Aug 27, 2011

my genius brain faeries

It is really no secret that I am not a fan of old houses.  (I'm pretty sure I complained enough about it when I was moving, yes?) And while some people would adore to live in a charming, character-filled, and possibly haunted, old house I have never had that particular desire.


But it's surprising how quickly one can acclimate.  Even when one was absolutely positive that one would undoubtedly die if one was forced to live here even for one second.  It has been 8 weeks since I moved here, and I am not even slightly dead.  AND, I sort of, almost, semi like-ish my house a little bit.  Maybe.  EVEN THOUGH IT'S OLD.

The vents don't even seem as scary now.  Sometimes.

And we sprayed for spiders.

But here's the thing - someday we need to eventually BUY a house.  Like real grown-ups do.  Our landlord is also a real estate agent and upon hearing that we want to someday eventually buy a house took us to see two properties today.  And then said he'd call in the afternoon to see if we wanted to put in a offer.  And then we said, "WOAH NELLY, we are not putting in an offer on anything today."

Because do we really even want to buy a house?!

And also, if we want to live anywhere near Husband's office (seeing as we're also mostly opposed to things like gas guzzling commutes so we kind of want to stay near Husband's office) we will have to buy an OLD HOUSE.  Because that is all that's here.  It is ALL old.  (And probably haunted like old houses tend to be.)

SO.

The ultimate plan, which I concocted in my head with the help of my highly imaginative and illogical brain faeries, is to buy a fixer upper-type house that we can renovate, add onto, and COMPLETELY CHANGE (and all this changing would happen in under 2 years, says the faeries).  And, as I am now discovering, old houses are perfect for this whole change completely thing. And there are plenty of fixer-uppers around here with "amazing potential".

It would be like turning this:


into this:


It would be totally amazing because my brain faeries are geniuses.

But still, do we really want to buy a house?!

And do I really want to worry about remodeling said house?! 

The handy with power tools thing is not a strong suit here.  Plus also, it takes that green paper stuff that has dead president's heads on it (I'm not really quite sure what it's called, because it's been so long since I've seen some).  And I highly doubt we'll be having very much of that green paper stuff because HOLY SULFUR BOMBS, houses are expensive.

You can still be a real adult if you live in rentals for the rest of your life, right?

Aug 24, 2011

and then school starts



Today was the first day of school for us.

I had my whole morning all planned out.   

It was to go like this:

1. We all get tremendous amounts of sleep the night before and are fully, absolutely, happily rested.

2. I wake up early and start a special breakfast filled with love.

3. Listening to the birds chirp gaily, I tiptoe to the children's room and wake up just the two older kids (letting the little kids sleep in).

4. They wake up with smiles and get dressed while I finish the love-filled breakfast.

5. I sing about butterflies until robins land on my outstretched fingertips while unicorns prance over rainbows.

6. The kids eat.

7. I do a spectacular first day of school hairdo on Two Bits while discussing philosophical topics such as the existential realm of avocados.

8. We take first day of school pictures and give hugs and maybe a high five or two.

9. Husband takes the kids to school on time, with no stress, and maybe the unicorns could follow the car for a few blocks.

10. I go back to bed (because, let's face it, my plans are always realistic).


GOOD PLAN, right?


This is how it really went:

1. Opie wakes me up 4 times during the night ask if it's morning yet.  The rest of my night is filled with vivid dreams about The Borg.


2. I wake up early, and go to the bathroom, while Husband helps  by running downstairs and yelling, "GET UP, IT'S MORNING!" 

3. The little kids lay on the kitchen floor whining while I start the special breakfast filled with annoyance.

4. The older kids come upstairs with grumpy, "eeew, what are you making?" faces.

5. I have to make extra breakfast since I didn't plan on feeding the WHOLE family so early.  So we eat in stages, and I'm in and out of the kitchen.

6. I don't even think there are birds chirping.

7. I do a spectacular first of school hairdo on Two Bits (that instantly frizzes out) while discussing how it's not ok to cry just because I require you to stand for 4 minutes while I braid, and could you just act like an 8 year old already.


8. We take first day of school pictures and I forget about the hugs and high fives because Husband is still in the shower even though he's their ride and the kids keep squinting into the direct sunlight even though I specifically told them to open their eyes for the pictures.


9. Husband takes the kids to school BARELY on time, with lots of stress, and I scared all the unicorns away with all of my scowling and fake-good-parenting.


10. I can't go back to bed because the little kids are on a squealing rampage of destruction.



I don't even know why I make plans for anything anymore.

The excitement this morning was palpable.  Really.

Aug 21, 2011

this post is just about STUFF

I keep remodeling my house.....in my head. I even drew up floorplans and elevations and landscape diagrams.

Except that I'm ignoring a couple of crucial details.

1. It costs a lot of money to remodel. Especially when I use the word "remodel" when referring to adding an entire second floor.

AND

2. We don't own this house. Yeah, landlords kind of look down on the concept of tenant wall removal.

But still, I have big plans for this house. BIG PLANS. But like most of my plans, they will never ever, EVER, E.V.E.R. actually happen.

Which really blows.

The landlords have, however, given us permission to improve the yard in anyway we desire.  Which is why I threw in the landscaping diagrams.  But when I approached Husband on the subject, he gave me a big lecture on Exception Number One (the costing money thing) and then went on ignoring the jungle that is our back yard.

Until today, when he said, "We should get chickens!"  And I said, "Where would we put them?"  And he said, "We can build them a chicken coop in the back yard!"  And I said, "So, you're willing to spend money on a CHICKEN COOP, but not on making our yard better for us HUMANS?"

And he wouldn't even want to get chicks.  He wants to jump to full blown chickens.  Which is just a waste of chicken getting, if you ask me.

Plus, I'd rather have a nice yard.

But Husband will hear none of it.  Which kind of makes me want to punch him.

In the eye.

ON THE OTHER HAND, guess what?

I finally have a new edition of The Barrel out!  I KNOW, it's been forever.  But you were all busy being summer-y anyway, right?  So that's ok that it's been forever.


I'm going to have an announcement soon concerning the magazine.  Because it's going to kind of change.  But it's going to be good (you'll like it).  But yeah, for now, just go read this issue.


ALSO, and totally unrelated, I crocheted this really cute shirt and I want to show it off:


Number Four has no future in modeling.  Not because she isn't adorable (because she's obviously THAT) but because the second I tell her she has to model for a picture she gets all grumpy and mean.  And I had to bribe her with candy and make Husband hit himself in the face while he stood behind me just to get her to look in the right direction.

(If you want to crochet this same shirt, I'm actually selling the pattern in my etsy shop.  Because, I think it's cute.  So naturally, I think you all want to make it too.)

Aug 16, 2011

We have a pet praying mantis named Cereal.

Well, his name might not actually be Cereal, because there was a big debate and nothing was decided.  The options were between: Pointy, Praying Mantis, and Cereal (of course).  And since the other names were so boring, I decided that I can say his name is Cereal, because WHY NOT?  Even though mostly we just call it, IT.

(My kids are never very creative when it comes to naming things.  This sort of annoys me.  For example, say they have a stuffed animal that is a black kitten.  They'll name it either Kitty or Blackie.  Even though I'm right there saying, "Why not name it Biscotti?  Or Cleopatra?  Or Flappy-Doodle?"  And the kids all look at me like I'm stupid and go on calling things Kitty and Blackie.  It's kind of sad.)

The whole idea of having a pet praying mantis is, in my opinion, extremely stupid.  What with my tremendous dislike of the entire bugdom, and the fact that my children are even afraid of things like fruit flies, I don't know what Husband was thinking when he bought a plastic "insect habitat" and decided to keep something that looks like this:



in my house.

(Ok, I'm super creeped out by that picture.  Does that creep anyone else out?  Because I feel like screaming now.)

So far my kids are fascinated by Cereal the praying mantis.  Husband fed it some other bugs this morning, which was, obviously, the highlight of breakfast.  You know, if you like watching small things get devoured in a violent manner.  Which, apparently, my kids do.

I seriously hope it dies.  And soon.  And that it's not replaced by something even more gross.  Like a tarantula or something (that my kids would probably name Spidey).

Aug 9, 2011

color coordinated schedules are EVIL, I tell you

I decided to make myself a real live schedule. I've tried them in the past, but I'm kind of a schedule quitter. But it's been sort of stressful around here what with all I have to do and the kids taking full advantage of my busyness.

So I wrote down all the meals we would be eating, and snacks. I wrote down a time table of activities for our day. I wrote down everyone's chores and everyone's punishments (like for when the kids decide to kick each other in the teeth or something). I wrote on multiple white erase boards in coordinating colors, and I even drew a few pictures.

Organization people, organ I zation.

But then the same thing happened that always happens. I hate the schedule just because IT'S THERE.

I look at it and think, "ok, it's time to do laundry now. It's Monday, so I have to do the white load.".

But then I think about how much I don't want to do the white load. Because who ever WANTS to do the white load anyway? No one, that's who. And I think about how I could get more work done if I keep ignoring the white load like I want to.

But there's the schedule with it's coordinating colors practically screaming, "You have to do the white load, Melissa. YOU MUST. And now."

So then I have to look at the schedule and yell back, "Oh really? Who made you the boss anyway? I don't have to do anything you say, you stupid white board."

And then we fight for awhile, and the next thing I know, my time allotted for the white load is over and now the schedule is yelling, "Look at that, you doofus, the white load isn't done and it's time to teach your kids' piano lessons. Get off your butt and accomplish something already!"

So then I have to yell, "Who are you calling a doofus? You're just a white board. And plus, my kids hate piano lessons, so why torture everyone?" And then I have to drown out its lecturing with an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, courtesy of Netflix.

But the schedule just keeps going on and on, with it's incessant reminders of all the things I don't want to do. And I end up with my fingers in my ears, rocking back and forth, humming the Oscar Meyer Wiener song.

And then my kids have to call Husband and tell him to bring home frozen pizza for dinner. Except that in real life they don't, I just WISH they would take the intiative to call and ask for pizza. Usually what really happens is that they walk in, look at me for a second and say, "Mom's yelling at the wall again. Hey, she probably won't even notice if we all steal cookies from the pantry and smear them into the carpet!"

So yeah, a couple days into the new schedule and I have to tear it from the wall and erase every third letter so that it can get over it's authoritative attitude and leave me alone already.

I really hate schedules. They are undoubtedly evil.

Aug 5, 2011

if you like to hear about my offspring

Let's talk about my kids for a minute.  Because they kind of rule my entire life.

The past couple weeks I attempted to potty train both of my younger kids.  Monkey is 4 1/2 and Number Four is 3, so I was like, "It's about time, yeah?" (I was going to potty train in the spring, but then we found out we were moving, and blah blah blah, at least I got around to it.)

Except that Number Four refuses to pee in the toilet.  She'll sit there.  She'll get her potty candy after that.  And then she'll hop off and pee in her pull-up.  And I have this strict "I will not potty train a child who is not ready" policy (this policy kicked in after it took me over 3 painful and smelly years to potty train Opie).  So she's back in diapers.

Monkey though - he's like a potty training pro.  Sort of.  He tries really hard.

He really tries not to poop more than halfway in his pull-up.

He really tries not to smear poop on more than 3 body parts and 7 bathroom surfaces when he pulls down his half-way poop filled pull-up.

He really tries to remember to call me in to wipe his bum before he gets off the toilet and runs through the house smeared in feces.

Lots of trying.

It's getting marginally better, but man can that kid produce poop - it's almost like his only goal in life is to manufacture poo.  And then smear it places.

But there is a small glimmering light at the end of this poopy-filled tunnel: I will only have ONE KID in diapers!

ONE.

Did you know that hasn't happened to me for almost 7 years?

It's pretty amazing.  And who knows, maybe one of these days Number Four will actually decide that peeing in the toilet is the bees knees and we can get rid of diapers altogether.  I don't even remember what it was like before changing diapers.  But I imagine that it's filled with sparkles and lollipops.

And while we're talking about my kids, I have to share -for posterity's sake- some of the cute things they say.  (Yeah, if you're not grandma, you can probably stop reading.  But it is pretty cute, so you know, you might want to stick around.)

Our potty candy is M&M's (what else is there?) but Monkey calls them "Nummy Nums".

When I'm putting in my contact lenses all the kids are like, "Oh, you're putting in your eyetax."

Monkey calls Opie, "Kaybub".  (This will probably make his real name obvious, but whatever.)

Opie can't say "regular" he says "yegural".

Opie also refers to any instructions or directions as, "the destructions".

Opie is also saving his money to buy a toy "life savior" or as the rest of the world calls it, a "light saber".

Also, Opie calls the piano a "pinano".

Monkey and Number Four refer to bananas as "bammas".

And the very the best of all, when Two Bits was 4, her articulation was really horrible and she substituted a lot of sounds with the letter G.  But she talked a lot anyway and she liked to sing.  Her favorite song was Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, or as she sang it, "Tinko Tinko Wito Guy".

See?  Adorable.