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April 2015
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June 2015

Me vs. Nature, Part Four Million and Three

This is our garden. We have sage, a batshit amount of parsley, two pots of chives, and a big mishmosh of rosemary, thyme, dill, and marjoram. Beans, bush tomatoes, and peas. Two sacks of potatoes. Delicious little radishes. Tons of not-quite-ripe strawberries that are straight-up torturing my children. Cherry tomatoes, carrots, beets... ...and a fucking squirrel trap. Squirrels became a big problem for us last year. We were super-ambitious and planted about twice what we have this year. They ate every single tomato. We'd go outside and find our big, gorgeous heirlooms lying in the dirt, half gnawed on. If there weren't any tomatoes, they went after strawberries, squash, melons...whatever else they could wring a little liquid out of on dry, sunny days. It was just two squirrels in particular. One had a bald spot on its butt and one had lost the tip of its tail. We named them Asshole and Stumpy. We'd see them on the fence and send Ceiba out to yap at them, but they'd immediately come back when the coast was clear. We tried everything. Those bobble-headed owl statues, special repellent sprays and predator scents, offering water and food on the OTHER side of our... Read more →

Our Week Without Blue Apron

This post is sponsored by Blue Apron. Since we signed up for Blue Apron last summer, we’ve only skipped a small handful of weeks. Usually because of holidays and travel schedules, when we knew we wouldn’t be able to prepare the meals when the ingredients were still super fresh. We skipped a week this month because we were going to have a string of back-to-back weeknight plans, so it didn’t make sense to have three meals’ worth of ingredients sitting in the fridge until the weekend. Besides, Jason said, he had a few recipes bookmarked he’d like to try the other nights. Of course, our weeknight plans all fell through in semi-rapid succession, and by Sunday afternoon we were looking at a week with no Blue Apron delivery scheduled and multiple meals to plan and shop for on our own. You know, like 99.999999% of the rest of the adult population manages to do each and every week. Yeah. Here’s how that went… DAY ONE, SUNDAY We spend a LOT of time on different recipes sites, going back and forth about different recipes and meal ideas. I repeatedly, gently at first, then increasingly shrill-like, point out that every recipe Jason... Read more →

If You Can't Draw a Crowd Put Coke on a Wall

Remember that time we painted a chalkboard wall in our kitchen? Remember how nice it looked at first? Yeah, me neither. From top to bottom: 1) Our grown-up behavior chart, which was abandoned (on a Wednesday, apparently) a good six months ago. 2) The ghostly remains of an Ike/Ezra behavior chart, which only tracked one behavior, which was Get Out Of Bed In The Morning And Put Clothes On Without Mom Losing Her Shit At You. There are zero stars awarded to either, so Ezra helpfully wrote "Ty" a couple times to keep us up-to-date on who was "winning." 3) A very pretty flower that I think our babysitter drew. No one in this household has those skillz. 4) I don't know who drew all those boobs around the light switch. Wasn't me. 5) Assorted scribbles and doodles. Ike says they are "battle machines." Ezra drew a "calendar" for Ike so he could assign one of the colored behavior codes they use in kindergarten. From the looks of all the pink and yellow, Ike is not having a good month. Here's the thing: Behavior charts work really, really well for my kids. Always have. We target a small handful of... Read more →

Breathe Easy

This post is sponsored by FilterEasy. “Air filters? What in sam hill am I supposed to say about air filters?” That’s the G-rated version of what I said to myself after reading the sponsored post proposal from FilterEasy. But after thinking about it, I decided to take the challenge. I would find something funny to say about air filters. I mean, if I could make air filters entertaining, I am probably some sort of god among bloggers. Sponsor me, all ye mundane household items! Pay me in paper towels and caulk! Let me synergize your brand, lemon-scented dusting spray! Then I looked at the ordering instructions and I was like, “I’m supposed to buy air…filtersss? Like more than one?” Prior to my experience with FilterEasy, the entire scope of my air filter knowledge was: I dunno, that’s a husband thing. I mean, I knew they were a thing that existed and needed to be purchased and changed regularly, but I had zero idea what variety or size we’d need and how to change it or how often and wow, stop being such a wuss and SACK UP AND LEARN ABOUT HOW THINGS WORK, AMY. (It’s like that time we ran... Read more →

In Which We Learn Our Door Lock Does Not, You Know, LOCK

FADE IN: INT MASTER BEDROOM - NIGHT MOM and DAD are present. (CENSORED CONTENT) The door, previously believed to be securely locked, suddenly opens. CHILD stands in doorway. MOM: OH SHIT DAD: (grabs covers) CHILD: Mom? Why were you making that sound? MOM: What? No. NO. I have no idea what you're talking about. Go to bed. CHILD: No, I heard a sound. A sound like... CHILD does remarkably decent impression of Meg Ryan's famous "I'll Have What She's Having" scene from When Harry Met Sally. DAD: (bursts out laughing) MOM: (buries face in hands) CHILD: Why were you making that sound, Mom? MOM: Honey, I'm fine. We'll talk about it more in the morning. It's a...grown-up thing. CHILD: Ohhhhhh. Growing pains! I get it. MOM: Wha-? Uh. Sure. CHILD: Sorry about your growing pains, Mom. DAD: (is still laughing) MOM: Can you go back to bed, sweetie? CHILD: Okay, good night! MOM & DAD: SHUT THE DOOR PLEASE. FADE OUT Read more →


The day has come, the assholes said. To talk of many things: Of ships, and shoes, and sealing wax, And Craiglist ads, and tires. (Okay that last line might need some work. Am simple drunk-ass blogger, not poet, after all.) But YES. The day has come, little walruses. TIREWATCH 2015 is officially over. Someone bought the tire. It's gone now. (Our last moment together, before Jason came to pick it up and/or it rolled right the fuck off the picnic bench like an ungrateful bastard.) We got one hundred dollahs for the tire. Worth it? Jason thinks so. The rest of the world who had to put up with this nonsense online might say otherwise. Bye Tire. I should have named you Felicia. This has been TIREWATCH 2015: THE TIRE WATCHENING, brought to you by your friendly neighborhood asshole who really, really hope none of the neighbors saw her posing a fucking tire at a picnic table and pouring it a glass of wine at 2:30 in the afternoon while giggling like an idiot because HA HA LOOK TIRE THINKS IT'S PEOPLE. Read more →

Flea Circus

This post is sponsored by Adams™ Flea & Tick Control Products THINGS CEIBA NO LIKE: 1) MAILMAN 2) FOOD THAT IS NOT WAFFLES 3) CHILDREN WHO NO SHARE WAFFLES 4) WHEN CAT STEALS BEST SUNBEAM SPOT 5) FLEAS AND TICKS Things Max is not particularly a fan of: 1) Online meme-y catspeak that really demeans us all, if you think about it 2) Not being fed right this second 3) Or this second 4) Dog getting up in his face while he’s just trying to chill in a sunbeam 5) Fleas and ticks I remain neutral on the great sunbeam turf war but at least I’ve got them thoroughly covered on number 5, thanks to Adams™ Flea & Tick Control Products. Oh yeah. IT’S ON. While I can’t think of ANYTHING that ISN’T terrible about a flea infestation, I will say the WORST part is the re-infestation, right when you think you’ve got the situation under control. Or noticing the OTHER pet, who was just fine the first million times you checked, suddenly scratching like crazy. COME ON. We’ve been really pretty fortunate that our pets have stayed mostly pest-free, but I like to think it’s because we’re not idiots... Read more →

I Promise I'll Always Let You Know When There's a Velociraptor Behind You

So thank you, Internet People and Real Life People, for all your nice words of support and encouragement after my last post. I am really so grateful to everyone who commented or reached out to me to share their stories/experiences/helpful tips on living with a tremor. (And special shout-out to Callie for gifting me with her friend's description of her "Chihuahua Hands," which is totally going to be my answer from now on when someone asks me why I'm shaking. Or I'll just flap my arms and shriek "BECAUSE I'M PART HUMMINGBIRD WHEEEEE.") I feel like just writing that post and hitting the publish button helped. I was trying so hard to hide the tremor that the act of exposing it to the big online world let me...relax about it. Which...relaxed the tremor itself. It's that rare catharsis that blogging can give you sometimes, when you finally open an emotional bottleneck and just...BLARGHYBLARGH it all over the Internet. (Why, yes. Blarghyblargh is totally a verb.) This morning Ike's school hosted their yearly Mother's Day breakfast, which meant I had to leave the house and put on makeup and fiddle with jewelry clasps and various clothing items that are now stupidly... Read more →

I'm Just Gonna Shake Shake Shake

So let's talk about weird health things. I have a weird health thing to talk about. I mentioned recently (around the time I Q-U-I-T mah J-O-B) that my hands shake when I'm nervous or anxious. That's kinda only the half of it. When your hands start shaking uncontrollably, your brain immediately starts thinking of Big Bad Things, like Parkinson's, or MS. And that's what was happening. I would feel fine, sitting there with friends, with no reason to feel anxious about anything. And then I'd bring my glass up to my mouth and suddenly my hand would be all: And someone would notice, and ask me if I was okay, and I would admit that I didn't know. It was just something that was happening a lot. The good news is that it's NOT any of the Big Bad Things. It's a common movement disorder known as Essential Tremor. It apparently used to be called Benign Essential Tremor to differentiate it from the more vicious, debilitating disorders, but "benign" was eventually dropped because HEY YOU KNOW WHAT THIS ONE STILL FUCKING SUCKS. Writing with a pen or pencil, putting on makeup, just about any small task involving my hands is... Read more →

Two Tales of Betrayal & Comeuppance

BETRAYAL BY CHOCOLATE: THE IKE STORCH STORY On Friday night, Jason and I were hanging out on the back deck after dinner. The boys were instructed to get pajamas on before picking out a movie to watch. Noah and Ezra were allowed to make a pit stop at the candy bowl for dessert; Ike had refused to eat any dinner so he was to go directly upstairs. Suddenly, we heard some very, very distressed crying coming from the kitchen. Ike was sitting by the candy bowl and wailing. "What's wrong, what happened?" I asked. "IT'S HOT!" he cried. "What's hot?" "NOTHING!" That was a damn dirty lie and we both knew it. "Did you eat something you weren't supposed to, Ike?" "NO," he sobbed. "YES." Yes, indeed. Out of all the clandestine candy options he could have gone with, he'd chosen very, very poorly: I purchased this chocolate at food & booze festival we attended a couple months ago, and I purchased it because the ghost peppers are like built-in portion control. It is physically impossible for me to shove all this chocolate in my mouth hole and that's a good thing. One or two small bites is about all... Read more →