10 Surefire Tips to Smooth Schoolday Mornings

1) Before the school year begins, let each child pick out their very own alarm clock for them to completely ignore every single morning. Having three different alarm tones blaring is a surefire way to make sure you never oversleep and can start shouting at your unconscious children right on time. 2) If a child doesn't have any clean shirts in his closet, it's best to dig one out from the bottom of the hamper to make sure it wasn't worn recently enough for anyone to notice. 3) Teach older children basic breakfast preparation skills, both for themselves and their... Read more →


You Can't Stop the Lego

Just came here to post evidence that for a brief moment in time, my oldest child had a floor. A floor completely devoid of Lego. Because I spent an entire afternoon turning this: And this: Into this: (Why yes, those are Ikea bins with glued-on Lego collection logos I cut out of instruction books after personally separating out every applicable minifigure, accessory, vehicle, spaceship, Ninja Warrior Jungle Cycle Whatever The Fuck.) (Why yes, I am in-between projects at work and a new contract gig starts next week but in the meantime I have a lot of extra time on my... Read more →


The Virus Awakens

Star Wars is a deeply special thing for our nerdtastic family, going all the way back to my very first date with Jason. We love it. Insane for it. Get a case of the warm and fuzzies just from thinking about it. Despite having our young hearts broken by the prequels, being able to introduce our children to the original trilogy brought back the love and magic big time, every time. (Ike, watching Empire Strikes Back for the first time last weekend. I've never seen him so blown away by a movie. When it was over, we said SCREW BEDTIME... Read more →


The Pinkeye That Ate Christmas

One week ago, I looked in the mirror and said, "Yep, that's viral pinkeye, right there." And then went on my merry hand-washing way, because viral! What are you gonna do? "Well you can't just do NOTHING," Jason said a couple days later, staring at my eyes in horror. "You look AWFUL." I argued with him for a little bit, then Googled some more, eventually coming across a description of Epidemic keratoconjunctivitis. I texted him a link. "BAM. This is what I have." "STOP DIAGNOSING YOURSELF," was the reply. "GO TO THE DOCTOR." And thus, the journey began. Antibiotics, worsening... Read more →


It's the Most Germiful Time of the Year

Ah, November. The leaves are dropping, the weather's all over the place (40 degrees! No, 60 ! Sun! Rain! More rain! Here's some wind! Now get those shorts back out cuz it's going up to 80 for some reason!)...and of course, everybody's sick. We're passing around a mostly symptom-less fever thing right now, most likely the flu because I lost the consent forms for them to get vaccinated at school and then the Target flu clinic was out of the mist when we went and then the next day Ezra complained of a headache and went to bed for three... Read more →


This Thing Is Still On, I'm Sorry

Back in 2003, just a couple days before Halloween, I registered the www.amalah.com domain. Then I sat on it for a few weeks before actually taking the plunge, and I hit the "publish" button for the very first time about a month later. Twelve years, three babies, 2,161 posts, 134,790 comments, the social media revolution, the rise and fall of the entire personal blogging establishment later, I'm not sure what it says about me that I am still -- STILL! -- the sort of person who forgets to update her stupid credit card information and accidentally lets her domain expire,... Read more →


Shoes, OMG

Ike is currently at school, wearing rubber rainboots. It is not raining; it is not going to rain. I simply could not find his shoes this morning, anywhere. The shoe thing, SERIOUSLY. Now I will completely admit that my patience reserves are not always overflowing with zen-like parenting chill, but the shoe thing manages to tap them out completely like nothing else*, because every goddamn day, people. Someone's shoes mysteriously go missing, usually right at the exact second that particular someone needs to get out the door like NOW I MEAN IT. We have a closet. There is a shelf... Read more →


Palettes and Pallets

We have floors! And a full set of cabinets! Including one that is wrong and needs to be re-ordered! (Arrived with doors instead of drawers, nobody noticed at first because we were simply blinded with joy over having cabinets again.) Now we're just waiting on the countertops and new light fixtures to arrive, and to settle on a paint color. We went to the paint store yesterday, because for some reason we mistook ourselves for Confident Proactive Decision Makers and thought we'd be able to pick out not only a color for the kitchen, but an entirely new color scheme... Read more →


Of Cabinets & Cat Pee, aka a really weird hodgepodge of a post

We have (some) cabinets! That was as of last night, actually. By the time I left to take Ike to school we already had a few more, and the foyer looked like it was getting the final prep for tile. IT'S ALL HAPPENING. It turns out getting your kitchen remodeled is a bit like being pregnant. "How long will it take?" is the new "So what's your birth plan?" and then everybody really just wants to talk about how they were in labor for 175 hours before an unmedicated breech birth and also THEIR kitchen remodel started five years ago... Read more →