Friday, October 31, 2008

Trick or Treat!

Yay for Halloween! Nugget and Strip had fun. Nugget was a lion and had a fantastic roar and Strip was Fancy Nancy. She love the FN books, so were were super excited to find all of the Fancy Nancy dress up stuff. The doggy was a good sport and was her "Posh Puppy."

When we decided on FN for a costume, Strip asked if we could go to the library and get a movie of FN. I said I didn't think there were any FN movies, but we have all the books. What's the deal? No, she said, I need to watch the movie so she could hear how FN talked. I didn't know what the heck she was talking about, so I told her FN was a little girl like you, so she probably talked a lot like you do, but we can read the books when we get home.


Then it hit me! She was trying to get into character. HA! So when we got home, Ma and Strip plopped on the couch and read FN books working on their French. Strip had her act down. She would say, "Oh la la!" when she got candy and "Au revoir!" when she was leaving. Super cute.

Well, not everyone in the 'hood is a reader, so she kept getting, "Oh! What a cute little princess you are!" Strip, not being shy would look them dead in the eye and say, "Actually (her favorite word) I'm Fancy Nancy. It's a book." but the condesending tone in her voice was hilarious!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

There's a new navigation lady in my life

Well, we made it safely to the parents house, no thanks to Madge and set off this morning for another 700 mile drive. Having lost all faith in Madge, you would think that I would be a little nervous on this long drive. Not so because I not only had this:

I had this:

My mother. Or as the kids call her, "Ma," but she will be now know as MA-gellan. The MA-gellan is a unique navigation tool. Instead of the little green line leading the way, the MA-gellan makes small talk about how bad the traffic is going the other way.

"Glad we're not going south!"

"Well, mom it's probably people going into work"

"No, it's always like this"


"No really. The last time your father and I were going this way... why were we here, I guess it was your brother's graduation or maybe his birthday, yeah, it was his birthday OH! Did I tell you where we had dinner, it was so good..... (20 minutes later) Anyway, we were driving back this way and the traffic was horrible. Always horrible southbound."

"Ok, mom. That does it."


"We are NEVER coming home to visit."

"confused look"

"If traffic is always this bad southbound, I will never drive home. You have only yourself to blame."

"ha. Ha."

But aside from random conversation, MA-gellan also has a special alert function. Not when you need to exit, but anytime there is a change in traffic. Lane ends, traffic merge, interstate crosses, interstate splits, which as you can imagine on a 700 mile trip happens quite a few times. MA-gellan will let you know.

Sign appears that the road we are on is about to split off into a different interstate going another direction. I see this, but know we stay on this road for another state. But MA-gellan is on the case.

"oOOOOO K, let's see. What's going on here. Ok do you see that? The road is splitting. OK, what way hmmm ok, umm well.."

"We stay left MA-gellan"

"Well it looks like you have to go right in this lane. Look at the sign ok, 1,2,3 right lanes must exit right are we going right? I thought you said we stay left. What lane are we in? Is this going to make us go left we want North, is this north? That one said East, but is it really North?

"We're fine, we stay left."

"Ok, let's see umm ok oh! We stayed left in this lane! You were right! Ha!"


My MA-Gellan also has a built-in car sensor that would alert MA-gellan if you hit the rumble strip a little which would alert her to scream, "What are you doing?! Let me do that! You just drive! I can get the kids juice!"

Not the shortest trip ever.

Oh, and since this is supposed to be a kid related blog, here's a nugget from Strip.

In her previous school, there was a little girl who spoke no English. Only Spanish. I took French and Italian, so I don't know much, but I have picked up a few things thanks to my pals Manny, Dora and Diego. So I would tell Strip that "_____ is the Spanish word for _____" whenever I could.

Fast forward to the big drive. Strip would just make up random words and say, "Yeah that's the Spanish word for playing." She was always wrong, but E for Effort, right? So MA-Gellan are discussing how, once again, we stay in this lane and follow this road when Strip pipes up from the backseat, "Mommy. You are 'irritated.'" I look at Ma and we giggle, so I ask for clarification. I'm what?

"You are 'irritated.' That's the Spanish word for 'driving.'"

Well, get use to it, Strip, because Mommy is going to be irritated for about 5 more hours!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Dream dream dream

Everyone should get pregnant. Seriously. You have some of the greatest, craziest dreams when you are pregnant. I think my new "Congratulations on your pregnancy" gift is going to be a legal pad and a Bic pen because you have phenomenal dreams when pregnant and the only way to remember them is to write them down.

When I was pregnant with Strip, I had a dream that she was born fully clothed, with jewelry. Frilly dress, bonnet, hoop earrings, gold bangle bracelet, everything. And to make this odd dream even odder, the nurse announced, "The doctor's not in here! Put her back in!" And they did.

But just when I thought dreams couldn't get any odder, I found myself buying a house 4 states away (where my husband was living) while I was working, taking care of 2 kids and trying to sell current house in one of the worst possible markets ever. That lends itself to some freaky-weird dreams!

Exhibit A: In real life, I have a friend who works for Disney. She is engaged, and they are getting married at Disney. Yay! So between the stress of before mentioned life and knowing that I was going to Disney with the fam, the following dream took place.

I was asked to sing at friend's wedding. But for some reason, there were no rehearsals and no one ever told me what I would be singing. I show up that day and find out that I and another (male)friend who also works for the mouse, will be singing a duet at the reception. Ok, no problem. Then I find out what. The bride and groom have requested that we sing the first dance, Beauty and the Beast, but instead of the Disney lyrics, we are to sing, "Tale as old as time, song as old as rhyme, Nicole and Colin!" And for a little icing on the cake, the bride's dress was an exact replica of Belle's dress, only white and the groom looked like the beast, but dipped in white, too. Odd.

Latest example would be the new house purchase. Strip and I flew up to house hunt, and our fantastic realtor showed us so many houses. We were super excited to find the perfect house on the last day, last house we saw. Yay! We're done! Offer accepted and it's ours. Well, being a few states away, and not being able to drive by the house all the time, I started over thinking it. Was there a pantry? What did the fence look like again? Is it really a good neighborhood? What did the closets look like...

I decided that house hunting and wedding dress shopping were the same -- you look at a ton, order the perfect one, stress out about what it looked like until your fitting, then realize it's even better than you remembered. So I'm feeling a little better. Then I have a dream.

Me, husband, Nugget, Strip, my parents, my brother and brother's girlfriend are all in our new city to celebrate the move. Our realtor is with us, but it's not really our realtor here, it's our craptastic realtor from Florida. For some reason, we decide to all go look at one of our reject houses before going to our real house. Well, reject house is perfect. The lot is awesome, the floors are great, brand new carpet, awesome appliances, master bedroom was down stairs, there was a finished (huge) basement AND a playroom upstairs for the kids along with 2 guestrooms. It was great. Starting to worry, I look at our realtor and say, "Wow. This one is better than I remembered. Why didn't we get this one?" and his response was "well, it didn't have a pantry, so I took it off the list."

WHAT?!?!?! This house was freaking perfect! It even had a laundry chute! A pantry is NOT a deal breaker what the heck is wrong with you?!?! He assured me that even though our house didn't have enough bedrooms, a basement and had a detached garage, the pantry was awesome.

Ugh. I hope this is not foreshadowing.

Monday, October 20, 2008

She's out to get me

Last weekend, we did a Disney trip. Husband flew back, and the kids and I drove to the Parents house. I had not driven the way we were going alone before, but felt like I knew the route well enough. And never fear, I had Magellan, or as we call her Madge leading the way with her little green route line and calm, reassuring voice, I knew it would be a smooth 400 + miles.

I think it would have been, had Madge not been trying to kill me. Maybe it's because she really belongs in Husband's car and felt I was just using her. I don't know. Things are going smoothly, I'm rockin out to a little talk radio, kids chillin in the back seat when she pipes up

"Exit in 2 miles, Martin Luther King Blvd."

Ummm what's that Madge? I thought I stayed on this road for 2 more hours. Hmm.

"Prepare to exit. Martin Luther King Blvd"

No thanks Madge. It's a rough city, and that just doesn't sound right. I'm going to go on up to the next exit.

"Calculating route"

Atta girl

"When possible, make a legal U-turn"

Crap, Madge. Maybe you were right. Traffic slows, so I do the turn by turn directions to see what she's up to. Madge wanted me to exit on MLK, drive 4 blocks and hop back on the interstate. Uh no thank you. Thankfully I had my trusty new phone that also has navigation, so I checked it for backup where it was confirmed. I'm right, Madge is wrong. I turn Madge off for the rest of the drive.

Hint Taken

So last week was extremely crazy. Packers, movers, trucks, shuffling kids, tying up loose ends at work before the move, just nuts. I already spent one glorious day with the packers and was preparing for day two.

I hopped out of bed at 5 am and slipped into my jeans. As I did the hip-wiggle buttoning of my pants, I made the mental note to drink more water. The day before I spent downing Sprite and thought I didn't need anymore liquid calories. Dropped off Strip at a friends and Nugget and I headed back to the house for the final day of packing and loading.

Around 3 pm, I was feeling like I needed a nap. Not wanting to snooze while three strange men were around, I figured the next best thing would be to hit the fridge/freezer. After all, in the next 24 hours, it was all going to hit the garbage or the neighbors' house so I might as well. Nothing in the fridge, but I did spy a carton of Java Chip ice cream. Score! Coffee, ice cream and chocolate, Hooray!! I grabbed a baby spoon out of the sink and popped the top, just as mover guy #2 walked in the kitchen. He gave me a little look, so I said,

"Hey, I just have to toss it tomorrow, right? Might as well enjoy a little first!"

Mover #2 looks me right in the eye and says, "A taste on the lips is a lifetime on the hips."

Wow. I stood there stunned. Everything within me was screaming. Screaming irrational, stupid things. Things like, "If you think I'm fat now, you should have seen me pregnant with my daughter. I gained a good 50+ pounds!" and "Hey, buddy, I've had 2 kids and these jeans are a size 6! SIX! I will take them off right now and show you the tag!" But I said nothing. Not. A. Thing. By this point he wandered off, so I proceeded to follow him around the house, eating more ice cream than I really intended. Later he was looking for a screwdriver, and when I handed it to him, he said "Thank you." I wanted to say, "I should be stabbing you in the face for that comment," but I just said you're welcome.

Fast Forward to 6:30 pm.

Pick up Strip from the friend who, bless her heart, took care of her for 11 hours. I was hungry, Nugget was hungry and everything we owned was either in a box or on a truck, so we stopped at a new burger place for dinner. SO tired, I was holding Nugget with my hip/belly poked out to compensate for the added weight of holding him. Strip reaches up to tell me something and taps my stomach. She then looks up and says,

"You have a nice tummy, mommy!"

Yes! Confidence is coming back! I DO have a nice tummy, don't I?

About to thank Strip when she finishes the thought by whispering:

Strip: "Is there a baby coming?"

Me: in disbelief "WHAT??"

Strip: "Is there a baby coming?"

Me: No, but I think there is a gym membership coming.

Yo ho Yo ho

I love to people watch. And what's better than people watching? People listening. Thanks to cell phones, people have an automatic sense of privacy wherever they go, no matter how loud they are talking. For example, I'm in the bank the other day, filling out a deposit slip, when in walks a guy screaming/talking on his cell phone, proclaiming, "YEAH, I HAVE LIKE $64 DOLLARS LEFT IN MY ACCOUNT." Wow. That didn't do much for your cause buddy.
But, even without cell phones, people still speak at such a volume that you can pick up priceless nuggets where every you go. The greatest place to overhear things -- Disney World.
I. Love. Disney.
I would move into Cinderella's castle tomorrow. Love it. I love the music and the characters, but more than that, I love witnessing some of the greatest parenting moments ever.
Just take a walk through Tomorrowland. You'll hear little gems like a father lovingly screaming at a double stroller full of sticky kids, "I DON'T CARE, WE ARE HAVING A GOOD TIME," and you can see the steam coming out of his ears. Love it! Or, you can hear super-fast-mom-speller who is dictate the day's activities to her darling husband, one letter at a time so that the kids can't understand her. This sounds like this
"No, first we are going to see what the wait for S-n-o-w W-h-i-t-e is and if it's long, we get a fast pass, if not we ride it, then it's off to D-u-m-b-o and then we will do S-m-a-l-l W-o-r-l-d. THEN we e-a-t."
Unfortunately, she lost dad at S-n.
So on our last trip to WDW, we of course take the kids on Pirates of the Caribbean, the perfect ride for two kids under four. I know, we are horrible, but Strip has loved that ride since the first time she sat in the boat, so we ride it all the time. We were there during a party, so the lines were nonexistent.
As we scoot on up, the "couple" behind us is huffing and puffing at our heels. I say "couple" because dude is in his mid to late 40's and his ladyfriend is in her really late 60's (but really more like 70's). We stop when we reach the line and begin to dance and sing to the Yo ho yo ho music (hey, it's Disney!). One of my favorite things about Disney rides is you really can't see the ride until you are about to get on it. On Pirates, you can peer through some slats and see the group getting on the boat. We are standing at said place. Here's the conversation:
Dude: Huh. It's a ride.
Ladyfriend: Well, I'll be.
Dude: I thought you said it was a show?!
Ladyfriend: I thought it was! The sign said the next one was in 5 minutes!
At this point, husband and I are about to wet our pants because the sign they saw was really the "wait time is 5 minutes" and Ladyfriend has just made (hefty) Dude run convinced that the show was about to start.
Husband gets sucked in.
Dude: Hey, did you know this was a ride?
Husband: Yup.
Ladyfriend: I thought it was a show!
Husband: Well, I guess it could be like a show, but you move through it on a boat!
Dude: What do you mean.
Husband: Well, you know the movies Pirates of the Caribbean
Dude: No.
Husband (taken aback): Umm you know the pirate movies that came out a few years ago?
Dude: No.
Husband: Really? They were pretty big. They had Johnny Depp in them...
Dude: Oh yeah.
Husband: Yeah those!
Dude: Don't know anything about them
Husband (obviously struggling and I am obviously wetting my pants): Yeah, anyway, there were
these big pirate movies with Johnny Depp in them that were actually based on this ride.
Ladyfriend: I know Johnny Depp!
Me (trying to add something) Well, be on the look out because he's in the ride three times (catching myself because these two didn't seem to be the sharpest) as a robot figure thing. They added him after the movies...
Oh look! It's our time! Enjoy the "show!"
NOTE: They ended up sitting behind us in the boat where we got to hear a play-by-play commentary about how "oh gawd that was smoke not water!" and "oh gawd it smells funny" as we were thinking "oh gawd, she's feeling all up on his leg and oh gawd we totally thought you were a mother/son duo." Yikes.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Who's Hungry?

When prepping for a move, you have to let go of a few things. This week, I am working on the fridge, but I am a little concerned. I think someone has been breaking in and putting things in ours. Here's an example:

Most people have something that looks like this in their fridge:

Ours has this:

Yup. 4 jars of pickles. And if you count relish as being in the pickle family, you have this:

That's just nuts. I don't eat pickles. I don't like pickles. The kids don't eat pickles. One pickle-eater should not equal that many jars. So I know you are just dying to see what else is in there. Well, here ya go ....

If you can't see it that well, in the door of the refrigerator we had

  • 2 jars of A1 (I know why it was BOGO free)
  • 7 different types of salad dressing (the last time we had salad I made the dressing, and not from any of those)
  • 4 random seasoning sauces
  • the above mentioned pickles and relish
  • 2 types of mayo
  • 3 types of mustard
  • 1 ketchup
  • 1 jar of marmalade

We are in the process of buying a fridge for the new place and I'm thinking we can downsize. If we can keep our condiment addiction under control, we might be fine with a mini-fridge. I hate to throw it away, so I think I'm going to have a dinner party. All of the above will be served with the 5 different kinds of beer that have taken up residences in the garage fridge. Please R.S.V.P.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Call me insane

Albert Einstein is attributed with saying, "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

Call me insane.

Because it never fails that a rainy day will come along, and with nothing to eat and not wanting to drag kids to the store, I call Papa. Why? Because I think it will be easy to order a pizza. It never is. Something always gets messed up and Papa apparently never heard a little something called the customer is always right. Because of their screw-ups, they so sweetly gave me a coupon good for a FREE 2 liter bottle of coke. Get excited!

We closed on our new house today, so I thought, What the heck! Live a little! Order the pizza and get yourself that FREE bottle! You deserve it.

So I call, place the order, tell the gal that I want the special Tuscan cheese pizza for $12.99. Then I tell her about my coupon. She gets my info and and tells me my total is $19.97.


I remind her about my bad experience coupon, and she says,

"Well, to get the free coke, you have to get a pizza at regular price."
I tell her I have no desire to spend $5 on a free coke. She stammers, a little confused and asks if I want to order anything else. I told her to take off my FREE $5 coke and just give me the pizza at the lower price.
It should be here in an hour, and I'm sure there will be spit in it.

phd in pee

I may not know everything, but I am a professional pee-er. This goes waaaaaay back. Because of a kidney problem I had when I was little, I often have the joy of doing a "24 hour." What's that you say? Let me share.

You start by getting to carry this sweet number out of the doctor's office:

Nice! Then, on your lucky day, you wake up, pee and the fun begins. For the next 24 hours, you get to collect every drop of gold in this nifty container. But where do you keep that thing? I hear you asking.

In the fridge. Yup. Don't confuse it with the orange juice. The first time Husband got to experience the joy of a "24" was when I was about 3 months pregnant with Strip. When I filled him in, he said, "Seriously? We have to keep pee in our refrigerator. That is disgusting." My response... we are about to have a baby. This is not gross, this is the tip of the iceberg.

So this isn't as much gross anymore as it is inconvenient. I had to do an emergency 24 on Friday, so mix in unloading pumpkins with the above instructions, and you can imagine what a fun day it was. Anyway, on to my point.

So, after completing your mission, you then get to take the above pictured, full, back into a lab where they draw a couple of vials of blood and you get to pee (again) in a cup. This is all very routine. No problems there. My only problem -- I started this on a Friday which means I had to go to the only Saturday lab. Strip had a fun morning at church planned, so it was just me and Nugget. We arrive at 11:30. Lab closes at 12, so I'm good. I was wrong.

Me: signs in at the desk while juggling stroller with hungry, cranky toddler, insurance card and a full jug.

Lab tech: Do you have a specimen to drop off?

Me: nooooo this is my water bottle. I just like the color Yes. (smiles and hands the nice man a jug of urine). Must be your lucky day!

Lab tech: looks totally confused. Reads the label, reads the order. Still looks confused. Ummmmm where did you get this?

Me: pointing to the large sticker that proudly displays this labs' name From the lab.

Lab tech: Well, was there anything in it when you picked it up?

Seriously?!?! This is not going to be good.

Me: nope. Just air.

Lab tech: Ok. Umm. have a seat we'll be with you in a minute.

I sit. One minute turns to 27. I hear another tech joyfully say, "Woo hoo! I'm locking the door!" as she skips out to the waiting area. Where I am sitting. With a VERY cranky toddler. She looks at me. There is NO ONE else in the lab not wearing scrubs. So her question:

new tech: Are you here for lab work?

Me: yes

nt: Oh, did you want it done at 12?

Me: Or now. Whatever is easier.

NT: oh! Ok sit tight! I'll find your stuff.

Fantastic. She then comes out and says she noticed on my orders that I brought in a specimen. Do you still have it? Nope, turned it in. Well, where is it? Uh, I'm not sure. I don't work here.

All I can think is they've lost my pee and I'm going to have to do this all over again. Good news they find the jug. And it's my turn. Yay.

Follow NT back to the back where I sit and show her the good vein. She strikes up a conversation about binkies. I make a comment about how when Nugget was in the NICU, they really wanted them to have a binkie. NT looks at me and says, "NICU? What's that?" Ok, you now have a needle in your hand and that scares me. I thought any nurse would know what a NICU was. Wow. So I explain. She draws my blood and says, "You're all set!"

Me: No, I'm not

NT: Why?

Me: I need to give you a urine sample.

NT: Nooooo you brought one in.

Me:Right, but that was a 24 hr one. I need to give you another one now.

NT: Hmmmm grabs the chart and reads

She then looks me right in the eye and says, "Oh, yeah well, we normally just skim a little off the top for that." Ok. First, that's gross. Second, that's wrong. So I say that I've done these a million times and this is how it goes, yadda yadda yah. NT finally tells me, "Fine, if you really want to." and hands me not a sterile cup with a lid, but a dixie cup with the lab's name stamped on the side. Wow. This is going to be fun trying to balance while pushing a stroller. So I bring it back to her and I say, "Thanks! Have a great weekend," and NT says, "You too! And hey, you were right!"

Wow. I really think she should have taken one more vial of blood, too so I have a good feeling that another brown jug will be in my future this week. The good news? I won't have to go to the Saturday lab.

Saturday, October 4, 2008


Bath time rocks. My kids could spend a month in the tub. They just love it. Tonight, they were equally gross, so I thought I'd let them have separate tub time. Nugget got the scrub down first. got him out, dried off, diaper and pjs on. Drained and drew second bath, tossed Strip in. Nugget hopped up at the sink and was happily brushing his teeth while I brushed his hair. I was looking at what a HORRIBLE job the Great-Clips-meets-Hooters salon did cutting his hair and thought there was no way me trimming his bangs could make him look any worse.

So I stepped out of the room, exactly 5 steps from the bathroom to the counter where the scissors were. I turn around, look in the bathroom and scream, nooooooooooo!

Nugget has raced to the tub and has one leg over the edge. I sprint to the bathroom, but he hears me coming. Giggle, splash and hysterical laughter from all three of us. A dry, diapered, pj'd nugget is now...

soggy. Bath time just got a little longer, and that bottle of wine is going to get a little more chilled.

It's not you, it's me.

For years, I've heard the same thing from my mother. "Write that down! You'll forget it!" It didn't matter if it was a grocery list or a reminder for homework, according to my mother, if you didn't write it down it wouldn't/didn't happen.

So, after having kids, this phrase is used MUCH more. Funny stories, the things they say, when they got teeth, whenever I told my mom, it was "Oh! Write that down, you'll forget it." Well, Mom, you were right (GASP!!). I'm forgetting the funny/scary/sad/gross moments of motherhood. So I'm writing them down here.

Why the blog? I have terrible hand writing. And if I wrote it down in a journal, I'd probably lose it. So I thought this would be a good place to start. I needed a quick, easy place where I could jot down thoughts and stories, which means about 85% of this will be pretty boring to someone who doesn't share my last name.

I hope you enjoy reading about our lives. I'm sure most posts will be about the kids, Nugget (1 1/2) and Strip (3 1/2). So , if you find yourself here thinking, "Why is she posting this? Who really cares what size shoe her kid is?" Remember, it's not you, it's me :-)