Wednesday, December 28, 2011


Phestive philodendrons.
Medium just bounced into the den, holding one of the fake poinsettias that we have stuck into our philodendrons to make them more phestive.

Medium: Mommy, is this soak?

Me: Soak?

Medium: Yeah, soak.

Me [light dawning]: Yes, that's silk.  Can you put it back where you got it?

Medium: Where's dat?

Me: In the plants on the landing, with the others.

Medium: Oh, yeah.  [heading out of the room]  Lawrge!  It goes in da plants!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Truth or Lies?

Medium: I want to kiss you!

Hubby [who's no fool]: Are you going to kiss me or zerbert me?

Medium: I don't know!

How in the HECK...

Medium just came into the den, after I'd called her up due to a Small-Fry-tattling.

She was wearing a black shirt that's so small that the full-length sleeves (on the appropriate-sized child) barely come past her elbows.

Oh, gosh.  Where to even start now?  I have no idea where she found this shirt.

And how on earth did she get her big head and poofy hair through that turtleneck?

This is my child who has had trouble wearing turtlenecks in the right size for the last three years.

I grabbed her hand and pulled her close.  "Gimme that."  I pulled her arms up and grasped the hem in my hands, whipping it off over her head with surprisingly little difficulty.

For kicks, I check the tag.

6-12 months.

Holy cow.

I still don't know how she got it on in the first place, but I do know that I'm going to have to make this shirt disappear.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Wii, Wii, Wii, All the Way Home

As this year's big family gift, we got a Wii.

Two-fold purpose, really:  One, if we got it first, we could control it (whereas there could be issues if Bro or XSIL were the ones who purchased it for the kids).  Two, we were planning to do it anyway, and might as well do so sooner rather than later.

Gramma and Boppa have a Wii, and Large Fry has played several games on it.

Ripping off the paper to discover the Wii resulted in squeals of delight.

Much later, after a fantastic Christmas dinner and Hubby and Boppa had scooted out to a gas station convenience store to see if they could procure dishwasher detergent without having to drive the twelve miles back to the old house, Large Fry wanted to play.

"No, honey," I said.  "We can't."

"But I know how!" she persisted.

"We can't play the Wii.  It's not set up yet."

"I can set it up!"

I tried not to laugh.  "Honey, I can't set it up.  We have to wait until Daddy gets back.  Then he'll set it up, and then you can play."

"I can set it up!  I know how!"

And, if not for the fact that she's never handled cables and plugged stuff into the back of a tv and figured out how to make it all work, I'm pretty sure she could set it up herself, and that she does know how to get the games going.

Of course, Gramma and Boppa's Wii is already all set up when she wants to play.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Two Days. Essentially.

To that end...
  • I have no idea if I'm actually done with my Christmas shopping.
  • I have not bought the gifts from Gramma B (which she sent me money for).
  • I have not bought the gifts from Auntie C (who also sent me money).
  • I have not wrapped a thing.
  • I have not found Large Fry's stocking.
  • I haven't even opened all the boxes with all the gifts that I ordered to see where I'm at.
  • I have not written the Christmas letter.
  • I haven't ordered prints to go in with the letter.
  • I do not know where the gift tags are.

  • I did not do any laundry today.  And I should have.
  • I did actually get the really huge living room shelves moved over to where I want them (thank you, Hubby), and the nativity scene I inherited from my grandmother (made by my mom) is now up.  Nothing else is on the shelves, but the nativity is up.
  • I got some things arranged properly in my office...but I still think I'm missing several boxes of books.  This is heart-wrenching.
  • I think I finally got things sort-of company-ish ready in the hall bath.  Which is good, since my parents are coming for Christmas.
  • I think my crock pot and most of my pots and pans are still over at the old house.  Must go fetch them....  Tomorrow.  Or Saturday.  One of the two.
  • This is a really boring post!

Friday, December 16, 2011

A First!

First post from the new house, y'all!  (Yes, those five weeks in Texas fifteen years ago really rubbed off on me.)

I'm sitting on the floor of my office, happily typing away.

Popoki is relatively contentedly exploring the house.

Koa is making occasional forays out of the basement.

Pa'ani is sitting in the litterbox with his nose in the corner, afraid to move and growling at any feline sibling who comes near.

Keiki is bunking in a carrier.

Minou has made it as far as the kitchen level before getting freaked and going back downstairs to hide in the utility room.

And poor Mika is cowering behind the gas logs in the fireplace.  He won't come out for nothin'.  Poor thing.

Now, let's see if my router will work!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Please Sign This Paper.

Oh, and this one.  And this one.  And this one.  And initial here.  Sign here.  Initial the first twelve pages, then sign on page 13.

Sign this.

Sign this.

This paper verifies that you will be making this property your primary residence within 60 days, and that it's not a rental or investment property.  Sign here.

It's official.

We bought a house.

We move all the big stuff this weekend and as much of the little stuff that's left that we've, y'know, actually gotten packed.

The living room furniture here is not going with us.  It's served well (three different families, mind you) for the last 20-odd years.

Our new furniture (because, heaven knows, you can't just go into massive debt to buy a house; you must increase your debt by buying furniture) arrives on Tuesday...and then we can FINALLY decorate for Christmas!

Hubby informed the Realtor this afternoon that he was not allowed to come over and pull out his own sign from the yard.  Hubby would yank the sign and leave it up against the side of the house; Realtor could come get it at his convenience.

Of course, that was until Hubby, in conversation with Realtor, was told he could have a SOLD sign to put on the For Sale sign in the yard.  (Realtor said he'd had to eat too many "SOLD" signs, so he didn't put one up.)

Now I think Hubby plans to leave the sign in the yard for about a week, declaring boldly to the neighborhood that the house is sold.

It's a relief that the buying process is finally over.  We offered on this house the first of September.  It's taken us three and a half months to get here (not due to problems on our end).  Since we're the fourth (and only) in-contract to make it to settlement, I like to think that this was meant to be.

Hubby is now chauffeuring a chorus of indignant felines over to their new domicile, to give them a couple days to get used to the place before we do the big move.  Lucky Hubby.

Meanwhile, I'm sitting here, listening to the Fries' breathing through the monitor, and realizing how weirdly empty my house feels without my cats.  It's too quiet when the kids are bunking with Gramma and Boppa, but it's amazing to me how much my house feels more like home when I still have the kitties around.  There's this weird feline void now.  Here, at least.

I was feeling rather sad as I watched Hubby prepare to drive off, with Minou riding shotgun.

At least I know I'll get to see them tomorrow, and we join them in our new house on Saturday!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Accomplished Today

  • Talked with Large Fry's school about enrollment.
  • Called cable company to transfer services.
  • Washed a load of blankets that I think Keiki expressed her displeasure on.
  • Retrieved baskets from top of fridge to take over to new house.
  • Packed a whopping two boxes.
  • Wrote this post.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


I think I'm going to die before we get this move finished.

That is all.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Question of the Day

How many full-grown adults does it take to hold down one five-year-old in order to remove a sliver from the ball of said five-year-old's foot?


At least one more than we had.

The sliver in and of itself was small, and when first alerted to its presence in Medium's foot, I figured I could get it out quickly.


I'm never going to be THAT stupid again.

By the time I was desperately calling Hubby's cell phone for the third time, and Medium was wailing like I was going to slit her throat, every flinch of her foot and toes had driven the thing in deeper, and now the only way that it was coming out was if I actually reached Hubby (by this time I was getting seriously annoyed), and told him to come home toot sweet.

And that's when I heard it.

The personalized ring tone that Hubby has set for me on his cell phone.

Which was in my purse.

Ten feet away from me, in the kitchen.

Nowhere near Hubby's office.

So I try calling the office several times, attempting to get through, only to get a busy signal every time.

No soap.

I settle for a desperate email, sent to both of his email addresses, demanding that he come home RIGHT NOW, because we had to get this sliver out, and there was no way I could do it myself.

Turns out, we probably needed another two or three people to hold her down.

I am not kidding.

Medium is a very stocky build.  At her checkup a couple weeks back, she weighed as many pounds as she was inches tall.  (My best friend commented that her middle son was once a "square," too.)

This is forty-two pounds of pure, raging fury.  And all of it's muscle.

Hubby is snarling, "Hold your foot still!"

Medium is wailing, "I am!"  And continues to squirm and flex her foot, shoving my hands out of the way with her other foot.

Hubby is retorting, "You're not!"

Lather, rinse, repeat.

I'm trying to wield the sterilized pin to get under the tiny sliver enough that I can use the tweezers to get it out, through all of this.  We both had to nearly lay on her, and she was still able to yank her foot around, flex her toes, and generally cause more trouble for herself.

I almost had the thing four times, but Medium would flex her foot, and it would get driven in under the skin again.

I was almost to the point of taking her to the ER and having her sedated so that we could get it out.

Yes, it was that bad.

I finally got it, and Medium was still screaming.  (She would scream when I wasn't even touching her, which did not help.)

Hubby summarily sent her down the hall to bed for a short nap.

She sniffled in there and whimpered, "I need a band-aid."

I was already getting her one.

As I sat on the floor and applied it to her foot, including a dab of antibiotic ointment (who knows what germs are on the 120+ year old wood floors in this house), she whimpered again, "Do you still love me?"

I smiled at her.  "Always.  I'll always love you.  Daddy will always love you, too."

I now have a killer headache.

And I no longer care about the humongous amount of work I have to do this week to be ready to move on Saturday.

The new house has carpeting.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Highlights from the Weekend

  • On Friday night, Small Fry came completely unglued over the thought of...wait for  She absolutely, unequivocally, did not want to go to college.  Despite my insistence that she didn't have to go to college for another thirteen years at least, she was not reassured and was completely inconsolable at the thought of having to go to college.  And she's five.
  • At the same time, Medium Fry was also in total-meltdown mode, because she was absolutely sure that she would not want Duckie when she's a grownup, and this made her very sad.  I told her that I still had my Pooh Bear that I was given the day I was born; it's okay to still have your favorite stuffed animal as an adult.  Nothing doing.  She was sure she wouldn't want him, would lose him, and was hating herself for her future lack of needing Duckie.  Also inconsolable.
  • At bedtime on Friday, Hubby and Big D were over at the new house, getting Large Fry's new bed set up.  Large Fry was very upset by the thought that she would no longer be sharing a room with her sisters, as she has been for the last couple of months as we've been preparing to move.  We had to call Hubby to have him appease everyone, and have him take a picture with his cell phone so that Large could see her new bed.
  • The Fries charmed everyone around on Saturday afternoon when we went to look at some furniture listed for sale on Craigslist.  And by "everyone," I mean two burly, hulking guys and a skinny, wiry dude, all of whom were completely wrapped around the girls' little fingers by the time we left.  Oh, and the old English Bulldog owned by one of the burly brutes, who just loved kids and wanted to get out and play with them.  (I was so proud that Small Fry even stepped into the room where the crated doggy was.  Such progress.)
  • Our friend Big D put up with an overabundance of effusive loving-on and playing-with by the Fries.  (He helped haul our furniture home.)  He played hide-and-seek.  He sat next to Medium, who begged to sit with him at the restaurant (the least we could do is feed the guy).  He endured a dozen arm-hugs from Medium.  He was generally a good sport.
  • I went up to bed last night, and saw a lump on Hubby's side of the bed when I went to turn on his bedside lamp.  I put out a hand to stroke whichever kitty I was about to offend by waking with light...and was surprised to feel fleece instead.  Large Fry was sleeping in our bed.  "Honey," I whispered, "what are you doing here?"  She groaned and stirred.  "Small Fry was going like this on me"--she proceeded to make sucking, snuffling noises--"and I couldn't sleep."  I thought I knew what was going on, but wanting clarity... "She got out of bed and did that to you?"  "No.  She was in her bed."  Ooookay.  What had really happened made Friday's protest of having her own room again absolutely hilarious.  "Sweetie, I think she just fell asleep and was sucking her thumb real loud.  Can you go back to your bed now?"  "Can I just have another minute?"  Geez, how could I say no?  "Sure you can."  By the time I changed into jammies and got through my nightly routine, it had been way more than "another minute," and I got her awake enough to walk down the hall.  At least, I think she was awake.  She sure walked like she was sleep-walking.  
  • Medium Fry was very excited to learn that today was her buddy GB's birthday.  (We kid GB and his girlfriend, MK, that Medium is really his girlfriend, and MK is having to compete.)  However, after nap time this afternoon, when certain things did not go Medium's way and she wound up in a corner after throwing a tantrum, she brokenly sobbed that she didn't get to celebrate GB's birthday, and she was so very sad about that.
  • As we were getting jammies on tonight, Medium was singing.  I quickly recognized the tune as the praise song "Hosanna," which we'd sung in second service at church this morning.  Except...Medium had put her own twist on it.  ♫ Hoseeeeaaaa, Hoseeeea.... ♪
  • I had gone down the hall to my bedroom after shooing the kids upstairs at bedtime, and I forget why.  I'd turned on the music in their room, and Medium had prayed their goodnight prayer without any prompting from me or help from her sisters.  I went down to my room, and as I came back down the hall, Medium was saying, "All monsters, giants, and unfwiendly fings, get out!  Fwiendly fings go to Gwramma and Boppa's!"  "Hey," I said.  "If you can pray and kick out the monsters by yourself, what do you need me for?"  "Hugs!" Medium said.  "Kisses!  An' da bushel-an'-a-peck song!" said Small Fry.  "Hugs and kisses," Large Fry agreed.  Okay, so it's nice to be needed for those things.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

"BIRD Colonel Sherman T. Potter!"

I've long been a fan of M*A*S*H, so I was saddened by the news yesterday that Harry Morgan, who played the inimitable Col. Sherman T. Potter, had passed away at age 96.

Potter was, by far, his best known role, and to read the articles abounding yesterday, it was one of his favorites.

Blake was funny, in an inept sort of way.  Potter was absolutely my favorite; his quick wit and pithy brilliance made him shine far above Blake, in my opinion.  He had some of the best lines of dialogue I've ever had the privilege of seeing acted out, and M*A*S*H still holds court in my mind as the yardstick by which I measure all sitcoms.  Precious few measure up to its greatness.  While the writers, producers, directors and the creator certainly share in the brilliance of the show, it was the cast that made those words come to life: Alan Alda, Mike Farrell, Wayne Rogers, Loretta Swit, William Christopher, Gary Burghoff, Larry Linville, David Ogden Stiers, Jamie Farrell...and Harry Morgan.

His impressive performance in "The General Flipped At Dawn" ("General Bartford Hamilton Steele, with three Es, not all in a row") paved the way for Harry Morgan to become Col. Potter when McLean Stevenson left the show.

You'll be missed, Harry.  Say hi to the boys for us.

Some of my favorite Col. Potter moments:

And, the episode that started Morgan on this role:

Thanks, Harry.

"It's nawt scawee!"

Medium wanted to watch TV.  I told her she could pick something out of the DVD case that holds their movies and videos.

Unfortunately, also in there are a couple of our movies that aren't 100% small-kid friendly, from whatever trip we took last that I stuffed them in there for, just in case the adults wanted to watch something.

Medium:  Mommy, can I watch dis one?

Me:  I can't see which one you have.  Bring it here.

I'm making lunch in the kitchen while she chooses.

Medium: Dis one.

Eep.  It's Voyage of the Dawn Treader, the recent one.  Wonderful story.  Excellent movie. But not for a five-year-old.

Me: No, honey, you can't watch that one.  That's too old for you.

Medium: No, it's nawt!

Me: It's too scary.  You can't watch that one.

Medium: What does it have in it?

Me: Big, scary animals.  A lot of fighting.  Bad men.  Swords.  A ship.

Medium: Is dewre piwrates?

Me [thinking]:  Yeah, sort of.  They're bad men.

Medium:  I won't be scawred.

Me: You're too young to watch it.  Pick something else.

Medium:  I won't be scawred!

Me [sternly]: Pick something else.

Medium pouts but puts away that DVD and selects another.

Medium: Can I watch dis one?  Lawrge Fwy watched it!

Good golly.  She's holding up The Princess Bride.

Me: No!  And Large Fry has not watched that!

Medium:  Yes, she did, a lohwng time ago!

Me [quickly getting exasperated]: No!  That's too old for you.  It's too old for Large Fry!  She has not seen that!

Medium: She said she did.

Me: No.  She hasn't.  Pick something else.

Medium: But I want dis one!

Me:  No!  That's your answer!  Quit fighting me and pick something else!

Medium flounces back into the living room, does another disc exchange, and pops back into view with a different DVD.

Medium: Can I watch dis?

Whew.  She has The Princess Diaries 2.  I can live with that.

Me: Yes, you can watch that.

Medium:  Yay!

Musical Goodness

Oh, wow....

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

This cannot end well.

Me: Large Fry, what are you doing?

Large Fry: Looking for a cat to be my reindeer.  In the kitchen, maybe....  Won't a cat or two be my reindeer? [sees Pa'ani]  You're going to my sleigh, to be my reindeer!

Pa'ani: Meow.

Large [sees Popoki next to me on the couch]: You, too!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

First Time go see a movie in an actual movie theater!

That's what we decided to do tonight.  After our religiously-observed Sunday afternoon nap, we piled the kids into the car and drove up to the mall (such as it is in our neck of the woods).

The Muppets at 6:45, two adults, three kids.

We were early enough that I went and bought tickets while Hubby, realizing that Santa was holding court at 12 o'clock from our current position, took the kids up to meet the right jolly old elf.  I joined them after I'd gotten the tickets.

No surprise here...Medium and Large were right in the thick of things, and happily chatting with Santa, while Small Fry came straight to me to show me her stickers and candy cane as soon as I walked up.

Oh, what the heck.  It's Christmas.  I can't decorate because of the impending move (and the fact that the tree is here while the ornaments and nearly everything else are over at the new house), and I've been chafing under the lack of Christmas cheer in my house.

Fries, let's get a picture of you with Santa!

Large and Medium were all for that one.

Small?  Not so much.

She wouldn't even stand next to the kindly gentleman, even with Hubby nearby (and yet cropped out of the picture).

I bent down to Small-Fry level.  "What if Daddy or I hold you?"

Thumb tucked securely in her mouth, she shook her head.  "Want to go see da Puppets."  (We haven't quite grasped Muppet yet, and, well, puppet is pretty accurate.)

A few minutes of cajoling, and we agreed that we would all be in the picture, I would hold Small Fry, and we would all smile.

Hubby picked out which of the three shots was the best, and we shelled out the dough.

I'm not sorry.

Even if I heard my dad's voice in the back of my head, telling me it's highway robbery.  Which, naturally, is why I never went to see Santa at the mall as a kid.

It's a great memory.

Then we moseyed back down to the theater, spent even more money on popcorn and drinks, and went to sit down.

The kids did really well for their first theater experience, even if the concepts of previews and advertisements were lost on them.

Medium and Small both had to go potty during the movie.  Large didn't...but I think she ate her weight in popcorn.  Even as the credits rolled, she asked if there was any popcorn left.

I'd say our first movie trip was a raging success!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Guest Post by Medium Fry

Chelsea, The Little Cacoo

There was once a little Cacoo who lost her family. A Giant Pickle caught her! 
The Little Cacoo said, “Coo, coo, coo! I want my family!”
She wanted her Little Duckling but the Giant Pickle would not give it her!   The Giant Pickle turned into an OLD Giant.   And he fell asleep.
The Little Cacoo wanted her duckling but the Giant would not give it to her.  So while he was asleep she grabbed it and sang  “I want my Pigeon – my Pigeon family. Please come back, please come back, please come for your Little Cacoo with all her Loveness!”
While the Giant Pickle was sleeping the Little Cacoo escaped and ran away to her pigeon family!  She escaped with all her Loveness and Jesus in her heart!   She got away from the Giant Pickle!
She found her family with all her loveness – and she found the three girls inside the three doors!  And there were three special apples!
The Mommy and the Daddy Pigeon were so glad to have the Little Cacoo with all her loveness!  They all lived happily every after.  
The End
(As told to Gramma, and accompanied by music and singing by Medium!)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Marching Orders

Hubby is getting ready to leave for worship team practice, after a very rough day with all three Fries at home.

And, by "rough day," I mean that each one of them got major discipline before noon.  Even Large Fry, who's home sick today.

It was enough to have me tearing my hair out before 9 a.m.

Hubby ended up working from home today, because I was so fried from being still sick and having kids who refused to listen to me.

I took a long nap this afternoon.

As he's getting ready to leave, Hubby has a stern conversation with the Fries.

Hubby: I have to go to practice.  Are you going to be good?

The Fries all nod assent.

Hubby: Are you going to listen to Mommy?

Large nods.

Medium: Uh-huh.

Small: Yesh.

Hubby:  Are you going to obey?

Small: Yesh.

Medium: We will.

Large agrees.

Of course, Hubby's not gone fifteen minutes before Medium is in a snit, Small is crying because the claw-capped Keiki batted at her hand while she was coloring less than a foot from Ke's face, and Large is accusing both twins of writing in her little notepad.

I'm thinking I should go make dinner.  Yesh.