Thursday, August 30, 2012

What Had Happened Was...

     So, I haven't been around here in a hot minute.  Mostly because I suck at life and blogging, but also because of school starting back, my new job, and my funktagiousness complete with low grade fever.  But, I promise on my first born, I will be back soon to write an actual post.  I'm sure you all are just sitting around and holding your breath, right?

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

A Farewell To Arms

     As of 0930 yesterday morning, my service with the Army National Guard has come to an end.  And, even though it's what is best for my family, it still sucks.  So much of my life and my identity have been wrapped up in being a soldier and a veteran, and now that it's over, I feel lost.  I know that it will get better eventually, but I'm currently kind of, sort of, completely terrified.  What do I do now?  Who am I?  What am I doing with my life?  What's up with the universe and all that?  How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a wood chuck could chuck wood?  These are the things going on in the old canoodle right now.  But I do know one thing.  Despite all the griping and complaining about the military that I have done, I am really going to miss it.  It has truly been an honor serving with all my brothers and sisters in the armed forces (even the stupid ones,) and it is something that I will be proud of for the rest of my life.  Sanstrousers out.

Me playing Dr. Giggles in Iraq.
Definitely going to miss this kind of nonsense.

Friday, August 17, 2012

I'm Freaking Out: IEP Edition

     In a little over a week, we will be having Skeletor's first IEP meeting of the school year.  And I am FREAKING OUT!  This is how I feel, right now.  Or, rather, right meow.  Skeletor was in Pre-K at the same school last year, and we had no problems whatsoever.  (I don't even know if that's really a word.  It doesn't look like a word.  I'm freaking out!)  The main cause of my spazz attack is kind of weird.  I don't know what to request.  I spoke to his Pre-K teacher, the teacher's assistant, and his speech therapist on a near daily basis, so I never really had to ask for something to be put in the IEP.  We all just kind of figured things out together.  You know, all go with the flow and loosy goosy-like.  But because my dear, sweet, precious, angel baby is in Kindergarten this year, I'm not in his classroom as much.  Which makes this IEP meeting seem so much more important...and scary.  Also, it's time to get down to the nitty gritty with this whole "formal education" business.  So, obviously I should have lots of things to put into the IEP to make Skeletor's school year go as smoothly as possible, right?  Except I don't.  I have two things on my list of demands: I want to walk him to class every morning so he doesn't end up hiding under a bench somewhere after he has touched each block on the wall that happens to be at his eye level.  And I want him to use the smaller Handwriting Without Tears pencils.  That is the entirety of my demand list.  I would make a terrible hostage taker.  So, I rambled all that, to ask this: What kind of things should I ask to put in his IEP?  I know, I know.  Every child is a perfect, unique snowflake and stuff.  But if anyone would like to help a sister out by maybe telling me some examples of things you have requested in your IEP's so I can get an idea of what I'm doing, that would be super sweet.  Because I am lost in the sauce, and freaking out.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Children: We Just Don't Like Them

     As some of you may know, I recently went back to work.  I'm a hostess at the very same restaurant that I worked at 9 years ago.  This is also the same restaurant that I continued to have stress dreams about as recently as three weeks ago.  Anyway, today I was at work, and I had an encounter that left me positively baffled.  A party of four came in, and requested a table (not a booth.)  Yadda, yadda, yadda, restaurant logistics, blah, blah, blah.  I took them to the only table that I had available at that time.  It was a perfectly lovely table, centered in the middle of section D and all.  I gave them their menus, plus the spill about our specials, and left them to their delicious seafood.  As I was walking away, I heard one of the men mutter, "Oh, great.  There's two of them."  The "them" he was referring to?  Children.

     Now, I will be the first in line to duct tape the mouth of a child that is screaming in public.  But these two kids were seated at separate tables, and they were just chilling.  Not screaming, not banging things on the table, not flinging scrumptious cheesy biscuits through the air (also known as everything my kids would have been doing had they been there.)  None of the party asked to be moved, so I really didn't think anything else about it, other than having a nasty little inner chuckle when I sat another table with two kids in that same section.  What?  I'm supposed to make them wait for a table because you don't want kids near you?  Not likely.
     As they were finishing up their meal, one of the women in the party came past the host stand on the way to the restroom.  She stopped when my manager asked her how her meal was.  And you know what her complaint was?  That we didn't have an adults only section.  She said, "Why don't you make an effort when you see a group of people without kids to seat them where there aren't any kids near them?  Because, children?"  She literally paused and shuddered here.  "We just don't like them."  Um...what?!
     There's a reason that my manager makes the big bucks, because all I could do was look down at the ground and bite my lip.  (I've been told that I make faces that convey exactly what I'm thinking, so I have to avoid eye contact quite a bit.)  He kind of chuckled with the woman, and was all, "Yeah, that would be nice."  It got quiet, and I guess she could tell that we thought she was a monster, because she made a hasty retreat.  They left a few minutes later, and that was that.
     Except it wasn't, because all I could think about was the audacity of those people.  As if they were in any way deserving of special treatment.  As if families with small children should all be tucked away in a hidey hole in the back of the restaurant.  I just don't get it.  Seriously, the freaking balls on some of these people!  Am I the only one who finds this so irritating?  Because it certainly would not be the first time I got all bent out of shape over an imagined transgression.  Let me know in the comments, would you?  Thanks.  You're a peach.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Swimming Telephone

     The lovely and amazeballs Marian at Just Keep Swimming has started something awesome.  It's a bloggy version of the kid's (or immature adult's) game, Telephone.  Her version is called Swimming Telephone, and tells the story of one mother's especially craptastic day.  The blogger who tagged me in is Nicole at Ninja Mom, and next in line is Robyn at Hollow Tree Ventures.  My part in the story begins after "Seriously?"  Okay, let's get this shindig started!



Still Not Great

Downhill, indeed. Just like my youngest, who, by the time I’d stumbled back to my coffee, had managed to get on his Lightning McQueen Trike-to-Bike Convertible Toddler Tricycle with Button-Activated Sounds from Disney/Pixar’s “Cars.” I knew this, not because I saw him as he trundled down our inclined driveway, but because I heard Tow Mater’s voice sing out in Doppler Effect, “Git-R-Done!”
There are some mothers who wake before their children, shower and dress themselves, brush on some age-defying mineral make-up, and are seated at the kitchen table, halfway through a cup of coffee when their children begin to wake. I hate those women.
While I flew out the door to rescue my three-year-old from a traffic accident, the whole neighborhood discovered that I sleep in a tattered old tee shirt of my husband’s that leaves a whole lot less to the imagination than I might like.
“Morning, Ellen!” I called to my neighbor as my cotton panties slid ever deeper between my cheeks.
I grabbed the parent push bars on the trike just before Ellen got an eyeful of my banana-shaped birthmark. She’s lucky it was underwear day.
“Are you kidding me? Since when is it okay to sneak out for a morning bike ride without mommy? Do you realize I haven’t even finished my coffee yet? Do you realize you could have been killed in the road by some texting-and-driving maniac? Do you realize these questions are rhetorical?”
It was nice to have another adult enter the conversation, even if it was a cartoon tow truck with poor dental coverage. At least Mater had a can-do attitude. It looked like I’d need it today.


     Once I had corralled the escapee back into the house, and adjusted my massive wedgie, I was suddenly struck by how quiet it was.  A churning started deep in my gut, as this kind of extreme silence usually meant that something somewhere was on fire.  Even though I had no evidence to support my hypothesis, I made a beeline for my oldest child's room.  As I made my way down the hall, my mommy-powers were validated.  The girl's door was closed, but I could still smell the overwhelming scent of permanent markers.
     The desperate and slightly insane part of me began chanting to herself, "Please be sniffing sharpies.  Please be sniffing sharpies." 
     But, alas, as I flung open the bedroom door, I was faced with irrefutable evidence that my young children had not taken up huffing as a hobby.  My middle child was covered with black permanent marker.  The girl paused mid-stroke, and squeaked out, "Oh, hi, Mommy!  Look, brother's a tiger!"
     A second glance at the child revealed that he did appear to be covered in stripes that were vaguely tiger-like.  Unfortunately, a third glance (more like a double take, really) showed something even more interesting.  Emblazoned on my son's forearm was a word.  And not a very nice one.  Some, like Ralphie from "A Christmas Story," would even call it the Queen Mother of Dirty Words.  And, I'm not talking about fudge, either. 
     I knew that the boy didn't write it on himself.  He couldn't even spell his own name, much less master the elusive "ck" letter combination.  As I opened my mouth to begin screaming obscenities (I wonder where she gets it?) the doorbell rang.  A quick peek out the window revealed my mother-in-law.  Awesome.  Maybe she could entertain the children with stories of how the Democrats want to take all our Bibles and guns, while I did the laundry.  And she could also get a good look at her grandson's sweet, sweet new ink.


   Alrighty then.  I will now pass the reigns over to Robyn.  I'm sure this mom's day is going to get worse before it gets better.  And, thanks again for including me in the awesome, Marian!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Obligatory Post-Vacation Playback

     So, we just got back from vacation.  And when I say "just got back," I obviously mean we got back almost a week ago, and I'm just now able to write anything about it.  Anyhoo, about a month back, my mom and I were discussing the fact that I had not been on a vacation in ten years.  (Unless you count Iraq and Kuwait.  Which I very much do not.)  And that although Smarty Pants and Miss Priss have been on all sorts of adventures with my mom, Sassafrass and Skeletor have never been on a vacation at all.  Upon this realization, my mother was shocked and appalled, and decided to remedy the situation immediately.  So she took us all on a mini-vacation!  (How awesome is my mom, by the way?)
     We left from my mom's house early Monday morning, and drove to Atlanta.  We took copious bathroom breaks and mommy-needs-out-of-this-car-before-she-kills-you-all breaks.  About halfway there, we stopped at the good old Golden Arches, and gorged ourselves.  I have no regrets.

Smarty Pants and Miss Priss being classy.
They get that from me.

     Feeling full and slightly greasy, we then drove the rest of the way to Atlanta.  We went swimming and played in the hot tub at our hotel.  It was Sassafrass and Skeletor's first time in an in-ground pool and in a hot tub.  The fact that they did not know how to swim was of little consequence to them.  After we got done with our water play, we all got fancied up to go out to dinner at a Hibachi grill.  (Yet another first for the little ones.)  I will now make you look at pictures of all of us because we clean up so good.
Miss Priss

Smarty Pants



The best mommy EVAH!

This picture makes me want to punch people,
but whatevers.
     The next day, we got up and went to the Georgia Aquarium!  It was absolutely amazing.  I literally have a thousand pictures from my camera and from my mom's, but I won't subject you to such a thing.  I will show you just a couple of the best, and let you fill in the blanks.  Yes, I did feel like my hair should have turned grey while I was in there, but it apparently did not.

Of course he found the skeletons immediately.

Sassafrass, there's a dolphin behind you!

Skeletor fearlessly touching a sea urchin.  He touched a shark, too!

Whale shark's are big and junk.

Sibling love.

Smarty Pants looking way too grown.

Miss Priss with the lion fish.  Roar.

Mi mami!

At the entrance.

At the exit.
      Well, that's about it.  I apologize for the picture overload, but...I'm a mom.  What can you do, right?  Oh, one more thing.  Although Sassafrass and Skeletor left the house unable to swim, they came back with skills.  Skeletor claims he can "swim like a Hasselhoff" now.  Color me impressed.  I guess all that sea life must have given them some pointers!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

I Got An Award,Ya'll!

     Oh em geezy, George and Weezy!  I got my very first blogging award!  (I love how I say that like there are many, many more to come.  That's not conceited at all, right?)  Anyhoozle, the super awesome sauce Marian at Just Keep Swimming gave me the Versatile Blogger Award.  This lady is the first person to make me feel like anybody gave a flying flippedy floo that I had a blog.  She's just the sweetest lady ever!  Thanks, Marian!

This.  This is what I got.  Fancy, huh?

     The rules for accepting this award are as follows:
1. Thank the blogger who nominated you.
2. Include a link to their blog.
3. Include the award image in your blog post.
4. Give 7 random facts about yourself.
5. Nominate 15 other bloggers for the award.
6. When nominating, include a link to their site.
7. Let the bloggers know they have been nominated.

     Sooooooooo, 1 through 3 accomplished, now onto number 4.  Here are four random facts about little old me:
1.  I have a tattoo on my upper left thigh that says friendship in Arabic.  My bestie, Slapajawea has a matching one.  We got them in Iraq, and they look like garbage.  But we love them anyway.
2.  I don't do hugs, unless they come from my family or my very, very, very close friends.  So don't be offended if I elbow you in the face if you attempt to hug me.
3.  My mother had to institute a "No Reading At The Table Rule" just for me when I was a kid.
4.  I used to to have a haunted baby doll that my mom found in an attic when I was a kid.  Her name was Chuckette, and she said very strange things when you pulled her string.  She died of decapitation at the hands of my brother and his friend.  Her crime?  Being too creepy to live.
5.  My absolute favorite movie is "Mean Girls."  I refuse to apologize.
6.  I hate egg yolks; my brother hates egg whites; we always share Easter eggs.
7.  I'm usually a very good blog follower, but I've had a bunch a craziness going on.  I'm not ignoring you, my dearies, I promise.

     And here is my list of bloggers to pass the award on to.  They are all just the coolest:
1.  Kate at Some Of This May Be True.  Too, too funny!
2.  Wub Boo Mummy for having the balls to Ermagahdify herself.
3.  Murr at Murrmurrs.  She writes about leaking weasels, and such.
4.  Karen at Ow, My Angst.  Her posts have titles like "Don't Lick Poop."  Sage advice.
5.  Cari at The Incredible Bitch Blog.  The title says enough.
6.  Blanche at All Over The Spectrum.  This lady tirelessly looks for things fun, educational activities for all our youngins.
7.  Mac at Homestyle Mama (with a side of autism.)  She is so nice and funny and supportive!
8.  Lizbeth Four Sea Stars.  She makes the funny a lot.
9.  Kimberly at All Work And No Play Make Mommy Go Something Something.  She's hilarious and brutally honest.  Killer combination.
10.  Mom2LittleMiss at Beyond The Dryer Vent.  Funny and educational = good sauce!
11.  Carrie at Cannibalistic Nerd.  Pretty much the definition of versatile blogging.
12.  Robyn at Hollow Tree Ventures, because da-doy, that's why!
13.  Lexi at Mostly True Stuff.  She makes my heart happy.
14.  The lovely lady over at Naptime Writing.  She's funny, and she's not afraid to say what everyone else is thinking!
15.  Jillsmo at Yeah. Good Times.  Hilarious and mean as hell (when need be.)  Love!

     Anyway, we just got back from a little min-vacation to the Georgia Aquarium, and I'm so tired that I feel like I could vomit.  Do you guys ever feel like that when you get just stupid tired?  Or have I reached the point of being so tired that I'm delusional?  Hmmmm...flubber milkshakes barney socks.  That is all.