Last night as I was driving home with the kids we were singing Jesus songs at the top of our lungs. My daughter stops in the middle and says, "Mom, is poop "dung"?"

"Uh, yeah, poop is 'dung.'" I hate answering their endless questions. They are all sort of similar to these and then they all three get in on it and argue about them while I am driving and then I have to yell loudly to cut the din.

"Yeah, poop is 'dung'." I say.

My daughter lights up in her car seat (she is five and beautiful) and says, "Well, then I went dung three times today!"

"You can't use it in that context!" Yells my Oldest from the front seat.

"Yes you can!" Shouts my daughter. "Poop is dung, dung is poop!"

"Mom! She is wrong, right?!" My Oldest loudly says.

"I don't know, it sounds ok to me," I say.

Poop is dung, dung is poop, is it not? Why not interchange? It makes sense.


Cell Phones

I have a sad fact to admit to all of you in the technological world we live in: I don't have a cell phone.

What really bugs me is that with any form I have to fill out for a doctor, credit card, job application---you name it, any form, you are asked for your cell phone number. I don't have one. I have to admit to every person that I don't. People look at me weird too.

Well, you know what? I think you cell phone freaks are weird. Especially the cell phone freaks that have those ones on your ears like some sort of Star Trek implant. I almost laugh whenever I see someone donning one of those things. I think practically every time I see one of you people out there that you are insane and talking to yourself.

Of course, not having a cell phone definitely has its downsides. Like, for instance, I am trying to meet Dear Sir tonight at the shopping center by the freeway, not far from here when he gets off work. We had to steadily plan this just now because hey, we can't just whip out a phone on the way there to say, "Hey babe, I am at the corner of Robinson and Turner right now. In three lights I will be where you are at. I'll flash my lights to get your attention." It just doesn't happen.

"What time do you think you will be over there?"

"Uh, probably six. If I am lucky I can get in quickly to get my haircut and be outta there by six thirty. Maybe...."

"So, should I meet you at the hair place?"

"Well, you don't have to. Well, I guess, yes. Try to meet me there at six and do what errands you have to run before that in case I am not done in time..."

This is the kind of dialogue we have well before the actual happening. It gets frustrating. One time I was trying to meet Dear Sir at a really hole in the wall hamburger joint and we were right in the front as he sped right past us. If I had a phone I could have said, "Turn around, buddy." Or better yet, I could have said to him BEFORE he drove by to look to his left and he would not have driven by.

But, I must say, I think some phone people that even use the regular little phones are annoying. They talk loud, talk about stupid things like shampoo and I just wonder, what the heck do they have to say to someone who is probably sitting at home not caring about whether or not they buy Suave or Pantene? Plus, the call is usually always broken up anyway. I dread sometimes the calls I get from people that use a cell phone. "Huh?" I am always saying.
"I--pt---scr----age----ip--ta---" That is kind of what it is like on my end.

My dear friend who calls me on her cell phone does have the presence of mind to tell me before she hits a bad place, "Rach, I am getting to a place right now where I am always cutting off. If I start to do that, just hang up and call me at home in ten minutes."

Dear Sir tells me that the first thing people do before they go into work and right after they leave it (in the parking lot) is call someone on their cell phones. Why?

I can't stand driving behind someone talking on one either. They usually cut people off because they don't want to turn their heads because they have the phone on their ear!

I admit, if it weren't for cell phones some of my friends would not call me as much as they would want to. They usually call me on the way to some place. "Well, I just pulled into the mall, so I better go..."

Cell phones are good for some things.

Now, if I were driving home alone late at night and the car breaks down on the highway, I would be up the creek. Thankfully, I could flag anyone down driving by and they would have a cell phone.


Putting It On

So I just finished a book by Wilkie Collins called Basil. I know none of you care. All I will say is it was a good read, a bit over the top, but nice and sensational. I will be moving on to The Frozen Deep. Sounds good, eh?

One of my band members told me that she considers pumpkin pie to be a breakfast food. I had never really thought about it before: the crust could be some sort of bread, there are eggs in the mixture along with a vegetable (pumpkin) and milk. Then, you can splurge and have some whip cream on top. I like it. I tried it this morning.

I have actually just this year started making pumpkin pies from scratch (no can). It has been a most pleasurable experience.

Apparently I am Frank. I am not putting a link to that, I am just putting that up here for your eyes, deary.
I know, you must think I have lost my mind.
I sort of have.

Yesterday, when on the phone with Dear Sir at his work, I told him my plans for dinner. "Oh," he said, "I was hoping I could skip dinner."

So I made pancakes for the kids and I had a glass of wine (to drown my sorrows) and some whole wheat tortillas and this rockin jalapeno and red pepper hummus. I guess my breath wasn't rockin though. Apparently no one wanted to be around me.

So, when Dear Sir said to me that he wanted to skip dinner, I told him, "Yeah, you've been putting it on there for awhile, it's about time you lose some weight." What I just said to my dear man is a long joke that we have had for years between one another.
This is how it started:

We were at my mother and father in laws house for dinner. I had just lost maybe 15-20 pounds. I am 5'5 and I was probably about 135-140 lbs. I was working on losing more, but it took me a bit longer than I anticipated. But, I guess 15 pounds is noticeable, so my father in law said to me:

"Hey, did you lose some weight? You look really good!" He is the most amazing man. Very jovial, very kind, and he always means well, bless his heart.

"Yeah, I have lost some weight, sure."

"Well, you have quite the discipline! I tell ya, you were putting it on there for awhile, but you have bounced back nicely."

I laughed at him and smiled, completely not offended.

When we got to the car, I told Dear Sir (he was not present during my interaction with his dad).

Dear Sir grabbed his gut and laughed most heartily and said, "He SAID THAT?! Wow." He proceeded to shake his head in mirth.

occasionally Dear Sir points at a picture in a picture album and says, "Hey, you were putting it on there for awhile!"

He would continue to tell me that that statement was preposterous, and I have nothing to fear. But I WAS putting it on there for awhile. No wonder whenever I was over there eating they would say, "Rachel, you look like you could use more potatoes..." as they would pass me the fare. "Oh, help yourself!" "Please, finish this off, I am sure you have room!"

Yeah, I've got lots of room, cuz I'm putting it on, right? I also was in the middle of having a few BABIES. Let's try nursing and eating a PEA for dinner. Not gonna cut it. I would die of hunger pains.

Well, I've got to go make popcorn now. Dear Sir swears that I am the best popcorn maker on the planet (gee, I just put butter and salt on it). I still really struggle to believe him. I think it is a trick to get me to do it. "But you make THE BEST!" He is sure to shout his hearty praise as he stuffs it in his mouth. I fall for it everytime. If you are especially bored, I have a lot of fun domestic jewels just like this (even a popcorn post) in the archives.


Waste in the Lake

A benefit to weighing more is that on the see-saw I can make someone scared. Ok, so I weigh more than my Oldest child. Big deal. I felt on top of the world though. I took the crazies to the park and my Oldest wanted someone comparable to his weight and here I go on this crazy see-saw. I had a continual smile on my face and a giggle about to burst every moment. My Oldest kept saying, "Hey!" as I would abruptly stop the thing and make his rear end bounce clear up in the air and scare the crud out of him. Power. The thrills of power. He would half laugh and half scream but I could tell he thought it was fun. At one point I put all my weight down on my seat and had him as high as he could go, saying, "Now I have you exactly where I want you." He struggled like a Jedi in Darth Vader's death grip. It was too fun.

We went to our lake and the kids looked for stones to collect and I walked around and enjoyed the scenery. Suddenly the kids were throwing the stones in the lake and noticed something. I looked out and it appeared to be a dead duck. A literal dead duck, just floating there all bloated and weird looking. The kids tried to pelt it with the stones but they were too far away to reach. My Oldest had his feet in the water a little and I imagined how rank and full of bacteria his shoes must be. Just vile.

Instead, we admired the stones they collected. My daughter named hers ridiculous names. "This one is called 'medicine dropper' because it looks like a pill." And it did look like a pill. Instead of the blue pill or the red pill, it looked like the white pill. I thought how horrid it would be to swallow that thing by accident.

"This, I will call Wedding Dress..." A beautiful white rock is what she showed me. Eraser Eater cried because he said that he is the one that came up with that name and she stole it. After, my daughter kept saying, "My precious rock! They stole it from us!"

They kept going on and on like this and finally I had had enough, took them to the park, and went home to make dinner.

What did we have? French fries, charred chicken wings, and broccoli. I am not much of a cook lately, although in my glory days I once was a good one. You give up when your husband wants to eat fried chicken, pizza and fried chicken all the time.

My neighbor approached me one time while I was grilling and said, "You make a lot of chicken don't you?" ---As she looks down on my chicken.

"Yes, I do." I said, smiling. Of course I do. We LIVE on chicken over here. And I can't even make it a myriad of ways. I make it grilled, baked (in the plainest fashion) or fried. Yep, that is all my choices, dear reader.

Just make whatever I want, you say? Oh, I do sometimes...and what happens is that no one eats it (except me and the kids---and sometimes that is a struggle) and half a pot roast literally goes to waste. HALF A POT ROAST. WASTE. It is not easy being economical and pleasing everyone. It is just not possible. I have done this now for almost nine years and I have finally decided that cooking is nice in itself but not really required where I live.

My friend says that in her house it is the same way. She LIVES on beef at her house and she is sick and tired of beef. She would love to serve chicken fried, baked (in the plainest fashion) and grilled. She doesn't even ASK anymore what her husband wants. The answer: beef. You know if she does not do it that half of her dinner that night is going down the garbage disposal. I feel the pain. This must be the thing about having too much in America. We can choose what we want and then throw away what we don't want! Lovely.

So I saw a dead duck in the lake. I thought about someone killing it or how it got killed. It's bad meat now. Wasted meat. Ok, I am going too far. I am not getting so "Great Depression" on you that I would make cicada tacos. I am not that bad. I just hate waste. It sears me. I would never eat a bug anyway. A big one at that. Yuck. I have eaten plenty on my runs outside---a little gnat fare will do you well and put some protein in your body. You can't help it; sometimes they just fly right up your nose.

I had weevil soup once, but I will post on that another day.


The Kids These Days 3

Every band rehearsal night I have to travel over an hour with uncomfortable children to the northern part of my state. I take them so that I can switch cars with Dear Sir and then go to rehearsal, not too far from his work. I can't wait until Dear Sir gets home or I would be late to rehearsal, since it takes him an hour and a half with traffic (this traffic is worse than Cali, I am pretty sure) to get home. So, I meet him up there at his work. I go to him. I have the kids bring books and stuff and we are on our way.

I brought my ipod this time so I could listen to some music (mainly songs I need to practice for the concert). I also had to think of what to do with two hours before rehearsal. I usually go shop, and that is what I did. I went to the dollar store to get some Halloween buckets, and then I high tailed it to Target for a particular item I needed. When I got in the car, I decided that I wanted to listen to my ipod (in particular this band called The Colour---they are AWESOME) so at a five minute red light I decided to fiddle with the thing and put the songs on. My ipod is so sensitive (it is one of those nano things) that I always press the wrong band or entry or setting or something so I end up taking forever to get what I want. When I was looking down though, I noticed some movement in the car next to me. It just caught the corner of my eye. I looked over and there was this guy---I mean, this kid---he was probably seventeen or something, no kidding---trying to get my attention. I looked at him and he looked straight at me, put his hand up in a gesture as if to say, "I am cool in my Papa John's delivery car and I think you are cute," and so I rolled my eyes at him, shook my head and looked back down at my stinking ipod. This is what I ALMOST did:

I almost rolled my window down to prompt him to hear me out and tell him that I am almost thirty years old and he pretty much just learned to drive. I almost screamed at him, "I AM THIRTY!" But I didn't.

Maybe I live in a deep dark cave of naive-ITY, but, I never realized that men turn their heads so much at women who put a little make-up on. I don't get out much, I guess. Good grief.


Let's Not Talk About It....

I woke up to seeing the hugest zit in the world on my chin. It is disgusting. I winced and put some oxy on it.

Fast forward to breakfast:

"What's that white stuff on your chin, Mommy?" Eraser Eater asks.

"Oh," I say, "I have an owie on my chin and I put some medicine on it." I really did not want to think about zits while I was eating Cream of Wheat.

"Oh, is it a pimple?" The Oldest asks between a bite of Cream of Wheat or an egg.

"Eww..." Eraser Eater says, holding his gut.

"How about some ancane? It could be ancane, mom, really. You should...."

"Ancane?" I ask. "You mean 'acne'?"


"Let's not talk about it," I say to my Oldest while Eraser Eater is whimpering in disgust. Remember, he can't even eat when the Oldest does not have a shirt on. He loses his "appletite".

"Eat your breakfast."

Eraser Eater looks down and takes a bite. He looks over at me and then I can tell he is looking at my zit. Well, the oxy covering my zit. The big white spot. His eyes are right on it.

I look down, sort of embarrassed. I craftily put my hand up to cover my chin.

"Eat your breakfast," I say.


We Are Cared For

My Oldest (he is ten) just finished reading the Bible cover to cover this morning. He has been excited for weeks since he reached the New Testament to actually finish. This motivation of his came from when Dear Sir would order him to read five chapters of the Bible before he could play his gameboy. He has had that thing just over a year and the "rule" has probably only been in effect for maybe a year or even less. I am proud of him!

I woke up this morning also to seeing him at the breakfast table finishing up his Language. I almost fainted. He said that he wanted to get a head start on school. He made eggs for me and himself for breakfast, washed the dishes, and then finished the Bible. He called Dear Sir at work and told him what he had done.

He is excited because he gets to go out with Dear Sir tonight for ice cream. This is his reward once he finished the Bible.

Now if I can motivate myself by reading the Bible before I eat any chocolate or something like that. Sheesh. Better go start the Latin video after I get a shirt on my daughter who only has a skirt on. Her hair is in knots and she looks freakish in only a skirt and no shirt. The boys keep telling her to take a trip upstairs to get one on. She says that she can not find a proper shirt to match the skirt (she needs to realize that she needs to WEAR SOMETHING ELSE then). Goodness gracious.

I also woke up to remembering a story of what God had done in our lives when we were living in Idaho and really roughing it. I was amazed that I woke up just remembering this story. It is truly an amazing one to me.
In our house in Idaho we had a sliding glass door that locked for no reason. We had no control over it. I remember this time when my daughter was just born and she was sleeping on our bed and the boys had me come outside for something (I think) important. Eraser Eater (he was probably just barely two) slammed the sliding glass door shut, and then I realized that it had locked, with my newborn baby inside! Luckily I could see her through the window sleeping. I went to the neighbor and she said that we needed to get a locksmith. Pretty soon we could see my daughter on the edge of the bed, screaming her little two month old head off, almost certainly sure to fall off soon if we did not do anything about it and waited the hours until Dear Sir got home (about three?). I was so scared and felt so helpless seeing the girl screaming like that and I could not get to her. The locksmith came and when he finally opened the door (he said it was particularly hard to open---our FRONT door) I did not think I had to pay him. I mean, I knew I had to pay him, but I did not think in emergencies like these people still demanded payment. I know, I was stupid. I was totally willing to pay him when he did ask for payment but secretly I was sad because we only had fifty dollars left to our name for a handful of days until we got paid again and he was asking for forty three of it! I imagined what Dear Sir would say to me when he got home. I just remember being thankful to God that the money was in there, and that nothing happened to our daughter and someone could help at a relatively quick time. I was so scared!

Then, expecting nothing, I went to the mailbox to get the mail that was always running late. We got a strange letter and I opened it. It was a check from George Bush for $750 bucks! I remember after I opened that letter I must have looked like a thankful peasant woman. I lifted the letter in the air, put it to my heart and told God "thank you." I did not have to tell Dear Sir that I had to pay the locksmith nearly our last dime, I had good news for him when he got home instead of a horrific tale with a bad ending of...."Well, we only have seven dollars in the bank now."

I am reminded by my Father this day that He alone cares for us.


Drive Box II

Here is the sequel post to this previous post of mine from last month. Ok, so since you read that now and are updated you realize that it is sort of odd that my neighbors across the street never walk to the mailbox to get their mail. The kids somehow put a stop to this yesterday. I almost fainted when I saw my female neighbor WALK to the mailbox, stand before it, and pull out her mail like all of us other mail retrievers do. It was truly amazing. I thought, "Is she trying to exercise now?" or "Is this some past New Year's resolution that she has just remembered to live out?" Who knows, right? Well, I looked closely out the window beyond my mac and saw a HUGE tree branch jutting out into the street right in front of her mailbox. What I mean is, if she were to try to get her mail with her huge SUV, the branch would probably poke her car, scratch it up, or pop a tire or something while she was doing it. She was smart about this. She apparently saw this. To save further tree branch obstruction, she could have MOVED the thing, but I don't think she wanted to bend down. It was there all the way until this morning when Dear Sir moved it and said, "Who put that branch there?! I had it in the woodpile!"

The Oldest was guilty, he hung his head, and Dear Sir hauled the huge branch back to the woods, shaking his head the whole way there. I guess that means no more exercise for the neighbors.


Motherhood in Your Face

First off, I feel stupid this morning. I have been suffering stupidity all these years in regards to one of my favorite classical CDs. My son is into listening to classical music on his headphones now while he does math and he approached me with my favorite Bach CD. He said, "Mom, I have chosen my CD for today: Bach By Popular Demand." And then he shows it to me. I have never picked the thing up and read the title out loud, I have always sort of read it in my mind and slid the disc in the player. It is supposed to be funny---you know, like, "Back by popular demand." I am an idiot. All these years I have never thought of it that way.

___________________________________(thank you, Susie)

The other day I was walking into my room and the boys were playing games on the laptop. I entered into a sort of argument and finally Eraser Eater says, "Mom! He said 'oh my gosh'!" pointing at my Oldest.

My oldest stutters a bit. "But I----uh---"

I put my arm up in helplessness because I really did not know what to do. Really, who cares? I don't. Not that much. Whenever I say it around them they always tell me that I am saying bad words and I need to stop. So, trying to be a good mother, I tell my oldest not to say those words again.

"But it's not my fault, Mom," he says, "It's all your bad mothering skills that get me in trouble. You say it all the time! It's useless!"

"Thanks," I say.


To add to the sadness of my condition as a human being I have not exercised a lick this week. {Shouts, roars, cheers}


Yesterday I let the kids go outside to have a break for thirty minutes (I know, 30 minutes! What am I thinking? Ten minutes is totally enough time!). I saw that they were having such fun. When I called them all in my oldest yelped into the air like I shot his leg, apparently he was into what he was doing. A few minutes later he came in with my daughter and then Eraser Eater came in wearing his moon boots. Within a single minute Eraser eater had walked around the whole house (I could tell) because he tracked that wonderful Virginia clay all over in nice little clumps. I was fiery hot with anger. I ran over to him, picked him up by his shoulders and removed him from the carpet yelling, "Look what you have done! My carpet!"

"I didn't know..." He slurred and spat.

"You tracked the clay ALL OVER THE CARPET!"

"I didn't do it," chimes in my oldest.

As I slaved over that stupid carpet for forty five minutes I told the boys that I had planned on making bread for dinner at that time and now we will have no bread. {There were gasps.}

After I was finished cleaning up the carpets I decided to get the vinegar water and spray a little on the wood floor by the stairs. Heaven help me, I did not look at the stairs. Eraser Eater had also somehow tracked the clay upstairs and straight to his room. I was pretty much breathing fire at this point and sweating profusely. I was seriously thinking of the Latin chants while I was on my hands and knees---"serva, servae, slave, slave" and their pointing fingers. I got bitter. I am over it now though.

So, Last night we were eating a pretty nice dinner. I had a few rolls left over in the freezer so I pulled them out. There were just enough---one per person. Eraser Eater commented: "What?! Only one roll each?!"
I almost flew at him, but the red wine I was drinking held me down. I felt a little nicer than usual and put up with it (the lush that I am).
"Well," I said sweetly, but firmly, "if I did not have to slave over the floor this morning during my baking bread time, I would have had some bread made. I don't want another comment!"

I think he saw his folly immediately; those kids always think I forget absolutely everything, which I nearly do. The Oldest suddenly grew a beard and turned into "Dad" and scolded him and his insolence, and of course, I had to remind my oldest that he is not "Dad" but merely my child and he needs to simmer down. The beard sank back into his skin to reveal his boyish face and the deeper commanding voice halted and sank, like the beard, into an oblivion (really, a waiting pool for next time he can pretend he is dad) and Mickey Mouse returned on his throne and the high pitched voice of my Oldest again reigned supreme. How many times a day do I do this, you ask? A million. If that is not enough to commit me now, I don't know what is.


Five Things

I am not really out of writing material, I just thought this was fun. I like answering questions sometimes if I can sit down and think about it. I got this from Jennifer at Sob'ah My Soul:

Five (meaningful) things I would do if I had 5 minutes to myself.....

1. Eat a piece of chocolate slowly (for five minutes) instead of inhaling it.
2. Declare that five minutes is not enough as the clock keeps ticking.
3. Read an email all the way through without someone disturbing me.
4. Enjoy silence with prayer involved.
5. Sit outside and read a few paragraphs of the Bible (weather permitting).

Five Items I'd love to get rid of.....
1. That item in my brain that makes me obsessed with my appearance.
2. My eczema
3. My Oral Allergy Syndrome that hinders me from eating any raw food.
4. TV (aka--the time sucker)
5. My lack of faith and trust in God when times get rough.

Five Items I wouldn't part with...
1. Dear Sir, The Oldest, Eraser Eater, and The Daughter
2. My ipod--Dear Sir bought this for me and even though it is a thing, I did not expect it when he gave it to me and I found that his motives in getting it for me were so thoughtful that when I see it it reminds me of him. I love that man.
3. Music--my music, music in general, singing, playing guitar (I really suck but I am getting better).
4. My Wonder Woman Mug that I usually drink water out of because too much caffeine makes me literally ill.
5. Food and red wine. I am really a slosh, but don't tell anyone.

Five words or phrases I would love to hear.......
1. "Sign this recording contract..."
2. This slot is for any unmentionables that I will not say.
3. "Well done my good and faithful servant."
4. "You are not crazy."
5. "You were a pretty good mom---not perfect, but pretty good."

Everyone finds these things burdensome, so if you pass this and happen to read it and it floats your boat, have at it.


The Children are Breaking Down

Chess Club went well for the boys---they had a great time as usual. There is apparently another boy there with Eraser Eater's same name who cheats and lies. He happens to be the son of the guy who organizes and teaches the thing. Argh.

I got to know some of the homeschool ladies; that was nice. I have figured that I have to go up to these people and introduce myself regardless of my introversion. So that is what I did all night; I worked the stinking floor. This one lady was particularly nice. She was easy to talk to and helpful in answering any questions. I asked her which kids were hers, etc and she told me which ones were particularly interested in chess. I told her my Oldest is the chess freak. In fact, he is so proud about it, he needs to really learn some humility, the things he says. He has no mercy, is completely competitive, and uses words like, "crush, defeat, diminish, obliterate..." you get the picture. She had to laugh. I told her that last week he learned from the instructor on how to "unleash the Queen". Nice.

So, as we were talking about his sportsmanship, he comes up to me to inform me that he has won a game. He says to me in a sly way with one foot kicked over another and his hand pointing backward: "I came, I saw, I conquered."

I was a little mortified by my ten year old. Yet he is so predictable. He could draw a silly and poorly drawn picture and be proud of it saying that he could be a Van Gogh. It is his condition thing again. He doesn't exactly mean to be so vain. He has no idea that he is being so!


My daughter just walked in here to get my attention as she is attempting to get dressed. She is five. She wants me to get her some jeans but I am not responding because I am so stinking one track minded. She is standing right next to me pressuring me with a shirt extended before her in her hands as if to tell me that I need to get a match for it in the jeans. Quickly, she whips out the scissors on the computer desk and opens them up. She acts as if she is about to cut the shirt. "Now, if you don't get me some jeans," she says, "I will be forced to do this!"

What the heck?


Acting Out Latin

The boys like to act out our Latin verbs and nouns that we learn when we chant. When they chant the word for "work" they pretend they are hammering, and when they chant the word for "anger" they make excessively angry faces (I especially love the way Eraser Eater does it, he looks ridiculous) and claw at each other like animals. Today, Eraser Eater did the usual, but clawed toward his brother and ended up flying across the room and landing on his butt. He laughed and got up and proceeded to act like a "wave", which was the next word.

During our Latin lessons recently we learned a whole set of feminine nouns. Bear with me here, this is what happened as we chanted each one. The boys, seeing that they did not fit the bill of females, wanted to "act out" as usual, the words that they chant. My daughter and I were chanting with them, so they would point at whoever fit the description of the feminine nouns.

"Puella, puellae, girl, girl" They pointed at my daughter.
"Femina, feminae, woman, woman" They pointed at me.
"Filia, filiae, daughter, daughter" They pointed at my daughter.
"Germana, germanae, sister, sister," They pointed at my daughter again.
"Magistra, magistrae, female teacher," They pointed at me.
"Discipula, discipulae, female student," They pointed at my daughter.
"Domina, dominae, female master," They pointed at me. "Hmm..." I thought.
"Famula, famulae, female servant," They pointed at me. I started laughing.
"Serva, servae, female slave," They coninued to point at me. I was smaking their hands away.
"Amica, amicae, female friend," They pointed at their sister.

"I am your slave?!" I asked them.

"Yeah, you're kind of our slave, Mom. Dad always says that you slave around and do stuff for us. You DO do all the work," chimes in Eraser Eater.

At least they pointed at me when they chanted "Domina." Gee whiz.

This Week Will Be Better

Tonight is Chess Club (I think). The geeks want to go, so I must take them. Thankfully this time I don't have to deal with the oncoming cold like last time and deal with the Pharmacy Wench. I would demand my Sudafed if I had to this time.

The Oldest wanted me to pull out the old history book on the Romans in the shed, so this morning I went out there to retrieve it. He is champing at the bit to read that book. He knows all there is to know about the Greek gods. He corrects me. He has almost read the Bible from cover to cover in a matter of months (Dear Sir makes him read five chapters before he plays gameboy every day) and he makes me look like a buffoon sometimes when I am sitting there teaching the kid and he knows all the stuff already. He can't pronounce the words or anything worth a lick, but he sure can retain the stories and ideas. "Posdin is the god of the sea, yes, he is," he would say. "Atna is the goddess of wisdom, yes she is," he would continue. I taught the boy phonics but it does not help. He does not think phonetically at all. Spelling is a challenge for him.

Eraser Eater is the most shy child I have ever encountered. He can spell and he can spell quick as a whip too. He sort of has a little lispy cute voice (it sounds a little bit lazy) and he has a habit of drooling a bit, so when he spells he splats out some spit here and there because he does it lightening fast and walks around as he is doing it, twitching his hands here and there in the air. The homeschool group I just joined is starting a spelling bee program and I was reluctant to do it with my son because he is so shy. When talking to a woman about it recently I still had not talked to my son about this program and asked him on the fly if he wanted to do it. Eraser Eater lit up the second I mentioned it, and smiled (with a little drool glistening on the corners of his mouth). He nodded his head immediately and said he would be happy to be a part of the spelling bee. I was a little surprised.

Well, the kettle is on the boil and it just went off. My daughter screamed in terror. Apparently she hates the sound of it! The kids were just outside making "mines" in the dirt in the woods and my daughter came in with blue chalk all over her face. I opened the black homeschool supply cabinet and she was within it's doors, hands and arms splayed out, making a weird sound as if to scare me (?) and face all blue. It's like Lord of the Flies around here.


A Few Things I Love

I am in a bad mood (as usual---this week has been terrible in some ways) so I will try to uplift it by thinking of some uplifting things.

I love British rock music like Oasis, Coldplay, Blur, Led Zeppelin and Travis (they are actually from Scotland).

I love to sing.

I love the song "People Are Strange" by the Doors.

I love hardwood floors.

I love mopping them.

I love a very clean, non cluttered house, but it is not usually that way around here with three kids.

I love gardenias.

I love getting flowers but when I recieve them I get embarrassed.

I love getting the bills paid.

I love classic novels---especially Hardy because he is usually tragic and very descriptive.

I love Autumn and all the things that go with it like pumpkin stuff and baked bread and cooler weather.

I love sweaters.

I love getting out of bed and feeling cold floors under my feet.

I love being organized but I am not good at keeping it up.

I love to help people out.

I love giving soap away, smelling it from time to time, looking at it, and bathing with it (that is, natural, fresh soap I make).

I love playing Memory with my daughter and when she gets the Little Mermaid match she glows. My favorite match is Alice in Wonderland so I get this weird excited feeling when I get that one.

I love Wonder Woman and I love my Wonder Woman mug and shirts and I am not afraid or ashamed to show them off.

I love to read St. Paul's letters.

I love getting eggs from a chicken coop. My friend L. lets me get them from hers whenever I am around.

I love making truffles and giving them to people at Christmas time. I love to bake.

I love eating chocolate and Cadbury Eggs at Easter and I especially love dark chocolate.

I love peanut butter crunch and fruity pebbles cereal (but I don't let myself eat them).

I love skim milk.

I love patchouli.

I love inscense and icons and cathedrals but I am not a part of the Orthodox Church.

I love pizza with green peppers, onions, and bacon on it the best.

I love chewing my cheeks but I HAVE to stop.

I love to eat way too much.

I love my ipod.

I love Dear Sir's beard and I love sniffing it.

I love to sniff my younger children. The oldest one is getting too funky for my taste now. :(

I love lounge pants.

I love drinking red wine before I sing, while I make dinner, while I am with friends, and always after five o'clock.

I love to floss my teeth and I love going to the dentist. I particularly enjoy bleeding in the gums when I am done but that is not too often.

I love reading books in bed before bed with Dear Sir. I feel like the Brady's and somehow it is just "right."

I love Cliff Bars.

That's all for now, I have too much to do again!

Have a good weekend!



Me answering the phone one day:


"Yes, Mrs. Johnston?" She had a thick, Asian accent.

"No, I am not Mrs. Johnston. I am the lucky recipient of Mrs. Johnston's OLD number."

"Oh, sorry, that's ok though. Am I speaking to the lady of the house?"

"Yes, but--" I began

"I wanted to tell you about protection for your home and you---"

"I am not interested," I said. I usually hang up on these people but I thought I would let her know a few things. "I am also on the 'no call' list," I finished.

She kept talking. And talking. And talking faster. I had no idea what she was saying, her accent was so thick and she was just running all she had to say together.


She kept going. Yap, yap, yap.

"Excuse me. Excuse me. EXCUSE ME!" I shouted.

Silence and then, "Yes, ma'am?"

"I have a question for you," I began.

"Yes, ma'am?"

"Are you human?"

"Wha? Huh? What do you mean?"

"Are you a human being?" I asked her.

"Uh," she giggles, "Yes, of course."

"Good, because I can trust you understand me when I tell you that I am on the no call list and you are calling my home illegally."

"I am sorry to hear that," she said and then CLICK.


We're Up

We are finally up for our gig, the bands and I. Buy some tickets and see me and the freaks for a good cause. The time is November 7th.



Today we went to the Fall Fiber Festival in Montpelier and it was so muddy and sludgy from two days of rain, that we gave up and went home with the muddiest, brownest, shoes in all creation. My daughter was wearing her brand new pink mary janes and she was in despair because she thought they were ruined. They weren't. I cleaned them up well. We stood in a mucky puddle of mud and watched the Sheep dog trials for a bit and tried not to look at our feet. It was bad. I can't even express how bad it was. I mean, the mud. I have never seen so much mud in my life. It was daunting too, because you could not escape it. Worms and such were crawling all in it (even big white catepillars) and nothing was solid. I thought about buying a sweater or something, but you literally needed a boat or those kind of boots that you wear out flyfishing---truly. It was unhealthy and wrong.

Will post some pictures of the sheep or something later. I am too tired. I tried and then it didn't work, so I thought I would post something else instead. I guess.


The Morning of No Sleep

I was so looking forward to this morning. I was so happy that I could sleep in finally (maybe until nine?) and here I go waking up before eight. Listen though, I usually have trouble getting up every morning on a week day and wish I could keep sleeping. I am molasses head. Today was the day. I totally ruined it.

I was not comfortable enough all night so I turned around a lot. I had garlic on my hands from making a marinade earlier in the day (I am usually good at getting that off) and I whiffed it all night. I felt stuffy and sneezy and my throat was scratchy again. Then, to top it off, I had weird dreams of being back at my old house in Idaho and moving back in it. I was totally depressed in the dream. They put in ugly burnt orange carpet while we were gone and expected us to live on it. I somehow disclosed some sort of information (this is a latter, more complicated part of the dream that still involved my old house) and so people were coming at me with guns and I had to think of tricky ways to get out of the house. I had my running clothes on and could not run.

So, I wake up before I want to, the weather is divinely rainy and cold outside, and everyone else (I think besides my daughter) is cozy and toasty in their beds.

I am a failure at running lately too. I have been reading a lot about people who are running and they are running more than me presently. I did not realize that I was competitive like that. I have only been running three miles MWF and one day on the weekend, so that totals 12 miles a week. Pretty pathetic for me. I have been trying to walk on the off days when I am on the phone, so that helps me out. I like moving, but when I school as intense as I do I don't get to do it as often as I like. It is sad because about two months ago I was running 25+ miles a week, but really, if I can just do twenty a week I would be glad with that. Sometimes it turns into just another thing on my list I have to accomplish during the day. The plight of homeschooling mothers, I say.

I am going to brew up some coffee and make some pancakes. I bought this HUGE pack of maple syrup and pancake mix (I know, I gave up making them from scratch---I continue to be a loser) at Costco so I better get cracking on getting that used at least a little!

I am so not a morning person. I bet you can tell.


Yo-Yo on the Butt

Dear Sir is sick with the cold that I probably passed to him and tonight I put the kids to bed late because I was out and came back late. I came home to the kids playing shadow puppets in my five year old daughter's room, getting all sweaty. They were a little wound up. My daughter kept saying "My own personal yo-yo!" over and over again as I was going through the bedtime routine of teeth brushing, medicine, and pajamas. We were getting down to the teeth brushing in the bathroom when I had had enough of the yo-yo outburst.

"That's it," I said. "If I hear you say 'my own personal yo-yo' one more time I will pound you with a personal yo-yo on your butt!"

She was goofy. They all were. I heard a cackle in the background.

"I'd like to see that!" Yelled my daughter in a cascade of giggles.

"Oh really?!" I said.

"YES!" Yelled Eraser-Eater, getting ready for bed too, but so excited about the yo-yo on the butt statement that he ran toward me with his sweats around his ankles. He had his arms up in the air, fingers making a tickling motion in sheer taunt fashion.

"Ok!" I yelled. "I'll show you and your big ol' head!" I tackled him as he laughed his head off and held him down on his stomach. I proceeded to take my fists and punch each butt cheek alternately (not too hard) as he writhed around in laughter.

"How do you like that?!!!" I yelled, in mock anger.

I sat back and waited for his answer.

"It was sort of soothing," he said and laughed like crazy.

Then they all proceeded to lay themselves down on their stomachs saying, "I want to have my butt soothed!"

What am I teaching these kids?


Some things I hate

I hate having cramps.

I hate having fat under my ribs.

I hate Citrucel.

I hate shrimp because I hate worms and shrimp are sort of like worms.

I hate it when people talk over other people.

I hate being interrupted.

I hate Kramer on Seinfeld. He is too clumsy and he drives me nuts.

I hate how George always gets girlfriends---it makes no sense.

I hate it when people refer to themselves in the third person---for instance: "Mr. T doesn't like it when people back talk him!"

I hate being hot.

I hate trying to like football. It is frustrating.

I hate Verizon people. They don't ever help.

I hate it when people hate how I use the word hate. They are always sunshiny chipper people. I am not like that.

I hate snapping in my ears.

I hate whines.

I hate when someone is driving slow when I am in a hurry.

I hate Wal*Mart.

I hate barking dogs.

I hate cheesy lyrics.

I hate cheerleaders (no offense, Emily).

I hate (usually) modern novels.

I hate stretch marks (on myself).

I hate hair clots (especially wet and soppy in a drain).

I hate coinage.

I hate the smell of coinage.

I hate fingerprints on cheese, touching cheese, and cheese that is luke warm (sick!).

I hate mushrooms because they look like slugs, have a weird spongey texture and taste like dirt.

I hate chocolate haystacks because I got food poisoning once and I threw them up.

I hate John Denver, James Taylor, John Cougar Mellencamp, the Boss, and others that fit that group (but I am open, if you want me to sing them).

I am starting to really hate fried chicken. I make it too much for Dear Sir. I don't even eat with the family on those nights anymore.

I hate having athlete's foot.

I hate messes.

I hate spilled milk.

I hate jewelry (especially metallic, but usually any adornment is a struggle for me).

I usually hate popcorn.

I hate award shows.

I hate sneezing.

I guess since I just complained so much about what I hate, I will have to write about what I love to balance it out! I am so sure I hate many more things, but my brain is fried and I am sick and tired.


Pharmacy Wench

I just got back from taking my boys to the chess club. It was a good experience for the most part. I met a lady who has a boy with Asperger's and he is afraid of flying insects too! She described the same stories as I had all summer. My mouth could not stop dropping open.

The bad part of the chess thing is that I was steadily getting sick. My daughter has been sick with a cold for the past two days and I thought I was careful with the germs and all that, but you know, here I am getting it. I felt it on the way there but then kept sneezing and the nose started going. Thankfully the chess club meets at a really top notch grocery store (in the restaurant department) and so afterwards I went to the pharmacy to get medicine. I wanted the old Tylenol Cold you could buy that you now have to sign for. I went to the pharmacy counter with a couple of boxes of kleenex and two boys bouncing around beside me. Well, sort of beside me.

I asked the pharmacist for the meds.
"I want the cold medicine that you used to have to sign for or you have to sign for..." I began.

There were two pharmacists working. The man got up immediately to grab whatever it was that I was about to ask for but the woman sort of stopped him and said, "Wait. You still have to sign for it. What are your symptoms?" She sort of asked it lazily like I was a moron.

"You know, a runny nose, I am sure I will be coughing tomorrow---cold symptoms." I thought, "this is cool. She is going to help me. She is willing to help me find the right drug."
Was I wrong.

"Well then take Claritin," she said.

"I take Claritin already," I said.

"Are you congested?" She asked.

"Not yet."

"Then take Claritin."

"So, let me understand. In order to get some Sudafed I have to be congested?"

"Sudafed will not help your symptoms." I thought she was being awfully dumb. I told her that I was STARTING to get a cold; I did not have a full blown cold yet. I was preparing like people prepare for a hurricane or a drought.

At this moment the boys were falling apart and freaking out and I was ready to pull this lady's hair. "You know what? Just forget it." And I walked away.

I went to the stupid aisle and bought some nyquil.

I really hope I don't get so sick like I did last cold, which was not long ago. I don't get it either. I was really taking care of myself. Maybe it was the four slices of pizza and the ice cream cone! Ha ha.

Well, good night. I am going to call it a day.


Nothing much is going on the past day or two. That is a good thing---Dear Sir always says that no news is good news.

Tonight I am going to meet some homeschool group for a Chess club. The boys are really excited. I am a little nervous because homeschool moms scare me quite a bit. I am not a fan of the whole "homeschooling is my life and I am a homeschool mom!" mentality. It took me literally YEARS of doing it to finally tell people that I homeschool within the first ten minutes of meeting me. I mean, that is not the only thing I am about. Homeschooling is really not what I am about at all. It is just something I happen to do because our family senses the immediate need.

With that said, I have never been a part of a homeschool group ever. Again, it has always intimidated me. I am glad that I have a good five years under my belt of knowing what I do best to stand my ground when a bunch of opinionated women are around me. But I am talking about it like it is a battlefield. It shouldn't be. And it may well not be; I am talking in semi-ignorance.

If you guys have been keeping up with me at all lately, the "stack" still is in its place but knocked down some; I have not removed it. Dear Sir keeps saying that he will clean up the computer desk; I think that will happen when he is on vacation next week. Yes, he is taking vacation to eliminate the masses of lists he has made over the past few months. We all love these kinds of vacations. It works well for us. And, we don't spend money either going somewhere. We have enough stuff to see here anyway. We live in freakin Virginia! One hour from the Smithsonian, so we can't complain or have an excuse to leave for a bit. Which brings me to mention that we will visit the art gallery when Dear Sir is on vacation too.

I am sorry I have not been funny lately. I have been way too serious. I have not lost any kids lately either, so maybe I am growing out of my "Code Yellow" stage (look up Code Yellow on my blog and you will then be informed of what I refer to). I also don't feel so intimidated down here (I don't live in perfect Fairfax anymore), so I can be as hick as I want (if I really wanted to).

Gotta run.


Hints of Middle-Earth

Here is Eraser Eater standing next to the root of a "felled" tree in the Chancellorsville Battlefield yesterday. We all felt a little bit like we were walking in Middle Earth. We tread about a little over two miles of heavenly historical bliss and then went home and ate some hot wings. It was fun though; the leaves are on the brink of turning their myriad colors, and that smell of burning "something" is in the air. What is that? Is it Persephone finally making that journey to the Underworld to be with her husband, Hades?

I have almost had this blog for a year now.

October has to be the coolest month.