Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Where's my stuff?

I really wish certain people with whom I live (and who shall remain nameless though they know who they are--or they would if they were ever to read this, which they don't) would stop messing with stuff and losing it!

I was going to take some lovely photos to share with you today but, alas, once again, the photo card is missing from inside the camera as is the little plug-in thingy that we use to transfer our photos from said camera into the computer. This keeps happening again and again and it really frustrates my attempts at maintaining a barely interesting blog. And it's always the same two people--what on earth are they doing with that photo card? What could be so important that they must take it so often and keep it secreted so long? Should I be concerned?

Anyway, today is a momentous day and I really thought it warranted photographic documentation. It's Flannel Day. The day I bedeck the beds in all their flannel glory. Oh yes it is! I usually wait until the first of October, but the weather was so lovely today, so cool and crisp, and I had to strip and remake the beds anyway so I decided to just give in and do it!

I was going to take photos of all the flannely goodness, but...

That's really all I've got today. Nothing else of consequence has happened in the past few days. Daria and I have been driving each other out of our minds trying to plan this Clue party, but I don't really have any info to share on that other than I think I'm going to be Mrs. Peacock. But it's not finalized yet.

Hopefully, I can get Redheaded Snippet to tell me where the photo card is and take photos of the flannels and the Halloween decorations I've started around the house. But no promises, that girl is one tough negotiator (oops! and I was going to keep her nameless..oh well)!

Until next time...

Thursday, September 24, 2009

By George I've Got It!

With Halloween on a Saturday this year and dear, fun-loving friends planning on being in town visiting us that very weekend, I've been feeling quite a lot of Halloween pressure lately.

The decorations...must be magical!

The activities...must be sensational!

The costumes...must be brilliant!

Well, two days ago, the perfect idea just materialized into my fevered, little brain. It was a moment of true enlightenment.

That's right, CLUE!

I'm going to throw a Clue Halloween Party. All the guests are going to dress as Clue characters and we're going to play a live version of the game.

I am so excited and have a lot to do! Now, who do I want to be? Hmmmm...

More to come...

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Happy Autumn!

Today is the first day of Autumn and I, for one, couldn't be happier! In fact, just as I glanced up from the screen, a brown leaf floated gracefully past the window as if in confirmation of it.

We've been sleeping with the windows open, wearing light jackets and sweatshirts at night, building fires whenever possible and tonight, I'm making chili-an'-cornbread. I can't say them as separate words anymore. It's chili-an'-cornbread! And there's still some leftover (Theoretical No Longer) Butternut Squash, Apple and Gorgonzola Gratin to enjoy! That stuff is to die for. Just trust me. Make it, you'll love it.

In local news, Redheaded Snippet (doesn't she look cute in her uniform?) continues to take the world of high school field hockey by storm. Sure, I exaggerate slightly, but I've got bragging rights, don't I? She's still playing Varsity and last night scored three goals!

You may well wonder what on earth my sweet, little, dainty, fairy princess is doing...with what looks, it can't her hands...After each game the coaches select a Star of the Game who they think played like "The Shizz". I know, it's crass and it's vulgar, but I can't help but think it's pretty darn funny. I'm a little shocked at myself, honestly, but it just tickles me so! And after last night's game, Redheaded Snippet was named, "The Shizz"! Is it wrong to be so proud of her?

(In)appropriately enough, the "trophy" selected as the symbol of this great honor is none other than "Shizz" itself: fake, prank poo. Redheaded Snippet excitedly whipped it out of her bag and brandished it as if it were a blue ribbon when I picked her up after the game last night. That looked pretty funny. And for your information, it is squishy, it bounces and it smells slightly of plastic. Man-Cub is absolutely besotted with it.

And as if she wasn't already flying high enough, Snippet got her braces off this morning! I can only imagine how many times she's going to be digging through rubbish bins looking for that retainer...

We hadn't told The Viking they were coming off today; she wants to surprise him at the door with a big smile when he gets home tonight. She keeps running her tongue over her teeth and the retainer makes her talk a little funny, but she just can't seem to stop smiling.

And neither can I, when I look at that face.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Where's the Aleve?

Just a short one, I'm nursing quite a headache (more on that in a mo')...

So, this week we got a new tv...well, new to us, that is. A friend was getting rid of one and since ours was quite old (think encased in a faux wood box) he took pity on us and gave it to us! The menfolk are quite excited, as menfolk are wont to be about electronics and such, and wasted no time in setting it up and abandoning the old relic out by the curb.

Somehow, with the new tv, we now have all sorts of channels we never had before. We've gone from having the big three, plus a few of the local channels and pbs, to having TLC, the History Channel, AMC, HGTV, food network, the weather channel, MTV and even HBO. Now, I am not happy about the last two: MTV and HBO are two channels I do NOT want on my tv. There is no reason, in my opinion, for anyone to watch anything broadcast on those channels! I'm still trying to figure out how to block them completely to protect my dear children's little eyes, ears and minds.

Today, I got absolutely nothing done. I was mesmerized by the sheer volume of things available for my viewing pleasure. I don't usually watch tv at all during the day; it's nothing but soaps and court shows if you only have antenna service channels. But today, I confess, I got lost in the novelty of it all.

I sat and watched one of my all-time favorite movies, Sense and Sensibility. In its entirety. Without interruption. And, being quite alone, I felt free to blubber like a baby at several points during the movie. Which I did with wild abandon. I can't remember the last time I did that! Of course, my beds went unmade and my toilets unscoured so I will be paying for it later, but boy, was it indulgent!

In other news, I have a pounding headache that is so bad it's affecting my vision!

I wonder if these things could be related?

I guess I'm just lucky all 6 hours of Pride and Prejudice wasn't showing!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Mommy Vent

Well, I don't know the exact reason, but I have been in a right royal snit all day. I'm cranky! Man-Cub has been wearing on my nerves and I'm ready to sell him to the first gypsy wagon I see! Within 20 minutes of his arrival home from school I had had enough! He is a whiny, nagging, complaining mess, interrupting me every twelve seconds, climbing up on things he knows he shouldn't be climbing on, making a fuss over having to take his bath, do his homework, go to bed, making a fuss about everything! And the noises...ugh. His latest trick is to make odd noises of protest. I tell him he needs a bath and he hisses at me like a jungle cat. I tell him to stop pestering his sister and he growls at me like a wild dog. Whenever I ask him to do anything he responds with a forceful, "Never!" like an old British General refusing to surrender (complete with the accent) and sometimes he answers with a cock of the head and sidelong glance and a, "Maybe," like we're going to open negotiations or something.

Reading over that last paragraph I realize I am not painting a very good picture of my dear youngest child. He sounds like a brat, though The Viking says he is not a brat. He says he's just an eight-year-old boy and he's only going to get worse until puberty is over. Aye, me. The Viking has warned me that twelve-year-old boys are the worst people in the world and we are going to want to move away and not give Man-Cub the address when he hits that age. Is this just the build-up to that horrible day?

Today, at Redheaded Snippet's game (more on that later), Man-Cub was wreaking havoc (or reeking of havoc as my dear friend, Mrs. Brown, says) with a simple grocery store plastic bag. First, he was attempting to put it over his head. Then he stood on the third step of the bleachers with the bag over his head like a parachute, poised to jump. Fortunately, I caught on right as I saw his muscles begin to tense and aborted the flight. Why am I having to tell my eight-year-old not to put bags over his head or use them as parachutes? Isn't this four-year-old stuff? Or are we just getting into territory where my complete and total lack of experience with boys is going to be a problem? I just don't seem to understand him most of the time.

If I were reading this on someone else's blog I would think, "Hmmm, that boy is clearly screaming for attention." But he gets a lot of that and doesn't seem to appreciate it. He sure doesn't want it from me! All I seem to be good for is feeding him. I guess my role as his mother is changing and I haven't yet gotten used to what he now needs from me, though I know it's not cuddling or fussing over him! He tripped on the bleachers today (go figure) and I could tell by his face that his hand really stung but he was trying to pretend it didn't. I had to promise not to fuss or make any noise before he would come near me for me to look at it.

Anyway, I did not intend to spend this entire post venting about my boy. I think his biggest problem is he's bored and hates being cooped up in school all day long and then being dragged to hockey games three times a week. He's the kind of boy who needs hours of running outside in the fresh air and he's been spending way too much time sitting and having to be still. I think The Viking is going to take him out for a nice, long hike or bike ride this weekend. That should help.

Redheaded Snippet had another game today, a grudge match against a team that beat us last year. She didn't play at her usual level and only got about 5 minutes in the Varsity game, but she played most of the JV game and scored three goals! The Varsity team won the game 2-1 but the coach was spitting mad at the end and all the girls were crying. They won, but none of them played at the level they should have. They had much higher expectations of themselves and didn't come close to meeting them. It was a strange thing to see a team that had just won a close game standing around looking like they'd just lost the most important game of the season. But I guess that's one of the things that makes them so good; they treat every game like it's the most important one and set extremely high standards for themselves that have only a little to do with winning.

Well, it's time for me to finish my evening chores and get to bed. The Viking took the kids out to get some water ice but they should be back any minute and my few moments of solitude will be over. I still have to load the dishwasher, fold a few loads of laundry and, if there's anything half-decent on tv (like maybe there's been some kind of miracle), I'll get the ironing done before I turn in. Tomorrow is a shopping day and there is no game and we're celebrating The Viking's birthday! White Castle here we come!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Do You Know?

September is already half over??? Already??? I am, hence the excessive question marks of incredulity, shocked and dismayed by this! I love September and do not wish to see half of it already swept past me! And I mentioned to Man-Cub yesterday that Halloween was only 6 weeks away and that almost made me choke! It's going to be New Year's Eve before we know it!

So, I'd better get a move on! I've got apple-picking trips to arrange, Autmny-Harvesty recipes to unearth, flannels to launder, summer clothes to recover from the bottom of the dresser drawers and pack into the backs of closets, russety-, earthy-colored trinkets to haul up from the basement and arrange in delightful array about the house, and pumpkin lattes to sample!

All while managing the children's school and game schedules. Jeepers.

Which brings me to my second Do You Know of the day:

2009's Field Hockey Season has been so much FLIPPING FUN! This has been the most fun season ever and we're only 3 official games into it! First, as a woman who long ago bore a member of the team, I have been given a very adorable and satisfyingly large and ostentatious button with a photo of Redheaded Snippet on it. We moms wear them emblazoned on our chests at games, pretending to be blase' about it like we've forgotten just how good this team is or how completely chuffed we are to have a daughter playing on it while really, on the inside, we wish we could be wearing about 80 of those buttons all over every inch of our clothing and carry banners with our daughters' faces and numbers on them, screaming, "She's MINE, she came out of ME and I deserve your attention and admiration by proxy!" I think these buttons are great fun and take great pride in embarrassing Redheaded Snippet by wearing it everywhere! But they must be cool for even Daria wants one.

Second, Redheaded Snippet (okay, you may want to avert your eyes because I am going to brag. So, either look away or just deal with it), Redheaded Snippet has gotten plucked from JV (a team on which it is a great honor to play as a Freshman) and is now playing Varsity. She could, of course, be bumped back down to JV at any time depending on her performance, but so far, she has played in all three Varsity games. And has scored in two of them! And last night, she was part of the starting lineup. I couldn't believe it when I saw her trot onto the field, a wee speck of maroon under those bright, bright lights, and bend down with her stick on that fresh, green turf to start the game! I saw her name mentioned on our local paper's website for the first time this morning. I sent links to people. I am insufferable. Thankfully, Snippet herself is taking much more in stride. She just wants to play. Period.

Tomorrow is The Viking's birthday and I have nothing planned save going to the liquor store for his annual birthday bottle of good Scotch (I'm thinking Laphroaig this year--Lenny highly recommends it). He told me he wants White Castle hamburgers and a milkshake. What is wrong with this man? I was thinking along the lines of roast lamb with mint jelly and cheesecake for dessert, but it's not my birthday, now, is it? So White Castles it shall be and if the man wants a big ole package of indigestion tied up with a heartburn bow for his birthday, so be it. And it does cut down drastically the list of things I have to buy: Scotch and Pepto Bismol, check!

Right, so it's that time again, time to get back to my housework and get caught up on all the things that fell apart while I was resting my aching back and neck. Our sofa has become the Leaning Tower of Laundry, the fridge smells dreadful and there are tiny bits of turf all over the laundry room floor that need to be swept up. Not to mention I haven't the slightest idea what I'm making for dinner tonight to pack up and take to church. That's right, mid-week church starts up again tonight! This year, The Viking and I are leading Youth Band rehearsals on Wednesdays and Youth Worship on Sundays. Youth Band isn't really my thing, but I'm finding that when God calls you, it's not always to your particular cup of tea. Here's where He has me, so we'll see what He's got planned. But that still means I have to have dinner cooked and packed up by 6:00 tonight. I don't know yet what it will be, but it will have to be quick, cheap and very portable. BLTs, perhaps? I could go for one of those. And maybe I'll heat up a can of soup for The Viking. He doesn't seem to have great compunctions concerning the canning of soup.

Monday, September 14, 2009

On The Mend

(and a recipe)

I'm finally feeling better. I took my medicine like a good girl and did nothing for 2/3 of the day yesterday but sit in the recliner against the heating pad playing Lego Batman. That is all I did. Well, the first 1/3 of the day I spent at church, but I wasn't being pious. I was in rehearsal and then a very long staff meeting. And I was bored most of the time, so don't think respectful or admiring thoughts of me. But I think that time in the recliner was time well spent in healing.

Today, after a good night's sleep (aided by my lovely muscle relaxers), I am feeling a lot stronger. I can turn my neck almost completely to the right and left and can look up, though looking down is still not very pleasing to me. I'm probably walking around with all kinds of things (crumbs mostly) scattered all over my shirt front because I can't get a good look down there!

I tend to set myself back on days like these and run right out and do too much in order to make up for all the time I've lost, but I've committed to not doing that today. This week is just too busy and I can't afford a single extra day of recovery. The Viking was very frustrated and stressed out last night, having to fill in as Mommy during the Sunday Night School Week Preparations. I usually manage making sure we're all ready for the week ahead which entails groceries, the menu, lunch preparedness (this is one of my newest favorite words lately, have you noticed?), laundry, finding shoes and bags and mouthguards and water bottles and library books, taking a final check to make sure homework is done, making sure boys have bathed properly and girls are not taking too long or hogging the bathroom to do so, you get the idea. The Viking is know...I don't know what he usually does while I'm doing all that...probably something involving tools and bits of metal and quite likely his "work pants". But last night, he had to do my job. And, boy, was he cranky!

At one point, Redheaded Snippet sneaked from the kitchen where she was supposed to be helping The Viking into the living room (where I was convalescing) to tattle on him. She gave me her newly minted teen-aged look and said, very pointedly, and low so her poor father couldn't hear her, "Mom...he's throwing things." Indeed, I could hear frequent crashes coming from the room from which she had just escaped.

He wasn't being violent, just doing his tornado thing. He hates spending time cleaning or tidying so he goes in like a whirlwind doing it as fast as he can so it can just be over. I can't blame him. My job makes me cranky all the time but it doesn't alarm the children cause they're used to it from me! Of course, since the tornado blew through I may find myself unable to find anything in the kitchen...but bless his pointed little head for helping, right?

So, I am going to spend a little more time on the recliner now that I've spent the morning sitting upright all on my own. Redheaded Snippet has another game this afternoon and I intend to be there without my collar on so I'd better bank some down time.

But before I go, here for your culinary pursuits, is a recipe Lobelia has bestowed upon me. She got it from her Wegmans newsletter. I don't get those, but I'm sure going to start! This recipe is perfect for Autumn and I absolutely cannot wait to use it so I thought I'd post it here. It's a theoretical recipe as neither of us has actually made or tasted it yet, so ye be warned.

Theoretical: Butternut Squash, Apple, & Gorgonzola Gratin

SERVES 8 ACTIVE TIME: 20 min TOTAL TIME: 1 hour 45 min

-2 1/2 T olive oil, divided
-1 small butternut squash (1 1/2 lbs),peeled & sliced into 1/8-inch thick pieces
-Salt and pepper to taste
-1/4 t ground nutmeg, divided
-1 1/2 c heavy cream
-2 medium Granny Smith apples, cored, peeled, thinly sliced (about 2 1/2 cups)
-3oz Gorgonzola cheese

You'll Need: 2-quart shallow casserole dish, baking sheet
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

1. Rub casserole dish with 1 1/2 T oil. Place casserole dish on baking sheet. Cover bottom of dish with layer of squash; season with salt and pepper and half the nutmeg. Repeat with remaining squash; season with salt and pepper and remaining nutmeg. Pour heavy cream over all.

2. Bake 30 min; remove from oven. Press squash/cream mixture down using spatula; return to oven. Bake 10 min; remove from oven.

3. Toss apples with 1 T oil in small bowl. Cover top of squash mixture with single layer of apple slices, overlapping slightly and pressing apple slices gently into creamy mixture with a spatula.

4. Return casserole to oven; bake 45-50 min or until squash and apples are tender. Remove from oven. Top with dollops of Gorgonzola; let cheese melt before serving.

Chef Tip(s):
Squash can be sliced ahead of time and refrigerated.

Doesn't that just sound silly good? I'm imagining it served with marinated pork loin and roasted asparagus on some crisp, chilly night! Mmmmmmmm, I can't wait!

Okay, gotta go convalesce.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Ah, Sweet Relief

I have discovered, like scads of others on the planet, the wonders of muscle relaxers! Up until now I've only associated them with humorous references to prescription drug addictions in sitcoms and movies, but now, after my first treatment, I can understand their seductive allure!

I went to the doctor yesterday and got loaded up, as it were. I walked out (slowly and as though I were made of glass but on my own strength) with four scripts in my hand! One for inflammation, one for relaxation, one for pain eradication, and one for an X-ray in the event my lovely remedies don't do the trick.

But, trust me, they are. I got a good night's sleep last night, unlike the night before when I kept The Viking up all night, too, with my tossing and whimpering. I tried sleeping sitting up, sitting in the recliner, propping pillows all around my head like a custom-made, velvet-lined case, all to no avail. But one giant horsepillesque muscle relaxer made all the difference and I slept a woman on muscle relaxers.

I haven't actually taken the heavy duty one yet. I'm reserving that for when the pain is really bad. Like at EGOD's birthday luncheon this afternoon. Ha, I jest, surely I do. Not that the luncheon won't necessarily warrant the use of heavy narcotics, just that I would not abuse my prescriptions in such a manner.

We are celebrating EGOD's 90th birthday today. I feel I must repeat, the above image is not an actual photo of her, it's just a bloody good representation of what she's like. She's a charmer, that woman. We juggle and manoeuvre things to try and keep the children from being near her too much and that is hard to do during big family meals. Actually, it's a fortunate thing we have two members of the family who don't terribly mind sitting hear her and are usually willing to take one for the team: Lenny and The Viking. Notice it's the two grandsons-in-law, the ones who aren't related by blood, who are willing to endure the talking with the mouth full and, inevitably, subsequent spitting of food, the frequent complaints and nagging, whiny, disparaging comments about everything, and having to translate between her and the waitstaff. We Granddaughters think it's because they don't have the family history or emotional baggage we have. They say it's also because they find it slightly hilarious to keep filling her wine glass and sit back and watch the show. So, one of them will probably bite the bullet for us again.

Sigh. These dinners are exhausting. Sure, it's an excuse for the rest of us to gather and enjoy a nice meal (provided EGOD is not permitted to choose the venue), but you never know what kind of mood she's going to be in and it takes an awful lot of concentration and emotional energy to navigate through these events. Hmmm...maybe I will take a painkiller and let people think I've simply had too much wine.

On that note, I'm off to try to shower and do my hair so I might need to pop another muscle relaxer. Or, alternatively, it may be a nice day to wear a hat.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Oh My Aching Back

So, I only have a minute here because I must go back to the recliner. You may not remember my pesky aching back from a few weeks ago, but this morning, I managed to take a nagging ache that tended to flare up and was easily managed by periodic treatments of heat and rest (in other words sitting in the recliner with the heating pad on it for an hour or so) and turn it into an actual injury the likes of which is going to require a trip to the doctor, prescription meds and at least a day of confinement.

I fell down the stairs at 6:15 this morning. You see? THIS IS WHY I DON'T GET UP EARLY! I was up because I had to take The Viking to a coworker's house to get a ride into work so I could have the car because his truck broke down the other day resulting in a radiator hose exploding in his face, spraying him with coolant and hot water and yet not hurting him very badly (thanks to God's protecting hand). When I came home I was going to go back to bed, but for some reason I simply cannot remember, I decided to go back downstairs for something. What was it, it's driving me crazy!

I didn't turn the light on because everyone else was still asleep (lucky devils) and about 2 steps down, I stepped on something (I think it was a hanger, of all things, drat those kids), my feet slid out from underneath me and I bumped and slid down the rest of the staircase on my back.

I should have just turned that stupid light on because Daria and Redheaded Snippet were wakened anyway by the thunderous sound of my body flopping down the stairs and came running to see if I wasn't killed. I could have simply woken them up with the light. They would have been a little more cranky, but certainly less alarmed and I wouldn't be so...stiff and sore.

So, the knot in my back is now in full-blown spasms and I'm stuck moving like the Tin Man. As long as I only move at the waist and elbows I'm okay. But I can't move my neck side to side or up and down, I can only lift my right arm at the shoulder a little and I can't move my left shoulder at all.

Thank God Daria is here. She planted me in the recliner with heating pad, woke Man-Cub for me and drove him to school. Redheaded Snippet, of course, simply caught the bus so it was nice not to have to worry about her. I spent the morning playing Lego Batman in the recliner and then managed to creep back upstairs to take a nice, long, if pain-laced nap and then back down again to make some tea and toast before posting a quick update here.

I'm letting Daria sleep a bit more before I call the doctor to see if I can get in today. Thankfully, we all pitched in and cleaned the house right after dinner last night so I don't have to worry about that and I'm pretty sure Daria or Mom can pick up Man-Cub and Redheaded Snippet doesn't have a game today. But dinner is going to be a problem. I roasted a chicken last night and intended to make homemade chicken pot pie with the leftovers tonight and everyone was so looking forward to it. There is no way I will get Daria to touch a chicken carcass and by the time Redheaded Snippet gets home it will be too late to start it. Not sure what we're going to do!

Right, well, it's hurting to sit up anymore so I'm off. Off to recuperate some more. Now my only decision is which Lego game to play: Batman, Star Wars or Indiana Jones...

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Short But Sweet

I only have a few moments before I have to get ready for another of Redheaded Snippet's scrimmages. This is our first Saturday morning scrimmage. We're going to pack coffee and sticky buns and wear our USA Field Hockey visor and feel like real hockey parents. Well, I will. Maybe. If I can stop asking everyone around me what's going on and actually learn the game at some point before she graduates.

You would be well justified in thinking it is not a good idea to be blogging right now. Not when there are, admittedly, "only a few moments before I have to get ready" and Man-Cub has requested I make him sausage (why can't The Viking make him sausage, he's sitting right there?) and I'd like to get a load of clothes on the line and make my bed before we leave and we all know how I tend to run on so when I get to typing. But I only popped in to share a few things. It won't take more than a few minutes. Or 48.

I do not have photos so you will just have to take my (excellent, if I say so myself) word for it. But I made the best pizza last night. Seriously. It was. The kids said so. I think I'm really getting the hang of this thing. I made my own sauce last night (it's super easy and not fancy so don't be impressed) and then added about three times as much cheese as I usually sprinkle on it. I think that made all the difference. I ate it with the belief that I had no reason to ever call a pizza delivery man ever again. Except for sheer laziness. Yes, that's still there. I don't think I'll be escaping that one yet.

To make up for the lack of pizza photos, here is one of a small bunch of Campanula, also known as Bellflowers or Canterbury Bells (my favorite) that I bought to grace my dining room table. There was something about the delicate, purple-lined cups and subtle scent that reached out and pulled me down by my lapels. So I bought them and stuck them where I can see them every day.

I really am a horrible photographer. But they make me smile.

Friday, September 04, 2009


I really should have posted a before shot but I just didn't have the guts. Just imagine sand soaked in dishwater and you'll have my actual, God-given "before" color. Blah, blech, blargh.

It only took 2 hours, it only cost me what I chose to tip the stylists, and it's not so drastic that everyone will be looking at me thinking, "Oh, well, that woman bleaches her hair."

They even blew my hair out for me. I don't know about you, but having my hair dried is my idea of luxury. It feels so nice and all I have to do is close my eyes and breathe deeply. Between that and the hand and arm massage they threw in, it was like a little slice of being at a spa! Now I know when I go outside to hang out the laundry, I'll look good doing it!

Time for a Makeover!

I'm off to a local high-priced hair salon to be a hair model for students of the beauty school. They're having a blonde workshop and I got a slot and get to have my hair colored for FREE!

There are no words for how excited I am. Really, there aren't. I haven't had my hair highlighted professionally in at least 2 years because it's so dang expensive! But today, I get to have it done FREE!

Of course, I could come back with green hair, or burned off stubs, but I guess that's the chance I'm willing to take to save money. I'm not going to think about the green stubs. I'm going to think about this:

Keeping my fingers crossed...!

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Crikey! What a day!

As pertains to our new and improved system of running the household more smoothly, I managed to get (most) of my daily chores done today and even got (most) of my Tuesday weekly chore done, too! Beds made? Check. Bedroom tidied? Check. Man-Cub's room tidied? Check. Dinner made? Check. Laundry washed, dried and folder? Er...half-check (I've got a load still in the washer that I fully intended to hang on the line out in the glorious sunshine and dry, breezy weather we had today, but I ran out of time). Bathroom cleaned (including bathtub) and floor swept? CHECK!

I need to interrupt myself for just a moment to cast a plea out into the sea, as it were. Can anyone tell me how to clean my bathtub/shower? It never looks clean no matter how long I leave stuff to sit, no matter how hard or long I scrub it. I need a good method/system/product/tool to get it clean without half killing myself! Without meaning to be gross, there's this dirty-looking, taupe-ish colored smudgy stuff all over the bottom of the tub that refuses to come off. And when I scrub at it, the sponge, scrubby, whatever I'm using gets the stuff gunked all over it. What is that stuff?? Is it soap scum? I hate it!

Anyway, after my bathroom blitz, Mrs. (Councilor)Nugent came over with her label maker (I love that it was her Christmas present. That she asked for. She's such a delightful dork) and tackled the pantry and bathroom closet. She LOVES to organize things and is the perfect yin to my yang in such matters. We didn't get very far because of our combined four children for one reason or another. And then we had to stop and search for the pacifier she mysteriously lost and absolutely could not find (turned up hours later in her back pocket). But we did manage to solve the problem of the spice jar avalanche that was terrorizing anyone who dared reach into the cupboard for some ground ginger, garam masala or marjoram. One medium-sized basket and a sharpie was all it took! And she's promised to come back so we can really make some headway on my pantry. I won't tell you what could happen to you if you ventured inside my pantry. You might change your mind about visiting me.

We went right from the inside of my bathroom closet (where we rolled up washcloths and piled them into a decorative washtub, condensed a few baskets and made more room for towels) to the school for Redheaded Snippet's very first high school hockey game! We were all so excited and the weather was absolutely picture perfect!

There we were, chatting, laughing and having a marvelous time waiting for the Varsity game to be over so we could watch Redheaded Snippet play in the JV game when all of a sudden I saw something that made my heart stop. I grabbed Mom's and Mrs. (Councilor)Nugent's arms and gasped, "Is she going in?"

Sure enough, there she was, standing on the sideline, stick in hand, waiting for the signal to enter the game. The Varsity game. Okay, maybe I'm making a big deal about this, but I'm her mother, I'm allowed, right? She's a freshman (or will be, officially, on Friday). And this is the best high school hockey team in the state. It's enough of an honor to be on the JV team. And she got to play in the Varsity game. It was so unexpected and so exciting to watch! Especially because she held her own! Mrs. (Councilor)Nugent played hockey herself in high school and she was watching Snippet closely and said to me, "She's a flippin' freshman, playing against and with flippin' seniors on the best flippin' team in the state...and she's flippin' holding her own!"

Redheaded Snippet took it all in stride. I was all squeals when she got in the car after the games (Varsity won 6-1 and JV 4-0), but she just gave me a tired grin and began critiquing the crappy way she played during the JV game (according to her). Always looking for ways to improve, that kid.

Dinner tonight was kind of a rushed affair, what with arriving home at nearly 7:00 and all, but I still managed baked chicken with a hint of ginger and lime and cheesy orzo. The Viking built a fire and we carried our plates outside to eat around it. Then fixin's for S'mores were produced and we roasted marshmallows and lingered out in the cool air rehashing the day's events. Tomorrow is our first school night so tonight was the unofficial last night of Summer. We wanted to make the most of it, make it a little special. The hustle and bustle of school and homework and early bedtimes begins in less than 24 hours and I just can't believe it's over. Sigh.

Man-Cub and I are going out to get his backpack tomorrow and a few other sundry items to ease the pain of having to go back to school just a wee bit. Maybe I'll take him out to lunch, too. We'll have to see how the day goes.

So, I'm off to bed to fall asleep to the crickets' lullaby soughing through the open windows. Hurry, Autumn, make haste!