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November, 2007:

He Took His Mimi

I wrote back in August how Jason had given up his mimi. Since then, it’s been on his bed, but he’s never cared where it was really. It could be under the covers, on the floor – wherever – he really didn’t care. Until tonight…

This past week, he and his new friend from school, Josh, have been plotting a sleepover at Josh’s house. I finally talked to Josh’s mom today and we got it all straightened out. Jason will get off the bus with Josh after school on Friday and I’ll drop his sleeping bag and backpack off on my way home from work so he doesn’t have to schlep it to school. Jason is SOOOO excited – it’s so fun to watch :-)

We were in his room packing his stuff in to his backpack, and I picked up Brown Swing (his monkey Webkin) and said “Hey Dude, do you want to take your mimi or Brown Swing?” He looked at me like, “DUH, no! Mimi and Brown Swing are NOTHING to big boys who get off the bus at their friend’s house for a sleepover without ever coming home first.” But his little voice said “Um – no. I guess I probably shouldn’t take them.”

So we read books and Goodnight Moon (yes, still – every single night for the past 7 years I’ve read recited that book at bedtime) and I sang You Are My Sunshine (again, every single night for the past 7 years.) I left his room and I heard him say quietly “Hey Mom? I think I might take my mimi. Can you put it in my backpack for me?” Sure, dude, anything for you.

I go change in to my jammies. When I walk back out in to the hall I hear “Hey Mom? Do you think it’s OK if I take Brown Swing, too?” Sure, dude, I think that will be just fine. I stuff Brown Swing in to the backpack.

Another goodnight kiss and I walk out the door. “Hey Mom? Do you think Josh will make fun of me?” My heart jumped in to my throat. “No dude, I don’t think he will. But if you want, I can put your mimi and Brown Swing inside your sleeping bag so they’ll be there when you get in, and nobody else will ever know.” A moment’s pause and then “Sure Mom. That sounds like a good plan. I love you, Mom.”

I love you too, dude.

Something Happened To My Toothbrush

After playing our gazillionth game of Battleship, I sent Jason in to get ready for bed. About 30 seconds after he enters the bathroom I hear “Hey Mom! Something happened to my toothbrush!”

Um, what? What possibly could have happened to your toothbrush between 7:00 a.m. and now? We were all gone at school and work, then at gymnastics, then he and Keira played hockey in the house while I made dinner, then we all ate together, then we all played Battleship. I had to rack my brain (for all of 20 seconds) to try to figure out what possibly could have happened to his toothbrush during that time.

So I head to the bathroom to see what has happened. The bristles on his toothbrush are a bright magenta color. Not blood colored, magenta colored. Then it hit me – Keira was alone in the bathroom for a whoppin’ 5 minutes. She had been sent in to brush her teeth and get ready for bed and spent longer than normal in there – and was VERY quiet. I finally asked her what she was doing and she said “flossing.” Excellent – she’s flossing!

Turns out, she’s a big fat liar. She wasn’t flossing . . . she was busy painting her brothers toothbrush with “pail nolish” that she had just taken out of her “good choices” box that Grandma had sent her. You see, Keira had a rough few weeks, so Grandma sent her a box with some fun small things in it. When Keira made good choices a couple days in a row, she got to choose something out of the box. Last night, she chose the last item, which was a small bottle of magenta colored “pail nolish.” She then BEGGED me to paint her toenails. I said it was too late today, but maybe tomorrow we’d do it. She was happy with that answer and happily skipped down the hall to the bathroom to put her pail nolish away and brush her teeth for bed. Apparently, making good choices all day and getting her prize was more than she could handle. She made a bad choice and decided to paint Jason’s toothbrush with it! Does it seem ironic to anyone else that she made a very bad choice with the good choice prize she had just earned?

So I quietly placed the fuzzy bag that contains her nail polish and lip stuff on the counter next to her breakfast bowl – and also placed Jason’s magenta colored toothbrush right next to it. The next morning, she sat down and said “What’s this? Jason, what happened!” The look of total shock on her little face was amazing! I fully expect the Emmy to arrive on our doorstep any day now. I calmly took the magenta pail nolish out of the bag and set it next to the toothbrush – a perfect match! She couldn’t possibly comprehend HOW any of this had happened – had the mouse done it while we were sleeping? Had Jason done it and blamed it on Keira? I think not.

So, Keira cried and screamed as I took away the bag with the fuzzy handle and told her it was being put in toy jail until Dad got home this weekend and we could talk about it. She thought it was totally unfair that I was taking ALL of it when she only used one item for her bad deed . . . AH HA – she admitted it! I explained that I obviously couldn’t trust her with any of it and that I was disappointed because I thought we’d talked about her not using it without me around and without asking.

So, the pail nolish and lip gloss (all courtesy of Grandma) are in toy jail for 4 more days. Losing them isn’t as bad for her as knowing that they’re in toy jail . . . toys have been known to disappear in toy jail and never be seen again if the offense was bad enough!

Will she have magenta toes in time for the pool next summer? Only time will tell – and these are the Days Of Our Lives.

Wordless Wednesday – Sunday Hike

Castlewood Canyon #1


Castlewood Canyon #2


Castlewood Canyon #3


Castlewood Canyon #4


Castlewood Canyon #5

Boys Vs Girls

Yes, I do realize Halloween was a couple weeks ago – but hey, I went on vacation the day after Halloween for a week and well, I’ve just been too lazy/busy to get photos posted. But now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for . . . drum roll please . . .

Here is Me and Keira. She was my little pink poodle. I love that she’s a girly girl, but she is definitely not prissy. She might look all cute and cuddly in her pink poodle costume, but she’ll be the crap out of anyone who tries to steal her candy! Me, I’m a snowcone, and yes that is a pumpkin hat on my head! I looked a bit more like a snowcone at the actual costume party (see my hubby’s costume below) but I barely made it to trick or treating after work . . . so this had to do:

Jodie and Keira Costumes

Next up – Dan and Jason – snowcone and skeleton zombie. Notice that Jason’s costume is about 3 sizes too big . . . that was done intentionally. We usually have to stuff winter jackets and snowpants under costumes here . . . we do live in the snowbelt afterall! A couple year ago we trick or treated in an ice storm . . . the 4 of us were standing hand in hand walking across the top of an inclined driveway right next to the garage when I started sliding down the driveway. The other 3 followed close behind. There was nothing we could do but enjoy the ride until we got to the level street at the bottom. We threw in the towel at that point 😉 This year, however, it was actually beautiful – except for the lack of time change (thank you Congress!) which meant we either had to wait an hour for dark or start in the sunlight (we started in sunlight).

Jason and Dan Costumes 

So there you have it – the wonderfully amazing Halloween pictures :-)

Ice Princess

When soccer was over, we signed the kids up for ice skating lessons again. We all love to go ice skating – great exercise, cheap, and lots of fun. They have a 30 minute group lesson once a week and a practice session once a week. We also try to head out to the public skating sessions on Saturday night – I know, I know, what rebels we are! They’re both doing awesome! Jason wants to play hockey – I told him not gonna happen this year, but we’ll see about next year. Every day he’s been outside in the cul de sac with this roller blades, all his safety gear, his hockey stick, and a ball practicing. He’s convinced that if I see how much he wants to play I’ll change my mind – cuz I’m a pushover that way. But, not happening this year. He is really getting good at skating though – so I’m glad he’s out there working hard. Keira is also doing very well. Saturday night at open skating she decided to show me that she could spin . . . in her own little 4 year old way, she did a toe spin around and around and around – it was sooooo cute! And there is NO WAY you are allowed to get anywhere near her because she’s a big 4 year old and can skate by herself really fast without hanging on to a person or the wall. We ALL got that message loud and clear on Saturday!

Anywho – after sitting in a cold hockey rink for a couple weeks watching the kiddos skate, I noticed some women out there in a class at the exact same time – they didn’t seem to be doing anything too difficult. Maybe I should join? Why not get some exercise instead of freezing my behind off sitting still? So I inquired within and got myself signed up. They’d already had 2 classes of the 6 week session, and I was going to be gone the following week on vacation, so I set up a 20-minute private lesson with the instructor for the Friday before the 4th week of class. She passed me through all the skills and I was in the class. And today, I learned how to do a 2-foot spin! In my mind’s eye I looked like Dorothy Hamill, spinning flawlessly and gracefully around and around and around in a tight little circle. In everyone else’s eye, I looked much more like Dumbo trying to chase the red horse on a merry go ’round – except my ears aren’t that big.

Friday Funny – Or Not

Last night we decided to play a family game instead of whatever else it was that some of us thought we might like to do. Jason grabbed the easel and the dry erase markers and drew out a Hangman board and word. He actually chose a really good word (happy) that for some reason 2 adults and 4 year old couldn’t figure out. I was trying to figure out how HE might spell a totally common word . . . like hawse . . . but in fact he spelled his word right. The really sad part is that we had a TON of chances to get it right. When I played Hangman, you got a head, a stick body, two stick arms, and 2 stick legs. If I was feeling very generous (or just sorry for you) I may give you some hands and feet, and on rare occasions I might even throw in a couple eyes and a mouth. Well, we got through all of those parts and I said “Good word, Buddy! We can’t figure it out. Tell us what it is.” He said “No mom. You guys still have 3 more guesses.” I said “Oh, a nose and 2 ears.” He wrinkled up his nose and said in his most condescending you-don’t-know-anything-mom voice “Uh, no. You get a nose . . . and two boobies.”

Yes yes yes . . . a conversation did ensue about how that was not appropriate and he better not ever be playing that way at school – which I KNOW is where he learned it because we’ve never played Hangman at home. I’m just hoping the other forbidden Hangman body part doesn’t make an appearance!

Growing Up Up Up

My kids are growing up too fast. I know, big surprise. But this morning, my daughter is laying in my bed when I come out from my shower. She is wide-eyed and smiling . . . and snapping, over and over and over. Apparently, after months and months of trying, she learned to snap last weekend. Now this is very important, you see, because her big brother has been snapping for a couple years now and she just couldn’t STAND that he could do it and she couldn’t. I’m not sure what special powers the ability to snap will afford her, but she sure was happy about it. And I am preparing myself for a month of constant snapping, just like happened when Jason learned to snap.

The bigger growing up event happened this morning when I dropped her off at school. She announced that she wanted to read me a book. Previous to Thursday morning, that meant that we sat in the corner by the books, and she leafed through one and told me the story from memory. But today, I headed over to the bookshelf and she said “No mom. Over here. We have to sit at the table to read.” So I sat at the table, feeling much like the large Alice in the teeny tiny chair that my behind certainly does not fit in. She brought over a book simply titled “Mat.” I remembered it from when Jason was learning to read. She opened it and read it flawlessly – “Mat. Mat Sat. Sam. Sam Sat. Mat sat on Sam. Sam sat on Mat. Mat sat. Sam sat.” And do you know what I did while she read her first book flawlessly? I cried. Yup – a big blubbering Alice sitting in the teeny tiny chair crying while my daughter read a book to me.

When Jason read his first book to me, I was all happy and proud and excited. I am of course happy and proud and excited for Keira, too. But when it’s your baby that’s learning to read, well, it’s just a bit more emotional.

I also believe that part of the reason I was so emotional was that I realized I will no longer be able to spell things to my hubby to keep her from knowing what we’re talking about. One less mechanism available to keep our kids in the dark.

Aqua Dots Toy Recall

My daughter looks at these every time we go in to Target . . . I have never gotten her any, thankfully! Looks like the toy of the year isn’t so grand anymore :-( Please check out the recall information.

And please sign up for the CPSC alert e-mail so you get notices automatically when toys are recalled.

Fall Back Ba-by!

Don’t forget to turn your clock back tomorrow night!

How nice it will be to have that extra hour of sleep since The Girls are departing Jacksonville at precisely 6:00 a.m. on Sunday to drive to Carolina Beach.

How nice it will be to not spend every bit of daylight at the office – it may be a teeny bit light out when I arrive in the morning, now!

How nice it will be for the high school kids in my neighborhood not to have to stand at the bus stop in the pitch black dark at 6:30 a.m., dodging the cars who can’t see them and almost hit them while they’re standing on the side of the road because there are no sidewalks.

How nice it will be to have a little bit of daylight in the morning so it’s easier to drag my kids out of bed to get them to school on time.

How nice it will be to have my Palm Pilot sync properly since according to its software, standard time has already begun. Really – 1 week? Did that change to make the move one week later REALLY make a difference?

Happy clock turning, VCR blinking, cell phone turning off and on-ing, answering machine changing, alarm clock updating, and extra snoozing!

No Matter What Happens, We’ll Have A Story To Tell

That’s the theme of the adventure I’m embarking on today with my Grandma, Mom, and three aunts. I even made t-shirts for all of us with that on it! 

Today, at 6:30 a.m., I leave for a 6 day vacation with my Grandma, Mom, and three aunts. I’ve been looking forward to this forever! Really, we bought our tickets in MAY. Anyone know where the closest chapter of Advanced Planners Anonymous meets?

I fly from my home airport to their home airport. We all meet, get on the same airplane, and fly to Jacksonville, where we will spend 3 days with my Uncle (their youngest brother) and his wife. Alligator Farm? Ripley’s Believe It Or Not? Wax Museum? Beach? St. Augustine? The Spanish Quarter? The Old Fort? The Pool? The Bar? I can’t wait!

After 3 days, the 6 of us will say goodbye to Uncle and Jacksonville, load up the rented mini van and drive 8 hours to Carolina Beach to spend 3 days with my Aunt (their youngest sister, and twin to the youngest brother). I can only imagine that we’ll look something like this . . .


I’m the one driving – although I assure you I will not be wearing a pink shirt. I don’t even OWN a pink shirt! Anyway – we’ll spend another 3 days in my Aunt’s new house on the beach doing who knows what. The Mother, the 5 sisters, and the niece together. With this crew, I’m sure we’ll find some way to get in to trouble. Afterall, I do remember the stories my mom used to tell of her and her sisters having to kneel on the floor on their way out the door to Catholic school so Grandpa could make sure their skirts touched the floor, only to roll them up at the waist the minute they got on the bus so their knees actually showed. Oh, and that ONE (ha) time when some of them (I won’t say which ones) got caught smoking out back of Catholic school. Oh, and that one time when . . . but I digress. Just trust me – a good time will be had by all.

After 3 more days of fun, we’ll load up the van once again and head to the Raleigh/Durham airport to head home. We’ll all get off the plane at their home airport, hugs, kisses, and tears everywhere as we say goodbye. Then I’ll hop on my plane to head home to my wonderful hubby and kids whom I will miss dearly.

And no matter what happens, we’ll have a story to tell!