A Disney Style Downpour

Just a heads up, I'm taking a break from Stories in my Pocket this Saturday.  My brain is a bit crowded right now with the issues of present day, so I'm going to put off my stroll down memory lane until next week.

So how 'bout a Disney story instead?  

First let me say that when we planned a Florida vacation, we had no intention of stepping within fifty miles of Mickey's house.  We expected to spend our last day of vacation just chillin' with Larry's mom and sisters.  But when Aunt Kristi called us Saturday night to announce she could use her magic powers as a Disney employee to get the entire family into the park for zero dinero, we couldn't resist.

We checked out Sunday morning and hit the road, stopping just outside the fabled theme park to feed the kids and meet up with Grandma, Aunt Kristi and Aunt Betsy.  As we packed up our brood after lunch and headed for the Magic Kingdom, Caed observed, "I see lots of Mickey stuff.  And a roller coaster over there. We must be driving in a really fun place. Is this DISNEY?" 

I dodged the question, "What do you think?"

"Well, you said we were going someplace fun, and Disney is really fun, and I always want to go there... I think it IS DISNEY!!"  From there on out, every word he spoke came out three octaves higher than normal.
It's possible we parked closer to Alabama than to the Magic Kingdom, but after enduring the hazing of the parking shuttle, the monorail and the ticketing line, we were finally initiated as guests at the Happiest Place on Earth.  

And folks, it was hot.  You know it's hot when you rejoice at the sight of a lengthy line for Small World.  Because the line is INSIDE and AIR CONDITIONED.  This might be the point at which I question the Happiest Place on Earth thing I said earlier.  

The highlight of the rides--the one Dani continues to talk about--was the Barn Stormer "roller coaster" in Toon Town. Dani had to stand on her tippy toes to meet the height requirement (a fact this overprotective mom didn't realize until after we were halfway through the line!).  But she and Caed loved it.  When asked about Disney days later, she answered while reenacting the twists and turns, "I went on bower coater. Round and round and tru a tunnel!" 
Four hours and five rides later, we decided it was time to head back.  The storm clouds looming overhead had a bit to do with our hurried departure, as did the look of meltdown on Dani's nap-deprived face. 

We settled ourselves in on the parking shuttle just in time.  For a shower.  Our ten minute ride back to Sleepy 76 might as well have been a walk.  Or a StormCenter broadcast, live, from the scene of the deluge, without the rain gear.  It would have been complete hilarity if I hadn't been worried about the kids getting sick.  I mean, after a long day in the heat with not enough sleep, followed by a downpour in which they were soaked to the bone in 65 degree temps, it's not like they were susceptible or anything....

But in the midst of the drenching chaos, I found my moment of magic. I took Caed's hand and said, "Are you ready?  We're gonna run to the car and splash the WHOLE WAY!"

He squinted through the raindrops hitting his face, giggled and shouted, "Come on!"

We sprinted for thirty seconds, cackling, splashing, the water tickling our cheeks and the puddles enveloping our feet. I think I might have even screamed "Whheeeee!"  We got as lost in that moment as we got wet.  

I soaked in the moment so thoroughly I may never dry out.  Here's hoping...

A special thanks and shout out to Aunt Kristi, Aunt Betsy & Grandma for being our gracious hosts on the Disney adventure!  


At Least a Dozen Reasons I'll Never Get the Newbery Medal

I don't know why, but often when I mention my enjoyment of writing, people assume I aspire to write children's books.  I'm quite certain, however, that all encouragement toward this youthful genre would be rescinded if they saw this list. 

So here goes, a partial listing of my children's books that remain unpublished--for one very good reason or another:
  1. Curious George Gets a Spanking
  2. The Little Engine that Could if He Just Got off His Rear & Tried For Once
  3. Obnoxious McMansion on the Prairie 
  4. How Do Dinosaurs Go Extinct? (The sequel of course, to How Do Dinosaurs Get Well Soon)
  5. The Cat in the Vat
  6. Green Eggs and Spam
  7. Goodnight SOON (The please let it be bedtime soon book for new parents)
  8. Bread and Spam for Frances
  9. Guess How Much I love You. Nope! Guess Again!
  10. A Stew for Mr. McGregor: Peter Rabbit Learns the Hard Way
  11. Dora Gets Lost (Adios Amiga!)
  12. The Big (Gas Guzzlin', Rootin' Tootin' Polutin') Truck Book
*Dear Spam, if it appears I'm picking on you in this list, I apologize. It's not me.  It's you.  You make green eggs look delicious by comparison. Seriously, how is it you continue to be stocked in stores even to this day?  I mean, really, WHO BUYS YOU?

**Dear Reader, that was weird.  Did I just apologize to Spam like it was a person and then proceed to pummel it with cruel insults?  I did? Sorry about that.  This is just further support for why they should keep me from writing anything intended to be read to children.

So what's your favorite children's book?  Or your least favorite if you're feeling contrary?  And double bonus round points to those of you who can make me laugh with an addition to the list above!


It Was the Kind of Perfect That Leaves Debbie Downer Speechless

We just returned from a week of vacation. A REAL one. The kind that left me relaxed and refreshed and possibly ten pounds heavier. The kind where even a glass half empty person such as myself can't complain. Because the glass we're talking about was poolside, crackling with ice, lime and mint, and quite easily refilled.

I won't go on and on about it because it will either (a) make you insanely jealous, (b) bore you to tears, (c) make us all crave Mojitos or (d) all of the above.

But I need to just go on record that this was a blessing in the biggest form for our entire family. We found the deal of a lifetime that allowed us to take the vacation of a lifetime. It was the good kind of memorable, which is saying a lot considering we all had to sleep in the same room as Sheridan.

That said, it's good to be back. Earlier today, I passed by Caed's room and noticed he was curled up on his bed. I asked him what was wrong. He pulled his pillow and blanket up to his cheeks and said, "Nuttin's wrong, Mom. I'm just so happy to be home!" Me too, Buddy. ME TOO!

Now, I do have a fun story to tell about a last minute, half-day trip to parent purgatory Disney World, but I'm going to save it for tomorrow (or whenever I get around to telling it--no promises). And I might also have to tell you the story about the time Becky and I ventured out sailing with not enough training and too much wind. Fun times.

In the meantime, here are a few of my favorite photos:

Our crew of kiddos (Max, Dani, Caed)

Spiderman in Web Climbing Training

It only looks like she is debating going into the water. She's already been in, and that was just her finishing stance after throwing handfuls of sand.

I love the pictures where the fun appears on their faces with unquestionable certainty!

Yipee! A family photo (though Spiderman is pictured in lieu of Caed).

Nothing, and I mean nothing, makes a vacation like quality time with Dad!


Stories in my Pocket: The Pitstop (Part 3)

Click here to catch up: Part 1, Part 2.

The grass bordering the highway swayed tamed and trimmed as we whirred past it with eight working wheels.  But up close, as I trudged toward the overpassing country road knee-deep in blades, it was wild and overgrown.  The unseen possibilities of snakes or spiders on my sandaled feet spurred a hurried, jumpy gait. 

"Remember the time we got stuck in the gorge--at Letchworth?  And it started to storm, and we cut through the swampy riverish part, and I freaked out about snakes?" 

"Yeah, why?"

"Well, I might be freaking out again.  That road looked a lot closer from the freeway, and I can't see my feet, and I'm wearing sandals...."

He laughed, not the slightest bit nervous. Or at least he never let on as such.  He took being "even keel" to extremes.  I used to swear that if our apartment was ever on fire, he'd let me know by tapping me on the shoulder and saying, "I think we should go now."

It was only twenty minutes before we found a house with a phone and an owner who believed in sharing with strangers.  I dialed and explained.  It's the tow dolly wheel--yes, it should be covered in the rental fee.  How soon can you be here?  An hour?  Okay, please hurry.

It was a scorching morning when we left Texas.  Steam and fog jumbled the air that evening in the lot by the Shoney's where we wished we hadn't stopped, or at least hadn't sampled the meat sauce.  Almost cool by the time we reached the rest stop on the other side of St. Louis, we stopped to see if we could substitute a cat nap for a good night's sleep. And now we waited motionless, stirred only in one second spurts by the vibrating breeze of a passing car. The air pressed heavy with heat, thick with water, uncommon for a late spring Indiana day.  

Our spare tire man must have sped, for he arrived before the promised hour was up.  And I could tell by the haircut he didn't have that he liked to go fast.  He spoke sparingly, but when we joked that he had the skill of a crew chief, he admitted to his days of changing tires in the pits of the Indy 500.   

Larry offered small talk about cars and races while I studied the map.  We drove away smiling. This would be a fun story to tell when we got to Ohio.  

We were almost there.  There, where life would be so much easier.  I sped like the tire man, surged ahead in thought and mapped it all out.  I knew just how it would be. I had been there for months before we even arrived.  Like an eighth grade girlfriend, I broke up with The Present weeks before school was out, my careful handwriting on college ruled paper to say it was over.  I am moving on.  I am over you. There are better things ahead.  

Every beginning brings with it fear, healthy or otherwise. Unless of course, naivety calls shotgun. Then fear takes a back seat, and the journey speeds with unintended courage.

I was afraid of snakes and spiders and of being a nobody. As it turned out, I was afraid of all the wrong things.

Click here to continue reading Part 4.

Photo by Alizadeh100


Heart (wait for it) Warming

We have no shortage of heartwarming around here.  In fact, I find myself, the naturally introverted pessimist, frequently smiling the really-truly-can't-hold-it-in smiles (as opposed to the grin-and-bear-it kind).  

The kids recently began engaging each other in imaginative play with the baby dolls.  (I won't go into the baby doll history here, but let's just say, Sheridan's initial behavior was less than nurturing and borderline disturbing).  But this time, it's different.  

They put the baby to sleep in her bed and run down the stairs screaming at me to "BE QUIET!!! Because the BABY IS SWEEEEPING!"  They sing to the baby doll.  They read to the baby doll. They announce when and to what degree the baby is crying, and even provide their best guess as to why:  "Baby cwying wots and wots.  Baby hung'y!  No....Baby tired!"

But my favorite recap of the baby doll's status came from Caed.  And I quote: "We need our blankets, and the baby needs her blankets.  Do you know why we need our blankies, Mom?  Because we don't want to be cold and then get sick, because if we get a fever, how would we take care of the baby?  So we all need to be warm and cuddly with our blankets together."

See what I mean?  Heart (wait for it) Warming.

And in this little clip, they had just finished reading to the very creatively named "pink baby", and are beginning the singing to sleep process.  You'll note my youngest is quite the enthusiastic performer.

So it's quite easy to see why I've nearly outgrown my grumpy pants, isn't it?  They just don't fit anymore.  I find myself wearing a smile instead.  Which suits me and my extraordinarily warmed heart just fine.


Oh, the irony...

I could be wrong, but I don't think this is the response the creators of the Jump Arounds were going for, what with all their musical exhortation to "get up, jump, jump, get down".

And speaking of the creators of the Jump Arounds, I'm thinking incarceration might be appropriate, with a TV of course, where nothing but the Jump Arounds shows for hours on end.
I figure that would be an appropriate way to address the problem, much easier than taking responsibility as the lame-o parent who actually exposed my child to what might rival Barney as the most frightfully annoying kid's show EVER.

I'll chalk it up to 15 minute lapse in judgment, which is a pretty long lapse, considering the music I had to endure in the background.

So, for the sake of our ears and our sanity, tell me, what kids' shows do you think must be avoided at all costs?


Stories in my Pocket: Mountains and Molehills (Part 2)

Click here for Part 1. 

"Oh yahyess, you've just gotta go up to Fort Seeuhl. There's mountin climbin' and you can see like five states awahyee," the old temp bubbled on about the day trips I'd just hafta take during my short stay in Texas.

Just a year out of high school, she was already moving up to a permanent office job, that is, after she trained the new temp. We were done in a day or two, and she told the boss it was because I was a quick learner. Except for driving the pallet mover. I had to ask her twice about that.

I stood at a folding table in a loft-like portion of the warehouse, watching the line below churn out product as I stuffed binders with specs and cleared my head a million times over. With so many thoughts taken captive, the holding cells tended to overload. Those dreadful thoughts often rose up in revolt and staged cerebral jail breaks. They turned on me--questioning, accusing, doubting, and holding me hostage with a pointed finger.

That degree I was so anxious to get? The one that would surely open doors and change my life? My chance to trade my greasy fast food uniform for a white collar? The only thing it did was roll itself into a scroll and slap me in the face.

To cover the abuse, I read a semester's worth of English Lit on my lunch breaks. Perhaps with my nose in a book, no one would notice the splotchy marks of misery on my face.

Back at the base, my airman made use of his bootstraps. He wore a yellow rope around his sleeve, the signal of a student leader, and Highest Honors would soon be his. He was a product of trying, failing and trying again. To him, rejection was just an arrow pointing to a different path. To me, it mapped the quickest route to despair.

He dreamed; I schemed. He birthed wild ideas and I named them in obstacles. He dug up possibilities, and I buried them under the reasons why not. So when he refused to be bound by my carefully constructed limits--the kind that prevent failure and success--it was a profound act of leadership.  But it would be years before I saw it as such.

I followed him into the fray, not because I was wise or brave, but because given the choices, it seemed like the safest thing to do.

"So that girl from work was telling me about Fort Seal--just a short drive from here. She said there's some great hiking and views. Maybe we could do some bouldering and take a picnic or something." I suggested.

It took us a few tries to find the landmark. "Oh, she must have meant Fort Sill. Yeah, let's go Saturday. I've got the day off." Larry agreed.

Armed with travel mugs, trail mix and a sense of adventure, we sputtered north. Thirty minutes passed and still nothing but red dust rose from the horizon. We laughed at the hoards of prairie dogs popping up randomly along the side of the road and wondered when the silhouette of the mountains might make an appearance.

A short while later we pulled into the lot and exchanged "oh well" looks as we set off to make the best of a disappointing outing. 

"I guess I should have clued in when I told her I was from Ohio and she gushed about how beautiful the mountains are there. I thought maybe she was thinking of Idaho, and I didn't want to correct her."  I said. She really was a sweet girl, even if she did make mountains out of molehills.

On the way home, after another unsuccessful attempt to convince my only friend in the vast state of Texas to delve into a literary criticism of The Mill on the Floss, my husband suggested a remedy. 

"Do you want to go back to school, maybe get your masters? I hear they have scholarships for military wives. You should check it out. Honestly, Jo, you need to find an outlet besides me. I'm too overloaded with school to be your solitary book club member."

He was wise well before I called it wisdom. He knew from the start he couldn't meet my every need, that marriage was not a cure all. 

"I'll look into it," I said, throat tightening under the threat of tears. I was not ready to part with my unrealistic expectations.

Nothing was as I had pictured it.  I earned minimum wage at a factory while my college loans loomed.  I married my best friend and never felt lonelier than when he couldn't relate. And those blasted mountains were just rocky foothills. 

So naturally, I blamed it all on Texas and counted down days until new orders would send us East to flat but familiar terrain.

Click here to continue reading (Part 3).


Heavy on the Here & Now, Light on the Windex

Last night, nearer to dawn than dusk, I sunk my freckled cheek into cotton-wrapped comfort and sighed.  "They're at the perfect age.  It's wearying sometimes, but it's so good." I drifted toward sleep while a parade of images from the year before mingled with the faces from hours earlier. 

Maybe it was all the video and picture sorting I had done that afternoon.  This feeling was just unshakeable. These fleeting days will turn one by one into a history of years-- the years I'll label in retrospect as some of the happiest, the fullest, the sweetest.

"Two healthy kids--it's a miracle.  If you only knew how much can go wrong.  It's really amazing," my husband added, both of us awake enough to marvel, asleep enough to have ceased yawning and blinking.

I went on about how tender they are, dependent, bright-eyed, adorable, hilarious, straightforward.  It's easier now to protect them, more black and white.  And to love them, even in tantrums, because they don't yet try to hurt us with words, or accidentally hurt us with choices, or turn us inside out with grief when those choices hurt them terribly.  "Oh", I sighed, "Thank goodness they're still small."  

They jump out from behind their beds ten times a day and yell "Happy Mother's Day", each time fancying themselves entirely original and surprising.  They scamper around the house shooting sound effects from their fingertips and taking turns as 'piderman. They crouch in wonder at worms and dare to touch.  They giggle and hop and show off with ill-conceived acrobatics.

Yes, when another decade passes and I turn to look back, I will know even more certainly that these were most wonderful days.  

If only I could live now with that certainty.  To live like it is a live performance--one that simply can't be missed.  I must stop and watch and applaud, not disappear during Act I to clean up the concession area or calculate the ticket sales.  If only I could live now with a willingness to happily sacrifice getting things done, to forget about a floor without crumbs, a garden without weeds, a window without fingerprints.

I don't want a decade to pass before I know.

Because someday I will look back, sitting on a stain-free chair, gazing through a spotless window, and I'll wish for these fingerprints and the little hands that made them.

In the Tuesdays Unwrapped series, Emily asks, "Where is the gift today?" and invites us to share what big and important moments we've discovered hiding in the small and ordinary.  As you can surmise from my mothery blubbery above, I found my gift in the form of fingerprints. 
I also found an excuse not to worry about wiping the windows for a good while longer!


Here, There & Everywhere (RJ Returns)

I had no idea my superhero alter ego was going to come in so handy. With randomness as her super power, there really is no stopping her (and no shortage of topics she can tackle). So here we go (again):

  • My friend Heather is a big cheese over at Bloggers Annex and she waved her magic wand, and poof, I'm famous! Okay, not even remotely famous, but I was featured. So mosey on over there if you wish.
  • On Friday, my crazy "I'm not ready for Kindergarten!" rant will be featured as part of the Dose of Humor column at 5 Minutes for Parenting. So now there are TWO places on the world wide web that are publishing the crap I write my lovely work. (So now can I call myself famous? Famously delusion, perhaps).
  • It's Children's Book Week and my friend Danielle is hosting a little sale on Barefoot Books, offering a great line of literature that your children (or grandchildren!) will love.
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  • Our Stories in my Pocket series continues on Saturday, so get those posts ready! Thanks so much to you who joined me in our first week! It really was a treat to read your stories. If you intended to join last week, but didn't get a chance, please know you can jump in at any time. And remember, you can recycle an old post or write a new one. Mister Linky should be up by Friday night or Saturday morning. See you then!
In conclusion (comma) I'm getting a bit worried that the "Random" label is becoming one of the most prominent in that little label cloud. If it overtakes the "Caed" and "Dani" labels (hulloh, the REASON for this blog), please promise me you'll stage an intervention and take away my Random Joannedumb cape, you know the one I had made with the big "RJ" on the back? Yeah, you might not want to wait on that intervention idea.


Stories in my Pocket: Deep in the Armpit of Texas (Part 1)

I jostled into Texas on an eighteen wheeler. Everything to my name sat stacked in a tiny corner of the truck, wearing the original bubble wrap of wedding gifts yet to be plugged in, dishes yet to see a sink.

A family friend had offered me and my inaptly named Isuzu "Trooper" a ride on his western route. He averaged about one word an hour during the 20 hour drive. It was perfect, really. I didn't need to be chatted up like I was getting my hair cut. I was content to drift in and out of daydreams.

We turned into a tired parking lot shadowed on either side by blue-tinted brick two stories tall. I ran into the office to get the key.

"You got yursef an ice box, and stove and such. Rent's due top a tha munth." my landlord drawled. The ancient TV blared as if yelling to be recognized and rescued, lost in a sea of junk. There were three cats, as best I could count. The friendly one rubbed her ears against my jeans as I signed my married name the same way I doodled it during a tedious history lecture a couple years back. Now it was for real.

"Month to month, right, for military?" I asked the question to which I already knew the answer. But what I really wanted to know was how long these sixty days would feel, and what the heck was an ice box.

The untrusty Trooper and I were unprepared for the gushes of biting cold that tumbled February weeds across the northern Texas horizon. It took several tries before the old truck woke and sputtered a slow hello to her new neighbors. In five minutes flat, my belongings traveled from the bed of the truck to the floor of my apartment. It's possible there was more living space on the semi. Fortunately, we were as short on stuff as we were on space.

It was time to unpack the beginning.

Though he marched less than a mile away, I was still 24 hours from a reunion with my groom. It was tech school, after all, and most were kids just a couple years beyond their first driver's license. The Air Force doled freedom sparingly in the form of an occasional day pass. And there was to be no special treatment for the 23 year old newlywed.

So while he saluted and studied, I sorted and folded and hung the fabric of our future in the tiny space we shared (then unknowingly) with roaches and mildew.

The hopes of what we might become piled far higher than the worries of losing what little we had. Our heads were packed wall to wall with promise while our hands swung unburdened.

I picked an empty cart out of the line up and swerved wobbly wheeled past the produce. Floating through the commissary, I collected everything from the pantry basics my mother had assured me we'd need to the frozen appetizers my mother would never have bought.

Next I found shelter for the groceries in the meager shelving and antique fridge. (Oooh, this must be the ice box!) The kitchen boasted no three-pronged outlets, so my shiny new mixer churned out chocolate mousse on the living room floor, under the shadow of the arm chair with more than a spring loose. Sit at your own risk, I would smirk and warn, when I gave him the grand tour.

Oh yes, the tour. When he finally came home--so strange that it was our home--I proudly led him room to room, cupboard to closet, reciting bargain prices on everything from orange juice to cinnamon bread. He stopped me halfway through the grocery inventory.

"You bought microwave popcorn?"

"Yes, isn't that the kind you like?"

"Yes, no, I mean, it's great. But, I was just wondering. Did you buy a microwave?"

It was only the first in a long line of stories where I would serve as the punch line. We grinned and dreamed out loud about the next place we'd live. We'd keep the popcorn. No sense taking it back. Someday soon we'd have a microwave and a place to plug it in.

We were never richer in hope than when it was all we had, still undashed and only slightly deferred.

Continue to Part 2.


My Wake-up Call Wears Pink Pajamas

My daughter is determined to make the sun look lazy. And that's no easy task considering the longitude in which we live. (Please pause while I put on my Farmer's Almanac hat and reveal that the sun rose today at 5:30 a.m., and that we live just a hop, skip and a comfortable car ride from the first place in the United States where the sun can be caught stretching its rays in preparation for the dawning of day).

Unfortunately, Sheridan has outpaced the sun nearly every morning for the past two months.

I find myself wishing that early bird perks extended beyond worms. Because really, I don't see what the big deal is about getting the worm anyway. It's not like we eat them (unless of course, nobody likes us and everybody hates us, which I sincerely hope is not the case here.)

So my dear Dani, can we stop stockpiling worms and focus on something we can actually use? Say, for instance, SLEEP??
(With Caed as my witness, I swear I didn't have her pose for these pictures. She pulled out this random interpretation of Early Bird meets Where the Wild Things Are entirely on her own.)

But alas, the sleeping beyond 6:00 a.m. just isn't happening. Every morning is the same. And really, I have only myself to blame. I freed her from containment far too early in life.

If she was still in her crib, she could "wake happily and talk to herself" until I came to fetch her at the decent hour of 7 a.m. And yes, I'm using air quotes. Because she's never been the "I'll just happily entertain myself in my crib" type. And yes, I could have slept just fine through her "happy entertainment", if ever the opportunity arose. And yes, I just said "and yes" three times in a row. Forgive me. It's just that I'M TIRED. And yes.

I want to believe that buried somewhere in the innumerable predawn moments I share with my daughter, there is an ordinary moment itching to become extraordinary, a sleepy moment begging to be sweet, a foggy moment ready to be burned clear into dawn.

Maybe this one:

Or this one:
Or even this one:

Perhaps there is more to this early bird thing than just worms. A whole lot more.

Thanks to Emily for hosting Tuesdays Unwrapped and in doing so, reminding me that these ordinary moments are totally worth waking for!


I Have a Four Year Old Ghostwriter

The other day Caed randomly announced, "You can't grow an orange from an apple tree."  I concluded he would grow up to be a Chinese Proverb writer, and posted as such on Facebook.  

Upon reading his wise words, my friend Michelle suggested Caed start his own blog.  But we all know that's out of the question.  Because without material from my quotable boy, what would that leave me to write about on my blog?  

Apparently, I'm not above plagiarizing the works of a four year old.  Does it make it less pathetic that he's my four year old?  Anyway, below is a compilation of quotes, most of which he uttered this week, though I admittedly included a few classic reruns:

The Quotable Caed on Dogs
  • "If dogs don't have tails, how will people know they're happy?
  • "That dog looks like a squirrel.  I'm not so sure he's a dog." (Said of a yippy little squirrel-colored dog at the beach, within earshot of the owner.  And to the squirrel-dog's owner, I have to say I'm sorry, dude, but it's true.  Even my preschooler knows your dog looks dangerously close to a rodent).
The Quotable Caed on Food:
  • After hearing from his Dad that the french fries being served were made with a special ingredient called love, he replied, "I don't taste the love.  Just potatoes."  To which Dad replied, "Well, perhaps you haven't yet developed a discerning palate."  To which Caed responded in his most condescending voice, "I don't think there is a discernin' pawwet OR love in here. They're just french fries, Dad."
  • After biting into a cake ice cream cone for the first time, he scrunched his nose and said, "This doesn't taste like food." 
The Quotable Caed on Arguing His Way out of Trouble:
  • After being told he was not to interrupt when Mommy & Daddy were talking, he said, "I wasn't saying 'Daddy' to you, I was talking to my car.  My car is named 'Daddy.'" Then he tried to sell it by engaging in a little pretend play with Daddy the matchbox car.
  • After being told not to open the trash cabinet, he replied, "I'm not opening it.  My bad lightsaber is opening it."  And yes, he had figured out a way to open the cabinet using nothing but a nerf lightsaber.
The Quotable Caed on Going Green:
  • "I can't remember.  Does hair go in the recyclin' or the regular trash?" he queried as he dangled a strand over the open trash (which, just to be clear, was opened not by him, but by his evil lightsaber).
  • "You better save some water for da whales, Mom! Or else they won’t have any place to live cuz you were washin’ dishes too much.” (This quote dates over a year ago, after he completed an Earth Day series at preschool.  But it's a classic and a great excuse for leaving my dishes in the sink a bit longer.)
The Quotable Caed on Using the Restroom:
  • "Wow, they really need to clean this place up. It's da'custing!", upon entering a public restroom. I couldn't have agreed with him more!
  • "Dani, please puhlease get outa here.  I need to have my peace.  Ughh, this is not peaceful AT ALL." (Now he knows how Mommy feels).
I told Caed I was going to post a few fun things he had said throughout the week and asked him if there was anything further he'd like to share, in a conclusion of sorts.  He cocked his head and pooched his lips to one side and replied, "No, just tell them I don't have anything in my mind right now."   Ah yes, just one more thing he has in common with his mother.


There's an App for That

Missing your Nana from far, far away?

There's an app for that....
And only a Nana (our Nana!) would set aside her first cup of tea to field questions about donuts, (va)'cations, and whether or not the "Michigan 'Nonalds has a p'ayp'ace" during a 6 a.m. Skype press conference with these two junior reporters.

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