Wednesday, October 14, 2009


My brain is so full I just haven't known where to start. So I will just start...
  • My kids got into the honors classes they wanted. Tuesday was their first day. So far, so good. We will see. I will say they are happy about it. And, they both had homework to do last night. A first this year. And as you might assume, the homework was in their honors classes. So yes, they have more work but no, it doesn't seem too difficult for them. I think I'm liking being THAT mom.

  • I have officially started my holiday shopping. Hold me.

  • Little snow flakes are showing up in my weather app on my Google homepage. Not for today but for Friday and Saturday. I have heard there was a sighting of flakes this morning. f.l.a.k.e.s. Not happy. Not ready. And yes, our heat is on already. I do not compete in your furnace wars you foolish ones. I like to be warm. In related news, the kids are still complaining it's cold in the house.

  • It seems the children and I are battling a cold. I'm not sure who is winning at this point.

  • SQUEE! GLEE! is on tonight.

  • I have now downloaded all 16 Glee songs that are available on Amazon. I may have a sickness. I will not tell you how many times I have listened to Gold Digger on my ipod. There is however a need to point out the absolute brilliance of Mercedes' (Amber Riley's) opening of that song. If you have not heard it? I would like to offer my condolences.

  • The Halloween costumes have been procured. Only 2 of the children still want to dress up. The other two are wearing masks. At least, that is what they tell me when I say they can't go beg for candy without some kind of costume. I have also bought extra masks. What are the two littles going to be? A repeat of Indiana Jones that necessitated a new whip and hat. (Old whip was broken and old hat is too small for his GIANT 11 year old noggin.) The littlest little is going to be Dr. Horrible. I predict no one here will know who he is. Except me and the boys. I am okay with this.

  • The invites for our Halloween party have not been printed.

  • The garage has not been cleaned.

  • I predict it will not be warm like it was last year. I predict rain and cold and snow. Glad we had the roof replaced. Also, Jeff ripped out the ceiling and the beams are now exposed making the garage extra spooky. Also, the cobwebs add ambiance. Do not try to dissuade me of this fact.

  • I got a call from one of the children telling me he had to stay after school for the next 3 days to make up something or other in band. BAND. Fine, whatever.

  • I got another call two hours later telling me he was home and skipped out on his detention that "is not really a detention." I do not even know what to do with this information.

  • Anyone who knows any of my children can identify this particular child. I shall not name names here. Although he may have had a birthday recently.

  • One of the children keeps crying. Over EVERYTHING. Surely not everything you say. Yes, EVERYTHING. It is making me weary. Also? I hate nine. Nine and boys do not go together well.
That is all. I have things to do and loins to gird. I'm not sure I want to go home tonight.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

I'm Turning into "That" Mom

For ten years and four kids I've tried my best to avoid being "that" mom. You know the one. The one that when the teachers or administrators at school see you coming they groan, run and hide or roll their eyes. I've really tried to let them do their jobs and trust them. We live in an excellent school district. In fact, we moved to our current location BECAUSE of the school district.


I have found one problem. I've let it slide most of the time. Or rather I've addressed the problem and then let it go numerous times. Individual teachers have made it easier to let the issue go. In 98% of cases they've done their part. The administration however has refused to do their parts. And now I'm done discussing the issue. I want action.

Maybe I should mention what the problem is. Yes?

The school refuses to challenge my kids. More specifically, my oldest two. They slide by without putting any effort in. They are happy enough getting mostly A's with the occasional B without doing more than the bare minimum. I am so not okay with this. Now that they are in 8th and 9th grade they need to learn how to work a little. They need to be in a more competitive academic atmosphere. They need to be with kids that work at school and take pride in their grades.

Here's the thing. My oldest's friends are all in honors classes. They have been since 7th grade. None of them understand why he isn't. His father and I don't understand why he isn't. The junior high has some formula they use to place kids in honors and apparently he didn't qualify. Even though he could do the work. We let it slide. I will admit, this was my mistake. I should have gone to the school back in 7th grade. I should have pushed. But I didn't want to be "that" parent.

Now he's in high school. He has 100 average in everything 5 weeks in and we told him he needed to talk to the school about getting into an honors class. He needs a challenge. Get this: He AGREED. I told him to pick one subject that they offer as honors. His choices: math, science & social studies. He chose social studies. Now honestly? That is the LAST class I would chose to take an honors version of. In fact, I believe that was my worst subject in school. But that's what he picked. He spoke to his teacher yesterday and his teacher said he was already looking at moving him into his honors class. All he has to do is ace his unit test this week. Only thing standing in his way? He hasn't cracked a book. Guess what we're doing tonight.

My oldest has also said he'd like to try for honors math next year. HIS OWN SUGGESTION. He doesn't want to do it this year because he thinks it might be too much all at once. I told him the longer he waits the further behind he's going to get. His response? Geometry is easy. You guys can help me get caught up. To which I replied, "Hell no. I can't do geometry. I'm the algebra lady." Yes, it's true. Geometry is impossible for me but I love Algebra. I know. Odd and GEEK. Whatevs. He says dad can help him.

So see, no need to be "that" mom. Son, taking action himself. I'm so proud.

Now, on to the second child. Oh dear son of mine. He has his head in the clouds most of the time. He is silly and goofy and a more than a little devious.  Good thing he's so handsome. Makes it easier not to kill him at times. Also, keeps the girls from completely dismissing him.

One other thing he is? A math brain. He is the child that would make me put addition and subtraction problems on our chalkboard at 3. For fun. And he got them right. He would demand more math when I was trying to make dinner. He made up his own math problems on white boards, chalkboards, paper. He could just "see" how numbers worked. He was also the one shouting out the answers to the multiplication problems when I quizzed his older brother before he could even comprehend what I just said. He is the one we've been trying to get into honors math since the end of 6th grade.

Last year we fought with the principle over and over. He would not budge. We were told we were forcing our son to do something he didn't want to do. That we would make him hate math. It was implied that we were being "those" parents. Then they conceded. He could take a math placement test at the end of August. A 90 or above meant honors math.

The fact is he got a 75.

Part of the problem was we were so intent on him studying for his Bar Mitzvah (on September 12th) and going to his Hebrew tutor's. We didn't push the math. The math he said he went over. The math practice test he assured us he could do. The day before the exam I realized the error of our ways and brought him to work with me. He worked for five hours. I showed him how to do about 30% of the problems. He got it. He took the exam the next day. He complained there was stuff on it not on the practice test. Four kids took the test.

I know at least one other didn't pass it with a 90. She got an 80. She studied all summer with three different tutors. He is not in honors math. This is a kid that WANTS to be in honors math. This is a kids that could do it if you just put him in the damn class. The school won't budge. I was going to give it up. After the exam I did nothing. But now he's bugging ME about it.

So now it's time. I'm making yet another appointment with the principal. I'm going to be "that" parent. I'm going to sit there and not budge from my position. I'm going to take a lesson from son #3 and be stubborn. So damn stubborn and not give up. I will not give in. I will wear him down. I will just not take no for an answer. I don't care about rules and guidelines. There are always exceptions. This is one of those exceptions. It is time.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Open Letter to the local Teenage Geese

Dear local Teenage Geese,

Just a couple things to keep in mind so you do not GET KILLED:
  1. Look both ways before crossing.

  2. Please cross with the light.

  3. When the light changes you may want to hurry just a bit. That leisurely pace is not the best idea when people are running late for work.

  4. Yes, it is fun to watch everyone stop and wait for you to cross. I understand it gives you a great feeling of power. Just remember it only takes one person who doesn't care to get you killed.

  5. Please remember: YOU. CAN. FLY.
Thank you for your time and attention to this matter.



Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The baseball season that never ended

I am currently mired in baseball and soccer games galore. Yes, school sports have ended but travel and recreation leagues are in full swing. It is the usual Spring balancing act of great mental and geektastic scheduling. I will admit that this year I did not use an excel spreadsheet as I have the past couple of years. Still, life has become work, sports, bed. This week has the added bonus of being finals week for the older two.

This morning I came across something so fun and entertaining that I had to share. Or rather, I had to steal this from Marcy at The Glamorous Life Association. Really. It is hysterical.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

By the Numbers

This week:

5 baseball games

4 soccer games

4 track practices

3 baseball practices

2.5 days as a single parent

2 soccer practices

2 appointments

2 work FAILS

1 missed 504 meeting (major parenting FAIL)

1 track meet

1 band concert

1 NJHS induction

1 guitar lesson

1 dinner date

unspecified number of bottles of wine drank

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

What's been going on here?

Last week was great fun around these parts. First off the kids were on Spring break. Secondly, the husband was out of state for the majority of the week and lastly, I almost died from a head cold.

Okay, so I didn't almost die. I had a cold. I was sick enough to be sent home from work early on Thursday and stayed home Friday. Unfortunately, the time I didn't take as vacation because I  HAD to work, I spent on my couch alternating between begging the children to let me sleep and barking orders for them to clean the house. It seemed every time I fell asleep someone would come in and wake me. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. When I finally gave up, I tried to get them to clean the downstairs because we were having company Saturday night. Needless to say, some of the children complied. Some did not. And then I died.

Or, recovered enough to enjoy having two families over for dinner on Saturday night. Now two families may sound small and manageable but if said families were all crazy and all produced 4 offspring each... well, that's a whole lot of people.

One of ours was gone to a birthday party and another was away at college (not one of ours). That left us with six adults and ten children. Yeah. TEN. They ranged in age from six to fifteen. I would just like to praise Mother Nature for holding out on the rain that was predicted. The kids spent the majority of the night outside playing laser tag and chasing each other around outside. Yay Mother Nature! You go girl!

My husband declared the night, "Jewing it up night." We served matzoh ball soup, challah, hummus, matzoh, potato knish, applesauce, sour cream, He-brew beer, wine and salad. One family brought venison and the other brought latkes.

You should know, we live in a small town. We are one of three Jewish families that I know of. The kids only know two other Jewish students in their school. To say they are celebrities in their classes would be accurate. Their dad always did the Hanukkah demonstration in Primary school and the fact they get eight days of gifts makes them rock stars. When the oldest had his Bar Mitzvah it was the event of the year. I'm not niave enough to believe there is no hate but for the most part I believe my kids have positive experiences living in the situation they do.

So anyway, we are what I call Jewish-lite. We do not keep kosher. We do eat bread during Passover. We celebrate the secular aspects of Christmas and Easter. The kids do go to Temple and Sunday school. They attend Hebrew school and see their tutor every week while preparing for their Bar Mitzvahs. We discuss mitzvahs (good deeds) and tzedakah (charity) and try to make these part of our daily lives. So, Jewish-lite. Say what you may but this works for us and I think many families take what works for them from their religion and leave the rest. This is what works for us.

So, we have many friends that are not Jewish. We have friends that are curious. We needed a good excuse to all get together. Well, not really NEEDED an excuse. But with the business of 4 kids each, we needed a push. My husband gave us that push and I'm so glad he did. It was great fun. The kids are all friends and got along great AND the adults all get along really well. I find it is rare for that to happen. Men getting along and wives and kids. It's taken a long time for us to find this dynamic but I'm so glad we did.

Now for a string of non-related strange facts about our little group:
  • The other two couples have been together since High School. Seriously. HIGH. SCHOOL. Yes, I find that odd.

  • The men are all engineers. I guess that's not odd as I seem to know in inordinate amount of engineers and not just through my husband. But still, what's with all the engi-nerds? (heh, my pet name for them)

  • We do not have the oldest child or the youngest but our kids are the closest in age.

  • All the adults are between 38 & 41 and our kids ages are: 20, 15, 14, 14, 12, 12, 10, 9, 8, 8, 6, 6. The only ones without friends in the group are the 20 & 10 year olds. (they also happen to be the two not present)

  • I have also now shown my highly nerdy need for numbers. They fascinate me. It's a sickness.

  • I cannot fathom having a 20 year old nor a 6 year old. One of the couples has both. They are also not the oldest.

  • I told you it was a sickness.

  • Out of 12 children there are only 2 girls. 14 and 6. Two different families. Neither is mine. (You should all already know this random fact.)


  • Maybe I should take a statistics course.

  • Also, it does not escape my notice that I called them engi-nerds and I'm here with the number sickness.
To wrap up here I will say that school is FINALLY back in session today after a extra day off yesterday for an unused snow day. And do NOT get me started on the fact that the kids had school on a day when several buses slid off the road - one containing one of my children - only to have 2 snow days left over now.

Routine, it is good.

Friday, April 10, 2009


It seems like the subject of choices keeps coming up lately.

I've always tried to teach my children that life is a series of choices. You can choose to do what I ask or deal with the punishment. You can choose to to quit band but then you have to take music in Junior High. You can choose to yell in my face but then you'll also get slapped. Then there are other choices. Harder choices.

If you don't like how something is going you have to choose to change it. If you think you are fat - which, BTW,  I don't agree with - you need to not eat as much ice cream after dinner. Have a piece of fruit. Make healthier food choices. If you want to save your money for a big purchase maybe you shouldn't go to the ice cream shop with your friends. If you want to play sports you need to keep your grades up. That means taking 20 minutes the night before a test and studying.

The thing is, we make choices constantly. Sometimes it doesn't seem like a choice because we feel so strongly one way or another. We may even say we didn't have a choice. But we almost always do. Yes, things happen that we can't change but we can change our response. Or not. Our choice. We may not like our choices but we still get to choose between them. We may like both our choices. Many times it's between what our heart wants and what our head wants. And by heart I do not just mean love. Sometimes heart refers to our gut or our wants or the child within us. By head I'm referring to the logical choice.

It's not always easy letting your kids make their own choices. Especially if you feel strongly about the outcome. Sometimes it's still necessary to let them do the choosing. Sometimes it is not at all appropriate to let them have the final decision. No, you may not kill your brother so he will stop annoying you. I don't care if you decide it is worth the punishment. No, you may not quit school and work at McDonald's for the rest of your life. You can decide to work there but you will finish school so you have the choice later.

I believe in the handing over of decisions along with the conversation of what results of the choices will be. I am not above gentle nudging. I am not above the suggestion of postponement of certain decisions. Finish band this year, you only have 2 months left then you can decide about next year later.

The hardest part of letting the kids make choices is letting them make what you feel are the wrong choices. I'm not sure how I will handle that. I've been very lucky so far in that they haven't gone against anything I feel extremely strong about. But we are still working on realizing that some of the things that happen have been their choice. You wouldn't go to your room when you were told and now I have to drag you. One of the boys accused us of almost ripping his arm out of the socket when trying to drag him upstairs to bed one night. I said that all he had to do was choose to walk and that wouldn't have happened/would have stopped. He just looked at me.

In the boys' defense, I think they are coming along nicely in the learning to make choices department. Hell, I even have to take the time to remind myself when I'm unhappy that I am choosing this. Every time I eat when I'm not hungry, every time I eat large amounts of fattening foods I am choosing to be fat. I'm not a victim of genetics or medications or physical ailments. I am fat because of what I eat. This is not to say that others don't have these issues to deal with - they do - this is just to qualify my particular situation. In my life, it is my choices that have resulted in the fat. If nothing else, the tracking of what I eat has proven this.

There are other areas of my life that are not such easy choices. Not as straight forward as whether to eat the Easter candy (child within want) or lose weight (logic). In many cases it's a choice between two wants. Or two logical options. This is when things get difficult. At one point it was financial security vs being home with the boys. Every day that I work I am still making that choice. And yes, many times there are a multitude of things to factor into the decision. It is an ever changing landscape that shapes our decisions. This is what I think makes it difficult to understand other people's decisions.

If I have learned anything in my 38 years it is that you should not judge other's decisions. There are always things you do not know. Circumstances you can not understand. Nuances you are not aware of. And above all, we are all different. We all have different priorities. We all have different histories. We all have different breaking points.

And after all of this I will still choose to eat the damn Easter candy.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

What's on my mind?

Nothing profound. It's a little of this and a little of that and well, it would bore you to tears. This would be why I haven't written in a while.

Today I have decided to write anyway. More as a chance to write then to write anything specific. Below is a list! With bullets! Fun for all!
  • Work has been busy as my immediate supervisor has been out.

  • The second to last Life on Mars is on tonight.

  • I've been knitting, knitting, knitting.

  • The oldest needed cleats for baseball.

  • ZJ needs new laces.

  • DJ has been complaining his heel hurts for over a week now.
It took me this long to realize the pain DJ has may be related to the sneakers he's been wearing. So last night it was off to Famous Footwear after dinner. 1 pair of cleats, 1 pair of sneakers, 2 sets of laces and two sets of heel cushions seemed to fulfill everyone's needs. (buy 1, get 1 1/2 off sale = LOVE)

Being out of the house right after dinner also helped with the other thing that has been on my mind for the last 9 days. It kept me from eating. I guess the truth of the matter is something has been on my mind more than usual lately. Something I'm hesitant to talk about here. Something I'm trying to not talk about much at all. (trying not to jinx any progress I've made)

Yes, I'm trying to lose a bit of weight. Something happened this past year (I have no idea what) and now none of my clothes fit me. It's to the point that I must take it very seriously. The last time I succeeded in losing weight was about a year after the youngest was born. That would be 8 years ago for those of you not wanting to do the math. I used weight watchers on my own and got down to a weight I hadn't seen since my freshman year of college.

Not to say the clothes I wore when 20 pounds heavier fit me because - oh hell no. The skirt I wore on one of my first dates with the husband - the skirt I wore at 20 pounds heavier - still didn't fit. Seems the children spread my hips, ribs and pretty much anything else that is spreadable.

Still, I'm hoping I have the right state of mind to win the war yet again. And the one thing I have learned in all my 38 years is it is all about state of mind. Nothing more.

I'm hoping winning the war, or at least a couple more battles, will help with my exhaustion and muscle fatigue. It's one of those circles of hell. Can't exercise because of exhaustion and muscle fatigue, have more exhaustion and muscle fatigue from carrying too much weight. Basically a lose-lose situation. So I'm modifying my diet.

As always, tracking is key. And GOOD GOD do I eat a lot. Well, did eat a lot. It once again is forcing me to look at the choices I make when I eat. And, it forces me to look at how much I eat. Should I repeat? I EAT A LOT. I eat enough on an average day to support a professional athlete. Ok, I'm guessing there but seriously - FOOD, how I love thee. It amazes me how little I can live on. I kind of wish I was six feet tall just so I could eat more. Being 5'1" means I need air, 2 bites of chicken, a sip of milk and an apple to live on. My body cannot burn a pound of my favorite Carbonara. Or even a forkful for that matter. Let us just say SUCK.

So now you really know what's been on my mind. I'm not going to give you numbers. Not yet anyway. Maybe sometime in the future when I change my mind as I am apt to do. No numbers and no planned progress updates. Just obsessive filling out of my journal at everydayhealth.

What's on your mind?

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Steak & BJ Day

I almost missed reminding you that today is Steak and Blowjob Day.

Don't forget to show your love for your honey by celebrating. You can learn more about it here.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

I Win! The pool that is.

I officially have won the pool. The oldest is home with a fever. He came down with it last night and when I left was still sleeping. The last ill one is still coughing and complaining about a sore throat but it isn't even a little red. My guess, although he doesn't seem to want to believe me, is it is sore from coughing. Ya think? He was trying to angle staying home again but that was a no go. I shoved a bag of cough drops into his hands and told him to get to school. I predict he was fine by 9am.

The children have been angling for the various giveaway items. I know, I was shocked too. Last night the oldest grabbed the Noticeable and told me he was putting it in his room. I had to stop him and explain it was going to someone else. He looked at me like I had three heads. I explained I would buy him a replacement for him if he wanted. The one in his room ran out awhile ago and I haven't replaced it. I'm guessing this means it's time. I kind of avoid their room except for a quick tuck in at bed time and moment to flip on the light in the morning and yell, "Time to get up." Okay, truthfully, it's more like a couple of shouts over a period of 20 minutes. Still, see: AVOID.

Dylan asked to spray the air freshener all over because he looooves the smell. I vetoed that. Still, I may have to check the weight of the can when it's time to send it out and possibly replace it first. Who knows what they do when I'm not around. I'm guessing this means I can't just leave the box lying around like I'm wont to do. I will have to pack it up and hide it.

Now, enough about me,
hahahaha. Sorry. It's all about me.
Seriously though, Tide is selling t-shirts to help raise cash for a project they're doing called Tide Loads of Hope. From their website:
"Tide Loads of Hope helps in the aftermath of a natural disaster by providing clean clothes and a sense of comfort to families in need. Partnering with Feeding America, we travel to disaster affected neighborhoods with the Tide Loads of Hope truck or vans, our free mobile laundry service."
You can find out more about their work here.

I'm not sure I could fit one breast into one of their shirts but I'm thinking the 2 older boys might dig them. So support disaster relief with a tee and you can be as cool as my teen & almost teen. Come on, you know you want to.

One last thing I have to mention, every time I look out the window it is doing something else. One time - snowing. Next - sun. Next - snow. Next - cloudy and gray but no snow. For reals people. It's a little freaky.

Edited to add: The coughing child was fine once it came time to ask if a friend could come over to play basketball. In the snow.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


Okay, I caved. I watched Castle last night. And just as I feared, I like it. ABC may now commence canceling it. Well, I'm sure they'll wait until I'm in a few more episodes so as to truly hook me first. I have decided that the ABC execs are not really all about tv. They are actually preforming studies on torture. Get the masses addicted to quality programing and then replace it with crappy reality tv. It has nothing to do with ratings at all.

So another domino fell over the weekend. The sick child does not appear to have strep but a high fever, stuffy nose and aches. I'm guessing flu. Actually, he's back at school today so it's about time for the next domino to fall. Will it be the father? mother? One of the two other children that have not succumbed yet? Who knows. Maybe we should start a pool. I'll put 50 on the oldest. (That's 50 dustbunnies - the only thing I have 50 of)

One last thing, I have a confession to make...

I spent Saturday afternoon all tucked in on the couch watching bad tv and napping. I let the 2 younger children watch tv (10 y/o) and play on the computer (youngest) all afternoon. After a late night, making a HUGE breakfast for the kids and their friends and kitchen cleanup (me) and playing outside with friends all morning (kids) we had lunch and became the ultimate sloths. I cannot remember the last time I did such a thing. It was the perfect day though. The skies opened and it poured all afternoon - with flood warnings! I honestly think it has been many years since I have done such a thing while healthy. It reminded me of my childless days. That's how long it's been. And it was the first time in a long time we had nowhere to go and I didn't feel any guilt. (The guilt is what usually gets me up off the couch.)

So what did you do this past weekend? Do you love any shows I should be watching? And are you ready to place your bets?

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Sick Kid

Zach: "Throwing up is the worst thing that can happen when you're sick besides dying."

Friday, February 27, 2009

Rites of Passage

I had plans. Big plans. Regarding what you ask? Regarding a certain rite of passage.

Which one? Shaving. Yes, really. I'm not sure how these things happen either.

My oldest has been planning to experience this for a few months now. It was getting to the point that he NEEDED to shave. At fourteen. Gah!

Not that he had a actual mustache but it was blond and getting longer and filling in quite a bit. (Note the blond comment. It will come in handy in a few moments.) So I had plans. I had visions of photographing the big event. Plans of witnessing this  time honored tradition between father and son. Yes, you can see where this is going.

My son asked me why his razor was in the shower. The one I'd been shaving my legs with. (It was an emergency!) I knew it wasn't my husband's razor. I guessed that he had left it out in preparation of the big event. What I didn't guess was that the big event had already happened while I was washing the dishes one night.

And the best part? His comment.

"Can't you tell?"

"Ah, now that you mention it, yes."

That earned me a thoroughly disgusted look.

"But it's blond! You can only see it in the right light. Or if you're looking closely. I'm not observant. You know that! It's not my fault!"

And then I turned the tables. How could you do that without me? I wanted to take pictures. I missed this big event in your life! Whaaaaaaa.

The look horror and then relief when he realized the bullet he dodged. All was forgiven. I believe there may have been high fives behind my back between the boy and his father.

Later when I confronted my husband he insisted that maybe this wasn't the sort of thing moms should be photographing. That maybe it was best that I missed it. It's a guy thing and most guy things shouldn't be photographed.

And that's when I realized, my little boy is really growing up.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

What mind?

I was going to write about my youngest today but, well, I forgot what he said this morning that I wanted to remember. So much for using this blog as my memory. It only works when I remember something for long enough to write about it. My mind, it is going. Ha! That's optomistic.

My mind, it is gone. There, that's more accurate.

Something that is currently on my mind is the absolute torment of working at a university where I am able to take classes for free, where I am constantly working on class schedules and yet have absolutely no time to actually take a course. It's kind of like being at a buffet of all your favorite foods but you're not allowed to eat them. I keep thinking I could fit a course in if I really wanted to but then I wonder when I will do the homework, go to class, do reading and research and realize, hell, I don't even have time to grocery shop most weeks. Who am I kidding? Maybe when the kids are old enough to drive.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Now at a website near you...

Want to see me somewhere else?

Yes, I wrote something for Alpha Mom. You should totally go read it. It is a subject I am quite an expert at. In fact, if you are an expert on a subject you should totally submit your idea to them. They'll let you know if they already have one in the que on your topic. In fact, as of this minute it is the featured article on their homepage. Go, then let me know what you think.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Answers to her Questions

TXPoppet's questions, that is.

This whole interview business was started by Immoral Matriarch. And it marches on here.


1. Four boys begs the obvious question, do you keep enough seltzer on hand for daily burping contests? Also, how many members of your household can burp the alphabet and are you one of them?

I keep quite a bit of seltzer on hand since that's all I drink besides coffee and wine. Fortunately, the boys all hate it. Because of that they don't burp nearly as often as I do. I think the fact I am a champion burper and can out burp them at every turn has dissuaded them from attempting anything like the alphabet. The farting on the other hand is out of control.

2. What do the boys do that makes you laugh nearly every day?

The littles, as I call the younger two, are quite silly and like to shake their booties with abandon. That makes me laugh. The older two are 12 and 14 so there isn't much going on in the make mom laugh area right now. It is more of the eye rolling, sighing, "parents are so dumb" type stuff. I will say that when the littles taunt the older two and make them insane with rage - that's pretty funny. Lately, that type of thing is a daily occurrence.

3. In an alternate reality, what would your double be doing right now?

My double is right now sitting on a beach in Bimini with a good book, frosty drink and a hot cabana boy fanning me with a palm frond. Oh, and she looks fabulous in a bathing suit.

4. In your Jan. 21st meme you mentioned that you are teaching.  What are you teaching at night?

It is hysterical that you asked this. I had to go back read what you were talking about and then look at a calendar because for the life of me I couldn't figure it out. Now I see that my youngest had a cub scout meeting and myself and another mom were teaching them a little sign language.

Now that I've said that, I will say that THANK GOD I do not have to do that again any time soon. There were six 8 year old boys, one 10 year old (mine), and one 5 year old girl (friend's). The meeting was held at my home and at one point Zach, my youngest, was literally climbing on my head. The other boys were fabulous. I think Zach was a wee bit excited over the meeting being at our house and having mom instead of dad working with them. To say he was bouncing off the walls would be an understatement.

Even with the insanity of an eight year old they all managed to learn the alphabet and how to say, "My name is [their name]. What is your name?" in American Sign Language. After taking an intense 3 week ASL course this summer I am saddened to say I don't remember much more than that.

5. If you could hug any person you've never actually met, who would it be and why?

Oh, this is a hard one. I would have to say Sharon. Or Cursingmama. Or Kinnicchick. Or ecined. Yes, they're all blogging friends. But they are most definitely friends. I'm hoping one of these days to meet all these lovely ladies and give them that hug. They have all supported me during some less than fun times and I'd love to be able to show them how much their friendship has meant to me.

Whew! That was tough. Hopefully it will tell you all a little more about me. If anyone else has a question, feel free to ask away. If you'd like for ME to ask YOU some questions...

Want to be part of it? Follow these instructions:
1. Leave me a comment saying, "Interview me."
2. I will respond by emailing you five questions. I get to pick the questions.
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone
else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them
five questions.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


It seems as if the very air is filled with hope this morning. As the morning progresses and people start their days it seems to increase. It is only 7:42 in the morning and I've been up for 2 hours. As I made my way into work this morning there was a perfect snow falling. It's like a giant snow-globe with drifting snow. No cars in snowbanks. No wind whipping the flakes into your face. Just beautiful. It's still pretty dark out and I'm the only one in the office so far but I'm still bursting with positive feelings.

I realized this morning that being filled with hope effects behavior. That may be its greatest strength. A President can't change the world him (or her) self but if they infuse the world with hope, the human race can make the change. It is a huge burden to put on one person. It is also a huge accomplishment to achieve. The giving of the gift of hope.

The thing is, it's not just this country who is filled with hope. The world is hoping right along with us. And if we're all hoping and believing how can we not change? How can the world not change?

Yesterday my eight year old told me today was a big day. He was very excited because something great was happening today. Then he asked if I knew what great thing was going to happen. Honestly, at that moment I thought he might be confused and think today was ski club. But no. He was talking about "Obama is becoming our president." He feels the hope in the air. He is excited. I can not honestly remember ever being the slightest bit interested in the President until High School. It was just a very vague thing that was discussed in class right before the election and then not spoken about for four more years. It amazes me what strong beliefs my children have. It amazes me they have such interest. It amazes me that it does not seem so momentous that we are hours away from having a black president. That in fact they can't comprehend why the grown ups keep making a big deal about it. "Why wouldn't we have a black president? What does that have to do with being president?" It actually brings tears to my eyes that they feel this way. It makes me feel like I succeeded at at least one thing in raising them. Even if I can't really take credit because it is the entire country's success. I am thankful the country has helped me in this aspect of raising my children right.

So thank you. And enjoy today. Keep the hope in your hearts and together we can make things better. We've made a great start already.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Jumbled Monday

Ah, Monday. I love Mondays. Okay, sometimes I love Mondays. This particular Monday is not a horrible occurrence but not a relief either. It should be noted, I am tired.

The husband left town for work until tomorrow night and I didn't get the grocery shopping done this weekend so I'm starting the week off behind on life. I did do 5 loads of laundry yesterday. Yes, 5, even with the front loader. I'm thinking the skiing thing is causing much more laundry than usual. Oh, almost forgot about basketball practice - hee, yes, one of the Shetland boys is playing basketball this year - and soccer practice and lacrosse practice all started last week. God, I'm tired just writing all that.

I think I got gypped. Not only did I not get any girls, all my boys run around and make music which in turn causes me to have to run them around to countless practices and attend games and concerts galore. Why do I not have a little girl I could buy cute stripped tights for who would sit quietly and read in a comfy chair in the corner? (Which is what I would rather be doing right now.) I understand you might find the request of a tight wearing girl odd but there is something you probably don't know about my house...

Socks. They can be found in every single room in my home. No matter how many times I (or less often, the children - when ordered) pick them up and put them in the wash, they find their way into rooms such as the dining room, bathroom, playroom, kitchen. EVERY. SINGLE. ROOM. They only have 2 feet each. We have 11 rooms in our house. I may not be a math whiz but that just does not add up. 4 children x 2 feet = 8 socks. 11 rooms. Does not compute.

No, honestly, I'm not sad to not have a girl. I kid. I would much rather have my 4 loud, obsessed with bodily functions and sports children who beat the crap out of each other on a regular basis than a bunch of girls. I always did find it easier to get along with boys. Besides, boys are impressed with loud belches rather than repulsed.  Also, I have the sense of humor of a twelve year old boy - still. The hardest part is not laughing at the inappropriate jokes.

In truth, inappropriate jokes might not really be the hardest part of raising the boys - that falls more to the trying to raise good men with all their limbs. Trying to keep them in one piece while simultaneously not killing them for ignoring me when I tell them to do something around the house because they are too busy playing video games - that is what is killing me.

I have no idea where this post went. This is what happens when you start a post, do some work, come back to work on the post, do more work. You get a jumbled mess that you have no time to fix because you have actual work to do that you avoided last week. May your day be less jumbled than this post. It can't be too hard.

Friday, January 9, 2009

In the (lack of) News

I've got nothing.

I've tried and tried today but... nothing. I've also done nothing today.

Okay, okay, not nothing but not as much as I should be getting done. I've done everything but the one big project that is just drudgery.

Also? People are dumb.

And annoying.

And no, I'm not in a bad mood.

Someone in my life seems to have been in a bad mood for the last... oh, I don't know... eleventy-million months. I'm not naming any names here but... it is a real downer. The worst part is I'm not allowed to ask about it or the person ends up in an even worse mood. There is no winning here.

Mind. can. not. focus.

This is another reason large project of drudgery is not getting done. Requires focus. Wait! Do I see something shiny?

Quick, look over there!

Now to figure out how to complete pre-Bar Mitzvah child's Torah project TONIGHT as it is due TOMORROW at some crazy hour like 9am. This whole weekend's schedule is insane. Speaking of which, must remember to print out calendar pages for weekend or will forget one or ten items on the schedule. Why did we have so many children and why must they be so involved?

In positive news, I updated to WordPress 2.7. I like it. It is good. That is all.

This may be the worst blog post ever.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Back at work & your regularly scheduled life

It feels as if I spent the past eleven days on a bit of vacation from life. It was definitely a vacation from work and without a schedule to follow I sort of floundered as I am wont to do. I did have grand ideas of things I could get done with so much time off work but without any actual plans I got nothing done. The only thing I swore I would do - bake - didn't even get done. Yes, a holiday season without baking. A travesty if there ever was one!

I did however take the children skiing more than once. I rented skis for the season, I suited them up and spent a day reading in the lodge with breaks to hand out money, food and hot chocolate. I also bought a snowboard for one of them and last night... Last night I skied for the first time in five years. My planning skills really need work. Not only do I have to adjust to being back at work, I had to figure out how to get to my second floor office without going up the stairs. Also, the screams every time I rise from my chair are upsetting my office mates. I don't think they appreciate it on this first day back to work.

As for holidays and new years and resolutions...

The holidays were good. Much Rock Band 2 was played on the Wii. During said play it was discovered my 12 y/o's voice is changing and now I have to pay him to not sing. A nasty head cold made the rounds but overall it was a healthy holiday. The new year was celebrated by bowling. And we were witness to another holiday miracle...

My 14 y/o was invited to a New Year's party and did not even ASK if he could go. He told his friend he would be bowling with his family. Yes, a 14 y/o boy willingly spent time with his family over the break. He played games with us, bowled, and did not sulk. I'm trying to soak up and enjoy each and every moment before the wind changes direction. I know this will not last but for now I even have photographic PROOF of this miracle. Of course I can't post it because it would require me to actually take the photos off my camera. That has not happened. I'm thinking I need to put more photos on Flickr so maybe I'll start with these.

As for resolutions, I'm not a fan. Some years I make them, most years I don't. I think this is a don't year. They just make me feel bad when I don't accomplish them. 2009 seems to be the year of let's see what happens. Of course, I just realized I mentioned I must work on my planning skills. That without plans I get nothing done... hmmm. Still, right now feels like a take life where it leads you time.

Things I learned over the break:
  1. I can not drink 10 cups of coffee in one day unless I want to be up until 3am.

  2. I need a plan or I will get nothing done but watch Gilmore Girls.

  3. I think I'm in love with Gilmore Girls. I'm on season 6. I don't want it to end.

  4. Your arms can be sore from skiing. No, I don't know how that happens. It just does.

  5. It is possible for teenage boys to play Rock Band for 7 hours straight with only one break for food.

  6. If not playing video games they eat approximately every 23 minutes. (Okay, I already knew this.)

  7. Sometimes your kids will want to play a board game with you.

  8. A cool uncle present will up the time your teen will want to spend in your company.

  9. If you need to laugh until you cry, hang out with a sibling.

  10. Mondays are harder than you remember when you have to go back to work after a vacation.