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Moving Day

February 2, 2011

Moving is hard. Getting settled takes a while.

My new blog is ready!

Kind of.

For better or for worse, I’m residing there now.   And I’m ready for company.  Come on over!




Hopefully it’ll feel like home soon!

The Delousing

January 25, 2011

Today was one I won’t get back.  And do you know what? I wouldn’t want it back, not if it came with a pretty bow and a bag of pralines.

Today was not the reason I became a parent.

Wayne woke up at 6:30 this morning.  The alarm clock that was supposed to sound at 6:15 had failed to go off.  So, we were up and running late.  Already, before Monday had even gotten off the ground.

I know everyone has a different system, but this is the short longer than nessecary version of ours.

  • Get up and rush the kids to get baths.
  • At 6:30, they’re ready for wardrobe, hair and makeup.  For better or for worse, Wayne handles that.
  • I make breakfast, get drinks fixed and greet everyone pleasantly with encouraging words.  I also field questions about why school has to start so early in the morning.  I don’t tell the truth, which would sound like, “Damned if I know.” But, instead, tell them how nice it is that they’ll get out at 2:00 instead of 3:00.
  • While they eat, we try to round up shoes, socks and book bags.  Often, voices are raised and loud questions about the whereabouts of said items are asked.  The kids don’t tell the truth when asked why they don’t leave their shoes in the mud room.  If they did, it would sound very much like, “Damned if I know.”  And that doesn’t sound good coming from little kids.  Most mornings, they leave with at least two out of three of these items.  Most of the time, but we’re not perfectionists, so whatever.
  • Then they scoot to brush teeth and are out the door.

Yesterday was a different matter altogether.  As I’m preparing breakfast, Wayne comes into the kitchen with great big eyes and starts questioning me in hushed tones about what lice look like.  All I know is that they’re little bugs.  Wayne suspects that while drying Mack’s hair, he’s found some.

God help us.

I seriously can’t see without my dollar tree optical center cheaters, so I put my glasses on and sure enough. Bugs.


By this point, I kid you not, my hands were shaking and my head was itching.

Sam had what may have been nits when we looked at his head.  My itching got worse.  Wayne was looking pretty uncomfortable too.

Adam had no signs of life on his scalp, so we let him go to school.  But, had plans to treat him as soon as he arrived home, just as a precaution.

I immediately googled head lice, asked for advice on twitter, and called the school.  All at the same time.

That’s an embarrassing phone call to make, let me tell ya!   But, I felt like I had to, we are all out of absences.  Remember the Disney trips!  I didn’t really schedule those with head lice in mind.

I was told that this would be an excused absence and they wanted them to stay home and be treated. (That’s a little nugget I’ll store, just in case hooky looks too tempting on one of those pretty spring days! Head lice=excused absence.  Some days pretty weather is worth a little humiliation.) I emailed their teachers, and one of them said she’d had an “incident” on Thursday and that she was worried because Sam was so “snuggly.”  To think, we always thought that his affectionate nature was a good thing.  Who knew?  I’m pretty sure, though Mack got the blame to begin with, that Sam was the originator.

These photos pretty much prove my point.  Don’t judge me on the poor quality, they’re just submitted as evidence.  He looks like the carrier to me.

More of Sam and his harem :)

Sam, Sam the ladies man.

Alliah and Sam

Sam and Caroline at the Polar Express Day

Caroline and Sam from behind

The person I spoke with at the school gave me a few tips involving olive oil, vinegar and tequila.  (By the end of the day, I was convinced that the tequila is there to anesthetize the mother who is stuck doing this.)

Like it or not, it was battle time.

My husband went to the pharmacy, where he made the humiliating purchases. He came home with an arsenal of head lice combating weapons.  Dropped them off with me and then got the heck out of Dodge.  Using work as an excuse.  The nerve!

I was left with two children, an itchy head and a bug battle to fight.  Somehow, when I dreamed of having a family, this was one daydream that didn’t make the cut.

Step one, douse Mack liberally with a lice killing shampoo,  most likely a carcinogen that smelled suspiciously like flea dip.  It had to be left on his head for ten minutes, according to the bottle, no more, no less.  What would happen if I left it for 11 minutes?  I felt the need to be super careful, just in case his scalp was to be eaten off, exposing his skull or a thousand other scary scenarios.  So, after ten minutes, no more, no less, I added water and then lathered his little lice infested head.  While pretending that he didn’t skeeve me out.  You know, just so his self-esteem was left in tact after the delousing.

Then we rinsed the flea shampoo medicated shampoo from his head.  And applied egg/knit picking gel.  I wish I were making this up.   Then I had to comb every hair on this wiggly child’s head with a two-inch wide fine tooth comb.  Neither of us enjoyed this one little bit.

Sam on the other hand sat on the edge of the tub watching intently as I inspected every millimeter of Mack’s scalp.  I wish it had been a false alarm, but I’m pretty sure it was not.  Quite a few suspicious looking things came from his nasty little head.

After pouring over his hair for what seemed like hours, we rinsed it.  Then dried it.  Mind you, I’m going through lots of towels during this process.  After each step, I gave him a new towel, I didn’t want to put anything we’d taken off back on.

Then I poured a bunch of olive oil on his head.  Wrapped it in Saran wrap, then put a clear shower cap on him.  I gave him old soccer shorts that I didn’t mind tossing.  And we started on Sam.

Sam couldn’t understand why Mack wasn’t interested in hanging around and seeing what would come out of his head.  Mack had spent enough of his life in a bathroom and was gone.  Shower cap, or “lice helmet” as he calls it, and all.

I repeated the gruesome process with Sam, who kept referring to it as a “spa day.”

Whatever gets him through the night.

For good measure, I poured half a bottle of olive oil on my own head, wrapped it in plastic wrap and put on a shower cap.

This whole process took, and I’m not exaggerating, over three hours.

I had a pretty strong feeling that if I picked Adam up in a shower cap, and by some stroke of luck, happened to have a bump up in front of the middle school, that caused me to get the kids out of the car, wearing shower caps due to lice infestation, that Adam wouldn’t like it.  So, my sweet mother in law picked them up for me.

Adam agreed upon arriving home and looking at us that I’d made the right call.

Then I did the flea bath/fine tooth comb treatment on him.  He was not pleased.  I was not either.  That kid has a lot of hair.

Once again, Sam enjoyed it.  Always seeing the glass half full, he told Adam he was having a spa day.  Adam said it was like “spa day at the trailer park.”  (Not nice, I know.  I’m sure there are wonderful trailer parks, and I’m sorry if you live in one and this was offensive.   Sadly, the one we were thinking of, is not one of the good ones.)

I didn’t find anything suspicious on him, so he was allowed to skip the olive oil. Lucky dog.

The other two boys asked for bread an awful lot yesterday.  I finally figured out the smell of olive oil was triggering that.  Shudder.

Between treating the infested, I used my washing machine’s sanitary cycle to wash linens, and all of the towels that the lice treatment was generating, clothes the kids had recently worn, ect.  Then I sprayed it with “bed spray,” Lord help me, and have bagged them in trash bags for two weeks.  All of the stuffed animals that Sam wallows on when he doesn’t have a human to hug up with are bagged as well.  This annoying precaution is just in case some of the nits survived and hatch again.

We have to do all of this again in seven to ten days.  Joy.

I scratch as I type.  Are you feeling itchy yet?

Hours passed and I combed the little guys again, washed their hair several times, trying to get the EVOO out.  And pronounced them nit and bug free.

Wayne came home, and proved his undying love for me.  I have very, very, thick hair.  And this man, who promised to love me in sickness and in health, spent the entire night living up to those vows. (This is sickness, my friends.  This is sickness.)  An entire night, he spent “nit-picking” me.  We were like a couple of monkeys grooming each other.  I can honestly say, last night, our bathroom was where sexy went to die.  After giving me the full spa treatment, I did Wayne’s grooming.   And we were done.

We all went to bed itching like son of a guns.  The very idea was crawling on all of us.

We checked everyone out this morning and they seemed to be clear.  Pray that it stays that way.

Sorry for the length of this post, but if I had to live through it, by gosh, I was going to share it.


January 20, 2011

Okay, we’ve had our two weeks of winter, and since it’s lasted so long this year, I guess we’re all ready for summer.

I’ve started loosely planning our summer vacation.

I’m envisioning lots of beach time mixed with a very eclectic road trip.

I’m hoping(if Wayne can get away) that we’ll be able to take an east coast road trip.  Last year, I was flipping a trip to DC over in my head, but couldn’t work the dates out with my family’s pesky work and  school issues.

I’m hopeful that we can get a few weeks on the road this summer.  In my daydreams, I’m imagining the Outer Banks of NC, I’d like to take the kids to see Wild Corolla Spanish Mustang Horses.  Then maybe off to Richmond, Yorktown, Jamestown or maybe the Hampton Roads area or Virginia.  I’d like to scoot into Washington DC for the better part of a week.  Then onto Boston and on up to Acadia National Park in Maine.

I’m envisioning the Whitman’s sampler of lodging choices.  I’d like to do everything from camping in a tent to renting a cabin or house to seedy(or not so seedy) hotels to really nice hotels and resorts.  I’m checking out my options currently.  Suggestions would be appreciated!

I want to get a good dose of history, entertainment and lots of the great outdoors.  I’ve found whale watching tours and kayak trips and rock climbing excursions.  I’ve researched hot air balloon rides and archaeological dig sites.  I’ve found lobster boats that will take us out for the day.  Bike tours of the Washington DC.  Scavenger hunts all over Boston. Trails and camping areas that look like just plain fun. I’m getting very excited.

Now, if Wayne’s dad-gum business will cooperate and we can get away, I’m ready.

We all got new camping gear for Christmas.  Always planning, that’s me.

I’ve talked about it a lot with the kids, trying to feel out what they’d find interesting and all.  It’s been a great diversion since we’ve been in a lot with our two weeks of winter.

Sam, who is more like me than you could even imagine, is getting as ramped up as I am.  In fact, he’s been “practicing.”

I have a 12×12 tent set up in my living room.  It sort of fills up a room.  We don’t hang out in there much anyway, so I guess it’s not actually hurting anything.  Though, it looks pretty crazy.  I’m sort of used to it now.

Sam is sleeping in it more than in his own room.

He’s pretending he’s on a trip.

I think I’m raising a wanderer.


** The ill fitting, mismatched pajamas that Sam is wearing were his call, not mine.  You can’t accuse me of micromanaging these kids!

The Family that Dresses Together…..

January 17, 2011

I’m finding it really hard to get “family” outfits for the whole lot of us.

The family above isn’t mine, I snagged it from Google Images, but a girl can dream, right?

Clothing companies are too concerned about the individual outfits and are missing an entire market.  When is the last time you’ve been able to find  an entire outfit that matches your five year olds? There aren’t any out there.  Hard to imagine, right?

And what preteen boy doesn’t want to wear a nice corduroy romper just like his mom, dad and little brothers?  And sometimes his MawMaw? Maybe one with a nice applique that really proclaims the holiday or the season.  I don’t know about you, but it’s something I don’t want my kids to miss out on.

My husband and I have spent long evenings lamenting this perplexing dilemma.  How could they experience a proper childhood without family ensembles?  The closer the match, the better.

And just imagine the photographs.  I daydream of the possibilities.

One night, just before my birthday, Wayne took me out to dinner, and surprised me by solving this problem forever.

Yep.  You’re seeing it right.

A sewing machine that also monograms!

And lots of thread so that I can personalize everything we wear.






I’ll begin as soon as I finish my sewing classes that start this week!

So durn you, Ann Taylor! Your refusal to make clothes that fit my husband and children will bother me no more.

So there.

Yippee.  We can all be happy now!  My kids childhoods are still in tact!

I’m all about them having experiences, and this can only add a feeling of unity to our adventures.

I’ve already got five matching leprechaun outfits twirling around in my head for March.  I think I’ll surprise the boys with them! March 17th falls on a Thursday this year, maybe their dad and I could wear ours and volunteer at their school!  They’re going to be the happiest boys!  It’ll be like finding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!

Let me know, because I’m sure by Easter, I’ll be able to churn out some matching Easterwear for you and your loved ones. Get your orders in early!

I think a career is born!

Filling a niche, making the dreams of others come true.

That’s what I’m all about.

My life has purpose.

May your seams be strong and straight,







P.S. I think I need to clear something up, the wall behind that machine is not properly exposed, I would never paint anything in a color that muted! lol

Macro Friday-The Frigid Edition

January 14, 2011

I love Macro Friday, but have been out of the loop for a while.  Truthfully, I haven’t had many good macro shots.  And I hope this one qualifies.  SC has had freakish weather lately, and I took a walk and snapped a few icy shots.  These were some tiny weeds poking through the ice. Here’s my attempt at macro this morning.

And here’s a couple, anxiously anticipating the thaw, no doubt. The ice and the light made these appear almost metallic to me.

If you’ve got a good one, Laura at Blogging From Bolivia is the place to go to link up!

Have a good day!

The Tooth Fairy is Evil

January 13, 2011

For the last seven years or so, somebody at my house has been losing teeth.    They look forward to a visit from the tooth fairy.  Everybody enjoys a little easy money.

But, seriously, that chick has issues.  Every time she comes to visit, the dollars she leaves are filled with smart aleck comments in her teeny, tiny handwriting.  She heckles the kiddos with comments like, “Talk less, brush more”  and  “Flossing is good, you should try it.”   “I think there’s been a mix up, when I said ‘Brush more,’ I meant with the side of the brush with the bristles.” “Are you familiar with toothpaste? Make friends with it.”

And if that’s not bad enough, she even rejected one particularly worn down looking tooth.  She did leave one lone dollar, though.   And in microscopic print, the dollar read, “I REJECT this tooth.  What on earth would I do with it?  You need to brush and floss, mister.”

That crazy fairy is always jerking people around.  One day, she didn’t even show up!  Imagine, the nerve.   And the next night, she left a note blaming it on the smoke detector.  She said the batteries needed changing, and that the shrill beeping sound nearly deafened her.

Wing nut.

Because of our history with her,  Adam has used the very idea of her to torment Sam.

He’s got a tooth that’s dangling.  I think the whole family will agree that we’re tired of seeing him wiggle it.

Most of all, it’s making Adam particularly crazy.

And the wiggly tooth has driven him to mischief.

He forged a note from the tooth fairy threatening Sam.  It said, “Pull the tooth or else.  Signed, The Tooth Fairy”  And then in conversation, he mentioned the tooth fairy coming with a chain saw.  My oldest is as nutty as the tooth fairy, I’m afraid.

This has spooked my youngest child.  Though, not spooked enough to make him pull the wiggly tooth.  But, enough to crank up the crazy sleep behavior that I thought we had put behind us.

Every time I try to get Adam to admit it, he just laughs and won’t give Sam a straight answer.  It’s rather funny, and because I’m demented, I’ve not really forced him to ‘fess up.  I’m really not a good mother.

But, after a bout of SHR(sleep hell raising) out of Sam last night, I think I’m going to have to force the point.   It’s got to stop, for Sam’s sake and mine!

And frankly, I can’t imagine that half-baked fairy will appreciate a forgery!

And I wouldn’t want to get on her bad list.

Three Guesses

January 12, 2011

Three guesses what he’s doing.

Figured it out yet?

I have got to get this kid a camera of his own!  I had my zoom on and he didn’t notice me watching.

I’m sneaky like that.

He’s framing pictures.

It’s in his blood!

One day, he too will annoy everyone in his life with his camera!

It’s the legacy I’m leaving him!


And I am so glad to have someone to snap pictures with!