Monday, January 29, 2007


No, no, no!!!!!

Saturday was the end of an era for the Hubster and me. (A short era, but a very important one.)

We spent most of the day deciding if we wanted to head up to the North Shore for sunset, or go have dinner at
our most favorite local restaurant, the Pita Pocket Cafe. By the time we finished shuffling kids around and debating the issue, it was too late to head North.

So, we headed out for dinner.

The Pita Pocket is a small, hole-in-the-wall place where the husband and wife owners greet you as you walk in, then take your order, prepare your meal, bring it to your table, and chat with you like an old friend all the while. The Hubster and I go there several times a month and have never been disappointed.

Saturday we walked in, the Hubster took our usual table in the corner, and I approached the counter to place our order.

Mrs. Owner: Two schwarmas, spicy, one with no beets, and a baba ganoush? One Coke and a Diet Coke?

Me: That's it!

Mrs. Owner (pointing to the rotisserie where her husband was busily carving slices of lamb): That's the last of the schwarma.

Me: For today? You guys ran out fast! (They often run out because their food is so dang good!!)

Mrs. Owner: No. Forever. Didn't I tell you? We sold the is our last day.

Me: (fighting back the tears) No!!!

Mrs. Owner: You two are getting the last schwarma. I'm glad the last ones go to favorite customers.


What are we supposed to do now? Because I certainly won't take up the slack by cooking an extra day each week.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Destructo Meets His Match

And it's the edge of a tile-top coffee table.

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This was Sunday, the day after he launched himself from the sofa to the coffee table. There was an element of skill involved, because he managed to do a half-front flip over a pillow and hit himself directly between the eyes.

It immediately puffed up as big as his nose, which sent the Hubster running out of the room.

Destructo cried for five minutes and refused ice packs. Then he started making demands.

The Blonde One brought him a cold juice pack. The Wildcard brought Toy Story snackies and did cartoon voices until he laughed. The Blonde One had to one-up this by giving Destructo his iPod to play with and massaging his toes.

Times like that, it pays to be the baby of the family.

He's recovering nicely, and the bruises are changing to a lovely green/brown color.

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He's very proud of his battle scar, and made his "tough guy" face for that picture.

Anyone intimidated?

Sunday, January 21, 2007

The Big "Q"

Last night the Blonde One was at a friend's house and the Wildcard was on a camping outing, so the Hubster and I grabbed our coupons for The Sub Shop Which Will Remain Nameless But Begins With The Letter 'Q'.

We love the subs at the Q, but they are pricey (more so on this island) and we only go if we have coupons.

Now, the Local Q has a bit of a reputation. The food is fantastic (who doesn't love a toasted sub smothered in guacamole?), but the owners are a bit difficult. They can't keep employees, so the couple who own it are usually the only ones working there. They accept coupons, but generally don't ring them up and hope you don't notice. I've called them on that several times, and they always act like it is the first time it has ever happened.

Anyway, I went in and placed our order while the Hubster and Destructo settled at a table outside. I watched as Mr. Q made my sandwich, then I stepped up to the register to pay as he started on the Hubster's sandwich.

Mrs. Q was working the register and complaining because the customer ahead of me had grabbed three lids for his soda. She wasn't happy with him and declared that he was just weird to do something like that. Who takes extra lids, anyway?

I presented my $2 coupon, told her what I had ordered and prepared to pay. Once again, she 'forgot' to ring my coupon. She sighed and acted as if it was a huge ordeal to correct her mistake.

When the Hubster's sandwich came out of the little toaster thingie, it wasn't what I had ordered; instead, it was the new Ultimate Italian, which was $3 more than the one he wanted. She looked at the sandwich, then at me and said, "This isn't what you told me to ring up! You can't have that sandwich for the price of the one I rang up!!"

I swear she thought I was trying to con her out of a more expensive sub.

I told her I hadn't ordered the Ultimate Italian ( I was already married to one of those, thankyouverymuch!). Mr. Q stepped out from behind the toaster thingie and said that I had ordered it....if I hadn't ordered it, he wouldn't have made it. We 'discussed' it for a minute, then Mrs. Q said, "Well it's only $3 more." She stepped up to the register and started to ring an additional $3.

(Why was it so simple to add an extra $3, but such an ordeal for her to subtract the $2 coupon?)

I told her I didn't want the sandwich, and I wasn't going to pay $3 more for something I didn't order and didn't want anyway.

She said I had to take it because they couldn't just throw it away.

By now I was totally pissed. Destructo was two hours beyond his bedtime and was in his super delirious, super crazy mode. The Hubster, who was watching through the window, was frazzled, hungry, and just wanted to eat.

I stepped aside, pointed to the burly, hungry Marine sitting outside and said, "Go tell HIM that he has to eat a sandwich he didn't order."

A few minutes later I walked out with both of the sandwiches I had ordered.

And I grabbed three lids for my soda, just for good measure.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Six Weird Things

Heather tagged me a few days ago, but I've been AWOL and it's taken me a while to get back to it. My assignment is to list six weird things about me. Here goes....

1. I'm a hand-washer. Every time I return home, the first thing I do is wash my hands. When I'm cooking, I stop to wash my hands every time I get gunk on them.

2. I love to bake, but I don't like to cook. I think it has something to do with the fact that I'd rather eat pie than pork chops.

3. I've been told that I'm not easy to approach. The exception to this rule seems to be everyone who doesn't speak English. Plenty of those people approach me.

4. When I am alone, my favorite meal is a can of soup. That would be cold soup, eaten directly from the can. My current favorite is Progresso Split Pea and Ham.

5. I don't like jellybeans. Or gummy type candy. Or hard candy. I mostly only eat chocolate candy.

6. I take my camera everywhere, even if it's just to pick the kids up at school. But that's probably no big secret.

Peaceful Friday

That would be the PhotoFriday topic, not necessarily the situation at the House O' Testosterone.

This week's photo is about six years old, but I've always loved it. (It's scanned, so the quality isn't near digital.)

the Wildcard playing in the sand up at the North Shore.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

History Repeating Itself

Four years ago today I was getting up and heading off to work in a small town in Oklahoma. I was in the second year of my Comeback Career, working flexible hours at a CPA firm and loving it.

I loved having to actually use my brain every day. I loved having an office to go to. I loved gossiping about my co-workers. And I really loved having a paycheck.

I had somehow raised three kids to school age without serious incident, and it was time to move forward with my life.


Three years ago today I was laying on a hard, cold table under bright lights while random masked strangers scurried about, just doing their job.

Three years ago, in Cape Canaveral, Florida, a masked stranger plopped a very pissed child into a plexiglass bassinette next to me and warned me that I was "in for a wild ride with this one."

After nearly nine years I was back to diapers, middle of the night feedings, carseats, and a whole new lifestyle. It seemed like a huge step backwards

We wouldn't change it for the world.

So, Destructo turned three today, with little fanfare. We celebrated his birthday last week, before the Diva headed back to college. There was ice cream cake, candles, presents, balloons, and lots of streamers.

Today was just confetti cake, cream cheese frosting, and lots of sprinkles, all specially chosen by Destructo himself. No fanfare and no presents, but he was okay with all that.

Although..............I'm thinking tomorrow will be a good day to go out and buy him another Lightning the Queen.

Happy Birthday, Destructo!!!

Friday, January 12, 2007

How to Make Me Crazy Today

Follow along behind me saying "Where's my Lightning the Queen? I want my Lightning the Queen. Where's my Lightning the Queen?"

Repeat this about five thousand times over the course of the day.

(That would be Lightning McQueen from the movie "Cars" for those who don't speak Destructo.)

Thursday, January 11, 2007

'Tis the Season

We've been making our list, checking it twice, then chucking the whole thing and starting over again.

It is Orders Season for us.

(Civilian explanation - The Powers That Be are currently deciding where we will be spending the next year or two or three of our lives.)

The Hubster received a list in November of all the available slots for him, and we weren't excited about any of them. We went through the list, crossing off all the definite "No" positions. We were left with five, so we ranked them and submitted our preliminary Wish List in December.

I'm not sure what ever happened to our original Wish List, but the Hubster received a final list of available slots just before Christmas. The Powers That Be had adjusted their original list for things like retirements, promotions, and ass-kissing. None of our choices were on the revised list. To make matters worse, our options were even more pathetic than before.

So, we went with the 'Garbage In/Garbage Out' plan.

If they weren't giving us any decent choices, we weren't going to choose anything off their list. The Hubster came up with his own list of seven jobs he would take, ranked them #1 through #7, and submitted it to the Powers That Be.

I'm guessing we're going to get choice #8.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Discovery of the Day

It began simply enough, with a trip to the commissary and Destructo tagging along.

Destructo is a huge jello fan, and he and the Blonde One bond over jello-making. The Blonde One handles the boiling of water, the stirring, and adding the ice cubes. Destructo's main responsibility in the Making of the Jello is pouring the powder into the water and watching it change color. And of course he loves to eat it with his hands when it is *almost* set.

So, Destructo went nuts in the jello section today. He grabbed two boxes of strawberry jello, two lime jello, one cherry jello, and three orange jellos. He held them all through the commissary and helped load them onto the conveyer belt at the checkout.

Enter Ditzy Cashier. She is mindlessly swiping groceries across the little scanner, waiting for the beep, then shoving them in the direction of the waiting baggers.

And then she saw the jello.

Ditzy Cashier: What IS this? Is this jello?

Destructo: It's jello.

Ditzy Cashier: I've never seen this mean you can MAKE jello?

Total silence all around.

Ditzy cashier turns to the baggers. Have you seen this before? How do you MAKE jello?

She pauses to read the directions...."Add boiling water, stir, add cold water, stir, refrigerate.......Wow....I think I could do that!!!"

Then she turned to me and said, "I've never seen anything like that before!! I'm going to go back there on break and get some jello!!"

I think she's going to go nuts when she sees the little trick where the water changes color when the powder is added.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Return of the Annoying Friend

(File under "What the Hell is wrong with people?")

You know those people you meet who seem unable to comprehend that there is anything important outside their little bubble of a universe? Well, they breed and give birth to Annoying Friends for your children.

Last Wednesday was the first morning I've not had to wake up early in a very long time. Of course, my phone rang at 7:10 a.m.

It was the father of the Wildcard's Annoying Friend.

He thought it would be a good idea to get the boys together sometime during Christmas break, and proposed a sleepover. Me, being half asleep and knowing that the Wildcard was hoping to have a friend over during break, agreed and suggested we do it at our house.

So, we tossed around possible dates. Thursday wouldn't work because the Annoying Friend had a recital of some sort. Friday he had a school fundraiser to attend. They had guests coming for the weekend, so that was out. Tuesday wouldn't work because the Annoying Friend had to go back to school on Wednesday.

By this time I was pretty pissed because the Annoying Friend's dad hadn't thought this through before he called me at 7:10 a.m. on my first morning to sleep in.

I told him we could do it New Year's day, or not at all.

He agreed and said he would call early on Monday afternoon to work out the specifics. (Thankfully, we live on a military installation and they don't have access....we always have to figure out a drop off/pick up point.)

Monday afternoon we returned from the beach and found a message from the Annoying Friend's dad: "We're running a bit late because the Annoying Friend was up late on New Year's Eve. He doesn't do well on three hours of sleep....ha ha. We'll still be up there and will give you a call when we leave."

Ummmm.....I didn't agree to have a sleep-deprived Annoying Friend spend the night at my house.

Two hours later he called to let us know they were on the road and would be here in 30 minutes. Then he added: "Oh, Annoying Friend threw up as we were leaving the house and again in the car. I think he will be fine by the time we drop him off...."

I cancelled the sleepover, but who tries to pull shit like that anyway??!!??
Best of Friday

This week's PhotoFriday topic is "Best of 2006".

It may not be the best, but it is one of
my favorites.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Bring It On!!!

2007, that is!!

Do you make New Year's resolutions?

Most years, I make the usual resolutions: Get more organized, work out more, don't procrastinate, blah, blah, blah.

I'm taking a different approach this year, and it all started when I sat down to write our Christmas letter. My typical letter includes a quick blurb about each of us and what we've been up to this year.

When I tried to write my blurb, all I could come up with was "I drove the kids to school, practices, and friends' houses. I filled out paperwork for the kids, proofread papers for the Hubster, cleaned the house, and chased after Destructo all day. I volunteered for X, Y, and Z."


Other than doing random, mundane things for other people, I didn't accomplish squat all year.

I realized that I've been putting off doing "me" things until everyone else is taken care of, and the majority of the time I'm just too tired at the end of the day to do anything for myself.

So, I resolve that this year will be different and I am basing my New Year's resolution on an ad for a local HMO. The theme of the ad is "Be your own cause" and urges you to take care of yourself first.

I don't have any specific goals, other than to focus on myself physically, emotionally, and professionally. The Hubster and the kids will have to step it up a bit, and the volunteer work will be pared back.

So, basically I am going to be selfish and devote the year to being my own cause and taking better care of myself.

What are your resolutions?