Saturday, August 29, 2009
Friday, August 28, 2009
- If you've got any good jokes or one-liners searching for a place to light for a minute, slap 'em down in the comments. I'm thinking we can all use all the giggles we can get :) On a related note, the only knock-knock joke I can ever remember is the banana/banana/orange one. How about you?
- My children requested AC/DC songs for their wakeup music this morning. Is it just me, or is there really something funny about listening to Brian Johnson shriek that early in the morning? Seriously, I laughed. Couldn't help it, it was just kind of surreal.
- White pizza for supper tonight. Stack it up like this, and then bake until golden: pizza crust (you know I'm gonna rely on the DoughBoy for that one, but homemade would be even better), garlic powder and black pepper, ricotta cheese in a thick but not too thick to bake quickly layer (anywhere from a thin smear to a quarter or half inch), more garlic and pepper, whatever white "pizza/Italian" cheese you have on hand (mozerella, shredded parmesan, one of those four cheese mixes, etc-- but I wouldn't add swiss or limburger, if I were you, LOL), and a few pepperoni or mushrooms if you're so inclined.
- Nice people are good.
- Mutts, aka Heinz 57 pound puppies, are my favorite "breed" of dog. One of my children wants a golden retriever, the other one wants a collie (or a huskey or a wiener dog or anything instantly recognizable as one particular breed), and my hubby is a cat person. Wonder what we'll end up with when we do add another pet? Oh, and my children say I am not allowed to name any new pets when we do get one "because you always get to pick out names." I've learned to nod my head and silently cross my fingers at that one because I like creative, imaginative pet names that suit the particular animal. . .Mom ain't budging in her stance against "I wanna name him Max because that's the number one popular name"!
- Read. It's good for your brain and your heart :)
- I don't want to wear socks ever again. If we can have winter without me having to put on socks, then I'm on board. If that can't be arranged, then you'll recognize me as the woman traipsing through the snow in Croc-flops and striped fuzzy socks.
- That's all. . . for now. . . you know I never really shut up for long! Have a Happy Friday!
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
- As soon as you think you know the answer to a problem and act on that answer, a much more reasonable but now unavailable option will clunk you right in the forehead. From this point, you can either expend a whole lot of energy contorting everything in your world to make sure your answer was right or YOU CAN PULL UP YOUR BIG GIRL PANTIES AND SAY "I WAS WRONG. CAN YOU HELP ME FIX IT?" As I sit here trying to think of a humorous example, all I can tell you is that I'm sure this one must apply to me and all the times I've bumbled through a project of some sort instead of stopping and asking for help. As a matter of fact, as I type this, my brain is being bombarded with visions of my brother's triedtotellyou face. Heehee, thank you, Bubby, for all the times you've patiently tried to help me. Helllllllll, thank you to every single member of my family, I'm sure!
- There are always exceptions to a rule but that does not mean you have to point them out every single time the rule is mentioned. Most people realize life is not a simple series of cut and dried decisions with only black or white options. . . most people understand there are shades of gray involved and don't need you to remind them of this. Oooooooooh, this is a tough one for me! I can't tolerate some one who can't tolerate shades of gray. Ooooooooooh, bite my K.I.A. tongue, bite my K.I.A. tongue. After all, not tolerating someone who can't tolerate someone else is doing the same as they are doing, right?
- Here's one thing I have learned and try to remember to use to my advantage when it comes to telling my spouse something. You see, it turns out that we are each fairly stereotypically male/female in our areas of knowledge. When I want to suggest an answer to a typically "male" kind of problem, I now know to frame it as possible advice from another male, instead of musings of a woman who could care less about how an engine makes a car go. For example, the back door of my van once locked and would not open. Now, I know next to squat about vehicles, but I had the idea that something electrical was causing this problem-- probably because the problem showed up on the same day that plugging in my phone charger caused a great big spark. Um, but because I admittedly know next to nothing about cars, my husband pooh-poohed the idea. For a very long time, I waited for the accountant by day to have time to play grease monkey and fix the problem. Each time I asked about fuses/electrical stuff, he dismissed it as a possibility. Then, one day he fixed the van, and this is basically what he said (automotive terms may be wrong, remember I'm not a grease monkey), "Well, I fixed your van. Jim and I were looking at it, and we decided it must be a blown fuse." What the heck?? Didn't I suggest this very solution to him weeks ago?? So, here's the take home point-- now, when I want to suggest an answer to the K.I.A. grease monkey/accountant, I frame it like this, "You know, I'm sure Jim Bob would say blah, blah, blah."
- If no one is going to be physically harmed by another K.I.A.'s mistaken postulations, then let it go. You have not been appointed by anyone to be the Great Deliverer of Corrections. For instance, if someone repeatedly says "physical" when they are talking about "fiscal," let it go unless by some strange chance that someone is the C.F.O. or C.E.O. of a huge corporation. And hey, if someone that far up the ladder has made it to where they are while saying "physical" instead of "fiscal," then do you really think you are going to change things by piping up with the correction? If a cop cuts across the "medium" to write you a ticket for speeding, are you going to be smart and not comment, or are you going to be a stupid K.I.A. and mention that he surprised you by whipping across the median so quickly? If it's not going to hurt someone, bite your tongue-- you don't need the extra drama or responsibility of being the corrector of all things wrong.
- Snopes.com.--- JUST SAY NO TO SNOPES, or at least keep the link to yourself. Nobody really believes those stupid email stories are real. We know they were made up-- but there might be a good lesson or tip for living ensconced in that madeup story, so chill out and let people talk about it if they want to do so.
Bite my tongue, bite my tongue, bite my tongue. I am still sitting here shaking my head over the fact that the person who has irritated me always has to be right, no matter how trivial the information in question. . . I want to just let it slide right on by me, because it really is something trivial, because I'm not around this person enough for it to be worth my time (or theirs) to hash this out, because it's petty of me to care one way or the other. Smack my fingers, bite my tongue, don't let me write Would you please stop feeling the need to contradict almost everything I say to you, because let's face it, sometimes YOU ARE WRONG. Oops. Sorry, the know it all thing is really, really, really hard to change in my personality.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
- "...and candlesticks always make a good wedding present."
- "I'm just happy to be here, and I hope I can help the club."
- "The rose goes in the front, big guy."
Who hasn't cried, listening to Louis Armstrong's voice serenely belting out "What a Wonderful World" while a montage of scenes of young men arriving in Vietnam flows across the bleary screen?
Who hasn't just about peed their pants while watching Nicholas Cage's bumbling robbery of a pack of diapers from the convenience store? Son, you got a panty (say that with a long "a" sound, paaaaaaaanty) on your head.
Oh, and the heroines to be admired. Angela Bassett and I probably share only our first names, but every time I watched her I could feel her confidence pumping mine up just a bit. Geena Davis in The Long Kiss Goodnight might not have done her best acting, but her character was surely the epitomy of kickbuttwomanhood. Susan Sarandon, well, what's not to say? Talk about a strong minded, smart woman. You know what I realized as I stacked these videos in a box and vaguely remembered scenes and lines? I always wanted to be those girls. . . just never worked out. The year I wanted to be as tough and cool as Kelly McGillis was the same year I got a short haircut and looked like Tom Cruise. Yep, instead of a kickbutt heroine, I think I must resemble a frazzled Ralphie's mom. . . you don't remember her, do you? Nah, that's what I thought. Took me a minute to recall her, too. It's okay. I've always been pretty nondescript, always more likely to be mistaken for Ferris Bueller's sister than for Patrick Swayze's dance partner. I'll tell you one thing about not being the gorgeous heroine, though . . . there will come a day (hmm, probably in your forties) when you will be quite happy with the woman you've become, no matter which movie character her facade resembles.
So, relax, let's have some fun out here. This game's fun, okay? Fun, goddammit. And don't hold the ball so hard. It's an egg, got it? Hold it like an egg.
Monday, August 24, 2009
Sunday, August 23, 2009
As soon as I see balloons coming our way, I rush James and Kate out of bed and into the van so we can join the mostly safe and slightly crazy chase to get to the balloons. All the country roads around here are laid out in a grid, and you can usually see for miles in any direction. . . perfect for balloon crews staying close to their pilot, as well as for the rest of us who love to watch it all up close. Balloon pilots and crews are always so generous with their waves from the air, and they are always patient and happy to share the excitement with onlookers.
It's a total eclipse of the balloon! My first thought as I focused the camera was something along the lines of "what the heeeeeeeeeeeck?" and "what did I mess up on the camera now??." Took me a second to register why one balloon was so brightly lit by the morning sun and the other was so dark.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Grilled copper bookmark.
Junk collection of A. Garren.
She's an embossed sketch inspired by a photograph of an intricate sculpture of Maya standing under the tree of life and sprouting Siddhartha from her ribs. Maybe it was the "ribs" part of the story, which I initially ignored while making the sketch, that subconsciously prompted me to bury the bright copper bookmark in the coals of the grill after I'd finished inscribing the sketch? Well, that, and the knowledge that heat applied to copper brings out some pretty colors. Unfortunately, I didn't pay attention to what kind of heat was mentioned whenever I read that blurb about heat and copper. Soooooo, being the pyromiddleagedmaniac lover of flame that I am, I got the bright idea to heat her in the charcoal.
Of course, one wild hair leads to another, and I decided that if coals were good, then some fast burning cardboard on top of the pile would be even better. Poor, poor Maya. Don't know whether it was the cardboard or the chilling splash of cold water when I finally decided I'd better put out the fire, but something charred her completely black from about shin height to the top of the tree of life branch dangling over her dainty headdress. Solid. Black. So much for bringing out pretty colors!
Now that she's had a lovely lemon juice and salt scrub, she's feeling much better. Bonus to the salt scrub is that she can actually be used as a bookmark, whereas before she would've amounted to a charcoal rubbing marking the page of your (hopefully not borrowed from the library) book.
Since today is the full day of school for the kiddos, I think this Mom needs to think about firing up the torch and melting some glass. I really enjoyed looking at that photograph, picking out the most prominent lines, and echoing those lines as I scratched this sketch onto the copper BUT. . .you know what I'm gonna say. . . in the end, nothing looks and feels as right to me as the finished product when I melt glass. Everything else manages to leave me scratching my head and wondering how in the world to make it look more polished and professional, ya know?
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Shall I translate for you? First of all, MME is Meanest Mom Ever. I currently hold that title, although more than a few moms have laughed and welcomed me to the club when told about my title ;-) Apparently, being dubbed the MME by your children is actually a good sign, a sign that you are doing something right as you muddle through the swamp of parental decisions. If you happen to be an MDE (aka Meanest Dad Ever), then let me welcome you to the club, too, although I am inclined to think there are more MME's in the club. When the potential MDE in our house gets home from a long day of work plus commute, he is not likely to spend time uttering phrases such as "because I said so" or "get down from there before somebody gets hurt." That's just the way it is in our house. Mom is gonna tell you to quit burping in your sister's face, and Dad is likely to laugh at you because it really is kinda funny. Mom is gonna tell you it's time to calm down for the evening and quit tormenting your brother by asking him why he's sitting there watching Hannah Montana if he hates that show so much, and Dad is likely to laugh at you because it really is a good point you just made.
This whole MME versus the GD (aka Good Dad) thing used to really tick me off, especially when the kids were little and I was the one who took them to work with me at the daycare while Daddy sat in an office. . .in a cubicle. . .that I thought had to be a sanctuary of quietude. . .for the whole day long. Now, after three years of being a mostly stay at home mom ("mostly" because I started substitute teaching last spring and can't wait to do some more as soon as school starts and teachers start judiciously using some of their time off), I am finally starting to have much more understanding for the differences between moms and dads. If I were the one sitting in that cubicle, that potential sanctuary of quietude where no one interrupts you in the middle of washing your hair so they can let you know starvation is imminent if you don't help them decide what to eat within the next 30 seconds, IF I were the one sitting in that cubicle, then it would no longer be a sanctuary BECAUSE :
- The phone would be instantly start ringing off the hook with long distance complaints that "he looked at me funny" and "she hit me on purpose," and these kinds of complaints simply get very little reaction from a Dad.
- If the phone didn't ring, then I would sit there for precisely three minutes before I started wondering "exactly why is it so darn quiet all of a sudden," and these kinds of Mom-tuitions or Mom-dar cannot be ignored.
Sooooooooooooooooo, let me just say that I have finally reached the point where I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I would not want to trade jobs with my husband. I appreciate what he gives up so that I can be here to drop the kids off at school in the mornings, pick them up in the afternoons, make sure homework is done (correctly, and don't let me ever again catch you making up answers so you can get done faster), and you get the idea. I appreciate the sense of freedom and bravery he gives to our kids because he can ride the Superman (one of those drop straight down from 253 feet rides at Six Flags) with them without flinching, because he wrestles and plays with them without scolding that "if you keep that up, somebody's going to get hurt and then it won't be so much fun anymore," and because he lets them walk around the block by themselves in his old neighborhood without worrying excessively that the neighborhood might have changed since he was 7 or 8 years old almost four decades ago. Lesson finally sinking in-- kids can use both kinds of parents, it's just that some of us are good for one area and others are good for complementary areas.
Oops! Got carried away and almost forgot I am supposed to translate P&Q for you, too. Heehee, betcha some of you already know it stands for PEACE AND QUIET. Over the course of an entire summer vacation, it will likely by accompanied by more words, such as "just for a few minutes, please" or "shhhhhhh...enjoy it...we're being quiet" or "if I don't get some P&Q, then Daddy's gonna be paying for a nanny while Mommy is staying at the closest mental institution." Yep, P&Q is one of the things on my list of selfish desires that contribute to keeping Mom sane :)
And all of this rambling is the prelude to telling you that I think Mom-vana (that's mom-nirvana) might have been achieved yesterday evening when both of my children wanted to sit in the candlelight, listen to a cd of Native American flute music, and meditate with Mom. I don't even meditate in this way, flame meditation at the torch is my version of meditation, BUT we had some new candles, the stars were aligned just right, James chilled out after much squirming and goofing around, Kate sat cross-legged on the chair and om'ed, and for that hour or so, this Mom was graced with the most wonderful P&Q ever . . . peacefulness and quietude with two thoughtful and profoundly wise-when-they-want-to-be children. James and Kate, I hope that memory is one you'll treasure as much as your mother will.
Saturday, August 15, 2009
- Hope all is well with each of you.
- See why I love books with pictures of religious art?
- The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, nor to worry about the future, but to live the present moment wisely and earnestly. -- Buddha
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Ninja-girl Kate reveals her identity. She appears to be one glum warrior, but I'm pretty sure the sad face was brought on by her brother refusing to play ninja any more that day.
In fact, the ninja-boy had decided the bubble sword would be more fun to use for blowing bubbles.
Summer vacation is almost over. . . where did it go??