know that I entered the Blogging for Books contest this past month. I had a most enjoyable time, and look forward to trying again. I visit the Zero Boss on a regular basis, and at times, leave a comment. His humor and wit are quick, and his topics are never ending. In other words, I like his blog, a lot.

Be that as it may, it seems that one of the comments I posted there was the 4,000th comment to be received. Because of that, I have won a book. Come take a peek and read the post.

I'm looking forward to some good reading. Thanks Zero Boss, you made my day.

Saturday, November 13, 2004

Conversations at lunch time

The wisdom I gain from a lunch date with a couple of 10 year olds always astounds me.

For instance:
  1. Did you know that sharks swallow their food whole?
  2. Whatever you do, don't pop your cold sore because it has a really nasty taste.
  3. It is possible to lose a tooth while brushing your teeth, but there is a lot of blood which really looks cool with the toothpaste.
  4. Never go to the dentist when you have to have a tooth pulled because it really hurts.
  5. That I make the best chicken nuggets and macaroni and cheese lunch because I serve it with both barbecue sauce AND ranch dressing.
  6. That it is possible to burp in three part harmony.
  7. When you cough and fart at the same time, it hurts.
I could add more, but I need to go lay face down on my bed and have a good scream.

Anybody have a tissue?

I think I'm gonna cry. As a staid member of "Who's Wine Is It Anyway," I was about to post how comments on my blog were few and far between. As usual, my online friends (some of the new) made me look like a fool. Thankfully, they did this before I posted one of my bitch-fests.

Firstly, I've been getting some wonderful comments, most recently on "You know it's going to be a bad day when."

Then, I go over and visit one of my many favorite blogs, and find that I have been selected for "Blog Forward" for the week. Thank you Mellie for making my day!

Do your ears hang low?

Do your ears hang low,
Do they wobble to and fro?
Can you tie 'em in a knot?
Can you tie 'em in a bow?
Can you throw 'em over your shoulder,
when the wind begins to blow?
Do your ears haaaaang low????

Many experts say that it's a good sign when your children sing a lot. It means they are happy. I believe this, really I do. I just wish that they would pick the more traditional songs to sing. What ever happened to "The Wheels on the Bus Go Round and Round?" I guess playing things like Redneck Woman doesn't help my cause.

As I get older, I realize that my ears are not the only thing that hang low, but I'd rather not get into that right now because the topic would need to be talked about in depth as there are too many parts of my anatomy to discuss in just one sitting. So, without any further ado, I bring you the real topic of the moment, brought to you by non other than Golly Blog Howdy who provided the link on her fantabulous blog.

Are you feeling a bit low today?

Do you need a boost to your self esteem? Did your get up and go take a taxi to the nearest spa and leave you and you poor morale sitting in a rocking chair trying not to think about the mess your house is in, or the fact that you are having a house full of company during the Thanksgiving holidays? Have I got a site for you.

For all you overworked, underpaid and not appreciated parents out there, here's your chance to prove how wonderful you really are (as if you didn't already know). Just go here and type in your name. Go ahead, see if it doesn't make you feel a bit better.

Moooom, can I have a snaaaaaaaaack? And now we take you back to your regularly scheduled chaos.

Friday, November 12, 2004


Moogie specializes in Full Face Painting. It's more fun to be something else than to have a heart on your cheek! And it really doesn't take much longer! Moogie paints 12-15 faces per hour! Moogie only uses hypoallergenic FDA approved face paints and does not use glitter which can damage one's eyes.

It's truly amazing what one will find when one googles on their name. It seems that I am now a world famous clown, known for my face painting and balloon sculptures. Cool. I had no idea I was this talented. Actually, she looks pretty fun. Here is a page about her. If you go far enough down that page, you'll see a dog that looks remarkably like Zoot's Sweetie. She even has a cool kid's page that offers a lot of different stuff to do. Do you remember Mad Libs? We had hours of fun with those.

Maybe that's my career fall-back plan. I dunno, at least my name would be right. After all, a clown is much better than being referred to as a Ferengi.

A little nip here, a little tuck there. Some dental work. I'd need a good wig though. Hey...look at the added bonus here folks. I'd never have to buy a Halloween costume again.

My personal favorite is a story named “Moogie is a Messy Beastie.” Lord help me but I think they came to my house for inspiration, and used one of my children as a model for Moogie.

There are too many google matches to mention here, but it was amusing to look at them. Go ahead and give it a your name and see what you come up with.

You know it’s going to be a bad day when….

Your first sip of coffee at work, goes through the hole in your mouth and makes a beeline right for your shirt, which of course, is dry clean only. And because you have not had enough coffee to clear your mind, you try to clean it off in the bathroom. This in turn, makes the spot worse. I have three meetings today, and then after work I am going to get my hair done. Lovely. This is why I think the picture above is so appropriate. I copped this one from vegemite this morning. My eyes are definitely not that wide open.

Speaking of coffee

Today, some bright minded sole brought in “Blueberry Crunch.” No, not a cereal but a type of coffee. To add insult to injury, it’s decaf. I’m surprised the first sip of this didn’t come out of my nose.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Veteran's Day Salute

To all the men and women who have risked or lost their lives serving our country, I salute you. You are the best!

Look here for a post by OWW (Mr. Moogie).

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Pork Butt

"One of the traditional cuts of meat used for barbecue is the whole pork shoulder or more commonly in California, the Boston Butt. Despite the name 'butt' the cut is from the shoulder of the hog, not the butt, where the hams are located. "

Even though I am from California (can I say that here?) I did not know what a pork butt was (well, I thought I did but was wrong) when I first came here. We had just moved in our house and that weekend, the neighbors put together a "welcome to the neighborhood" barbecue. While enjoying the friendliness that was uncommon to us in our previous home, I began to wonder if we had chosen the right place to live.

On the one hand, I didn't want to hurt them by refusing their wonderful offer, but on the other, I had to question the sanity of anyone who would eat something that was from the nether regions. Kind of like I wonder why anyone would want to eat liver. Get my drift?

My reservations not withstanding, we went, and I gamely tried the pork butt (it had been smoked all day) and found it to be quite palatable. Ok, I really loved it and even had a second piece but that's not the point. As the wine flowed, and the tongues loosened, I mentioned something about the fact that I didn't think I would have liked anything having to do with a butt. When the laughter died down, my neighbor wiped the tears from his eyes and proceeded to explain to me the parts of a pig, and how that related to the names of meat.


From that point on, I was hooked and was later introduced to "pulled pork." Luckily I cut my imagination just short of picturing Billy Joe and Beauregard, each standing at the end of the pig (front and back) and pulling the pig. Phew. I love pulled pork. It's even better when you have a large heaping spoonful of cole slaw to go with it. I was taught by my co-workers to eat the two of them together. On a side note, I didn't realize how much I loved cole slaw until I moved to the south. It's a lot different that what I'm used to. I also love to put it on my hot dogs and my pulled pork sandwiches. But I digress, which if you are one of my three loyal readers, shouldn't surprise you much.

I stay away from collard greens and fried chicken gizzards, and black eyed peas are something that should be thrown at your brother, but I've certainly found plenty of different foods here that I enjoy.

I wanted to try my hand at making my own pulled pork so I began to search the web. I wanted to see if it could be done in a crockpot. It had to be easy to make. A lot of the recipes called for rubs and such. Bah. Too much work. I ended up compiling a couple of recipes, and the following is my take on "The California Girls Guide to Making Crockpot Pulled Pork." I apologize in advance because the pictures don't do it justice.

The Butt

This one was right around 6 pounds or so. I cut off all of the visible fat I could before I started to prepare it.

Adding the garlic

After determining that it was difficult to get all of the fat off, I went on to the next step, which was adding the cloves of garlic. For most recipes, they used about 4-6 cloves but that was mainly for about 4 pounds of meat. We love garlic, so I decided to go out on a limb and put more on. It's a simple step. Just take a knife and put holes in the butt and stuff the clove into the hole. Just remember that your hands are going to smell like garlic for the next few days. Most recipes call this "studding the butt." (that's not a good visualization I know, but hang with me here, it will get better)

Slicing the onions

I don't think I have to go any farther with this one. Slice two onions for this recipe, and it doesn't matter what the thickness is. I would recommend making them thicker as they will be easier to remove when you are ready to "pull."

At this point, sprinkle the butt with salt and pepper, and put the onions away in a sack (this is, of course, if you prepare it the night before, which is what I do because I like coming home to work to find dinner already done.

The first layer

When you are ready to begin cooking, place one of the onions in a layer in the bottom of your crockpot, and then lay the butt on top of them.

The second layer

Place the second onion on top of the butt, in another layer and add at least two cups of water. For a six pounder, I added about 3 cups.

Pulling the butt

After cooking it on low all day, it's time to go to the next step. Pulling the pork. I found that working with two forks is the best method. I also used tongs to pull the meat out. It will be really tender and will fall apart when you do this. Use the forks to pull apart the meat or "shred it" and put it in a separate bowl as you work. While going through this process, remove and discard the garlic and onions.

The sauce

Here is where the recipe can vary. You can add the sauce now, or let your guests choose what they want to add when you serve it. My family tends to like the sauce added in it so that's what I do. You can also add chopped onions at this point but since I have a child who can spot an onion on the 40 yard line, I skip this step.

The finished product

This is what it looks like if you add the barbecue sauce right away. Heat it up and you're set to go. I made some cole slaw (the easy way) to go with it, and served it with toasted buns.

The cole slaw

Taking care of two children, and working full time, tends to make me simplify things. For my cole slaw I used the bagged variety, and buy our favorite brand of cole slaw dressing. I add a little celery seed, mix it up and am set to go.


Tuesday, November 09, 2004

The return of the lounge chair

The pictures didn't turn out too good but the girls sure had fun with these chairs. It's amazing what little one's can do with their imagination.

Moobear is on the left, Meelie No on the right.

Points to Ponder

  1. Why are there empty cereal boxes in my cupboard?
  2. For that matter, why is there an empty gallon container of milk in my refrigerator?
  3. Where does the sock monster live when the dryer isn't running?
  4. Why do you wake up 10 minutes before the alarm goes off, and have to go to the bathroom so bad you can't go back to sleep?
  5. Why did I teach my children to talk?
  6. Why do my children like my hair brush better than theirs?
  7. Why can I never find my hairbrush in the morning?
  8. Why can't a child brush their teeth without making the mirror dirty?
  9. Why do children find it necessary to change clothes a minimum of four times a day?
  10. Why won't my eldest daughter wear a belt?
  11. Why can't my youngest daughter sit at the table for dinner without getting up from her seat a minimum of twelve times?
  12. How come a toy, that has been sitting in the middle of the living room for most of the day, suddenly become the subject of World War III when one child picks it up?
  13. Why does my dog, who is fed two times a day, eat bugs and toads?
  14. Why do my children behave like angels at someone else's house, and then come home to take on the role of the devil incarnate?
  15. And lastly, why do kids have to grow up?
Those are just a few things I can think of off the top of my head. Do you have anything else to add?

Sunday, November 07, 2004

More flashbacks

Sunday must have been a go-back day. A day to let my mind wander to the years I was growing up. I suspect it is because I haven't seen my parents in a while, so I'm missing them more than usual.

I was thinking about my dad. My mother was never one of those "wait until your father gets home" types. The punishment was always swift, and immediate. But, and this was a huge deal in our household, we had to tell dad what we had done when he came home. He never added to the punishment, but had this way of looking at you that would break even the toughest kid's heart. We always knew that he was disappointed in us, and our behavior, decisions or whatever the situation. As the only girl, disappointing dad was devastating to me. As I look back on it now, I'd imagine that's why they did it. It really reinforced what behaviors were acceptable, and what wasn't. It was very effective. To this very day, I have a difficult time divulging information that I know they do not want to hear. No mommy, please, spank me, ground me for the rest of my life, make me clean my brothers underwear but puleeze don’t make me tell daddy that! I promise I’ll never do it again! You think I’m kidding? The memories of those days are enough to make me start twitching again. I try to avoid that because then the voices get louder (Eat that piece of cake Moogie, no one will notice. So what if it's right before dinner? Come on, you know you want to).

We were pretty scared of him as well. The man never laid a hand on us but he certainly had our number. I can remember sitting next to my mother and brothers in church. Dad would be an usher, and we kids would be fidgeting around, and he would be walking down the aisle, taking up the offering. When “the look” from mom didn’t work (oh, I see you know that one as well), dad would just grab hold of his belt and hitch up his pants. Mom said that none of us would make as much as a peep or a move in any direction during the rest of the service after he did that.

Being scared of him didn’t seem to deter the fact that we wanted to play with him whenever possible and he was always a willing participant. Dad traveled quite a bit for his job, so there were a lot of absences. I remember I had a doll named Karen. Karen was probably close to my height but I really loved her. I can remember asking dad to hold her, and he would sit down and put Karen on his lap. He would admire her pretty hair, which I had no doubt, just put 27 hair bands in, complete with matching barrettes. One day, I asked my dad if he wanted to feed Karen, and he obliged (what a guy). The thing is, Karen was one of those dolls that you fed with a bottle, and the water just came out the bottom (i.e. the butt) right away…..only I didn’t tell my father that. To this day I maintain that I did not do that on purpose, but for some reason my entire family doesn’t believe me. Go figure. Be that as it may, my mother told me I laughed out loud when my dad lifted Karen off of his lap and found a big wet spot. My mom said it took a while for me to calm down. But I really didn’t do that on purpose, honest. Really.

My father also had a big appetite for poker chips. It was rumored that he preferred the blue one’s, but he never told me that. He didn't want to stress me out. I had an old pot and pan set that my mother gave me to play with. I even had some wooden spoons. I remember “cooking” up a feast of chips for my father, dishing it up on my fancy dishes and presenting it to my father as if it was a meal fit for a king. He of course, always told me it was. It was a while before I thought to ask him what he did with all of those poker chips. He told me that after I went to bed, he and my mother would fish them out of the cushions in the couch.

He had a lot of patience back then. He still does. I don’t know how he does it.

No mother, of course I didn’t mean to run over the little dog next door. Yes, I know he barks a lot and yes, that bothered me. Yeah…I agree, I guess I shouldn’t have tried to run over the owner as well. Her hair will grow back, really, and so will her roses…you’re not gonna make me tell dad are you?

What about you? Do you have an special memories about your parents? Post a comment or email them to me. I'll put them up on Moogie's World.

Bouncey, Bouncey, Bouncey.....

What I saw when I looked out my sunroom windows this morning.

That's my Meelie No and her friends, Little Miss (remember Peaches?) and Little Mister.

Coffee...I need more coffee. And a shower. That should help. Where do these kids get this kind of energy?

She's got eyes in the back of her head

As a young child, I remember believing my mother knew everything. She knew how to make the best Halloween costumes, how to get splinters out without hurting, put your hair up so you looked like a princess, mend a broken heart, and find was to make chores even seem fun (I have yet to master this talent). She just generally knew how to do everything, and knew everything that was going on in our lives.

The thing I was most impressed with was the fact that this woman did not have to be looking at you in order for her to determine that you were doing something that would warrant her disapproval.

I can remember when we would be sitting at the table doing our homework, and Mom was cooking dinner. In stealth mode, I'd make my move, assured that my mother wouldn't see a thing since her back was towards us. Before my arm was fully raised and ready to smack my unsuspecting brother, she would calmly state: "Moogie, don't even think about hitting your brother in the back of the head." Dumbfounded (does that word mean you were found to be dumb?), all three of us would stare at each other in wide eyed wonder. My oldest brother, being the bravest one of the three of us, spoke up and asked "how did you do that?"

She slowly turned around with a wooden spoon in her hand and a smile on her face and said "I have eyes in the back of my head." I believed that was true until just a few years ago. Even now, I have my suspicions that she very well may have been telling the truth.

One night at dinner, that same brave brother walked over to stand behind her, staring intently at the back of her head. Not a woman to be bothered by the strange behavior of her children, she calmly asked him what he was doing. He promptly, and very seriously responded, "I'm looking for the eyes."

Early Morning Conversations

I was sitting in front of my computer, surfing through my friends blogs, and checking out my email when my youngest daughter came skipping (which at that time of the morning is so not right) up to me. She was in a really good mood, which is rare for her, but as her mother, I wasn't about to try and spoil it the tranquility I felt at that moment. But I blew it. Not for her, but for me. The conversation left me questioning my ability to understand even the most simplest of life's pleasures.

Me: Hiya cutie, what's up?

Meelie No: Good.

And she happily skips away to, I would imagine, look for her father to torture him in much the same way.

It is here I ask myself why I even attempt to hold a conversation with a six year old before I've had a chance to finish my first cup of coffee. Granted, I most likely wouldn't have been able to understand it any better, but at least my head would be clear and my eyes a bit less blurry.

Is it any wonder that I don't have a better command of the English language?

Saturday, November 06, 2004

Let's Talk Farts

Arachnoleptic fit (n.): The frantic dance performed just after you've
accidentally walked through a spider web. (found on Grouchy Old Cripple)

What is it with kids (and husbands) and farts? Oh, wait...should I call it boof, passing gas, short sweet purple one's? Everyone in my family, except me (cough*bs*cough) seems to suffer from this debilitating problem. For god sakes people, that's what we have bathrooms for!

Case in point: Meelie No was standing next to me in the office, showing me her beautiful artistice representation of Rollie Pollie Ollie (OMG..the colors were superb...and everything was in the lines) and she, well, yes..she boofed. Loudly. That wasn't even the bad part. While she was doing that she had her hands down her pants, and afterwards put them up to her face to smell them. Oh like that's an odor I'd like to walk around with all day.

My husband is not better. We will be sleeping and I'll be snuggled up to him (spooning) and he lets off a loud ripper. He immediately wakes up and says..."What did ya say honey?" And when I reply "nothing" he says "then what did you wake me up for?" It generally only takes me about 10 minutes to patch up the hole in my kneecap.

The dog is the worst. Short, sweet, silent purple one's. You know what I'm talking about people. It's amazing. We'll all be cuddled together watching a movie and we smell this obnoxious odor. Alright...who did that? After we make our rounds of accusations and realize it was none of the humans, we all cry out "Tiny!" The dog has the audacity to get up, turn around, give us a disgusted look (as if to say, dare you?), bark, and moves into her kennel.

I'm sorry to bring this up, but tonight's episode nearly brought me to my knees. Not an easy task. I must be the only one with this problem. If not, there would be a website about it.

I miss the politics

Psyche! Had you going there for a minute didn't I? Nor more campaigning! Well, at least for a little while.

I'm gonna miss it though, really. As much as:
  • Getting sand in my bathing suit while I'm at the beach.
  • The bottom of my foot itching and I'm wearing boots, and they're lace-ups.
  • Stubbing my toe.
  • Going to the dentist.
  • Picking something up from underneath my desk and raising back up before I've cleared it.
  • Eating burnt toast.
  • Discovering the milk is bad, after I've just taken a big sip.
  • Giving myself a do-it-yourself appendectomy.
I've never understood the fascination with. But then again, a lot of folks don't understand my fascination with kids. It's a good thing to be different. It would get a little dull around here if we weren't.

Friday, November 05, 2004

I learned a new song!

Y'all ever heard of the chicken dance? Here are the real words to it, according to Moobear.

I don't wanna be a chicken,
I don't wanna be a duck,
So kiss my butt,
Cluck, cluck, cluck, cluck.


School Days

I think perhaps I should have stayed in bed today. Meelie No told me about a conversation she had with her 1st grade teacher. I feel it's important to keep the communications open with my children but sometimes that comes back to bite me.

Dear Miss Teacher,

Meelie No informed me that she told you that you couldn't spend the night at our house because you were too grumpy.

I would like to set the record straight. Meelie No is not really my child. The stork dropped her off at the wrong house.

Miss Moogie

Things I don't want to know about

Me: Hi Meelie No, have you been playing with Little Miss?

Meelie No: No, she isn't home.

Me: Then what have you been doing?

Meelie No: Picking the fleas off Peaches.

I should have left well enough alone.

Note to readers: Peaches is Little Miss's dog, who is left out front during the day.