Figuring out what I wanna be when I grow up.
Oop..I AM grown up...


Saturday, July 30, 2011

See You Soon xoxo


I've been packing crap all week.  I'm sick of packing.  Will the family vacation kill me or not...only time will tell.  Either way, I'll be back in a week to bitch. 

PEACE OUT, HOMEBOYS AND HOMEGIRLS!



Thursday, July 28, 2011

Your Fantasy Life

Level with me, people.  You have a daydream about that other PATH in life.  You know:  that cliché-ish, magical, mystical place called

THE PATH NOT TAKEN

It's weird that I've been pondering this a lot lately, and my friend B. at Say Yes or else!! has coincidentally posted The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost.  Hm...maybe there's something to these later days of summer which makes a person feel nostalgic, and makes us think of the turn to harder seasons.  Hm...who knows?

Even if you appreciate your life, and love the people in it.  Even if you like your house, and your pets.  You still think about other realities sometimes, don't you?  Don't you have fantasies about other things you might have done with your life?  Regrets?  Yearnings?  Career paths you wish you'd taken? 

This can be a tricky subject, because nobody wants to admit that they wished they'd just plain done something else (not in a loud voice anyway).  Nobody wants any implications that their children are of anything less than tantamount importance in their lives. 

So, you're the STAY AT HOME MOM.  You get up each day to continue working on what you left off last night.  You didn't finish everything last night, because it was 9:00, and you were tired, and if you don't PUNCH THE CLOCK at 9, you won't get any time to yourself.  Ever since you parted with your old life, and started caring for people round the clock, time to yourself is more precious than anything else.  So, that load of laundry getting more wrinkly in the dryer can wait till tomorrow to fold. 

Because you're never really going to complete a task anyway.  It's hard, non-stop work, and it's not always very satisfying--let's be honest.  You don't get any praise for getting the stains out of the whites, for rotating efficiently through pasta, rice and potatoes during the week.  There is no yearly BONUS for your efforts. Nobody leaves a five dollar bill on the table after eating. You get verbally abused by your children every day because they have behavioural problems, or developmental problems, and it is exhausting.

or,

You're the bread winner.  You had to settle on a career that you never envisioned for yourself, because it pays really well and has good benefits.  You can't switch to another career, because you'll be starting at the bottom of the ladder, and your family can't afford that smaller salary.  You have to work long hours, and be accountable at nearly all times, and it's funny because you always thought you'd get a job in animation.  You never imagined you'd become a spread-sheet master.  Oh, and don't mention that commute.  It's tedious, and traffic-crammed and it nearly does you in by the end of the week.

So,

What's your fantasy?  When I'm at the sink with another pile of dishes, sometimes I imagine I didn't go to university IMMEDIATELY after finishing highschool; that I took some time to think about what the hell I wanted to do, instead of fumbling forward without direction anyway, hoping I'd just fall into what I was supposed to do.

I'd have saved money and gone AWAY to school, instead of staying local.  In my fantasy, I'm a registered dietitian.  I have an amazing job that I'm actually interested in.  I have a tidy little apartment, and my bedroom is really pretty, and I have a fluffy white cat and no children.  I date when I have time, but mostly I go on really fantastic trips when I take vacation time.  I go to places like Norway and Luxembourg, which I once heard has more castles than anywhere else.

Oh, but you're prickling over this scenario.  No children? How could she have a fantasy with no children and no husband???  Doesn't that mean that she doesn't truly love them? 

To this I say, relax.  It's only a fantasy.  I've already figured out that 99% of humans can never be truly satisfied with anything anyway, so we all know I'd be lonely for a steady man, that monstrous biological urge to further the species would never be quiet, and the white cat would drop fur balls all over the place. 

The travel would probably be great though...if I had the nerve.

Still, don't you have one of those friends on facebook?  She's never been married?  She has no children taking up her time, and she has amazing pictures of places around the world she's lived and worked in, because hell, she had no attachments, so she can just pick up and take that risk.  She looks rested and happy and smiling in every picture and you envy her...just a teeny bit??? 

Meh--she's probably not that happy either.  I'm telling you:  none of us are happy : )

That being said, level with me:  I want you to tell me your other life fantasy.  It's okay:  we're all friends here.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

BOO YAH, I'm Over HERE Today

Me so excited.  I've pushed my way onto Ms. Suniverse's blog, like a rude house guest who invited herself and immediately showed up with an overnight bag, leaves a drink ring on the coffee table and grinds cake into the carpet. 

I can't remember how I had the fortune of stumbling into Sue's world of tart, intelligent wit, peppered with some yummy cynicism.  Please, when you're over there, check HER out too, because her posts on Gwyneth Paltrow will make you cry.  Oh, and she posted a fabulous blue cheese cole slaw recipe that I'm now obsessed with. 


So, click me, CLICK ME, CLICK ME HERE:


I'm So Mad At Amy Winehouse


see you there!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Sometimes Parents Are Morons ♥

You annoy me, Harry Potter, but you're still not as annoying as that f*cking idiot who brought her 4 year old to see this


On Saturday night, The Man and I ditched our kids at Grandparents' House O' Fun, SPECIFICALLY so we could go see THE LAST HARRY POTTER MOVIE. 

Because that's how I roll now:  I get all excited for Harry Potter films.  Of which there will be no more.  Oh, and I make sure to go to the EARLY SHOW, so I don't have to stay up so late.  But I still stayed up too late, because as soon as we returned home, we spent the next 2 and a half hours watching MY BIG FAT GYPSY WEDDING on tv, because, people--that is a TRAIN WRECK that you can not look away from.  I've never seen anything so fantastically tacky and overblown in my whole life.  Completely fascinating. 

But, like I was saying, we were all geared up to see the last Potter flick.  It's a bit sad that it was the last one, because 98% of movies coming out these days SUCK, so who knows when the next good movie will come along.  Incidentally, I don't get this:  there are a lot of good books out there that could be turned into fantastic movies.  Do we REALLY need another shitty ROM-COM starring Jennifer Why-is-she-so-rich-and-famous Aniston?!? 

I'm not terribly sad that it was the end of the Harry Potter series, because, come on--what was that, like 7 years of Potter movies or something?  No, I'm not doing the math on it, that was a guess.  It was a lot at any rate. 

So, what do we know about this series of movies?  Well, like the books, the first one was filled with light-hearted whimsy and magic and some PG ideas about villains and bad guys.  Perfectly fine for the kids. 

Anything after that?  Erm, no.  The movies are chock full of darkness and murder and that scary snake-faced idiot LORD VOLDEMORT.  So, is this stuff too much for me?  Of course not.  I'm a freaking grown up.  I would also say that the series became progressively "darker" as it wound its way to its fairly violent conclusion. 

Once again, no problem.  Fine for older kids and adults.  Very imaginative, good story line, good characters; fun, really detestable villains. 

And yet, there I was in line to get a drink before the show, and I saw a mom I recognized from the Nursery school, and her husband, and her two kids.  Her son and daughter were twirling around the lobby in their Harry Potter robes.  Oh, I did say NURSERY SCHOOL, did I not??

HER SON IS FREAKING FOUR YEARS OLD...MAYBE ONLY JUST TURNED FOUR. 

Seriously?  Is she retarded?  I couldn't stop thinking about what a total freaking idiot she is on and off during the movie.  At first The Man tried to justify it by saying; "maybe they'd seen all the other movies," because yeah, that makes it all better. 

I'm not going to give anything away...but after certain characters died, I hissed at him; "good scene for a FOUR YEAR OLD?"  Then, during another part in the movie when dead bodies are all over the place, I whipped my head over again:

"this is CERTAINLY an appropriate scene for a FOUR YEAR OLD." 

Seriously--if this doesn't give that kid nightmares, I'd be totally amazed. 

So, there I was feeling all self-righteous and totally uppity, and  then I remembered my little outing with the kids last week:


karen's Attempt to Cram The Little Savages Full of Culture

Okay, so since summer I've been trying lots of different ways to keep the kids occupied, and keep blood-shed and screaming to a minimum.  I decided to take them to our local art gallery, because I hadn't been, and because Jack likes art, and I figured there'd be some entertaining stuff for kids as well. 

Little did I know that the gallery is typically RINKY DINK for this city, which means that there is next to no funding, so it's a little ... lacking (ie; LAME). 

We walked in, and most of the lights were off in the place because, hell, nobody else was there to look at art, and they have to save money. The youngish, hip curator of the gallery, quickly leapt up from his office, and I explained that we wanted to see the art.  For some reason, the only freaking artist featured in the whole gallery is William Kurelek.  You can read about him HERE, but I warn you: he's Canadian and therefore slightly bland :)  OH, don't get all bent out of shape fellow Canadians:  you know we're pleasant and slightly bland. 

The gallery guy got a little wide eyed, and suggested that some of the works are a bit much for children, and maybe I should preview them first before deciding to let the kids see.  Aw hell, I figured, I'm all new-agey and cool, and my kids and I TALK about stuff together, and if anything is a little provacative, we'll DISCUSS it together. 

Erkay...the guy looked a little doubtful, but who is he to argue.  So, he flicked some more lights on, and in we went.  There's a fairly extensive section on Kurelek's Christ series, so if you're a fan of The Jesus, you'd probably find your trip worthwhile.  I got a little tripped up at the pic where they've crowned him with thorns, and tried to explain it to a wide-eyed Ella as best as a heathen could.  Okay, a bit much, but whatever.  Moving along. 


And then we came to the shiniest gem of all:  Kurelek's graphic anti-abortion painting.  If you'd like to see it, the only link I could find is HERE.  Well poor little Ella looked HORRIFIED when she saw it, and I had to do some rapid back-peddling, and lie my ass off:

Moron Moi:  "Oh, that's not BABIES...no, that's broken dolls and they're covered with KETCHUP!"  Isn't that WEIRD?  Well, that's how artists are sometimes--they want their art to be WEIRD.  Ha ha ha, what a stupid painting eh?  Come on kids, let's go play in the KIDS' section." 


Then the next day, she was still thinking about it:

Ella:  "but Mom, all those broken dolls would make me CRY."

Stupid Super-Liar Moron Moi:  "didn't you see the other painting where all the dolls are FIXED?  You didn't see that one?  How did you miss it?!?  Oh yeah...they're all fixed.  Ha ha, aren't artists STRANGE sometimes honey?"


Sheesh. 


Three smacks on the wrist for karen. 


yes I is.  (image from Here)
 So what do YOU think?  Do you let your teeny children see the Harry Potter movies?  Do you make SUPER idiotic lapses in judgement sometimes? 




Saturday, July 23, 2011

I Have A Sense Of Humour but That's Just Not Funny

Okay, so I spend a lot of time here in blog land.  I love to read and reply to comments.  I love coming up with wacky ways to make people laugh.  I like being my outrageous self at times, and I super enjoy writing.  Well, I have to enjoy something people;  I suck at sports. 

Sometimes it's fun (mostly not, I'm trying to be optimistic) to hit the 'next blog' button at the top of the page. Occasionally I'll stumble across something really interesting.  Mostly though, I either get lead to a) the long distance bicycle enthusiasts, or b) the religious blogs.  No, I'm not trying to start an argument, or be a jerk, or anything, I just find it interesting, that if I hit the 'next blog' button long enough, these are the sub-genres I will always fall into.  This is kind of funny in a way, because it almost feels like I'm being sent some sort of cosmic messages:

A) GET OFF THE BLOG AND GET MORE DAMN EXCERCISE

and

B) TAKE IT, HEATHEN, TAKE IT!!!!


Weird.

Recently, in a blog writers' site that I follow, I saw a blogger who was being featured that week and clicked said blogger's link.  Okay, it was the typical thing:  tons of followers, lots of outrageous humour peppered liberally with the salitiest language, some talk of dicks and boobs, some snark, etc.  Fine, fine.  Whatever. 

On the side of this blogger's page were the blogger's "blog awards."  Blog awards are tokens of appreciation from other bloggers.  This one particular blog award really stuck in my craw though:

It was a school picture of the girl who made the award from the 60's or 70's, with a few missing baby teeth.  It was called "The Award of Pedophilia", and the caption on it read something to the effect of "because you TOUCH me where I pee"

...

I'm not a prude here people.  I'm also not a tight ass, or a stick in the mud.  I don't often need to "loosen up."  I'm hip...relatively.  I like a good outrageous laugh. 

But,

That's not funny.

Why is pedophilia ever funny?  Even if this is shock humour.  Even if this is meant to be over-the-top. 

Can someone explain to me why this is funny? 

But, the girl who made this blog award has a ton of followers.  And her blog seems to follow along that whole F*CK YOU IF YOU DON'T LIKE IT YOU CAN SUCK MY $%&!*  kind of tone.  I don't know when it became cool to lose all sense of decency or respect to one another in order to get that slurpable laugh. 

It kind of got me the same way that Elmo On Crack video that my innocent son stumbled across by accident on youtube did that time.  The kid was looking for Elmo video's for f*ck's sake because he liked Sesame Street. 

What the world needs are more funny, tasteful posts on weekend romances with whisky.  Now THAT, my friends, is class. 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Sweet Cherry Flashback

So, the grocery stores are filled with sweet cherries now.  Every freaking time I see them, or any cherries for that matter, I think back to the ridiculous sweet cherry incident when I was around 12 or 13. 

It was a typical hot summer, and my dad, who super lurvs cherries, wanted to go for a ride to a local pick-your-own fruit farm.  I came along with him.  I must have been very bored, because anyone who's ever been forced to go along with their parents to a dry, dusty orchard in the dead of summer knows how endlessly dull it is. 

The old farmer greeted us at the gate, and directed us to the area where we could pick our own.  Dad drove in, we parked and then got out to scope out the best tree.  We appeared to be the only ones there, so we could have our pick of the orchard, it seemed. 

Is everyone familiar with an orchard ladder?  Well, they look like this:



post on one side, climby part on the other

Unfortunately my dad has never had much sense, or sense of DANGER when it comes to DANGEROUS THINGS. So, he set up the ladder under a good tree, which was fine, and he climbed up like the person in the picture, but that wasn't good enough, so he climbed higher. Ooo, looky, look! There's a nice big cluster of cherries right overhead!

Well, I would like to think that everyone knows that that step at the very top of the ladder is NOT a step. I think it even says that on some ladders, you know, for those sort of people who might be inclined to run their hair dryer while they're in the bath?


So, dad stepped up onto the not-a-step step, until he was a good five feet off the ground or more, and even better, reached way overhead to grab that enticing large bunch of cherries, even though cautious karen was not happy about him being on that precarious ladder like that. 

Dad reached.  The ladder closed like a book.  The ladder flopped over one way, and dad fell the other, landing flat on his back with a great "OOF!!!"

I was HORRIFIED.  I leaned over dad.  His eyes bulged.  He had blood on the side of his mouth. 

"Dad!  Are you okay?!?" 

But dad couldn't talk, and mumbled out some unintelligible; "blobbleobbleumble buh..."

So, I reacted just as I should:  I FREAKED.

"DON'T WORRY DAD I'LL GET HELP!"

I tore off through the dusty orchard, sobbing, in a total panic.  I took a wrong turn and came nearly face to face with the snarly, gnashing teeth of the farm dog, luckily on a chain.  Horrified I back-tracked and ran like a headless chicken back to the entrance to the farm, where the farmer himself was having a nap in his little entry shack. 

"MY DADDY FELL OFF THE LADDER!" I wailed.

The old farmer sprang up; "OKAY, HONEY! GET IN!" 


We hopped into his old, huge beater of a car, and started driving.  And there was dad, standing up and waving his arm around, shouting my name. 

When we pulled up, dad explained that while he'd given me a good scare, he was okay.  I was ruined and collapsed against him.  He talked with the farmer for a minute and I remember the farmer saying; "that's a good girl ya got there," but I couldn't stop sobbing. 

They chatted amicably for a moment, and then the farmer drove back to his post.  Dad said; "phew, I think that's enough for today.  Let's go home." 

So, what had happened?  Dad was on the top of that precarious ladder, reaching for that irresistably large bunch of cherries.  However, he'd been eating them as fast as he could pick them, and had a nice mouthful at the time, when the ladder WOBBLED then SMACKED CLOSED.  He landed flat on his back, with a mouthful of cherries. Cherry juice spurted out beside his mouth, and the wind had nicely been knocked out of him, so that's why he couldn't answer immediately.  By the time he'd caught enough breath to tell me he was alright, I was more than halfway back to the farmer. 

So, I had a heart-attack, he had a nice permanent cherry juice stain on his back, and my family had a new story to chortle over every year thereafter; they especially love the part where I say "my DADDY fell off the ladder".   Yeah, yeah, whatever.


The End.




Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Clearly I don't know what I'm doing in BLOG LAND

erm...


I'm doing some sort of blog hop linky something something.  I think that this means that I'm on a list of blogs in a directory at Bloggy Moms and peeps can see that directory and vote for my blog.

or something.

It may also mean that I'm supposed to hop around and vote for other blogs.

There's a problem with this though:

I'M IN IT FOR ME, MWAH HA HAAAAAAAAAAA.

Well geez, what the f*ck?  Am I so altruistic that I'm going to be happy just to see a bunch  of other peeps win?  AGAIN?  If I want to do that, I'll link on over to Top Mommy Blogs and see just how much I'm sucking, har har.

Anyhoo, I'd like to think that I'm tech savvy, but I'm not.  The Man told me not too long ago that I'm only "book smart."  Isn't he precious.  Okay, so, I'll post some link thing at the bottom, and what's supposed to happen is a list of other blogs will pop up.  That's the guess.

Good luck, karen--it could be the most ridiculous blog hop ever :)



Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Hummus Is Giving Me HEARTBURN

Holy sh*t...the TUMS can kick in any time now. 


I have to confess something:  I am OBSESSED with HUMMUS right now.  You've had hummus, right?  Chick peas...GARLIC...tahini...lemon juice, etc, all blended down into THE DIP OF THE GODS.  This appears to be a kick that I'm on right now.  Soon I will hate it, but first I will eat it until a) I burn myself out, or b) acid burns a hole through my stomach. 

I have been trying to incorporate it into nearly every meal.  No, not a lot; I know it's fattening, okay?  Let's see:

* Saturday morning I ate it for breakfast on baby carrots.  It was great, but then I felt disappointed because I'd already consumed enough calories for breakfast, and it didn't feel breakfasty at all.  I looked at the box of raisin bran, and shed a small tear. 


Also, it wasn't a very yummy combo with coffee.

* On Sunday I lived the dream and had a canned salmon and hummus sandwich.  My only regret is that the hummus wasn't more noticeable. 

* Monday:  more carrots and hummus at various points of the day.  It's also not bad on RITZ crackers, but I'm thinking the calories will add up with an alarming rate.  Ditto for ridgy potato chips.

* I also eat it directly off the spoon.  This is smart, I'm thinking, because the transport medium has no calories.  I'M A FREAKING GENIUS.  Oh wait...maybe not;  I do this with Nutella as well.  This is why I never buy Nutella.

I need more recipes with hummus.  It's getting a little repetitive. 

There is, of course, another problem besides some nice, churling acid indigestion: 


HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE BREATH. 

I used to be completely phobic about having bad breath.  Or body odour of any kind.  I think I still have a phobia of raw onions. If you ever serve me a salad with little slices of raw onion in it, they will be discreetly left behind.  And as for fears of not smelling bodily AWESOME?   Let us not speak of that one incident with the all natural deodorant, during another phase in my hopeless quest to give up traditional aluminum-filled anti-perspirant for good.  Update:  still wearing the name brand stuff :(

Actually, I just realised I don't care about the bad breath.  Sorry, The Man.  If I really want to admit it, it's all going downhill now that I'm 39.  I go outside to water the flowers wearing the white shorts that I've probably had since I was 16.  They're so completely stretched out, that if I so much as put a dime in the pocket, those things are coming down.  I don't even know what's holding them together any longer--oh, yes I do:  LOVE. 

When I fill up my watering can?  I bend right from the waist.  Yeah, that's right.  I don't give a crap.  And my THIRTY NINE YEAR OLD ASS faces right out onto the road.  But guess what--NOBODY CARES.  They're too busy checking out the 19 year old hotty who walks her dog down my street.  Hell, it's too hot for makeup lately, so sometimes I've been going without.  How about my giant hair/sponge that sucks up great pints of humidity?  I've been throwing that into those stupid hair clips we girls all used to wear--what are they called...butterfly clips?  I think these ones came with Ella's doll.  That's right, Ella's doll.  This means they're pink and purple, and shaped like butterflies, with little sparkly jewels on them. 

F*ck it, I'm 39. 

Who am I going to be fancy for?  THE MAN?  Pfft.  Chances are, if he looked at me in THAT WAY, I'd probably ask him what the freak he was looking at, and don't even think of touching me, because I'm a human pms water tower, and roughly half of that water is in my FACE, and my t*ts hurt so much these days, that I try to pretend they're not even there, and oh, that reminds me:  the underwire snapped in my bra the other day when I stood up, so I just yanked those wire bits out, and I've been wearing the saggy thing sans wire and who cares that it doesn't give me the right LIFT and SEPARATION any longer, because it's


FORTY DEGREES WITH THE HUMIDITY (THAT'S 104 F B*TCHES) AND THE ONLY REASON I'M WEARING A BRA AT ALL IS SO I HAVE SOMETHING TO SWEAT INTO.  WHAT YOU DON'T LIKE IT?  TOO MUCH INFORMATION?

Damn.

Better go easy on the hummus tomorrow. 

Monday, July 18, 2011

In My Garden


peony



hydrangea



day lily



lily



begonias ~ one of my favourites



coreopsis



blanket flower



white cone flower



dianthus



oh, what's this called again...



at last!  The pink lilies!



little cone flower peeking



candy coloured coleus






can't remember the name of this either, but it's VERY drought tolerant!















on the porch - you can even see my rubby-dub lawn chair




coreopsis "Moonbeam"



One,



Two,



three!








phlox




Sweet William




daisy





I LURV white flowers




my kitchen window


Sunday, July 17, 2011

Maybe It's The Vodka Talking....


not my picture, but it's in my garden.

Today I got it. 


I got why people like summer.  I've always been a complainer; a hater of the heat, detester of the humidity.  But there I was just now, in my back yard, shaded by the linden and the maple trees, with a breeze blowing across the neighbouring yards.  The kids were in the "hundred dollar pool" as they used to call it, and a few of the neighbourhood kids were in there too. 

Some of them were swimming and some were jumping on the trampoline.  The shade kept us safe from the staggering heat and made it pleasantly warm.  My flowers are opening.  The rose of sharon is raucous with buds.  The lilies are open, and heady with mysterious tropical scent.  The blanket flowers, cone flowers and dianthus are in full bloom.  I can't wait to see what the tall flox will be like.  The grass has gone dormant because it hasn't rained in weeks. 

Sun, sun, everywhere. 

It is the most relaxing day of sitting around in bathing suits, and enjoying late dinners.  Lazy and without obligation.  And I'm lucky to be here.  Lucky to be above ground, feeling this breeze, surrounded by people I love, with friends and family. 

Some days, summer's not so bad after all. 


Friday, July 15, 2011

No Time to Blog--I have To Do MORE Stuff With The Kids

Summer vacation is killing me.  What gives me comfort is knowing that it's killing all you other parents and especially my HOMEGIRLS--the stay-at-home-moms.  ROCK ON, GIRLFRIENDS--I FEEL YOU.

Here's how I would waste spend my day if I could: 


* roll out of bed at 8:00 so as to be ready for a power walk

* go for a power walk then come back and write

* have oatmeal and a leisurely coffee while checking out my good friend INTERNET

* make some beds.  Maybe. 

* get round to doing a load of laundry or 15

* have all the laundry done in ONE DAY!  MIRACLE!  JUBILATION!

* not talk to ANYONE while accomplishing all this.

(does anyone realise how f*cking sad these aspirations are?  Anyone?)
Instead, it's summer vacation and apparently kids don't know how to freaking entertain themselves any longer, because cartoons are on 24/7, and the internet always has something to offer. 

Also, The Man works from home, so I feel like I HAVE to get the fight twins out of the house every day so he doesn't have to be the one to KNOCK HEADS TOGETHER, as I sit here ignoring them and blogging. 

*Note:  I'm ignoring their endless, petty fighting, not their triumphs and witticisms, whatever those may be.

So, I've been to the library, and the public pool (hellz yes, that was some GOOD chlorine inhalation!  That HAS to be good for you!).  I've done a couple of day trips to the beach (so stressful I almost had a stroke just getting ready).  I've been stuck in the backyard for several afternoons while the kids fought in their little pool:


"Mom, Ella keeps trying to make my head trapped under water."
So yeah, stuff's been happening.  Today, because my sister and I are burnt, we are taking the kids to one of those stupid indoor playland places, that cost too much $$, but are air conditioned, and have a giant jungle gym inside for the little monsters of the city to climb around on. 

These places often have some stupid name like "Fun Town" or "Fun Zone" or "Balls of Fun" or "Little Monkees" or whatever.  I've been to enough of them over the years, and have been nearly weeping with desire to come home after hours of wandering around after a super hepped up little person, so they've kind of lost their appeal. 

Plus, they are CESSPOOLS OF PESTILENCE.  Your child is almost guaranteed to come down with something horrid after a fun afternoon of running around like an idiot, while all the other kids wizz on, drool all over, and coliform the play structure. 

Also, I have a few problems:



Hey, there's PUKE under here!  Cool!
see this fun slide that was on the website?  Yeah, it hasn't been inflated in months
holy crap--I can't find my kid
here's the birthday party room where the kids get to eat their cardboard pizza.  Sorry, there's only food for the kids.  None for parents.
I've been here for FOUR HOURS!  Mommy won't stop crying, hee hee!
only 5 kids at a time on the bouncy castle.  The rest of you kids will have to have the tantrum of the century while you wait, and then lose your minds with pure rage after your 2 minute jump session
First of all, the tubing/climber configuration can be EXTREMELY convoluted in some of these locations.  I've seen plenty of 2 or 3 year olds get about half way up the habitrail and completely lose their sense of direction.  And then they just stand their crying behind the mesh wall.  Climbing those things is no picnic when you're a grownup. 

It is important to note that older siblings are very rarely helpful, and they do NOT give a crap when their younger siblings are losing their mind somewhere up their on the third floor by the rope ladder.  So, no matter how much you plead with them to rescue that sibling, it's going to be YOU who has to squeeze your way up to find that kid. 

Here's another problem:  at least half of the parents never pay attention to their kids.  So, their little jerks are running around shoving other kids, and steamrolling over top of other kids to get to the top, stepping on heads to get to the twirly slide, whatever.  Because the more kids that are in these places, the more they feed off the frenetic energy that's in the air, and the more INSANE THEY BECOME.  You've seen them:  eyes all wild, completely CRAZED with LUST FOR FUN. 

This brings me to my super paranoid fear:  I am always afraid that the kids are going to turn all LORD OF THE FLIES way up their at the top of the climber where I can neither see nor get to my kids in time, and they'll just trample some weaker kid up there. 

Okay, that's horrible, but that's the kind of crap I worry about. 

And don't get me started on pedophiles.  I worry that they're lurking EVERYWHERE.  Thanks Chris Hansen--I'm totally paranoid now.  And just know THIS, lurking pervo who tries to snatch a kid on my watch:  I have no problem with tearing your nuts off by hand. 

So, these little worries aside, the biggest problem is that these places are FREAKING BORING, and the kids NEVER EVER EVER WANT TO LEAVE.

Ah well, it's still better than the public pool.

 

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Damn You Twilight

R. Patz:  "how come I'm getting uglier with each new movie?"
K. Stew:  How come my acting has remained consistently wooden? 
karen:  WHY do I even go see these movies?

Okay, at the risk of sounding like some immature, overgrown, strange COUGAR / TEEN hybrid, I have to lament something here:

ME NOT HAPPY.

That stupid next Twilight movie, "Breaking Dawn" won't be coming out until FREAKING NOVEMBER.  It's true.  I just googled it. 

I was sure it was coming out this summer, and that meant I was going to get all perfumed up with my sexier capri pants...or maybe even shorts!  YES, SHORTS!  Then I would get my sister, and we would shamelessly head to the movie theatre and watch that latest piece of tripe. 

Because let's face it:  those movies are NOT good.  Sorry "Team Jacob."  Sorry "Team Edward," they are not good movies.  But, we go see them because we read every freaking book, and while we kinda developed a solid 'LIKE' for Bella by the end, we really only read them because when we lay down in bed at night next to that 200 degree  noise machine known as our husbands, we imagined that an articulate, well-read vampire with devil-may-care hair would swoop in through the window and watch us all night, just because he thinks we're PURDY WHEN WE SLEEP.

Sigh...

But let's not confuse EDWARD with R. PATZ.  Edward makes my toes curl.  R. Patz looks like he's got lipstick on in the past few movies.  Also, not long after the first movie came out, there was some photo spread of the guy in a big magazine, and one of the photos revealed him to be V. HAIRY.  Like, to get into character to be Edward, he's probably shaving those arms, and shaving that chest starting right under his throat.  Not that I have a problem with chest hair.  Hellz no.  It can be fantastically manly. 

But I digress.

Oh wait a minute...I just realised something:  some of you have already stopped reading this at the word "Twilight."  And some of you are 'pretending' you don't like the books.  Do you think I'M happy about it?  I'm THIRTY NINE FREAKING YEARS OLD FOR CRAP'S SAKE.  When I went to the movie theatre to see those movies, I was crammed in among a sea of idiotic teen girls.  Idiotic, loud, obnoxious, potty-mouth, perfume soaked teen girls.  So idiotic, in fact, that I spent at least the first third of the movie pondering whether I was EVER that idiotic when I was a teen girl. 

CONCLUSION:  NO.  I was NEVER that idiotic. 

It was in one of those girl-choked theatres that I learned the term "Va-jay-jay."  So, that was kind of exciting. 

Idiotic Teen Girl:  "Ohmygod, if you did that, I would like totally rip off your VAJAYJAY."

I have personally amended this super fun genital slang to "Va-gee-gee."  It's not spelled VAJINA, girls.  Let's all try to use our brains.  And oh yes, I use that term too.  Because I'm DOWN like that. 

So okay, you don't like Twilight.  You don't want to read the books, even though it's summer, and they are so brainlessly, pleasurably readable, that you could knock off the whole series in about a week or two.  But noooooo....those are books for KIDS, but how do you know if you haven't read them? 

I will say this:  I recommend the books.  Who doesn't like a break from thinking?  Who hates romance?  Pppft.  I do NOT recommend the movies though.  I'm willing to try to save you from them.  You're welcome.  They're terrible. 

Okay, which movie was the one in which Edward had to pretend he never wanted to be with Bella again, because he was worried his vampire family would accidentally eat her, so he left her, dumped and broken-hearted in the middle of the forest?  And in the book, Bella is understandably, and believably devastated, but in the movie that adorable, wooden Kristen Stewart can barely even cough up a fake tear?

Come on, you know the part I'm talking about:

Kristen Wooden Bella, immediately after Edward has told her she'll never see her again, and then takes off with super vampire speed: 

"Edward.      Edward.        Edward.       Edward.      Edward."  

Brutal. 

And ohmygod, how about that scene at the end when Bella is running through the festival-crowded streets of a picturesque Italian village, trying to get to Edward before he steps into the sunny streets to --no, not kill himself, this is a modern vampire tale-- to reveal his disco ball skin to the world, and out himself as a VAMPIRE, thus bringing the WRATH OF THE VOLUTURI, AN ANCIENT VAMPIRE LEAGUE UPON HIM BECAUSE HE THINKS BELLA IS DEAD AND EVEN THOUGH HE DUMPED HER, HE CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT HER AND HOLY CRAP THIS IS TEDIOUS AND REALLY MELODRAMATIC AND STOOPID...


and all I could think was; "wow, he really had to shave up for this scene," and, "is it true that they painted abs on him with makeup?  Hrm..."  and; "oh my god.  I just wasted twenty bucks again."

That being said, I'm still pissed that I have to wait till November 18 :( 


Fess up, homegirls and homeboys:  what's your guilty secret?




Saturday, July 9, 2011

The ELLA FILES

Well, my 4 year old daughter Ella is off to the hospital to see if they can get that mystery BLUE stuff out of her ear.  Yeah, I already ranted about that HERE.  Can't wait to see what that turns out to be.  Actually, I do look forward to seeing it, because we want the docs to say they can get it out.  The thing was coming out yesterday, according to The Man, but then the kid pushed it back up there again.  No worries--she hasn't complained AT ALL.  Yes, let's all join hands people, and send positive energy to the doctors and their crafty extraction tools. 

Sigh. 

My girlie is something else.  She hurts herself CONSTANTLY.  Why, just this morning she already bit her cheek twice, and then after one too many twirls in her summer dress she collided with the door frame.  And when she gets hurt--she WAILS.  Oh, she reaches decibals that the average person can't reach.  When she was a newborn, and I had to change that diaper at 4 in the morning, and she'd be WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

tired, bedgraggled karen would actually put her hands over her ears for a moment for a little respite from the FREAKING NOISE. 

Also, she is constantly saying crazy things, and I try to scribble them down in my notepad whenever I'm able.  So, in honour of Ella, I thought I'd clack up some of her craziness just for you.

* One morning at Jack's school, as we were waiting for the bell to ring, a dad of one of the kindergarten kids walked up with his daughter.
Ella"Mom, would you have a date with that man?"


Me:  "sssshhh!!"

Ella:  "What?! I want you to have a date with him!"
Me:  "I can't."

Ella:  "why?"
Me:  "I'm married to daddy!"



* Ella, to an 11 year old kid at Mcdonk's playland:
"HEY, BIG BOY! BETCHA CAN'T SEE A LITTLE FART IN YOUR BUM!"

* Ella, coming in to brush her teeth before school while I'm still naked and getting ready:
"I love your belly, mom, but I'm allergic to nipples.  I don't want my knees to touch them."

*
Ella:  "Mom?"
Me: "yeah?"

Ella:  "bad guys have POWER POOP."
Me:  "yeah?"

Ella:  "Yeah.  Power poop."

*
Ella:  "Does Gravy grow in meat?"
Me:  "Does gravy grow in meat???  Well gravy is made from meat juices."

Ella:  "Ucccccchhh!"


* Grabbing a handful chest pudge and kissing it:

"I love my little baby nibbles!"



* "Dad, let's play my game; 'If You Don't Have Trust It's Time For Revenge.'"


* "'P' is a letter, a vegetable, and a juice."


* Ella, leaning against me and yawning loudly...
Me:  "Are you tired today?"

Ella:  "Does a cat pee in a cat litter box?"
Me:  "I guess that means 'yes.'"

Ella:  "yes."



At TOP VOLUME in the back yard as she's floating around in her little pool:

"MOM, ONE DAY WHEN I'M A LADY RED BLOOD WILL COME OUT OF MY VAGINA."


Crazy kid.  Hurry up and get that mystery blue object out of your freaking ear!!!  I hope you're all having a stress-free weekend, that doesn't involve long, boring trips to the emergency room!


Hey, if you'd like to read more crazy Ella-ness, just click the link:That Kid Is A SCREAM

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

It's Not PARANOIA, it's PRACTICAL

The Man is away on a business trip.  He's been gone for a few days and will be back....

ANY MINUTE NOW, STALKERS, MASHERS AND WEIRDOS, SO DON'T EVEN THINK OF TRYING TO EASE YOUR WAY IN THROUGH A WINDOW WHILE I'M NOT LOOKING. 

WAIT...I mean,


Heh heh, that sounds paranoid. 

Okay, but if I say that I've been a little bit nervous at night, I'll sound like a big, overgrown baby, right?  Well, I'M NO BABY.  That's right.  I'm a GROWN ASS WOMAN, and I fear nothing!  Yes, I am a LIONESS who does what is necessary to protect her CHILDREN! 


I will, however, make the following recommendation:  don't read POST-APOCALYPTIC fiction RIGHT before bed (click HERE to learn about The Year Of The Flood by Margaret Atwood). 

It's almost always going to be creepy. 

I mean, come on--does anyone ever write a post-apocalyptic book wherein everything's really nice, and zen and happy after the world gets ravaged by a PANDEMIC, or NUCLEAR BOMB, or after almost all life has been destroyed by the stupidity of man?  Is there ever a book in this genre in which things get BETTER?  Maybe only the 'bad' people get wiped out by the super bug, so all the evil corporations are gone, and the nice people live in harmony in their new, greener, healthier Earth? 

Pfft...I don't think so. 

And let me tell you something people:  when the APOCALYPSE COMES, you women better get yourselves a BIG STRONG MAN, because those dudes who survived the bad times ARE NO GENTLEMEN!!  Hoo...let's not think about it. 

And let me tell you something else people: I officially HATE zombies.  They're almost as boring as Vampires wearing sexy, skin-tight leather clothes.  I should have done a whole post on how retarded I think zombies are, and how I'm so sick of hearing about how we should all prepare for the ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE, and WHAT CAN WE DO TO SURVIVE THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE??? 


Re
Tar
Ded.

But I digress...

Anyhoo, as I was saying, one can get some serious heebie jeebies at night time, that aren't necessarily there when the sun is shining and the birds are singing. I was getting ready for bed the other night, and it sounded EXACTLY like someone was coming up the stairs. My whole body prickled. I got the bathroom scissors ready in hand--and slightly open, if you must know. Much pointier that way, and DOUBLE THE PRONG ACTION, my friends. Turns out, it was only FATTY, the more rotund of my two cats.



Fatty's real name is "Tiger."  The Man named her.  I like "Fatty" Better though.

oh look at that FAT LITTLE THING!  Who's a FAT LITTLE THING? A-Whuzza Whuzza... Look at that Fat little kitty!   Is you a fat little kitty?  Oh yes you is!  coochy coochy coochy! 

Anyhow, apparently Fatty is heavy enough to cause the stairs to creek like a human.  Don't judge me.  My other cat is slim and fairly high-strung. 

So, after that, I was a little...shall we say UNNERVED, and I decided to take some precautions.

The next morning, when the kids came scampering out of bed and busted in to my sanctuary, just as they were hopping on the bed, they discovered this


That's RIGHT, BITCHES:  anyone who STEPS UP TO ME is going to get a MOTHERTRUCKING ROLLING PIN TO THE HEAD

So, the kids spotted it on The Man's pillow.  And they started laughing.  In fact, they thought it was rather hilarious;

"Mo-om!  You have a ROLLING PIN on Daddy's side of the bed!"

Me:  "that's right, children.  Meet your NEW DAD."

Then Ella slid her hands under the pillow;

"And a PHONE UNDER THE PILLOW?!?"

They both had a good laugh over this.  What?  If some dirt bag is busy laying his shoulder into your back door, are you going to sit back and CRY, or are you going to WHIP THAT CORDLESS PHONE OUT FROM UNDER THE PILLOW AND DIAL 911?

Yeah.  Looks like SOME of us are SURVIVORS. 

Okay, so maybe the kids were right.  Maybe I was being a little bit ridiculous.  After all, this rolling pin is nothing like The Man.  It's just a solid chunk of wood. 

Something was missing. 

So, I dressed it up a little.  I think it's a pretty good likeness, myself--and almost as useful as my REAL husband, HAW, HAW, HAW!  Whattaya think?


"I'm still only going to clean the litter box twice a week, no matter the stank." 

Ella:  "MOM, this rolling pin is NOT our Dad.  It's a ROLLING PIN, for ROLLING DOUGH."

Jack:  "how do you know it's a rolling pin?"

Ella:  "I know EVERYTHING."

Jack (copying her):  "I know EVERYTHING."

Ella:  "JACK!  SHUT UP!" (racing after him with pure rage)

Jack:  "MONSTER!  AAAAAAAAH!"

Then they cracked their heads together by accident, which was followed by much wailing. 

I don't care what the kids say.  I'll take The Wood Rolling Pin Man to bed tonight too.  He's the strong silent type, and he makes wicked good pie pastry. 


Monday, July 4, 2011

Two Good Articles On Grief


Lately, I had been feeling...blah.

It was like everything had gone beige.  Nothing seemed particularly exciting, and a lot of things felt pointless. 

My Mom died April, 2010.  She had what we thought was a lung infection, that she hadn't been able to shake for several months.  Then she caught a nasty flu bug that my kids, husband and I had in February, and the fever that came with it never went away. 

I won't go into detail about this again.  I have written all the painful details HERE

What I have come to realise is this:  in this whole grief process, one expects to move through certain stages in a logical pattern.  The sad part is, that most people around you will expect you to move on, to be strong.  There is an unspoken time line for this to occur, but it is definitely there. 

After a certain amount of time, crying becomes less acceptable; like you really only had the right to that luxury within the first few weeks after the death of that loved one.  If you don't cry in front of anyone, people will marvel over how "strong" you are. 

People will offer you many platitudes about your suffering.  You will be urged to look on the bright side of the death of that person you loved so dearly.  Your grief may even be overlooked to a certain extent; measured against other deaths in the world. 

I had heard many times that the "death of a partner" is one of the most difficult deaths to deal with.  But what about the fact that she was my MOTHER, and a very important person in my life besides that? 

So, I had been moving along logically, like a good griever, through all of my stages.  I could practically check them off with a pen. 

That is, until reaching that one year later mark. So, I did some googling, as I am wont to do, and found two good articles on grief. 

One is called "Grief, Healing and the One-to-Two Year Myth." by Karen Carney.

From the first article, I realised I'm not cuckoo. Hooray, how nice to know. Basically, after all that scrambling around during the first year to regroup and reorganise, what is left are feelings of profound sadness. 



The other is "When your mother dies" by Rona Maynard:

"My mentors prepared me for the passage rite ahead. In my mother's deserted house, as I stuffed endless garbage bags with bric-a-brac that she had treasured and no one else would want, I knew other daughters had faced the same heart-piercing duty. I belonged to a sisterhood now—one every woman must eventually join unless her mother outlives her."



Hopefully these articles will bring someone else comfort as well, and if they do, well, that makes me happy.






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