Overheard at the gas station

Chichimama: “Fill it up with regular please.*”

Gas station attendent: “We’re out.”

Chichimama: “Uh, OK. Fill it up with plus then.”

C: “Mom, why are they out of ‘fill it up with regular?’ Why do we have to get ‘fill it up with plus?'”

Chichimama: “Huh? Oh! It’s not ‘fill it up with regular,’ it’s just regular, really.”

C: “Then why do you always say ‘fill it up with regular?'”

Chichimama: “Well, because that’s just how you order gas I guess.”

C: “Huh. If you say so.”

*Yes, I live in NJ in case you hadn’t figured it out by now. I love that I don’t have to pump my own gas. Love. It.

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They know me by name now

Today I had no less than three trips to the grocery store. Because I kept leaving my list in the car, and then winging it instead of walking BACK out to the car to get it. You would think I would have learned after the first time. And I actually should go a fourth time, because I managed to break the eggs on the way from the car to the house, but I’m going to make M stop at 7-Eleven on the way home instead. Because it will take him three minutes to run in by himself while it will take me close to twenty with the kids in tow between the getting into the car, the getting out of the car, and the chasing around the store hassles.

Why can I not get a grip on the routine tasks that running a household entail? I was so not cut out to be a housewife. A parent, OK, I can handle that part, sometimes. But the keeping everything else running smoothly part? Not so much. They really need a “Housekeeper 911” show instead of “Nanny 911”. I would sign up for that in a heartbeat. I so bet that there are many more people with housekeeping issues rather than parenting ones. Hmm. Perhaps I should pitch it someplace. Where oh where are my screen writing notes from college?

Just what I wanted to hear

C: “Hey! Mom! Guess what?! I remembered what happened today!”

Mommy: “What C?”

C: “Giggling Friend’s mommy had to come pick her up before snack today! She had a tummy ache! And a fever!”

Mommy: “Oh God. Did you play with her today?”

C: “Yeah! All morning! We were playing secret message!”

Mommy: “Noooooo…..”

Mars and Venus

Mommy: “C, what did you do at school today?”

C: “I dunno, I can’t remember. Snack? Play?”

Mommy: (big sigh) “A, what did you do at school today?”

A: “First I played dress up. With New Friend. She was in pink. Then I did my project. We made green trees with sticks. Miss M helped me. Then I played with the babies. They were hungry, so I gave them bottles. We had crackers AND pretzels for snack. Three of each. We put on coats and went outside. Miss P pushed me on the swing. Then I pooped, but I didn’t tell Miss M. I slide down the slide and poop got everywhere. It was a big mess. Miss M changed me, and I got to wear New Friend’s socks. Because you didn’t put any in my cubby. Then some kids went home, and I went in to have lunch. Except I didn’t eat much because I wanted to play with the train. Then you picked me up! Can I have my lunch now?”

Hamster

Hamsters are the ones that run round and round on little wheels, never getting anyplace, right? Or is the the guinea pig? I can never keep them straight. Well, whichever creature it is, that’s me right now, except instead of getting exercise on a wheel, I am moving from chair to couch and back again, trying to figure out which of the many holiday related tasks I need to tackle first. And so I am tackling none of them.

But today I DID clean the downstairs of the house. Vacuuming and mopping and the whole nine yards. And then when I walked into the house after taking the kids out to dinner (one shouldn’t have to clean AND cook in the same day in my opinion), I couldn’t figure out why it smelled so funny. I checked the furnace, the stove, and then realized it was the smell of Murphy’s Oil Soap. How sad is that that I didn’t recognize the smell of clean…

Anywho, back to my hamster habits. Do I keep knitting, knowing that I probably won’t finish the scarf by Sunday? Or do I instead turn to the holiday cards? Or do I wrap the presents that have to get shipped and dig around to find a big enough box to fit them all? Right now I have chosen to sit on the couch and watch a Charlie Brown Christmas on TV. Because that’s productive. But I really should be combining it with something. Like the holiday cards. But I don’t have stamps. Or M’s address list. So how far could I really get?

Did I mention the cookies I need to bake for the cookie exchange? And the ones for gifts for the teachers and such? Oh, and I need to plan a menu for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. And figure out stocking stuffers. Because Christmas is all about the stockings in my opinion. Somehow I judge the success of the holiday on how much people like their stocking stuffers. I know. I know. But I LOVE stocking stuffers. I am sure I spend more on the stocking stuffers than the actual under the tree presents.

Maybe I should keep knitting. I can knit and watch Charlie Brown. But I need to throw the bread for playgroup tomorrow into the breadmaker….Wheel. Spin. Wheee….

I owe it all to Susan Wagner

I have my holiday outfit. And it all cost less than $40. At Target today I bought this jacket,


which Susan over at Friday Playdate had been praising a few weeks ago. When I saw it in her post I thought “God, short and boxy. It would look look horrific on me,” and didn’t give it another thought. But today, in the clearance racks of Target, there it sat in just my size. “What do I have to lose?” I thought, and trotted off to the dressing room (yes, you heard me, I went into the dressing room at Target because I so sure it wouldn’t look right that it wasn’t even worth leaving the store with it). And, it looked good! But not with the wide-leg flowy pants I have at home.

So I headed next door to Old Navy to try and find another Susan recommendation, these pants. And guess what? On sale and in my size! Add a pair of black heels and a chunky necklace, and I actually look put together! Can you see the dance of joy I am doing right now? Thank you, thank you Susan! And thank you everyone for your moral support during this shopping crisis. I now return you to your regularly scheduled blogging.

Fashionista I am not

I just had the unfortunate experience of spending the afternoon at the mall with two children in tow, trying on clothes that are office holiday party appropriate. For the first time in five years, a sitter had been lined up and I will be attending M’s office party, assuming no major illnesses befell us.

Since it has been five years since I have spent the holiday season doing anything besides putting together toys, when I went shopping in my closet I found nothing that both fit and didn’t scream “bought in 1996!” So to the mall I went. First I headed to Ann Taylor Loft. “Cheap and trendy! I love Ann Taylor Loft” I thought. I tried on this…and it was clearly not made for boobs that have nursed two children. Then I tried this…but I am just not a shrug type of gal. Other than that, nothing looked even remotely appropriate.

Next I headed to JCrew. Everything there was $200 and up, and we moved on to Talbots. Yes, you heard me. Talbots. I came very close to buying this. It was comfortable. It had an elastic waist. It hid my belly roll and hips. But I just couldn’t quite do it. C told me it looked like pajamas. And if my almost five year old thinks it looks like pajamas…well, it probably does. I tried on four pair of pants. Three blouses. Apparently, short shirts are in again which is just unfortunate. After two children, I want to hide my tummy. As I’m not about to start doing sit ups.

Finally I headed to JJill. By this point, the troops were whining “I’m hungry. I’m tired of walking. I want to see the penguins.” I whipped through the store and walked out with this. I know. Not very chic. But comfortable! And useful, as I can wear it with jeans after the fact. Do you think with a pair of dressy black pants, heels and a cami I can pull it off? Or does it too scream frumpy mom?

Gah. Have I mentioned that I really, really hate to shop?

Ah, it is good to be average

As seen at Charlotte’s Web. I am proud to be a…

C-List Blogger

Head over to Kineda to get your own great little doo-dad!

Do you think I could get a better table at the dinner downtown now? Because they always put me and the kids in the corner near the kitchen, or by the door in the winter. But if I tell them I am a C-List blogger and I’m going to blog about it….hmmm.

Thanksgiving Roundup, Brought to You by the National Bullet Association

Still doing laundry. The problem with going to my dads place Thanksgiving weekend is that they are getting ready to close up the house for the winter, so things like the washing machine, which is not critical for most grownups who don’t have to change children’s outfits every five minutes, are turned off. So, in between loads, I’ll give you an abbreviated version of our trip.

  • We managed to avoid traffic both directions. It made the whole trip that much more enjoyable.
  • Disappointingly, we could not find a Starbucks on the trip up or back. Next time I will need to do my homework and plot them in advance. Except somehow I doubt that where my dad lives is a hotbed of the Starbucks demographic.
  • My youngest aunt and her kids didn’t make it for Thanksgiving, which made for a somewhat quieter Thanksgiving than years past.
  • In fact, there were so few of us in attendance that I finally graduated to the grownup table, as did my kids.
  • The food was delicious, M spent several hours groaning on the couch after the meal was over.
  • I, however, paced myself and was able to have a turkey sandwich before bed. The best part of Thanksgiving is the turkey sandwich before bed.
  • C wouldn’t know how good the food was, he spent the meal whining about how he doesn’t like new things, even thought he used to eat everything on the table with gusto.
  • A got brownie points for eating up a storm, although I have a sneaking suspicion that my Uncle ate most of her meal for her. At least she pretended to like it.
  • My grandmother was sprung from her nursing home for the day, and held court around the veggies and dip and cupcakes.
  • Except she kept turning off her hearing aid, so I don’t think she heard much.
  • But she seemed to be doing as well as anyone could be at age 96.
  • Because my youngest aunt was missing, M and I got to sleep in the part of the house with heat. It made it so much more enjoyable. Especially since my dad keeps the thermostat at a much higher setting than we do at home. It was almost decadent.
  • The kids had a blast, despite the constant whining about food options. There were sticks to pick up, ice cream to be had, and grandparents to lead them in the making of a gingerbread house.
  • Thanks to heroic kid watching efforts on the part of M and my dad and step-mom, I actually completed three Christmas knitting projects while I was up there. I probably could have done more, but I ran out of yarn and was too lazy to head downtown and buy some more.
  • Now I need to decide how many more gifts I am making. The temptation is there to keep going, but I am afraid that I’ll be pulling all nighters the week before Christmas if I don’t think this through.
  • And on that note, I am off to buy some size 9 needles so I can start on the scarf for M’s grandma. Because she is arriving on Friday and I want to send it back home with her. One less thing to ship don’t you know.

The problem with coming home

The problem with coming home after a long weekend away is the laundry. Well, that and the cat puke that covered every surface in our house. Which only adds to the laundry issue. I’m off to be one with the washer and dryer, as the hand-me down cupcake pajamas must be clean by bedtime or there will be no sleep for anyone.