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Friday, May 29, 2009

Last Day of School Celebration

One week ago today was the last day of 1st grade for the girls. To celebrate, we took them to Chili's so that they could order their favorite - ribs! Chan kept turning to me and very seriously saying, "Do I have anything on my face, Mama?" knowing full well that she had sauce on 3/4 of it. Casey, on the other hand, has to be the neatest rib eater in the world. She uses the wet wipe in between each and every bite. I am really having a hard time with the fact that the girls are going into 2nd grade next year. Where has the time gone???

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A Private Area Problem

So last week, as the girls were getting ready to take a bath, Casey showed up in the living room, wrapped in her towel, hand on her hip and looking completely bent out of shape.

Me: Yes?
Casey: Mama, Chandler just put her finger in my private area. (big disgusted sigh)
Me: What???!??! Go tell your sister to come down here right now.

Chandler enters the room, wrapped in a towel, acting very low key.
Chandler: Mama, I know what you want to talk to me about.
Me: You do? Then what is it?
Chan: That I put my finger in Casey's private area. (big sigh)
Me: Yes. What on God's green Earth were you thinking? Why, Chandler, why would you do something like that???
Chan: Well, we were getting in the bathtub and Casey was bending over and I said, "Ooh, Case, you need to wipe better. There's some brown on your tush." And Casey said, "Where?" So I said, "Right here." And I pointed my finger on her bottom and then she moved and my finger slipped and went right in the hole in her tush.
Me: I see. Well. Ok, let's make a new rule in the house.... Do not EVER put your finger anywhere near anyone else's private area for any reason. Any reason whatsoever at all. Keep your finger to yourself.
Chandler: Ok, Mama. Can I take a bath now?

The girls are spending the week out at mom's and I am grateful for that. :)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Hole in the Wall Update

Remember that hole in the wall? The one that was made 2 weeks and 5 days ago? Well, the guy finally came back out this afternoon and patched it. The hole was 3 ft tall x 5in wide...the patch for that is 4.5 ft tall and 2ft wide. Supposedly more people are coming out Thursday morning to sand, paint and put up a new chair rail. I will be standing beside them to make sure that they don't drive another nail through the air conditioning line. After all that is done, it will then be time for Chris to repaint the orange and gray...which we don't have enough of left over to cover the massive patch job. Did I mention that this is the one "full" wall in the room? Chris is really excited about that. What a pain in my ass.

Quinn's BFF

This is Quinn with his BFF, Duntavious...or Dunt Dunt for short (he's our baby-sitter's grandson). Yes, I know that Quinn is only 11 months old, but Dunt is most definitely Quinn's BFF. I am sure of this because Quinn's current vocabulary consists of "Dada" and "Dunt Dunt." That is most definitely a sign of being best friends for life. Quinn was not exactly thrilled about the photo op, but he was super thrilled about the food. See pictures below for proof.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Sitting in a Quiet House

I am sitting in a quiet house. Chris has taken the girls up to the school parking lot to ride bikes. Quinn (quite happily) is in bed, sound asleep. And my house is completely quiet. Even the refrigerator, which has a horrible rattle and hum to it 99% of the time is silent. I am finished with the scrapbook(s) for Mr. G's retirement bash. The laundry is fairly well caught up. I am in between books right now. And even though I am sure that there is something that needs cleaning, I am sitting on the couch with my feet propped up and just thought I would take a minute to share this moment with you.

I am really looking forward to this summer. Even though I crack jokes about who will have it worse - Chris for being in school all day or me for being home with all 3 children...I do know that I am definitely getting the better deal. Of course, you may want to check back with me in 3 weeks to see if my tune has changed.

I am celebrating this week that I have made it through my first year out of the classroom and in the media center. It was certainly a struggle at times. I have a lot to do this summer to prepare for next year to make it an outstanding year.

In the quiet I am also thinking about how I have been struggling with the idea of "If I were to die tomorrow..." there are so many things that I wish had happened differently. I think my dad's illness has done this to me. I feel like for the past year and a half, I have (to a certain extent) put my life on hold...between grad school and the pregnancy and then a new baby and a new job. There are many times these days that I feel like I need to reconnect so many things in my life - I feel like two years ago I was a better parent, a better friend, a better daughter, a better wife. So starting this summer there will be some changes.

There will be another post coming soon about our weekend - Quinn attended his first birthday party!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Self Portrait

Chan: Casey asked me to draw a self portrait of her in the black chair.
Me: Wait. YOU are going to draw a SELF portrait of CASEY?
Chan: Yep. She wants me to.
Me: Ok, if you are going to draw a self portrait, it has to be of yourself, not Casey. If you are going to draw a picture of Casey, its just called a portrait.
Chan: Everybody thinks we look the same anyway, so I can draw a self portrait of her.
Me: That's not really how it works.
Chan: to draw the self portrait..Come on Case!

So, the point of that conversation was completely missed.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Summer Read

I love books. I think that my choice of librarian...kind of lets people know that, but I felt like saying it again. Certain books stand out for me because of what was going on at the time I was reading them...ME TALK PRETTY ONE DAY and the HANDMAID'S TALE were the last books I read before Chris and I started dating...SNOW FLOWER AND THE SECRET FAN was what I read during out last summer trip to Chicago (I read and cried - both because of the book and because of leaving my dad - the whole way home). I read the diaries of Anne Morrow Lindbergh and THE TIME TRAVELER'S WIFE the summer that Chris and I got married and I read LOVING FRANK right before I had Quinn. Seriously, my whole life is marked like this (I was reading BERENSTAIN BEARS AND THE MESSY ROOM when my mom busted in on me in the 1st grade to attack me for putting clean clothes back in with the dirty...just as an example). I have just finished reading the Southern Vampire Mysteries and am wondering what book I will remember this summer for. Any thoughts on this?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mother's Day 09

What? You didn't have a piniata at your mother's day celebration?

Quinn can't wait for next year when he gets a chance with the bat.

It's Just a Hole in the Wall

Yep. That's a hole in the wall alright. Wondering how it got there? Let me just tell you the short a minute...
This is what my front room looks like. That is the furniture from the craft room (which is what used to be the dining room, which is the room with the hole in the wall) that has all been moved into the front room. Awesome.

So, back to how this happened....Last spring our air didn't work, so we called the builder. The first tech said that he "sees it all the time...a nail from the chair rail or crown molding in the dining room goes right into the line and causes a leak"...and they'd have to cut a hole in the wall to fix it. So, then a 2nd tech was sent out who said the unit just needed to be charged. Problem solved. Only, it wasn't. When we went to turn on the air for the first time this spring - on April 24th when it was 88 degrees outside - it only blew hot air. Right, this is the short version...warranty up, told builder it was their problem, it took 2 weeks for a tech to come out, and VOILA! there is now a 3ft hole in the wall and the chair rail is what is laying on the floor. I called the builder to let them know my list of demands...
1. fix the damn hole in the wall
2. put up a new damn chair rail
3. reimburse us the damn $78 for the service call
4. reimburse us for the damn paint we're going to have to buy when we repaint the damn wall

He told me to put it in writing. Awesome. He didn't know that I was an English teacher. I wrote two pages. I revised 4 times. I read it to a variety of audiences to get feedback before hitting the send button. Monday afternoon I got a call about where to fax the receipt to. Today I got a call the schedule the patch job. We'll see about the rest. I am prepared to call Channel 2 Action News and put up an "Unhappy Homeowner" sign in my front yard. I think it will really help sell the houses down the street from us.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Gail Carson Levine

My old school was having Gail Carson Levine for their author visit this year. The night that she arrived from the airport she came to my friend Melinda's for dinner (which was very yummy!). It was a pleasure to meet her - she was polite and open and by far one of the tiniest ladies I have ever met. (Thanks for inviting me over, Melinda!)

Thursday, May 7, 2009

I like to ride my bicycle, I like to ride my bike...

Once again, I have loaded the pictures in the wrong order, so keep that in mind. :) Chris took the girls last Saturday to get new, 20" bikes. They had not gotten new bikes since they're 4th birthday and were in desperate need of them. We decided to make sure that the new bikes did not have training wheels on them. Their old bikes did and we had never taken them off. We decided that they needed to learn the old fashioned way...the way that we learned...the way where you are covered in band aids by the end of the day.

So, on Sunday we packed up the van - Chris, the girls, the bikes, the tool box (for seat adjustments), helmets and pads - and the car - me, Quinn, snacks, water, capri suns, diaper bag,, stroller and scooter - and drove the five miles up to the school parking lot. We then unloaded everyone and everything and padded the future Lance Armstrongs up.

By the end of the day Chan looked like this...riding without any help! (Casey looked like that too, but I can only upload 5 pics at a time, so...)

Below is a picture of Casey riding at the beginning. Please note Chris's position. Then think of what it is like to teach ONE child how to ride a bike. For Chris, with two, there was never a break. He ran in a hunched over state for two hours. What a good man...a good dad!

Strapping on all the pads. This is a requirement for me. I hate the park - it is just a head injury waiting to happen, so you better believe that my children were all sorts of padded up for bike riding - including elbow pads. Do they look foolish? Yes. Will they be made fun of at some point? Yes. Does it make me feel better? Absolutely.

Oh, look, its sweet Quinn Boy! He was so good, hanging out in the stroller eating his puffs.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


Friday the girls went on a field trip to see the movie Earth at the IMAX theatre and then to a park to eat lunch and play. I figured that they would be off the wall by the time that they got home. But, no. It was all hum glum.

Me: So, girls how was the movie?
Girls: Fine.
Me: Did you go to the park?
Girls: Yes.
Me: How was it?
Girls: Fine.

Catch my drift? No smiles. No laughing. Staring at the floor...

Me: So, what's wrong?
Girls: Nothing.
Chris: Well, something is wrong. I think there is something going on between them. Chan looked like she was ready to cry when I picked them up.
Me: Chan, were you ready to cry?
Chan: No. *and then busts out in tears*
Me: What's going on? What happened? What's wrong Chan?
Chan: Siiiiisssssttttterrrrr bit me!
*look of shock on mine and Chris's face*

Me: Case, did you bite sister?
Casey: She bit me too!
*Chris and I - another look of shock, followed by hysterical laughter at the ridiculousness of the situation*

Casey: Why are you laughing?
Me: Because you are 7. Why are you biting each other? Did you do this at school?
Chan: Casey bit me when we were going to bed last night.
Me: Casey did you bite her last night?
Casey: I was scared. I was having a bad dream. My teeth were shaking and I got too close to her.

Do I really need to play by play the rest of this conversation? No, probably not. It took about 45 minutes for us to get the whole story. Casey bit Chandler on the top of the head when they were going to bed. She then begged Chan not to tell, so she didn't and instead carried this animosity to school the next day. Chandler asked Casey to play with her at school on Friday and Casey screamed "no" in her face, so she grabbed her and bit the top of her head...just so she could know how it feels.

Big sigh. Do I need to remind you that they are 7? 7!! They had no tv privileges Friday night and they went to bed at their usual time instead of staying up later. We also had a long talk about the wrongs in this situation.... 1. the biting 2. the begging not to tell 3. holding a grudge when agreeing not to tell 4. screaming in someone's face (how rude!) 5. biting in retaliation 6. taking a problem that you have with sister to school instead of keeping it at home.

For any GSES teachers out there that read my blog, if you see my children biting each other at school, please send them to the principal's office.