Must be a Daddy Tang!
Saturday, February 28, 2009
Thursday, February 26, 2009
You've been stalking all day to see if there was an update right? Sorry it took so long to get here but if you could see my hands right now you would know what I was doing.
Poor Lion. He wanted so badly to help me paint but he was lacking the finesse and patience to get the same sponging result that I was getting and he liked my version better. He went so far as to completely clean all the paint off one stripe and try from scratch only to frustrate himself more. So he grudgingly moved out and waited patiently for me to finish. And friends, I assure you that there is absolutely NO sarcasm here. He really wanted to paint for his two little princesses and I'm getting a little faklempt that he wasn't able to.
Now, I ask you, how many days did it take me to tape off the room? Three? Ask me how long it took me to paint. Three hours. No kidding. Three hours and only a quart of paint. So now we have a full gallon (because you had to add 1 quart of glaze to the paint) of Pepto pink paint with glaze that we have no clue what to do with.
I suggested that we give it to the exhibits and let them go nuts in the playroom but Lion vetoed that. It's not like I don't also have avacado green and sky blue that they could play with too and if you consider that the room is already Big Bird yellow with Emerald City green carpet, how much worse could they really make it? But I digress.
Tomorrow we go snag the new knobs for the dresser and the curtain and valance for the window and then we are ready for moving day on Sunday! Saturday will be dedicated to taking all the other furniture out of the room and cleaning the carpet.
I'm starting to get really excited again. We are getting close to the finish line in this marathon and I have to tell you that I'm glad we didn't move in last weekend. The room is going to look so much cuter now. Lesson learned - slow down and be flexible. But don't tell Lion! He'll never let me live it down!
By the way, those of you who are wondering why we switched from vlogging mode? I'm saving it all for the big reveal on Monday! You won't even get pictures except maybe of some bits and fragments of things I buy for the room. Oh yeah! Who knows how to drive her blog traffic?
And any of my other followers who are teachers.
I am writing to apologize to you. I know that your job as a teacher is made infinitely more difficult by parents who do not take advantage of teachable moments and expose their children to new and interesting opportunities and experiences. I understand that science is one of those subjects that can use all the parental assistance possible as it is as much observational as it is hands on.
I am confessing to you right now that I intentionally avoided one such learning experience this afternoon on the way home from school. As we left to go to carpool duty, I noticed that one of our neighborhood sciurus carolinenis (squirrel) had met his (or her) demise on the street leading out of the neighborhood. Having grown up in a rural area I did not give it a second thought because, well, life happens like that. You think you've dodged a bullet and then you see the garbage truck grill.
We completed our assigned rounds and were pulling back into the neighborhood when I observed a cathartes aura (turkey buzzard) feasting on our fresh carrion. I must admit that I sped up a little. Initially my hope was to make said fowl lift off in flight but then I was reminded that should these particular aviators have a full stomach upon lift off they will void said organ. Not what I want to park in the garage. Therefore it became my intent to swiftly ease past my dining friend without startling him or drawing attention to his meal of choice.
I really had no desire to explain to my children why their favorite Over the Hedge character had just become an afternoon snack. I recognize that in doing so I missed out on a tremendous teaching opportunity. I beg your forgiveness and promise that when they are a little older (say 12?) I will make amends by seeking out feasting cathartes auras.
Thank you for understanding my situation and forgiving my cowardice.
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Posted by Sarah at 11:50 PM
Monday, February 23, 2009
Those of you who have been following my Great Switch-a-Room know that I have been confronted full force with an unexpected project. I thought it was only appropriate to share some Dos and Don'ts of unexpected project management.
Don't: Panic. That's what happened to me yesterday. I had my brain set on "moving" and it simply did not happen. Looking back (without the aggravation factor) I should have expected to have to clean the bed frames. I mean, what mom isn't going to clean something before she puts it in her children's room? Duh!
Do: Slow down. Unless you are up against a deadline imposed by someone else, you can be flexible. I wanted it all done YESTERDAY but it wasn't going to happen. I had to back off make a list of the steps that needed to happen before move in and create a plan of attack.
Don't: Lose your temper. It just gave me a stomach and headache and really made everyone's day miserable. And there was no reason. After Lion and I both stepped back and looked at the project ahead of us, we reached a compromise within a 3 minute conversation. Before that we were just standing in the garage shooting daggers at each other.
Do: Tap into your creativity. Even if you don't think you have any, a walk though Home Depot, Bed Bath and Beyond or JoAnn Fabrics will start the thinking and provide a little inspiration even if it is just in colors. Then prepare to reign yourself in. I have about a million ideas floating around in my head but the reality is that I will only be able to execute on paint, window treatments and art on the wall.
Well, now I am off to prep the furniture for cleaning. The kids have agreed to help so it should be an interesting afternoon after we pick up the Orangutan! By the way, the girls have decided on pink so Mom has her eye on some cute polka dot panels at Bed Bath and Beyond and I'm studying up on sponging techniques. Wish me luck!
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Saturday, February 21, 2009
Friday, February 20, 2009
What I am talking about is moving children. We have been stalling on putting Rhino in his own big bed and moving Marmoset out of the crib. We really can't stall anymore because the child can put the side of the crib down and put herself to bed now. It sounds cool but I assure you it is not. That means that sooner than later she will figure out that her arms are long enough to reach down and release the catch thus freeing herself as well.
Now I know putting her in the toddler bed or her own big girl bed is not going to be much different but at least then I can retrain her. So we were investigating bunk beds. Grand Keeper and Silverback were going to get them so that Rhino could have his own bed for his birthday but they are 600 miles away so the logistics were killing us.
Then Lion called me today from work. Ms. M has a set of off white bunk beds with the mattresses, a dresser and a mirror that she will freecycle to us. We'll just owe her one. We can pick them up on Sunday.
Holy Housing Issues Batman! I have to prep two rooms for the grand swap-a-roo in less than 48 hours. Dismantle and stash the crib and rocking chair, sort through a butt load of clothes, find two more sets of bedding and (most importantly) come to grips with the fact that for the first time in 5 years there will not be a baby within our gates.
Do you know what this means? The next time I say, "If you're gonna throw a fit, you can just go sit!" to Marmoset, she'll actually have a place to sit. No more dragging a Rhino out from under his bed in the morning. Orangutan will actually be able to go to bed with someone who sleeps on her same schedule - not an hour and a half behind.
I can finally paint a boy room and a girl room. No more gender neutral. I could just about cry. But instead I think I'm going to go whip up a little cocktail and celebrate the fact that I am one step closer to no more diapers - EVER!
And that's exactly how immaculate their room will stay too.
Ouch! I think I just snorted vodka!
Thursday, February 19, 2009
I have a spare exhibit this week so not only has my glorious routine been blown to smithereens but my disaster quotient has been exceptionally high. I promise you I can have a room spotless, walk away to blow my nose and come back to worse than it was before I cleaned. It's amazing! They are like those sister twisters in Twister. You know the ones that were flinging the cow around? Yeah. That's Marmoset and her cohort. Holy Flying Cows, Batman!
Yesterday I just gave up. I really said out loud so that the children and Lion could hear, "That's it! I quit. If the tornado warning carries the house away at least I'll have a God sent reason for the disaster!" They looked at me like I was nuts and went about their destruction.
This morning I woke up and scrambled to get Orangutan out for Cuddle Up and Read Day which involved both of us putting on our clean PJ's, gathering up some books and flying out the door. Halfway through my visit to OAT I remembered that the cable guy was going to be at our house between 11 and 2. It was 9. Lion had not left for the hunt yet so I knew the kitchen had exploded, the playroom was a left over nightmare, and the living room was probably in such shambles that the cable guy couldn't even get to the TV.
I zipped home as quickly as possible. Load and run the dishwasher while I speed pack a lunch for Lion. Kick toys into the cubby under the TV while I rip the vacuum around the carpet. Snatch the sheets off the beds because if they are in the washer I have a reason for the beds being unmade, right? Then it was a slide down the stairs and a quick scoop and stash in the playroom. Speed twirl the vacuum around the playroom and back up the stairs to save the kitchen. Unloading and reloading the dishwasher with one hand while I run the mop water and wipe down the counters with the other. Scrape a layer of sludge off the kitchen floor (that I just did yesterday) while herding the Twister Sisters off the wet floor. Go redo the living room where the Twister Sisters have been hanging out.
You know what? I should probably reconnect the cable boxes so that the cable guy can see what the problem was.
Are you )*&@$%^() kidding me?!
The cable is working?
But at least I have the afternoon off right?
Ok, people. Just so all of you know Zookeeper is not my only title. I am also Maid over at Notes from the Toilet Bowl. Today I launched a new feature that I hope will lighten everyone's hearts in a world of crummy news. It's called Show me the Funny! So if you wrote something funny or if you read something funny earlier this week or last week stop by there and drop it off in my linky so that we can all chuckle and take a laugh break today.
I'd love to stay and chat more but the cable guy is here in an hour and a half (I'm an optimist) and the playroom looks like WalMart threw up. Have a great day and don't forget to ...
Show me the Funny!
Posted by Sarah at 9:35 AM
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
I can handle three children at a time. There was a period last summer where I was balancing six children at a time but I call that my Loonie Period and really don't remember much of it. At least I came out with both of my ears. I think. Yeah, they're both there.
But I know I can handle three at a time. Yesterday I had a fourth because Orangutan didn't have OAT and my spare exhibit is here this week. Yesterdayday I started to consider my stance on drinking before noon. But I know I can handle three.
Lion asks for extra exhibits from time to time. I tell him no - three is my limit. He begs. He pleads. He talks sweet and he tells me how cute I was when I was preggers and how sweet it is to fall asleep with a baby on your chest. That's when I schedule a day like today.
Yesterday was a day when I intentionally called him half way through the third hour of screaming and running laps around the kitchen, dining room, living room circuit. I made sure I called him when the very large, very loud stray dog was throwing itself at the front door. I made sure I talked to him in the middle of the playroom meltdown. Side note: Gravity is what takes the toys off the shelf and children cannot battle gravity. But that's for another day.
And still he came home and wondered why there was a pile of popcorn still laying in the middle of the foyer hall where the two two year olds had made a "snowstorm" for the two big ones while I was trying to make their dinner, feed the dog, answer the phone, fold laundry, wipe noses, clean the bathrooms, save dinner from burning, bake shortcakes, prep our dinner, talk to Spare's father, trip over the dog, run the vacuum, and snatch myself bald. On one cup of coffee.
Did I mention that a very scary dog kept barking and throwing itself at the front door?
I'm just saying that I know I can handle three. There will not be a #4. I know my limits and yesterday I pushed them.
Monday, February 16, 2009
Friday, February 13, 2009
I was on the phone with The Great Silverback (aka Poppie) the other night. Orangutan was in the playroom being delightfully quiet with her coloring books. Rhino and Marmoset were playing with his wooden train set in the middle of the living room floor and dinner was simmering away on the stove. All was well and The Silverback and I were having a delightful conversation.
Unprovoked and unannounced Marmoset picked up a piece of train track, stood up, and promptly WHACKED Rhino on the head. Without so much as a squeak Rhino picked up a piece of train track, stood up and whacked Marmoset on the head.
Suddenly, both of their eyes flew wide open, their faces contorted as if they were possessed and they let out screams, wails and gnashing of teeth all mashed up together. It was almost as if they were surprised that their skulls were throbbing with cartoonish heartbeats even though they had just actively participated in the exchange.
Silverback immediately said, "You need to go!" To which I very calmly replied, "No, I don't. But give me a second anyway." This was followed by the next very brief exchange.
Marmoset, when you whack your brother you have to expect that he is going to whack you back. Got it? Good.
Rhino, when she stands up with something hard in her hand, it's safe to assume that she is going to whack you with it. Next time duck. Got it? Good.
The Silverback was obviously in tears at my calm and well thought out directions. I'm sure it's awe inspiring to observe my parenting skills in action but I never thought I would move anyone to tears. Then again, if the Grand Keeper (aka Grammy) and her laughter were any indication, the tears may have been more AT me than because of their awe.
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
A little piece of critical backstory - her best friend is a 3 year old African American boy. His mom is one of my closest friends and she's already heard the story so I know she wasn't offended but very highly amused. His two older siblings are also close friends to my children and have spent many an afternoon here deconstructing the playroom. And of course Marmoset attends a very diverse Sunday School class as well.
As soon as she saw the President on TV she looked up at me and said, "K?"
No baby. That's not K. That's Mr. President.
Right! (that's a big word for a two year old!)
No baby. K isn't the President.
"Pezz-dint head. K head."
Well, yes. The President and K both have heads.
"Pezz-dint nose. K nose."
That's right too.
"Pezz-dint ears. K ears."
"Pezz-dint no hab peet (feet). K peet."
You have to love a toddler's concept of object permanance. If you can't see it, it isn't there. So Mr Pezz-dint didn't have feet since she couldn't see them. And since she knows that K has feet that must be what makes him NOT be the pezz-dint.
Wouldn't it be great if we could only tell each other apart by differences like our shirts rather than the differences over our skin?
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
#1. And this is really important. Unless you are a rock star who is jumping the gun and celebrating the big V-Day on Friday instead of on Saturday, I'm guessing very few of you have something to do this Friday night. **Please don't correct me if I'm wrong. I don't want to be the only loser at home alone!**
So here's your something to do! Trisha has been hosting some Live broadcasts from MomDot sharing her knowledge of blogging, SEO (and that's not stick your ear out - silly me!), PR work, and other great blog growing tips she has found that work. But this week in honor of Friday the 13th (collective scream and gasp!) she's going to let us take the night off from school work and PARTAY! If you could see the lineup of sponsors for this thing you would be shorting out your keyboard too!
Tuck those wee cupids into bed early and check in over at MomDot at 8:30 Central (you do the math to find your own time)! Actually you probably want to keep checking in all week because she'll be posting instructions and more info about the games and party and such. Here's hoping I see you there. I hear there are cocktails involved! Everyone together now. "Uh Oh!!...."
Now #2 and this is really the end of the brain junk tonight. I am tired! I had this grand scheme to take the kids outside as much as possible this week since we are having some rock star weather. Fresh air, wide open spaces, running...exhaustion, early bedtimes, sound sleeping...Happy mommy!
Can we spell backfire? I'm beat! Yesterday one hour at the park climbing, running, keeping track of children (some not my own). Today an hour in the front yard planting some spring bulbs and cleaning up some leftovers from Sunday's yard work followed by another hour and a half at the park after we picked up the Orangutan. More running, climbing, tracking children that are not mine in hopes of keeping mine from losing body parts.
And silly me! I'm 31. I really should know better! But I went for it anyway. "Hey Mo! Watch this!" 31 year old mothers of three who are not gymnastics coaches have no business doing cartwheels. They shouldn't even smile at the notion of pulling (every muscle in their legs) one off with grace and skill and without (excruciating, star inducing) pain!