Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The oy and the vey

I know, I know ... it's been a week and a day.

You'll get over it.

I'm taking advantage of the fact that Bubbles is napping (and I'm pointedly ignoring the laundry in the dryer at the moment).

Let's see, what all has happened for me to tell you about??
  • Bucket had her first "Activity Days" activity (church group of 8-11 year-old girls). She had a BLAST.
    Luckily for her, she has it TWICE a month.
    She has also chosen NOT to join Girl Scouts ... so, well. That's that.
  • Bruise had his first Den Meeting in Cub Scouts. He likes his den leaders. Had a good time.
    (Needs to get his manual signed off by the den leaders. Michael will take care of that tomorrow)
    The girls and I went to the church, got Bruise settled with his den, and headed to the Nursery to play for the hour that he's at Scouts (since Michael had meetings). Michael got done WAY early and he came and relieved us ... so I took the girls home, got Bubbles into bed, and Bucket and I chillaxed until our boys got home.
  • Thursday was a blood drive. I was a little sad that the gal who checked my vitals was kind of brusque ... but it was totally worth it, since my favorite phlebotomist/whatever took my blood.
    As soon as I heard someone singing along to the radio, I was sure it was him.
    And I was right.
    Greg and I talked books and movies (and we talk about food. I HAVE to get out to The Sea Hag and try their Monte Cristo. He swears that it's LIFE-CHANGING). Good times, indeed.
    Bruise and Bucket were entertaining Bubbles in the Nursery ... so that all went quite well.
    And we headed home (Michael forgot that he was scheduled to donate ... so he didn't get there in time. *sigh*) before heading over to the kids' school for PTC ... Michael met us there and took the kids home ... and picked up Del Taco goodies for dinner. Good man.
  • Friday, I was starting to feel bad/crazy/hormonal/exhausted ... but we got stuff for dinner for a family in the ward and stuff to fix dinner for the missionaries assigned to our ward. It was good to get to know them ... even though, by the time Michael brought them over, the house was full of bacon-grease-smoke. Good times.
    But the butternut squash soup (that was the request. And I cater to requests!) and cornbread (which I ALMOST forgot to make) and bacon bits and salad all turned out fine.
    And we bought a cake for dessert, so nobody was left hungry.
  • Saturday, Michael had an EQ (Elders' Quorum) shooting activity. Scheduled 10-Noon. And I took the kids to the mall for the kids' club (and to get freebies at Bath and Body Works).
    Bucket cried because they ran out of crafts before she got one ... but Bruise got one and didn't want it, so he gave his to her. And got a back-up craft. they got snacks, so that was good. And I got to chat with a friend from church. Then we headed back home to wait for Michael to get home.
    And, per his suggestion, to run to the closest BSA store to get Bruise's Cub Scout shirt.
    Well, I figured that with an activity scheduled to end at noon, he'd get home by ... 1:30. That'd give plenty of time to clean up, finish chatting, and come home.
    Michael gave a call, saying that they were wrapping things up just before that. So, I figured that he'd get home in 20-30 minutes.
    He got in at three. And his phone's battery was dying, so he couldn't really call to update me.
    But, as he was about to leave, he realized that the teenager he was giving a ride home had GONE OFF with another group to a different part of the property they were at ... so Michael had to wait for him for about FORTY FIVE MINUTES. Then, it's a twenty minute drive back to town and he had to drop off the teenager across town and drive back home ...

    So, yeah, and by the time he got home, I checked the BSA store hours ... and they weren't even OPEN on weekends. There's a store in Portland, but they CLOSE at 4:30 on Saturdays ... so we'd get there AFTER it's closed. Michael suggested the one in another (different council) city ... they close at 1:30 on Saturdays. (And they might not even have the right REQUIRED council patch).

    So, I ended up going and crying in the shower and hiding out in the bedroom for a few hours. Until I could get my shiz together. Yeah, when I'm hormonal, even I don't want to be around me.
  • Sunday, Michael had meetings in the morning, so we took different cars. I got the kids all ready. Bubbles was NOT going to sit still and quietly during Sacrament meeting, so Michael had her. I was exhausted (still) and not feeling well, so I went home after Sacrament. Bruise gave a scripture in Primary ... which neither Michael and I were there to hear/give moral support. He handled it okay, so he tells me.
    I took a nap at home ... well, I rested, anyways. And the kids and I read through our story-story a bit more (four chapters left!) ... and then we got ready for their "It's Great to Be Eight!" meeting (about being baptized) ... pretty much, we're all ready ... just show up early, get pictures. And make sure that we bring a towel and dry underwear for Bruise and Bucket ... and the camera. And they need to wear white underwear ... which is ONLY what I've been telling them for the last couple years.
    (When I was getting dressed to go to my baptism, I had to change my underwear. I was TICKED OFF that I couldn't wear my Lady LovelyLocks underwear. But I got to wear it when I was changing into dry clothes. SO THERE.)
  • Yesterday, the kids didn't have school. I had them clean their room (when they actually WORKED on it, it only [ONLY] took them just over an hour. But, when they "started" at 7 and didn't finish until about 10:30, you KNOW there was some yelling happening. (Good thing my lungs can support that.)
    We picked up the front rooms, worked on dishes, put Bubbles down for a nap, and cleaned out the van (Yeah, THAT took a while. But it looks GREAT now. If only I could get it to STAY that way, right?). Then we went and got kitty litter and stuff for dinner (fish sticks and tater tots. Whoooo.) after Bubbles woke up.
    After that, I left Bruise and Bucket in charge and went and took a nap/rest. I don't know if I SLEPT, but I DID have my eyes closed for around 40 minutes. And I didn't really feel any more rested.
    I got dinner put together and we ate, put the kids to bed, and Michael and I got through some sites that I had bookmarked to share with him.
    And I whinged in prayer to Heavenly Father that I stop being crazy/stupid and can't my dang period JUST FREAKING START so that the crazy can end?
    (In other news, it's nice when prayers are answered. It's good to feel rested and not crazy.)
Michael says that I ought to share with you some of the things that I say.

You know how, when you're feeling poorly, you can have someone feel your forehead and tell you if you're running a temperature?

Well, I don't often run a temperature (Mom and I usually end up running subnormal fevers. We're special like that.) ... but I've asked Michael to feel my forehead ...

"Can you feel my forehead? Do I feel clammy?"  ... And the answer is often "yes."

But, apparently, I'm not quite right in the head. Here are other things I've asked Michael to ascertain:

"Can you feel my forehead. Do I feel tired?" ... Yeah. Because if you can feel if someone's ill, wouldn't it stand to reason that you'd be able to feel if they were tired? ... Only in my brain does this logic seem to work.

But! There's more!

A couple weeks ago, I asked Michael, proffering my forehead, "Do I feel melancholy to you?"
And he finds this quite amusing, though I was being quite serious.
But, sadly, people cannot determine your MOODS though your forehead.

It's times like these that I realize a few things:
  1. Modern medical science is obviously not my forte.
  2. I have very high expectations for the feel-the-forehead test.
  3. I very well might just be an alien.
But, yeah, this is what he has to put up with.
I mean, I can laugh about it. Sure.
But, that doesn't change the fact that I'm quite in earnest when I'm asking it.

(Also: Wouldn't it be AWESOME if people COULD tell all that from feeling your forehead?
"Ah, yes. Go have a lie down after a cuppa Rooibos with honey and cream. Give yourself a new pedi. Read [insert author here] while it dries. Slip on some aromatherapy body butter on your hands and top with a pair of cotton gloves while watching [insert proper show or movie title]. You'll feel right as rain in approx. two hours. Ta!"
... Apparently I'm VERY British today. I'd apologize except that I'm not sorry for that.)

Well, I think I've got you all caught up for the meantime. And my mom's about to show up any minute. And I should grab a sweater before she comes (so I can help her schlep in her bags).

Monday, January 13, 2014

The Birthday Extravaganza ...

So, my babies are eight. We had their birthday party. I made it through church. And it's already Monday ...

Let's get caught up:
  • After the kids got home from school (during which time, I wrapped their presents), we went out to dinner (Red Robin ... their choice. And I REMEMBERED to print out the coupons I had for their kids' meals. Phew! And they ate and were serenaded and got free dessert).
    When we got home, though, Bruise had a stomach ache.
    So, two doses of Emetrol and a dose of Kids Pepto later, it was all fine. And we all watched Gremlins (except Bubbles, who was exhausted).
  • Saturday morning, I woke up and checked my email (the plus side of sleeping next to one's smartphone). Dad and L had emailed that morning, about a half-hour ago, asking if they could come up for lunch and leave around 3. I called them back to say, "sure," but that we're leaving the house by 2:30, since we needed to be at the bowling alley by 3.
  • They came up, bearing Arby's. We ate, the kids played with presents from Dad and L (flying sock monkeys ahoy!), and we watched Despicable Me 2 ... and they took off.
  • We made a stop by the grocery store and picked up ice cream (and other supplies, in case folks wanted to stop by our place afterwards ... which is why the house was cleaner than it had been! ... And I had a plate of cookies set out. And a bowl of Pirate's Booty. JUST IN CASE.)
  • Drove to the bowling alley and got settled in for the party.
The party went REALLY well. It was nice to have someone else in change of food, cake, and entertainment. Michael kept an eye on the kids bowling (Bruise, Bucket, Cousins -B,I,C, and H-, and school friends T, D, F, J, and K. Bubbles kept her grandmas (Mom and Mom C) and my Aunt J and stepdad busy. Michael's brother, J, and Dad C bowled, too.

The kids liked the pizza and soda and cake (we supplied ice cream) ... the hardest part for me, was trying to socialize with everyone and then the mad dash of getting everyone pizza and then cake and ice cream. And trying to take pictures (Cosmic Bowling = VERY low light situation. Yay for the DSLR from Michael a few years ago).

It was REALLY fun. And I did enjoy getting to chat with T and D's moms. We all know each other from PTC and volunteering and our kids being friends ... and, since I haven't been called to volunteer in the classroom this year, I barely see them.

The kids got lots of presents ... including their own tablets.

Once we got home, we compiled a list and wrote thank you notes ... most of which have been mailed off.
I still have three here for family. And the rest have been taken to school so that their teacher can make sure that their friends get them.

Between everything, I was tuckered out.

Yesterday, I substituted in Nursery again. I can tell you that Bubbles is NOT a fan of sharing toys. We'll work on that.
However I DID get to color a picture (and Pam [I visit teach her, we're friends, AND she's the nursery leader in our ward/congregation] made sure to label my picture with my name. "A-L-L-A-N-N-A. Looks like 'all anna.' SAY IT RIGHT." Which made me laugh.) ... AND, after one boy knocked down the tables (folded up) that were leaning against the wall, all the kids started stomp-dancing on their impromptu stage.
There were two other moms in there to witness. And we all took pictures and/or video. Good times.

Yesterday, the kids played with their tablets (and dolls and games) while Bubbles napped.

And I worked with Bruise on his Bobcat Trail (Cub Scouts), which he has to do before he can earn any other awards. So, well, we need to get that done. Since he REALLY wants to earn some badges.

Today, I got up, got a shower right away so that I could be sure to pick up a friend on time to give her a ride.
I threw a load in the dishwasher and a load in the washer (or "worsher" as I tend to say it, thanks to my Nana).
And then Bubbles and I went grocery shopping after giving my friend a ride. She (Bubbles) got to pick out some yogurt-covered pretzels.

And ... well, that's been my day so far. I should finish laundry before the kids get home. Clean out the kitchen sink and finish the dishes. Figure out dinner (but I got a treat for after FHE [Family Home Evening] planned!) and maybe read my book. Obviously, exercising is falling by the wayside again. Unless you count grocery shopping, which I really don't.

When the kids get home, we'll work on memorizing the Articles of Faith (looks like we've got the first four of thirteen covered ... just NINE more, right?) and making sure that Bruise still has the Cub Scout Promise and Law of the Pack fresh in his head.

But what I really want to do is just curl up in bed with a book. Or maybe curl up in a hot bath with a book and a facial mask. And repaint my toenails.

But I have to change the catbox first.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Make your own ... because I'm about THROUGH with responsibility. For the next five minutes or so.

So, mah baaaaaybeees have turned eight.

Bucket burst in on me when I was getting out of the shower (I had on a towel.) to announce that it was her birthday.

Instead of pulling a Mother Goethel like I have been  ("What?? No! Can't be! You just had a birthday LAST year!"), I serenaded her with the song of my people:

Happy Birthday to you!
You live in a zoo!
You look like a monkey...
And you smell like one, too!

Yes, my children are so, so lucky.
(I serenaded Bruise later, as he sat on the couch reading.)

I got SOME stuff done yesterday. Dishes, laundry, cleaning off my desk (it's not CLEAN-CLEAN, but it's a darn sigh better than it was!!), made a grocery list for getting birthday stuff (Bruise wanted to take COOKIES for his class, since another student in his group was bringing cupcakes. Bucket was adamant about cupcakes ... and it's not like I could make them -- food safety and all, so, well, I had to plan accordingly).

I also managed to do a couple non-priority things (thus, sluffing off priorities) -- I printed off nice-looking Articles of Faith for the kids' room and trimmed them (thanks to Michael buying me that paper cutter! Phew!) and put them in the IKEA frames we bought a couple months back for this project.
And I found my hole-puncher. Not the THREE-hole punch, I knew where THAT was, but the ONE-hole punch, so I went through my rewards cards/membership cards and punched holes and put them on a keyring and threw that into my purse.

I found a couple gift cards. One expired. Too bad on that.
The other, from when Bruise and Bucket were born still was good. And it was a $25 one (so I found out). AND I learned that I don't have to find a Baby Gap to use it at ... I can use it at old Navy, if I want! Yay! So that was nice.

And I found the little miniSD card that I misplaced. So I put that where it NEEDED to be ...
Cleaned up the kitchen and got the photos I borrowed from L (Dad's girlfriend) scanned so I can give them back at the kids' party.

Got a call from the bowling alley about the kids' party. Just stuff we needed to know (like we CAN bring ice cream to serve with the cake).

Emailed the kids' teachers about Bruise's assessment with the Speech specialist. Bruise is not eligible for Speech at school. But he does display a vocalic R (when working with him yesterday, it's really the "ar" sound that is most troublesome. There goes his future as a pirate.), but that I would be meeting with the Speech specialist to learn techniques/exercises that should take care of this distortion. ... And, if it doesn't right itself (with our efforts) in a year, THEN he would start Speech.

I also asked about treats for the kids birthday and other parent-teacher stuff. Which is how I knew that Bruise's group needed a non-cupcake treat.
It's not because I'm psychic. Not at all.

I called Michael, after having the kids work on cleaning up the floors (as I tackled tidying up the kitchen counters and a bit of the laundry room), so see about doing a family store-run after dinner (if I got it made in time) before the kids went to bed, so I didn't have to juggle ALL the kids AND fret about dinner AND the kids would be there to pick out what treats they'd prefer.

Well, no, that wouldn't work, since the Home Teachers JUST confirmed that they'd be coming over (which is a GREAT thing, don't get me wrong).
And, since it wasn't on the calendar, I had no idea about it ... and it wrecked my plans ... and I started crying. To Michael. On the phone.

He offered to bring home pizza for dinner (two nights of pizza in a row! And he had pizza for lunch! ... I don't mind eating the same thing often. I could almost be an engineer, according to The Engineer's Guide to Cats ... except Michael, who IS an engineer, NEEDS food variety) ... and either he or I could go out shopping.

So, we ate pizza, finished picking up before the Home Teachers came, had a good visit/lesson with them, put the kids to bed, and I headed out.

I ran over to Costco and almost didn't go in, since it was 8:27 and they close at 8:30. But I put my big girl panties on and grabbed a thing of cookies (they only had Oatmeal Raisin or a variety pack ... and with one kid in the kids' classes allergic to nuts, I wasn't taking chances), Pirate's Booty (that was another option. And Bruise had been craving it), flat pretzels (excellent with hummus and I have a CRAPLOAD of canned garbanzo beans in the pantry), and flowers (for decoration. And people will probably come over on Saturday after bowling ... hence the reason my house SHOULD be cleaned up).

Then, I scurried over to the Mal of Warts (this is what happens when I'm stressed and tired. I come up with crazy names for the Wal-Mart. My other favorite, which I didn't create at all, is Voldemart. Cracks me up every time) ... I picked up more cookies (since they have, like 25 or so students. And the Costco cookies come in packs of 24. D'oh!) and the cupcakes. And extra cookies for when people come over. And folders for stuff that's NOT in their Tuesday folders from school, so I won't get, SAY, a slightly DISSOLVED speech assessment report ... and a new backpack for my boy, who tends to drag his VERY NICE ONE so it's needing a break. And duct tape (because EVERYONE needs duct tape ... and after about five years, my current roll is running out) and moisturizer (because I am like Cassandra [Doctor Who] and I like me some moisturizer. And the last one that I bought didn't have SPF in it. And I'm noticing an abundance of sun damage. Freckles, I can handle, this isn't looking like cute freckles).

And, while there, I ran into a friend and we got to talking since she's not in my ward right now and we've missed each other. So we MMMM-HMMM'ed at each other and I talked to her daughter and we got caught up and swapped cell numbers.

And I finally made it home where Michael told me that I bought too much and that it's not a have-to-cover-every-situation thing, it's a stress thing ... and that I don't need to be stressed.

(But I'm just so dang GOOD at it!)

And we went to bed and I couldn't sleep (and I hadn't had ANY Cherry Coke, so you can't blame that! ... Though I did make cow's eyes at a pint of Cappuccino-flavored gelato ... I just like the smell and flavor of coffee. Blame it on my Nana's giving me coffee candy as a little. It's just so, so good!) so I played a few rounds of Doctor Who: Legacy (like Bejewled, but better and Whovian).

Once Bubbles takes a nap, I can wrap presents. Then Michael'll be home and we'll use a groupon (Pitas/Gyros! Yum!!!!!!) and I'll be ... mostly done.
Then, after their party and subbing at church, I can maybe, relax.

Until I start planning Bubbles's birthday party.
At least I have a FULL month to plan, right?

Thursday, January 09, 2014

To Bruise and Bucket, as you are almost eight

Today is the day before you turn eight.
It's a pretty big deal.
You're reaching the age of accountability. I'm going to raise my expectations for you.

Both of you, I need you to THINK.
Think before you act.
Think before you speak.
Think of what would be a good decision for you. What will be best in the long run?

There are a few weeks before you're baptised. This is a great time to consider our Savior and his sacrifice. Jesus chose to suffer in the Garden of Gethsemane and to suffer and die on the cross for YOU.
You as an individual. Because He loves YOU just that much.

Dad and I love you, too.
Even when you don't pick up your stuff (but we love it when you choose to pick up your things and leave the rooms you've been in cleaner than how you found them).

Bruise, in a few short years, you're going to receive the Aaronic priesthood. This will allow you to serve in ways that you haven't before. Please honor your priesthood power. Remember that you are a son of God. You have amazing talents and He put you here on Earth, exactly where you are, for a reason.
Dad and I love you. We want to help you grow and learn to be your best self.

I am amazed at how much you've grown. I can still see you, in my memory, how I first met you. Barely a minute old, they showed you to me after our ordeal of labor and delivery. As soon as I saw your face, I knew that we had named you correctly. I didn't get to hold you until the next day, but you've never held that against me.

You are the sweetest boy I know. You can be sensitive. You can be a goofball. You love to laugh. You love to create and imagine. You are kind to your sisters. You seem to have a song in your heart at all times. Sometimes, you are so insightful that I have to catch my breath. I am thankful for you.

Happy day before your eighth birthday, Bruise. I love you.

Bucket, you are quickly (sometimes a little too quickly!) growing into a wonderful young lady. Please always remember, no matter how others treat you or what the media says, that you ARE a daughter of God. You have divine potential and infinite worth, that the most lovely girls are those with souls that radiate beauty.
Develop your many talents ... if you work on them, you'll never be bored. Especially if you develop your talent of service.
Heavenly Father had you come to Earth at this time, in this place, for a reason. And we're glad that you have. You are so special to us. We love you very much. And, because of that, we want to help you to learn and grow to be the best person you can be.

Often, as I look at you, I start to see you all-at-once. You're your newborn self, rolling your eyes as I feed you for the first time. You're your sweet toddler self with your impish grin. You're your child-self as you are now -- happy and silly and confident. I also catch glimpses of you as your future self, a teenager, a mother.

You are clever. Sometimes even too clever for your own good. You give me glimpses of what I put my mother through ... and that gives me proof of how much your Mutti loved/loves me that she let me live. (I love you, dear girl. Even when you are driving me crazy. Sometimes, you are too much like me. I still love you.) You have a love for (nearly) all God's creations. You have a love for learning. When you think nobody is looking, you dance with a grace that I adore. You have wonderful artistic talent that amazes me. I am thankful for you.

Happy day before your eighth birthday, Bucket. I love you.

Bubbles, you're not turning eight.
Not for another six years and nearly two months. Thank you for that.
But you don't make it easy to write sentimental letters to your siblings while sitting/climbing in my lap. Though, your opera-babble is quite entertaining.

Thank you for being little still. And for being cuddly.
And thank you for making me laugh by going and laying down next to Freyja-cat and tickling her. It's a good things she loves you enough to put up with that.
 I love you, too, Bubbles.

Stuff. And Thangs. And books.

So, I did miss some things in what we've been up to ...

Last Saturday, we went to the Home Depot kids' workshop ... because you get to bang things with hammers and it's free.
And this month's project was a desktop calendar. And, oy, it was NOT easy.

For the first bit, you had to hammer in nails on a diagonal.
Another little girl was in tears ... since even when you DID get the nails in correctly, the nails were really cheap and started bending (not such an issue when you can hold things squared).
I was doing my best to NOT curse and blue streak (there were CHILLENS around, y'all!!) and I was crying, myself.

Good thing Michael, the engineer, who once worked at making walls for manufactured homes, was there. He got the kids started. I helped another gal work on her daughter's calendar.
Then we bought some stuff to do a few projects around the house (and some more cleanser ... and a mop!! And a bucket for the mop!!)

Since I last posted, I have swept and mopped the floor. And vacuumed TWICE! Shocker.
Still, the house should be a LOT cleaner, since people might come over on Saturday.
I can do this. I hope.

Bruise met with the school's speech specialist. He does have a few issues. But nothing that'd qualify him to attend Speech classes. So, in a couple weeks, I'll be meeting with the Speech specialist and she'll teach me a few things to work with him on. And she's confident that, a few months to a year from now, he'll be speaking much better. If not, once he hits nine, then he could have Speech at school.

(It's just 'r's and "th" and, since he's not got his front teeth in, his "sh" sounds.)

Last night, Bruise had his first Pack meeting for Cub Scouts ... Michael had a meeting in the bad part of town, and he couldn't get out of it. So the rest of us went. And, after we got home, I texted Michael to make sure he wasn't lying dead in the gutter or got shivved or whacked or bumped off.
Thankfully, he was fine and got home about 10 minutes later.

Tomorrow, Bruise and Bucket turn eight.
That is crazy.

That peace lily that my Nana got me while I was in the hospital on bedrest before having them is still alive. It's not THRIVING, but it's still alive.
Also crazy.

Bubbles is getting another tooth. (Finally her canines start to come in!) This is making her cranky.
Which doesn't help MY level of cranky.

I have a ton of Michael Crichton books from the library to read.
There's a story behind this.

A few nights ago, Michael and I finished watching Season One of Once Upon a Time.
We were talking about stories and tropes and such.
Then we were looking at the tumblr "What Musicals Taught Me." Which brought up "Love Never Dies," which we didn't really enjoy.
Don't get me wrong ... I'm normally an Andrew Lloyd Webber fangirl. I really liked the music (especially "Devil Take the Hindmost" in this one) ... but ... the plot. It was like a BAD fanfic.
(And, as someone who's read some fanfic, I know that not all of it is bad.)

And, I segued onto how some fanfic is pretty awesome. (I got started once, reading some Labyrinth fanfic. There's some that I love ... and I came across a great Anne of Green Gables fanfic. It's the story told from Gilbert's perspective. So darling and sweet) ... which brought me to a regular statement that Gilbert Blythe is the perfect literary boyfriend/husband.

And Michael patiently puts up with that.
And he started talking a little about Matthew and Marilla ... and I ask him if he knew why Marilla is so prickly. And he stated that he didn't.

Me: "Spoiler alert. ... But, since the book's been around about a hundred years ..."

Michael: "What if I told you that I was actually reading it?"

BACKSTORY: I was aware that Michael would NEVER read the Anne books. He once watched part of one of the movies since his sisters were watching it. And he's always brought up how he was BORED OUT OF HIS SKULL with it (whereas I ... adore the Megan Follows DVDs. Well, the ones that ARE based on the series. My aunt once lent our VHS sets to a friend. And that friend moved OUT OF STATE without ever returning them to us. ... Yes, I'm still rather peeved. SOMEDAY, I will get them on DVD and watch them. ... I also need the Veronica Mars seasons on DVD, but that's another story).
    He also states, on a regular basis, how over the top everything is in Anne's world. So I knew that, love him as I do, he'd never share my interest in Anne Shirley and her world.

Me: "... ... ... ... Are you KIDDING me?!??!??"

Michael: *pulls out his tablet and brings up his Kindle app. I look at the page he's on.*

Me: "SERIOUSLY?!?? ... You're not joking me?!??"

So, yes, this is how much he loves me. And he admits that he's gained a LOT of insight to how I was when I was younger, since I LOVED Anne. She was one of my BOSOM COMPANIONS (since, well, I was an only child. And I was often grounded from playing outside since my room was a sty. So, instead of cleaning my room, I'd just read. And read. And read and read and read). And, oh, I wanted to BE Anne -- with her puffed sleeves and her bright hair and mind ...

And, it's the least I can do to read one of HIS favorite authors. ... And, since ALL my holds came in at once, I have my work to do, don't I?
(I mean, I did read "The Andromeda Strain" ... but that was ages ago, shortly before I started college. It barely counts. ... And, after I get through "Timeline," "The Terminal Man," "The Andromeda Strain," "Sphere," and "The 13th Warrior/Eaters of the Dead," I think that everyone would agree that a reread of some Anne books is quite earned.
(I've already shared "Jane Eyre" and Robin McKinley's "Beauty" with Michael ... so we're, pardon the pun, on the same page now.)

Still, though, I'm rather shocked. I'd NEVER have foreseen that he'd willingly read an Anne book. Much less do it without me nagging him (and I hate nagging people. I nag Bruise and Bucket to clean WAY TOO MUCH. So over that.)

But, yeah. I'm quite chuffed.

Monday, January 06, 2014

In which I admit that I should pick out those window treatments for my duplex in Hell.

So, in the spirit of full-disclosure, here are some funny things from my life.

Vignettes, if you will.

About a month ago, I had ASKED Bucket, politely but firmly to move a cup from her little sister's reach.
When she neglected to follow directions, I was upset.
Upset enough to use the WHOLE treatment and THEN SOME.

I bellowed "[First name] [Middle name] DAMMIT [Last name]!!!!!"
Michael had me take a time-out.

(I almost mistyped that as a time-pout ... which isn't that far from the truth. Except, when I'm in time out, I usually end up reading or playing games on my phone or taking a bath.)

The other day, when my mom came to visit, we all went out to lunch. Then I took her to the local Blockbuster (which is closing next week) to score some good deals (I ended up buying six DVDs and a WiiU game for about $25).

The same cashier rung up my order as when Michael and I had been there on Wednesday evening.

When he came in, I pointed him as he entered the store for work to my mom.

Me: Mom, that guy there? He works here. He might be a manager.
Mom: Oh. I thought maybe he was one of Santa's little helpers.
Me: *seriously* Don't tell him that.

He rung up my order. And I joked that I really SHOULD pay attention to the directions on the keypad (for running my debit card) so I didn't waste his time. And he replied that the more time I took, the less he had to do. And I said that I'd the the best I could.

(So, yeah, I treated him like any other cashier.)

He handed me my bag of loot purchases. "Here you go, pretty lady."

And, well, I'll admit, I blushed.

When Mom was done being rung up and caught up to me, I told her, "Hey, my cashier called me 'pretty lady.' Yup, I've still got it."

Michael and the kids had been waiting for us in the car. As I climbed in, I told him, "Hey, you remember our cashier from the other day?"

"The dwarf?"

"That's the one. He called me 'pretty lady!'"

After Mom's visit, as we were getting ready for bed, I confessed that I felt like Snow White.
But with a much messier house.

So, yes, a dwarf called me "pretty lady."
You can send my admission papers for princessing school here.
I'll practice my warblings and princess-s hand movements.
I'm sure they'll put me on a princess diet to fit into more princess-y dresses ... unless I'm to be like Jacquline from "Ever After." You know "I'm only here for the food."

Because, unlike a lot of princess-y princesses, I really LIKE food.

But, still, I'm really tickled ... I mean, I wasn't even wearing any makeup.
So, it does help prove that beauty is more personality than skin-deep.

Which should be somewhat redeeming, right?

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Happy 2014!

I'm blogging ... and it's not even been a whole WEEK between blogs.

Shocker, right?

Well, hey, at least I'm getting a good start to the new year, right?

So, let's get all caught up.

Sunday was church. We brought snack for the Nursery class (Fig Newtons and string cheese. Snack of CHAMPIONS. Or, at least, it's something that the kids will eat). Then we just had a kinda lazy day at home ... to recuperate from BOTH Michael and me having to speak in the fifth Sunday lesson (where, usually, all the folks NOT teaching in Primary [childrens' classes] meet together.)

Monday, we cleaned up the house. Michael took Bruise and Bucket's baptism invitations to be printed. We went grocery shopping and delivered a meal to a family in the ward. I addressed envelopes and got the kids' baptism invites into the mail. I made sure that the kids' birthday invites were emailed out (and their teacher will help in inviting some of their school friends that I DON'T have contact information for).

Tuesday, we went to Costco after taking down the Christmas decorations. The kids played outside with a neighbor (except for Bubbles who took a nap. FINALLY) until we took them to Mom and Dad C's for a sleepover with some cousins ... which freed up OUR New Year's Eve.

So, we had an evening without kids ... what should we do?

We bought dinner at Safeway (Chinese food wraps ... and I had my Cherry Coke to help me stay awake during out late night out) and hit the local, closing Blockbuster ... bought a few movies.
Then we got our tickets ... we watched The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug first.
I have to say that the fight choreographer has QUITE the sense of humor.
Very good. We liked it.
Then we went to Fred Meyer to kill some time ... and I found a copy of mental_floss to buy. (Yay!!)
And back to the theater to watch The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. We got discount popcorn and a free soda (And they had Cherry Coke! Yay! No ice, because I want Cherry Coke, not gross watered-down soda) ... which, since I'm not so used to THAT much caffeine (yes, two cokes for me = more than I'm used to. What? I'm a lightweight in that way.), I noticed that my heart was racing a bit after the Quarter Quell began.
We enjoyed both movies a lot.

Then we went to bed ...

And I was dead to the world until almost 8:30 this morning.
After we got up, we watched our Netflix DVD (The Wolverine) ... then we got ready for Mom and Dad C to bring the kids back.

And, since we were hungry, we went out for lunch.
And then went back home and played SongParty on the WiiU.

And I'm exhausted.

The other day, I had my legs across Bucket's lap.
She let me do that, sweet girl. ... Then ...

Bucket: Oh, look. Here's the line from where you wore your socks too long. Aww.
And it feels like you have a rash. ... Oh, wait. That's just that you haven't shaved your legs.

Yup, that's my girl.

I don't know where she'd learn anything like that ...

Like how, as I was exhausted, Michael challenged me to describe string theory.

My answer?

Well, you take a bunch of yarn. Or threads. And you make hypotheses and test them. And it involves Physics. ... But you can't KNOW. Because it's STRING THEORY. If you KNEW, then it'd be STRING LAW.

Yup, he's so lucky to have me.

I still need to figure a time to use the elliptical on a regular basis. And when to read scriptures and such.
And I want to get caught up (again) on laundry and dishes. And plan meals.

But, hey, at least we're pretty prepared for the kids' baptism and birthday.
Now to plan Bubbles' birthday.

And Mom C is talking of convincing everyone to come home a day early from their vacation to make the kids' baptism ... It'd be nice.

Also, yesterday, I received news that one of our past bishops and neighbors passed away.
Nelson lived down the road from my folks' house. He was also one of our Home Teachers.
He was always very kind and helpful.
He and Betty, his wife, were at my mom and stepdad's wedding.
Before that, when the wiring at our house was wonky, he came and helped work on it ... and, mistaking the sound of his footsteps, I called him "Mom."
He leaves behind a wonderful, large family with many children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. And many friends.
But I know that we'll get to see him again. Not immediately ... but sooner than later.

And he'll have all his fingers. And his body will be strong and healthy again.
And that'll be nice.

Counting ...

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