Monday, May 30, 2011

Hooray For Furniture That Doesn't SUCK!!

It’s been a long time coming, but after nearly 17 years, Sugar Daddy and I finally decided we were ready to buy new furniture.  I mean, “NEW” new, not just “new to me” new. 

Shopping for furniture is a surreal experience.  You go someplace you've never been before, sit on other people's stuff and act like you live there while people you've never met before rush at you from every direction and attempt to make conversation.  Try it on a weekend and you can laugh as they try to feign interest in your furniture needs, despite the fact that their eyes dart each time the bell on the front door rings.
We tested out the comfiest of the comfy furniture in every store in town.  Twice.   We sat on it.  We took our shoes off and put our feet up.   We got comfortable. 

And I realized something...

We looked completely ridiculous. 

Comforted by, and giggling inwardly at the fact that other customers were all “getting a feel” for their prospective new couches and chairs, looking just as ridiculous as we did, we searched happily until (finally) just the right living room set presented itself to us.  I'd like to say that at that moment the heavens opened and a ray of light shone down on it as a choir of angels sang, but that would be a lie...unless we can count the Bangles singing “Hazy Shade of Winter" in another part of the store.   Anyway, we knew we had found what we were looking for.  


Now, there's one thing I learned about buying new furniture.  You have to wait for it.  
Wait, what?  WAIT??  Oh.  
I hate waiting.  It’s not enough to sign your refund away and put up a kid (or two, if you want the matching ottoman) in the promise that you’ll finish paying for something that, let’s face it, your butt really gets the most use out of.  You also have to wait for a month and a half before it can be delivered to your house.  Still, I didn't want to go home with the floor model.  What would the point of that have been?   We were buying NEW, not some community couch that 800 people farted on.  (Suddenly waiting doesn't seem like such a chore.)

We used the time to say goodbye to the terrible furniture of the past, subjecting our backs to a bit more pain and suffering as we readied ourselves to sit in the long-awaited lap of luxury where so many have gone before us. 

In making this rather large purchase, I feel it’s only right to pay homage to the furniture of our past.  Many years of marriage, children, pets and holidays were spent relaxing on our “satisfactory” yard sale finds, friends’ and relatives’ hand-me-downs, gawd-awful chairs, one Hideously Ugly Striped Couch and The Terrible Man-Eating Sofa.  

I send a shout out to the Terrible Furniture of the past...

How Now Brown Couch (with Lily age 6 months)
The Sandpaper Snapper: Hide-a-Bed Loveseat of Doom (and Madison age 2)
Hideously Ugly Striped Sofa (with Madison, home from the hospital two whole minutes, and a curious Frank)
Hideously Ugly Striped Couch (with Madison and Luthor)

Sandpaper Snapper (with Madison and Luthor)
Lumpy  (with Lily)
How Now Brown Couch AND Sandpaper Snapper (with Sugar Daddy and Luthor)
Great Gold People Swallower (with Yours Truly at 27 and Luthor)
GawdAwful Chair (with Luthor)
The Terrible Man-Eating Sofa (with Madison, Lily and Sam)

Terrible Furniture, adieu.  For the most part, you kept our butts off the floor and for that, we thank you.  

Alright.  NOW I can post our new, newly purchased "NEW" new furniture without guilt.  (Have you ever typed a word so much that it suddenly looks like it's spelled wrong?) 

Fabulous New Loveseat of Awesomeness
Fabulous New Sofa of Awesomeness (with Madison...smelling it?)
Fabulous New Furniture and Madison
Fabulous New Television (free 51" tv with insane furniture purchase) and Fabulous New Television Stand (not free, but still a good deal)

So there it is…all set up in our living room, looking fabulous, not sagging in the wrong places, poking our posteriors with popped springs or trapping us in its cushiony depths and forcing us to live off stale Cheetos and abandoned M&Ms.

We sat on it.  We took our shoes off and put our feet up.  We got comfortable.  And I realized something:  We own grown-up furniture.  *blink*  *blink*

I said, “Honey, this is grown-up furniture.”
“I know.”
“So should we act like grown-up people?”
“Oh, hell no!”

“Yeah.  I was just checking.”

big smile mini

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Crappy Neighbors.

What do you do when you see the toilet from your neighbor’s remodeling project is STILL sitting where he left it, waiting to be hauled off by the city?   Take advantage of a juvenile photo opportunity, of course!  

Step 1: 
Sit on the junked crapper and act extremely irritated that your photographer had the nerve to interrupt your morning business:  


(You’ll note that the pants are not down and there’s no newspaper.  No one wanted this photo shoot to look THAT real.  We’re juvenile, not insane.)

Step 2:
Survey the imaginary log.

“Corn?  When did I eat corn?”

Step 3: 
Give your deposit the Arthur Fonzarelli Seal of Approval.

“Now THAT’S suitable for Bulky Waste Pick-Up.”  

Step 4:
Write about toilet humor, blatantly displaying your extreme immaturity to the masses and hope that your neighbor doesn't suddenly decide to follow your blog.  Voila!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

The Unflickable Booger.

From the moment their little mouths could make one syllable of baby babble, I coaxed it out of them.  I encouraged it.  I wanted to hear them say that word, that special name I longed to be called - “Mommy”.  All peeps and squeaks with any semblance of that magical title were rewarded with smiles and hugs and approval. 

The simple truth is this: I started it.

*sigh* Clearly, I didn’t think that through. 

Indeed, I got my wish.  They say it.  Boy, do they say it.  Constantly!  “Mommy” is now the most abused moniker of my existence.  It’s both wonderful and terrible at once. 

True, it is awesome to be so invaluable that my name is the one that they call instinctively.  Also true is the fact that in their eyes, everything seems to be stamped in big bold letters - URGENT.

Don’t get me wrong.  I have three of the most wonderful, silly children I could have ever hoped for, but there are days when I am needed to the point that I want to run away. 

Every so often, one of my kids becomes The Unflickable Booger.  I can bob and weave and put myself in Time Out to lose whatever glue-child is tailing me, to no avail.  The Unflickable Booger will follow me.  She waits outside the bathroom door to bombard me with questions about everything from long breasts to the lock-picking finesse Santa uses on homes without chimneys. More often than not, however, The Unflickable Booger’s main calling is that of stool pigeon.

Her insistence on coupling what used to be such a lovely word with “she” is maddening. The “Mommy, she (this)” and “Mommy, she (that)” statements have piled high on this camel’s back.  I really don’t need to know which “she” did what to whom and why and for how long, do I?  (Okay, sometimes I do.)

I recently made an announcement to my children. I would no longer respond to the name “mommy” if they continued to follow it with the pronoun “she” or asinine requests for the unloading of a particular “she” in the wilderness to be raised by wolves. 

My name henceforth will be Tapioca Puddin’. 


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The Amazing Adventures of Hop-Along Sam and the Splinter of Doom!


Normally, a splinter wouldn't be blog-worthy, but when you're the parent of an overachiever, it becomes a major production.

Our story begins on a rainy winter morning. While stalling in her preparation for our friends' wedding, Samantha decided not to put on her tights as Mother had instructed, but to instead play a game of Chase After The Cat on the hardwood floor of our dining room.

And Sam got a splinter.
Sam screamed.
I pulled it out.
It was big.

(Now, I say "big" and, in average splinter terms, this one was about half an inch long total, with half of that under her skin. That would be "big" in Splinter-ese. Have you got the picture?)

She complained that her leg hurt even after the splinter was removed, but how much of that was pain or general crabbiness we didn't know. We suspected that it was sore because it was such a big splinter. She limped for an hour. She then proceeded to dance the night away with her sisters and the bride and groom, doing the Hokey-Pokey and turning herself around, limp and pain-free...or so we thought.

The next day, it looked like this:

Still a little swollen, I was concerned that there might have been another piece in there. We picked off that little scab and to our amazement, there was another piece of splinter attached to the scab. This one was about a quarter of an inch long. Well! NOW she should be feeling MUUUCH better.
We thought that was the last of it.

Two months later, while I was tucking her in, she requested a pillow for under her leg. I said, "What for?" "For where my splinter was. Hello-o." "What?? Is that leg bothering you?" "No, just when I lay on it." "Let me see your leg. Sam."



After many exciting (for Sam) and nerve-wracking (for Mom and Dad) visits to the doctor, an orthopedic specialist, an x-ray and an MRI, we finally learned that there were still pieces of that danged splinter in her little leg muscle. STILL! AFTER TWO MONTHS! And it would require surgery to get those pieces out!

(I accept this Darwin Award on behalf of the clueless parents of splinter-filled children everywhere.)


Finally the day of Sam's Splinterectomy was upon us.

First, she watched Dora the Explorer while we waited for her nurse to ask us a bajillion questions.

Then a nice lady came in and painted her leg with Snooki Bronzer. Ooh, purdy!

Then they put this adorable little shower cap on her and wheeled her off.

But first, a smile for all her FANS:

Still all giggles as she's wheeled into surgery.

Forty-five minutes and two planks of wood later, a groggy Sam wakes up.

Sam, can you give me a smile, honey?

*snicker* Thanks, Dopey.

She got a few ice chips and a cherry popsicle. We were sure to remove all wood from Sam's vicinity when she finished it.

These are the sticks the doctor removed from my baby's tibialis anterior. They look to me like they'd support popsicles of their own.

And this is what her leg looked like when she woke up:
Oh, but the excitement doesn't end there. We knew that she would be spending the night, to get a jump and a boost on the antibiotics to clear up the infection that Wooden Nastiness had created. We were prepared to have her sleeping at the hospital hooked up to an IV. What we didn't realize (and were not told about until she was in recovery) was that the pediatric unit is at the hospital across town. So the Medic Team came...

And transferred her to the East campus. I had to sign to have the child shipped. Weirdness. Of course, we got a picture of her first (and hopefully only) ambulance ride. Doesn't she look thrilled?

The bumpy ride from the West campus was entertaining/embarrassing.
EMT #1 (girl with ponytail in pic): What did she have?
ME: Splinter.
EMT #2 (dude without glasses in pic): Wha-huh?
ME: She had a splinter. Two of them, actually. Doctor Hussein just removed one that was over half an inch long and one that was just less than half an inch. They were in her muscle. For about two months. Without complaint.
EMT #1: Oh-Em-Gee!
ME: Right?!
EMT #2: Tough kid!
ME: She's like the Black Knight in Monty Python's Holy Grail.
EMT#3 (with glasses): Ha-HA! "It's just a flesh wound! Come back and fight!"
ME: Exactly.

We got her into her room where they scanned the UPC code on her bracelet and told me she would cost an arm and the other leg and then put a little anti-theft device on her ankle that we were promised would sound off many an alarm in the event of her sleepwalking, attempted escape or kidnapping. Let it be known that you can't pull a Dine and Dash at Genesis East without serious repercussions...or at least a heck of a lot of noise.

My mother helped her get settled in. In the picture below, Sam is reading her the list of movies. Apparently the hospital gets Netflix. I don't even want to know how much they'll charge for that on our bill. $140 for The Jungle Book 2?! WTH?!

After school, her sisters came to hang out. There was at least some semblance of normalcy again with all of them in one room. No one argued, which was super-nice.

Madison's 12th birthday was that same day, and more than slightly overshadowed by the Splinterectomy, the poor girl. She took it really well and let Sam's recovery take the front seat that day. She's a great kid.

Weird fact #68: I gave birth to Madison 12 years earlier just two floors up from where we were sitting. She declined my offer to re-enact the moment of her birth. *humph* Some kids just don't care about history.

Thankfully, she had already celebrated with a Slumber Party of Awesomeness the Friday before. Still, we got her a little something for her actual birthday. See that little brown thing in her hand? It's a gift card. She's texting her friend to tell her about it. The purple and green blankets are gifts for their newly decorated bedroom and we just decided to make them hospital/birthday gifts for each of them.

Sam liked the hospital food, at least the stuff that Madison didn't sample.

Operation is THE game to play when you're in the hospital. I think the pencil (Writer's Cramp) in his forearm is about the same size as the larger of the two splinters removed from Sam's leg.

Weird fact #99: Operation dude's name is "Cavity Sam".

I laughed my face off at that. Samantha didn't find it as amusing.

And finally she slept. The book you see there is Curious George Goes To The Hospital, which her Aunt Jennie brought her a few days before surgery. Seems that George eats a wooden puzzle piece and has to have surgery to get it out of his little monkey belly. Wood is the debbil.

And the next day, she was ready to roll...posing with the candy that Uncle Marky brought her the night before. Notice the Anti Theft Device on her ankle. They removed it and discharged her shortly after this pic was taken and we were able to get her dressed and head home. She was thrilled at the idea that she would get to ride in a wheelchair (but the ambulance ride had her completely unimpressed).

We'll close with a picture of Sam on the mend. This is her "Can we play Just Dance on the Wii" face:


Monday, January 31, 2011

Sick Phuck

The story of my friend's plight as the very busy wife of a husband with a cold
(interpreted by yours truly).

*great hulking man beast bellows*

"Katie, HELP! Come quick!"

*Katie runs in* "WHAT?!"

"I just blew my nose into THIS Kleenex and it's all greenish and gross. LOOK!"

*shoves tissue at Katie*

"Yup, it sure is."

"Am I going to die? I don't FEEL good.” *whines* “Man, I think I need to lie down."

*genius of melodrama lies directly on the floor*

Katie: "Welp. *sigh* Is that all you wanted me for?"


"Yeah, I can see that. *eyeroll* Look, I'm baking and taking care of your son and two dogs and cleaning and a number of other things so if you need me for anything else, I'll be in the kitchen."


“Remind me what the doctor told you.”

*Pouting* “Drink fluids and get some rest.”

“And what else?”

*quietly* “Don’t be such a pussy.”

“Thank you. I’ll be in the kitchen.”



Can you get me some juice?"


Sunday, January 23, 2011

Here We Go, Steelers...HERE WE GO!

No more of this bullshit. You ain't walkin' into the house that Art built in 1933 and declaring victory. We've all seen "A Bronx Tale". We'll let you in our house, but you ain't leaving till we say its time. The Jets ain't got nothing. It's a group of young whipper-snappers, all cocky and ballsy. What we have you can't even fathom. It's time, it's honored, it's tradition. It's Pittsburgh Steeler Time, ALL THE TIME, BABY. You want what we have but you didn't bring a cart big enough to carry it. You can't have it. It's ours. We've been to this dance 15 times and we're walking out lady in hand. You wanted a war, well you've got one.

Our Father, Who art in Pittsburgh , Football be Thy Game, Let Mendenhall Run, 6
Superbowls Won, On Earth as it is in Heinz Field. Give Us this Day a
Playoff Victory, and Forgive Us Our Penalties, as We Defeat Those Jets
Who Play Against Us. But Lead Us into a Victory, and Deliver Us to Texas .
For Thine is the D-Line, the Polamalu, and the Harrison .....A-Ben. GO STEELERS!!!!!!

(Disclaimer: I did NOT write this. I found it on a Sound-Off forum and absolutely had to share it with my fellow Steeler fans. Enjoy it, my people.)

HERE WE ...................

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Paper Person Visits, Has Time of Her Little Paper Life!

We had a house guest come to visit in December!

My friend Ashlyn, who lives in Virginia, sent the flat, laminated version of herself to my house to spend the holidays with our family. She had a great time hanging out with us.

The first thing we did with Flat Ashlyn was take her to our neighbor's wedding. Here she is in the church with the rest of my family. She was very well-behaved during the ceremony. We didn't hear a peep out of her the whole time. :)

Of course Flat Ashlyn went to the reception with us:

The hors d'ouvres were much to her liking. Here she is enjoying a Cheese Nip. She said she liked it because it was almost as flat as she was.

She even got her picture taken with the bride! Doesn't she look beautiful? And the bride looks great too!

She offered to drive the kids to school before Winter Break. I had to put my foot down though. Hers wouldn't reach the gas pedal.

She got to help decorate the tree and put up one of our favorite ornaments:

Flat Ashlyn got the cherished job of putting the angel on top of our tree. We wanted to put HER on the tree, but we didn't want her to end up being bored there for the rest of her visit.

Flat Ashlyn and Sam read a few good books together...

She learned how to play Heart and Soul on the piano...

Then she played Hide-and-Seek...

It snowed while she was staying with us. Here she is making a snow angel. What fun!

She did get into trouble once for not using her words:

...but she served her time in the Naughty Chair and when she came out of time-out she was as good as gold again. :)

Until she tried to play another game of Hide-And-Seek...

I am happy to report that Flat Ashlyn was a wonderful house guest and was sent back to her real self in Virginia slightly worse for wear, but all in one piece.

I'd like to point out one interesting fact that we learned about Flat Ashlyn, during her stay: She cannot pick anything but "paper" in the Rock, Paper, Scissors game and reacts rather strongly when her opponent repeatedly picks "scissors".

I wonder if that's strictly a Flat Person thing.

Some Other Stuff I Wrote