Monday, September 25, 2006

Strong Museum

We had a very family filled weekend. On Saturday we took the kids to a family birthday party. As I have mentioned before, my children regard their cousins as friends. And when you are going to a party and a ton of your friends are going to be there, it's something to look forward to. Needless to say, twelve o'clock on Saturday could not come soon enough for these two!

On Sunday we took the kids to Strong Museum, for those of you not from Rochester, it is an amazing place. Most recently they doubled their space to 282,000 square feet, with a $37 million dollar expansion. It is the first and only major museum in the world devoted to the study and interpretation of play.
We covered about two thirds of it in about three hours. That was just walking through playing with some things looking at others, the kids did some crafts, but for every one they did there was ten more that they didn't want to slow down to try.
It encourages reading and adventure, the respect and study of nature, and best of all there is nothing they can't touch, or play with.
That is what makes it great. I can't wait until Little Man and Goo come back to New York, they will love it.
I needed this weekend, due to the events of the past week, I just needed to have a good time. Last week our house was a little more empty, and Sundae is no longer a tortured soul. So to act silly and have a good time with Little P, Boots and Mr. Fantastic was perfect!

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Button, Button, Who's Got The Button

I have been been given 20 of these super sweet metal pumpkins! Oh the possibilities for fall decorating!!!!! I have something involving lights in mind. I will be decorating this week, so look for pics then!!!!
Walking again down nostalgia lane, I watched Boots playing in my huge stock of buttons the other day. Something I remember vividly doing in my mothers sewing room. He was sitting at my desk, in front of a window with light flooding in, the buttons shining like diamonds as his little hands swirled around in them. I must have watched quietly for at least 30 minutes as his little profile was just lit up.
It is totally moments like that, that remind me to slow down and really look. He took such simple pleasure in this huge mess of buttons. Later on in the day I found out that he loved the way they were cool in his hands, and he loved the colors, and that when he ran his hands through them they landed differently every time. This is something that I could never find on a toy store shelf, seeing him enjoy something so simple in such a huge way. I wonder if this is what my mom felt like seeing me at that age, with my hands up to the elbows in her bin full of buttons. I hope so, because it's a wonder way to feel.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Poncho, finished at last.

I'm back, I took a little time off to deal with some stuff. But now I'm ready to post like a mad woman.

As promised, here is the finished poncho....
And I have to say I could never loose the child in this, and it is lined in the pink fleece, so it is super warm.
The floor looked like a psychedelic chicken blew up all over the place!
I have been on a little craft kick, it's like my hands need to do something productive long after my body has decided it needs to sit on my couch and watch The Office.

So this is what I am working on at the moment.
When they are finished, almost all of them will be sewn into a little Halloween garland thing for the windows in the kitchen. The others that are not going on the garland will be special birthday tags for my favorite little Halloween baby!

Little P, prompted by some books her grandparents brought her, has decided to ask for an American Girl Doll for her birthday. And so it begins. I will have to make a lot of clothing for these dolls. Thank goodness for companies like this.

And last but not least, Mr. Fantastic and I have been gleefully gorging ourselves on as much Ghost Hunters as we can handle.
These guys are too freakin' funny. They are different because they spend their time trying to debunk the claims. They are plumbers by day and paranormal investigators by night. Love it!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Time for a Change

Little P has out grown her book case. We happen to have a large book case, that has been moved around our house several times and finally landed in the dining room. It was suppose to be temporary, just to hold extra juice, soda, dishes. That was three years ago. It was time for something more permanent. So with Little P's need in mind, I revamped the book case for her, adding the necessary flowers and a new coat of paint.
Then I was left with this large hole in my dining room and no extra place to put stuff. We always have some furniture lying around, in the garage, or in the basement with my intention of refinishing. In this case, It worked out great that I have been such a furniture pack rat!

So it started out like this....
I forgot to take a picture of it with all of the drawers in, and before we flipped it and taped off the top! But here are the drawers. Check out those pulls, Oh you know you want them. Who doesn't want pineapples with wings???
Anywho, here they are minus new pulls. I can't decide which one's I want, the story of my life!
And here is the dresser repainted and curing. Yes, I know to let it cure for at least 24 hours before sealing it and then another 24 hours before putting it into use, or in other words filling it up with crap.
I will take a final picture when it is in place all decorated for fall.

A good friend of ours mom had some bad news a while back that resulted in an operation, chemo, and a incredibly strong will. We just got the word that she is all clear. I know and love her whole family. You have never met nicer people. She fought, and fought and fought and WON. Today, when it is so common to hear the words cancer and loss in the same sentence, I cheer for her, and I don't mean politely clap and tell her good job. I mean jump up and down screaming for her until I have no voice left and my hand are raw from slamming them together kind of cheering. Momma Pooh, you have been so good to me, you will never understand what that has meant. If there was anyone that ever deserved a second chance, I would say with out a hesitation, it's you.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Cranky Boots

Boots has been ultra cranky lately. And if you know him at all, this is very unlike him. He is super laid back and easy going. So when he got sick the beginning of the week, his attitude really didn't change. He went through some crazy fever dreams (toys floating around all by them selves, and he still insists that he was not sleeping). And has continued to battle through the same cold everyone else has had. This morning after him being super cranky for the past few days I decided it was time for a trip to the doctors.

He got a new big boy booster seat yesterday so getting him in the car was easy as pie, considering he LOVES it! As soon as we got into see the doctor and the temp was taken I knew the news was an infection of some type. He was happy and running around and showing the doctor the little plastic animals he brought with him, when she announced with a smile that he had a 103 temp and should be acting much worse.

But that's my Boots,usually happy, happy, happy, even when sick, sick, sick. So with prescription in hand we made our way to the pharmacy, which just happens to be part of a rather large retail store, and I am a huge softy so when he asked for this so politely, I totally caved....
Oh don't act like you wouldn't too!!!!! Besides, he kind of got screwed twice, first he gets a sinus infection and then his older sister gets to go to a party and he has to sit his sick little butt home with his folks.

On a side note, we were walking around the Halloween section of the store when I hear a loud, "Awe....Sweeeet! Look Mommas, a bloody arm!" I can guarantee that this is the only time I have ever said, Oh honey, you already have a severed arm at home, wouldn't you rather have a skull?

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

The Cure for the common cold

So today both of the men in my life were under the weather and at home. Mr. Fantastic went to work for a while, and came home after putting up the good fight. Boots, who had fever dreams last night about his stuffed animals moving around his room all by themselves, was well into his second day of fighting off this nasty cold when dad came home to join the sick and weary club.
When Mr. Fantastic was sick when he was little, he would lay on the couch and watch Star Wars, the originals, not the crappy doctored up rereleased versions. So today as luck would have it, the Lucas Empire, saw fit to rerelease the original unaltered trilogy, so Mr. Fantastic was in his under the weather glory as he filled his afternoon with this...
Boots was perking up a little this afternoon so we made a quick trip to the store for more medication, gatorade and found these....
How fun is this shirt? He loved it because it looks "Cweepy", and it glows in the dark, does it get any better? Oh wait,... it does, that is a tiny glow in the dark skeleton with ooz in a clear coffin, and a squishy spider. We LOVE halloween here!

Little P got off the school bus this afternoon all slouchy, with her little cheeks all red. With her a definite sign that she is not feeling well. I walked with her inside and told her to snuggle up with softy on the couch and I would get her a snack. She said she wasn't hungry and just wanted to go in her room. Little P is ALWAYS hungry, especially after a long day at school. I ran for the thermometer, and the Motrin. After a little medicine and some juice she seemed more like herself and by dinner time, she was hungry, so things are looking up for her.

Miraculously, I managed to avoid the majority of this germ fest. I am going to stand behind my completely unscientific theory that coffee is the cure for the common cold!
By the way, someone out there that I just adore will soon be receiving a special surprise and here is a hint......

Monday, September 11, 2006

A Moment of Silence

Boots has a cold. This is a tad unusual because he is hardly ever sick. And this boy follows the old saying of "Feed a cold", he is never more hungry than when he is sick, and it seems to work because he gets over colds pretty quickly.

So this morning when he was sitting quietly in front of the coffee table with his little Star Wars men sitting in a long line before him with his eyes closed, I thought nothing of it. I walked past him picking up a few things and said, What ch'a doing buddy? He looked at me and put a finger to his little lips and very quietly shushed me, he put his head back down and closed his eyes again.

At this point I am very curious, but I do as I am told and wait quietly until he picked his head up again, a moment later, and again I asked, "Boots, what are you doing?". He turned to me a smiled and said, I was having a moment of silence." Shocked, I asked him if he knew what that was, he quickly answered yes, it's to member' people momma. Again, I was shocked, and said what made you think of that? He said the tv in our room had a moment of silence. I nodded my head and let him go about his buiness and I quickly made my way to our room, trying to figure out what he meant. As I walked in I heard peoples names being read, and realized a little too late what today was, the fifth anniversary of 9-11. I had absentmindedly left the tv on as I watched the weather this morning and it had gone on to the live coverage of the anniversary in New York. So the light came on, now I knew where he had heard it. But it still amazed me that he stopped to listen and understood what he was seeing.

He knows nothing of the destruction of this day, he is only three. He didn't watch for days the coverage and feel the safety draining from our lives. The events of that day were catastrophic for all americans, but there was something slightly deeper for those of us who are New Yorkers.

We were careful not have Little P see the news then, she was almost three then. But as fate would have it, she walked in to the living room and one of us was not quick enough with the remote, just in time to catch the first plane into the first tower. We were a mere three months away from her first plane ride, and we had spent a long time talking about planes and how they work and that they were so safe. We had many more talks after that, about safety and planes. I think it was harder for us to believe that than her.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

School Days

Fall is one of those times of the year when you can't help but think of bright yellow school buses and new backpacks, packed so full of back to school necessities that the zippers barley close. All of the new school clothes, and I will say that it is the only time you seen a zillion pairs of bright white sneakers. This is only valid on the morning of the first day of school, by the time they get home, the are scuffed from a glorious day of reunion play with your friends.
Little P started second grade today. She woke up at the crack of dawn and was dressed and completely ready to have breakfast at 7:01!!! She was so excited to see her friends and see her teacher, and most of all be the big shots in her school. They only go to second grade, and then it's a whole new school for third, fourth and fifth, and then on to another school for the final years. I love how much she loves school. It does my heart good to know that she is a little disappointed when it's a snow day, yes, she loves school that much.
I love this time of year. I love fall clothes, I love the change in the leaves, I love fall colors, they are warm and soft, with a bit of elegance to them. Fall for me, feels like home. The smell of baked apples and warm maple syrup, screams fall. Mix that with coffee and I am back in my mom's kitchen on a Saturday morning.

I have the worst memory of anyone I know, but the few memories I have from growing up, or even of my home town that still are easily recalled are memories that take place this time of year. I will never forget coming home for a friends wedding in the fall of my freshman year of college, and walking out on to our back deck and seeing my mother standing in a football field sized garden, surrounded on three sides by the changing leaves from the vast forest that surrounded out hill top home. In front of her was a red wheel barrow overflowing with deep orange pumpkins. The sun was setting behind her and the breeze playfully blew her auburn hair around her face, she then tucked it firmly behind her ear, a gesture I'd see her do a million times before. She looked up and saw me, immediately her lovely face took on this familiar smile. And she yelled Hey Kiddo!!! Wanna carve pumpkins?

The minute the leaves start to turn, when it cools down at night, and there is a crispness to the air, this is what I see, this is what my thoughts wander to. That weekend I stood next to one of my best friends and watched her marry her high school sweetheart, it was beautiful, that I remember, but the rest of the details of the day escape me.

But that Friday, looking out into the garden at my mom framed in the light from the sunset, that... I will never forget.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Boots Rocks the Hawk

Today Little P and I decided that Boots needed a haircut, and since I am not actually good at the "cut" part, Boots kinda got a buzz, but it was no ordinary buzz, no, no, no,. It was a little Boots hawk.
He loves it !!!!!!
Little P starts 2nd grade tomorrow so I will have to tell you how that goes after she gets home!

Monday, September 04, 2006

New Projects and Warm Muffins

So, it's cold here in NY, in fact, it's frigid in the mornings. And with Little P starting second grade on Thursday, I felt a poncho was in order. I had envisioned some thing fleecy and warm and soft. Apparently Little P had the same visions, hers were just a little brighter than mine.
Check it...
Don't tell me you won't see her coming a mile away!!! I don't really have a set pattern, but my hope is to make two poncho coat things, two hats and two scarfs. She will be all set for a while, not to mention too stinkin' cute for words!

There was some rather strange toy phenomenon going on in our house today. The wire holder that goes in the fridge to hold soda was turned into a torture chamber for rather innocent Star Wars men,
Well almost innocent...
And then there was the battle of the Doggie Daycare camps.... with some unwanted visitors...

That is one pissed off little Jawa....
And finally it has been so cold here that I have been on a muffin kick. This usually doesn't happen until late September, early October, but when the weather cooperates, I bake. Not knowing when it will be 100 again, really makes you seize the day.
This new recipe worked out so well I am making it again tomorrow. It's a Bananna Chocolate Chip Oatmeal muffin. The kids have LOVED these, and it will be our little secret that they are made with applesauce, and wheatflour, in this case, what they don't know will most certainly NOT kill them. And sometimes as a momma you shoot your self in the foot with telling them how healthy it is before they eat it. So it's a treat right.... (wink, wink, wink)

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Dashboard Warnings and Bad Shoes

So this week hasn't exactly been stellar. You know sometimes when you are kind of at your limit for things going wrong, and THEN your service engine soon light comes on in your car. And all you can say is " Of freakin' course!!!!!!!!!

I don't know if I mentioned that my baby brother is getting married next weekend. He is adorable and I will do anything for him, so when they asked me to be a part of the wedding of course, I said yes. There have since been minor crisis after minor crisis as with all weddings. The dress had to be ordered forever ago, when I finally got it from a bridal shop out of town it was HUGE, blah, blah, blah. Thank goodness for a really good seamstress at a bridal shop here in town!

So here we are down to the final stretch and I go to pick up the dye-able shoes, now normally, this is not my thing. But it is all part of the being a bridesmaid package. So I order them over three weeks ago. I received the call that they were in. So I pack up the kids and among running other errands, dropped in to pick them up. I open the box and find a nasty mint green shoe glaring back at me. I very calmly asked to see their color book, so make sure that I had indeed picked the appropriate color and not this offensive 90 year old florida footwear. And I had picked the exact color I was suppose to, so then I tried to stay calm as the girl tells me that there is nothing they can do, it's a mistake, but now there is no time to fix it and perhaps I should have ordered them earlier.... That was it, I lost it...

I looked at the sales clerk whom by the way appeared to be 10, and isn't that illegal in NY. Child labor laws or something??????!!!!!! I fought off the urge to say "And where is your mommy little girl?" and instead asked for the manager who read me the same bull for at least 20 minutes while Little P and Boots where loosing their patience for waiting. I gritted my teeth, and in a low voice said " I have stood here for at least 20 minutes listening to you tell me what I did wrong, so now let me tell you, what you did wrong." I bought YOUR shoe, I picked YOUR color specified in YOUR book, I agreed to and waited for YOUR three week time frame, YOUR company was happy to take my money and now YOUR company will find a way to fix this today, right now in fact. So I will stand right here, while you get YOUR boss on the phone and I would appreciate if you would loose the condescending tone and admit YOUR mistake. I walked out with a promise that the shoes that took no less than three weeks before would be back in two days, and if they didn't get it right that time, they would pay to have them dyed at another store. I picked them up after the two days and guess what??? I guess you can dye a shoe in two days.... who knew?
And just when I saw a little light at the end of a very hectic tunnel..... I got back in my car after picking up the shoes and looked down at that lovely little service engine soon light that had just made a new home on my dashboard. Some times you just can catch a break.

Friday, September 01, 2006

I'm here to fight for truth, and justice, and the American way.

Boots has a new obsession. He is a HUGE Superman fan. I suppose it is every little boys dream to defend droves of people, leap tall buildings in a single bound, be able to deflect bullets with nothing more than his skin. Well every little boy I know anyhow.

With the recent re-imagining of Superman, it's fairly easy to see why Boots would be enamored with this all american icon. Every store that you go into the shelves are overflowing with merchandise, partly because they pimped the hell out of that movie, and partly because superheros in general are on the slow steady rise, and have been ever since they made the first X-Men movie. Really pushed into the main stream anyhow. So, now with it's new found accessibility, admirers of the defenders of the innocent can be outfitted, educated by and entertained by all of their favorite superheros, with greater ease than ever before.

While away on business, our friend Jill found this shirt for Boots.
It's a limited edition and the coolest part of the whole shirt is this... it's on the inside on the back...
A little closer:
Most recently Boots has received a surprise gift from his grandparents in CA, containing this shirt,
And this Superman, complete with crystal thingy (I admit I am not well schooled in the ways of Superman, so back off, I can say thingy if I want to!)
He all so has a major obsession with Spiderman, and with his favorite character being Venom, I feel that we have done justice to the geek world, by correctly schooling the boy. His likes and dislikes come from old school cartoons and graphic novels. He could point out that black suit and nasty lizard like tongue before he could talk.
Before I married Mr. Fantastic, I had never set foot in a comic book store, I had no idea who The Punisher was (whom incidentally, despite the weak ass movie, is my favorite it so far. Being broken myself I get that.) I am not a literary snob, I will read anything, as long as it captures my attention. But chances are, if I had not met him I would never have seen or read this....which was incredible.
I do have the feeling that it has only just begun, and that I have a lot to learn.... so truth, justice and the American way here I come.....