Monday, December 31, 2007

Farwell 2007 Hello 2008

I am creating one last culinary creation with feasts 2007 leftovers--turkey tetrazzeni.

Here is how we will each say farewell to 2007--a year that had its lows but ended on the highest of highs-- and welcome in 2008:

Princess A will host a party.

Uli & I will chaperone the party.

King Ralph will drive around busting parties.

D will "lock-in" to a party.

M will party and then, maybe, for a bit, slumber.

Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Oops!

Our friends called today...said they couldn't wait another day longer...to thank me for sending them an empty envelope. Not "us" but "me" because, everyone knows King Ralph wouldn't have the patience to address seventy-five envelopes.

That's right people, I spent thirty-seven cents to send a beautiful emerald green Christmas card--minus the card--envelope. Oh well, aren't we all allowed one Christmas blunder? If so that was mine.

I certainly hope that when they unsealed that emerald green envelope the spirit of Christmas and the joy of the season I sprinkled inside swelled the room.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Call me a Vixen, party girl, hostess extraodiaire, wish me a Merry Christmas and then put me to bed!


What a whirl wind these last five days have been!

It started on Friday afternoon in the reindeer relay where I tried my best to bring a win in for Team Vixen but unfortunately we were taken down by Team Dasher. After a transformation (which included a quick hair dye job) I gussied myself up in festive holiday attire and headed to a wonderful party. I could have stayed all night sipping from the punch bowl of sangria and eating cherry tomato-mozzarella cheese-fresh basil-black olive-on a stick appetizers-- but like any good Cinderella knows when the clock strikes it is time to go.


Saturday was a more casual party with fun cousins, great food, mudslides and trivia games.

Sunday at church for the children's program Demi sang-- well tried -- a solo through an ill voice unable to project her usual sweet harmonic soprano tone. She gets an A for effort. Alee could be heard in the back ground playing the sweet sound of a carol on her flute as the Advent wreath's fourth candle was lit. Then it was home to do some quick bathroom tidies and the family starting pouring in for phase one of DFF (dysfunctional family fun). This divorced parent thing with King Ralph's parents would make the worst married couple want to stay married for the sake of making the holidays for the children simple...pain in the ass! We feasted. Then we opened presents...I just love my gift.




(The King looks grander on the piano than it does in my arms)

Monday, with little sleep, we donned our Christmas outfits and welcomed Christmas Eve...phase two of DFF. King Ralph's mother and her side of the family filled the house for a champagne brunch...or Bloody Mary...or screw driver...coffee and bailey's, spiked nog brunch. We feasted more, again. Then presents flowed. Love and laughter filled our home. We all parted ways, headed to church and remembered why it is Christmas; what we are celebrating. The thing that fills my spirit with Christmas joy is Alee playing Silent Night on the flute while the sanctuary is a glow with hand held candles.


Tuesday. Sadly, since crime knows no holiday, King Ralph rose, dressed in blues, and headed out the door at 530am. I quickly exited bed, stuffed stocking and dressed the base of the tree in pretty packages with impressive bows. Then I crawled back in bed while carols lulled me back in sleep. The girls and I prepared for the King's arrival at noon--it was a long time drooling over the elegant silver and scarlet red shimmering bows but, finally a figure of blue stepped in and a chorus of girls rang out a boisterous call of... "Merry Christmas, let's open presents". Pretty papers tossed in air to reveal a handy cam, air compressor, digital camera, cell phone, perfumes, a watch, slippers, suede boots for all...but best of all a jump rope (the only thing I said I really wanted). Then in the peaceful joy of Christmas the five of us gathered around the dining room table to show thanks of another bountiful feast-- steak and shrimp -- and raised our glasses (using the G-O-O-D crystal) of asti and sparkling grape juices and toasted to a VERY BLESSED AND MERRY CHRISTMAS!


I hope your Christmas was filled with as much blessings,joy and happiness as we believe ours was. Now, if you don't mind I am going to bed. I am exhausted!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Time For Panic To Set In

I admit I am a bit behind on my usual holiday pace. Those hours in my day that are now consumed by employment--turns out those are valuable personal hours during this month of December.

I picked my cards up today...I had to cross the state line to guarantee all of you a card before the year 2008 rings in. I still have sugar cookies to cut and crescent cookies to bake. I did however make praline pecan crunch with the pecans my dear friend was peddling a few months back. I have my grocery list organized by isles so that should help me to shop rather well...question is what day should I prefer my heart jump started when the checker calls out the dollar amount she wants collected?

Well, I'd like to stay here and chatter nonsense but I really need to squeeze in a little reindeer relay workout.

Monday, December 17, 2007

The Special Thing About This Day

It appears by the clock, that if I let my mind wander back fifteen years, that King Ralph left the hospital to pick up a Blockbuster movie while my water was being broke.

In three and a half hours my sweet and funny M, our "love child", will be fifteen years old.

I hope that she feels I remembered to kiss her and love her enough in these fifteen years to make it recognized how much she was wanted and is truly loved.

Happy Birthday Maddi-Phyl!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Sunday or Funday

We took a usual Sunday and turned into a winter Funday!

We went sledding at the park.

Princess A & M made snow angels

The Princess turned devilish

M took the Princess ddddowwwwn with a WWE move
Since they are, after all sisters--they decided one last trip down the hill should be as the trio they are


This was a funday, on a cold afternoon, that warmed our spirits and hearts.



Saturday, December 15, 2007

A Perfect Day


A perfect day--waking to the tranquility of a peaceful house while gazing out the kitchen window at freshly fallen snow. Then with the help of the girls we filled the house with the aromatic scent of fresh baked cookies--my grandmother's Christmas cookies. We sang carols together. D built a snowman in the front yard. To end our "perfect" Saturday we could not resist playing in falling snow with the moon as our lantern...with a photo to remember.


Thursday, December 13, 2007

I am still breathing deep breaths of holiday on-set

I'm still here. I've just been busy shopping, wrapping, going to and hosting parties. I been to so many school musical functions I have my cell phone calendar set to alert me when I attend the next. If you are waiting for our usual Christmas card...well, I have not quite gotten around to that just yet. Soon. I promise. Soon. As for the baking of cookies...this weekend baking will commence.

In my abundance of free time I am in training for next Friday's Reindeer Relay. I will remain unwavering in my preparations to take the place Rudolph. I am sticking to a strict diet of oats and raw carrots, while continuing to perfect my ability to soar at a speed like no reindeer has done before. Tune in next Friday for whatever embarrassing photos may transpire by some crafty, lurking, sideline fellow co-worker.

Till then.......

Friday, December 07, 2007

A Self Holiday Reminder

Myself is telling me...Breathe, deep breaths, sing a carol and go with it all...this week will pass.

It is a week full of holiday cheer.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Yes, I Do Believe

In a world that sadly has lost its ability to celebrate the season--Christmas...in a world that now has abolished Santa's trade mark saying; Ho-Ho-Ho--because it just might offend the "ho" that walks past Santa...in a world that wants to rush our youth from a the magic of believing...I say to you and mostly my third grade friends--Santa is real. Mrs. Avery does believe. No lie. And, I will say it so don't bother asking me if I will offend, because I don't really care--Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

one more thing to add to the list

19. I am beginning to get the feeling-- the finding college monies for Princess A feeling.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Just Another List

Another one of those list of things that no one really gives a crap to know, but I am making the list nonetheless.

1. Georgina decided that Mr. Hayes, our co-worker, looks like John Denver...so I sang him John Denver songs all afternoon.

2. Princess A is able to drive and see the world in a whole new view. Third time really must be the charm.

3. I'd really like a Bailey's Irish Cream on the rocks...wait, with a splash of butterscotch snaps. But I have no time to partake in the spirits.

4. The movie Enchanted is delightfully enchanting.

5. This Saturday is the Cans Film Festival so the girls and I are going to donate our can goods to view August Rush. Three cans equals a free movie ticket.

6. For Christmas I want a jump rope, champion quality jump rope. Then I am going to be the coolest building assistant and join in the Jump Rope for Heart.

7. King Ralph is getting a prestigious award this evening and we are going to watch the presentation...for no other reason than we are proud of our king for being such a great Sgt. Sausage Fingers.

8. I need a hair cut so I can stop having bad hair days.

9. M told me I am a good mom.

10. I need to finish my Christmas shopping and start baking.

11. M's French teacher frustrates me!

12. Uli is lonely for her best-dog friend Penny

13. At school a little boy named me Mrs. Nice Lady.

14. M & D need a trash can for there newly remodeled bathroom.

15. I'm thinking maybe a new watch, a nice watch would be something Santa could bring too.

16. I spent $67 at the fabric store so my budding fashion designer can create fashions for her friends for Christmas gifts.

17. The sound of Princess A playing Christmas carols on her flute permeates through the house filling my soul.

18. A portable oxygen tank may be something I should look into this month...I feel a calendar suffocation coming on.

And...and I don't have anything else I want to list--at this time.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

My Cornucopia Runneth Over

It's just not on this day, but on all days that I am thankful for much...however on this day, Thanksgiving, I will stop to reflect on merely a few of my gratitudes.

1. Family
2. Prayers abound
3. Healing hands
4. Friends
5. Laughter
6. Love
7. Pumpkin pie with Ready Whip (even if my cousin says the pumpkin pie is just an excuse for eating whip cream from a can, I'm partaking in both)
8. Mountains to climb
9. Music that fills the house
10. A job I love
11. Parades on TV
12. A warm fall day
13. Cool fall days
...and the list goes on................

Uli says she is thankful to have her dog-friend Penny aka brown dog aka skate board dog spending a whole week with her, to run and play with all day long. To share dog kisses with all day long. But she is not thankful when she tries to take her claim to her cage...Penny has her own cage.

Here wishing all of you a day of many thanks. Happy Thanksgiving.

Friday, November 16, 2007

All I have to say...

Is that I slept well enough in the recliner, again last night, to dream of making bologna sandwiches.

and...

My lil' bird is wounded but will soon sore like an eagle. Even if it means soring wearing glasses fitted with a prism. Shortly--first I'll have to fight rush hour trafic on Hwy 270--we will have the answers.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Still Budging My Way to the Front of the Prayer Line

I know that I should be sleeping, that certainly is what most normal people do at 3am. Then again who said there was anything normal about me, us, yesterday or this night. It isn't even the recliner I have taken as my place of rest on this night. The recliner is pretty comfy-- as recliner sleeping goes. A place precisely placed next to a mended and healing Princess A. A position where my constant prayers laced with pretty pleases is not to far to touch a --peacefully resting--princess stretched on a comfy couch.

Mended? Not mended but fixed? It is not yet certain. Then again has it ever been...will it ever be, that truly is the question. All I can say is the doc said he wanted to "leave well enough alone for now." How long is "now"?

All I know is that my place and purpose is to be next to my sweet princess to nurse and love, to dole out pain killers and chicken noodle soup. But most of all love.

If in the end she still sees double well...well then she can look at me, see two of mom and...and know it means twice the love.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Here We Go...Again

I am up preparing to start my morning scurry...lunches to pack, maybe a load of laundry, maneuver my way around the bathroom passing through cords of curling irons, hair straighteners and...head to the surgery center--again.

Third times a charm? I hope because, because this time I feel extra nervous. I've been praying a whole lot. I envision myself in a crowded room of prays pushing my way to the front of the line past the please let me win the lottery and don't let my parents find out prayers, saying "hear ME first dear God." Sometimes there is a need to per-fect the perfect in order to help the not-so-perfect. In other words today the are operating on Princess's A's good eye. Good eye. Nervous. Yet necessary.

Oddly enough Princess A seems more at peace,maybe the reason is we gave her the choice this time if she wanted to endure yet another eye surgery. She is to the point in her life where her own maturity allows her to know what she is and is not capable of tolerating. No matter how she was created or what the out come of her two previous surgeries; she has always adapted and kept on dancing right through life. For this I am proud of her...as her mom I still reserve the right to be nervous for her. Regardless the flaws in her being-- the little person I brought into this world is perfect in so many ways.

I have one hour more to push my way through the room of prayers to get back to the front of the line. Excuse me...excuse me...Dear God please guide the hands of those who seek to mend.....

Monday, November 12, 2007

Body Wierd

Since I was out of pumpkin pie to gobble up....

Being off school and work the decision was made we should head the STL Science Center for a viewing of Body Worlds3. (I wish you could see the look on my face--I think it is scrunched, my teeth are clinched, my eyes slightly contracting.) To put it simply...it was a whole lot of penis. Come on, what is it with the need to plasticize the penis? Right out there for all to see, it testes dangling along side--plasticized. They even had a penis displayed in a case to present the entire urinary tract. It wasn't like the female specimens gave crotch shots or the female urinary tract with vagina was in a case on display. I don't know, is this a call for equal display? Like I said, it was a whole lot of penis. I was so waiting for D make comment but, she didn't. Not once. Only I said anything--"it's a whole lot of penis."

Aside from the too much penis the whole display in equal was interesting and haunting.

So, please, make sure when life ends I go in the ground!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

My Saturday To Do List


1. Purchase pumpkin pie at Sam's Club
2. Eat pumpkin pie loaded with Ready Whip
3. Take a nap
4. Clean the house
5. Eat pumpkin pie loaded with Ready Whip
6. Take a nap
7. Color hair
8. Eat pumpkin pie loaded with Ready Whip
9. Eat pumpkin pie loaded with Ready Whip....

Okay someone, p-l-e-a-s-e, get over here and take the pumpkin pie and Ready Whip. Save me.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Stupendous Sunshine

After an extremely long morning of pre-surgery doctors appointments, which always seem to make me want to cry (but I did not)-- kindness and good news was welcomed with open arms.

This afternoon while performing my final duty of the work day, I got a sweet gift of McDonald's gift certificates from a mom who teaches at the high school. This mom tends to run late getting from the high school to the elementary school (which is never a deal to me at all)... I just entertain my two little friends with idol chat. Once when I suggested that there mother was late because she was stuck at a red light they let me know the real reason she was late...there mom has an important job in the math department, she has desk number four. So today when the mom gave me her gift of kindness for taking care of her kids past pick up time she singed it "AKA The Fourth Chair". Sweet that someone loves a Building Assistant.

When I got home I retrieved the mail...I handed Princess A a large envelope, inside was something she has been wondering and waiting for; an acceptance letter from Loyola University-Chicago. So now we sit and wait and wonder if choice number two's letter is not far behind. King Ralph just kept saying Loyola is far from home, over and over he repeated. I am beginning to think King Ralph wishes every one of his girls still were in diapers needing him to carry them all around. Somehow in the blink of time they have grown.

There you have it. Kindness and good news. Good day.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

We Probably Should be a Reality TV Show Family

Tonight, like most Wednesdays, we were cramming for confirmation class. Each week we are to do a family exercise, "Talk Time" with D, then she records certain aspects of the conversation in her class journal.

Tonight while we all choked down hamburgers (no side dishes because as it has been noted milk was needed to make the box augratin potatoes and, I, didn't go to the store) we did the exercise gathered at the dinner table. The exercise consisted of expressing the gifts we feel God instilled in each of us. Being the mom I decided to get the ball rolling and I went first...I told King Ralph he is a gifted carpenter and our new bathroom was remodeled beautifully--that craftsmanship is his gift from God. King Ralph trying to be sweet says "I like how your mom is always happy since she started working". "Doesn't count" I said "that's not a gift". Then some wise cracking kid (M) perks up with this statement, "mom you have the gift of doing laundry". Hehehe. To which Princess A says "you sure do, I have only two pairs of underwear in my drawer". Then M-- who started this whole thing--says "well I am wearing desperates". "So am I", I said "and you don't hear me complaining besides, none of you are wearing your underwear inside out". Then King Ralph decides to join in on the pick on mom conversation and states "well I have you all beat, I'm wearing my dirtiest-cleanest-pair-of-underwear". Ppppppleassssse.

Then I decided to be nasty back (of course all in good humor)...I rose from the table and said "if you don't mind I need to replace the toilet paper in the bathrooms so when you all have to make dodo you have paper to wipe your...I wanted to say it but I didn't instead I said...butts with". I left the room and the roar of laughter could have been heard in Texas while they all said "try to say it with a straight face, you can't, say it, say dodo". Teenage girls trying to say "dodo" without laughing. What a "Talk Time" we had.

So I guess what D should write in her journal is our family has been given the gift of sarcasm. And laughter. And love.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

For the Record

I AM HAVING A BAD HAIR DAY!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Movie Should Be Rated DWWP (don't watch with parents)

I'm am learning often of late that there are certain movies I just shouldn't sit down to watch with Princess A...say like Knocked Up. Oh brother!

I am open in conversation about sex with my girls. I actually drive them a little batty with my sudden unprompted sex ed 101 talks. But the movie Knocked Up, well that left me feeling a bit awkward. Maybe...no it was, the scenes of sex positions of choice during pregnant sex. I sat silent did not comment, not once. When the movie was over I said to Princess A "did you feel uncomfortable watching that movie with me?" She replied "no but I would have if I was watching it with dad." I think the dad would have got up and left the room.

Let's just hope We Are Marshall is finally available at the Blockbuster next time I go in to pick a movie.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Jump Off, Smackdown & An Open Letter to My Family

Let it be known to all that Mrs. Avery is a better jump roper than Mr. Hayes.

Today at lunch recess Mr. Hayes thought he would be funny and tried to jump rope, two people at a time--himself with a little second grader. He didn't do so well. I believe the two rope twirlers were singing the jump rope song "Texaco Texaco over the hill to Mexico"--Mr. Hayes crashed and burned at "over"; disappointing his jumping partner. So I was like move-over-Mr. Hayes-here-comes-Mrs. Avery. Now mind you I was wearing my wicked black boots with there two and half inch heels. The foot wear was not about to stop me. I did set down the megaphone but kept my walkie talkie in my hand. And...well, I rocked. Two of the second grade teachers watched with smiles on there faces as the two building assistants had there jump off. It was reminiscent of the walk off in the movie Zoolander.

I think I may have to ask Santa to bring me a top of the line jump rope for Christmas...figured out that jump roping is quite the work out.

***********
M is having her first weekend comedown from the marching band season. She is not thinking, wondering or praying that she catches her sabor or releases her flags at the exact correct point. She is not concerned how she will look in her silver foil costume. Instead she is curled in the leather recliner nearly yelling "this is gonna be great. someone, someone has to come watch this with me!" I don't know... I don't understand... please explain to me...what is the allure in Friday Night Smackdown? I continue to be baffled at the idea that I bore a wrestling loving daughter. Tag team? Undertaker & Batista? Great Kahli & Mark Henry? What is with this stuff? Finally M has found a taker in her quest for viewing company--King Ralph. M has just announced with glee, "tomorrow Wrestlemania tickets go on sale and guess where it is going to be...Orlando". Watch out Disney, move over, Wrestlemania is coming to town.
***********
Now for my open letter to my family.

Dear Children:
It is quite apparent as I look around the house that is was indeed Halloween this week.

What you ask gives me such an idea? Well now, let me answer that for you all. The Sherlock Holmes hat that was resting on the floor of the front foyer-- till I tossed it down the stairs-- would be a good indicator. Or how 'bout the London Fog trench coat I hung up? Could the Raggedy Ann costume strewn all around the living/dining room be yet another clue? The thing however that is the number one hint would be the never ending candy wrappers. Please take careful note to what I am about to say next...I am not your slave! Which basically means when you leave multiple suckers sticks and wrappers on the glass top of the end table--I see red! When you chose a piece of candy to eat while in the kitchen look around, you are guaranteed to find a trash can close by. A trash can holds trash. Odd I know but it was in fact invented for just that purpose.

So my lovely daughters, I do not care if you think you are princesses, you are not. We do not employ maids or have slave laborers in our home. We are self maintaining. The threat is now being issued here, for all the world to hold me to my promise...one more candy wrapper found lying loosely about and the fruits of your October 31 slogging for treats will be GONE.

Love,
Mutti xoxo

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloweenie 2007

Just a few prenotes to my day...I took "Princess A's" car to get inspected this morning so I drove it to work... only to return to it after work as a totally dead vehicle, no power. Thankfully King Ralph was on duty as Sgt. Sausage-Fingers so, he saved the day. When I pulled in the driveway I noticed Princess A and M transformed the yard into a grave yard. Nothing like decorating the house at the eleventh hour. They did good!

Halloween is becoming almost predictable--everyone is finding somewhere other than home to go to get there supply of tricks and treats. I have however stepped up in the company department, last year it was me and the dog...this year I have Alee. Although she is more consumed with reading "Fast Food Nation" than caring about the cool pencils I am giving out to the little ghouls who ring my bell. Okay-okay, I don't want to hear about my pencils or how I am the Mr. Feeny of the neighborhood (as my girls are referring to me). I am also giving out, your choice of a Vess orange or lemon-lime soda. Which as treats go, has given me a high coolness factor with the few kids who came to my door (twenty to be exact). Which if I may ask-- what happened to kids saying "trick-or-treat" when you open the door? They just stand there sticking there candy bag in your face like I owe them something. It just isn't like it use to be.

Enough about kids, let's talk about my re-entry into the fun world of Halloween. I looked fabulous in Pastor Tom's black robe transformed into Professor Snape's robe. The black hair gel worked marginally but did the trick. The kids at my lunch shift actually could guess who I was. The office looked fantastic...no it looked FANTASTIC! My contribution would be the bricks on the front door, or as we called it "9 3/4 Hogwarts Express". Parents were very impressed with how we tricked the place out. I will leave you now with a score of photos of the Hogwart haven and my Halloween day.











(My lunchroom team...Mr. Hayes is Scabbers the magical rat)

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

On the Eve of Halloween

The sudden pressure of Halloween that work has placed upon me. The office theme is Harry Potter. When I left the office this afternoon-- in a haste to gather a group of confirmation kids to cook dinner at the Ronald McDonald House, the office was being transformed into a Hogwarts haven.

I burst through the door of the church office where I saw the group of waiting kids and parents and yelled out "who has a black robe I can borrow". You see I have been on the panic hunt for a black robe for my Harry Potter character costume, I am going to be Professor Snape. And what do you know...God is good...because Pastor Tom offered me his black robe. Said he needed it back by Good Friday.

Now I just hope I am not mistaken as Father Sarducci without the mustache (by staff old enough to remember who that SNL character was).

I have black hair gel to really get the full Professor Snape look. If by chance it stains my hair permanently I will proclaim myself an emerging Gothic queen.

Until tomorrow...when all the goulish fun begins.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Oh my blog I do love you, but I have been busy keeping

Dear Blog

I believe you are feeling neglected, as though I do not care, but I do. My devotion, or lack there of is not deliberate. I think about you everyday-- somehow things just seem to be taking priority.

Like...Last Tuesday I organized the Diaperpalooza Baby Shower for two of the band directors who are going to be first time dads. They were totally surprised to not only see there wives in the band room but, there wives each surrounded by 2700 diapers and 3100 wet wipes (or least that is what one of the directors and his wife counted was the haul).

Wednesday I nursed my sick child, battled rush hour traffic to get to the doctor before I was due in the office. Then, I spent the evening in the church office printing off the monthly newsletter; biting my tongue so to refrain from wanting to say ugly things to the Rizo machine and the paper folder as it jammed. The picture of an almost laughing Jesus in the work room made me feel he was enjoying the comedy in it all.


Thursday was a great day and a bad day. Great day because D turned thirteen. We are a house of all teenage girls, YIKES! D's friends kidnapped her in the morning and dressed her up like this...
D looking like that lead to the bad in my day. D's friends, in all there excitement left the front door open and Uli escaped. I ran through the neighborhood for a mile (that is no exaggeration) in circles for 30 minutes in my PJ's and flip flops screaming profane things at the black devil till I caught her. I know for a fact she is alive only by the grace of God--it would have been a toss up on who could have taken her life, the car or me. The police car parked at the top of street was probably called to control the crazy lady--me. I guess it was Uli's way of saying hey how 'bout me, celebrate me living as a part of the family for a year now. I think I wanted to forget my moment of weakness when I agreed to getting the black devil for D's 12th birthday.


Friday was Senior Night. Only for the love of a child-- who has been in the marching band for four years-- would parents stand in the pouring rain to hear there child's name and future education plans announced to a dwindling stadium of fans...thanks family next to us for the loan of an umbrella--well King Ralph can't thank'em the umbrella was built for two, not three.



Saturday was another busy day. D and I logged some service hours at the church Pig Roast. We both could have done without seeing an elderly gentleman enjoying (way to much) gnawing with delight on the roasted pig snout. Then it was home to do a color guard hairdo for M and out the door to prepare lunch, or was it dinner...we'll call it linner for the marching band before the final competition of the marching season. Then back home to gather a spouse and a child and off to the dome we went...to see this, the marching band perform there field show "The Flight" a tribute to the 80th anniversary of Charles Lindbergh flight across the Atlantic.




(Princess A is on the 5 of the 50 yard line and M is running with the giant windsock on the 30 yard line)

The bitter sweetness is if Princess A doesn't decide to do college marching band that was her final performance on the field. As great as the band was this night, as sick as M was she pulled off her best performance--they couldn't reclaim that first place spot, they left with the second place trophy. Regardless we were proud!


Sunday...well, they're made for doing laundry. A lot of laundry.

Friday, October 19, 2007

I Heard Someone in the Mail Room Today Say, It's Time to Start a Fire

I heard someone in the mail room today say "it's time to start a fire this evening". I believe a typical sentiment for when school pictures are handed out. Although most of the children looked adorable there is something about an adult's school picture that leaves much to be desired.

It has been so long since I had a school picture. Today I burst into the house after work, in the same fashion as my girls and announced to all..."I got my school pictures today". To which one unnamed child said "oh gee mom, please, let me see". I even offered a wallet exchange--no takers, as of yet.

The last time I had a school picture I looked like this...

Let me be the first to say thank God that was in black and white sparing all from the sight of my frosty eye shadow, but still visible is the quintessential 80's strand of pearls required for all Senior photos.

Then there is this...


Mrs. Avery, Building Assistant


You may print it off and throw darts if you wish. Maybe draw horns on my head. Maybe a handle bar mustache. Do whatever your inner artist commands.

My Dirty Little Secret

The only way I could post my secret on Frank Warren's blog would be with a photo, which I never could. Never Will. We all have to preserve our reputations in some way...mine is never to open the door to divulge my crisis zone, the causality otherwise known as--the laundry room.

This week the front yards of my neighbors and myself resembles a panicked search for Jimmy Hoffa's body. We have multiple man holes dug up in our yards; the gas company is replacing gas lines. After each dig there is a conference between three employees...then it seems they all disappear, only a piece of plywood remains to trap whatever, or whoever may be lurking in that big hole(s). Although yesterday the positioning of one-man hole gave question to if one of them was trying to take off with my new mailbox.

So imagine this, my man eating pile of laundry on the ground, the racks of clean clothes hanging from rods (that require special talent to weave through and past) to access the back area (which is a mess of old toys and sewing notions) comes a ring at the door from a gas company employee--who wants to access my laundry room to light pilots on my water heater and furnace. YIKES! I was about to plummet into the depths of being mortally humiliated, I was! Princess A and M screeched, "he's going into the laundry room", to which I whispered back dial 911 if we don't return. But, before we reached the vault of sure death I had to race forward to slide the newly heaped pile of smelly laundry from the base of the steps. Then I warned him. He promised me as a gasman he has seen much much worse. I promised him he has not. The entire time I was thinking why did King Ralph have to go fishing this week; if he was home he could have lit all the pilots. I told the gas man I knew what his dinner table conversation was going to be...I could hear it in my head...Oh my gosh you should have seen this ladies laundry room, he assured he would not, I told him he was a liar. We both laughed. Once the pilots were lit and we nearly escaped the man eating pile of dirty laundry I made Mr. Gas Man raise his right hand place it on the bottle of liquid All and promise never to divulge my dirty little secret or, raising the box in my right hand I said or I'll have to Bounce you.

When I escorted him out the front door his co-workers hollered out "don't believe a thing he says" to which I screamed back "don't believe a thing he says."

I think I am in need of a laundry intervention. HELPPPPPP! My name is Keeper and I am a.......

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Must Watch Wednesday


This is totally one of my favorite TV shows. It is so whimsical...has a bit of a Big Fish and Series of Unfortunate Events feeling.

The best part about Pushing Daisies is that it brings us all together to enjoy TV as a family. A rarity theses days.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Zippadeedooda

Let me just say I love working. I love it because when contemplation is the mode it clears my mind and lets my thoughts melt away. I feel refreshed and renewed as if I never had a concern. Hmmmmm...I guess work is like yoga.

King Ralph brought home three giant Merb's candy apples--coated in thick caramel, rolled in rich toasted pecans. Breakfast of champions I say. Candied apples are a sign that Fall is indeed the season even though my sister in law's spousal equivalent invited us to swim in the pool this weekend. Don't you agree that the mere fact that a STL pool is still "open for business", that the temperature warrants, has a certain oddity? Proof that global warming exists.

Tomorrow, being off work and the girls off school, we will resume the remodeling of the Jack-n-Jill bath-- as a family. My brother laughed at me yesterday when I said "the girls bathroom gut is hard...being down a whole bath". He laughed reminding me we still have two fully functioning bathrooms. Who in there right mind wants to go down a flight of steps to potty? Not a single person who lives here in this house. As if getting the toilet paper replaced wasn't fight enough, now it's dog eat dog for a spot on the pot.

I feel great today. There's something about eight hours of sleep, a caramel apple and a diet coke for breakfast that makes life seem absolutely-totally-unequivocally perfect!

To that I say good day!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Weekend Review In Pictures

Although I could have stopped by the alumni tent, slapped on one of the fancy stickers that announced the year that tagged me to the homecoming while securing a ticket for a free hot dog--I took the pass, instead indulging in the excitement that homecoming offered my two girls.


PRINCESS A AND HER FRIEND LIZ WELCOMED "HOME" THERE OLE' BAND BUDS


FRIEND NIKKI HUGS M--A GIRL DRESSED IN ALUMINIUM FOIL NEEDS A HUG--AFTER A GREAT HALF TIME PERFORMANCE


SISTERS LOOKING GOOD FOR THE LHS 2007 HOMECOMING "DISCO INFERNO" DANCE


WEARING THIS SEASONS HOT FASHION TREND...BOLD RED LIPS


M SMILES AT THE THOUGHT THAT SOON A NICE BIG JUICY STEAK AND A TWICE BAKED POTATO WILL BE PLACED IN FRONT OF HER


THE FRESHMAN GIRLS ONLY POSSE HAVING DINNER AT "HILLTOP MANOR"

Friday, September 28, 2007

Never End An Email With These Words...

Never end an email to the social committee chair who just opened her own restaurant with these words, "Let me know if there is anything else I can do to help, i am more than happy". You may be sorry.

You see last Saturday when I stepped up to the plate to take over serving the marching band lunch before competition...all the food was ordered by the chairperson, delivered...all I had to do was get it out on the table and serve the hungry mob. This time...this time I am off to the store to shop not only to serve dinner (the Friday night Homecoming banquet) to 220 high school band kids and there 145 8th grade band guests but basically do the whole thing. (Excuse me while I scccccreammmmmmm.) Don't bother with the math I'll do it for for you...THREE HUNDRED SIXTY FIVE STARVING TEENS!!!!!!!!! Plus the table decorations, which was the job I originally signed up to do. I hope all those episodes of Whose Wedding is it Anyway I have watched will turn out to be a helpful tool in pulling off this monster task that was tossed my way, MONDAY. This feels like a rushed wedding with a pregnant bride.

The little wrench in this plan is I now work so I can't really be there at the time I need to be in order for this whole dinner to play out like a well rehearsed symphony. I have lassoed in the only friend I have dumb enough to refuse me. She lovingly laughs when I list off "our" to do list.

I have just begun my IV of caffeinated Diet Coke before heading out to Sam's to purchase gallons of ranch dressing and bags of tossed salad by the ton.

By the time the evening is complete I will need a stiff drink. But, no time for that, not the whole weekend is there time for such pleasure. There will be nails to paint, hair to curl, more food to cook, dresses that need a nip and tuck, photos to capture, taxi freshmans to a dance........

Instead maybe my steam rolled body will need to be peeled up from the road.

Homecoming 2007.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Kitchen Nightmare

An episode of Kitchen Nightmare is taking place as type. D is baking some quick bread in the name of 10 extra credit points in her honors social studies class.

The recipe for nightmare goes as follows...
Drop egg on floor, check.
Dribble mashed pumpkin on floor, check.
Tip measuring cup filled with flour on counter, check.
Eliminate use of the Rachel Ray garbage bowl, check.
Add tablespoons of salt and baking soda instead of teaspoons, check.

I am getting more scared as watch this assignment unfold. This pumpkin bread may (no it certainly will) require a large glass of water for and during consumption.

I have done my best to "save" the quick bread--no matter how much cinnamon I pour in the batter the salt pops through. Let me rephrase that...pours through! I have been made aware it is not how it tastes but how it looks. Here's to looking good.

Tomorrow while eating D's pumpkin bread it's a toss up for her classmates--between playing Amazing Grace or Taps.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Big Smile...Say Cheese

While I mocked my children last night with the usual ritual of words--I don't know what to wear, I don't like your choices, what to do with my hair; all in honor, on the eve of school picture day. Not the kids. Mine.

That's right my friends, I got my school picture taken this afternoon. It was apparent by the look of the staff and student body that it was picture day. Everyone seemed a little more spit shined, hair coiffed, even saw a few lads with there collars "popped". My skirt was cuter than my black t-shirt, but when I suggested a full length photo the pho-tog-rapher snared at me. Even when I twinkled my toes painted in "The Deepest of Violets" polish--there bit of a goth-edge appearance might have scared her, not sure.

For Christmas this year you all are getting an 8x10 glossy of me--framed.

Tell your children I'll have plenty wallets for a swap.

Monday, September 24, 2007

My Kleenex Mom Moment

I have been known to write teachers notes thanking for touching my child's life and guiding them to grow in knowledge. I often find myself doing this in middle and high school since--unlike elementary school were most shower that level of teachers with holiday and end of the year mementos to show appreciation; the higher level teachers seem forgotten.

Never in my life have I ever dreamed I would open my email and find a note from a teacher thanking me for my child's efforts. It was a total Kleenex moment for this mom. As King Ralph is having a busier and more difficult night shift as Sgt. Sausage Fingers--when I read him the email it made his night... let's say a little brighter.

So if you don't mind, I think my four hours of labor pains bringing M into this world earned me this bragging right......

Hey Folks,

I wish you could have seen your daughter today! She has volunteered her time to help teach the 8th grade potential colorguard girls at Sperreng. Today, she commanded the majority of the group and had them looking pretty great by the end of our time together. As her teacher watching her teach, it was an AMAZING moment.

She has something that many people don't possess at her age; the ability to instill desire. Every 8th grade girl was looking up to her in astonishment. Not at how she spun the flag, but how effective she was as a teacher, and how easy she made everything seem. I know this skill comes from her hard work to be successful at high school, AND everything you guys do at home to insure that she "grows up right."

I just had to share this moment with you, because it was a proud moment. I really enjoy knowing all of the Avery girls, and I appreciate you as parents making the world a better place through your children!!!

Sincerely,
J. Hutson

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Hat Day

In case you bump into me on a Saturday...every Saturday, now that I am a working girl and have to look presentable Monday through Friday, is hat day...or maybe ponytail day. No hat day.

Tomorrow I will be sporting the usual LHS Spirit of STL Marching Band hat. It's competition day.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Money and Mane

I had a moment today...

I was paying some bills on line, I quickly scanned my eyes up and down the ledger--what is that from the school district, you can't charge with the district,naaaa....hmmmmm.....what did I write a check for that amount...then it dawned on me, son-of-a-gun, it's my first paycheck--automatic deposit. It just took me off guard. Can you see me smile? I just made a financial contribution to our little castle for the first time since...well since a pig last flew.

Then there was this....

The blow dryer has been on the fritz for a while. I loathe buying things like blow dryers and curling irons (which both went kaput this week)...I'd rather have a new shirt or a home decorating accessory--a blow dryer just lacks that rush of great purchase. But, but today when I switched on the new blow dryer it may have sparked a little joy in me. For the last month I have been starting the dryer like someone would start there 1976 Pinto that is rusting in the garage, slowly warning it up. I was waiting for the dryer to catch fire and torch my hair till I was nearly bald before I purchased the replacement. King Ralph on the other hand prefers to keep the house (and my hair) in tact--so he purchased the replacement (now that's love). Maybe he still had visions of the time my previous hair dryer crapped out, I was on the way to a wedding and asked him to help me blow dry my hair with the leaf blower. I would start out with the old dryer on the cool setting with it's slow hum and ever slight breeze (really I could blow 40 candles on a cake with more wind than that the dryer gave out) and work it till it was blowing good, then pump it up to warm, turning it off at times when the scent of burnt rubber started to fill the air. Today...oh baby, today I turned that new dryer on and it went like a 2007 Corvette on the open road. My hair was blowing in the wind like a super model at a photo shot.

How 'bout this...

I am pleased to also announce I have managed to stay in the staff Survivor pool. They must like me right, they asked me to play there game and only 16 can play? Then again maybe they just like my money? Well either way I am one week closer to the pot of green.


So I have money in the bank and good hair. Good day I say!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Corny Mom Says Corny Prayer

I know I said the corniest of prayers ever. I was so nervous for M to preform her color guard routine at competition I actually prayed for two days to God that she not drop a single guard implement on the field during competition this afternoon--and she didn't. Prayer heard. Amen!

Get this, the color guard won best auxiliary in there division and best color guard out of all three divisions. M needed this esteem booster.

Princess A isn't quite as happy since the marching band as a whole won second place in the division. Hard to swallow after being grand champs last year. Oh well tis' good to share.

Back to color guard... M's performance costume is less than attractive, she refers to it as her space suit...you can be the judge for yourself. M's opinion of it--uhg!, no more like UHG-LEE!



*I was going to post a better shot I took but, the girl in front of M has a wicked camel's toe...total yo-yo...it ain't a pretty sight.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Friday's Sweetest Things

Listening to my dear friend's 2 year son say "I wuv woo mommy"...because she never got to hear that phrase from her first child. Sweetness.

The little girl in my Kindergarten lunch group that cried on Thursday because her daddy forgot to pack her a cookie; giggled today that she forgot to mention to her daddy last night that he forgot her cookie. So adorably sweet.

Driving down the highway with all my girlies singing Dione Warwick's Say a Little Prayer for Me. Relished Mother-Daughter sweetness.

Shopping with my two high school girlie's for homecoming ensembles. Sweet is the price of the dresses purchased at Forever 21 and sweeter is the shoes to match on sale at Macy's. Double the sweet.

Pulling in the garage after a night at the mall, closing the garage door, sitting in the car listening to the radio to finish singing Spice Girl's Wannabe with Princess A and M-- all of us crazily knowing every word. Crazy sweetness.

King Ralph agreeing to pick up bobby pins for M...you have no idea the direction and description it takes to get the King to understand what is a bobby pin (or in the case of the paniced phone call, hair pins) . Sweet daddy.

Biggest sweet of all...filling out a time sheet for the first time in nearly 18 years.

It really is always the small things in life that make the days--sweet!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Note to Myself

I need to remind myself-- as a Building Assistant I must...

1. Remember to wear my watch (shoot I mean find my watch).

2. Bring my own combination lock for my locker (I know it is such a hoot, I have a locker. I felt like a middle school girl starting 6th grade and having my first ever locker...every lock they gave me didn't work. I had to call the janitor to use his emergency key to free my purse from captivity).

3. Memorize the names of 868 elementary school children.

4. Next time a whole grade level applause me for being the new Building Assistant--curtsy instead of bow (my kids, who weren't anywhere near the school said I embarrassed them when I told them I bowed).

5. Don't spend a penny earned...Princess A applied to Loyola this week.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Green Light Means Go



I got the green light. I'll be starting work tomorrow (at the place in the photo). I hope they like me. It has been nearly 18 years since I have had to say, "I have to work tomorrow".

I'm excited and nervous.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Monday Morning Meditation

I think I need to meditate. Here's my list of contemplation.

The hardest part of mothering is hoping you say the right thing to your child. My quote for M this day is " You must be proud to be different. Your only shame is to have shame".

I think no matter how many e-notes the middle school principal sends out there will remain parents who will never understand the concept of the car pool lane and how to make to it flow a wee-bit faster. This is why I seldom drop off in the morning. (Praise be to the big yellow bus!)

Will this house ever truly possess enough feminine product? I think answer is never when one needs it.

Why did the dog have to chew--to the point of total destruction--MY shoe?

Is there such thing as getting enough sleep?

Why can't some company that produces sandwich bags package them in boxes of 10,000?

Why can the kids pack for a trip but never unpack?

Is it acceptable to go downtown for an FBI background check unshowered with a ball cap substituting for a hair-do? Because that is unquestionably the Monday plan.

Here is what I heard inside my head while I meditated... having determined it is easier to just have some powered sugar donettes and a diet coke than find answers to these questions.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Brit, can you really sing?

How can I sleep tonight without commenting on the VMA choice of Brittany Spears for the opening? I can't so I will comment.

Britney just got beat up in our living room.

One, she totally lip synced the whole song!
Two, her butt cheeks didn't fit her sparkly black ensemble...although there wasn't much to the ensemble, typical Brit T & A.
Three, she lacked any sign of emotion that evoked she was enjoying her little comeback--dead in the face.
Four, nice spray tan.
Five, her weave didn't match her roots.
Six, Gimme More...that's what the backup dancer said after he grabbed her breast.

Gimme More? No that was more than enough Gimme for this gal!

Then Sarah Silverman came out and totally, totally dissed I-have-gone-off-the-edge-Britney--ouch!

Weekend Review

I can offer no photo of Friday's standard high school marching band/football fun-- since, I had to run for my life from the metal football stands. Being a human lighting rod left little opportunity to snap photos of the band-sis-ta-s. I guess I could have snapped photos of King Ralph and I enjoying our rain out game fun at Clipper's with our friends--the cranberry and vodka was a relaxing touch to a busy week--but I didn't.

Saturday we began phase one of our final stint as parents of a confirmation student--D's turn. We played enough "get-to-know-you" games that if you don't know me (us) now you never will or don't care too. I can't not mention how King Ralph had to leave camp early to do his midnight duty as Sergeant Sausage Fingers; leaving camp with MY car keys in his pocket (which I never gave to him but D did) leaving me to send someone under the car in the pouring rain to retrieve my hide-a-key. (Thank you Steve!) I am also happy to report that in all the years I have slept at Camp Wartburg there were no, I will repeat, NO snoring women to disrupt the small amount of sleep I had. You have no idea how fabulous that was!




Can't have a weekend at Camp Wartburg without playing the hat game!



...another year of hat game causes M to lose her mind and go totally c-r-a-z-y!

Sunday Princess A had the opportunity to fulfill a dream she never knew she had--back up singer for a Christian rock band, of course she had company in the experience. Oh wait, come to think of it she wasn't just a back up singer, the high school kids actually wrote a verse and sang it. The only reason I have any idea what they sang is I was monitoring the writing session...I think it went something like this "when you're chilling in your Ford believe in the Lord, our God is an awesome God". (So what do you do if your vehicle is a Toyota or a Dodge? What rhythms?)


You rock girls...next time though, don't think the microphone can do all the work-- raise those voices!



...and since this weekend really was all about D here she is adding color to the rocking outdoor worship service with her yellow banner

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Buffing my Briefcase

I chose Tommy Girl. I must have had the right scent.

It's a tie for my favorite interview question:

Do you like Mexican food? To which I nicely replied yes I like Mexican, very much (what I really wanted to reply with was, hell ya but mostly with a margarita)

Do you sing...do you like to sing? To which I replied yes I can to sing I sing all the time, it doesn't sound so good but I like to sing (what I really wanted to do was break out in my rendition of Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody completed with a little air guitar action).

Now I won't exactly be buffing my briefcase, I won't need one but, I got offered the job--I accepted.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Chipping off the Rust

Okay I don't want to say much--afraid I may jinx myself. So all I am going to say is, I hopefully chipped all the rust away. The only thing more I will say is when she called last night she said, "so they can sniff you out" and I replied, "well then I will wear perfume".

Question. Which perfume-- Tommy Girl or Shi?

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Happy Birthday Doghter

Today just happens to be my doghter's birthday...Happy First Birthday Uli. Since I have a hidden talent-- I'm part Keeper of the House and part Dr. Doolittle, I had this conversation with Uli.

ME: Uli you know it's your birthday what would you like...a dog bone, maybe a new leash?

ULI: I was thinking something more practical like an full ovarian and uterine extraction and a micro chip implanted under my skin.

ME: Oh Uli I knew you were the doghter for me, you think practical in terms of gifts. The sisters would have asked for things like Jimmy Choo shoes or a Kate Spade bag. You don't think it will make me appear a little like a Dr. Kevorkian?

ULI: No, no not at all. But, you know I don't want my gift to be that easy. I would like you to take me to the Humane Society where the vet students come once a month to do a few pracitce hysterectomies for a discounted rate... which means you will have to engage in rush hour traffic, say at 630am. Remember I won't be able to eat in the morning so be sure to have the sisters leave an apple granola bar in the back seat to tempt me while freaking you out as you try to merge from one highway to the other. Of course when we get the Humane Society I will be sure they have a one eyed black cat perched at the front desk--I know how you love a good cat.

ME: Aaaaaaachoo! How about this...since it's your birthday I will ask them for a few pain killers so you can experience a physcodelic trip post surgery...say for at least a few days. I'll play some Doors tunes, maybe rent the movie Pink Floyd's The Wall to enhance your doggie drug tripping experience.

ULI: You're the best!

ME: So I've heard.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Firsts & Lasts

It was a Friday night of firsts and lasts...

First football game of the season. First half time show of the season. First time the sister's hit the field in performance together. It was the last first game for Princess A and, the first first game for M. Then it started to get silly with the seniors--how's that last first after half time soda tasting...how was your last first performance of your LHS marching career and so on....


Then there was this...my first photo of the band sisters for the season but, surely not my last.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Reclaiming

Yesterday evening when I rang the dinner bell alerting all that a feast of spaghetti with meat sauce and tossed salad was ready for consumption--instruction were to grab a plate, claim a 12x12 square of ceramic tile anywhere in the center perimeter of the kitchen, be still and eat; while standing.


It appears by the looks of things that every flat surface had, has been monopolized by homework...poster board swallows half the kitchen table with all its accent pieces and snippets of magazine pages. The island's upper level is exhausted with freshman class binders and folders in coordinating colors; to identify French II from Honors English and so on... The lower portion of the island stacks with more attempts to bring on the need to create carpal tunnel syndrome for me with a signature here and there. Then somehow we manage to toss in a desktop and a laptop into this mix of education muddle. Then because space is at such premium in the central station of the house; Princess A had her constant course of AP Psychology (I swear she will be able to offer therapy session by years end) diverted to the lower rung of the house....


I wonder why I bother to ask myself why King Ralph may have a case of the shingles. Just looking around at this mayhem would make anyones skin ache! Certain too it will take a bit more than gummed reinforcer to secure things back in order.


To simply put it...I NEED TO RECLAIM THE CENTRAL STATION OF THE CASTLE!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Quite the Dog Day

I think... maybe...today, I'd like to be Leona Hemsley's dog.

What the *&^% is a dog to do with a trust fund of 12-million dollars?

I don't even know if one can answer that question.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Snow Day In August

This is what the opening page of the school district web site read this early morning--to be sure my tired eyes aren't seeing wrong they posted it in red...

"Due to air conditioning failure, all classes and events at ******* Middle School are canceled for Wednesday, August 29, 2007."

I suggest a few blocks of ice and a couple of fans...that should keep the building cool and the kids on the path to education...and my renewed; relished peaceful days in tact.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Humdrum Tuesday

Laundry day. I have been churning it out at a constant pace-- since 9am. Fresh undies for all. Matched socks. T-shirts that smell like fresh rain. Bath towels stacked to tower height.

To entertain myself between loads I have sunk to an all time TV low, I am watching season one of Tori & Dean:Inn Love. Why? Why am I watching this ridiculous reality TV show? For some odd and demented reason I am laughing (out loud) at Tori catching a mouse from the blue room bathtub and sneaking it out in a shoe in avoidance of guest awareness...mental check for me? I believe so!

I suppose I will relish in the remainder of humdrum Tuesday because the rest of the week lends little for a calendar break--open houses, fall sport pep rally night, football games and marching band...

Friday, August 24, 2007

The Powerhouse

It's a slumber par-tay in the basement family room tonight. The celebration--we are the people with the power, the electricity. M has her "in the dark" posse down there staying cool, pillows and blankets swallow the sectional couch. The girls are eating ice cream, popsicles, popcorn, drinking soda-pop. All while doing a round of DDR, rocking out with Guitar Hero, watching movies, telling stories about high school life as a freshman, moans of how they are to survive a year of French II with a certain teacher...

In other words, it is incredibly fun to see M and her friends being giddy high school girls. It even more fun to see and hear our resident senior Princess A join in the conversation and know exactly what and whom they are talking about.

Today, I love teenage girls--even more than yesterday. And...since,I loved them a ton yesterday I love them two tons today.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Blog Interuption

Pardon me while I take an intermission from blogging. True I have a bit more; actually a lot of school supply shopping. Real reason for this unplanned interuption is I have a 7th grade Challenge English class homework assignment. Yes me, the parent--a paper titled ONE IN A MILLION.

In a "million words or less" (I'm teetering with the idea of going for the million words to screw with the teacher, I love a challenge) I am to describe my child...basically introduce D.

I am sweating my use of proper grammar, punctuation, pulling out my thesaurus to jazz up my vocabulary...I am on a mission to receive an A, nothing less will I settle for.

Since the English teacher and I share a surname I am planning my witty sign off...Respectfully submitted by "The Other" Mrs. A.

Back on the Sandwich Bandwagon


They're off, off to the first day of school--12th grade, 9th grade and 7th grade.

When I asked the girls what they wanted me to pack in there lunches M moaned "back on the sandwich bandwagon". (I think she is having a hard time embracing the standard staple of school lunches--the sandwich. Since our backpacks while hiking the month of June were always stuffed with a sandwich.) Princess A is also still suffering from the affects of sandwich overload, sandwich burnout. She did however request a turkey and cheddar on sour dough. M requested turkey with lettuce on white...because we all know she only likes the white bread. D on the other hand is not totally ready to embrace the sandwich bandwagon and requested a chef salad--I obliged her.

Of course the day started with alarm clock music; a little Beatles, a little Christian rock. Really mixing it up. The guy upstairs knew I was going to need a higher power presence (this day via music) to make it through this morning...looming ahead was another fashion fight--static with stilettos.

While Princess A and D dressed minus any dissension M was preparing to duel the queen. (FYI, the queen always wins!) A & M had to get their dress fix in on the first day since zero hour band rehearsals start tomorrow...that means comfortable marching clothes. D, well, she is finding her feminine side--finally.

Back brace. M has chosen to make a medical decision, relinquishing herself from the bondage of her brace. I gently said, if some ogre is going to be cruel on the first day they are certainly going to be cruel on the second, third, fourth...but I'm just a mom, what do I know. Princess A assured her that this is high school, not middle school; people aren't that cruel they've matured--hopefully. Shoes. As you can tell from this years first day of school picture I was without a doubt going to achieve victory in the shoes battle--or barefoot it would be. We found compromise with the borrowing of a pair of metallic weave wedge sandals from Princess A's closest. Stiletto subject settled.

D walked to the bus stop at exactly 6:54am and 56 seconds. The bus arrived at 6:55am. Perfect timing. We managed to avoid the stress topic of the gummed reinforcers. Thank you very much.

At precisely 7:15am Princess A and M loaded themselves, a few spiral notebooks and pencils in the Toyota to test out the official nature of that newly acquired high school campus parking permit.

Here I sit, alone, with loads of dirty laundry. First, off to the doctor...this summer cold has become something more than just a cold.

**************************************************
1254PM: King Ralph called to inform he has procured a package of gummed reinforcers. This hot potato is closed!

Monday, August 20, 2007

First Day of School Eve

To simply sum up the first day of school eve--King Ralph wishes he was on the night shift this month so to avoid all the female teenage drama that accompanies this eve.

When I returned home from the first ever "Freshman Transition Day" I was worked up at the lack of conscience on the part of the upper classmen who volunteered themselves up as mentors...not to mention the lack of organization the day possessed. So, I fired off a letter to the freshman principal, who then forwarded it the head principal, who then forwarded it to the freshman counselor...to make the long story short it seems the head principal has named me a parent member of next years transition day committee.

Princess A helped to save the afternoon of freshman newbie nerves by helping M plot a course of direction to properly navigate the hallways of her "new" school. The calmness of an afternoon turned to twisted nerves, cries of "please don't make me wear this back brace the first day" which elevated into "I'm going to be the freak in the freshman class" to "you have no trust in me"...a full blown poor-me-life-handed-me-a-barrel-of-lemons episode. I tried, like a any good mom, to assure M that one can make lemonade from a barrel of lemons. Then it seems she drinks the lemonade from a old smelly shoe instead of a nice crystal beverage glass. I'll trudge on doing my job best I can...self esteem I say you are there somewhere.

In the mean time D suddenly decided to jump on the sister's fashion wagon. She has informed us she does not have ownership of a proper purse to match the printed dress that is to be the first day of school outfit. Never mind borrowing M's purse which is a perfect match because, in the midst of a melt down you do not ask to borrow anything from a fellow melt downer. Besides what does a 7th grader need a purse for? Her tampon? Okay, I'll give you that--if she was menstruating, which doesn't seem to be at this present time. Then to make the drama even richer she had a total flip out over the fact I did not purchase gummed reinforcers (which were on the school list). You "definitely need these the first day of school". To which I say h-o-g-w-a-s-h. I struck a deal if any teacher curses D for her lack of gummed reinforcers to strengthen those hole punched papers I will do her chores for a week. I am almost certain I will not be unloading the dish washer or taking out the trash.

Princess A was in a tizzy over needing a slip for her black linen skirt. Why don't stores sell slips anymore? The "spousal equivalent" aka opticman did a segment on his radio show about this...woman do in fact still need slips, really more often than they think. So being the genius mother I am I took one of my hibernating 80's ankle length slips and hacked it off. Presto instant mini slip. When I had to give my opinion on the perfect necklace--I thought the King was going to loose it. He just doesn't understand the being of a teenage girl, girls!

Really...honestly...I could use another of Lisa's margaritas! I guess with my summer cold I'll have to settle for a shot of NyQuil.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

...continued

I just lifted my September issue of Good Housekeeping from its plastic postage wrap...the cover reads "Easy! 20 Chicken Recipes" It's like the devil has a hold of me--both in temperature and chicken. I think I may have even dreamt I got a job at Tyson, plucking chickens.

How can I escape the chicken? I'm drowning.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Chicken Hell

Chicken. Hell. Chicken Hell. I am in Chicken Hell.

I know this because the only thing in our freezer is chicken. I know for certain I am in hell-- temperatures swirl at 105*, lest not forget it "feels like 107*". So that certainly means hell? Yes.

King Ralph went to the grocery store last evening for his own fruition. He returned with $140 of light, fat free, low or no cholesterol food options--rices, yogurts, ramen noodles (in a variety of flavors)...the only produce he managed to toss in the cart was blueberries and green grapes... and chicken. He actually suggested I toss the Popsicles to make room for the chicken. CHICKEN-CHICKEN-CHICKEN.

I am beginning to emanate chicken from my pores. My girls have sprung the beginnings of a beak. As the King's cholesterol lowers our feet are morphing into web. I no longer yell at my girls, I cluck. No need to shave we preen.

I am in chicken hell. Cholesterol-free-chicken-hell.

I had a break down, like Tim Allen's character in Wild Hogs, I mashed potatoes and drowned them in butter barely escaping my desire to literally eat the stick whole.

Last night I binged on brownies my friend baked me. I couldn't decide how many I should stop with on my binge...and I was not about to go "super-model" after the binge, I was keeping them--all four. I need a mixer for the chicken. I need fat grams.

I am to the point of chicken hell where my dreams are certain to turn nightmare--Colonel Sanders chasing me with a butcher knife and a bowl of his original recipe seasoning.

God save the chicken. Save me!

Sunday, August 12, 2007

The Best Koolaid Stand Ever!

While I sip Apple-Cranberry martini(s) here in Michigan...I am flipping through my sis's bartender pocket book.

If I have a stand with this koolaid will you come? Do you think I will make a lot of money...even have enough customers to make it worth my while?

Electric Koolaid Cocktail Recipe

Ingredients : - 1/2 oz amaretto
- 1/2 oz blue curacao liqueur
- 1/2 oz peach liqueur
- 1/2 oz melon liqueur (midori, melloni...)
- 1/2 oz cherry brandy
- fill with 1/2 sweet and sour mix
- fill with 1/2 cranberry juice
- 1 splash grenadine syrup

What do you charge for such a fine cup of koolaid? Should I card?

Friday, August 10, 2007

Innocence

I don't know if my niece Chlo-Yo and I are buds because I witnessed her entrance into the world--but we are. Always have been. Always will be.

Today at the beach-- as we sat on our towels playing a game-- she was so adorable when she innocently and sweetly said with a dose of amazement,"oh-my-gosh did you see what God just did, wasn't that cool". All "God" did was move a cloud over the sun.

I wish I still had the thrill of a child. Instead I have a mild sunburn.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Choo-Choo

Me and D are taking the train to MI tomorrow morning--on the 435am train bound for Chicago before catching another on to Ann Arbor. We are excited despite the ridiculous time.

Princess A and M are off to 4 days of intense band rehearsals in the wilderness...removed from all the distraction of everyday life. It's going to be an all out sweat fest. 100* temperatures swirl. God lov'm!

The King...well...he's gonna keep castle solo. Four estrogen free days. For some strange reason I think he wishes we were all going to be home to drive him batty.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Celebrating a Year Older

Friday, my actual birthday, I spent torturing myself in wilds of the school supply isle at Walmart all in the name of tax free day...to what save a few pennies while losing compassion for my fellow man, or this situation mothers? I watched a mother beat her toddler in the cart for touching the pencil pouches and then beating her again for crying. I listened to a mother's response to every thing her child read off the school list with a "bullshit". I tried like hell with my psychic abilities to get the lane blockers to move there carts to one side of the isle--my power weakens in my year older state. All the while I silently sang Happy Birthday to myself; spirits up I said. I had a lunch date for Chinese with King Ralph and D. Then at 515pm I got my annual millisecond of fame with my sister-in-law's DJ spousal equivalent's on air birthday shout-out. I ended the day by falling asleep on my new couch-- my favorite thing to do.

Saturday, myself, my niece (whose birthday is August 1) and spousal equivalent (whose birthday is August 4)-- whom we affectionately nicknamed "Opticman"-- had our annual celebration...this year pool party style. I sipped margaritas while the others tipped back beers and pina coladas.

Here we are with our fantastic pool party birthday cake (half chocolate, half yellow with custard filling)...


Wait I think you need a close up of that cake...


To say the least, it was a great birthday!

Friday, August 03, 2007

Brain Fart

I am not sure if it is the fact that I am a year older today, waking at 6am to prepare the girls' marching band water coolers, staying up till after midnight or a combo of all--I cannot type my own entries or even reply to others without some type of error with a dyslexic flair. I mean to type fond and I type found. I mean to how and I type who. There is something happening up here in my head and it could be more than just a little brain fart?

Chanel No. 5?



It seems to be happening more frequently--home alone.

So what's a girl to do? Invite a friend over for popcorn and a Blockbuster movie? Exactly.

The flick was Perfume The Story of a Murder. In the event that my scent may evoke some emotional meaning to a curious male--this movie let's me know bathed or unbathed makes no difference. Let's just say I may have to rethink the whole sweet smelling scent splashed on my body.

Strange, strange movie.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Big Day

It's a big day around here...Princess A drove solo (meaning no mom or dad in the passenger seat)--M was in the passenger seat instead. There she went at 635am zipping down the street in the little blue Toyota towards school. One hand I bit my nails, with the other I swept up King Ralph's falling hair--as if it were a ceremony we stood watching from the front door glass.

It's also the first day to the end of the summer--marching band rehearsals commence, 7am-530pm of instruments, flags, marching, conditioning training...

Although M has been at practice twirling her flags and sabor now for three weeks this is her first day with everyone, from freshman to seniors, really feeling like she in high school. She left wearing "Helga", with the plan in mind to dump her in the car when the long beginning of director talk ends. She'll learn the arduous routine and figure out how to get her 18 hours of torture managed.

I really don't know what is harder to accept, Princess A with a driver's license, Princess A being a senior in high school or M being a freshman in high school? I might just have to have a stiff drink tonight to help soak it all up and in!

Saturday, July 28, 2007

AAAAHHHHH

how the $%&^ do you get this twitter on the side!?? HELP! I hate being computer stupid!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Cholesterol

King Ralph had his yearly physical. The king, has high cholesterol. We are now on a chicken diet.

I may have to reinvent the shrimp scene from Forrest Gump with chicken...there's chicken soup, broiled chicken, baked chicken, chicken with rice, chicken with broccoli, chicken stew, rosemary chicken...

Chances are we will all start to cluck and grow feathers behind our ears.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

War of the Roses...

...that is how you can imagine purchasing new furniture with King Ralph was like.

At one store we actually had two salesman; one who understood to be on the woman's side meant a sale, while the other was rallying behind the man--bad salesman! No sale here.

After a dozen stores, a refueling with a Lion's Choice roast beef, a diet coke and a badgering from our daughters (I needed some extra neck turning power) King Ralph finally decided that compromise means meeting in the middle, not getting his way.

I really think next time we need new furnishings it would be easier to just shoot myself in the foot.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Dog pulls a Trix move on the Lucky Charns

It came to be known that our little puppy prefers a bowl of Lucky Charms to her morning portions of Purina Puppy Chow. To make things worse I had just prepared this somewhat healthy-nutritious- magically-delicious breakfast for myself with the last bit of the milk--pretty much any hope for a bowl of cereal was dashed away. If only I could train the kids like the dog (has trained itself) to drink all the milk in the bowl. I then scooted Uli out the house to the yard while I murmured something to the affect of... get out there, go crap out magic shapes in 8 colors, silly dog Lucky Charms are for humans...really, it was more like this, @#=$%^&*

The following should be read realizing the quality of sarcasm and annoyance in my tone. The tone only a mother can pull off.

Then top it off M who keeps her room in such impeccable shape offered Uli the option of an evening snack-- M & M's or a Hershey chocolate bar...she took both, consumed one. UHG! That would be a double UHG, one for the room and one for the dog.

On another note, of the musical kind. M has told me to stop singing. That I sing all the time. I am assuming that it is either a bad thing because, my voice sucks, or that she feels threatened by my untapped talent. So now I am surfing YouTube for the perfect Happy Birthday video to send to my brother-in-law--diverting from the usual phone call with moi's voice booming out the celebratory tune.

So now I have loaded the dishwasher, dusted the living/dining room, grilled some meat, cleaned the windows, and well, I feel nostalgic over this summer's road trip...I need another get away. How 'bout another hand full of my favorite picks? Ya? Okay you got it!



Father and daughter climb the incredible red rocks in Garden of the Gods, Colorado Springs


The "Balancing Rock" at Garden of the Gods

Watermelon night at the campground, 1/6 of a melon for $1...cleaned it to the rhine

The last of our self timed family pictures, about 3/4 of the way down Pikes Peak Barr Trail