Sunday, September 30, 2007

Can you tell they dressed themselves?

Do not let those smiles fool you. These are not little girls but soul sucking wraiths whose only purpose on this earth is to sap the life force from their mother.

Last night at dinner we were discussing how we didn't understand how mothers could abandon their children. I take it all back. I understand completely.

Eion gets to live...for now.

Tim has an insane number of days off in October which, of course, are earned by working lots of 12 hour shifts and weekends! Knowing he was on nights, Kirsten, whose husband was away on a golf trip, encouraged me to get a sitter so we could go out. We were joined by Ann & Hans and went to Blue 50 for dinner. They had ok food but a great beer selection. I had a bourbon barrel stout which was excellent! I can recommend the beer with two somewhat obvious but very important qualifiers: you need to like both bourbon and stout (which fortunately, I do.) It's not like bourbon glazed ribs that don't really taste like their namesake. This beer has a strong undercurrent of bourbon. Anyhoo, we ended up back at Ann & Hans' house and talked till way past bedtime. Then, being ever the smart girl, I decided I needed to stay up and watch the season premiere of Stargate Atlantis (come on - you know you love it!)

My point being [I had one all along, you just didn't know how I was going to get there] I was tired this morning. So when Susan called and asked if I wanted to meet up at the park after we went to the gym, I was thrilled to have an outing. The girls were great. Well behaved, self entertaining, non-whining. Eion was the polar opposite. He entered the park screaming. Which actually was kind of funny because, unbeknownst to me, Ann & Hans were there playing tennis. They heard the crying and said to each other, "That sounds like Eion!"

He then proceeded to steal another boy's truck, refuse to give it back and then throw said toy to the ground in what I can only surmise was an attempt to break it. He then snapped some random girl's headband in two, threw mulch and dirt over anyone who came near and was generally intolerable. The worst was when I caught him out of the corner of my eye grabbing Trent's shirt and using it to spin him in a circle, trying to throw him to the ground in a very WWE fashion. I have decided he can live for now but only because my friends with boys swear it will get better.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Halloween Horror!

The girls, who are as enthusiastic as I am about Halloween, have been after me to decorate for the season. We pulled the big plastic storage bin out of the basement to find any fabric or paper items ruined by mold! [Guess we should have run the dehumidifier more.] So most of it, including cute pumpkin treat bags, had to be thrown out. But the silver lining is I now had an excuse to log on to Pottery Barn Kids and get them personalized ones (love the monograms) that were on sale! The girls, recognizing the tragic shortfall of Halloween decorations, have started making their own signs including helpful intel like: "Beware of ghosts" and "Vampires are near." They are definitely better than store bought jolliment!

But the mold does make me fear for the integrity of the decorations for my second favorite holiday, Christmas. I'll investigate and report out tomorrow!


So in the quest to be the best room Mom ever, I started researching Halloween projects weeks ago. I settled on making spiders: take black styrofoam ball, insert pipe cleaners, glue on googly eyes. No problem. Styrofoam balls only come in white & green. Problem. I briefly entertained the idea of letting the kids paint the balls themselves to which Tim commented, "You do realize this can only lead to heartache and disaster don't you?" Concurring that setting 2 classes of 19 kids each loose with black paint may not be the best idea, the girls and I decided to paint 38 balls.

We started out with gusto and enthusiasm. Maggie was the first to drop out, leaving us so she could sit in the other room. Morrigan lasted longer, albeit in a very messy manner. [Note in above picture that the object being painted is nowhere near the counter-protecting paper. Fortunately said counter is black and I am a big believer in washable paints.] Soon thereafter, at about ball eight, she left me too. But I soldiered on, finishing the 24 we had (addition for To Do list: go to craft store and buy more styrofoam balls.) Now my counter looks like a B movie reproduction of War of the Worlds:

I have to say, this was, all in all, just about as good an idea as cutting out 38 paper bats to decorate goody bags for the Halloween parties! Did I mention the title of this post is insanity?

Friday, September 28, 2007

Supper Club Invite

We're in a newly formed supper club that has 6 couples. We are co-hosting the first dinner with Ann & Hans so we only had to send out 4 invitations. I decided to go a bit more elaborate than normal. I was quite proud of myself. Probably too much so but I am not the most creative person!

Also, must make note to self. When you wake up early, stay in bed. I chose to get up instead and start poking around on the internet. Now I have spent all my earnings from the last round of eBay sales. Oh well. The girls have some really cute new Thanksgiving dresses!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Danger, Danger

Before I even get started, I have to warn my male readers that this post will be choc-full of EFC (extreme feminine content.) While I try not to stray too far from what is acceptable for mixed company, you may want to think twice before reading further. That being said, Dad, you were warned.

So where have I been? Just here caught up in a state of, as my loving husband likes to say, warpiness. Now I knew it was coming from telltale signs like getting all misty over Daughtry songs which never happens the other 23 odd days of the month. For god's sake I can't normally tolerate a pop rock band that actually uses the word "closure" in their songs let alone get emotional about it. But the fire of hormone fueled emotions consumed me, rendering me unstable at best. And while my maniacal ravings would be alternately hysterical and terrifying, I decided to save you the roller coaster ride this month. Feeling once again safe for publication, I return today.

Highlights from the past few days include:

We had dinner Monday at the home of one of Tim's new partners. There were several other couples there including Kevin and Jennifer who have a 5 month old girl. Seeing as only one of them was eating and the other was walking the baby, I offered to hold her so they could both sit down. Ungrateful baby (really I was looking out for her parents' happiness) starts to scream immediately causing them to make a quick exit. I was a big help!

Went to a medical alliance meeting/coffee Tuesday. I really want to know why people refuse to adjust their home's temperature when they have guests. I walked into the meeting 10 minutes after it started and it was sweltering! I decided to take matters into my own hands (lots and lots of hormones, remember) and adjusted the thermostat. The air was set at 80 degrees! [note: it was close to 90 outside.] Without a guilty thought, I cranked that WAY downward.

Maggie had her 4 year check up. She is still very tall for her age, though she has dropped from the 107th percentile to the 95th. She had to get three shots and was very concerned the blood would get on her dress. So she walked out holding it up exposing her Tinkerbell undies to the world. At least concentrating on that stopped the crying.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Hookie Football

Do you remember when I didn't win the Virginia Tech football tickets? Well there was a mix up with the game to which the Robs were supposed to go. To make it up to them, the people who donated the tickets gave them six rather than four tickets. Remembering how miffed I was, they were kind enough to ask Tim & myself to go with them (or they may have just been afraid of me!) So we spent the day in Blacksburg at the VA Tech vs. William and Mary game. It was a beautiful day!

We left the kids with Arlene and headed out to tailgate around 11. We had awesome parking - look how close we are to the stadium!

And great Club level tickets on the 50 yard line.

I wasn't sure if wearing the ticket around my neck was going to make me look like a huge dork but I soon found out that pass got us into a lounge with comfy chairs, its own snack bar and air conditioning! Here is Tim lounging with our friend Susan who we ran into there.

Now many of you who know me may be wondering why the girl who went to 1 1/2 Michigan football games in her 3 years there would want to go to a game here. I have to tell you, college football is way better in the South! The game itself was a blowout, Tech was winning by a ridiculous margin by the end of the 1st quarter, but the weather can't be beat! And we weren't in the student section. At Michigan, I basically got to watch some guy's back because no one sat down and froze my arse off. Clearly my enjoyment of the game is more about the amenities than the game itself!

Later we returned home to host our monthly couples poker game. Tim came in 1st and I came in 3rd. Not bad considering we started drinking wine at 11am.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Happy (Faux) Birthday Maggie!

Her real birthday isn't until tomorrow, but as I know we will be way to busy for me to blog, I'll post for Maggie today. She dressed in her birthday dress, naturally, and took cupcakes to school which were a big hit! Admittedly, they were store bought cupcakes but I'm telling you, Kroger makes some fine cake! We had some (more) cake this afternoon at home and were happy to have unplanned visitors, Kirsten & her kids. Tim was at work and her husband was at a golf outing so she called to see if we wanted to go out for ice cream. But we had birthday cake, which is a pretty good draw.

At the risk of sounding amazingly repetitive, I cannot believe Maggie is turning four. So I have to take a brief trip down memory lane.....Maggie was the best baby. By that I mean she slept all the time. I was very much trying to institute the Babywise eat, wake sleep cycle but she would only adopt eat and sleep. We have many, many photos of her asleep everywhere:

Including photo shoots:
And she was the cutest little thing (in my completely unbiased opinion) with big cheeks and nice fat appendages.

She may have been too good, leading us to take a laissez-faire approach to birth control and bringing her brother into the world when she was only 16 months old.

But in spite of being sandwiched in the dreaded middle child position, Maggie is still such a sweetie.

She has had to grow up faster than her brother, who gets to be the baby. And she gets treated as if she is older because she is so darn tall. Seriously, the gal towers.

This kid is a month older than her!

But Maggie has the biggest heart around. She loves unconditionally and is hurt so easily.

I asked her if she would stop growing and stay my little girl forever. She told me "I have to get big so I can get things off the top shelf for you." I hope I do well by you Maggie. Happy birthday. I love you.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Trips to the Men's Bathroom and Oven Fires

Should be proofing Crystal Spring Directory. Instead, blogging! I managed to get tons done today including buying the supplies for our supper club invitations. If they turn out as planned, they should be so fun. I don't want to get ahead of myself, but this may be the best idea I have (independently) come up with lately. Not being a super creative type, I am forced to rip off ideas from a local Martha Stewart type, JK. But this one is all me. Hope to have them done in the next few days....

Of course I did not get all my stuff done at work which means I have to go in after golf and miss lunch. I am more than a tad put out about this.

The girls went to tumbling tonight. They did much better according to their coach. Not that I would know. Spent the entire time chasing Eion in and out of the men's bathroom which was, mercifully, empty.

Got home at 7:15 and was starving. The kids ate at 5 but I had made myself and Tim a chicken curry casserole. I popped it in the oven and went to check the email. Returned to the kitchen to find smoke pouring out of the oven. Open oven to find it on fire. I had to postpone my dinner while the oven cooled (after I put out the fire) and bathe the kids. Finally at well after 8 I got to eat.

Tomorrow is Maggie's modified birthday. Her actual birthday is Saturday but Tim & I are going to Virginia Tech game. Not wanting her memory of her 4th birthday to be spending it with a babysitter, I decided we would just move it up a day. I think it will work out for everyone!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

I Love Fall

Fall is my favorite season. I love the crisp, bright weather. The summer haze that covers the mountains is gone leaving a clear view (as evidenced in this picture from last October.)

And of course every day of fall brings us one day closer to the greatest holiday of all, Halloween. (Seriously, I am a Halloween addict. I am the room Mom for Morrigan's class and have already started planning the party.) I genuinely like putting away all the well worn sundresses in favor of darker Autumn colors and heavier fabrics.

But this year my love of the season is marred by my children's unstoppable growth! Every pair of pants Morrigan, aka the girl with tremendously long legs, tries on are too short. The mind numbing pain of finding an outfit in the first place is surpassed only by having to then talk her out of said outfit and find a new one. All of Maggie's favorite dresses are way too short. She pleads yet I cannot set her loose on the world in these smocked mini-dresses! Eion too has experienced a growth spurt. All his pants are just a bit too short but the next size up is too long. Good news is the next week is supposed to be in the 80s so it is back to sundresses!

Overheard in the Locker Room Today

Two women talking about people's stupid behavior: "Well that's the ignorancy of some folks." Indeed.

Back to School Night

Last night was Maggie's "Back to School Night" at Fishburn. I really wasn't planning on going because I had met the teachers many times before (they were Morrigan's pre-K teachers) and I was up to speed on what was going on in the class. But they sent home a note that the kids had a "special surprise" and Maggie was all geared up about it. She told me they had a special surprise but said she wasn't going to talk about the cupcakes. Well turns out the real surprise was there were no cupcakes! She mixed up the fact that she would be bringing them on Friday for her birthday with the BTSN surprise, which, by the way, was a bear they colored. I think they will have to evaluate what constitutes as a "special surprise!" But the girls had fun. Morrigan told one of her old teachers, Mrs. Randolph, "You'll always be in my heart!" Love it. Sucking up even after she is out of the class.

Only other news here is Tim & I are going to Vegas! We secured babysitting (thanks Mom & Dad) and booked our trip last night. We are staying at the Wynn in October for 3 nights. The weather should be great, highs around 80. We did discuss that we may be turning into those people who only go to Vegas on vacation. You know the ones, the go to Las Vegas every year and you think "Why don't they go anywhere else?" Well, that's us! But we decided that life was too short to plan our vacations to suit what others think we should do. And at this point in our lives, we have limited time to get away and can't get to other places we want to go like Italy or South America or really anywhere that is more than a few hours plane ride away. One day we'll branch out. I did have to remind Tim of a quote that is on a friend's blog: "Life is a book and those who do not travel only read one page." His response "Well then we've read two and the second is Vegas baby!"

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Shop Victoriously!

Today, I am in love with three stores, the first of which is TJMaxx. Now the Maxx and I have had a love-hate relationship for some time now. Hate because there are times when you spend forever trying things on and digging through racks only to leave empty-handed or you just know the right dress is lurking in there but you have three kids with you and don't have the time to devote to such a hunt so you end up at that pricey boutique (because, seriously, you need a new dress for that party) spending 4 times as much. But then there are the love days, when you walk in and find 6 awesome new tops none of which is over $16.

Then there is the Gap. I love them for their "Curvy" cut pants. I have never found pants that fit me so well. Unfortunately not usually on sale in my size but I will forgive them.

The last store befitting of my affection is Old Navy. They have either cut their sizes in a more generous fashion (likely) or I have magically become a size 4 (not so likely)! Whatever. I should be above this type of trickery playing to my vanity. I should know that the number doesn't matter. Guess what, I am not. I may float all day for fitting into that 4. When I got to ask the dressing room attendant if she could find me a 4 since that 6 was too big, I was on top of the world. Shallow, shallow, I know. Give me my moment. I am Self Aware and realize everything else in my closet is more likely an 8 as does anyone who looks at me. But admit it, in your heart of hearts, you like those smaller numbers too.

Last shopping bit for today...I upgraded my dying cell phone, joined the 2000's and got a Motorola Razr. My old phone, in addition to functioning so poorly I was in danger of becoming a bad horror film star ["Quick, the flesh eating zombies are after us! Call the police. Nooooo! My phone looked fully charged but it is dead!"], the darn thing was a dinosaur. When I called US Cellular to ask about what they had available, the help desk person's response was "Wow! You really do have an old phone. I didn't think these were in service anymore." So in three to five business days, I will have a camera phone that holds 1,000 contacts (note to self: make more friends) and has bluetooth technology, whatever that is.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Rules By Which to Live

Shiny Purple Spandex was at the gym today. She is there most Sundays decked out, as her handle would imply, in the same shiny purple spandex. Now I have nothing against frequent use of an outfit. I really only have a couple of workout clothes that I rotate. Surely, someone is telling their spouse, "I saw Navy Blue Shorts with Maroon Top today at the gym." But for the record, no one should wear shiny purple spandex, ever. Now I realize I would not look good in it either but that is my point. So if you are considering SPS as a fashion choice, you do not even have to try it on. You do not look good in it.

Love is in the Air

Today is shaping up to be a long day. Tim is at work for a 12 hour shift and Eion was in time out by 7:19 for pinching his sister (He got up at 7:04 - 15 minutes of peace and then it was on.) Luckily, I am not quite as tired as yesterday. We went to dinner at Tony Pope's with Jennifer, Mark, Kirsten and Tom. They have wonderful "small plates" there which are technically appetizers but are big enough for a small meal. I had the saffron shrimp risotto which was really good. We had a little private room and as this group was about as far as you can get from reserved, lots of great conversation. From there we headed over to a cocktail party at April & Greg's which was so much fun! Great food, perfect weather and lots of fun people. I was disappointed that we had to leave early but was happy we had when the alarm went off this morning.

Morrigan has apparently found herself a man. My friend Kris told me last night that Morrigan told her son Mark they he was going to be her boyfriend. He has eyes for Shelby but will bend to Morrigan's will as "She told me I had to be her boyfriend." Not a bad couple anyway:
Maggie seems to have many suitors, one of the advantages of being in a class with so few girls. Apparently, she and friend Jack:
arranged a wedding in the gym playland last week complete with a limousine. What the hell, I never had a limo!

The kids are psyched that Before the Dinosaurs taped last night (which they are watching as we speak.) Morrigan is obsessed with two types of shows: prehistoric/dinosaur shows and survival shows like Man Vs. Wild and Survivorman. I guess they are relatively educational and certainly allow me to find out all kinds of great things. We'll be driving down the road and Morrigan will bust out with: "Coconuts can save you with their milk but they can kill if they fall on your head" or "Hypothermia is a real danger in Iceland" or one of my personal favorites "Did you know you can drink your own pee?"

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Fun Friday

Yesterday was a great day. Do you ever have those days where you just feel on top of the world? That was my day. I went to my second golf lesson where I did really well. Now this is basically unprecedented. I never do well at a new sport. I am one of those people who has to work very hard at athletic endeavours. No natural talent here. But (at least yesterday) I felt like the instructions made sense and when I followed them, it worked!

After the lesson, I went to lunch with fellow golfer Hayden, who is the wife of one of Tim's coworkers. We had a nice lunch at Ukrops - at my request since I had to get some groceries afterwards. I was a bit embarrassed that when we got our salads weighed, my was easily 50% heavier. But what can I say - I was hungry!

When the kids went down for their naps I worked on the school directory. I am almost done and am on track to make more than the $250 I am expected to produce.

Last night we went to the RAMA "Welcome to the Valley" cocktail party. Here I am with friend Mark:

In spite of my slightly crazy eyes and very large grin which are almost always signs I have had a glass too many, I had not even had a drink here. I think the crazed expression comes from the fact that the photographer of said picture asked to borrow my camera which I had brought for personal use and then right before she took this, fussed me out because the batteries were low. I have a great suggestion, bring your own camera! But the party was great fun and we were among the last people there. We were talking to Damon and Karen, both ER doc who recently started working with Tim. I had met Karen before but not Damon and I was glad to finally do so as Tim had told me all about him. We ended up back at there house where I did have that glass too many (sorry no pictures) but had some great conversation. Karen grew up here and regaled me with tales of our neighbors in their youth. It's always fun to find out that Mom I know from Junior League who is always decked out in Lilly Pulitzer used to get in trouble for fighting!

We were out too late & were tired this morning but Tim only has to work 8 hours. I made it too the gym with the little ones, albeit a little later than planned. With of course, a post workout double cheeseburger in plans all along.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Maggie's Birthday Part II

Now for all the details on yesterday's soiree! We had a joint birthday party with Maggie's friend Will (they were born 11 day apart.) It was at Pump It Up - one of those places with all the bounce houses. I can't say I am a huge fan. They are loud and overstimulating. But we gave them a few choices and this was the selected locale. Overall, things went well. We made a few mistakes. The main one being we brought Eion. He was missing his nap and spent the majority of the party like this:

But one of those things I dislike about Pump It Up worked to my advantage. It was so loud his crying didn't disturb the party! I felt bad for the guy. On the way there he told us he was sleepy
but by then we were committed. We figured with all the entertainment and cake etc. that he would rally. We figured wrong.

But Maggie had a good time. We got her the wedding bride cake that she had repeatedly requested for a full calendar year:

A friend of mine bought a similar cake for her daughter. I agree with her assessment of the cake: pretty but not as tasty as other cake. Contrary to what Tim thought, the barbie is a whole doll inside the cake. Imagine if she were not - the nightmares of amputee barbie!

Lots of wild jumping and sliding:

I think both Maggie & Will were more worn out from school than we anticipated and the excitement took its toll - there were tears here and there. But I am coming to find that is pretty common at little kids' birthday parties. That perfect storm of sugar, excitement, and a sense of birthday entitlement. In the end, I think she had fun and has already started planning for next year!

Maggie's Birthday Party Part I

I know there are those of you (Mom) eagerly awaiting the report from Maggie's 4th birthday party. Don't have time for a full report out this morning but in brief: we survived the bounce house party, Maggie got her "wedding bride cake," both the birthday boy and girl ended up in tears at one point. Success! More to follow.....

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Ruining Tim's Image

After the kids went to bed last night, Tim finally got to regale me with tales from his boys' weekend in Dallas. Sounds like they had a good time, and surprisingly it did not involve a strip club, but when I asked him if he would go next year he said [note: image ruining starts now] "I just kept thinking how I wished you were there." I love this man.

I Hate Meetings

Now that is a sweet picture! Really, can you beat huge hair and acid wash jeans? I haven't finished my gathering from all my old scrapbooks, but this was a favorite so far. And I remember this night specifically. It was my birthday (1988) and we were headed out to a party a friend was having. We spent allot of time getting ready so we would look extra good! And it shows.

But back to 2007....Those of you who know me know that I end up doing quite a bit of volunteer work every year (beats real work.) I generally am involved in PTA, Medical Alliance (RAMA), Junior League and whatever else I get roped into. I like the work but I hate the meetings. This morning I hosted a RAMA board meeting. [I am chairing our fundraiser, Book and Author Dinner this year.] As it was at my house, I was trapped at this interminable meeting, missing both tennis and the gym. And why do I hate these kinds of meetings (other than because I miss tennis)? Because things like this happen. B&A was approached by a local bookstore to do our book sales the night of the dinner. We decided to stick with our current bookseller for many reasons and the issue was closed. Or so I thought. I was asked to "bring the group up to speed" which led to discussions on the pros and cons of switching booksellers, our history with this bookstore blah blah blah. The issue is closed bitches! That is why you have committees - to deal with things so you don't have to have a giant round table on every topic!

But I finally escaped and went to work where I was able to finish all my tasks for the week. When I came home I found a plastic container with cupcakes next to the mail. I asked Tim who brought them. He said they were just in the mailbox and that I really shouldn't eat mystery food. But they just looked so darn tasty! I knew it was a container in which I gave someone cookies so I started calling around to find the baker. Luckily, I found her on the second call. Thanks Olivia! They were so good I ate two!

Tomorrow is Maggie-Pie's birthday party at Pump It Up, a local place with a bunch of those inflatable bounce houses. This is a location I generally drop off at rather than stay for the party because it is so insane. Tomorrow, karma bitch slaps me as I will be responsible for 25 screaming 3 and 4 year olds. Pray for me.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I Love Carpools!

A friend, Browning, with a little girl in Eion's class asked me to carpool. I pick up Anne Marie in the morning and she brings Eion home in the afternoon. After two days, I have to say I love it! Eion is really cute when Anne Marie gets in the car and says "Hi Anne Marie!" which is a mouthful for the little guy. Still not much of a talker.

Morrigan really wants to be in Brownies. I looked into it but there is only one troop in her school and it is mostly 2nd graders. But I thought since she really has her heart set on it, maybe we can get a few girls together once a month and have a very informal troop. So I emailed friends with girls the same age and told them about our plans. I told her about my plans and she was excited. When I picked her up today, she told me about how she had recruited all the girls in her class. Hmmm...this could get scary!

Sunday, September 09, 2007

You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet

Dear friend Jennifer K has been greatly enjoying [read: laughing at] the hair in my vintage pictures. It really got me in a nostalgic mood and I started to leaf through some old photo albums (I am a long time scrapbooker!) All I have to say is the ones I have posted are just the tip of a completely awesome collection of bad hair and outfit moments. If I have the energy after these kiddos go to bed, I may dig some out. But in the meantime, you can enjoy this fest of very large hair circa 1989. [I am the third from the left in the top row.]

I Miss the Pool

I really miss the pool on days like today. [I was keenly aware of just how much we enjoyed the pool when I opened a jaw-droppingly high Club bill yesterday. Probably better for the bottom line that pool season is over.] It is 91 degrees out so the kids really don't want to go to the park. We have already used up our 2 hours at the gym and I have had it with board games. Morrigan got the High School Musical game for her birthday. What I did not realize until we were playing was that it was a HSM trivia game. While I have heard it in the background any number of times, I have not committed the dance moves or songs to heart. In short, I totally sucked at the game. And while you would think repeated viewings would have burned the details into my children's heads they are not much better than me. It was a very long game.

So thinking back to the sweet days when the pool was still open...we pass a convenience store, the Z Mart, on the way - Club is in the hood. This past year the owner, Zaid (hence the Z) was shot and killed. I believe it was a robbery. It was pretty shocking but I am not sure it was more shocking than driving by and seeing this:

The previous sign was replaced with this new one, complete with picture of dead owner staring down at you! His brother took over the store after Zaid's untimely demise and it appears has chosen to memorialize him with this incredibly creepy sign. Every time I see it I think of Zaid saying "I know who killed me. Vengeance will be mine!"

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Timmy Does Dallas

Tim is in Dallas this weekend with the guys going to a Cowboys football game. One of our friends has season tickets (really who in Roanoke doesn't have Cowboys season tickets) and organizes a trip like this every year. Letting Tim go seemed like such a good idea when I said yes, I am being repaid in days at a spa in Utah, but now that the weekend is here, I am not so sure. But to be completely honest, I am alone with the kids half the weekends anyway due to that pesky job of Tim's so it hasn't been that different from most weekends.

Today the girls had a soccer "game" - really more a series of scrimmages and then Morrigan had ballet. It wasn't my turn to drive for soccer so Eion and I hit the gym. We had to really rush to get to ballet and were still 15 minutes late. But I thought, fortunately, soccer is only until the end of October so we won't have to do the back to back activities too often. When we got to ballet, we found out they changed the time putting it in direct conflict with soccer. So there I am trying to work out what we will do with the dance teacher and Eion cranks one off. Pause to change diaper, back to negotiations. Looks like Morrigan will just start in November when soccer is over. As much as I want her to do both, this will actually work out better so we don't have to rush so much on Saturdays.

This afternoon there was a neighborhood block party down by the fire station. I had the foresight to bring a babysitter to help manage the kids. She arrived in some completely inappropriate bootery but that was her problem! We packed up some drinks and snacks and off we went. As it turns out, we were woefully unprepared. It was about a billion degrees out and shade was at a premium. Enter Tom & Kirsten, master planners, who had a shade tent and were kind enough to take us in! Tom found out I had no adult beverages with me and questioned my Irish heritage. I soon found myself with a Fresca and vodka (which was very tasty) in hand. My plan was to last long as we could without serious meltdown.

Maggie really did the best of the three. But then again, she was getting gifts from admirers!

I tried to keep Eion cool with ice cream:

Let me tell you how that shirt was covered with orange push up just minutes later (and it was a first wearing to boot.) He commenced to screaming "Shirt off!" and I promptly gave in. Shoes were off soon after and he ran around like a little hillbilly. His nose was running too so he was just gross. And mine all mine. We were there for about an hour and a half which was longer than I thought we would make it. Kirsten invited me over for pizza and drinks and I hoped to escape the kids but my sitter had other plans :( But it was a fun event. Hopefully, Tim will be around for it next year and it will be a bit less hot!

Friday, September 07, 2007

My Favorite Morrigan Moments This Week

We are at the store buying Morrigan tap shoes (the ballet class is a combo with tap) and a little boys sits down next to her. She asks him if he was buying dance shoes. His response was "Boys don't do ballet." A nice PC mom says to them "But of course boys can dance ballet. They can do any kind of dance they want." Morrigan looks at her and says "Not at my house they don't."

We have been picking out the girls clothes the night before school. It gives us one less thing about which to fight in the morning. But this morning Morrigan was dismayed that the gown she picked out last night would get dirty in art class and she wanted to wear pants. So I told her to pick out anything she wanted. Tim told me, "You know she is going to pick out that skirt that is too short and the shirt that looks like someone got a hold of a Bedazzler." At which point Morrigan reentered the room in that exact outfit.

And of course there is tonight. The kids were winding down with some tv and I was working on the school directory which I foolishly volunteered to do. I went in and told the girls I loved them. Maggie responded that she loved me too. Morrigan not so much:

Morrigan: "Well I think you are mean."
Me: "Oh really. What did I do that was mean?"
Morrigan: "You didn't let us watch tv this morning and you do mean stuff like that every day."

At which point I decided to show her how mean I could be. The tv was turned off & we cleaned up toys and went to bed. Crying, she told me she wants to leave this house. I volunteered to help her pack.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

The Cheerleading Underworld

Well we have done it. We have entered the fascinating and the somewhat frightening world of cheerleading. Morrigan's stated life ambition is to be a cheerleader. Now while I think she might aim just a bit higher, I was thrilled she was showing interest in a physical endeavour. She's what you might call an indoor girl. I researched and the "cheer teams" seemed downright terrifying. Interstate travel for competitions, large cash outlay for among other things, makeup?!? But one program had classes that were strictly tumbling - cartwheels, handsprings etc. I had entertained the idea of gymnastics but Morrigan was scared of the balance beam and uneven bars. The tumbling class seemed to offer the floor work without the elements of which she was afraid. Maggie, never wanting to be left behind, wanted to go too.

So off we go to the gym today for our first class. Maggie did great. She was bouncing around and happy. Morrigan was in tears because she was still afraid of doing an assisted handstand and of failure. With some positive reinforcement: "All that matters is you have a good time. Just try your best etc." she got with the program by the end of the hour. One of their plans to get Morrigan to try a handstand was to have me do one. Great plan I told them but I am wearing a skirt!

They were trying to recruit Maggie for the "bitty cheer" team. The coach said she had that special something (which I am guessing is actually a Mom with a checkbook.) Slow down! Though she really was enthusiastic, I think we will hang back on the travel team. Then the coach went on to tell me about the Moms cheer team. Yeah. That is just not going to happen.

Now I am sure the majority of you are wondering what is up with the picture for this post. As I didn't take any photos today, I offer you a vintage track circa 1989. It's me (on the right) and my cousin Kelly. We were in the parade celebrating the bicentennial of the French Revolution dressed, clearly, as cheerleaders! And before you have a chance to email and mention it, JK, I know my hair is completely awesome! I love the eighties!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

School Days

All the kids were back to school today! Maggie was the first to depart on the bus to pre-k at Fishburn Park. She darted off so fast I had to recruit the bus driver to stop her for a picture. She came home all smiles and said she had a great day!

Morrigan was the next to go starting 1st grade at Crystal Spring. (Pictured here with classmate Mark.)

Note it is "gowns" all around. They picked them out! Eion was the last to be dropped off at 1st Pres. He literally ran into the building, cut in front of people on the stairs and walked right to his classroom.
His teacher said he had a great day. He was worn out but seemed happy. When he got home, he grabbed his cars "Kojak" and "Blue" (he named them) and it was off to naptime.

What did I do with my free time? Went to work. So boring but so true.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Soccer Practice

I love sports for the very young. For sheer comedic value, they can't be beat. I sent the girls upstairs to get ready for soccer. They came down dressed like this:

"Hmmm, soccer practice. What will I wear? Oh yes! My pink dress."

They divided up the kids into groups of six for different drills and scrimmages.The gals were generally listening to their coaches and trying their best but I am still convinced Maggie's team will be named Legion of Nimrods. In a three on three game, Maggie's team had the ball. The little boy with it ran towards the goal. Maggie and her friend Will could not be bothered to help as they were busy hugging. Not that the other team made any attempt all to stop him. But perhaps it was a sage maneuver on their part as he ran right past the unguarded goal and couldn't get it in.

Who won? We'll never know as Maggie had to use the potty. Now I am smart enough that I had her go before we left the house but it was no use. So off we go to the port a potties that are about a half mile away round trip. When we got there, she said she didn't want to go in because they were stinky. Perfect.