Thursday, July 19, 2012

Are you there Blog? It's me Monica.

Here's a short list of why there have been no postings this week.

1.  The three year old finally has the hang of sleeping in.  So, I have gotten no wake-up call in the morning.  My days have started about an hour later, causing me to spend the entire day trying to catch up by one hour.  Yes, it can drive one crazy.

2.  Boy Child was warned at the beginning of the summer not to lose his:  goggles, swim shoes, regular shoes, swim shirt, or swim bag.  He managed to lose the goggles the first week, left one swim shoe at the river the last time we went, wore his regular shoes for swim shoes on our most recent trip to the river, and now they stink like river (go figure?), can't find his swim shirt, and managed to hold on to his swim bag (albeit empty) the entire time.  After some serious responsibility talks with him (or should I just say with me and myself since he obviously pays me no mind?), much of my week has been spent buying him new sh*t.

3.  The DayintheLife family has planned a summer vacation for 2012.  I procrastinated until summer was half over, but alas it's done.  We are officially vacationing.  The planning took approximately 5.8 hours.

4.  My actual work has been insanely busy this summer.  Most years people vacation during the summer and few people email me or call me.  Apparently this summer has been an exception to the rule because now everyone wants to just keep calling me.  Great for business, bad for my blog.

5.  I cleaned every cupboard in my kitchen.  Granted this has taken about 5 weeks total (so I suspect the cupboard I started with is now disgustingly sticky and disorganized again, but frankly I don't give a damn), but it is done!  Well, except for about three that I don't use too much.  Kidding!  I use them all the time, but they might not get done until next summer. 

6.  Girl 1 had a growth spurt since summer started (who does that???).  This required new clothes.  The kind that fit.  This required a trip to Old Navy and lots of trying on, and primping in front of the mirror (that's fairly new behavior), and seeing what she liked, and screaming at the three year old who kept opening the changing room door while she was naked, and generally just lots and lots of time.

7.  I've tried to organize a few things in my house.  This is painful and time consuming for me.  It's a little like that book If You Give a Mouse a Cookie.  I started one day by finally purchasing an organization method for hubby's business crap papers.  This quickly led to a look-see through the papers.  Which led to sticky notes to him of "Do you need this paper???"  Which led to a complete inventory of everything in the desk where said papers were being held.  Which led to me having a complete melt-down and drinking a beer at the kitchen table which was covered in papers.  You get the picture.

I could lie and say I am going to blog more faithfully  now, but it would be just that.  A lie. 

P.S. - I give complete credit to a good friend for the title of this post.  And, if that good friend is reading - wanna just write the title and post next time?  Please and thank you!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

I don't know much, but I do know the Chupacabra (and he's not the largest rodent in the world).

I will be the first to admit I am not smarter than a fifth grader.  Hell, I am not even smarter than my pre-schooler some days.  Half of this inability to compute can be blamed on my ever shrinking memory.  (Who are you?  Why are you reading my blog?)  The other half can be blamed on the fact that I really suck at all kinds of trivia, science, history, politics, and paparazzi.  And the other half can be blamed on the fact that I confuse things in my head on a regular basis.  (Was Neil Armstrong the first man on the moon, or a famous jazz musician?  Is a doppelganger something evil representing misfortune or is it a show about a harried detective that I like to watch on PBS?  Do I respect philanthropists or philanderers?)

When you have four kids who ask you everything under the freakin' sun all day long, and who during the summer are home 24/7 this can be a little problematic.

During the last six weeks here is an incomplete list of things I have been asked and that I have attempted (feebly) to explain (know that my kids now *might* be misguided):
  • What color is blood before it squirts out of your body?
  • What makes something radioactive?
  • What does "being paroled" mean?
  • What happens after the policeman arrests you for speeding?
  • Why are there magnets?
  • What's photosynthesis?
  • What's the tallest mountain in the world?
  • Why are no two fingerprints alike?
  • Who invented money?  Why can't we just make more at our house? 
  • Is Cinderella the one with the wicked step mother or is it Snow White?
  • What is Pixar from Disney Pixar?  What does it mean?
  • Which presidents are still alive?
  • Are there four Ice Age movies or three?
  • Is there more than one "f" word?
  • What's puberty?

Luckily my husband can explain most things (and if he can't, he just makes fairly believable sh*t up).  So, my usual answer goes something like this, "Photosynthesis is when some rare gases mix with the sun's rays and form tequila.  We use the tequila to make a common drink called a margarita.  There are many recipes for them and we usually put salt on the rim of the glass.  I think.  But, I am sure dad knows more, so when he gets home let's ask him.  And then mom will drink a margarita."  Or sometimes I just say, "That sounds like a great question for Google.  Go look it up and prepare a five page report on what you find."

Here's a short list of things I do not/did not know (just pulled randomly from this past month) mainly because I did not remember the facts as they were presented to me or I just plain don't know/don't care:

Many of these have to do with whether or not people are dead or alive and if they are dead, how they died.  You can analyze that at your leisure and decide whether or not I am obsessed and have a problem.  Or, I can save you the analysis and tell you:  Yes, I am.  I have many problems.

1.  I did not know Flo-Jo was dead. 
2.  I did not know Anne Frank died in the end (prematurely, I should say since we all die in the end).
3.  I did not know who Arlo Guthrie was.  Although, the 100th anniversary of Woody Guthrie's death has been commemorated on par with the death of Ronald Reagan (whose funeral might still be in progress).
4.  I am not sure what the largest sea animal is.
5.  I do not know which is bigger:  an elephant or a whale.
6.  I do not know the tallest mountain in the world.
7.  I am not sure why there are magnets.
8.  I do not know how many Disney princesses there are.

All of this is to give you an idea of my frame of mind a few weeks ago when hubby brought home this:

For some reason, Girl 1 was distrustful of the facts as they appeared on the box and felt the need to pose questions to all of us every morning.

(This was a joy to me as I have already explained to you how I excel at these things.)  And, did I mention my Keurig is broken???

Here's how pre-coffee breakfast conversations have gone:

Girl 1:  Mom, is the saguaro really the tallest cactus in America?
Me:  I don't know.  I think so.
Girl 1:  Mom, is the White Sturgeon really the largest freshwater fish?
Me:  Hmm.  I'm not sure.  Is a whale a fish?
Girl 1:  Mom, is Mount Washington really the Windiest Place?
Me:  That's a good question.  How would they even know what the windiest place was?  What do they use to measure it?  Their licked fingers???

I was a little irritated that after making such painstaking attempts to be accurate in my answers, it wasn't until a few days into this game that Girl 1 told me these "Superlatives" were limited to America.  After I found that out, I would just respond with, "Oh, I'm not sure what this is in America.  I know how it is in the whole world, but to know about just America, you'll have to Google it." 

(I am sure this made me appear much smarter to my kids.)

Finally, Girl 1 asked a question I knew a lot about.

She said, "Mom, I FOUND A MISTAKE ON THIS BOX!  I KNOW the largest rodent is NOT the American Beaver!"

I said, "You are absolutely right.  It's not."

Because, this is trivia I actually know!  I hate rodents more than I hate raccoons and so naturally I know that the capybara is the largest rodent in the world.  (Forget the fact that I knew the box would have listed the largest rodent in America.  Which probably is, in fact, the American beaver.)  There is even a capybara at our local zoo that we visit frequently, so I have seen one in person.

I waited for Girl 1 to give me the right answer and she loudly proclaimed,

"A CHUPACABRA is the largest rodent!"

Before I could laugh hysterically, or astound her with the fact that I knew the right answer she said,


I am deeply disturbed that at age nine, Girl 1 seems to be following directly in my footsteps.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

I'm getting back to you (you might want to write this on the calendar).

As you know, I have a habit of procrastination and leaving things in the lurch.  So, in the spirit of change (Huh?  What's that?) I thought I would bring you two updates.  Shocking, I know.

1.  The quick one first. The Keurig is indeed dead.  I will be calling customer service tomorrow when I have perfected the story I am going to tell them.  Not that it's not true.  Well kinda true.  Technically I guess it's a half truth.  And now I am hearing my dead mother's voice, "Half truth, half lie."  Thank you, Keurig for invoking my deceased mother to prove your point.  The situation in which I got the Keurig was kind of a backroom deal.  Of sorts.  Anyway.  I just needed a little time to decide what to say.  I'll keep you posted.  (And, you know how good I am about that.)

2.  Yes, the raccoons are still here.  They are low-key now.  I no longer go out to the Yukon Cornelius and find mounds of garbage strewn all over the yard.  It's more subtle (and, I like to think of them thinking of it as "discreet" and somewhat "friendly").  For example, yesterday I found simply a ripped Ziploc bag that had contained grapes that had gone bad right outside the garbage can.  The heavy, heavy rock was about six inches from the front of the can.  It looked as if all the grapes were still in the bag.  Apparently, raccoons don't like moldy grapes.  Sorry, raccoons.

I am seeing our relationship as more of a test now.  They are testing my fortitude and ability to consume everything in my fridge.  I am testing their brute strength and persistence.

Some of you (I think one person?  And, that person could be a figment of my imagination.) wondered if I had any photographic examples of what was happening.  So, I snapped this photo a while back just for you guys.

Notice how the rock is in place and there is still trash?  (That's when we realized the raccoons had moved on to the neighbor's trash can.  And then we put a rock on that one.)

2.  Remember when I re-did my girls' room like I was some kind of reject from Design on a Dime auditions?  I told you how miserable I was at decorating and crafting?  And I gave you teaser photos of what was to come?  Well, it's been done for ages now and I thought I'd give you a few photos of the finished product and a budget breakdown like the TV show.  But, then I lost all the receipts.  So, you are just getting photos and know that the complete re-do cost less than the two computers that hubby bought right after I was done. 

I realize that most people will look at these photos and think, "Meh."  But, know that I do not finish much anything.  In fact, this room might well be the only room in my house that is "finished."  And, it will probably stay this way until the girls move out.  Plus, I picked everything myself (so please don't tell me if you hate it or if it is totally uncoordinated).

The new bunk beds.  And the radiating light from the new ceiling fan.  Thank you, hubby.

The view from the top bunk.  See all of our new organization?  I am scared of heights, so you're welcome.

The new hanging thing to hang all the things.

The room from the door.  Really, really bad lighting and not-so-great camera. 
My kids are going to camp this coming week, so I'll be blogging everyday I am going to get some work done.  Have a great week!

Friday, July 6, 2012

If Kubler-Ross had a Keurig and it stopped working.

Stage 1 Denial

The Keurig can't be broken.  There's no way I could have paid this much money for this thing and it be broken.  It just needs to be cleaned!  Surely that's it.  I'll dig out the instructions and clean it.

Stage 2 Anger

Stupid Keurig.  I hate Keurig.  Who wanted this coffee maker anyway???  De-scaling???  Who calls it that except for pretentious people.  It's removing water scum is what it is.  I hate Keurig.

Stage 3 Bargaining

COME ON KEURIG.  I have cleaned every conceivable part of you.  If you just start working for a week, I promise to de-scale you on a schedule for the love of God. 

Stage 4 Depression

What am I going to do???  I don't think I can live without a Keurig.  Who is going to care???  Hubby was right?!  Noooooooooooooo!

Stage 5 Acceptance

Hubby was right?!  Keurig is over rated.  WalMart coffee makers are okay.  I will drink coffee from a WalMart coffee maker and be happy.