Wednesday, April 30, 2008


Melissa and Jenni tagged me for this. I've probably offered up all this info before because for some reason on this blog I am an open book. Anyhoo, here goes.

Here are the rules:

1. The rules of the game get posted at the beginning.
2. Each player answers the questions about themselves.
3. At the end of the post, the player tags 5 people and posts their name, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know they've been tagged and asking them to read your blog.

What was I doing 10 years ago:
Wow. Ten years ago we were just starting to think about starting our family. BN and I had been married 8 years.

Five Snacks I enjoy:
1. pretzels
2. peanut butter toast
3. cheese sticks
4. popcorn

In the real world:
1. I think I am the same as you see me here. Although, if you watch me on Twitter, you'll get the real deal. It's hard to put on airs and compose when you are talking "live".
2. I'm a wee bit pampered. My family calls me spoiled.
3. I have lost my ability to recall most short term details. I think lack of sleep is the culprit.
4. I like adventures. Road trips to anywhere thrill me.
5. I totally hate any kind of conflict. ( I liked this from Melissa and decided to steal it for my own.)

Things I would do if I were a billionaire:
1. Make sure our parents were setup for their golden years.
2. Finish up the college fund for the kids.
3. Help others in the family as needed. (I liked this one too and really, why bother rewording it.)
4. Give to others (non-family).
5. Travel non-stop 'til we drop.

Five jobs that I have had:
1. I worked at Pizza Hut for 2 hours when I was 17. I knew in those two hours that I would never again work in the food industry. And I never have.
2. Systems Analyst for a major finance company.
3. Executive Assistant in the Department of Defense
4. Air Traffic Controller in the Navy.
5. Pharmacy assistant. Actually one of my favorite jobs. I was 18.

Three of my habits:
1. I always start my day by making my bed.
2. Furrow my brows. I'll need botox soon.
3. Ensure that all rolls of toilet paper unravel from the top. There is nothing worse than having to find the end under the roll. And if I come to your house and your toilet paper is the "wrong" way, I WILL change it.

Five place I have lived:
1. Fredericksburg, VA
2. San Diego, CA
3. Silverdale, WA
4. Greensboro, NC
5. Salisbury, DE

What do you want others to get from your blog:

Ahh who knows. I want you to feel my pain and my happiness. My frustrations and sarcasm. I guess a little camaraderie. It's nice when you get me even when I don't get myself sometimes. I think we all just want to be heard and have someone (or 50) validate us. Why else would we blog? And besides I think I am hilarious. Just like at dinner today. I'll set it up for you. BN was eating salad and with his diet he eats a lot of it. Well, of course he tends to have stuff in his teeth. Pete noticed it and I said, "don't mind daddy. that's just his lettuce grill." Woo-boy, I'm still cracking up at that and BN is still shaking his head.

So there, now you have been enlightened a bit more about me now. Who should I tag? I'm not tagging but if you wanna play, let me know so I can come and read it.


Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Um, Hello. We're NOT in Kansas.

Yeah, that's right. We don't get F3 tornadoes here on a regular basis. We get hurricanes. We know hurricanes. We don't know tornadoes.

For everyone that already knew where I lived and emailed with concern. Thanks! The tornado missed our neighborhood by about a 1/2 mile, measuring across the marsh.

It wiped out the strip mall in front of our recycling center. It threw a truck into my orthopedic surgeon's building. In fact the truck landed in the very room where my shredded ACL was diagnosed. And it took out about a 1/3 of my old neighborhood. We survived the last big hurricane in that neighborhood.

Sushi, the purse fairy, lives one street over from me and her view was unobstructed by trees. She was able to see the flying debris. Right before that hit, we got strong winds and tiny hail and since I knew that was a precursor to the main event, the boys and I hid in the pantry. I blared the tv volume so I could hear when it passed.

So anyway, we are fine. I can't imagine what the folks impacted by this must be going through with only the foundation left from their homes and businesses.

And just to keep count:

Robinella:2 Earthquakes:0
Robinella:2 Tornadoes:0
Robinella:3 Hurricanes:0



Saturday, April 26, 2008

Twitter and PeePee

Twittering is fun. Where else can you post "play-by-play" the scrubbing of a toilet. I did that on Friday.

I decided to encourage the boys to pee outside. I should have taken pictures of their toilet but thought better of it. I do have photographic standards, you know. Yeah, right!

I normally try to wipe down toilets each day with those Method toilet wipes but ran out and pretended not to notice the pee dripping down the front/left/right/back sides of the pot. But since I clean all the bathrooms on the same day, I was forced to face the mess.

The bathroom smelled like urine. I don't know why Pete still pees on the seats. I just have no logical explanation for his bad aim. Poor little RePete's thingie just makes it to the top of the rim so I expect he may have splatters. He won't use the stool so we'll just have to wait until he grows taller.

So in addition to encouraging outdoor urinating, I am teaching them this fantastic new thing I read about. It's called the "taking some toilet paper off the roll and cleaning up your damn piss" technique.

Sort of on this topic: Did you know if you spread male urine around your gardens, the deer will steer clear? I don't have any deer roaming around, but I will use this as my excuse when social services pulls up.


Friday, April 25, 2008

My Beloved Bedroom Furniture

OR why I can't go totally organic.

It's the designer snob in me. Plain and simple. We took about a year to decide on beds for the kids because BN wanted to go whole hog and not only buy the mattress and bedding but also the furniture. If you have looked at "organic" or chemical free furniture, it is Plain Jane. In fact, it's a lot like IKEA, which is fine for a boys room, but not my whole house. I like things streamlined rather than fufu, but Plain Jane? No.

This is My Beloved Bedroom Furniture (MBBF) in its natural habitat. See that bedding - that was my sacrifice. It's organic, Plain Jane, but it works for the feel I wanted in here. (the throw pillows are not organic) The room isn't big but it's comfy feeling.

We went to a Home-A-Rama (home show) about 9 years ago and this furniture was showcased in one of the homes. These home shows kick off a new development and local custom builders get to show off their skills and area designers get to show off theirs. It's a lot of fun to walk through the houses and see what's new on the market and get great ideas.

Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah, MBBF. Did I tell you I polish it everyday? If I did, I was lying because I hate to dust but I wish I did to keep it oh-so-shiny. I saw this furniture at that home show 9 years ago and took pictures of the bedroom to put in my wish file. BN and I don't use credit as a rule, so I knew I would have to save for it. We always get a kick out of the look on the cashier's faces when we walk in with a huge piggy bank and hammer. Whoo-Boy that's fun. At least in my imagination. Imagine that with me now...Isn't that funny? Or not.

So I saved and saved and then the most amazing thing happened. That furniture showed up in our local discount furniture store. The best stuff always ends up there. I guess it is no longer in vogue with the designers and lucky me - I bought it. This stuff is so heavy I cannot move it. It's good furniture and I love it and therefore, I will never buy the Plain Jane stuff. Which is why I can not go totally organic.

And I think I'll use outgassing as an excuse for my fickleness.


Thursday, April 24, 2008

The Effing Hygienist

(Pretend it's Thursday please, I'm getting a hemorrhoid. Gotta get off the computer. Computer chair that is, you sickos.)

After lunch at Firehouse Subs, the boys and I went to Toys R Crazy and bought Tech Decks and then started for the park. On the way, I called some friends to see if they wanted to meet us there and they couldn't because they were on the field trip that we had to miss.

WAIT! Why did we miss the field trip? CRAP! Pete had a dental appointment that morning. Well SHAT! Since we were close to the dentist I just drove over there to let them know what happened and see if anyone cancelled and we could squeeze in. It was 1:25.

Fortunately, she could get us in at 2pm, but Pete had to...poo. So, I had to drive all the way home, coach Pete in a fast poo, and then drive like a bat out of hell to get back by 2pm. Luckily the hygienist was kind and understanding and took Pete back for his cleaning.

Then I came back to sit for when the dentist looked him over. Pete said, "Mom, I thought I wasn't supposed to get fluoride." Me, looking to the hygenist, "Oh that's right, his old dentist probably only sent over xrays not forms so you wouldn't know not to use fluoride. Would you please note that in his folder." Her (still smiling kindly): "Sure, but you know that fluoride is great for still developing teeth, right?" Me: "Thanks, but we prefer not to use fluoride."

Then the evil grin appeared. The all-knowing, hmmmm grin. The one that no matter what I say at this point, no matter that I had gone to college for 10 years and I'm great with small talk and usually make people laugh, she can only give up the smirking, snarky, belittling grin.

She mentioned she had daughters in 2nd and preschool. And then she asked about home schooling and I knew no matter what I said, she'd provide me with that grin. So when she assumed that RePete was doing preschool right now, I said nope, it isn't necessary. Her grin became something she could hardly contain. Her eyes were starting to look funny, so I knew I had to go on. I had to push her buttons.

I told her that I didn't do preschool because kids learn that stuff through play. And it's true. I told her that RePete, like his brother before him, learned counting, shapes, colors and the alphabet and letter sounds without any need for formal instruction.

"I mean, it's not rocket science, right", I laughed. She was about to burst and that was exactly what I hoped would happen.

Effing Hygienist.

ps Oopsie on the spelling. It's hygIenist, not hygenist. Must have been too late for posting. :-)

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Momma's still got it!

I took the boys out to lunch today at Firehouse. Man, we love that place.

Anyway, today the whole graduating class of 2008 firepeople walked in. I guess that should read firefighters. Okay. So I notice Pete watching everyone as we eat and then he pulled me close and whispered, "Mom, all the boys your age keep looking at you. I think boys your age think you are pretty."

Bless his loving little heart. (said without a sarcastic southern undertone)


ps what do you think he meant by your age? 25-ish? Me too.

Thank You, Jenni in KS

You know... I love art. I love all forms, even the crazy stuff people poo-paw. I love it because someone created it and art is usually from the heart, although some is motivated by the wallet.

Jenni had a little contest over at her place and I'm competitive. Even though I didn't want the cd she was illegally burning, I'm just kidding, the cd she purchased and was giving away, I just had to try and win. Now I understand why my boys always race up the stairs or why they have to drink their water at dinner the fastest, etc etc. They get it from me. Poor little guys.

Anyhoo, I didn't win. I got the answer correct but was too late. Jenni could feel my deflated ego from way over there and decided to send me consolation prizes. BONUS! I received two prints from the Jennster. Photos taken by her own little hands.

Thanks, Jenni for having the foresight to place them in an acid free plastic covering because with Doodlebops blaring in the background and alternating reading Green Eggs and Ham pages with Pete, I didn't hear the postal worker. Apparently, because the envelope only said, "DO NOT BEND" and did not have the "DO NOT LEAVE IN RAIN" stamp, he thought it was okay to leave it IN THE RAIN on my front porch. He must have just delivered it and ran because it was just starting to get rain on it.

and when I opened the package, rain was indeed seeping inside.

Jenni sent me this little postcard with a small message for Willowtree. Hey, I'm just the messenger.

I just happened to have the perfect frame lying around and decided to put her work of art on my desk. It gives me happy thoughts.

Although, I have ouchy thoughts right now cause I cut my thumb cleaning the glass.

Just one little tip, my dear. ALWAYS sign your work or put a watermark on it. Not only because someone might try and steal your hard work, but because I need your autograph in case you become famous one day and then I can hold a piece of work from your "early years".


(see happy thoughts)

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Pete's New Organic Bed

BN's argument for going organic is because of outgassing. Apparently, the chemicals used in the production and making of furniture, flooring and even bedding/clothing produces noxious fumes that over time cause bodily harm. I'm okay with that reasoning. But have you looked at the prices for this stuff. You may have tried but the websites don't post prices, you have to call for pricing. That is pretty much a dead giveaway to me as to how expensive it really is. Due to price we opted to buy the IKEA bedframes for the boys, which I love, and their mattress and bedding are organic. Actually, we are buying them one at a time. We need more money, people. Feel free to donate.

So anyway, we bought an organic mattress for Pete. Pete has always had sinus/allergy issues. He also has other issues that I always describe as "MORE". He's more of this than other kids, he's more of that. We love him for it. It takes more energy to raise him and we're happy to expend it. Just like we were happy to spend more on the mattress.

Pete would lie awake at night for a good two hours yelling down to us, "Goodnight, Mom, goodnight, Dad." or "What time is it?" or "What are you watching?" or anything really for two hours. This has gone on for quite some time. In fact, it started when he was almost 4 and we bought his first big boy mattress. We bought it from a respectable company, paid a respectable price. It was by anyone's standards a good mattress.

Then the organic mattress arrived last week. It's taken Pete no longer than 10 minutes to fall asleep and without all the questions. This transformation took place on the first night. It'll be interesting to see if this endures. Is it the mattress? I think it is. He's sensitive to soaps and perfumes, so why not chemical-laden mattresses.

Next RePete gets one and then we'll buy one. But I have no intention of getting rid of my beloved bedroom furniture - only the mattress.


If you are interested, we purchase a great many things from Lifekind, including Pete's mattress.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Burn, Baby, Burn

Well, it's that time of year when I start looking at curriculum for next year.

We've been very loosey-goosey these last two years and it's time for us to buckle down. I came across a post on a message board and the poster uses Apologia Sciences so I decided to look them up and see what they were about.

What got me was a sample module on the sun. Here's the snippet from the actual text:

Did you know that you can take a magnifying glass out into the sun and burn little holes in leaves? This works especially well during the summer when the sun is shining its light more directly upon us. When you focus the sunlight coming through the curved lens of the magnifying glass for a short period of time, it will burn a hole in the leaf.

Yeah, right! Like I'd put that dumb idea in my son's head. Can you imagine? Tomorrow, I'd be writing a post, complete with pictures of course, of our house and all of the houses on our street burning to the ground because I told my son how to start fires with a magnifying glass.

So anyway, Apologia is OUT! Next.


My eyes are burning

It is raining like crazy here. Still thundering and lightening. Needless to say we are stuck indoors.

Normally, the TV and gaming devices are not on during the day. From time to time, RePete will want to play a computer game - educational, of course. Today? Poop on it. Pete is playing Spongebob - marathon style. RePete is alternating between watching his Doodlebops dvd and playing preschool games on the computer. And I'm catching up on blogs.

A few minutes ago RePete said his eyes were burning. I told him to take a break from his ABC dot-to-dot game and let his eyes rest. He said, "No, I can't want to do that. I'm gonna get a washcloth."

That sounded reasonable until I looked across the hall to the bathroom and saw him rinsing his washcloth out in the toilet. He thought he had eye problems before...


Friday, April 18, 2008

Happy Friday

Well we went to the pool today. The pool I spoke of yesterday is about 30 minutes from our home and it has a great outdoor pool complete with slides and fountains. We have closer pools but the kids love this one so I take them there about once a week during the summer season.

Let me backtrack a bit.

While the boys were playing this morning, I laid out their clothes: T-shirt, trunks and fake Crocs. (yes, fake, I refuse to pay that amount for plastic shoes) And then I waited. RePete saw his clothes first and exclaimed, "Mom, you got my babysuit?" "Why I need my babysuit?" "Look, Pete, my babysuit!"

Pete, looking a bit annoyed, said, "RePete, it's a b.a.t.h.i.n.g. suit, not babysuit." "WAIT! Mom, why did you give us bathing suits? Are we going to the pool?" "Woohoo!"

I love the beginnings of summer. (two months early)

So anyway, we go to the pool which is located at the YMCA, check in, do a quick bathroom run and head for the outdoor pool. Just as we opened the door, a Y rep came up saying, "Sorry, it's closed. We'll be opening at 4pm today."

My boys immediately start to whine. I say to her that I thought it was open from 10 to 1pm today and I guess I should have called first. She said that it was supposed to be open, but that they JUST changed that. (It's 11am)

Well thanks for that! So as I am quieting the boys I ask her if the indoor has free swim today and she doesn't know. I herd the boys toward the indoor pool while muttering under my breath how sorry the people at the Y will be if it isn't free swim time because my boys are going to have a hissy fit and I will too since I just drove 30 minutes in my bathing suit and we're covered in sunblock. I hate sunblock.

Luckily, free swim was happening so we jumped in and all our previous angst drowned.


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Bedtime Tales

I had to forgo taking the boys to the zoo today because Pete's new mattress was being delivered a day early. So I had to clean up the boys room because not only was he getting a new mattress but we also bought new beds for both boys and they needed to be assembled prior to the delivery.
I normally make the boys clean their own room, but since that means shoving everything under their beds, I knew I needed to pitch in on this one. I'm glad I did because I found out that Pete is hoarding things in his room. I found 3 pieces of gum in his underwear drawer. (I wondered why the pack in my purse was almost gone!) I found numerous candy wrappers under the bed, behind the dresser and a myriad of other places. (he snuck candy home from Grandma's.)

Saturday, April 12, 2008


When we visited the Great Dismal Swamp with our home school 4-H group, one of the rangers was talking to the kids and asked this:

Ranger: Do you know what algae is?
Pete: Yeah, it is the stuff that makes me sneeze.

Apparently, it also clogs his ears.


Saturday, April 5, 2008


I reluctantly agreed to go with my sister to NC to visit my Grandmother. She turned 75 on April 2nd.
The reluctance is due in part to the fact that we'll be in a car with our three boys aged 13, 8, 4 for almost five hours Friday night. It's also partly due to the fact that my Mom is surprising my Grandma with a little shindig at the old folks meeting house Saturday afternoon. I don't know what else to call it. My Grandma lives in an "elderly apartment complex" and there is not one single thing for 8 and 4 year olds to do.
We are staying with my Dad the night before and I am waking them up early and making them run all over the yard about 100 times (and no I don't mean 7 times). Hopefully this will expend enough energy that they will behave themselves at the party.
Oh and did I mention the family that will attend are from my Mom's side. Several cousins that I could seriously do without seeing will be coming. The joys of family get-togethers. What's that saying about "you can pick your friends, but you can't pick your family" Definitely applies here.
And lastly, it's because we then will be driving the almost five hours back home Saturday night so my sister can enjoy a day off before returning to work.
I had planned on sending a really nice gift and wishing her a Happy Birthday from afar. But my sentimental sister said we had to go because it's her 75th. Of course I'm all like yeah, so, what if she has another birthday next year. She laughed and I'm thinking maybe I shouldn't have said that out loud.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Kids are so fricking literal.

I am smarter than a second grader, thank you very much.

Only he doesn't think so. Someone needs to call CPS - QUICK!

I swear, if that boy corrects me one more time, I am going to lose it. It's bad enough if he corrects me when I am actually wrong, but when he corrects me and I am right, it burns my ass big time.

About 100 times a day, I hear this, "Mom, don't you mean 7 times a day?" To which I reply, "NOOOOO, I don't mean THAT...I mean 100 times a day."

Or if he asks the time and I say, "1:30". He'll look at the clock (the same one I am looking at btw) and say, "Mom, don't you mean it's 1:28?" Of course by that time I can't see the clock because of all the steam escaping my head and clouding my vision. And he's farsighted not near sighted so why is he asking me the time anyway.

OK, deep breath in, hold it, pass out. (waking up 3 hours later) Phew, I feel better.


Thursday, April 3, 2008

Reading Glasses

I've mentioned Pete's reading before. How he hems and haws and gets all exasperated reading even the smallest thing.

Well, last week I took him to my optometrist to get an eye exam - a real one, not the quickie they do at the pediatric office. Turns out, he needs glasses for...READING. Apparently the poor kid has been reading using only his right eye because his left eye can't see that close.

I feel terrible for getting on his case or even making him read in the first place, but you know, he never mentioned not being able to see the page. He never complained about headaches or his eyes hurting. He DID rub his eyes a lot. He DID have trouble keeping his place on the page. He DID lay his head down on the papers/books and complain. complain. complain., "I can't read."

So now we know. I have to pick up the glasses today and I can't wait to have him read something. See if maybe anything changes. I really hope something does.

Thankfully, the doctor said it is common for children to outgrow farsightedness. I sure hope so, cause glasses and contacts are a pain in the ass.


Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Live to 150?

Did you happen to catch Babs last night on the telly? Barbara Walters did a special on Living to 150. It was actually pretty interesting to watch. Some of the people on there, the doctors and scientists were a bit scary. There was one in particular who looked like a hillbilly (no offense to hillbillies). He had a long ponytail and this humongous beard. Oh and he spoke with a British accent. Some professor or something at Cambridge. I couldn't really concentrate on what he was saying because of how he was saying it. I totally expected him to spit into a spittoon at any moment or pull out a banjo. He never did.

Did you know there are 84,000 folks 100 years old or older in the US alone? I found that tidbit amazing. I have really got to pump up our long term investments to make it last that long. We had only planned on living to 100. Or that you can pay $75,000 to have your body cryogenically frozen so that one day you can have your body brought back to life. That should be interesting. I wonder what beliefs these people have. Do they think they currently have a soul? If so, what'll happen when the body (souless at that point) is resuscitated? Of course, if they don't believe in souls then I guess there is nothing to worry about.

And was it me or did all of the "experts" have really dark eyes? They would have been perfect in any movie playing the part of Satan's minions. Really weird - but their eyes held me captive - I couldn't look away.

And finally there was another "expert" at the end of the show who talked to Barbara about sex. According to him, with people living longer, and men typically dying earlier than women, and these super old women still feeling feisty, they'll be turning to one another to satisfy their itch. We'll soon be overrun with old lesbians.

Wow! (stunned silence)