Thursday, November 29, 2012

Christmas Gifts

Okay people. What are you buying your kids for Christmas? I assume that many of you struggle with this as we do, for probably some of the following reasons:

1. Your kids have too much stuff already.
2. What they do have, they play with a lot, then a little, then not at all.
3. They're too little to really know what they want. Or they want something unreasonable, like a trampoline.
4. You hate plastic.
5. Your kids already have a lot of "imaginative" toys (blocks, play doh, legos, art supplies, sand box) and you dislike many of the "un-imaginative" sort.
6. Let's be honest: Your kids are content with a box...for their heads. (Yes, Ollie loves walking around with a box/bucket/whatever on his head, even if that box/bucket/whatever is opaque.)
7. Santa only brings one gift because you still feel weird lying to your kids.
8. (And this may be my issue alone) You like to make the gifts instead of buy.

Given all of my issues, what do I get my boys?

P.S. We're thinking about doing four gifts for each child, one each in the following categories: want, need, do, read. What do you think? Do any of you do something like this?

P.P.S. Again, I apologize to myself for the irregular posting schedule this week. I've just been feeling a little off.

Monday, November 26, 2012

More Little Things

It's well known that I love my thrift store. But do you know that I'm actually grateful for it? This might be the best buy I've ever made there: the hairdresser set of play doh stuff. The razor even buzzes as it cuts hair. So dang cool.

Although this pie is pretty, and the apple pie was really yummy, I am thankful for pie crust all by itself.

And I'm thankful I don't have to hear the words "Black Friday" for another year. This shot is just for fun.

Not at all a little thing: I'm thankful for date nights with Chuck. We had one last Saturday and get two this week. Whatever should we do?!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

It's the Little Things

All the gratitude posts I see on Facebook this month seem to be of the obvious type. You know, "I'm thankful for my husband" or "I'm thankful to have a job." Of course I too am thankful for these things. I have a great husband and, well, a job. I'm thankful for my boys and that they are happy and healthy little children with functioning brains and all of their limbs. But c'mon. Isn't it much more fun to think about the not-so-obvious things for which we're grateful? Such as:

The perfectly reheated leftover. Not too hot, not too cold.

When the top rack of the dishwasher gets full at the same exact time as the bottom part.

(We interrupt that to bring this: ACK! I have TWO boys! Sorry, but sometimes, this still creeps up on me.)

Freegal, the free music resource available through my county library. What? Three free MP3s each week? I'll take it!

Socks that actually fit my feet. No more heels half way up my calf!

And, finally, the sock bun. What a wonder it is for my hair.

The end.

Wait. Check out this video of my brother. Does the comment about him being an adult strike you as funny, because it does me. Anyway, the video is long with a lot of snow, but it's also kind of mesmerizing at the same time.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Can't. Stop. Please. Help.

I know I said I wouldn't do this anymore, but I found a new-to-me bow tie pattern for Chuck that didn't require any hardware. The temptation was too much and I succumbed.

Friday, November 16, 2012

I Don't Feel Like Typing Much

I know I'm not alone in this, but I love when Rhett falls asleep "reading."

Stellar dressing, dude.

I love when pumpkins are past their prime and they look like old men who lost their dentures.

What is the plastic doing stuck to the walls? Are we painting again? NO. We are trying to save our floors and walls from Ollie and Bruno. One throws food and the other licks it up. Can we please be done with this stage?

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Things You Swore You'd Never Wear

I don't get Tom's shoes. Before you feel like I'm attacking you--don't go. I'm not saying I dislike them or find them hideous. But they're a simple loafer, right? Then why all the hype? It reminds me of how I initially felt about Birkenstocks. The first time I saw Birkenstocks I thought they were hideous. Absolutely hideous. I swore I would never, ever wear them. But guess what? I did. I loved them. So maybe some day I'll wear a pair of Tom's.

It got me thinking: what else, fashion-wise, have I sworn I'd never wear, but now find myself wearing?

Here's one I remember: I swore I'd never marry anyone who wears "little socks." (This is what I called them in college. I now know they're called "ankle socks.") Guess what? Not only did I marry an ankle-sock wearer, but I wear them too. Just for running, but still: I wear them. Somewhere, 20-year-old-me is feeling all nails-on-a-chalkboard-ish because of this.

P.S. Hmmm...You know, these aren't terrible. And these look like great little-kid shoes. But these? Uh, seriously? Are these like shoes from the future? (Please watch the video.) I will never wear these shoes.

P.P.S. "Hahahaha. Sure you won't," says me of the future.

Monday, November 12, 2012

A Retropactum

The other day, I was looking through my blog archives for a post on Rhett at the age Ollie is now (15 months). I ended up reading far more than planned because, man, can I be ridiculous, or what?! I sure know how to blog about the totally unimportant. Sooooo glad I've matured. (Why isn't there a font for sarcasm? It would make it so much easier.) Today I'm going to comment on all my posts from June 2009. Here we go.

June 1, 2009 Ollie loves that little pop car now! I need to take a picture of him on it and compare the two.

June 3, 2009 Of course having two kids is harder than one, but really, I was very self-aware to know that, for me, some things would be easier with the second. I am so less bored with Ollie than I was with Rhett, and so much more confident. That is, I was confident until Ollie started being oppo-Rhett. (See how I used that in a sentence? Try it!)

June 5, 2009 I still hate that bumper sticker.

June 6, 2009 Aw, that "new little one" got a new sister just last week! That tablecloth, once washed, was a beast to iron. Ugh. Those cookies are still the best chocolate chip cookies. Too bad I'm horrible at making them. Anyone want to make them for me? I accept deliveries.

June 6, 2009 This one kills me. Just in case you didn't catch on, this was a situation from real life (GASP!). But the killer thing is that the people offering the babysitting (me and my YW) and the person requesting the babysitting for her visiting Philly ward was none other than Natalie, who has become one of my best friends. Awesome.

June 11, 2009 Wow. Reading my first thoughts about this are so eye-opening. It was successful and we are repeating this ad infinitum!

June 14, 2009 I don't think I ever found a use for those bottom two fabrics. The first became a backpack for Rhett and a diaper clutch.

June 17, 2009 I'm still a wuss. I can't even open sippie cups that Chuck closed.

June 19, 2009 I'm embarrassed to admit that paper towels are used and abused in my house. We go through them pretty quickly; I'm sure my mom would be horrified. (Hi Mom!) And I can't believe I forgot that I can put muffin tins in the dishwasher. I still do all pots and pans by hand (or by Chuck's hand), but cleaning those muffin tins is the reason I don't bake more muffins.

June 21, 2009 Those are cute! I should make more.

June 23, 2009 The Metro. Ugh, the Metro. Since the people who fared the worst were in the very end of the train, and since I always sit in the very last seat on my way to work, it lasted a couple of weeks before I returned to "my" seat. Isn't that funny? You watch "Supersize Me" and swear off McDonald's for...oh, I don't know...three months? Was anyone able to never go to McDonald's again after watching that movie? Morgan Spurlock never got sick on the ice cream cones, so I'm safe.

June 25, 2009 We still have and use that box. It's a counter saver for sure.

June 27, 2009 My first thought was, "Dang. I need to get some pictures taken of the boys." My second thought was, "I really like my life. All of my life." My third thought was, "Well, maybe I don't really like it when Ollie throws everything from his high chair tray to Bruno."

June 29, 2009 Oh, this was a great idea! I had so much fun doing this with all the other women. How lovely and talented they all were (are!). The quiet books turned out great and I hope everyone involved feels the same way. We should do more projects as a group. Any ideas?

Whee--this was fun! I might do it again. Bonus points if you can tell me the movie reference for the post's title (unless you're Chuck--I know you know).

Friday, November 9, 2012

My Perfect Thanksgiving Menu

Since I've disallowed all travel for Thanksgiving (not enough time, too expensive, too many crowds, too much traffic), I'm excited to spend it at home (well, my in-laws' home). While Chuck's mom and I were divvying up the dishes, it made me think about my perfect Thanksgiving dinner. I see no need to have some food just because it's tradition. I want to fill my stomach with only those foods I actually like to eat. So here's what would be on my menu:

1. No to meat. I don't really care for turkey and see no need to spend the money, time, calories, and oven space on it.

2. No to stuffing. Can't stand it.

3. No to regular mashed potatoes. They just don't do it for me.

4. Yes to my mother-in-law's cranberry dish. At this moment, I can't recall what goes in it (cranberries, sugar, and...?) but it's good. Really good. Bonus: it can be made in advance.

5. Yes to my mother-in-law's orange rolls. I could probably eat a good half dozen of these, if not for pie. Oh, let's be honest, even with pie I will probably eat six.

6. Yes to my mom's sweet potatoes. I don't like the marshmallow-topped sweet potatoes, but this one has an excellent streusel topping. Trust me.

7. Because any excuse for this raspberry-pretzel "salad" is welcome, let's add this too.

8. Yes to pie. And because it makes both me and my husband happy, apple pie. Sure having more pies for variety is nice, but I don't need them. Besides, apple pie makes a great breakfast the next day.

Am I missing anything? What's on your Thanksgiving dream menu?

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Things Rhett Says

Rhett: Mom, which do you want more? Me to calm down OR me to sleep in your bed?
Me: Calm down, of course.
Rhett: Well, then you'll have to let me sleep in your bed because it's the only way that I'll calm down.

After talking to Rhett about smoking...

Rhett: Mom, when M and I get married, we won't smoke.

After talking to Rhett about a friend of his who has two dads...
Rhett: I know I won't do that because I've already decided to marry Madeleine.

Rhett: Mom, does ketchup stain?
Me: Yes, very much.
Rhett: Then come get it off my face!

Rhett: Can we do some more origami, Mom?
Me: Well, how about you go downstairs and vacuum up bugs?
Rhett: Yah! That got origami off my mind.
Note to my parents: While I love the origami and love doing it with Rhett, I do all of it and sometimes I just don't feel like doing all of it.

Monday evening, Rhett decided to take off his clothes (leaving him in just underwear), don a fox mask and his cape, and zoom about the house as "Super Fox." Oh how I want to post a picture of him as Super Fox, but you know, the interwebs might get a hold of it and then where would I be?! But don't worry: that picture will be used for ammo at a to-be-determined date, probably when he's about 16 or so.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Random Thoughts

Let's say that one of the legs in your flannel pajamas tore in the knee (notice the singular "knee"). You get tired of it catching on everything, so you rip off the entire leg from the knee down. So now you have shorts on one leg and pants on the other. Make sense? Do you keep wearing the shants (shorts + pants = shants)? Or do you toss them because, well, they're now shants?

You know how some people when wanting to express that something is the exact opposite of another is called the anti-____? But I don't like this. It implies that it's against it, not just the opposite of. So I introduce to you my new prefix: oppo! (It's even fun to say, yes?) Try it out. I promise you won't be disappointed.

My mom came up with a great idea for dealing with Halloween candy. You see, rationing in our house doesn't work. Rhett can't have just one. Instead he begs all day for one more. And if given that one more, then he wants another. Just a tiny one. And on and on. My mom told me that we should buy it off him, so that's what we did! He ended up with $13.25 and we'll take him to Kohl's today to spend it. Why Kohl's? Because I just happen to have a free $10.

We saw Jupiter through our telescope last night. So flippin' cool. We could see its orangish color and three of its moons. Sweet!

What kind of bread do you eat at your house? Does it look like this:

or more like this:

or something else entirely? Would you say that the second bread is the oppo-Wonder-Bread? I might, because, well, it is to me.

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to get my husband to take pictures that are NOT blurry? Seriously. It's so incredibly frustrating. And please don't tell him to buy a new camera. He does it with all he touches. And please don't tell me to take the pictures myself. I do that already. All I ask is a couple of good ones every once in a while with my boys. That's it.

Friday, November 2, 2012


Hurricane Sandy did not, thankfully, ruin our Halloween. Behind a dry floor and no power loss, this is the third-best thing that happened this week.

Tuesday, while we were all off because of the storm, we made some awesome candy corn cookies. Then we ate them. And they were good.

Then we carved our pumpkins and Ollie had a great time picking up, and then throwing, the pumpkin guts.

Halloween dinner was chicken noodle soup and bony breadsticks with blood special dipping sauce.

Then for the real fun. Our neighborhood isn't the most Halloween-y, so we visited that of a friend's. Good times were had by all.

Especially when I got to pick the candy I wanted Ollie to have, since I know I'll be the one eating it. (Almond Joy, thankyouverymuch.)

The spoils. Now we just have to decide how to go about disposing of it. One a day? Or one day of candy bingeing? The jury is still out.