Monday, September 28, 2009


Mesa consider yourselves lucky to be getting one of these great establishments at the Dana Park shopping area. This is our families favorite spot for a good hamburger and their fries are made from Idaho potatoes. Five Guys will make coming to AZ even better. We can have are taste of home while visiting family. I am so excited!

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Ultimate Doorstop

"Daddy! Camden is trying to close the door!" Brooklyn called out from the girls bedroom after we put them to bed. Lately Camden has been intentionally doing little things that irritate Brooklyn. Closing the door after bedtime is very much one of those things.

"Brooklyn, Camden is only closing the door because of the way you are reacting to her," I reply.

But my explanation at psychology did not sink in, usually indicated by an "Oh, I know what I can do, daddy!"

So I prompted Brooklyn further, "So, if Camden is only closing the door because you get mad and call out to mommy and me, what do you think is the easiest thing for you to do to get her to stop closing the door."

"Oh, I know, daddy."

I think to myself, "There's my girl," feeling her realize that she should refrain from overreacting to Camden's prodding.

Brooklyn continues, "I can find something big, heavy, and invisible and put it in front of the door."

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Bean Dip

Tassi attended a friend's baby shower. Thus, I had Brooklyn and Camden alone and wanted to treat them to a special dinner. Of course, Brooklyn initially voted for her favorite Chick-fil-a but she and I finally negotiated on "messidan food". (She hasn't been able to correctly pronounce "Mexican food".)

So we found ourselves at Los Tres Magueyes playing tic-tac-toe in a booth. Brooklyn on one side and Camden and I on the other. After ordering for myself and the girls, I asked "Is there bean dip?" "No," was the waiters reply, much to my dismay.

Our food came and we started to chow down. Camden put some of her food in my face. It looked like bean dip and I immediately began to resent that the waiter lied to me. "Hey, there's bean dip," I thought.

And then I smelled it.

My head whipped down to look where Camden is standing on the booth bench. A puddle of diarrhea pooled from shoe to shoe as balanced herself, leaning over me, shoving the feces into my face, trying to communicate her accident.

"Dapa dapa," Camden was saying (Diaper).

I nearly gagged. I quickly signaled to the waiter and asked for the check and boxes. The stench was beginning to spread. I could not tell if the neighboring booth could smell the offensive, hanging scent.

Needless to say, my appetite for bean dip has dissipated.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Forget Everything

I received the headboard cover and the bed skirt yesterday. We were really excited to open the package and get the bed skirts on. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the darker stripe is not a pink but a red. However the stripes and the blue walls just don't go. I am now going to change the wall color with a lot of manipulation and coaxing Brooklyn to get her to agree with the color change. At the moment we are thinking a soft neutral creamy yellow. I will keep you updated.
Bed skirtsBed skirts

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

The Speech

The speech is live in 30 minutes.

I read it last night and think it is funny that people are complaining that President Obama refers to himself too much. "He says 'I' too much," says one comment on among many with that theme.

Of course Obama refers to himself. Remember, he is speaking to children ages 5 to 18. His rhetoric will be different than his normal public appearances. Teaching with stories and finding common ground to relate to the children is essential to make the message of setting goals and taking responsibility for your individual education.

And note the irony of parents keeping their children out of school to avoid hearing a message of staying in school.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

What gives ... ?

Here is the story. I am a large pregnant woman. My babies have no place to go but out since I don't have much of a torso. Well here are two scenarios.

Church Lady: Wow so when are you due?
Me: Oh November 16th is my scheduled c-section.
Church Lady: Oh dear you look way too big to be due then.
Me: (hide offense) Oh yeah. (end conversation quickly)

Target Lady: Oh bless your heart you are due with your third.
Me: Oh thanks. (Not sure what people mean when they say that. Are they giving me a blessing of survival because I will now be a mother of three?)
Target Lady: So when are you due?
Me: I am due November 16th
Target Lady: Oh there will be no way you will make it ALL THE WAY to November. (Saying this while glaring at my popped belly.)
Me: Well good talking to you.

Seriously though my stories are pretty minimal compared to what I have heard other friends go through while pregnant. People seem to think they can say whatever, touch wherever, and offer any kind of advice while pregnant.

I am not trying to say I am perfect. I know I have offended at times. Do you think it would be possible for me to tell people things like "Wow you are looking old. You don't look like you are going to last too much longer." or "You look like you are going to pop. Have you ever thought about joining a gym or Gastrointestinal surgery."

I really think there is no need to tell a pregnant lady she is large. We all know it. Why state the obvious?

The Rhyming Game

Brooklyn loves playing games in the car. The Rhyming Game is among our favorite to play with her because 20 Questions usually involves vague and abstract hints... Brooklyn initiates with "I'm thinking of something pink" and it turns out to be a dragon. Whatever, Brooklyn.

But the Rhyming Game is great because it involves rapid turns in coming up with words that rhyme. Tree. Bee. See. Pee. Knee. Kree.

"Brooklyn, 'kree' isn't a word."

"It doesn't have to be a word. We're just rhyming."

Whatever, Brooklyn.

And so we engaged in a round of rhyming in the car on the way home from dinner. Tassi and Brooklyn were going back and forth. Tassi started.

Stuck. Luck. Truck. Ffff...

Time slowed down. From the seat behind me and to the right I could feel every vibration of my daughter's innocent lips of the voiceless labiodental fricative.


The gas molecules seemed especially turbulent as Brooklyn constricted air between her lower lips and upper teeth.


Such a small, sweet girl and yet she was shaping this consonant, without vibrations of the vocal chords, in a piercing manner.


The final part of the pulmonic egressive airstream finally flowed over her tongue and began to change. It was inevitable. No going back now.

...I think you know how this ends.

Silence hung in the car and I said the only thing I could think of. "That's not a word, Brooklyn."

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Speaking to our children

There seems to be a lot of hoopla about our country's President speaking to students next September 8th. And, of course, right wing parents have used this to further convince themselves that Obama's motivation is to spread socialist propaganda and turn children against their parents.

At the center of the conspiracy theories are two documents produced by the Department of Education to assist teachers in stimulating student minds. One document is for Pre-K through 6th grade while the other is for 7th to 12th. Each contains similarly worded, but age appropriate, questions and constructive activities in an attempt to make the speech more likely to make an impact on our nation's future generation.

Only I have one small concern. Some blogs I've read are linking to a version of the Pre-K to 6th grade document that is hosted on non-authoritative servers:

The official document provided by the Department of Education for distribution is here:

The reason the other document concerns me is that there are two parts in the content that are different. One is minor and negligible. However, the other deserves attention.

In particular, the unofficial document, second bullet in the "Extension of the Speech" section, contains the following sentence:

"Write letters to themselves about what they can do to help the president."

Whereas the official document has this sentence in the same location:

"Write letters to themselves about how they can achieve their short‐term and long‐term education goals."

Worst case scenario holds that someone deliberately modified the text to incite right wing parents.

Best case scenario is that the unofficial document is an earlier draft, reviewers felt that "help the president" in fact would be controversial despite it addressing students helping the president in his goals for education.

Which, therefore, in my view attests to why Barak Obama wants to talk to my daughter, along with the rest of the country's students...

No Child Left Behind was/is about schools owning the education experience in our country and being held accountable through standardized tests and school, district, and state report cards of key indicators for "progress" and "success".

Obama's emerging education policy will turn NCLB on its head and redirect the ultimate responsibility for education in the individual. In the words of the official document linked above... "short‐term and long‐term education goals". Which is really where is should be.

Isn't education ultimately a life-long process? Is our educational system preparing us for that? Hasn't our country incorrectly emphasized certain subjects (math, science) while diminishing others (art, dance, music, physical education)? Shouldn't education be more about self-discovery and equipping our youth with the skills to adapt and succeed in our ever changing world? Instead we glorify students that are narrowly talented and call them the "smart" ones.

I believe the content Obama will deliver on September 8th will focus on helping students shape their own education and be joint partners in it with parents and teachers.

Update on bedroom

Okay Here is the newest update. At Potterybarn their Emmy stripe headboard slipcover and bedskirt is now way on clearance. If I go with this I can still do the brown damask and polka dots and still have it go with the painting. Although I am thinking the damask is too much. It would also save me a lot of time and money that I can spend else where or maybe just save. I am feeling it is such a good deal to pass up.

The girls headboards and skirts will be the pink stripes. I am not sure what I will do with their sheeting and comforter yet. The wall color is close to that blue I used in previous post. I am planning on doing the brown polka dot for the crib and maybe put in some green and blue with that. I then want to find a floral that can be used for decorative pillows as an accent.