In which AB requests to be interviewed but things go off the rails

What do you want to talk about?
About my school.
What about it?
It’s fun. It’s work through play. I like my friends. (She means learning through play.)

Who were your best friends there?
Teagan, Luke, Victoria and Arya. All three of them. Actually, just Victoria and Arya.

How did you like your old school?
It was fine. It was work like a boarding school.

How do you know what boarding school is like?
Cause I know all about it. Cause I heard of it before from Christopher Robin. If you wanted to be on an interview blog, whose blog would you want it to be? You type quickly. Are you supposed to type quickly?

Who’s doing the interview here?

What makes you scared or lonely?
What makes me feel lonely is if you’re at work and I’m at home and I kinda get a little worried about you. That makes me sad and lonely.
What makes you feel brave?

To have courage.
What is courage?
I don’t know. Do you?

Tell me about your imaginary friends.
Ralph and Leah are on vacation but they’re coming home. They’ll meet us at MA. Massachusetts is fun at Grammy’s apartment. Me and my Aunt Squiddzen go and have a lot of adventures together. Like one time we explored a tunnel. I will never go in there again!

Tell me a story about your life.
One time, it was the night before my birthday and I didn’t want to turn 5.
Why not?
Because I liked being 4!

Do you not like being 5?
I do. The one thing I’m glad about being five is I can go to the Home Depot kids making things. I went just a couple days ago!

What’s your favorite color?
Magenta and blue and green and purple. Dark, dark, dark, dark, dark purple. Look at the cats! They’re sleeping!

Can you tell me a joke?
Do you remember the joke of gobble, gobble, google? Here’s another joke about z,z,z. What did the zebra do all night? Zzz, zzz, zzz! Sleep!

If you wrote a book what would it be about?
It would be about soggy, wet, scratchy blankets on top of a blankie, on top of a blankie, on top of a blankie! Then there would be a whole stack on top of soggy, wet, scratchy blankets! Isn’t that funny. 
Or I’d write about the Watermelon Princess and the surfing hampster. 

What kinds of things do I like to do?
You like to hold me. And you like to go in drawers. You go in there and snooze all day and never get any work done. 

I’ve never snoozed in a drawer!
I know but it’s a silly answer! You like Daddy. You like black things and sparkly things. 
Who taught you how to wave like the queen?
You did.

What else have I taught you?
That feathers are made from birds. That if you put your fingers across it, you don’t have a messed up feather anymore. You want me how to talk. How to write an A. How to say “hi Daddy.” How to groom the cat’s fur. How to read. 
What are your favorite things to do with me?
Tag and tickle and tickle tag! I like to spend time with you playing tickle and airplane.

How old am I?

What size shoe do you think I have?
890? Maybe size 1.
How old is Dad?
How strong is Daddy?
So strong! Like, a zillion strong! So strong.
What do you like to do with Daddy?
Get presents for you. Go to Home Depot and make the kids activities. 

I’m going to ask you some questions about America.
America! You know all about America! If I were you I’d spell my name.
Why would I spell your name when we’re talking about America? 
It has hair.
What does?
America! It has hair! It has ears! America has cats scratching it all the time! 

Where does the president live?
In the 1890’s? Or the 1880s. Get it?
No, I don’t. I mean, what’s the name of his house?
The Black House! I mean, the White House.

What is his wife called?
The First Lady. Can you read me this interview?

“Mama, what’s squash bubbling?”
“Squash bubbling? Is it something in cooking? Where did you hear it?”
“It was in the Peter Pan movie. They were squash bubbling.”
“I think the word is swashbuckling.”
”That’s what I said. Squash bubbling.”

“I used midge pod at VBS. Do you ever use midge pod?”
“What’s midge pod?”

“Do you mean modge podge?”

I hope she always mispronounces words.

my first writings as a 30 year old

As of the 28th of May, I am officially old. The big 3-0. Feel send me all manner of walkers, canes, orthopedic shoes and hard candies. I’ll be at Walgreens buying a large pillbox for all my medications.

Christopher says 30 isn’t old, but it’s easy to talk that way when you’re not the one with long gray hairs and a rapidly lengthening anti-wrinkle skin care routine.

Our camping trip was partly for my birthday so we were very low-key on the actual day. I had to dispose of a dead mouse in the mouse trap immediately upon waking followed by being sneezed on by Linus. What a lovely start to the day! After AB’s swimming lesson, I went to the flower shop to buy myself birthday flowers. I should have said I wanted to order a bouquet and moved on with life, but I added unnecessary details about them being a birthday gift to myself and I don’t want lilies and I was going to go to the other flower shop but decided on them because their building was on the same side of the street that I was already on, blahblahblah. She asked if I wanted to include a card but I said no. Again, I was sending them to myself so I was expecting them.

I feel very wise now that I’ve entered a new decade. I shared quite a bit of knowledge with Andrew, Elizabeth, and Christopher. Some are more receptive than others, but I press on. I’m sharing so many pearls of wisdom they’re about to make a full pearl necklace.

Annabelle was in charge of decorating the cake because she knows where the candles are and Christopher doesn’t. She asked how many candles I wanted and said 30 might be too many. I agree. I’d need an oxygen tank to blow out all those candles.

I feel like I had more birthday things to document but I don’t remember what they were. It was 10 days ago but feels like 70 years.

Speaking of time, it’s flying but simultaneously creeeeeping by. Annabelle was only been out of school for two years. I legitimately thought it was a month ago. In those two weeks, I’ve had a birthday, gone camping, done art camp and VBS, put an offer on a house, embarrassed myself in public multiple times, racked up $18.50 in library fines because I got the return date wrong, crawled through the spider-infested woods next to the house several times to catch Linus after he escaped, caught three mice in mouse traps and made the kitchen spotless for a few minutes. That was worth recording.
I didn’t plan on volunteering at VBS but as these things always go, I got sucked in because I can’t say no. My plan was to bring AB to VBS at our old church 7 minutes away and spend time at home painting my nails/cross stitching/napping while she was learning about God. Instead, we’re at a VBS half an hour away and I’ve stayed every night to help watch the babies. My friend said she needed help “for one night” in the nursery. She promised me 5 tiny babies under the age of one. That was false advertising. There are no tiny babies. We have three little girls between the ages of 16-21 months. They are very cute and I’d like to bring Cordelia home with me, but it’s been 20 hours of free childcare in 5 evenings. I am, to use our family word for tired, Snooped Dogged. My friend suggested we do foot and handprint art with them and asked if I was good at painting. What I should have said was no. What I did say was I’ve been doing footprint art since Sesame was one month old so no problemo. I’ll do it all. No worries. The moms will love them. I’ve never done it before, but surely I can turn a footprint into a parrot. How hard can it be?

Evidently very hard.

I have never been more dissatisfied with how artwork has turned out. We started them on Tuesday night and I could not for the life of me make them look good. I kept adding paint in hopes they would improve, but they didn’t. The angle of the footprint was off. I couldn’t blend the colors well. I didn’t want any parent to see them. I was annoyed with myself all night. When I saw them again on Wednesday night I will say they looked slightly better than I remembered. Still NOT great, but time healed my injured artist heart slightly.

I went to Joanns yesterday for new canvases. I was determined to redo the art, even though none of the kids liked paint on their feet. Sometimes making art is painful, kids! We made footprint bunnies which turned out a million times better. While Annabelle was learning about John the Baptist, I was in the nursery learning to not boast about my paintbrush skilz.

it was an in-tents trip

Last week I was applauding myself for 10 years of blogging then I abruptly and unintentionally took 10 days off. 

I wish I could say I was taking a blog-funded trip to the beaches of Bora Bora but alas, the monetary gains from this blog are very low. Instead, we were on a budget camping trip.

I’ve been trying to go camping since we got married. The closest we got was our brief babymoon at the Loretta Lynn cabins in late 2013. Other than the fact that I spent most of the time popping zofran, it was a great trip. I was determined this would be THE YEAR we finally took our family camping trip. I made reservations two weeks ago on Airbnb for the cutest little cabin. Fifteen minutes after I reserved the cabin, I got an email saying there had been an issue with scheduling and the cabin was already booked, but please come visit us again later! I thought my camping dreams would once again be put on hold for several months but at the last minute, I found the last available cabin in the entire state of Georgia that was less than $225 per night. I made a list of the 35 camping items I’d need to pack (not counting clothes and food) and wrote a schedule for the next day. I’ve spent many a night in a tent, but we knew a cabin would be easier for Annabelle to sleep in and overall give a less stressful trip. I could not wait to take AB in a kayak or play with her on the banks of the lake. We would read bedtime stories by the fire. I was so excited. 

Annabelle had to a pottery painting class that morning and told me on the way there that she didn’t feel well. Naturally, she would require a visit to the doctor on the day we were going camping. I called the doctor to beg for a prescription but they said I would need to be seen, but they didn’t have any openings for the rest of the day. I didn’t want to visit urgent care, but I also didn’t want her to suffer from a UTI for four days. We did the pottery class, stocked up on supplies at Walmart, ate lunch, packed and drove ourselves to the nearest urgent care. I bought myself an iced coffee on the way for liquid courage. We prayed we’d be in and out quickly and the Lord who hears our cries and pleas got us out in under 30 minutes.

Thanks to our unforeseen visit to see the doctor, we got on the road late and rolled into the campground around 7:30. I knew the cabin would have air conditioning and a bathroom which I considered fake camping, but I wasn’t expecting it to look like a hotel room straight out of the 70’s. It had wood paneling, faded floral comforters, and a generic hotel painting. It was not adorable the cabin in the woods I had dreamed of for so long. We couldn’t even find a fire pit! What’s a camping trip with no fire to sit around while toasting marshmallows?! I was so disappointed I almost cried. 

The next morning we explored the campground. On the website, they advertised boat rentals with a picture of a woman in a kayak. They had no kayaks or canoes for rent. I asked where we could play in the water since swimming was also advertised, and three separate park rangers said they would never swim in that water. It turns out that the campground is more of an overnight stop for boaters and hikers than an actual campground. All the toys I had brought for Annabelle were for water or outdoor play, neither of which she could do much of. There was a playground and we walked around a little, but it was 103* with high humidity. There are no words Daniel Webster could pull out of his dictionary to accurately describe the heat. It was outrageous. I knew camping in May would be hot, but I thought it would be manageable. The thermometer can read the same in Massachusetts and Georiga, but here it feels like someone is putting a wet pillowcase over your head. It’s the worst. The gnats were out in full force. I HATE GNATS. I hate them so much, I’ve been praying since last summer that God would keep the gnats away this summer. So far my prayers have been working well (you’re welcome, people of Georgia) but they were all over the campground. 

We did make some fun memories. We went on a boat ride, made a 550 piece puzzle, went on a short hike, and looked for alligators. I got some reading done. On Sunday we drove about an hour to the nearest town to go wading in the little creek. I only slipped and fell in once. I would have stayed upright if I wasn’t watching a very pregnant woman crawl over slippery rocks in an effort to get the most Pinterest worthy photos she could. 

 “Here you go, Mama. You can take these and decorate the cabin like you like.”

We found the firepit (a circle in the middle of the grass) and Sesame got to roast her own marshmallows.
I’d make s’more jokes but it’s too hot.

we’ve hit double digits

Today marks the tenth anniversary of this ol’ blog. To commemorate such an auspicious occasion, I set myself no less than 8 phone alarms this week to remind me to write a special post. Alas, here we are, with not a one special post idea in mind.

In 10 years, I’ve written 1,267 posts and have 92 drafts. My posts took a steep dive south when I had Annabelle. I don’t want to assign blame, but she’s really cramped my blogging style. I looked at the 92 drafts to see what I didn’t publish and I can now say the internet wouldn’t have been improved had I published all those drafts. I often type notes of what to blog about at future dates, yet most of the time I didn’t give myself enough information to remember my brilliant idea when I actually sit down to the computer. I tell myself that at least I had ideas.

The following is a small sample of the gibberish notes I found:

Orange groomsmen
Homeless children
Water plants before it rains
Ebay anniversary
Driving the car

Blog name

I really wish I knew what I meant by “orange groomsmen.” The only one I can speak to is my blog name. The current name has absolutely no special significance. I don’t know why I chose it. I don’t particularly like it and I’d like to change it. I didn’t think I’d stick with blogging for long so it wouldn’t matter what I called it. Here we are 10 years later and I’m researching how to change the name and the URL. I remember Daisy Days being an option but, thank God, someone else already had it and I was saved from that trainwreck of a name.


I also found an unpublished post where I took several BuzzFeed quizzes.

Quiz: What Kind of Mom will You Be?
Result: Stage mom. 

This makes me laugh as I was just a stage mom for the first time and I was not good at it.  

Quiz: What Percent Diva Are You? 
Result: 80%. You’ve got more diva in you than not. While you have a little bit of flair for the dramatic, you’re also somewhat of a realist. You’re used to coming in first, which is why it’s hard for you to accept certain failures. You strive for perfection, and people who can’t keep up with you can step aside. In short, you’re someone people generally admire but would NOT mess with.
If the crown fits…
Quiz: What Period in History do You Really Belong In?
Result: Renaissance Italy.
 couldn’t disagree with this more. I’d like to live in a time period with air conditioning and underwear.

Quiz: What Career Should You Have? 

Result: Writer

You have a skill for language, your imagination is vast and you are artistic and creative. Your brain is just overflowing with ideas, and all you have to do is get a piece of paper and share it with the world. You were born to turn words into magical stories.
While the quiz goes above and beyond in describing my overflowing brain, I do have an award-winning blog* and am writing my memoir called “I Have No Idea what I’m Doing, subtitled When Does the Pizza Arrive?”
* I did get a blog award from a friend back in 2012 which is the equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize.
Quiz: Which Fruit Matches Your Personality?
Result: Apple.  Apples are classic, classy, and sophisticated. Apples know what’s up. You can’t mess with an apple. You try to mess with an apple and you’ll regret it. Apples just have it together and know what’s up.
Given that I have several pounds I can’t lose (a.k.a I’m getting rounder) the shape of this fruit hits a little too close to home. I do try to be klassy but sometimes it doesn’t work out well. For example, I didn’t realize that I wore the wrong bra under my dress to church today. It was visible from all angles.
When I look back on my first years of blogging it makes me want to sink into the floor with embarrassment. I’ve unpublished some of them because they’re so awkward. I must have written 45 posts about Daniel and Erika’s wedding and 189 about my babysitting career. It was a snoozefest for a while there. I didn’t have any timeline when I started blogging. I started and just haven’t stopped. It’s crazy to think of all the things that have happened in those 10 years. I went from a 20-year-old student/professional child caregiver to a wife, mother, and owner of cats.

This blog has given me some of my favorite people. I have a daily group chat with three girls I became friends with through blogs- Laura, Michelle, and currently blogless Toi. I call them my focus group and ask their input every time Christopher and I disagree on something. We discuss everything from proper tipping amounts to bad neighbors to moral dilemmas. I’m the only one who has met any of the others in person but I’ll keep hoping someday we can all get together to eat chips and dips.

Of course, it gave me a husband. Christopher read my blog while he was deployed and it brought such joy to his life. Not only have I blogged tirelessly for 10 years, but I also improved the morale of the troops. I assume I’ll be given the Presidential Medal of Freedom any day now.

I might not love the name and most of the posts might be less than stellar, but it’s my little blog and I think I’ll keep it around for a while longer.

little graduate

Sesame Pie graduated preschool this week. I don’t know how that happened since she started preschool seven minutes ago.
Everyone knows I love a good party and any chance to celebrate, but I’ve always rolled my eyes a little at preschool and kindergarten graduations. I’m the odd person who enjoys high school and college graduations, but preschool graduation ceremonies always seemed a little too much. However, I arrived at Annabelle’s graduation ceremony 25 minutes early to get a good seat and loved every second.

I teared up a little when they walked into Pomp and Circumstance. I feel like she was just learning to smile and hold Mr. Lion. In September I agonized and shed tears over whether I should have her switch schools. It could not have gone better. She learned so much about God. She went to chapel every week and memorized a new Bible verse every month. She learned so much about praying and says the school prayers at home. She loved playing Wild Kratts on the playground with the other kids in her class who also watch the show. She went to music class weekly. She loved her little group of friends. She learned about fruit by the foot and other foods we don’t buy by seeing what her friends bring for lunch. 

She told me for weeks they were going to sing “the ABC 123 song but not like, the ABC song. The other song that has ABC in it. Some kids will get to hold signs with ABC and 123 on them but not me. Miss Terry’s class gets to do that. I get to move my hands fast like boom boom boom.” They sang four songs and recited all their Bible verses. It was precious. 
Receiving a preschool diploma is very serious business. 
Her teachers, Jessica and Sheila, made a photo book of the school year for all the students. They also gave a children’s Bible that they and the principal had written in. 
I plan on many months of popsicle eating and swimming before we hit the books again next school year.