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Need advice—quick!

October 30, 2014

Okay, readers, we are getting close to the finish line with the Big Boy room.  Here’s what we’ve got so far:

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Okay, so it doesn’t look like much but this represents a solid month of weekends spent painting, skim coating, repainting, trimming, buying, assembling, touch-up painting, and moving of stuff from one room to another.  Not to mention the hour it takes me to clear things off the bed and desk to actually take these pictures!

But I need some advice on the desk area.  We bought a bunch of magnetic boards to hang above it and will buy some white cabinets to hang above those.  Here’s the general idea:

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The question is this: do we leave the magnetic boards silver, as they are, or should I cover them with lime green cloth?  Here’s the general idea (the board will be centered over the desk):

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Here’s a really crappy Photoshop attempt to show about what it will look like green, though I would do more of a chartruse than a grass green:

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What do you think?

WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Chicken stew in pumpkin bowls
White chocolate seckel pears

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Pumpkin Farm

October 23, 2014

It was Pumpkin farm weekend for the MrsMouthies!  Here are a few of our top moments:

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Actually, Vincenzo’s glam shot looked like this—we’ve been too busy to get him a haircut.

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But who needs haircuts when you have Photoshop?  Anyway, to continue…

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The kids played in the hay, went in the bouncy houses, ate kettle korn, looked at the animals, rode the train and canoes and roller coaster, putted around in the old timey cars…but the one thing they didn’t have time to do at the pumpkin farm was ride the wagon out to the field to pick pumpkins.  Oops.

To end on a funny note, here is my second favorite picture from the pumpkin farm:

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I love how he tilted his head just so.

…and my favorite picture of the day, from my mom’s collection:

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Awkward.

WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Chili
Corn bread
Steamed broccoli
Pumpkin pie

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An Eye for an Eye

October 20, 2014

I used to have a cat. I loved him more than I loved my children. Of course, I had no children at the time, and lucky for them.

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This fluff ball turned grew into one of those super silky, soft cats who flopped like a rag when you picked him up and who felt like he was weightless when he jumped onto your lap. His name was Rocky.

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At Christmas time we’d send out cards with his pictures on it. In summer I’d put him on a leash and try to walk him. When he got his man-cat parts chopped we even threw him a Ball Voyage party.

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(One of the food tags from the party)

My SIL found a little replica of Rocky that she gave us.  We named him Bizarro Rocky.

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Bizarro Rocky was present at the birth of our first son, naturally.

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Sadly, the real Rocky died of a lung infection when he was just four years old. Around that time, a very mangy version of Rocky showed up in the neighborhood—he was ratty, his tail looked half-eaten, and he seemed to be missing an eye. We named him Pirate Rocky.  It is comforting, somehow, to see Pirate Rocky roaming the neighborhood from time to time.

The other day the boys were downstairs playing and yelling at each other when the yelling got louder than usual and turned to all STOP! LEO! NO! NO LEO! LEEEOOOO! OH NO NOW YOU BROKE IT!

Then Rocco* came up the stairs carrying this:

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(Technically he was just carrying the thing on my hand—not my actual hand.)

Apparently Leo had been swinging Bizarro around by his tail until Bizarro whacked a wall and lost an eye and became…

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Pirate Rocky!

But as they say, one cat’s eye is another man’s treasure and I have taken to wearing the eye around myself in a version of me I call Bizarro Mommy.

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Bizarro Mommy gets to do anything she wants, any way she wants.  I’m sure you haven’t seen the last of her here.

*I should point out here that we did not, in fact, name our son after our cat.  Rocco was named after his father, whose middle name is Rocco, and his name was chosen because Kevin’s dad really liked the Rocky movies.

WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Chicken and dumplings
Salad with roasted pumpkin, pepitas, and goat cheese
Fruit
Sugar cookies

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Thing #5

October 15, 2014

Thanks, Tricia, for the suggestion.  To add onto yesterday’s post:

5) What do you do when your husband asks for this 7-layer Pop Rock cake for his birthday?

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You tell him absolutely not; that is a completely ridiculous request.  Then you make him this 6-layer Pop Rock cake for his birthday.

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(Each layer is sprinkled with a bag of Pop Rocks, the outside is covered in Pop Rocks, and the recipe calls for TEN POUNDS of frosting.)

WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Hot dogs and hamburgers
Fried daikon radish cakes
6-layer cake remnant cake pops

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Little Things

October 14, 2014

1. Kevin’s parents gifted us with a pose-able skeleton for Halloween.  Rocco spent five minutes outside with it and I found Skelly looking like this:

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Skelly totally gets me–that’s the same way I feel when I spend five minutes with Rocco.

2.  Vincenzo just finished his thank-you cards.  You don’t need to read them but just look at their overall style:

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I just love how very Charlie Brown-ish they look.

3.  Last week Rocco’s voice was a little hoarse.  Kevin’s dad asked if he was sick or something and Kevin said, “Nope; he’s just been talking for the past five years.”

4.  Vincenzo closed a book he had been reading all afternoon.  I asked him if he finished it and he said, “No—I just turned it off.”

It feels weird to end on #4.  Does anyone have a #5 to toss out there tonight?

WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Citrus halibut with braised fennel
Butternut squash risotto with fried sage
Green beans with dill
6-Layer PopRock Cake

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I Spy a Postal Mom

October 7, 2014

1. Me: I spy with my little eye something that is green.
Leo: I give up.  What is it, Mom?
Me: The trees.
Leo: YOU GUESSED IT!!

2. Rocco: I spy with my little eye something that is brown.
Vincenzo: Is it the dirt?
R: No.
Dad: Is it the dirt?
R: Yes.
V: That’s not fair!  I already guessed dirt!
R: Yeah, but you had to guess it twice.

3. Leo: I spy with mine little eyes something that is blue.
Me: Is it the sky?
Leo: No.
Me: Is it a car?
Leo: No.
Me: Is it a sign?
Leo: No.
Me: I give up.  What is it?
Leo: It is a song.

4. Kevin: I spy with my BIG eyes something that is red, and you have to guess what it is twenty times.
Vincenzo: Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight? Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?  Is it the stoplight?
Kevin: No.
Vincenzo: Is it the stop sign?  Is it the stop sign? {and on and on and ON and on and on}

5. This last one, unfortunately, is the most common version played in our car and the reason I HATE the game of I Spy more than anything else I’ve encountered in all nine years of parenting:

Rocco: Hey, I have an idea.  Let’s play I Spy!
Leo:  Yeah!  I spy with my little…
R: NO!  I get to go first.  I spy…
Leo: NO!  I GO FIRST!  I spy…
R: WITH MY LITTLE…
L: WIFMYLI’LEYE
R:EYE
L: NO!  I GO FIRST!  SOMETHING THAT IS BLUE!
R: NO, ME!
L: NO, ME!
R: I SPY WITH MY LITTLE EYE
L: AAAAYYYYYYYY!  WAAAAAAHHHHH!
R: MOOOOMMMMM!
L: BLUUUUUEEEE!
R: NOOOOO!
L: WAAAHHH!  WAAAAAIIILLLL!

(At which point Mom loses it and goes off the rails *a bit* and makes the kids promise they will never, ever, ever attempt to play I Spy EVER again.)

(They always do.)

WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Fresh spaghetti and meatballs, made by Chef Rocco (and his sous chef, Mom)
Crudites (i.e. sous chef was either too lazy or too busy to actually cook the vegetables)
Thunder cake

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Awesome Sauce Turns 9

October 5, 2014

You didn’t think I would let Vincenzo’s birthday pass without a post where I make fun of him, demonstrate his complexities, get soft on him, then turn him into an immortalized icon, did you?

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It’s just hard to write about V without it sounding like a bunch of bragging. He has mastered the English language so I can’t write about the hilariously misspoken. It’s no longer appropriate to post pictures of him doing absurd things in his underwear, even though I have plenty.  Now I have to draw clothes on him so he doesn’t get embarrassed:

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Vincenzo is calm, studious, well-behaved, polite, social, hard-working, generous, and of course brilliant. Seriously, for birthday presents this year he asked friends to donate to the Wolf Conservatory. How can I make fun of that?! It’s like he doesn’t even care that I have a blog anymore!

Of course, he sometimes forgets to put his homework in his backpack.

And once he went to bed without flossing.

So I guess there’s that.

Vincenzo is just a go-with-the-flow guy who is as happy being enrolled in a singing/dancing class as he is being enrolled in a karate class. If he could plan the perfect day he’d spend half of it reading and half of it playing with friends. Actually, he’d first ask if he could spend 100% of it playing video games and when I told him “no,” he’d go for the reading and playing with friends thing.

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Every time he has a play date, it’s with a different person—everyone likes him and he likes everyone. He is just at home playing with Rocco’s four-year-old friends as he is having sleepovers at his 12-year-old cousins’ house.

Well, there is one kid who always strikes a nerve with Vincenzo and who Vincenzo wishes he never had sleepovers with, but that kid’s name is Rocco so he’s going to have to get over it. We don’t have enough bedrooms for him not to.

Vincenzo knows how to laugh at himself, like when he looks over at dinner to see me and Kevin slurping noodles straight off our plate because that’s what we saw him doing a minute ago. Then he might cry because I tell him he spelled the word “scool” wrong on his homework. Then he laughs when I tell him that he is crying about the letter “h.”

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He has never spent a cent of his own money on himself, but he donates big chunks of his money at a time when Hopelink or his school’s jog-a-thon come around. He reads absolutely anything that is made up of letters. He understands and can explain the sun doesn’t go down at night but that our part of the world is actually rotating away from the sun.

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He also runs around the house in his undies yelling, “Me want fight Daddy now! Me want fight Daddy now!”

Vincenzo is our absent-minded professor who dresses himself in a purple plaid button-up shirt, blue striped shorts, black knee-high socks, and fluorescent yellow flip-flops. Sometimes I let him go out like that; sometimes I try to help him. Either way he goes out, he will tell everyone who asks that he is doing “awesome.”

And he is. He is our sometimes silly, often thoughtful, usually sweet, always awesome boy.

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Here’s to another year of awesomeness, Baby Number One.  We have never stopped being as proud of you as we were on the day you were born.

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See how proud we were?  See how proud we are.

WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Jackfruit enchiladas
Chicken quesadillas…just in case
Jackfruit coconut creams

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