Thursday, 29 July 2010

cookies, diet drinks, and a giveaway

Over on my review blog I'm reviewing the underWAY drinks and all the food that comes along with it....
Click over and leave me a message (sorry, just Canadians!) to receive a box full of the same stuff I talk about!

Sunday, 25 July 2010

woefully behind the times

Wow, and I just got used to the idea of summer....

R has a very cool pool noodle. It's white, striped with red, and looks like a giant candy-stick.

Cass, of course, is cool and disinterested and secretly lusts for one (preferably without the red stripe) of his own.

So this Friday (the 23rd of July) I went into the local big-box yellow faced horror, and went hunting for a pool noodle. It was going to be easy - I mean, I was on my lunch hour, and since I knew just where they were, it would take no time at all - and I swung into the store, humming a little ditty, which died in my throat when I saw.

Where the pool noodles - nay, where the accessories, toys, and chemicals for pool section had been? A solid wall of backpacks and loose-leaf paper, markers and trapper-keepers.

WHAT? Had I lost a month? It couldn't be the last bit of August already, could it?

Nope. It was still mid July, hot as all get-out, still SUMMER, still....back to school? Not a pool toy in sight?

No. I refuse to believe it. We still have half a summer to go.

Don't rush me.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010


There are blueberries and raspberries growing wild in my side yard.

This isn't a new thing, I've talked about it before....but it's a simple thing that still fills me with amazement.

Tonight, cobbler. Or berries over ice cream.

I can't wait.

Monday, 19 July 2010

I'm melting!

Like an ice cube in a tall glass of lemon-bedecked iced tea.


Yes, the weather is hot. But c'mon, it's summer! Where I live we dream all winter about heat, glorious heat that doesn't radiate from the wood stoves or the baseboard heaters, heat you don't have to pay for. Bright clear yellow light not from a lamp. The temperature is just a bonus, really.

Friday I picked up Cass from his first jaunt off to summer camp. He was filthy, (Me, tipping giant bag of dirty clothes directly into washer: Oh, look! There's your washing kit! *pause* Um, Beau?  Your washcloth! It's....dry! And the brand new bar of soap you took? Still unopened! Now how did that happen? Cass brought over his backpack. "I.....washed in shampoo, Mom!' And I couldn't bring myself to look at his toothbrush.) tired, and happy, so it was a rousing success.

And he learned, along with nature facts and how to stay up all night without waking up your counselors that not only did Jesus die for his sins, but he came back to life afterward. (Something I guess I'd forgotten to ever mention. I think we've covered that his religious education? Has sucked.)

(Cass whispering in my ear at the camp closing ceremony: Mom? Did you know this is a church camp??')

Why yes, boy of mine, I did. Did you learn anything?
He cocked his head.

If you put a black ant and a red ant together? They'll fight. Can I come back here next year?

Thursday, 15 July 2010

driving along in my automobile

And after a day of driving rain and gloom, the sun is out and the world is gold and blue again.

I've been listening (yes, still! Holy schmoley, there are FIFTEEN CDs!!) to the 19th Wife and am amazed at the differences between reading a book and having the story told to you. I think about this book in the characters voices, which helps give body to the story, but I find I'm imagining a lot less about the scenes (what did a hot, still day in the desert sun look like in the pioneer days? What were the houses like in the small town?) even though I wouldn't get any more description from actually reading the book.

I wonder if this is why both my kids can disappear into a book they're reading on their own?

Yesterday I was booming down the road, listening, and there was a house coming down the road. A house, cut into two, still looking cheerful and pleased to go where it would be used (if sunny yellow paint and white trim can be said to have an air of excitement) - not an everyday occurrence on these roads, but still common enough so you glance and go on, and directly after that came an enormous round silver tank of some sort, shining in the  (brief) sun. I watched it pull under the overpass and registered wow, there's not a lot of extra room there, better steer toward the side of the road a bit

and started to do so, and

And then there was the deer.

Late Spring/early summer is a hard time for critters around here. The young'uns get the worst of it - they're nearly grown and out on their own, and have no idea of what that big expanse of hard-packed tarmac is (smash)

If I ate roadkill, this would probably be called the buffet season.

So, to recap -

Shiny instrument of hugeness on road to one side, dead (pre-killed) deer on the other.

I think I had about three inches clearance. The driver of the semi had dark hair, horrified eyes,  and a huge Adams apple that bobbed when he realized I wasn't scooting to the side.

And then we passed each other, and I went on, listening to my tale of polygamist woe and feeling very, very lucky that not only I wasn't a character in the book, I wasn't being smooshed on the highway either.

Friday, 9 July 2010


There are times I look at this blog and I hate the voice I've become. I feel like the entirety of it is all rah-rah go mom things, all pictures of my children and stuff about school, and less of me. Major Bedhead talked about that today, about looking in the mirror and not recognizing the woman there, and sometimes? Sometimes I don't recognize my own life here, in these pages.

And now, to take my own advice, here I'll give you a story, and stop blatting angst:

We've been in the pool a lot lately, where a lot equals at least once per day, and I guess I shouldn't have been surprised when the kids started running out with fabric strips to dry themselves I thought had been consigned to the rag-bag long ago. I was idly looking over the picnic table where all the towels park until they're needed and realized that they all had at least one hole, and most were thin and flimsy. And was that one from my mother's house? (I haven't lived with my parents years? These are OLD towels. Practically antiques.)

At that point, I realized something that has probably been evident to most of you:
I'm just not terribly domestic.

Towels and dishcloths   - completely beyond my radar. So yesterday I sucked it up and went to a big box store and reveled in their low low prices and ohmigod TOWELS that aren't paper thin and stringing themselves into oblivion along one edge.  There! I thought. There! We look less like a paper-bag family now.
I paused, all triumphant and busy making a home! and maybe this domestic stuff isn't so bad!

and watched the children promptly use them, then toss them at the laundry basket and forget them.

Maybe they don't care about perfection? Maybe I shouldn't care about it, either.

At least not while there's a pool waiting.

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

party lobster

I walked around all weekend wondering what on earth was wrong with me.

I can't be getting old this fast, I thought. What on earth?

But still, plodding like an old mule. Tired. Heavy legs. Climbing the stairs took a long, long time. I had a nap both Saturday and Sunday. (Yes, it was delicious. But I don't usually do that, and it was starting to worry me)

Then on Sunday night I had a sunburn. And I finally clued in. (Cluelessness, thy name is Jess)

Sunday had been a day and a half.  It was Privateer Days, so the kids and I (deep breath)

went to:
a reptile show (and Cass handled a boa constrictor. I have pictures. I was too busy staring at the man that was putting a large and hungry-looking reptile on my son's shoulders making sure he knew what he was doing to really register it, but yes, my son wore a snake.

Bouncy castles.

Ate fair food. (God love the Kinsmen and their sinful, sinful french fries.)
Went to the library and the playground when it became apparent the midway people were sleeping in.
Went to the park
Dragged them home for a bit of quiet time
And ended up, like we have every day this week,
In the pool. For hours.
After a bite of dinner and a break, we roared back into town to go on the rides (I'm still the title-holding World's Meanest Mom because I won't let them go on the ride where they hang upside down)
and discovered that Miss Rosey has an incredible stomach for loop-de-loop and things you'd think would make her dizzy - not so!

She was still talking about how 'that ride made my brain feel like it was coming out of my ears, Mom! Let's go again!' when her brother finally drooped and cried uncle

and then we hung out on the playground

and watched fireworks when the sun went down.

They still had enough energy to bound up the stairs, complaining about the injustice of showers, and beg a few minutes of reading time. (They have me pegged. As long as they can get me reading, they've figured out bedtime can comfortably be forgotten.)

Then they went to bed. And it was all quiet.

I put out all the lights, struggled up the stairs one last time, and got ready for bed, realizing I was mightily red. And sore. My legs were killing me. What on earth?

Yes, Virginia, if you're going to spend afternoons in the pool, swishing and splashing and getting all sorts of unaccustomed exercise, it's best to use sunscreen.

Yarn over and over

Someone, an old babysitter maybe, taught me to crochet when I was six. I remember making long braided loops of yarn and thinking how pretty ...