Monthly Archives: November 2009

Talking Turkey

I posted on my Facebook status that I’m ready for this weekend to end so that I have permission to stop eating.  My mother-in-law believes in abundance as evidenced by the FOUR pies she had available for the four adults and three non-pie-eating children that were in the house.

We received wonderful news the day before we left that our potentially diabetic son was, in fact, NOT diabetic, so this year’s feast was all the more sweet.  We were told to continue being careful about his intake and to continue the diet plan,  but we got the official go- ahead to lift the restrictions for Thanksgiving Day. 

This was the first year in ten that the boys decided that turkey and stuffing were good things and helped themselves to more than a teaspoonful.  I think we’ve taken them to one too many buffets, though, because when JJ went back for seconds, he asked where his grandmother kept the stack of clean plates.

We did not participate in early morning Black Friday activities, but Mr. CPQ and I did get out Friday night for a little date night of burgers and wings and paid our Thanksgiving tribute to the Cherokee tribe at Harrah’s followed by our annual post-event stop at the Arby’s so Mr. CPQ could get a Jamocha shake. 

Because we clearly had not had enough sweet stuff the day before.

Saturday morning the menfolk decided it was time to initiate the boys into the family golf tradition, but by the third hole had texted back that there was not enough Valium in the world to ever make them do it again.  JJ and Tommy came back raving about the experience, though, so hopefully the year long break before they do this again will erase the memory of losing a dozen golf balls into the stream.

Our little family is splitting up today.  Mr. CPQ is headed back home and the boys and I are headed west to points unknown.  I really don’t have an itinerary after Tuesday, but for the next couple of days I’ll be in Atlanta before going on to my parent’s house.  I’m taking the road less traveled, so I’m hoping it makes all the difference in the attitude of my travelers as they see new sights along the southern route.  

On the road again.

I am thankful.

Have a nice day.

Of mice and men

I think the cat needs to go back to the shelter.

I was sitting at the kitchen table minding my own business when he hopped in through his special door and announced his presence in a sort of growly way.  Turns out he couldn’t meow because there was a MOUSE IN HIS MOUTH which he lovingly deposited at my feet and turned to look adoringly at me as though I should give him tuna treats for such a bountiful gift.

Give me flying rabid vampire bats, give me needles in my eye, give me triplets, give me ANYTHING except for a rodent on the loose.

I did what any rational person would do and ran screaming from the room.  Sadly, my offspring did not jump to my rescue until I pulled out cold hard cash and waved a $5 reward to whomever would take it out of the house.  Baby A decided that five bucks was enough to get over his heebie jeebies, and took the offensive rat from Hades outside and threw it into the yard.

Where it was promptly rescued by the cat and brought back into the house less than three minutes later.

Read the paragraph above to see what I did again, and this time, realizing he had significant leverage in the situation, my child negotiated a bigger fee for disposal.

My hero.

And his father’s son.

Have a nice day.

Send in the clowns

Before I get started on telling you about our adventures yesterday, let me just say “Thank you” to the Kohl’s Cash program which today made it free for me to replace my qualifies-as-a-science-project shower curtain.

Let’s never speak again about how heinous it was.

Moving on.


We surprised the kids yesterday with the news that their usual afternoon of listening to Mom nag about homework was going to be replaced with tickets to the circus.  Mr. CPQ joined us for an afternoon of popcorn, death defying high wire acts, elephant riding, and spectator watching.

On two separate occasions, I saw the puffy shirt poorly accessorized.  Penny loafers and wellingtons are not the preferred shoe pairing.

And massive amounts of chest hair didn’t complement it either.

At the circus, we sang the national anthem….

Ate peanuts and popcorn…..

Stuck peanuts in our nose……

and in our ear….

and we generally looked tired and haggard.

There were flying Aghans (the dogs, not the blankets), the world’s only performing Persian cat, and can-can dancers that looked a little long in the hoof.  The boys were amazed at the man who juggled ping pong balls out of his mouth (and guess what they want for Christmas now?) and Mr. CPQ was amazed that he spent $60 on tickets to see “geometric artists” who were, in his words, ex-college drum majors who didn’t get over twirling their batons.

After the circus, Mr. CPQ took the boys home and I went to dinner with Gretchen.  We were supposed to meet for coffee, but I talked her into going next door to the Lebanese place where I forced her to watch me eat eggplant and lamb and she valiantly sat through the ordeal even though she has a sensitive gag reflex.  We mosied/mosyed/mosey-d/meandered next door for coffee afterwards and they had the nerve to kick us out because we stayed until closing time, which made us feel bad to the bone.

I’ll be paying for staying out of the house all day yesterday, but it was worth every single three-ring-circus minute of it.

Have a nice day.

Weekend Update

Other than my Sunday morning outing to church, I don’t think I left the house all weekend. I’m usually not that much of a homebody, but the mountains of laundry could  be ignored no longer.  I’m down to two loads left, and tackling them today.

Unless, of course, this morning’s training session leaves me without limb function.

I tried a new osso bucco recipe Saturday night, and despite the brief interlude in which we decided that discussing the composition and function of bone marrow might best be left for the science lab and not the dinner table,  we all enjoyed it thoroughly.

The boys have three days of school this week and then they’re done until January. To say they’re ready for break would be an understatement. I’ll be taking them traveling early in the month while Mr. CPQ stays behind to work and fund my hotel habit.  We have to be back in town mid-month for basketball tryouts for the spring season (new sport for them and new blog fodder for me).  I may head to DC for a quick trip to see the American History Museum that has reopened after a year long closure. After that we’ll be home because theoretically the house has to be decorated and cookies need to be made.

I’m also having a rather significant birthday and I need to mentally and emotionally prepare myself.

Speaking of preparing, I need to sign off and prepare for the day ahead.  We’re taking the boys to the Shriner’s circus this afternoon and I’m meeting a friend for coffee tonight, so if anything is going to be accomplished, it needs to happen in the next few hours.

Have a nice day.

Never too early to be bilingual

Tommy called the house to let me know that he won a medal at his football game and after we had spoken, he asked to talk to Travis.  I held the phone to Travis’ ear, and before Tommy could get a word out, Travis dove right into the conversation.

“Hello, Tommy?  I thought you’d never call.  Can you do me a favor?  I’m making alphabet soup and I don’t have the letter C.  My soup would taste so much better if I had one.  Can you bring it to me?



I think someone’s been listening to Dad’s language cd’s.

Have a nice day.

Friday Fill-in

I’ve been out of town for a quick trip to Charlotte in an attempt to get my Christmas shopping done before the boys start their winter vacation next week.  I managed to get 80% of it done and scored some serious barganzas in the process.

And can I just insert that I love me an outlet mall that has TWO Starbucks in it.

I went with three other girlfriends and you will not be surprised to find out that it was my job to choose the restaurant for dinner Wednesday evening.  I went with Luce, and was not disappointed.  The coconut gelato alone was worth the price of admission.

I would have taken a picture but I was in such a rapturous state that all rational thought left me.

A couple of thoughts that I’ve been meaning to share.  Since I acted all Martha and crafty yesterday, I thought I’d make a Martha recipe from the most recent Christmas magazine.

This is Martha’s picture from her lovely magazine, so all credit to whomever took it…blah blah blah

Mine came out looking not so pretty and tasting even worse.

I read the recipe FOUR times to make sure I understood that it called for two TABLESPOONS of salt, and believing that Martha would not steer me wrong, I went with what she called for, but I’m sorry to report that it was completely indedible and I had to throw it away.

Save your high blood pressure and just take a pass.

Whew, feels good to have that public service announcement out of the way.

Secondly, I’m highly concerned about this.

“Inconvenient” is not the word I would use for this situation.

“DEFCON 5” better suits the level of alert in which we currently find ourselves.

Have a nice day.


In which I try to be like Martha

Now that the boys are older and I find myself with bits of time here and there, I’m trying to get back into decorating my house with something other than strewn Legos.  I have a craft room that’s really just a large storage closet in the garage, but over the past couple of years with surgeries, therapies, and a general malaise about homekeeping, I’ve let it get a little, um, unruly.

As in, can’t even walk in the door.



When Momologuer was here last weekend, our little floral project inspired me to get back in the game and nurture what remains of the creative side of my brain.  The weather’s been nice this week, so while we’ve been outside soaking up some Vitamin D, I tackled the space.

Muuuuch better.

I have no lack of items on my to do list.  There are so many unfinished projects in this room, it’s not even funny.  See those four white drawers?  They’re full of pictures waiting to be turned into scrapbooks.  Since it takes me 4,700 hours to decide on a page layout, I’ve decided that getting them in regular old albums is going to be the route I take.  It’s all about playing to your strengths.

My favorite crafty projects are making wreaths and floral arrangements.  I like to use natural material from the yard as much as possible and have a ton of pine cones and prickly sweet gum balls.  I use my old coffee cans to store them.

I also repurpose other items from the house – this is the silverware basket from our dead dishwasher that I use to keep my paints contained.

Speaking of paint….old paint buckets are great for holding flowers and stems.  I had my dad line the walls with peg board and hung the buckets from S hooks…


What’s your favorite craft and how do you contain it?

Have a nice day.


I’m observing silence as I mourn with Amy who is burying her father today.

Though the fig tree does not bud
and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
and no cattle in the stalls,

yet I will rejoice in the LORD,
I will be joyful in God my Savior.

Habakkuk 3:17 -18

On the food front

The strict food guidelines thing is going better than I expected.  After three rough days at the beginning, my calorie-restricted child is starting to come around to the new plan and other than a couple of moments where he just had to cry it out because of having to say no to something that he really loved, he’s soldiered bravely on.

His dream life has taken a hit….this morning he told me that last night he dreamed we went to Baskin Robbins and he had to eat an apple while we ate sundaes, and he got so mad that his body took over and forced him to rob an ice cream factory.

I haven’t been eating Krispy Kremes in front of him.  We’re all on the same plan (with some extra caloric snacks in his brothers’ lunchboxes) and I’m eating waaaaayyy more fruits and vegetables than I ever have before.

Do you know how hard it is to get five servings in a day???  Regardless of what Ronald Reagan said, ketchup doesn’t count.

Produce isn’t cheap, but I keep telling myself that it’s going to be a wash since I’m not buying chips and other processed foods.  The health benefits alone are worth it, right? I’m introducing some new fruits to the kids in an effort to keep things interesting and to avoid burnout on grapes and apples.  We’ve rediscovered pears in their natural state (you mean they don’t come floating in corn syrup?), and this week’s “try something new” kiwi was met with mixed reviews.  On the vegetable front, butternut squash, green beans, peas, broccoli and carrots are in rotation.

Lima beans were summarily rejected.


I haven’t tried the whole grain pastas yet, but that’s going to be my next move to give us some variety.  Are there some brands that are better than others?  Will your kids eat it without giving you the hairy eyeball?

Have a nice day.

Weekend and a winner

Y’all cracked me up with the secret guilty pleasures.  I wish I could have bought all of you a Snuggie so you could be warm and cozy while you ate dry brownie mix, cookie dough, and Doritos while watching your soaps and reality TV.  In the end, I had to go with the random number generator because I just couldn’t make a decision.

Here are your random numbers:


Timestamp: 2009-11-16 11:23:31 UTC

Congratulations to Jenster!


And in other news, we had a delightful visit this past weekend from our dear friends ImNotNed and Momologuer.  They’ve been hanging out with us for many years and many houses (we’ve been in four plus an apartment in the last thirteen years) and are the easiest company in the world because at this stage in our friendship, we’ve seen the inside of the silverware drawer/the scary closet where you stuff everything/the dark underbelly of the house where no one else can go and that stuff just doesn’t matter anymore.

A comfy couch, a warm chocolate chip cookie, and the promise of a Saturday morning doughnut run to Krispy Kreme are the simple ties that bind us.

Our visits to each others’ homes are low key.  Usually there’s a project or two that NotNed and Mr. CPQ will tackle while Momologuer and I leaf through Martha Stewart magazines and talk about all the things we could do if we had the time or a clear surface on which to work. We let the kids entertain each other and the four of us just enjoy being together and catching up on all the life stuff  that happens away from the glare of the internet.

They drove in around noon on Thursday only to be greeted by a sick boy with strep throat and by a cold, wet-headed hostess in a house with no eletricity.  Fortunately, the lights came on just as we were about to walk out the door to meet Kellie for lunch, so I was able to dry my hair and avoid going out in 45 degree blustery rainy weather looking like a drowned rat.

On Friday we took them to that  strip mall Chinese buffet place that I’ve talked about before because they’re weird and they enable Mr. CPQ in his bad food habits.  Besides, they  wanted to witness firsthand the filching of  money from the koi pond to feed the boys’ gumball habit.


Saturday found us on the flag football field where our team was once again shellacked we kept our losing streak alive.  We didn’t let a loss ruin our good spirits and had packed a picnic lunch to ease the inevitable pain.




Momologuer with her chi-chi scarf and shades.  I wish I were as cool as she.019

Baby A – wearing shorts while the rest of us were in six layers.

Having picked my battle for the day, it was not a hill on which to die.

They had to leave Saturday to get back for an event, but not before Momologuer and I made a Christmas flower arrangement for my foyer table.  It’s not quite finished, but when it is, I’ll post a picture – I’m going with a lime green and brown theme for the holidays this year.

Thanks, guys, for making the trek here.  It did my soul a world of good.

Have a nice day.