Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Random Weird Freaking Tuesday

Holy cows, people.  Monday's krappe is spilling over into Tuesday.  And let me tell you, Monday was a day I would love to forget.  But it's Tuesday, and at least in Bloggy world, that's a fun day.  Sidle up to the random bar  and have Keely pour you a drink.

->  I have to use Google Chrome as my browser at work.  The IT geeks told me so.  And I don't really like it.  It's not one of those "You'll get used to it" things.  There are things I just don't like, outright.  But the IT geeks don't like it when I use FireFox (who the hell knows why), and I'm tired of getting yelled at.  

->  The place I work at is a little like "Wonderland".  When you're hired you fall down the rabbit hole, and slowly discover that it's a weird place.  But if you can get used to the fact that your boss is the Queen of Hearts, and HR is like the Mad Hatter, you'll do just fine here. (I wish I were kidding or exaggerating.  I'm not.)

->  Little O is almost walking by himself.  It's cute as hell to watch LG take his hand and help him walk around.  I'd get a picture, but he insists on falling on his butt and crawling to the camera the minute I take it out, thereby ruining my photo op.  

->  We're not talking about his haircut.  Or how sad I am about that.  All of my in-laws were very kind to tell me how cute he it is with his new do.  Nobody mentioned that he looks like a toddler, not a baby, with his short hair.  And only one SILs  mentioned all his curls being gone.  She was properly sad about it, so I felt a little better.

->  I should be nominated for "worst wife ever".  We have some sort of flying, biting, horrible insect nesting in our front lawn.  And I sent PB out with full battle gear (a can of raid and a baseball cap) to kill them the other night.  The same PB who had to go to the urgent care when some sort of flying, biting, horrible insect bit him last weekend and his ankle swelled up like a grapefruit.   What else was I going to do?  After it was over I realized how completely screwed I would have been if something had happened, too.  Little o was hanging out in just a diaper, LG had no shoes anywhere in sight.  The diaper bag was strewn across the floor.  If we had to rush to the emergency room?  We would have looked like the Beverly Hillbillies.  Great.  Housewife of the year, right here.  Bring on the Good Housekeeping Seal.

->  My cake worries are over.  I'm not saying how.  It's a surprise.  But trust me, if this all pans out,  Little o will have birthday wonderfulness.  He'll never be able to complain about the 2nd kid getting left behind, I tell you.  I will take pictures, I promise.

->  Why is it that people can't make room in traffic when they see someone who has politely put on their directional and let them know they need to change lanes?  Why do some people speed up and ride the bumper in front of them, rather than let someone else who is trying to be a courteous driver get into their lane?    Yes, yes.  School is back in session and the people who are not used to commuting after a long summer off are causing traffic back ups.  I'm sure it will get better as they get their commute ironed out, but for the next two weeks?  I shake my fist and wish bad car karma on them.

Ok, I'm off.  I leave you with an old picture of LG that pretty much sums up my week so far...

Have a good one.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Monday MicroFiction

I'm back with Stony River for the MicroFiction that happens on Monday.

She wanted to make a crack about how she'd be glad to get into "Coolville" and out of the heat, but she still wasn't speaking to him.  

Oh, and my I'd rather be for this Monday:

I'd rather be at work than at school with LG.  When I left this morning, I was told that the teacher in LG's new room ( the teacher that's he's been waiting a year to re-join after she left the baby room) is leaving.  They're not sure how they're going to break it to the kids.  I want to be in another county when that happens, please.  We'll sure miss you, Miss N.  I hope your new job loves you as much as we do!

And that's, as they say, is all for today folks.  Have a good one.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts

Ugh, see I started this yesterday.  I did.  But this week and blogging aren't getting along well at all.  Because I'm crabby, and PB is crabby and my boss is being an idiot (which is unusual).  I can muster a random thought or two, though.

->Little o is having a "ducky in bubbles" 1st birthday party.  Which I have been completely neglecting.  And now I realize that it's 2 and 1/2 weeks away.  Uhm, I'd better get on that.  Especially since I now have a 3D ducky birthday cake pan sitting on my counter that will require a practice run.  Who thought that was a good idea?  (ok, maybe me.  but I thought is was a flat pan when I picked it out.)  I'm no Ace of Cakes, here, people.  This could be an utter disaster in the making.  

->  Little o is also getting a hair cut this week.  Because he's gone from beautiful golden corn silky curls to beautiful mullet of golden curls (80's rock stars would have died for that do!) to fuzzy, sticking to his cheeks and getting pulled on fur.  I had wanted to wait until after 1, but it's making him unhappy.  So, off to the hair dresser he will go (but not until after crazy hair day at school tomorrow.  We have our priorities!)

->  We had a "date night" on Saturday.  An official, get a real paid sitter, go out alone for dinner and a movie, Date Night.  It was amazing.  We talked without being interrupted, ate without having to stop to poke food into children, watched a whole movie and held hands -with each other.  Sigh.  Ok, really we went out to Red Lobster and saw Despicable Me.  But it was a good time.

          ->>>  Side note:  Are we the only ones who crank the cleanliness up a notch when a sitter who isn't related to us comes to watch the kids?  We moved furniture to vacuum for the sitter.  In rooms I'm pretty certain she never went into.  The boys rooms were cleaner than they've been in months.  Why is that?  I'm sure she didn't care.  It does feel great to have a really clean house, though.  

->  When he woke up Sunday morning, LG did not ask for PB.  He asked to play with Miss N.  Uhm, no.  PB and I are home.  LG asked if she could come back.  Replaced in 4 hours.  That must be a record of some sort.

->  My boss is being a jackarse this week.  Last month when I embarked upon an audit that hasn't been done in YEARS, I asked for his input on the new audit plan.  It's an IT audit, and many things in IT have changed since 2005.  He said (and I quote), "Be creative.  I'm sure you'll do a great job.  Think outside the box on this one."  Do I look like an ad agent?  A cartoonist?  I'm a freaking auditor.  An accountant.  My life is little boxes and the numbers that should fit neatly into them.  Now that I've created the plan and have started testing it, he suddenly might have input.  Go to hell.  In a hand basket.  Normally, my boss lives in the same little boxes I do, so he's great to work for.  I have no idea where he got that free wheelin' hippy attitude last month, but I don't like it.  Must be a summer thing.

->  I love the new KIA Soul commercials.  The ones with the hamsters?  Those ones.  I'm not sure why.  They make me smile.

->  PB gave in and we went to the expensive market to get coffee again this past weekend.  He and the boys came in with me (to prevent me from buying anything but coffee).  You can guess how that worked out.  But the cheese spread with the horseradish and bacon?  Mmmmm.  And the cinnamon raisin bread?  Ahhhhh.  The bill?  ugh.

Ok, I'm done.  It's Wednesday.  Holy Moses.  Must achieve something this week.  Grrrr.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

COSI- Science at your fingertips


Lots of places claim to be "child friendly".  Museums and amusement parks, monuments and gardens.  But how many really are?  How many places go out of their way to cater to little kids?  Even Disney's Magic Kingdom is geared to children over 3. (How can you tell?  Just look at the ticket prices.  If your kid is free, they're not counting on them using any of the services.  In the case of Disney, be careful.  It's not really age, but height that will limit you.  Most rides require you to be at least 3 feet tall).  In the past two years, we've realized that most places are just not all that fun for the stroller set.  Most stuff requires them to be out of the stroller to see or enjoy (have you noticed that most hand rails are conveniently exactly the height of a kid in a stroller?).

But that's not what this post is about.  Down in Columbus, Ohio we found an amazing place that truly does cater to even the littlest ones.  If you can sit by yourself, you are guaranteed to have fun at COSI (the Center Of Science and Industry).

COSI has something for everyone.  Right now their large exhibit is Titanic.  Facts about the ship, as well as many artifacts recovered from the wreck are all on display.  Rumor has it that it's an hour of entertainment.  For older kids there is a bike on a tightrope that you can ride over the main exhibit hall.  For budding scientists, there are hands on exhibits all over the place.  These reach out to anyone who can walk- really.
This is LG at a weather experiment.  He aimed his "gun" at different objects on the display and hopped up and down on the pad to make the "wind" blow.  I thought it would go over his head, but he completely got that he was turning the windmill and moving the clouds.

The full frontal of this display.  The different guns were all powered differently (see the steering wheel on the right and the stick thing in the middle) and each one had a different force wind.  Pretty cool, huh?

What impressed me most was the room for "smallest scientists", though.  They call it the "Little Kid Space".  It was heaven, I tell you.  The age range is 6 months to 6 years (though I think the low limit is arbitrary, if you can sit, you can play.  The top range is set, though.  No one who is above Kindergarten is allowed to play.)  This prevents the littlest ones from getting trampled.  

There is a wide variety of "stuff" in the exhibit.  Some things geared toward toddlers, a lot geared towards babies.

Little o chilling on a bouncy pod thing.  There were a bunch of soft balls with him.  At every "infant" station there were two volunteers that sat with the kids and offered them activities.

I didn't think o would be able to ride the toys, but a volunteer put him on and set up the course for him.  Until LG came over and tackled him, he did great.

LG liked dressing up in the "power company" suit and inspecting the wiring in this little house.  You can see the doorbell in the upper right.  The wires that make it work, as well as the innards are all on display inside.  There were tools for them to "fix" the lights and such.

Just like the wind display, this water display had a bunch of opportunities for toddlers to experiment with water.  Even though this was directed at toddlers, a staff member is there to assist them in putting on a rain coat (provided) and to make sure no one does anything dangerous.  Once or twice he gathered the kids around to show them how part of the table worked.  Mostly he stood back and let them do their own thing.

Babies had a completely separate water table that they could sit in.  Another staff member is here to put their coats on and help them out (and keep them from drinking the water).  The little black things are water jets.  I wish I had gotten a better shot of this one, it really was quite amazing.

All the boys loved this thing.  It was a dome with air jets on it.  You put a ball on the jet and watch it "float".  Pb had to be pulled away.

I have a million more shots of all the things the boys did (LG standing under the giraffe who tells you how tall you are- I have no idea how, LG in the "ambulance" learning about his blood pressure, watching rat basketball) but I did not get the best shot of the day.  Two high school aged girls spent at least 20 minutes sitting on a pod with little o with different kinds of shakers.  Bells, cymbals, clackers, maracas, beads.  He climbed into each of their laps separately, and they just kept showing him stuff.  It was great.  He giggled non-stop.

I think the part I liked most was that you were expected to just let your kids roam free.  The space is not so big that they could get "lost" and there are chairs lined up against the walls.  Staff assisted them in almost every "experiment", and you were really just there to snap pictures.

If you are ever in Columbus, stop in to COSI.  It will be worth the trip, I promise.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts

Don't you love it when life hands you a "gimme".  Like when Keely throws up the purple button and we get to glop all our passing thoughts into one post without segues?  Ahhh, the life that is Tuesday.  

->  Last week was an utter fiasco.  You will all remember that I was suffering from the plague.  Well, by Wednesday afternoon, I decided enough was enough.  I went home sick.  To find a guy from the gas company standing in my yard, looking perplexed.  During a random check, he had knocked the riser off the gas line to the house, and now that line was venting under my front porch.  Thanks, jacktard.  Needless to say, I did not get to go inside and sleep on my couch.  Instead, I spend 4 hours out on the lawn, in varying degrees of krappe weather, with the fire squad (gas is flammable, remember?), and many different people from the gas company.  Once PB and the boys arrived home (yes, it took longer than the work day I skipped out of), we headed to my in-laws for some danger free food and bath time.  By the time we got home at 9:pm, all that was left was to test for leaks and turn the gas back on.  So, not only did I have a wonderfully sucky afternoon, but I had to take 1/2 a sick day to do it.  Go team.

->  I have a small favor to ask of my neighbors, and the people at our rec center.  When you exercise, please make sure that your clothing not only covers all the important bits, but it does so in a not see through manner. (Yes, guy in white shorts with no skivvies on, I'm looking right at you.  ok, now I'm looking away in horror.)  I've come across a lot of folks who don't seem to realize that they're "showing off".  Ewww.  Now, you'd think I'm talking about the young ones, right?  The ones who might have a g-string on that I can't see?  Nope. These are almost certainly retirees.  I'm all about a show, but make sure it's worth showing off, at least.  Oh, and when my 2 year old says, "I see his butt!", don't give us dirty looks.  It's your fault, not his.

->  I've recently realized that I should be nominated for arse of the week.  For being insensitive.  LG's girlfriends Mom (let's call her m1) has grown increasingly quiet towards me and another Mom (we shall call her m2) at school.  Not rude, she just doesn't seek us out anymore.  And we thought maybe we had done something wrong.  We couldn't figure out what.  Our problem was that, for us, something had gone right.  You see, just before I had little o, the m2 had little k.  And m1 has been trying very hard to have her own "little".  To no avail.  So, as she's grown increasingly frustrated, she's grown quiet.  And now we feel like dummies.  Because she was always so nice to ask about "the littles" and never once did we consider that she wanted one.  To be honest, she's cute and thin and worked really hard to get her figure back, so I just assumed she had one and was done.  Here I am, sending all sorts of baby thoughts and vibes out over the interwebs (and I still am) and not once giving any support on the home front.  Some times I just suck.

->  I had a boatload of basil dumped in my cube this morning.  I randomly stated on Sunday at my office picnic that I needed basil for a great summer recipe, and there was none at the store. - Side note:  no we can't grow our own.  We have deer that are so bold they come up on our porch and eat out of the flower boxes. - Anywho, 3 of my co-workers picked a bagful (yup, a shopping bag full of basil) for me.  Anyone have a good Basil recipe that can be frozen?

->  Summer isn't over just because the kids are going back to school!  The sun will still shine, the pool is still open.  And I can still wear my white pants.  Stop saying summer is over!!!

->Oh, yes.  I did just put a photo of my youngest son on the web dressed like a pretty, pretty princess.  I need to give the boy some reason to have teenage angst, right?

OK, go about your business.   Nothing left to see here.

Monday, August 16, 2010

MicroFiction Monday

Susan at StonyRiver has decided to host us again.  Though, why I can't figure.  We're an unruly bunch and some of us forget to wipe our feet...  Take a glimpse at my 140, and then visit the others who are up for the challenge.

Lance had gotten into the outfit and up to the door.  Now all he had to figure out was how to get the ring out of his pocket.  

And to all who "missed" last week.  It was an homage to John Steinbeck's "Travels with Charlie" in which Steinbeck drove cross country with his poodle, Charlie, and left his wife, Elaine, back home.

And I'd rather be at work today than standing in line at the market listening to a woman "educate" us all on how she is feeding her children a vegan diet and how we're killing America's youth by not doing the same.  Bite me.  Oh, wait.  You can't.  I'm made of meat.  Pthppppt.

Have a great Monday, all.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Spin Cycle- Weddings

Ok.  I'm going to use this Spin to break out of my blogging funk.  Because I've been a little lame as of late.  Not anymore.  I owe it to you guys to give you more, and I'm going to channel my inner Billy Mays (RIP, Mr. Oxyclean) to get the job done.

I could tell you all about the Badger wedding.  All about how it was sweltering hot on 9/8/7 until around 5:30 when the skies opened up and it poured rain on our tent wedding.  But I think it would be much more fun to show you.

First the wedding girls looking pretty for the camera.  (I have no idea what the boys were doing at this point):

Oh, wait.  They were doing this:

Because this was no "planned" wedding.  It was just PB and MB getting hitched in the church's backyard.  We did it all ourselves (with a lot of help from family and friends).

The boys also took care of these:
We drank Pink Champagne at my wedding...

Then to the important part:

And all the while Rev. Lovejoy (I have no recollection of his real name) had his fly open.  Because that's how it goes when I get to pick the minister.  Side note:  we did eventually get married in a church, but that came later due to unforeseen complications.

Just because she's so damn cute, I'm going to throw in this one:

That's my niece, the flower girl.  She's so sweet she could cause a diabetic attack.  Seriously, how stinking cute is she?  Go ahead, my SIL reads my blog.  Tell her how cute her kid is, she'll love it.  She could use a little loving these days.


Then people went and found these:

I folded over 100 origami Luau shirts as my place cards...  I know.  I'm a goddess with useless talents.

The reception looked like this:

Oh, yes.  Did I mention that everyone except the wedding party were in Hawaiian shirts and Bermuda shorts?  Nothing formal about the Badgers.  We served everyone Bubba's BBQ, too.  We're just like that.  Erm, a class act...

We had one of these:

But even better was this:

We had one of these (PB and Uncle B made it all by themselves):

And after many libations it all looked like this;):

But in the end, a good time was had by all.

If you head on over to Sprite's Keeper's place, you'll probably get to hear stories about nice, normal weddings.  People with class, and some semblance of taste.  

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Random Stinky Tuedsay Thoughts...

Yuck.  I have a cold.  Today's random is brought to you not only by Keely (the illustrious Un Mom of recent NY BlogHer fame) but by Tylenol Cold.  Woo hoo.

->  I think I got this cold from little o.  Which makes me possibly the worst parent ever.  He's had a little cough (much like mine right now) for about a week and a half.  We dragged him through the zoo, and other illustrious places.  Sent him to school all last week.  And if he feels even half as bad as I do?  Poor little o.

->  Have you noticed that when you're about to do something stupid, and you realize it a second before you do, you are powerless to stop it?  This morning I went to put on some face cream.  Right before the hand reached the face, I could smell the familiar scent of hair gel.  And yet, I didn't stop the hand.  Ewww.  Wash, rinse, repeat.  Though, if the hair gel had SPF in it, I might not have bothered.  I feel that yucky.

->  Based on the overwhelming response to my latest Facebook status, I think I've found my next great invention.  I'm going to design a washing machine a "Gross little boy" setting!  No more pre-treating, no more checking pockets, no more holding items at arms length and just hoping they get clean.  A little OxyClean and the "Gross little boy" setting and you're good to go.  Works for grown men's clothes, too.

Boys and elephants.  Both are cute, both smell similar on a hot day...

Ok, it's too fuzzy to type any more.  Must go refill the teacup.  Someone pass the hot water bottle.  Sniffle.  Snurp.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Micro-I'd rather be-Birthday Monday...

The postcard read, “Wish you were here.”  Elaine taped it to the fridge next to the rest.  At least John had that damn poodle for company.

(extra points if you can figure out who the hell I'm referring to...)

And that takes care of my MicroFiction Monday.   Many thanks to Susan of Stony River  for hosting our 140 character or less jaunt into creativity.

Now, onward, because we have a lot to cover on this fine Monday.

I'd rather be at work than trying to tame the monster that little o's room has become.  There are clothes in varying sizes all over the place and not a single set is ready to be packed away.  I spent the weekend trying to organize and clean it all, but failed miserably.  It might actually look worse now. Yuck.

And last, but certainly not least, Happy Birthday Papa Badger!  Woo hoo.  And on 8/9/10, none the less.  You still don't look (or act) a day over 25.

Have a good week all. 

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts

Ay, Carumba, it's Tuesday again!  And once again I'm shocked that we've made it through another week.  You'd think I'd be used to it by now.  Go see Keely, she's got the 7 day thing down pat.

->  We reached new highs (lows) in self esteem last week.  When swim lessons first started, PB and I were a little worried about our slightly snug, not quite new swimwear.  And the pasty bits that were revealed when said swimwear was donned.  But we plunged in, as parents concerned with their child's aquatic ability.  Last week we had a stunning realization:  nobody cares.  We're all just worried about keeping our own guts covered and our kids from drowning that we don't have time to look at the other parents.  To the point that PB had no idea that one of the other Moms wears a bikini.  Honest to goodness.  He said, "XXX's Mom?  The kid with the cars swimsuit?  I'll have to check that out."  Great.  

->  Our big summer trip is over.  Gone.  Done with.  It was a ton of fun, and very successful.  But now what do we look forward to?  Oh, yeah, right.  Little o is almost 1!  I know, I don't believe it either.  But here's proof:

Yes.  That's little o standing with LG by the baby elephant statue.  Standing all by himself.  No, he's not walking yet.  But it's coming.  

->The inventor of the Cheez Doodle passed away last week.  A moment of silence, please.  Now go wipe the orange goo off your hands. 

->  We saw rats play basketball this weekend.  And they were pretty good.

LG was more interested in their snacking habits than their talent (I had to pick him up so that he would stop walking behind the case to see what the trainer was doing...)

->  Because there are VERY few places to take kids who can not walk yet, I want to highly recommend COSI (the Center of Science and Industry) in Columbus, Ohio.  For most of our trips, little o just hangs out in his stroller.  He views the scene from about 2 feet off the ground, often through the bars that are there to keep kids like his brother out of trouble.  Rarely do people bring attractions down to stroller level.  COSI has an area (no, not just a room, a whole area) for kids under 4.  You put the little ones down and let them go to town.  Soft ramps to crawl on, a water table to sit in and explore.  Tunnels to crawl through, and slides that they can crawl up to.  The volunteers sat on the floor on mats with different things to try out (shakers, and feather balls).  He was in heaven.  And LG had a lot of fun, too.

Yeah, that's all I have this week.  Not very random.  I told our good vacation story yesterday (go see it!).  

Have a good week, all.

Monday, August 2, 2010

MicroFiction I'd Rather Be Monday... All in one.

Susan, of Stony River, has once again left us a challenge for a MicroFiction Monday.  Basic gist- tell the story in 140 characters or less.  Then visit the others and see what they wrote.  Here's today's picture:

It's well worth a moment to visit the other writers and see how many different takes there are on just one photo with a 140 character caption!
And the I'd Rather Be:

I'd rather be at work than having to ask the people in the next hotel room to PLEASE, keep it down.  My kids are trying to sleep.  

We stayed in a hotel next to the Columbus Zoo this weekend.  It had completely gone over my head that other families would want to stay close to the zoo, too. Other families who let their kids stay up until 11:30 and make lots of noise.  When I politely asked them to turn the volume down on the TV and maybe keep the kids from screaming, I was informed that she was TRYING to put them to bed, and thanks for making it that much easier.  To which I replied, I didn't realize the Disney Channel loud enough to be heard in the next room and having a pizza delivered at 10:30 were ways to help children sleep.  Man, I've been doing it all wrong these past two years.  I heard the couple in the room on the other side laugh out loud at that one.  I did not feel one bit bad that the boys woke up at 7:am the next morning.  Normally, I'd try to keep them quiet.  Nope.  There was no one on the other side of us, so I let them bounce on bed and giggle in glee.  No, I'm not a nice person.

Have a good week, all.

Spin Cycle- Firsts

Sprite's Keeper is back from her remodeling.  Go see the new digs and read some Spin's on "Firsts".  

There are so many places to go with this one.  The first bike, the first smooch, the first pet.  Blah, whatever.

Does anyone remember their first book? Not necessarily the first one you owned, but the first one you called your own.  One you didn't have to share, or hand down.  One you never "got too old for" and let fall by the wayside.

I remember the day my Dad brought my first book home.  I was about 7 or 8.  A client of his was closing his bookstore (he was retiring, and had no children who were interested in running a bookstore, so he closed up shop- sad, huh?).  As a gift for all his years of help and good advice, he gave my Dad a box of books.  All sorts of books.  A big picture book of David the Gnome.  A few photography books.  A gigantic international cookbook.  And there, in the middle, My Book.  A slightly tattered copy of Shel Silverstein's "Where the Sidewalk Ends".  

At first I didn't realize it was my book.  I left it in the box while I browsed through David the Gnome and some other kids books.  There were a lot of words and not enough pictures.  Skip.  But when my Mom asked us to take the ones we wanted so she could bring the rest to the library, I took that one.  Who knows why?  I wish I could say the minute I opened the cover, I knew.  I read and read.  But that would be a lie.  It sat on the bookshelf for years.  When  finally opened it, though, I did fall in love.  With Sara Silvia Cynthia Stout, and Ickle me, Pickle me and Tickle me, too.  I've been eaten by a boa constrictor (and I didn't like it one bit).  I know the dangers of a sticky peanut butter sandwich. 

I took the book to college with me, and to each apartment and house since.  It's one of the few that always gets unpacked.  It sat next to Shakespeare and Hemingway.  Because, subject aside, Shel Silverstein is one of the great authors of our time.

Now the book sits on LG's book shelf.  PB reads a few poems to him each night (from this and the other Shel books).  His favorite is the crocodile dentist.  

What about you?  What was first book you claimed for your own?