Saturday, December 27, 2008

In Case You Care

So you may be wondering, "What happened with that crazy elf box?" Well, we were doing great until Charlie threw Bobby's Nintendo DS across the kitchen floor and smashed it to bits.

Bobby was inconsolable. He loves that thing. Santa brought it to him last year and he plays with it all the time. That night he wrote a letter to Mike the Elf asking him to please fix it and left it with the broken DS on top of the elf box.

If it had been Bobby's fault at all I would have said "Tough crap. Start saving your money". But it wasn't and he didn't even ask for a new one. I told The Husband that we should go buy a new one and just let him think the elf magically fixed it. He said no way. He left a note from Mike saying that Mike was just a candy elf. He didn't know how to fix toys. Bobby was disappointed but every night he continued to leave it on the box.

I felt so bad for him that I finally wore The Husband down. But now it was the 23rd and I couldn't find a black DS (to match the one he had) anywhere. I could only find silver. So, that night "Mike" left a note saying that he would take the DS to the North Pole and let a toy elf look at it. Bobby was thrilled.

Christmas morning, next to the plate of eaten cookies was Bobby's broken DS and a note from Mike. It said, that the toy elf, Hannibal* couldn't fix the DS but had a surprise for him behind the box. Behind that damned elf box was the new silver DS. Bobby was beside himself - it was probably the best part of Christmas.

*The most disturbing part of this story is that my husband seems to have the whole elf world clearly laid out in his mind. I asked him why the toy elf's name was Hannibal and not, say, Paul. He replied way too seriously that candy elves had regular names like Mike and Paul but toy elves had names from the classical era, like Caesar or Octavius.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

In Which I Turn a Year Older and Hate on Pier 1

Yesterday was my birthday. Despite the general dread of being one year closer to 40, (full disclosure - I'm now 37) it went pretty well. The best part was my husband's present - a laptop! Yes, I have been blogging and shopping from Ye Olde Desktoppe. But those days are over. I have had this thing in my lap for most of the past 24 hours. My children - they will probably be neglected while I delight in laptoppiness. My house - well, it's already neglected, but it obviously is not going to get any better this week. Hopefully the threat of houseguests the day after Christmas will allow me to get up and do some laundry or dust. But don't count on it.

In other news, whaddup with the bitchy sales staff at Pier 1? I went in the other day to pick up an ornament or two for my book club's ornament swap. I ended up buying three ornaments and took them to the counter. The sales lady looked at me with total disdain and said, "Is that all the ornaments your tree will hold"? It was so rude that I couldn't even initially respond. I finally said, through gritted teeth, "No, MY tree is full. These are for an ornament exchange, bitch". OK, I didn't say bitch, but it was implied in my tone, trust me. On what planet would anyone say this to anyone else, much less an employee to a customer!!! Probably be awhile before I stick my head in there again.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Scenes from the hallway

The Husband: Come on boys! I'm taking you outside! Get your shoes!

The Boys: Yeah! Yeah! Outside! Yeah!

The Husband: (to me) I'll take the boys outside while you get ready. Wait, do you even know where outside is?

Me: Of course. It's where the stores are.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Dude. He's, like, a fish.

At Thanksgiving, several family memebers asked if we had a pet and/or were we getting Bobby a puppy for Christmas. My initial reaction (Hell to the no) was usually tempered with my classic response that I only house break one thing at a time (Charlie is still in diapers). My oldest would love to get a dog. Or a cat. Or basically any kind of pet with fur. (For some reason, he does not think his two year old brother counts, although I see many similarities). I have no interest in getting a dog for the obvious reasons. I will be the one who walks it, bathes it, trains it and picks up it's poop. A cat seems like the next best thing but I am horribly allergic. So that's out.

We have had one pet in the past. A fish. Well, I guess it counts as a fish.

At our old house there was a large pond in the backyard and one day all the neighborhood kids were scooping all these tiny minnows out and trying to sell them to each other. (Note: The collective idiocy of the neighborhood children was one of the big reasons for our move). In one of his less shrewd moments, Bobby came running in the house asking for $5 to buy a fish. I explained to him that he could scoop one out for free. He needed a fish bowl but I wasn't prepared to invest any money in housing for a free minnow that probably wouldn't last the day. I found an old take-out wonton soup container (this was during my incredible wonton soup cravings while pregnant with Charlie), added some pond water and our little pet was all set up. Bobby named him Dude. I'm not sure why. At the time, he was really pushing us to name his baby brother Corn. Again, not sure why.

Dude grew a little. Very little. Later we read that fish will only grow enough to fit their environment. And that wonton soup container was nice and tall but not so wide. He seemed happy though. (I can't believe I just wrote that. Can a fish seem happy?) We refreshed his (nasty) water from the pond and tried to feed him fish food from the store (a 79 cent investment) but he didn't seem interested. He was, I guess living on whatever was in all the pond water (which was rather murky).

Bobby got really attached to Dude. The Husband and I could not believe he was still alive. We explained to Bobby that he probably wouldn't live very long since he was really meant to live in a big pond. Bobby was convinced that we had saved him. Surely, some larger fish or turtle would have eaten Dude by now had he been left to shift for himself out there!

A year and a half later Dude finally went belly up. A YEAR AND A HALF. A year and a half of changing that horrible water and Bobby worrying when we traveled if Dude would be lonely. He would usually set up an elaborate ring of stuffed animals around his bowl/soup container. Which actually seemed to me like it would scare the crap out of the little fish to see all those large brightly colored furry things about to take over his home. But Bobby was convinced that they would keep Dude company.

But I digress. Dude, he died. And Bobby was broken hearted. He cried and cried. He was so worried that Dude had gotten sick and he hadn't noticed or that we should have done something different (ahem, like maybe get him a real bowl). We put Dude in an old matchbox on top of a tissue and buried him under a tree in our backyard. Bobby had us put a picture of him in the box with Dude so that he wouldn't be lonely. A few months later we moved and Bobby was upset that we were leaving Dude behind. There was talk of exhuming him and moving him with us but I quickly killed that idea.

With this much drama around a free, wild minnow, I cannot imagine the trauma and drama if we lost a real pet. So, for now, we will remain puppy free. Unless someone knows where I can get a puppy that fits in a wonton soup container.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Well I Do Declare

Please add me to your blog! I used to read you all the time and then you went private. I was so excited to see you comment! Thanks in advance!

I'm a Two Faced Bitch

So I got my hair cut. Really short. For me, anyway. I have basically had the same haircut since 8th grade: a slightly above the shoulder bob or sometimes I let it grow past my shoulders and then get sick of it and cut it. So last Saturday I had it cut to my chin. It's still a bob, just REALLY short. At first, I loved it. So light! So easy! And hey, I probably lost of few pounds in just hair so, bonus.

The problem is that half of the time, when I look in the mirror, I think, "It looks good! Just like I wanted it". The other half I get a glimpse of myself and think, "Sweet Lord, what a hatchet job"! It's like that girl in the Seinfeld episode who looked great in one sort of light and horrible in another. That's me, but with my hair. I'm a two face.

Also, my annual Scrooge-fest has begun. Normally, I love Christmas but several Christmases ago we got one of those advent boxes. You know, with 24 little boxes inside one big box? Anyway, my husband told our oldest child, Bobby, that the little gifts inside were from one of Santa's elves, who dropped them off while checking to see if Bobby was being good. It became known as the Elf Box and it is the bane of my exsistence.

It is really difficult to find enough crap to put in all those little boxes without getting too repetitive. The Husband finally said to just buy bigger stuff and he would write a clue from the elf to put in the box that would lead to the treat. This opened a whole new can of worms. Bobby loved the "hunts" as he called them. Problem is, he now expects them. It totally Scrooges me out. I sigh as soon as I see that damn Elf Box unpacked every year.

I know this really doesn't sound like that big of a problem, but on top of all the regular Christmas shopping, decorating, baking, wrapping, etc. I have to come up with 24 gifts/candies and/or the notes and clues for hunts! Plus, I always forget to put the treats in the box. We have to wait until after Bobby is asleep to do it, but by then I have forgotten/blocked out that we have the stupid thing. This year, it only took me until the second night to forget. I remembered with a start at about 11:45 and sat up, "Crap! Did you do the Elf box"? This of course, woke up The Husband (as it was meant to). Of course he didn't. So I got up to put the damn treat in the box. What do I find in the box? A note to the elf, from Bobby, asking: "Dear Elf, What is your name?" He even drew a blank for the elf to fill in.

Now, I can be creative, but coming up with elf names on the spot at 11:45pm when I have already been sleeping, turns out not to be my strong suit. So I did what anyone else would have done. I went back upstairs and woke The Husband up again.

Me: "He wants to know what the elf's name is!"

Husband: "Mike."

Me: "Seriously? Mike?"

Husband: "Yes. Mike"

Me: "Wow. I would have picked Snowflake or Gumdrop or something. Ok. Mike it is."

Which I think turned out to be a good pick since Bobby seemed to be excited about the fact that the elf was named Mike, but I'm not really sure why.

Anyway, I have been grousing and bitching about this box for three days so the bright side is: only 21 more days of bitching to go!

Note: I originally thought of three other stories to write about but every one of them involved poop. And poop somehow just didn't seem very seasonal. Of course two faced bitches = reason for the season.