Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Incredible Shrinking M-spike

My M-spike has shrunk again, to a teeny-tiny 1.4. Ha ha ha, M-spike! Do you really think you can kill off that absurdly large spider with a sewing needle? You are so wrong.

Monday, May 21, 2012


For the past several years, we've held WCK's birthday party at a local jump-up-and-down-on-inflatable-things place. Our local jump-up-and-down-on-inflatable-things place has really good employees who are great at keeping the kids in line and keeping the party moving so we're out of there in exactly 90 minutes. Playtime, cake, presents: Boom, boom, boom. Last year, we invited the entire kindergarten class, so we ended up with 10-ish girls and 10-ish boys. Even with the great jump-up-and-down employees working to keep things under control, it still felt like 90 minutes of pure insanity. Plus, WCK ended up with about 10,000 Barbie dolls, because that's what all boys think any girl would want for her birthday.

OK, it was, like, four Barbie dolls, but their teeny little shoes are everywhere. Don't get me started on the one that came with hair extensions.

This year when it was birthday-party-planning time, I was determined to throw a kinder, gentler party. WCK agreed to have a cooking-themed party in the party room at a local grocery store, and we would only invite the girls from her class this time. The kids would bake pizzas, decorate cupcakes, and make ice-cream sundaes. Before the party, I had a vision of twelve calm little girls gently cooking. The only sound in the room would be contented sighs.

Yes, I really thought this. Because I am insane.

Let me tell you, twelve 7-year-old girls in one room are loud. Put a pile of cupcake frosting into each of their bodies, and the volume-level triples. They mean well, but they're easily excited. You mean we get to drink Sprite? SPRITE!! SPRITE!! SPRITE!!!

The poor shoppers on the other side of the store were probably running for their lives. I started to worry that my family was going to get a lifetime ban from the grocery store.

Fortunately, the lady in charge of the party was unfazed and said they were actually a very good group. She said she's had parties where she's needed to re-paint the walls afterwards. I was too scared to ask what stained the walls at a child's birthday party, but I was greatly relieved that our group was not the worst group. We're loud, but we don't do permanent damage! Yes!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Happy birthday!

Today is WCK's seventh birthday. I've decided to finally post a photo of her, but she's still not recognizable, because this photo is seven years old. Plus, the nurses at the hospital stuck a tiny bow on her head, and WCK has not willingly worn a bow since this photo was taken:

This photo was taken at the scariest moment of my whole entire life. A group of nurses who were, apparently, drunk, decided that it was perfectly fine for Jay and me to take this baby home with us and take care of her all by ourselves. What? Were they completely insane? I couldn't believe these people were going to let us take this baby. I snapped this photo in the back seat of our car just as we were pulling away from the curb at the hospital. See how she looks kind of confused? You people are going to take care of me? You?

Well, we've had the baby home with us for seven years now, and she seems to be doing OK. I've only dropped her one time.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Not a fan

WCK has written lyrics for an original song entitled, "I Hate Justin Bieber".

I Hate Justin Bieber
by WCK

I hate Justin Bieber
I hate Justin Bieber
I hate Justin Bieber
I think he is poopy.
He is dumb.
I think I should hit him on the head.
Pa rum pa pum pum.
I hate Justin Bieber.

"Pa rum pa pum pum?" I said.

"Well, yeah," said WCK. "I needed something to rhyme with 'dumb'."

You have to admit, even with the word "poopy" in it, it has more sophisticated lyrics than "Baby, Baby, Baby."

Monday, May 14, 2012

Public speaking

WCK goes to Catholic school, and this week she's reading a little prayer at the first-grade mass. Jay and I are very proud that she volunteered for this; her teacher has been trying to get her to do it for months, but WCK has always declined because she was "too nervous." For some reason, she changed her mind and decided she was fine with it. Today we practiced her prayer, and I asked her if she felt nervous. Her answer was very matter-of-fact:

"I'm just reading in front of teachers and parents and kids," she said. "It's not like I'm reading in front of vampires and witches who will eat me if I mess up."

I'm going to have to remember that if I ever have to speak in public.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

How Billy Dee Williams embarrassed our child

About a month or so ago, Jay and I saw an article in the newspaper that said Billy Dee Williams was going to be appearing at a comic book convention in the Kansas City area. We did the only thing that rational people can do when faced with such news: Jay threw on his Star Trek uniform and we grabbed our child and jumped in the car.

Jay has owned The Uniform since before we were married, and while he's been threatening to wear it for 14-ish years, he'd never actually done it until now. The Power of Billy Dee is strong.

Here's a photo I took of Billy Dee: 

WCK was less than thrilled that we were dragging her to a comic book convention to see some old guy she'd never heard of and, most of all, that her own father was wearing a Star Trek uniform. My own father used to like to go out of his way to embarrass me in public as a kid, but I think Jay has really raised the bar with the Star Trek uniform. We spent the 45-minute drive teasing WCK that she'd probably run into friends from school at the comic book convention. I should have more empathy for my child, because I remember being horrified by exactly the same thing when I was a kid and my parents forced me to go somewhere lame, such as an Oak Ridge Boys concert. What if I run into someone I know?

Of course, I failed to see the logic here. If they see me at the lame location, then they are also at the lame location and are therefore just as lame as I am. I think I feared that I'd run into some super-cool popular kids who were a) only attending the concert ironically so they could make fun of it and/or b) planted as spies and instructed to report back to the leader of the super-cool popular kids about who was lame enough to show up on a non-spy basis. Perhaps the popular kids had helicopters circling over the Oak Ridge Boys concert to see who went inside. Hey, I was never in the popular crowd. I don't know how they operate or how high their budget is. Anything is possible.

We got out of the car and headed toward the line outside the convention center, and that's when we saw  -- yes -- one of WCK's friends from school! In a giant crowd 45 minutes from where we live, this is the first person we saw. This little girl is only in first grade, so I don't think she was there ironically, but she easily could have been a spy. You can imagine how horrifying it is to have one of your friends see your dad walking around in public in a Star Trek uniform. A few minutes later, I took a photo of WCK standing next to Jay. She looks extremely ticked off, like she's making plans to run away and/or find a good therapist later in life.

It was a really fun day.

Monday, May 07, 2012

Crazy Part Two!

Today I'm here to tell you about

Crazy Decision Number Two:

We're planning a trip to Disney World. Now, I know that's not really a crazy decision, although after we got the credit card bill for our prepaid vacation package, Jay and I were all, "Whaaaaaat? We did whaaaaaaaaaat? Were we drunk?"* I specifically instructed Jay not to look directly at the credit card bill, but rather to just get a sense of it and then look away. ** Jay ended up looking at it, though, and he curled up in a ball and temporarily went blind. I think he's going to be OK once we can carry him onto the Star Tours ride. Maybe.

So, yes, millions of people go to Disney World all the time, so this is not really a crazy decision, but it is making me crazy. And, yes, I realize this is a lame problem. I should just go to Disney World and have the time of my life and shut up. I mean, I've been to Disney before, but this time I can't stop buying guide books:

If you've never read a Disney guide book, here's what you need to know: Disney guide books love to tell you -- gleefully -- that if you don't have a detailed plan for touring Disney World, your entire life is ruined and your child will hate you. After extensive reading, I am now convinced -- convinced -- that if we're not on the flying Dumbo ride within two seconds of the Magic Kingdom opening, we will all die.

Suddenly, everyone you know who has been to Disney World within the past few years becomes a goldmine of "tips." Everyone wants to share their tips with you, and everyone is dead serious about their Disney tips. My favorite tip so far came from another first-grade mother I ran into at a birthday party: "If you want to see Rapunzel, you get there before the park opens. As soon as they drop the rope (dramatic pause), you run like a bat outta hell."

Bat outta hell. Check.

When I chaperoned WCK's field trip to the nature center, I spent the bus ride grilling the 7-year-old next to me for more tips. She actually gave me a good one: If it's your birthday month (which it will be for WCK), let them know at the hotel, and then you get a button to wear. Excellent.

Sometimes you get "tips" from people, but you can tell these people did not have a Plan, and therefore their tips are lame. "Oh, we didn't go on Small World because there was a 90-minute wait." And you think back to your guide books and your Plan, and you chuckle to yourself in a superior way. A 90-minute wait for Small World? Not on my watch, sister.

I spent a couple of days having a breakdown because I couldn't figure out a good plan for Disney's Animal Kingdom. Jay says I am in charge of creating the Plan, so he wasn't too interested in hearing about my struggles. I do not want to badmouth my husband, but, my gosh, it's like he just didn't care whether we go to DinoLand first or Kilimanjaro Safari first. What is wrong with him? I know he still has some emotional damage from seeing the credit card bill, but still.

* Again, we were not.
** Yes, that was Jerry Seinfeld's advice to George about how to look at cleavage.

Sunday, May 06, 2012


During the time that my blogging was on hiatus, I made a couple of crazy decisions.

Crazy Decision Number One:

About a month ago, Jay and I had this brilliant idea that he would run the Kansas City Marathon, and I'd run the half-marathon. Were we drunk?* We got all psyched up and then signed up. Two seconds after registering, we were all, "Whaaaaaaaat? We did whaaaaaaaaaat? Were we drunk?**"

The marathon/half-marathon is not until the fall, so in theory -- in theory -- I should have way, way more than enough time to train for a half-marathon. On a good day, I can already run eight miles without stopping, which takes me about 90 minutes. (I never said that I run fast.) I figured out that a half-marathon would take me another hour. That's two and a half hours of running. I don't even like to sit through a movie that's two and a half hours long.

Anyway, I'm a little nervous about the summer, because last summer WCK and I spent a lot of time  watching Tom and Jerry cartoons and hanging out at Yogurtini and my running fell by the wayside. But it will be totally different this summer, I'm sure.

Here are my running shoes, all ready to go:

* No! We were not!
** We really weren't!

Friday, May 04, 2012

Like Backstreet, I am back! All right!

OK, I know I've been terrible -- terrible! -- about writing on the blog lately. I don't have a good reason. I'm sorry I haven't been better about keeping up. I'm not trying to make myself sound more important than I am, like huge masses of people are anxiously awaiting my next post. It's just that with a cancer blog, a huge gap between posts is never a good thing. You start to wonder if the person is horribly sick or, as my mom would say, has "passed out of the picture." I have not passed out of the picture, and I'm not at all sick. I'm just lazy. I have Lazy Disease. Symptoms include ... I'm not sure. I'm too lazy to look it up.

Then yesterday I was driving around running errands and listening to Kansas City public radio, and they were interviewing a local woman who has a blog called "People I Want to Punch in the Throat." Seriously, this is her blog. People she wants to punch in the throat. She has, like, a ba-zillion followers. I went to the blog, and it is pretty hilarious, and I agreed with most of her choices for throat-punching victims. It made me start thinking about my own blog and how I kind of missed it. I'll probably never be interviewed on the radio or get a ba-zillion followers or punch anyone in the throat, but it's my own little blog and I should probably take better care of it.

So here I am, tending to my poor little blog. I promised it all the ice cream it could eat.