Monthly Archives: September 2010

Gone Fishing

Well, not really fishing because I don’t like to take wriggly things off sharp hooks…..

I cleaned like a madwoman yesterday in an attempt to get the house livable enough for my in-laws who will be here caring for the kiddos while Mr. CPQ and I head to Hilton Head for a few days of flip-flopping on the beach.

How do crumbs get in a clean silverware drawer?

I’ll be taking a little bloggy break while I’m gone, and I’ll see you next week when I get back.

Have a nice day.

A little bit of this, a little bit of that

I left the boys at their grandparents’ house and drove back to Raleigh yesterday.  I always have mixed emotions when they stay there without me.  I feel guilty for leaving them, anxious for them to behave appropriately every.single.minute, worried that the grownups will have the strength to care for Travis for an extended period of time, and concerned that twenty years from now one of them will be on a therapy couch telling their counselor about their abandonment issues.

Or maybe I should be the one on the therapy couch.

ANYWAY, the point of this story is to say that I didn’t realize until I pulled into my driveway four hours later that I had not turned the radio on the entire drive and, other than a couple of phone calls,  had enjoyed four hours of complete and utter silence.


I got home a little before six, jumped in the shower and threw on some going out clothes and met Heather at the hospital where we went to welcome our friend Rebecca’s freshly hatched baby to the world.

Isn’t she beautiful? I had fun holding her and listening to those sweet little baby sighs, and then Heather had to pry her out of my arms I returned her before the urge to sneak her out of the hospital got too strong.

And then Mr. CPQ and I went out to eat a lovely meal at a grown-up restaurant  with cloth napkins and I remembered why I was done having babies.

Have a nice day.

What I’ve Learned

1. I learned that I am a little obsessed with bacon-wrapped jalapeño poppers. I drove for 9 hours today and all I could think about was the sweet, spicy, smokey flavor of these little beauties that Whimzie and I made.

Actually, Whimzie did most of the work. I showed her my hangnails and we decided it might be best if I stayed away from the slicing and de-seeding prep work.

I did NOT, however, stay away from the taste testing.

2. I learned that the floorboards of my car can absorb a 20 ounce coke.

3. I learned that a couple of my eleven year olds couldn’t absorb that spilled coke needed to be cleaned up.


4. I learned that certain gas stations carry Blue Bell Ice Cream in a snack-size.

And those three little ounces of Homemade Vanilla were the only things that stood between me and the 6:00 news after we had a little too much togetherness during the trip.

5. And lastly, I learned that we need to work on our vocabulary skills. We were seated around my mother-in-law’s dinner table when Tommy casually mentioned that JJ had homophobia. When I asked him if he knew what that meant, he told me of course he did; it meant JJ missed home.

You learn something new every day.

Audio Post

CPQ from the road (Audio Post)

Coming to you from the second floor of a hotel in the middle of nowhere…..

Have a nice day.

Ranger Rick Kitchen Tip

It would be smart to label things as you put them in the freezer and not rely on appearance alone to jog your memory.

Hence the discovery that the seasoned and carefully prepared pork roast was actually beef.

Have a nice day.

My Mother Asks Sus

Sus, this is your mother.  Why haven’t you called me in a week?

I know we talk almost every single day, Mom, but the boys have been on break and they’ve caused me to use up my word allotment by noon and I’m too wiped out to speak.  Most of those words used have been futile attempts at conveying the importance of daily showers, but yesterday I actually said “Please stop throwing grapes into your tomato soup to see how far the splash will go.”

Sus, are you taking your vitamins?  They’ll keep you healthy and strong, you know.

Next question.

Well, I’ll take care of the vitamin thing when I come see you next month.  What else will we do while we’re there?

Can I count on you to help me clean my microwave?

Just kidding.


You’ll definitely need to come with your appetite.  Your son-in-law is already thinking of the menu plan and it’s pretty grill-centric.  I’m also hoping we’ll do a little outlet shopping and maybe some decorating while you’re here because the decor or lack of it hasn’t changed since the last time you were here.

That sounds like fun.  Look, honey, I need to run meet my friends at the hospital cafeteria for lunch because it’s tortilla soup day, but before I go, I need to ask you one last question.  Jerseylicious?  Really?

I knew you’d have something to say about that, Mom.  I promise it was the first and only episode I’d ever seen.  I happened to run across it flipping channels and was fascinated by the train wreck.  In a way it reminded me a lot of the hair salon back home except without the outrageous accents, the head wagging and the catfights out in the parking lot.

I redeemed those thirty minutes by staying up until 1 a.m. watching Charlie Rose interview President Ahma-however-you-spell-it on PBS last night.

Don’t you feel better now?

I love you, Mom.

Have a nice day.

Monday Musings

It was a good weekend at Casa de Carpool.  We kicked it off with a run to Target on Friday afternoon to celebrate the end of our first week of vacation.  I used the found laundry money to catch up the boys’ allowance that had been owed them for over a month and we had a good time wandering the aisles with no set agenda. The boys bought a toy apiece (Lego sets for Tommy and JJ, trains for Travis) and I found the Ball Blue Book on Preserving on one of the clearance racks and embarrassed my children doing the 90% off shriek of glee in the middle of the store.

By Saturday morning, however, the shriek of glee had turned to moans of despair when Mr. CPQ decided it was time to get the house whipped into shape, but we all dug deep and within four hours got it where it needed to be.

I told him he needed to stay home more often.  I’m much more productive when I have a witness I can socialize with another adult.

We’d booked a babysitter for Saturday night and went to a friend’s house for dinner.  The food was great (grilled chicken, mixed green salad with strawberries and gorgonzola dressing, twice baked potatoes, and blueberry pie with vanilla ice cream for dessert), the company enjoyable, and other than the slight mishap where I sent the contents of the dog’s water bowl flying across the deck, it was a perfect evening.

Just call me Grace.

And on Sunday I rested.

And watched Jerseylicious.

And enjoyed my clean house.

Have a nice day.

Five on Friday

1.  I may or may not have gotten overly excited about Amazon’s pressure canner sale and officially frightened the husband.

2.  I may or may not have invented a new side dish to serve with dinner last night because the cupboards were bare and going to the grocery store with the tribe required a level of emotional fortitude that I didn’t possess.

3.  I may or may not have stayed awake until 1:30 last night getting caught up on a backlog of TV shows from last season.

I’m in a Mexican standoff with 12 remaining episodes of the Good Wife.

4.  I may or may not have laughed out loud when I got a solicitation for a guest post on this blog.  The email was immediately recognized as spam when she told me the post would be tailored to my theme.

Theme?  We’re supposed to have a theme for these things?

5.  I may or may not be excited about next week’s trip to see Whimzie.


Have a nice day.

Let’s dance

We tempted fate a second time and took the boys to dinner downtown last night.  There was a little more moaning than usual about having to wear dressy clothes but that probably had everything to do with the fact that we’d been in our pajamas for the better part of the day.

For the record, I kicked tail and took names got seven loads of laundry folded AND PUT AWAY (the putting away always gets me) and the kitchen floor swept and mopped, all in my pajamas, because I am strangely more productive in flannel.

I should have put flannel on the boys last night because I forgot that Family Dinner Night means pasta and red sauce and by the time the meal was over, Travis looked like he’d been in a drive-by but everyone was happy and had a great time, especially the other patrons who got to witness JJ executing a flawless rendition of the jukey dance in the buffet line because the piano player chose that moment to play a familiar tune and I have raised my children in the way they should go and that means dancing when we hear Charlie Brown.

I think lessons at Arthur Murray are on tap for next week.

Have a nice day.