31 October 2007

Boo! (updated)

Lars as Pokémon Gengar

Ross as Luke Skywalker

Ross as Luke Skywalker with Aniken Enhancement (scar on face).

Gengar did not want purple face makeup, would not stand still for a pre-trick-or-treating picture, and collected 103 pieces of candy (he had to count them and make tally marks as his homework tonight). For those keeping track of the proceedings on Worst.Mama.Ever., Lars completed 68 "I must not carve on furniture" lines in order to be able to go out tonight. When asked if he'd be carving things on furniture again, he snapped, "Mama! No. Really, NO."

Happy Halloween from our house to yours! Chris carved our pumpkins this year Pokémon Gengar (Lars); my hockey team; and Luke Skywalker for Ross. The back of my Wings pumpkin is carved "Bears" for the kids' team. Here's hoping my pumpkin will break the hex and I'll be back on the ice by the end of November!

26 October 2007

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?

Well, ok, he joined us for breakfast today.

21 October 2007

Rain in the Back Hall (again)

Once upon a time, we had a rainstorm that looked and sounded very, very much as if Niagara Falls was passing through on its' way to Florida or someplace. We marveled at the solid block of water and did the Dry Basement Happy Dance. Later that same week, while making dinner, I thought I heard that sort of rain again but was horrified to find the crashing water pouring through the ceiling into the back hall! It turned out the boys had been bouncing on the PVC upstairs water feed and it hadn't held up. It also turned out that we did not, in fact, have a shut-off to the upstairs...but that's a tale for another time.

More recently, Chris and I were standing in the back hall when water started tricking down again from above. Chris dashed toward the basement where he knows the exact location of the upstairs shut-off valve we now have but, before he got all the way down the stairs, I called him back - it wasn't water. Lars had gotten himself out of bed to use the bathroom and had sleepily missed the pot...the "rain" was boy-made. Thankfully, we haven't fixed the ceiling from the first disaster, so clean up was reasonable and we were chuckling about the poor kid in short order.

Tonight, we were finishing off odds and ends in the den when we heard a tell-tale trickle and we both leaped up! Chris made it to the hall first to discover a sleeping Ross, half-way down the stairs, pants down, peeing. He'd missed the bathroom and had taken the next left - the stairs - and walked down as many steps as it would have taken to get to the toilet, if he'd been in the right room.

Note to self: The back hall is no place for rugs.

15 October 2007


I am always amused when the kids come home with a classic like "Eeenie-Meenie-Miney-Moe." They are always so eager to share the new hip thing and so delighted when I catch on quickly.

"Scissors-Paper-Rock," which came home a while ago, has been making a comeback recently and the kids were playing yesterday in the car. The format is unchanged - fists are plunged three times in the center as the participants chant the title phrase, then hands are whipped into what one hopes will be the winning shape and compared around. A few rounds into the game, we heard both kids chant, "Scissors, Paper, Rock," followed by a triumphant roar of, "LIGHTNING GOD," which beat all.

The times? They have a-changed.

10 October 2007

Stock Tip: Buy SBUX

I drove myself to the train station this morning (!!), stopping on the way for a latte (cue Hallelujah Chorus), which I could carry because I also navigated the city without crutches today! I got a round of applause in my Sbux for walking in on my own feet again, which probably means you would do well to invest now.

Eyes on the Prize

Full coverage and commentary at Worst. Mama. Ever.

09 October 2007

Daily Reading

In first grade, you get one page of math homework and must read for 15 minutes each night, noting your work in a Reading Log. Today, Lars brought home a book from his classroom to read but he decided, instead, to read from a chapter book about dragons that we have here at home.

Lars is a very good reader but he's not THAT good, so I asked him to do his reading out loud for me. He flipped the book open without hesitation, then paused. "Mama, I'm not wanting to do this reading out loud," he said.

"Oh, no?"

He wrinkled his brow at the pages. "I don't know a lot of these words. The letters are the same but the words are all different," he observed.

"That might be a hard book to read out loud, then. Maybe you could try the book you brought home from school first?"

With a sigh, he went to retrieve the book from school. When he was done reading me the book, he made his log entry dutifully but with a hint of a flourish. "Did you know that I will get a sticker on the chart in my classroom if I read at least FIVE books a night?"

"Five? A night?" If so, they've upped the ante considerably from the five per week mark the first grades used when Ross went two years ago. "Do you think it might be five per week? I think five each night is a lot to ask."

He shook his head at me sincerely, "It is five books for each night and I can do it! I really can!" To illustrate this, he sprinted upstairs and returned with a Curious George - the one about the pizza - and began to read. Halfway through, he stopped. "Pizza for dinner is a great idea, Mama. We should take the advice of this book. It's really good advice!"

Does anyone have a copy of Curious George and the Canadian Baked Eggs I can borrow, fast?

08 October 2007

Hikaru Dorodango

Japanese kids take mud play to a whole new level.

A Real Conversation

"Hello, I just got your e-mail, thanks! I see it says X-Y-Z. Do you mean X?"

"Yes, X."

"Ok, that's good. And Y? You mean Y?"

"Yes, Y."

"That's great - I wasn't expecting that. Now, about Z. When are you going to address Z?"

"Z is addressed in my message and there's an attachment to back it up, too."

"You mean you already responded to Z?"

"....Yes. If you'll read my e-mail, you'll find details for Z right after X and Y. And there's an attachment, Z.pdf, which cites other instances of this same issue and details resolution options."

"Well, fine! Fine, then. Now, all I need you to do is send me something detailing our options so I can present them to the client. Can you do that for me today?"

"Sure - in fact, it's already done! Check the attachments to the message I sent. There should be three files, full information on X, Y, and Z."

"Well, that's great then! All I need is for you to send me something I can share with the client."

"You can share these with the client."

"The client needs them printed out. Would you send me six copies? I have a meeting with them tomorrow."

"You can print as many copies of those .pdf files as you need."

"You can't print them for me?"

The conversation ended at this point, because I crawled into the phone and strangled the guy with my compression sock.


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