Writings of a teachermom, choosing to stay home with her kids, while loathing all domestic responsibilities! In late Aug. 2008, I was diagnosed with Triple Negative breast cancer. After surgery, chemo and radiation, I was given theall clear. However, in the late summer of 2008, I was diagnosed with a brain tumor, which metasticized to other areas.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

What will they think of next?

Didn't know you could improve a popsicle!


Thursday, June 28, 2007

Camper Cameron

I’ve noticed that I haven’t written much about my oldest son lately. That’s because this week he hasn’t been around much as he’s been in day camp with his friend Ben. At first he thought it was an overnight camp and did not want to go. But once he heard it was just during the day he was excited.

The morning of his first day, he was up bright and early, ready to get going. I handed him some clothes to put on.

“But Mommy, at camp you’re supposed to wear brown clothes with badges!”

“What?” I asked, having no clue what he was talking about.

“When people go to camp, they wear brown shirts and there are badges on them.”

It was then that I realized he was talking about the Scouts, which he knows a little about because the boys across the street belong to them.

“No Cameron, that’s if you’re a Cub Scout. But you’re not going to Cub Scout camp. You’re just going to a regular camp.”

“But why aren’t I going to Cub Scout camp?”

“Because Cub Scouts is a club that you belong to when you’re in first grade.”

“So I’m going to Club Scout camp?”

“No! You’re just going to a regular Day Camp. It’s called the YMCA Day Camp.”

“Oh,” he responded, a bit disappointed that he wouldn’t be collecting any badges.
But the whole rest of the day, whenever he talked about camp, he referred to it as the Y…M…C…A Day Camp, pausing between each letter, making sure he said the full name.

This week he had the opportunity to do fun things like hiking, canoeing, swimming, gym games and archery. Yes, they put bows and arrows into the hands of 6 year olds. Cameron said he didn’t even get it on the target. I’m glad I wasn’t around to see that.

He also participated in the daily Opening and Closing ceremonies. The past few days kids volunteered to share some talent that they had that maybe other kids wouldn’t be able to do…..2 boys burped their ABCS, one girl did fart sounds with her knee, and another camper made her eyeballs shiver. Cameron volunteered today and showed everyone how he could cross his eyes. Such honorable talents!

Anyhow, even though he’s incredibly exhausted by the end of the day, he’s having a blast, and even wants to do another week later on in the summer. And I’m sure after a month of him being around everyday, wanting to be entertained constantly, I’ll be more than happy to do the early morning drive and send him back to the Y..M..C..A Day Camp.

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Cellulite Haiku

Bathing suit shopping
at Mall of America
too depressed to write

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Growing Girl

Ella had her 18 month check-up yesterday. As soon as we began walking down the hallway to the rooms, she started screaming hysterically…and basically stayed that way almost the entire visit…..And she didn’t even get any shots! She's at the 25th percentile for her weight (up from the 10% at our last visit), and at 50th percentile for her height.

During our last visit, when we had to fill out the developmental questionnaire (where you stop after 3 “no” answers), we didn’t get very far for the mere fact that she wasn’t walking. All of the questions seemed to revolve around standing, stooping, walking, etc. This time, we could answer YES to almost all the questions…even the speech ones.

Ella is saying A LOT of words. Besides “All Done”…which is a welcomed alternative to tossing her food and plate, she also uses the phrases “Uh-Oh”, and “Up Please.” She’ll say Max, fish, duck, animals, Shrek, Dora, eat, bath etc. And she’ll repeat almost anything you say. She also says and means “Dada.” But as for Mama, I don’t the she completely grasps the concept. She says “Mom” whenever she wants something, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be from me.

Along with her verbal communication, she communicates in other ways as well. If she’s hungry, she goes into the pantry, finds the paper plates and hands them to me. If she hears the blender, she thinks I’m making smoothies and she hands me a cup. After breakfast, she pulls me into the family room to read her some books…not just any books, but some particular ones that she wants me to read over, and over, and over again.

She also is very clear when she doesn’t like something. Yesterday she had “escaped” out the back in only a tank top and diaper. When I brought her back in to put some shorts and shoes on her, she threw the biggest fit I had ever seen. She was literally STOMPING in circles, screaming, coming over to me where I had her shorts in my hands and she would kick the shorts and stomp away, still screaming, then return to me and bite the shorts and continue stomping away and screaming. She did this around 4 times before I finally was able to stop giggling at her behavior and just force the shorts and sandals on her. That little girl was NOT at all happy.

And now I FEAR the hellion she may become as a teenager.

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Monday, June 25, 2007

Now she's clean.

Apparently Max felt that Ella was really dirty last night.

Because when I left the bathroom to get a towel from the hallway closet, he decided to be "helpful" and pour the entire brand-new bottle of baby bath into her tub.

This is NOT the first time he has done this.


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Saturday, June 23, 2007

Beauty Shop

Fed up with my attempt at styling her locks, Ella apparently decided to take matters into her own hands.

I think she overdid it a little, don't you?

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Friday, June 22, 2007

She's not so innocent.

The crime scene Contemplating a steal

Testing out the merchandiseCaught in the actDisposing of the evidenceThe great escape

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Tuesday, June 19, 2007

What gets you moving?

It seems like every couple of months, Runner’s World publishes a “Motivation Issue.” I could use one of these every week. But for now, here are my own motivation triggers for running:

1. Sign up for a marathon. Once you spend the hefty registration fee, you can’t NOT train for a 26.2 mile run.

2. Sign up for a marathon with some friends. Now you really have to train, since others are counting on you.

3. Put on the jeans that fit you two months ago but are now cutting off your circulation at the thighs.

4. Borrow someone else’s iPod and go for a jog just to see what they have playing.

5. Take your son to any kind of practice at the end of the day when you really are not in the best of moods and are too tired and impatient for small talk with the other parents, so you need something else to do…like going for a run.

6. Remember that the Lemon Lime Gatorade tastes just like a margarita…and if you run far or fast enough, the endorphins at the end will make you feel like there were more than just electrolytes in that drink.

7. Look at ANY clothes catalog…where all the models are size zero with C-D cups making everything look perfect on them…and then when you try the outfit on, you just look plain fat.

8. Remember that when you’re running, you’re ALONE…with no whining, screaming, ungrateful kids nagging at your side.

9. Get a sexy husband (like mine) who works around young, flirtatious, pretty women all day…not that he’s looking….but I see them.

10. Go bathing suit shopping. But warning, not only might you start running, but you also might stop eating.

Those are my motivational techniques for now. And although I’ve been running a lot these past few weeks, I haven’t dropped a pound, and my belly hasn’t shrunk an inch, the cellulite is still showing on my thighs and butt, and those too tight jeans are still too tight. Oh well….I’m trying.

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Sunday, June 17, 2007

Day for Dads

The past few years I’ve ordered different gift baskets to send to all the “dads” in our life. However, this year, with the kids being sick all last week and me being in some unnecessary funk lately, I just totally dropped the ball and sent out nothing. On Saturday, I managed to get a gift together for Melvin…traveling to 5 different stores with Max and Cameron to get him a gift card from all the places that he likes to shop. (Not too original, but better than Cameron's 2 ideas....a shout of "Hip Hip Horray!" or a container for bugs) But for everyone else, I didn’t even get cards sent out.

So I will acknowledge them here….and hope that I get something out to them by the end of the week.

Happy Father’s Day….

To my father

To my father-in-law

To Grandaddy Melvin

To Pop-pop Zibby

To Grandpa

To (Uncle) Wally

To the rookie dad, my brother, (Uncle) Scott

I hope you all had a wonderful day.

And all kudos to my own husband:

Although he works a lot, when he is home, he always takes time to spend with the kids. Yesterday, part of his father’s day gift was supposed to be for him to go fishing….alone…so he can actually fish…instead of babysit. But at the last minute, he couldn’t resist Cameron’s request to go with him, and he took him along. And then today, when he should have been relaxing, and doing everything for himself…he decided to have a family day instead, and we took the kids to Valley Fair (an amusement/water park) around here. What a wonderful dad he is!

To all the fathers out there…..Happy Father’s Day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Thursday, June 14, 2007

Sick Question

Possible State Standardized Test question occurring in our house:

Scenario: Max goes to bed sick Monday night. He wakes up at 4:00 AM and remains awake until morning. He then goes to bed Tuesday night and wakes up at 3:00 AM and remains awake for a few hours before returning to sleep. On Wednesday night he goes to bed and awakens at 2:00 AM, remaining awake for a few more hours.

Question: Based on the pre-established pattern, what time will he wake up after going to sleep tonight?

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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Certainly not Breakfast at Tiffany's

How to Eat Cereal in our household.
1. Take it all out of the bowl, sip the milk, and eat the rest directly off the table.

2. Forget the utensils and just dive right in.

3. Sit back, relax, and put your feet up.

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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

How does he know?

This evening, while my husband was shoveling some mulch, Cameron was staring at some goofy high school boys across the street messing around making up some game with a ball and karate nunchucks (sp?). He was mesmerized by their stupidity.

“Why are they doing that?” he asked his daddy.

“Because they’re silly little boys,” was Melvin’s response.

Cameron just looked at him and with all the wisdom in the world said, “You know you did naughty things, too.” And as he walked into the house, and we both sorta looked at him wondering what he was talking about, when he continued with, “So don’t even try it. You know when you were their age you did naughty things.”

What a perceptive little boy his is. If only he even knew the half of the naughty things his father did in high school….and I wasn’t around then, so I can only go with what he has told me.

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Morning Reading

Rare moments of peace, quiet and happiness....for about 5 minutes...then the kicking, screaming, pushing and grabbing of books begins.

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Sunday, June 10, 2007

The Queen's manners

I adore my friend Libby (Ben's Mom) because she does things like:

apologizes if she might have lost some "social etiquette" since she's had a bit of beer with her husband at dinner.

Now imagine her saying that with a British accent.

Too cute!!!


Friday, June 08, 2007

Chutes and Ladders

Today was Cameron’s official first day of summer…no school.

We went to an amazing park I had never been to before. I think half of Minnesota was there as well.

While playing, Ella had sand dumped on her head by a little girl whose response to me when I asked her not to do that was, “Well, she’s not being very nice.”

Despite climbing through all the ropes, crawling through the tubes and slipping down the slides at least 10 times by himself, Max decided at one point that he was scared and had to be helped by some of the playground monitors before I was able to scale the ropes to reach his tear-filled face.

Cameron and his two friends were (supposedly) being chased and pushed around by another group of boys.

And yet when it came time to go, none of them wanted to leave.

Can’t imagine why not! Is this KidHeaven or what?

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Thursday, June 07, 2007


My husband always says to me, “He’s definitely your son,” when referring to Cameron’s forgetful and emotional behavior. But yesterday he had a different reason to say such. Yesterday Cameron had a track meet, and because of weather and other commitments only about a couple dozen kids showed up (unlike the usual hundred or so), so the kids could run as many events as they wanted. Cameron decided to do ALL of them. He ran the 55 meters, then the 400, next the 100, then the 800 and finally the 200 meters. And he managed to run around in between each race cheering on the other runners. Oh yes, he’s definitely my son.

Now Max on the other hand….I know I birthed him, but I constantly question if he’s my son. Episode in the car today:
Max is spitting…and spitting…and spitting.
“Max stop spitting!”
“Why?” he asked in between spits.
“Because that’s gross. Now stop!”
He stops for a couple seconds, then says, “I spit one more time.” And he proceeds to do so.
Then he says, “Mommy, you spit.”
“No, Max, I’m not spitting.”
“Why not? It’s fun. You should spit.”

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Tuesday, June 05, 2007


Conversation with a 2 year old:

"Max, you need to make your bed."
"Nooooo. YOU make it."

"Max, BIG boys make their beds."

"Okay, when I get bigger, then I make my bed."


Monday, June 04, 2007

Throwing Frisbees instead of Tantrums

My six year old has been somewhat difficult lately. Crabby a lot, stomping around, giving me dirty looks. Having complete meltdowns because he can’t go to someone’s house, or because Ella put his hotdog in her mouth and I had no more left to give him. And when I say complete melt-down, I mean on the floor screaming his head off and crying, so that I just step outside and tend to the other kids while he continues with his ridiculous tantrum. I have to tell him 5 times before he does anything, and then he often forgets what he’s supposed to do once he finally makes it to his destination. And all of my negative answers to his requests are met with “But…,” responses explaining over and over why I’m wrong and he should have his way.

So when he had his Kindergarten graduation last Friday, as I left the classroom, I turned to his teacher with a bit of worry on my face and said, “They do still have school next week, right?” And she assured me that they’ll be in class until Thursday. Needless to say, I’m a bit nervous wondering how we’re all going to function happily this summer with his little attitudes popping up all over the place.

But tonight, after dinner, the three kids and I went outside. In between pushing Max and Ella on the swings, I tossed the Frisbee with Cameron. And for the first time in a couple weeks, we actually had a lot of fun together. (And he was pretty good!)

I wonder if he’ll tire of Frisbee soon, because September is a long way away, and it might be the daily activity that saves my sanity this summer!

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Sunday, June 03, 2007


Last night my husband and I attended a wedding reception for his nurse Maria. When the reception was winding down, we headed to a bar that was attached to the reception hall with a few of Melvin’s younger colleagues. As we headed into the place, I got carded.

did not have my license with me, because I knew I wouldn’t need it at a wedding. I told the guy I was 34… “Can’t you see my wrinkles and greys?” I laughed. He didn’t think I was funny, and told me if I didn’t have my license I couldn’t go in. Well, I thought that was ridiculous, as I don’t look like I’m twenty! And since I had already had a few drinks at the reception, I was feeling rather bold. So as he was checking everyone else’s IDs, I just walked right in, and headed to the far side of the sports bar to watch the Detroit/Cleveland Basketball game.

What I didn’t know was that as soon as I walked in, the “bouncer” immediately got on his walkie-talkie. So as I’m watching the game waiting for everyone else to join me, a police officer…a State Trooper actually, came up to me and escorted me out!

“Oh my gosh! Are you kidding me?” I said, and when we were out of the bar I pleaded my case with him. Told him how I’m obviously over 21, I’m out with my husband, I have 3 kids at home with a babysitter. I’m just trying to hang out and have fun away from all my kids for awhile…we were at a wedding so I didn’t know I’d need my wallet, etc. etc. etc. He just had a grin on his face listening to my buzz plea. He then told me that they’ve had to be really strict lately because they’ve had some problems with underage drinkers. And then he took my name and birthdate and told me to wait where I was.

A few minutes later he came back with one of those paper bracelets that granted me entrance into the dive bar and allowed me to drink.

Now I wonder if when he left the room, did he punch my info in some database that pulls up your picture and your complete life history like they do in the movies?

Or did he just leave the room to crack up laughing in hysterics that the bouncer would actually think that I would be under 21.

I’m sure the latter. I don’t think all my “anti” aging products work that well!

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Friday, June 01, 2007

Grinding again

I’m sure one of the benefits of having family around is that there’s always a dad, or uncle, or grandpa to help you out when you have minor repairs to deal with….like a garbage disposal that suddenly stops working.

But my family lives clear across the country, and I have a husband who doesn’t have time to fix a garbage disposal because he’s too busy fixing vaginas.

And I’m cool with that. Because if he didn’t do that, we wouldn’t have the $60 dollars the plumber charged for the 5 SECONDS of work that it took to get my sink back in working order.

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