Wednesday, March 24, 2010

It was just a matter of time....

So, when I run at work, I get ready via sponge bath. I clean up as well as I can since we don't have showers here. (FYI to the management: I will gladly pay daily for a 3-minute shower. The costs of building the shower will be recuperated in six months just from Carol and I!)

Anyway, from time to time, I've forgotten my washcloth or towel, but that's OK since I can just use a few paper towels. I've forgotten my hairspray, my blow dryer, my curling iron, and even my make-up once. I've forgotten socks, barrettes and even my lunch, but I have never forgotten my bra - until today.

So, under my cute little business sweater, I'm wearing a stinky, sweat soaked jog bra. Oh, I've sprayed a good amount of perfume already, and I hope that this lovely Estee Laud*er scent combined with my pina colada pits is enough to mask the scent. Why? Because I have three meetings today in close quarters with several people. Oh, the joys!

Friday, March 19, 2010

She's a hero!

Earlier this week, Bub and the boys picked me up from work and we went to Liberty Park. There was fun and playing and lots of parents not paying attention to their kids. We went to two of the playground areas. Meatball and I lagged behind Bub and Peanut while walking because we were going through the jungle. I asked him if I should be looking for several animals (jaguar, parrot, snake, etc.), but the only animal in his (pine tree) jungle was a frog. So, we jumped a lot.

After playing for about an hour, we (Bub) were getting hungry and grumpy, so we decided to get some sandwiches. I just wanted to go home so that I could get some homework done, but the boys and Bub had other plans. So, we went to a different park around 16th South and West Temple. It's just a little pocket park, but it's not crowded, and the boys like it. When we went there last week, we met and played with a nice little non-English speaking boy named Landon.

So, the boys were running around and sliding and climbing while Bub and I ate our sandwiches. She and I were up and down and chasing after the boys. All of a sudden, she yelled "Oh, my god!" and started running (which she hates to do). I couldn't figure out what she was doing, but it was clear that I needed to stay with the boys since she was about to dart out into the street.

Then, I saw it - the reason for her panic: a little boy - about 18 months old - CROSSING WEST TEMPLE BY HIMSELF DURING 5 O'CLOCK TRAFFIC!!!!!!!!!!! Nope - no grown up around - just this little boy stepping into the street.

Luckily, headed north-bound was a cop who (thankfully) slammed on his brakes just in time and flipped on his lights. The traffic behind him skidded to a halt, too. A really big van was headed south-bound, and slowed as soon as it saw the lights of the cop car. Good thing since Bub ran right in front of the van and scooped up the little boy.

Good hell!

Cop: Is this your son?
Bub: Hell, no!

So, while they are moving the now freaked-out little boy to the sidewalk, I'm trying to figure out where he came from and keep our own kids in the park (because, of course, they want to go see what mom is doing).

Bub (yelling to me): He doesn't speak English! (Like I'm going to come up with something profound. In the best of circumstances, I can ask where the bathroom is.)
Then, it occurred to me that it might be the same little boy from last week.
Me: Ask him if his name is Landon!
(All this time, still no grown up.)
She started asking him if he was Landon, and he seemed to respond to that a bit. She held him while the cop moved his car out of traffic, and I continued to try and assess the situation. Ah-ha! I see an open door and an open gate, so I start yelling to her and the cop.

Me: He probably came from that top apartment on the corner - the one with the open door.

So, Bub, little boy, and cop walk through the open gate, up the flight of cement stairs and to the open door. The cop knocked. After about 90 seconds (yes, 90 MORE seconds - this whole thing has taken almost five minutes already), the mom finally comes to the door. She acted like she was all concerned, but whatever, dumb bitch! Where were you when your kid was strolling around in traffic?

After giving the cop her name and number, Bub returned to the park. She was shaking, and sweating, and furious. It was the same mom and boy from last week. She said that she had wanted to absolutely punch the mom right in the face.

The cop spent a fair amount of time there. When he was finally done, he passed by the park and shouted a thank you to Bub. We left the park not long afterwards. When speaking to a friend from work the next day, she indicated that by law the cop will have to have DCFS pay a visit to the mom. GOOD!

Also the next day, Bub called me at work.
Bub: The cops just called.
Me: Oh great. What now?
Bub: They just called to thank me. They said that Officer So-And-So wanted me to know how much he appreciated my help and the risks that I took.
Me: So, you are a real hero!

I'm really proud of her. It was some impressive life-saving. She's not a half-bad sprinter, either!

Nope - I didn't want to go to that park, but I'm glad that we did. I don't really do the whole "divine intervention" thing - or fate - or alignment of planets - or whatever. We're generally atheists, but there are times when I do believe we are in the right place at the right time for the right reason. This was definitely one of those days.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Making cookies

The Meatball really likes to help cook. Everything. Cookies (seen here, obviously), stirring the fake, powdered cheese into the macaroni, making hamburger patties, whatever. He really gets a kick out of it. Well, until he gets flour in his eye...

If you like pina coladas, and gettin' caught in the rain...

I ran out of deoderant in my gym bag last week. While at the store, I picked up a new stick. I wasn't really paying much attention, and I was looking for something relatively cheap because, let's face it, who needs a lot of sweat protection when sitting in a cube all day? So, I grabbed something and continued shopping. When applying the deoderant for the first time, I noticed that the sticker was a different color than normal. Great. I got a new scent. Not that I'm particularly attached to "spring rain" or "baby fresh," but I can rarely find unscented. Who really needs their pits to smell like spring rain anyway? And anyone who has actually been around a baby long enough for it to poop or puke knows that it doesn't smell fresh. But, what did I buy? Tropical Paradise. First off, I don't really think that any part of my body should be likened to the tropics. When I think of tropical, I think of humidity and moistness and foot fungus. Secondly, my arm pits now smell like a pina colada.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Onion Rosemary Confiturra

Well, I did it. March Can Jam food was alliums - any of them. I didn't want to just do pickled onions because I wanted it to be a challenge, and we would never eat them anyway. So, I found a recipe for Onion Rosemary Confiturra (jam). It made more than I expected (three 1/2 pints, one 1/4 pint, and one pint), but it took a long time.

I started out by cutting ten cups of onions. While I like to eat a little onion once in a while, I don't get along well with them. No matter the size or variety of onion, they make me cry like someone who just got stood up for the prom. I chose white onions because Bub said that they would be sweeter, but I think that they are aromatically meaner. (In the end, it is nice and sweet...)

Added olive oil, rosemary sprigs, bay leaf and simmer for 20-ish minutes until the onions wilted. Added two kinds of vinegar, a bit of sugar, salt, pepper, and honey. Simmered for what seemed like forever so that the liquid reduced by half. Then, it was time to pull out the rosemary twigs and bay leaves. The recipe said that some of the rosemary would fall apart, but ALL of mine fell apart, so I spent a good 30 minutes pulling those pokey little rosemary leaves out.

Heated up again, bottled and stuck in the water bath for 15-ish minutes. One of the comments on the recipe questioned if it is acidic enough, so just to be sure, I added a little extra vinegar, and since I didn't have any pH strips I'm storing it in the fridge in addition to having the sealed lids.

This should be really good on a pork roast or a roasted chicken or even as a sort of dip with cream cheese and little bread crisps (which Bub will not eat - she says it has too much rosemary for her liking, so we'll most likely just use it on pork and chicken).

It was a good experiment, but I'm not sure if I'll make it again. I guess I'll see how we use it over the next few months.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

What Do You Say?

The other morning around 3am, Peanut climbed into bed with us. No, I don’t even try to stop it, because, frankly, I don’t care. I’m that mom, and you can judge me all you want. Someday, they won’t even want to be seen in the same car as me, so I’ll get all of the snuggle time now that I can get. Besides, there will be plenty of nights in the future where they stay in their own beds…..

Anyway, Peanut climbed into bed and started talking. It took a couple of minutes before I convinced him to at least whisper so that he wouldn’t wake Bub. Once he started whispering, we had this exchange:
Peanut: Mom?
Me: What?
Peanut: Where is my milk?
Me: Well, it’s probably in the fridge.
Peanut (sweetly): You can get it for me?
Me: (sigh) What do you say?
Peanut: Thank you.

Oops! We’re missing an important “please” in there somewhere! I still got up and got the milk. Maybe it had something to do with the fact that he was holding my face in his two little hands and talking to me by the light of the moon trickling through our window blinds.

Man, these kids are cute!

Damn, I am a sucker!

Nightly singing

Every night, the boys and I sit on their bedroom floor and read a couple of stories. Then they try to convince me that they don’t need to go to bed, but eventually I get them to lie down. Then, I turn out the light, and we sing a couple of songs.

During the day, when I’m working or running or trying to relax, I have kid’s songs and nursery rhymes going through my head constantly. However, when it comes time to sing something, I’m stuck, so I ask them what they want to sing. Peanut almost invariably wants to sing “Pocket Poe Da’ Pence” which, if you know him, means “Sing a Song of Sixpence.” It is fun, and they know all of the words. At the end, when the blackbird comes down and snatches off the maid’s nose, Meatball always adds “and head.” Poor Maid. If he doesn’t choose “Pocket Poe Da’ Pence,” he chooses the Thomas the Tank Engine theme song – a song that will live in my brain for the rest of my life. (“They’re two, they’re four, they’re six, they’re eight….)

Since I have such a hard time getting songs to come to my head, they boys can sing the 50 states in alphabetical order (another song that will live in my brain forever thanks to Shellie Poulsen’s 5th grade teacher for teaching her and thanks to her for teaching me – I wonder if she still knows it, too?). At least this song will serve us well at parties for years – the early years will prove to people just how brilliant our kids are, later years it will make their inebriated friends stop talking for a few minutes – a difficult feat to be sure. I have also had to recently resort to “Popcorn Popping on the Apricot Tree,” that much loved and never forgotten action song from years of Sunday morning Mormon primary. No, I don’t typically fall back on the Mormon classics – especially since I’m no longer Mormon (although almost old enough to be considered a classic), and I hope that the boys never choose to become one (Mormon, not classic). But, it is a fun song. Don’t worry – we won’t be singing any rousing renditions of “Jesus Wants Me for a SunBEAM” or “Put Your Shoulder to the Wheel” any time soon – or ever if I have my way.

Meatball has a larger repertoire of beloved songs than Peanut. (In all fairness, Peanut will also occasionally choose “Boo Boo Choo Choo,” too – another song from Thomas that encourages the engines to be brave and to not be afraid of the dark.) But the Meatball, he’s got this down to a science. “Sing the dog song” (How Much is that Doggie in the Window?), “Christopher Robin” (Return to Pooh Corner), Six Little Ducks, Old MacDonald, Twinkle Twinkle, Golden Slumber, and etc.

But the other night, when I asked for requests, Meatball really caught me off guard.
Me: Hmmmm…. What song should we sing?
Meatball: C’mon Baby.
Me: C’mon Baby? What’s C’mon Baby?
Meatball: C’mon Baby!
Me: Sing it for me, Sweetie. (Yes, yes – I call them Sweetie – and Buddy – and Cutie Pants – and My Favorite Green/Brown Eyed Boy – and I love every second of it)
Meatball: C’mon baby, let’s get out of this town, mom!

Yes – you read that right. He started singing “Baby, You Can Sleep While I Drive” by Melissa Etheridge. He knows a fair amount of the words! You see, when I run out of kid’s songs and they haven’t yet run out of steam, I must resort to songs that I know that are longer than just a couple of stanzas. I must admit that Meatball also knows “Poseidon” by the Indigo Girls. While he thinks it’s about fishing, and therefore kinda’ fun, I hope that it doesn’t get him beat up on the playground. I mean, really, is the kid destined to be a punching bag? All I play is Indigo Girls, and all Bubba seems to listen to is Barbra, Barbra, Barbra. When all of the kids are listening to the progeny of P-Diddy’s or Puff Daddy’s or Sean Puffy’s (or whatever his name will be then) and our little Meatball is singing show tunes or political lesbian folk music, will there be a throw down?