Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Rubbin' corner

When Roman was born more than 3 years ago, a friend from my ward sewed him a baby blanket. It is yellow on one side and white with pastel alphabet letters on the other. Or, it used to be. Roman has loved it and carried it around with him every day of his life. He uses it at night to snuggle and he rubs one corner against his nose while he sucks his thumb. After 3 years, it's hella nasty, and looks disgusting even straight out of the wash, but oh how he loves it. This is his favorite corner of the blanket. What caused him to actually pick a favorite corner, I do not know, but now it's obvious which one it is. He actually rubbed it so much that it wore right through. Now we just call his little snuggle routine "rubbin' corner"- as in, "Hey Roman, do you want to go to bed and rub some corner?" or if you see him snuggling his blanket and ask him what he's doing he'll say, "Rubbin' corner."
It's cute that he has a lovey.

I think I'm an antique

Mom, right now we're studying Greek mythology, and then we're gonna study
Medieval times, and then we're gonna study, like, a little bit before you were

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Free ice cream and toilet spray

The high and low of my day. Free Ben and Jerry's ice cream! Yay! I took the kids after school and we all sat outside in the beautiful weather and ate our treats. I had cheesecake brownie, which was not as good as I had hoped, but hey, cheesecake and brownies even in a not-as-good-as-I-had-hoped-kind-of-way is still pretty darn good.
There were a ton of people there and some 20-ish looking girls came and stood on the stairs out front where little Dario had been sliding down the rail as the rest of us finished our ice cream. They started up a conversation and it must have interested him because he got off the rail and actually stood right there in their little circle and stared at them as they talked, until I finally pulled him away.

After getting ice cream we headed over to the library to check out some books and movies. While we were there Roman had to go to the bathroom. (Hallelujah he's finally potty-trained!) So we went into the restroom and squeezed into one of their tiny stalls, since the larger handicapped one was being used. He did his thing and then needed help to pull up his underwear, so I squatted down to help him and the darn automatic toilet went off just as I bent down. I hate those things. They're always going off at the wrong time and sucking the toilet seat cover down, or giving me the bidet-effect, or, today, spraying me in the face! I've kindly drawn you an artistic re-creation of the horrid event:And yes, his real-life butt cheeks really are that cute.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Dario Jr.'s 6th birthday party

Dario Jr.'s birthday was on the 15th, but he chose not to have a big birthday party. He said he's rather just take a couple of his closest friends and go to Texas Jumping Beans, which is a place they have all sorts of inflatable jumpy things like this:
After putting this little get-together off for 2 weeks, one because of scheduling conflicts and the other because Dario came down with strep throat, we finally got to go. Dario and his friends had a great time jumping and chasing each other around. And we got really lucky that day because the owner's wife came in and did free face painting.
Dario wanted to be a skeleton. Gabby chose something more pretty.
The kids actually jumped for about 3 1/2 hours! Then we left to get pizza. I thought I'd pick up pizza at Little Caesar's since they are supposed to have them "hot and ready". That didn't work out quite as planned however. There were a bunch of morons working there and they had an entire warmer FULL of pizza, but handed out none until they had at least 10 orders backed up, because they took too many orders and got mixed up. Then when they finally came down the line and I was next, they skipped me and served the next 4 people before I demanded to see the manager. So we got our pizza in after about 45 minutes. The kids were starving and hot. But all was well once we got home. The boys ate and played around a little.Then we had Dario blow out 6 candles on 6 separate cupcakes. No trick candles this time.
After all that, Dario opened gifts and the boys all took turns playing with the new toys. It went great and Dario and the other kids had a wonderful day.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

My kids? Competitive? Nah!

Tonight we were playing a card game with the kids. After a few rounds little Dario and Roman got tired of playing and decided to just watch Dario, Gabby, and me play the remainder of the game. The game was dragging on for a long while with no end in sight and I was trying to do things to make it easier for more cards to get played, but Dario would do no such thing. So since he was going to play for the win no matter what, Gabby and I decided to gang up and help each other just so he wouldn't win. In the meantime, little Dario decided that he was on his dad's team. He cheered and taunted and made an evil little laugh every time Dario made a good play. Well, Gabby and I managed to turn things our way, and as I was laying down the winning card, little Dario popped up off of his dad's lap and shouted, "I'm on Mommy's team!"


Roman loves to do puzzles, so I spend a lot of time in his room these days assembling jungle animal scenes and the like. It can get kind of repetitive at times, so the other day I tried to spice things up a little. And for those of you who know me or read my blog on any sort of a regular basis, you'll know that I love to tease my kids. So we were putting together a puzzle and when it got down to the last piece I grabbed it and put it in place really fast and shouted, "I win!" Roman really got into it after that and it became a contest as to who could get the last piece. But after a few rounds of that things began to get out of hand. Roman started to get really ticked off when I'd grab the last piece, and he'd start screaming. So I explained to him that puzzles aren't really for winning or losing and that it was just fun to do them together. He agreed and we started another puzzle. When it got down to the last piece I had it in my hand and, trying to make sure I had gotten my point across, I said, "Am I going to win when I put this piece in?" I was glad to see that he understood when he shook his head and replied, "No. Puzzles aren't for winning mommy. They're just for fun." After that answer I knew that he had understood so as a gesture of good will I handed him the last piece and said, "Here Roman. You want to put it in?" "Sure," he nodded. Then he took the piece and, frantically shoving it in place, screamed, "I WIN!"

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Happy Birthday Mank!

Yesterday was little Dario's 6th birthday. We kept it pretty low-key, and it was just a nice relaxing day. I had set out Dario's gift on the kitchen table so he would see it when he got home, but when he arrived from school he stopped by the door and asked me if we had gotten him a present. Since he hadn't seen it yet I thought I'd mess with him a little.

I said, "No, that's just for friends to do at parties."

"No. Did you get me a present?" he asked.

"No, I told you. That's just just for friends to do at parties."

"You really didn't? Why?"

"Well, I just didn't really feel like it. Maybe next time."


That was fun, and I could have gone on with it for a while, but then Gabby came in and asked him if he had opened his gift yet. (She had already gone into the kitchen.) Darn it!

We let Dario open his gift, which was a couple of remote control bumper cars that you try to ram them into buttons they each have on the sides of the cars and when you hit a button the driver screams and is ejected from the car. He liked it, but unfortunately so did Roman, who has spent a lot of time screaming that he wants it and that it's his turn.

After he opened his gift and played for a while, we all went to the movies and watched "The Spiderwick Chronicles", which was good, but I had no idea there would be so many scary goblins and ogres trying to do bodily harm to nice people. I expected at least one, if not two, little boys creeping into my room last night, and I was right. Roman did come in.

When we got home the kids played bumper cars some more and jumped on the trampoline, and then we lit the candles on Dario's cake and sang "Happy Birthday". (If you're wondering if I skipped writing about dinner because that's boring, no need to wonder. Dinner was popcorn and candy at the theater. I'm such a good mom.) We used trick candles on the cake, and Dario told little Dario that if he could blow out all his candles on the first try we'd give him $20. He was excited about that prospect, and both Dario and I were very worried we'd actually have to pay out when we lit the candles and there were no tell-tale sparks coming from them. But it seems that trick candles have come a long way since I was a kid, and they no longer pop and sizzle when you light them. He blew them all out multiple times and they just lit right back up. It was quite entertaining. Little Dario had never seen them before so he had absolutely no idea what was going on. It was pretty funny and I got it all on video. And maybe someday I'll actually get it added onto this post, but for now I've given up trying. (I actually wrote this post last night and fell asleep while Dario was trying to figure out how to get the video edited.)
I asked Dario what the best part about being six was, and he said, "I'm almost 8 so I can be baptized, and I get to be the same age as some of my friends." Sounds pretty good to me. Happy Birthday Monkey Mank!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

He put his finger where?!?

When I was out running yesterday I saw a smashed armadillo on the road, and first I thought "Yuck, that looks sick", but then I was wondering what armadillo actually tastes like. I mean, it's GOT to be good, because the measures my father-in-law went to to actually catch one of those babies for a meal when he lived in Argentina are great. Let me explain.

According to my father-in-law, armadillos are a delicacy. When he was growing up in Argentina they were always on the lookout for armadillos. Mostly they'd see them while driving along a road somewhere. When they spotted one they'd immediately pull the car over and hop out and give chase. Armadillos are fast runners, and they're really fast diggers. In the event that they were able to outrun or corner an armadillo, it would immediately start digging. So it had to be stopped somehow.

And this is the part that I'm speaking of when I say he went to great measures.

In order to stop the armadillo from digging, he had to put his finger....

um, how do I say this....

...where the sun don't shine. You know, the back door. IN his behind. Yes. That's right.

But if you stop to think about it, this really does make sense. I mean, if someone did that to you, you'd stop digging, wouldn't you?

So then they had it, and they'd take it home and put it in a cage, with a bottom of course so it couldn't dig out, and take it out when they were ready to eat him. And then if they were really feeling industrious, they'd make a guitar out of its shell. So they got a great meal AND a musical instrument. Pretty nifty, but let me tell you, that meat would have to be awfully tasty to get me to go to those lengths to get some.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Throwing things is therapeutic

This is our shoe basket. It has been placed under a table right by the front door so when we come into the house we can just throw our shoes in and have them out of the way. I bought this basket because apparently the shoe rack that I had there before was too much effort. You know, having to actually set the shoes down on it and all. This basket only required tossing, which I thought was a fair compromise between me wanting things neat and the rest of my family wanting to be lazy, uh, I mean, wanting ease of use. But do you see those shoes that are not in the basket? (And believe me folks, it's usually much worse than this. There are normally about 3 pairs of my husband's shoes lying somewhere in the vicinity of the basket, much like his clothes that are thrown in the vicinity of the hamper. But I digress...) And this was making me very mad. UNTIL, I found a solution to relieve my anger. And it actually works. All I do is pick up those shoes and chuck them into the garage, preferably slinging the matching pairs into opposite corners. No more nagging, and you wouldn't believe how nice it feels to throw things. Not quite as satisfying as dishes would be, but then, I'd have to clean that mess up, so this really is even better. My family now knows where to look if they can't find their shoes in the basket, and I don't have to hear a word about it, because they know why. So far it hasn't helped shoes make it into their proper place more often, but that's okay, because whenever I'm irked about something, I just go look for some therapy in the vicinity of the basket.

No longer a bumbling toothfairy trainee

After approximately 5 years of training (my best guess as to when Gabby started losing teeth), I think I'm finally starting to get this down. Dario Jr. lost yet another tooth. I begged him to try to keep it in just long enough for family pictures, (4! missing teeth, looks like someone punched him in the mouth!), but he gave me some bunk 5 year old excuse about his gums giving out and yada yada yada. Whatever. Always thinking of himself. Hurumph!

Anyway, as I was saying. Thanks to the intensive 4 teeth in a row training I've gotten as of late, I'm starting to work out a system. We're now leaving the tooth smack dab in the middle of the kitchen island where I won't forget, and we're also putting it in water that has food coloring in it so I won't drink it.

When Dario woke up there were 4 shiny quarters at the bottom of the glass, and all was well in the world. Hoo-RAY for me.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Why yes, I do enjoy being frustrated.

Got some spare time and like to get angry? Click here.

Does Jesus pay HOA dues?

Roman is getting really good at recognizing places around town, and can even tell me where to turn to get home sometimes. The other day we were driving down a road and passed the entrance to our subdivison, and Roman pointed and said, "Our house is over there, Mom."
"Yep, that's our neighborhood, son," I said. Then he pointed up to the sky and said, "And that's Jesus' neighborhood."

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Determined to be miserable

A conversation from tonight in the van after dropping off Gabby for Activity Days
Dario: *pitiful sigh* "Mom, when will I be old enough
to go to Activity Days?"
Me: "Activity Days is for girls, Dario. But when you're 8 years
old you can go to boy scouts."
Dario: "No. I don't want to go to boy scouts. I'm not going to
Me: "Yes you will. They do activities just like the girls only
it's with all boys."
Dario: "Well I don't like it and I'm not going."
Me: "Yep, you will go, and I'm sure you'll like it."
Dario: "NO! I don't want to go!" *starts to cry* "Why should I?
What's in it for me?"
Me: "Fun. That's what's in it for you."
Dario: "I HATE fun!"


We had a really nice Easter this year. We did all the fun stuff , like dying eggs and having an egg hunt and seeing the Easter bunny, but we tried to focus on the true meaning of the holiday as well, and talked a lot about Christ's resurrection and what that meant for us. It was a nice balance and made for a wonderful day.
This picture is from the neighborhood egg hunt. I asked my husband to get pictures of all the kids with the Easter bunny. This is what I got. Geesh. Husbands.
The hardest part for Roman was having the patience to wait for the egg to be colored.
Little Dario was SO proud of his painted egg.
Dario painting an egg. Every year he finds a new way to decorate. I thought I was fancy using some oil in a couple of the cups to get a tie-dye effect, but NO. He's gotta embellish with paint or stickers or crayon or rubberbands or whatever. Outdoes me every time.
THE HUNT on Easter morning
Gabby was all excited that she found the golden egg, because last year we put money in it. Oops, we didn't do that this year and I didn't realize that egg got stuffed and mixed in with the rest. She was a good sport about it though.
Happy kids with lots of loot.

Notice that this tray has two empty spots. We couldn't find the last two eggs, so either some animal ate them or we're going to find a couple of nasty rotten smelly surprises in our yard soon.