Friday, October 29, 2010

Ouch, Your Honor!

Today at the placement hearing I attended, my supervisor smacked me when it was my turn to speak to the judge. Apparently he wanted me to stand up, and that was his idea of giving me a little hint. There was an awkward moment as the judge just stared at us. I wanted to file a dependency petition right then and there to remove myself from my sup's "care", 'cause I'm pretty sure that was abuse. And I have witnesses.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

No Thanks, I'm Full

As most of you know, hubby and I hit the jackpot in terms of having unique children. I know, I know; every child is unique. But you gotta admit-- mystery dermatological diseases and quirky social disorders are not something that the average parent gets to navigate through. So, needless to say, we've dabbled in all sorts of health-related fields over the years. This week we explored naturopathy. (Naturopathy is not a new concept for us, of course-- raw diet, anyone? But I've never taken both the kiddos to see an actual naturopathic doctor for testing before.)

And you know what we found out from the naturopath? We are not allowed to eat food anymore. It's rather unfortunate, really-- I've always enjoyed eating. But the naturopath identified the children's intolerances and in our family we have an "all for one, one for all" food policy, which means that if one of us isn't allowed to eat something, nobody else gets it either. (At least, not while anyone is looking. Hey, I'm not an angel, folks.)

For LM, milk and soy are now off limits. For Ruby Jane, it's potatoes. At first glance these might seem like simple (although unfortunate) foods to avoid. But what you may not realize is that there are milk, soy and potato derivatives in literally everything. Regular salt? Off-limits due to its potato-derived anti-caking agent. Most rice milk? Off-limits due to a milk-derived calcium additive. Chocolate? Soy-lecithin. Bread and meat? Most likely have potato starch or milk-derived preservatives. (Unless I get the uber-expensive stuff at health food stores.) So, what does that leave us? Celery and water, my friends. Celery and water.


Now, if hubby and I get tested it's quite possible that celery will be taken off the list of allowable food items. So hubby and I will remain in blissful ignorance-- for now....

Any bets on how long this is gonna last?

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Video Du Jour

I have a video quote (of sorts) to share this time. In it you will notice a few things-- one of which is the fact that I find my son hilarious when really I should be correcting him. You might also notice that LM finds the image of himself (which he can see while I'm recording him) quite distracting.

I'm gonna have to do some research to find out what the Bible says about archenemies, 'cause I don't have an answer for that one. As usual, LM's mind is operating on a more profound level than mine.

On to the "regular" quotes:

1. LM: (commenting on hubby's breath) "Ewwwww! That smells disgusting!"
Hubby: "I'm not feelin' a lot of love right now."
LM: "Saying 'ewwww!' isn't loving? I don't get it."
(We know son, we know....)

2. Ruby: (trying to assist her littlest cousin in the bathroom) "Mister, are you pretending to go potty?"
Mister: "Yeah. I preten'n to go potty. Wanna see my butt? Wanna see my butt?!"
Ruby: "Ummmm, no thanks."
(Boys.... Do they ever tire of showing us their favorite parts? Ever?)

3. Hubby: (seeing our daughter looking all comfy-cozy) "I'm gonna take Ruby's book page and get into my bathrobe."
(Or, would you be "taking a page from her book" rather? I'd say skip the bathrobe and go straight to bed, babe.)

4. LM: "Mom, you rock!"
Me: "Ah, thanks, bud!"
LM: "You could rock a guitar! You could rock it anywhere!"
(Sometimes LM gets his metaphors a little too on the literal side.)

5. Me: (with Mister on my lap waving a pair of toy scissors in front of my face) "I'm scared!"
The Bopper: "Don't be scared! Trust in the Lord with all your heart!"
Me: "Okay!" (Mister then proceeds to pinch my face-- hard-- in between the scissors.)
Me: "OW! Bopper, I trusted in the Lord but still got hurt. Now what?"
The Bopper: (thinking a moment) "Make Mister get off-- just go give him to my mom."
Me: (removing the tike from my lap) "Good idea."
(As usual, I enjoy dissecting the profundity of kids' answers. And I came up with this: trust God always, but don't let that stop you from removing the wild kid with scissors from your lap before he attacks your face.)

6. LM: (looking in the mirror after I had unsuccessfully attempted to tame his morning hair) "Looks sexy!"

7. LM: (after telling me that one of his classmates informed him their school is haunted) "Looks like I have a mystery on my hands!"

8. LM: (upon seeing my grandma and uncle who were visiting from out of town) "Did you bring us something?"
Me: (slightly horrified) "If they didn't that would be okay-- because you're happy to see them whether they bring you something or not, right?"
LM: (looking back to my grandma) "Yeah." (Pause.) "But did you?"
(As a matter of fact, she did!)

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, all! :)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Zdravo, Dober Dan!

Ummmm.... I just discovered the confusing "stats" tab on my Blogger dashboard. It mostly tells me information I don't understand in the least, but this little tidbit I do understand: someone from Slovenia has checked out my blog this month. Uh, I don't know anyone from Slovenia. But I would like to extend a heartfelt "dobrodosli!" in case they should ever return. (And to the few Canadians who stopped by, "Hello, eh!")


I'm growing something in a jar on my counter. On purpose. I'm not even sure what it is, but in a week when it's all fermenty-like, I'm gonna make my daughter drink it. To be honest, I feel a little bit like a witch who's mixing up some nasty potion for my hapless victim.

Kombucha. Ever heard of it? I have-- but I've never tasted it let alone fermented the stuff right in my own kitchen. It's just one of the many experiments (in a long line) that we've dabbled in for the sake of Ruby's mystery disease. A little old lady I don't even know gave me a "start" of the stuff so that we can mix the magical brew and cure Ruby once and for all! (If I had a dime for every time we've been given a "miracle cure" I'd be in Hawaii right now.) Heck, we're always game for a dietary adventure, though-- 'cause you never know when something might actually work, right?

So if you come over and see the bowl of brown liquid with a blobby mass growing inside it, know that it is not a science fair project gone terribly wrong. It is far, far worse than that. It is Kombucha. (Whatever the heck that is exactly.) But hey, at least I don't have to drink the stuff. That's Ruby's job. Wahahahahahaaa! Ahem, I mean, poor little thing....

Sunday, October 17, 2010

What's Your Function?

Commas are very, very important-- as are conjunctions. When they're not used appropriately, nauseating food may result. Like the sign I saw today advertising "Cornbread Chili" and "Coleslaw Brownies". How disgusting! And to think that something delicious like "Cornbread, Chili, Coleslaw and Brownies" could have been served instead-- if only some decent punctuation had been implemented. What a shame! All those poor customers needlessly eating cabbage-infused brownies and dry, crumbly chili as a result....

So, let that be a lesson to restaurants everywhere: food tastes better with a dash of proper grammar! (And since you cannot eat my writing, I hereby exempt myself from my own advice. Thank you. That is all.)

Saturday, October 16, 2010

He Does That....

We were at a busy playground this afternoon, the kids and I. I always keep a hawk-eye on LM at these places because the boy loves talking to strangers-- and this particular crowd was pretty ghetto. But within the span of about 5 seconds I lost sight of him. He does that...wanders off. (I estimate that at least 10 years have been taken off my life span due to moments like these.) But I finally spotted him running toward the covered picnic area. He was dodging behind beams ala James Bond before breaking out into an army crawl on the concrete ground under the tables. What the...? When I finally caught up to him, he was already speaking to a young woman with her daughter and grandmother. He was apologizing for something.

"He's apologizing for being mean to my daughter," the young woman explains.

"What did you do, LM?" I ask, not having seen whatever encounter was being discussed.

"Well, I accidentally stepped on her finger when she fell down," he explains. The mother of the little girl then adds, "I believe he growled at her afterward-- so she started to cry and ran over here." Yep-- he does that!

"Ohhhhh," I say, not knowing what else to do. After all, it looked like LM had already taken care of the problem on his own. But LM wasn't through. He addressed the child's mother again.

"Yeah, I almost didn't come over here. I was scared you'd kill me. But then I thought, 'hey, it's the right thing to do!' and so I snuck over to apologize."

"Well, that was very brave of you!" exclaims the grandmother.

"Yeah! Just look at how strong I am!" LM proceeds to roll up his sleeve and display his impressive bulk. "Check out these muscles!" he invites. A chorus of ohhhhhs and ahhhhhs follow. The little girl is smiling now, too. "Hey, let me make it up to you," LM adds. He opens up the little black backpack that is his constant companion on outings and takes out his collection of prized possessions. "Let me show you my toys-- you can play with them for a while!" A very generous offer. But oh my, look at the time! I convince LM to put his toys back so that we can go and collect his sister who is playing the "I don't know these people" act.

We leave the trio to their KFC lunch, all of them smiling. I tell LM how proud I am that he took the initiative to go and apologize to the girl, but his mind is already on to the next thing. But my mind isn't, and I find myself smiling too. He does that...makes me smile.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Charmed, I'm Sure

It always brings a smile to my face when I hear of LM's antics second-hand from someone who has had the pleasure of his company while I was away. He is an equal-opportunity embarrasser-- so anyone is fair game. It sorta reinforces the fact that I do not make this stuff up.

Take, for instance, the story my mom relayed to me this evening about a fun excursion she had with LM today. You see, LM likes to start up conversations with strangers. And, depending on the stranger, these exchanges can range from quaint to mortifying. I don't know where this particular experience landed on that scale (I wasn't there, after all), but it was enough to send my mom into fits of giggles retelling it while my dad just shook his head, speechless.

According to my mother, LM found a nice elderly couple to cozy up to while he was taking a quick snack break at a major shopping center. First he commented on the sheer size of their grocery haul, and then he suggested possible ways they could use their bounty (like, make Chinese food, for instance). But it wasn't until he began giving them advice for how to look younger that my mom lost it. (I believe LM suggested hair dye and wrinkle cream.) Fortunately the couple found him charming. At least, that's what I assumed when my mom informed me the lady was covering her face in laughter by the end of their chat. I imagine LM made for a lovely dinnertime tale at someone's house this evening.

Ah, yes, that's my boy. So if you ever want to find out if that certain pair of pants really makes your butt look big-- you know who to ask. Heck, he might just tell you regardless.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Gosh, you learn something new everyday, don'tcha? For instance, today I learned that I am a good candidate to lead a life of crime without fear of leaving my fingerprints behind to incriminate me. Huh? What does that even mean? Oh, I'll tell you what that means. That means my fingerprints are virtually useless and unreadable for law enforcement purposes. I found that out today as I was, well, getting fingerprinted. (Don't anybody get alarmed-- it was just a security screen to allow me to officially work at my son's school.) Apparently I have too many wrinkles in my skin that impede the normal spiral pattern. They actually accused me of not moisturizing my hands enough, but I told them (and I would know, thank you very much) that my fingers are simply like that. What can I say? I have the hands of a 90-year old woman. They told me I would need to repeat the experience because my prints could not be scanned properly, and next time would I please come fully moisturized and ready. Yeah, sure, I'll do that. (In the meantime, I'm already scoping out banks.)

Anyway, that has nothing to do with any of the following quotes:

1. LM: "How much money do we have for the carnival?"
Me: "Not very much-- so don't ask for a lot of stuff-- just $15."
LM: "$15?! Ca-CHING!!"

2. LM: (after watching Survivor) "Dad, you're like an older tribe, I'm like a younger tribe."
(Yeah, enjoy it while you can, buddy.)

3. LM: (to one of Ruby's soccer teammates) "You look more like a mom than a soccer player."
(What every 10-year old girl wants to hear, I'm sure.)

4. Me: (to Ruby after she'd made fun of the mangled waffles she cooked up for us) "It doesn't matter what they look like...."
LM: (interrupting me) "Yeah! It just matters that she's a sister in Christ!"
(Well, I was gonna say, "It just matters how they taste." But I like his answer better.)

5. M-i-L (discussing Ruby's soccer game) "It looked like the ball was decepted!"
(I think M-i-L was creating her own word here by combining "deflected" and "intercepted". Hey, it could catch on in the sports world-- you never know.)

6. LM: (offering his pre-dinner prayer) "Dear Jesus, thank you for this day and this dreamy food!"
(If only he thought so highly of all my culinary creations.)

7. LM: (when I told him his TV quota had been filled for the day) "But Mom, you don't know the rules."
(Not only do I know them, kiddo, I wrote 'em!)

8. Me: "Can you guys give me ideas for Nini's birthday?"
Ruby: "For presents?"
Me: "No, for dinner."
Ruby: "Oh, I was going to say underwear, 'cause grown-ups always like boring presents."
(Indeed, we do. And to anyone who cares to know, I love getting underwear.)

9. LM: "Today Auna let me copy her spelling words. Wasn't that so nice?"
Me: "Well.... It sounds like cheating-- I hope it wasn't."
LM: (cheerily) "It was! But don't worry, I won't tell my teacher."
(Oookay, apparently a little chat is in order.)

10. Ruby: (regarding a highly made-up woman) "She looks like she put her makeup on with a paintball gun."
(I hope she remembers that woman during her first venture with eye liner someday....)

11. LM: (upon waking) "I feel refreshingly nice!"
(Oh, that we all could say as much at 7:30am....)

Well, it's time for bed. I have a very busy day tomorrow. First Chase, then Bank of America, and then perhaps Wells-Fargo-- but we'll see how I'm feeling.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Neti...Or Noti?

There are two types of people in the world: those who neti, and those who don't. Me? I neti. In fact, I've turned into a one woman walking advertisement for neti pots. I admit that at first the very idea of neti pots not only repulsed me, it scared the bajeezers outta me. Some of you may recall that last year I dabbled in nasal irrigation by snorting salty water up my nose through cupped hands. I believe I described it as "do-it-yourself waterboarding". Yeah, that didn't work out so well for me.

So this year when I realized that my first-cold-of-the-season congestion was turning into an outright sinus infection, I decided I was desperate enough to buy an actual neti pot. And let me tell you, it was love at first...irrigation.

Since then I've been conducting an informal poll of peeps with colds at the moment. Do they neti, or do they stubbornly choose to suffer? It's a fairly even split. Even now as some of you read this you're experiencing one of two reactions: "Me and my neti pot are tight fo' shizzle!" or "I pity the fool who irrigates their nasal passages!" (Yes, these are actually your exact thoughts.)

As for me, I've been converted. I'd love to convert you, too. So come by anytime and I'll give you a demo! I'll even shove the neti pot up your nose and lean you over the sink in proper position just to get you started. Trust me, you'll thank me profusely. You might even take me out for tea afterward in gratitude. And maybe a pastry, too-- but just tea would be fine.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Hindsight Is 20/20

I am exhausted. I should totally be in bed right now, but look at me up blogging instead. Go figure.... It's just that I spent the entire day at my son's school doing vision screening, among other things. What are my credentials for vision screening, you ask? Well.... I wear glasses for starters. The fact that my own vision is atrocious oughta count for something, right? 'Cause, dang, I've been to oodles of eye appointments.

Actually, I have to be honest-- I have no idea why anyone would put me in charge of testing children's eye sight. They must've been pretttty desperate. And there were no real guidelines to follow so I sorta just made up my own. What else was I supposed to do? You see, I'm learning that volunteering in general requires a bit (Remember-- it's my blog, I can make up whatever words I wanna.) So in the absence of directions, my motto is "make up your own"! Sure, I was scared the first few times I tried this because I am an absolute dyed-in-the-wool direction follower. I read user guides and instruction manuals like they were the latest Grisham novel. My mom once got me a balloon that said, "Love Rules"-- our inside joke being that "love" was the verb and "rules" was the noun instead of vice versa. But we rule lovers are oftentimes not ideal volunteers, let's face it-- we're annoying. We ask too many dang questions! But it's a habit that gets a little more broken with every new volunteer opportunity.

So there I was, telling kids to cover up one eye and then the next, and then having them read the rows of letters from my handy-dandy eye chart. How many letters did they have to get wrong until I declared them to be 20/30, 20/40, 20/50 or beyond? Heck if know-- nobody bothered to explain that part to me! So I implemented my own set of criteria based upon what seemed logical at the time. (Ummmm, I don't think any of your children attend my son's school, but if they do, you might want to consider getting their eyes rechecked by a professional.) But did I get the job done? You betcha! And with a cheery smile to boot? Oh, yeah! And possibly even correctly? Well...possibly....

But the best part is knowing that I just gave a boost to the local optometric businesses, because a lot of kids are going to need professional vision testing after today. I mean, a lot. Ahhh, all in a day's work!