More Christmas gift fun

The fun with Vincenzo’s Christmas presents continue.  Today we were playing with knights.  This one here…


…keeps bragging about how he’s in knight school which he thinks is hilarious and Vincenzo thinks makes perfect sense.  The knight goes up to some of Vincenzo’s other toys and asks them if they’ll go to prom.  If any of them say “no” Vincenzo’s knight cuts off their heads.  The ones who do say yes get treated to a cardboard box limo ride, a green blow-up disco ball, and the prom theme of A Knight to Remember.  Then they go to Denny’s and the bowling alley where they think they’re so original, bowling in their prom shoes and…I’m dredging up too many memories for you now, aren’t I.

Oh, and the green blow-up disco ball?  A huge hit with Baby Rocco.


Some genius put nipples ALL over this ball, and Rocco can’t get enough of it.  I’m pretty sure this is what he thinks my body looks like underneath my clothes.


Then we were reading from Vincenzo’s new book, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and we came to the part where Willy Wonka shows the kids his inventing room.  I paused.

Me: You know, Vincenzo, I think I have an inventing room too!  I invent things in the kitchen!  Is there a room in the house where you do most of your inventing
Vincenzo: I guess I do most of my inventing in–
Kevin: I do all MY inventing in the bathroom.
Me: …
Vincenzo: I guess I do most of my inventing in—
Kevin: I’m working on my BIGGEST invention yet.
Me: …
Vincenzo: I guess I do most of my inventing in–
Me: And THIS, Vincenzo, is a little invention I call the “eye roll.”

Mall fare

I should be writing the thank you cards…

Vincenzo: The fur on my arms is longer than the fur on my legs.  I think it’s because my arms are older.
Vincenzo is loving his new Christmas presents.  Or maybe it’s me loving Vincenzo’s new Christmas presents.  Either way it’s really you that benefits in the end when things like this happen on Vincenzo’s new walkie talkies. 

Yesterday he and I were playing around on them when the voice of another young boy came through.

Other young boy: Hello?
MrsMouthy: [using a robot voice, as it’s really her only other voice]  Hi.  Do you speak alien?
OYB: Who are you?
MM: We are the aliens.  Requesting permission to land on Earth.
OYB: What?
MM: We take that as a “yes.”
OYB: Where are you?
kkkkkkk whitenoise kkkkkkkkk whitenoise kkkkkkk
OYB: Hello?  Hello?

I haven’t had this much fun since I convinced my students I had to have surgery to remove a watermelon plant from my stomach after swallowing a watermelon seed.

Corn chowder
Baked potatoes

What the wisemen WOULD have brought Baby Jesus, if only they had known…

What would you rather get for Christmas?

1.  Chocolate-covered bacon


2.  A glow-in-the-dark zombie playset:


3.  A t-shirt with this on it:


If you were my lucky, lucky husband you wouldn’t have to choose between the three.  He got all this and a magic cheeseburger that comes up with answers such as “I EATED IT” and “MEH.”

Oh, you’re wondering what I got?  A new dishwasher with a super sexy hard food disposer that I am hoping will routinely ask if I would like a foot rub and whether or not my emotional needs have been met today.*

I guess that’s what you get for getting your husband a toaster for his birthday.

My sister’s awesome vegetarian lasagna (thanks for giving me the night off!)
Triple layer fruitcake (but much better than the fruitcake you’re thinking of)


*I just asked the magic cheeseburger if deep down I’m secretly way excited about the dishwasher and it answered, “OMG YES!!!”

Christmas 2009

Today’s post goes out to all of you who are checking your mailboxes every day in hopes MrsMouthy’s Christmas letter soon will be there.but finding instead totally useless things like your winning paycheck from Publisher’s Clearing House.  I can’t imagine the pain and rejection you must be dealing with on a daily basis. So, out of the goodness of my heart and in spirit of Christmas, here’s my letter from this year.


Merry Christmas one and all! I want to start by clarifying that in the picture on the front of this card, Rocco is not smiling—he’s crying. And up until we bribed him with m&m’s, Vincenzo was whining, “Rocco’s punching me!” Kevin and I decided to opt for the artsy blurry-in-background look rather than actually take showers and groom ourselves. So now you know why the phrase “picture perfect” was really created—for families with small kids.

With Christmas coming there have been many opportunities to talk about God with Vincenzo. He got a bible from school and loves to listen to us read it, especially the part when Daddy says, “And on the seventh day, God invented rock ‘n roll.” We’ve been making sure to pray before every meal and bedtime, though I’m not sure Vincenzo gets it, as he often prays for “God, prayers, and BOM!” That’s the least of his problems, as he has recently begun calling Jesus “Beezus.” And then there was the day he pointed a pretend blaster to heaven and said something about how he just shot God…which I guess explains why he feels inclined to pray for God at dinnertime.

I feel rather sacrilegious writing all this, but I believe God must have a sense of humor (how else do you explain Kevin’s hair?), and as I have reached the bottom of this letter and have not yet been struck down, you have to agree with me—though you may want to give me a call upon receiving the letter, just to make sure.

So there it is: another Beto holiday letter that may have made you smile but did nothing to let you know whether or not Vincenzo can write his name yet (he can’t) or if Rocco’s sleeping through the night (he’s not) or if Kevin got a promotion this year (he did). Who needs details when you have one-liners? Happy holidays and may your year be filled with hugs, love, and your own one-liners.

Does Santa read blog posts?

Things I don’t feel funny enough to blog about, so here is a C- attempt:

1.  Gingerbread cookies


Brrrr.  I’m cold.


Hey, can one of you guys google “black tears”?


Has anyone seen my neck?

2.  Our Christmas lights.  I was going to take pictures and write this glorious post about how this year I got smart and decided to skip the whole climb-on-the-roof and use-a-ladder thing by simply hanging—taping, rather—the Christmas lights to our new deck in the back of the house.  Then I was going to be all braggy about how we our house was sporting the mullet of Christmas lights: business in the front, Christmas party in the back.

But then this happened.  Those little white things on the railing are pieces of tape.


And those colorful things on our lawn would be our Christmas lights.


I asked Kevin if he would help me put them back up and he suggested maybe I should use double-sided tape this time.  I suggested he maybe should go screw himself.

3.  I’ve had this metallic taste in my mouth for a few weeks now and when I *bing*d possible causes I decided it’s most likely a #5) iron deficiency, as I am usually anemic, so I started taking my iron-laden prenatal vitamins again but the metallic taste is still there, possibly because of likely cause #7) prenatal vitamins so now I’m wondering if maybe it’s something more like likely cause #2) cadmium poisoning because Kevin has taken a sudden interest in making me toddies each night and also because there’s absolutely no chance that it’s likely cause #8) hormonal because IF YOU DON’T GET THOSE CHRISTMAS LIGHTS HUNG UP BY DINNER TONIGHT I SWEAR TO GOD I WILL MAKE YOU CRY BLACK TEARS.  NOW GO MAKE ME MY EGGNOG RUM BUTTERSCOTCH WHATEVER THINGGY AGAIN.  AND DON’T SKIMP ON THE CADMIUM THIS TIME!

4.  I’m not sure whether I should confess to a priest, Ronnica, or Santa about that whole “swear to God” thing but it doesn’t matter.  I’m still not taking it out.

Things that taste like metal

I will not yell in class

I remember seeing this bag when I was a teacher.


I never understood what it meant until I was faced with the challenge of trying to teach my own four-year-old how to do…well how to do absolutely anything at all.  I have a freakin’ MASTER’S DEGREE in education!  I’ve been published in educational journals!  I used to teach TEACHERS in my spare time!  And now look:

“Vincenzo, look at all these scrambled up letters!  I think if you unscramble them you can spell your name with them!”


[After a few honest attempts at beginning his name with the letter “i” and with an all-due-respect suggestion from Mom to start with a “V”]:


“Ooooo, you got so many letters in the right place!  Look how smart you are!”  [Mom cautiously shows how to rearrange the middle letters, ready at any moment to be hit with a cactus ball]  “Okay, let’s see if you can unscramble them a second time.”


[Mom leaves to give child breathing room.  Returns to find this]:


[Mom once again wonders why her life reads as a cartoon strip.] Says aloud, “Oh wow!  Now you are [phonetic pronunciation of] ‘a8ViNcenZo3h’”  [Hysterical laughing]  [Not from Mom]

Later in the evening, when Grammy shows up, Mom says, “Grammy, Vincenzo has gotten very smart.  There are a bunch of letters here and he knows how to unscramble them to spell something…but we’re not going to tell you what it is!”  [Mom wink-winks at Vincenzo, then casually carries on conversation with Grammy about the merits of coriander in a feeble attempt to disperse the contents of her spice cupboard on other people]

Meanwhile, back at the magnetic board…


[More hysterical laughing]  [And also: the sound of hair being ripped out of someone’s own head]

Going out!!

The NEW holiday season

QUICKIE: Vincenzo, after I explained that Seattle is called the Emerald City because everything here is so green: “But I’m not green.”
I don’t want Christmas to be next friggin’ week.  I still want to go ice skating and to the zoo lights and to Snowflake Lane and I think I forgot to tell Santa about the yacht.  I haven’t even played a round of Christmas songs on the piano while my family joyously sings along and it’s hard to sing the word “joy” because we keep looking at each other and smiling, so it comes out more like “joaaaay.”  You know.  Like we do every year.

So.  I am proposing a new holiday schedule that is more conducive to my making merry during the Christmas season:

Late November: Thanksgiving
Late December: Thanksgiving II
Late January: Christmas

Okay, before you get all, “But you can’t just move Jesus’ birthday!” on me, his real birthday was more like May 14th, 6BC, for Christ’s sake!  (I’m not swearing; I’m just referring non-facetiously to Christ’s sake.)  Anyway, this new holiday schedule solves so many problems.  Instead of deciding which side of the family to spend Thanksgiving with, Thanksgiving has conveniently multiplied by two.  Now not only can you see Buppa on the first Thanksgiving, but you can also see Bampy on the second one.  Plus, you to eat turkey, mashed potatoes, marshmallow yams, and green been casserole. TWICE.  In TWO MONTHS.

And also with Christmas two months after the first Thanksgiving, we get four extra weeks of Christmas trees and Bing Crosby and modern-day tales of the nativity where Mary is a street walker and Joseph is a gansta’…or something like that.

Is it just me, or does this not solve all the world’s problems?

Mo’ chili
Mo’ cornbread
Gingerbread cheesecake

Cue the Christmas ballad

This worked for a friend of mine.*

My Christmas list 2009:

1.  One extra hour added into every day that no one in the family knows about but me
2.  Formal recognition by President Barack Obama of Neckbeard November Month and the plight of the Delaware Mormons
3.  World domination
4.  A pony
5.  Hay (for the pony)

*If you do read her Christmas list, be sure to read the follow-up and comments.  It won’t make this post any funnier, but I like to pretend it will.


“Gingerbread houses”

QUICKIE: Me to V: “If you had another brother or sister, what name would you give him/her?”  V: “And.”
We made gingerbread houses today.  Please note there was nothing gingerbread about Vincenzo’s house, nor was there anything house about his gingerbread house.  Ninja turtles play by their own rules.






That was at 10AM.  It is now 2PM and for four hours I have been asked over and over again, “Now can I eat it?  Can I eat it now?”  I have no good reason for saying, “no,” but I keep saying, “NO!”  What am I holding out for?  For the candy to lose its potency over the course of the day?  Do I think if I make Vincenzo wait long enough the whole thing will turn into vegetables and then he can eat it?  Or am I waiting for an arranged *accident* to occur?  Kevin’s family still does have some mafia connections, I think…

Nah.  Vincenzo’s probably just right: Mom is MEAN!

Beef and cheese mancotti
Candy (or vegetables)

Cookie bake

QUICKIE: Me to V: “Do you think you’ll be a coffee drinker when you grow up?”  V: “No…I think I’ll be a skier.”
Maybe we’ll just call them “holiday” cookies.


Split pea soup
Cheddar scones
"Holiday” cookies