As [livejournal.com profile] brian1789 posted this morning, our first attempt at dinner last night was, um, challenging. It could have been worse: I could have slapped the waitress -- which I came close to doing -- and spent the night in jail. I'm still shaken up.


* Our previous three trips to San Diego have involved catastrophes, almost all car-related. I had come to the conclusion that maybe we were cursed, but decided that we would be okay if we simply didn't drive our own car down. I was wrong.
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( Oct. 1st, 2006 11:57 pm)
Me: The knock against Sondheim has always been that he's too cerebral. His work is too much in the head.
Kevin: Affects the head and not the heart?
Me: Right.
James: I'd much rather have cerebral than manipulative.

That's my boy. (Says she who detested Terms of Endearment because it was so damned manipulative.)

This started out as a discussion about "Putting it Together," the musical review, and then the song, and then the context for the song.

We have such cool dinnertime conversation.
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( Sep. 5th, 2006 09:29 pm)
My youngest son is obsessed with echidnas. He wants one as a pet. He wants to grow up and move to Australia and be either a zoologist or zookeeper and work with, you guessed it, echidnas. He was home from school today with an earache and spent his time on the web researching information about echidnas. Not for school, but simply because he loves echidnas. We even talked about the origin of the name "echidna," from Greek mythology.

Did you know that a baby echidna is called a puggle? No, neither did I.

And his second greatest obsession, after echidnas, are platypuses, or platypi, whatever. A baby platypus is called a puggle, as well.

I have weird kids. I would not trade them for the world.
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( Sep. 1st, 2006 10:36 pm)
Because everyone needs one... Satan's MySpace.

ETA: Also has sound, and bright colors. SFW, unless you work with fundies. Or people with no sense of humor.
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[cross-posted to [livejournal.com profile] note_to_kid]

Dear red-headed menace:

Until such time as your handwriting gets better -- i.e., less distinctive -- you may want to reconsider sending nasty anonymous letters to people through your elementary school's inter-class mail system. Catharsis be damned -- it will come back to haunt you in the end. It took Ms. K all of about, what, 3 seconds to recognize your unique (i.e., half-legible) scrawl?

As lovely a woman as your principal is, and as much as I usually enjoy talking to her, both she and I have much better things to do than sit around and speculate about just why you are turning into a delinquent.

Love,

Your mother, the ex-lawyer, who takes a really dim view of crap like this.
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( Mar. 5th, 2006 07:46 pm)
J's comment regarding Hilary Swank's dress: "If the laws of gravity were in effect, the Academy Awards would be a lot more interesting right now."
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( Feb. 28th, 2006 10:28 pm)
When J was in skating, when he hit the pre-freestyle level (finished with the basic level classes, about ready to go into higher level "program with music" courses), he would come off the ice and, if pressed would say what he learned. He seemed interested in it as something he was good at, but didn't seem enthusiastic for the moves themselves. It was a challenge.

K is now at that level, albeit having reached it at an earlier age (by a couple of years) than J. He comes off the ice glowing "We did pivots! That was so much fun!" He loves it not simply because he's good at it, but for its own sake. He's really fun to watch. He wants to be on the ice.

Today, he went around humming the Olympic theme.

Tonight, we were listening to the portion of "Rent" that I have deemed suitable for his tender years, and he said, "If you knew enough moves, you could totally do Rent on ice." "Rent on ice." "Yeah, except all the soccer moms who brought their kids would get mad at the bad language."

"Rent on Ice." Now, there's a thought.
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Last week was "ski week". (Don't ask.) The kids were off of school.

On Wednesday, the younger two and I went to Natural Bridges State Park in Santa Cruz. After walking down to check on the butterflies -- who left early this year, unfortunately -- they decided to head out to the tide pools. Normally I would send J with them, but he had opted to spend the day with friends rather than go with us.

So I went to the tide pools. It was low tide. To get to the best tide pool area, one has to clamber over rocks and small cliffs. (For those familiar with the area, we went from the base of the rocks at the edge of beach until just past the end of the point where the wooden house stands.) It's a distance of maybe a half mile (less as the crow flies) although it seems much longer, due to all the climbing up and down.

One place involved climbing up a vertical rock face of about six to six and a half feet, or a little over my head. I know this doesn't sound like much, but it really is vertical.

I am a very large woman. I have bad knees and ankles. And I made it all the way out to the tide pools.

I was rewarded by seeing sea anemones the size of small dinner plates, and beautiful jewel-like Pacific starfish, and a dozen purple sea urchins, all in their natural habitat. Not to mention untold mussels and barnacles.

On the way back, I was climbing down the vertical rock face (which is harder than climbing up: because of my knees, I couldn't jump, and it's hard to work your way down rocks when you can't see where your footholds are). K said, "You know, Mom, you could go around and wade back, the tide is low enough." I replied through clenched teeth "NO. I climbed all the way out there and I AM going to climb all the way back."

At which point K said "You are one extreme Mom."

Best compliment I've gotten all year.
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Ok, *one* of the things about kids is...

When your kid need to be somewhere, in this case at church at 8:25 to set up for the 9:00 am service (for which he plays drums) it does not matter how late you got to bed or how little sleep you have had. You still have to pull yourself together and wake yourself up enough to drive him to church.
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Kevin really loves "Can You Hear The People Sing?" (This isn't really any surprise -- his other favorite show tunes are "Man of La Mancha" and "The Impossible Dream.") This morning he kept asking for me to play it for him.

He also kept asking what it was about, and about the French revolution (and I had to explain that this was not about the French revolution that everyone talks about, which happened in 1789, but a different one in 1848). Then he paused, and thoughtfully said....

"You know, this could apply to our country, as well."

Yesss.

Just as well he likes it so much, because then he doesn't ask why I skip past the prior song on my latest Broadway Mix CD. Which just happens to be "La Vie Boheme." I tell him it has bad words in it, but it's really because I really don't want to have to explain what a dildo is to a nine-year-old.
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My love affair with show tunes began in Mrs. North's fourth grade class. She taught us all the songs from The Sound of Music and Oliver! and "The Impossible Dream" from Man of La Mancha (rather an odd choice for fourth graders).

The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (part of the Department of Health and Human Services) has a website which provides "sing-along" music and lyrics for educational purposes. They have a section which includes songs from musicals and movies.

It pleases me to think that somewhere out there is Mrs. North's successor teaching a bunch of fourth graders to sing the song below, which was included on the website. I just hope somehow the message gets through.

Sing a song.... )
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( Sep. 5th, 2005 11:13 am)
I told David and Kevin that "Dad's sick. He's in Munich and he's feeling sick." Kevin's reply? "Well, he is getting old."

*Thwap*
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( Sep. 1st, 2005 11:10 am)
Darling child,

I have been quite impressed with your ability to haul your ass out of bed at five a.m. and be on the road by six so you can be at your 7 a.m. marching band practice. That this means that you are going to bed earlier and thence cannot stay up IMing with your friends shows maturity on your part. Go you.

However, when you haul me out of bed an hour earlier than I was supposed to get up (and which I did *not* plan for, or I would not have bothered to stay up working on cleaning the kitchen) to write you a check for lab materials for science, when you could have asked me any time the day -- or week -- before. I get cranky.

And when I find said check lying on the table where you forgot to put it in your backpack after I blearily wrote it out, I say really nasty words.

I think it's just as well you have late band practice. Maybe I'll get a nap before you get home so I don't snarl at you.

Migraines are so much fun. Preventable migraines so much more fun.

Love, Mom

P.S. You even think of picking up those drumsticks after you get home and I will get violent.
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James got weighed at the doctor's today. He's 5'11", and weighs 136 lbs. Did I mention he eats like a horse? He ate ten dollars worth of food at Taco Bell yesterday.
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( Aug. 16th, 2002 08:20 pm)
Harass (n): An action designed to annoy others, most especially younger brothers.

David was told that if he didn't stop harassing Kevin at the pool today, he would have to sit out for five minutes. A few minutes later I heard Kevin say "Stop it David! That's a harass!"
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( Aug. 8th, 2002 08:55 pm)
He's baaaacccckkk! brian1789 got back late Tuesday-- a day early, which was sweet of him. There has been the usual settling in to old routines difficulty -- its amazing how three weeks apart can affect your relationship. We had his "welcome home" dinner tonight (last night was our son's birthday).

K, my son most likely to win a Darwin award (bright, but absolutely fearless), turned 6 yesterday. He's wonderful, redheaded, charming, has no concept of personal safety, is non-responsive to most discipline, and has a capacity for developing new and unthought of ways to tempt fate. His guardian angel works overtime. (Oh, and he really likes girls. He hits puberty, I'm locking him in his room.) He is going to be one hell of an amazing adult (if he lives that long); I just hope I don't drop dead from the stress of parenting him.

J, my eleven year old (going on thirty-five) was justifiably annoyed with me today: I was with my middle child at the doctor's and completely forgot about picking him up from theater camp. A costly mistake as well: they give you fifteen minutes leeway, then charge a dollar a minute after that. My slip up is going to cost me thirty dollars. Ouch.
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