Dere’s Uh Alligator In Dere

We finally made it home to good ole Lakeside, Ca. I drove in with the 4 kids about 2 hours after Thanksgiving had begun. I was really freaking happy to get to see all my family in one spot on return from my sojourn.

It’s funny the things one takes for granted in one’s environment. I remember when we first moved to Florida, pjdaddy and I were trippin’ on how flat it was. Not a hill in site. There was one area in our community called Fort Caroline Hills. HAH! Look at the picture of it.

This is the equivalent of a speedbump in California.

He and I missed the mountains. We missed the view, but mostly we missed the snow and snowboarding. We were really excited to leave the First Coast and return to the Left Coast.

When driving about town I don’t let the kids watch DVDs in the car, because I want them to look at the scenery. The drive across country was completely different. I packed every DVD we owned in the van. I was not going to listen to “are we there yet?” for the entire 2338 miles. DVD players in the car rock. The kids were strapped in their seats and I was able to force musicals down their throat for a good portion of the trip. These kids will be exposed to the classics if it kills me/them. Yes we watched Monsters Inc. but they wound up loving, “The Sound of Music” and “My Fair Lady” and “Annie” and “Oliver”. It was fun to show them that the nun in the first musical mentioned also played Mary Poppins in another movie. I even got to introduce them to Abbott & Costello. They were a huge hit. I’d never have been able to get my kids to sit down and watch these flicks any other way.

On the trip out to Florida years ago I’d bought the two oldest disposable cameras so they could take pictures of their trip and to give them something to do. I found them undeveloped as I packed for our reverse move. I learned my lesson not to develop their photos after I paid for 24 pictures of Tom & Jerry on TV.

I had this fantasy that we’d pull over at rest stops and have little picnics with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and cheese sticks, hard boiled eggs, yogurt and juice. I was going to save money and we were going to eat relatively healthy. Hah, yeah right.

Screw that. We went thru McDonald’s and Jack in the Box’s. I even made them, yes I did, I’m gonna say it, are you ready? Pee in cups. I couldn’t believe it when my dad wouldn’t stop for us to pee on trips and we had to go in cups, but because I’m a kinder, gentler person than my dad, I at least stopped the car. It’s soooo much faster that way.

Luckily we had some fake internet friends Sohos and Count, who graciously allowed us to stay at their home in Houston. They couldn’t have lived anymore on our route if they tried. Hopefully we became real friends after meeting them even though I did steal their USB cord. It’s in the mail, really. Course Count is the man who told my children that if they sang, 99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall” really loud 3 times in a row they’d be able to fly. I only still love him because he took my kids fishing off his parent’s dock. Sohos couldn’t go because she has to work. She needs to quit so things like that don’t happen in the future.



The kids had a blast. I wanna have one of those in my backyard.

img_3003How many times have I told you NOT to eat the bait?!?!?!

Graham put his bait to good use.


Oh you don’t want me to take your picture Garren? Ok, I won’t. Oh hey wow, look at the bug mommy has on her camera lense!

img_3018SNAP!!! Gotcha sucka.

Count even took us on a little boat ride. Gavin was freakin’, well for about a second.


We stayed in Houston for two days to wait for poor pjdaddy to catch up as he was still in Jacksonville painting over tiny hand and footprints on the wall to make our home rentable.

So off we go on the rest of our trip. Our friend Dan Coffey, who seems to show up every time we move, ready and willing to help, showed up again. Weirdest part is he never knows we’re moving……he just has bad timing. He even helped us on our original move from Arizona to Florida following us across country driving our rental truck. Dan followed us this time as well. He coincidentally had to be in California today.

In addition to my “side of the road picnics” I thought I’d have, I also thought I’d take a picture of my kids in front of each state’s welcome sign. It was dark when I left Jacksonville, so it was dark when I hit my first state. Alabama. I didn’t see the sign till too late and there was no way I was gonna make a U-turn and unload the kids for a photo op. Oh well, nother idea down the drain.

About the time we made it to New Mexico, I realized my bottom 3 children had either never seen a mountain or couldn’t remember ever having seen a mountain. What a weird thought to me. The mountains I cherish so much. I was cracking up at how amazed they were at something I took for granted my entire life. My mountains.

We’ve been getting settled in. We’ve taken over my poor parents home until we figure out what we’re gonna do and where exactly we’re gonna settle here.

I took my kids to the park playground I loved as a little girl. There happens to be a lake there and I couldn’t get my kids to go near it for nothin’. I couldn’t figure it out till Gavin points to the lake and says, “Dere’s uh alligator in dere”. It took forever to convince them there weren’t any alligators here in San Diego County.

I’ve been trying to go everywhere and visit everyone since I’ve arrived. I feel like a dog. I need to pee on everything. You are my territory and I will mark you.

On one of our trips today, my bottom 3 kids started gagging like crazy. My daughter said, “oh mom, what’s that smell?”. It dawned on me that I have not smelled that particular smell ever in Florida or even in Arizona, but smelled it often in my hometown growing up. It was a skunk.

Welcome to California kids. It’s good to be home.

Puppies, Maggots and Snakes Oh My!

I work one day a week at my local gym. It’s good for me because it saves me the cost of my membership every month and I get a couple extra bucks spending cash.

I was hired to torture kids in the gym’s Kid’s Club. Garren, my four year old has found himself a friend there.  We’ll call him “Little D” unless his momma “Mrs. D” tells me it’s ok to use his name.

Now Garren having a friend means one thing to him and another thing to me. To him, he’s found himself a kindred spirit, to me, I need to clean my freaking house so I can have them over for a playdate. All right, I’ll admit it, Mrs. D is pretty cool to hang with too.

I asked pjdaddy to get my floor scrubber out of the garage for me so I can attempt to clean up the joint. Ok gnarly. Apparently this thing hasn’t been used in a while. My bad. Guess I’ll have to take it outside and hose it off. Know what comes out of things that have been stored in the garage for a long time?

^ THOSE! Those come out of your scrubber when you hose it off. Here in Florida they’re called, “Palmetto Bugs”. Palmetto Bugs my ass, those are roaches! COCKroaches. hhhhhmmmm, cock, that’s interesting, but I digress.

I got control of myself and I dealt with it. I finished cleaning that baby because I want to make my house all nice and purty.

I leave the scrubber outside to dry and come in and attempt to recover emotionally……….that is until Garren tells me there’s a worm on the floor.

A worm? That’s weird. Worms are icky, but I can deal with that. After stumbling upon, “The Nest”, I can handle anything, or so I thought. It wasn’t a worm on my floor. It was this:

Ok, there’s a possibility the maggot might not have been that big, but at the time, it sure seemed like it.

Gah. How the HELL am I supposed to clean that up? I do not want to get a papertowel and have that thing within a micromillimeter of my skin. {{{SHUDDER}}}

I scan the living room for ideas of what to do and that’s when I saw it……… dear sweet puppy brought a little gift into the house.



How am I supposed to get rid of that? I’m surprised the neighbors didn’t call the police with all the shrieking I was doing. Hey, wait a minute, now that I think about it, I’m going to go yell at the neighbors for not calling the police!

^ This man could have been raping me! It would have been just awful. Don’t………….stop! Don’t…..stop! Ok, don’t stop.

Sorry, I had to slip a palate cleanser in there before I went on, now back to the snake. *sigh

I had no freaking idea how I was going to get that out of the house. I opened the back sliding glass door and the puppy decided to help me out. She picked that snake right back up and bounced out of the house, shaking maggots out the whole way.

I come back in the living room to survey the damage. There’s a good 10 of them on my living room floor. FUCK! Seriously, FUCK! This is just waaay too nasty. What the heck? Why does pjdaddy have to work? I need him for this.  I grabbed the vacuum cleaner and sucked them up.

I’m still debating whether or not to set the vacuum on fire.

Luckily, although not for Garren, “Little D” and his family have gone out of town for a month. This means I have a little more time to clean my bug infested home prior to any play dates.

“Mrs. D” however, found this little ditty in the Skymall magazine on her flight out and emailed it to me:

A bug vacuum.

Oh man, I know how to mow the lawn, I’ve got my little toy *cough, all I need is that bug vacuum and a jar opener and pjdaddy’s gonna be obsolete.

Okay, I should so NOT be here

I. Hurt. Everywhere.The Academy is working me hard mentally and physically. Tomorrow we have another run day, it’s supposed to be 100 degrees. Pray for me.

I should be shining my shoes, studying, or icing my stomach but I thought I would share this….I find myself laughing and drooling at the same time. Silver is the new Black!

Fishing without a license

Went to the beach to swim (about 5:30p) tonight. It’s nice because we are two miles away, so to jump in before dinner is not a big deal. The waves were a bit choppy but we managed, one wave got me though….I was getting pummeled. I recovered, but once up I felt something wiggling in between the upper half of my suit. What the …..????? I looked down, two fish! I caught TWO. Fish. In. My. Swimsuit. Mom mode kicked in and I showed Brodey and he got to hold the fish and then release  -it was quite neat to see.

After all the excitement, we sat and watched our son play in the sand for about 15 minutes and then it was time to get home. My husband got Brodey bathed, I poured more into my wine glass (from earlier) and then checked email. Time to shower for me and then it happened….. I pulled my suit down in the tub and out flopped another fish! Are you kidding me? I screamed, not sure why?…but I was shocked…Oh my, how long have I been walking around with a fish in my suit, ew! We figured at least 45 minutes. Gross. (please save all your “smells like fish jokes” not interested)

We got rid of it properly though….thank goodness for boys!

[update] as you can tell by the extremely clean shower walls, this is kare-kare’s post, not pajama momma’s

The Kennedy v. Louisiana Decision As Heard By A 10 Year Old

The radio blares the headline, “Child Rapists Will Not Receive The Death Penalty.”

Translated by my son who has never heard the word rape before.

“What? A child named Ravis was going to get the death penalty? He must have been a really bad kid.”

For People Who Laugh At Farts (not smelling them) As Much As I Do

Here you go San Diego Momma And Mommypie. :)

h/t mesablue who plays good games

Baby it’s Cold Outside (not really)

I just watched Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium, I know, I know.. it’s a silly movie, but I loved it. It got me thinkin’ about other silly movies and this came to mind…Elf. The movie was cute, but this scene…well, I think it’s just great.

I’ve always been a music girl (my sis too). The finest tune can make me have goosebumps, go weak in the knees, shed a tear, etc. If you watched the clip of the shower scene from Elf (I bet you’re clicking on it now) You’d hear that the actress, Zooey Deschanel has a great voice. Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward released an album together called She & Him:Volume One

I like their music but at the moment -this one song has a grip on me, enjoy.

Fundraisers Suck

Every year in elementary school we were required to sell chocolate bars to raise money for school. These were not just any chocolate bars, they were, the “World’s Finest” chocolate bars. And they weren’t the single size they are today. They were double-wides. One giant chocolate bar wrapped and ready for my consumption to sell.

We never made money with these fundraisers, well the school did, but my family actually lost money. Scott was a kid in my class who sold so many boxes, he beat out the entire school every year. At the award ceremony I was so jealous seeing him on stage getting the biggest, best toy out there. I’d get a consolation Frisbee. There was no way for me to compete. His parents took the bars to their place of business and sold boxes upon boxes. My mother, much like I am today, had no desire to take me door to door to offload these burdens. So there the box would sit…….torturing me.

I had no recourse but to eat them myself. I would often go to my brother’s room for solitude. He had a captain’s bed with a great little hiding place underneath. I would go to his cassette collection, put on some Simon and Garfunkel and Blondie, maybe even some E.L.O. and just chill. This is where I went took my chocolate bounty. I tore the wrappers off each bar and downed them like I hadn’t eaten in years.

I never understood Charlie, the boy in the chocolate factory movie. What was his deal? He slowly, painstakingly opened his bars and took teeny tiny bites. He savored it. He made that thing last forever. He even shared! What’s wrong with that boy? Eat the damn bar.

Anyhoo, I sat under his bed and over the course of several days, devoured all 30 bars. Each day I took coins from my brother’s water jug bank to pay for the bars, stuffing them in the little cash envelope intended for paper money and checks.

On the third day of this money thieving, chocolate feeding frenzy, brother came home from school and that obsessive compulsive freak noticed coin the level in his water jug was considerably lower. Sheesh. What a spaz. Actually, I’m surprised it took him that long.

I didn’t have to confess, they knew it was me. They zeroed in on me like a Smart Bomb on Al-Qaida. I hand my mother the envelope busted open with coins falling out everywhere, even covering the bottom of the empty box of chocolates. What? What’s the problem? I ate the chocolate and was doing the right thing by paying for it. Nevermind the fact that it wasn’t my chocolate or my money.

I was stone cold busted. I’m pretty sure I had to do chores to pay back the money, but mom usually forgot to enforce my punishments. Or, decided it was more of a chore for her to punish me by getting me to work off a debt. Funny thing is, mom didn’t learn her lesson, I did the same thing the next year. I know, I know, I’m the one that was supposed to learn the lesson, but come on. Putting chocolate in front of me is like putting beer in front of an alcoholic. Maybe they should have had an, “Intervention” for me.

I hope my kids don’t ever have to sell them, I don’t know if I could resist.

bitchface and kare-kare, but mostly kare-kare cuz she’s the real bitchface

There’s a cockroach by my bedroom door

Interesting, it wasn’t there before

Giggles from another room

I wait, revenge won’t come too soon

I knock at the offender’s door

In goes the cockroach, much to her horror

The scope of my sister’s revenge I did not know

Until in my room, 1000 ladybugs did show

Those muther-effers bite


Sometimes The Dress-up Box Gets On My Nerves

*Garren: Mom I can’t find my “Credible” ( Incredible Hulk) costume.

*Me: Ok, I’ll help you look for it. Honey I can’t find it, how bout this costume? It’s mommy’s “Box of Wine” costume from last Halloween.

*Garren: No, I want my “Credible” costume.

*Me: Ugh, fine.

My kids don’t just play dress-up, they play the, “How many costumes can we get mom to help us put on and take off before she gets annoyed” game. I must have put on 80 gajillion costumes yesterday.

I thought I was doing good, seriously, I was patient for a loooong time. And then it gets to the point where I’m like, NO! Pay attention this foot goes in here! NO! Look at me, not the TV. Pay attention to where your foot is going, that’s the wrong hole again! For the love of God man, you’re just like your father……that’s not the right hole! (they’ll forget I made that comment by the time they understand what it means…..right?)

All right mom, time to redirect.

Ok guys, mommy’s gonna put a movie in, you guys can keep the costumes you have on, but I’m not putting anymore on for you. That’s the deal.

*few minutes later

“Mom can you take my costume off?” I told you I wasn’t going to do that for you anymore. “But I have to go to the bathroom” Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

The left is my living room on any given Monday morning. The right? Monday afternoon. That green blob on the couch is an unconscious alligator child. I had to shoot him with a tranquilizer dart and duct tape his snout shut so he wouldn’t bite me. I saw them do that on Animal Planet once.