Wednesday, December 31, 2008
I was going to do a post about New Year's Resolutions, so I pulled up my post from last year to see what resolutions I made then. I didn't keep them so I made a modified list on January 31 of last year. I tend to notsomuch keep my resolutions every year so I'm using reverse psychology this time. That's right. Uh-huh. I'm always thinking. tapping the ole noggin
This year, I've decided to make a fool-proof list of resolutions that I'll be able to keep. Wink wink, I really won't be able to keep them, but that's ok because it's all part of my master plan!
1. I will procrastinate every chance I get. I will put off til tomorrow what I can do today on a regular basis.
2. I will not lose weight. I will be sure to not lose a single ounce this year. I will not start eating healthier and I will not start exercising.
3. I will lose my temper with my kids daily.
4. I will make sure my laundry is piled to the ceiling every day. I won't manage to get the clean folded clothes put into their drawers. I will never be totally caught up with my laundry.
5. I won't get more than 4 hours of sleep a night. I'll make sure I stay up too late every night.
Yep, that should do it. Given my less than stellar record of following through with New Year's Resolutions, I'll never do any of these things. And that's a good thing. You know, because of the whole reverse psychology thing. And, if by chance I keep my resolutions for the first time in my life, at least I can say that I kept my resolutions! It's a winning situation either way! See? I'm way too smart for one person.
Anyway, I want to thank all of you for reading my blog this past year. Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to leave me comments here and write me emails. Hearing from you guys really does make my day! :) I hope you all have a totally awesome 2009! Did I just write "totally awesome"? What year is it again??? LOL!
Have a wonderful, prosperous, healthy, happy, blessed 2009!
Posted by Dawn at 2:25 PM
Please, pay attention. Listen closely. Grab a pen and some paper. Take notes.
LESSON ONE: Learn how to spell
If you want to get the most out of Google, you really should have a clue how to spell. If you can't spell, USE A DICTIONARY OR SPELL CHECK, for crying out loud. Let's take a look at some examples of actual search phrases I found on my Stat Counter that contain misspelled words, shall we?
I'm not sure, but I'm guessing they were looking for a recipe.
mr clean magic reasures
Yes, Mr. Clean makes Magic Erasers and Mr. Clean also reassures you that it's ok if the kids colored on the wall.
wahat to do for sour feet from walking
Clearly, this person misspelled the word "what". But, I'm curious; do you really think they have sour feet? Or perhaps they have sore feet?
Now, I'm sure these people were looking for something entirely different, but their misspelled words brought them to my blog. Too bad for them.
LESSON TWO: Google is not a Magic 8 Ball. Repeat after me. "Google is not a Magic 8 Ball. It cannot give me advice. It cannot tell me what to do. It cannot solve my problems. It is a search engine. Not Magic 8 Ball. Search engine."
These are the kinds of phrases that do not belong in a Google search:
what is fun stuff that'll make me happy?
Reply hazy, try again
how to make mom say yes to picking sister up early?
Outlook not so good
should I remove the dead animal smell from my 8 year old son's backpack?
My sources say no
what do I do if I was walking around and now my feet hurt?
Concentrate and ask again
If my license is suspended when do you have till you have to retake driving test in new York?
Cannot predict now
is it a Myth pinching your nose to alleviate the stubbing your toe pain in your toe?
Signs point to yes
will slimming tea make me poop grease?
Without a doubt
My tooth is super lose and its dangling by 1 gum what do I do?
Ask again later
my son flushed a squirt gun down the toilet and now it is clogged what should i do?
LEARN TO USE GOOGLE PROPERLY!
LESSON THREE: The random statement. Google is not your diary. You do not need to type miscellaneous random sentences into the search engine for no particular purpose. Call up a friend, join a chat room or message board, or talk to your spouse and tell them your news instead. These kinds of statements do not belong in a Google search:
i love camping because there's no schedule
Oh yeah, "love" and "camping" belong in the same sentence. Not.
my daughter has little ponytails
talking with my mom is hilarious
Umm yeah, "hilarious". That's the word I was looking for.
i still can't hear after my ear infection
What? (BAAAA! I just crack myself up. That one never gets old!)
my 2 year old son stuck a macaroni noodle up his nose
Oh good! I thought you were going to say a fusilli noodle which would just be plain silly.
my husband didn't buy me a birthday present
It could be worse; he could've gotten you a present at the gas station on the way home from work.
my 13 year old son is moody and pouts
Your point is...?
At the age of 10, my entire fifth grade class went to a soup kitchen, a non-profit organization helping feel homeless people five days a week
Good for you!
LESSON FOUR: Another way that some people use Google is to see if they can end up in one of my Google posts. Some people think it makes them famous to wind up featured here. For example:
would you like some buttpaste mom2my6pack
No thank you. I haven't been experiencing any chafing lately.
So what I like a tooth go for because I said so dawn rocks!
I'm not sure what language this is, but ok. Ummm thanks?
Can I send you hate me because I said so
Uhhh sure? Just don't send me hate mail, please.
I forgot that wearing pants clogs because I said so
Yes, I forget that sometimes too.
Im a mean mom becuase I said juicebutts poop on bats
LOL!!! You said, "juicebutt"! LOL!
Why does bat poop lead to dawn’s blog?
Because you people keep Googling it!
Eat bat poop because I said so
I think I'll pass. I've already eaten, thank you.
Everybody have fun tonight, everybody wang chung tonight what sitcom
Aha! Busted! I caught you cheating!
LESSON FIVE: Do not use Google while under the influence. AKA: Friends don't let friends Google drunk. When you use Google after drinking heavily, your searches show up in people's Stat Counters and they WILL make fun of you. For example:
mooo-oom he’s proud of peeing on a black eye boob
I don't even want to know.
Socks on her handsglamour pills sideways
Have another drink, my friend.
Zing zing zing like a washing machine blog
with sound effects and everything
I think you're starting to slur
Got glasses picor pics or picture or pictures –his glasses site:blogspot.com
Uh huh, I know exactly what you're talking or talk or speaking or speak about.
Imagine being in an ant farm boy with poptart breath
Seriously, drugs are bad for you, dude!
Blog I don’t know anything but here’s what I think the boy he needed to pee
A letter to my sister to let her know that I still love here chair for here
You started off ok, but then just had to go and have that last glass of wine...
Baby swallowed stapler
Crap! And I thought it was bad when my baby swallowed a couple staples!
you know who i said i do she said you do i said do but i really don't because it's you that i really want.
My head is spinning.
Win thi lootery book
This concludes today's class. Please folks, study your notes. Share your new found knowledge with other poor Google-impaired folks. Together, we can rid my blog of bat poop searches.
Posted by Dawn at 12:13 PM
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
I think I said something calm and collected like, "What the crap are you doing?!!! JACKSON! Take that out of here! Why? Why? Why would you scoop up a dead animal and bring it into the house?!?!?!!!!! OH! MY! GOSH! Use your brain, boy!"
As he turned to leave, he wavered a bit and the shovel started to tip. Oh great, he's going to drop a nasty, dead bunny on the floor, I thought. I think I yelled at him in another language at this point. It's really all a blur though.
What goes on in the head's of boys? Seriously, what on earth are they thinking when they do something like this? After I had calmed down (you know, like 5 hours later), I asked Jackson, "Why did you bring that rabbit into the house?"
"I wanted to show it to you," he answered.
"Did you really think I would like seeing a dead rabbit in the house???"
"I dunno," he replied.
"Seriously, WHY did you do that?" I asked. I really wanted to know what makes his brain tick.
Again came his reply of, "I dunno."
I give up.
Posted by Dawn at 4:02 PM
Sunday, December 28, 2008
But first, I just wanted everyone to know that the winner of the Macy's gift card and the $20 for charity, Alane, asked that the money be donated to CureSearch in Dante Taraborelli's (carepage TrooperDante) honor to fight this beast called cancer. (Dante is an absolutely adorable little boy who has also been battling neuroblastoma and could really use your prayers.) She also wanted the gift card to be sent to cute little Dante's mom instead of keeping it herself. Thank you for your generosity, Alane!
OK, here we go....
Orbit has Mojito flavored gum??? Lord! Where have I been??? Please tell me it actually contains alcohol?!?
Unfortunately, it does not. But it does cover the smell of alcohol on your breath nicely. (Actually, I'm just assuming here.)
Hi Dawn, I have a Sunday sound out question. I think I remember you saying your computer was in your bedroom and now you own a laptop. Where do you sit to have alone time to write your dailey post?
I usually sit in the family room to blog. Sometimes I hide in my bedroom. To work on my book, however, I usually go to the library where it's nice and quiet and no one bugs me.
Dawn, how did you get to be so funny!?
OK, I'm going to go out on a limb here and assume you're not talking about my looks.
Eh, it's not me. The people around me just do funny things and I feel the need to relate them to you. Because I like to make people laugh. And I like to get comments from readers. And I like to talk. A lot. And I like positive feedback because I have a fragile ego. And I basically need people to tell me how awesome I am. Maybe it's a writer thing. Maybe it's just me. Aren't you glad you asked your question now?
We already went to the dentist recently, so I can't use that activity to distract them. Any other suggestions (besides the old standby of TV, of course!)?
Movies, bowling, the zoo (if it isn't too cold)...Hmmm, I guess it depends on where you live. You could take a train ride into the city, or a drive to a fun theme restaurant for lunch. You could go to a museum or an indoor play place. We're actually taking the kids to an indoor waterpark in the Dells later this week. My parents gave the kids a gift card for it for Christmas LAST year and we're finally going. If you have an indoor pool near you - Y, park district, hotel, you could take them to swim for the day.
Dawn, SSO question: Bat poop or butt paste?
Ummm, things you don't want to confuse with pâté de foie gras?
Dawn, is it just me or are you always at the dentist office? :)
Nope, sometimes I'm at the doctor's office.
Any chance your lamp is coming? Soooo much stuff I ordered (last ummm Friday) is "unanticipated weather delayed" so who knows when it will arrive other than after Christmas. But hey -- it's the thought that counts right?
No, ugh, the projection lamp for the TV is still backordered. The Twilight shirt I ordered for Savannah is backordered. The charm I ordered for Clay's godmother is still backordered. It's the projection lamp I really, really, really want though! One more week of 6 kids home and a broken TV is going to kill me.
Have you ever noticed how often your life resembles a sitcom?
Nah, the sitcoms resemble my life.
Gorgeous nativity set btw!
It is! I took that picture at church. My nativity set consists of a plastic Fisher-Price Mary, a sheep, one shepherd, and a camel.
I especially like your concept that the Christ child is the the only figure in the nativity with color and all the rest are simply white.
I'm so thrilled you noticed that! I had fun playing with picnik.com. You've got to check out that site! It is FUN to play around with your photos there! And it's free too!
Am I the only one who looked at that picture and wondered if one of the kids put shredded cheese on the baby Jesus?
I read your blog often and I wanted to say that I love it! Could you please tell me how you got your signature on your post?
Yes. My web designer extraordinaire told me to sign a piece of paper and fax it to her. And now my signature somehow automatically shows up when I write a new post.
As I was cleaning, I thought of your post of when you were cleaning out your pocketbook. This is what I found in my couch.Have you cleaned out your couch lately, lol?
First - pocketbook??? Are you from the east coast? And secondly, sure I clean out my couch cushions. In fact, I cleaned them out HERE.
By the way, Savannah is done with her braces?
Yes, she is! Check it out! Before & after pics! (She was an avid thumb sucker.)
I love that shirt! Where can I get one?
I'm not sure where my sister got it, but I found them online HERE. In fact, they have a few funny Princess Bride ones, and other shirts too! Like this one....
I think the pants that Sav is wearing are the ones I am wearing now. I got them for Christmas. Old Navy?
Seriously? You got Savannah's pants for Christmas?
Posted by Dawn at 1:44 PM
Saturday, December 27, 2008
This is according to Mimi... "As far as I know, Coleman was airlifted on Christmas day to the hospital and things didn't look good. He was unable to swallow or talk. Caden joined them yesterday."
If you've been following Coleman's carepages, I'm sure you're as heartbroken as I am. If you haven't been following and don't know Coleman, he and his twin brother Caden are the sweetest little 5 year boys! Coleman's been battling brain cancer since he was 2 1/2 years old. Their mom, Peggy updates Coleman's carepages and she has a terrific sense of humor and a huge faith.
You can leave Peggy and Scott messages of encouragement on Coleman's carepages. Sign in at carepages.com. Colemanscott is the name of his page.
You can take a minute to light a virtual candle for Coleman HERE - group CSL.
You can send the Larsons and especially Coleman's twin brother, Caden, cards here...
Callender, Iowa 50523
Posted by Dawn at 10:50 PM
Friday, December 26, 2008
Brooklyn looking like a Binford tool girl wearing high heels while using power tools.
Clay who was thoroughly UNimpressed with the workbench. "I can't make real stuff with it!"
Lex just looking cute
Savannah happy with her music
Jax ready to hit the waves (it's actually a dry erase/magnet board)
Austin eating some beef jerky for breakfast
Here's the difference between your first child and your sixth. See my sister's first child, Dominick, sitting on my mom's lap. He's decked out to the nines for Christmas day - plaid shirt, red sweater vest, black cords and cute little black dress shoes. And then there's my sixth child. Yep, she's wearing an old bathing suit over a diaper for Christmas day.
And now you know the difference.
Instead of exchanging gifts, this year we just did a white elephant exchange among the adults. Here my brother-in-law, Sam holds up his white elephant. Literally. My mom sewed that up 2 days ago for the exchange. Everyone's a comedian in my family.
My sister and I always do socks for each other and Deb always comes up with THE MOST AWESOME stuff ever to put in my sock. This year, my favorite was a toss-up between this shirt (Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.) LOVE IT!!!
Penne Dawn! (from the creator of Fusilli Jerry) I LOVE IT! Now, there's not only Fusilli Jerry and Macaroni Midler, but Penne Dawn. PENne Dawn? Get it? Because I'm a writer! Deb's so clever! Let's get a closer look...
She comes complete with a copy of my best selling book Because I Said So! LOL! And check out the belt! OK, here's the story behind the belt...
About 12 or so years ago, my aunt gave my sister and me two old rings that she'd had. She told us that we could each have one. Deb and I couldn't decide who would get which ring and joked that we could each take a ring and then just switch off now and then. Thus began our tradition of giving these rings back and forth to one another.
For about 12 years, for every holiday, birthday, or special occasion, we've given these rings to each other. When my sister got married, I tied the rings to the ring bearer's pillow at the rehearsal. One year, we were out to dinner for my birthday and when I looked away, my sister slipped a ring into my drink. One Valentine's Day, I carefully opened the cellophane on a heart shaped box of candy, put the ring in the box among the chocolates, wrapped the cellophane back around the box, and gave it to her. We've hidden them in plastic Easter eggs. Last year, Deb took a monster pencil topper and attached a ring (like a crown) on its head and put it in my stocking. These rings have been passed back and forth in the most hilarious ways for years. I think this one takes the cake though. There's no way I can give it back to Deb unless I break Penne Dawn or give her back the whole pasta creation. I'm going to have to think about this one.
Tonight we go to my inlaws to continue the celebration!
Posted by Dawn at 1:57 PM
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
I never sent out cards (sorry to all my family and friends). It just didn't happen this year. I don't think I ever completely finished my shopping, but it's a little late now. Several items I ordered online have been back ordered. I just realized that the kids have eaten all the cookies I've made and there are none to put out for Santa now. I encouraged them to leave him a glass of wine instead. And I failed to read the Christmas story to the kids before they went to bed.
But you know what? None of that matters. It really doesn't. Christmas is here! Christ is born! And He doesn't care if we sent out Christmas cards. He doesn't care if we ate all the cookies we baked. He doesn't even care if we never got around to baking a single cookie at all! He loves us no matter how much we screw up. Now that's worth celebrating!
MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!!!
Posted by Dawn at 11:05 PM
Monday, December 22, 2008
I'm usually prepared for visits and pack a few toys/games to occupy the little ones. I wasn't prepared today. In fact, we all got up late and I threw pieces of toast to the kids as I
Anyway, as I started writing my post for tonight, I remembered that I had written one about my trip to the dentist back in July to have a couple cavities filled. I only posted the last paragraph for some reason. Here's the rest of it.....
I went to the dentist today. My dentist is a little Novocaine happy. Then again, my old dentist never used Novocaine when he filled my teeth. Of course, he was senile. Seriously, I'd gone to the same dentist for 20-some years and despite the fact that I'd have a tooth filled one week, he wouldn't seem to remember me the following week. Maybe that's why, when I switched dentists, my new one told me that my teeth were still decayed beneath my fillings - because he didn't drill them enough, thus no need for Novocaine.
Anyway, he approached me with the needle and I clamped my mouth shut.
"Open," he instructed.
"Huh-uh!" I said while turning my head.
He looked at me for a minute while debating whether I was serious. He wondered for a minute if he should restrain me, give up, or plug my nose thereby forcing me to open my mouth.
I gave in and opened up.
He slowly pushed the plunger on the syringe and, after 4 and a half minutes, had injected 86 ounces of Novocaine. Meanwhile I sat there all nice and tense, my nails biting into the flesh of my palms. I jab my nails into my hands while having my teeth worked on because I'm positive this will keep my dentist from hitting a nerve and sending me into orbit in a fit of horrific pain. I'm serious. It works.
"Go ahead and rinse."
I sit up, take a sip from the cup that magically fills every time he tells me to rinse, and swish it around my mouth which is quickly becoming numb. Then I spit. I don't think I've ever just spit into the bowl and been done with it. Not once in my life. And I've had a LOT of dental appointments in my life. Nope, I don't just spit. I spit and drool and make a huge mess. Sometimes I spit with such force that the water sloshes over the side of the bowl. Sometimes I kinda miss the bowl. But I ALWAYS have globs of drool hanging all over my face when I'm done. No problem - I have my very own absorbent paper bib to wipe my mouth on. I'm sure my dentist is thoroughly disgusted by my practice of wiping my mouth all over myself. By the time I leave, the bib is a soaking wet, shriveled scrap of paper.
Then he grabs another syringe and points it at my mouth.
"I'll fix the tooth on top too." Then he proceeds to repeat the process on the top of my mouth.
So he drilled my teeth with a um, jackhammer. Seriously, I don't know what kind of drill bit he was using, but I felt this vibrating in my head as a delicious burnt flavor slowly dripped down my throat. As he drilled my teeth, I concentrated on not swallowing. The more I thought about not swallowing, the more I needed to swallow and no matter how much I willed myself not to, my throat didn't obey. I have this fear that I'm going to swallow while he's drilling and the swallowing action is going to push his drill into my gum where it will bore a hole through my skull and I won't even know it because I'm so numb. What's left of my brain will leak out into my mouth and I'll accidentally spit it into the little toilet bowl the next time I'm told to rinse.
When he's done drilling, he starts to put some tooth-filler-stuff in them. After putting some goo on my tooth, he takes this little wand that has a glowing purple light on it. It's basically a glow stick that kids like to play with at Halloween. It makes some sort of beeping noise. The purpose of this is to glow and beep.
After the glow stick treatment, the dentist had me bite down on a piece of carbon paper. When businesses went from that old fashioned machine where they slid your credit card under a stack of paper and carbons to an automated computer system, they gave dentists their supply of leftover carbon paper. I mean, they didn't want to just throw it out. That would be wasteful. The dentist uses this carbon paper to ...well, actually they just use it because they don't want to throw away their boxes and boxes of carbon paper either.
After my appointment, I went shopping for a pair of shoes because I'd decided that I couldn't wear my Crocs to BlogHer. I went to 50 shoe stores! Do you have any idea how hard it is to find a pair of shoes that look cute and yet are super comfortable? I found dozens of cute pairs at every store. They were adorable! Unfortunately, I would break my neck if I ever tried to walk in them. Still, I tried a couple pairs on for kicks. Keep in mind, that at this point, my mouth was still completely numb. So here I am, stumbling around in these heels, my mouth drooping, probably drooling on myself and I couldn't stop thinking about that Seinfeld episode with Kramer and the shoes and the Novocaine!
Posted by Dawn at 11:12 PM
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Your roast recipe sounds great! And I stole your gingerbread recipe, too. Now if you can just get me an easy one for Baklava....
Ask and you shall receive....
This is the recipe I use. It's very easy. Just make sure you have a nice pastry brush. Because, if you don't, the bristles might come out of the brush and stick to your layers of phyllo dough. Then when you serve this at your son's school for "International Day", people could choke on bristles. They could gag and nearly throw up bristles. They could be completely grossed out by your Bristlava. This is just a hypothetical situation, of course. I'm not saying that I've ever done this. Any and all likenesses to actual events are coincidental.
1 lb. finely chopped walnuts
1 c. butter, melted
2 t. cinnamon
1 pinch ground cloves
1 lb. phyllo dough
2 c. sugar
1 c. honey
2 t. vanilla
1 1/2 c. water
Mix walnuts, cinnamon & cloves. In a buttered 9 X 13 pan, layer 4 sheets of phyllo dough (each brushed with melted butter). Sprinkle some spiced nut mixture over dough. Top with 2 leaves of buttered phyllo dough. Repeat until filling and phyllo dough are gone. End with 4 sheets of phyllo dough on top. Cut into diamonds and bake in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes. Boil sugar, honey, vanilla, lemon and water for 5 minutes. Pour over warm baklava. Serve chilled.
* NOTE - Phyllo dough is paper-thin. It dries out quickly so work FAST and keep the unused dough covered with a slightly damp tea towel.
* NOTE - it will seem like there's a LOT of syrup to pour over the top of the baklava. Use all of it. Just wait a minute for it to soak in and pour a little more; wait a minute; pour some more. It'll all fit in the pan.
Stupid question, cut the rump roast in half width wise or length wise (replace with a banana, cut it down the center to two long pieces, or chop it in have to have 2 short but round tube pieces)?
I think you should cut it diagonally in half (just to spice things up!)
Did you see the Monster's Inc. show at Disney?
Yup! We texted in a joke for them to use while we were waiting.
"What's the difference between roast beef and pea soup?"
"Anyone can roast beef!"
That was a fun one!
"Everybody have fun tonight. Everybody Wang Chung tonight." Quick, who said this on what sitcom?
OK, Frasier said this at his bachelor party on the late, great Cheers! But so many of you said Chandler on Friends that I'm wondering if he ever said it. If so, I don't remember it. And the idea that I might not remember a Friends quote scares me.
"Or the automated voice hell at AT&T."
Did you mean 'hello' or that hell is at AT&T?
Oh no, I meant hell.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
No, thankfully, everyone is healthy!
How many kids wore casts this year? lol
Only 2! That's just a third of my kids. Besides casts don't count. No one's been hospitalized. :::knock on wood:::
Second, I'm shocked Dawn!!! Don't you know that Uniqua is from the Backyardigans? I guess it's pretty sad that I know that, but I'm surprised you don't! :]
Of course I know who Uniqua is, I was just recalling a post about her. I was just, ah forget it. I give up.
What's with the cell phone and hotel key thing?
Cellphones + room key = bad.
Dawn, did you see that Lisa Belkin referenced your blog today in the Motherlode blog at the New York Times?
Yep! Lisa's great! You can check out her column HERE.
Unfortunately the world is to attached to their TV's. We don't even own one and have very few DVD's which we limit (sometimes only 1 time a week and sometimes less).
Ok then. I generally have the TV on 14 hours a day (at least in the background) and I frequently tell the kids, "Go watch TV!" because I'm just a good mom that way.
Ouch. I will say that when we had a lockdown at ONE of the elementary schools recently, we got updates about every 20 minutes. I can't believe you weren't updated at all. Did you talk to the principal or superintendent about it (seriously)?
Oh yeah, I was told, by the principal, "According to the AlertNow Delivery Report I ran, it appears that both calls were successfully sent to your home. The first call is listed in the report as a "Live (Partial)" meaning that the recipient only listened to part of the message (in this case, only the first 36 seconds). In turn, the information about the fourth grade bus not returning on time was missed, as well as our notice to families that we would call them via AlertNow as soon as the bus arrived at school. That second call was also successfully sent to your home and "Live Answer" indicates that the entire message played.
Given that information, I think the AlertNow system is working properly on our end and I ask that you support our communicative efforts by listening to the messages and listening to them in their entirety. Thank you for sharing your question and concern with our school district. "
So, according to the principal, a call at 3:00 and not another word until 8:00 is sufficient. We'll see how he feels when his kids are old enough to attend school. Oh and as far as the superintedent - well, he stopped off at a sports bar on the way home from work and was unaware the kids were out until 8:00 at night. Yep, that's my district!
Maybe this is a SSO question, but does Joe take time off over the kids holiday break? Or is my hottie hubby the only one who uses his vacation to "help" (read dripping with sarcasm) during these two weeks? And how can I politely decline this next year? And at what point do I stop cleaning and let the house got messy until they go back to school?
Signed, Wit's End in PA
Dear Wit's End,
Ahhh yes, the husband staying home to "help" situation. They try, bless their hearts. They just don't understand that we have a system; we have a routine that we stick with. When they stay home, they think they're helping when they decide to paint the inside of the pantry as you attempt to unload groceries and put them away. They just don't understand that their brand of help is not always so helpful.
The trick is to make them feel like you really want their help without letting them destroy everything. My suggestion is to send him on errands, preferably with the kids. For example, "Honey, can you help me find me a Wii Fit? Take the kids with you. They could use some fresh air." That should take him away from the house for several hours so you can get some cleaning, present wrapping, or laundry done. (Of course he won't really be able to find a Wii Fit since Nintendo doesn't ship enough to keep up with demand! Seriously, what's up with that? Is Nintendo actually so short-sighted? Did they really not know that Wii Fit would take off like crazy? Or is it all part of their evil plan to increase demand? Ticks me off! I still haven't been able to find one since I first saw them at Johnson & Johnson's Camp Baby last April!)
Sorry, I digress. Send hubby out with the kids to go shopping or bowling or skating or to see a movie. This plan is really 3 fold.
1. Quality Daddy/kiddo bonding time
2. You have peace and quiet to get things done
3. They're not in the house messing things up
And as far as when you give up on cleaning, well that answer's simple. You stop cleaning when you're done having guests to your house. I'm having my family over on Christmas day which means, I stop trying to clean on December 26. I don't start again until the kids go back to school. If no one is coming to your house in the next 2 weeks, you can stop cleaning right now. With everyone home under your feet, it's a losing battle anyway.
I hope this helps, Wit's End in PA.
And was that you moving Brooklyn's lips?
Heck no. That would be my 7th child, Joe.
Only one of those patches could be from Cub Scouts - the yellow/gold arrow point. Was he in Cubs or Awana? The other patch is not Cub Scout related, and Cub Scouts don't wear vests. :-)
Well, I don't know how they do things in your pack, but Cub Scouts around here do indeed wear brag vests and they earn segment patches for them. In fact, here's a cool display thing that Austin and I put together when he got out of Cub Scouts. The big circle in the middle is the back of his vest with all the segments he earned. There's a blank area on the top left where I was supposed to find a picture of Austin in his uniform to add to it. I never did get around to that, so the box sits unfinished on the floor of Austin's room. sigh
You seriously need a card cubby! Go to cardcubby.com and look.
I do! Those look pretty cool!
What happened to your Coach purse? Did you actually send it back to be fixed?
Nope, it's taking up space in my closet. As soon as I find a picture of Austin in his Cub Scout uniform, I'll take my purse to get fixed.
Don't worry about the gum. Our son's pediatric dentist said Orbit is the only gum she recommends. It actually can help prevent cavities.
It's not cavities I'm worried about. My teeth tend to crack when I chew gum. Or my fillings fall out. It's not good. I just chew Orbit because I like their commercials and they have flavors like Mint Mojito and Sangria.
Posted by Dawn at 7:09 PM
Saturday, December 20, 2008
Clisty wrote back, "Dawn I challenge you to a purse dump blog post."
So, here it is. It isn't pretty. Parental guidance is suggested. You may have to avert your eyes at times.
No normal sized purse for me thankyouverymuch.
I put my purse on the scale to weigh it first. 9.8 pounds. OK, so it doesn't weigh as much as my toddler, but it's close.
Let the dumping begin.
a container of diapers and wipes - normal and necessary
pics of the kiddos - what any good mom should have in their purse
Jackson's CD - I'm not sure why this is in my purse...
a book, stamps, my wallet and Jackson's wallet - I'm sure I have a perfectly good reason for having his wallet in my purse.
Jackson's old eyeglass case - It's empty. I have no clue why it's in my purse, but it might come in handy one day. You know, if I get a new pair of glasses. And they forget to give me a case for them.
a case of business cards, my memory card adapter thingy and my headphones
misc. cards - some are business cards, some are rewards cards, some are gift cards. I'm pretty sure I've never used the one for the fabric store. Ever.
Well, look at that. I have 3 Lego cards. You know why? Because every time I go to a Lego store, I can't find my punch card, so they give me a new one. Each one has 3 or 4 stamps in it.
Shhhh, don't tell my dentist about all the gum.
Ummm, a couple batteries and a luggage lock. I lost the key to the lock on my way home from Sonoma because I left the key dangling from the lock when I checked my luggage. I still have the lock because I'm pretty sure the airline is going to call me any day now and say, "We found a key to a lock and we're pretty sure it belongs to you, Mrs. Meehan." And the batteries are in my purse because - well, you just never know when you're going to need them.
Here we have half a tomato, a fairy and an ant. All reasonable things to carry in a purse.
My phone, my bluetooth Jawbone, and my Flip (because you just never know when someone like Ty Pennington might walk by and that's the kind of thing you want to get on film, my friends.)
These are some segments Jackson earned when he was in Cub Scouts. He hasn't been in Cub Scouts for 2 years. I'm going to sew them on his vest any day now.
My books are on here. Well, actually I need to update this because if my computer crashes, I'll lose about 10,000 from my second book.
a little plastic pizza - you know, in case someone gets hungry.
Jackson's DS game. Sigh, ok, I'm running out of excuses for having all this stuff in my purse.
Yes, there are 15 coupons for Bed, Bath & Beyond. One of these days I'm going to use them. Yes I am.
2008 calendar, 2009-10 calendar, a book about Wings women's shelter, and my book because you just never know when an opportunity will arise for you to whip out your book and make a fool of yourself to a complete stranger.
8 pens - more than half of these were umm borrowed from hotels. What?! They're just pens. At least I didn't pull a Ross and take the salt from the shakers!
One of the kids' notebooks full of interesting drawings.
a paper which had an important phone number on it. Clay got ahold of it and now it has an important phone number on one side and CLAYTON written on the other.
a receipt from my train ride last week
A gum wrapper. Hey, you never know when you might need to spit out a piece of gum. Eventually gum loses flavor and you must discard it. Well, where are you going to spit it? Into the wrapper, of course!
Ahhh yes, the compact I got when I went to Johnson & Johnson's Camp Baby last year. Yes, it does really say, "What's happening down there? Let's talk about bladder prolapse." I remember this talk well. I think it began something like this...
"Do you ever leak urine when you sneeze? How about when you laugh?"
At this point, I started cracking up (and of course, had to excuse myself to use the bathroom.)
These are ear drops from when Clay and Lexi had tubes put in their ears over a year ago.
misc. stuff - epi-pen (I think this can be packed away since bees aren't prevalent in DECEMBER!), nail polish, several bottles of lotion, rubber bands, Advil, perfume, tissues, Dentabursts, rice paper, tampon, SpongeBob bandaid, you know - the usual stuff you need in a purse
9 things of lipstick/gloss/chapstick. What?! I believe in the Boy Scout motto - BE PREPARED! You never know when you might need to regloss.
I'd like to clean out my purse, but really I can't think of a single thing that I can take out. I mean, I only have the absolute essentials in my purse.
Posted by Dawn at 11:37 PM
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
I've been finding poor amputee gingerbread men all over the house too. Not even their M&M buttons were spared. I've given up cleaning my floors. With all the snow and salt being tracked in everyday, there's no way to keep up with it. Speaking of snow...
Yesterday, Jackson went on a field trip to a museum downtown. They left the museum at 2:00 PM and didn't get back to the school until 8:00 at night! They were on that bus for SIX hours! Although I was worried about my son and their safe arrival home, I think I was more worried about that poor bus driver! You know how nerve wracking it can be to drive in a snow storm. Add rush hour traffic, a huge bus full of fourth graders who haven't eaten or gone to the bathroom in hours, singing 9,999,999 bottles of beer on the wall... I think I would've driven off a cliff. She deserves a gold medal.
The school, however, gets a flunking grade from me. They made one phone call about the situation. I had just gotten a phone call from the junior high saying that after-school activities were canceled so when the grade school called with their message about the cancellation of after-school activities, I listened for a minute and then hung up. I guess at the end of that message, they mentioned that the fourth graders on the field trip hadn't gotten back to school yet and wouldn't be there in time for dismissal. That was my fault for not listening to that message in its entirety. However, the school never made another phone call after that. Not one call from 3:00 to 8:00 when the kids finally made it back to the school.
At 4:30 I called the school to get an update. "What's going on? Are they almost home?"
I was told that they were fine; just stuck in traffic and should be back to the school by 5:30. "Between 5:30 and 6:00," she added.
5:30 came and went. 6:00 came and went. 6:30 came and went. When I still hadn't heard anything at 7:00, I called the school again.
"I'm calling for an update on the fourth graders."
"Oh they're fine. They stopped to let the kids use the bathroom so that took a little extra time, but they're back on the road and should be arriving soon."
"OK, I was wondering about the bathroom. Those kids have got to be really hungry now too."
"Yes, they stopped for a bathroom break because that could get really uncomfortable if they didn't."
"OK, why you aren't using the AlertNow message system to update parents."
"Well, we made one phone call."
"I haven't gotten any phone calls. Not one. And by 7:00 at night, there should have been several calls made!" (I realize now that I did indeed receive that first call, but didn't listen to the message until the very end so I missed the part about the fourth graders being late.) Still, that was the only call made all evening. And that initial call only came to my home phone, not my cell like alerts usually do. I feel really bad for the working parents who weren't home to get that one phone call.
Finally at 8:00 PM, I got the call that Jackson was back at school.
Now I know, living in Chicago, bad weather happens. It's unavoidable. You deal with it. What I don't understand is why the school didn't keep the parents informed of what was going on. We were sitting at home worried, as we heard reports of crashes happening during that awful commute yesterday. There's just no excuse for the lack of communication. And it's not even like we have to use a phone tree with volunteers calling a dozen people each. Oh no, we spent a bunch of money on this AlertNow system. All the principal had to do was record an update and it could have be sent out to everyone. Ta da. We could have received hourly updates, but no. They didn't do that.
Not only that, but when I asked Jackson about the trip, he said, "They never stopped for us to use the bathroom! They stopped a couple times for the driver to clean off the window. That's it." I doubled checked with a friend who was a chaperone on the trip and she confirmed Jackson's story that they never took a bathroom break. I don't think the secretary just lied to me, but clearly there was some miscommunication happening.
Let's see, what else has been going on? Clay had his Christmas program at school today. I forgot my camera. I ALWAYS have my camera! I bring it everywhere! And today, I forgot it. And do you think I got teacher's gifts in time? Last night, as I lay awake in bed, following my routine which goes a little something like this... Pray, remember something I forgot, pray some more, think about another ball I dropped, jump out of bed to switch loads of laundry one more time, go back to praying, remember a few things I have to do in the morning, push Brooklyn over to the other side of the bed, remember another ball I dropped, jump out of bed to write a check out for lunch money, make a mental list of stuff I need to finish this week, remember something else I screwed up, move Brooklyn's feet off my spleen, then finally fall asleep about 2 hours before my alarm goes off. Anyway, as I lay there last night, I realized I never got any teacher gifts. Ugh.
Oh and the projection lamp went out on our TV. Do you hear me? I have 2 more days until all 6 kids will be home every minute of every day for a solid 2 weeks and the TV isn't working!!! A warning had flashed across the screen every day for about a month, alerting us to the fact that the lamp was about to go. Do you think we paid it any heed? Oh no. Well, actually, that's not entirely true. We looked up how much it would cost to replace the lamp and decided that clearly, the warning was wrong and the lamp couldn't possibly burn out soon because it's too expensive to replace.
On the bright side, we do have a small TV in my bedroom and the kids have gone in there to watch it a couple times. Unfortunately, that also means, they've trashed my room, but hey, it's worth it to have the little ones occupied for a half hour, right?
Oh yes, and 2 nights ago, Lexi lost a tooth. Amazingly the Tooth Fairy remembered to come and take her tooth. On the first night, no less! Last night at bedtime, however, Lexi lay awake crying her eyes out. "What's wrong?" I asked.
"I miss my tooth!" she wailed. "I want it back!"
Oh for crying out loud. That's a new one for me.
Now I hear my washing machine hopping across the floor with an unbalanced load and I have to go pick the middles up from school. Gotta go!
*****Edited to add - I have another giveaway over HERE. It's for a Word World Moon Sand Set.*****
Posted by Dawn at 12:24 PM
Monday, December 15, 2008
I took a shower. Just kidding. I mean, I'm not kidding about taking a shower. I really did shower this year. I'm just kidding about using that as my answer.
Ummm, I did a lot of things! I walked the red carpet in L.A., I took all my kids to Disney World, I wrote a book, I saw Oprah with Mimi and Michelle, I went to New York, I stayed up way too late most nights - oops, that's not really different than any other year.
2. Did you keep your New Years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Sure, sure I did. OK, well I kept them for like 4 hours. That's gotta count for something. And of course, I’ll make some new ones next year. A girl needs goals she’ll never live up to, right?
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Ha, this would be fun if you were a labor and delivery nurse or a midwife or OB. OK, ok, my sil gave birth to my little niece.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
I refuse to answer on the grounds that I might jinx things.
5. What countries did you visit?
Let's see, there was Mexico, China, Norway, Germany, Italy, America, Japan, Morocco, France, United Kingdom, and Canada. Yes, I know they were all in Epcot. I think it should still count. No? Well, I watched the Olympics. That's gotta count for something.
6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008?
7. What dates from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory?
I should probably have some great, profound moments that are indelibly written on my brain, but alas I'm bad with dates. Probably because dates include numbers and we all know how well I do with math.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I sold 2 books. Eeee!
9. What was your biggest failure?
The diet. I still weigh about as much as a Sumatran Rhino.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
No, thankfully, everyone is healthy!
11. What was the best thing you bought?
My Dansko clogs. Or toilet paper. One of those two.
12. Whose behaviour merited celebration?
"Behaviour"? Oooo, where did this meme originate? Not in this country.
13. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?
I was going to write, "my kids", but I realized there was far worse behavior out there. Like stupid Blagojevich.
14. Where did most of your money go?
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Have I mentioned that I touched Matthew Perry?
16. What song/album will always remind you of 2008?
I don't listen to music too much. I may be the only person in the country who doesn't own an MP3 player. I really don't know, but I'll tell you what song reminds me of 1985!
17. Compared to this time last year, are you: happier/sadder,thinner/heavier,richer/poorer?
happier, richer, the same stupid weight.
18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
play with the littles
19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
time spent on my computer
20. How will you be spending Christmas?
Party at Dawn's house - relatives, food, presents, and chaos abound!
21. Who did you spend the most time on the phone with?
My awesome friend, Sue! Or the automated voice hell at AT&T.
22. Did you fall in love in 2008?
I don't think so.
23. How many one night stands in this last year?
A dozen. Kidding! Just kidding! What kind of crazy question is that? How many people do you think answer it truthfully?
24. What was your favourite TV program?
Do reruns count? If so, it's a toss-up between Seinfeld and Friends.
25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
26. What was the best book(s) you read?
In an old house in Paris that was covered with vines, lived twelve little girls in two straight lines....
Clearly I don't have time for much reading.
27. What was your greatest musical discovery?
"Musical discovery"? Like the time I discovered the lost symphony of Beethoven buried beneath that old church in Germany? What the heck is a musical discovery? Are they asking if I'm responsible for discovering any major talent?
28. What did you want and get?
29. What did you want and not get?
pink gel pens
30. What were your favourite films of this year?
The only films I saw in the theater were Indiana Jones and Space Chimps and they were definitely not favorites. I can't even remember any movies that came out this year! We recently rented that new Batman one. I only watched it because Heath Leger was in it, but he looked all freaky-like, so I stopped watching after the first 4 1/2 hours. I saw Get Smart on the plane and liked it. Oh yeah, and I saw Sex and the City and really liked that one too! Oooo, oooo, and I saw Fireproof which was also really good.
31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
For real? That was back in March! I don't remember anything that happened in March!
32. What's one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
I can't say.
33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008?
I'm pretty sure you can't use the word "fashion" to describe jeans, t-shirts, and clogs.
34. What kept you sane?
ROFL! Oh that's a good one! Me, sane! Hee hee hee!
35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Which celebrity did I "fancy"? Seriously, from where did this meme originate?
36. What political issue stirred you the most?
I don't know that it "stirred" me, but I'd have to say the election.
37. Who did you miss?
My friend Erica
38. Who was the best new person you met?
I met a TON of people this past year! I can't pick just one.
39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008.
Don't put your cell phone next to your hotel key.
The chicken crossed the road because a bat farted on it.
Lying is bad because you could be hung over a pit of lava.
A disturbing amount of people land on my blog after googling "bat poop".
95% of people have no clue how to use Google.
If your kids say they're going to play Indiana Jones, make sure your health insurance is in order.
Don't buy Happy Birthday signs at the dollar store.
The smallest dog in history was a tiny Yorkie from Blackburn, England. At 2 yrs old, he was 2" tall and 3" long. He weighed 4 ounces!
Do not let Brooklyn pour parmesan cheese on her spaghetti by herself.
When a toddler sticks a Tic Tac up their nose, just plug the other side and have them blow.
When Clayton says he feels like throwing up, listen to him!
Brooklyn can indeed, live on ketchup and chocolate syrup for a week.
Wombats are hilariously funny.
99% of the world's population has (or has had) plantar fasciitis.
13 year old boys need to be reminded to wear shoes when they go to church.
Dry ice should be kept out of the hands of children AND husbands.
I'm not cool enough to eat lunch with my kids at school.
Mammograms aren't really all that bad.
If you need to renew your license, plan on spending at least 4
No one knows what Uniqua is.
It's not a good idea to step on those little blue "balloons" that wash up on the beach of Padre Island.
Eggs should never be put in the microwave for 55 minutes and 55 seconds.
If you're going to steal your brother's video camera, don't turn it on and tape the crime scene.
40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year?
"Everybody have fun tonight. Everybody Wang Chung tonight." Quick, who said this on what sitcom?
Posted by Dawn at 10:04 PM
Sunday, December 14, 2008
I could tell you, but then I'd have to kill you.
Any chance you'll share your recipes?
Sure, here's the one for the roast...
Saucy Italian Roast - this is super quick and easy!
1 boneless rump roast (3-3 1/2 pounds)
can of mushrooms, drained
medium onion, diced
1 jar (14 oz) spaghetti sauce
1/2 c. red wine or beef broth
Cut the roast in half. Rub with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Place in bottom of 5-qt. slow cooker. Top with mushrooms and onion. Combine spaghetti sauce with wine or broth and pour over top. Cover and cook on low 8-9 hours or until meat is tender. Slice roast across grain and serve over pasta with pan juices. Easy peasy lemon squeasy. Just add a salad and a loaf of fresh, crusty bread and you're good to go.
Please tell us how you stuff manicotti without breaking the noodles. My daughter loves it, but I hate cooking it.
They break for me sometimes too. Don't boil the noodles too long; keep them al dente and that helps.
Do your kids share bedrooms and bathrooms?
Yup. We have 4 bedrooms and 2 very small bathrooms. But I'm thinking of moving the boys' "bathroom" to the backyard.
Btw... are you feeling better? You sounded congested [in the video] poor girl.
I am still a little stuffy. What's up with that?! I've been sick since Thanksgiving day. But I feel fine, thank you!
I have to ask, the kids actually left you alone for the whole 4 minutes and 22 seconds [while making the video]. I'm impressed. I would have thought they would have barged in claiming that some wild animal snuck in and clogged the toilet. Hehe :)
I only had 4 kids home at that time. Savannah was filming me and Austin was occupying the 2 little ones. If you listen closely though, you can hear them going bonkers in the background a few times.
Are you finished Christmas shopping? Not even started? What are the kids getting?
Finished? LOL! It's not Christmas eve yet, so no. I have finally started at least. And I can't tell you what the kids are getting because the older ones read my blog sometimes.
By the way...has anyone ever told you that you sound like Kirstie Alley??
Yes, actually. However, I've also been told I sound like...
What was that "Lovely" drawing of you drawn on? a table? cabinet? piece of furniture?
It was the kitchen table, but it happened last December. It finally faded completely.
Just wondering.. who drew your, Er, lovely drawing of you? My guess is clay but who knows?
Clay drew it a year ago.
That was great! [12 Days of Christmas video] How many hours did that take?
From the time I got the idea, filmed it, took the still shots, and edited it all together, - 3 hours.
I now have a NEW question and would like to know if the diapers were clean when you put the baseballs in them and if not, then who had the the fun job of wiping off the baseballs when the video shoot was over?
OK, let's think about this question for a minute, shall we?
Okay here's something weird. You and Savannah were in my dream last night. Savannah was my roommate and you were at our apartment just hanging out. You decided to decorate our whole living room with Christmas stuff (which looked pretty amazing). We just sat and talked for a long time...we got along so well. lol. You had decided to move to Mansfield, TX (not sure why there. It's about an hour away from me) Either way, just thought I should share that with you. Your thoughts?
Maybe stay away from pizza right before bed? ;)
Your recipe looks yummy but I am curious if it is Feingold friendly with the M&M's?
I haven't been following Feingold 100% lately. I am still making sure to cut out all obvious sources of artificial ingredients however. M&Ms are definitely a big no-no. Some of my kids used M&Ms, but Jackson and Clayton used Sun Drops instead. They're like M&Ms, but with vegetable coloring. If you look at the pictures, the Sun Drops are the ones with more muted colors.
Oooo and check out my website!
Kelli Santa paid me a visit the other night and it's now snowing there! Which is where snow should stay - on my website! And off the streets!
Posted by Dawn at 1:20 PM