Friday, July 31, 2009

Flashback Friday


I wrote this last August after a full summer of gym-skipping and weight gain. Last weekend, it was brought back into sharp relief when I arrived at BlogHer weighing nearly 10 pounds more than I did at the beginning of the summer. Who the eff gains weight to meet people they're hoping to impress? Me! The same person who should be working to increase her readership thanks to wonderful contacts made at aforementioned BlogHer and instead posts a repeat!

Thanks, PMS/peri-menopause/metabolism freak-out/stress-eating/empty alcohol caloric intake/total lack of exercise. And of course, my children. And now, we at SJAMM proudly present...

You Can't Go Om Again...

Dick Clark:
Welcome to $25,000 Pyramid! Let's play our game!

Joan Van Ark:
Day Camp
Family Time
Running of the Brides
Swimming Lessons
Weekend Get-Away

Brett Sommers:
Reasons why Christine hasn't been to yoga in over a month?

Ding! Ding! Ding!

Gavin McLeod:
Loss of Flexibility
Loss of Muscletone
Neck Pain
Return of Cellulite
Stressed Out
Weight Gain

Charles Nelson Reilly:
Results of Christine's absence from yoga?

Ding! Ding! Ding!

Paul Lynde:
Glad to Be Back
Out of Shape

Whoopie Goldberg:
How Christine felt to be back in yoga today?

Ding! Ding! Ding!

Dick Clark:
Christine wins three months of yoga at her gym to get back to where she was in June!

Thank you all for playing our game!


Tuesday, July 28, 2009


To my wonderful, supportive, intrepid husband, I can't properly thank you for all that you did in allowing me this time and space away. So I won't.

Rather, I thought I would offer a little constructive feedback - both positive and otherwise on your care and feeding of our progeny and home this past weekend:

1. Kudos on figuring out the dishwasher loading/unloading scenario! Next, I'd like to invite you to view the wonders of Cascade gel in action. Said gel can be located under the kitchen sink. Simply extrude the gel into the marked containers on the inside of the dishwashing device, close the door, and press "Start". Performing this simple operation will mitigate the sour milk/syrup/smell-of-unknown-origin odor emanating each time the appliance door is opened.

2. At some point a meal was made! Or reheated! Or defrosted! Cue applause!! I am aware of this, not only through your insightful and informative guest posts but because of the melted remains for said food items coating the inside of the microwave. It is unsavory at best and carcinogenic at worst.

A Clorox wipe or even a paper towel (both located to the left of the sink) swiped across door, roof, and carousel of the microwave has been shown to prevent said food preparation residue from dripping down onto the stove top beneath. (ps: It is also a good idea not to leave things you intend to eat in the microwave until they explode. But that's a lesson for another day.)

3. You know how much I love the smell of Acqua di Gio on you. Less so on the boys but again, "A" for effort. You handled this issue of their hygiene with creativity and questionable judgment!

Again, not a criticism, just a friendly reminder for future use: If you will hearken back to your own personal care routine, you may call to mind vigorously applying toothpaste to your own teeth at regular intervals throughout the weekend. Our children, too require this action to avoid the carrion/death breath spewing from their smiling mouths when I scooped them into my arms in the baggage claim of Terminal B.

I know I've given you a lot to digest so I'll end my summary here. But rest assured, my absence and your tenure at the helm has provided discussion topics to get us through awkward silences and long car rides for years to come.

Next up: "The Broom and Vacuum: Where they live and what they do."

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Dad: Conclusion

Cleaning. Oh God. No time.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Dad: Part IV - If it takes a village, are we all Village People?

Well, the neighbors read this online periodical. Good thing too.

Having determined that the daily periodic feedings were keeping the hunger at bay, I was trying to decide what to feed them last night. I was going back and forth between the 'dinosaur chicken/mac & cheese combo' and pizza. Then I froze. Swear to God. Vacillating back and forth took its toll and I just broke. It was as if I couldn't stand to make one more decision regarding the children, so I mentally punted.

We were out front and the neighborhood had gathered around 5:30 or so (as I understand it does) when an alert friend evidently recognized my look of utter cerebral failure. They are going on vacation and had ordered out for the no effort, no clean-up effect that delivered pizza provides. He immediately put the 3/4 full box-o-pizza-his-kids-had-barely-touched into my hands, at which time things came back into focus for me. I thanked him. I would have said something like "and I never even knew the kind strangers name," but I know the guy. We all ate like kings.

By the way, I figured out the dishwasher problem, i.e. empty it of clean first, then fill with dirty. The counters are a little cluttered now, but the sink is WIDE OPEN baby!

The next issue I face is the fact that my children smell bad. I never realized it, but they're kind of rank. I've been noticing more and more since Chris left the day before yesterday. Maybe I'll try aftershave.

That's all for now.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Dad: Part III

It has come to my attention (see comment at Part I) that today is Friday, not Saturday. Normally the first day I'm not at work is Saturday, the second generally being Sunday. Clearly my temporal faux pas is excusable. Although it does explain the marked lack of neighbors out and about.

However, this presents, among other problems, a credibility issue with HRH and Gremlin. They are already questioning my command of this 'mommy gone' situation. Clearly this cannot stand. For example, I was recently correct in my explanation to HRH that I cannot empty the sink of dishes because there is no place to put them. The dishwasher is full of clean dishes. I will not mix dirty with clean. I was born at night kid, but not last night. He didn't seem to buy it. For his insolence I banished him from the house. (Nana will bring him back around 6 for pizza. See comment at Part II and thanks for the idea).

I will attempt to incorporate "the-day-after-tomorrow" into today's lexicon instead of the shortened 'tomorrow' when responding to inquiries of Christine's itinerary.

Let's see if they notice.

Dad: Part II

Well, so much for nothin' to it. The hunger issue returned this morning and again an hour ago. I've determined to feed them periodically throughout the day, each day until Chris returns. She will know what to do.

Meanwhile, the house becomes dangerous. I tripped over Gremlin's pajamas in the living room this morning. The were on top of his clothes from yesterday. I've temporarily solved the problem by spreading them across the floor so they're not so high. I hope I don't run out of space.

Wish me luck.

Dad's Guest Post: Part 1

Well, She is in Chicago. They are here with me.

I'm calling Friday a win because I remembered to pick them up on the way home from work.

6:35 PM - Even though they'd been fed before pick-up, HRH indicates he is hungry. Gremlin asserts that he is also hungry. I agree. I too am hungry.

6:35-6:55 - Watching TV while hungry.

6:55 - Nana shows up (yeah Mom!). I convey that we are hungry. Nana departs.

7:20 - Nana returns with doughnuts for the boys and coffee for the adults. Hunger issue solved (I consider coffee a food group).

8:00 - Bed for boys. TV for me.

Nothin' to it.

Monday, July 20, 2009

One Giant Leap

Forty years ago today, I was 10 months and 11 days old. My sister, Danni was two years and 13 days. And our parents got us out of bed so that we could watch Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walk on the moon.
Human beings were born to explore, to discover. It seems so often the only time the world shares a moment is in time of tragedy. I wish I could remember that day, that moment. To feel the wonder, the awe and the pride that we as Americans - as humans, felt.

I hope to share that same feeling and the belief that anything is possible with my children. Thank you for sharing with me, Mom and Dad.

We came in peace for all mankind.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Dog Day (Afternoon)

Meet Daisy!We picked her up Friday and we are in love! She is a playful, smart, goofy, clod-hopping puppy who does not seem to have a moment of anxiety - even after the entire neighborhood was out to greet her upon our arrival. She just bounced sideways around the grass playing, chasing the kids, and rolling onto her back to have her belly rubbed.

As expected, HRH is the careful big brother, making sure her water bowl is full, speaking softly to her, and pulling Legos and other tiny items from her mouth. Gremlin is Gremlin; loving her HARD and needing to be reminded that she is just a baby.

Andy and I finally shooed the boys off to bed Friday night then lay on the floor, playing with her. It was all fun and games until she found an old toy of Maddie's, which was a total downer.
Circle of life, right?

She does eventually run out of gas but after a quick puppycatnap, she's up and at 'em! We're so happy you're here, baby girl.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Life's Lessons from The Bink

I remember reading an article ages ago about a cat that lived in a nursing home. The cat acted as signal to the nurses that a patient was about to pass. He/she would visit the patient shortly before and stay until the patient had died. For all you skeptics no, the cat did not smother the patients; he merely sensed that his presence was needed to comfort and soothe them.

Tonight we were on Round Three of putting HRH to bed. He's not loving Baseball Camp, which consists of three hours a day of practice in hitting, throwing, catching, and fielding. I'm not a fan of quitting things before they're seen through. At the same time, I'm not leaving him there for that reason alone.

(a) God, I need three hours a day of one fewer child.
(b) We paid $125.00 for these 12 hours
(c) He likes baseball and is a pretty good hitter and thrower. I want him to have a recognized skill he can be proud of.
(d) I want him to be well-rounded and physically fit.
(e) He does not dislike it. Everything he's said had been reasonably positive. About how nice the coaches are, how the other kids are fun, and how he got to play an actual game with the 5-6-7 year-olds.
(f) Did I mention he's there 3 hours a day, exhausting himself?

So, HRH being HRH, he blames this for his failure to sleep, then working himself up to believe that he couldn't sleep because of Baseball Camp Angst.

During Andy's turn to re-put HRH to bed, the cat showed up, lay down on HRH's pillow and began to nuzzle his nose into HRH's hair. My (human) boy got a huge smile on his face, closed his eyes, and drifted to sleep. All because The Bink knew his presence was needed to comfort and soothe him.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Hearing your Own Voice

Scene: Leaving McDonalds parking lot. They Might Be Giants, Here Come the One, Two, Threes is in the CD player.

HRH: Mommy, can start this song over again?

Gremlin: This song makes me feel dumb.

Manic Mommy and HRH simultaneously: First of all, Gremlin...

(MM stops to listen to HRH's reasoning)

HRH continues: ...that doesn't even make sense. Secondly, no one will ever think you are dumb. And third, Mommy doesn't like hearing you say that."

Thank you, HRH. I couldn't have said it better myself.

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