Friday, December 10, 2010

Leopold Mark

What's onomatopoeia for a balloon inflating? How about Phhhhhh....
Phhhhhh......Phhhhhhhhhhhhhh......Aannnd Pop!
Baby straight jacket.
Mother Hen.Baby spa day.I miss you all out there in blogland. :)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Gone Fishin', Fishin's Gone.

I would have so fewer pie portraits without digital photography.....
Apple Blackberry. Good stuff.

So Lily got it in her head that she wanted to go fishing. It was a long haul to and through the holiday weekend, but Mark agreed to take her down to the pond after he grabbed a quick nap.

To help her pass the time while she was waiting I sent her on a worm digging mission. It's been pretty dry and she'd come back to me time after time empty-handed and with a little bead of sweat on her brow. Sad. So she and daddy had to make a worm run up to the gas station. Does your gas station carry worms?

A benefit of fishing at home is no special attire is required. You can wear your napping clothes.
She caught a baby bass. (All the fish are kind of babies still.) She said she wanted to eat him (because it is her mission in life to just say things to see what we'll say in return) but we told her it still has lots of growing to do and he was returned to the pond.And she caught a pretty little yellow perch which I didn't get a photo of because Mark was too traumatized by the hook being irretrievable and I was all flustered. The perch was sent back to the pond but its final fate is unknown.
No doubt Mark has had the uncooperative hook scenario more times than I can count. He's been fishing and hunting and trapping since he was a boy. But this time was different. We know these fish. And he was upset that the perch was injured, so he called 'No more fishing in the pond.'

No more fishing in the pond that was engineered and cultivated specifically for fishing. That was stocked with hundreds of dollars in fish, outfitted with a more-than-hundreds of dollars worth of fountain for aeration, that receives bimonthly servings of some mystery powders that help digest excess plant matter & provide minerals to the fish...Eh, whatever. I pretty much think of the fish as pets now, too. They come when you feed them, for pete's sake.

But that didn't eliminate Lily's urgent need to go fishing. She was just getting warmed up. So Mark took her to a local sportsman's (sportsmen's?) club he belongs to where they could fish for fish strangers.

Plus, this club is hillbilly enough that you can still wear your napping clothes and everyone is either 1. wearing the same outfit or 2. too drunk to notice.
We don't get out there enough, I tell ya...

On the way to the club:
See the mother deer and her 2 fawns?

Here is the Loch Ness Beaver:
I think the photo is just bad enough to give that Loch Ness monster vibe. There were actually 2 young beavers swimming and slapping their tails in the water in front of us. Pretty cute.

We left in a rush and only had 1 hook and bobber but Mark knew to scout around for cast off fishing gear in the pavilions and fire pits. He scored one more hook and bobber.

He set Lily up and coached her from a picnic bench. She caught a wee little blue gill. She fidgeted and chattered and missed lots of bites because she was staring off into space.

She wanted to try casting by herself and Mark let her try. She managed to wrap the line around the pavilion poles and the hook and its worm flew off into no man's land. Thank goodness for that found hook or fishing would've been over.

The sun was setting and the bats were flying. Mark said he was going to cast her line out into King Catfish Country.

And she got a bite.

From King Catfish:
Though I like to say it could be a Queen Catfish. It spit out the hook right at the shore and Mark had to catch it with his bare hands. Excitement!And Lily said she wanted to eat it (of course, because she must say it) but Mark had other plans.

We had no bucket of water to transport it in, but Mark said you can practically leave a catfish lay in the yard half a day and it will swim right away once you put it in the water. Not that you would want to...

But it turns out he was right. We live a mile or two away and after its car ride, King (or Queen) Catfish swam off with much vim and vigor as soon as it touched the water of our pond.
Welcome home, Catfish.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

A Bee-utiful Thing

How much do I love this lady? Even though she's been teasing me for a while with little bee and honey themed tidbits on her blog lately.
Tidbits like this:
Looks like a bee has been dancing all about here:
Ha! There she is! Isn't she cute?This is so cool:And this is a work of art: (YoYo the cat approves.)
A genuine Osage Bluff Quilter quilt! For Baby "B" Bedillion. It is magnificent and I have to resist carrying it around everywhere with me to show it off to everyone. My photos don't do it any justice and there are so many cool things on it.
Patti, you are a SWEETHEART!!!!!!! (You too, Blacksmith ! :) ) We thank you thank you thank you! It is a treasure!
Big Smooch & Big Hug,
The Bee-dillions

Friday, July 2, 2010

Baby Got Björk

Poop Patch!
I picked Sam & Lil up from swimming at Mom's the other day and of course Sam immediately picked up on whatever music I'm playing ad nauseum in the car, because that's how I do. That day I happened to be rocking out to Björk's Greatest Hits and I insisted to Sam that the baby likes it. That's why I have to turn it up real loud so the baby can rock out too.

It also led to a discussion of Iceland and Björk's appeal and Greenland and its barrenness and just some general good-hearted disagreeing and making fun of mom. Good times.

Things I've said lately:

To these cats this morning when I caught them smooching and hugging. "You kids are crazy." Not "cats" or "kitties" but "kids" as in "people."
To Gentelman Jim, our resident yard bird Rooster, when I saw a third chicken in his harem (a boy chicken, too!): "Who's that chicken?" Not "what" but "who" as in "person."

To Mark while I sat and chatted with him at the market while a customer stood nearby unbeknownst to me: "My butthole still hurts." Don't get excited. I was generalizing the area of discomfort for comic effect. My, shall we say, saddle-area, has been having some major ligament pain combined with various baby-kicking of my innards in that general region, and I was over-sharing as I am wont to do, that's all.
Let's just be glad I clammed up and didn't try to clarify all that to the customer. It could only go downhill from "My butthole still hurts."

And these are only the things I've said out loud lately. Goodness knows what I'm saying inside this fun house of a brain.
Probably "Baby Got Björk" to the tune of this:

And now you are, too!!! :)

Monday, June 28, 2010

In No Particular Order

A pig with no ears.
The Belly.
Bubbles saying hello.
The Cooker.

Chicken halves. All sold.
Since blogger and I go 'round and 'round over photo posting, feel free to peruse the rest over yonder. It also explains the ear-less pig.

It was nice to have the camera out again. Hecks, nice to be outside for non-softball related activities.

I took a 2 hour walk in the woods yesterday, the first time in a very long time, and nearly cried because I'd missed it so much. (Insert Mark rolling his eyes here. ) :)

I didn't even mind the bugs, sweat, scratches, poison ivy and getting lost/stuck for half an hour. I must be part Mowgli or Tarzan or something. All the trails are grown over and I was having to try to navigate deer paths. I was still glad to be there. Glad to take a cool shower when I got home, too.

Mark sold chicken halves on Saturday. His special sauce is the trick. I was lucky to get one for myself before they sold out.

I put Aggie on the bus (ah, motor coach, thankyouverymuch.) to camp Sunday. A lovely drive in Shadyside on a Sunday morning. The camp posts photos online everyday but I didn't see her in any yet. She got to go with her BFF and we watched them through the bus windows chomping at the bit to be on their way. Kinda doubt she'll be homesick at all this week.

Lily couldn't get herself to her grandparents' fast enough after Aggie left either. Said she wasn't sleeping in her bedroom alone. She took one outfit and her giant dry erase board. Just the necessities.

So Sam is our only child (well, plus Pellet, of course) this week, it seems. Last night we watched a movie, Defiance, which we all enjoyed. If you can take the violence of a war movie it was a good story. A true story! Then after the movie, I balanced the remote control on my belly and we watched the baby kick it around. Cute/gross!

I could share more pregnancy gross with you but I'll just save it. Only 'bout 17 weeks to go! Seven Teen Weeks To Go.... The countdown 'til I might get my brain back!

Monday, June 7, 2010

And Now There Will Be 3 People Not Putting The Seat Up In My House.

Boys pulling triggers all over the place.

Sam's trophy. For pulling triggers. When I first met Mark, when he was even weirder than he is now ;) he had this thing he'd do when something excited him or made him happy. Could've been a good part of the story he was telling, could've been a good song on the radio, could've been an exceptionally tasty bite of whatever he was eating, but he'd always punctuate the event by 'pulling a trigger on it.'

With the fingers of one hand curled up just so, he'd pump that hand forward and pull it back in a recoil like the blast of a shot gun. Sometimes he'd say 'Bam!' but it definitely wasn't required. Sometimes something would warrant double or even triple triggers. Beware if something called for a trigger when he was driving. That usually included an involuntary tapping of the brakes. Mmmmm, whiplashy.

These days Mark doesn't really do the full trigger-pulling motion, but that doesn't change the definition of pulling a trigger or minimize it's use in our familiar conversation. In other words, it's a good thing.

Baby boy Bedillion pulling triggers. :)

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Almost Halfway There!

19 weeks today, I believe?
Rockin' the bump. Parking in the Expectant Mothers parking spaces if I have to. Ok, once I did that, but I totally qualified for that space and some jerk stole my regular people space.

New weird side effects:

-First time for the Mask of Pregnancy. It looks like I got tangled up with a curling iron, like when I'd occasionally burn my forehead trying to get my Claw Poof hairdo in middle school. Three weird lines on my forehead. Maybe I'll have to get a picture of it. Just weird.

-I kid you not, I laugh different. Maybe it has something to do with having a big belly like Santa Claus, but when I laugh it's from way down deep in there somewhere. Feels pretty good and sometimes it takes very little to make me laugh. Finally, a good side effect! And makes me think of the bible story when God told Sarah she was going to have a baby and she laughed Ya, right! . And the He showed her.

I guess the hearty laughter makes up for the insomnia, crying, zombie-moods, and cellulite.


-In other news, where have all the pretty sandals gone? I can appreciate a gladiator sandal or those sandals that kind of look like Donald Duck's spats as much as the next gal, but I need something a little more...wearable? Plus I'm not trying to draw unnecessary attention to my cankles at this time.
But seriously, Target, normally trusty source of reasonably priced cute footwear, has really let me down this year. Plenty of flip flops, but flip flops are the sweat pants of the shoe world. OK for home and the beach and maybe some errands, but not so good for much more. No matter how many big plastic jewels or pleather flowers you put on them.
Plenty of retreads of last years sandals. And lots of low quality sandals that I know might look cute for a couple wearings and will then look like raggedy garbage.
Where are the quality sandals? Kick-ass leather sandals. None of this weird microfiber stuff. Sandals with real wooden stacked heels, not plastic heels with stickers made to look like stacked wooden heels. Metal buckles, not plastic. That kind of thing.
Ya, I know, they're on Zappos and they only cost $200. I'll keep on searching. But how about that for an indignant rant, eh? Deep thoughts, I know.

-Mark's aunt has told me on two separate occasions how huge I am. I am debating a 3 Strikes You Are Going To Get A Frakkin Earful From Me policy.

-Mystery Koi. We found 3 big koi in our pond and we have no idea where they came from. I need to get a photo of them. Two orange and one white, they are so pretty.

-YoYo gets some penicillin. The cat was exhibiting signs of a urinary tract infection so I picked up some antibiotic. Mark gives the shots in the family, from pigs to cows to cats, and my job was to restrain. Lucky me: YoYo is the cat who has sent several of us to the ER for tetanus shots. But YoYo would tell you there were extenuating circumstances.
At any rate, the wretched-smelling dehydrated beef liver dog treats were more than enough distraction for him. Hopefully he's on the mend.

-Lazy Days Of Summer. So the kids will be home all Summer and I won't. As we approached this horizon Mark & I knew that some changes needed to be made, namely in the chores arena.

Sam, only son and oldest child, had been the chore boy from the get go. The kid is a worker, I tell you. He works at the market, many times setting everything up by himself in the mornings. He's done that for years. He feeds the animals. Helps work the bee hives. Cuts the grass. Weedwacks. Trash duty. Occasionally supper and dishes. Some laundry. Plus he does yard work for other people, among other things. Honestly, looking at that list, it's a wonder why I have so much damn work to do myself when I get home.
Ah yes, now I remember. The Girls.
I love my girls so very much, I do. They do well in school, they're kind and caring, and not particularly sassy. They're my beautiful girls.
But thanks to their reliable and hard-working brother and their own ability to hide when there's work to be done, they've managed to skate by pretty easily all these years.
Mark and I know there's a lot of blame to place directly on us: we let 'em slide way too often and now we're paying the piper trying to reverse the damage done.
So far it's a pretty painful process.
Their shared bedroom has been the black hole cesspool of the house forever. Their brother's room? Looks exactly the same every day: bed made, floor immaculate, everything in its place. The rest of the house generally looks like civilized people live in it, but the girls' room was always...overwhelming.
Since moving into the house 6 years ago we have taken literal shovels full of stuff out of it. Bags and bags of garbage, toys and Goodwill clothes at a time. And yet, just days later it was destroyed again. Bad. I quit buying anything but bare necessities for them years ago and still it overflows.
I've threatened, I've counseled, I've given How-To Demonstrations, I've given step-by-step instructions pick up that sock, throw away that piece of paper, put away that book until the whole room was clean. I've given options, no options, time lines. Ignored it altogether or broken down in tears of frustration.
Even with the rules of no phone, no iPod, no friends til it's clean, it is still an every day battle.
Add to that our new lofty ambitions of laundry, dishes, and floor cleaning, and it's a full-time job goading my daughters.
But I'm pretty sure that's all it boils down to: wearing them down, one Chinese water torture drip at a time. Or was that me being drip-drip-dripped into madness? Time will tell.

I have hope that eventually there will be a day when they do something of their own volition. Just not today. Today, they will bargain and complain and drag it out and make dirty faces at their mother.

-And lastly. Anybody else see this resemblance?

It's been bugging me since this first time I saw her. Thanks for letting me get that off my chest.

Peace out.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Pig Bone Fat. I Got Nothin' For A Blog Post.

Check it.

"Fatty acids derived from pork bone fat are used as a hardening agent in crayons and also gives them their distinctive smell."

That special crayon smell? Pig bone fat. Now that I think about it, yes, it's a nostalgic smell, but really, isn't it kind of a stinky smell?

In other news, my short term memory is shot, so goodness knows what we've been up to.

School's out next Wednesday though the girls skipped yesterday to go to Kennywood, and they all skipped today because the girls were tired from Kennywood and Sam uncharacteristically missed the bus. Only half days anyway.

Yep. That's all I've got today. Who wants chicken wings?

Monday, May 17, 2010

Getting In Touch With My Gross Side

Turns out, I'm gross.
Exhibit One:
Regular pants don't fit? Only 2 pairs of maternity? Refuse to wear those sweatpants again today?
Duct Tape, my friend, duct tape. A really sad moment because it wasn't a sad moment at first. At first it was totally acceptable. I was in a rush to get out the door and I thought, perfect!
No. No, it's not. You duct taped your pants. Gross.
Only good thing is I might get famous here.

Grossness, Exhibit Two?

Going shower-less for 3 days and I wasn't camping (but was wearing duct tape pants.) And somewhere in there, sleeping for like 15 hours straight and I wasn't hungover or anything. 'sup with that?

Grossness number three: Septic tank flower garden.
I imagine there's a proper thing folks do with the septic tank lids. Do they bury them? Because I'm afraid to bury them and then we'll end up driving the tractor over them and cracking the lids. Or maybe some bushy ornamental grass? Then it would be my luck we'd have to tear them all up to get to the lids.

Nah, I just let the girls plant flowers to their hearts' content. Yes, with a million and one places around the house to plant flowers, let's draw attention to the poop tank with flowers.
Just going to hope the petunias spread. A lot.

Grossness Four. Now, I could only maybe take half credit for this, but birthing a child who at the tender age of 8 is capable of the most pungent man-like armpit odor in our whole family. A female child no less!

Five. Salami sandwich for breakfast. Debatable.

Ya, I guess a lot of it's debatable, but I was just so not feeling feminine this weekend, ya know? Just.....not cute. Or pretty. One of those weekends.

But how 'bout a palate cleanser?

Awww, neato! A heron outside my back door this morning. Nature!

What else?

-Go kart's broken again. We need to keep parts on stock.

-Lily finally had a friend over after much waiting, and darn, if I didn't forget to pre-warn the mom about how filthy their child is going to get at my house.

Straight to the creek in shoes and socks, thoroughly coat them in mud then strip them off and throw them all over the porch. Splash mud over every appendage. Add a coating of watermelon juice from 2 big slices each. It helps the kitten hair and barn dust stick better. Then, when I shoo you into the tub to rinse your arms and legs, skip that and just have a splash fight. Return from the bathroom every bit as dirty and also soaking wet.

They had such fun though. And friend's mom is totally cool with the creek mud.

-Roses for my anniversary. I forgot to take pictures, but what a lovely surprise at work. Mark, you rascal, you.

-I can slightly, slightly feel a baby moving in there sometimes. A little bit. Just not when I'm lying really still trying really hard to feel it. I am struggling with not driving myself so, so crazy with this whole thing. Funny how carefree I was all those other times. Boy, am I making up for it now.

-I did some laundry. I cut up some fruit. I planted some sunflowers. ;-) I'm just being purposely extra boring now.
Have A Good Monday, Internets!

Monday, May 3, 2010

The Fungus Among Us, Girls Will Be Girls, And I Heart Maternity Pants.

Howdy, Neighbors. 'Tis the month of May and verily it doth truck along.
Morel Mushroom season, but our haul was much smaller that last year's. I think it just wasn't quite the right temperature/moisture combo going on out there in the woods. But we found enough to fry and eat with leftover prime rib one night, and the next night to make a fabulous stuffing/dressing with leftover hard rolls, scallions, and morels baked to a yummy goodness. It went perfect with oven baked rabbit.

Look at the cute little snail.
Last weekend we finally got the part to fix the go kart. That was an adventure in and of itself. It involved a trip to a small town West Virginia cycle shop where the owner behind the counter was unabashedly eating sardines on saltine crackers when I walked in. And that seemed to make perfect sense at the time.
So anyway, fixed the go kart. The weather wasn't cooperating and Agnes and her friend were going nuttynuts. They finally decided weather-be-damned, we're going riding.And so they did. And it took about 5 minutes for them to look like this.It rained and they rode. For hours.
And then the tricky part of cleaning up. Ever notice that it's a lot of work letting kids be kids?
My plan was for them to hose off at the barn in their clothes, come in the cellar where I'd have towels so they could strip out of the mud clothes and then head to the shower in their towels.
Instead, they grabbed the towels and headed to the barn to strip. Dripping wet and still pretty muddy, they trekked from the barn to the back door. OK, not the cellar door like I asked, but no biggie. I asked Where are your sweatshirts? (to go with the other piled muddy wet humps of clothing they left on the porch) and they headed back out to the barn to fetch them, still muddy and wrapped in nothing but towels. So forgetful, these pre-teens.
So then I'm waiting and waiting and waiting for them to come back from the barn because it's like 8:30pm on a school night and they still need to get showers before we take Ag's friend home.
Ah, here they come, still totally unaffected by their lack of clothing. Well, we figured since we were already over at the barn we might as well go see the new kittens...
Well, that makes perfect sense!
Finally they were showered and content, and I was left with the aftermath of mud-filled tennis shoes and a bathtub full of sediment and leaves.
But then when I was looking through the photos I'd taken of their fun, I found this picture of yours truly from about this time last year:

and I couldn't really complain because Aggie gets her muddiness honestly. (sigh, was my butt ever that small?)

In addition to morel and mud season it is also softball season. Both girls are playing and it is quite the time suck. We got home after 9pm last night. I guess I'm just a big rookie at this is my problem.
But I do enjoy watching them, and I'm ever so happy that they seem to be enjoying it because I finally have someone to play catch with!Good memories. Pretty fun watching a bunch of 8 year olds, too. They're like a flock of chickens running around out there.

I took these puppies out for a test drive today: During my 1st trimester misery I was hellbent on staying in normal people clothes for as long as possible. I was pissed when I went to Target to grab a bunch of big neutral pregnancy clothes and they stayed in the bag for awhile unworn. I was sweating the fact that I was growing too large too quickly, but I'm over it. Pregnant four times equals get big quickly for me. So that's my approximately 15 1/2 weeks belly up thar pokin' out. And my growing bosom. Hello! Enjoying that before they get out of hand.

Anywho, glory be, are these pants not the most comfortable thing on my bloated middle? Love love love. Even more than my sweatpants. And they are not nearly so ugly as the maternity jeans I wore 9 years ago. We'll see how long til I'm exploding out of them.

That's all she wrote for now. Happy Mother's Day to all you Moms out there!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Why Must I Ruin Her Life All The Time?

Protesting the fact that I did not buy her a trampoline this weekend. A right proper sit-in.All my poor neglected girl can do is sit and listen to her iPod Touch and text woeful texts to her friends. sigh. To her credit, she has limited it to theatrics only, no mean sass mouth to date. Thank God for small miracles there.

So Ag and her bestie had big plans this weekend for the go kart. Unfortunately, shortly into their fun Saturday the throttle cable pooped the bed and ended it all.

Begin the volleys of asking mom then dad then mom then dad to buy a trampoline to end their boredom suffering. They are champions of sweet asking those two. They made Mark lunch of a peanut butter honey sandwich with a honey heart on the bun. Aggie volunteered to forego all 2010 future Christmas presents. There were frowny faces. A touch of sighing.

Lemme just say, since there's a really good chance I'll end up caving like I do on stuff like this, I think trampolines are the junkiest piece of eyesore I could probably ever put in my yard. I admit, though I know it's not totally fair, that I associate them with trashy trailer parks. I've often wondered how long it takes for the thing to become boring and forgotten like any other yard toy.

It makes me think of Sit-N-Spins.

We never had a Sit-N-Spin at our house growing up and they were like the funnest toy ever-in my mind. Any time I visited someone else's house where they had one (and I swear everyone else had one but me) I'd sit-n-spin & sit-n-spin. And probably, the kid to whom it belonged thought "what the heck's the big deal?" and they probably never played with the dang thing. It's just one of those toys that's way funner at somebody else's house. Like a trampoline. At least, that's my theory.

Fortunately they did manage to find other ways to entertain themselves. I made them waffles for breakfast and then they headed outside in their 'pajamas.' I wasn't paying attention and then it was too late to bother making them change....

They were catching bullfrogs. Good times.Just like Charlie's Angels. Or something. Sam had just caught a couple of drones (male bees that don't have stingers) to play with and possibly take to school. He'd bee wrangled a bee at school last week and kept everybody entertained for a period or two. I said Crazy Bee Boy, huh? and he said Ya! He got the drones from an unoccupied hive that the other bees were cleaning of its residual honey. No gloves or nothin'! Even though you know they don't have stingers, it still makes me feel weird to hold one.

Could this be a prince?

We were just finishing supper, chicken fried wild turkey-yum!, when my grandmother phoned and Lily picked up. Nan asked Lily what she was doing and Lil said eating, but immediately said we caught bullfrogs today! And Nan said, You're eating bullfrogs?! and Lil said No! And Nan said Well, good. I wouldn't want you to croak.

Bum dum bump!