Thursday, October 25, 2012


Noah does not handle change well. Even the slightest shift to the routine can and will throw him off resulting in epic tantrums and flailing fists all before 7:15 am. Tuesday was just such a day. Things were 'off' and when told it was time to go and brush his teeth to leave for school, he shrieked, cried and ran to hide behind the train table which is located in front of the bay window.  (Doesn't everyone keep their Thomas gear in the living room? No? Just me? Very well then, move along.) As I bent down to pick him up from the turkey fetal position, I happened to look up and through the top of the plantation shutters saw the sunrise.

It was a gorgeous sunrise, streaks of pink, blue and lavender stretching ladder-like across the sky. As I picked him up to haul his stubborn ass upstairs I remarked, "Wow, that's a beautiful sunrise!"

"Can I see?"

"Sure buddy" (hoisted him up to look)

"...Oh pretty! Who did that, Mommy?"


"Thank you God!"

Thank you God indeed.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

An open letter of confuzzlement to Lifetouch photography

Dear Lifetouch,

Is it okay if I call you 'Life'? Great, thanks. Life, I've got some questions. You see, yesterday my daughter had her very first school picture done and last night she brought home an order form directing my to PUTS THE MONIES IN BAZKET in two days or it would self-destruct. Or something. The problem is, I don't know what it is I would be ordering as there was nothing enclosed to review. In photography parlance I'm pretty sure they are called 'proofs'. You might want to look into those.

Undoubtedly Life, you utilize digital photography because HAI 500 STUDENTS and whatnot so I logically concluded that one could visit your website to review the 'proofs' as surely you wouldn't require parents and guardians to purchase expensive photo packages sight unseen. It's a lovely website full of Rah Rah stuff but when I went to the link for K-11 school portraits, I was greeted with this:

"We're currently performing maintenance on our website. Please check back later."

The only page on the website that wasn't working. Curious, no? Not to be deterred, I next visited the 'Make Payments and Shop Products' page as surely there would be a way there to find what I needed. Alas, in order to pay or order more pictures, one first needs to set up an account with information that can only be transmitted via the supersekkrit code the portrait package order. We seem to have come full circle. You see the problem here Life.

Now, I took the liberty of conducting a highly scientific poll of past and current marks users of your products via email, Twitter and facebook and the consensus was that this is an extremely effed up way of doing business. How many other times are you expected to pay for something without seeing what it is you are buying first? I'm no economist but this doesn't seem to be a very sound business model. Or maybe it is as research (well, Twitter) indicates you are the only game in town. One would think with the delightful website that that there would be a way to provide codes to students so parents could review pictures online prior to having to fork over a crap-ton of money for potentially questionable products. See again: digital photography, wonders of.

I can only assume that this is an (ongoing) oversight and you are working diligently to bring your company into the 21st century as the upcharge for basic and DELUXE!!! retouching is inane when YOU CAN'T EVEN SEE WHAT MIGHT NEED TO BE RETOUCHED IN THE FIRST PLACE.

Warmest regards,


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

I expect the next great American novel by 5th grade

I'ma just gonna get this off my chest: Kindergarten does NOT mess around. I remember some 32-odd years ago being in kindergarten and working on learning the freaking alphabet, but apparently that's not good enough for our schools today. No, they want them doing real actual school work and when you're done with that, ASSEMBLE THESE PARTICLE ACCELERATORS KTHXBAI.

It has been six weeks since Noelle began her Journey Through Public Education with the first five coasting along, okay, we've got this: rules, sharing, no picking your nose in class, etc. But this week, oh ho HO! this week. Hope you enjoyed that gentle introduction because shit's about to get real up in here. FAST. Today is Wednesday. Please to be keeping that in mind. On Monday she came home and spouted off about compound words. You know, Mommy, a word made up of two other words. And then she proceeded to list lots of then. That party trick was followed up by clapping out syllables. Wow! That's awesome! You go with your bad self there girlfriend. Hey, it's homework time, let's see what the schedule There...there isn't the monthly calendar. Oh look! It's the letter 'E' worksheet...but we just got the 'D' worksheets on Friday...okay, time to do your homework.

Last night at dinner she informed us that Mrs. Richmond calls the period 'Mr. Meany' because he stops a sentence. And that a comma means a pause and you know what? She's absolutely correct. This bears repeating: they are learning grammar rules. In Kindergarten. Grammar. Rules. Hey, homework time! Let's see if we have the calendar yet...nope. But look! It's the letter 'F' worksheet. Were 'D' and 'E' supposed to be done by now? Do they all get turned in Friday? WHO SHOT JR?!

And then I proceeded to drink the rest of the bottle of wine.

The end.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Pillow Talk

Wednesday night after the first presidential debate, Dylan and I were laying in bed and as seems to be our wont, engaging in a deep philosophical conversation, this time around the role of religion in government and policies. (What? Doesn't everyone do this? SEXAY TIMEZ NAO) His position (and one that I agree with) is that one of the founding precepts of this country was a freedom to worship as you please; aka the freedom of religion.  Too many in this country operate under the misguided notion that this is Christian country. Let's get this straight right now: No. No it is not. Never has been. The majority of citizens may in fact practice one of the myriad factions of Christianity but there is no national religion. You can look that up in the Constitution. Go ahead, I'll wait.

Okay? Okay. Moving on.

He was angry that so many felt the need to tell other that UR DOING IT RONG. That there is only one way to peace/enlightenment/heaven/joy and you better get with the program. OR ELSE. That the Bible has good morals and many teachable moments but if you were to actually attempt to live the Bible, you would be reduced to a quivering mass of inconsistencies. There is a book out written by a guy named AJ Jacobs who attempted to literally live the bible for a year (The Year of Living Biblically*). Dyl's point was about picking and choosing and the tendency of those who base arguments and attempt to base policies on biblical passages to ignore the forest for the trees.

Then he brought up an interesting point; all of these different 'Gods', they are really the same person/spirit/entity and truly all we are debating is semantics. It doesn't matter if you address 'God' as God, Yahweh, Jehovah, Muhammed, Grilled Cheese or Honey Boo Boo. If you believe in a divine deity, it's the same figure. And the divine deity? He/She/It likes to mess with us out of boredom. See: everything. I mean, really, how else to you amuse yourself when you are an immortal, all-powerful being?

I admit I was taken by this idea and took it one step further: what if God was participating in a multi-universe Sims game with other Gods of other universes to create the ultimate utopia? What if all we are are but pawns in an intergalatic computer game? WHICH PILL DO WE TAKE?

And as one does after such a discussion, we fell asleep.

* Disclaimer: the link goes to Amazon but that's only because it was the first one that popped up in the Google search. No affiliate link blah blah blah.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

9 Years

Nine. NINE?! 9. Today is my 9th wedding anniversary to Dylan. Just over 12 years ago we met and three years later were married. Now two kids, three cats, multiple job changes and a house later, here we are. And I couldn't be happier.

Love you so much honey! Happy Anniversary.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

I have seen the enemy and its name is Kindergarten

In a rare burst of domesticity/mothered-out-bliss, I volunteered to help out in Noelle's Kindergarten class with 'centers' once a month. Note: I did NOT volunteer to be room parent because HELL NO. My first day was yesterday as last week I received the calendar with the volunteer schedule. (Um, did anyone maybe THINK to check if said schedule for OTHER PEOPLE was actually workable?) (No.) (Obviously.) Because I am a TEAM PLAYER (and apparently have much more in common with sheep than I am comfortable examining right now), I sucked it up, kissed lunch good-bye and headed out. In a freakin' monsoon. I swear that the roads I took were *thisclose* to being completely washed out and I was headed for a starring role on the evening news: 'Over-involved mother of 2 discovered in tree after minivan was swept away in the Raging Corn River of October 2012'. (It was so that bad y'all.) In a rare moment of foresight, I actually built in extra time so I wouldn't be late to help a teacher who had no idea I was coming. Communication FTMFW!

Noelle's teacher was glad to see me though and my role was to assist the kids in their centers. Also to referee and cheerlead as 15 five-and six-year olds after recess are...challenging. And you know what? I really enjoyed it. It was such an incredible experience being able to be in the classroom with my daughter, see her participate engage in learning activities. And Noelle? She was so excited that HER MOMMY came to her class to help that she glowed. She wanted so badly to run to me and bear-hug me but she held it in until Mrs. Richmond gave her the go-ahead to break formation. And I was okay with that. My role was to assist, not disrupt the classroom routine that she had spent the past month drilling into those little heads. I was able to sneak in lots of hugs and kisses during my hour there; worked with two centers on making their books about their families and family trees. Basically, I was there to do whatever Mrs. Richmond needed to allow her to work with smaller groups of the kids. And these kids were great. Great listeners, very little redirection needed, they got along and I had a blast working with them, getting to know them and building Noelle's confidence that her mommy and daddy cared about her school. I know that I'm lucky that my job has enough flexibility to allow me to take an hour here and there to be involved in her education. Not everyone is as fortunate as I and I do not disparage anyone for not being able to do the same.

And this was a good transition for me after being so involved in her preschool day; in seeing her teachers every day and discussing the good and bad. So as much as it was for her, I guess it was for me too. So much so that I went and volunteered to pick up another day a month.

Someone send me some rose-colored glasses please? I have a feeling I'm going to need them.