Tuesday, November 30, 2010

let's talk about holes, shall we?

Nina's sitting in the bathtub, looking thoughtful, when she says, "Hey! There's a hole back there!"

Fastforward a couple of weeks to today and I ask her to get out of the tub. She's sitting there and she says, "Wait, there's something in my bum."

"Leave it," I say, "We'll wipe when you get out."

"No! It's pointy," she replies.

Oh geez.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

git 'er done

I've blogged about Michaels' craftiness with glue, and now I'd like to add tape to that list of preferred fixer-upper supplies. Came home to this:

Charming, isn't it?

Saturday, November 27, 2010

the audrey turner show

Audrey and the girls are playing an awesome winter blues game called "How long can we stay in the playroom in our fort?" Michael and I think it's the best game they've ever come up with. I served them lunch and cookies and they've been up there for at least 3 hours. Then Audrey came to the top of the stairs...

As she throws herself on the ground and starts to sloooowly slide on her butt down the stairs, she whines, "Gracie won't let me sleep in the same spot. I have to move to a light spot. I don't want that spot. It's. Not. Fair!"

Michael and I hide our laughter and begin to twirl dramatically and say, "It's the Judy Miller Show!" Audrey gets ticked and crosses her arms. If you haven't already seen the SNL skit The Judy Miller Show, check it out. As much as Ramona is Audrey, so is Judy Miller.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Audrey's views on loooong ago

Audrey was staring at a clock in our living room.

"Mom, there's something interesting about this clock. Those aren't really numbers." I replied, "Those are Roman numerals. They were used a long time ago." After thinking about it she said, " a looong time ago? Like in the 1970s?" I said, "No, way before that." She said with confidence, "Oh, you mean like when they wore long, dirty clothes, right?"


In the car, Audrey says, "Did you know that a looong time ago people didn't even have any food to eat? They only had fish and other gross things to eat."

dinner talk

Last night at dinner it was just me and the girls. With her mouth half-full of spaghetti, Audrey asked thoughtfully, "If you toot, would it push your baby out?"

Me: Um, no.

Monday, November 15, 2010

remember how I said Auddie is a great Catholic school girl?

Here's a picture Audrey drew today... please be impressed by the detail.

Red arrow - Jesus on the cross
Blue arrow - Father Champeaux
Orange arrow - Me holding two glasses of wine (no, not because of last weekend, Kayte & Mike Denslow) - for communion (never taken it, but Audrey doesn't know that, nor do we need to answer those questions right now)

I also love that she refers to the alter boys/girls as "the workers."

dinner with the Turners - worse than being at Chuck E. Cheese on a sat night

In general, Michael and I loathe weekday dinners. Over the past 5 years, we've turned into the parents we didn't think we'd be--making different meals for our kids.

Audrey has a gag reflex from hell and Nina's just a pill. To be fair, though, I should mention that they do have individual tastes and we know this because they have actually ventured outside of the nugget bubble.

For example, Audrey likes carrots and turkey sandwiches with mayo. Thin, deli-sliced turkey. Too thick and she'll gag and wrinkle her nose. Or if it's good turkey - like the kind I'm craving as Thanksgiving gets closer -- she starts to have a conniption fit at the thought of eating it.

Nina, unlike Audrey, enjoys rice. White rice, brown rice, gross rice, whatever. And they both eat tons of fruit, so there's hope.

But last week it occurred to me that we're just two weeks out from Thanksgiving at my in-laws. I'm almost certain they think I'm an angel and #1 Mom, but to be sure, I wanted to get the kiddos eating an actual grownup meal with us on this special day.

So, as of last week, the girls eat what we eat - every meal. Now, we don't eat caviar, liver, salmon, or anything even remotely exotic, so it isn't like we're torturing the kids. But tonight, you would have thought I was feeding Audrey a two-day old, smelly egg salad sandwich when I put a GRILLED CHEESE sandwich in front of her.

Gagging, plugging of the nose...cries of "I'm gonna throw up! I'm serious!"

Nina, on the other hand, was Eddie Haskel and kept saying, "Audrey, I'm eating it.'s good for you, Audrey. Stop being a baby...I'm gonna get a treat....I'm not gonna throw up..." and so on, and so forth.

I was sitting with a napkin over my face because I was so frustrated I wanted to scream and Michael, bless his heart, just kept at it with Audrey...encouraging her every step of the way.

She finally did eat the bloody sandwich, but not without Nina serenading us with, "Mary had a little man, little man, little man..." At least it gave us something to chuckle about.

Anyone wanna join us for dinner this weekend?

Friday, November 12, 2010

Ramona is Audrey. Audrey is Ramona.

Michael took Grace and Auddie to Ramona and Beezus when it was in theaters this summer. To my surprise, Michael really liked it -- even got teary (but don't tell him I told you).

I bought the movie this week and we declared today Family Movie Night, complete with a concession stand. The Turner girls worked hard at the setup (see below). Nina said popcorn was "40 bucks" and Audrey wanted to sell "Indian headbands" for $20. Not a bad deal. Grace was the more reasonable merchant and she sold us 5 movie tix for 50 cents.


I was looking forward to the movie because we've said for several years that Audrey reminds us of Ramona the Pest. I didn't expect to cry nearly eight times during the movie, but it was so Audrey.

*Ramona's nickname is Pickle. Audrey's is Noodle.
*Ramona likes to wear firefighter boots to school. Audrey likes to wear a feather in her headband so she looks like the Indians she's been learning about.
*Ramona tries to do the right thing, but somehow it turns out badly and she ends up in trouble.

I love when Ramona is presenting to the class and she says they have a big hole in their house. No one believes her, including the teacher, and she's asked to sit down before she gets to finish. That's Audrey, and it reminded me to slow down and listen closer to her stories that seem outrageous because there's likely more truth than fiction in them.

An example: In the first month of school, she told me the kindergartners didn't have to go on the Friday of Sausage Fest. I didn't believe her, didn't check the school calendar. Dropped her off that morning and got as far as Starbucks when the school secretary called to tell me the kindergartners didn't have school...and that Audrey was just coloring in the office, waiting for me. When I picked her up, she looked at me and said, "I told you so, didn't I?" She wasn't rubbing it in, she was just being matter-of-fact. It was a lesson learned for me.

I'm so thankful for my Audrey--antics and all. She, like Ramona, can teach us all a few things.

saints and other important figures

As I was driving Auddie home from school today she started another uncomfortable religious conversation with me. It's uncomfortable because I don't know how to answer her questions. She doesn't know that I actually study the little religious workbook sheets she brings home so that I can be somewhat intelligent about it.

So she says, "Do you know what Saints are?"
Me: Yes
Auddie: St. Patrick...and St. Lucy...and St. Margo...
Me: Um, sure. (verified later with Michael that there is no Lucy or Margo in the lineup)
Auddie: ...and the Tooth Fairy.
Me: Well, yes.

growing up

Nina said to me this week, "I already had a granola bar for breakfast, but it only made me grow to here (she puts her hand to the top of her head)...maybe I need to grow with pancakes so I can get here (puts her hand high in the air).

lesson learned

I pulled into the garage today and saw that Nina had a bloody nose. She was milking the attention as I took off her shirt, assuming she needed to cool down, etc. Then she said in a sad, sad voice, "Well, maybe I picked my boogers a lot..."

spirit fingers

We took the girls to a Bombers football game two weeks ago. The cheerleaders were handing out flyers for a cheer camp--the younger Turner girls were all over it. I asked Grace if she wanted to go and I got the non-committal, almost-teen shrug, scrunched nose and "sure," which I interpreted as "only if you make me." So, it was up to Auddie & Nina to leave the Turner imprint on the cheer squad.

We brought along Audrey's friend, Faith, and at first the three girls stood off to the side of the 75+ group of girls. Ages ranged from pre-k to 5th grade. Our girls were among the smallest. Audrey didn't get to use her hands for at least half an hour because Nina had a death grip on one of them.

As soon as the cheerleaders put the kids in small groups, that's when the Turners really started to shine. And by shine I mean become their usual high-maintenance selves, mixed with a little bit of cheer.

In the first 45 minutes, Nina took 5 water and 3 bathroom breaks. Pretty normal day for us, but a bit shocking to the cheerleaders, I'm sure. And thank goodness the camp was 4 hours long because it took Audrey and Faith about 2 hours to really warm up to things.

During the two hour warmup, amidst Nina's "breaks," Audrey came over to tell me that a scratch on her face she got days ago from Fredo "really, really itches and it's just driving me crazy!" Suck it up, friend, you're a cheerleader for a day. The Faith had something bugging her in a part of her shoe. Fixed that. Then Audrey's tummy hurt. "I mean, I had a juice and two cookies at snack, but my tummy is growling...I'm starving!" Again, suck it up.

Now you're probably wondering what the girls were actually learning during this time. They observed a lot of "spirit fingers" -- "a valuable tool," said Michael. They learned a cheer about how hot their team was, and they learned to shake their booty. For those of you who already know my girls, all of these things were right up their alley.

As I walked Nina to one of her bathroom breaks, I asked what her favorite part was so far... "Well, that boy lifted that girl with the sharp teeth." I did not ask follow-up questions.

So our cheer camp ended with a bang. Nina marched herself up with the cheer squad when they were being introduced by their coach. She was so small amongst them that I don't think anyone really noticed. Then during the performance for the parents, Audrey demonstrated that she's really only ever one beat behind everyone else -- not three beats, as I previously thought.

Enjoy the mini videos.

Monday, November 8, 2010

when crap happens (again)

Today was one of those days when I cried to Michael when he got home. I also sent him a variety of manic text messages throughout the day -- some with cute, funny pictures of Nina's wardrobe of the day (see below), others with a WTF connotation because I just can't believe the chain of events that can happen in the day of the life as a stay-at-home (but rarely at home) mom. Here's an example:

Nina and I go to lunch with Britt & Brax. Nina refuses to eat any of her lunch, makes me pinky-swear (literally) that it "tastes good" before she even tries a bite. It's KRAFT MACARONI & CHEESE at a restaurant. (And it's the best damn mac & cheese I've ever tasted, in case you're wondering.) We leave the restaurant with her throwing a temper tantrum (thanks for tolerating B&B!).We get in the car, she screams for 5 minutes, then is out cold for a brief nap.

I have to kill some time before we pick up Audrey, so we got to Fred Meyer (here's where it gets fun). I have to go to the bathroom -- too much iced tea at lunch -- but Nina is still sleeping. I planned to just lay her in the cart on a coat, but I know the Freddy's plush restrooms can't fit a cart. Pickle #1. I leave our cart parked outside the bathrooms. Nina's over my shoulder, drooling in her sleep. I wedge us into a stall (can't use the handicrapper--thanks MT for that clever one--because it isn't presentabl). I hang my purse on the hook and then glance down to see if I dare set Neens on the floor. No can do.

I hold her nearly 30 pound body in one arm and undo my pants one-handed. Then I sit with her on my lap, go quickly, wipe, miss getting the t.p. into the toilet (oh-so-glad I didn't set her down on the floor), get pants back up one-handed, flush with foot, grab purse, and head out to wash hands (also a challenge). I'm feeling pretty darn proud of myself at this point. Sign me up for a multi-tasking competition, por favor.

Now I'll fast-forward to waiting in the parking lot of Audrey's school, about 30 min later. We have 25 minutes to kill so Nina's in the back eating nuggets and I'm surfing the net on my bberry. Nina toots LOUDLY twice. She giggles, I glare and ask her to excuse herself. Then she says "I need to potty real bad."

For those of you who know Nina, she ALWAYS has to go potty. It's her favorite pasttime, so I don't always hop to it when she tells me to. But I think back to 5 minutes earlier with the toot-o-rama and we jump out of the car and run into the church office where I know they have a bathroom (because we've used it umpteem times).

I close the door, turn Nina around and pull down her tights. Out falls a teeny turd.

I was so shocked that I wasn't sure, at first, what it was. She never indicated that anything actually happened in her drawers. I said, "Nina! What's going on? You peed and pooped your pants? Why didn't you tell me?" She shrugged her shoulders and said, "I didn't know I did. Sorry." Then she began a 10 minute sing-song about "so happy Christmas is almost here." I stripped her down, gave strict instructions not to let the wind catch her dress while we were outside getting Audrey, and off we went.

Now it's 3:00 and I have a brief shoot at 3:45 at the park -- and the girls have to come with me. I can't take nearly-naked-Nina, so we dash to Freddy's again to buy some new clothes. Made it to the shoot with 5 minutes to spare and Audrey even got an outfit out of the deal.

And what did I get out of the deal? A tasty hard cider and a box of rice a roni at the end of the day.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

the glue that binds

Michael thinks glue fixes most problems. Door knob fall off? Glue the sucker on. Toilet paper holder jiggle? Glue it. Got an awesome patch that you want on a shirt? Glue it, of course. And, last but not least, even if you have a tear in the butt cheek of your trousers...Michael will offer that glue can make it all better.

So it came as no surprise when Audrey told me today after school, "Mom, Madison lost a shiny thing on her shoe. It fell off. She still has it, though, and I told her my dad was a really good gluer. Don't you think he's the right person to fix it, Mom? I can have Madison's mom write a note and send her shoe home with me for Dad to fix."

No loyalty or just following the rules?

Audrey learned about house fires today at school. The mobile burning home was brought in and the firefighters talked about stop, drop & roll, etc. The part Audrey retained best, however, was this...

"Mom! Most important. If you leave something in the house, DON'T GO BACK AND GET IT. Like, if you leave Nina, don't worry about it. Leave her. DON'T GO BACK AND GET HER."

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

When illness strikes...

It's been a while since I blogged. Or at least it feels that way. I'm on my second week of illness, but each of the two weeks has been a cornucopia of symptoms, keeping me on my toes.

Last week's illness is a funny story now, but it wasn't last Wednesday when I was in the fetal position on the floor with "happy" stickers on my bathrobe.

The day started like any other weekday -- me running around like a chicken with my head cut off, the girls either chasing me to ask questions or completely ignoring me as they sit zombie-like in front of the t.v.

As I drove Audrey to school, my stomach started to really hurt. Not. Good. I practically shoved her out the door so I could get home...certain that if I could lie down for a few minutes, I'd feel better.

First I called to cancel my dental appt for later that morning. The receptionist sounded skeptical of my last-minute excuse, but if she saw me at the exact time I was to be in their office, she would have insisted I remain at home.

Nina and I get back home and I lay on the couch, stomach cramping. I can't tell if I'm gonna puke, but I know the pains aren't from hunger (I actually hadn't eaten anything, but that also helped me rule out food poisoning). I tell Nina that I can't take her to school because I'm too sick. She barely looks at me because it's a critical moment on Curious George.

I decide to crawl into the kitchen to mix ginger and water. It's the nasty cocktail Michael always makes me when my stomach is upset and I know it'll either settle the stomach or make me barf. I'll take either at this point. So I get down the box 'o medical goodies, but now my stomach hurts so much that I have to lie down on the kitchen floor. I'm on my side, trying to get comfortable. Fetal position seems best. Tummy rumbles, I feel like I'm about to get relief...then...BAM!

I crapped my pants.

Let me rephrase that...I firehose sprayed my jeans with soupy poopy. Worst. Feeling. Ever.

So now I crawl furiously to the bathroom. Nina's still watching George. Now, this part becomes a little fuzzy because I'm not entirely sure I didn't blackout at some point. I think it was a combination of the smell, pain and downright horrific realization at what just happened and I still have a 3 year old to care for.

After what feels like an eternity, I crawl half-naked to the bedroom where I put on fresh undies. So now I'm wearing athletic socks, boy short undies and a t-shirt. The chills begin to hit me so I grab my robe from the bed. (It's important now to note that the robe was a gift from my hubby. It resembles an Easter egg because it's white, powder blue, pink and light green...striped.). My outfit just went from bad to worse.

I yell for Nina and ask her to find a phone and bring it to me. She obeys like a good little 3 year old and runs back to her t.v. I call Michael, no answer. I call his cell, no answer. I need help. Pain is awful, so wiped I can't stand...praying Nina doesn't need anything any time soon. I know Mom's driving to Spokane, dad's out of town, Jaime doesn't answer her cell. I don't want to call anyone with kids because they won't want to come to the house. I don't want to call my brother because I left a haze of poo in the other bathroom and I'm certain you can smell it from the front door.

That's when I start crying and Nina kneels beside me. "You want me to call 911?"

Me: Oh god, no, thanks honey. If you do that, I'll have to crawl to the door like this. I'll just keep trying to call Dad.

I tried again 5 times and finally get him. I don't elaborate on the situation. Rather, I whimper and tell him to get home pronto. I hang up and Nina brings me a cup of water (bless her) and covers me with her baby's blankets. Then she sits next to me and pats my back.

Michael shows up, takes one look around and asks, "What's going on?" I reply, "Um, I'm sick." He makes me the ginger stuff, I barf many times, crawl into bed and sleep for 4 hours.

During this time, my dear hubby cleans the other bathroom (including the grotesque clothes that I would have THROWN AWAY). When I wake up, I notice little stickers on my bathrobe. "Nina? Did you put these on me?" She replies, "Yep. So they make you happy."

Love that kid.