Friday, November 30, 2007

The Elf Family

Click above link to see us embarrass ourselves.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Ella's Grocery List

This was a list of things that Ella needed me to pick up for her at the supermarket.

I know it is a little hard to read so here it is,

Stackers (these are little polka dot fruit roll ups)
Ice Cream
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Band Aids
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
And some juice

It is a good thing that she knows with a diet like that she will need vitamins and band aids.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Who What When Where and WHY

Bobo is going through a phase it is some times charming, cute and endearing but most of the time relentless, exhausting and yes I can admit downright irritating I have even had thoughts of gouging my own ears. It is the dreaded question everything at least 100 times stage. Bobo has taken to this stage with a fierce determination to leave no question unasked. Every day with Bobo is an interrogation of everything from the smallest, most mundane, insignificant topics all the way up to the biggest philosophical questions man has pondered throughout the history of the human race. As I typed this last sentence she has asked me three times what day it will be tomorrow and what day it was yesterday, simple enough questions but her understanding of the tenses is a little fuzzy so she can trip you up. When she was clearly asking what yesterday was by asking what tomorrow is and you give the wrong answer the temper begins to flare. You see she already knows the answer but why waste an opportunity to ask another question, it is guaranteed fun for everyone involved. To illustrate my point Molly had the flu on Saturday she was so tired that she fell asleep on the wooden playroom floor with her dolly's little receiving blanket draped over her legs. Keep in mind this is the child who fights sleep with every ounce of her little being every day of her life. After waking up an emptying the contents of her stomach the line of questioning that accompanies our every day existence together started right back up. She wanted to know why she did not feel well, why did she have germs, why did she have a virus, why did she have to throw up, in fact many of these were asked in the midst of actually vomiting. Did any of these questions carry such urgency that she couldn't wait the two minutes it took her to throw up to ask them. Poor thing, but it was all I could do not to laugh at her I mean really can nothing slow down the procession of questions. When I ask Bobo why she asks so many questions her reply is simply, because your my mama

Monday, November 19, 2007

Next stop Broadway

Well maybe not right this minute there is a strike to consider but my youngest has become enamoured with a song from A Chorus Line. And yes I put off writing about this because in order to tell the tale I have to admit that in a moment of nostalgia it was I who first played her the tune. Now at any given moment in my house you might find yourself with front row seats to a one woman show, she only has one tune but she belts it out with enthusiasm and charm.

"This man is NOTHING, this course is NOTHING, if you want something go find a better class and when you find one you'll be an actress and I assure you that's what finally came to pass"

The song does contain a few no no, grown up words but the one she has really latched on to is Jesus Christ, Jesus Christ she exclaims exactly as it can be heard on the tune as she catches my eye in the rear view mirror a smile stretching all the way up to the corner of her eyes "you didn't get mad at me when I said that bad word" No, pause, (not sure of what I am about to say knowing it could backfire in ways I have not even considered) when you are singing the words to a song it is different. The problem is the words in question are one I have mumbled a little too loudly and far too often so she is already familiar with the phrase and the numerous occasions that mommy feels call for it's use. At least I did not let her listen to Dance 10 Looks 3 in which the dancer explains how "tits and ass can change your life" although if memory serves me right I did my fair share of dancing, prancing and singing to that tune in my living room well before I had either.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

How Can I Tell You That I Love You, That I'm Always Thinking Of You

We have been married for 2,631 days not to mention all the days we dated (which sorry I was to lazy to calculate that total after figuring out the first one, and I know you could have figured it out in your head in a matter of seconds but I had to break out a calculator) and I love when you surprise me or I glimpse another little piece of who you are. Like getting in your car the other day when the CD player started up I was greeted by a Ween song which I do not even know the name of, but it is a song that I know and one you listen to and enjoy so it was not a surprise to me but the next song on the CD was a Tracy Chapman song. That was not what I was expecting to hear and it made me smile, here I thought you just conceded to my music choices occasionally but maybe some of my taste has rubbed off on you because somewhere nestled between 50 cent and Nirvana there was there was another discovery, a Tina Turner song. I do not want to out you on your musical selections just for the sake of embarrassment but to let you know how much the little things like that can bring me closer to you, to us.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

What's the Forcast?

Need a quick weather update just check with Molly she usually has the most up to date information concerning the weather. One of her favorite television stations is the Weather Channel, she would watch for hours if we let her. She will ask me to put on the weather channel and within a few minutes when she feels she has an accurate picture of all the major weather events she will wander off. Do not mistake this for an opportunity to change the channel if you do she will become hysterical. She likes to hear the comforting soundtrack of the Weather Channel running in the background and her little ears perk up and she comes running when she hears weather on the 8's. For she knows this means a local weather update, and for the remainder of the afternoon you will hear her try to drop phrases like partially cloud in to the conversation. She was really taken by the phrase generally sunny and repeated it over and over to herself and anyone else who would listen. She even earmarks occasions with the forecast of the day, I asked if she remembered our special lunch together last week and she pondered a moment before replying yes it was the gray drizzly day. I am not sure if this fascination with the weather has anything to do with her fear of thunder storms, maybe this is an attempt to put some order and control on the weather in her corner of the world. I do know that it is endearing to see Molly and her sister (who indulges Molly with a slight interest in the weather as well) eating their dinner and watching the weather updates together.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


Ella just asked me if forever was the longest thing, I told her that it was indeed, that forever was endless. She thought for a second and replied "so it's like every green light in every city in every country in the world being green all the time never red or even yellow?"

Monday, October 08, 2007

Dancing Queens

Molly may have a better sense of rhythm but I think Ella has an edge when it comes to ballet. When the teacher told the girls to stand up straight Ella pulled in and up effortlessly straightening her spine and lengthening her neck. While Molly stood in exactly the same stance and just wiggled in anticipation of the music. Ella was a studious little ballerina while Molly's little pigeon toes rebelled from first position, I had to stifle a giggle as the teacher tried to position her feet just to have them spring right back. Whatever the future hold for these two little dancers I will say that they both adore their teacher and are having a wonderful time.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

So we spent this lovely Sunday afternoon in October at the beach, it is probably the last time we will see the beach this year and while it seemed a little chilly as we left the house before we abandoned the beach Molly had gone in the water all the way up to her waist. We had our own little section of the beach until a rather odd trio appeared. They came on to the scene and immediately one of them curled up on the sand and began to slumber another slunk of to god knows where and the third began making her way over to us. It did not take very long to deduct that this member of the trio had been indulging in some early afternoon cocktails. She was a very friendly maybe a little too friendly and did not want to let the conversation go and she followed us every time I tried to steer the girls a little bit this way or a little bit that way. Finally something else caught her eye and she was on her way down the beach. As her friend continued to sleep a seagull found the picnic the trio had packed for themselves, within seconds the seagull was making a awful sound that seemed to signal the rest of the crew that he had hit the jackpot. Before you know it the sleeping woman and her picnic lunch were surrounded by birds going to town on what turned out to be a grocery bag full of food. The girls and I were down by the water as this was happening at the top of the beach by the sand dunes and I must admit that even if I had not been watching over two little girls I do not think the good Samaritan in me would have intervened in the situation that was unfolding. More and more gulls approached as number one peacefully slumbered not stirring a bit and #2 and #3 were no where to be seen. Some one else with a bigger heart than mine did try to persuade the feeding frenzy of birds but to no avail. After the sandwiches which were tightly wrapped in large sheets of wax paper and the bags of chips in cellophane bags had been shredded and devoured I see friendly member of the trio making her way back to her spot. She spots the commotion from a bit of a distance but the early afternoon cocktails are taking their effect on her making any sort of speedy approach. She ungracefully runs and stumbles and runs and stumbles to the birds shaking her fists and yelling, number one is still sleeping, and it takes her a good four to five minutes to get these birds to abandon the food. I watch as she salvages what she can, which really would you try to salvage anything from that scene? Then she glares in my direction as if I should have done more to protect her picnic and part of me wonders if maybe I should have, but anyone who knows my children knows that they are terrified of any living feathered or furry creature and would never have forgotten the horror they felt as I charged in to a flock of seagulls. Besides I had to conserve my energy to get my children and there gear back to the car and cleaned up. Which is no easy feat when you consider my kids strange dispositions. My girls are all for getting down and dirty until suddenly every speck of sand must be off of their body before a full fledged panic attack is under way. So a few hours at the beach involves careful planning on my part which for some reason I did not consider today and actually went to the beach on a whim without the proper equipment. The equipment consists of bottles of water to rinse hands and feet, changes of clothing, baby wipes for sticky spots and ice cold drinks for the ride home. Today we improvised and it was not as disastrous as I thought, dare I say that maybe they are adapting to life as "normal" humans sand and all. So today I had them rinse their hands in the ocean then their feet and then jump in to my arms and if you could only have seen me carrying them both all the way from low low low tide all the way back to the parking lot. Molly kept saying why are you making that noise with your breath? Well I don't know maybe carrying 70-80 pounds in wet mushy sand is a little hard for a mom as out of shape as me, you really don't need to insult the person who is carrying your little butt quite a distance just to avoid a little sand on your tootsies.

Saturday, September 29, 2007


And here are the afters, I went to the fabric store and found nothing at all inspirational so then I dragged the girls to Pier One and found these dish towels that I thought might work. Ella and Molly both were taken in by Pier One and there were many oohs and ahhs heard while we looked around. I do not know if has anything to do with my interest in design but it seemed unusual to me that two little girls would be so excited by a store that sells furniture and decorative items. It made me smile to hear them appreciate the rugs and the curtains making suggestions about where they would fit in around our house. It is a good thing that they were able to charm me with those memories because just a short time later as I reupholstered the chair seats it was an entirely different emotion that they provoked. You see I had set up the art easel and Molly had been painting by herself for over an hour in an entirely organized and controlled fashion. I do not know exactly what happened when Ella joined in but a few minutes later Molly ran in to the room that I was working in with red paint up to her elbows and just dripping from her little finger tips. As soon as I raised my voice Molly took off in a mad dash screaming "noooo mommy" as bright red paint was flung all over my kitchen and playroom, then bathroom where I cornered her and discovered her accomplice with another shade of paint that had been used to decorated my bathroom. My heart began to race as I scanned the room calculating the damage, the purple and red paint seeping in to the grout lines. I was quick to action stripping the girls and putting them in the shower where they both cried indignantly that they needed to get out this minute. I grabbed the shower head with my left hand and hosed them down in a fashion similar to a fireman putting out a blaze, while scrubbing at the grout with my right hand. All the while yelling " in the four and six years you have lived in this house do you not know me well enough to know this sort of thing makes mommy really mad and realllyyy crazy?" and perhaps I threw in a few " what the hell were you thinking". Ella was sobbing while Molly urged me to "use your regular voice mommy, use your regular voice". I wrapped them in towels and in a eerily quiet about to really loose it voice suggested that they might want to dress themselves and give me a few moments to get the mess under control. As I finished cleaning the bathroom I noticed the window was wide open so I can only hope that the neighborhood enjoyed their free Friday afternoon show. I then ventured in to the other rooms to survey the damage, it was not good, I will just say that I spent well over and hour just locating and cleaning paint splatter. It was not the way I wanted to start my weekend but luckily I spent the rest of my evening at a restaurant sans children laughing as I repeated the tale to my girlfriends.


Notice the lovely stains

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

New found friendship

Ella could not have been happier to report that she had in fact sat next to Cassidy on the bus and then she had more good news to share, there was going to be a rendezvous the next day in Target in the Leapster aisle. I asked Ella what time this meeting was going to go down and she looked at the kitchen clock and said "well how about 2:00". Then I was left with the task of breaking her heart when I explained that if they had not set up a time to met then it was going to be a little hard to coordinate our arrival times. Ella was not going to let go of her play date that easily she tried to convince me it would work out, that we would surely run in to her new best friend. Then it came to her in a flash of brilliance " I know where she gets off the bus, we can walk down there and find her. She has a sticker on her bedroom window. I know we can find her!" I explained that we really could not go to the apartment complex down the road and start knocking on doors but in my own flash of brilliance suggested that we write her a note inviting her over on some future date. That seemed to appease Ella and she set to work gathering card stock, stickers and markers this was not going to be just any note. And indeed it was not just a note but a card that she carefully crafted and tweaked all weekend. She could not wait to give Cassidy the "note" on Monday ( and I had slipped my own note of introduction for Cassidy's mom just in case Ella's was a tad bit unclear). So the note has been delivered and now we wait for a call from Cassidy or her mother.

Update- It is now Thursday and we have not heard form Cassidy or her mother but surprisingly Ella has not even mentioned the play date again, and here I was wondering if her heart or spirit would be broken.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

School Bus Etiquette

Perhaps I romanticized riding the bus. I remember listening to the radio on the bus, my driver liked it loud and he played the top 40 station. I remember it quite fondly the newest Duran Duran song blaring as I tried to snag my favorite seat all the way in the back where the littlest bump would send you flying 4" above the seat. Maybe the music was not even that loud but it was louder than either of my parents ever played it in the car and more importantly it was no station any other adult I knew would play. Perhaps I do not have all the facts straight seeing as I only rode the bus from Kindergarten through the third grade, so here is the reality of the bus as seen through the eyes of another 5 year old. On Monday as Ella stepped off the bus I asked my usual "how was your day?" the answer was not what I expected, mommy some one peed on the bus. Oh really, how do you know? Well there was "water" running under my feet. So we talked about how they must have really had to go to the bathroom and how it was too bad because they were probably embarrassed, she agreed so then we talked about how it was not the end of the world and what she could do if she was ever in that situation. Then today when Ella got off the bus she exclaimed guess what mommy and I asked what to which she responded "well I did not really mean to say guess what, but guess what?" How about you just tell me I nudged, well some of the boys on the bus were telling mama jokes. Mama jokes? Yeah, big mama jokes. So tell me a big mama joke Ella (I was not sure what was coming but I should have known) well one boy told another boy his mama was so big that people tripped on her booty. I burst out laughing and it was not even a good joke but something about her repeating this information was funny. After funny passed came the realization that this is just a fraction of the things she will overhear on the bus, this could be a very interesting year.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Maybe I spoke too soon?

Ella hit the wall after school today, she came home found her spot on the couch and did not move. She did not let her hair down but she felt she could not wear her underpants for one minute longer and off they came. Who knew how uptight that new school of hers really was making all those kids wear underpants and all. Actually I have no idea why she felt the need to take them off that is really not like her and when I sat down to chat with her she shared the following with me. That one little girl in her class that she had never seen before ( you know in the whole 2 days that she has been there) threw up in the sink in their classroom. And that she played on the playground with a girl who had bangs and they screamed at the boys on the slide. Now if that is not a great second day of school then I do not know what is. She was really indignant with me after bath time when reminding me that I had woken her up way too early and my daughter who went to bed all summer long between 9:00 and 10:00 was in bed sound asleep at 7:30. I am hoping that will help her prespective in the morning because before she succomed to the sleep she so desperatly needed she wimpered and cried and expressed an interest in repeating her preschool year. I really hope that she likes school for her sake and for mine or this will be a long year.

Preliminary report

After her first whole day at school I can report back that she seems to have a good day and she was able to give me a fairly detailed description of what went on with the exception of names, she could not even come up with one of those. But she amazed me with her ability to remember the littlest of details and comprehend things from another students perspective she is amazingly observant. I will have to keep that in mind as she is most likely filling away all sorts of sordid little details form her upbringing that she will no doubt use against me at a later date. And although she seems to be quite happy with her school, teacher and new friends she is most definitely the offspring of Nick and I, amazingly motivated unless of course that involves getting up early in the morning. As she sleepily ate her breakfast this morning she asked with optimism in her voice "after today do I not have to get up early?" I had to break the news to her that she in fact had to get up two more morning this week but failed to add, and perhaps for the rest of your life. She then asked if she could sleep as long as she wanted on Saturday and Sunday, and I told her of course. But we all know how that works even though she does not have to be up she probably will be up with the sun after being forced to rise every morning this week.
I am also happy to report that the girls had a wonderful time at their first ballet class. There was some hesitation on Molly's part when we first arrived, and there was the whole business of an already exhausted Ella wailing no one loves me as I rushed her off the bus and in to her tights and leotard. But when they emerged from the studio they both had big smiles on there face and wanted to share with me everything that miss Brittney had taught them. I think just seeing them in their ballet outfits would have been rewarding enough, Molly loves the way she looks in her leotard and tutu. When looking at the pictures of herself in the outfit she said dreamily I like that girl and I laughed and said that is you silly and she could not have been prouder.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

And there off

Both the girls are at their respective schools as I type this. I can not be certain that I have come to grips with all of my feeling about the fact that they are both now enrolled in school. Although Molly will only be going to school two days a week for half a day so maybe the last statement is a bit dramatic. But I have had my house full of little girls noise for the past six years (almost) so it is first and foremost strange and a little disconcerting. This morning after I found myself alone in the house the first thing I did was clean up the whirlwind everyone had left behind and as I vacuumed the entire first floor without stopping and I might add with my ipod on full volume (what a luxury that was) I could not truly relish my efficiency. While signing along I kept hearing thuds or squeals like phantom children noises, maybe related to the phantom pain one feels when they loose a limb and still feel tingling or pain or itching. I remember after having Ella as I sat in my hospital room holding her in my arms I would feel kicks and movement as though she was still tucked safely inside so I asked the nurse about it alarmed that something was wrong with me. She said that nothing was wrong and that it is actually quite common that or maybe she was just trying to console a crazy first time mother. But here Ella is somehow now old enough to be whisked away on a school bus all by herself, it does not seem possible.When the bus pulled up this morning Nick said where is everyone as the bus appeared empty, that is until it started to round the corner and all these little faces were all staring out barely able to peer out over the bottom of the window. I suddenly feel as though Ella is so vulnerable and there is nothing I can do to remedy that. As I was making her lunch last night and packing it ever so carefully in her new barbie (not my choice for sure) lunchbox I fretted over it like she would be spending a week in the deep woods. I worried about if she doesn't like what I have packed and will she be starving and miserable by the time she gets home? Or is that enough juice for the whole day, I mean at home she can eat or drink whenever the mood strikes her and I am always there to make sure her needs are met. Listen to me glorify my mothering skills as if there were never times when I was swamped with work and instructed her to pick a box of cereal out of the cupboard for snack and share it with her sister. But it was still based on my judgement and my knowledge of my daughter and now Ella will be spending the majority of her waking hours with someone who hardly knows her. I know Ella will love school and this is just me feeling the pain of the first time in a series of many when she will pull away but I had honestly fooled myself in to thinking this transition wouldn't bother me in the least. So here I sit crying and typing and very proud of my smart beautiful big school girl, and her sister too who did so much better than I ever would have guessed on her first day of preschool. Last year when Ella started preschool that did not bother me at all it was a nice little break for me and in a school I had picked just for her and I know Molly will love it there too, but this whole kindergarten thing is much bigger than I expected.
*Disclaimer- may not make as much sense I thought when I was writing it because I was being an emotional sap!

Friday, August 10, 2007

For your viewing pleasure

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Just click on the picture to see Dr. Claire & Dr. Cayla Hayley in action.

Why do we always hurt those we love the most?

Bobo has a ritual she follows when I leave the house, it is not all that elaborate and it makes me feel loved and missed. She absolutely must get a big hug and kiss and then she stands on the porch and waves goodbye as I drive away, and I open my window and yell that I love her and to be a good girl. Well I gather it is all a bit too sappy for my oldest to wittness because the other day as I was driving away and giving Bobo my final farwell I see her come flying out of the doorway she was standing in and fall to her knees. I stopped the car and yelled for Nick, Ella who was on the other side of the door had slammed it shut and sent Bobo flying. It was fine in the end all was forgiven and it was back to being playmates, but as I drove away I thought it is too bad that we often do treat those closest to us the worst. I know that I am sometimes guilty of being more patient with the clerk at the supermarket than I am with Nick or the girls so who I am to ask any more of them.

Fear Factor

Bobo has always been a scaredy cat but recently her fears have expanded in both scope and intensity. The phrase that escapes her mouth most frequently is "what was that noise!?" followed by "was that just you?" She gets worked up all the time and when I say worked up it is a sight you would have to witness to believe, you would think she had spent the first years of her life in a war torn country. She screams, cries, clamps her hands around her ears, sweats, and just becomes generally paranoid and miserable, the main culprits are as follows.

Thunder storms
The ice maker (which she call the ice cream maker)
Construction noise (they are building houses on our street and have been for the past 2 years)
Closed doors (even when you would like a little privacy in the bathroom)
Bugaboo Creek, a steakhouse with a talking moose on the wall.

Chuck E. Cheese, Nick has a bad experience there with Bobo and to tis day when we drive by she makes us promise to never bring her there again. One of the easiest promises I will ever make in my life.

The dark, when she goes to bed the following lights must be on, our room, the guest room and the upstairs playroom. Yes they have two playrooms one upstairs one downstairs and I still have toys strewn all through the house. You should hear the reasons given for not playing in the two room dedicated to play.

Any noise that she does not know the origin of, no matter how distant the source or low the volume.

You know I could go on and on with the list, it just grows by the day and while I hope that this stage is reaching it's peak at least Nick and I can keep our sense of humor. While discussing her fears we came to the conclusion that some day her biggest fear will be running in to us in public, her friends will hear her say "what was that noise, was that my mom's car, it sounded like my mom's car"

Wednesday, August 01, 2007


Bobo why must you yell down the stairs every night at the top of your lungs. Asking the same question each night. Mommy do we have to whisper?

And while we are on this topic why do you ask me every night if that is your seat at the dinner table, as if you have not sat in that seat at every meal since you graduated from a highchair. Never mind that every other seat at the table is already occupied. Do you really not know the answer? Because if I do not answer you repeat the question over and over your voice growing in size and pitch until I look you in the eye and say not just yes or yep or thats right, but I must tell you that yes that is your seat Bobo.

You are something else miss Bobo.