Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Oh, Druther.

In re-planning Christmas with Fred's family (thank you, blizzard), Grandma Judy emailed me asking to know what my druthers are.

Which -- side note -- reminds me. Hey, Channel 8 - I don't really care to hear you proclaim that December has been the 'snowiest December' in Lincoln's recorded history and then chuckle. There really isn't anything funny about it. I was stuck in my house for 3 solid days. We missed our family Christmas. Are you offering to find me a spot to stash all of this snow? I didn't think so. Zip it Coskren.

I digress... let's get back to druthers.

Those sound like bad things to me. So, I emailed her back to let her know my druthers are Greyhound buses, Geometry and broccoli.

Seeing how she announced that she's sending a Greyhound to pick us up and doing Geometry before enjoying our dinner of creamed broccoli, broccoli salad and broccoli... I think I had the definition wrong. And I think this Christmas is going to suck.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Happy Monday!

Tooting my own horn:

I made it onto the list of Favorite Etsy Finds in 2009 from Ohdeedoh!

Thank you, mom and dad, for creating my sister as she's the one that started it all with Ohdeedoh so many months ago.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Elliot's Christmas Insanity

Being trapped in the house by the Christmas blizzard weekend is starting to get to all of us. However, I think the combination of being inside for days and the excitement of Santa Claus has blown a fuse in poor Elliot. He has frantically alternated from one activity to another for most of the day, then while we were making dinner he began performing to himself. Using the reflection from the front of the dishwasher he serenaded himself with a song and dance routine that included an apparently new version of "Jingle Bells."

Elliot has made this one of my favorite Christmas seasons ever. He is so excited by every gift and completely in awe of Santa and his "reindeers". This is such a fun stage of his development and it really takes me back to being a kid again.








Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Sweet, Sweet Snow Day

1. Get a cup.
2. Get a KCup of hot cocoa.
3. Unwrap a homemade marshmallow/fudge stick.
4. Enjoy.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Nightlights and Little-Tiny-House-Lights

Since he was 1, Elliot has gone to bed with at least one book in his hands. Propped up on his elbows, he'd flip through the book - sometimes reading, sometimes singing - and then slip it through the slats in his crib and go to sleep.

Lately, he's demanding the lamp be left on. And by 'demanding' I mean screaming and wailing like someone just hacked his leg off with a butter knife. The first night, Fred obliged and we turned it off when we went to bed. Second night, same. Third night Elliot was stuck with me and I gave him my No Way, Jose - you only get to sucker your dad look and he was okay with that.

Fast forward a week.

Last night, he was wailing again because Fred wouldn't leave the lamp on. Fred's solution? He remembered this tiny little key chain we got from our realtor that is shaped like a house and emits a tiny red light when you squeeze it. This not only satisfied him but made him happy to have a little light of his very own. Finally, he slept.

I got up to him yelling around 4:30 a.m. and went in to see what the problem was. He looked at me and very seriously said "Hep me. Not fine da yight." I looked over and he had his blankets all pushed in one corner and his book open as though he were trying, desperately, to read it. Still in my sleepy-stupor I said "What? You want me to find that dumb little light? Are you kidding me?" (Kind of harsh, I know, but I never once said I was a morning person.) He responded with "Fine da yight mommy?" and I did.

He. Was. Sitting. On. It.

Someone pray for this child. It would be in his best interest to NOT wake me up at 4:30 asking me to find the dumb little flashlight.

Next time, I'll grab it from under your butt and peg it at your sweet little head. Now, MOMMY SAID TO GO TO BED.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Dear Santa

Dear Santa,

My name is Elliot Seckman. I have been a good boy this year. I would like a Gordon train, underwears and a game. I will leave you milk and cookies. Please leavce the presents under the tree.

Merry Christmas,
Elliot

Friday, December 18, 2009

Final Answer

I'm going to let Santa know that he doesn't need to wrap the presents he brings for anyone in our house. There's really no need to wrap up gifts fresh from the workshop and what if it snows on the package and the paper gets ruined? Couldn't he potentially get the presents to the wrong people if they're all wrapped up? Tags fall off, you know, and Fred would probably die if Elliot got Barbie's Corvette.

Further, to give ample space in which to lodge the various presents, we will be opening non-Santa gifts on Christmas Eve. (Secretly, I've just always wanted to do this so now that I am THE MOM I get to make this decision and write it off as a new family tradition!)

I am considering adding more traditions like Fred grilling Christmas dinner, caroling around our cul de sac and having Christmas, Round II on New Years Day on which everyone will present ME with lovely gifts from expensive stores and boutiques. I have a sneaking suspicion, though, that I'll be completely overruled on these.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

To (w)rap or not to (w)rap

Growing up at the Wenciker house, presents were found on Christmas morning all wrapped up and tagged so you'd know who they were from. Most were from Santa, but some were from parents.

Growing up at the Seckman house, presents from the parents were wrapped and given on Christmas eve. The family woke up to presents from Santa - unwrapped - on Christmas morning. The logic here is that the presents came directly from the workshop (right?) so why would Santa bother with wrapping them?

How to meld the Wenciker and Seckman homes? We're not sure. I can totally buy into the unwrapped thing because the logic is there. But that's just not the way it was for me. Control Freak Anna is having a hard time giving up the 'final say' in this battle.

So... we are opening it up to you. Leave a comment, take the poll.... how did Santa leave your presents?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Snow Days

I spent the last three days home with Elliot while Fred was either working, running or scooping the never-ending piles of snow that are now frozen ice mounds on our driveway. My condolences go out to the family of the Abominable Snowman that exploded all over town.

Being trapped to the confines of our house with a potty training, almost-3 year old drives home the simple fact that I was not created to be a stay-at-home momma. I was created to be a not-at-home momma so that when I am around my darling child I'm not irritated and annoyed but instead enamored by his every thought and sound (including the stinky farts).

I did learn some things, though:
  • Dora will always use her backpack. Always. Just like how Handy Manny and the tools always rescue the bumbling white guy Mr. Lopart. And Mickey's Clubhouse goes away at the end of each episode and Blue thinks it necessary to give clues as to what she wants to do.
  • When a package comes that can't be opened in front of him, your toddler will come unglued. He will beg, plead and cry until you find a 2 minute window to dash in a room, stuff the boxes into a closet and say a quick prayer for 'out of sight, out of mind' to work.
  • Cell phones call different people. I was looked at like a complete idiot when I thought I was on the phone with Grandpa Jim when it was so obviously Grandpa Frank because ONLY the lion phone will call Grandpa Jim. Jeez, mommy.
  • If you tell a toddler that it's time to take a nap, he will look at you and say "I don't love you Mommy. I not. I not. I wan my Daddy." and it will crush your soul and infuriate you at the same time. BUT when he gets up from nap and ASKS YOU to cuddle with them you somehow forget that earlier (and obvious) misspeak.
  • It's impossible to build train tracks on carpet and couch cushions-- I'd like to see you rationalize this with him because it fell on deaf ears for 3 ENTIRE DAYS. It doesn't matter if Thomas or the pumper truck leads, it just isn't going to work.
  • All I talk about it pee and poop. No, really, it is.
  • You don't actually get to watch soaps, lay on the couch eating bonbons, shop online and have wine parties with other moms.
I am not a stay-at-home mom because I need my sanity to be a good mom. Kudos to those of you that can do it.

Now, a stay-at-home sewer and quilter? Sign me up!
(And sign my kid up for daycare.)

Friday, December 4, 2009

To Every Up ... There's a Down

Elliot has been working on names and doing well. He knows that mommy is Anna and that daddy is Fred and that we all have the last name of Seckman. Great, right?

Except when this happened:

A: (Sees Elliot doing something naughty) Elliot James!!!
E: Seckman!!!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

From One Holiday to the Next

'Twas the weekend after Thanksgiving
And all through the house,
Elliot was talking about 'cwrissmiss yites'
and visiting Mickey Mouse.
The weather was sunny and calm;
Fred hung up the lights.
With lights on our house,
You can imagine Elliot's delight.
Inside we went when the night went dark
And in the morning rose to see
Another day that would prove to be perfect
For erecting the Christmas Tree.
Elliot jumped and Elliot screamed;
He even did a happy dance.
Ran circles around the tree -
I think he almost peed his pants.
Decorations went up with Elliot's help -
On bells, on garland and candy canes too
All hung at eye-level...
Except for a few.
With Christmas music on,
And the light's soft glow...
The only thing we're missing
Is some good Nebraska Snow.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

A Fancy Little Way for a House to Say HEY!

This fall, a sister of a friend of Fred's (follow that?) found me on facebook and questioned me a bit about creating an Etsy account since I have one. I answered her questions and finally asked - what are you making?

Door Art!

Door art is something kind of big here in Lincoln - but not sure how far this trend has reached. I have a small collection myself - a pair of mittens, a Christmas tree, an acorn and the original red flower that started it all. But now, thanks to P & J Peddlers, I have an "S" to adorn my door with.

A fraction of the price of the ones sold in fancy schmancy homey stores around here - and if you live in Lincoln she will work out a drop off to avoid shipping. Color me excited!! In fact, I came home and had it hanging up in less than 3 minutes. Then I went back to let Elliot out of the car...

Every time I pull in the driveway I think "Welcome Home, Seckmans!"

Saturday, November 28, 2009

We were ready.
We were prepared for the worst... Yet optimistic for the best.

Elliot "ran out" of diapers on Thanksgiving night and woke up to an empty space where the diapers used to be. Oh well, guess you'll have to wear underwear!

Fred told Elliot that the same thing happened to him when he was little - his mommy and daddy ran out of diapers so he had to start wearing underwear too. That's when he became a big boy and used the potty.

One full day - and only two real accidents.
So far so good!

(Sorry for the lame post, it really is the ONLY thing going on!)

Monday, November 23, 2009

Keep Your Spirit to Yourself

While I do appreciate a good set of Christmas lights hung perfectly around the roof of a home, I do think there's something to be said for waiting until after Thanksgiving to start the festivities.

Some people will argue that October is simply better weather to be up on your roof clipping lights around the place. I get that. Turn them on to test them out. I get that. Turning them on every night since two days before Halloween? Uh... Hmm. (scratching head) Okaaay.

But they start selling the holiday gear in August (it gets earlier every year, right?) so I am compelled to buy it and get it set up!

First let's carve the pumpkins, then roast (or fry - yummy!) the turkeys, then put up the strands of lights. And repeat those three items like Dora the Explorer does: Pumpkins, Turkeys, Strands of Lights. Pumkins, Turkeys, Strands of Lights.

And -- perhaps a little tiny bit selfishly -- I am SICK TO DEATH of having to say "oh yeah!" "uh-huh!" "mm-hmm!" to Elliot every. time. he sees someones house is outfitted with 'Cwrissus Ylites.'

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Grounded

Sometimes we get so distracted and consumed by the tiniest of details that - at the time - seem like major, potentially earth-moving events. A constant crush of feeling like there are not enough hours in the day. Every day.

Elliot potties at daycare but won't enter the bathroom at home.
Sienna wakes us up every morning at 5 demanding food.
Needing to find time to mow and rake up the leaves.
Finding time for Fred to put in his long weekend runs.

Details, details, details that have turned into crisis, panic and stress.

This morning a good friend of mine, her husband and their two dogs lost their house and home to a fire. And my heart breaks for them. And it puts this all into perspective - and suddenly I am consumed with thinking about what I can do to help instead of what will be on the table for dinner.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Joanne: A Rose Nylon by Another Name

I was in a three-day training last week. Before you get jealous thinking I was shipped off to a warmer land with a cabana boy at my disposal let me tell you I was trapped in an office with no windows, two laptops glaring at me and hooked to the training via conference call. For. three. entire. days.

Before taking this class, I think one should brush up their tech-savvy-ness like... oh I don't know... figure out where the Shift key is. Ladies and Gentlemen and Internet, let me introduce you to Joanne. A lovely lady, I'm sure, from Pleasanton, California that managed to make me scowl at her through the phone when we were only 45 minutes into Day 1.

To all my older readers - don't get all up in arms about what I'm trying to say. Other than Shift, she also had a hard time finding the F1 key. I trust that each and every one of you, if I asked you to, could manage to find those on your keyboard.

Here are some snippets (with what I was yelling at the phone):

Instructor: Okay, guys, now to get to B you just have to enter in A.
Joanne: Excuse me, I have a question. How do you get to B then?
I: You have to enter in A.
J: Then it will go to B?
I: Yes.
A: AUGH For the love of sweet baby Jesus! ENTER A!!
-----
J: I'm sorry, I have to leave for 5 minutes. Can you just talk really slowly?
I: (Silence that sounded like confusion and head-scratching)
A: WTF Lady?!
-----
J: Excuse me, I can't find that F1 key.
I: Joanne, the F1 Key is right above Q.
A: You make me want to bang my head into a bucket of nails!
-----
J: I can't hear you because there's people outside my window. I'm gonna miss some stuff so you'll have to repeat it all in a while when they're done.
I: Um.... Class, let's just take a break. Joanne, stay on the line.
A: (Chanting and pounding fists on desk) Toss her out! Toss her out!

He didn't toss her out. But, by the end of three days I was thanking the inventor of the mute button so I could mumble obscenities at her and figured out how to manage my anger.

Every time she started in with her meek 'Excuse me' bit, I'd head for the bathroom. Read a few books, wrote a letter to Santa and even had time to build a model train. By the time I'd get back the instructor would just be finishing with her and moving on. Awesome.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Dear Grandpa Frank and Judy

Hi Grandpa Frank. Hi Judy.

I can call you that, right? You see, I'm just so busy that I can't take the time to add Grandma to your name. And now when I talk about you people ask my mom if that is her dad's "special friend" and she gets flustered and has to tell them no. I think its funny.

Thank you for coming from 'acago' (Chicago) in your car - no motocyca cause iss loud - and playing with me this weekend. I really liked when you read me the same book about firetrucks 347 times.

Did you know I like firetrucks? And firetruck guys? I was a firefighter for Halloween - Happy Twricker Twreat! - here, let me get dressed up for you again. Oh No! Kitty's on fire! I hafta go to da stashun!

Grandpa Frank, I call my mom a worm now. I think its funny; she just gives me a look. I never knew about tickle worms and how they always think it's Tickle Time. Now I know. And no, still not time. Also, the candies were yummy. I can't believe, though, that you actually made me work for them by telling you the color. I'll tell you whatever you want if you've got candy.

Judy, thanks for playing trains with me a lot this weekend - I think its fun to make trains wreck. I was so happy to see you at my school on Friday that I actually ran right past my mom and straight to you! Thanks for sitting in the backseat of Daddy's truck with me when we went shopping, I love having company.

I miss you guys already. Love, Elliot

Sunday, November 8, 2009

A Holy Update

In addition to still spouting "Holy Crap" at things, he now also uses Holy Cow and Holy God. Just thought I'd let you know.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Can I Get a "Holy Crap" Over Here?

My parents sent Elliot a box full of Halloween candy and other goodies and as Elliot opened it up and stared in awe, Fred came over his shoulder commenting "Holy crap! That's a lot of candy!"

Elliot sort of nodded and said "Hodee crap!"

(Insert image of Fred and I laughing so hard we're shaking but trying so desperately hard to not let Elliot know it was funny.)

We ignored it and hoped it would go away.

1. Halloween Day. We head over to Stacey's house to trick-or-treat and as we're walking up to the porch filled with pumpkins and gourds he yells "Hodee crap! Looka da pumpkins!"

2. Halloween Night. We're driving to Tecumseh and pass the train tracks outside of Syracuse when Elliot looks over and sees the trains. "TWO trains?!! Hodee crap!"

3. This Morning. Driving into downtown on our way to daycare we pass a building that's been under construction for the last few weeks. "Mommy look! Hodee crap a bucket truck!"

So, yeah, on one hand, Daddy taught him a not-very-pleasant phrase. On the other hand, he uses it in the right context flawlessly. And shouldn't that be commended?

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Swine Flu, I OWN You.

The President declares some kind of disaster regarding H1N1 and my response to Fred was "Yeah, and what's that got to do with me? I have it!" Turns out I won't be getting any kind of stimulus check, just the knowledge that the Pres cares about my health. Kind of.

Well, Pres, I don't really think its an epidemic. Sure, people die from it. People die crossing the street too and THAT is an epidemic if you've ever driven downtown on a Husker game day. In fact, if given the choice in the future, I will hands-down take H1N1 over any of the other flu viruses.

A virus that just makes you want to sleep? Sign. Me. Up.

Only next time maybe Fred won't leave me at home with a sick two year old all day long. Internets, just between you and me, I'm going to tell you a little secret. I have NO earthly idea what Elliot did all day on Thursday - I was so out of it. Sure, I cracked an eye now and then and craned my neck to get a general location on the kid. But I really didn't do much more than that. I'm guessing I made him lunch? Surely I fed him...

I do know I did the best I could considering the piggies inside me were in full swing of wanting me to sleep, sleep sleep. And I know that because he's still alive and begging me to watch him play trains (more on that some other day).

So here I am, almost a week later and doing good. A friend asked me if the pigs are out of my body yet. My response? Only the one that eats Oreos by the handful is left, so yeah, I guess.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Monday Evening Chuckle

For those of you not around Elliot, he does this great "oooueehhh" noise whenever he's excited - kind of that sucking-air-in noise you make when something takes you off guard. You'll need to know that to make this funnier.

A & E: (Sitting on couch. A Disney World commercial comes on.)
E: Oooueehhh!
A: What is that?
E: Mikey Mouse House. Castle.
A: You're right. We're going to go there, huh?
E: Oooueehhh! Yessssss. On airplane?
A: Yes, on an airplane.
E: Oooueehhh! In a little bit?
A: It's going to be a while.
E: Yeah, a while.
A: Like when its Daddy's birthday.
E: Oooueehhh! Daddy hasa berfday?!

- - - - 5 Minutes Later - - - -

Elliot is standing on the ottoman singing Happy Birthday to Fred.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Baby Steps: A Pumpkin Patch Story

I have never been in a pumpkin patch. (That I'm aware of... mom, correct me if I'm wrong.) Last year, I was excited to go and as most of you know - we went to the farm but didn't get to the patch.

We worked our our plan for this year. Within minutes of getting out of the truck we were going to be ON that hay rack headed directly to the pumpkin patch. Bypass the silly buildings, skip the goats and chickens - it's Pumpkin or Bust, Baby!

Around 6:20pm last night, we pulled into Roca Berry Farm - home to strawberries in the spring and pumpkins in the fall - and climbed out of the truck and into the muddy abyss. Handed over our tickets and were informed that the LAST hay rack was going out soon so we smirked in a heh, try to screw us over this year, Roca way and piled onto the trailer.

Pulls out and off we go.
And we keep going.

I, trying not to panic, think - oh, I bet its a type of rotation where they don't want everyone to constantly be in one particular patch. Yes, uh-huh.

But we kept going. And going.
And passing glorious pumpkins along the way.
Then we turned around. What?
It's too muddy for people to be in the patches.

In a tiny moment of despair I looked out to see the baby pumpkins in the patch stating for anyone listening to hear me say "But those are perfectly sized for Elliot!" There was no stopping this hay rack. Chug, chug, chug - the tractor pulled us right back to where we started.

Then Mr. I-Like-To-Ruin-Your-Day jumped off the tractor and informed us that they had essentially just closed because the sun set.

The Seckman's left without actually getting into a pumpkin patch.
The Seckman's left without a pumpkin.

Baby steps, people.

Next year, Roca. Next year you are MINE.
And I will not be leaving without a pumpkin.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Shameless Self-Promotion

If you're looking for something to do - I'm involved in the 'Front Porch Friends' sale here in Lincoln. If you go to the sale you'll find a variety of handmade items and mine will be thrown in the mix as well.

My items are pincushions, pajama sets (size 12-18m), coasters, crayon bags, trick-or-treat bags and flower lapel pins.

Other items are pottery, rug hooking, candles, gourds, etc. But - come on, my stuff sounds WAY cooler, right? Right?!

Friday's hours are 9am - 7pm and Saturday's hours are 9am - 3pm
Sale is located in the Southwood area: 5000 Tipperary Trail

Monday, October 12, 2009

Popularity Contest

For some reason, I have 'Popular' from the Wicked soundtrack running through my head today. Running and running and running.

While that is somewhat annoying (but it is a great song and even better musical), it led me to a quick google search where I found this fun little website to determine my family's popularity.

It seems I made a smart move in my goal to be the Most Common Named Person Ever (no, not really) by ditching Wenciker - 53,448th most popular - for Seckman - 21,903rd most popular. Yay me! Err, I mean us... yay us!

Elliot ranked 582nd; Freddie is 299th and I am 33rd (WINNER!).

Where are you?

Sunday, October 11, 2009

50, L, cincuenta

No matter how you say it - 50 is a big number. Especially when its the anniversary of two lovely people known to us as Grandpa Chuck and Grandma Judy. Their known to others as mom and dad, the Sears Store owners, Charles and Judith, Aunt Judy and Uncle Chuck, that Morrissey family - you name it, they've been called it.

Those two crazy kids got married 50 years ago this Saturday.

What else is celebrating their 50th Anniversary?
1. The Hovercraft
2. The first seamless aluminum beer can
3. Barbie
4. Space Monkey
5. Twilight Zone

For a variety of reasons, Chuck and Judy are my favorite thing (they're married, and that's a "thing" right?) celebrating 50 years in 2009. And, these other things didn't invite me to a party with cake so they pretty much suck anyway.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

No Victor = No Anna

I could hardly believe what I was hearing when Judy called last night - Eric Braeden is leaving The Young and the Restless. Say what?

He's been Victor Newman since 1980 - dang near longer than I've been alive. And, if the rumors are right its all about the money.

He's Victor freakin' Newman!
You can't lowball him - he IS Genoa City!
He can't just disappear from GC... who will Jack fight with?
I mean, really, he just got Colleen's heart!?!!

As I have done various times in the past, I will QUIT watching that show if they simply replace Victor with another actor.

Only this time I'm serious.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Its a Serious Business

Its a normal occurrence around our house to hear a parent-figure of the home's single child ask whether or not poo is currently residing in the back of his diaper.

Its also a normal occurrence for the answer to always be no.

With that in mind, I think you'll see the hilarity of this.

A few nights ago, Elliot was performing - climbed on the ottoman and was singing into his microphone (read: booger-sucker thing) - and suddenly stopped, bending over the microphone.

Me: Elliot, what's up?
E: I not! I seengin.
Me: Huh? What are you doing?
E: I MAKIN POOPIE!!! (pauses and looks at me) OKAAAAAY?

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Thinking Thursday

So I have this blog that I read pretty religiously that if it weren't for the threat of copyright (or thought-right) infringement I wouldn't even reference it only because I know that most of my readers will be appalled even by its name, let alone the crass language she uses on a regular basis. That, my friends, is exactly why I love to read it. If you want to read it, and are over age 18 and promise not to hold it against me, you can click here.

Anyhoot. She was going on a tangent the other day and said: ... if I had to BE a vowel, I would be “sometimes y”. Wouldn’t you?

My answer? Absolutely.

Lets do a run-down of the alternatives, shall we?
A - boring. I use that letter A LOT and am tired of it. Besides there's some show from another decade in which some dude kept saying "Aaaaa" to everyone.
E - it's all "wheee" look at me I just curl around myself when its lowercase. Caps isn't very friendly either - it's like a fork without the part you hold on to.
I - seriously, I don't don't dot my eyes because it takes too much time. you, my friend, are a bit high maintenance.
O - kind of boring... like "oh." all deflated-like. Huh. Meh. Oh.
U - this one's obvious - its not about YOU its about ME. Just like that country song - I wanna talk about me! Wanna talk about I! Wanna talk about #1...

Sometimes Y - perfect. Wishy-washy. Not set on being any one thing and isn't afraid to strut its stuff. Maybe it has a hard time making decisions - just like me. I love you, Sometimes Y.

What vowel would you be?

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Bueller.... Bueller.....

At the age of 2.75 years, Elliot pulled his first Ferris Bueller.

A cold came on fast on Sunday and worsened Monday. That night, he was acting listless (I learned that it is not called lethargic if they make eye contact... potatoes, pototoes) and was doing a weird gasp-y breathing thing and retracting so we took him in to the ER.

(Side note: Hello Deductible! Nice to meet you!)

3 hours, a chest x-ray and flu swab later - its just a cold. Tuesday he was out of school. This morning I took him in and he was fine until we got there. At about the precise moment he figured out Ms. Haley was out for the day he started in with the clingy-ness and whining. I left him there reading a book knowing he'd snap out of it.

Fast forward an hour and Ms. Des calls to tell me he's sick. Seems he was whining and crying and laying about as still as a dead guy (listless, I would imagine...) and when she went to pick him up he cuddled into her and was burning up. Fever was a bit over 101.

I hang up, cussing. I have (correction, had) 3 days of leave time left to get me through the rest of 2009. I get there and he sees me. Smirks at me and hides his face in a book. I tell him we're leaving and he bounds toward me grinning from ear to ear.

He jabbered the entire way home.
Checked his temp and he was normal.
You've got to be freaking kidding me.

Now, I'm not sure how he faked his temp (maybe had a hot stone stowed in his armpit?) but I have no doubt he pulled a Bueller on us today. The rest of our morning he ran, sang, jumped, laughed, etc., just like he would any other day. Still has a cold - but he was FAKING this morning. I'll bet money it was all stemming from Ms. Haley not being there.

He's going back on Notice.

What is this kid going to do when he ages out of Ms. Haley's class in 4 months? Shhh - don't tell him just yet. I don't have enough leave time for the repercussion it would no doubt bring.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Sharing is Caring: 4 Fun Facts About Me

1. In high school, I wrote down every outfit I wore so as not to repeat the same shirt-and-jeans combo in any week-and-a-half time span. Mostly done out of necessity (we really didn't get many clothes), I think I crossed the line when I started adding what color my shoes and socks were.

2. I attended catholic school for grades K-6. I know, right? Wait, no, let me finish. The only class I ever got lower than a B in? Religion. Why? Little Miss Anna didn't like to memorize prayers and found the topic to be a total bore. Instead, I doodled religious-based doodlings in my Religion workbook (I can remember getting 10 extra points because Sr. Cecilia liked my picture of Mary doing the rosary).

3. Back in my late teens/early twenties, I stole menus from restaurants and displayed them proudly on my wall. My mom even stole a few with and for me. Why? Well, I don't really know. It was pretty harmless (I figured) and kind of fun to figure out how I'd sneak it out without anyone knowing. What else was I supposed to do? ...I already had a 12-piece set of cloth napkins from Outback Steakhouse.

4. New Kids on the Block always sucked. They sang like girls - I totally didn't get why they were so cool. I still don't. Everyone I know loved them, having posters and pillows and imaginary weddings with every single one of them. Besides, I was way too busy playing my 'Toy Soldiers' by Martika single cassette tape over and over and over and over and over on my boom box. After that was 'Runaway Train' by Soul Asylum then 'Teen Spirit' by Nirvana.

What are four things I don't know about you?

Friday, September 25, 2009

By the Numbers

I work at a statewide non-profit (Nebraska Children and Families Foundation, or NCFF) that constantly deals with numbers and statistics in an on-going effort to make sure our kids are happy, healthy and thriving. We had an all-staff meeting today and a stat sheet was handed out about children in Nebraska... and it goes something like this:

Put all of Nebraska's kids that are entering kindergarten this fall in one room. Out of that, pull out a sample of 100 kids. Of these kids:
9 were born to teenage mothers
17 are living below the poverty level
14 are obese
11 do not have health insurance
9 already need mental health services
1 will become the victim of substantiated abuse this year
2 are already state wards
4 will be arrested in high school
9 will attempt suicide in high school
21 will not graduate from high school

While these numbers are shocking, it is the truth of our great state. (And, small plug here - why NCFF exists!) What really got me, though, was when the presenter said this:

And, one kid could be ALL of these.

As the mom of an almost 3 year old, that's scary.
(PS - If you want the sources, contact me.)

Monday, September 21, 2009

My Bitterness Subsides... The Apple Story

We share a backyard fence with three neighbors and one of these neighbors has an apple tree just 3 feet on their side. Give yourself a pat on the back if you guessed what this post is about. For those of you that didn't get it, it means apples galore on our side of the fence.

For three years, Fred has cussed the neighbors as he mows over the literal 100s of apples in our yard in various stages of decay. Now and then the mower even tries to chuck a rotting apple right at Fred. Done mowing, we now have a patch of rotting applesauce.

The other weekend, Grandma Judy had the bright idea to pick a few of those apples giving me some line about it falling on my property and being mine. I had my doubts, but we picked a couple from the branch and cut them up. Best. Apples. Ever.

Fast forward a week or so and I come home from work to find the neighbors on a ladder - in OUR yard - picking apples. Pick-pick-pick. For a full minute I was convinced they were picking all of the apples so that Judy and I wouldn't get any more. When the Grandma Wenciker paranoia wore off I realized - hey, they're even picking up the rotten ones! Super Sweet!

Elliot and I headed down and helped out for a bit. In the end, she had 3 5-gallon buckets and 2 shopping bags full of good apples. I came back with 2 full bags. Mrs. Apple Tree Owner told us they were sold a 10' dwarf apple tree 35 years ago; I think they were sold a lie.

As I sit here munching a fresh apple I can't help but think what a sweet lie that was. I'm not all hyper granola-crunchin-tree-hugging-save-the-whales or anything but I am loving this truly organic apple stash a mere 20 yards from my backdoor.

Pictures here.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Love Hate Relationship: The Apple Tree -- SCRATCH THAT!

You know what Google Blogger - you SUCK!!!! *

I just typed out this brilliant post on the neighbor's apple tree and you can't seem to understand what a paragraph is. I mean, really. I have to keep posting, viewing and then re-editing and keep PUNCHING IN THE SAME Enter button to get the paragraph to take.

But does it work? Oh, you'd sure think so.
You. Are. WRONG.

So I deleted it. The whole thing. If you want some annoying-turned-happy story about our neighbors apple tree you'll have to do it the old-fashioned way and give me a buzz. On my Blackberry, of course, because that's how old-fashioned we are.

Sure is nice that you're breaking up my paragraphs now, you jerk.

* Fred advised me to take out the F-word I was trying to use here....
You can thank him if you're relieved to not have to hear my potty mouth.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Letter of Apology

Dear Kelly,

Hi, how's the weather? It's nice here, one zip code digit away from where you are. How is your family? Oh, right, I work with the hubby and our kids are in daycare together. I obviously need to stop beating around the bush (what the hell does that phrase mean anyway?).

When I first started working here you and me got along swimmingly and found a deep connection over lunches with LaRon and the love of Barenaked Ladies. And plants - you owned them but I cared for them. Wise Ole Jade was my favorite - a tiny stem about 4 inches high with 6 plump leaves. And then I left this fine establishment for a few years and in those few years the plants managed to really flourish.

Then I came back and a matter of months later you left (plan it that way?) and your plants were left to fight for life in the new, red-walled MarComm area. The time came when they had to give up the ghost (another saying I don't really get) and admit defeat... Jade was shriveling. It was hard for me to see the now 18 inch tall monster like that so I called PPS (Plant Protective Services, duh) (oh, and PPS would be ME) and confiscated it.

I loved it like I love my own plants. New pot, fresh soil and plenty of water to fill those succulent leaves back up. And then. Well. I don't know what happened. Would this be another Office Etiquette Snafu? I watered it on a Friday and when I came back Monday, half of the thing is limp and bent completely over the side of the pot. Kind of like this but worse - much, much worse.

I googled up all possible diseases but nothing seems to fit.
All I can do at this point is hope that I didn't kill Wise Ole Jade.

Kelly, my good friend, I am sorry for what I have done to your plant. I really thought I was helping it (and it does look 100x better - sorry MarComm friends for the dig) and now it seems I was crushing its will to live. I hope you have it in your heart to forgive me.

Love, Anna

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Oh! The Humanity!!

I'm a full-time worker bee, mommy and a sporadic-at-best wife (read: I don't do much cleaning or cooking at our house). As me, Jess and Jess used to say "I'm verrry busy."

The Internets are my friends with their webs and tubes feeding my every addiction and giving me answers to nearly any question I have. During nearly every lunch hour and again at night, I have a tidy mental list of sites I like to troll. But right now - one tube in particular is failing me and it is shaking me to the core.

I feel ... so disconnected. So un-knowledgeable (its a word, right?).

Lost, even.

Is Sharon still in the nut-house? What's Nick going to do since he knows the baby is his? Does Ashley remember running over Nikki? Will JT find out that Vicki cheated on him? Is Nina still in town and is Chance still giving Chloe the googly eyes? And Patty - where to even begin with that one. I heard something about Colleen and a cow?

I'd love to find the answers - particularly to that last one - but alas, I cannot. My trusty (and now ex-) best friend, cbs.com has some funky problem on their Recaps page and I am unable to feed my Newman Family Addiction. My NFA is hungry!

I don't know what has happened since last Thursday... that's a week, people! An entire week! Do you have any idea - any idea, at all - how much can happen and change in a week in Genoa City? Victor and Nikki's kids grew 12 years in less than a month one summer! Maybe it'll be one of those slow-progressing weeks like how Ashley miscarried like 37 weeks ago and still doesn't realize she isn't pregnant (I mean, really?).

Sure, there are other sites out there that like to gossip and even spoil what will happen next (what, its not reality?) but that's beside the point. I want my daily recap back and I want it now. As my best friend Tim Gunn would say 'make it work.' And he means it.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Office Etiquette Snafu

One of the worst thing about sharing a kitchen in an office is the funky odors that emanate when something has been left to ... grow, shall we say?

I don't even understand how this happens as I meticulously check expiration dates and yes, I am THAT girl that will dump an entire gallon of milk out if today is the expiration date stamped on the jug. Does one honestly forget that they brought a bowl up cut-up cantaloupe to work 9 weeks ago and forgot about it? (Who would do that to a yummy melon??) I don't get it.

This week, the smell arrived. A particularly pungent, offensive-to-all-senses smell. A trio of us worked our way through the fridge tossing old items including a banana SO ripe that the entire thing was black - not even a hint of other color. The smell just didn't quit.

Stumped until Wendi couldn't take it any more and tore through every container in there whether it was brand new, old but not expired or a box of leftovers from yesterday. The culprit? My wedges of Laughing Cow cheese, of course. Whoops.

Wendi pulled them out and took a sniff - nearly dropping dead from the smell - and immediately threw them in the trash. Then the trash got taken outside. Then I got chastised.

I'll have you know they weren't expired, they just decided to expire.

Regardless, I am embarrassed for the pain and suffering I put my co-workers through over the last 3 days. I am sorry guys. And that smell? Yeah, still from my cheese. I know it smells like rotten feet. And no, I don't know how long until it clears out. And yes, I'll buy you a new apple since yours tastes like rotten feet.

Friday, September 11, 2009

He's ALL MINE, Ladies

I emailed Fred to tell him that I do think I am getting sick - that this isn't just allergies. I'm sneezing every 13 minutes, coughing, achy and tired. His loving response?

You better keep your pig flu to yourself and not share with me.

Ladies and Gentlemen, my lovely (and caring?) husband, Fred.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

New Gadgets

I've added new gadgets.

Bonus points to those of you that recognize where I got them....

Sunday, September 6, 2009

How to NOT Sell a Truck

Did some recent truck shopping and along the way learned some tricks of the trade that the dealers should really avoid when you're working with relatively smart buyers.

1. Small talk is just that - small talk. Don't try to sell me a truck noting how well my son's car seat would fit in it. We've done our research.

2. Don't keep me waiting - I am not the type that is going to say oh gee, I spent this much time here I guess I should just buy that truck from him even if he is a total tool. Not gonna happen.

3. Quit asking me questions and show me the truck. I just want to test drive it. And, trust me, I wouldn't be asking to test drive THAT truck if I didn't already know everything about it.

4. Don't bother asking what I want my payments to be - I'm not new in town. I know you can mess with amortization (busted... yes, Fred taught me that big word) to get my price point where I need it but I'll be damned if I'm paying any more for it than I need to in the long run.

5. When I tell you what rate I know I can get, don't laugh and say well, you'd have to have A-1 credit to get anything close to that here. Well, duh. How do you think I qualified for it at the bank? Think I duped them by hacking into the 3 major credit bureaus and raised my scores by 300 points while I laughed maniacally in the corner? I WISH. Do you think I'd be working an 8-5 if I could do that?

6. Don't tell me you're going to get me a great deal and assault my intelligence by starting out asking more for the truck that what is listed. I think maybe that should've been rule number 1.

(Side note: Turns out Jer-Bear was just a total idiot and was trying to sell us a COMPLETELY different truck.) Which leads me to this doozy:

7. Please refrain from telling me that your customers like to call you Jer-Bear. Really. Don't do that. It makes you look like more of a tool than you already are, Jerry.

8. Trying to shortchange me on the trade-in is an insult. I know more about that car than your CARFAX can tell you and I know its worth more than your laughable offer.

9. When we counter your offer (mind you, you are asking us to pay full listed price and taking next to nothing for our trade) don't come back with fancy graphs and charts telling me why YOU are giving ME such a good deal and for those reasons, you will not budge. I, too, know how to use Excel proficiently.

This will cause my husband to literally throw your keys down, yell that its a total screw job and demand his keys. Oooh almost forgot -

10. After you test drive our car, give the keys back. You hanging on them and forcing me to spend MORE time in your dealership is only making me angry.

11. When you tell me you are going to have a manager come talk to us - do that. Don't just come back sneering hand my husband his keys and say good luck at the other place and let me know what they give for your car.

Cause, Jer-Bear (I can call you that, right?), we did just that. They met our price on a BRAND NEW one, never hassled us once, took twice your offer for our car (yes, they can read CARFAX too). But you know what else they did? They filled up the tank and every. single. person. we talked to said "Thank you" and meant it.

Husker Auto - you should really give it a try.
Sid Dillon - I heart you.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Added Note: To Husker Auto - Don't ever tell your potential buyer that $200 in fees goes directly to the University for using 'Husker' in your name. I can't understand why, for any reason, I am responsible for paying YOUR bill to the University.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Begging and Pleading

Dear Elliot,

It's been a while since I have last written you. And, as usual, I am writing you to ask some favors from you. Some change in current action from you, if you will.

First, lets discuss your current sleeping habits. Not that long ago you put yourself to sleep singing Twinkle Twinkle and I loved it. I was proud to say that you were such a big boy. Now, though, you insist on yelling and screaming yourself to sleep and are still up by 5:45 a.m. ready to talk and sing and play.

Mommy can't do this much longer, honey. You see, my life at work sucks enough as it is right now and I don't really need to be going in short on sleep too after being accosted by you for not being Daddy.

Next up, the potty. If you could just tell me what happened... we were doing so good - we had 10 consecutive days of going potty at least once a day. And now we're back to square one and you'll barely even step into the bathroom. You still go at school and that makes me crazy! Did Froggy Potty bite you? If so - just tell me and I'll put him in timeout.

Last, you are overusing a phrase that makes no sense and I want it to stop. When I ask you if you want pancakes for breakfast and you tell me "I not pancakes!" you must know that it doesn't make sense. I get that you're rebelling against the stringent rules your Daddy and I make for you (I not bath! I not eat! I not shirt! I not shoes!) what with these being the teenage years of your toddler years.

Your 'funny face' is only going to get you so far in life, pal.

Love, Mommy

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Trickle-Down Effect

Thanks to the one little post by my sister, I have seen a lot of traffic coming through my store that has turned into a few orders and even a swap (I am now the proud owner of a super-cool apron from Love, September!). I have also been invited to create a wall quilt or two for the new Child Advocacy Center when it opens next year.

Today is no different... I am featured as the giveaway here and all you have to do is follow her simple directions and you'll be in the running for one of my Stitched Handprints. Lucky You!

And with this, I promise to stop clogging up this blog with my sewing geekiness. If you want to hear more about what I'm up to, visit me at Something Sewn.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Sing A Song

Elliot has been a singing fool for several weeks now. While he plays he is almost always singing himself a song. Whenever we have guests over we try to get him to sing for them. He always chickens out and so we decide to try to capture a song on video. Our attempts were mostly fruitless, however the results are fairly amusing.


video

How We Spent Our Summer

In honor of all those little folks returning to school and crafting their own "How I Spent my Summer" essays, I thought I'd write out ours.

Elliot spent his summer playing in water, spending numerous nights at Grandma Cindy and Grandpa Jim's and meeting Thomas and Sir Topham Hatt. Rode his first carnie rides at the Johnson County Fair and experienced 'big living' down at the Morrissey acreage riding a tractor, 4-wheeler and lawnmower. His first MLB game in Kansas City is still talked about. 'Goa Woyals!'

Fred has spent this summer nursing a running injury and is hopeful that Disney is still on. He also got a road bike and has been putting on miles and falling off of it whenever he can. Fred blew up his grill and yet managed to smoke food through numerous hellacious rainstorms. He also watched one of his best friends get married this summer. I mean, really, Josh-freaking-Rother got married?

Anna has been sewing and busy with opening and filling her Etsy store (come on, people, buy my nifty shi#!) She also somersaulted elegantly from the back of a horse and is nursing the injuries to this day. A quick day-trip to Kansas City with a friend, eating Fred's grilled dinners and is still begging for a wafflemaker. A wafflemaker.

Summer is ending. I know this because a 3T Chicago Bears jersey showed up on our doorstep, Fred has been relentlessly playing the new Madden and I'm thinking Halloween with Trick-or-Treat bags for my Etsy store and costumes for the family.

(Elliot & Fred as Curious George and the Man in the Yellow Hat?)

The end of Summer means one thing: the beginning of Fall. My fave-o-rite season. The weather, warm food and sweatshirts. The lets do it before the weather turns activities. It's Waubonsie in October, comforting Fred when the Cubs blow it and avoiding Lincoln like the plague on game days. And, hopefully, my blogging will get better.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Sweetness!

Thanks to Jen for the following:
- Wanting me to make some handprints in fabric for her kids
- Letting me put them on Etsy for her to purchase in my store
- Buying them and blogging about it, leading to
- ME BEING FEATURED ON A KIDDO WEBSITE!!!

Check me out at Ohdeedoh!

If you want a Stitched Handprint - check out my shop!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Neat and Tidy List: It Makes me ...

Happy
A huge smile and running hug from Elliot.
Dinner with everyone talking about their day.
Bananas in my oatmeal and pancakes for dinner.
Elliot finally using the potty at least once daily.

Annoyed
The lady that tried to run Elliot and I over this morning.
Wal-Mart. Even just the parking lot.
People that inadvertently say offensive things.
The 'are you sure no more kids?' question.

Sad
The book I'm reading... the chick's brain dead.
My sister and her family live too far away.
Knowing nothing I can do can 'fix' the one I love.
Some people are just rotten to the core.

Hopeful
Alzheimer's research continues.
Payday on the 15th lets me get a haircut and highlights.
Elliot just might be out of diapers at age 3.
Someday my dining room will not be carpeted.

Disappointed
No sales yet on Etsy, except to a person I know.
Being made to feel I'm not good enough for certain people.
A purchased product fails to meet expectations.
Nikki & Victor and Nick & Phyllis Newman.

Excited
Nate's sleeping over at our house soon.
I think I'm going to make Bella a fabulous fall coat.
Finishing my quilt - first one I've made for ME.
RIBFEST.

Friday, August 7, 2009

You Want a What Wedding?

From the very beginning, it had been Fred's idea. I stared, figuring out whether or not to laugh at him and ultimately snorted saying "yeah, right, a baseball wedding. Come on, be serious."

He was.

Soon we were putting together pennants, taking pictures for a baseball card and buying a case of baseballs. Painting pots, buying bulk licorice and ordering ivy. Taking hat orders, designing a flower ball, finding pint-sized jerseys and rounding up a dozen old bats.

The very original plan was guys and gals in jerseys on Sherman Field here in Lincoln. After a series of getting-nowhere calls with the City's Parks Department we ended up with a small town church and infused baseball in every step. Rev. Tubbesing embraced the idea - asking at least twice, even I get to wear a ball cap?

Our guests signed baseballs as a guestbook and picked up their programs broken out by innings. I walked down the aisle after a ring bearer in uniform holding our rings in a mit and a flower girl in uniform carrying a baseball-looking flower ball. The guys were all in hats - sharp white ones with the team of their choosing.

Did the I do's and walked down the aisle to the organist playing 'Take me Out to the Ballgame.' Everyone snickered - we grinned. We left the church under a tunnel of baseball bats and were sent off by guests waving their pennants. Climbed on the small bus (what, a limo at a ballgame??) and we were off.



As stated on the program, the 7th Inning Stretch was the drive over and the 8th and 9th Innings were the reception. No stuffy dance for us - just people hanging out, eating baseball food (cracker jacks, hot dogs, popcorn, nuts, etc.) and the groom's ball field cake and looking at the baseball cards we had made as favors. On each table were painted brick wall pots with ivy climbing out and mini baseball hats tucked inside.

It was, by far, the most funnest wedding ever. Happy 5 Years, F.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Mommy's Haircut Parlor

Before I became a Mommy, I started cutting Fred's hair. Thanks to having thick, poker-straight hair it has always been an easy chore for me... a 1 on the bottom and finger-width on top.

Got that?

Now add in 9 months of growing a baby and all of the forgetfulness that comes with it and what do you get? NO GUARD on the clipper and a crying pregnant lady shrieking "OhmiGawd I'm so sorry!"

Fred was calm and patient - and annoyed as all get out I am sure since I shaved this strip down the middle of his head - and promised me that everything was fine. No big deal. This way, he joked, he'd be more aerodynamic when running. That, and a heaping bowl of ice cream soothed my sorrows... but I have never forgotten about it. (In fact, it was almost a year before I was willing to cut his hair again.)

Fast forward about 2 1/2 years to tonight. Fred sits down and I swear I see a flicker of fear in his eye that dates back to "pregnant + clippers = BAD NEWS" but I forage on. After taking a look at the fabulous job I did, I was puffing out my feathers in my I am sooo awesome at haircuts kind of way and plopped Elliot down on Fred's lap and flipped on the clippers.

Whoops. And... oh shit. As Britney would say - I did it again.


Only this time I'm not pregnant and have no good excuse.

Silly Mommy.

Call me Captain Lame-o

I guess I'm in the midst of a raging case of Blogger's Block.

Anything you want to hear about, Internets?

Friday, July 31, 2009

Sharing is Nice

So sometimes when I have had a not-so-stellar day, my favorite thing to do is listen to loud music the entire way home and then take it allllll out on Fred the minute I walk in the door.

Isn't he a lucky little ducky?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Seckman Sing-a-long

Elliot sat on his potty Saturday. I use the word "sat" carefully because there is a lot of fidgeting involved like he was uncomfortable. He has all but given up on his Spidey potty seat so I about jumped out of my socks when we were at Target today and were cruising the potty aisle.

And - let me tell you - we came home and no sooner had plopped it in the bathroom when Mr. Big Boy toddled in there, undressed himself and pottied!

(To the tune of Simon and Garfunkel's Sounds of Silence)
ah-ah-ah-ah-ah-ahem

Hello Potty, my new friend,
I've come to sit on you again....

Interwebs, tubes and nets - meet our new best friend, Froggy Friend Potty - we call him Froggy Potty for short.

I know, I know, don't get my hopes up. But this is progress.

PRO-GRESS.

Friday, July 24, 2009

And the Battle Rages On

I love Elliot to pieces - all the way from his adorable new facial expression to his constant stubbornness. Most days.

The battle du jour at chez Seckman is potty training. Elliot wants nothing to do with it - won't step into the bathroom unless its for a bath, won't even touch the big boy underwear and adamantly refuses if the idea of pottying is even suggested. We even bought him Thomas the Train stickers - he acts all stickers are sooo for 1 year olds, guys.

Did I mention that's only at home?

At daycare he toddles over to the bathroom, drops his drawers and tinkles. Multiple times every single day. He gets teeny tiny stickers and is SO PROUD of them. Shows them to his classmates, shows them to the security guards and inevitably wears one home on his shirt proudly announcing to anyone that asks "Go potty!"

And I applaud this and praise this. And then - geez, Mom - I nonchalantly say "hey, we should try to potty at home too!" with a big, Mom-ish grin. I am met with a cold stare and a very solemn "No. No potty." Game over; I just put a screeching halt on his good time.

So what to do?

Fred took Elliot in for his 30 month appointment and asked his fabulous doctor about it. She suggested a sticker chart. And pointing out other kids his age that don't wear diapers. What I think she doesn't know (or wasn't told, perhaps?) was that our kid has the coolest stickers in town AND DOESN'T CARE and has underwear with firetrucks AND DOESN'T CARE.

So, again, what to do?

She says not to push him. It's the ONE thing they have 100% control over and it is a battle that the parents will never, ever win. He'll come around, she assures us. Riiight, I think, when he's in like 3rd grade - and you bet your bippee I'll be shoving him into those 2T firetruck undies!

What it boils down to is this: the boy can pee and poop whenever, wherever and however he wants. Should I provoke his stubborn side and start pushing potty training on him? Sure, if I want him pooping in potted plants and peeing on the cat.

I know what you're thinking and no - even though I don't like her, I don't wish for someone to tinkle on her.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

WM: Sunday, July 19, 2009

I don't know what happened and how it became Wednesday night - but it is... so I better get cracking on our Weekend Moment.


It's the weekend Elliot didn't even know he was waiting for... Thomas the Train and Sir Topham Hatt were going to be in Fremont and we had tickets to ride! He should have had a great time - yelling, clapping and even dancing. He should have been trying to hang out the window and touch the dinga-dings (Railroad Crossings). He should have been blown away by the tent full of Thomas goodies for purchase. He should have at least cracked a smile. Once.

Turns out our little one was sick. He was diagnosed with Croup Saturday morning and was not himself on Sunday. After Thomas, a brief rebound at lunch and then a long nap he woke up in more pain than I have seen him in a long time. About 2 hours later the Urgent Care doc confirms my suspicions - raging ear infection.

So what, in here, is my Weekend Moment? Well. Err... I don't exactly know. Sadly, my favorite part of the weekend was when he was sick and cuddling to me closer than he has in a long time. He is, you know, 2 1/2 now and has many, many important things to tend to.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Appealing to a Higher Power

We have tickets with the Medwick's to see Thomas and Sir Topham Hatt this coming Sunday.

I - foolishly - thought that today would be an okay amount of time to tell Elliot without him driving me too batty asking to go.

A: Hey Elliot. Do you like Thomas?
E: Yes. Choo-choooo! Dinga-dinga-dinga!
A: Do you want to see Thomas?
E: (Looks, inquisitively.)
A: We're going to ride Thomas and see Sir Topham Hatt on Sunday.
E: I see Toppahatt today!
A: No, three days.
E: Today!
A: No, three days.
E: (In a humph, I will not be defeated way) Me wan talk to Daddy.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Brilliance Spews Forth

Tonight I was cooking dinner. Out of nowhere, Elliot appears.
E: Mommy, I go bye-bye. Go doctor and car wash. Bye!

Sitting at the table, Fred and I can hear him coming down the hall.
E: Watch out peoples here da firetwuk! Shoot da water - eeooo eeooo. Oh no fire person here comes da water in da water hose! I shoot da fire person!

Two minutes ago he pops up on the couch.
E: Mommy, me is stinky feet. Baff? Bubble Baff?

If you knew how bad his feet can smell, you'd completely understand why this is the end of this blog post as I simply must get those nasty feet into a tub of hot water and industrial soap and a brillo pad.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Ted & Vance -- oh, and Susanna too

I have this friend "Ted" who is obsessed with "Vance" who is somewhat-famous so it makes it pretty easy to follow Vance's every move. Ted is married to "Susanna" who stands by Ted but is concerned it is turning into an obsession.

Vance tweets. Ted reads every single one.
Vance is being video taped. Ted watches every second.
Vance has a clothing line. Ted wears it.
Vance has an exercise clothing line. Ted wears it.
Vance races motorcycles. Ted rode for 32 miles.

Everything Vance does, Ted knows. And relays on to Susanna.
Susanna wonders if Ted is going to leave her follow Vance around.

Now if you replace Ted with Fred, Susanna with Anna and Vance with Lance Armstrong - you have just spent a day in our house.


** Thank you, Eagle Eyes Judy for catching my typo! **

WM: Saturday, July 11, 2009

Elliot is his name; naughty is his game.

For about the 100th time since getting up from his nap, I tossed Elliot into time out around 6:15 p.m. (Btw - I tossed him because time out is in his crib.)

At about 6:15:25 he was running down the hallway.

Whaaaa? I think I stared in disbelief for a minute at him and had to be reminded by Fred to not laugh. Seriously, it took him 25 seconds to climb up out of his crib and come bounding down the hall.

I just don't have any idea where he gets this fine, I'll show you attitude. But it was that look on his face that created this Weekend Moment. That one-second-flash of 'yeah, mom, go ahead and try it again.' I broke into a fit of laughter and had to leave the room.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Open for Business!

For the last few months I've been creating inventory for an Etsy shop I've been wanting to open. Mike Medwick (good friend, co-worker, husband of a good friend and dad to Elliot's good friend) designed my banner and avatar and away I went.

Well - the day is finally here and I am up and running... and open for business. Check it out!

At this point, I only have a few items for sale but hope to continue sewing more and more - if you have suggestions for something just let me know. OH - and if you want to actually follow my work, check out my other blog. I hope for this to be a place for ideas, works in progress and other side projects or just stories relating to projects.

I hope you like it - I'm pretty pleased.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Doing some Math...

What do you get when you put a toddler in a swim diaper, throw him in the pool and add in a dad that has the incessant need to play rough, including delivering body slams (fake, mind you)?

Poo all down your shirt.

Ha ha, Daddy. It seems that swim diapers aren't meant to hold poo and when you have a man-child that refuses to tell you when he goes poo the water gets in and turns it to liquid poo. When you, dear father, flip him upside down over your head - well, I don't think I need to elaborate any further, do I?

Back Seat Driving

We were headed into work and work (what Elliot now calls his school, where he works with Ms. Haley and Nate M.) and I let Elliot bring his bananas and cereal in the car because we were running late.

I was cruising into downtown where the stop-and-start begins.

A: (Quick stop, thinking JEEZ!!)
E: Mommy! Stop it!
A: Huh?
E: Stop it!
A: Stop what? Stop Stopping?
E: Yeah.
E: Ceeweeal fall on fwor!
A: Oooh, sorry.
E: Stop it!
A: So this next light I should just run?
E: Yeah. No ceeweeal on fwor!

Monday, July 6, 2009

A Heavy Dose of Support

I was just cruising through Google Analytics to see what my site's looking like and was excited to see that there were 868 visitors, 110 of which were unique, to my blog in the last 30 days!

I told this to Katy, my current BFF. Her response?

(Insert eye roll.) Well, they could be spammers.

WM: Friday, July 3, 2009

My weekend moment is not funny (yet), was not filmed (dang) and happened on Friday but it's mine, none the less.

I was riding a lovely horse named Winston who has a crush on Bree. Enter Crawford - the other man. Winston seemed to have an issue with Crawford giving Bree "the eye."

Long story short, I got thrown from Winston in a fit of jealousy. I got a foot caught in a stirrup on the way down (sprained ankle) and landed straight on my head (sore neck) and then scraped along the ground (numerous bumps, bruises and massive scratches).

Not stepped on and wearing a helmet; I'm alive to tell the tale.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

WM: Sunday, June 28, 2009

Fred's post was going to be my Weekend Moment.

Fred is a born and raised Cubs fan so it's only natural that he would drop everything and run to Target to buy him a bat and ball after confidently asking to watch baseball with Daddy and yelling Go Cubs.

Not sure, though, what position this future 5'5" guy is going to play.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Cripes, Jennifer!

I just got an email from my sister with the following subject:

WM WTF

I mean, really, Jennifer. This whole Weekend Moment (WM) thing isn't even your bag and you're going to ask me What-The-Fword (WTF)? I wonder what Leanne would think about this incessant badgering. Okay, incessant was a bit much. But I still wonder.

I am deciding between two so back off you big, pushy meanie-head!
Oh, and I love you.

Checking Out

Oh, Internet, how I have loved feeding on you. I learn a lot of information from you - some useful, some interesting and some quite enlightening. It is time, though, that I stop learning the unnecessary.

I've known it and thought it, but have never been able to put it into words like one of my newest favorite bloggers did. I, too, enjoyed reading and snickering on a fairly frequent basis.

Celebrity Gossip sites, I am checking out. And taking a moment to be thankful that I don't have 17 guys with cameras following my every move and making it a national headline.

Friday, June 26, 2009

My Name is...

Snarky McSnarkerson, not Slim Shady.

Pleased to meet you. And... join me, if you dare.

As of late, I've been swept up in a new attitude. One that is fun, entertaining and downright rude and unfriendly to outsiders. And - best part - I have a new partner in crime to be Super Snarky with. After all, snarking is really best done (and likely safest) in numbers.

What is a snark? According to some tool reviewing a book aptly titled Snark, it is a tone of teasing, snide, undermining abuse ... attempting to erase one's cool. He goes further to say that snarkers like to think they're witty but they're really just seething and snarling.

I must admit, it IS exhausting being so much better, cooler and witty than anyone else I know. It's an addiction that only feeds on more snark - NEED MORE SNARK - somewhat like the little 'brring-brring' noise that let's me know someone wants to Blackberry Messenger me. [Side Note: I picked the brring-brring noise as a constant reminder to Freddie Bill that I have YET to get a bell for my bicycle. I'm running people over left and right because I simply cannot warn them that I am coming in behind them.] I digress. Or do I snark? Well, that doesn't have as nice of a ring. But, again, I snark. Oh - ha - just caught that little pun there... you see, I wouldn't know what a ringing noise is since I don't have a bell to produce it.

Wow, I really did digress on that last bit. My point was that I'm addicted to being snarky much like I'm addicted to my Blackberry.

Now back to my original point. I'm snarky. You can take my snark and embrace it. Or you can take my snark and shove it. (That last part was to the tune of Take This Job and Shove It.) I am, though, a self-titled Part Time Snarker. I'd like to think I don't act like a total jerk ALL of the time.

Monday, June 22, 2009

WM: Saturday, June 20, 2009

Saturday morning I went to breakfast with my good friend Stacey. No kids, no husbands, no interruptions. Jess and Jess chittin' and chattin' while eating pancakes and waffles.

Yum, Yum, Yum.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Busted by a Toddler

A new car game lately has been discussing traffic lights. Red means STOP! and green means either Go!Go!Go! or Vroom!Vroom!

What happens when mommy slides through a Yellow?

A little voice pops up from the backseat "Oops, Mommy."

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Elliot's New Best Friends

In a chance happening of conversation, I happened upon someone trying to unload a train table - with trains, tracks and buildings included. Long story short, we looked into it and decided it was a good purchase and I came home with it on Monday afternoon.

We put it up Monday night, building it as best we could (it's used, so not everything is there...) and playing with it for a while after that. Elliot didn't see it until we got home from school and work today; he absolutely loves it!

I snapped a few pictures - but this one just says "boy and his train."

Sunday, June 14, 2009

WM: Saturday, June 13, 2009


Sitting outside on a warm sunny morning, eating lunch with friends at a new restaurant in a city away from home. Perfection.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Definition of Bittersweet

I am looking forward to this weekend in Colorado. Fred and I leave tonight and are driving out for his friend Josh's wedding and are padding a day each way for the Rocky Mountain National Park and a Rockie's game. Not comin' back until Monday.

Did you catch the part about it just being Fred and I?

It was hard to type. This will officially be the longest that we have been apart from Elliot at the same time. He's not even gone yet (but will be in a matter of hours) and I'm already missing him.

Rationally, I know this weekend would be NO fun for him and that he will have a grand time in Tecumseh. And I know that Fred and I will have enjoy eating out without coaxing him to try the beans, sleeping past 6:30 a.m. and having "normal" adult conversation.

But.

I miss him already.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A Bar None

This weekend we were enticed by Grandma Judy to come to her house for lunch - she was serving up a spaghetti bar! Wow - a spaghetti bar?

As in similar to a potato bar where one finds a giant pile of baked taters and is then bombarded with a bar FULL of options to load on top of the potato? Oh boy, Oh boy, Oh boy! I can hardly wait to see a mounding pot of noodles with all kinds of goodies to top my pasta with - sauces, meats, veggies (yech), cheeses, etc.

Grandma Judy's getting fancy now - watch out Tecumseh!

... Or not. (insert sound of crickets chirping)

Not only did the spaghetti bar consist of a maximum of TWO sauce choices, but there was no spaghetti to be had! There were"crazy" noodles (you know, the funny color ones) and there was linguine. Neither of which are spaghetti. Sauce choices: red with meat or white with shrimp. And while the garlic bread was truly divine, there were no options here either.

Pasta Station? Maybe. Spaghetti Bar? Not even close.
But..... I ate you anyway and enjoyed every minute of it!

Monday, June 8, 2009

WM: Saturday, June 6, 2009


Roca Berry Farm: Two friends with their two sons picking strawberries in the Saturday morning sun. Perfect weekend moment.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

A Trip Down Memory Lane

I was going through pictures on our camera (I know, I'm terrible at updating Flickr) and found this little gem from Fred and Elliot's trip to the zoo last Wednesday.

Sure, the kid in the video is pretty cute but what kills me is Leo the Lion and how he is still at the zoo and still eating trash. This was Elliot's first experience. I think it was a hit.


video

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Not So Fast, Seckman!

Huh. It's kind of hard to give away a cat during the Month of May when you don't even post about it until its already June.

I don't pretend to be smart so it doesn't surprise me that I just caught that little blooper. But my readers... well, I expected more from you guys.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

May: Adopt a Cat Month

May is National Adopt a Cat Month. Anyone want mine?

Monday, June 1, 2009

WM: Saturday, May 30, 2009

A friend of Jen's, Leanne Wadenpfuhl, is starting a new thing - Weekend Moment - and I'm intrigued. Intrigued by the idea of it, but also to see how long I'll keep up with it.

The idea is to capture a moment from your weekend (hence naming it Weekend Moment) and spew it into your blog through any form of media - picture, haiku, dissertation, simple reflection, etc. I think everyone ought to give it a try, at least once.

Consider this my first attempt.

Fred and I were in Kansas City on Saturday to see Ben Folds. As we sat and waited (not)patiently for him to take the stage, Fred looked at me and said - we met at a Ben Folds concert in Kansas City 7 years ago. Would you have guessed we'd be here again but this time be married almost 5 years and have a 2 year old?

I sort of smiled/smirked. He smiled back.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Let Me Hear You Sing

I think Lionel Ritchie said it best...


What is happening here?
Something is going on that's not quite clear.
Somebody turn on the light,
We're gonna have a party it's starting tonight!

Oh, what a feeling! When we're dancing on the ceiling!!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tuesday Morning Tantrum

Elliot, along with every single other classmate (except, of course, Crazy Brenda's kid) was flipping out this morning having just been left by their parent. I calmly told him that I loved him, patted him on the head, kissed his cheek and said "suck it up, honey, we do this almost every day" and proceeded to leave.

On my walk to work I realized something. Had I played all weekend with 6 grandparents, 4 aunts and uncles, saw 3 real-life motorcycles, gone to the zoo, went for a bike ride, visited Tecumseh, numerous trips to the store, played with Nate, Mike and Kelly all afternoon and was fighting a cold on top of it all... I wouldn't want to be "stuck" at daycare either.

Waaaait a minute. I think I have this all wrong. After taking care of a 2 year old through all of that I think I should be the one in daycare today so I can eat, sleep and play my day away.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Still No Bell

Update: My bike still doens't have a bell. Damn.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

No Angels

What do you get when six old people completely decked out in "Harley gear" roll up on Harley 'geezer edition' bikes and park in your cul de sac? They creakily dismount the bikes, remove the helmets and the ladies fix their hair before climbing the 6 torturous steps to our house.

Fast forward about an hour - 2 of the 3 male old persons are snoozing on the sofa. Fast forward another hour - all 3 are snoozing (and it was caught on tape for posterity).

As they rolled back out of our neighborhood 4 hours after showing up Fred and I had a good chuckle.

A: Boy, they sure are a bunch of geezers.
F: More like "Hells Nappers."

Monday, May 18, 2009

Ring my Bell.

I want to ring my bell.

Problem is, my bike didn't come with one. AND to make it worse, Fred didn't allow me to purchase one and instead offered me the one off of his bike. Not only is Fred's bell old but it's from his TREK bike and mine is a Specialized/Globe bike. Isn't that sort of like putting a Honda door on a Toyota? I think it is.

Take my little survey - Should Anna get to buy a new bell?
(Preferably a red shiny one with a melodic little ding?)