At Huckdoll's suggestion:
Monday, June 30, 2008
I am becoming a blogging junkie. This stuff is addicting. And comments are like crack. They feel soooo good! But all too soon that high wears off and you're scrounging for more. In the near future I can see myself in the fetal position lying on the cold tile floor with the shakes.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
The countdown has begun. In 5 short days The weasels are going on vacation, without Mom or Dad!!!!!!!!! They are headed to their grandparents farm for a week of country livin'.
My in-laws are pretty great in this regard. They love spending extended time with the kids without pesky parents getting in the way of the fun. They can break a good many of Mom's rules, 'cause Mom's not here'. And that's okay, they're on vacation. They will have lots of fun avoiding walking in cow pies, chicken scat and horse manure. They will play with (by this I mean chase down and torture) dogs and cats. Walk through the woods and the creek until they become mud caked specimens not fit for living indoors. They will eat blueberry pie for breakfast. They can feed the pig and collect the chicken eggs. But most of all, they are looking forward to driving the tractor.
Being little patch lawn suburban kids, the farm life is an excellent adventure vacation for them. Like the people from New York City who pay thousands of dollars to vacation working as a ranch hand in Montana (fools). Only this vacation for 5 consisting of 8 days and 7 nights at the luxurious Grandparents Farm Resort comes to a grand total of $0.00. But that's not even the best part.
The best part is I will have the house to myself!!! Hubby still has to go to work. He and I will have great quiet time together in the evenings and on the weekend. I will pick a day to meet him for lunch near the office. But during the days I shall be alone! In a nice quiet clean (that will be my 1st priority after they leave) house. A house that will stay clean for a whole week! That may not sound like anything too special to some people, but for me it's almost as good as a week on Waikiki Beach ( I said almost).
We have been in this house for 4 years now, and the longest that I have been alone in the house was for 4 hours one afternoon, and that only happened once. So I am very much looking forward to the serenity of it all. But first, I think I will have to tear off my clothes and run naked through the house, just because I can. IF the neighbors are lucky I will close the blinds first.
Don't get me wrong. I love summertime with the kids. But they can use a break from oppressive parent types who are just 'the man, trying to keep them down' and Mom and Dad need time to think up new chores for them to do and other ways to continue our oppression.
Friday, June 27, 2008
Our house is always chaos. But it is usually organized chaos. At least to some degree organized. With 5 kids and 2 pseudo-adults living here full time, that's really the best you could hope for. We also have managed to acquire a menagerie of pets. Two hamsters, three fire bellied toads, three cats and a housefly named 'Frankie'. All of the pets have proven themselves to be pretty useless but also fairly harmless.
At current we also have a dog as a house guest. A week and half ago a friend needed dog sitting for 3 days. She is still eating meals here and relieving herself in my yard. But we really don't mind. I will get a lot of of good blog posts out of the deal.
Now it's summertime and school's out. This is a great thing. I not only enjoy spending time with my kids, but summer is a lot easier than the school year. There are no lunches to make (it's survival of the fittest. If you can't find the pantry by now you'll never survive life in the real world), no homework to do and best of all a much more relaxed schedule. Thanks to this schedule I get my best summer perk of all. I can say 'YES'. Yes, your friend can come play, yes you can go play, yes you can have your friend sleep over. This pleases me. During the school year I am the Nazi Mom. No, no, no, do your homework, eat your dinner, no time to play, get in the car we are late for....insert sport here. Eat your breakfast, where's your papers, brush your teeth, don't use your toothbrush on the cat.......IT"S TIME TO GO!!!!!!!!
The downside to this summer free-for- all is that it's a free-for-all. Our home is constantly full of transients and could be confused for a homeless shelter. Complete with soup kitchen style meals. Trying to keep track of who's in, who's out, who's eating where and who is this kid eating out of the cats' dish.
When a neighbor can't find their child, they don't call 911 or the FBI, they call my house. It is now 8:30 am on a Saturday and surprisingly I am only stepping over 1 extra transient in the living room. By this afternoon, this place will look like we are having a frat party Animal House style. Very often Hubby (mister weasel himself) will be helping to serve a meal, tie shoes etc. When he makes eye contact with a child he suddenly realizes is not his own. "Who are you? What are you doing in my home? Did you pay the cover charge?"
I would actually make a fortune if I put a popsicle vending machine in my garage, or save a fortune if I put a padlock on my freezer. Putting in a revolving would also be money saving and how much fun would it be to let the dog out.
We all know that the traditional gift for the 1st anniversary is paper, the 10th is diamonds, 25th is silver, and 50th is gold. But last night Hubby and I discovered that the 15th is candy. For that is what was gifted to us from the bushweasels. Gobs and gobs and gobs of candy. Enough candy that i suspect they knocked off the Easter Bunny. They must not have held up a bank, for no lollipops were involved.
It was very sweet of them, pun intended. Considering they never ever did a damn thing for our anniversary before. After we've fed and bathed them for years, the little ingrates. We were very grateful, touched and naive. This was actually a bushweasel ambush disguised as an act of loving generosity.
The gifts were numerous and painstakingly individually gift wrapped. There was a bag of carmel creams, a Hershey Bar with almonds, A 3 Musketeers, a Kit Kat, An Almond Joy, 2 Cow Tails, 2 boxes of Bertie Bott's every flavor beans, 2 packages of Gummi Slugs, a box of Andies Candies, a large box of Jelly Bellies and a pound bag of Hershey's Kissables.
When the time came, we opened our presents with delight. We were amused by the thought that went into them. At which point a small voice announces "It's for sharing!". That translates from weaselesse into "it's our candy and you can have some". I'm sure they were thinking "the suckers fell for it! What a couple of dumb asses! That was too easy, we need to a challenge next time". There was only time for laughter and no arguing because Hubby and I were running late for our night of romance.
Now on to our hot date. Hubby was tired and flustered after a busy day at work and rushing home in time to make our date. His spirits were good, but he could have used some spirits. My spirits were flying high, as I was out of the house and the kids were having frozen pizza for dinner. We arrived at the fundraiser and did the social hellos and the meet and great. Eventually finding our way to the table of regulars that we choose to call friends.
Soon the contest would begin. 12 men, some disguised as women and children, 1 hour, and pasta with meatballs in 2 lb. bowls. Gentlemen, start your gorging! The race was on who for who could stuff their pie hole the most. This was the 1st eating contest that I have ever attended. Surprisingly, it wasn't nearly as disgusting as I had imagined. Or maybe I am just too used to sitting down to a table where eating habits aren't nearly as good as they should be.
In the end, Hubby did just fine. He didn't win, not even close, but did manage to shove in 3 1/2 lbs. of pasta and 4 meatballs. The overall winner inhaled 5 lbs. 7 oz of the stuff with who knows how many meatballs. The best part was how bloated and ill the guys felt after it was over. Ha! revenge! Now you know what it feels like after eating 1/2 ounce of rice when your 9 months pregnant! Only we can't stop eating once we feel that way, the urge is too strong and the food too plentiful. Hubby even commented that had I been pregnant I could have made the winner look like a lightweight.
We went home and proceeded to bed where our evening culminated with a series of moans and groans. All coming from the other side of the bed as hubby tried to digest all that pasta.
I think this actually counts as a very romantic evening together. If you look at the facts, we had an Italian Dinner at a nice restaurant, gifts of chocolates and moaning and groaning in the bed after we returned home.
You should have it this good!
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Okay, so I have a friend who is a single mom. We will call her Megan. She hadn't dated at all since her divorce a few years ago. Lots of her friends, including me, encouraged her to 'get out there'. So she went to e-harmony's website and filled out the profile stuff (about an hours worth) and when she got to the dreaded screen of time to pay she froze and saved it as it was. Every time we talked (daily) she hadn't done anything more.
So one afternoon Megan came over early to hang for a while before she and I were going out to dinner. Hubby would be home to feed the kids and all was good. We could go and have a nice Mom's night out. There would be no cutting up food for other people. Spilled drinks were not a worry. A peaceful meal would soon be at hand.
But before Hubby came home, I asked her about e-harmony again. And of course nothing had changed. So I put my foot down, like any good Mom would, and said that you are doing it right now! "I didn't bring my credit card" she protested. "So you will use mine and pay me later" I replied. And so it was done.
When we went to dinner, my cell phone battery was dying. So, I left it in the car. No big deal right?
Meanwhile at home, Hubby noticing that the are quiet decides that now is the perfect time to balance our checking account online. He does so only to find an e-harmony withdraw!!!! He tries to call me and ask about this expense, but my phone is in the car! Megan and I are enjoying girl time without the kids and taking our sweet time. No need to hurry, we are not going home until the kids are in bed asleep. "Yes waiter, we'll have another round"
Hubby is at home now frantically trying to call me. I won't answer, so I must be on a date with someone I met on e-harmony. She would never do that he thinks to himself. But the evidence is right in front of him and I won't answer my phone.
Eventually, Hubby calls Megan's Phone, to check in with my alibi, and ask if I am there. Of course I am, we are still finishing a round. Hubby sighs relief. Megan passes the phone and I almost wet my pants laughing about the whole situation.
Hubby feels silly after I explain and he begins laughing with Megan and I. When I get out to the car I have 16 missed calls, and the laughter starts all over again.
Okay, so in this family, we (read I), have a twisted sense of humor. Practical jokes are an art form around here. Whoopi cushions are for amateurs. So as the story goes, you will need some background info. Hubby and I are not DIY types. In fact, we are completely incompetent at anything pertaining to home maintenance, both inside and out. However, we try, and with tips and advice from friends and neighbors, our home is still standing. Some of our neighbors are lawn gods. Luckily, they are also friendly and helpful when we have needs (probably to protect the values of their own homes).
So anyway, we had a summer of drought conditions with severe watering restrictions. We also had a service cutting the lawn, so we didn't have to. The grass was brown and dying. The lawn had a total lack of TLC as far as any type of weeding or fertilizing. Hubby was convinced that it was the fault of the lawn mowing service.
The next spring he decided to become a lawn god, because "real men mow their own lawns." He cancelled the service and bought a mower. I, being the loving wife that I am, resisted arguing that the lawn needed more care than just mowing. So while he is at work I confer with the man who has nicest lawn in town (he lives across the street) as to how to care for the lawn. Said neighbor, who I will refer to as "Bill" gave day to day, step by step instructions of what to buy, how to apply, etc.
Next thing you know our lawn is green and plush. Friends, who also happen to be neighbors , are accusing us of spray painting the lawn green (it would be much more our style). However, the same group knows that I am treating the lawn without Hubby's knowledge. Hubby comes home from work and proudly, hands on hips, to surveys the lawn each day. With great pride, he tells everyone who will listen that he is cutting his own grass. They smile (with a chuckle under their breath) and state what a good job he is doing.
In the mean time, I am exhausted. The lawn needed so much TLC that it is wearing me out, so I hire Scott's to finish out the season. The routine continues and Hubby grows prouder of his lawn and hard work by the day. I just keep telling him how awesome his mad lawn skills are. All those in on the joke keep complimenting him during his nightly surveys. This persists for about 3 months.
At this point, I get busted due to my own stupidity. One night he came home from work, started to survey his masterpiece, and spotted the lawn stake left by Scott's that day. I, because of thoughtlessness, or laziness, or whatever didn't notice it and hence, didn't remove it. Stupid! It had all been going so well. I had been laughing to myself all summer. Now the fun was over. He was ticked, but only for a few days, before he started laughing too. The next year he hired Scott's again. And so it goes on.
Today marks the 15th Anniversary of the day I should have been declared 'mentally incompetent'. Of course, I jest. But it is our wedding anniversary and hence the anniversary of when this insanity that is my current life started. It's kinda neat that I can track down to the day and hour we jumped off that cliff, caution to the wind, to start our life together into the unknown abyss of marriage and family. Of course we knew it all and had all all the answers (what a couple of morons!). Life proved to us that we didn't know anything, yet we managed to scuttle through to this point anyway and it's proven to be a hell of a fun ride. Better than anything Disney or Universal engineers could come up with. The drops are deeper and scarier than anything 'the happiest place on earth' would dare to put in their park. And the laughs and good times are better than any comedy show could come up with.
In 15 years we have managed to live in 3 different sates ( once we get x amount of parking tickets we are politely asked to leave), 5 different apartments, 2 different homes, 2 dogs, 5 cats, numerous hamsters(more on that later) , 3 toads and 6 bushweasels.
But anyway, back to the title of this post. I have a decorative sign hanging above the cabinets in the kitchen that states "All Because Two People Fell in Love". When I saw this at the Bed, Bath and Beyond I started to howl with laughter in the isle of the store. My children were mortified, but that is part of the joys of parenthood. The sign was perfect! It was sweet and sentimental, but also tongue in cheek. On the best days I can point to that sign as a symbol of the love in our home. On the days that life and or the children are out of control I can point to that sign and laugh out loud knowing the root cause of the insanity.
But today I can look at that sign in both lights. As 3 bushweasels and 1 weasel friend are snoring and drooling in my living room after a sleep over with a late night, a house that is trashed from all the fun they had and 3 cats extremely suspicious of an overly friendly dog (who is also a house guest,and was supposed to go home a week ago, more on that later) and the smallest bushweasel (4 years) who wants to make them all best friends.
Hubby went to work early, in order to come home early and celebrate our anniversary in style. Tonight should prove to be a special night of romance, as we've made special plans. To celebrate 15 years of marital bliss we will be attending a fundraiser for Sudden Infant Death Services of Illinois, to raise money for a worthy cause by Hubby participating in a spaghetti eating contest! Italian dinners are romantic, right? If you would like to donate at any time see their website, www.sidsillinois.org .
All in all, life is grand and after 15 years I couldn't imagine any other life that would have been better. Life without the weasels or Hubby to do this with me doesn't sound like anything better than the Dumbo ride at Disney.
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Way back when the eldest was two, things were a lot different. There were no laptops at our house. For that matter, there wasn't an X-Box, a DVD player, or even meat. There weren't any extras. We struggled like most young couples do. The one prized possession that I did have was an expensive lipstick ($25, I think). It was a gift from a sweet lady that I used to work for. Way more than I would pay for a lipstick, even today.
Well anyway, at the time, Hubby was out of work. So we switched roles, and I went out to work at a miserable job (when I say miserable I actually mean "sin dipped in misery"), and he stayed home with our toddler. All seemed to be going smooth enough when I wasn't at home. For a few days, I actually thought Hubby was competent at this parenting thing. Then I woke up.
I came home after my shift at the Gates of Hell and low and behold Hubby is watching Barney all by himself. "Where's your daughter?" I ask. His answer is a stare as empty as my bank account. I wander through our small apartment and discover our eldest in the bathroom (note, she wasn't potty trained yet) with an empty tube of the prized lipstick, the former contents covering the counter, mirror, bathtub, walls, carpeting (yes, carpet in the bathroom of this apartment. I told you we were struggling!!!), cabinets and her face and ears. This was the angriest I had been at her up to this point in her short life (as the years passed, that would change). I then exited the bathroom to get a grip on myself, at which point loving, caring, sweet Hubby steps up and says "You go relax, I'll handle this" with all the righteous fury of a disciplinary dad. I (the fool) was relieved that he would take care of it as I could have hurt that child (yeah, it's just a lipstick, but it was my one thing!).
From the living room, a mere 7 steps away, I hear "Young lady, what do you think your doing?" with Dad-style force. I am confident that Said Child will be scrubbing with a toothbrush at the hardened age of two. I'm thinking, "You go, Hubby!!!." The scene did not play out as I had imagined. I turn to look and see a reddish-brown wax-covered toddler approach Hubby, arms extended, with her pouty lips and big blue-green eyes, professing "I wuv you, Daddy." Hubby then takes her into his arms, sapping "It's okay Princess, I love you too." What a sucker!
That was the moment I knew I was sunk! Discipline was gonna be a Mom thing. Dad's a pushover.
The bushweasels can smell weakness like dogs smell fear. They prey on it every time Mom's not home. That's why when Hubby found another job, I never left the house for work again.
This is as good a place as any to get started. Weasel is short for "bushweasel." What's a bushweasel, you ask? Well how silly of you to not know! Or at least that's the reaction I recieved from my eldest (now a teen) when she was 3. One day, she came home form preschool and announced that she was a bushweasel, then proceeded to explain to her obviously intellectually deficient mother (ever been talked down to by a 3 year old?) what a bushweasel is:
Bushweasel: n; a weasel that hides in the bushes and jumps out to attack you when you least expect it.
Hence the phrase 'bush weasel' was coined. Ever since then, adult child in the house (who will be referred to as Hubby) and I have affectionately referred to our children as "the bushweasels." And that makes me the Weaselmomma.
We have since found out that these sneaky little creatures of night attack in many ways, both expected and not. They often work as a pack, similar to wolves, but with smaller teeth, and will try to separate their prey (Mom and Dad) from the security of the herd. Overall, they are sweet little cuddly creatures. In theory, they make good house pets and companions, but in reality they should be cared for only by professionals. Unfortunately for them, Hubby and I are there caretakers.