Sunday, October 31, 2010

Fall Ball 2010

The 5th Annual Fall Ball has come and gone and was a HUGE success.  The first year we put on the Fall Ball, it was really just an excuse to have friends over.  No costumes were required, as was stated on the invitation, and yet if you CHOSE to wear a costume, I assured the attendees that we were more than willing to point and laugh.  Only the BIL and his wife wore costumes.  Said THAT part of the invite somehow got mangled in the mail.

The second Fall Ball would probably come closest to  this year's success.  It was the first year we did costumes and most of us really went all out.  The guys came as the Village People, the girls as Pussy Cat Dolls.  The pictures my other, uh, computer.  Ahem.

The next two years were OK.  The boys came as delivery type people (Milk man...Male man, spelling purposefully get the picture).  The girls as 80s prom queens.  Last year the party was expanded a little but I wanted people to have to really I themed the party movie characters, specifically 80 movies, but that seemed to be to restrictive so it turned into just movie characters.  
So this year's theme was musical acts.  The husband and I were Sonny and Cher:
Down girls...he's all mine! 
Then we had Prince:
And Twisted Sister's Dee Snider:
About halfway through the evening, I took off my boots, only to have them IMMEDIATELY absconded by Dee:
Then Kurt and Courtney arrived:
Slash and Axel:

Tim and Faith:
Amy Winehouse:
Jake Blues:
Dolly Parton and Brian Wilson:
Kenny Chesney (w/ was a big night for country music):
 We had a lip sync (ok...some lip synced...some sang "I got you babe") contest, in which Prince stole the show.  Best costume went to Twisted Sister (although it was close with Prince).  We also played musical wigs.  And do I have some funny pictures of THAT.  The winner, Christina, won with Prince's wig:
So, we danced, we sang, we par-tayed until around 1 am.  Everyone seemed to be wiped by then.  The cleanup was a vacuum needed to clean up strewn popcorn.  Just a few dishes to wash and we were off to bed.
Where we found THIS parked under our covers at the foot of our bed:

If it looks familiar, you're probably thinking that USPS commercial.  Yes, very similar.  Scary clown...our white elephant party gift from last Christmas party that keeps on giving.  It has become something like the story of the yellow shirt  but as you surely note from the bottom of the clown, we are now counting how often the clown passes hands.  OK is SO on!
Oh was our anniversary (18 years) too.  Could NOT have been better!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Countdown...

WHOOT!  No panic mode here.  Thanks to a fabulous husband who went above and beyond.  That's not to say I did nothing.  But, at no point did I panic. Although, it is 423 and I am still in my jammies. 

I finished my costume yesterday afternoon.  My girls laughed.  They LOVE it.

The soup has been made and is simmering.  Pumpkin bars are frosted.  Texas caviar is marinating and shrimp salsa is made (just need to add some avocados to it).  I'm making a stuffed brie with apples, walnuts, cinnamon and honey.  I have 4 different cheeses and a chianti salami ready to go.  Beer is on ice.  Any wine that needs to be chilled is chilling.  Glasses are all washed.  House is clean.

I actually may go sit in the hot tub and contemplate how awesome this evening is going to be.

Houston...we're a go!

Friday, October 29, 2010

A Week of Prep

It's been a busy week here.  We have our 5th Annual Fall Ball scheduled for Saturday (coincidentally, our 18th wedding anniversary...18 long, drawn out, soul shattering years), Halloween on Sunday (yes, we actually Trick or Treat ON Halloween, however much I may hate trying to peel my kids off the ceiling after their initial "separation of the candy" post ToT).  I keep thinking I have enough time to get everything done I need to get done, but I won't know until tomorrow afternoon if I have in fact "planned my work and worked my plan".  If I am in full panic mode, then I failed miserably. 

So far, I have got about half my costume made.  Yes, made.  No looking closely at the seams.  I am hoping to have the rest of it completed today.  No, you don't get to know what that is until I post pictures on Sunday (maybe Monday).  I will give you a clue though:  the theme this year is musical acts.  ANY musical act.  So, the sky's the limit.  Door prizes will be awarded.

I kept saying all last week I'd get back out to the Apple Farm to pick up our pumpkins and of course, I didn't get there.  Then Monday was WINDY and WET and COLD.  Tuesday was WINDY and SNOW and COLD.  I finally got out there yesterday and got our pumpkins, hay bale, corn stalks and some fun gourds.  

The husband cleaned the pumpkins and carved them with the 3 of the 4 kids.  I think I'm going to declare that the new "tradition" because he is SO much more patient than I.  He thoughtfully saved the pumpkin seeds too!  Why the heck would I want to interfere?  Plus, I sometimes have "control" issues and this is definitely one of those situations.  I would want to all the patterned pumpkins carved PERFECTLY.  So, this was all good.  See how much fun they had?  Note the smiles (smiles are sometimes absent when I'm involved):
OK, the boy isn't smiling but that's because of the camera...NOT me.

Since one child was very quick, I didn't get her pic.  And since the other was off at play rehearsal, Dad carved hers:

And then there were the seeds, before...all slimy:
And after...YUM!
Those are Martha Stewart Sweet and Spicy Pumpkin seeds.  I've been using this recipe for about 12 years and they always go quickly.

OK the outside is ready:
The sign cracks me says..."You say witch like it's a bad thing".  I'm still looking for the sign I saw last year that I didn't make a move on quick enough and was gone...that one was a black boot with striped stockings and said..."If the shoe fits..."  Maybe after all this is over, I'll mull over exactly WHY I am attracted to these "witch" signs.
So, I have my pumpkin seeds made, I have Cajun Spiced Pecans made.  I have pumpkin bars (the bar part...they still need to cool before I frost with cream cheese frosting) done.  I'm off to make some Texas Caviar and Shrimp Salsa and get all my veggies chopped for the pièce de résistance   Cuban Black Bean soup.
See...I AM planning my work. 

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Heading Home

I wish I could take credit for having perfect weather, but I can't.  Most definitely God's hand was involved.   I woke up this morning to the sounds of waves crashing, thinking it was me dreaming I was in Mexico.  Nope.  This is Minnesota...and if you blink, well, you know what happens when you blink.

This was the scene that greeted us outside our hotel as we readied our bags to leave: more blinking.

Full Moon in Duluth

We had a somewhat late lunch at Betty's Pies so no one was hungry when it was "supper time" so we decided to skip it and headed to Cold Stone for dessert.  As we were walking back to the hotel we noted the moon.  If it wasn't full, it was about as close to full as it can get.
Once we settled the kids in the room, we sat outside and just watched the moon reflect off the STILL water.  Seriously folks, this is Lake Superior, it isn't usually glassy calm.  But Friday night it was:

Yes, that's the moon.  I'd add to that, but really, words are superfluous.

Shipping in...then out

When we got back to Duluth, we had seen a container ship approaching the bridge, so the husband and I headed out to watch it come into the canal.  We made it with plenty of time to spare.

It's amazing that ships that size can make it through such a small canal.

Wait...I've given birth, what am I saying!

Betty's Pies

The one on the left was called Lemon Angel...sorta a reverse lemon meringue where the crust was a baked meringue and the filling was a whipped lemon filling. The pie on the right was bumbleberry...blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and strawberries. It was a toss up as to which was best. You decide.

Gooseberry Falls

We don't seem to be able to hit the Duluth area without stopping at Gooseberry Falls State Park.  It's maybe an hour north of Duluth, past Two Harbors, but not as far as Split Rock Light House.  We really REALLY lucked out on Friday because the day was absolutely beautiful.  It was in the low 60s with a very light breeze and the sky was clear as a bell.

The falls themselves are neat because you can use stepping stones to get up pretty close to them, at several different levels.  This is Beanie with her dad...before she went rock hopping.  How do I know?  Well, first her pants aren't rolled up past her knee where she stepped in the water...several times.  AND she is still smiling. 
The other two girls seemed to be pretty adept at hopping the stones.  This would be an after shot.
The boy also figured out the rock hopping.

 I'm good with leaving the rock hopping to the kids.
 The kids climbed to this cliff area in the center of the falls (with me holding my breath the whole time).  See?
Do you know how hard it is to get this many shots of the boy without having to use my angry voice because he's not cooperating?
We started to walk down to where the falls hit Lake Superior but decided that might be a bit ambitious.  So, we headed back up the falls.

One pair of wet Twinkle Toes, two wet mis-matched socks, one bottom that had an unsavory look to it and 5 big smiles.  Can't win'em all.  


MEA Weekend

This weekend was MEA weekend in Minnesota.  For those of you not familiar with that, as I was when we moved here, it is a weekend in MN where the teachers are given two days off of school to attend a conference in Minneapolis sponsored by the MEA...Minnesota Education Association.  Actually they have 3 days off, the first, Wednesday, is a teacher planning day, the next two are to attend conferences.  Although  after 12 years in the school system, I have yet to hear of any teacher attend a conference.  Most do what the rest of us parents do...we take our kids on a long weekend.

We are no different from most parents.  Our location of choice for MEA is Duluth.  And OH, BOY did we ever luck out.  We've done Duluth in Oct when it was so cold we had to wear winter jackets.  This year, Thursday and Friday were GLORIOUS!

We arrived mid afternoon on Thursday and checked into our hotel, Comfort Suites on Canal Park.  This hotel is the one closest to the lift bridge through which most of the behemoth container ships must transverse in order to off/on load their containers.  And when I say these ships are huge, I mean HUGE!  From our room, right across from the indoor pool, we were able to see Lake Superior and the pier and watch ships pass through the canal.

Our first afternoon, was cooler, probably mid 50s with a light breeze.  The kids immediately ran to the water (TO the water, not IN the water thank heavens).  We had a very  nice Packer fan (yes, there ARE nice Packer fans out there) offer to take a picture of the family:

No ships on the horizon meant we'd have to wait until Friday to see them come into the bay.  So we walked the pier and canal street before heading to Grandma's Saloon for dinner.  It's become something of a tradition.  Kids love it and even though it's almost always a wait, it seems to be worth it.

Back to the hotel, as we had a busy weekend ahead of us.  And there was a pool, calling the kiddie's names.

Monday, October 18, 2010

That's How Cleatus Does It

OK, so, remember the Jury post from below?  I'll give you a sec to go check it out...I'll wait.

*drumming fingers*

Back?  Good.  I am happy to report my oldest daughter is living her education.  Yesterday, while we were at the game, she had some class mates over to work on a civics project.  YES, I knew she was having the girls over.  NO, I did not know the extent of their project.

Her project was to understand what the amendments to the constitution are.  They had a variety of ways they could do it.  They could make a comic book.  They could write their own amendment and explain it.  The girls chose to produce a video explaining the first 10 amendments.

I could tell you about it, but it is SO much more entertaining to show you.  Watch for the presence of the jury.  It all becomes clear.

Enjoy!  We LOVED it.  And even better...they're GETTING it!

Sure am glad to know Remy is a lawyer.  It might come in handy someday.

Do I Want to Know?

The girls were alone most of yesterday as we were at the football game (Go wasn't pretty but it was a win and I'll take it).  No, we didn't get ANY calls while we were there (to our amazement...although I should say, I don't think our carrier, Verizon, worked inside the dome), so I really had NO idea as to what they did while we were gone.

All I know is I went downstairs to fold laundry this morning and found this in the middle of the family room floor:

 I do have a couple of pertinent comments.  One, I'm not sure where they found 5 Barbie (like) dolls all with hair still on their heads, or for that matter, all with heads still attached.  Two, given that the boy was with us, at least they got the "of their peers" part right.  Three, no phone calls mean that they CAN handle situations themselves without having me mediating EVERY.LITTLE.THING that happens. And Four, do I want to know why this was necessary?

 I don't think so.  I believe this is one of those parenting moments where ignorance IS bliss.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Tailgating...a family affair

Bringing the boy to the game.

WHOOT!!! Skol Vikings!

At the Vikings game...tailgating. Bloody marys. Pulled pork sammies. Cole slaw. Chips. A perfect fall day. Does it get any better?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

For the Birds

Earlier this year, I noticed that we would occasionally get some very colorful birds stopping by our deck.  Oh, we got the standard finches and robins and sparrows and red winged blackbirds, but I wanted to see more cardinals and blue jays.

So I started buying these birdseed bells...packed with birdseed, black sunflower seeds, raisins, and peanuts.  And sat back and waited.

I didn't have to wait long.  The blue jays...they're a bit elusive.  They stop by regularly, but I believe they're not super enamored with what's on the menu.  My dad says they're partial to peanuts in the shell. is an edit.  Blue Jay appeared to be hungry enough to eat the swill left by the other birds:
A couple of times, I've managed to get shots of the cardinal.  He's a beauty:
Then, mid summer the squirrels seemed to figure out that "Old Country Buffet" was open for business and they arrived (singularly...or it could be just one that keeps coming back) and this beast, that is the size of a siamese cat, is actually picking up the bell and gorging on it.  It either has an eating disorder or a thyroid problem.  You decide.
We also have hawks and the rare bald eagle that circles the area.  Not sure, beyond a small blonde child, what would attract them.  Or if I want to. 

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Same Time Last Year

I wrote about what happened one year ago.  Remember? Snow.  Not much but on Oct 10, even not much is too much.  This year has been a VAST improvement on last year.  This past week has been absolutely glorious!  I tell you, when Mother Nature isn't PMSing she knows how to put on a doozy of a show!

Friday was the homecoming football game and my three oldest went while we sat on the deck with friends in 75+ degree weather and ate spinach and chicken salad with a warm bacon mustard dressing.  We moved down to the lower deck and lit a fire and relaxed on our previously little used patio furniture and listened to the sound of fireworks each time our team scored.  Which was often given the 52-28 final score.  It was a stunning night.

Saturday we hit the lake for one last hurrah, taking the kids and meeting up with friends on the lake.  We relaxed and enjoyed the stunning views of the leaves changing.  This was from the cove where we relaxed:
Then we moved around the lake and I HAD to have a picture of this stunning maple.  I wish I could buy the house if JUST for the maple:
OK, yeah, being on the lake wouldn't suck either.  But...that maple...

We headed to Capt Jacks for a late lunch, did a little wake boarding and called it a day.  BUT we still had a full evening ahead of us.  We had to attend a 40th birthday party for a neighbor.

Intending only to stay for a little while, we ended up leaving much later than we had expected.  We had to find out the results of the quiz on how well we knew the birthday girl.  Prizes were given and while we were fairly positive we wouldn't win for any right answer, we were pretty sure we'd get "most creative".  Sure enough, the husband and his friend tied.  While most people would split the prize, these two characters Indian Leg Wrestled for the prize.  Surprisingly, it was a bit of a draw so they did end up splitting it:  A bottle of Boons Farm AND a coupon book of 5 $1 coupons to McDonalds.  Now there's a prize worth wrestling over. (edited to add picture...because really...seeing IS believing):
And that's all I'm going to say about that.

This morning we went to church and since it was STILL so gorgeous (although not quite at the 88 degrees of Saturday), we decided to head down to Jim's Apple Farm which bills itself as Minnesota's Largest Candy Store:
There were pumpkins and gourds galore.  And hay bales and corn stalks.  Every variety of squash you might possibly want.  There was apple tasting inside.  And yes...there were 87 different kinds of Licorice:
That's just part of one table.  I think there were about 10 of these that were about 25 feet long and 6 feet wide.  And there were tables on each outside wall.  There was candy from my childhood that I thought never to see again:  Clarks Teaberry Gum, Gold nugget gum in a little bag, candy cigarettes (SCANDALOUS...yes, we did buy some), Ju Ju Bees, Boston Baked Beans, Sugar Babies and Daddy's, Razzels, Zotz.  We had the girls with us and they were like...well, a kid(s) in a candy shop.  I actually found my all time favorite candy, which normally I can't find outside of Canada or England:  Cadbury Flake bar.  YUM!

The store didn't just sell candy and pumpkins.  There was a bakery and they sold fresh pies and strudel.  Hand dipped caramel apples.  Fresh picked apples and cider.  Various kinds of cheese curds and root beer.  Tons of varieties of popcorn (for popping), different teas, different kinds of salsas, jams, mustards, really was seemingly endless.  We escaped with a bag of apples, some popcorn, a treat for everyone, some smoked meat sticks.

While my preference would be for Mother Nature to continue drinking whatever it is she has been drinking that's making her so happy, I think I COULD be ready for the "s" word.

Once I find out what it was she was drinking so I can get me some.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Saber Spirit

Am I lacking in school spirit when I say I am really glad to see Homecoming Week come to an end?  Between the different costumes, the different social events, the different sporting events along with all of their 'normal' activities, I'm exhausted.

I sorta erred in my post about all 3 having different events on different days.  Sorta.  Each school calls it something different.  The HS is School Colors Day.  Couldn't they all just call it Saber Spirit day and be done? son left this morning actually partaking in today's activities.  He was dressed in head to toe in black and red (with a touch of grey).  From his black Nike's, red soccer socks, black and red shorts, red and grey shirt AND a red and black bandana tied around his head in Ralph Macchio/Karate Kid fashion (yes...I actually pulled up the "Beginner Luck" you tube video to show him WHO I was talking about).

My oldest daughter made her with red and grey puff paint.  She had on red shorts and under one eye, football glare paint sprinkled with red glitter (did I mention how she KNOWS how to accessorize?).

Middle daughter was the most creative which is both a good and bad thing.  She and her friend of wacky hair day created "Spirit Jeans" by cutting out pleather letters in red and black (yes, I DID happen to have that material on hand), and using material adhesive to glue them in place and THEN decorate them with puff paint.  They also did a grey shirt.  No picture of the jeans but I could take a picture of the mess left behind on my formal dining room table.  But I won't.  I'll just be happy that I have said table back.

Tonight is the game and I'm not sure if we are going to the game (momspeak for NO we are not going) and it is supposed to hit 86 degrees.  This week has been the epitome of Indian summer (are we allowed to still call it an Indian summer?  Or has that been relegated to politically incorrect?).  I am a bit worried as we were enjoying the beautiful weather last night, eating the BEST batch of chicken pasta salad and drinking some chardonnay when my husband noted that my lilacs are beginning to BLOOM!!!  Just one of my 3 plants.  They're not the giant blooms they normally get so I'm hoping that means I'll still be getting those next spring.  I am OK with sending the older two to the game on their own, but I'm wondering about the middle daughter.  She's 12 and I'm sure there'll be more than enough surrogate parents there to keep her in line, NOT that I expect she would get out of line.  Still, there will be the judgmental looks I'm sure to receive IF I should mention that no we didn't go.

You know what?  I think I'm OK with the judgmental looks. 

edited to boy (and his bud), as he headed off to the game.  WHOOT!

Yes, I did the hair.  I think he's finally starting to trust me.  May wonders never cease!
And yes...they won.  Ridiculous score...almost like basketball vs football.  Still...Sabers are 6-0.
They haven't won 6 games in the past 6 years!  So, this is a BIG DEAL!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Homecoming Week Day #4

Sorry, no pics this morning.  Costumes not really worthy.  HS is Jersey Day.  That was subject to interpretation apparently because the boy said that many kids were coming as the cast of Jersey Shores.  He chose to go without.  Again.

JrHS is Nerd Day.  Yes, we do happen to have argyle in our repertoire. 

MS is Era Day...many options to choose from but she went with early 70s...braids, headband, peace sign and LUCKILY...we still have flare jeans from their recent fashion comeback.

Still,  it's been fun seeing what they come up with on a daily basis.  Who knew my closet would provide them with a plethora of choices for costumes.

Note to thinks it's time to purge some items in my closet...ahem...

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Homecoming Week Day #3

As reported yesterday, the schools are all having different "event" days.  Today, my early morning visitor was my middle daughter's friend to prepare for "wacky hair day" at the Middle School.

Apparently nothing says wacky hair like: zig-zag parts, 4-6 ponies ratted, and the trifecta of royal blue, neon green and raspberry pink colors.  Behold:
For those burning with curiosity...the HS was mis-match day.  My son chose not to participate given that he was attending a college fair in the city. YES...COLLEGE.  Just saying those words makes my heart skip a beat.

The JrHS had sports day.  She wore her BABY sister's Vikings jersey coupled with a purple and gold feather boa.  The girl knows how to accessorize.

And to think...they do this to themselves VOLUNTARILY!

Note to self:  Children NOT taking a shower tonight is NOT an option!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Homecoming Week

It's Homecoming Week here and Oh, the schools play to the kids.  It would be nice if they would be on the same page so we weren't looking at each school having different days.  Yesterday, for example, at the HS was Crayon Day.  Apparently this is pronounced Cran Day.  Or so my son informed me as I stood in the kitchen with a completely BLANK look on my face.  Cran day...cran day...what the heck is cran day?  Then he looked at me as if I had 2 heads (a common occurrence, I assure you)..."CRAN what you COLOR with?"  I mean CRAY-on?  He says, "NO ONE says's CRAN".  When the heck did that happen?  So, on CRAN day, they dress all in one color...monochromatic.

But, that was the HS.   The JrHS (8-9th grade) was Pajama Day, this meant that my daughter had to do nothing beyond roll out of bed.  Seriously.  The Middle School was Sports Day.   Each school chose a different theme for each day and NO two days in any of the 3 schools are the same.

Someone shoot me.  I'm supposed to keep this straight?  To have all the different supplies on hand?  One school had wacky hair day.  Must have hair paint on hand.  Not sure which school or which day.

C'mon...can't we all get on the same page?  Would it really be THAT bad if we all had the kids in all the schools doing the same thing on the same day?

I guess it would.

So, today was formal day at the JrHS.  My oldest daughter had 3 friends come over at gawd awful hour o'clock this morning so they could get ready (imagine, if you will...the night of prom but having to do it in 10 minutes).  Since my son goes to school later than my daughter, I was informed later, he would have been appreciative of knowing his sister's plans in advance so as not to parade in front of her friends, on the way to the bathroom, in his sleep boxers.

Yes, boys DO blush.

Here are my lovely "formal freshmen":

Aren't they lovely (especially given the hour)?

In conclusion...4 kids in 4 different schools has become quite the learning experience.  Can't wait to see what the rest of the week has in store.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Do You Have One of These?

Remember earlier this year when I painted Beanie's room?  It was her birthday present? And do you remember why I was hesitating doing it? Go ahead...look and see.  I'll wait.

 *drumming fingers, evaluating condition of nails, thinking I need a manicure

Back?  OK, if you didn't go and look at it, I'll tell ya: it was the fear that her room would revert back to that state that makes me CRAZY.  Well, I'll have you know that it's not there.  Not exactly. 

HOWEVER (there's always a catch right?)...

Her "cleaning" style STILL drives me crazy.  Her idea of cleaning is to look around and find a "container" of some sort that will hold whatever it is she is trying to "clean" and stuff it in the container.  Her container of choice?  Usually  some kind of "bag".  She has a small carry on duffel bag that we gave her to take to Mexico which is stored on the top shelf of her closet, available for sleepovers and the like,  that she routinely uses to store things.  She even uses a stool to get it off the top shelf of her closet, which means she is actually going to an effort to "clean".  And THIS is the crux of my issue.

It's not that she moves stuff from the floor to a bag, it's that it takes MORE effort to clean her way than it would if she would just put stuff away correctly.  PLUS there is the added bonus of actually  knowing where an item is if she needs it.  So, yesterday I emptied out the duffel which was filled with socks (some paired up, some not but all clean), candy wrappers (I think I know the root of our recent dental issues), a few odd crayons, a flashlight and 2 batteries (of different size that do NOT fit the flashlight).  That was one bag.  I found another bag (this one was a reusable bag that you get for $.99 at the grocery store) with a damp beach towel, a pair of dirty panties, 2 unmatched socks, a marker without the top and a book of Aesops Fables.  Hanging on the door to her closet was a plastic Gymboree bag with a pair of clean capris and a pair of dirty knit shorts.  And finally, hanging over the headboard of her bed is a small plastic bag that earlier this week contained a 3 pack of camis that I got her, that is now empty of the camis but she has chosen to fill it with garbage (clothing tags and scraps of paper) and hang it on a thumb tack over her bed.  As if her room NEEDS this as "decoration".

Now, here is where I would normally launch into a Faye Dunaway rendition of "no wire hangers" in reference to having BEGGED her not to put anymore holes in the walls, AND going to the effort of finding ticky-tak so IF she needed to decorate her walls she could do it without holes...because I do a much better Joan Crawford than Faye Dunaway.  Actually, I think I do a better Joan Crawford than Joan Crawford.  But I digress.  She watched me painstakingly remove the paint (from where I in past painting projects was not attentive to detail...ahem)  and do a REALLY good job painting her room, so was it really too much to ask that she PLEASE not put holes in her wall.  And especially not put holes in her wall in order to hang her garbage.  Apparently it was.

So, my you have one of these pack rat/hoarders?

Do you want one?

Friday, October 1, 2010

Picture Day

Today was picture day at Beanie's school.  And I got an email asking for parent volunteers to help with picture day.  I have never helped out in this capacity before but I knew that parent volunteers on picture day typically get their kid's pictures free, so I decided, IF they still needed help, I would volunteer.  They needed help.

OY!  Now I'm committed.

So, I drop off Beanie and our carpooler at school and sign in as a volunteer and go to the gym for "orientation".  There were only 5 parent helpers and it was just enough.  Once things got moving, they actually moved along pretty quickly.  There were 3 photographers.  No backgrounds changed.  One pose.  One parent helper was at each station to make sure hair was combed, zippers zipped, buggers wiped, buttons properly buttoned, necklaces straight, etc.  A fourth helper made ID cards for each child having a picture taken (IF there wasn't one for them).  I was the fifth helper and I ran the ID cards to each teacher 15 minutes before their scheduled time.  When a student ID wasn't listed (for the purpose of the ID card), I ran to the office and found the student's ID number.

All things considering, it went really well.  But some highlights:
  • the janitor steam cleaning the carpet just outside the gym.  Yes, the over excitement of picture day, for some kids, DOES lead to an upset tummy.  I was grateful I had passed on breakfast this morning.
  • black halter handkerchief dress with 80s teal sequin trim PROBABLY isn't appropriate for picture day. CAN say no.
  • while maribou trimmed tiaras ARE adorable on your little princess when they're playing dressup, I'd probably pass on letting her wear it for picture day.  Because she WILL look back at her picture one day and say to you (the mom)...ARE YOU KIDDING ME?  A MARIBOU TIARA? What were you smokin'?
  • I seriously don't think we pay teachers enough.  One boy was first in his class to have his picture taken.  He didn't even get back to the line before he started moving in circles saying "I'm bored".  THEN he decided he would walk around the teacher, in circles, the remainder of the time there (about 5 minutes) saying "I'm bored".  God Bless that teacher as he did NOTHING.
  • to those who think girls are preeners, I have news for you:  the boys took it to a new level.  Licking their OWN hair (hand to hair) into place, fixing their OWN eyebrows (yes, one boy's eyebrows had gone astray), and combing repeatedly through buzz cuts that changed nothing.  It was cute in a sorta obsessive kind of way. 
It was an experience.  And I got to put a price on my time.  Apparently, I'm worth $4.30/hour.