Thursday, December 29, 2005

12 Sudsy Steps?

I'm an addict.

I swore I'd only do it once. But it was SO GOOD.

I've spent my Christmas money on it, and started dipping into my savings.

You see, a couple weeks ago, E was out of town, and I was feeling blue. My blueness wasn't helped by the fact that due to Christmas preparations, Sophie and I had literally worn every item of clothing we own, twice. The laundry mountain had become a mountain range. I cracked.

I packed the whole thing into garbage bags and took it to the laundry mat in town that has a wash and fold service.

Just a few hours later, and I was presented with clean clothes. Clean clothes I didn't clean. Folded clothes. Folded clothes I didn't fold. Shirts. On hangers. All for 80 cents a pound.

Today I looked at the laundry mountain and began to shake. The jones became stronger and stronger. The next thing I knew, I had SNEAKED the laundry past E, out the front door and into the car where, on some trumped up excuse (had to by batteries I think), I delivered it to the washers and folders. I picked it up this evening--opened the bag to a pile of fresh smelling and expertly folded clothing, and the high was excruciatingly intense. Now though, the guilt is eating at me. 80 cents a pound sounds cheap--but clothes are heavy. I simply can't afford to have other people do my wash for me. I have a perfectly good washer and dryer sitting empty in my basement. Who am I to think other people should wash my dirty socks?

But now that I've done it, it's going to be so hard to quit.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Soph was playing with her friend B in her room today. I totally eavesdropped on their conversation. It's so fun to hear her orchestrate the play with someone other than me.

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Finding an egg--cracked open mind you--in the play kitchen that had been there FOR SOME TIME!

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

The Great Escape

E and I had a perfectly ugly blow out last night.

So--today I am a fugitive. I woke up this morning with an emotional hangover of epic proportions. Then, called around looking for a massage with no success. E felt bad for me and made a few more calls--ultimately finding an opening at the new massage school in town.

The massage was so good--but so exhausting. The girl was a complete angel as I bawled my way through most of it. Apparently, the muscles in my shoulders are basically petrified. She did something called "stripping" the muscles that didn't necessarily hurt, but that made me bawl and bawl and bawl some more. As I said, the therapist was a complete angel and went over our scheduled time by 45 minutes because I had SO MUCH work to be done, and because we kept having to stop for me to mop my nose and regain enough composure to continue.

After the massage, I took myself out to lunch, and as I still don't want to go home, I'm typing this entry from "The Grind," CC's local coffee house/New Age-y Christian church.

Now--I guess I'll go wander around Walmart for a while, to put off the inevitable. Going home. Sigh.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Lately Soph is the snuggliest little thing. I just get hugs and kisses all day.

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Here is a brief list of things NEVER to buy your friend's or family's kids for Christmas. (Unless you hate them.) Dealing with these things is the worst thing today.

1. Play make-up. I mean, it's REAL, and makes a REAL mess, but is designed for little girls to play with. By play, I mean cover their faces, bodies, clothing, and bedspreads with.

2. Musical instruments of any kind.

3. Polly Pocket Beading Machine. (OK--I bought this one. But it SUCKS! Millions and millions of little beads. Everywhere.)

4. Silly putty. (DUH!)

4. Finger paint (Double DUH!)

Sunday, December 25, 2005

How I Fucked Up This Christmas

1. Waited until Christmas morning to make the 2 coconut cream pies to take to E's sister's house. Didn't notice until I had mixed everything together that the milk had gone sour. No pies.

2. Bought a turkey breast that was too big for my crock pot. Just discovered this. Now will have to run home half way through lunch @ E's sis house to put in oven.

3. Refered to my parents and Kate as "my family," thus, apparently hurting E's feelings, resulting in a fight in which I called him a lazy prick. Ahh. Christmas.

4. Didn't notice as the dog stole and chewed up Sophie's new kitten (toy). She discovered it chewed and mangeled in the kitchen.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Christmas eve-eve

Apparently I started this post at 12:53 last night--but didn't make too much progress.

I love Christmas eve-eve. It's my favorite part of the holidays. Close enough to the big day to feel exciting, but not close enough to have one's presence required by anyone other than chosen friends.

The regulars came over for cocktails, cheeseballs, and games. I had about 2 drinks too many but maintained my composure fairly well. We busted out "Songburst," a game that is super fun, but that, for some reason, brings out the worst competitive side of all. E refuses to play, because singing is involved, so he is the DJ and dictator. Basically he chooses a card, and reads 4 things. A date, singer, title of song, and first 2-4 words of a line. The player then must SING the rest of the line, this moving spaces on the game board. (1977, Supertramp, "Give a Little Bit.) I believe at one point I hollered "This game is under protest! Fuck all of you!"

My dad called about 3 rum and cokes in to tell me that the Disney Princess Talking Vanity that he was putting together for me for Soph WAS NOT TALKING! So--I started making plans to head to Walmart first thing this morning (horror of horrors--Walmart on Christmas Eve) when Katy, in a supreme gesture of selflessness, offered to take care of it. Luckily for her, the vanity just needed a good thump, and began talking as it should.

Bought E and Janz a KICK ASS present--will post later on what it is as E may read this, but suffice it to say, I nearly sprained my back again wrapping it. Still need to wrap the Santa gifts for Soph which include a glow-in-the-dark Doodle Bear, Polly Pocket magic bead jewelry maker, Dance-a-rella ballet dvd-o-rama thing, Mrs. Potato Head, and a few other things I can't remember. (The vanity will just get a big bow.)

So--very tired, but feeling ok. Christmas pictures and posts to come.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Sticking adhesive bows all over each other

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Oh--how I miss sleeping in after a night of debauchery. No rest for the wicked I guess.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Lies I've told my daughter in the past 24 hours

I said: Sophie, if we don't brush your hair, it will get so tangled that birds will come build their nests in it.

She said: I HATE YOU!!!!
I said: Well--then I guess we'd better go find you a new mommy. Let's get in the car. (She's sure to be in therapy for that one.)

She said: Is Santa real or pretend?
I said: Real baby.

She said: How do the reindeer fly?
I said: They eat magic oats.

She said: I want to go home!!
I said: This will only take a couple of minutes. (This conversation took place on our way into the UPS store. 40 minutes and $20 smacks later, we were done.)

She said: Cut off the crusts!
I said: The crusts will make you big and strong.

I said: Santa's elves are watching, and they won't bring your Princess Talking Vanity if you don't lay down right now.

I think "good liar" should be part of a mom's job description. My mom told me lies--both white and black, ranging from, "If you keep pouting like that a little bird will come poop on your lip" to "Joseph Smith was a true prophet." The older Sophie gets, the more I seem to lie to her.

If you have kids, do you lie to them? Did your mom lie to you?

Today's best thing about being a mom:
So--we're driving around doing errands with my mom. Soph says to me, "You be an elf. I'll be Soph. You say--have you been a good girl?" So I do. She says, "Yes. Very very good." I say, "Well, I saw you squirting dish soap into Jimmy's water and all over your mom's kitchen floor." She says, "Can I talk to a new one?"

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Shit--this being Santa thing is EXPENSIVE! I realized today that I forgot stocking stuffers. Sheesh.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

You be...

This is the name of the new game Soph likes to play. Actually, it's the only game we play lately, other than duck duck goose, which is tricky with just 2 people.

Whatever book, movie, tv show, family member, friend, etc., Sophie is currently fixating on, she wants to be. So she says to me, "You be Velma. I'll be Scooby. You say, 'Would you do it for a Scooby snack?'" then she precedes to dictate the rest of the game--with me acting as her pawn--spewing out lines here and there as she sees fit.

In the last 24 hours, I have been: Glinda to her Dorothy ("Mommy--you say, 'Are you a good witch or a bad witch?'"), Maleficent, in her dragon form, to Prince Philip (this was at The Main Street Grill. Only by my super speedy lightning like reflexes did I avoid being stabbed with a jelly laden butter knife), some random monster to her princess (In this one, she wanted to be tied to her chair. Couldn't get her to wear pants this morning. Am glad no random callers dropped by.), and of course, Jimmy, our dog.

Spent half of the morning on-line looking for Russell Athletic NuBlend Sweatpant, NO POCKETS, mens size medium, in oxford gray--as this is really the only thing Erik wants for Christmas, other than sex with me wearing a Santa hat. Apparently, there is ONE pair of said sweats on the planet right now. I checked the Russell web site, Amazon, JCPenney, Sports-o-rama, Sports and Your Mom, and The Biggest Fucking Sportswear Site In All The Land. Each site let me only order one--just one pair of sweats. So--I ordered one from Pennys, and will get more for E for, um Valentines day.

The other half was spent printing out pictures of the kids, and putting them in cheap frames, wrapping said frames, hunting for addresses, etc to send to the great-grandma's up north. As a result the house has surpassed its usual level of repulsive filthiness. Soph's new favorite play thing? Coffee filters! These are super cool, because not only are there like a gazillion of them in the bag, perfect for strewing all over the place--but they can hold things, be smushed into place mats--or cut into snow flakes. Soph chose to fill a couple with orange and black fabric paint (left over from the Funshine Bear costume) and then stick her feet in them.

So--she's currently in the bathtub, playing with the Dora the Explorer bathtub set that we bought for her friend Addison for Christmas. Poor Addison will just have to live without it, I suppose.

In other riveting news--Katy and I made some toffee last night--which was delicious. I have packaged it in lovely Christmas tins, delivered it to various neighbors, and now that little job is done. In the rest of the world, are people expected to bring dinky little gifts to their neighbors--even if they don't really know or like them? Here in planet Utah, it's apparently a requirement to do so; the dinky gift should, preferably, include some stupid little saying or verse with it. Example--a plate of muffins with the card, "You're gettin' muffins for Christmas" or a box of Whoppers, cleverly dressed up as a reindeer by means of cut out pieces of felt, with a hole cut under the tail, thus to dispense the Whoppers/reindeer droppings and the verse

We were awakened when we heard Santa call,"Now dash away, dash away, dash away all."
We soon discovered, out on our front lawn,Santa and all of his reindeer were gone.
I ran to the lawn, and in the snowy white drifts,soon saw those nasty reindeer had left "little gifts."
So, with our little shovels, we started to scoop,all of the droppings. . . YUCK!. . . reindeer poop!
But we so generously filled up your sack,Have a merry old Christmas, and enjoy your snack!
WTF? Last year, one of my neighbors brought over a bag of brown and serve rolls. That's it. No bow. No jam. Just a bag of brown and serve rolls--not even browned!
Soph's out of the tub--so I must go see what havoc she's reeking.
Today's best thing about being a mom:
Playing pretend
Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Finding Soph on all fours, licking water out of Jimmy's bowl

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Who's this big girl?

My baby has grown up.

It sneaked up on me so stealthily--I hardly even noticed. The bottles are all gone, (thanks to Jimmy--the huge unruly puppy--who chewed them all up) as are the diapers. No more high chair. No more bibs. Sophie's chest of drawers has nary a onesie. She's grown out of her stroller. We switched her from the car seat to the booster.

Rattles have been replaced by Barbies. The Baby Einstein videos are in the back of the cabinet, and Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, and Snow White are in the front.

No more baby food or formula in the cupboard. In fact, this morning, with very little help on my part, Soph made herself a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. My only job was to cut off the crusts.

When we go to the restaurant, I no longer ask for a high chair. Now when the server comes, Sophie cheekily offers, "Umm. I'll have a woot beer please."

Instead of cheerfully spending her time chewing on baby biscuits and trying to roll over, Soph points out letters of the alphabet to me, and recognizes her name.

No more bouncy seat. Now we have a Barbie Jeep in the back yard, and a big wheel in the front.

Instead of trying to coax her to say Ma Ma, I spank her butt for calling me a pain in the ass. Instead of helping her learn to walk, I help her to a time out after I find her on the kitchen cabinet, dumping out the Lucky Charms all over the floor, better to sort the useless cereal from the delicious marshmallows.

I haven't changed a shitty diaper in months--but am now summoned into the bathroom to find her little butt poking up in the air waiting for a wipe.

Of course, I'm both elated and heart broken by this realization. Changing shitty diapers is something that even the most sentimental of mothers couldn't miss--but man, folding all of those little pairs of Care Bear panties kind of chokes me up sometimes.

I used to worry about her eating things off of the floor. Now I worry about all of her name calling (Apparently, any noun, followed by the word head, is a "name." ex. diaper head, couch head, banana head, hamburger head.)

Who is this big girl? What has she done with my baby?

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Not making bottles and changing diapers anymore

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Not making bottles and changing diapers anymore

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Haven't felt much like posting lately. Today's post is more out of a weird sense of duty than of really wanting to.

I hate the winter so much. As the days grow shorter, I can feel my body start to shut down--my energy start to slip away--the happiness slowly leaching out of my life. Kind of dramatic--eh? I hate getting out of bed before the sun is up. And when the sun goes down--at 5:30--I want nothing more than to go to sleep. I started growing a pounding headache yesterday at about 3:00--had to lay down by 7:00--and fell asleep and slept until 7:00 this morning (with the mandatory 2-3 interruptions my Soph for this and that.) The point I guess I'm making is that I have a total split personality. During the spring and summer, I'm a fairly happy, gregarious, and dare I say fun and witty person. Fall and winter, however, see me as a sort of depressed slug.

Our Christmas plans are in the shitter, because of the engine on my old Nissan imploding, and that has lead to tons of friction between E and I. Add to that the current day care nightmare, and things here are just bordering on melt down.

That said, here's a little Soph update. I haven't taken her back to her old school. I don't think I will. So--I've been racking my brain looking for other options. Sweet Kodi took her yesterday, Gma C will have her tomorrow, and Friday, she'll probably come to school with me, as it's the last day before winter recess, and we're just doing fun holiday stuff anyway.

I still am hoping to put her in Montesorri. The scheduling is making me insane though. I lay in bed and think--ok, Mondays when I don't work all day, I can get her, when I do work, my mom can--Tuesdays will be E and F--what about Fridays though? And all other manner of scheduling cluster fucks. I sat down and made a calendar--hoping that would clear things up, but that just lead to a fight with E, and one thing we don't need right now are more fights.

That's about it.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Hmmm. (5 minute pause while thinking.) Fuck. There has to be something. OK. More trips to the ice cream parlor.

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
She's currently having a tantrum (complete with threats that can't come to her party) because I won't fill up her toy box with water and let her have a bath in the living room while she watches "The King and I." Am I a raging bitch or what?

Thursday, December 08, 2005

New hair. New school?

Had a shitty day yesterday, so when Soph shrieked like a scalded ape about having her hair washed and brushed, I asked, "Do you want short hair?" She said yes, so we headed to the hair styling college, and here is the result.

In further news, daycare is becomming a complete and total nightmare. She used to love it, but lately, she throws a huge fit whenever she has to go. In fact, today, when E took her, she started crying so hard that she hyperventelated and then threw up. He called me at work, I called a sub, and am here at home with her. I don't know if that was the right thing to do or not, but there you have it. When I've tried to talk to her about it, she tells me that school is scarry, and that the kids aren't nice. After talking to the teacher, I still don't have a great idea of what is going on.

So--I've been looking into other options. There is a new montesorri school here in town that her friend goes to. Everything I've heard about montesorri looks super, and they do a 8:30 to 3:30 Monday through Friday. It's pricey, but I'm hoping that grandma carolyn can be convinced to pick up the difference. I'm going to visit today, and we'll see.

Soph and I started playing a new game last nigh. Before bed, I said to her, "I love you more than everything." She picked right up on it, and said to me, "I love you more than bunnies." Here's the rest of the conversation.

M: I love you more than sunny days.
S: I love you more than pink bunnies.
M: I love you more than french fries.
S: I love you more than pink marshmallow bunnies.
M: I love you more than snuggily blankets.
S: I love you more than Care Bears.
M: I love you more than bubble baths.
S: I love you more than stickers.
M: I love you more than rocky road ice cream.
S: I love you more than...ummm...CARE BEAR STICKERS!!

I was quite flattered.

Oh--here are a couple of pics from the anniversary trip.
Today's best thing about being a mom:
An unexpected day off work

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
An unexpected day off work

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Dull and Duller

I feel so tired lately. Things that I used to enjoy now seem more like tasks that need to be done. I'm not sure exactly what's going on, other than the fact that winter is upon is, and I am a solar powered person with no battery back up.

E and I celebrated our 10Th anniversary last weekend. We spend a lovely weekend in Zion Canyon just walking around, watching movies, eating out, and spending time without the kids, or dog, or jobs. It's been a LONG time since we've done that. 10 years of marriage. Zowie. Coming home after even just 2 days away was kind of tough. For as fortunate as I know we are, between work and kid stuff and, well, just life, the stress certainly can do a number on our relationship.

As for the Sophinator, I, again, am in the running for the world's worst mother. She's been congested for weeks, and coughing on and off for as long. I thought she just had a cold, but it lasted so long that I FINALLY took her in to the doctor yesterday. Raging ear infection. Bronchitis. Red throat. No wonder she's been such a pill lately. The antibiotics have started to kick in though, and last night, she slept through the night for the first time in AGES.

On a related note, the first dose of antibiotic was huge, as per the doctor's instructions, and we were standing in the middle of the game store (caught again. This time it's Dance Dance Revolution. I suck at it, but it's a blast, AND I'm getting aerobic exercise for the first time in about 5 years) when her stomach started to gurgle. I picked her up and asked where the bathroom was. They said they didn't have one--bullshit. We went in and out of 3 stores in the strip mall, and none of them would let us use their bathroom. I almost said "Well, I'll just let my kid shit all over your floor then" but luckily, the nice lady at the Verison Wireless let us use her bathroom after I told her we were having an emergency. That poor kid had the most explosive diarrhea I've ever encountered in a toddler.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Making bracelets with beads and pipe cleaners

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Christmas shopping in the toy department at Wal-mart

Thursday, December 01, 2005

A Christmas Miracle

Every town has the Christmas house. The one with the extra power supply. The one that lights up the night like a Yuletide beacon. In our town, for many years, we called this house, simply, 'The Griswalds." (A nod to "Christmas Vacation.) However, this year when we took Sophie to see this spectacle, this veritable regurgitation of electric holiday madness, she looked at it in awe and said, "It's a Christmas Miracle!" So now, of course, the Griswalds have been renamed "The Christmas Miracle House."

Truth be told, I'm a bit of a Scrooge. However, reflecting last night on possible blog fodder, I realized that I have actually experienced one or two Christmas miracles, both small and large, of my own. Here is my favorite small miracle, and my favorite big one.

The Miracle of the Cheeseball
Last Christmas, just as Mand was getting ready to move, she and I and the kids were decorating Christmas cookies. We had Christmas music playing, the tree was lit, and the things were down right festive. Either she or I said "Now all we need is Mom's cheeseball." Now--said cheeseball is a little odd--major ingredients being shredded corned beef and Worcestershire sauce--but it's an acquired taste, we're all crazy about it, and it just tastes like Christmas to us. Not one minute after making our Christmas cheese wish, there came a knock on the door. It was a young lad--about eight or 10. Low and behold he was selling CHEESEBALLS! To raise money for some worthy cause or another, and not only were they cheeseballs, they were the exact same recipe my mom uses! Of course we bought one, devoured it, and thus ends the miracle of the cheeseball.

The Miracle of Sophie
I found out I was pregnant with Soph right before Christmas. Right before this time, I had been doing tons of yoga, and was taking a meditation class. I was just beginning to align my spirituality, but was still struggling heavily with many issues. I decided that I was ready for a teacher, and began sending energy into the universe (Damn. When I type that, it sounds down right floopy.) to send me one. I was also sending out that I was ready to start living my life in the moment--to find some gratitude--to connect with something bigger than myself. Now I only realized this a few weeks ago, but very very shortly after this experience, I got knocked up. I wouldn't call Soph a mistake--but she certainly wasn't a plan. During the last several days, I've realized that Sophie is the teacher I asked for, and that she is teaching me all of the things I truly wanted to learn.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Yesterday I was PISSED! E had dumped out my big box of Christmas decorations in our filthy disgusting laundry room, apparently some months ago, to use the box for a laundry basket. My mom was over, and I was telling her that I was MAD as HELL! Sophie heard me, and said, "Mom, Christmas isn't mad. It's magic!"

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
I really feel, now that she's 3 and really getting this Christmas thing, that I have to go all out this year, and it's just not my bag. I put lights up outside, have the tree up, and today am going to deck various other halls, but I feel more like I'm doing it out of duty than desire.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Happy Hallo-thanks-mas!

Hallo-thanks-mas--is the holiday that is apparently being celebrated at my house. Several Halloween window-clings remain clinging to the windows--along with 2 pumpkins in the window sill, and 3 little blow up ghosts hang near them. My table is bedecked with my lovely harvest runner, and the refrigerator holds the scanty remains of the Thanksgiving leftovers. Christmas lights twinkle outside (yes, it's 11:00 am, and I still haven't turned them off from last night) and the wreath I threw together last night adorns the door. Hallo-thanks-mas.

So--Thanksgiving went off basically without a hitch. My pies were a success. I tried something new with the pumpkin--and everyone LOVED it. The recipe is here, (I cheated and used canned pumpkin.) It's sweetened with real maple syrup and brown sugar. Of course, mom got a little martyr-ish, and hurt Katy's feelings a bit, but (I hate to say it) that's kind of to be expected.

Spending time with Mandy, I think, tops my list of the things I was most thankful for. We had a kick-ass time Friday night with Kods, Jen, Paul, and Katy, throwing back some vanilla rum and cokes and margaritas and playing games. The dominoes (prison rules, of course) were great--enhanced by Katy's new word--dominojo.

dominojo (n): a combination of the word "domino" and "mojo." It is the higher energy of the domino--and one possessing it can do no domino wrong. ex. "My dominojo was in full effect last night when I totally kicked Paul's ass at dominoes."

The Uno was also the bomb. Jorgensen house rules include everyone passing their cards in the direction of play whenever a 2 is put down, having the option to trade cards with any player when playing a 7, and being required to say something vulgar (Kodi won that one with "Jesus fucked me up the ass."), do a sexy dance (Jen took that prize--something about a moist towlette?), or make a barnyard animal sound when playing a wild draw four.

There was a BIT of tension when Mr. Dail dared argue with me (ME! The mistress of all evil!) about the presence of dolphins in the Guns n' Roses video for "November Rain." There totally ARE dolphins in that video--swimming down the street for no reason. If you'd like to tell him that I am right about this matter (which I looked up on line just to make sure--and was, again, RIGHT!) drop him a comment here. (FUCK FUCK FUCK! The dolphins are in Estranged--which, in my defence, is part of the same video trilogy that included November Rain. No--I'm not a huge G&R fan--but I am a huge fan of BEING RIGHT--which, I am not. 11/27 5:45)

So now, I'm beginning to think about Christmas shopping for Mrs. Sophie. As her favorite 3 toys of all time are--1) Paper towels, 2) a bamboo place mat and 3) a giant plastic candy cane, I kind of hate to drop $90 on the Disney Princess Magic Vanity that she's had her eye on. As for the baby sister that she asked Santa Clause for the other day, I'm afraid that she'll have to settle for a Cabbage Patch Baby.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Soph's cold pink cheeks after playing outside in the first show of the season.

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Soph's cold pink hands, on my bare stomach, after same play session.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Easiest Coconut Cream Pie Ever

2 boxes (3.4 oz) instant coconut pudding
2 3/4 c COLD milk (whole works best--but 2% is ok)
1 carton cool whip (again--regular is ok, but the extra creamy is, umm, extra creamy)
1 premade grahm cracker crust
1 small package coconut (optional)

Optional--If you want to kick this up a notch, before you start the filling, put the coconut on a cookie sheet, and toast it in the oven at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, pushing it around with a spatula 2 or 3 times during cooking.

OK--Pour the cold milk into a bowl, and add the pudding. Whisk for 2 minutes. (Basically, follow the pie directions on the pudding box.) Fold in 1/2 carton of cool whip, and 1/2 the toasted coconut (optional). Pour into crust. Top with remaining cool whip, and sprinkle with remaining coconut (which, as you know, is optional.) I ususally flip the plastic thing that was in the crust over and use it for a lid. The pie sets up in 1 hour--but 3 is best. It's a great make the night before recipe.

Crack Kills

Just thinking over the past few days. Here are a few images that immediately come to mind.

Janzen (My step son. The NICEST, SWEETEST kid in all of creation.) and I playing Karaoke Revolution together. His signature numbers: What I Like About You, I Love Rock and Roll, Start Me Up. We wanted to get a perfect score on a duet--so we tried Uptown Girl. He sang the lead--I the back up. That kid has such a competitive streak. We must have sang that song 15 times--but never quite got the "diamond" record. I can hear him in my head "She's been living in her uptown world. As long as anyone with hot blood can. And now she's looking for a downtown man. That's what I am."

Sophie, at the dollar store sporting a pair of reindeer antlers on a head band. The antlers were wired, and one was bent. She came up to me with this perfectly crafted melancholy look on her face and said, "I'm the saddest reindeer."

Sophie again, waking me up this morning, naked from the waist down. She said, "Look what I did!" I look closely and see the 3 bandaids she had put on--right across her butt crack, as though to hold the two cheeks together. (Her dad was watching her. Really.)

Janzen at the library--Sophie in his lap, reading her "The Bathtub Grandpa."

So--tomorrow my assignment for Thanksgiving is pies. I'm just a bit flattered--I think the first Thanksgiving I was married, I was asked to bring ice or something. I'm no Katy in the kitchen, but the pie gods have smiled on me, and yes, I can bake a pretty bitchin' pie. I'm going to shake things up just a little this year. I found a pumpkin pie recipe that uses real maple syrup for the sweetener that I'm going to try out. In addition to that, I'm making a lemon sour cream pie, and a coconut cream. (OK--Erik may have married me for my coconut cream pie. His family asks me to bring it to all of their functions. But--the truth is, it's the easiest pie to make EVER in all of creation. Takes 15 minutes, tops. If you want the recipe--let me know. I'm to lazy to type it up if no one wants it.)

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Sliding down the slide together.

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
As I sit here, she's yelling at me, "Mom! Draw me a beautiful meadow! With flowers! RIGHT NOW!"

Monday, November 21, 2005

A little it of this...A little bit of that.

As a general rule--I try to avoid blogging about blogging. It just seems kind of mentally masturbatory, and also, umm, kind of lame. However, I've hit a bit of a blogging rut, and need to write about it--just kind of get it out there so I can quit struggling with it.

It's a question of audience. I try and help my students to understand that they must consider audience when writing. In fact, every year, we do an audience assignment. Each student imagines a scenario in which he/she has a super hot date--but no wheels. The student then writes 2 letters: one to a best friend, and one to a grandmother, trying to persuade him/her to loan his/her car to the student for the night. We discuss what information is left in--and left out depending on the audience. We talk about how the word choice is different--as is the tone, and the voice.

So now, here I am with this blog--and I'm really really struggling with audience. At first--my audience really was me. I just wrote stuff about me--about Sophie--and what I wrote, I wrote for an audience of one. Then, enter my Philly girls. So sweet--so funny--and now when I write, I can't help but write with a mind toward them reading it. Here comes Kods, Katy, and Mandy, then the Seattle bunch, plus a couple of Utah pals, my husband, and a handful of others here and there, and suddenly--blog paralysis. I can't really write for this audience. People I know--people I don't know--people I kind of know. Some who I want to think I'm witty and caustic. Some who I want to think I'm a decent but unconventional mom. Some who already know me, and just think I'm in need of a good mental enema. And come to think of it, why should I want anyone to think anything about me really? I was reading Sophie "Horton Hears a Who" last night--and came to realize that my blog is my way of yelling--in my little Who voice, "I am here! I am here! I am here!"

So, audience. I love you--really I do, and quite frankly, I'm kind of dumbfounded and grateful that you even read my blog (Sorry to be having a Sally Fields moment) but from here on out, I'm mentally dismissing you. My last few posts have felt so stilted to me--the voice in them doesn't sound like my voice, and I think it's because I've been trying to hard to sound like what I perceive other people's perception of me to be. And that's just plain silly. (You know like those fights with your husband when he thinks you might be mad at him, so he acts kind of stand off-ish, and so you get kind of mad and start making little comments, and then he gets more mad, and then soon you're having this kind of phantom fight about nothing at all other than what you each thought the other was thinking that you weren't thinking at all?)

So--enough meta-blog-nition.

Sophie Gene has been bringing home the MOST annoying things from school, my least favorite of which is, "You're not coming to my party." Oooh. This one totally pisses me off for 3 main reasons. The first is, she says this to me when she's mad at me, and I'm like "Oh yea? Well sista--any party you have will be put on BY me so you'd better believe that I'll be there." Secondly, I KNOW that some little shit at school said this to her, and for 3 year olds, the "You're not coming to my party" is tantamount to "Fuck off and die." She told me that Alexia said this to her, and today, when I pick her up, I'm going to find out who this Alexia is and possibly have a little chat with her. Finally--if I know Soph, she's already said this to a few other kids, and that, well, that is just not ok. I gave her a couple of time outs this weekend for saying "You're not coming to my party" (after we had discussed that it is not a nice thing to say and that I don't want her to ever say it) and maybe that will help. Sigh.

The second most annoying phrase we're dealing with is "I'm telling on you!" To which I answer, "Who are you going to tell?" This TOTALLY pisses her off, and she says, "I'M TELLING ON YOU!!!" and so I say, "Who are you going to tell?" and then she just kind of shrieks and throws herself on the floor.

I also got my first "I HATE you!" from Soph this weekend. I believe the conflict was over Eggo waffles, and the present lack of them in your house. This, combined with "You're not my friend anymore" and I'm about ready to quit my job and not allow her to ever talk to anyone under the age of 20 ever again.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
We play a Sleeping Beauty game where I have to be asleep, and she comes and wakes me up with a kiss. It's quite sweet.

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Really--what do you do about this awful stuff they learn at day care? I just have no freakin' idea.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

I meme stolen from Down Under

Suffering through a bout of insomnia and the blahs. Haven't posted for a while--so I stole this from the underachiever.


First best friend: Jessica Paraskevas. 5th grade. She was 1/2 Greek and 1/2 Mexican. When I slept over at her house, I never had any idea what anyone was saying--but the food was great!
First Car: Red Volkswagen Bug--purchased when I was 17 for $500 from shady character named Ramon, who(m?) I later dated, and who later stole my dining room table. Oh. The car was hot-wired because the ignition was broken--so he said. That thing was such a piece of shit. The seats were coming apart--and the stuff inside them gave me a rash, so I had to line them with towels. Poor Ernest (the car) was later crashed by a guy I dated for about 10 seconds. I think his name was John.
First kiss: TJ Young--summer between 7th and 8th grade. Mostly noses bumping-although I think our lips actually did touch for a second or two.
First real kiss: What was his name? Dillan I think. 8th grade
First makeout: Dillan again. To Phil Collins "Groovy Kind of Love." (Incidentally--my first, and last, cat fight happened just after when his girlfriend punched me.)
First big trip: UT to Santa Barbara with Mand. Lovely hazy memories if delicious strawberry waffles, clove cigarettes, waking up stuck to the kitchen floor. GT.
First time skiing/Snowboarding: 9th grade at Sugar Bowl with Kristi. Her mom was Danish--still learning English. She (the mom) kept saying "What a holy cow!"
First concert: Sawyer Brown. I was filling in for Mandy on a blind date that she either didn't want to go on, or was too sick to go in. Mandy--did we tell him I was me, or did I pretend to be you?
First Alcoholic Drink: Kaluah. House party in 9th grade. I was sure I was going to hell.
First ticket violation: Freshman year of college. Just for speeding--but could have been for much more if I had been pulled over 15 minutes earlier. Whew.
First job: Frozen yogurt jockey at "Sounds Yummy." Sounds Yummy yogurt was next door to Sounds Easy video. I personally thought it sounded like a brothel.
First date: 15--with Kelly Yturralde--my first real boyfriend. My parents let me break the Mormon "no dating until 16" rule because we were moving from CA to UT. Fancy Italian restaurant, walk on the beach. A nice memory


Last car ride: Walmart and back today
Last kiss: Hubby--last night
Last time you cried: 2 weeks ago Friday.
Last movie watched: Scooby Doo and the Witches Ghost
Last food you ate: French Toast
Last love: Erik
Last temptation: Christmas pillows at Walmart (didn't buy them)
Last item bought: Other than food--a humidifier. Soph is super stuffy and sleepless lately
Last annoyance: People not calling when they are going to be late--or not show up at all
Last time wanting to die: 1 year ago
Last alcoholic drink: Box of wine baby!
Last concert: Dave Matthews--4 years ago
Last phone call: Play date who hasn't called and is late and may not show up
Last friend you added on MYSPACE: Huh?


Current Best Friend(s): Kodi, Jennifer, Katy, Mandy, Erik
Current Car: Subaru Forester--silver 2004
Current love: Erik and Sleep
Current drink: Water
Current activity: Just spent 3 hours finding and sizing pictures of Janzen and Sophie to put into a 5 hole picture frame. Spent WAY too much time on that.
Current annoyance: Sophie saying, "I'm going to tell on you!"
Current mood: Tired

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Playing the bongo drums together

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
See "current annoyance"

Sunday, November 13, 2005

I arrived home from the rendezvous with Janzen's mom about an hour ago. (He lives 3 hours away. E goes all the way up and back on Fridays. I drive him home on Sundays--but his mom meets me 2/3ds of the way.) Soph was/is making cookies at Grandma's house with Aunty K, and Erik has gone for a jog.

Folks--this has left me, (wait for it; wait for it...) IN THE HOUSE COMPLETELY ALONE!!! And what's more, Erik cleaned while I was driving. So here I am, alone, in a reasonably clean house.

I don't think this has ever happened before.

For the first 20 minutes, I was pretty dazed. I wandered from room to room, munching on a cinnamon Eggo (no butter--no syrup. I'm back on the phentermine and trying to fit into at least 2 pairs of pants.) and just kind of looking around. Then I played some Zam Bee Zee. After that, I put away a little laundry, but now--I'm stumped.

I think one of the hardest things about being a mom, for me at least, is never having time alone. Sure--she naps (sometimes) but even during naptime a mom is "on call." I know that someday--too soon--she'll be over at her friend's house all the time, and the last place she'll want to be is with me, but lately, I feel like I'm a Siameese twin.

Before Soph, I absolutely relished my time alone. I would have listed is as a need, not a want if asked. Now that I don't get it very often, when it comes around, I, obviously, don't really know what to do with it. It's like the Calvin and Hobbs when it's Sunday--and C says something like--"Come on! We have to fit all the fun in that we can before tomorrow!" I find myself alone and it's like--ok, dust something? Veg on the couch? Blog? Read? I don't want to waste the precious minutes--but on the other hand--maybe I that's exactly what I should do with them.

Of course--not having time to be alone has created this little piece of crazy in my brain. It's like there's this little caged animal growling--LET ME OUT!-- and when it gets really bad--it bites. Particularly at E or Sophie or anyone else who is unfortunate enough to put his/her fingers near the cage. (Dumb similie--but as close as I could get.)

Once upon a time--when I found myself alone--I'd hurry outside to have a smoke--but for some reason, I seem to have quit. The last several times I lit a cigarette, I smoked about 1/3rd, and then thought--this is kind of gross--and put it out. I haven't bought a pack in weeks. (Don't get me wrong--when drinking or truly annoyed, I'm sure to have a cigarette--they just seem to have been worked out of my day to day.)

So folks--I'm off to do...something. Of course, the minute I start, Katy will bring Sophie home.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Thanks to Karaoke Revolution (don't worry--I won't blog about it, but it is THE BOMB!) Sophie is learning the words to "I Love Rock and Roll." How cool is that?

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
I've said it before--I'll say it again. It's so easy to loose track of the part of you that isn't the mom.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Soph just said to me: You're a freakin' pain in the ass.

This after I picked every last pea out of her bowl of alphabet soup. I give up. It's Friday night, and I'd like nothing better than to be alone, with my book and my pajamas. Alas, even that is not to be.

She and Jimmy are having serious sibling rivalry issues tonight--and she screeches everytime he even looks at her, and just now she smacked the shit out of him with her pink fairy wand.

I need a vacation.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
French braids and overalls (on her--not me)

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
The hours and the pay suck.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005


Drat! Bugger! Poop! Bullocks!

No karaoke today. The GAMES are here but the game BUNDLES won't be here until tomorrow. I know. Who gives a fuck. Unfortunately, I, a 30 year old English teacher and mother, CAN NOT WAIT FOR MY VIDEO GAME!!!!

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Built in reason to leave work a little early

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Soph drew chicken pox on her arms and legs, with marker (washable--thank Jesus) this morning right before I had to take her to day care. Cute--but time consuming to scrub off.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Watch out for flying pigs!

(Pretty boring post today.)

I just returned from the local video game store. (Are they still called video games?) There I dropped sixty bucks. SIXTY BUCKS PEOPLE! Was I buying a gift? No. I was prepaying for my copy of Karaoke Revolution Party. (Actually--I prepaid for the KRP bundle--it includes a new microphone because one of mine broke.)

We have 2 video game stores in town. I discovered today that one of them totally sucks ass, and the other is actually quite nice. Here's how the conversation went between me and 10 year old boy working the counter at the ass sucking game place.

me: (Looking around at fellow customers--mostly 14 year old boys, thinking, damn, I am completely out of my element here.) "Ummm. Hi. I was hoping to pick --Sophie, put that down!-- up a copy of the new Karaoke Revolution for Playstation 2."
kid: Hmm. We don't have that yet.
me: Well, --Sophie! Come here!--I know that it comes out today.
kid (rolls eyes and consults ratty stapeled bunch of papers): Oh. It ships today. It doesn't come out until tomorrow.
me: Oh. Can I reserve one?
kid: no
me: Oh. Well can I--Sophie! One! Two! Three!-- special order one?
kid: No. We only take special orders 10 or more days before the game comes out.
me: Oh. Well do you know if you are getting any?
kid: No. We don't do the ordering.
me: Well, that was pretty useless.

I did actually say that last sentence. Normally, I try to be nice to retail clerks, but really. Enough is enough. So I called the non-ass sucking place. Conversation.

me: Hi. I was wondering if you are getting any of the new Karaoke Revolution games in tomorrow?
nice man: You bet!
me: Oh! Can I reserve a copy?
nice man: Sure. I'm really sorry, but because it's so popular, you'll have to come down to the store to reserve it. Can I give you directions?
me: No. I'll be right down.

5 minutes later, at the store.

me: Hi. I'd like to reserve a copy of Karaoke Revolution please.
nice man: Oh. I must have just talked to you on the phone. (To Sophie) Hi sweetie! Are you helping your mom today? (To me) Ok... (Continues to be very polite, helpful, and informative.)

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Sophie's new favorite movie is Mary Poppins. I hadn't seen it in YEARS! It's so good.

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
I treated us to breakfast out at IHOP today. She threw a fit until I let her drink the creamers. I'm talking 8 or 9 of them.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

I couldn't make this stuff up.

A little background info...

1. It's a well know fact that I have a mouth like a truck driver. In fact, I could probably outcurse a truckdriver if given the opportunity. Lately, I've been trying very hard to watch my mouth in front of Soph, and as a result, have been using the word "freakin'" a freakin' lot. My little parrot has incorporated "freakin'" into her vocabulary, and uses it almost as much as her mother.

2. Sophie LOVES creams. She calls suntan lotion "sun cream." She always wants to use my face cream. When we go to my mom's house, she loves to poke around in the bathroom drawers looking for different kinds of creams to use and sample.

3. Sophie still wears pull-ups for bed time and nap time. Right now she has a bit of a diaper rash.

So--I came in the living room, and Soph was busily scratching at her nether region. I said, "Sophie--are you ok? Is your bottom sore?" Her answer: "Gosh Mom. I need some freakin' cooter cream!"

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Having stories like this to save up and embarrass the shit out of her when she's a teenager.

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
5:00 a.m. wake up calls--2 days in a row now. It's the weekend for Christ's sake!

Thursday, November 03, 2005

I am from...

This as an assignment I gave my students that I did along with them. You start out with some listing—family memories, fears, triumphs, likes, loves, etc. Then, create a kind of a personal “found poem,” beginning each line with the phrase “I am from.”

I am from...

I am from pink spongy curlers in my hair every Saturday night, for princess hair on Sunday.
I am from days in the car—writing letters on crackers in squeeze cheese, playing and fighting and sitting.
I am from job lists and sharing a room and "borrowing" my sisters clothes.
I am from salt smells and waves and fog; and naked red rock and juniper and sage.
I am from The Mists of Avalon, The Red Tent, The Blue Sword, and Dragonsinger.
I am from a religion that spread guilt like cheep margarine.
I am from the thrill and the burn, the laughter and hunger and sometimes the truth.
I am from long sticky nights on the couch, filled with kisses, Cheers and Taxi.
I am from stony silence, and fighting it out, and talking it out, and loving it out.
I am from stretch marks and breast pumps and diapers and a baby bouncing on my hip.
I am from Funshine Bear and big girl panties and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.
I am from South Beach and Atkins and Phentemine and bulimia
I am from crying with Mandy, playing with Katy, singing with Kodie, dancing with Jennifer, and regretting with Kelli.
I am from apostrophes, settings, topic sentences, and make-up work.
I am from driving with Janzen, reading to Sophie, and Erik holding my hand.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Being introduced at day-care by Sophie as if I'm a movie star. "This is MY mom!"

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Somewhere she picked up "You'll never get away with this!" It's what she says to me when I give her a time out, try to put her to bed, or comb her hair. It's SO HARD NOT TO LAUGH, but it also really pisses me off.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005


November makes me so sleepy. I just want to crawl into bed and hibernate until spring--leaving winter to its own cold, grey, miserable devices. Add to that the remnants of a cold, and the recent time change, and I can barely drag my ass from the bedroom to the couch.

Case in point--this morning. Soph woke up at her usual bright and early hour--6:15, except today, my clock said 5:15 when she came tarting in. For the first time, I turned on her shows, put her on the couch with a blanket, and went back to bed.

Big mistake.

I forgot about the Halloween candy. Soph came in my bedroom a couple times, asking "Will you open this?" and I groggily did so, not realizing that I was opening a package of smarties, a mini butterfinger, and a reeces peanut butter cup.

When I came into the livingroom, Sophie was sitting in the middle of a pile of candy, happily eating her way through the stuff she could open herself. There was evidence of her frustration with the candies she couldn't open--a kit-kat wrapper that had been chewed until the chocolate began to ooze through. Sigh.

In addition to forgetting the candy, I forgot the pile of clean laundry sitting on the couch. Luckily only a few things ended up chocolate covered.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Having a reason to get out of bed

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
While rooting around in the laundry this morning--Sophie discovered a new "backpack." So far, she's refused to take it off, even when offered other more appropriate backpack options. Yes. It's a new fashion trend--the panty-pack.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Monday, October 31, 2005

Sophie's better. I'm better. Nuff said.

So--I just peered through her door (no--while I am super mommy, I do not have x-ray vision. Remember her door knob breaking and me climbing out the window? The knob is still missing, so her door has a 2 inch hole in it.) and rather than sleeping, Soph was jumping on her bed, chanting "Cha, cha, cha-cha-cha" like a cracked-up ballroom dance teacher. I opened the door mid jump, and she looked at me, landed on her butt, lay down, and immediately began to fake snore. Looks like a no nap day.

In honor of daylight savings (did we just start saving or unsaving? Damned it I know.) her is a brief Sophie to English lexicon of Sophie words involving time.

last mornin': Any time in the past. ex. "Grandma! Last mornin' I frew up in mommy's bed."

potty time: Potty time is reserved for very specific time intervals: right when mom's food comes at the restaurant, after being buckled into the car seat, immediately after the door closes after being put to bed.

dinner time: Not a time for actually eating, as no candy is involved. Dinner time is strictly for food art creations, and for science type experiments involving volume.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Nibbling on baby arms and legs.

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Black marker on my CARPET!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Sophie. Throwing up. All night. Still throwing up. Very tired. Whatever gods I've offended--I'm sorry already.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Weekend Update

Just a quick update on the weekend so far.

Friday morning I woke up SICK!! Sore throat, eyes red and runny, headache. Fuckity fuck-o-rama. So I ran into work (at 6:30 A.M.!) to get some things ready for a sub, and to call a sub. One of the worst things about teaching is getting up sick, and realizing that you have find a sub.

So--I spent 40 minutes arranging things so that a sub could understand them (note to self. MUST get a generic sub plan ready. It's only been 5 fucking years now.) and then called 4 different subs. No luck. I started to bawl. I really was sick as a dog, and sitting on the phone begging people to take my class was NOT on my list of things to do at that moment.

So I called my principal's cell and left a message--saying that I was sick, that I'd tried to get a sub without success, and that I was going back to bed.

Came home--had a fight with Erik where I TOTALLY lost it and became down right verbally abusive--and then laid down on the floor to cry for a while, the whole time fretting about my kids showing up for class and finding no teacher there.

About 15 minutes later, the sweet sweet sped teacher called, told me that she was taking my 1st period class, and that she was looking for a sub for me, and for me to get my ass in bed. I LOVE FORREST NORLIN.

So--Soph went to school, Erik went to work, and I went to bed.

Today I'm feeling marginally better. I went to the doc and got oral and eye drop antibiotics. (My eyes hurt so bad I can't wear my contacts, and as Soph broke my glasses 2 years ago, I have been BLIND for 2 days.) We can't go to my pal's Halloween party tonight, which sucks, and well, that's about it.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
This is one of those days when it's hard to choose one of these. OK. Animal crackers?

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Watching "Caillou." It you haven't seen this show, count yourself lucky. Damn. That is some mind numbingly boring yet intensely annoying shit.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Can we make somefin?

Sophie asks me this question about 5 times a day. Because I am the most permissive mother in all the land, we usually bake a batch of cookies, or cupcakes, or make playdough, or pom-pom creatures, or something to add to the freakin' mess that is my house.

Today we made Halloween cupcakes. The last time she was sick, I bought applesauce, and she doesn't like it, so I found a recipe for applesauce raisin cupcakes. I figured we could decorate them with Halloween decor, and tart them around to our friends and family, impressing them with our baking and decorating prowess.

So--I'm frosting, and Sophie is adorning each cupcake with a pumpkin candy-corn type candy. Suddenly she says, "Hey mom! They're like your boobs!" I paused a moment, a bit baffled. Then looked again at the cupcakes. Here's what we had created.

It's official. Today my daughter and I made boob cupcakes.

Obviously we couldn't deliver a plate of boobs to Grandma Carolyn, Grandma Buddy, etc. So, I removed the, um, nipples, and replaced them with sprinkles and candy corn. Sigh.

On a more PG note, the Funshine costume turned out nice. I think she'll be warm and comfortable in it--and, well, she loves it, and that's what's most important.

Today's best thing about being a mom:

Boob cupcakes

Today's worst thing about being a mom;

Boob cupcakes

Saturday, October 22, 2005

White Trash and Zealots

When people ask me about my heritage, I answer them in all honesty that I am descended from white trash and zealots. (I said this to my dad once, and he laughed and asked what, exactly, constitutes a zealot. I answered, "Well, anyone who would cross 1000+ miles of farmland in a covered wagon to settle in a desert, I guess.)

The zealotry, of course, is due to the Mormon side--my mother's side. Her great-greats were actually tarred and feathered, persecuted, run out of Navuoo, and crossed the plains to settle in Salt Lake. Bless their hearts.

As for the white trash, my dad grew up in Nebraska in a basement house. His dad worked for the railroad until he died of lung cancer. (I once asked my Granny for her chicken and noodles recipe. She started out with, "Well, it's best to use an old rooster.") Dad was a smart little shit, and perfectly fits the bootstrap-pulling American guy. His sister took a different rout--marrying first a wife beater, and then a pedophile.

So--in my family, we're a little strapped to celebrate our heritage. Last Christmas, I looked up some Danish recipes (the zealot side is predominantly Danish) hoping to, you know, embrace our roots, but found mostly recipes for smoked and jellied fish.

Enter--BOWLING!! What a better way to incorporate both the zealotry and white-trashiness than to take the fam down to the lanes for a little rolling on a Friday night.

Fun was had by all. You'll note that in order to truly celebrate our white trash roots, we all dressed in traditional white trash garb. We dined on traditional white trash fare of French fries drenched in fry sauce, (The fry sauce is a very traditional Mormon/Utah condiment. 1/2 catsup, 1/2 mayo. Delish.) push-up pops, and root beer.

Sophie's a natural. I think she rolled a 35.

Janz rolled a 17, but still had fun.

Erik, of course, won with a 117

Katy was in the running for a long time, but alas, was defeated by Erik with her impressive score of 72.

Here you see my soon to be patented "lean"method of bowling. Simply contort your body in the direction you'd like the ball to roll, and yell, "Get the fuck over!" repeatedly. My method didn't work great, however, and I came in 3rd with a 62.

Today's best thing about being a mom.

Behold--my creation! I started making Sophie's Halloween costume today. It was a total blast. When the glue and paint is dry, I'll post a picture of her in it. If you didn't know, this is Funshine Bear. Along with the hat, I'm making a sweat suit into the rest of the costume. Not bad for a $1.00 Walmart hat, a piece of white felt, and 2 tubes of craft paint, eh?

Today's worst thing about being a mom:

Today, I was forced to play "Jimmy" about 20 times. In case you'd like to play too, here's how it works. Sophie lays in her bed. I scratch on her door, then crawl into her room on all fours. Then, I lick Sophie's face, and whimper a bit. She pretends to wake up, then scratches my ears and says, "You silly pooch!" Then, trade rolls, and repeat 10-20 times.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

The Great Pumpkin!

Last weekend we took Sophie to the Great Pumpkin festival. Don't know why I haven't blogged about it until today.

After we woke up Saturday morning, I tried to feed and dress Sophie quickly--in order to get us all out the door by 9:00. Fall in Cedar City is WINDY and the earlier you can get started, the less wind there is to deal with. But alas and alak, an early start wasn't to be, and with one thing and another, Erik, Sophie and I didn't make it to the university until almost 11:00.

We milled around for a bit, trying to get our bearings, (passing, on the way, the cotton candy machine which comes into the story later) and found the fairly hidden kiosk where we paid 5 bucks for Sophie's plastic bracelet that let her into all the pumpkin events.

From there, we went to the "pumpkin corral" where Soph could climb all over a giant stack of pumpkins, and then pick one to take with her, and either carve or paint.

After the corral, we went to the painting station, and were given a paper plate with small squirts of different colored paint and one paint brush. (On the way to paint, I noticed several kids at the carving station, all hacking away at pumpkins with real knives and very little supervision. I didn't hear of any major injuries, but damn! That just looked like a very bad idea to me.) Soph had fun painting her pumpkin, and the only trouble there was when she was looking around for somewhere to rinse her paintbrush, noticed Erik's $2 paper cup of Pepsi, and proceeded to give the brush a thorough swishing in it.

Next was the dress up tent. Of course, she choose a princess costume. The very sweet ladies running the tent dressed her to the nines, and then sat her on a throne and took her picture. A minor melt down ensued when Sophie realized that she had to take off and return the costume, but I was able to lure her away with a promise of cookie decorating.

At the cookie decorating station, a cute college guy gave us yet another paper plate, this time with a pumpkin shaped cookie, frosting, and candies. Sophie was so thorough in her cookie decorating, and felt very proud of her ultimate creation. So much so, that had a little "have her cake and eat it too" moment and couldn't decide whether to eat the cookie or save it. Ultimately, she went for eat it, of course.

After the cookie decorating, we found a shady spot to sit and I went to procure some $2 hot dogs for all of us. (A side note. I love hot dogs. I rarely eat them, because I know they're freaking gross and filled with nitrates and balls and whatever else, but damn, they're tasty.)

While we were eating, I noticed a couple of 8 year old hoods who had set a pumpkin on a table and were THROWING KNIVES AT IT. TOWARD PEOPLE! I was just getting up to regulate on that action when a festival official of some sort came down on them like a plague or the land. WTF?

"Ghost Eating" was after lunch--the typical eat the doughnut (why is that word SO HARD TO SPELL?) on string with no hands. Soph was a total sport and didn't use her hands once. She didn't win, but got to eat a doughnut on a string with no hands--and that was apparently trophy enough.

By this time, we were all kind of tired and ready to go home, even though Sophie wouldn't admit it. I told her that we'd get a cotton candy on the way out--so she reluctantly agreed to go. Then, horror of horrors, we walked to the cotton candy booth and IT WAS GONE!!! Please don't underestimate how big of a problem this created. Tears. Snot. Kicking. Fuck. So, our nice happy time ended with a huge scene. Oh well.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Pumpkin painting

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Lately, Soph is totally into the quarter (usually 50 cents, actually) machines and rides at the supermarket--or wherever else. It's such a pain in the ass. To give in or not to give in? That is the question. Whether 'tis nobler to withstand the screams and tantrums of an angry three year old, or to say yes and be branded as, once again, the most permissive mother in all the land. Sigh.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005


Feeling very uninspired and uninspiring today. But luckily--I've been tagged by Lonna, and so will not be forced to write about the gray rainy autumn weather, the 4 loads of laundry I just did, or the fact that it took 3 Clorox Ready Mop pads to mop my kitchen floor--it was so filthy. Oh. I guess I just did.

Ten years ago: Ten years ago, Erik had just proposed to me. I suppose it's time to tell the brief history of our relationship.

I moved to Southern Utah the beginning of my Sophomore year in high school. The move from Central California to Utah was, obviously, tanamount to a death in my mind. So--enter blond, busty California girl into the sad, sad, sorry world of Cedar High School. My first memory of Erik is of him leaning against his locker, watching me walk down the hall, looking as though he was contemplating whether I'd taste better topped with hot fudge or caramel sauce. Damn. He was SO fine. (Still is, of course.)

So--I kept my eye on him. The first time I actually "hung out" with Erik, we were both in line at the snack bar at school. He and his very rowdy friends were in the back of the line, yelling at the lunch ladies, "Do you sell twat burgers?" I had no idea what they were saying--because I had never before hear that particuar vulgarity.

Flash forward about 6 months. I had joined the debate club--40% because he was on it, 60% because I wanted to. Erik had a steady girlfriend--not me--but we flirted fairly outrageously with eachother whenever given a chance. So-- on the bus home this one particular trip, he came and sat by me. It was dark--the bus was chilly. We climbed under a blanket together--and had a delicious make-out session that lasted some 100 miles. Sigh.

Of course, that was QUITE scandalous, and said girlfriend was less than pleased with the news.

For the next 2 years, things followed much this same pattern. He had a girlfriend. We'd fool around. I'd fool around with his friends to piss him off. Lather. Rinse. Repeat.

Then he graduated and I didn't hear from him for some 2 years.

Then one day he called me--out of the blue--at my work. He asked me to come over to his apartment. (Small. Smelly.) Basically--he had me at hello, (I know. Gag.) and a few months later, he asked me to marry him. We were engaged for 2 months--got married (a whole other story) and now, 10 years have passed. Damn.

Five years ago: We had just moved into our house, and I was working 4 jobs. I taught at the "Opportunity School, (11-3)" (the sad, sorry excuse for an alternative high school that existed at the time) was a class size reduction aid for a kindergarten (9:00-10:30), worked at Erik's dad's book store (3:30-6:00), taught an elementary Spanish class a couple afternoons a week. I remember it as being a very busy, but very happy time.

One year ago: Let's see. Sophie was barely 2. Erik and I were in the middle of a huge marital shit sandwich. Not a pleasant time.

Five snacks: Cookie Crisp Cereal, French fries, kettle corn, pine nuts, apples with salt and peanut butter.

Five songs I know all the words to: Son of a Preacher Man, Sweet Home Alabama, Killing Me Softly, I Want You to Want Me, The Gambler

Five things I would do with $100 million: college for Janz and Sophie, publish E's book, buy beautiful home with amazing landscaping, employ personal trainer/chef, breast reduction surgery/laser eye surgery.

Five things I would never wear: "Pro Life" t shirt, garments (Mormon underwear. Really.), a thong, stirrup pants (although I had 5 pair in middle school), jeweled sweat suit (very popular item with old ladies in Las Vegas.)

Five favorite TV shows: Northern Exposure, American Idol, Real World/Road Rules Challenge, Good Eats, Sesame Street

Five biggest joys: Erik, Sophie, Janzen, Someone else doing the dishes, time to read

Five favorite games: (I changed this one. Don't really have and "toys.") Scrabble, Dominoes, Zam Bee Zee, Karaoke Revolution, Song Burst

Five people to pass this on to: Kodi, Katie(Magic), Paul (So he doesn't feel left out--and because I'm very curious about what he was doing 5 years ago), Erik, Jen

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Puddle jumping

Today's worst thing about being a mom:

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Your Pimp Name Is...

Luscious Bling

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Couldn't resist

I know I just posted a bunch of pictures, but these are so cute, I couldn't resist. Every Halloween, Janzen and I (and now Sophie) drive to Paragonah to the pumpkin patch. Paragonah is a "suburb" of Parowan which is a suburb of Cedar City--which last I heard has a population of about 24 thousand. I think about 12 people live in Paragonah. There is a sign on the way into town that says "No shooting in town limits." The sign, is of course, riddled with gun shots. It's not unlikely there to pass a front yard that has 3 rusting trucks, 2 old mobile homes, and a sheep or two thrown in for good measure.

The pumpkin patch is behind the home of a VERY old couple. A sweet old grandma weighs your pumpkins on a 200 year old scale, then charges about 10 cents a pound. If she doesn't feel like collecting money, or is out getting her hair shellacked, there is a sign that says, "Please put money in the pumpkin." Said pumpkin is an old plastic trick-or-treat bucket that sits on top of the scale. This year, the sign also says, "Free pumpkins for children of the 222." (The 222 is the national guard unit from So. Utah that is currently in Iraq.)

Soph liked the patch, but was a little freaked out by the pumpkin vines. They are pretty prickly, and walking through them is a bit of a challenge. I ended up hauling her around on my hip. Janzen makes a very careful study before picking out his pumpkin--searching for the perfect one.

We stopped in Parowan on the way back to have lunch with Erik at the "Frost Stop." (Parowan is the county seat.) On the way home, Janz and I listened to "Wonder Boy" about 10 times, and he told me about the website I hope to god that he doesn't visit it on his own. After some investigation, as you'll see, I found that the site is pretty sexually explicit, as well as grossly scatalogical. (Well, what do you expect.) Apparently, a "Poo Poo McGoo" is not only Sophie's favorite toddler curse word, but is a prank one plays on a passed out friend. (Fill up a pair of swimming goggles with poo and strap them on passed out "friend."

Back to the pumpkins. This year, we ended up with 87 pounds of pumpkins, which are currently residing in my dining room window box. Soph loves to pat them and talk to them. "So, ummm, Pumpkin. How ya doin'?"

Pumpkin Princess Posted by Picasa

Enough with the pictures already! Posted by Picasa

Investigating a squished pumpkin Posted by Picasa

It's got to be here somewhere! Posted by Picasa

Pumpkin Princess Part Deux Posted by Picasa

Mission successful Posted by Picasa

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Today we mailed out some Halloween cards to cousins and friends. Sophie thought licking the envelopes was the most bitchin' thing ever. Then when we went to the post office and she got to put the stamps on them, she almost fainted from excitement. When she actually got to put them in the mailbox, she was literally jumping up and down. I love how much fun she has with everything. I love that that makes me try and think of fun things for us to do together.

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
We went to the Family Dollar today to look for some more cheep Halloween decor. She kept walking up to strangers asking, "Umm. Excuse me. How much is this?"