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October 2013
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December 2013

He's Not Stubborn, He's Street Styling

(Alternate title: THAT'S SO EZRA PART FOUR HUNDRED AND TWELVE) We had a wee bit of drama yesterday morning when I told Ezra that it was too cold to wear his dinosaur raincoat. He could wear his dinosaur rainboots, yes, but he really needed to wear his winter coat. "But I won't match!" he wailed, and then glared at me when I attempted to point out that look! Your winter coat has some blue on it! Your boots are blue! They totally match! "Thats. The. WRONG. BLUE," he explained, through tiny clenched teeth, as patiently as he possibly could. He had a point. They were very different shades of blue. Also: NO DINOSAURS. He eventually did agree to wear his winter coat — a change of heart that, in retrospect, should have tipped me off to a plot of some kind — and I got him to school on time and dressed appropriately. When I picked him up later, however, I noticed...something. When I wasn't looking, he'd shoved the raincoat into his backpack. And was now rocking a jaunty layered look. You know what? It works. And he knows it. Very sassy move there, Zah. Read more →

Holiday Preparations, Amalah Style

We're hosting a fuller house than usual this year for Thanksgiving, which is Very Exciting for me because 1) more people mean an excuse to make more food, even though I already make 14 times more food than necessary every year but I REFUSE TO LEARN ANYTHING, and 2) more people staying overnight mean I am gaining entire blocks of hours that I now can spend offering those people things to eat. "It's been 30 minutes since you last had some pie. Should I reheat some stuffing for you? How about a little turkey nightcap? Okay, fine. But I'm waking you up at 2 a.m. to feed you some yams. DEAL WITH IT." *does happy gluttony dance* In preparation, we went to Ikea on Saturday so I could obtain replacements for all the plates and wine glasses we've broken since last Thanksgiving, and also to procure some luxury items for our overnight guests. Like "pillows." And "a functional shower curtain." I know, right? So overboard. Just wait until you hear about the new factory-refurbished vacuum cleaner I ordered for the express purpose of vacuuming up dead spiders in the basement. I am the greatest hostess in the world. Now shut... Read more →

And I Was Like, Fine, You Can Stay Home But I'm Putting You To Work

A special guest post by Noah, age 8, who is sick for the second time this week with his second stomach-related ailment, oh my God, for freaking real, you have got to be kidding me with this. Once upon a time there was a little boy named Noah. And he was kinda sick today and couldn't go to school and stayed home on the couch. And he is with his mom right now, telling this story. Before he was telling this story he sort of all of a sudden fell asleep like this. *falls dramatically on the couch and closes eyes* While he was asleep he heard his alarm clock and thought it was time to get up for school. But then he woke up and he was still on the couch. He didn't have to go to school because he was still sick! After that he had some magic medicine and felt better. (That didn't actually happen okay so don't write that down.) Soon Noah really will feel better. His mom said when he was done telling the story he could watch TV. He is now done telling the story. Read more →

Better, I Think, She Says Suspiciously

Hello! Hi! We're all fine, thank you. Feeling much better, yes. Look at me, not talking about barfing. (I am maybe a little bit talking about barfing.) The latest round of pestilence was swift and mighty, yet mercifully brief. I took a nap in the afternoon and woke up to find that Ezra had raided the pantry in a post-viral snack attack and had put together a disgusting, non-BRAT-diet approved buffet of just about everything that didn't require a can opener. Noah took a little longer to recover, but still took one sad look at the bowl of white rice I made him for dinner and requested a pizza instead. Ike, on the other hand, went down for his nap around 2 p.m. and stayed soundly asleep until 7 a.m. this morning. I officially think he's part hibernating bear. Today he likewise seems just fine, other than the fact that he's been eating lunch now for two and a half solid hours. SEND GROCERIES, INTERNET. I still haven't committed to actually tucking anyone's sheets around the mattress corners, though. Or removed the strategically-placed plastic wastebaskets from their rooms. That feels like an invitation for a second wave, if you ask... Read more →

Bleeeeeehhhhhhhhhhh etc.

Someday, if you find yourself tasked writing the inevitable "Top 27 Moments That Signaled the Death of Mommyblogging" listicle for BuzzFaceTwitBook, I would be greatly humbled if you considered this moment, November 19, 2013, When Amalah Finally Ran Out Of Original Ways To Talk About How Everybody In Her House Has A Stomach Virus For The 8th Or 9th Year In A Row. Ezra got it first, over the weekend. Seemed better. I started fantasizing of an alternate reality where no one else would get it, in time gone by, when life was kind and handwashing up to the elbows 20 times a day had meaning. Then Ezra got sick again last night around bedtime and Ike quickly followed, over and over and over, and then Noah burst out of his room in a frantic dash to the bathroom at the exact second it was dawning on me that I wasn't feeling so hot either. (Jason, as of this writing, is still standing. And he deserves all the hookers and blow for his service last night, as the only person capable of handling the non-stop cycle of sheet changes, cleaning, wipedowns and comforting of disgusting little people.) Today, Jason left... Read more →

An Ordinary Day Like Every Other

Today started with Noah's face inches from mine. "Mom! You told me last night to remind you to give me money for the book fair," he says, lifting up the covers while I blink blearily at him. "So I'm reminding you." And we're off. I pull on some clothes and pull my hair into a ponytail while Jason gets Ike ready. Ezra, as usual, needs to be physically dragged out of bed and deposited on the floor of his room, at least four feet away from his bed so he won't immediately climb back in the minute our backs are turned. I distribute underwear and socks and shirts and hope that there are clean pants in the drawers — by Friday it's usually a laundry crapshoot. I inform Noah that the shirt he put on is too small for him. He insists it's fine, it's okay, he just won't raise his arms too much. Downstairs: Cheerios, milk, juice, grapes, eggs, bananas, pancakes. Second, third, fourth helpings. Good Lord, they eat so, so much. Noah rehearses a presentation for a school project — a shoe box decorated and filled with representations of our family's cultural background. He struggles with the pronunciations... Read more →

A Hot (& Cold) Mess

Today's post title is a reference to me, and my current physical state, right now. First, I managed to thwack off a not-insignificant chunk of my index finger last night while trying to cut a sweet potato in half with a crappy dull chef's knife. It's DISGUSTING. Like, I didn't even realize what I'd done until I noticed that there was a flap of skin sort of merrily hanging there, semi-inside out. And although it's my left hand, it's still one of those injuries that I can't stop accidentally tapping, hitting, bumping, jamming, what-have-you. I'm trying to type right now with it pointed up and away from the keyboard because it huuuuuurts, but then I go to like, rub my nose or something and jab the bandaged finger in my eye, then I yelp and flinch and manage to smack it on my desk on the way down. Maybe later it'll get run over by a car or hacked off in the garbage disposal. Second, and the reason I didn't just go with just the classic "hot mess," is because the cold weather is playing a major part in my State o' Mess. I'm sure I've mentioned this before but... Read more →

Things My Mother Did That Were Terrible

A special guest post by His Royal Inherent Ikeness, Esq. I don't usually accept guest posts on this blog, but after requesting an explanation from Ike for this morning's epic, 75-minute-long sobbing ragefest, I was presented with the following list of my crimes. In the interest of fairness, I have agreed to publish it in full. 1. You walked in my room and asked if I wanted to get up. I said no. 2. You started to walk away. 3. HEY I'M AWAKE HERE MOM. 4. You took off my pajamas. Air! Air on my body! Everywhere is air! 5. You put my pajamas in the hamper. Jamas! My love! Come back! 6. Also in the hamper: The green shirt I wore yesterday. I indicated my desire to wear it again. 7. You informed me that I could not, as I spilled spaghetti sauce on it. 8. You changed my diaper while acting like the shirt issue was solved, which it totally wasn't. 9. I DON'T CARE ABOUT SPAGHETTI SAUCE STAINS, BTW. I WOULD LIKE TO MAKE THAT DOUBLY CLEAR. 10. You chose a red shirt with buttons from my closet. I did not want to wear a red shirt... Read more →

His Inherent Ikeness

Ike's preschool teacher said that phrase at least five times this morning, during our parent/teacher conference. So I'm thinking Ike has finally found his post-Baby-Ike nickname of Mighty Zah proportions. His Inherent Ikeness. The one, the only. Lords and ladies of the court, please bow before His Inherent Ikeness. She used the phrase to sum up his personality, particularly his penchant for testing every single limit, rule and boundary, over and over and over, like how the raptors in Jurassic Park hurled themselves at the electric fences in search of weakness. "Ike, time to come sit in the circle!" "No." "Ike, you can't play the name game unless you're sitting in the circle." "No." (Ike crosses his arms and looks staight in her eyes, defiant and yet trying desperately not to smile. Has he got her now? He's totally got her now.) "Okay." (Teacher begins the name game anyway, ignoring his tiny rebellion.) (This is the opposite of what Ike wants. Panic! Mayday! Abort!) (Ike immediately busts his butt over to the circle, then stops to give his teacher a quick hug and a sheepish smile before sitting down, just to confirm that she ain't mad at 'em, because how... Read more →


*crickets* OKAY LET'S PRETEND I DIDN'T PHRASE THAT AS A QUESTION When we last left our plucky band of heroes, Ike was spending all afternoon stuck in his room, in a futile attempt at "quiet time." He'd fight sleep with every ounce of his being for hours, only to finally collapse in exhaustion at a point slightly south of dinnertime, thus combining "nap" and "night-night" into a giant, horrible hybrid sleep of 15/16 straight hours. Many of you suggested I embrace this schedule, which was very tempting because it involved me doing nothing at all, but unfortunately it just doesn't work for us. Mostly because I need to work until at least 3 p.m. every day. Like, actual work that requires my butt at my desk or my ear on a phone, with my full concentration aimed at the computer screen. A couple days a week I typically need to work later than that, but at a minimum, Ike really, really needs to take his nap during that early afternoon window so I can get the majority of my shit done before Noah and Ezra get home and chaos takes over. If I give up on the early nap, I'd... Read more →