I've always had a dream of making a gingerbread house (pretty lofty dreams, I know) and I've never done it. Today when I was waiting for my prescription to get filled, I saw a "Candy Cane Cottage" gingerbreadish house kit for $1. Perfect!
So while Rudy napped, Baba and I created....
We created a large mess and ate a lot of frosting. Mmmm, frosting. Before I could stop him, Baba dived in.
Happy Thanksgiving from my little turkeys. When Baba a.k.a Harry Potter saw Rudy a.k.a. Ginny Weasley he said, "She looks so beautiful, I feel like dancing with her." So they danced.
Because NOTHING says, "Happy Thanksgiving!" like a dance party in the kitchen (when we are running late and now are running even later because they were so darn cute I had to take pictures and then blog about the morning's festivities).
I'm blaming my lack of blogging on the packing. Most definitely the packing's fault. And since we move in a week (Ahhhh!) I really should be packing instead of blogging, but I'm on break (union job, you know).
The children have been most, um, "helpful." Baba is old enough to really, really want to help but not old enough to actually be any help. He did, however, very proudly pack two boxes all by himself. I have no idea what is in the boxes (all he let me do was tape them up. Fingers crossed.), but I know Rudy didn't end up in a box, so how bad can it be? The boxes Baba packed we had to label "Baba packed all by himself" so at least I'll be prepared for the surprise. I guess.
I must admit that while packing, I am not as vigilant in the watching of the offspring as I usually am. The children are most pleased by this development.
A couple weeks ago, my sister-in-law posted something along the lines of watching a TV show on hoarding and if you couldn't walk across her apartment to stage an intervention because the hoarders logic made since. I am somewhat of a hoarder - mostly due to my grocery shopping rules. I may be moving 29 boxes of cereal, but if the cereal is under a dollar a box, I have to buy it. That's the rule.
After taping a box and labeling, I realized that the entire box was filled with cereal, salad dressing, ketchup, and BBQ sauce. Maybe I am a hoarder. Hopefully my sister-in-law is not around when we open that box, she may stage an intervention for me. But, in my defense, all of the salad dressing, ketchup, and BBQ was free and we will eat it.
Baba has been begging for a dollhouse for about a year now. I said I wanted to build one for him and his sister (which I still do), but don't have the time or the space to do so.
When I was out running last weekend, I ran by a garage sale that had one of those plastic little tike's dollhouses for $10. Score! I asked how long they were going to be open for and she said they were closing. I said I could run home and be back in 10 minutes. She said I could take it with me now. I declined (Um, how am I supposed to run (or walk for that matter) home carrying a super bulky and somewhat heavy dollhouse with accessories?).
I ran home as fast as I could, panted to Baba that there was a garage sale and we needed to hurry. He ran outside sans shoes in his excitement. After locating shoes and some water for me, we were off. We get out of the car at the garage sale and Baba says, pointing to the dollhouse, "Let's buy that!"
The little girl who had been the previous owner of the dollhouse looked at Baba and said, "Why are you buying a dollhouse" in her snottiest voice.
I told her we like dolls at our house, failing to see the problem with a four year old boy playing with a dollhouse. I wish she could have seen Baba playing this morning. He ran downstairs, excited and out of breath, yelling, "Stormtroopers have stormed the dollhouse!"
I had promised the children I would take them to the county fair yesterday. Rudy's vocabulary is pretty limited so her response involved lots of "bananas!" and "burps!", but Baba was pretty pumped. Then I broke my baby toe Wednesday night (if it swells any larger, its going to beat my big toe in the biggest toe on my foot contest).
I was on pins and needles all thursday morning, hoping that Baba had forgotten about the fair. I had asked him a couple times what he wanted to do today. If he wasn't going to bring it up, I certainly wasn't going to volunteer that it was supposed to be fair day. I was perfectly content to eat tylenol while sitting on the couch with my foot elevated (and my children are so patient and understanding when Mom is injured). I asked him a couple times what he wanted to do today. I got the usual: watch Star Wars, play Star Wars on the Wii, have lightsaber battles, eat, etc. I thought I was home free. Then, right after lunch, he remember. He promised to be good until Christmas, so I buddy-wrapped, slide my poor foot into my biggest tennis shoes and off we hubbled (or, I hobbled, Rudy ran, and Baba bounced with glee).
The kids loved the animal barns. They didn't care that it stink or was 9,001 degrees. They would have happily oohed and aahed at cows and horses and pigs and goats all day. We watched barrel races, cow judging (which, is the only time that my children have sat still for more than 2 minutes consecutively), sheep judging, and a karate demenstration, during which, Baba turns to me and says, "Mom, can I take gymnastics and dance and karate. Dance and gymnastics because I want to and karate in case someone makes fun of me for taking gymnastics and dance."
Baba also got to make a super cool bookmark at the library booth. He got to use different color stamps to make finger prints on a piece of card stock. He was making TIE fighters (of course). The librarian says in her voice reserved for dealing with dumb children, "Oh! That looks like a butterfly. Its so pretty." Baba says in his most condisending voice, "Its a TIE fighter. Pew! Pew! Pew! TIE fighter." I don't think he took my "you need to be respectful to adults even if they aren't respectful to you" lecture too seriously since I was giggling through it.
After a root beer, some salt water taffy, a hot dog, some french fries, and a juice box, it was time to go. We made it home relativly in one piece and neither of my children sampled any of the prize winning produce (not for lack of trying and me screaming "Babaua Harold put that zucchini down. NOW!"). They had a great time and I had a great drink when we got home. It was a succesful day.
Last Thursday, Ma and I took the children for a fun filled, action packed day at the Minnesota Zoo. Rudy loved watching the animals. Everything was a "ili!" her word for Wili, our cat. Baba loved the African biome and kept asking when we were are going to Africa to visit my uncle.
I got to feed a giraffe. Their tongues are very cool. Baba was supposed to feed the giraffe but chickened out when he found out he'd have to wash his hands after feeding the giraffe.
They have a dairy farm set up, complete with animals. Of course, we had to look at the cows, pigs, sheep, and goats. The farm was set up so you could go into the goat pen. I really like goats (I want a fainting goat), so I took Baba into the pen with me. Everytime a goat would get too close, he'd pretend to be a tree. Oddly enough, the goats weren't tricked.
The highlight of the day was the "roller coaster" aka the monorail. Baba wanted to know why it didn't go as fast as the roller coaster at the big mall. But he stilled loved it, despite its lack of speed.
I'm not sure what happens in Baba's room after I tuck him in for the night, but I really want to know why he needs 2 light sabers, 1 Nerf gun, a pair of binoculars, 1 miner style flashlight, a canteen full of water complete with plate and spork, and his train whistle.
When I ask him why he needs the precariously balanced pile of treasures on his night stand, he always answers, "Just in case, Mom."
My maternal grandfather (and Baba's namesake) is the uber pack rat. I don't think he has EVER thrown anything away in his entire life. His shop, garage, granary, barn, etc, etc is piled full of stuff that may one day come in handy. Right after I got married, I was visiting my grandma and mentioned that I was going to buy a sewing machine. My grandpa scurried out to the shop and returned with 2 sewing machines for me to choose from. I worry that there is a pack rat gene and I have it. I don't have 2 spare sewing machines and I do get rid of things that are broken, but I was the proud owner of 2 blenders for a long time (granted, they were wedding presents and I didn't want to get rid of a perfectly good blender that I would someday use. I'm in denial).
Fast forward to a couple weeks ago, I was at my parents house talking about how I really, really, really wanted a Kitchen-Aide Mixer. My mom says, "I think we have an extra in the basement," and scurries down to get it. Genetics at work?
This past weekend, I decided to try test my luck on the pack rat gene again. I mentioned that our printer had stopped working (all it does is flash its lights and refuse to print anything), so my mom scurried downstairs and returned with a new to us printer. I may never go shopping again.
Me, blogger, and the Internet have been fighting. Our Internet has been working randomly at best (the new modem has taken care of the 15 minutes of Internet access until the modem gets too hot then unplug it for 3 hours to cool off problem/solution). And for some reason blogger thinks its appropriate to take an hour and not post anything. Grr.
My boys have been obsessed with fishing lately. I think fishing is boring, however, I like eating fish so I allow the foolishness. They have yet to catch any "keepers" which is a bit annoying because I'm hungry for fish.
I also broke down and did the Build-A-Bear thing. We went for the first time last year. I got a $5 off coupon, so I let Baba pick out a $10 bear. He joyfully built a brown bear whom he named Nacki. Thankfully, Josh insisted that bears do not wear clothes thus Nacki would be much happier naked. Then for his birthday he got a free bear coupon because he shares a birthday with the Build-A-Bear founder. A blue bear named Tink came to live with us (named after my cuz whom we call "Stink").
For the last few weeks Baba has been insisting that Rudy needs a bear and he'll pay for it. I didn't let Baba use his own money; we used Rudy's birthday money instead. So Baba built a pink bear whom he named Baba-Bear. Baba-Bear cannot be naked because girls cannot run around naked like boys can. So I had to buy a T-shirt for Baba-Bear (as I type, Baba is running around in his underwear, his clothes having "falled off" again. I wonder why that happens). Rudy LOVES her bear. When I go to pick her up from her nap or in the morning, she races to whatever side of the crib Baba-Bear ended up on and grabs her.
We got Rudy's one year pictures back on Friday. I feel like I've accomplished something now that she's a year. Baba has been super funny about pictures lately. He does not want his pictures taken. Period. End of story. But, before we left for Rudy's one year pictures, he said he wanted to be in the pictures. I didn't believe him, but let him pick out some nice clothes to wear in Rudy's picture.
When we got to the picture place, I figured he'd change his mind about being in the pictures. I told the picture taker person that he didn't really like getting his picture taken, but I wasn't opposed to having him in the picture. He wanted to be in every pictures.
Later that week, we were at Wal-Mart. He saw the Wal-Mart picture taker place and said, "Mom, we need to take pictures of me today." I said, "We just took pictures of you." Then he said, "I counted on the wall, Mom, and we don't have enough pictures of me."
In an effort to do our part to save the environment, reduce our consumption of fossil fuels, and prevent global warming, we have been using compact florescent bulbs. Which can't be tossed in the trash when they burn out, they have to be recycled. Zippy has been putting the burned out bulbs back into the box to bring to a recycling facility at a later date. Later date has yet to occur and every time I look at the box I think we still have 4 light bulbs left. (side note: aren't these ridiculously overpriced light bulbs supposed to last 5 years? Because ours have lasted less than 2 years)
Although there were 4 light bulbs in the box when our second of two vanity lights burned out, there were no WORKING replacement bulbs in the house. Big difference. Being the McGuyver that I am, I borrowed Zippy's work light from the garage.
Its kind of like pee-ing while being interrogated. The boy thinks its great.
There is nothing like taking a nap on the cat to cure what ails you.
Rudy was taking her afternoon nap on my lap as I was vainly hoping to join her in the nap. She rolled over and snuggled into Wili for her pillow. I asked Baba to get the camera off the hutch. He grabbed it and held it up in triumph. Held it up upside down, of course. The camera obeyed the law of gravity.
He picked it up and said, "I'm okay, Mom!" He ran over and sort of tossed it in my generally direction. The camera met the floor again. But, luckily, it wasn't damaged. At least not that I'm aware of.
Baba said to me this morning, "I was thinking, Mom. When we get our new house we should have 3 dogs."
I said, "3 dogs?"
Baba said, "Yes. I was thinking about 4, but then I thought that might be too many. So I need a little black dog named 'Toto' and a dog to be a friend for Toto. And dad needs a hunting dog. So we need 3 dogs."
"Talk to your father," I replied.
After the dog discussion, Baba was climbing over to my lap to finish my cereal. He had only eaten one bowl of cereal and one jelly sandwich, so I could see how he was still hungry. He bumped his knee and said, "Oh! I hurt my patella. I need you to read the Star Wars cookbook to me, that will make me feel better."
My yearning for a new computer has been upgraded from a want to a need. I was just going to get another laptop for portability reasons (I like to drive 14 hours for a weekend of playing the Sims in peace), but there is a HUGE problem in that plan.
Sims 3 comes out June 2 and Diablo III comes out sometime in the near future (no release date that I can find has been set). Both will be slow to play on a laptop. Neither game is really built for a laptop.
As of today, it has been 2 weeks since Zippy's children started getting sick (they are my children when they are healthy, well-behaved, and cute). Since then, I have been to the doctor's office 5 times, filled 4 prescriptions, and 1 child got a shot of some sort of penicillin. The kids have had strep throat, an ear infection, stomach flu, diarrhea, and Rudy has almost been hospitalized (twice!) for dehydration. As in the doctor saying, "She should probably be in the hospital, but if you'd rather keep her home, I'm okay with waiting another 12 hours to see if she improves."
During this time, I also costumed 33 characters (most with at least one costume change, 2 with seven costumes changes) and planned a Star Wars birthday party extravaganza for a very happy 4 year old. Last week, I had over 20 hours of rehearsal. This week, thankfully, we only had 5 hours. We open tomorrow night. I have been pooped on, puked on, and watched Care Bears until I thought I was going to personally maul those freakin' bears! Baba's record tempature was 102, Rudy has a very low body temp due to dehydration (her extremities are like ice cubes and are a brilliant shade of purple). I am half tempted to take a picture of her for prosperity, but she just looks too pathetic.
But, for whatever reason, neither Zippy or I have gotten whatever it is these little germ factories are producing. I've done at least 3 loads of pukey/poopy laundry a day for the past 2 weeks (you do the math) and my hands are cracked from washing them every ten minutes.
I need a stiff drink and a nap.
I think the little people are getting better. Baba has been a trouper through all the trips to the doctor (for him and his sister), but now they are to the stage where they don't feel well enough to play like they usually do, but don't feel sick enough to lay on the couch all day. All we need now is for Rudy to slow down on the current defecating schedule so she can rehydrate and stay out of the hospital. At least her doctor is on call this weekend and Rudy's doc gave me her cell phone number in case I need anything. I think she felt sorry for me.
At Target, I overheard a dad telling his son he couldn't go down the doll aisle because that was just for "girls." I've heard dad's tell their sons that they can't have a kitchen set, a baby doll, or a play vacuum because they are just for "girls."
I let Baba play with my Barbies. I read him American Girl books. He loves to cook with me. I don't really see this as a problem. Growing up, I loved playing with my actions figures as much as I liked my Barbies. I loved building with my legos more than I liked baking with my easy bake oven. I always wanted to be a boy scout, not a girl scout. I played with what I was interested in, not what I was "supposed" to play with.
So why do I get the "I can't believe you are letting your son play with Barbies" and/or "I can't believe you are reading him American Girl books" when I mention these things? I am trying to let him explore all his interests, not just the ones that are "acceptable" for his gender. He pranced around preschool one day wearing a pink party dress while playing dress up with some girls. Not only did I not care that he was wearing a dress, I encouraged it because it was making the other mom's around uncomfortable.
I often get asked how my husband feels about all of this. I usually asked, "All of what?" I don't believe that letting my son play with dolls and/or dresses is going to make him any more or any less gay then he may or may not be. I truly believe that he cannot choose or control his sexuality. All I care is he ends up with a nice person (be it man or woman) and provides me with grandkids because that is the ONLY reason why I had these kids in the first place - to be a grandma.
I never cease to be amazed at how closed minded people can be. You can judge me all you want, but please don't ruin something my son loves because you feel that its not "gender" appropriate. There is so little time to explore interests with uninfluenced passion, please don't ruin that for him.
We brought home one blue plastic storage bin (3 more remain at my parents house) of my Star Wars stuff because Baba is SO into 'Tar Wars right now. We watch at least 2 'Tar Wars movies a day. He's seen them all except Revenge of the Sith. Zippy and I think he needs to be a little older because its the darkest of all of them (and Anakin becomes Darth Vader) but Baba keeps trying to to "trick" us into watching it.
Baba wanted to play 'tar Wars. Zippy got the plastic storage bin down and asked me if there was anything in there that Baba couldn't play with. I said that everything in there was okay, thinking that Zippy would pull out the Star Wars stamp markers and my Millenium Falcon scissors. My mistake. Never assume.
Baba played happily for a long time until I noticed he was quiet. Too quiet.
I was in the bathroom brushing my hair this morning when I heard Baba yell, "Mom!!! My baby's in trouble!"
Since I didn't hear Rudy crying and my house is perfectly child proofed (and adult proofed - the locks on my hutch are a bizatch to get into), I wasn't too worried. But, being the good Mom I am, I went down the hall to Baba's room to investigate.
Me: What's wrong, Baba?
Baba: She's 'tanding!
I look and see that Rudy is 'tanding in the middle of the boy's room. Not quite sure how she got into a 'tanding position because there was nothing to pull up any where around her.....
Me: That's okay. She's practising standing.
Baba: I don't like it. She could fall and get hurt.
What is he going to do when "his" baby is ready for school?
Generally, it is an up hill battle to get Baba out of his pajamas. He is just not interested in getting his pajama's off because pj's are so comfy, cozy, and other things among his 9,574 other excuses for not getting dressed.
I was eating my Kix and Reece's Puffs mix for breakfast this morning (I highly recommend mixing cereal. Yum!) and I turned around. The boy was darn near naked. I laughed so hard cereal almost came out of nose.
I said, "Why are you naked?" Baba said, "I'm not naked. I have my undies and socks on."
I said, "Why are you in your undies and socks." Baba said, "Because my pj's came off!"
Its the coldest day of the year and my child is running around in his under-roos. He says he's not cold because he is a polar bear, but he did mention the chair was cold when he stole my cereal and sat down to eat it. PS I brought down clothes for him to wear and have been nagging him to get dressed for the past 30 minutes or so. Now his clothes are missing and he isn't sure where they went. I can only conclude his clothes have a mind of their own.
Yesterday afternoon my phone rang with an unknown number. I usually don't pick up if I don't recognize the number, but it was a local area code and River City Theater has about 14 different phone numbers they call me from, so I answered thinking that our rehearsal location/date/production had been changed. Again.
It wasn't River City Theater.
It was our pastor. My first that was, "Oh crap! He's going to ask why we haven't been in church since Christmas Eve. Really!? I can't miss a few Sundays without the pastor giving me a call!? What's up with that? I'm sorry we ever started going to that church."
He was actually calling to remind me that registration for Grandma's Marathon opens today. We spoke for a few minutes with no comment on our spotty church attendance, just a pleasant conversation on the joys of training for a marathon. He said he was filling out his registration and thought of me and how busy you are with little kids and thought I might have forgotten that registration opened today. I thanked him for thinking of me. All in all, it was a pleasant conversation. Although, I think he muttered, "sinner" under his breath when he hung up.
There were 5 pieces of bread consumed at my house this morning. I had none, the girl had 1, and the boy had 4. Yes, 4. Two toasted with jelly, two without toasted but with jelly.
So, to the dude at the food store with his snide comment of "Like bread, do you?" upon seeing the 6 loaves of bread in my cart. No, I don't really like bread, but my kids do. And as an FYI the 2 gallons of milk I bought, sir, will last about a week.
Rudy is obsessed with the steps and is a quick little bugger so you have to watch her constantly. You turn your back for 2 seconds and she's halfway up. Baba is obsessed with "watching" his baby and loves volunteering to "watch" her so I can go to the bathroom, start supper, make a snack, etc.
Baba wanted a snack this afternoon and volunteered to watch his sister while I fixed his 87th snack of the day. I said okay, but to let me know if she started on the steps. He agreed.
I fixed his snack and came around the corner. "Where's your sister?" I asked.
"On the 'teps!" Baba yelled.
I said, "I thought you were watching her."
He said, "I was. But I needed a break."
He had been "watching" her for about 30 seconds.
I rescued Rudy from the steps and they happily went back to playing with the cat toy (which I got on clearance at Target for 29 cents. Next year, Santa is bringing boxes, cat toys, and more boxes).