Thursday, January 31, 2008

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Inside the Over-Reactor's Studio

Guys, this was so fun. Thanks for coming through for me. And the Oscar goes to...

Phoenix wanted to know...

1. Favorite Book of all time?
Such a hard question. Recently? I've read all the Harry Potters with varying degrees of enjoyment but most enjoy sharing the thoughts, and ideas, and messages with my nieces. I liked DaVinci Code by liked Angels and Demons much better. I was thinking about all the Judy Blumes that I read as an adolescent and how really, really great they were.

Then I came up with Brave New World by Aldous Huxley. It was assigned reading my sophomore year in high school and it's stayed with me to this day. It's a sort of pre-Orwellian look at the future in an engineered society but with British humor and insight.

2. What the heck are your kids names?
HRH is His Royal Highness. That pseudonym was easy because he was the first grandchild born on Andy's side of the family who actually lived in this state. He is the second coming in the eyes of my MIL and SIL. Not such a bad thing. Except when he starts to believe his own press - or worse, when I do. RC is for Roger Clemens. Because he throws. EVERYTHING. I would have used Monkey but it was already taken. I think about changing RC's pseudonym but then find myself using it in emails to people I know IRL.

3. What made you want to blog?
Desperation. I stopped working (for money) in October of 2006. By March I was going insane. I joined the gym for sanity and yoga. One day, HRH had a complete meltdown in the parking lot of the gym and I found myself yelling back like a four-year-old; "It's not fair!" and I realized I needed to find a few like-minded people to rant to and have rant back. I think it's worked out pretty well.

4. How did you meet your husband?
Andy's version is that we met at Hooters. Anyone who has seen me and my girls knows this is not true. We were a set up. I was headed into town with my girlfriends and a friend at work told me to come to this bar where her friend's band was playing. Her husband is Andy's cousin, who had also been told to 'come hear the band'. The best part is that RJ Fitz, the bar in Boston where we met, was actually bought out by Hooters.

merlotmom asks...
5. If your husband gave you permission to sleep with one person, just once, of course, who would it be?
Not a second of hesitation or forethought needed because he knows and I have a list. Number one is Kevin Bacon. I loved him in Footloose and every movie since. He works for me. Big. Time. Like Bossy and John Cusak without The Thompson Twins playing in the background.

I loved this question and often ask it of others. Andy's number one is Salma Hayek.

slouching mom said...
6. How does your husband feel about your blogging?

He views it as a necessary evil. Kind of like antibiotics. He recognizes the value of my being able to relate to others even if he can't totally understand it. He likes my stories and likes the way I write, so that's a bonus. He definitely keeps the safety of our family at the forefront of his mind.

***as I was finishing up this post, Andy opened the door and said "you're not going to answer the names question, are you?" ***

Jen said...
7. Who's your favorite neighbor?

Yes, those Cheeky Little Monkeys are my neighbors. And they are the best you could ask for. We're thinking of taking them with us when we move. But don't worry, New Girl. She doesn't know my real name either.

8. What do you miss most about "life before kids"?

SLEEP. Actually, I miss just hanging out with my husband. We used to call each other at the end of the work day and decide if we were headed home or headed straight to our bar (where everyone knows your name) and meet up with all our other DINK friends.

And speak of the devil, the new girl asks...
9. What really scares you?

I guess you need to define 'really.' I'm terrified of centipedes, I don't like torture porn, and I'm medium-claustrophobic but what *really* scares me, is anything happening to my kids. Especially if it were in my presence and outside of my control. We couldn't even keep watching Syriana after Matt Damon's son dies. Thank you for getting all morbid on me. :-)~

JCK wanted to know...
10. Do you blog at the same time every day or at different times?

It's funny you ask this because I have noticed that most of us do it after 8:00 pm ET. I'm thinking bed time? Anyone?

I kind of have a pattern; I wake up, quickly check emails and blogs while getting the kids ready for the day, check/read/possibly write while RC is down for his nap, provided HRH is otherwise happy and engaged. Lastly, I check in post-kids' bedtime. Andy and I wrangle for computer time as we only have one currently working.

Mimi cracked me up with...
11. I don't know you at all: sum it up on one sentence?

Insecure, 39-year-old SAHM still waiting to feel like a grownup, with two brilliant, infuriating preschoolers, married to a man I like and love and deciding whether or not to 'go for the girl' before the timer runs out.

There you have it; in one big fat, run-on sentence.

ImpostorMom said...
12. What is the thing you like to do most with "you" time?

I really enjoy yoga. It relaxes and rejuvenates me. I would also like to look into meditation learn more about wine.

sue asked...
13. If you could go back to one moment in time and change it, what would the moment be and how would you change it?

October, 1989. I would un-meet Scott.

JCK said...
O.K., I have another one. How did you get so damn funny? Your comment about Sawyer on my blog made me almost pee my pants. I agree!!

I'm not going to answer this. I just wanted to make it perfectly clear that at least one other person in the blogisphere gets my sense of humor. Thank you JCK, clearly you rock.

Ask Wifey said...
14. I love your "Mommy's Time Out" wine bottle. Which do you prefer - white or red?

Oh, I'm an equal opportunity Whino. I've been on reds for a few years now. I love Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cabernet, and Andy and I brought home 11 bottles of Chianti from our honeymoon in Italy. That being said, I love freezing cold Santa Margarita Pinot Grigio in the summer and found an absolutely wonderful Chablis through a local wine store.

KC's question was...
15. If you had an extra hour in your day, how would you spend it?

SLEEPING. God, I fear this is true. Either that or I'd probably use it for another thankless, endless endeavor like folding clothes or cleaning. If it were a guilt-free enriching hour, see question 12. The idea of attending a wine course holds a lot of appeal as does working on 'me.'


Thank you again for not making me feel like a fool with no questions. The only thing I'd add is how fun and funny it is to relate your stories to other people and phrase it as, "my friend" did or said this...I've achieved what I wanted to in blogging; realizing that while I'm unique, there are a lot of us out there.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Enough About You, Let's Talk About Me

Right now, I feel like Drew Barrymore at the end of Never Been Kissed, alone on the pitcher's mound, waiting for Michael Vartan to come and rescue her from eternal embarassment.

Let me back up a step. We all try to remain somewhat incognito while sharing our most self absorbed innermost thoughts. But it's just what I've wanted you to know, you know? The New Girl, stole homaged a post from Mimi, who copied it from Beck. The idea was "Are there any questions?". So I'm putting myself out there, like Drew, hoping you're interested enough to ask me anything about me.

I'm putting myself out there for you, New Girl. Don't leave me hangin'.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Lion at the Watering Hole

I recently realized that The Bink is the only member of our family not to have made it onto the blog. Here is my boy. He is 11 1/2 and by far the most low-maintenance member of the family (as in practically fell of the radar after the boys were born). One of his few quirks is that he will only drink running water. Thus, you will often find him lying (in wait) in the bathroom sink. I do draw the line at the kitchen sink.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Cranky Pants

Does everyone already own this book?

I found it two years ago and still pray HRH will choose it when we select our nightly reading. It is adorable. It's the story of a boy who woke up on the wrong side of the bed, how it affects his day, and how his cranky-pants-ness is eventually overcome by his mom.

The author and illustrator clearly grew up in the 70s (note the Inch Worm and Weebles on the front cover) and the book itself is littered with nostalgia. It's got great pictures, a good cadence and a nice message. It is, in short, the perfect book for every toddler/preschooler with a 'tude and his parents.

I keep waiting for Steven Sanzo to write another but so far, nothing.

Well, what are you waiting for? Go, buy it!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

It Came Around to Me

My friend, Kristen at Mommy Needs a Cocktail, also at Mommy Needs a Review, also at Baby Brewing (why yes, she is quite prolific) tagged me for this meme.

The rules are as follows: (1)Link to the person that tagged you. (2)Post the rules on your blog. (3)Share six non-important things/habits/quirks about yourself. (4)Tag six random people at the end of your post by linking to their blogs. (5)Let each random person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their website. [I feel like there should be six rules].

A meaningless unnerving entertaining view into the Manic Mommy Psyche:

1. Anthropomorphism in cartoons fascinates me. Why does Diego rescue animals, yet Boots' father is an architect? The Berenstain Bears have a pet dog - how does that work?

2. I am a space geek. I can recite every word in Apollo 13 and have the From the Earth to the Moon Box Set. In college, I took Astronomy I and II for my Physics requirement. I will watch any space documentary on The History Channel, The Science Channel, NOVA, The Discovery Channel, etc.

3. I love disaster movies. My all time favorite is The Towering Inferno but also love Independence Day. I saw both Dante's Peak and Volcano at the movies.

4. I We paid off my truck loan today - over a year early. Time to trade it in (just kidding, Andy).

5. I have a freakish memory for trivia. So much so that I am teaming with my 12 and 8 year old nieces in a competition at their school during Catholic Schools Week. I guess we'll see if I really am smarter than a 5th grader.

6. I used to be very organized. I still try with varying degrees of success. I have most of the boys' toys in 12x12 bins from Target. Each with printed labels with a picture of the item(s) and their name (e.g., Fisher Price Little People) afixed to the outside. Don't be impressed, it doesn't work.


Now to share the horror. I am tagging Denise at real. life. ramblings. because I think she and I were separated at birth. I'm tagging Merlot Mom because I think she and I could sit down and have a glass of wine together. I'm tagging Jen because I've had many, many glasses of wine with her. Helena gets it because I envy her creativity and her taste in wine. I'm sending this to Sarah at In the Trenches of Mommyhood because it's fun to think we might actually meet over a glass of wine when Bossy comes to town on her roadtrip. And last, I tag Bossy because she is my idol and because if I'm going to assume her identity one day, I need to know the minutia too. I will buy her the wine.

Monday, January 21, 2008

One Car Ride, Much Fodder

Driving to McDonalds:

RC: I see it! I see it! Look at all the flags on top!

HRH: That's because McDonalds is celebrating Marther...Marter...
Mom, who's that guy who had a dream?

MM: Martin Luther King

HRH: Martin Luther King Junior, Mom.

MM: Yes, that's right.

(We are so getting our money's worth at pre-K)


Driving home from McDonalds:

HRH: Mary had a little lamb, little lamb, little lamb.
And everywhere that Mary went, the lamb was forced to go.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Cabin Fever/Thoughts on Nick Jr.

Where the hell are Max and Ruby's parents and why are they living in my grandparents' house in the 1940s?







I find it scary concerning amusing that I set my kids up in front of the TV to watch a show about going outside and using your imagination.

I love Austin. He is my favorite Backyardigan. He is also by far the smartest. When I was google imaging for a picture, I found out I am not alone, which is a little disturbing.

It is widely recognized that Austin and Tasha (yellow hippo to Austin's right) are the Professor and MaryAnn of their generation.




New drinking game: Everytime Ming-Ming says "This is seeweeus [serious]," take a shot.
















(Also, my neighbors dressed up as The Wonder Pets for Halloween.)






Originally, I preferred Steve to Joe on Blues Clues.









But now I've come to like Joe more.

It's kind of a BJ vs. Trapper thing.















(Current picture of Steve - weird. )

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Things I Never Thought I'd Say - Part III

Scene: This morning, five minutes late dropping HRH off at Pre-K

MM to HRH's teacher: Mrs. Stoffel, RC stuck his finger up HRH's nose this morning and it bled a little. I think it's all set now but I wanted you to know just in case.

Mrs. Stoffel: It must be so much fun to have two boys.

MM shakes head and chases RC down hallway.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Meet The Parents

In the dream, my MIL, SIL, assorted other family members, and I are setting a banquet table outside in my MIL's yard. We're preparing to welcome home Andy's dad from Iraq and we're serving pancakes. In the dream, I remember thinking how wonderful it was to observe my MIL as part of a couple as the entire time I've known her, she's been a single.

So that family party goes on. I've got an image of a light shade of green. It may be the tablecloth. I guess I do dream in color. My FIL approaches me and asks me why I've been so stand-offish. I answer that I find it odd that I know (insert recently deceased older cousin's name here) better than I know him. He says that he'd really like to change that if I'm up to it. I smile and say I'd like that.

Andy's dad died when Andy was 11. He's told me that whenever he's had a major life decision to make, he dreams of arguing about it with his father. I really like that my father-in-law paid me a visit. I think that after 7 1/2 years of marriage and two children, he's given me his blessing. And I really would have liked to know him.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

My Top 10 - The Unexpected Meme

While there is almost nothing I would change about my life right now, I recently read a question that's had me remembering fondly. The question was "What did you love most about being single?" Here's what I came up with in no particular order.

  1. Living alone for five years. You really get to be best friends with your roommate. Actually, the next three are variations of a theme.
  2. My apartment. Four sunny, big rooms in a great college area, in a house owned by an elderly couple much more interested in a good tenant than a good rent. Hey! That's me! I paid $450.00 a month -- including heat (for anyone reading this outside of the Northeast, this. is. unheard-of.) .
  3. Having a bathroom all to myself - and never shutting the door.
  4. Wherever I left something, that's where it was when I went looking for it.
  5. Buying a brand new car without consulting anyone because I knew more about the subject than any of the men in my life at the time.
  6. Having the time to read a lot and take classes because the topics interested me.
  7. Spending far too much money on clothes or shoes, all for me.
  8. Sleeping 12 hours a night (or sometimes four, if I was having fun).
  9. Traveling so much for work that I saw some great places but none I liked enough to leave where I grew up.
  10. Meeting Andy and falling in love.

So what did/do you love most about being single? Helena promised to blog more in '08, so we'll tag her, as well as the estimable, Mrs. Chicky.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Thursday, January 10, 2008

We've Had a Good Run

Two years, eight months, and sixteen days. Really. Anyone would agree that with a kid as active and agile as RC, two years, eight months, and sixteen days really was more than you could hope for. I mean to have two years, eight months, and sixteen days of putting him in his crib and having him stay there until one of us retrieved him was a pretty good run.

Two minutes ago, I put RC back upstairs - on the second floor - for a nap, for the fourth time. And for the fourth time, RC is now joining me at the computer. Downstairs. In the basement. It's not a fluke. Or a one time occurrence. Things have just gotten exponentially more interesting at our house. I. am. so. screwed.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Is Tipping Appropriate Under These Circumstances?

Last night while watching the Berenstain Bears talk about moving from their mountain cave into their treehouse HRH asks:

"Daddy, when we have another baby, can we buy a bigger house?"

MM: Arms up in classic "surrender/I dunno" posture.

God, I love that boy.

Not that I'm planning or anything, you understand. Oh, dream house...

Friday, January 4, 2008

They'd Better Put This Much Thought Into My Nursing Home

Here's what I remember about kindergarten:

1. We had a teacher named Miss Merry, who was quite large and when she sneezed, we'd all mimic her "ah...ah...ah...choooie!!" Big laughs.

2. On picture day, I wore a long dress (shut up, it was the 70s!) and John Aceto stuck his head under my dress while I was sitting in circle. I was horrified (enough that I remember his name 34 years later).

HRH will be attending kindergarten in the fall so it's time to register. We - and every parent of a five year old I know - are in the throws of some major decision-making. So when did choosing the right kindergarten become as crucial as choosing the right college?

Do we go public? Do we go private (insert second mortgage here)? Do we go Catholic? What are our values and which school will best instill those?

Thoughts on Public:
We live in a nice neighborhood of a city outside Boston. A few years ago, they closed down all the neighborhood schools and built a few brand new, beautiful warehouses schools that house literally thousands of children. Our designated public school currently has FIVE kindergartens with about 25+ kids apiece. I can't imagine my boys thriving in that environment.

Thoughts on Private:
Andy attended smaller private schools and jokes that he was the token Irish-Catholic. At these schools, competition wasn't 'who did better on the math quiz', it was 'my daddy makes more money than yours'. Is that really what I want to teach my kids? Plus, let's be realistic, we can't shell out anywhere from $12 -25K per kid, per year!

Thoughts on Catholic:
I attended a small Catholic school since first grade and graduated high school with just 68 other kids, many of whom were classmates from that very first grade. Because of its size, our school lacked many extra curriculars that would have provided a more fully-rounded education.
I'm very much an ala carte Catholic (I agree with this, I believe in that, that's a metaphor, God doesn't really care if I eat meat on Fridays in Lent, and so forth) but I do believe in God and I do want my children to have faith in their lives. So Catholic it is! Erm. Right?


So. Right. Catholic school. I mean, Catholic School! Woo-Hoo! Now. Which one? There are three under consideration at the moment, one being my alma mater (see? Catholic school education = Latin!). All with open houses toward the end of the month.

And not one with a team in the NCAA.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Cray-ola-Mode

Seriously. everything. I. drink. ends up with something floating in it courtesy of my son. These guys are part of a brand new 64 pack with the sharpener in the back. I love crayon smell. I love tea too but it's not to be.
 

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