Thursday, August 31, 2006

I'd like to propose a toast

This morning at breakfast my girlie raises her cup of milk and says, "Cheers to going to Newport!". I open a handy bottle of water and clink her cup. My boy laughs and then refuses to cheer.

Pretending to be horribly insulted I tell him that if he refuses a toast he'll bring bad luck to the wish and when he grinned I went all Urban Legendy on him an made like this was all commonly known superstition.

He says "What? We won't go to Newport?"

I say "Maybe not, maybe something will happen. Something bad luck."

He disbelieving me says "What?"

I say "Maybe my car will break down."

Note to reader: Foreshadowing text will be noted with green font.

At this point we're all laughing. And thinking of how bad luck might hit us in other ways...

"Runescape might go down. For a whole day!" Ahhhhhhhhh!

"You could drop your english muffin" ewwwww.

We agreed. All sorts of bad luck could befall us.

An hour or two later, the girlie was riding her bike (She dumped the training wheels a few days ago - Hurray for Girlie! There'd be a picture but the camera, she is abroken.) with her brother. I was making the beds and instead of riding where she was supposed to she took the corner and headed down the road. Our road is so NOT a busy one. It's dirt and it's short and there's not allota people down here. Anyway.

I hear hollering. I figure she's mad because he keeps flying by her and not waiting for her and she's had enough. The hollering continues. I run outside and here she comes with the neighbor, blood streaming from her nose through her hand. She was crying but not hysterical and we washed her up she was as good as new. Or almost. Her nose is sore, bruised and a bit swollen. (Then again, how do you tell if someone has an actual broken nose? Ida know.) Again, no picture.

A bit later, they're back to their bikes. This time it's the boy. He wipes out and screams bloody murder. I run, only to discover that he's scraped up a bit but not mortally wounded. I wonder what happens if he gets hurt in front of his friends? He freaks out about even the most minor of wounds. A splinter? He has to be asleep in order for me to pull it out. Seriously. Anyway, we washed him up and he was as good as new. Or almost, he's scraped and bruised and I was worried about his zero pain tolerance the minute the scrapes hit the salty water of Newport.

I needn't have worried.

At lunch time we pack the car for the afternoon - cooler, kites, boogie boards, letterbox clue - and we were off.

Seven miles was as far as we got.

A crazy rattle from the engine department and I look at the dial...Temperature redlining on H.
I pull over, call the inlaws for a ride and AAA for a tow.

There is transmission fluid in the radiator overflow. Not good.

But tonight we are laughing about just how bad our luck could've been. "A bridge, we could've been on a bridge! In traffic! With no cell phone!" Now we're cranking Pearl Jam & Simple Plan and then we're watching Little House on the Prairie. Is it morbid to keep hoping that THIS will finally be the one where Mary goes blind? Yeah, I thought so.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Well, my weeklong vacation from work is nearly over and we have yet to do a thing. I suppose we've done many things, just none of them very interesting or very fun.

The kids are fairly well set for school. The boy will wear shorts for the first few weeks so that was easy, he has plenty. But there is a new wardrobe development this year. He wants to wear jeans. He hasn't worn jeans, with the exception of trips to Maine where we spend lotsa time in the woods, in four years. Since kindergarten. Always those swishy pants or cargo type khakis. And this year jeans! Hurray! I really have no idea why I'm happy about this. I mean, who cares? You do? Well thank you.

I'm debating our plans for today...a little letterboxing maybe or a trip to the beach...summer's fading fast in these parts, the pond's cooling down and in a few weeks will be c-c-c-c-cold.

Hockey starts this weekend so we've got standing weekend plans for the next eight months. (Eight months. It sounds ludicrous doesn't it?) But because we're in the bargain league (it's over $1,000 cheaper than the next cheapest one which still freaks me out and horrifies me as to just how much people will pay to have their 8 year old skate) we don't get scheduled times. Well, they're scheduled but the schedule varies from week to week. every week. This week? Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning. Next week it might be Tuesday night, Saturday early morning (read 5:50 a.m.) and Sunday afternoon. Generally, we get at least a week's notice about the scheduling...sometimes when they're feeling generous we get a full month's notice. It's great for planning things like birthday parties and such. Or not, like right now there's nothing on the schedule past this Sunday. They seem to like variety, to keep us guessing. Maybe it's no wonder we've become such good friends with the hockey folk, we all keep the same hours.

Oh. and my digital camera has officially bitten the dust. I. Am. Bummed.

Monday, August 21, 2006

All good things must come to an end

They've made it home safely. I met them at our friends house for some boiled lobsters and corn on the cob. Their daughter said it was the perfect way to end the summer and I agreed. And then I took it right back.


Um, no sorry. Not ready for that quite yet. Football is a nice addition to the sports viewing schedule but I'm not looking forward to oven cooking, school lunch making and the like.

Besides, my kids don't start school until after labor day. I'm not on the bandwagon with the whole starting school in August phenomenon. And quite frankly, my boy checks out of school mentally right after Memorial Day Weekend, as do I. And according to his teacher, as does the entire class.

But the world doesn't wait for me. The kids have their teacher assignments, the boy got his list of supplies (dry erase markers? really? - does she know they stain?). Backpacks have been purchased. Today we're on a quest for new sneakers. I just want to drive by and stick my tongue out at the school.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

In which Jenny makes a remarkable comeback from the grouchiness that plauged her last weekend

My house is quiet.

(Not exactly, the Pats are on TV and are schooling the Cardinals right now).

The fact that it's night time has zero to do with it.

My husband took the kids to New Hampshire (which is good because I can't keep the kids inside or bugsprayed forever and *bonus* two human cases of EEE have been confirmed) for the weekend and I. Am. Alone.

I've only been semi productive, getting the fall clothes out, weeding a bit, grocery shopping, framing some photos...

There's also been a fair share of cringing as the Sox have dropped three in a row to the Yankees, some Sims playing and movie watching.

The husband went up with another dad and his three kids, driving seven hours in a Suburban (two in traffic). The last time I heard from them they were well into NH with another two hours to go. They don't have any cell service up there in moose country so I'm going with the theory that no news is good news.

My son says to me "Dad and Coach M (the other dad was my son's hockey coach for the past few years)?!?!, That's it? There is going to be very little parenting going on this weekend!"

Which, sometimes, is a good thing. Especially after the PMS'y crabapple camping trip we just had.

I'm glad I have some time to myself, I feel like I've caught my breath and gotten a handle on things around here but tomorrow I know I'll be puttering around, killing time until they get here. Or maybe not, I've still got a wall to paint, an errand to run and there's still a movie or two with my name on them.

Oh, hey... have any of you guys ever pitched? y'know, pitched a baseball? because if you have ever even TOUCHED a baseball you probably have just as good of a shot at beating the Yanks as the Sox bullpen. C'mon up to Boston, give it a shot.

holy what the fuck. 15,761,321 runs in three games. I'd say it can get much worse but you know what will happen. It will get much worse. But honestly, I really don't believe it will. I'm optimistic about tomorrow's game. Why, I don't know, especially because I'm a glass half empty kind of girl. Whatever the case, I'll be watching. Maybe if we had a team full of Jewish guys....*

*Okay, I'll add here that the whole Jewish thing is a joke that anyone watching the game the other night with Dennis Leary and Lenny Clarke in the booth will understand. "Take that Mel!"

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

In which Jenny bitches and moans and go on and click the red x if you're looking for something sunshiney

the camping trip:
An idea, broached by the husband whose actual words were something like: "What, doya want to sit around and do nothing all next weekend too?" I murmur something about being okay with that (because sitting around doing nothing generally evolves into something unplanned and good timeish). He says "well then I'll take the kids camping, you can stay home".

and here is where i should've shut my trap and went upstairs to ponder my good fortune.

Instead I say that I'll take the kids down midweek so that we can get a few extra days in. Good weather's in the forecast and whathaveyou, I've done the solo camping thing before - it's fine.

Well, the weather cooperated but the kids did not.

Children, however, seem to forgive and forget quicker than quick. Argue over a colored pencil? A flashlight? A juice bag? A bike ride? (and oh, if it were only these four things life would've been so good) Done and over. No grudge holding here. At least where they're concerned. I, on the other hand, am exhausted by the cumulative bickerfest and sighing. The neverending sighs.
"Can you stand your bike up next to the tree instead of lying it down?" Sigh.

"Can you walk your sister to the bathroom?" Sigh.

"Can you bring me your flashlite so I can change the batteries?" Sigh.

My god children, I'm not asking you to handwash the clothes, milk the cows and 'till the fields.

Yesterday and today haven't been much better. In fact, as a result, we missed their dad's last hockey game, have taken away the t.v. and all visits with friends.

So who's really punished? me.

Did I mention the fact that my husband VOLUNTEERED to work this past Saturday? While I was on the big 'his idea' camping trip? errrgh. It was only a few hours and he was pretty sheepish about it, I acted way more put out then I actually was. In order to maximize the guilt a bit - he knew the kids were being cretins. So I let him bike ride the canal while I sat and read in the breezy sunshine. He had to tow my daughter for the last mile. Revenge is sweet.

Tomorrow, punishments be damned. We're heading to the beach for some solar therapy.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

My husband's last words:

"Packing isn't really that much work - you just make it that way"

And then I beat him silly with a tent pole.

Last night, we head to the campground. It's not too far so we have the luxury of bringing down a load of firewood and the bikes a day early... and I got some adult help with the tent setup.

We get to the office. I booked the wrong campsite. damndamndamn. same site number - different area. And it's a yucky site. The park ranger is, quite possibly, now one of my top five favorite people - he took me out of the scrub brush, gravel, surrounded by people site and found a HUGE site, surrounded by pines trees on the top of a hill for me. Love the ranger.

My husband has the lovely habit of sitting in his chair, complaining about the Red Sox (no lack of material there) and WATCHING me pack. Um, no. So I kindly say that maybe he'd be more comfortable watching the game upstairs. Or maybe it wasn't so kindly and more along the lines of " If you value your life maybe you should just go upstairs to watch the game because I'm kinda busy here and it's 11:18 p.m and I'm not close to done." Within ten mintues he was gone.

And he loaded up the car for me this morning. So he's redeemed himself. Oh! Double redemption: He told me that I could go home this weekend if I wanted and he would stay camping with the kids. I'm totally thinking about that last one...we'll see.

Off we go...

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

so here I am.

blogging from work.

one horse has died from EEE.

we have been sprayed with pesticide.

my neighbor was bitten by a mosquito an hour after they flew over.

i'm taking the kids and heading to the cape for a day or four.

sigh a nora.

maybe I'll post later, after i've packed some...

Monday, August 07, 2006

Maybe Javy Lopez is getting a little 'subsidy' from Steinbrenner. A little something extra every week to ensure that he will SUCK at the plate. And what's happening to Timlin? *sigh*

We took in a little semipro ball yesterday. Or maybe it's not semipro, but the tickets were free and it was baseball with friends so we went...and enjoyed.

And how do I now know the girlie would never last with me at Fenway? 47,252 trips to A. Face Painting, B. the bathroom, C. The Snack Bar. Cripes. But she left with a butterfly painted on her face, a belly full of cotton candy and a smile, so I guess it all worked out.

After the game they let you run the bases, very cool. For the kids.

And at $8.00 a ticket it's cheaper than a movie. Who pays $9.00 to see You, Me and Dupree??? Really.

I wish I could put into words just how much I hate, no, HATE to grocery shop with both of my kids in tow. They don't really beg for things, it's more a general and constant pushing of my buttons. I have to go and I'm dreading it.

Current countdowns?

4 weeks and one day until fourth grade.

4 weeks and three days until kindergarten.

2 weeks and some days until hockey starts. (note: that's the boy counting down - he thinks we've wrecked him by making him take four months off)

1 week and four days until the husband and children head to the Granite State for a long weekend. And I? Do not.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Deadly viruses and a Chicken

You know what's fun?

Convincing yourself that, as a result of shoddy parenting, (not applying bugspray to your kids during a cookout and them getting some where in the neighborhood of 25 mosquito bites each) your daughter's mysterious stomach bug with a slight fever and big time lethargy is actually not a harmless virus but Eastern Equine Encephalitis.


Infected mosquitos, the human biting ones this time, were found in town.

They're spraying but apparently not until Monday.

From some website I found while googling for the spray details:

Pine duBois, executive director of the Jones River Watershed Association, was alarmed to learn that spraying would begin so soon.

`I think it's an extreme tactic to take, and I think that they have a long way to go to prove that it's safer for us to experience aerial bombardment of that nature than to take precautions to protect ourselves," she said.

Since 30% of people who get infected DIE and another high percentage have to be institutionalized because of severe brain damage I'd venture a guess and say Miss duBois hasn't had her daughter covered in bug bites, doubled over with belly cramps and lying on the couch glassy eyed while the mom is staring at EEE fact sheets online and crying a bit. And hoping with all of her might that we are not the 1 in 54,000,000 statistic, as was a five year old girl from this neck of the woods last summer.

Aerially bombard me anyday.

P.S. The girlie is MUCH better this morning. And so am I.

Oh. and a bird for a bird:

An old picture from an old post.

A beer butt chicken. One of the favorite meals in this house. Pathetically easy and almost foolproof. And now I know what we'll have for dinner tomorrow.

Chicken, with a side of DEET. Yum-may!