Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Where's the Love?

As I began typing this, Megan was mad at me. This feeling towards me is nothing new, but the reason is new. After seeing an ambulance and fire truck drive down our street, she went outside to investigate. She came back to report that the emergency vehicles had parked about 4-5 houses down, "In front of the house where teenagers live. You know, the ones that smoke." I asked if she thought that them smoking was the reason for the ambulance and fire truck's visit. She didn't think so. Anyway, she then asked if we could have a yard sale today. (Perhaps she was hoping to sell some old Barbies to a Paramedic?) I said no to the yard sale, because that kind of thing takes time and planning. She argued that it would be all HER stuff that would be sold (you mean all YOUR stuff that your MOM & DAD purchased?!) She stomped off.

Then Amanda came in and asked me if I liked what she was wearing (Since this was her 3rd outfit of the day, all I could see when I looked at her was more laundry.) I told her it was fine. (wrong answer) "FINE?!? You think I look FINE?!? That means you HATE what I'm wearing!!" (What in the world?) I countered, "Amanda, since when has 'fine' ever meant 'hate'?" She yelled, "Since FOREVER!!" Oh brother.

The good thing about these kinds of blow-ups, is that they only last about 5 minutes. By the time I finished typing this, both girls were sitting next to me, laughing at an episode of The Brady Bunch. Girls!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Word Association

Amanda and Megan are very different (duh). A little game of word association only confirmed this. Even the photos I took during this little exercise show how different they are ... Amanda laughs (hard) at anything and everything. Megan's like, "You think that's funny?"


Happy: GLAD (Thinkin' outside the box.)
Gas: AIR (I thought she'd say 'Megan' for sure!)
Piano: MUSIC
Teeth: WHITE
Sugar: HYPER (To put it mildly.)
Today: YESTERDAY (Living in the past?)


Happy: GRANT (Don't know a Grant, happy or otherwise.)
Feet: MAD
Teeth: KEEP (Good plan.)
Sugar: CAVITY (She's had her share already.)
Bed: MADE (Hers is NOT made, btw.)
Today: TOMORROW (Moving on!)

Easter Break

Easter Break, Christmas Break, Summer Break ... all sound good beforehand. Then you get 2 days into it, and it's nothing but sibling rivalry. I opted for 2 kids, thinking they would actually play with eachother. Or better yet, like eachother. Before having a 2nd child, I should have thought back to my own sisterly experiences growing up, but like childbirth, the more time that passes ~ the less pain you remember.

Yesterday, the girls fought so much that they were banned to their individual rooms. Today they started out good (see photo), but soon after, the complaining began: "She's not sharing the computer!" "She's singing too loud!" "She keeps burping in my face!" "Get out of my room!!" "Leave me alone!" Okay, those last 2 were me.
Tonight I'm clinging onto the promise of mercies being new every morning ... tomorrow will be better. Tomorrow they'll be sweet to eachother. Tomorrow there will be peace. Tomorrow I will be sane. Tomorrow can't come soon enough.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

A Palm Sunday Drive

We had a wonderful visit with our family in Visalia this afternoon and evening (Thanks, Aunt Vera!) On the ride home, however, things got a tad bit silly.

It all started when we saw a train off to the right of the freeway. Amanda wanted to know why the train didn't have a caboose. Henry explained that most trains don't have them anymore. Before he could explain why, we all caught wind of something very prevalent in Central California ~ A DAIRY. If you don't know what a dairy smells like, consider yourself blessed. (Side Note: On the way to our family gathering, and while passing yet another a dairy, I mused to Henry that bathrooms on dairies probably didn't have any need for air fresheners. It's not like they could actually make a difference. Am I right, or am I right?)

Okay, so as we're driving through the foul smelling area, I turned to my most gaseous daughter and said, "Hey, Meg, if you need to pass anything, now would be a good time." She replied, "If cabooses farted, they would be so powerful, they could go up a tree!" Huh?

From there, the potty talk picked up speed, involving Nuns and their "habits". I can't even remember all that was said, but at one point, I was concerned that Henry might drive off the road for laughing so hard.

So much for a dignified ending to Palm Sunday.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Meg Moments

There were many "Meg Moments" today.

While at the grocery store today, Meg saw a lady with a walker. She turned to me and said, "Mom, look at those cool yellow tennis ball wheels! Where do you think she got those?" Uh, Big 5?

Later, she commented on some colorful Fly Swappers. Amanda tried to correct her, "Megan, they're called Fly Swatters, not Fly Swappers." All that did was get Megan started on a made up tune about Fly Swappers.

Tonight after bedtime prayers she announced that she does not want to get married. When I asked why, she said, "Because they kiss in front of everyone, and that's gross." I said, "Well, just because everyone else does that at their wedding, doesn't mean you have to. What do you think you would like to do at your wedding?" She said, "I'd like to dance, but not touch each other." I clarified, "So, after the ceremony, instead of the minister saying, 'You may now kiss the Bride', he would say, 'You may now dance with the Bride, but don't touch her.' Does that sound about right?" Megan smiled, "Yeah."

That's gonna' be a fun wedding.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Our Visit to the 99 Cent Store

Yesterday after school the girls and I were on a mission to find 22 prizes for Amanda's class Easter party games. When you have to buy that many prizes, you either go to the 99 Cent Store or Dollar Tree. Yesterday we picked the 99 Cent Store.

It didn't take more than about 1 minute for the girls to completely lose sight of why we were even there. "Mom, can I get this?" "Mom, look at this calculator! Can I get a calculator? It's only 99 cents!" "Mom, I've always wanted a mini stapler, and look! They have one! Can I get it? Huh? Huh? Can I? Can I?" After reminding them several times of our purpose, I finally broke down and agreed to let them each pick out ONE item for themselves. (Mistake!) All of a sudden, they just couldn't decide what to get. I mean how could I expect them to choose just 1 crappy item out of a store-full of crappy items??

20 minutes later, Amanda chose the calculator and Megan chose Sour Patch Kids candy.

While waiting in the check-out line, Megan asked if she could eat her Sour Patch Kids once we got back in the car. I said, "Uh, no. The next thing we're going to do is eat dinner." Megan replied, "But I'll die if I can't eat my Sour Patch Kids now!!" I looked at her sympathetically and said, "Well Megan, we'll just have to take that chance."

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Favorite Part of the Day

Every Wednesday I have the pleasure of taking Megan and Hunter Raynes home with me after school, feed them dinner and take them to church with us. They are a lot of fun to have around (and it doesn't hurt that they keep my girls occupied for 3 hours either.)
Tonight during dinner, I asked each kid: What was your favorite part of the day?

Hunter: FOOD!!
Me: Really? Just food?
Hunter: Okay, food and math, but I didn't eat my math.
Me: Okaaay.

Amanda: Recess & social studies.
Me: Why social studies?
Amanda: It was easy.
Me: Of course.

Megan: Recess.
Me: Recess.
Megan: Yep.
(And yes, that is a heart sticker on her forehead.)

Megan: Coming over to your house.
Me: Reallly?
Megan: Mmm Hmm.
Me: Hunter, why didn't YOU say that?
Hunter: Uh, I thought this was about school.
Me: That's okay, I understand.

By the way, this was MY favorite part of the day, not that anybody asked.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Say What?!?

Tonight Amanda said the words that I never thought I would ever hear her say ...

She told me that she thinks the reason a friend of hers is always in trouble at school is because she doesn't get spankings at home, and (are you ready for this?) "Spankings are the best kind of punishment." Say what?!?! Who are you and what have you done with my daughter?? I had to ask, "And why are spankings the best kind of punishment, Amanda?" She said, "Because they HURT!!" And??? "And the pain makes you not do bad things again." I swear, it was like the heavens opened up and filled the room with its glorious light.

Then there's Megan, who tonight during bedtime prayers, asked God to let her temperature be over 100 tomorrow so she wouldn't have to go to school. The scary thing is that she's actually prayed this before, and woken up with a fever the following day.

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Meganator Strikes Again

How can the same child make you laugh 'till your belly aches, and then make you so mad you want to pull your hair out (or THEIR hair out?!) This describes my Megan. My friend Steve Clark (after hearing several stories) has dubbed her The Meganator. This afternoon The Meganator struck again ...

We were on our way home when she announced that she wanted something cold to drink, "And not ice water from our house! I want a McFlurry from McDonald's!" She demanded. "Well," I said, "we're not going to do that today, so as soon as we get home, you can have a cold drink of something else if you don't want water." My reply was the beginning of her undoing. From there she took on a Linda Blair persona which culminated in her spitting in her sister's face. And by spitting, I mean a full Tablespoon of saliva. Not only was I shocked and appalled to witness such a heinous crime, but I was kinda glad that I saw it happen with my own eyes rather than hear it from the first born second hand.

What happened next was nothing short of supernatural. I calmly, without raising my voice, advised Megan that as soon as we got home, she was to go to her room where she would receive a spanking. (This only brought on more possessed-like behavior.) I warned her, again in a very out-of-body-experience-like-calmness, that if she continued with this tantrum, her punishment would only increase.

Okay, fast-forward (you're welcome) to me walking into her room to administer the discipline. The Meganator begins to give me all the reasons why I shouldn't give her the spanking:

1) "If you DON'T spank me, I won't ever spit at Amanda again." (Strike One)

2) "If you DO spank me, I WILL spit at Amanda again." (Strike Two)

3) "If you spank me, I will scream in your ear!" Okay, that's just lame, but you can't blame her for trying. (Strike Three)

Bless her heart. Once the punishment was over, and wisdom was imparted, she was an absolute angel (and by angel, I mean hilarious and well behaved) for the rest of the night.

I love that kid.

Sunday, March 21, 2010


Last week when I started this blog, I decided to add pictures as often as I could. My friend Tracey does this and it adds so much. Okay, so my girls picked up on the fact that I was suddenly taking a lot more pictures than usual. They asked why, and I told them it was for my new blog. After explaining what a blog was, Amanda disappeard with the camera. She came in a few minutes later laughing her head off. She handed me the camera saying, "Put THIS on your blog, Mom." I looked at the digital image to see a photo of her sister's backside. Lovely.

Well, I'm not going to post that photo, but rather a photo of Amanda cracking herself up over something else. What she was laughing at this time, I can't remember. She laughs at just about anything. That's what I love about her.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

This is why ...

... puppies belong OUTSIDE.

... I never send whole apples in the girl's lunches.

... I don't purchase Barbies anymore. (They all end up naked in the tub.)

... my girls will never own a pair of Uggs until they can purchase them with their own money.

... hand, mouth & foot disease exists. Pretty sure.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

The Power of Suggestion

After school today, the girls and I had to go to Walgreens to fill my much needed prescription for an Amoxicillin Z-Pak. We pulled into the drive-thru (of course), and dropped off the RX. The Pharmacist said it would be ready in 20 minutes. Perfect. Just enough time to drive across the street to McDonald's for a quick, health-challenged, "dinner". So as we're pulling into the McD's parking lot, I announce that we're actually going to eat INSIDE McDonald's because Mom needs to use the restroom. Amanda yells, "Good! Because I have to go to the bathroom soooooo bad." Seriously? Could you not have gone at my office? You had like 45 minutes to take care of business. "Fine." I said.

So we park, go inside, and head for the "little girl's room". Once inside, Megan checks out stall #1 only to find that it's plugged. So that leaves the handicapped stall. Amanda got there first, and insisted on me joining her. Come ON! I was the one who had to go, and now, not only do I have to wait for you, but I have to watch you too?!? Motherhood.

Now all 3 of us are in the (thankfully) large stall. Amanda goes to sit, only to discover Megan already on the pot! I said to Megan, "Oh no you don't. Amanda has to go bad, and I probably have to go worse than her, but I'm the mom so who cares about that. YOU didn't even mention having to go, so YOU HAVE TO WAIT." Megan moves. Amanda sits. Megan (with pants down) asks, "Can I just go right here?" Okay, am I on Candid Camera? "NO YOU CANNOT GO RIGHT HERE! ARE YOU NUTS?!?" Needless to say, I had to wait for Megan too.

Next time I'm keepin' my mouth shut.

Megan's Ladies

Megan likes to capture ladybugs. I think she believes she's helping them. Giving them a better life. I've tried to explain that being trapped in a Ziploc sandwich bag without any food, water or airholes is NOT helping. Nevertheless, she continues.

Today I was pleasantly surprised when she came into my office this afternoon to show me that she had caught 2 ladybugs today at school, and had remembered to give them food this time! I looked inside the clear plastic and said, "Is that a ..." "Yep!" She exclaimed, "It's part of my sandwich and a little bit of Snickers!"

Baby steps ...

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Haircuts, Nuns & Mokes

Megan: "Amanda thinks she's all popular because of her new haircut."

Me: "Well you have a new haircut also, so does that mean you're 'all popular' too?"

Megan: "No."

Me: "Why not?"

Megan: "I don't want to be popular, I want to be a Nun."

Me: "And Nuns aren't popular?"

Megan: "No."

Amanda: "Are there boy Nuns?"

Me: "Yes, they're called Munks."

Megan: "Munks?"

Me: "Munks."

Megan: "I bet if they smoke they're called Mokes."

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Vocab ~ Unplugged

It was time for homework. I asked Megan if she would rather read or work on vocabulary words. She skipped out of the room shouting "Vocab! Vocab! Vocab!" Vocab it is.

Then she breaks out her guitar. I asked, "What are you doing?" Again she shouts, "Vocab!" I clarified, "Yes, but what are you doing with the GUITAR?" She said, "I'm going to play it while I do my vocab." Naturally.

So, after every word, she would strum her guitar: "SWAM!" strum "WEATHER!" strum "COUNTRY!" strum .

If she would get a word wrong, she would do a little extra strumming with a look of embarrassment: "HEEDS!" (no that's pronounced HEADS) strum of shame "CUSSIN'!" (no that's actually COUSIN) strum of shame ... and on it went.

It took a little longer to do it this way, but it sure was fun.

The Book

Last week I received an email from our school librarian. She wanted to let me know that Amanda had come across an anatomy book, and that because of a rather graphic section on the male sex organs, she thought she'd better find out from me first if it was okay for Amanda to take the book home. I thanked her for her concern, and requested that she send it over to me (I work in the school's business office) to review before giving it to Amanda. Then I started sweating. A lot. So I threw it out to my colleagues for discussion. "What do I do? Is 9 years of age too young to look at ... that ?" One saw no problem with it (but keep in mind that she was a hippie in the sixties), one felt she was too young (thank you!), one suggested an American Girl book that walks a girl through the changes in her body (a book that focuses on the female body, NOT the male body, thank you very much), and then one (our very quiet, MALE, tech director, who normally isn't in our office) just shook his head and said, "We never talk about stuff like this in my office."

Since one of my spiritual gifts is worry (some think it's a sin, but I beg to differ), I fretted all afternoon about THE BOOK and what kinds of questions I would soon have to answer with a straight face. Well, the book didn't arrive that afternoon, but was on my desk first thing the next morning ... a morning when Amanda had chosen to come up to my office before school instead of play on the playground! She gasped with delight when she saw it and grabbed it before I could even spit out the words, "Wait! You're only 9! You're too young! I'M too young! And when is Jesus returning anyway?!?!" Turns out that the book is one of those flap books, and out of ALL the stuff in there, she wanted to show me the TOOTH and all its different layers!! Well THAT was worry well spent.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Romeo & Juliet (a.k.a. Oscar & Megan)

There's a boy in the neighborhood. His name is Oscar. He's from the other side of the tracks. Okay, the other side of the street. Still, he's proven to be more bad than good. The last thing he was caught doing was stealing a neighbor's hat and lighting it on fire. After that, I told the girls they were not to play with Oscar anymore. (They had already heard about the hat burning, and understood why I was laying down such a law.) While the girls have been good about carrying out my wishes, Megan still has a fascination with this forbidden neighbor. I heard her yelling his name from the backyard tonight. I looked out to see her standing on this thing, just hoping for a glimpse of the little rebel. Oh boy.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Water Anyone?

Last week Megan talked me into purchasing a new water bottle for her to take to school everyday. Amanda had gotten one a few weeks back, and now Megan wanted in on the action. The aluminum water bottles were in the check out line at Home Goods. Since there were people in front of us and behind us, I kept inching along while Megan picked out the color of bottle she liked best. My favorite color is blue, so I was quite pleased with her choice: A light blue background with white swirly designs and a little pink thrown in. After she had taken it to her Christian school a few times, I actually LOOKED at the designs on the bottle. Turns out that the designs included a phrase: Who says this is water? And next to the phrase is a picture of a pink martini glass!! Nice.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

I Should Have Taken Notes Today

I really should have taken notes today. My girls provided me with so much blog material, but there's no way I can remember it all. I guess I'll just start typing and see what happens.

Amanda was watching a Miley Cyrus music video on the computer ...

Amanda: "When is Miley Cyrus' birthday?"
Me: "How should I know?"
Amanda: Shruggs her shoulders.
Me "Why do you want to know?"
Amanda: "I want to know when she turns 17."
Me: "Because?"
Amanda: "I don't know."
Megan: "I'm gonna' get married when I'm 17."
Me: "Oh REALLY? Why 17?"
Megan: "It's a good age."
Me: "Not for getting married."

Later we ran some errands. Since I had failed to feed them lunch, and it was closing in on 2:00, we hit the Taco Bell drive-thru (You'll find out soon that it's rare for me to actually go inside any place. If grocery stores had drive-thru's, my life would be complete.) Megan wanted a burrito, and Amanda wanted a taco. Their beverage of choice was a fruit freeze. Megan's fave is the Strawberry Mango (also MY fave) and Amanda likes the Pina Colada. As we pulled up to the squawk box, I saw that they had replaced the Pina Colada freeze with a Strawberry Lemonade one. Amanda was NOT happy to see this!!

Amanda: "How could they DO that?!?!?"
Me: "I know. How COULD they?"
Amanda: "Why the Pina Colada? Why not get rid of the plain Strawberry?"
Me: "Who knows."
Amanda: "Why didn't they have a bunch of commercials on TV telling everyone that they're going to get rid of the Pina Colada freezes, so you better get them while you can?"
Me: "I don't know, honey." Probably for the same reason that cosmetic companies don't advertise when they're going to stop making your favorite shade of lipstick or nail polish. It forces you to buy a few wrong shades before finding the perfect replacement. Evil cosmetic companies.

Later still, I found Megan sitting on the kitchen counter, using a large feather as a quill, dipping it into green food coloring and writing on a piece of paper:

Megan Grimmius
I love Mom

If nothing else, this blog might help me savor these kinds of moments.

Why does it all hit the fan when Dad leaves?

What is it about the presence of "Dad" in the home that keeps my girls a wee bit better behaved? Last night Henry came home for dinner before having to return to church for a rehearsal. We had a lovely hour or so together as a family. Then it was time for Henry to leave. We all received our goodbye kisses, and he was gone. I swear, within 45 seconds of the garage door closing, it all hit the fan. Amanda, who was nothing but sheer contentment while Henry was home, began moaning, and then crying about her tummy hurting. This, of course, was AFTER I told her to get into the bathtub. Then Megan, who was the last one sitting at the table, because she had chosen to goof-off during dinner instead of eat, decided to run to her room while my back was turned washing the dishes, and retrieve a Hippity-Hop (big round ball with a handle that you bounce around on) and put it on her chair to sit on while she finished her meal. Well, as soon as I saw this, I told her there was no way she was going to sit on that thing while she ate her dinner. So she proceeded to stand on the chair, pick up the Hippity Hop and place it (not on the ground, mind you) ON THE TABLE where it rolled and knocked over a very tall glass of water!! All the while Amanda is crying in the background about her tummy ache. Are you kidding me?!?!?

So naturally I called Henry, not to blame him, but rather to let him know just how well things had gone since he left 3 minutes prior.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Chick-fil-A Drive-Thru

So I had to run some errands after work yesterday. My girls were with me, and since we were all on the verge of crankiness, I thought the errands might go better if we got a little treat first. After a short discussion (Me: How 'bout milkshakes from Chic-Fil-A? Girls: Okay.), I turned into the driveway which would lead us to the Chic-Fil-A drive-thru. As I approached the drive-thru, I noticed that there were orange pylons blocking most of the drive-thru entrance. I then watched a woman (late 60's?) go waaaaaay around the parking lot to enter the same drive-thru from a different angle. Since she was the only one currently in the drive-thru, and since I knew I could easily pass between the pylons, avoiding the drive waaaaaay around the parking lot, I sat and waited for her to pass. One problem: she stopped right in front of me (her car perpendicular to mine). She then began waving her arms, motioning for me to go waaaaaay around the parking lot in order to enter the drive-thru like she did. Well I motioned right back that no one was behind her so I'd proceed the way I wanted to, in between the blockade and right behind her. Well this only brought on more hand motions from the woman, and then bigger hand motions from yours truly. Finally she rolled down her window, so I followed suit. Then she said, "I think you're supposed to go AROUND." To which I replied, "But no one is behind you." (The pylons were there to keep a steady flow during lunch and dinner hours ... it was 4:00.) She insisted, "But I really think you're supposed to go AROUND like I did." I smiled and said, "I think I'll just go this way." Well, that was NOT the answer she wanted to hear, so she kept her car parked right there in front of me, instead of pulling up and ordering, just so I would be forced to GO AROUND!!! Can you EVEN believe that?!?!? She was the only one in line, for cryin' out loud. Sheesh! I'll bet she was one heck of a hall monitor in her elementary school days.

Well, after sitting there for about a minute, I decided to just cut my losses and GO AROUND.