Thursday, November 29, 2012

Suffering from Adulthood

I'm pretty sure Adulthood is a disease.  Once you're afflicted there is no cure and the symptoms are painfully obvious.  Small children recognize you as an authority figure the minute you open your mouth and larger children run from you because they know you're going to tell them whatever they're doing is unsafe.  The only treatment is to not take yourself too seriously and laugh at how you've turned into the very people you swore you would never become.......YOUR PARENTS!!

Top 10 Ways You Know You're Finally An Adult:

10. You roll your eyes at your children when they go all "drama queen" on you and say things like, "If you had any idea....." or "When I was a kid....."
9.  You read the obituaries.....and often know the people who died.
8.  You vote in each presedential election and actually care who wins.
7.  Whenever someone tells you they're taking a family vacation you think about how much it will cost instead of how fun it will be.
6.  You no longer drive like a maniac and yell at the people who do.
5.  You celebrate your coupon savings at the grocery store like you just won the Miss America Pagent.
4.  You happily trade nights out "whooping it up" for nights in drinking wine and "getting crafty" with your girlfriends.
3.  You often comment that the rating system for movies has deteriorated beyond redemption ("Really!?! Seriously!?! They can actually put that in a Disney movie now?? How is this movie rated PG-13?? They call THIS trash a FAMILY MOVIE??!!).
2.  You turn the music in your car down instead of up.

And Finally:

1.  You eat healthy serial (Wheat Chex...GASP!) without a bunch of sugar on it (double GASP!!) and LIKE IT!! (faint).

P.S. You also use words like "afflicted" and "redemption".......*sigh*.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Back pain, Bath time and Alien Probes

Sometimes life just isn't that funny.  And I refuse to blog about the mundane or not-so funny stuff in my life.  If you're looking for that stuff just jump on over to Facebook or the evening news.  At any rate, there just really hasn't been anything worth blogging about lately, until yesterday.  Now prepare yourselves for some serious funny!

Two days ago we got about 6 inches of snow, added to the 2 inches we already had.  And yes my friends, that gives you......enough to go snowmobiling!!  I bought a helmet off of Craigslist yesterday for $30 (new they are anywhere from $85 to $200), so I was set.  So after returning home with my children I decided it was time to fire up the arctic cat 500 we bought this fall.  Now the newer models have an electric start and all you have to do is push a button.  We are not new model folks, so therefore ours has the standard pull-start.  These were not designed for small women (or a hobbit, as I am often referred to around here).  So I pulled, and pulled, and pulled.  I worked up a serious sweat cranking on that stupid pull-start.  I texted my friend Austin (snowmobile guru) and whined that I couldn't get it started.  He replied that he found that funny and that perhaps I was "less than snowmobile material."  I retaliated by calling him some choice names, and then returned to pulling on that damn cord.  That's right, failure is not an option!! That snowmobile purred like a kitten while I stood there in 10-degree coldness and sweat like a whore in church (don't gasp at that phrase, my dad taught it to me so it's legal). 

I had a blast scooting around the yard, down the driveway and out around Helen's cabin.  I am truly snowmobile material, hobbit or not, because "I have a need, a need for speed!"  Unfortunately, all of my determination and enjoyment landed me a big fat back ache that was a good reminder you "pay to play." 

Moving on.  I decided a nice warm soak was the perfect remedy for my exertion and subsequent aches so I happily placed myself into the tub.  I was probably only in there 30 seconds before the first child asked, "Mom, when you're done can I have your bathwater?" "Sure," I said, "now get out."  Approximately 2 minutes after that another child pulled back the curtain, "Are you done yet?" "No, get out," I replied.  It is hard to relax with constant interruptions, not to mention every time you pull the curtain back (because apparently if I can't see you I can't hear you), it lets a big old draft of cold air in.  Finally, after 15 minutes, Noah got sick of asking.  He jerked back the curtain, stood there buck naked and informed me, "Mom, you are done!"  Alrighty then, it looks like I am, like it or not.  Note to self:  Lock the frickin' door from now on!

As I had failed to achieve soaking satisfaction and I was pretty tired, I surmised an early bedtime was called for.  As soon as the boys were tucked in, I turned in as well.  About midnight Noah crawled into my bed (as he does most nights).  This only roused me enough to roll over.  However, the small cold feet that then jabbed my back, my legs, my stomach, my butt and who knows how many other places completed the job of waking me.  I lay there thinking that an alien probe probably felt about the same and that sometimes I wouldn't mind being abducted by aliens because it would be like a vacation.  Then I thought, "Seriously?? They'd probably make you a slave and you already hate taking care of the 4 people in your house now, imagine a whole spaceship full of needy little creatures?"  With that I snuggled back in and drifted off.......

Monday, October 15, 2012


Yikes! It's been over 2 weeks since I blogged.  Really sorry if there are folks out there who check regularly to see what's up in our neck of the woods.  Although in my defense, there hasn't really been anything exciting to report.  School, work, sleep, school, work, sleep.  That's about it. 

My current favorite blogger, Katy Wolk-Stanley occasionally writes what she calls a mishmash.  This is where she focuses a little bit on this and a little bit on that.  After reading her blog this morning I decided I had enough material to do a mishmash as well.

1.  Austin gave me a wonderful chuckle the other day when he asked, "Mom, do you know what I wear every single day?"  Of course my first thought was his birthday suit, but that wasn't it.  So I asked, "What do you wear every single day Austin?"  And his reply....."My awesomeness!"  Something I think we should all remember each morning.  Today I am putting on my awesomeness :)

2.  We got our very first little dusting of snow on the ground back on September 30th.  We got our PFD's (Permanent Fund Dividend, i.e. money for living in Alaska) on October 4th.  We decided this year we were going to really enjoy an Alaska winter as we're supposed to get even more snow than last year.  So on October 13th, we bought our first snowmobile!  It's a vintage 1981 Yamaha 300 that is perfect for the boys!  And get this, our good friend Austin Earns brought it out to the house in his truck and when he pulled into the driveway, it started snowing hard!  We got almost an inch :)  Talk about a great start to winter.  We also found a slamming deal on a Ski-doo 500 Summit for Dust and I yesterday.  Both are older sleds but run great and will provide endless hours of entertainment for all. 

3.  We put a propane heater in the living room (2nd floor) which completes our preparations for a nice cozy winter nestled into our house (when we're not snowmobiling!)  We have lots of wood stacked out back for the woodstove, lots of propane in the tanks and lots of fun stuff to do indoors.  Bring it on Mother Nature!!

Hope this finds you all enjoying fall (or winter if that's the case) and ready for some winter fun.


Friday, September 28, 2012

You Don't Say......

Way back when I was in college we had to take sociology.  One of the things we learned was that each family develops its own language.  Certain phrases take on meanings that only that one particular family understands.  Just like an inside joke.  Well, as I've noticed before and again more recently, our family is no different. 

I have previously blogged about how we never call body parts by their "normal" names.  And everyone has a nickname.  Recently, our little parrot (a.k.a Noah) has started throwing out things that we can easily pinpoint back to one family member or another.  For example:

1.  "What's up homes?" (that one would be me)
2.  "Shut your face!" (Austin and Connor)
3.  "Whatcha buildin'?" (Dustin)

I also smile when he tells me, "Good choice mom!" after picking a song to play in the truck and "Sounds like a plan!" when I fill him in on the day's itinerary.  "I'm on it!" is echoed when he's asked to pick up toys or let the dogs in. 

Sadly, he's also used a few less than favorable phrases not fit for writing on a blog post about a 4-year-old.  I take responsibility for those as well.  All in all, he is quite articulate for a 4-year-old and has developed quite the sense of humor.  I think we'll keep him.

Monday, September 17, 2012

It's Disgusting!!

Dear Austin,
Some day perhaps you will read this blog post.  I hope we share a good laugh over it.  I have a feeling we will beacuse you're that kind of kid, able to laugh at himself. 

Yesterday I asked you to fold laundry.  It was actually supposed to be punishment for snapping Connor with a bungee cord.  It turned out to be what I consider a life lesson.  You were definitely upset about having to fold laundry because you said "I'm not good at it."  I replied that the more you did it, the better you would get at it.  You thumped yourself down in front of the baskets and started folding.  Then you got to my underwear. 

You came to me and said, "Mom, I feel like it's inappropriate that I fold your bra and underwear."  I tried to hide a smile.  I told you I had folded your underwear more times than I could count.  "But that's different," you said, "I'm your kid."  "Maybe you're right," I said, "but clothes are clothes and my underwear are no different than shirts or pants."  I tried reasoning with you for about 5 minutes, but you just dug your heels in and finally started crying.  Then you said, "It's disgusting and I am NOT folding your underwear!!"  I sent you to your room for yelling at me.

I wasn't sure how to proceed.  On the one hand, I felt you had a legitimate gripe and I could see how a 9-year-old boy would find his mother's underwear less than sexy.  On the other hand, you have an enviable knack for getting out of work and I could see this spiraling into "everybody's clothes but mine are disgusting...."  I also try to remind myself that I'm not just raising sons, but future husbands, and before that men who will need to be able to take care of themselves. 

So when you came back downstairs, much calmer, I spoke to you about all the things I've done for you that are "disgusting".  I reminded you of poopy diapers that went up your back and down your legs, puke that covered every surface for 20 square feet, pee on the walls and yes, sometimes your underwear.  Again you reminded me, "but you're my mom."  I said, "I'm sorry Austin, but these are the facts of life.  We all have to do things we'd rather not do.  And while I understand that you're not crazy about touching my underwear, I promise you they are clean and won't transmit girl cooties." 

You resigned yourself to the fact that mom was not going to budge on this one and acting as though they were on fire, very quickly folded my underwear into a barely recognizable wad and threw them at my pile of clothes.  I assured you that after awhile underwear would be no big deal.  You assured me that you doubted my wisdom on this one. 

I love you Austin.  You make me laugh, you are open, smart and kind.  You are also very normal.  And someday, you will be a good man just like Dust, who is practically impossible to gross out.


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Ahhhh, the Fair

In Montana there are fairs all summer long.  Just where we lived there was the Missoula fair, the Kalispell fair and the Plains fair.  In Alaska........there is 1.  But it's a doozy!  The last several years we haven't had a lot of money to spend at the fair so it was usually a pretty subdued experience, but this year we were a little more flush so we had A LOT more fun. 

We started out walking by all the vendors, ooohhing and ahhhing over hot tubs (me), snowmobiles and 4-wheelers (Austin and Connor), mini back massagers (Dustin) and construction equipment (Noah).  Then we hit the food trail.  Oh how we reveled.  We paid so much for food we probably could have fed a small African country for a week.  There were tamales, cheese curds, pizza and tacos followed by cotton candy, ice cream, a rootbeer float and a carmel apple.  No one walked away hungry or unsugared.

Of course rides had to be ridden.....and for your enjoyment I have included pictures :) 

No one puked! Although I came dangerously close on the carousel as it was whipping around at 0.2 miles per hour. 

Finally we toured the barns.  The kids were not impressed with the quilts or the artwork, but had a blast checking out all the animals.  They had fun petting lambs, goats, cows and bunnies.  They got to see baby chicks hatching and turkeys gobbling.  I believe Noah summed up the day best when he told a rooster who had just cock-a-doodle-doo'd, "Chicken, that was AMAZING!!"

Monday, August 13, 2012

Stinky Baby Sasquatch

I suppose its inevitable that my boys will eventually mature into men.....And for some reason I've decided that the easily observable physical signs are the hardest for me to accept.  The boys however seem quite delighted with each new thing that makes them "more like dad." 

Upon their return from Montana this year Austin announced that his legs were becoming quite hairy and that he was turning into a baby Sasquatch.  I found this very funny and told him so.  I also suggested he spend more time roaming the woods around our house just to see if his "true parents" were out there somewhere.  He didn't find that very funny at all.

A few days ago Connor passed by me and caused me to wonder if I had forgotten to put my deoderant on that morning.  So I casually sniffed and was relieved to discover that I hadn't forgetten, which was time to buy deoderant for the boys (which they used to refer to as "boyoderant" and loved to apply whenever Dustin was caught putting his on).  I was pretty surprised that I had a hard time convincing them they needed it and even went so far as to make them smell their own armpits.  The looks on their faces reminded me of someone who had to suck on a lemon knowing there will be no shot of tequila to follow.  Total bummer dude. 

Last of all, they will soon surpass my own hobbit-like stature and I will become the midget in my house.  At only 9 years of age they are already at my shoulder so I'm forcasting another year or so before they're looking me directly in the eyes.  And should they think that my vertically challenged condition equals weakness, I shall remind them that a lower center of gravity equals a much better tackle :)