Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Snow in June

Last night Kaylin and I pulled into the parking lot for swim lessons and Gene and Logan were already there. We went over to their car, got Logan and headed to the building to change. Logan started screaming excitedly about snow. Sure enough, there was a HUGE pile of snow! (Apparently the skating rink next to the pool was, uh, changing ice or something?) Anyway, we all ran over and played in the snow on a 90 degree, 90% humidity day!

I wish I had my camera. It was great to watch the kids- in flip-flops and crocs- running around on this mountain of snow. Even Gene, the biggest snow hater in the universe, had fun. We went back and played some more after the lesson.

Speaking of the lesson... Both kids did great, following instructions and actually trying to kick and paddle, etc. There were only 4 kids in Logan's class last night so he got a lot of personal attention and did a lot of swimming and a lot of playing. At the end of the lesson his teacher did one more swim for each kid. Logan was last. As he finished "swimming" to the side he had a huge smile on his face. As he climbed out of the water the smile changed. As I watched everything went to slow motion (including my thoughts that took on that deep, drawn-out tone.)

Ohhhh, nooooooooooooo. Loooooogannnnnnn's gonnnnnnnnnna puuuuuuuuuuuuuke!

Sure enough, as soon as he got out of the water he spewed McDonald's all over the pool deck. And then again for good measure. He stood there surprised but calm, flicking chunks from his arms and legs. "Huh, I puked. I didn't eat Spaghettios but I puked. I must be sick." I told him he wasn't sick he just drank too much pool water. He happily accepted that explanation and went with Gene to shower and change.

I stood guard over the vomit for a few minutes so no one would step in it, but when Kaylin came I left it. His instructor went and informed SOMEONE but they obviously weren't all gung-ho about removing it. Oh well. Logan was fine afterward and went home and ate again. But NOT Spaghettios!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

40 before 40 list

This post is for Janae who was offended by my desire to accomplish something before turning 40 when that is soooooooooooo far, far away!

40 before 40
A list of 40 things to accomplish before turning 40 on 10/29/2012.

1. Overcome walking stick phobia
2. Vacation without kids for at least 3 days
3. Vacation by myself for at least 3 days
4. Vacation with kids somewhere other than Walt Disney World
5. Start college savings for both kids
6. Organize and declutter entire house
7. Furnish at least one room with "real" non-hand-me-down furniture
8. Establish savings account
9. Avoid acquiring ANY new dogs, small mammals or birds
10. Meal plan for an entire month
11. No fast food for two months straight
12. Keep weight at or below current level
13. Regulate sleep schedule
14. Establish daily exercise program
15. Figure out how to balance family/work/kids activities/personal time
16. Go to Yellowstone or Grand Canyon
17. Visit a friend or family member out of state
18. Do something every day that takes me out of my comfort zone
19. Write a book- even if only for myself
20. Buy a video camera and actually use it
21. Hang family pictures
22. Learn to play piano or guitar
23. Read the classics I’ve never read
24. Eat the daily food pyramid recommendations for fruits and vegetables
25. Increase wardrobe to include DECENT outfits for every season and occasion
26. Get up close to a giant anteater
27. Take kids to see the eagles at the dam near Burlington
28. Run in a Zoo Run Run
29. Convince Logan to sleep in his own bed rather than under Kaylin’s desk
30. Find a place to see wild otters
31. Learn how to buy and cook meat other than hamburger and chicken breasts
32. Make and freeze a week’s worth of meals and then actually eat them as intended
33. Refrain from starting any new collections
34. Organize photos into albums or scrapbooks
35. Learn to identify trees
36. Go to a concert
37. Regularly keep a journal or blog
38. Read at least two books a month
39. Sleep in past 8am (being sick doesn’t count)
40. Do something completely unexpected (Tara claims I’ve accomplished this by writing this list.)

Dumbest. Game. Ever.

The local museum has a very kid friendly, craft heavy exhibit for the summer so we took the kids for a couple hours today. Kaylin enjoyed making all kinds of things out of paper while Logan built and destroyed block towers with a catapult and played with foam play dough. The museum also has a permanent children's area which kept the kids occupied while Gene and I played an insanely loooooong game of Mindball.

Gene was very eager to try Mindball. He found the thought of using brain waves to control a ball exciting. I played along to be nice. The actual game was anything but exciting... We followed the simple instructions and strapped the sensor headbands firmly around our foreheads, placed the metal superball-sized ball in the start position in the middle of the playing board and pushed the start button. The instructions said to clear our minds and that certain brain waves that occur when one is in a meditative state will cause the ball to move toward the opponent. A buzzer would signal victory. We could also watch our brain waves on monitors-the flatter the lines, the better for play.

We started the game and sat and sat and sat and sat for at least 5 full minutes before anything happened. The ball moved about two inches toward me. After another couple of minutes I sent it about an inch back. Then Gene moved it another two inches toward me and me an inch back. I never got the ball back to the center position (so never even on Gene's side of the board) but somehow would move it slightly. We probably sat there for AT LEAST 20 minutes before Gene finally got the ball to my target and triggered the buzzer. We ripped off the headbands, grabbed the kids and started toward the exit, relieved to be done with that stupid, pointless game.

Another family quickly took our place at the game and excitedly started. I was thinking "Poor schmucks, it's not fun." We left the gallery and walked about 100 feet when we heard the winning buzzer. WHAT????? They couldn't have been playing longer than a minute!

Gene and I decided they must be extremely dull people with no worries or stress in their lives to be able to flat-line their brain waves so rapidly. Whatever. I'm not bitter.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Swim lessons

Both kids are taking swim lessons (swimming lessons?) Anyway, Kaylin was always very excited about them and Logan was always very positive that he was NOT getting in the water. Ever. Not once.

The first day of lessons (they're in different age group classes) Kaylin jumped right in and happily did everything her instructor asked. Logan sat on my lap, clinging to me. The second lesson he put his feet into the water. The third lesson his instructor grabbed him from the side (unexpectedly) and took him into the water. He stayed in the rest of the time.

Last night he jumped right in. His class is held on the steps so the younger kids can safely play around while the instructor is working with individuals. Logan still wasn't as brave as the four fearless girls in his class, but he did everything his instructor asked and spent all his free time ducking his head under the water. He even eagerly jumped off the side at the end of his lesson!

I don't really know why I'm surprised by his progress because outside of LESSONS Logan loves the water. He loves playing in pools- especially on the steps. I have no idea why he feared lessons, but hopefully he'll enjoy them and learn how to swim.

Kaylin's doing well but would prefer to dog paddle or swim underwater rather than learn proper floating and stroke techniques. I imagine that will come with time...

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Why? Why? Why?

I hate milk. I can't stand to drink it. Ever since my freshman biology lab where we learned WAY too much about it, I can't drink milk straight. I do love cheese and ice cream and can tolerate yogurt (after forcing myself to eat it daily for two weeks.) Osteoporosis runs in my family and I hate calcium pills so I try to at least have milk on my cereal every morning.

This morning I got up early and was running way ahead of schedule. I was excited to sit down with my cheerios and the paper. As I was pouring milk onto my cereal a straw came out of the jug. A yellow bendy straw that was BENT!

Who would DO this disgusting thing and WHY??? I immediately had visions of one of the kids dumping their leftover milk back into the jug! I went hollering accusations all around the house. Surprise, surprise, everyone denied committing said crime. I imagine the nasty milk bottlers just happened to insert a straw identical to the ones we have into a random jug.

I managed to eat most of my cereal before I was too disgusted by the thought of it and gave the rest to the dog.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Paper boy

Usually the first thing Logan does when he wakes up in the morning is go outside to get the newspaper. The paper is delivered at the end of the driveway out by the road so it's a little walk rather than just grabbing it off the porch or something. He's been playing paper boy for a month or two and I've always wondered why it takes him so long to get the paper. I figured he was probably goofing around, looking at bugs or kicking rocks. Every time I've been concerned enough by how long he's taking and actually looked out the door, he's been on his way back to the house. This morning I watched the process...

Logan immediately walked all the way out to the big tree just before the end of the driveway and stopped. He then dropped his pants and peed for a really long time, pulled up his pants and proceeded to get the paper and bring it inside.

Huh. No wonder getting the paper is such an urgent matter! Fortunately, we live on a very quiet dead end street. There are only a few houses past ours so it's pretty unlikely a neighbor would pass while he's doing his business. I think I'll choose to ignore it and let the "problem" cure itself when it gets cold in a few months.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Gene took the kids to boat races on the river while I was at work today. For some reason they also saw some kind of martial arts demonstration and are HI-YA kicking the crap out of each other and the neighbor kids tonight. They have to put their hands at their sides and bow first. I'm waiting for the crying to start- probably because they whack their heads together while bowing.

Huh. Maybe the new neighbors will disapprove of this game. We've talked to the parents a total of TWICE and the kids have been over for hours every day for two weeks. The kids are 2 and 4! I would NEVER let MY kids go inside their house for hours on end. I don't know them! It's the weirdest thing... The kids are well behaved and nice and I usually don't mind having them here, but c'mon!

The zoo inspection is FINALLY over so work is back to normal. No more 10 hour days of frenzied painting and cleaning and weed pulling. I've actually taken both morning and afternoon breaks the past two days for the first time in months. The inspection went well though we apparently won't know we passed until September.

Saturday, June 9, 2007


Kaylin's Hated Tooth finally fell out today while I was at work! Apparently she was holding a book by her face and accidentally walked into the wall, knocking her tooth out. Huh.

Well, we're off to WalMart to buy the Littlest Pet Shop vet set as a reward. A happy start to my weekend!

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

mental illness

Woooohooooooo! We finally transitioned Logan to wearing short sleeves AND shorts! It took more than a month and lots of tears, but he's worn summer clothes to school the past three days. Ugh. Only three months until we have to transition back to long sleeves and pants. (I was insistent he wear shorts this summer because he has worn through the knees of approximately 754 pairs of jeans and pants in 2007 alone.)

The poor kid does not adapt well to change. Of course, neither do I. I always say Logan inherited all of Gene's and my worst qualities. His independence, stubbornness and general pain in the butt-ed-ness come from me. His freakish tidiness, extreme sensitivity and inability to accept change come from Gene. I'm not sure where he got his overwhelming need to stay on schedule but he NEEDS to be in bed by 8:30pm or we pay. Clothing tags are manufactured by Satan and one must be dressed to shoes within five minutes of waking in the morning. My 4-year-old neatly folds his two silkies (small security blankets) and places them on his pillow before making his bed. Logan's not perfectly behaved at school, but we often get compliments from his teacher about how helpful he is at cleanup time.

His need to do EVERYTHING for himself does come in handy. At age 4 he is capable of safely using the toaster and microwave. He uses a scissors to open packages he can't tear and can pour his own drink without making a mess. I never have to make him breakfast or get him a snack. He also taught his OLDER sister how to do all these things so I don't have to do them for her either. He rarely makes much of a mess because he's too tidy.

Hopefully some of his issues will improve with age, but considering his 38-yr-old dad just went to several stores (including Bed Bath and Beyond and Linens 'n Things twice apiece to buy and return) before he finally found a blanket that met all his needs and his 34-yr-old mom just bought her 10th pair of identical New Balance walking shoes he's probably screwed...

Monday, June 4, 2007

Teeth, ugh.

Kaylin has had a loose front tooth for well over two months. It is dangling in her mouth but she absolutely refuses to twist or even wiggle it because it hurts a teensy bit. She was at the dentist in early April and at that time I thought the tooth was so loose that it would come out any day. The dental hygeinist couldn't even stand to look at it! It's still there.

The tooth is icky to look at and is starting to stink. I have made so many bribes of "If you lose the tooth by ___, I'll buy you ___..." I can't even remember what all I've offered. We were at ToysRUs yesterday and I told her if she lost the tooth while we were in the store I'd buy her anything in the store. Anything. She wouldn't even wiggle it with her tongue.

Last night I went out with a friend. Gene took the kids to Dairy Queen for ice cream. Everyone was in bed when I got home but Gene woke up and excitedly told me Kaylin lost her tooth when she bit into her ice cream sandwich! I was completely thrilled. I deposited some Tooth Fairy cash under her pillow and fell happily asleep.

This morning when Kaylin woke up I rushed back to her bedroom to see the missing tooth. She gave me a big smile and shock of all shock, she lost the OTHER front tooth! The tooth that was barely loose in comparison to the hated, dangling one! WHAT??????? AAAAHHHHHHH!!!!

So now the Hated Tooth looks even more disgusting hanging there in her mouth. Kaylin has a couple of slightly loose lower teeth that will probably fall out first. At least she's now motivated to lose the tooth because she's excited about having both front teeth gone. Gene said she was actually wiggling it last night! It's just beyond belief to me that a kid wouldn't want to lose a tooth. I would have messed with the thing constantly!