Wednesday, November 25, 2009


happy thanksgiving. we all have so very much to be thankful for. this blog has really helped me be a more grateful person. it has also reinforced for me that i am surrounded by many wonderful people.

hope you all have/had a wonderful thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

cracker, cuties, and anything else that falls out of my brain.

***edit: if you make the crackers, only bake them for about 10 minutes, or at least keep an eye on them. 15 minutes, as the recipe says, would be charred in my oven.

(the context of this: i wrote this post a week ago. so if it doesn't make sense, it is last week's fault. four attempts later i was finally able to post. yes, i wasted a lot of time on this post. it made me quite sour about blogging to be honest.)

glad to hear i'm not the only one still afraid of monsters. honestly it's not really monsters so much as cougars, aliens, cows, and the creature from "the village". let's just say m. night shyamalan is NOT my friend. cougars are mean and unlike most other creatures that try to get away from people, cougars have been known to stalk and kill hikers, cyclist, and me going to my car at night if given the chance. i know it's mean and they were here first, but i'm glad they have been pushed out of my lil spot of kansas and hope they stay out. as i child i was afraid aliens were going to come at night and steal my organs like the llamas on "unsolved mysteries". i hated my brothers for watching that terrible show. and cows, well, i obviously don't even have to explain that one. who isn't afraid of cows.

now that we've thoroughly discussed my weird fears, we can move on to crackers. erika had asked if i had a good cracker recipe, and because she once upon a time gave me an awesome bread recipe that has endeared me to my whole family for my usefulness in the bread making arena, i will share the cracker recipe. i some how found it here, although i don't know how because i don't read that blog. maybe i linked in from moneysavingmom, but i found the recipe long before i started reading moneysavingmom. apparently it was providence. not to imply that the recipe is so mindblowingly delicious, but it does the job of satisfying me and my littles. i'm pretty sure commercial crackers (and chips for that matter) have cocaine in them, thus making it possible to eat way, way, WAY too many in a sitting without realizing it. i hate the food industry. but i'll stop myself from that rant.

obviously i am not a food blogger, nor do i have any desire to be one. food is really hard to take pictures of and whenever i try, i gain more respect for the people who do it so well and artistically. but because i am a very visual learner, i took these to show a bit of the process. i like pics for new recipes because then i know i'm not screwing it up.

ingredients all mixed up in my circa 1980 cuisinart. i used evoo and white whole wheat flour on this occasion.

crumbles all mushed together and ready to roll out. oh rolling pin (that you can barely see), how i love you.

baked and broken up. i score mine before baking them so they break more evenly when done. i also mush the sea salt into the "dough" before baking so that it doesn't flake off.

now that crackers are out of the way, let's move on to the cuties.

here's the little giraffe we hauled around with us on halloween. his costume was too big, which made him extra cute.

he's in there somewhere.

here he and his cousin (the boy with the most kissable chubby cheeks) are trying to figure out why they are dressed so foolishly.

ben was a firefighter, which didn't seem like much of a costume since he wears his firefighter boots every day and the rest of the costume around the house quite a bit. still, pretty dang cute in my book. (am i biased? most definitely!!)

we had fun at tim's uncle's, who lives in college hill. if you've never been to college hill on halloween, you must go at least once in your lifetime. it's quite the experience.

to complete the randomness of this post, i will round it out with some coloring-therapy.

ben really likes watercolors lately. i had to accept that they would be destroyed and the colors would get all mixed together and the case would be a soggy mess. (i remember very clearly in kindergarten seeing other kids color-blended, soggy watercolor sets and thinking they needed to more careful. i liked to keep my colors true. )

he quickly tires of my picture taking.

on this particular day, i was really enjoying crayons.

don't be jealous of my skillz. i was, after all, a coloring contest grand champion. art, even if you're not good, is good for the soul. kids are really good about reminding us of the simple things.

well, i think that's all folks. good night and good day.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

must peel bottom off couch.

i need to get up. really i do. i need to clean my kitchen. i'll admit, sometimes i'm lazy and wait till the morning to do it, but honestly, i've noticed it really sets a pooey tone for the day when i do. a clean table greeting me as i stumble down the stairs perks me up a little. and a clean kitchen as max starts the shakey dances makes them a little more tolerable. dirty kitchen equals very grouchy momma. so why am i still here writing about it instead of doing it? let's not go there.

my camera is once again unavailable. maybe by next halloween i can post pics of the boys. max was a very cute drunken giraffe.

to avoid the kitchen a bit longer, i will share a few things you might have overheard at our house recently.

"God, please put tape over my mom's mouth so she can't talk to me anymore." i did not find that funny. i can tell when ben knows all too well he did something wrong because he goes to his room without hesitation when told. i thought about putting tape over my mouth when i went to release him from timeout and mumbling to him the rest of the night, but i didn't want him to think he had that kind of power.

ben has been talking about monsters a lot lately. i don't know where the idea came from, and he is not really afraid, but he will say things like, "i don't want to go in the bathroom. the light is off. there's monsters in there." and when i ask where, and he points to the bathtub, and i pull back the shower curtain and prove how smart i am and point out there are no monsters, he says, "oh, yah." i don't make a big deal out of it, because i was terrified of A LOT of things as a kid. i still really don't like the dark, but have to be brave way more than i would like. so as i was loading the boys into their car seats the other night in the dark at the ripe ol late hour of six o'clock, ben's talk of monsters wasn't appreciated. reassuring myself as much as him, i kept casually saying, "ben, monster's aren't real. they're only in silly stories." to which he finally said, "what about that one on the porch?" be brave mary. be brave. i don't think he picked up on racing heartbeat as i reminded him yet again that monsters aren't real. but i did have to look over my shoulder. and walk calmly to my door and then slam the door very quickly and shiver a bit from the adrenaline dump. i really don't like having to be brave. i much prefer to whine and have other people do brave things for me.

speaking of whining, i may have taught max to whine like a rainicorn. a what? watch this. it's algebraic! really, my version isn't quite like the rainicorn, but more my memory of the rainicorn from a year ago. watching it again, i realize i need to work on my impression. occasionally, when i'm being obnoxiously whiny, i bring out my inner rainicorn. and now max does it. it was a proud moment when i realized what he was doing.

(contrary to the title of this post, i have actually moved from sitting to laying. not looking good for you kitchen.)

(( i love you all (in a non-weird way) for the comments you leave. you are my sunshine. not my only sunshine, but still.))

(((i'm trying my best to attract the attention of the parenthesis police. maybe if i'm in jail, i won't be responsible for my kitchen.)))

((((((((as i reread this i found a grammatical mistake that is now escaping me. very annoying. and you're thinking, "you only found one?! i found 8 million." well, good for you. maybe the grammar police can take me to their jail. the parenthesis police are worthless.)))))))))))))))(((((()))))))))))

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

mad max.

i used to have a sweet baby named max. and then i had a happy toddler named max. he was so happy to be upright and able to chase ben. he would, for the most part, just follow us around and dig in whatever he could reach. a couple of weeks ago he really started communicating by pointing to what he wanted and grunting or chirping or squealing. and then the fits started. he will start by pointing and squealing, then he starts the shakey dance, which is him bouncing up and down and hyperventilating. if he still hasn't gotten what he wants, he will start to scream and cry, and either crumble onto the floor or continue with the shakey dance while crying.

and he's not just crying because i didn't snap his onesie. this particular "session" lasted for about fifteen minutes and i really couldn't figure out what he wanted. he would even briefly stop, walk into ben's room, then come back to his room and resume fit. when i would offer to hold him, he would reel backwards. i think i finally got him to stop by just picking him up, holding on tight while he threw himself backwards, and carrying him around for awhile. (so maybe it was about his shirt. maybe if he'd hold still for more than a nanosecond while i'm changing him, he wouldn't be so unkempt.)

you know, maybe the whole fit really was about me taking pics of him in such a disheveled state. "mom, i'm so embarrassed. my shirt's on inside out and untucked. what will everyone think?!"

oh wait...the fit began long before the camera came out.

right now i'm on the stress-induced diet of mothering known as the "i want whatever you have" diet. anything i try ("try" being the key word) to eat, max wants. even if it is exactly what he has on his tray. water is the same. he apparently doesn't like sippy cups anymore but he spills an unlidded cup as soon as i look away or get distracted. and they are not accidental spills. he doesn't want to eat in his chair-it seems he would ideally take all his meals to-go.

(alright, i have to admit, i started this post this morning, after max had just stole my muffin, and i was about to LOSE. IT. big time. but now the day has passed, we all survived, and i'm nearly too tired to continue my livid rant. and in writing it, it is almost amusing.)

but without ranting, i can honestly say that max has become very challenging. he gets really bored because he's thoroughly explored his upright world so it's not new and interesting anymore, but he's not coordinated enough/have enough attention span to do anything more complex. and it fills me with a certain sense of-dare i say-dread. because i remember this stage all to well with ben. and it lasted a very long time in which we were both very frustrated. i feel a little better equipped this go round, but still a bit frazzled. okay, a lot frazzled. any suggestions for entertaining the beastly babe?

oh goodness gracious. i sometimes fantasize about a mellow, docile child. but that child would have to be adopted.

i love my intense boys. really i do. last friday tim had to work late and both of my boys ended up on my lap, eating my dinner, before the "meal" was over. at first i was annoyed. but then i was thankful. yes, they are a handful, or in that case, lap/arm full. but i'm thankful that they are what my life is full of. screaming shakey dances and all.

(see mom, i've stopped picking on ben. now i've moved on to max.)