Sunday, January 29, 2012

Amazon Must Love Me

I finally ordered a new mattress pad and pillow. I think I have milked all the mileage I am able to out of my current pad and pillow. I took the hint yesterday as I stripped the bed. I decided it was time to wash both the pillow case AND the "removable/washable cover" on my latex pillow. You know what? The pillow practically disintegrated in my hands. What a mess! I knew it was suffering from memory foam Alzheimer's (it no longer could remember it's original shape.) I did NOT know the pillow had suffered a complete breakdown.

When I stripped the sheets off the bed, the boys both came in and commented on the naked memory foam pad. "Mom? Can I sleep with you tonight on that side of the bed? I like how the bed is all squishy on your side and how I fit in your indent..."  My WHAT? Oh. Right. The pad has Alzheimer's too. How many years does it take memory foam to lose it's memory? For me, it's been about 9 years or so. But really, this pad could have been 86'd a couple years ago. Max's comment had me thinking. "Mom! Why is your bed yellow?!" Um. [He had me thinking gross!] That pad used to be white, honey. It's just very old. "Did you pee on it a lot like I used to???" Ummm. No honey. You have pee'd on it. So has your brother. But not Mommy.

The more I think about it, maybe I should donate this pad to science. What does 8+ years of night time kid invasions (with leaky diapers), years of night sweats with hormonal surges and other assorted thrills and spills contribute to the world of science? I have no idea. I'm curious what a microscope would show. And scared.

I'd say I deserve a new memory foam pad. The current pad is 2 inches thick (4 lb density). The new one is 3 inches thick (same density). Other than making it harder to stretch on my fitted sheets, I wonder what the extra inch will give me. I am hoping for a better night's sleep. Stay tuned...

Thursday, January 19, 2012

New Addition

It's been over 10 years, but we have a new addition to our family. A cute butcher block cafe table and chairs! I think the last bit of furniture we bought was stuff for the nursery. The boys are currently sharing that set between their two rooms. Tyler has the day bed I used when I was single and Max is still sleeping in Tyler's old toddler bed. Yeah. They are next on the list for new furniture as soon as we find the right sets (nice quality but affordable - it's not as easy as it sounds.)

I wouldn't recommend waiting 14+ years for a kitchen table (this spot has been empty since the house was built) but I am pleased with our $199 bargain from Bob's. Thanks Bob! Now we can retire the TV tables my parents gave us as a gift all those years ago. Ha!

We just need to coach Tyler not to throw his body into the table as he sits down. I can just picture the table being shoved right through the sliding glass door. Yikes! I am also anticipating some objection when the boys realize this is where we are eating dinner tonight. No TV! Heh heh.

After the boys' rooms have been done, maybe I can finally get an HD TV...flat screen! Imagine, no more having to slam the side of the TV to clear up the picture when it goes wonky. Ah, 21st century technology... Maybe by the 22nd century I will have you. Ha ha!

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Sarcastic Mom - Has a nice ring to it.

I've been thinking about changing the title of my blog. Why? I don't think everyone "gets" me. See, I receieved a couple comments from friends on my last post that equated to "gosh, I hope you really aren't constantly on the brink of beating the kids..."  Um, no. Really!

Here is a good example of a Sarcastic Mom moment. Max approached me today and said, "Mom? I'm gonna steal a piece of your chocolate and put it in Tyler's underpants!" He was laughing so hard he could hardly get the words out. I replied, "Touch my chocolate, young man, and you will find out what it's like to grow up with no arms."  He ran away laughing, yelling back - "I'll sneak in tomorrow morning and steal some for Tyler's underpants! You'll be sleeping and never know!!" See. He gets me.

Tyler, on the other hand, is still trying to figure out the nuance of sarcasm. He doesn't read people well and takes everything they say at face value. He is very literal. I have to be careful how I phrase things with him. Maybe I should utilise him more as a sounding board. Bounce my ideas off him and see how he reacts. I should have given him our Christmas card "newsletter" to read and gotten his reaction.

That is another prime example of how people don't "get" me. The note I sent this year with our annual Christmas Card was VERY Sarcastic Mom. Classic. It began with something along the lines of "Another year is gone. We are broke. We are tired. The End." Followed with a "But seriously!" and some tidbits about our year. My husband's uncle promptly sent us a check in a return card with a very sweet note. He was concerned about us being "broke" and wanted to send money for the boys to help out.

Yes, I cried. It was touching! But oh brother, he did NOT get me. I mean, yes we really are broke, but so is pretty much every single income middle class American family in this economy. Am I right?

Don't send money. I will keep it. Now I am off to Google my new blog title. I'll bet you chocolate that it's already taken.

Monday, January 09, 2012

If You Can't Beat Them, Charge Them?

It can be difficult to enforce rules when you are a parent who tries very hard to never physically strike your children. Time outs have limited effectiveness and you can't use them too often or the positive effect is lost (or your child is spending most of the day in time-out.)

We used a chore chart for a while with a prize box reward system. That worked pretty well, until the chart was accidentally erased (wipe off white board) by our goofy cat. How? I had the chart leaning against a wall and the cat thought it was huge fun to run through the "tunnel" I made. His repeated passes turned him into a big furry eraser. Once the boys realized I had no idea how many stars they had earned for the month, the chores and good behavior went undone. Back to square one.

Then thanks to a couple jerks on YouTube who thought it great fun to use clips from my youngest son's favorite TV show and replace the 5 year old friendly dialog with a spew of curses and other inappropriate talk and did NOT identify their efforts as MATURE CONTENT, I have been treated to a string of four letter words from both my boys (who naturally found these videos totally hilarious.)  With a great deal of difficulty, I resisted the urge to smack the lips off their faces and came up with an ingenious punishment. If either boy utters one of the "you can't say that!" words within hearing of his sibling, he must pay his brother 25 cents. Same goes if Mom or Dad hears those taboo words. They owe us a quarter. Of course, to be fair, I made the punishment valid for John and I too. If we slip and the boys hear us, we pay them a quarter.  I gave them each a Post-It and taught them to keep track of the quarters owed with hash marks.

Since both boys are very protective of their respective piggy banks, this worked really well for a day or two. Then my clever little devils figured out how to turn the punishment into a money making scheme. They started accusing each other of swearing. His brother might not even be in the same room but "Moooom! Max said the A word!" Oh brother. The Post-It hash marks started multiplying. Then things really escalated. They started doing things that made me want to swear. A lot. OK, maybe that last part is more about my frayed nerves and being this close to "that time of the month." Currently, I think Max owes Tyler $1.2 million and I owe both boys around $250K.

Yeah. I think I am in the market for a new method of punishment.

Friday, January 06, 2012

Photography Rules: The Chubby Chick (mainly me)

After seeing a few nightmarish holiday photos this season, I have come up with the following guidelines.

Rules for photographing the fat chick (from a fat chick):

1. When framing the photo, only shoot from the mid-bust and up, if at all possible.
2. Try to stand a little above us. Straight on or from below is much less flattering.
3. Have us sit at an angle and turn our heads a bit to the side. Tilt the head up a tad and bring the chin forward. All will minimize double-chins and create a more flattering line.
4. If there are young children available, arrange them in front or have them sit in her lap. The object is to mask and hide the mid-section.
5.  In a group photo, have her stand in the back row. If she is short, have her be the one to hold up a sign, stand behind a sign or at least turn slightly to the side and extend one leg forward.
6. If you know photoshop and have fat women you love or care about, for heaven's sake, airbrush out our double chin! If you can fudge our waistline a tad, remove any tell-tale creases where our clothes might be fitting a bit too snugly, or in any other way shave off a few pounds - then DO IT! Trust me. We won't mind.
7. Don't take a photo of me from the back. I don't need to see my butt. This is just a personal request.
8. I don't like being in a photo alone. If you must have a photo of me...have everyone around squeeze in too!
9. Smile!

There you have it. Nothing too difficult. I could add something about barreling in certain lenses and using a telephoto...but I'll just keep it simple. *grin*