Monday, December 31, 2007

Goodbye 2007, Hello 2008!

I'm pretty superstitious when it comes to things like this. I'm generally afraid of acknowledging how good things are because I'm afraid that, by saying it aloud, I have tempted the fates to screw it all up now. But, on this final day of 2007, I've gotta do it...

I am truly blessed. I have a great husband and four beautiful, healthy and funny kids. I have a mom and sisters who I'm happy to say are my best friends. I have an extended family that generally gets along and is supportive of one another. I have good friends, near and far. I have a beautiful home and the luxury of staying at home with my kids. I really can't complain about much of anything. Oh, I will complain but I shouldn't. And, relative to other families with real issues, the things I have to complain about aren't all that bad - in the big picture.

Thank you to all who have been there for me this year. It's been wonderful and challenging. Tiring and rewarding. Here's to an equally wonderful 2008 for all of us!

(Now I've gotta run and get ready for the NYE party my husband decided "we" should throw...)


Thursday, December 27, 2007

I Should Be Horrified

Instead I laughed.

I just walked downstairs to see what my big kids were doing. They were lying on the couch watching TV. I said: "Hey guys, whatcha watching?"

G: Oh, hey Mom. We're just watching Space Bag.

M: Do you want a Space Bag, Mom?

G: It's a 7 bag set!

Yep. They were quite contentedly watching a mini-infomercial for those storage bags that you vacuum the air out of. And, worse, they've clearly watched it before - because as I sat there I realized that this is the "Space Bag" that they've been asking me about for weeks...

We've got to get out of the house more during this Christmas break!

UPDATE: At dinnertime, G continued my edification on all things Space Bag.

All we have to do is put our items in, zip up the (something I didn't understand) and watertight zipper, take the vacuum with a hose and vacuum out the air.

M added: You know what Space Bags do, Mom? They clear out your closet and garage and you can store them under the bed or the basement or in the garage so you know they're safe.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Church Funny of the Week

Seems like there is at least one each week...

A few weeks ago, it was G saying "But I didn't sneeze" when the priest said "God bless you" to him in the communion line.

This week, upon the closing of Mass, the priest said, as he always does, "Go in peace to love and serve the Lord." G's response: Finger guns and a wink in the direction of the Crucifix.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Who Needs TV When You've Got This Kind of Entertainment?

Secrets, Part Deux

Yesterday, J made the big mistake of taking M with him to Christmas shop. When they got home, I jokingly asked what they got me and she smiled and told me that it was a secret. I asked her where they went and she smiled and told me that it was a secret. I messed with her a little more, but she didn't budge. And all of this was in front of J.

Today, while in the drive-thru line, I asked her again what store she and Dad went to yesterday to buy my Christmas present. I was pretty sure that she would not tell me a thing and I really didn't want to know what they bought.

M: Well, since Dad's not here, I can tell you. We went to Starbucks and bought you two purses.

Me: Starbucks?

M: Yes.

Me: Are you sure you got purses at Starbucks?

M: I said it twice Mom. Starbucks!

Now I feel bad that I asked again. I do find it funny that she told her secret because J wasn't around - and I'm not sure if I exactly believe what she told me. Really? TWO purses? From Starbucks? Stay tuned, this could get interesting.

p.s. J doesn't know what a blog is and certainly never reads this one. So, he doesn't (and won't) know that M has blown his secret.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

No Idea Where This One Came From

G was in the basement today jumping over J. He took a running start which was preceded by this rhyme:

"One for the money.

Two for the show.

Three for my grandmother.

And four like to go."

Monday, December 10, 2007

Six Year Old Boy

J and I were up at the elementary school on Friday for a meeting. Afterwards, we walked out with G's class at dismissal. One of his classmates turned around and waved to J, saying "Hi, G's dad!" (He said G's name and not just "G" but you get the picture.)

G: That's Mr. M******* to you, dammit!

Nice. That's my boy.

Red Lobster

J asked the kids from where would they like to get lunch on Sunday afternoon. He was going to run out and pick something up to bring back to the house. I'm sure that he was thinking of McDonald's, Quiznos, Sonic and the like.

G: How about Red Lobster? That's what we should get, lunch from the Red Lobster.

[NOTE TO READERS: None of my children has ever stepped foot in a Red Lobster. Not that I have anything against Red Lobster - LOVE the popcorn shrimp and the cheese biscuits...many fond childhood memories.]

Me: G, you've never even been to Red Lobster. What would you get to eat there?

G: Chicken nuggets.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Later that Day...

M: Mom, hair is not made from bones. It's just string-y stuff.

Me: Right.

M: Mr. Ross doesn't have any hair. What happened to Mr. Ross's hair?

Me: It just fell out, I guess. That happens to some men.

M: Maybe a twister came by and it pulled all of his hair out. Maybe that's what happened.

One Little Letter

Sunday, November 25th, 2:00 pm, Michael's Arts & Crafts:

M: Mom, I really want to get that weasel for Christmas!

Me: WHAT?!

M: That weasel, right there!

Me: That's an EASEL...

Monday, November 19, 2007

G is now SIX!

...M's brain is jacked up. And C has three times as much thigh as H. Happy Thanksgiving!

She's 4 Years Old

Me: You've got a serious listening problem today. I JUST told you to stand right here and you immediately walked away!

M: I'm sorry Mom. My brain is just all jacked up today....

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

I Couldn't Make This Stuff Up

On the way home from CCD last night, G informed me that some boy in his class pulled his hair.

G: I looked down and then he just pulled my hair!

Me: Did you tell him to stop?

G: Yes. And he did it again! He pulled my hair...pulled it right out of my freakin' brain!!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


On the way to school this morning, we were discussing Thanksgiving. The kids are doing Thanksgiving themes in class this week. They're making a pie or something at CCD tonight (not sure why...). So, I asked "what do you think we'll have to eat on Thanksgiving?"

G: Pumpkin pie. That's my favorite.

Me: What else do you think we might have?

G: Probably a dead turkey.

Monday, November 12, 2007

RPMs of Excitement

[Prefatory note: if I rev the engine on our Suburban to pass a car on the highway, my big kids crane to look at the RPM gauge (official name of this device is unknown to me) and always comment that I'm "going to 6!" Because 6 is the highest reading on the gauge.]

Today, M is going to a friend's house after dance class. She is very excited. She told me so after I picked her up from school.

M: I feel like I'm getting...super-excited to go to Leah's, Mom. I'm going all the way up to a 7 in my body, I'm so excited!

ETA: it's a tachometer...

Maybe They're Not as Bright as I First Thought...

In a developmental phenomenon which I cannot remember happening for the first two kids, the babies have now learned to stand up at the sides of the cribs - but have not figured out how to sit down from that position...which results in periods of frantic crying at naptime when they are stuck in a standing position (they'll stand up, thinking I'll come get them and let them skip their naps?). How do you not know how to just let go?

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Every So Often They Surprise You

M is almost 5, going on 15. She's very often a total diva, princess, attitudinal challenge. I truly have no idea how I am going to live with her as an adolescent.

But today? I picked her up from school and, as we drove towards G's school to pick him up, she said, out of the blue, apropros of nothing, "You know that blaster gun that G wants from that magazine? We should get that for him for his birthday. Because he really really wants it."

I was floored by her unsolicited kindness. And so, although I believed that I was finished with birthday presents, I will be venturing to Toys R Us to buy the blaster gun for M to give to G for his 6th birthday. Because she is sweet.

Saturday, November 3, 2007


I took all four kids to Toys R Us on Friday afternoon to get the hell out of the house/buy a birthday present for their father. All the way there and all the way home, we discussed that we couldn't tell Dad what we bought for him (Guitar Hero III). I felt like they really understood - although I almost certainly expected someone to tell him that we went to the toy store.

Anyway, upon arriving home from work, J looked through the pile of mail on the counter and grabbed a music store catalog. M was sitting at the counter eating her dinner.

J: Ooohh, look M! This catalog is full of lots of excellent gifts! [I believe he said this to be funny as a hint to me for birthday and Christmas.]

M: Oh Dad! We got you your favorite video game for your birthday!

Me: You've got to be kidding...

G: M, it was a secret. [pause] Can I tell him what it is now Mom?

Friday, November 2, 2007

We May Have Problems with 10th Grade Anatomy & Physiology

M: And, here, on your eye? This is called a pimple.

G: No. You mean "pupil."

M: Oh yeah. Pupil. Right.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Halloween Quotes

Best quote from one of my kids -

M, to G after trick-or-treating: Why won't you share your candy with me? If you asked me, I would share your candy with you...

(I have no idea if she meant to say it that way or if she is truly that manipulative at age four and a half.)

Best quote from a trick-or-treater -

Tweenage girl: Trick-or-treat! Thanks! OHMYGOD! I TOTALLY LOVE YOUR CHANDELIER!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

The Power of Peers: The Beginning

M, four and a half and in preschool at a nearby elementary school, just said to me:

"Will you tie this sweater around here [her waist], like the first graders do? Some first graders do this, Mom..."

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

1000 Words

This picture, I think, describes everything you need to know about the core differences between my 9 month old twins:

Sweet and calm? Meet wild and crazy. (Yes, that is an entire crunchy wagon wheel snack in C's mouth.)

Friday, October 12, 2007

Learning to Read

G is in kindergarten and they are learning to read and write. They write in "journals" using their own creative spelling - it's all very phonetic. And cute.

So, I had him write his own thank you email to his grandparents for a Halloween package they sent this week. It was as follows:

der mam

thk u for tu hlwn bk and kde.

luv g

Translation: Dear Mam, Thank you for the Halloween book and candy. Love, G

Then, M decided she needed to send her own email. Using a little bit of phonetic help from G, she came up with the following:

fak u grad for v hat ad v bc ad kad

lav m

Translation: Thank you Grand for the hat and the book and candy. Love M

Both messages made me laugh but I love M's "fak u"!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Educational Television

I, like most (I think) modern parents, try to fool myself into believing that the television programming I allow my children to watch is usually somewhat educational. Except Spongebob. I can't defend Spongebob - although he is actually pretty funny sometimes. Gary the Snail? He cracks me up. But I digress...

As you know, my children believe that they are fluent in Spanish because of Dora. And they often have cultural knowledge which they impart in rather jarring ways. Like a few Christmases ago, G looked at the cover of a coffee table book my mother-in-law bought in Japan and said, "Look, it's the Wave of Kanagawa!" And it was. This knowledge came from the Little Einsteins on Disney Channel.

Last night, I was showing the big kids Las Vegas on Google Earth because J and I are taking a long weekend there for our anniversary beginning tomorrow. I showed them our hotel and then clicked on some of the photos that people have posted of the hotel. M gasped and said, "GONDOLAS!" G followed up with "IT'S A CITY ON THE WATER! IT'S VENICE!!!!!" It is, in fact, the Venetian Hotel and Casino, fake in every way. But my 5 year old knows Venice! That rocks.

And that information, I believe, came from Little Einsteins and/or the Wonderpets (on Nick Jr./Noggin). So, TV is educational, right? I can stop feeling guilty for letting them watch? Right...

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

I am officially a Nerd

Okay, maybe that became official a long time ago. If so, no one has notified me yet - although it wouldn't be surprising.

I just finished reading all seven Harry Potter books. In two weeks. (Not entirely true: I listened to the first book on audio with my kids in August.)

I have four children. How did I have time to do this, you ask? I'm not sure - but I've got to run now and clean my kitchen, do my laundry and pick up the two weeks of shit that has piled up around my house...

(I really enjoyed the books, by the way.)

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Isn't It the Obvious Question?

After I set out underwear, shorts, a shirt and socks for her to change into this morning, M dressed, came downstairs and said:

M: Do we have school today?

Me: No, it's Saturday.

M: Then why am I wearing socks?

Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Y Chromosome

As you know, I've got twin 8 month old boys. Add those to the 5 year old boy and the 37 year old boy in the house and my daughter and I have a lot of Y chromosomes to deal with (I would say testosterone - but I don't think that the boys have a whole lot of that yet...).

Baby C has discovered his genitals. The second the diaper comes off, his hand goes down. He grabs his penis and scrotum until someone pries his fingers away in order to put the new diaper on. Where does this urge come from? And why doesn't it really ever go away for boys?

J's comment upon learning of C's new fascination with his own little package? "Welcome to the club, my friend. Welcome to the club."

Monday, September 24, 2007

Two Letters Make All the Diffference

So, the babies are getting their first teeth. H broke his bottom center teeth through a few weeks ago. Strangely, C got his top center teeth first (both of my big kids got their bottom teeth first as, I think, most babies do).

Anyway, J and I were laughing at C last night, calling him a little bucktooth. Enter four year old M...

M: What's a butt-tooth?

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Stranger Danger

We've been talking a lot about strangers lately. I don't think my kids totally understand the concept of "strangers" yet - but the concept, at least, has been introduced. There are periodic pop quizzes - like this morning:

Me: So, what do you do if a stranger asks you to come with him?

M: Tell him I need to ask my mom first.

Me: Good. What do you do if he says that he already talked to your mom and it's okay?

M: Tell him I need to ask my mom first.

Me: Okay, what do you do if he just grabs you and tries to make you go with him?

M: I yell loud like this - "AHHHHHHHH" - and run away.

Me: Good job.

M: Or I could yell like this - "YETIYETIYETIYETIYETI!!!!!" - and he would think I was a Yeti and be scared of me.

[Note: the capital letter y in this font resembles a capital letter v. Do not be confused - yes, she was referring to the Abominable Snowman.]

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Tact and Grace

In the midst of a room full of people eating red velvet cake, M says:

"You know, the red part of this cake looks just like my nose blood."


Monday, September 3, 2007


One baby tooth in. Nineteen to go. :(

Poor Parenting or Baby Genius ?

Should it concern me that my 8 month old son squeals with delight upon seeing this?

Monday, August 27, 2007


Today, my cleaning service came for its "every other week" clean. They were almost finished when I returned from picking the big kids up from school at noon. Shortly thereafter, the supervisor arrived to do an inspection before the cleaners left. She came in and said hello while the kids were eating lunch. And this conversation transpired:

G: What kind of person are you?

Penny: What? Do you mean what do I do?

G: Yeah, what do you do?

Penny: Well, I just kind of wander around and make sure that everyone is doing what they're supposed to be doing.

G: Oh..... you're a grown-up!

Friday, August 24, 2007


Me: G, I told you that you could play on the computer for 30 minutes and then it would be M's turn, okay?

G: Okay.

Me: Where is M?

G: She's asleep.

Me: Where?

G: Right here. In my chair.

And So It Begins....

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Google Ads are Funny

Google Ads run on this site. I won't pretend to know how they really work but it has something to do with scanning the site for content and then placing "related" ads on the page. Hypothetically, I would then get paid when people clicked the ads (probably an approximate profit of one-millionth of a cent for each click). Since only three people read this blog, I think, I'm not raking in the dough. But it's funny to see how they work.

For example, the ads are usually child- or parenting-related. My posts are usually child- or parenting-related. But a few posts ago, I wrote about how my son was excitedly calling my husband's friend a "dude" because of his appearance. And the title of the post was "The Dude". No "Big Lebowski" ads. All of the Google ads became links to dude ranch vacations. Who knew?

Creating Your Own Reality

Day Three of Kindergarten. Out marches G's class to line up to be delivered into the waiting line of moms' cars. Without G. I sat in line and waiting for another teacher to bring him out. Maybe he had to use the bathroom? I knew better....

When the line reached me, G's teacher called out his name to come up and get in the car. Of course, he didn't answer. Because he wasn't there. She told me that she was sure that he had probably lingered at the front doors of the school, chatting with a teacher. Which would actually not surprise me in the least. He's a big socializer, with adults.

Finally, after all of the other children had been deposited into their respective mother's vehicles, out comes a teacher with G in tow. His teacher walked him to the car. When he saw me, he said:

MOM! Where have you been?!

I, of course, said: I've been right here. Where have YOU been?

G: My class got lost.

(He had actually tagged along with the line going to after-school care and then realized that he didn't know where he was going, so asked a teacher to help him find his class and his mom.)

Thursday, August 16, 2007


J is at the Chiefs-Dolphins exhibition game. It is the Dolphins they're playing tonight, right? Really, who cares. Anyway, that's where he is. He ran in from work, changed, explained to the kids where he was going and left. M's only question to him was if he was going to have dinner with us.

Cut to dinner conversation between my 4 year old and 5 year old:

M: G, do you ever miss Dad when he's

G: Work?

M: No, a, uh, meeting and a football game, where he is having dinner too?

G: Yeah, I do.

M: I really miss him a lot when he goes there. I even forget about him while he's gone.

G: Yeah, me too.

M: Me three.

Across the room, feeding babies, I'm thinking: Oh, the guilt trip I am going to launch with this story will be HUGE...

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The Dude

My husband plays bass guitar in a cover band (which played exactly two shows last year and zero so far this year). The band rehearses periodically in my basement, usually after the kids are in bed. The guys came over last night before the big kids were in bed though. This was so M (again, four years old) could sing a song with them before she retired for the night: "She's Tight" by Cheap Trick. Yeah, I know....

Anyway, the kids know the other guitar player in the band, Steve, well and are always excited to see him. The drummer is a friend of Steve's and the kids have met him only once. Aaron does have a day job but has more of a stereotypical rock 'n roll appearance than the clean-cut mortgage lending members of the band. Specifically, Aaron has long-ish hair and some fairly large and visible tattoos.

So, when Steve and Aaron walked into our house last night very shortly before the kids' bedtime, G was very, very excited and kept saying, over and over, things like:

"Stevie! Stevie! You brought a DUDE with you!"
"Hey, Dude!"
"DUDE, nice tattoos!"
"WOW, look at those tattoos, Dude!"
"Mom, look! Steve brought a DUDE!"

He was told that the Dude's name was Aaron. Aaron showed G his tattoos. M sang Cheap Trick for everyone and I took them off to bed. G's last words before the lights went out (five minutes after leaving the basement where the band was)? "Mom, I miss Aaron..."


Side Note: G starts kindergarten on Friday. Sigh.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

God and the conjugation of English verbs and other important things

M told me today that God is an invisible spirit and when she ran into Him last night, He giggled. (Apparently, J, upon being asked what God was, told M that God is like an invisible spirit. Not sure why He is giggling.) UPDATE: J told M that God was always with us - like even in the room right now and that she might even bump into Him. And then He would giggle. An interesting theology lesson for you all...


Last night, G used the word "shit" - but he was trying to use the correct tense of the verb "shoot" when he did it. I wish I could remember exactly what he said - but J and I were laughing too hard once we figured out that he was talking about basketball.


And finally, M asked J how babies get into a mom's tummy. He pulled the best parent trick of all. Answered a totally different question - i.e. 'Babies start out really, really tiny and then they grow in the mommy's tummy until they're ready to be born.' She was completely satisfied by this answer. For now.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007


M: "Mom, I really need to go to that place so I can get my fingernails and toenails painted. I really need to get them painted."

She's four.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Naked as the Day You Were Born

M: "Mom, when the babies were in your tummy, did they wear clothes?"

Friday, August 3, 2007

Monkeys and Floozies - A Day at the Zoo

Went to the zoo today. Not much to say about it - it was the zoo. The kids enjoyed it. It wasn't too crowded.

This monkey stretched its leg out while we were watching it, causing G to say: "Look! It has a hand on its foot!"

Also saw this:

The pictures may be too small. (Click on the image to get a good look. Go ahead. Do it.) High heeled Barbie shoes. Short, short denim shorts. Spaghetti strapped chiffon top (which, from the front, featured a good bit of cleavage). A mane of overprocessed, overdyed and over-"producted" hair. And a trendy shoulder bag. All very sensible and appropriate for a 95 degree day at the zoo. I didn't even try to hide the fact that I was taking pictures of her.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Teeth and Star Wars

G lost his second tooth tonight. J actually pulled it, against G's will. There were tears. And more tears after he realized there was blood. Now, he's in bed. With a pair of pajama pants tied around his head as a "bandage" - kind of like the picture here. It's his "tooth pulling feel better invention."

I've been asked to call the tooth fairy to let her know that she'll need to stop by.

In other news: the kids have been playing a Star Wars video game on Xbox. G is pretty good at it. M informed me today that Princess Leia is on the "Light Side" and "Dark Vader" is from the "Dark Side." Also, C3PO is 3 years old. That, of course, makes guessed it, 2 years old. It all makes perfect sense in the mind of a 4 year old born more than 25 years after I first saw Star Wars at the big theater at the Glenwood. (Do you remember the Glenwood big theatre? It still beats the heck out of the new stadium seating multiplexes.)

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Random Church-related Post

So, I've been taking the two older kids to church (almost) every Sunday for the past year and half or so. We went periodically before that - but kids are a good excuse to not get right in the shower on Sunday morning. Anyway, after G turned four, I decided it was time to get the kids to church regularly. We trek to 9:30 Mass most Sundays now. It's very funny to watch them absorb religion (or, at least, religious tradition).

G will wander around the house some weeks, singing the Alleluia. He knows how to make the Sign of the Cross - although the second position ("the Son") is often at his belly button instead of his heart. And, most interestingly, he strikes the crucifixion pose every Sunday while sitting in the third or fourth pew from the front - directly in front of the main Crucifix. He crosses his feet, stretches his arms out with two fingers out and the others folded in and then hangs his head. A quick slap to the arm usually ends the kindergarten blasphemy...

M usually just wants to know how many more songs until Mass is over. She keeps track of the songs on the board listing the hymn numbers at the front of church. She learned to genuflect. But she jumps the gun a little. Instead of genuflecting before entering the pew, she genuflects to the bulletin table as she walks in and takes our bulletin. She's very reverent of the bulletin...

They both want to know - every week - when are they going to be able to get the Church Cookie (their phrase, not mine). They are in for a real letdown when they ultimately taste the host at First Communion. Not so much a cookie.

Today's random question during Mass: "Mom, what does domo arigato mean?" (I told him that it meant "goodbye" because I know they say it at the end of karate class. I've now looked it up - and it means "thank you very much.")

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Yesterday was a good day

For funny kid comments...

G was upstairs trying to keep M out of his room. He was standing in the doorway as she was trying to get in, telling her : "Stay out, it's private!"

Not three minutes later, he was downstairs asking me, "Mom, what does 'private' mean?"



After I explained that people in other countries speak different languages, I asked G what language he spoke.

His answer: "I speak Spanish and real talk."

Me: "That's called English."

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Saturday, July 21, 2007

New Favorite Word

G's new favorite word: "freakin'"

Today's use: It's just a freakin' dog.

We were shopping with my mom when we saw someone with an older (read: calm) golden retriever on the sidewalk at the shopping center. M was a little skittish. G's response? "It's just a freakin' dog."

Which, of course, sent me, my mom and the dog's owner into giggles - as I tried to reprimand G and explain that "freakin'" isn't so much a polite word.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Screaming Babies

Conversation in the car on the way home from camp today, while Thing#1 was screaming his head off for reasons unknown:

G: Mom, the baby is crying very loudly.

M: Yes, it's crescendo.

You will note that my 5 year old used good grammar by modifying "crying" with an appropriate adverb, a skill unknown to many adults. And that my 4 year old describes sounds with musical Italian.

Also important to note: The whole discussion began with G's exclamation of "Gee, he's FREAKIN' loud!" Yeah, that probably negates any points he got for the correct use of the adverb...

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


Helmet-less man, riding large Harley on a very busy street yesterday at noon. Talking on a cell phone (i.e. controlling his ginormous motorcycle with one hand?).

I kinda wanted to get in front of him and hit my brakes, just to teach him a lesson...I refrained, because I would have been late to pick the kids up from day camp.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Church, Age 5

Last week:

"Mom, excuse me, Mom? I really want Optimus Prime."

This week:

"Mom, umm, where exactly is my shin?"

Transformers and anatomy? Apparently, more interesting than Jesus.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

43" with a Responsible Adult

We spent all of yesterday afternoon at Worlds of Fun. G is about 48 inches tall and, therefore, tall enough for most rides other than the big roller coasters. M, however, is probably about 41 inches tall and not tall enough for many rides. There were many rides though for which she was tall enough to ride as long as she was seated "with a responsible adult."

The final ride of the evening for us was actually a roller coaster called "Spinning Dragons." M appeared to be about 2 inches shy of the height requirement for riding accompanied by an adult - per the measure stick at the entrance to the ride. We decided to try anyway as she was relatively close. She measured perfectly 43" by the measuring stick that the ride operator had! Go figure. Anyway, she loved it and, immediately upon finishing the ride, said "Let's do that again!" (She also loved the centrifugal force ride where it spins and you get stuck to the wall.)

So, while waiting in line for the second ride, my father (who was with us) and I discussed that there was a measurement for the first requirement - height - but no qualification of the "responsible adult" requirement. I think I may have been automatically disqualified from being "responsible" for even allowing my four year old child to ride a roller coaster...

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Apropos of Nothing

G: I want to go to Grandma's and watch Scooby-Do 2 because it's really scary...

M: I like things that are scary. And also things that are spicy.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Sad and Pathetic? Or Hip and Trendy?

Okay, so, for the very first time ever (that I can recall), I saw an outfit on a celebrity and specifically sought out said outfit for myself. Has anyone else done this? Is this weird? Apparently, if I'm weird, so is everyone else. I had to search and search the internet - because the damn dress is sold out EVERYWHERE. Almost every color and almost every size. I wanted it in white but settled for this rose color.

But it was so cute! [Jennifer Garner, by the way.]

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Happy Fourth of July!

Me, frazzled and trying to mix frosting while a 4 and 5 year old hover in wait, constantly underfoot: Guys! If you just leave me alone for 3 minutes, I'll let you each lick a beater when I'm finished. Do you want to do that? Lick a beater?

G, without missing a beat: Well, if you insist.


Later, in the car:

G: Look a karate center! [pointing to a storefront with Chinese characters in the sign]

Me: That's a Chinese restaurant.

G: Why do they do karate at the Chinese restaurant?


And later still, on the way home:

M: Mom, my favorite restaurant is Chik-Fil-A. I want to go there tomorrow for lunch. It's my favorite. Do you know why it's my favorite? Because they have a playground there.

[I interrupt at this point to remind her that we are going to the country club pool tomorrow and will probably have lunch there.]

M: Oh. Right. What do they have to eat there? I will have a hot dog. With ketchup and mustard. And chips. I'll probably have chips or something. And water. With ice. Or we could just bring our own lunch there. Maybe peanut butter sandwiches...or crackers...or salad...or something. And we could also bring dessert. Like, maybe cookies. Or, what other dessert could we bring, Mom? I need to bring my floatie too. It's in the garage. I'm going to wear my blue striped cover-up with the red star buttons over my swimsuit. It's really a dress. But it's also a cover-up.

[At this point, we pulled into the garage and I stopped even passively listening. She may still be talking for all I know...]

Wednesday, June 27, 2007


Theology, Age 5

"Mom, what is baptism?"

"Oh, it's like when we took the babies to church and Father Shea poured a little water on their heads and then they were members of the church for the first time."

"Right. And he held them up and they got the power of God."


"Just like Simba, remember?"

Friday, June 22, 2007

Nursery Rhymes for a New Generation

In an effort to entertain the babies, my four year old often grabs a baby foot and recites a familiar rhyme:

"This little piggy went to the mall..."

"This little piggy stayed home..."

"This little piggy had roast beeth..."

"This little piggy had none..."

"And THIS little piggy went wee-wee-wee all the way home."

I just love that the big toe gets to go to the mall.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Lunch Conversation at Costco

M: Mom, did you know that pupae ( live in French?

Me: What is French?

M: You know, where they speak Spanish...

(I think this was inspired by the episode of Wonder Pets in which they save a caterpillar.)

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

And then my five year old asked me what "BYOB" means. How does that happen?

Saturday, June 16, 2007

The Usual Suspects

Thing 1

And Thing 2

Apparently a future fashion stylist?

The one who started it all...

Friday, June 15, 2007


M: Mom, what is dynamite?

Me: It's something like a bomb. It explodes.

M: Right. And it's made from dinosaurs.

Me: What?

Sunday, June 10, 2007

The Lexicon of Parenthood

My, how things have changed in the last six years. All families have these personal words or phrases, inside jokes almost. It's funny to see them evolve in your own family as an adult.

Nightcap - noun - a baby bottle with approximately four ounces of formula (as opposed to the normal six or eight ounces), given to the baby just before putting him to bed for the night; used to convince droopy eyelids to close peacefully to sleep

Napcap - noun - the same small serving given just before naptime

Used in a sentence: "The baby's getting cranky. Will you fix him a nightcap and I'll take him to bed?"

Wednesday, June 6, 2007


M: When I grow up, I am going to be a doctor - a REAL doctor - or a veterinarian. Or a cowgirl.

Later while at a small art gallery shopping for a Father's Day gift for J -

G: Excuse me, Mrs. Art Store Lady? What is this? (gesturing to a small found item-type sculpture of a bird)

In the same regard, our housecleaner (the same one who has cleaned every two weeks since January and whose name I have told him several times) is generally Mrs. Cleaner Lady or Mrs. Cleaner. So, there's some semblance of manners there, right? Using the word "missus" indicates respect - just not enough respect to actually ask someone their proper name...

Tuesday, June 5, 2007


G and M started karate classes this afternoon. I've been told that martial arts is very good for kids with attention issues, like G. The whole "self-discipline" approach and whatnot. It was a very interesting hour. The class was made up of about ten 4 and 5 year olds - boys and girls. All beginners. The instructor started the class by telling the preschoolers that "[t]he government of the United States is a democracy. My dojo is not. It is a dictatorship and I am the dictator. That means I am the boss and you do what I say." Wow. Not exactly the warm and fuzzy demeanor of preschool teachers, tot gymnastics coaches and tap dance instructors...

He didn't let any kid get away with not listening or doing what it was that he was telling them to do. After my initial blood pressure spike passed though, I listened and watched pretty intently. He never said anything mean or demeaning. He just called them on their shit. Not listening, not sitting still, messing around, whatever. And wouldn't you know it, after only about 5 or 10 minutes, my kids were following every damn instruction, almost to a T.

And no one cried. Or told me they don't want to go back.

AND, the very last instruction of class?

Mr. S: When is Mother's Day, guys?

M: Um, it's already past.

Mr. S: Wrong answer! When is Mother's Day, guys? Mother's Day is EVERY day! So, when is Mother's Day?

Kids: EVERY DAY!!!

Mr. S: Be good to your moms, guys. See you Thursday.

When J got home tonight, I asked G to tell him what he has to do when he gets to the dojo. G showed him the stiff little bow they do. And then I asked him what do they do when the leave the dojo. His answer: "Be good to my mom." (I was looking for him to do another Japanese-style bow...) I love it.

Saturday, June 2, 2007


Before my ever-weakening memory completely fails me, I need to add a few good ones from earlier this spring.

My kids watch "Dora" on Nickelodeon and "Handy Manny" on Disney Channel, so they think they're fluent in Spanish. Like the time, Kid #1 (GBM) looked at the sacker at the grocery - a darker-skinned guy - and said, "HOLA!" And this one:

MMM: You know Mom, St. Patrick's Day is the Spanish word for Easter.

and this one, after he fell down and hurt his knee:

GBM (rubbing his knee): Oh, my ankle!

Me: Buddy, that's your knee.

GBM: Oh! Well...ankle is the Spanish word for knee.

The Wildebeest Made Me Do It

Okay, so after several months of thinking about it and talking about it, I decided to do it. A blog. Not that I have that much to say, but a break from day-in and day-out conversations with preschoolers can be nice...Every time that one of my kids says something that makes me laugh out loud (a daily occurrence), I keep saying "I need to write that down!" So here I am.

My blog title is Four Funny Kids. I know that the older two are funny. They are 4 and 5. The younger two are only 5 months old. They look like they're probably going to be funny. They laugh a lot - so they must have good senses of humor?! Anyway, the wildebeest.

This evening, leaving a graduation party for a friend's son:

GBM, apropos of nothing: What's a wildebeest?

MMM, with utmost confidence and without missing a beat: A wildebeest is a...a...a special kind of a bear. From Hawaii. You know, where volcanoes live.

GBM: Oh.