Sunday, December 31, 2006

the perfect end to the year

Our very good friend Steve gave each of us $50 for Christmas. Yes, he's very generous. And Archie's mom gave each of the girls gift certificates to Target. So we went and each of the girlies picked out an outfit and some fun stuff.

Lou got some art stuff. Bebe got a Barbie guitar. Charlotte fell in love because there is an included microphone. She was walking around with this pink thing, singing along with a pre-recorded Beyonce song, using the whammy bar like a pro, when suddenly she said, amplified, "Hey! Help! Rockstar has to go to the bathroom!"

I didn't think this hilarity could be topped. Except that ChaCha wanted to get the companion Barbie keyboard. Another microphone! You can actually play this (as opposed to the guitar), more pop songs, and lots of rhythm options. But the best thing, far and away, is a cowbell button.

When the cacophony gets a little overwhelming, I shout, "More cowbell!" and Cha pushes that button and it cracks me up every time.

May your 2007 have more cowbell. I know mine will.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

remnants of christmas

We watched "Elf" about 20 times this season. The girls fell in love with it -- especially Cha.

I went into the bathroom and ChaCha came bursting in. "Honey, I'm using the bathroom. I'll be done in a minute. Go shut the door." This is my attempt at getting a little privacy now that the girlies are all bigger.

Cha walked over to me, leaned close, and whispered, "You sit on a throne of lies!"

Then she turned around, walked out, and shut the door. I was crying with laughter. Thank you, Will Ferrell.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

...and to all a good night

A Mexican food feast for dinner. 7-layer cookies and milk left on the coffee table; carrots and oats outside for the reindeer. 3 little girls asleep. Stockings stuffed and ready to put on the beds. Watching the MST3K version of "Santa Claus" with a Diet Coke and Stoli while wrapping presents. Soon to bed.

It will be a very Merry Christmas tomorrow.

Friday, December 22, 2006


So we're dealing with some complications right now. My mother, very generously, gifted the twins with a bunk bed for Christmas. We've dismantled and moved their twin beds, we made space in our living room (the small one, with the tree) to house the 6 very large boxes. And there are no instructions. None. The delivery guys said there would be a set of instructions in every box, but they lied to us! Now we're trying to see if the bed can be assembled without directions and planning for the kids to camp out in the family room.

To add to the insanity, we have a guest coming tomorrow. A good friend, who will endure the craziness, but still.

And, it seems my kids are geniuses at choosing the hot holiday gifts. Which means, of course, that there are not any of these items to be had. Yes, they will have a nice Christmas and perfectly acceptable gifts will be produced. But they really aren't super-demanding kids and it makes me a little sad that they won't get the 2 things (one for Cha and a shared present for the twins -- which they asked for as a shared gift) they had their hearts set on.

[As I was typing away, Lou ran in screeching, "There are directions! We finally found them!" So, small favors and all that.]

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

thanks for leading with the first compliment

Today I took a little trouble with my appearance. I wore a fitted t-shirt, Levis that fit great, my fantastic brown suede boots, and my new necklace. I even took the time to do my makeup and put some product in my hair.

At bedtime, Bebe said, "Mama, you look beautiful. You're the prettiest person in the whole world!" She paused. "And you have a great personality!" show.ever

Have you seen "Cash Cab"? It's the best. Unsuspecting people climb into a cab and then the cabbie/host turns on some flashing lights on the ceiling of the cab and asks them if they want to answer some general knowledge questions while they ride to their destination. They will get kicked out if they answer 3 questions incorrectly. They can get help twice with "shout outs" -- one on a mobile phone, one where they ask a passerby on the street. If the taxi stops at a red light, the passengers can double their money with a "Red Light Challenge". And if they arrive at their destination, they can go double or nothing with a video challenge.

This show is fun on so many levels. Everyone is startled by the flashing lights. As the viewer, you can try to guess if contestants are going to get through the entire ride or get booted out of the cab. (On one epsiode, a guy had two strikes and over 20 blocks to go and said, "We're in the worst section of New York! We can't get kicked out here!" Heh.)

I love this show. I wish there was a cash cab in my area. But, until then, I'll just enjoy watching people in New York take what has to be the best cab ride of their lives. Even if they lose!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

lucky 13

4 entwined silver rings on a slender chain in a blue box with a white ribbon.

3 girls.

6 different addresses.

All those and more add up to 13 years today.

Happy anniversary to us.

the end of the world

This whole Miss USA thing is ridiculous. First, isn't it kind of expected that Miss USA should be a little wild? A tad out of control? She's not Miss America, where I think there is a bit of an expectation that the winner appears wholesome and moderately intelligent and tries to exhibit some talent. Miss USA has to look hot and rock a bikini. Isn't her reign mostly about posing for covers of Maxim and other lad mags? Where Miss America tours middle schools and ostensibly does charity work or tries to raise awareness of some issue important to her?

I just think there are different expectations and now Donald Trump is sending a 20 year old who is partying to rehab? Really? Rehab?

The saddest thing is that the press conference was covered live on all the major news outlets. I don't think it makes anyone a horrible person to be interested in the story, but is it really news that needs to be covered live on CNN and NBC and CBS and (probably) ESPN?

[This post brought to you by the question mark.]

Monday, December 18, 2006

i love referrer logs

In the past 2 weeks, there have been about 5 or 6 hits for "slugs in dishwasher". All from England. The slugs are trying to overtake the Empire, one dishwasher at a time.

i don't think i'll be requiring a clown, thanks

I had errands to run today, but instead of doing them after I dropped ChaCha off at preschool, I came home and took a nice long nap. It was only interrupted by the knocking of the furnace as it prepared to kick on, followed by the whoosh as the heated air was forced out to warm the house. And we needed that heat. Apparently, Alaska thought the Bay Area was a little too spoiled with mild, wet winters and decided to export some cold, cold weather. Thanks, Alaska. You shouldn't have.

I picked up Cha and we did a little Christmas shopping -- a few items for Archie. At one point, Charlotte exclaimed, "We're hopelessly lost!" Which was very amusing since I knew exactly what I was getting and we completed the mission in about 30 minutes.

Then we stopped at the dollar store. The big girls talked it up to their little sister, who insisted that she had to get presents for the twins. I also figured we could pick up some tape. When we approached the cash register, a woman was going on and on to the store owner about how the off-brand Sharpie markers she purchased there were not good. They weren't dark enough and didn't last very long and she went on and on about it. (Yes, I was mentally rolling my eyes, thinking, "They're markers from the dollar store. What did you expect?") She then spent several minutes digging around in her purse, produced a balloon, and made the weirdest looking thing I've ever seen made from a balloon which she declared was a reindeer and then she drew on eyes -- one with the crap marker and one with a superior marker. She offered the freaky balloon reindeer to Cha. Then she gave me a card, saying, "I'm a clown. If you ever need one, call me."

Cha started to sing "Rudolph" and this woman snips, "That's not Rudolph -- he doesn't have a red nose!" Now I'm thinking that marker-obsessed clown-woman is a wee bit unstable. I'm imagining a party where she complains about her substandard markers to the kids and then corrects them as she hands them misshapen balloon creatures. What fun!

Finally, we were out of the store and into the car. That was when the not-Rudolph balloon exploded. I would venture to guess that she doesn't get a whole lot of work. Well, she won't be getting any work from me, at any rate.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

the dollar store

I took the twins to a nearby dollar store this afternoon. I am not a big fan -- it's mainly just a huge jumble of cruddy stuff. But they somehow managed to find things they knew would make good presents for each other and for Cha. At a total cost of not-quite 5 bucks.

Here's hoping Archie takes them somewhere a bit nicer to get a present for me.

Friday, December 15, 2006

the talk

[This is a slightly reworked post from the summer. I have to be Santa and shop tomorrow, so I'm cheating a bit. Plus, people who are reading from Holidailies probably can't be bothered to read the archives. Also, it's very funny, I think. So, win-win. Marked as adult for anatomically correct sexual terms.]

You know, The Talk. The birds and the bees. How babies are made -- at least the old-fashioned way. S-E-X.

The other night, Bebe and Lulu were asking me all kinds of questions about how babies are made. The info they had up to that point: girls have a uterus, a vagina, and eggs; boys have a penis and sperm; the sperm and egg combine to make a baby which grows in the uterus and then is either pushed out or the mother is cut open and the baby is pulled out. Oh, and Bebe got a crucial bit of info about sperm coming out of the penis which she thought was a joke.

Anyway, the discussion was at bedtime and the gist was that they wanted to know how the egg and sperm get together. Mostly, I thought this was a ploy to not go to sleep, so I said we'd talk about it the next day, fairly certain it would be forgotten because they had a field trip for camp the next day. Beebs woke up and the first thing she said was, "So, how do the egg and sperm get together?" I said it was a little involved and we'd discuss it when they came home from camp. As we got in the car to drive home, Elizabeth was all, "So? How? You promised!"

We came home and I explained the basics. There were 2 very funny moments. The first was when Elizabee asked if maybe, since the sperm comes out of the penis, the guy puts the sperm in a cup? Oh, my, I had to force myself to not laugh and go off on an infertility tangent. No need to confuse the poor kids too much at the start. The second very amusing thing was after I'd finished, I asked if they had any other questions. Beebs said, "The man puts his penis in the woman's vagina? I think I'll just adopt."

little girls

This has been one of those weeks. You know the kind -- you just feel like you're always forgetting something and you're always playing catch-up. There has been medication to remember to give Cha and there was a slumber party, which threw us all off schedule and we never really recovered and settled into our normal routine. Then there were holiday programs to attend and yesterday was a special party after school -- which was a lot of fun -- but all of the added activities meant squeezing homework into 2 days. Then there was emergency laundry. Then dinner wasn't appetizing to anyone one evening and that ended in whining. Seriously, Christmas is going to seem like a vacation.

All of the disruptions mean that I've felt like Miss Hannigan. From "Annie". I've really identified with her song from the show, "Little Girls":

Little girls
Little girls
Everywhere I turn I can see them
Little girls
Little girls
Night and day
I eat, sleep and breathe them
Little cheeks
Little teeth
Everything around me is little
If I wring
Little necks
Surely I will get an acquittal
How I hate
Little shoes
Little socks
And each little bloomer
I'd have cracked
Years ago
If it weren't for my
Sense of humor
Some day
I'll step on their freckles
Some night
I'll straighten their curls
Send a flood
Send the flu
Anything that you can do
To little girls
Some day I'll land in the nut house
With all the nuts and the squirrels
There I'll stay
Until the prohibition of
Little girls

They just make me want to have a few snorts of some bathtub gin, they do. But, even when I'm feeling Miss Hannigan-ish, I keep coming back to one verse of the song that always cheers me up. I know it's meant sarcastically, but I often find myself singing it to my girls in a positive, happy way -- even when they're driving me crazy. They climb all over me and I trumpet:

Some women are dripping with diamonds
Some women are dripping with pearls
Lucky me! Lucky me!
Look at what I'm dripping with
Little girls

Lucky me, indeed.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

tats for preschoolers

Charlotte had her kindergarten shots last week and then got cellulitis. It manifested as a large, swollen, red splotch on her arm, where she'd gotten her shot. We went back to the doctor and got an antibiotic. The best thing, though, was when the doctor asked me, "Do you mind if I draw on her?"

"For fun or is there a purpose?"

"Not for fun -- I want to outline the area so we can tell if it's receding or spreading more easily."

So, Cha got a "tattoo". She's very proud of it. The cellulitis began to recede by the next morning. Don't worry -- she'll be finishing all of her course of antibiotics. One of my brothers contracted an antibiotic-resistant staph infection which required surgery and months of care.

We're not making any superbugs in this house, if we can help it.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

puttin' on the ritz

Peter Boyle died.

And my first thought when I heard was the scene where he danced and "sang" as the monster in "Young Frankenstein".

mr. gri-inch

Of course, you're a fan of "How the Grinch Stole Christmas". OK, maybe not Opie's live-action movie, but you love the book and adore the animated special, right? Sure you do!

We recorded it last night and watched it this morning as I was getting the girls ready for school. And there was a half-hour special all about the creation of the Chuck Jones version which was at times annoying, but where I learned one very interesting fact. The music was written by Albert Hague.

Do you know who Albert Hague is? He's Mr. Shorovsky from "Fame"! The beareded music teacher who always gave everyone such a hard time!

You really can learn something new every day -- even while watching a cartoon!

Monday, December 11, 2006

reverse psychology fails again

I've written before about Ms. ChaCha Bug's preschool issues. To briefly recap, she practically grew up there, since she was 6 months old when the twins started class. She felt completely comfortable and when she started, she exhibited some problems with seeing her teachers as authority figures. She was never blatantly defiant and nasty, she'd just ignore instructions, particularly to come inside from the play yard. When we switched schools (same basic program; different location) at the end of last year, she improved dramatically.

About halfway through the first session, the head teacher retired. So, Cha has started pulling the same ignoring routine again. She's doing really well on learning her letters and pre-reading stuff and she's very social and sweet-natured and loves her friends. But her teacher asked me today to talk to her about following instructions. (I am such a smart-ass, that the first thing I thought was, "I'm supposed to tell her to listen to you? Who knew? I've been telling her to ignore adults and any direct commands!" Heh.)

So, in the car on the ride home, I spoke to her for what seemed like the bazillionth time about listening and following directions. Charlotte said, "Do you know what Miss Grace says will happen to kids who don't listen?"

"No, sweetie. What does Miss Grace say?"

"That if you don't listen, you will have to sing a solo at the holiday program. That's where you have to sing all by yourself in front of all the parents."

Oh, Lord, this woman has absolutely no clue what makes this child tick.

"Mama, I've been trying to decide if I should sing 'Zombie Jamboree' or 'Hit Me with Your Best Shot'. Which do you think would be best?"

The teacher is grooming the kid to ignore her.

die, cristina aguilera, die

Last night, we decorated our Christmas tree. I told Archie to find a music channel on DirecTV that featured holiday music. For a few songs, it was lovely. There was a tune sung by Karen Carpenter. Perfect -- such a gorgeous voice. Something by Harry Belafonte -- fine. And then Christmas was ruined forever. Forever!

There was a backbeat and some choir-y noodling. Then a lot of vocal gymnastics which served no purpose other than to prove that the singer had a range. Every phrase had some embellishment -- a trill, a growl, a run. It was a case of gilding the lily that so many female singers are guilty of nowadays. And then it hit me -- this was a version of my favorite Christmas hymn. This is a song I love more than any other for the season. And some crazy singer was messing it up! Hell, she wasn't even remotely following the melody.

I ran into the family room to read the little caption on the TV. You've already guessed it was Cristina Aguilera. The song she was desecrating was "Angels We Have Heard On High". I think there was an electric guitar in the mix. I was ranting loudly to poor Archie -- "What is wrong with people? Why do they insist on making up melodies for standard songs which have perfectly lovely melodies? Nobody wants you to show your artistic chops on a Christmas song -- we just want it to sound pretty so we can sing along! I wish I could poison that woman so she could never sing again. That skank is still singing and Julie Andrews can't sing anymore? Julie Andrews would never do this to my favorite Christmas song! She has taste and class. Cristina is horrible and no amount of makeup spackled on to make her look like Marilyn Monroe is hiding the fact that her skin bites and it only makes her look like a drag queen. Did you hear that? What is she doing to my favorite Christmas song? Why, God? Why? I think this is proof that there is true evil in the world."

Archie tried valiantly to console me by saying there are lots of other beautiful and non-offending versions of this song and Ms. Skanky's doesn't have to be the one I have stuck in my head. Which is true, to a point.

But I woke up screaming, in a cold sweat, from a dream where I was forced to listen to the offending version over and over and over, "Clockwork Orange"-style.

Does anyone have the number for the folks who poisoned that Russian spy?

Sunday, December 10, 2006

conversations and a bonus

[I grabbed one of Archie's sweatshirts and this annoyed him to the point of snapping at me. We come in later in the car, after I have changed shirts.]

Archie: I'm sorry for yelling.
Me: No problem. I'm sorry. And I changed the shirt.
Archie: But I swear to God, if you ever wear one of my sweatshirts again, I'll [beginning to laugh] set you on fire!


[At IHoP, with Charlotte, after we've dropped the twins off at a slumber party. Our server has introduced himself. His name is Rolf. We've ordered and received our food.]

Me: When you see Rolf, can you ask him if I can have my glass of milk?
Archie: Oh, you want your milk, huh? You have water. What are you complaining about?
Me: Whatever. But you'll still be paying for it and I will not get to consume it, so you might want to bring it to Rolf's attention.
Me: Every time I say his name, I want to break into a stirring rendition of "16 Going on 17". Especially since it's raining outside.
Me: I guess my "Sound of Music" reference fell flat.
Archie: Oh. I was actually thinking of "The Muppet Show." I don't think Rolf would have taken good care of her.
Me: Of course not. Because he was a big Nazi!
Archie: But so good looking! And blonde!


We watched this movie called "Microcosmos" last night which was really cool and gross and neat-o -- if you like seeing bugs all in super-close-up, which we apparently do. Charlotte also loved it a lot because she has a lot of affection for the insect kingdom. Unfortunately, there was a bit of the porno to it -- which is always a risk with a nature documentary. There was the ladybug humping scene, which made me wonder if that was a Sapphic scenario, what with them being LADYbugs. Oh, I crack myself up.

Then there was the wocka-chocka snail scene. Cha asked, "What are they doing?" as the snails started to get veryclose to each other. Then she said, "Look! They're hugging! That's so cute." Then as they began to explore each other with their snaily appendages, she exclaimed, "Ooooo, they're kissing! Yuck! Bleeeech!" Archie and I were then amused when the snails toppled over from their passion.

Of course, they did so very slooooowly.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

not a francophile

Elizabee and I were looking at a picture of the Statue of Liberty. I mentioned that it was a gift from the country of France.

"I don't want to go to France."


"Too many French people! Too much french toast!"

Well, that should save me some airfare.

Friday, December 08, 2006

the best sandwich in the world

Start with some dark bread. I use Oroweat Schwartwalder Dark Rye. (I do not work for Oroweat. I just really love this bread.) Put mayo on one slice, mustard on the other. I would advise against a boring yellow mustard -- I'm currently using a champagne mustard we got in Napa in May, but I've also used a dijon or Gulden's, which are tasty, too.

On one slice of the bread, add the cheese. You can use any type you like, but you're going to want to use at least two kinds. I love a mix of Havarti and Swiss. (The Havarti I'm using right now has dill in it, which is very delicious.) Don't use great horking slabs of cheese -- slice it thinly and kind of alternate it on the bread. Then add some crunch. I like sliced onions and sprouts, but one of those would work alone, too, if you hate onions or hate sprouts. But you have to have something to give a little bite to your tooth. If you enjoy tomatoes (I do), add a few thin slices. Put the other slice of bread on top.

Microwave for a minute or until the cheese is starting to melt. Let cool just enough to pick up and devour.

Results? Joy for your tastebuds.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

dear person from massachusetts,

Thank you for visiting my site. I hope you found it interesting or amusing. I'm very sorry that Google directed you here for the search terms "taking care of a baby slug". I have no clue how you take care of any slug, let alone a baby one.

Wait, that's not really true. If I need to take care of a slug (and "taking care of" in this context means "getting rid of the damn slimy thing"), I call on the assistance of one of my 3 daughters who find slimy, gross things fascinating. They are all completely unlike me in that regard.



Wednesday, December 06, 2006

is it time to panic?

Just under 3 weeks until Christmas. We still don't have a tree. I haven't purchased a single present. I really need a jolt of some holiday cheer.

But maybe a few shots of vodka would be better.

Ho, ho, hiccup!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

bless you, mark twain

A very long time ago, my mother decided to paint our living room. In Ohio, in July. If you aren't from the Midwest, let me just inform you that July in Ohio is hot and dripping with humidity. I was 19, home from my frosh year of college, and sitting on a couch fanning myself and watching Mom paint.

Because I was a smart-ass, I was also keeping up a running commentary on how totally insane it was to be painting at that moment. Which, looking back now from the vantage point of parenthood, must have been unbelievably annoying. So my mom tried to be all tricky.

"This is really kind of fun! And you have to admit it looks a million times better. But I really don't know if I should even let you do this -- you'd probably make a mistake."

I sat there in disbelief for a moment. Then I started to laugh.

"Mom, I read 'The Adventures of Tom Sawyer' in elementary school. No way are you fooling me with the reverse psychology! But you really are cute trying to get me to whitewash your fence for you."

Monday, December 04, 2006

tale of the tooth

Elizabeth is our delicate flower. She can get emotional over just about everything. She cries easily. But her dramas pass just as quickly. And she sometimes displays a streak of toughness.

She's had a loose bottom tooth for what seems like forever. The adult tooth came in behind the baby one, so wiggling it with her tongue was kind of out of the equation. And Beebs isn't the kind of girl who likes to use her fingers to wiggle her teeth around. She's refused to eat anything other than soft foods.

When Archie and I got back from the party on Friday, Bebe woke up just enough to tell me that her tooth felt weird. When she got up in the morning, she refused to open her mouth, wouldn't talk, and wouldn't eat or drink. She tried to use charades to communicate, moved to humming grunts, and finally started to write everything down. Apparently, she wasn't in pain, it just felt strange because the tooth had shifted kind of sideways. She let me brush it very gently for a few minutes, and then shut her mouth. We actually got her to eat 3 chicken nuggets for dinner.

On Sunday morning, we tried to talk her into eating and drinking and talking. No dice. I tried to be sympathetic and attempted to suggest more gentle tooth brushing. Archie took the tack that it was a goddamned baby tooth and every person in the history of humankind loses them and she should just get over herself. There were lots of tears and sobbing hiccups. Oh, the drama! Finally, she told Archie to just take it out -- she wanted to eat!

According to Archie, the tooth was still anchored fairly tightly. He wiggled and wiggled it and poor Bebe made ouchy noises. Arch got a tissue and went back to work. I was holding Bebe on my lap and she was squeezing my hands very tightly. Archie sat back, announced the tooth was out, and the sun shone and a rainbow appeared and fairies danced through our kitchen. OK, what really happened was Elizabee jumped straight off my lap laughing and raced into the bathroom to spit blood into the sink and rejoice in the absence of the evil tooth.

She put that tooth on the Tooth Fairy plate and left a charming note detailing her pain and bravery in the face of removal. The Tooth Fairy left her a dollar bill and a note commending her toughness and reminding her to brush her teeth.

Only 14 more to go.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

technology adultery

We are an Apple household and worship at the shrine of Steve Jobs. All of our computers are Macs and Archie has gone through 2 iPods and currently uses the new, adorable clip-on style shuffle.

The other day, Louisa was going through Archie's bedside table and she pulled out a Rio player.

"Mama, what's this?"

"It's a Rio -- a music player."

"You mean Daddy's cheating on his iPod?"

Saturday, December 02, 2006

back to the future

Last night was Archie's work holiday party. He said they had a band named Tainted Love. I became much too excited because I was sure it would be all 80s covers and I could pretend to be 16, yet drink something better than cheap-ass beer in a plastic kegger cup.

As we walked into the club, the band kicked into "Melt With You". We boogied over to the bar and got some drinks. Then the band launched into "We Got the Beat" and Archie and I took big swigs of our drinks and bounced onto the empty dance floor. Screw the idea of waiting -- I had only a few hours and I was going to have fun. Plus, I don't have to see any of these people on a daily basis. Archie said later he will be hearing about how he started the dancing for weeks to come. Poor baby.

We jumped and twirled and stomped and sweated. Other people joined us. Yay! Then we paused during a Bon Jovi song (blech) to down some water and rest for a tiny bit. And mingle. Sadly, after a Clash song, the music took a turn for the ugly and was much too bad rock. We gave up when "Take Me Home Tonight" started and I screamed, "Eddie Money? Really? Really?"

Between sets, the big boss gave a short speech. He ended it by saying, "How many of you here were born in the 80s?" and was greeted by an obscene number of raised hands and hoots and whistles. I said to the people I was standing with, "How many of you had sex in the 80s?" and we all screamed and shouted. I think having sex trumps being born. Heh.

The really funny thing was eveyone we talked to asked about the kids. Not in a "How are the kids?" way, either, but a "Did you get a sitter?" way. We must look like very incompetent parents. And I guess we don't help that perception when we answer, "We left them alone at home. They'll be fine, right? 4 and 7 year olds are capable of taking care of themselves for a few hours." Maybe we should just answer, "Yeah -- we got a sitter and they're probably asleep by now."

Friday, December 01, 2006

sorry for the mess

Welcome to anyone who hasn't read before. I'm Katie, a 41 year old woman married to Archie and mother to 7 year old twins, Elizabeth and Louisa (often referred to as Bebe or Elizabee and Lulu or Lou), and 4 year old Charlotte (ChaCha the prancing pony girl). I adore reality TV, reading, string quartets, and walking on the beach. OK -- that last one's a lie. I rock at "Jeopardy!", though. And I know that there is a religion in Vietnam in which Victor Hugo is a saint. Isn't that interesting? Don't you want to be my best friend? Where are you going?

This space is where I mostly talk about my girlies and stupid things Archie and I say to each other. There's nothing salacious going on here and nothing earth-changing. The title, slug rodeo, comes from the kids. A number of years ago they were all playing and when I went to see what they were doing I discovered they had made a circle with dirt, like a corral. Inside was a very disgusting slug. When I asked what they were doing, one of the kids said, "It's a slug rodeo, Mama!" It nicely describes my life right now -- slow, silly, with brief flashes of excitement. And gross, because little kids bring the gross.

Feel free to delve into the archives. I think it will give you a bit of an idea of what a goofy family I'm a part of. I also think it's indicative of what a real conversation with me can be like -- I'll tell you a story about my grandma and then talk about an episode of a TV show and then tell a cute story about the kids.

Come back all this month if you like nice and slightly amusing. I'll be updating daily for Holidailies.