Archive | December, 2011


27 Dec

The days between the excess and exhaustion of the holidays and the dawn of the New Year are strange ones. Most people are pretty much done with the merriment, but it takes that week to really get your head wrapped around the idea of the New Year.

Cormac suggests simply conking out in a sunny spot. Heck…put your feet up while you’re at it.

Sunlit Snooze

Don’t lie. You’re feeling jealous right now.

As the book resting under Cormac’s head proclaims, “Oh, the places you’ll go!” in 2012. Once you are able to rouse yourself. And also if your feet aren’t dead asleep from being raised above your heart for two hours.



Guest Napper #55: SHHHH! I’m Shopping!

23 Dec

I just got back from Wegmans. At 9 a.m., the entire produce section was like a piranha feeding frenzy.

The olive bar resembled a game of Duck, Duck, Goose, with patrons circling the kalamatas like anxious predators.

Tense shoppers parked their carts in gridlocked spots around the cheese island, looking like they need a Valium more than a wheel of brie.

There were no chives. I will have to come up with another plan for garnishing my butternut squash soup.

I hope that Trent’s mom, Lizette, made a previous trip to Food Lion earlier in the week, because it looks as if she’s shopped this kid out and still has nothing in her cart.

You should have come earlier.

Okay, well, in Lizette’s defense, this isn’t really a photo from today. But it was really perfect for my mood. Which is not good. They have POLICE directing traffic AT THE GROCERY STORE, PEOPLE. How is this festive?

Now I’m home making beef stock, though, while my sainted husband steam vacuums our furniture. That’s putting the spirit of the holidays right back in my heart.

Be of good cheer, friends!

Comfort Food

22 Dec

Speaking of grilled cheese…evidence is mounting that it has a strong soporific effect.

That sandwich was a knockout!

Contrary to his spicy attire, Cormac is feeling extremely laid-back after, apparently, eating all but the crusts of his sandwich and then arranging them in some kind of modern art installation on his Easter egg plate.

Now, my boys aren’t even twins, and they seem to have some kind of telepathy going on. Little did Cormac know, his brother had done something extremely similar in the basement.

We do steam the couch, often, just so you know.

I am not as impressed with William’s crust-arranging skills, but he is truly the superior performer on the Xbox.

I think Celestial Seasonings should make a bedtime grilled cheese tea. It seems to be effective. That would be gross, though, wouldn’t it?

Insomnia be damned!

Guest Napper #54: Exhausted Escapee

21 Dec

Right about this time every year, it seems like all my friends are talking about how they just want to go hide in a closet somewhere. Calgon, take me away!

Danielle sent me this picture of Tristin. It looks like he bungled his own escape.

When you just gotta get out.

At least Tristin had the presence of mind to open the entire door, unlike William, who attempted an escape through the cat door some time ago.

Next thing you know, one of these kids will be trying to get out via the chimney. Someone warn Santa!



Snoozeworthy Sofa Arm

20 Dec

Who out there has a sofa that really could stand to be replaced, but which is so comfortable that you can’t bring yourself to do it? This little loveseat has been an absolute champion. I bought it for my tiny studio apartment when I lived in Chelsea in Manhattan. It was really hard to find a sofa this small to replace the ornate green one a recently-adopted cat had peed all over. I mean buckets, folks. I put that thing on the curb on West 20th St. and even the people who stopped to pinch it got a whiff and ran away. This couch, however, turned out to be worth every penny and, over a decade later it is still incredibly comfortable.

At least, Cormac sure things so.


Two cities, two children, and countless large backsides later, this baby is still providing faithful seating to the entire household and legions of dubious guests.

Hardworking armrest.

Cormac even thinks it’s better than his bed. However, come to think of it, he thinks the pool deck and the hardwood floor and the back deck are better than his bed, so it’s not such a compliment.

May you all spend the holidays in your happiest places.

Guest Nappers #52 and 53: Table Topple

19 Dec

According to Pam, this photo of cousins Jackson and Cooper was taken the day after Thanksgiving at The Cheesecake Factory. My guess is that someone told these boys how long it would take them to eat their 5lb. grilled cheese sandwiches, and they collapsed proactively from exhaustion.

Can we at least split one?

Even the little one’s optimistic t-shirt can’t conquer his fear of those Cheesecake Factory portions. At least he’s still upright. Notice he has jammed that pacifier resolutely in his mouth, though. No monstrous grilled cheese is making it past that goalie.

Perhaps this could be a way for all of us to avoid holiday excess? Do they make adult-size pacifiers? I’m looking into this, pronto, because I’ve never been good at that “just have one piece of Godiva” thing.

Just control yourselves, people. And stay away from “salads” (insert cheese, cheese, bacon, and buttered croutons) that could feed an entire housing tract.


Top Ten Ways You Know You’re a Gen X Parental Unit

15 Dec

We interrupt these regularly scheduled naps to bring you the lamentations that have been kicking around in my head this week, as I realize that I am officially no longer cool.

Top 10 Ways You Know You’re a Gen X Parental Unit

Def Leppard comes on the radio in your car, and you’re torn between closing the window in shame or rolling the window down and turning up the volume.

You accept Lego Star Wars and Lego Indiana Jones video games as a fair vehicle with which to introduce the best trilogies of all time to your kids, and you’re still in denial about the unmentionable movies that came after the trilogies.

Your kid owns an Atari t-shirt just like yours and a pair of checkered vans that you find amusing, but in which you would not be caught dead.

Your children wear helmets to ride on a flat surface, in a cul de sac, on a scooter, but you used to plunge down the steepest hill in the neighborhood, bareheaded, while riding on the handlebars of somebody else’s banana seat bike.

You boast on Facebook that your kid refused his children’s music and asked to listen to Weezer or They Might Be Giants.

Your kid is dancing in his underwear, so you tweet that Risky Business is being replayed at your house.

You love John Hughes because he saw high school for what it was and Joss Whedon because he saw it as it should have been.

Your go-to example of living on the edge is eating pop rocks while drinking Coke.

You can’t understand why your kid stares, blank-faced, when you joke about his Christmas request with, “You’ll shoot yer eye out!”

You pull out your favorite childhood books, only to discover that they are politically incorrect, except for Dr. Seuss which turns out to be full of thinly veiled social and political commentary. Then you’re stuck reading them to your kid every night.

Please. Atari was the best EVER.

Update: Come see what the very funny Jeff Kart had to say about this post on TLC’s Parentables!


15 Dec

Today, I want to bring you a very important holiday safety message.  Please, folks, stay awake while you are using the Sit ‘n Spin

Do not sit, snooze, 'n spin.

If you are going to do a layout off the Sit ‘n Spin, DO wear some really entertaining socks. Preferably some that will enable us all to make jokes about the Wicked Witch of the West.

Friend or Foe?

One unanswered question I have is this: is the tiger responsible for the accident? Did he cuddle his boy into a premature slumber, causing him to fall from his Sit ‘n Spin? People should remember that big cats are, after all, wild stuffed animals.

What's done is done. But next time...

If you’ll look closely, you’ll see that a small stuffed dachshund is the real victim, here. Cormac landed on him and is using him as a pillow. The tiger should be ashamed of himself.

Bedspins have never been so restful.

I want to issue a disclaimer that Cormac was NOT drinking out of that plastic cup when the accidental nap occurred. No, sir. We don’t drink apple juice while spinning in this house. Very strict rules.

Consider yourselves warned.

Guest Napper #51- LIVE!

14 Dec

This is a nap distinctly lacking in the traditional trappings of the holiday, such as snow, Santa, and sugar rushes. Come to think of it, this may just be a sugar CRASH happening here. I’m not sure this girl is fit to be behind the wheel of this sleek exersaucer in her drowsy condition.

Jen sent me this great video of her daughter Maycee, who seems all decked out in a party ‘do and appears to have zero chance of staying awake for the party.

Try to focus on the nap and not being jealous of this nice weather.

I think my favorite random detail is the stumbling, wandering boy who walks into the frame at the end. Wearing a helmet. Judging by Maycee’s dramatic nodding action, that might be a good idea…in case he decides to take a nap.

Exersaucer whiplash...


Luckily, the fine folks at the toy company knew to pad the dash on these things! It protects so many little noses.

Off to brew myself a pot of coffee…


Crashed-Out Christmas Help

13 Dec

So, what was your first job? As the holiday season gets into full swing, I am reminded of my very first minimum wage position at Miller’s Outpost in Moreno Valley, CA.  I think I had just turned 16, so it was December of 1988.  I spent Christmas selling acid-washed jeans, studded denim jackets and pleather (that’s not a typo – plastic leather) white boots to people who used too much Aquanet. This, of course, included myself. Because Miller’s Outpost was like, totally the awesomest place to shop for clothes in all of Moreno Valley!

It was a real accomplishment when I moved onward and upward to become a hostess at Chili’s.

Well, you can see that Cormac is steeling himself early for the minimum wage work world. It won’t be long before these kids are going to be expected to earn their keep. I see a position at a shoe store in his future.

Preparing for the world of work.

On the other hand, his boss may not like it if he falls asleep while fitting the patrons. This could cut into his Christmas money.

Maybe he can be a cashier, instead?

Also, we may have to work on separating from the blankie.

Come to think of it, there may have been days, throughout my career, when I’d have done better with a security blanket to help me out. That and a nap, of course. Maybe Cormac is onto something? They’ll introduce it in Europe and it’ll become the new standard for healthy work-life balance.

For now, I guess we should just concentrate on getting him to keep his nose out of the shoes.


Guest Napper #50: Searching for Santa?

12 Dec

In this season of wishes for Santa, Tricia’s photo of her daughter Georgia struck me as being especially appropriate.  I mean, I’m generally not one to put my kids in the lap of a mall Santa – mostly because I think they’d get super freaked out. But Georgia seems to be making a plea to parents everywhere.

Bring back the man in red!  Why is the throne of St. Nicholas empty?!  And, darn it, she’s going to occupy Santa’s chair until the situation is rectified.

But...where's the big guy?

As for my kids, I’ll be telling them Santa lives in their hearts.  I really don’t want to go to the mall.

They’d probably just fall asleep, anyway.

A cool yule to all, and to all a good…zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Culprit is Cornered

10 Dec

Nobody in my house will accept responsibility for the violence directed at this poor, snowy white stuffed dog. Even worse, nobody will take responsibility for the concurrent destruction of my Bobbi Brown lipstick.  BOBBI BROWN, ladies. You feel me?

Dog suffers dastardly crime...

I go in search of the culprit and discover a potential suspect, who has holed up in a hideout, barricading himself inside.

Anybody in there? Show yourself!

I order the person of interest to come out and explain himself. There is no sound.

Letting his guard down.

Circling the structure with catlike subtlety, I peer in through a hole in the wall. There he is, enjoying the sleep of the innocents. I’m remain unconvinced.

We'll question him when he wakes up.

I’ll have to wait outside, lest he sneak out and make off in his getaway car.  In the meantime, doggy is getting a bath on the “hot” cycle, with some bleach.

The prognosis for a good nap is excellent. The prognosis for a clean puppy is not good. The prognosis for my lipstick is too depressing for me to discuss right now.

Hey Girl, Let’s Take a Nap

8 Dec

A single, child-free friend of mine once remarked that she would go insane living in my house, because I appear to have constant couch cushion chaos.  I refrained from pointing out that I have already gone insane.

This picture provides no real clues to how William ended up sleeping under the toy box, but it does provide compelling evidence that there is a malevolent force at work in my media room downstairs. Heck – in every room. Friends, I present Exhibit A: Child Unconscious on Pile of Furniture Rubble.


My money is on aliens...

What’s really calloused here is how William continues to play Xbox with no concern for his brother’s well-being.  If he were Ryan Gosling, he’d be like “Hey girl, I know you get all concerned when we sleep buried in piles of rubble, but it’s okay, girl. You know how we are, girl.”'ll be his turn soon.

William is probably using this opportunity to level up in Lego Star Wars, seeing as how his bro isn’t as good at the game as he is. Toddler motor skills.

Go away. I'm sleeping.

Hey girl, I know you get your undies in a bunch when we wreck the house. But you know how much virile energy we have, girl. You know how it is.

What happened here?

7 Dec

I really sat sort of speechless in front of this photo for a few minutes and thought, “What, exactly, happened here?”

It looks as if William was playing a two-player Xbox game, when he was suddenly buried under an ottoman and a toy box.  And then…he got tired and fell asleep?

Yeah. I got nothin'...

How does a person prepare a bed of pillows and wrap himself in his blankie before being surprised by an avalanche of playroom furniture? Sadly, there wasn’t a good samaritan in sight to help pull him out of this awkward situation. Perhaps he played each controller until the batteries ran out and then succumbed to exhaustion, hoping a parent would find him.

Don't give up hope, William!

The worst part is that he was just a couple of feet from his half-eaten grilled cheese. He can almost reach it.

Hang on, my man. Mama is coming!


Guest Napper #44 Redux – Sweet on the Stairs

5 Dec

Some of you may remember Fiona, the amazing upside-down stair sleeper. Proving that she hasn’t given up on creative napping, she provided her mom, Beth, with another pretty awesome stair nap soon after her last guest appearance.  This one makes her a perfect friend for Cormac, who also favors this position.

At least she's at the bottom.

This time, it looks as if she got all dressed and ready to go, and then just couldn’t quite make it out the door without catching a catnap, first. And a stylish catnap it is! You go, girl.

Now that’s how you face Monday, folks. With cheerful pink attire and a good sleep on your side.

Sleeping By Surprise

2 Dec

Sometimes, of an afternoon, I let the boys have their lunch on a tray in the basement while they watch a movie. They call this “picnic” and it’s good, clean fun. Apparently, it’s also very tiring…at least for Cormac.

Grilled cheese gross out?

William has eaten half of his sandwich, but Cormac didn’t even make it to the cherry tomatoes before he crashed out.  William seems unconcerned.


In fact, this impromptu naps seems to have hit Cormac like a freight train, leaving him open-mouthed with surprise.  At least he thought to take his shoes off, first.

Blue Puppy was surprised, too.

Squished Sleep

As if he doesn’t know the drill by now. Puhleeze.

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