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.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Following in his footsteps

Ever since Max could turn over, it has been almost impossible to change his diaper. These past few weeks, however, he has been wonderful in this area. He lies down without a fuss, and doesn’t twist and turn with all of his might while I try not to get poop all over him, myself, the carpet, etc.

Guess who has decided that she no longer wants her diaper changed?

Max has also grown up tremendously when it comes to playing in his toy room. Just recently he has decided that it’s not necessary to turn over every bin in sight. He actually sits nicely and plays with his toys..alone…and when it comes time to move on to something else, he’ll even pick up the legos he’s been building houses with.

Guess who has decided that it’s really fun to topple over the bins of toys that I had just cleaned up?

Wednesday, September 27, 2006


I went to a very small, Catholic grade school. My graduating 8th grade class consisted of only 22 students, most of whom had been in class together since 4th grade. We often conspired together on different “projects.” In 7th and 8th grade, our Social Studies teacher was Mr. Prybylla, and his class was BORING. Like most of our classes at this school, our work consisted of reading the chapter, answering the questions after each section and then going over them in class. In order to amuse ourselves, we’d often try to alter this lesson plan. One tactic we took was to ask a LOT of questions, not because we didn’t understand the American History information that we had learned every year since 5th grade, but usually because we hadn’t finished the assignment, so we figured if we could drag out the lesson, we wouldn’t get through all the work and would have an extra day to complete the assignment. Sometimes we’d just see how far off track we could actually get. Or we’d just sit there and say, “I don’t get it,” prompting our teacher to merely repeat the information we were only pretending not to comprehend. Our questions were all about manipulation.

In high school, it was very different. I attended a public school, my freshman class had over 500 students in it, and my questions really were to seek understanding. I took an Honors Biology class, and I soon learned that I just am in no way a Science minded person. This was the first time I ever sought out extra tutoring. I never could see whatever it was I was supposed to examine in those microscopes, and I failed my first test ever. This test has a list of characteristics and I had to state whether each one described RNA, DNA, both or neither. The only thing I knew about RNA and DNA is that they were some spiral thing that you really couldn’t see. Because I didn’t understand Biology, I asked questions….apparently A LOT of questions. (If I was talking about this with my husband, this would be the point in the conversation when he would ask me if this was when I wore those really thick coke bottle glasses, to which I’d have to reply yes). I really did want to understand what my teacher Mr. Joyner was talking about, but I just couldn’t grasp abstract concepts. So I asked a lot of questions, every day.

One time Michael Roane came up to me and in a very rude tone inquired, “Why do you ask so many questions?”
“Because I don’t understand what’s going on.”
“Well, you sound dumb.”

That was all I needed to hear, and my days of public inquiry in Honors Biology were soon over. From that very brief conversation, I learned that asking questions in class made people think I was stupid. So I learned to just be confused, or try to figure it out on my own later, or ask the teacher my question after class.

I pretty much lived with this philosophy throughout most of my schooling….until I started graduate school, which was when I discovered that professors really like when you asked questions. And I am passionate about education, so I really had some concerns to address and practical understanding that I need to accomplish. In order to do this, I had to ask questions.

But I have to admit, as I sit in my educational research class that I am currently taking, I am encountering a lot of new information, and the questions continually run through my mind. Although I still ask questions, I often question my questions before I ask them. Is this question dumb? Does everyone else understand this? Should I just try to figure this out on my own? The teacher didn’t really answer my question, should I ask it again? Maybe I should e-mail her after class.

It’s amazing and ridiculous how a 30 second encounter with a silly boy 19 years ago still affects my confidence and actions today.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Will be quiet for food.

Obviously I had a wonderful time hanging out with my best friend Lanette, doing just a little bit of our favorite things….running, talking, sleeping, talking, eating, talking, sitting by the pool talking, relaxing on the beach, talking, looking at houses, talking, shopping, talking, tasting wine, talking, downing martinis, and of course more talking. She lives 1000 miles away from me, so we had a lot to catch up on!

But some of you have inquired about how my husband did with all 3 kids, and no babysitter, all weekend. First, I have to preface this by saying that when I’m away, my husband does NOT cook. He can cook, but he chooses not to (in much the same way that I CAN clean, but I choose not to). But one would think that with our three kids, he would not want to even attempt to venture out to a restaurant, not if he wanted all of his wits in tact at the end of the meal, right? WRONG!

They went out for every meal, some were even buffets. How he was able manage a 5 year old, 2 year old and 9 month old AND get all of their food and drinks on his own, I have no idea. But he did remark that at our usual breakfast buffet, one lady commented at how well behaved all the kids were.

What was his secret? Bribery perhaps? Hypnosis? Maybe a little magic?


STARVATION! His theory was that if they were so incredibly hungry, they would want to do nothing else but eat, eat and eat. No screaming, no crawling all over the floor, no grabbing plates and toppling over food. Only eating.

On Monday night I was able to see this theory put into action. Because of a little family fishing outing to the lake up the street, we did not sit down and eat dinner until 7 PM ( I usually serve the kids their food close to 5 PM). It was amazing. I looked at Melvin in disbelief and said, “Why in the world is it so quiet?” . “I told you,” he replied. “My approach really works.” The kids were doing nothing but stuffing their faces.

I can’t say that I will subscribe to his technique, but perhaps there’s some sort of lesson I can learn here…..Like next time I go away, hide a stash of snacks in the boys’ bedroom for when their stomach growls become louder than their own mouths.

Sunday, September 24, 2006


On my first night away, with the Atlantic Ocean right out my door, I slept from 11:30 pm to 8 am, with NO INTERUPTIONS!!! I did not wake up to go to the bathroom. I did not wake up to get Ella a bottle. I did not wake up to Max insisting he watch Diego at 2 am. I did not wake up to a pager going off. I did not wake up to the telephone ringing because I couldn't wake my husband to answer the pager, so now the hospital is calling him directly. I slept, slept, slept!!!!! The next night I also slept, slept, slept...until my husband called at 8:30 to ask me what I was doing!!!!

It was wonderful. I miss my kids and husband. But it sure was nice just to sleep. I have a 6:30 am flight to catch tomorrow morning, so I will get no such slumber tonight. It was nice while it lasted.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Weekend Away

I’ve been feeling REALLY bad lately. It just doesn’t seem fair that I have the wonderful opportunity to spend every day and night with my 3 kids, and my dear husband works so hard all day and often doesn’t get home until after 8:00, thus having little or no quality time with our 3 little munchkins.

So I decided this weekend, I would give up my sweet children and let my husband hang out with them, and have their love, affection and more all to himself.

And just so I wouldn’t be tempted to come home and take the kids’ time away from their Daddy, I decided to go really far away….to the Outer Banks. There I’ll be torturing myself by doing a 20 mile training run, and the rest of the day I’ll be so sore and tired, the only thing I’ll be able to do is sit on a beach all day.

It’s a huge sacrifice on my part, but one I’m willing to make for the benefit of my husband.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Chemically induced states

Lately, I’ve had a lot of work to do. Trying to juggle my grad class work, an extra presentation I had to do, the newsletter I’m doing for my Mom’s group, the Mom’s Spiritual Spa reading work, running for marathon training, playing with my kids, hanging out with my husband, writing my blog and “the dailyness” of everyday, has been quite a challenge.

I have Sara many days so that I can do some of the above mentioned items during part of the day, but often I don’t really have the time to buckle down for long periods until night time, when the kids are in bed. Unfortunately, by the time I put the kids to sleep, I too am completely exhausted and just want to crash.

But I can’t.

So my routine of late has been to put the kids to bed, brew some coffee, and start my work for the next few hours. The caffeine wakes me up and helps me focus tremendously. I’m amazed at how much I can get done.

But then it gets closer to midnight, and I must try to get some sleep before I’m woken up at least once by Ella and once by Max, usually between 2 and 4 AM, and then aroused awake for the day between 6 and 6:30 AM, usually by Cameron. The problem is, the caffeine from my coffee is still in full gear.

So I turn to wine to help counteract the caffeine, calm me down and help me sleep.

I wonder how long I can keep this up, because it really is working. However, in the back of my mind I know that this CANNOT possibly be good for my body.


This past weekend my husband was out of town. Usually this means extreme stress for me as I try to deal with having the kids all to myself, all the time. Often the hardest part is trying to figure out how to pass the time with 3 kids that differ in their ages and abilities, with the least amount of destruction and crying as possible.

It turned out to be okay, however. Cameron spent the night at someone’s house on Friday. We went to a birthday party on Saturday afternoon. Saturday evening, at the last minute, Cameron went around to all his friends’ house in the neighborhood and invited them to movie night at our house. ALL of them came….8 kids total. (Their parents must have been thrilled to pass them along), and except for Max clobbering a kid and another kid hitting Cameron, all went quite well.

Then Sunday was the best of all. Ella got up around 5:30. I gave her a bottle and she quickly went right back to sleep for several hours. Max and Cameron woke up early, but once I poured them their cereal, they were set for a few hours. I took advantage of this and returned to bed, and wasn’t woken up until 9:30, when the men working on our deck came to the door (I’m sure they thought I was a complete slacker mom as I answered the door in my robe, rubbing the sleep from my eyes).

The best part was later that day when all the kids were awake and playing. As I was preparing lunch, I overheard Cameron say to his brother, “Max, you have to share. Even though Ella is not sharing with you, she just doesn’t understand, and that doesn’t matter. You still have to share with her.”

My heart beamed, as Cameron joyfully came in to tell me that he was teaching Max how to share. He then picked up a broom and insisted on sweeping the kitchen, pulling out the chairs from under the table and everything.

If I knew he would be like this all the time, I might even consider home schooling him.

JUST JOKING! I would NEVER do that.

But it sure was nice having such a responsible, caring son around the house acting so grown up.

Maybe he actually is learning something in Kindergarten.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Different Parts

The other day I was taking a shower, and as usual, Max wanted to join me. Normally he just tries to pour out all my shampoo, shower gel or conditioner into cups and plays “mad scientist” combining all of his ingredients.

This time, however, he was observing me. At one point he looked at his penis, then looked up at me. Please don’t, I thought to myself. He looked at himself again, and then up at me. “Where Mommy’s go?” he asked, pointing to where he thought my penis should be.

My first thought was to tell him that I was a bad little kid who didn’t listen to my mom, constantly woke her up in the middle of the night demanding milk, dumping out toys and drawers wherever I was, and screaming NO WAY at the top of my lungs…so as a punishment they cut it off.

But I’m not that sinister. So I just looked at him and said, “I’m a girl. Girls don’t have penises.” “Oh yea,” he responded, as if he actually knew what I was talking about. Immediately after, he again looked at his own penis, and up at me, and again asked, “Where Mommy’s go?” Ugh. I thought, here we go again. I know they say you should just tell your kid the real names for anatomy from the beginning so they’re not embarrassed to talk about it. So I relented and said, “I have a vagina, I don’t have a penis. Girls have vaginas, boys have penises.” Right after I said that, I had a flashback of when I was at the store with my 2 year old niece who kept lifting up my skirt in the checkout line. “What are you doing!?!?” I finally asked in frustration. She responded with, “Trying to see your vagina.” Right away I regretted what I had just told Max, expecting him to now constantly refer to my vagina. But luckily, he just looked at me and again said, “Oh yea.”

And then he looked up at my chest, and looked at his own. He pointed to his chest and said, “What’s that?” I told him his chest. His standard response, “ Oh yeah.” Then he pointed to me and said, “But what’s that?” I don’t know how he could have seen any kind of difference. I’ve always been small, and after nursing 3 kids, he could probably fill out my bras better than I can. And until I get the time to get the implants I’ve always wanted…then I don’t see how Max could make a distinction between him and me. But I went ahead and told him “Those are breasts.” And then again I feared what he might say, as my neighbor had just told me that her 3 year old was squeezing her and said, “Mommy I love your breasts.” Luckily Max just responded again with, “Oh yea.”

I was nervous about any more questions he might have, but instead of talking anymore, he just decided to lie belly down on the shower floor and try to slurp up the water accumulating there.

I hope Max doesn't have any more body parts inquiries for a while. But I might need to initiate one with Cameron. No matter what I explain to him, he continues to tell me that girls can't pee because they don't have penises.

And anyhow...why am I having these conversations? Their father is a doctor. I think I need to pass the buck on this one.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Broken spirit

Have you ever seen the super “kid tough” electronic equipment that Fisher-Price makes for children? They have CD players you can drop down a whole flight of stairs and they still will play Disney Tunes without skipping.. They have cameras you can toss across the room without cracking the lens. And they even make MP3 players that can endure being used as a hockey puck.

I sure wish they made similar durable items for adults….without the primary colors of course.

Right now, all of my important electronic devices seem to be broken in some significant way.

My cell phone – Who knew you weren’t supposed to put it in your back pocket and then drive with it there. Apparently my flabby butt exerted too much pressure or something on it, completely ruining the window portion of the phone. I can still make and receive phone calls, I just can’t see any of the numbers I type in, nor can I see the names in my address book. This means I can’t call half my friends since I don’t actually know their numbers; they’re just programmed into my phone.

My laptop keyboard – As I wrote about before, Max got a hold of my keyboard and picked off many of the keys. Although my friend’s husband was able to fix some of them, a few were unsalvageable, and the ones that were fixed, are on the verge of popping off again. Although I can still type, it is very uncomfortable, as I must make sure I don’t push some keys too hard and others I must apply extra pressure in just the right location or else no letter will appear.

My digital camera – Max broke my first one. Didn’t like that I had it sitting in his stroller (that he NEVER sits in) and threw it down directly on the concrete sidewalk. For Mother’s Day I purchased myself a new one….exact same camera. Friday I was at a park trying to balance Ella in one arm, Max in the other, a diaper bag and my digital camera. When I was able to put the kids down, the camera strap slid off my shoulder, causing the camera to hit the pavement. Immediately I cringed, knowing the fate of my last camera. And sure enough, when I tried to turn it on, the thing made a really strange grinding sound and the lens jammed.

I’ve been able to make due with the first two broken for quite some time, and now I must resort to my film 35mm camera (which I love except for the fact that I don’t get instant photos to publish online).

I think electronic companies make their items fragile on purpose. They must rely on people like me to keep up their profits.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Kindergarten Anxiety

I’m having a really hard time with Cameron being in Kindergarten. Not like many moms who miss their dear 5 year old. I adore my child and love spending time with him, but I love that he’s in school and “learning.”

These are the things I’m having a hard time with:

1. Unlike at preschool, you don’t get to walk them to their classroom and pick them up, chat with the teacher, look at what’s happening in their surroundings, etc. I HATE not knowing what’s going on. Except for the fact that they’ve been reviewing their colors each day (which I personally think is intro preschool stuff), they make pictures during “quiet time” and they seem to have a coloring page each day, I don’t know what’s happening. I ask Cameron what they did ,and he tells me they “played games.” When I asked what the teacher was doing, he said, “Just hanging out.” Now mind you, he’s a five year old boy, so I take what he says with a grain of salt, but I haven’t seen anything I consider “real work” yet, and it would be nice if we received something telling us what was going on in class.

2.He didn’t get the teacher I wanted him to get. And the other full-day Kindergartners in our neighborhood have the teacher I wanted Cameron to get, so I can’t even talk with the moms about what’s going on in class.

3. Conferences are not until mid October, and I can’t wait that long to discuss at length (15 minutes) how my child is doing, what exactly it is that he’s doing, and if he’s being challenged. Because if he comes home merely doing the sounds of the letters, I’m going to flip. Cameron can read first reader books and always is trying to spell words, and I don’t want to lose a whole year of potential learning so that he stays with the rest of the class. I had to push for an accelerated reading group last year in preschool, and that rarely happened. I hope I don’t have to jump through such hoops this year.

4. Cameron is still forgetting things each day. I write notes in the communication folder asking the teacher to make sure he’s coming home with particular items, and although she responds positively stating that she’d make sure he came home with the sweatshirt he left in gym class two days ago, he still comes home empty handed. He also forgot his library book that I was supposed to read to him, and he forgot his lunchbox (again). Melvin was home and drove him back to school this time. No TV and Computer for a full day is his consequence. Although this bums him out, I don’t think it will deter his forgetfulness. And since I don’t even know what the end of the day routine is like, I can’t even suggest to him ways he can remember what he needs.

Okay, it has only been a week, and so maybe I ought to give the teacher more time and not be this parent from hell. When I called her earlier this week to try to understand how my son was able to purchase chocolate milk for lunch when I never put any money in his account, she did tell me how much of a sweetheart he is, and how he always says “thank you,” which leads the other kids to say it.

But how long do I wait before I politely suggest that I was really hoping to see my son do more than just color in Kindergarten?

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Lost and Found

1st Day of School: Forgot to leave his gym shoes in his locker, fogot to bring home his lunch box and forgot where to get off the bus.

2nd Day of School: Still forgot to leave his gym shoes in his locker.

3rd Day of School: Forgot his jacket somewhere in gym class, forgot the folder that must be checked and signed every night, and still forgot to leave his gym shoes in his locker.

This might be a VERY LONG school year.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Liar. Liar. Pants on fire.

Now that Cameron is in school, Max has been spending a lot more time with Ella lately. Sometimes this is good, like when he runs to tell me that Ella has paper in her mouth. And other times…like when he’s yanking toys from her hand, pulling her down by her neck from a standing position or sprinkling milk from her bottle on her head...sometimes, it’s not so good.

But today, as I was cleaning up from breakfast, I glanced in the family room and saw the two of them sitting nicely together looking at books. No screaming or yelling. Just the two of them getting along, peacefully.

But what actually was happening, was that Max was flipping through a Dora board book that contained pictures hidden under flaps. He was quietly tearing off each of the flaps. There must have been about 20 different flaps lying all over the floor.

This infuriated me, and I got right down on his level, made him look me in the eye and said sternly, “Bad boy Max. You do NOT tear books. That is very bad.”

He simply looked at me like I was completely mistaken, stood up, picked up one of the flaps and claimed, “Ella did it!” Then he pointed to some more and continued blaming his innocent sister, “Ella did it! Ella did it!” with each flap spread out across the carpet.

If this is any indication of what is to come…I am in big, big trouble!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Proud moments

Cameron's two latest accomplishments for which he is quite proud.

1. He can pee without having to pull his pants down.

2. He can make farting sounds by cupping his hand under his armpit.

I really hope now that he's in school, he'll find other things of which to be proud.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

First day.....finally

(Written on Friday, September 8th)

Was Cameron excited about his first day of Kindergarten?

This morning, in my slumber, I heard him come bounding into my room, fully dressed, socks and all, teeth brushed, waking me up to ask when the bus was going to come. It was only 6 AM.

Yes, he was definitely excited. And I was just as excited for him.

I took all three kids outside to the bus stop, which is directly across the street from our house. While there, I noticed that the zipper on Cameron’s brand new Superman backpack was zipped closed, and yet the spokes were splitting. I finally got it all aligned , but knew it was going to immediately split again. Great, first day, right before the bus comes, and his backpack is broken!

When he finally boarded those stairs and drove off, Max started crying…not because Cameron had left, but rather because HE wanted to go on the bus, also. “I go bus TOO!” he kept yelling. Finally, once he calmed down, he must have asked me 10 times in a row, “Where Cameron go?” “On the bus to school Max..” “Oh…Where Cameron go?” “On the bus to school Max. To Kindergarten.” “Oh….Where Cameron go?” etc, etc.

While inside, I think he finally figured out that Cameron wasn’t coming back, and he needed to make friends with his other playmate.

When Cameron returned home, we waited for the bus again, and this time I wanted to video tape him. As the kids scrambled down the bus stairs, Cameron was not coming off the bus, but rather running down the hill alongside the bus, grinning. He said that his friend Patrick got of the bus at a previous stop and he saw his mom, so Cameron thought that was his stop as well. Apparently it didn’t matter that my husband lectured to him AT LENGTH about where he was supposed to get off the bus…directly in front of our house and nowhere else but in front of our house.

Along with forgetting his bus stop, Cameron also forgot his lunch in his locker.

Max greeted Cameron by running up to him and bopping him on the head (I even have this on tape).

Cameron said he had a great time at school and was excited to tell me that he had music class and there was a calendar for me in his folder. Although, he also told me that the first thing they did was color, “and that was boring.” At recess they had to play on the “boring” playground. And the “boringest of all was gym class, where all we did was talk and stretch.

Apparently it wasn’t too boring, because when I told him the next day was Saturday so he didn’t have school, he moaned and asked, “But why don’t we have school on Saturday and Sunday?” And then he immediately wanted to know how many more days until he gets to return to school.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

True Nerd

I LOVE school supplies. When I was in elementary school, I couldn’t wait for when my mom came home with our supplies for the year. I’d lay them all out on our back patio and just admire them with the biggest grin on my face. (Yes, I was very much a nerd). And the best part was putting my name on everything. We usually used a pen and wrote it directly on the crayon box, notebook or Trapper Keeper, or we’d write our name on a piece of masking tape and adhere it to the scissors or glue bottle.

But one year my mom purchased a label maker…not one of those fancy mini computer looking things. (We’re talking the 80s here). It was a handheld maker with a dial on the top that had the alphabet printed around the edge of a wheel. Special, thick, red tape was threaded through this “machine.” You had to turn the dial at the top so that the letter you wanted to print lined up with a particular mark and then you’d squeeze the handle of the label maker really hard, allowing the indent of the letter to create a white imprint on the red tape. It was time consuming, but so much FUN when you finally got to the end of your name and turned that dial to the scissors picture, did a final squeeze and a label with your name popped off the edge. Sometimes I’d even create a label with more than just my name. Sometimes I’d label “I love Kevin Mauer”…my schoolboy crush for far too many years. (He was too shy to give me the time of day…..or more likely he couldn’t see the true beauty behind my bowl haircut, buck teeth and coke bottle glasses).

When I became a teacher, purchasing my own school supplies was a necessity in some of the poorer schools I worked in, and in another school, sometimes I had the privilege of raiding the supply closet! Oh the masking tape, markers, post-its, file folders….I was in my glory!

And nothing is more exciting than Target at Back-to School time. Dollar boxes of Crayola markers, twenty cent glue, ten cent folders! Last year, even though I did not need them, I purchased a few packs of one subject notebooks, for the mere fact that they were 10 in a pack for only $1. Only 10 cents for each spiral bound…how could I resist?

So you can imagine my delight when I received an e-mail from the principal of Cameron’s new school, that had the school supply list for Kindergarten attached. It read:
Do not label these supplies, they will be shared: -2 packs of pencils, sharpened -3 boxes of standard size crayons -3 packs of markers -2 packs of dry-erase markers -1 watercolor paint set -4 bottles of glue -2 packs of glue sticks -1 pair of scissors -1 box of Kleenex -2 canisters of baby-wipes -1 bottle of hand soap -1 box of snacks to share -Ziplock baggies (A-I: sandwhich, J-R: 1 gallon, S-Z: 2 gallon)
-These items are not shared, please label: 2 notebooks, backpack, and tennis shoes for gym (no black soles).

After reading this, I had 3 thoughts racing through my mind. My first one was, My that’s A LOT of stuff! I never had to purchase more than one of anything, except notebooks and pencils! FOUR bottles of glue? Are they serious?

My second thought was, You mean I could have REQUIRED to have my own students bring in dry-erase markers? That would have saved me a lot of my own money when I worked in a school that had dry erase boards, but only a limited supply of those damn markers.

And my third and most severe thought was, What? Don’t label these supplies? They will be shared? I really, really, really, really wanted to purchase one of those fancy label makers and share the supply labeling experience with my son. My heart was broken.

Well, the supplies filled up 2 shopping bags and his back pack. And we (well I) reluctantly turned them all in at Open House night.

Kindergarten begins for Cameron tomorrow…I better go make his lunch. Maybe I can at least label his name on each of his food items. I wouldn’t want someone else trying to claim his PB & J sandwich.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Needed Time

I had ignored my tire pressure warning light for too long. After viewing an almost flat tire before driving Cameron to his 20 minute Kindergarten evaluation, I decided to go ahead and take my van to some tire place to hopefully have the thing repaired. I didn’t want to get stuck with a blowout with 3 kids in the car.

So at 10:30 AM, Cameron and I were standing in Tires Plus, listening to some guy tell us that they wouldn’t be able to get to it until around 2PM (which actually turned out to be around 3PM).

Thankfully, we were right across the street from a very large strip mall shopping center. So in the five hours that passed before the tire was finally fixed, we went to Kid’s Hair to make an appointment, Old Navy for some clothes shopping, Dick’s Sporting Goods to climb the Climbing Wall (which was closed), back to Kid’s Hair for a cut, over to Champs for a sit-down lunch with smoothies, across to Lens Crafters to get my glasses adjusted, down to JC Penny’s to look for gym shoes and more clothes for Cameron, in the middle to Carter’s and Gymboree to check out the baby clothes, into Rocco’s to make a hair appointment, over to Pier One to just browse, into PetsMart to enjoy the animals and waste more time, around to Border’s to purchase a few books, and back to Tires Plus, where we still waited for another 20 minutes before they finished, during which time Cameron sat on my lap and read Hop on Pop to me. (The guys at the tire place tried to tell me my tires were so worn down that they were a millimeter from the legal limit, and I really should get them all replaced….um, I’ll pass, and get a 2nd opinion on that one).

The day was exhausting, but also so wonderful. I haven’t spent this much alone time with Cameron since before Max was born. And boy did we need it. It was so nice to just enjoy his company without having to spend most of my time attending to the other two who demand most of my attention. Unfortunately Cameron usually gets the raw deal with my impatience, because well, he’s 5 and “should know better,” when in reality, most of the time, it's not really him that I'm mad at.

So today, we just walked, talked, held hands, bought some school clothes, and hung out. It was not at all what I had planned to do today….just so much better…the perfect day to spend together before he begins Kindergarten on Friday.

Today is probably the only time I’ll say, “Thank the Lord for flat tires.”

Monday, September 04, 2006

Don't call Social Services

If you had 2 brothers who showed their intense love for you by yelling in your face, squishing your cheeks, pulling on your hair, yanking at your arms, jumping over your head, snatching away your toys, hiding you in pillow houses, lying on top of you, and poking you in the eyes, you'd need a little something to help get you through the day as well.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Better than TV

In Minnesota, the winters can be rough, but the summers are wonderful. Short, but wonderful! However, despite our front porch and back deck, it's almost impossible to enjoy relaxing evenings outside, sipping on a glass of wine, due to the influx of mosquitoes that inhabit our state. Therefore, we have decided to have a screened-in 3 season porch built off our kitchen, covering our old deck and also extending it, so that we still have an outside area to BBQ on.

They started work 2 days ago, tearing out the old wood. "Breaking it!" Max yelled. The kids have an unobstructed view of the work being completed from the kitchen door, and they are quite entertained by it.

I wonder if baybsitting fees are factored into the overall cost of the project.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Still Learning

After he endured the pain of a cheerio up his nose, I thought Max would never put anything up there again. Apparently he didn't learn his lesson.
I'm just glad this was a toy drill and not the real thing.