Sunday, December 28, 2008
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
'Twas the night before Christmas Eve
When all through our house
Many creatures were still stirring
Daddy even caught a mouse. (Eeew!)
Little Pumpkin was sent home early
From his family daycare
And Daddy hoped that Mommy
Soon would be there.
For while the children were napping
All snug in their beds
Evidence of Pumpkin's illness
Was there on his threads.
On his clothing, his mittens
His coat and his cap,
We knew the stomach bug
Had lived way past his nap.
We tried to offer light food
When he wanted to eat
But he said it tasted funny
Even his very favorite treat.
After a bath and some books
Bedtime drew near
I sang him his lullaby
And said, "I love you, my dear."
A few hours later
I heard sad toddler chatter
I jumped up from giftwrapping
To see what was the matter.
Pumpkin sat up in his crib
And he started to cry
He had gotten sick once again
The poor little guy.
When I finally decided
To get to into my bed
I was feeling uneasy
"So much to do," I said.
But at four in the morning
I flew to the bathroom door
All of the sudden it just hit me
Thank goodness for linoleum floor.
I had to write lesson plans
Since I couldn't go to work
And Eric got a mop
While I felt like a jerk.
I'm no good with stomach bugs
The sight makes me faint
One more reason I am grateful
I married a true saint.
And I heard Eric exclaim
As he walked out of sight,
"I'm sleeping in the guest room,
Until you're all right!"
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
I wish you could have seen his face when he saw his best out-of-town friends and his brother yell, "Surprise!" when we came into the restaurant. Especially since it was over two months until his actual birthday. But hey, that's a minor detail, I figured. Besides, getting everyone together in December would have proven to be much more difficult. So, surprise, Honey! It's your birthday party two months early. No wonder he never suspected a thing.
The show was one of the funniest I think I have ever seen. You may not know who Patton Oswalt is by name, but you may know him from television shows such as "The King of Queens" and from his voice-over work as the main character, Remy, in the children's film, Ratatouille.
I had contacted the manager of the theater months in advance to set up a "meet and greet" with Patton, and after explaining the special night I had planned for Eric, she seemed on board to try and make that happen. My directions were to find Ms. Very Important by the stage right ushers when I got there to learn if Patton had agreed to meet with us. The manager seemed optimistic when she called earlier that afternoon, so I admit that my hopes were high. So you can imagine that I was a bit annoyed when Ms. Very Important said that Patton wasn't feeling well, but he would sign a program for Eric. Boo! I was truly disappointed and figured he was blowing us off because we were lowly Delaware peons. No, it turns out that he was so sick that at times he joked that he was coughing up different lifeforms. He even took his medication on stage because "it was time." By this time, he had totally gained my respect back even though he wouldn't see us; I was surprised that anyone would continue on with a show who was that obviously ill. And anyway, serious flu germs weren't on the list of items I had planned to get Eric for his birthday.
Outside of the theater
Friday, December 12, 2008
Below is the cream of the crop from 2006. And frankly, after looking through all of the "rejects," I had no idea how increasingly difficult it would become to get good shots when they became their current ages of two and a half and five and a half. Even the ones we vetoed back in the below shoot look fairly decent next to the ridiculous faces Peanut has now decided are more fun, and the drool of Pumpkin's yesteryear has now been replaced by a constant runny nose (which is even less forgivable when captured on film). But thank heaven for matching sweaters and hats. Those outfits really do make all of the frustration of getting a semi-respectable picture worth the hassle.
Did you get a Christmas picture of your family or children this year? I'd love to hear about it. And by the way, those of you with more than two children who send a Christmas photo where all children are looking in the same direction immediately get my vote for sainthood.
Friday, December 5, 2008
Well, I'll give you some hints: He is old enough to be married with two children. No help? Okay, he grew up playing Atari, he listened to AC/DC as a teenager, and he still loves the television show, M*A*S*H. He is also older than I am (sorry, Hon, I had to throw that in there). But it doesn't matter; he still has that cute baby face all these years later. I picture us walking hand in hand when we're in our eighties and people thinking I caught myself a younger man.
So go ahead and leave a comment and guess how old my wonderful husband is today. And if you wanna give him a birthday present, visit his blog and leave him a comment, too. I'm sure that would make his big day even better!
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
I really should have known better. But after all, I am an optimist. I try not to be cynical. I should have noticed that symbolically colored dot in the exclamation point. But I didn't. I just curiously opened the package, awaiting my surprise and the fitting gift just for me.
And what a cute play on words! I'm always up for a good pun. Fit to be tried! Hey, that's punny, right? So, what is this surprise that I can try? New shampoo? Body lotion? Cute miracle trouser socks that will make my feet hurt less at the end of each day? I opened the package with anticipation.
Ummmm...you are kidding, right?!?!? THIS is what passes as a "gift" these days? I mean, I know that times are tough, but seriously? Hmmph. Well, I guess I won't be re-gifting this one. All I know is it truly is better to give than to receive.
And just in case you are feeling like you just can't find that perfect present for someone, you will know that -- unless you give the one pictured above -- your gift-giving efforts are bound to be more appreciated than this "gift" was.
Friday, November 28, 2008
Peanut the Pilgrim, age 3, with preschool turkey art
Pumpkin the Turkey, age 8 months
Hope everyone had a blessed Thanksgiving!
Sunday, November 23, 2008
ORIGINAL POST: Don't break it to my pumpkin that most people only read and sing about pumpkins in October. He and his brother became very attached to a movie called Spookley the Square Pumpkin earlier this fall and continued to watch it all through the Halloween season and into late November.
It's a predictable but cute story of a little square pumpkin who is teased because of his shape but ultimately teaches everyone that it's good to be different (remind anyone of a well-known red-nosed reindeer story?). It is based on the book of the same name, and the lonely extra on the DVD is a reading of the story, page by page. So, when I found the book for a steal (just $1.00!), I knew my little ones would be excited.
I didn't anticipate, however, what a fan little Pumpkin had become. He wanted all Spookley, all the time. No other television viewing was allowed. The book needed to be read over and over ad nauseum to satisfy his thirst for Spookley. And each reading of the story needed to be followed by a serenade of the "The Spookley Song." Yes, the movie is a musical (and the music is actually tolerable until about the 857th time). The cutest song of the bunch is a melancholy little tune called "If I Was Round" in which Spookley sings: "If I was round/ I would be/More like them/And less like me/And maybe I/Would have a friend/If I was round/If I was more like them." (Hearing Pumpkin sing every line of that one nearly melted my heart.) But I knew this obsession needed to be curtailed when Pumpkin decided he would sleep with his Spookley book, open to his favorite pages.
Hi, I'm Pumpkin, and I am reading my favorite pages of Spookley.
Here, get a good look!
After a while, I started enthusiastically encouraging other books so that he could enjoy other stories, too. But I had to include the video I filmed of him one night after reading the book when he sang every word of "The Spookley Song," complete with key changes and (his added) background vocals. Now that the ritual has ended, I have to admit, I kind of miss it. Then again, there's always next year.
And now, ladies and gentlemen (are there any gentlemen out there?), here is my pumpkin, singing about another pumpkin (with translations below).
The Spookley Song
He's so odd he won't fit in, look at Spookley, look at him
Spookley the square pumpkin
All the pumpkins in the patch are nice and round, we all match
Look at Spookley, look at him, Spookley the square pumpkin
Every time in every town the pumpkins they pick are nice and round
That's true it happens every year, the best will get picked
(I guess you'll stay here)
Look at Spookley, look at him, he's so odd he won't fit in
Look at Spookley, look at him, Spookley the square pumpkin
I can't help the way I am, I wish I could look more like them
It's hard to fit in when you've found, you're a square and the world is round
Look, look, look, look (he's so rectangular)
Look, look, look, look (he's so triangular)
Look at Spookley, look at him, Spookley the square
Look at Spookley (so rectangular)
He's so odd (he's so triangular)
Look at Spookley, look at him
Spookley, Spookley, Spookley, Spookley
Spookley the square pumpkin!
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
If You Give a Mom a Muffin
by Kathy Fictorie
If you give a mom a muffin, she'll want a cup of coffee to go with it.
She'll pour herself some.
Her two-year-old will spill the coffee.
She'll wipe it up.
Wiping the floor, she will find dirty socks.
She'll remember she has to do laundry.
When she puts the laundry in the washer, she'll trip over boots and bump into the freezer.
Bumping into the freezer will remind her she has to plan supper.
She will get out a pound of hamburger.
She'll look for her cookbook. (101 Things to Make With a Pound of Hamburger.)
The cookbook is sitting under a pile of mail.
She will see the phone bill, which is due tomorrow.
She will look for her checkbook.
The checkbook is in her purse that is being dumped out by her two-year-old.
She'll smell something funny.
She'll change the two-year-old.
While she is changing the two-year-old, the phone will ring.
Her five-year-old will answer and hang up.
She'll remember that she wants to phone a friend to come for coffee.
Thinking of coffee will remind her that she was going to have a cup.
She will pour herself some.
And chances are, if she has a cup of coffee, her kids will have eaten the muffin that went with it.
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Dash and Jack-Jack from The Incredibles, 2007
And, just for fun, here are all of the other previous costumes my boys have donned in years past:
Peanut as Pablo from The Backyardigans, 2006
Pumpkin as himself, 2006
Peanut as Simba from The Lion King, 2005
Peanut as Winnie the Pooh, 2004
Peanut as a puppy, 2003
Halloween will probably always be my least favorite day of the year. But these little boys of mine all dressed up in their sweet costumes certainly help me to smile.
Sunday, November 9, 2008
In a strange twist, it was actually Peanut who wanted to come home first from our night of going door-to-door. Pumpkin was having a blast and wasn't even afraid of some of the scary scenes some of our neighbors created (although he did voice his disapproval of the googly eye glasses given out at one house in lieu of candy that Peanut is holding in the picture below). The funniest image of the evening was watching Pumpkin attempting to grab handfuls of candy from the nice neighbors' bowls when they offered with his huge rubber gloves on. Peanut ditched his gloves earlier, but Pumpkin was determined to complete the look while in public.
I have to admit that I will be excited if we can accomplish another brotherly costume choice next year. I am sure that there won't be many years left where they will want to choose a costume together since next year, Pumpkin might actually have a say.
But since I didn't have this blog this time last year, anyone care to guess the brotherly duo my boys represented in 2007? All I can tell you is that it was an incredible feat!
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Secondly, I just wanted to update you on a previous post. Once told her baby would most certainly die of a heart condition, MckMama's baby boy was born last week -- with no signs of his previous believed-to-be-fatal heart failure. The doctors are all scratching their heads, but she isn't. She believes it might have something to do with the fact that she has had 1,595,304 visits to her blog and that she has 1187 loyal blog followers who all united in prayer for her family. It truly is a MckMiracle!
I promise that my next post will include Halloween costumes and two sweet little boys. Any guesses what they were? I'll give you a hint: I would love some right now!
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Ken and me, 1984
My big brother had committed suicide.
I still can't say that -- or write that -- without tears. My world was shattered. Twenty years later, my feelings are not much different. My childhood hero and my only sibling is gone. How could he have helped me through my own depression, yet never told anyone about his own? My family and I have been deprived of so many moments we should have shared. Every milestone is difficult to achieve without him: my college graduation, my first teaching job, my marriage, and, of course, my children. My husband would have bonded with him over Monty Python, horror films, and 80s heavy metal. And my boys would have loved their Uncle Ken, his silly jokes, his made-up songs, and his infectious laugh more than I can imagine.
If you saw my last post, there is evidence that I have come a long way. Before having children, I would have never even considered donning my doorstep with pumpkins or any festive decorations -- most certainly not a ghost. But my needs take a backseat to my little boys' needs, and I understand the childhood excitement and anticipation of Halloween. But my Halloween will never be a "happy" one. It will always be a reminder of the loss of all that once was and all that could have been.
Saturday, October 25, 2008
Another great part of this orchard was this adorable playground with wooden apple carts, tractors, and castles to climb and play in. Don't ask how fast Peanut got to the top of this castle and how long it took him to get down. Apparently, I passed on my fear of heights and inability to slide down fireman poles.
It was a great time! I can't wait to go for Easter when they change Pumpkinland into.....Bunnyland! :)