Thursday, December 9, 2010

Moving My Blog

I am moving and renaming my Blog!  What a change! 

The new blog name is Rufflebutts and the new link is:

I wanted a new name since so many of my hits are apparently people looking for running advice.  I don't run.  Ever. 

And with four daughters, I thought rufflebutts sounded cute and appropriate for what I generally discuss.  I just loved dressing them in ruffles when they were babies!  Remember the tights with ruffles on the butt?  My favorite!

I will still check here and try to make sure my archived posts don't disappear into cyberspace.  Ok, come on over to Rufflebutts and read my latest parenting adventures!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

I stabbed my tongue. Ow!

Wearing braces is just not as easy as the teenagers make it look.  I've seen so many teens and tween wearing braces and they seem unaffected by it all.  Fakers!

I keep getting food mashed up in my braces and it's very difficult to get out.  Then it feels like my mouth is all stuffed with mush, because it is.  Very icky and uncomfortable.  I have been brushing after eating and getting all of the extra bits of food out of the fence.  But I also try to unwedge the bigger bits with my tongue. 

I was eating rice or something, don't remember now, and I had a big hunk of it stuck on my upper molar.  I just reached over with the tip of my tongue to dislodge my meal and I stabbed my tongue with the sharp hook on the metal bracket!  OUCH!  Really, I stabbed my tongue.  It hurt so much!

There are hooks on the metal ring that hooks the wire onto that last molar tooth way in the back and that's what I jabbed my tongue on.  So, I now have this tremendous puncture wound on the tip of my tongue.

And it freaking hurts!  Why won't it heal up?  I dunno, maybe because I'm always smothering it with food and things (brownies) that are not conducive to healing.    In the meantime, I am suffering from a wounded tongue and my speech has completely gone south.  I need speech therapy. 

I can no longer say anything with an S in it.  My poor little tongue owie and my braces are just too much for trying to say things like "Sally found seashells by the seashore" and "Stop slapping your sister".  My lips have to wrap around all this extra hardware when I speak making me sound goofy and now with a stabbed tongue it's even worse.

I sound funny and my tongue hurts.  I also have a bit of brownie stuck in my braces, but I'm just going to enjoy the chocolate taste all day.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Preschool Christmas Program

December is off to a busy start! Gracie's preschool had their Christmas program on the 1st.  They sure don't waste any time getting right to the holiday!  I told Gracie that it is "Christmas season" now and she said "Already?"

Really, the 4 yr old thinks Christmas came along pretty fast, just imagine what I think.  You probably don't need to imagine, it seems like everyone agrees that Christmas sure happens fast these days.

Anyway, the preschool had their program the other night and it was an experience to remember! We sort of thought it might be since our daughter has more personality than the average bear.  When our older girls were in elementary school, my husband and I loved going to their spring singing concert every year.  The Christmas thing was chaos, but the spring show was great! The kids came out grade by grade and sang.  The best, absolutely the very best part of the show every year was this kid named Chance.

Yeah, we always went to watch someone else's kid.  He was super entertaining!  Our girls were nice singers, walked in line, stood nice and still in their assigned position, did the correct actions to the song... sure, love that.  But that little guy, Chance, he was so exuberant that he was hilarious!  Chance's mother was always the most embarrassed woman in the crowd, but everyone else just loved the boy's antics on stage.  He sang the loudest, waved, danced when everyone else stood still, you know the type.  He was Chance!

Well, as it turns out, our sweet little Gracie is a lot like Chance.  And we were very very afraid.  We said to each other, "I think she's Chance" and "Oh no, the Chance of this school is our kid!".  The Preschool Christmas Program was scheduled for a Wednesday night, the night my husband teaches a college class.  This means I'm going alone.  The lone parent of the new Chance.  I took the video camera and the jealous two year old.

If you have been reading with me for a while, you might remember that Gracie is a ballet school dropout.  She was dancing to her own music, and it was very energetic powerful music that took her out front and the other ballerinas were merely back-up dancers. We didn't even have her go to the recital, practice was bad enough! Although this is a singing concert, whose to say she won't be dancing? One just never knows!

I decided to wear a dress and brush my hair for once. I guess I was thinking that if my kid was going to be the show-hog and everyone was going to stare at me with that "is that your kid?" look, at least I was going to look presentable.  Gracie looked fabulous! She got a really cute haircut, a miniature manicure, and a new red and black holiday dress with bright pink shoes. She was just adorable! Right down to the ankles, below that needed some work.

We left three hours early.  I know, that seems excessive, but you see.... we also had Charlie.  And Lexie.  We dropped Lexie off at work and then drove to Charlie's dad's house and dropped off Charlie for an evening of fun rather than an evening of sitting still and being quiet.  He's a baby. It wasn't gonna happen.

Then we went to Payless to buy some black or red shoes.  Success!  Also ended up getting Libby some shoes.  After shoe shopping, we went to In-n-Out for burgers and fries and lots and lots of napkins.  We took our dinner to the Preschool, and check-in time was only an hour away now.  Then I got the kids out of their carseats and we all sat in the back of the van and had a picnic in our beautiful dresses.  It was fun! My van still smells like french fries, but we had a good time and we were on time for the concert. 

We had time to take Gracie to the potty and I reached in my bag for my travel toothbrush to get all the fast food out of my braces. Ewww.  After a lot of rummaging around in my purse, sifting through diapers, lollipops, nail clippers, spare socks, toys, and coins... I remembered that I tossed my toothbrush in the dishwasher and that's where it is.  Ugh.  I had to pick and swish with water.  Oh well.

It was almost 6pm now and Gracie was supposed to report to her classroom at six.  I took her to her room then Libby and I went to the big room to find our seats.  This place is a contemporary church, so they don't have pews, but chairs.  The chairs are all set in rows, does this matter?  Anyway....

I went straight to the front row. I want a good video for my husband since he has to miss this. There were very few people in the room and one lady was in the front pulling some papers out of her bag and placing them on every chair in the first two and three rows.  I looked and the papers said "Reserved ".  Really?  Before coming tonight to watch your kid, you sat at home and wrote out Reserved chair markers?  Who does that? Who goes and saves 20 - 30 seats?  While she was so rudely placing her signs on the front row chairs, I sat in the third row aisle chair and put Libby next to me.  Took two of her spots! HA!  In hindsight, I should have just taken a front row seat and tossed her reserved signs in the back. Wonder what Chance's mom would have done?  I should call her.

Reserved seating started to fill in. Tallest guy in the audience sat right in the front row.  Nice.  The family right in front of me hit the cookie table pretty hard.  Over and over and over again.  In the 15 minutes that they sat there, they inhaled a dozen cookies at least.  There were crumbs everywhere!  Not sure why they couldn't eat them without scattering crumbs all over themselves, the chairs and the carpet, but they sure made a mess.  And the cookies are for AFTER the show.  Great, now Libby wants a cookie too. 

The show started at 6:30 and by this time, Libby was fidgeting and fussing and wanted to run around and play.  But she didn't want to leave me, she's clingy like that. Luckily, the program started and she was happy! Yay!

The kids were escorted from the back of the big room, up the middle aisle and onto the stage.  People came from the back of the room and filled in along the sides of the audience for a better view of the little runts.

First the two-year olds sang. They were adorable!  They didn't really sing, but they went on the stage and jingled their bells. Only one was crying. 

Some people came up the sides of the room and ducked down and sat on the floor in front.  And by some, I mean lots.  Hmm.  Well, that's different.  Sitting on the floor. 

Next the three-year old class came up.  They were all dressed in green and they stood in the shape of a Christmas tree.  Very cute!  More of them sang then I expected.  None were really trying to be the star of the show.  I was really hoping there would be a few more kids like Chance on the stage.  Just gonna be Gracie. Sigh.

There are two classes of 4 yr olds.  I looked back to watch them come forward and, Whoa! What is this?   A stampede?  What the helk?!!!

Coming up the center aisle is a herd of crawling moms.  All of them dressed nice and wielding cameras.  They were crawling!  CRAWLING!  On hands and knees charging up to the front trying to beat each other in this race to the front for the best spot.  I have never in my life seen an audience behave like this!  I was in such shock that I had two cameras in my hands and didn't take a photo of the stampeding crawling moms.  My jaw dropped to the floor and my eyes took in this incredible sight in shock. They filled up the floor in front of the stage and they all stooped in the aisle clogging it up completely. 

The 4 yr olds couldn't get through.  The teacher escort had to inch her way up to the front saying excuse me a hundred times.  I wanted to will her to kick these crawling freaks out of the way, but she was too polite for that.  That was naughty, I had visions of being mean to the floor huggers while I was sitting in a church! I'm gonna pay for that later.

Finally, a path was cleared and the kids came forward. The crawling paparazzi snapped away and took video of the processional.  Gracie waved.

The other class was first and they did a little nativity play and then sang a song.  Yeah, yeah, cute, lets move on. Libby can't take much more. 

Gracie's class was next.  They lined up on stage for their two songs.  Turns out, my kid wasn't a complete show-hog!  Yay! She stayed in her spot!  Yippeee!  She sang her little heart out and I could hear her above all others, but she sang great and knew all of the words!  She wasn't too overly exuberant with her actions.  A bit, but the stage is for drama isn't it?  She was just GREAT!  I was a wee bit disappointed that she wasn't more of a ham, guess I had myself all psyched up for it.

Libby was totally done now.  Terrible two took over.  She cried during the entire performance of Gracie's class, she kept trying to yank my dress off or up or something.  She was crying for "boo-boo Now!"  Oh, no, not here and certainly not in a dress! I really have to just quit nursing.  She was tired and there's only so much sitting still a two year old can do. After seeing the grown-ups in this crowd act like a bunch of untrained monkeys, I really didn't worry about it and I let her fuss.

I video taped as best I could. I had to hold my arm way up in the air to get a good shot without tall-guy's head in the way.  Gracie sang and sang!  Loved it!  But, it was the Sylvia-Show not the Gracie show.  There was some relief in that.  Sylvia had a microphone in front of her and the rest of the class were her back up singers. Hmmm.  Must be the teacher's kid?  Sylvia sang one song with Gracie and the rest of the kids doing the back up, and then Sylvia lead the rest of the class in song #2.  Gracie did really well and sang as loud as Sylvia did. And Sylvia had a mic! Plus, Gracie stayed in her own spot and didn't dance around the stage like she did in ballet class.  My girl is growing up!

After the grand finale of a rousing chorus of Jingle Bells, the show is over.  YAY!  What an experience!  I sure learned a lot tonight, but I left very proud of my daughter.  She's got a long way to go to be as entertaining as Chance, but she's off to a good start.  In the end, it was the parents who left the biggest impression in my mind.  This audience of crazed moms and dads and whoever else they brought with them was just insane. Scariest thing about them... they are raising the little people who are my daughter's peers. Her social interaction is with children whose parents crawl in public.

Maybe we should homeschool. Nah, my little Chance can hold her own and I'll just have to teach her that her friends are being raised by packs of wolves with cameras. Not far from the truth.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Portobello Mushroom Pizza

Ingredients and their Calories:
Mushroom (100g) 26 calories
Ham 1oz, 30 calories
Motzerella Cheese, 1/3 cup shredded, 90 calories
White Sauce, 2-3 spoonfuls, 30 calories
Pineapple Chunks, just a few, 20 calories
Total: 196 or close to it

Use one large Portobello Mushroom cap and flip it over. Cut off the stem.  The upside down mushroom cap is the pizza crust.  Genius!

Spread white sauce or tomato sauce or pesto, or whatever sauce you choose. It will drip down into the mushroom. Yum yum yum!

Put the toppings on.  I used a couple of bites of ham and a few chunks of pineapple.  I also love to use tomatoes, spinach, bell peppers.

Cover with cheese. Sprinkle some Italian seasoning on top for taste.

Place it on foil and curl the edges of the foil up to catch any mushroom juice. Bake till done. I usually put it in the convection oven for 15 - 20 mins at 425. 

I just love this little pizza. It tastes great and the kids do not want a single bite!  How often can a mama enjoy a meal all by herself? This is one of those rare meals that does not get toddler slobber in it while you are eating. Gotta love that little bonus!

Another bonus: hardly any calories.  Probably burn off all the calories just chewing and swallowing.  This of course means you can have 6 soft peanut butter cookies for desert. Now, those you will have to share with the runts.

Friday, November 26, 2010

I've been Marathon Momming

I'm not gone, and I haven't forgotten my little blog.  But, I've been super busy with my mom duties!  It's just been a marathon of momness for the past couple of months. 

The oldest moved home from South Carolina at the end of September. Then she found a house to rent and moved in with her air mattress, a towel and a saucepan and spoon that she "borrowed" from my kitchen.  After a week in her empty lonely house, she flew to Connecticut to spend a couple of weeks with her husband.  He will be stationed out here beginning in December.  Katie will be back in San Diego next week. Yay!  We're going to pick her up at the airport and then "camp out" in her empty house.

Lexie and Charlie have been home more frequently, in fact, they stayed here all week this week. So nice to have them around more!  But, three little kids is sure a lot of work!  They exhaust me and I love it.  I'm so glad I get to babysit my grandson while my daughter works.  Since she's been working till midnight more often, she just spends the night instead of waking Charlie just to take him home.  Plus, since she doesn't have a car I would have to wake up the girls for the ride too.

Gracie and Libby are having so much fun!  Libby just had her birthday and then it was Halloween and then Thanksgiving, yikes, it's almost Christmas now!  It's really going that fast.  I've been taking them on lots of outings since it is cool out and has been kind of rainy, if I don't get them out they feel too cooped up. Besides, outings are fun.  We tried to get in as many outings as we could on nice days, just in case we didn't get another nice sunny day for a while. My mid-western mentality kicks in every fall.  Must hurry and get out before we are stuck at home all winter! I still forget that life in Southern California is different and I'm never really stuck at home.

My husband has the whole week of Thanksgiving off from work.  As soon as he was home from work on Friday, he packed up and headed out.  Off he went for a hunting trip to South Dakota.  He should be back Sunday evening.  Of course, he won't have any time to catch up on sleep before he goes back to work on Monday.  I imagine next week if we see him, he'll be snoring. 

If all of those excuses for not blogging more aren't enough, there's this:  I'm working on changing my blog.  It will include a name change and new pages.  Hopefully it will be more manageable for me and you all won't lose me when I shift it all over to the new one.  Exciting changes for my Momathon Blog!  I want to work on it a bit more before the unveiling. Stay tuned.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Yellow Dress

Yellow dresses are totally IN right now for a certain 2 year old who lives in this house.  It does not matter that it is November and there isn't a yellow dress to be found in any retail store or online.  She wants yellow. 

Luckily, she has two yellow dresses. We are rotating them with one on and one in the wash.  I don't dare get behind in the washing of the yellow dresses. 

I've been shopping and shopping for another yellow dress, and I told anyone who asked that she wants a yellow dress for her birthday (which was in September).  So far, nada.  It's a spring color and we are still a long way from spring.  By then, she'll probably want a brown dress.

I did find some yellow fabric at Walmart recently. It  is pretty cute - all yellow with bumblebees printed on it. I'm going to whip up a little dress for her and add one more dress to her wardrobe.

When a two year old wants to wear yellow in November, the social rules of fashion do not apply. Mom and her sewing machine to the rescue!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

All Fenced in

I got the wires on my braces.  My teeth are all fenced in now!  And I can't say I am enjoying it much.  It doesn't hurt, it's just uncomfortable. Getting the wires on was quite an ordeal!

I got the brackets glued on two weeks prior to getting the wires.   Felt like I had a mouthful of cactus, but I guess my cheeks got used to the abrasive feel of the brackets.  They also stuck little rubber "spacers" between my molars at that time.  I really didn't like the feel of constantly having something stuck between my teeth, but it is what it is.

This trip to the dentist, oh, I suppose I should call him the Orthodontist, but whatever... anyway, this trip I was to get the spacers out and wires put on. Sounded easy enough. I am slowly realizing that nothing is ever easy at the dentist office.  The dental assistant, real job title unknown to me so I made that one up for her, yanked out my rubber spacers.  Oh joy.  She used this fishhook on a stick as her spacer removal tool. My teeth are very tight together and the spacers didn't ever get any wiggle room, so pulling them out was no easy task.  She pulled with all her might and her fishhook on a stick slipped sending the sharp instrument up into the roof of my mouth.  I was stabbed!! Stabbed at the dentist office!   It freaking hurt like crazy!  I flinched and winced and hopped right up out of the chair and said "Oh My God!  I'm bleeding and everything!"  She looked at me like I was over reacting and then told me the spacers didn't move my teeth very much.  Yeah, I understand that.

After she got the rest of the spacers out, without stabbing me, she put metal rings on my back molars.  Wow, that was not pleasant at all!  I'm not sure what she had to do to get them on, but it felt horrible! She used some sort of pinching tool and she pinched the inside of my cheek in her tool.  Seriously?  Is this her first day?  I'm being abused here!  Plus the rings were painful and felt just awful. She told me I would get used to it.  I was ready to just call it quits right then and there, so she did some more adjusting and it felt a lot better. 

I asked her how long she'd been doing this.  She said since 1991.  Well, if this is 20 yrs of experience, I'm sure glad I waited and wasn't her first patient. Can you imagine?

The orthodonist came over and gave the nod of approval for her work.  Apparently, he didn't notice the gaping stab wound on the roof of my mouth.  Ok, now I am ready for wires.  At this point, I decide to just be a pest and request unscented gloves for the rest of my work. I was tired of holding back my gag reflex with those disgusting scented gloves right under my nose. I've suffered enough.  They had to go hunting for some unscented gloves but it was worth it.

Clumsy experienced assistant lady is ready to continue her work.  First, she yanks off a ring.  I bolted up, "what are you doing?  He said they were ok!"  She says she has to put the glue on. Are you freaking kidding me?  I said "so you have to do this twice?  Really?  Twice?"  She again gives me this "you are over reacting" look, but dang, I was just mad.  So, we start all over again, this time with uber disgusting glue.  Once the glue set she says she has to chip off the overflow of glue and that it will wear off over time.  Ewww!  Honestly, I no longer know why I'm doing this!

Finally, time for the wires.  She gets them on without too much trouble but I was pretty concerned when she stuck wire cutters in my mouth.  After the wires were anchored down she added little rubber bands to each bracket and tied the teeth to the wire.  She couldn't engage every tooth because they are just too crooked.  I asked her if it will be this uncomfortable for the duration or just a few days.  She says to get used to it, that's just how it will feel until we are done and I get them off in 2 yrs.  I will always feel like my face is being pulled off.  Great.  I'm just gonna cry now.

Then she adds that I will only be able to eat soft food, and I won't be able to bite with my front teeth.  This is normal and I'll get used to it.  I am now screaming inside and fighting the urge to say really bad words out loud.  The orthodontist never did come and check the glue and wire job so I hope it is done correctly.  My teeth ached like crazy for three days and now they are just fine.  I'm biting and chewing with care, but I'm doing it.  It's really not bad.  My fishhook wound is healed now too, and my pinched cheek.  I'm hoping for a different assistant next time.

Just think, in two years my teeth will line up like chicklet soldiers!