Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Rambling at Midnight

Can you be a prolific painter?
How do you spell Chattahoochee?
Is there a hyphen between high-maintenance? low-income? fast-paced?

These are the kinds of questions I run into every five minutes when I'm writing....which is why it takes me so darn long...because I have to Google everything...and then I have to blog about it to relieve my frustration...okay, back to writing.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Fair Pics

Pic #1 - This ferris wheel was scary! I had a curious 6-year-old and a wiggly 2-year-old in an open bucket with no straps, handles, or safety bars AT ALL. The metal gate in the front didn't even close all the way. A mom's worst nightmare!

Pic #2 - The petting zoo was a big hit!

Pic #3 - Mason rode all of the kids' rides over and over, but this airplane was the only one I could convince Carter to ride. He whimpered and clutched my arm the whole time. That was the last ride of the day for him (except for the deadly ferris wheel)

Pic #4 - The Just for Kids building kept them busy for hours. Carter rode little cars in the Little Tykes Land, and Mason built this tower all by himself from the ground up. Of course, he had more fun knocking it down.

Pic #5 - M and C got to milk a pretend cow, gather plastic eggs, and pick plastic fruit to earn money for the Country Store. These little farmers bought bags of chips with their earnings - the only free food at the fair!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Prince of Egypt

Mason wanted to watch the Prince of Egypt movie that we stole from Mimi's house last weekend (ummm...Mimi...can we borrow Prince of Egypt?....Thanks :) It's not the mindless entertainment that I was hoping it would be for a restful, relaxing evening. I've seen it several times, but never with a curious 6-year-old. So far I've had to come up with explanations for Egypt, the Hebrew people, slavery, pyramids, the Sphinx (and why his nose fell off), mass infanticide, the burning bush, plagues, Passover, children dying, lambs dying, blood on doors, the parting of the Red Sea...and the movie's not over yet. I love the movie, the story, the message, and especially the music. But I think I'll make sure Jas is home the next time we watch a historically-based movie.

Monday, October 20, 2008


I know I'm obsessing about the healthy family dinner thing, but I can't help it. I have to record the fact that Carter ate every last bite of his spaghetti pie...with hidden broccoli and carrots...AND whole wheat pasta. Mason wasn't as enthusiastic, but he warmed up to the dish when I threatened to take every snack/dessert item out of the house for a month if he didn't start eating meals at dinner time. He's getting into the habit of eating as little as possible on his plate and then asking, "Did I eat enough to get dessert?" Of course, "dessert" is usually something like cheese crackers or a couple of whole wheat Fig Newtons, but it's still a bad habit.

The little goof is also reading food labels to see how much fat and sodium it has. I didn't teach him that...must have been something they did at school. Here's how it goes:

Mason: Carter, let me see those Cheez Its to see if you can have some.
Carter: Okay. (hands him the box)
Mason: Oh...nope...they have too much trans fat and sodium. Sorry. (puts the box back in the pantry)
Carter: (breaks into screaming fit and tries to climb the pantry shelves)

Of course, Mason never lets the amount of trans fats or sodium in his snacks stop him from eating them. He just likes to be the nutrition police for everyone else.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Smells Like a Wasp in the Refrigerator

I think I'm losing ground on the quest to add veggies to my family's diet. Mason is starting to reject the healthy versions of the junk food that I've been making with pureed veggies. This morning I made sweet potato pancakes with cinnamon, flax seed, and whole wheat flour...they tasted much better than they sound. Mason sat down in front of his plate and wrinkled up his nose. "These smell like a wasp is in the refrigerator," he said before he took a bite. I'm guessing that in 6-year-old logic that means they smell bad. He took a few bites of pancakes drowned in syrup and then declared he wasn't hungry. Carter didn't do much better.

Despite their stubbornness, I still plan to keep adding veggies to their food. They're bound to get used to it one of these days. Here are some of the super easy "recipes" I can usually get away with:

Ramen Noodles - Add squash baby food, small bits of chicken or frozen shrimp, and finely chopped, frozen carrots. The frozen shrimp cools off the soup and adds protein. I do usually thaw the shrimp and carrots slightly. Carter LOVES this and drinks the broth (with the squash) through the straw in his special "straw bowl." I need to find a lower fat low sodium version of Ramen noodles at some point.

Mac-n-Cheese - Add squash baby food to boxed macaroni and cheese. I think I went overboard on how much squash I added a few times, and the boys wouldn't eat it. The key is to start slow and gradually add more over several months- something I'm not very good at because it requires patience.

Hamburger Helper - Add sweet potato or carrot baby food to lasagna and other tomato-based Hamburger Helper mixes. Add squash to the others, like the ranch one that is Mason's favorite. Once again, I have to be careful not to add too much.

Canned Spaghettio's and Raviolis - Add carrots or sweet potatoes. I need to see if Wild Oats has a healthier version of these fattening favorites.

Grilled Cheese - Add a little bit of squash baby food to shredded cheese and mix with a pat of butter. This works with grilled ham and cheese sandwiches, too.

Monday, October 13, 2008

I Luv Junie B. Jones

Mason and I abandoned the Narnia Chronicles several weeks ago in favor of the much lighter Junie B. Jones series. Narnia was giving me a headache. You can't just read it as-is to a have to paraphrase and do LOTS of explaining. And I don't even like fantasy. So we started reading the Junie books that Mason checked out at the library. I read it in her voice, and I do a great imitation of a bratty first-grader, if I do say so myself. Here's a passage we read tonight about Junie's boyfriend, Ricardo, breaking up with her:

"Because, Ricardo. Because I am your girlfriend. And you are my boyfriend. And boyfriends and girlfriends are only allowed to chase each other. That's how come."

Ricardo's face turned very glum. "But I like chasing new Thelma," he said kind of whiny. "It's fun."

I patted his arm very understanding. "Yes, well, I don't make the rules, Rick, I just enforce them," I said.

Ricardo didn't talk for a long time. Then finally he stood up. And he shook my hand real nice. "Junie B., it's been fun being your boyfriend," he said. "But I think it's time we started chasing other people." After that, he waved good bye. And he ran off to chase new Thelma again.

It won't be long before Mason realizes boys don't read these kind of stories - I'm just enjoying it while it lasts.

If Obama wins by one vote in Oklahoma... will be my fault. I missed the deadline to register in the city we moved to. I did at least think to call the election board to find out if we needed to re-register, even though we just moved 3 miles down the road. AND I informed Jas of the situation - he made it in time. I just forgot to go to the DMV before Friday to fill out the form - because I had a few other things to think about - like a screaming toddler who makes it hard to think when I'm running errands. Sorry John and Sarah!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Blogger's Block

My best friend Collyn (since the second grade) reminded me tonight that I haven't blogged in a week. I think I have a case of writer's block. I also have a case of cleaner's block and decorator's block where my house is concerned. I have chef's block in the kitchen and gardener's block in my very small, very dry garden. I just can't find my "get-up-and-go" this week. Next week is Fall Break - maybe I'll get motivated to quit being a slacker mom then. For now, though, I'm super sleepy and can't write type another word before I go to bed.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Freakin' Fabulous

I'm watching TV while I'm "working" on my writing projects for the day. My favorite fashion guru, Clinton Kelly, is on Today (which I usually can't stand to watch because Kathy Lee is just as annoying as she was with Regis 20 years ago). I'm learning a lot about being Freakin' Fabulous (the title of Clinton's new book). Apparently, I need a new wardrobe, a more modern haircut, a set of wine glasses (even though I don't drink), and fresh flowers in at least one room of my house every day. Every day? Seriously? Who does that? I think I'm happy being Freakin' Unfabulous, but thanks for the advice, Clinton.

Totally unrelated side note: I have pictures to post of our State Fair outing, but I can't find the box where I packed the camera's USB cord. I stayed SIX hours at the fair with the boys. Jas abandoned us after an hour - he had to leave for work. I was determined to get my $80 worth if it killed me. Yes, I spent $80 at the fair. And I was trying to be frugal! Next year, I'm going to rent a booth and sell t-shirts that say, "Tulsa State Fair - Expect the Expensive." Maybe I'll earn enough to cover our expenses.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Cracking up!

Check out my yearbook photos from The big hair one from 1994 is dangerously close to my senior picture from 1992.

P.S. Jas's pictures were laugh-out-loud, tears-streaming-down-my-face funny, but he won't let me post them.