Old Story, New Post

Not much has happened over the last couple of days that I feel is "blog-worthy," so I decided to post a story involving KayKay and our little rhyming game which happened a couple of months ago... Most of the people who know me have probably read this, but it's too funny not to share.

Before I tell the story, I would like to share a short anecdote of something the Ladybug said yesterday...

We went to Sam's Club (boy-oh-boy, the adventure that is the Sam's experience... Ten pounds of bacon and a couple of boxes of Oreos and I'm good. Whooo-hoo!!) yesterday and the Ladybug happened to see the GIANT trampoline that every Sam's hangs from their ceiling, and mentioned to the Daddy that she wanted to buy "one of dohse trampolines." When the Daddy asked her where we would put the thing, she said:

"We could get one of dohse little trampolines and put it in my dreadroom (bedroom) and take KayKay's bed out of the dreadroom so that we could make a little space and put the little trampoline in the space and then we could jump on it."

When we asked her where her sister would sleep, the Ladybug replied, "On dah floor. Or in Mommy and Daddy's dreadroom." Uh-huh.

Apparently, she's not at the age where looking out for her sister is a top priority. *Sigh*

I personally think we should just dispense with their beds altogether, get the trampoline and set it up up there (with the safety guard around it), throw some pillows and blankets to the top, then add a padlock to the little door thing on the safety guard, and be done with it. That way they could bounce all they want, and we could lock them in it at night so they couldn't burst into the bedroom at some unholy hour to wake us. They'd love it, and we'd get some sleep. It'd be perfect!

Anyway, so here's my story about my KayKay... She's at THAT age. You know which one I'm talking about.

So we went for a nice walk around the neighborhood a little while ago, and then (at the Daddy's suggestion), we went home and loaded up in the car to head to the McDonald's PlayPlace (which I personally have begun calling the "PooPlace" simply because I despise going there)...

Anyway, on the ride there, I suggested we play the "Rhyme Game," so that the Little Ladybug could start learning to rhyme words. So we went through a bunch, and Ladybug got into the idea of a game, even though she wanted to rhyme "tortoise" (which is well nigh impossible to rhyme, I might add), and didn't really get it. It's kind of hard to explain to a three-year-old that "flower" and "flower" aren't rhyming words, that they're the SAME. But that's okay, she'll get it eventually.

So as we go inside the McDonald's, KayKay and I are rhyming with "bored"... So we go, gourd and Lord and cord and roared and sword, etc... Around the middle of that one, we went into the Mickey D's and I'm in the middle of ordering our drinks, when the cashier got caught up doing something else for a minute. So we while we waited, Michaela said she'd run out of words that rhymed with "bored," and asked for another word. I started thinking (we'd already done a lot of the easier ones - hat, top, etc...), and finally spied that Michaela was wearing my hat that my Arctic Auntie had made for me, so I thought, "AHA!" and said the word "knit."

Well, that got off to a splendid start. We did kit and grit and hit and mitt and spit and split.

Then... JUST as the cashier (who I think was also a manager) had taken our order, and was waiting to take my money (and of course, there's another employee standing right next to him, and the nice guy standing behind us with his baby), Michaela turned to me and said quite LOUDLY (as loudly as possible, I think), "SH**!! Mama, is SH** a word??"

Oh. Dear. Lord. I thought the guy behind the counter was going to choke to death trying not to laugh. The poor, innocent guy behind me - well, his eyebrows hit his hairline, and he nearly dropped the baby. And I just wanted the ground to open up and swallow me whole. And now I'm caught between wanting to start sobbing and wanting to laugh hysterically.

So. Yeah.

Lord help us all.

We won't be rhyming with "duck" anytime soon, either.

I think it can only get better from here... Right?!?!?

Adventures In Cantaloupe

So it's been a few days since I've posted. Been super tired and have had to scrape my eyeballs off of the computer screen from looking at and applying to all the stupid freaking @#$!!! wonderful opportunities in the employment ads. Seriously. Too much scraping of the corneas. So I haven't much felt like writing or doing anything other than sleeping. And haven't been much successful at that. Whooo. So anyway...

I do have several fun little tidbits from the last couple of days, though, which are begging to be shared.

KayKay has lost yet another tooth at school. I think part of the lesson plans there involve "How To Remove Loose Teeth From The Heads of Your First-Graders," or something, because this is the second tooth she's managed to have pried out of her head while at school in as many weeks. This time it was one of the top front teeth, though, so she's already mispronouncing dozens of things. It's adorable. She has another extremely loose tooth as well, which when it comes out, will earn her the nickname of "Snaggle-Tooth," although she doesn't know it yet. As it is her smile looks sort of like a badly carved jack-o-lantern... Although I won't tell her that. We'll just leave it at Snaggle Tooth. Ah, how I love creating such fond memories for my children.

She's also planning on being in the "Top Five" of the upcoming First Grade spelling bee for her school. I wouldn't be surprised if she does it, either, because she knows all of the words for her grade, and half of the ones for the Second Grade spellers as well. We shall see. The mispronunciation was in full swing this afternoon while she was "practifing" her words. Hee. So cute. That makes it all the more fun to listen to. Apparently UNUSUAL is an UNUSUALLY hard word to spell, as well... And somehow it has a Y in it, too. She and I both caught the giggles trying to get her to spell it right without using the cheat-sheet. And, I think I'll forever refer to the word "quarrel" as "ca-WOW" from here on out. Except, maybe, in interviews. Assuming I actually get that far.

The Ladybug has been up to her own brand of mischief the last couple of days as well, and has managed to come up with two post-worthy gems in as many days. She has, however, also been incredibly snooty and has gotten two spankings in nearly as many days, which is highly unusual for her.

Sunday afternoon the Daddy and I laid down the law about the girls' bedroom. It looked like the aftermath of Hiroshima in there. So after nap time was done, I immediately banished them to their room to clean it. Which, in Little Ladybug's mind, means that her sister does all the cleaning while she jumps on the bed or does some other equally as forbidden thing, giggling all the time until I come back upstairs in a huff, at which point she pretends that she's been helping KayKay all along. Unfortunately, I was elbows deep in another cleaning project and couldn't stand over her the way I usually do to make certain that she actually HELPS. So after several threats from me, the Daddy got involved. He had some work to do, but took the time to step in. I was pleasantly surprised and thoroughly relieved, because he took over and left me to focus on the war zone that was our dining room floor. Mmmmmm. You really don't want to know.

Well, the Daddy ended up having to give the Ladybug her "final warning" (again, not the norm for her) and sent her back upstairs. A few minutes later, after listening to some (unknown to me) conversation between KayKay and Ladybug, he called upstairs and said, "Ladybug, sing the clean-up song while you clean."

Now, let me clarify something here - Ladybug knows the clean-up song, but I have been very lax in my teaching of the clean-up song of late, and have been more interested in the room actually being, you know, CLEAN, than the song that goes along with it (think along the lines of a Gestapo drill-sergeant). So it was with boundless amusement that we listened to her version of the clean-up song floating down the stairs...

It started out with "Clean-up SONG, clean-up SONG, clean, clean, clean-up SOOONG." And then when her sister started singing the actual song, she remembered the tune, and it very quickly spiraled into this:

"Clean-up, clean-up!
Everybody wear your HAIR!
Clean-up, clean-up!
Everybody's under-WEAR!

Yep. That's my girl.

So now we get to the cantaloupe. Not the ones that have anything to do with this blog's title, mind you, but still. I knew they would come in handy. (I'm so tired my brain's a few bricks short of a full load right now, if you know what I mean. So forgive the bizarre chattiness...)

Anyway. So the Ladybug has this thing where she's been calling the occasional marshmallow's we give as treats "cantaloupes." It makes no sense, I know. She knows what cantaloupes are. And she knows that marshmallows are called "marshmallows." But she's insisted on calling them cantaloupes for a couple of weeks now. However, I can never seem to catch her in the act of saying this, it's always the Daddy who is with her when she says this and, of course, he corrects her. In fact, I didn't even know she was calling them that until he told me about it one night a few weeks ago. Since then, I have heard her say it to him, and heard her correct him, but it's never been with me... Until last night.

When we first started potty-training Little Ladybug, anytime she had a poo-related potty experience, we rewarded her with some small treat, like one or two gummy bears or a marshmallow or two. We've since weaned her off of this, but once in a while when she goes, she wants a treat. So last night she got up out of bed, very tiredly (I think she was almost asleep when the urge hit) and did her business, and then asked for some "cantaloupes" from the Daddy. He passed the word on to me, and I went to get them. He'd already settled back in downstairs when I took the marshmallows up to our tired girl. When I got up there, she said, "I want TWO cantaloupes." So I looked at her, and said (while thinking to myself, "AHA!"), "Well look at that, Ladybug, I have TWO CANTALOUPES for you right here." And held them out to her in my hand. She then looked me full in the face and in all seriousness said,


I don't think I've heard the Daddy laugh that hard in years.


Pulled Pork And Pork Rinds

Okay, so I'll just say right off the bat that this entry has *nothing* to do with pork rinds... Unless you're talking about what happens when me and the kids hork down the occasional mound of horribly unhealthy snack food. But I digress. So I just liked the way "pork rinds" sounded with the whole "pulled pork" thing.


So I made this pulled pork thing in the crockpot tonight, and it was really tasty. It's my own bizarre concoction (with some input from the hubby) which I made for the first time a couple of weeks ago and I will say that it was tastier the first time. I went a little overboard on the OJ and lemon juice this time, I think. And for anyone who knows me, you know that I don't do pork. Other than the 12 pounds of bacon that I daydream of snarfing in one sitting. And again... I digress. So pork is not usually my thing, but it was so tasty last time that I decided to try it again, this time going with the whole Miami/Cuban yumminess as a theme. We had black beans and rice, too. Mmmm.

I thought I'd share the recipe for any of my three friend out there who read this and might want to cook up some tasty pork in the near future. I will give the first version of the recipe, as you might not want the uber-lemony pork we had tonight.


2-3 thick-cut pork loin chops, with most of the fat cut off
2/3 cup of OJ
1/3 cup of lemon/lime juice
LOTS of garlic powder (this translates to about 2 tablespoons, probably... Can you tell I don't do much measuring when I'm "creating"??)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1 small or 1/2 large onion, diced small
1-2 large carrots, diced small
2-3 large celery stalks, diced small
2-3 cups chicken stock (or pork if you have it... I just use chicken, because WHERE IN THE WORLD does one get PORK stock??? And besides that, it all tastes the same eventually!)


1 tablespoon cream
1-2 teaspoons softened butter
1-2 teaspoons flour


Throw everything except the stuff for the thickener into the crockpot. Set on low for 6-8 hours or high for 4-6 hours. Pull apart with a couple of forks until it's nice and shreddy. Mmmm.

Mix the cream, butter and flour together in a small bowl until it's a sort of creamy mushy looking consistency. Take a fork and scoop a decent dollop of it into the liquid of the pork and mix it around. Add in enough of the mixture to make the liquid have a gravy-like consistency.

Serve over rice or noodles or whatever. Yum!

So that's my post for the day. Have at it, brave crockpotters. :O)

From The Mouths of Babes

So just a little while ago, we were driving to dinner, and my KayKay was talking to me from the back seat about writing down her dreams, and about growing up, when suddenly she said something to the effect of, "Our parents always want us to grow up and have all the tools we need." She's six-and-a-half now - extremely bright for her age - and we have discussions about life and growing up fairly frequently.

Anyway, I recognized that phrase from one of the prayers that I often pray over her and the Ladybug before bed, and decided to run with it to see where she would take the idea. So I asked her, "Well, what kind of tools do you need when you grow up?" Here is the conversation which took place after that question came about...

"The fruit of the Spirit; love, joy, peace..."

"You're very right, KayKay, those are some of the tools you need, and that Mommy and Daddy want you to have when you grow up... So what do you think these tools are for?"

"Love, joy, peace, long-suffering..."

"No, my silly girl, you've already told me WHAT the tools are, but I want to know how you think you will USE them."

"Well, joy is a tool."

"Yeah, babe, joy is a tool. But why is joy an important tool in your life to be successful as a grown-up?"

"I don't get it. Love and kindness and gentleness..."

"Okay, KayKay, how about this - a rake is a tool, right? What do you use a rake for?"

"For raking."


"Raking leaves"

"Right. So joy is a tool, and love is a tool, so how do you think you will use those?"

"Ohhhhh! Loving other people!"

And I'm thinking to myself, "You go girl. Live this life, KayKay, full of love." But I only said aloud, "Good thinking. Now think for a minute more about the other Fruits of the Spirit and how you can use them in your life." I wanted her little brain to work some of this stuff out.

At this point, the Ladybug pipes up from the back that it's her turn to talk, PLEASE, and goes on to say that all the Fruit of the Spirit are growing on a big tree and her and Mommy and Daddy and the KayKay are all going to stand under the tree and pick the Fruit.


I thought that was a lovely story, but I *really* wanted to know what my KayKay was thinking. So we moved on. Very quickly. I told the Little Ladybug that I thought her story was very sweet and now it was KayKay's turn to talk. I asked her if she'd thought about some of the other Fruits and what they meant and how they were used, and she proceeded with some amazing wisdom from that little six-and-a-half-year-old brain.

"Joy: being joyful, and having joy. Giving joy to other people so they can be happier.

Kindness: doing things for other people so that they can have more. Using nice words and sharing. Being friends with people.

Faithfulness: being true and right and noble. Being kind to friends, and good."

Whoa. She just blew my socks off. They're still off! I think they're going to stay off for a while.

Faithfulness. Noble, right and true. You got that right, girl.

It's Almost Noon & I'm Still Asleep...

It took me until 11:30 this morning to get my daily dose of caffeine. I was pretty much a walking zombie until then, not that most of the people with whom I interacted would have known. But my brain was definitely not working at full capacity. It still isn't.

I admit it, I'm a caffeine addict. Yes, Mom, I said it. :O) Without my energy shot of coffee in the morning, I'm usually pretty useless. I'm still feeling pretty useless today, and I've already had the caffeinated beverage of choice. *THAT* I don't understand.

As my one dear follower knows (you know who you are! :O), I am on the hunt for a job. I would say ANY job, but my luck would allow that taxi cab gig I applied for a while back to come through. And I'm just not into being a cab driver. Or a legal secretary. Or anything that involves cleaning up human or animal excrement. I get enough of that here at home. Anyway.

I've been on the hunt for a while now, although mostly in a sort of half-assed sort of way, but recently thought I'd found "IT" and so put my life on hold to jump through all the hoops and do the hula for the "IT JOB" people. Unfortunately, they didn't think I was "IT". Which sucks. But (given a little time, some tears, and a lot of perspective) which is probably a good thing because I really want to only go where I fit, to that little niche that God has carved out especially for me, wherever that may be.

So now I'm (once again) thinking about life and meaning and the purpose of work and fulfillment and destiny and waiting and all those other other-worldly words upon which my brain likes to flutter around like a moth to the flame. Ugh.

Cross your fingers and say a prayer. A long one. I need it. I have to go finish cleaning the spilled cereal and milk that got flung across the kitchen by the Ladybug a little while ago. And not cry over it.

The First Post...

Well, it's not the first post, really. Not if you count the 150 or so which have been rattling around in my brain for the last couple of weeks as I contemplated starting a blog. I think that the act of thinking about blogging has been more work than the posts will be. (Say that one five times fast!) We shall see.

So, about the title - it's a line from a poem I wrote about a hundred years ago... Oh wait, I mean, last spring. I wrote it during a class in which we were given writing prompts, and the prompt that we happened to light upon involved presidential candidate Mike Huckabee. This blog is *not* about Mike Huckabee. The title just happens to have his name in it. Anyway, I don't know that the rest of the poem will ever make its way to the internet (I'm not THAT self-confident), but the first line has always seemed fun and interesting to me. It's totally random and has little to do with anything (especially not Mr. Huckabee), but I like it.

Ask me about the cantaloupes. I dare you.

Hopefully, my little bloggy will involve lots of anecdotes about my darling daughters, whom I will, for now, refer to as KayKay and Little Ladybug (which apparently, is her favorite creature, great or small), some of my poetry, and I'm certain lots of other random stuff as I experience and/or discover it.

I'll leave off with a little gem from last night.

Picture it: all's quiet in the
zoo house, and the mama and the daddy have just taken their first sigh of sweet silence for the evening. Finally. Then the giggles, which had just died down a few moments before, begin again. *Sigh*

After a few seconds, the daddy calls into the room, "Quiet down, it's sleeping time!"

More giggling.

Another "Quiet or I'm going to have to come in there," this time in more threatening tones.

Giggling, followed by some unintelligible noises, then out of the blue the Ladybug pipes up with perfect clarity, "Daddy I'm going to make you into a peanut butter and bread sandwich!" Laughter, this time.

And this time, the mama is giggling. And they hear her. So of course, that eggs them on. As if they needed any egging. *Sigh* So then it's, "A BOY Sandwich! With bread!" (Said in such a way that one knows that the grossest thing Little Ladybug can think of right now is, God forbid, a BOY Sandwich.)

Now mama is laughing. And so is daddy. And both little girls.

They eventually did go to sleep. And so did we. With a lot of giggles. :O)