Friday, March 31, 2006

We're into day 5 with Spencer's illness. It has been one. long. week! We entertained ourselves with stamps again yesterday. Here's Spencer's work:

And mine:

My boys love stamping with me. I have some fun sets that have things like bears, toys, cars, planes, creatures. They make their own coloring pages and we use chalk, crayons or watercolor pencils. They make little cards for people and we spend time together around the table. It is really a side-benefit I never expected from stamping. Something about being creative with your children opens them up to conversation. It slows them down just long enough to talk to mommy for awhile. I love it.


Today was a big day for Colin: his first Speedstacking contest. We've been waiting for months for this day to arrive, and this week has been very exciting. This morning, Spencer told me he was going to go wake up Colin so he could practice, and he did. Colin was a bundle of energy. He got dressed, fixed his hair and stacked until it was time to leave.

On the long drive out there we chattered about how exciting it was to go to his first contest ever. We wondered if anyone would be faster than him. We talked about how things would be set up and how many chances he would have. When we got there, the seatbelt flew off and he was anxiously waiting to get out of the car so we could run in.

Once inside, we approached the welcome desk and asked the two women to direct us to the contest. The nice lady (the other lady was rude) said, "That was yesterday."

My face fell and I heard the beginnings of weeping beside me. It was as if I was suddenly turned to stone.

Colin and I returned to the van, our heads hung low and both of us in tears. I let down my little boy. We were both devastated. I hugged him and apologized and he said he knew it wasn't my fault. He said it as if he was trying to convince himself...I mean, how could Mommy ever let him down? I told him I didn't know what happened, but if it was my fault I was very, very sorry and sad.

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Thursday, March 30, 2006

Foolin' Around
I think my boys are at the age they would really enjoy a little April Fool's Day joke. I haven't chosen one yet and I'd love your ideas. Here's one I found on the Family Fun website I thought was funny:

Name of Prank
Underwear Switch

Describe Your Prank
My husband had been really watching his diet and working out, and he lost about 15 pounds. The problem was he was always showing me and our daughter how much flatter his tummy was and admiring himself in the mirror. WE COULDN'T STAND IT ANYMORE!

So we went and bought another pack of his brand of underwear, but two sizes smaller than what he was currently wearing. Then we washed them with some dark towels so they didn't look new, and when he went to take a shower before work we switched out all his current underwear for the new smaller ones. When he put them on he couldn't get them past his hips! He tried on all three pairs (never noticing the different size on the label)and had to wear some SpongeBob boxers to work!

That night at dinner he said he only wanted a salad. My daughter and I laughed so hard we cried ... and so did he when we told him our prank!!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

UPDATE: After the removal of a cantaloupe-sized mass and a total hysterectomy, we got good news that my friend is cancer-free!!!!!!! YAY!!! WOO HOO!!!!! I could possibly do a flip!

I am most anxious tonight for a friend who is having surgery in the morning and will discovery whether she has cancer. While she is in surgery, another friend will begin chemo treatments. Would you please take a moment to pray for both of them. They both have such inner (and outer) beauty and each has two young children. The surgery is at 8:00, the chemo is in the morning, but I don't know the time. Please pray for peace, wisdom and healing. Pray that the doctors are well rested, clear minded and steady. Thank you.

I've been home with my Spencer for three days now. He's got the fever and a few other side effects we can't mention on prime time. To cheer myself up today, I played with some of my new stamping supplies and made about 100 tags for gift giving occassions. It is not as impressive as it sounds...I make a dozen of each design all at once and stamping is about as easy as it gets. Anyway, here are some samples.
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Please Don't Put the Prego on the Bananas!
When I go to the grocery store, I have a plan. The plan has nothing to do with efficient shopping, which would require a well-organized list tailored to the layout of the store - and which list would have to actually make it to the store with me. No, none of that sort of plan, just a plan to get home with all the food items in their intended form.

I have my cart mentally divided into heavy, cold, canned, soft and non-food. When I choose my vegetables and fruits, I am careful to check for bruising and over-ripeness and generally take quite a bit of time searching for the best specimens in the bin. I bag them carefully and place them in the child seat so I can watch over them during the duration of the shopping extravaganza. I check my eggs and bread carefully and rest them up front with the fresh produce.

All meats are kept together and, as if I'm Jewish, far from the dairy products. Frozen foods are stacked together to share the cold. Cans go to the bottom so they won't roll and "sqush" anything. It is all very well organized - even more so than it will ever be at home.

When I get to the checkout, I have a system for putting the items on the runway. (Yes, I know....) Anyway, heavy things go first since I know they'll be placed in the cart first. Cans and dry goods come next, then frozen foods, cold foods, vegetables, fruits, eggs and bread. My hope, futile as it may be, is that the items will make it back to the basket grouped in the aforementioned categories. This is especially important to me on hot days, when I'll want to bring the frozen and cold foods in first.

One would think cashiers would be at least aware that peoples like me exist. There is a certain persnickety segment of society that dislikes brown spots on the apples and doesn't care for smushed bread. Some of us have even heard rumors of sack boys who studied the art of properly packing the grocery bag.

But, woe is me. Invariably the canned tomatoes are packed with the sesame seed buns, the pears are thrown in with the new scrub brush and a jar of pickles, and the ice cream is packed with the shaved ham and tomatoes.


Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Green Frog Memories (see comments).

Fish, by Colin
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Seahorse, by Colin
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Sunday, March 26, 2006

I'm thinking about this.
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For a good long 8 years I've been unhappy with our bedroom. The main reason was this blue tulip border that went around the top edge of the room AND around the top of the chair rail. I know it must be difficult to understand why one would live with something unappealing for EIGHT years without changing it... I can't even believe it myself...but I've been busy! I have painted most every other room in the house, including the back porch. I've torn out and built gardens. I even laid out a truck load of dirt on my yard all by myself. Most importantly, I've been busy having and rearing children.

I think I've been frozen with indecision about the bedroom all this time, too. I just don't have a vision like I've had for other places in our home. So, I often sit there squinting at the tulips-that-do-not-occur-in-nature and wonder WHAT to do about them. See that tan line along the bottom. It created a nice optical illusion along the chair rail: the illusion of dust. Nice, huh?

I still don't have much of a plan, but I finally have a vision, so I tore it all down this weekend. Best thing I've ever done.
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So, as we sat down in church this morning I realized I had made a mistake: I wore mules (backless shoes) and failed to properly moisturize my heels before leaving home. I crossed my feet and pulled them under the pew, hoping nobody would notice. A few minutes later, the lights were turned out for a video presentation. I was relieved to have a few minutes under the cover of darkness and I reached into my handbag in search of a tube of lotion. I found it quickly, opened it and quietly moved my feet up just high enough to apply lotion without being noticed. I was quite proud of myself until the lights came up and I realized I had applied a lotion with glitter and had to endure the rest of the morning with sparkling heels!

Saturday, March 25, 2006

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Thursday, March 23, 2006

Here's Colin in Narnia this morning.
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You know how you sometimes find expensive works of art hidden behind framed prints? Well, I had a framed print of roses come apart yesterday and I found this behind it: a photo of some heavy equipment my dad used to manufacture. Yes, this was actually matted and framed! I guess my mother didn't think it would look so very beautiful in the guest bedroom, so she covered it with roses! Ha!
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The happy sunny daffodils have come and gone, the lilacs have budded and promise to bloom within days. Redbuds are in full bloom.

My backyard is Narnia.

It is beautiful, really. We have a big soft blanket of snow that twirls through the air with the slightest breeze. The children are outside exploring Narnia and throwing snowballs at each other. Colin has a new "bidness" venture: he's saving snow in the newspaper wrapper so we can have snowballs in summer.

It is the perfect day for my favorite poem:

Peril of Hope
- Robert Frost
It is right in there
Betwixt and between
The orchard bare
And the orchard green,

When the boughs are right
In a flowery burst
Of pink and white,
That we fear the worst.

For there's not a clime
But at any cost
Will take that time
For a night of frost.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Arbitrarily Arbitrating Arbitrability
Some of you may wonder what I do for a living. Well, I read stuff like this:

"Courts should not assume that the parties agreed to arbitrate arbitrability unless there is "clear and unmistakable" evidence that they did so. In this manner the law treats silence or ambiguity about the question "who (primarily) should decide arbitrability" differently from the way it treats silence or ambiguity about the question "whether a particular merits-related dispute is arbitrable because it is within the scope of a valid arbitration agreement" -for in respect to this latter question the law reverses the presumption."

This is why I write a silly blog - to counteract the effect this sort of stuff has on my brain.

Monday, March 20, 2006


A friend of mine once told me he thought I would be persnickity in my old age. Obviously it made an impact since I haven't forgotten (and it has been at least 22 years!). Recently I reminded him of that and he remembered, but said he thinks he was wrong and I'm not so very persnickity after all. Of course, I'm not really into my "old age" either...but back then we thought 42 WAS old age, so it still counts.

I appreciate him retracting his statement and acknowledging that I am, after all, a fairly light-hearted, optimistic old gal. Still, I got to thinking today he may not have been too far off the mark. You see, I may actually be a little bit, um, demanding in regard to what I consider civilized behavior. For instance, I think men and children should offer their seats to women - especially older or pregnant women. All able-bodied people should offer their seats to handicapped persons and the aged. In fact, they needn't even offer, but should merely stand leaving the seat free for such persons. I know I'm out of date on this point because I routinely observe families with pre-teen children lounging about the waiting areas of restaurants, usually with their legs spread apart, their bottoms near the edge of the seat and their shoulder blades plastered against the wall.

See what I mean. Persnickety.

I also got a little worked up today after 3 salespersons plowed right past me, clearly expecting me to step aside so they could get through. Mind you, I try to stay on my side of the aisle and normally take great pains not to inconvenience others, so I wasn NOT blocking the traffic flow! One salesperson came upon an aisle at the same time I did, but managed to squeeze in there before me with nary a word. She had somewhat of an expression of entitlement on her face.

I wanted to throw my arms up and yell, "Where is the deference????" But I knew it would fall on deaf ears. Employees are not taught that they should be deferential to customers. I don't know why. It seems obvious to me, and maybe it seems obvious to managers, but not so much to their employees. Maybe, just maybe, it is old fashioned to yield to the bread and butter.

I would shop elsewhere, but these days there is nowhere to turn.

The Persnickety Homemaker

Sunday, March 19, 2006


It is time, once again, for the "what's-on-your-desk" game. Here's what's on mine:

Part of a coral reef (plastic), a green army tank, eyelash curler, camera, rubber cement, hair clip, felt valentine bag, scrapbook paper, Colin's pants (?), kaleidescope, 5 magazines, 2 Franklin books, laser tag score sheets, nail file, BSF notebook, Colin's Speedstack artwork, an optical illusion disk from my mom, Colin's dental report card, cases to read for work, 2005 tax file, a map, hot tea with milk and sugar, door parts.

What's on your desk?
Just a Few Things:
1. Rain!!!!!!!!!!!
2. Spencer asks, "Mommy, can I stay up early tonight?"
3. Man, I've got a lot of work to do!
4. Colin went to play laser tag yesterday and came home with some bling. Actually it is a flashy gold dollar sign on a long black satin rope. It hangs right in the middle of his chest. That dude is hip hop.
5. I'm in charge of our school scrapbook, which is fine, except starting this year we will actually have a school yearbook. So what do you think? Do we need a scrapbook and a yearbook?
6. Rain!!!!!!!!!! Woo Hoo!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, March 17, 2006

Another thing to like about Oklahoma City? Our beautiful capitol building!


Mystery Shopping
The boys and I went grocery shopping today and actually had fun! They were all wired up to shop for produce and had a great time weighing their selections and putting them in bags. The selection today was wonderful, so it really was hard to resist.

While I was looking over the orange juice selection, Colin asked if he could choose the eggs. I told him to be sure to check that none of the eggs were cracked. He opened a container of brown eggs and exclaimed, "Wow! Spencer! Come look at this!"

Spencer ran over and peeked in. "Wow!" he said, "CHOCOLATE EGGS!"

"Yeah! Chocolate eggs! Can you believe it?"

I wasn't about to correct them, so I just continued to stare at the orange juice, trying not to smile. They marveled at the chocolate eggs, but decided to go with vanilla. I didn't say a word as we made our way to the bread aisle.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Here's another thing to love about Oklahoma: Leonardo's in Enid. Indoors you'll find a fun, interactive science museum. Outside you'll find a 3-dimensional maze of a castle complete with a beautiful garden, an interactive water feature, shaded seating for the parents and actual paved sidewalks!

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Another fun thing about Oklahoma City is the Oklahoma Railway Museum. I'm not saying it is the best railway museum in the country, but it certainly the most people-friendly. Guests are invited to climb aboard any of the cars and explore the insides as well as the outsides. You'll feel like you've stepped back in time in the quiet little gift shop which is devoid of fancy marketing schemes. From time to time, you might even find Thomas the Tank Engine, who LOVES Oklahoma City!


Friday, March 10, 2006


Driving around town today I pulled up next to a green Chevrolet Chevelle driven by a man with a 'fro and a pick stuck in the side. I kid you not, he was listening to 70s music. It made my day and got me thinking we needed a little karaoke tonight!

Car Wash
Rose Royce

You might not ever get rich
But let me tell ya it's better that diggin' a ditch.
There ain't no tellin' who ya might meet. .
A movie star or may be even an Indian Chief.

(Workin' at the) car wash.
Workin' at the car wash yeah !
Come on and sing it with me car wash.
Get with the feelin' y'all car wash yeah.

Come summer the work gets kind a hard
This ain't no place to be if ya planned on being a star.
Let me tell you it's always cool
And the boss don't mind sometimes if ya act a fool.

At the car wash
Talkin' about the car wash yeah!
Come on and sing it for me car wash.
Car wash yeah!

(Work and work) Well those cars never seem to stop comin'.
(Work and work) Keep those rags and machines hummin'
(Work and work) my fingers to the bone
(Work) at five I can't wait 'til it's time to go home

get your car washed today.
Fill up and you don't have to pay.
Come on and give us a play.
Get a wash right away.

Car wash talkin' about the car wash yeah!
Woo car wash

Those cars never seems to stop comin'
I say
Keep those rags and machines hummin'


Thursday, March 09, 2006

OW comes Gleeson sharing the most excellent applied mathematics to the formation of the beautiful lettering. What an inspiring answer for all those who wonder why we should study advanced mathematics!

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Time for a little shoe round-up for spring! It is also time to start the pedicures! Here's a fun little slide from Talbots.
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Ettienne Aigner's Selleck
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Vigotti's Donatella
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Sabine (red silk shoe) by RSVP
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Ettiene Aigner's Welsh
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Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Another lovely day, but no rain yet. When it finally rains, I suspect you'll find Oklahomans out dancing in the streets! We saw a bit of lightning tonight and it stirred up some excitement.

We took our boy scouts to a recycling plant today. The parents thought the process was very cool. The scouts thought the bits of plastic they found on the ground were cool. Everyone went home happy - some with pockets full of itty bitty trash.

I saw a store this week called, "Pam's Hands and Foot Spa." Why not "Hands and Feet" or "Hand and Foot"? I don't know. . . I just don't know.

It may be Engrish, which brings me to another thing I like about Oklahoma City: we have a large, thriving Vietnamese community. I suspect non-okies might think we have nothing but cowboys and indians around these parts, but we actually have a large asian influence near central Oklahoma City. We have several large grocery stores, dentists, lawyers, veterinarians, accountants, churches and restaurants....even a Vietnamese walking mall. If you would like to try authentic Vietnamese food, try Lido. . . or grab a sandwich from Saigon Baguette in the milk-bottle building.

Which, of course, leads us to Greg Burns, one of Oklahoma's most celebrated artists. Mr. Burn's creates incredibly detailed depictions of Oklahoma's most-loved buildings. His detail is all the more incredibly when you consider his physical handicaps. He is a true Oklahoma hero.

Monday, March 06, 2006

It was a glorious day! We had sunshine and a light breeze. It was around 80 degrees. Of course we need rain, but today was still wonderful. After Spence and I enjoyed lunch on the back porch, we headed out for a bike ride around the lake. Spencer was adorable on his tiny bike with the training wheels, peddling a mile a minute! If he turned around to look at me, he would veer off into the grass, but he kept doing it anyway!

After our ride, we came home and he played in the back yard with Colin while I took a cat nap on the bed with all the windows open so I could hear the children and the birds. The boys stayed outside all evening, finally coming in for a warm shower. If they had taken a bath, it would have all turned to mud!!! It sure is "dusty" back there!

So, with that, I give you one of my favorite things about Oklahoma City: Lake Hefner. Lake Hefner is known as one of the best lakes in the country for sailing! The wind conditions are favorable and constant, so you can really go for a ride! There are trails, playgrounds and picnic areas. On the south side is a golf course. You will see kite boarders, kayakers and sailboats. You can stop to eat at Bahama Breeze, Redrock Canyon Grill or Pearls, all of which have outdoor lakeside seating. The bird watching is fantastic, and it is a great place to take a blanket and a picnic!

Calling All Oklahoma Bloggers
We've all heard that Charles Barkley made some disparaging remarks about Oklahoma recently. Not that he has ever been to Oklahoma…he just has an image in his head and feels free to make bold statements based thereon. As I read an article in the Daily Oklahoman yesterday about the worldwide perceptions of Oklahoma, it occurred to me that we, as bloggers, are in a unique position to address these errant ideas. We can show the world what Oklahoma is really all about.

You know, it occurs to me that most people who have wrong ideas about places have never visited, and the Midwest is subject to more than its share of wrong ideas because few people visit us! Midwesterners are surprisingly well traveled. We visit New York and Seattle, San Diego and Miami. We cross the seas for Japan, Russia, Rwanda, Nigeria, England, Switzerland, France and Germany…we are actually quite aware of the world around us. Ironically, it is the sophisticated city dwellers who look down on us as if they have special information, yet they haven’t traveled to our small towns and experienced our lifestyles the way we have gone out to learn about them.

So, in the spirit of education, I’m calling on all Oklahoma bloggers to write a post or two about what makes your community special. Dispel the notions that we all live in huts (or teepees!) and subsist on public aid. Maybe you could post photographs of ACTUAL PAVED ROADS! Let’s give the world a look at our beautiful, vibrant and diverse state!

(If you don't have a blog, you can email me your thoughts and photos and I might just post them!!)

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Tank Battle (by Spencer)
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Peter & Aslan (by Colin)
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Thursday, March 02, 2006

Well, I called the dentist to make an appointment and they had just had a cancellation this morning! The dentist found some tooth decay which will require a filling. He took this photograph of the tooth to show us what it looks like! Amazing, isn't it? He also had X-ray images from the inside of the mouth, which showed that Colin will most likely be in 2nd grade before he ever loses a tooth.
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Wednesday, March 01, 2006

All I Want for Easter is to Lose My Teeth!
Colin is sad. He still has all of his teeth.

Last night, he tried to pull one out with a napkin. After school, he asked me to take him to the dentist to have a tooth pulled. Tonight he ate an apple for dinner in hopes it would jar a tooth loose. Nothing worked.

He got out of bed tonight and came to me saying, "Mommy, I need to tell you how I've been feeling. Last night I was so sad I cried. . . and I'm just so sad."

He just wants a tooth to come out. He does have a few concerns, though. First of all, he is hoping the tooth fairy stuff is not real, because he is afraid she will take his tooth. He NEEDS his tooth for his collection of body parts! He is also concerned the dentist will keep the tooth. I told him not to worry, nobody can make him give up his tooth.

We're overdue for dental appointments, so I told him I would call his dentist in the morning and get an appointment. I told him he may not pull a tooth out, but we will get X-rays and see if those big teeth are coming down. In the strange household I live in, my son ran out of the room yelling, "Good news, Daddy! Mommy is going to take me to the dentist!"


Oklahoma Politics
Colin and I are working on a project and need a little help from our friends. We are making a 3'x5' collage about Oklahoma Politics. We are hoping to collect images of hundreds of political buttons and stickers to use for the collage. They can be for a political party (rep, dem, ind...), a campaign for office (in Oklahoma), or for a political cause. I can accept emailed images and I can also borrow your items and scan them myself. If you can assist, please leave a comment or email me at happyhomemakerblog at yahoo dot com. Thank you!!!