Entertainingment

Once again, we threw a huge party and did not take a single photo of the actual party. Perhaps this is all a strange, yearly hoax where we only pretend to throw a huge party and like, know people and have friends. Or perhaps Friendsgiving only happens in our sick, twisted minds and we really spend the day drinking and conversing with ghosts! Here are the things I DID take photos of, in no particular order: Ezra created a scavenger hunt for the kids, complete with a big box of prizes. I had to ask about the "Stupid Hello Kitty" -- was there a smart Hello Kitty out there as well, like as a trick? -- and he explained that it was a Happy Meal "girl" toy that Ike got by mistake. "It's not stupid because it's a girl toy, though," Ezra clarified. "It's stupid because she's supposed to be a superhero but when you press on her head and it just kind of raises the arms a tiny bit and it's just..." He trailed off, visibly disgusted at the lack of product design that went into this particular Happy Meal offering. (The "Launch Pokeball" was the Happy Meal "boy"... Read more →


Adventures in Chaperoning

HI THERE! WHO'S READY TO CRUSH SOME SHIT TODAY? lol jk that mug is full of Theraflu, not coffee. I don't have the flu (we "believe" in the flu shot around here, because it is the flu shot, not Santa Claus), but some absolutely brutal cold -- or some amalgram of multiple colds from Jason's work, the kids' schools, that field trip to the Maryland Germ Factory Science Center I chaperoned last week -- that will not let me live or breathe or go 10 minutes without coughing up a lung. I didn't want to or even intend to chaperone the field trip, because I am really terrible at interacting with other people's children and never know how to handle my pack of charges. ("So you like, go to school? That sucks.") I shoot for being the Cool Chill Mom but instead end up being the Awkward and Ill-Prepared Mom who has terrible Time Management Skills. I forgot to ask about bathroom breaks until we were suddenly in a panicked sprint to find the nearest restroom two floors away; I couldn't find an empty table at lunchtime so we all ended up eating on the floor in a random corner;... Read more →


A Square Lamp in a Round Hole

Many, many years ago, we went to West Elm for pillow shams and also left with a lamp for our dining room. (A wee Ezra was helpful enough to document the shopping trip at the time.) All lighting was 10% off, and then there was an extra 40% store-wide sale going on, and so we got this $399 chandelier (in discontinued grey), comprised of hundreds of (INDIVIDUALLY! WRAPPED! IN TISSUE PAPER! AND TAPE!) seashell bits and bobs for...definitely less than that. This lamp was the only non-furniture thing in our old house that I insisted on bringing with us when we moved. This lamp was non-negotiable. This lamp was a Hill That I And Any Subsequent Real Estate Deal Would Die On, even against the most strenuous advice of our agent. (The same agent who made alarmingly critical noises about the MAIL SLOT on our front door, and so I rushed out to buy SPECIAL POLISH for the mail slot. AND THEN, when the special mail slot polish failed to deliver the desired pop of curb appeal, I replaced the entire mail slot because YES, THIS NEW MAIL SLOT WILL SURELY SELL THIS HOUSE!!1 !OMG!!1CRYTIME!) (This lamp was very important... Read more →


BATTLEBOTS

VACUUM ROBOT vs. PING PONG ROBOT. THERE CAN BE ONLY ONE. ("Holds over 100 ping-pong balls!" 75+ of which are now somewhere under your couch.) And then mere minutes after being reset and sent along on its merry vacuuming way, the vacuum robot celebrated its victory by dragging and then hurling a kitchen stool down a flight of steps. Because sure, why not. This household clearly needs more weird. Also a ping-pong ball retrieving robot. (Just kidding. That's what human children are for.) Read more →


Cakewalk

Not going to lie, one of my primary reasons for having so many children was to have more people to bake (highly amateurish) birthday cakes for. And after many years of fielding many varied requests, all three boys have more or less settled on their birthday cake of choice. Noah always asks for a Victoria sponge sandwich cake. Ike wants the same one-bowl chocolate cake recipe I've been baking him since preschool, which eventually landed on this specific variation with grapeseed oil. (I dump the wet ingredients into a large measuring cup so it's still technically a one-bowl recipe because fuck washing bowls.) Although every year he does change up the shape, frosting and decorating details, just to keep me on my toes. (I swear one of these years he's going to request an three-tiered octagon cake with dark chocolate frosting that is also blue, somehow, and yellow candles that turn into tiny rockets that spell HAPPY BIRTHDAY, IKE! in edible red smoke and also the whole cake doubles as a party pinata full of candy and money.) (And I'll be like, okay, I'll see what I can do, but are you sure I can't interest you in a giant... Read more →


Hobbies

So we've been going to the Maryland Renaissance Festival a lot lately. I guess our multiple season passes to multiple musical theater seasons weren't dorky enough, and the bins (ALSO MULTIPLE) of costumes (EVEN MORE MULTIPLE) required didn't compete with the space currently occupied by all of Jason's ping pong accessories or the industrial-grade meat slicer that he bought because he made bacon one time. There is apparently a not-very-large leap between attending a Renaissance Festival for the first time and thinking I do not get this, I do not get any of this at all and becoming a person who is like, SUPER INTO IT, maybe a little TOO INTO IT. And that leap appears to be somewhere around the purchase of 1) your second beer and 2) a flower crown. After that, you might as well go all in. (I keep getting a ton of hair compliments on IG/FB and I keep yelling that no, I do not deserve those compliments as the "hair" is a ridiculous clip-in extension that I got on Amazon for $9.99. My hair stops around my shoulders; everything past that is a lie.) (The clip-in color does admittedly match my actual hair color... Read more →


The ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, Saga

Whenever my blog posting frequency starts to dip, I notice a slight uptick in semi-concerned texts and emails. AMY R U OKAY R U OKAY AMY? Perfectly understandable, given the wild brain ride I've dragged everyone along on over the past...year? Two years? (I dunno, check the archives and see if you can pinpoint the exact second this blog became less "ha ha ha, let's all laugh at an exaggerated yet breezy re-telling of some dumb thing I did" and more "wow I am truly a dumb scrap of worthless jittery garbage but like...ha a aaa? ha HaAAAa? is ThIs How u d0 teh HumoR?") But I am okay! Very, very more than okay! The best I've felt in a very long time! My keyboard, on the other hand... Truly the REAL dumb scrap of worthless key-shedding garbage. The comma key fell off about...two months ago, and I kept stubbornly attaching it over and over again, only to have it pop loose again a few sentences later. So then I'd re-attach it again, but HARDER. (And since I route my text messages through Google Hangouts, this meant SEVERAL of those "hey just checking in hope all is well" texts got... Read more →


It's Happening

I currently have about a half-dozen questions of the Baby Sleep, How To Fix It, Oh God I'm So Tired variety in the Advice Smackdown queue.* And yet there is nobody around to tell me how I'm supposed to sleep with this bloody thing still moving around my house. They've more or less tired of the Jump Scare Game (though I've yet to let my guard down any time I open a door or turn a corner, which is a LOT of work in this ridiculously door- and twisty-corner-laden house), but I'm forbidden from getting rid of the clown until after Halloween, because they apparently have Plans. (Plans to get us dis-invited from every nice family neighborhood get-together, I'm assuming.) I finally shoved it (sorry, capital "It," can't disrespect a proper noun) out in our garage, facing a shelf in a well-lit area so my brain clearly registers it as a large piece of harmless cardboard vs. the hulking shape of death propped ominously in a far dark corner. (Which: Tried that. I died. The End.) Also, the door blocks it more or less entirely on your way out. Unfortunately, I didn't think about the other angle until I pulled... Read more →


Renaissance Family

This is our last week of summer vacation, and I am sick with a head cold that I suspect I caught at the Renaissance Festival this past weekend. (Though given the lengths some people go for 100% time-period accuracy I should be grateful that it's just a cold and not the plague or smallpox.) (This is also accurate. He has a new costume for next weekend that's some sort of muscle-bound executioner. He's looking forward to sentencing people to death for littering and/or cutting in the privy line.) (Ezra also has a wonderful new costume that didn't arrive in time for opening weekend so he had to go with Alexander Hamilton and was NOT HAPPY ABOUT IT. And although he received multiple compliments on his "fine nobleman's jacket," he told anyone who would listen about the Great Costume Injustice. "I wanted to be a scribe but Dad didn't order my costume in time and so they made me wear this instead." [NOBODY MADE HIM WEAR ANYTHING!!] He was later distracted by Many Foods On Sticks and then a side quest for find the Perfect Author's Satchel. Which: ??? I dunno but it cost me $28.) (Yeah. I know. Those weren't... Read more →


Summer Cereal Wars

We're currently getting the back deck and wood trim painted, which is one of those homeowneryship things that costs like, ALL of your money and leaves you with...well, everything pretty much looking exactly the same as before. (They're also power washing the siding, which has grown slightly greenish since we moved in, so we at least get to Make Yellow House Yellow AgainTM.) It's a very unsexy unfun home improvement, and it's taking forever because every day it starts raining right after the crew shows up. (That has got to be one of the All Time Top 10 Most Exciting Paragraphs I have ever written in the history of this blog, no? Perhaps later I shall set up a live video feed of the freshly painted window trim so we can all watch it dry together.) This morning they asked me to remove all the window screens, which I did, while the cats looked on in escapist glee. I of course managed to injure my fingers not once, but twice in the process, and drop one screen down the side of the house. ("HEADS UP!" I yelled to absolutely no one below, for no discernible reason.) Then I grumbled and... Read more →