Monday, December 29, 2008

Iron Chef Pizza Challenge with special guest judge Danny W.!

Two puppies, two kids and Nina (let's be honest, she's a bit of a loose cannon). It's no wonder that we don't normally get guests to Sunday dinner. Sadly, we have to resort to cheap tricks like having Iron Chef challenges to get people to visit. The good news is it totally works!

The entries...

Nina's Tuscan Zucchini and Proscuitto Pizza

Mom went all rebel and did a Chicago Deep Dish Sausage Pizza.

Bill (bill? I know! I was so proud) did a Pepperoni-Surprise Thin Crust. It is way less naughty than it sounds.

Me. plain. (I prefer to call it classic) Someone always has to make something non-controversial at these challenges so that the kids have something to eat.

But what's this?? a dark horse...a COOKIE Pizza from team Danstin (or Judan?)
It looks like it has enough red dye #5 to send a small child into a seizure, but it is impossible to be immune to warm-chocolate chip cookie dough with frosting. Totally not fair. That's like putting crack in your pizza.

Gia makes the ballots--she does a great job. But, judging is hard work. Wine is necessary.

Of course the cookie won (actually they tied with Nina with 10 points).
Good job guys! (though I should warn you Bill is demanding a recount).

Mario says the next challege should be Purina-related.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Gingerbread House of Horror

Holiday baking! One of my favorite traditions! While the grown-ups were making chocolate dipped biscotti and limoncello, we set the kids to making gingerbread cookies for Santa.

Oh, how sweet! (now THIS would have made a good Christmas card!)

Hey look, Uncle Justin is here! Yay! He is just in time to decorate the cookies with the kids!

Oh, wait. Oh, my goodness. Well, when the kids can't fall asleep at night we'll know its not because they are excited for Santa...its because they can't get these images out of their heads...

Justin, I think its amazing that for your job, you catch dirtbags all day long and keep us safe from the bad guys. I am consistently impressed at how you maintain cheerful optimism when you get to see some of the nastiest people there are--but dude, my kids won't eat the gingerbread anymore. I think you may be a little sick...but, that's probably why I like you so much!

I can't wait to see what you do when its time to color easter eggs!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Sorry about the lame X-mas card...

But we are probably lucky that mike is in it at all.

He warned me as soon as I got the camera out.
"I no take picture with YOU."

I did not believe him. This kid is 2, I've got 32 years on him, so presumably I should be able to outsmart him.

He would not pose with Gianna, near Gianna, in the same room as the tree or anything that resembled a Christmas decoration.

Good girl G (She posed like this for about 30 minutes, can you see the strain in her eyes?)

Impressive G! but where is Mike?

There he is...can you spot him?

Near the end, I resorted to bribery--not a first, nor will it be the last time. But it didn't work!

He sobbed while he ate the chocolate which meant I was still left with no viable picture for the card. How can chocolate NOT work when you are 2?? Chocolate still works on me.
Next year I'm hiring Beth to do my X-mas cards.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Her X-men name could be "Mistress Mastercard"

It is Black Friday and I'm just sitting down to look at my purchases. We took in a good haul this year even though we are not the getting-up-at-4am type (of course, this means we are also not the trample-an-employee-for-cheap-walmart-crap type either, so I'm ok with it). If you need to get some shopping done--you need to go with Nina. To say that shopping is a sport for her does not give really give the experience justice--unless maybe the sport is speed skating backwards while jousting.

After going to IKEA to "look" at beds for Mike:

Note that NONE of these boxes contained a bed. Or anything for Mike.

and this really needs no explanation:

This was today:

I should mention that I never really regret the purchases. It's all good stuff, it just happens so fast, its kind of hard to remember how it started.

We love to think about what different family member's mutant power might be if we were superheros. At least I do. Yes, because I'm a big geek--I know this--no need to belabor the point. Anyhow, Nina's power would certainly be convincing people to purchase as much as they can, in as short of a time as possible. I think mine would be my really loud clapping.

Despite what you see here, my Dad's would totally have to be his ability to tell the same story over and over andoverandover again and NOT remember that he already told you about the time that his buddy Eddy ate his goldfish or that his dog finally had enough of fluffy the cat...Anyway, go to his NEW website and look around!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

See, he's not always crying..

This week at teamworks didn't start out any better...

but it ended MUCH better!

Yay Mike! I'm so proud of you!

Monday, November 03, 2008

A pictoral response to the question "How did Mike like his first gym class?"

Well, at least he is near the soccer ball.

He did come around at the end of class. He even wiped some snoogies on coach Mike.

Sunday, November 02, 2008


What a great halloween.

Gianna was Ariel. Which meant that she got to wear a wig and a mermaid outfit with a bra. I guess its the 6-year old version of "sexy witch" or "sexy devil". There are inherent problems with a mermaid costume-and we ended up tying her fins up abut halfway around the block so she could walk. Not sure what PETA would have to say about that, but it was better than a mermaid with skinned knees and hands (that's not spooky-that's just sad).

No trips to the ER--Bill did the pumpkin and he did a GREAT JOB.

Mike was Wall-E. My Dad made the BEST costume and right up until Halloween, Mike wore it for a couple hours every day. Of course, on the big night the goggles were a big NEGATIVE. It made for a lot of confused neighbors--but honestly, most of them didn't know who Wall-E was anyway.

Yay! There's the loot!

Two things to notice--1. the costume-specific treat bags that I made the kids; seahorse for Gia, EVE for Mike (props please?) and 2. You can see the bag of Mike and Ike's that Mike is eating here. He later puked that up at our neighbor's house. I should mention that this summer--the dog puked in this same neighbor's yard. This would be ok if we didn't like them, but we REALLY like these neighbors. They are actually really awesome, and for some strange reason, they keep inviting us back--so, please, guys? stop with the puke--or at least spread it around the neighborhood.

Apparently Nina forsaw what the evening would bring. Here's her prophetic pumpkin....

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Walk of Shame (or why I love my sister)

I don't care what craziness you got into in college--and I know, most of you were much more interesting in your early twenties than I was--but I'm telling you, you have never done a walk of shame until you have to purchase this:

From the pharmacist that you worked with for 6 years. Whee. THAT was a fun conversation.

Let me tell you kids, these little guys are a FUN RIDE. However, I may have been a monkey in a previous life, because I am really, supernaturally good at getting them out (might have something to do with the OCD--i'm just saying).

The best part of this story, and the part that I will remember long after my kids have totally forgotten about this whole thing; is how great nina was--she walked into my house for dinner (all prepared BEFORE the delousing, but to be honest, I'm not sure if that is good or bad). She saw the box, her eyes got so wide--and I said two words, "please help".

She grabbed a comb and starting telling me and gia that "oh I do this all the time-what with working at a school and all, and ha-there is BARELY anything there! You almost don't need to bother. Oh--of course YOUR kids got them, they actually need clean hair--it's because your kids are so clean.." all while she was combing eggs out of my daughter's hair.

Here they are...pest-free...if you don't count the boy as a pest, which Gia does.
She diffused the situation in less than 5 minutes and showed me yet another unique skill she has (besides being rock-paper-scissors champion of the Northeast-I kid you NOT).

i love my sister--even if she did pour A1 sauce all over the lasagna I made 5 minutes later.

Monday, September 15, 2008

pls send applications to PO Box 666

The following is all true.

Gianna asked me the other day:

"Mum, why would a mommy want to give her baby away for adoption?"


I did exactly what you are NOT supposed to do and launched into a long soliloquy--starting with "Some mommies are not ready..." and somehow ending with me explaining the term "symbiotic".
We have friends at different stages of pregancy; from getting ultrasounds to just finishing the nursery. We also have a number of friends who are adopted--I can see where the question may have arisen, but that doesn't mean I had a great answer. I was really banking on my ability to talk so much and employ so may tangents that she would eventually give up and go watch tv.
Alas, she sat with rapt attention the entire time.

After I finished she looked at me sideways--clearly I had not given the answer she was looking for.

"So, Michael is too old now to be adopted?"

Ah. Yes he is.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

More Beach FUN! (with only a little bloodshed)

My favorite thing to do at the beach is nothing, followed by nothing and sometimes, later--I just relax and do nothing (if watching the kids and opening a continous stream of snack packs and capri suns for them counts as nothing).

Not everyone feels like that. Our friend Ken rarely sits still at the beach and regularly catches 30 pound stripers.

I should also mention, this is the same man that throws on flippers and chases the seals away. That's right after he jumps in his kayak to drop his fishing line miles out on the ocean. Its safe to say he's pretty darn intimidating* (and would be more so if he wasn't so good getting juiceboxes for the kids--but shhhh....we don't speak of that).
That's his hawttie of a wife.

In the face of that blur of activity--Bill brought his ocean-fishing pole (I'm sure there is a more technical term for it, fortunately not too many guys read this blog). We didn't catch too many fish--but we did manage to catch something else!

Picture this, all 5 kids in the truck (eating snacks and watching a movie), Tam looks out the window and notices a poor seagull with a lure stuck in his beak. At this point, we were just sort of hoping the kids didn't notice, one less life lesson to explain and all that. Just then, the seagull tried to fly away and we realized it wasn't any lure stuck in its beak, it was attached to Bill's fishing pole. This may be time for a cartoon...

So even though Ken may be the envy of pretty much all the guys on the beach--it was my beloved that ended up with a sweatshirt covered in seagull blood, go Bill! The kids really did think it was pretty impressive how he jumped right in there and grabbed that seagull (in case you are wondering, I did help--it's HUMAN germs I don't like, animal germs-not so bad). The seagull was (mostly) unharmed as well. So I guess it turned out ok.

If you don't count the therapy the kids are going to need.

*You can pretty much replace Ken's name in any of the Chuck Norris Facts....

such as: Ken doesn't frostbite, Ken bites frost; or There is no theory of evolution, just a list of animals Ken allows to live.

Monday, August 25, 2008

enough with the "I told you so" already.

Yeah, yeah--camping for a week is hard. Some parts anyway...

The beach--not hard, in fact, the most fun we had since last year at the beach.

Salt water taffy, cookouts every night, s'mores around the bonfire-SO FREAKIN FUN!

Showering with two kids (both in the stall with me, every day for 5 days) umm, not so fun. Explaining the more delicate parts of female anatomy to my daughter because sand is all up in there. Not. so. fun.


Getting drunk with our friends and showering a sleeping Bill with Glowstick juice.* Really FUN. REALLY REALLY FUN. Don't feel bad, he woke up, realized he bore a striking resemblance to tinkerbell, and promptly fell back asleep.

*this was totally sanctioned by 2 law enforcement officers. Actually they started it, but there was a nurse present to make sure that it was non-toxic. (There was a teacher there too, but she really didn't do much except giggle, I suppose she could have told us exactly how immature we were being...)

Monday, July 28, 2008

Just to make a point.

Everytime it rains, the end of our street floods. We have called the town about it, the neighbors have called, and we continue to call.

We have been told that we are overreacting. What do YOU think?

The 10th circle

This weekend I had the pleasure of going to NYC for Gianna's b-day present, tickets to The Little Mermaid on Broadway.

The show was great, mermaidy-cuteness abounded. Since it was Gianna's day, she got to pick what she wanted to do, and what better place to go if you are are 6 year old in Manhattan than:

American Girl Place

I was never a "doll" girl. I never liked them, never played with them, not even barbies. Maybe it was the creepy voices that my mom gave them (you KNOW you did mom), or maybe it was because I watched a lot of Twilight Zone as a child, but I prefered arts and crafts.

I contend that even if you love dolls, this place is scary as hell. Look what it did to my little girl.

Yes, she's one of them now.

At least she picked the hippy doll from the 70's. She asked me to hold her doll while she went to the little (doll's) girls room. She didn't know there were DOLL HOLDERS in the potty. If that is not proof of the evil that lurks there, then I don't know how to convince you. ("Mummymummymummy--give me JULIE! There's a holder-she can WATCH ME!")

ick and ick.

For the record, this is the doll that I picked:

Ok, he's from Toys'R'Us, but isn't he CUTE! (and he doesn't want to watch me pee).

Friday, July 18, 2008

Do you know what today is?

I am so excited I can't see straight.

Oh, and Justin* (I assume you are reading this because it you are compelled to look at anything that has to do with batman) LOOK what i found....

You and me buddy. And soon after, you, me and the ambulance drivers to scrape me off the jetty.

*I love doing stuff with Justin. It makes me feel like this:

(yep, its a cougar)