Saturday, August 28, 2010

You are the best thing that's ever been mine

Sissy is in the midst of a love affair with this person:
I mean, an obsession is in the offing here.  Not that I mind, I dig T-Swift, but I can't help but wonder if the subject matter of her songs is a little advanced for an eight year-old with a penchant for drama.  Last year, she was convinced she was in love with a little boy in another 2nd grade class, and fixated on the whole notion of "boyfriends and  girlfriends" for about 5 months.  I did a lot of handwringing and imagining what she'll be like at 14 during that 5 months.

Anyway, she's also still a little girl at heart:
From what I can tell, eight's gonna be all over the place.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

I want this.

I want a game closet in my house like this.  I love the whole retro vibe of this movie, and love the idea of kids playing board games and abandoning video games altogether.  I'm just having a fit of 70's nostalgia, I guess...all I know is that if you haven't seen The Royal Tenenbaums, you should.  You really should.  If only for Alec Baldwin's narration. 

Monday, August 23, 2010

I'm Not THAT Kind of Mother

Today was the first day of school for us.  I teach at the school Sassy attends, so we got to face the day toge ther--which was nice.  She's in third grade which completely boggles my mind, but there it is:
Sassy doesn't start pre-school until next week, so she is staying with family until her year starts.  I've always taught at my girls' school, so I'm spoiled in terms of having access to them whenever I want/need them for something.  Sassy's new pre-school is close by, but I won't be the one to drop her off at school, or pick her up, either, and I'm really struggling with that. 

As a teacher, I shamefully confess to judging the parents (really, the mothers--'cause that's what we women do) of my students who can't come to parties, ceremonies, etc. because of work or other issues.  I also pass judgment on the quality of my students' lunches, their hair, and their parents' ability to make sure forms, permission slips, and the like get to school in a timely manner.  In my total lack of humility and love for my fellow man I pat myself on the back for dotting all those i's, crossing all those t's, and looking to the world like a responsible, on-top-of-it mother.

This afternoon after school, my husband was mowing the backyard, and I was getting dinner together.  Sissy was in her room, and last I'd checked, three year-old Sassy was in the living room watching TV.  The doorbell rang, and I went to the front door, irritated and convinced it must be someone selling something.  There stood my neighbor from down the street, holding Sassy's hand.  She had gone out the open garage door (my husband left it open when he took out the lawn equipment) and wandered, barefoot and stringy-haired, 6 or 8 houses down to the cul-de-sac at the end of our street.  My neighbor just happened to be outside with her kids and recognized Sassy.  Since she has some speech issues, nobody would have been able to understand her if they'd asked her name, and I'm not altogether sure she could pick her house out of all the houses on our street.

If she'd wandered the other direction, she would most likely have been hit by a car, as we live just off the very busy main street into our neighborhood. 

My neighbor was very kind, and didn't seem to judge me as harshly as I judge others' parenting skills.  In her position, I'm sure I would have dropped off the errant child and thought to myself  "Hmph...she should really keep a better eye on her kids."  What a fool I am to think that my children are somehow immune to accidents or worse, simply because I manage to look like a "good" parent. 

One of my favorite pastors once remarked "Being able to discern others' shortcomings is not a spiritual gift," but we often act like it is.  Or I do, anyway.  Maybe today has taught me to be a little more compassionate, a little more humble, and surely more thankful for the two precious girls with which God has entrusted me.  In the meantime, this:
is starting to look more and more like a viable option every day.  Lord help me with this child.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Back to School

I love "back to school" time.  My life as a child was pretty unpredictable, but school provided a stability and structure that made me so happy and secure.  The school library was my special sanctuary, where I pored over Old Yeller, all the Ramona books, and several Judy Blume books I'd have a stroke if my third-grade daughter read today.

As a teacher, I still love this time of year.  While I might fuss about meeting after meeting, neverending inservices, and massive amounts of prep work, the truth is, I love starting over every year.  I love the promise of new experiences, the hopeful feeling that comes with investigating and trying out new teaching techniques.  I love that each year is a chance to do better, to *be* better at this wonderful profession in which God has placed me.  But, most of all, I love those rows of sweet, expectant faces waiting to be loved, understood, and taught.

I love that God made me a teacher.    

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Creative discipline? Abuse? You decide.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

BBQ, Buzz, and Woody

Sassy turns 3 on Sunday, and it has been non-stop Toy Story for the last month at our house.  I'm going to attempt a Buzz Lightyear cake, so check back for pictures if you want a good laugh.  Maybe it will be good (or bad) enough to wind up here

Martha has a great from-scratch BBQ sauce I'm dying to try.  If you make it with the new HFCS-free ketchup, it's perfect!

There you have my weekend rambles.  We're in the middle of a small kitchen remodel, so I'm pretty strung out between that and the impending party.  And I have PMS.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Let's Try This Again

Well, it's only taken me four months to come back to blogging.  I started teaching again, which tends to cut down on free time (read: eliminate it completely), and life has been a bit of a whirlwind.  Also, we started streaming netflix throught our Wii, which has sucked me into marathon Lost watching with my husband.  I still am not sure my brain has switched to summer mode yet, but Sissy and Sassy are fully in the swing of summer:

Life is good.  I'm hoping to do some sewing, crafting, cooking this summer that I can share. 


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

This blogging break is being brought to you by a corneal abrasion. Please stand by.

In case you were wondering, I look nowhere near this cool.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Free dog = Good reason

I am one of those annoying people who like little, yappy dogs.  Before you decide to hate me, I promise I never loaded one into a purse and carried it around the mall, or anything.  I like tiny and cute.  I'm a girl, for Pete's sake, and the idea of one of my stuffed animals coming to life was long one of my most fervent fantasies when I was little.  As soon as I was old enough for pet ownership, I gravitated toward Chihuahuas.  Tiny and cute, right?
This is PJ, my first chihuahua.  Actually, she was a Chihuahua-Pomeranian mix.  She was a Chihuahuaranian.  Or a Pomehuahua, take your pick.
She was sooo fat and funny-looking.  Her hair was super fuzzy, and her body was roughly the size and shape of a small barrel.  Unfortunately, her head was about the size of an orange.  Strangers would laugh at her when we took her for a walk.  She had tracheal malaisia (sp?), which made her hack and gag and cough and spit like a cat with a hairball.  She was a mess, but she was even-tempered and sweet.  Never 100% house-broken, though.
Chihuahua #2--Mya.  Isn't she cute?  Good thing, because she is about 5 pounds of pure, unadulterated stupid.

Mya was free.  We traded a rabbit for her (don't ask).  PJ had gone to that great dog park in the sky, and I was on the prowl for tiny and cute again.  Mya is a full-blooded Chihuahua, which I thought would make her smarter and more well-adjusted than a mixed breed.  Little did I know that Chihuahua blood is rife with  crazy, so a full-blooded Chihuahua can be fully twice as insane as any mutt known to man.  She barks, and barks, and BARKS UNTIL YOU WANT TO POKE A STICK UP YOUR NOSE AND SCRAMBLE YOUR BRAIN LIKE AN ANCIENT EGYPTIAN SO THAT IT WILL PLEASE, PLEASE STOP.  We got her when she was 7 months old, and guess what?  She wasn't 100% housebroken.  She is tiny and cute, and I think I hate her (not really--not all the time, anyway).
Chihuahua #3--Sugar
I turned 35 this past summer.  At roughly the same time, Sassy turned 2, and stopped smelling like a baby and started smelling like a stinky little kid.  I was less than happy, so I started looking for another tiny cute thing to love on.  And I found Sugar.  When we got her at 6 weeks, she weighed exactly 1 pound.  She's now up to 2.2 lbs., so has remained tiny and cute, and thankfully is almost 100% housebroken.  She's not a barker, thank goodness, but she is a licker.  She will lay on the sofa, licking the same spot on the upholstery over and over until it looks like you  poured a glass of water there.  This is what Mya and Sugar spend roughly 90% of their time doing:
playing...I guess?  It always sounds like about a million angry bees, with occasional yelping.  Who knows?  I'm about to give up on tiny and cute.
Should I go for big and ugly next time?

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Braving the Texas winter

We needed a little vitamin D therapy yesterday, so we hit the backyard.  Boy, it was rough out there in January--I think it was around 70 degrees or so.  Now, I fully admit there WILL be whining in July when it's 102 out and I'm praying that my 15 year-old A/C unit makes it through (please, please Lord, I implore you--just one more summer?  Just one?), but for now--I'm digging Texas.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

My Kid Could (and did!) Paint That

please 'scuse the flash in the above picture. thank you.

Sissy's artwork.  For an almost eight year-old, I'd say she's pretty awesome.  I want to go sit on that island and drink a margarita, staring at the sunset.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Tiny Tates

We made cupcakes this weekend ("tiny tates", according to Sassy).  Very non-nutritious, cake-mix-from-a-box, pastel-hydrogenated-oil-frosting-in-a-can cupcakes.  They were fun & also delish. 

Chocolate, lemon, and cherry frosting--the cherry was pretty gross, actually--don't ever buy it.

Sissy got right down to business...


Sassy, however, was quite intent upon creating a frosting masterpiece.

Not yet...


what?  You didn't tell me there were sprinkles! last.  And it only took 30 minutes to frost one cupcake!  Perfection takes time. 

Friday, January 8, 2010

Checking In With the Chillun

Sassy smelling a leaf--what do leaves smell like, anyway?  I'll have to ask.

Just wanted to do a quick update on Sissy and Sassy, for whom this little blog is named.  We are having sleeping issues around the S & S household.  Sassy has graduated to a "big-girl" bed and has lost her mind in the process.  She used to be this baby:

Day or night, you could put this baby in her crib with a binky and her blanket, and she would drift right off to dreamland.  Maybe a cry or two here and there, but mostly such a great sleeper I got VERY spoiled--I did crazy things like take a shower, fold laundry, check the mail.  It was such a welcome change from this baby:

This beautiful child is the worst sleeper the sweet Lord ever made.  We finally drove her out of our bed when she was 5.  She still wakes up EVERY SINGLE NIGHT at least once, and she's about to turn 8.  I doubt she's ever experienced a single REM cycle in her life.  I know I've gone 8 years without one.  Somehow, she has stealthily communicated to her sister that it would be a great idea if they satggered their late-night awakenings.  It goes a little something like this:

8:00--Daddy gets Sassy to sleep; takes about 15 minutes
8:30--Sissy gets into bed, sternly warned not to read any books
10:00--after much drama (and book-reading), Sissy falls asleep
11:00--Daddy & Mommy turn in for the night
11:30--Sassy wakes up & Daddy goes & gets her back to sleep
2:00--Sissy comes in to use our bathroom, though there's one right next door to her room
3:30--Sassy wakes up & is brought into our bed out of desperation
5:30--Daddy hits alarm and nearly weeps from pure exhaustion
6:30--Mommy hits alarm and does same.

Sometimes, not one of us wakes up in the same place we started out the night before.  Often, actually.  And when I go in to wake up Sissy for school, I get this look:
Actually, that is a much nicer look than the one I usually get.  I refuse to take a picture of her devil-possessed look.

Oh, well.  One day I'll  back on these times and wish they still wanted nothing more than to snuggle in my bed.  But that time will probably coincide with me waiting up to see if they make curfew.  Sigh.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Ringing in the new year

Oh, bloggy friends, it's been too long.  I took a break to deal with all the insanity that is Christmas in my family, and am finally feeling normal again.  And, of course, I made the obligatory resolution to lose weight.  This time, though, it HAS to be different.  I'm 35 & at my highest weight ever.  And, friends, it is high.  The good news is that, by counting calories, I'm already down 4 pounds or so.  My goals, specifically:

To stop abusing food--'tis my delicious drug of choice
To drink lots of water
To pay attention to my body and its signals
To log everything I eat into
To exercise moderately, stepping up the intensity when I see some weight coming off through dieting

Pretty much sounds like the boring advice in every magazine on the stands right now.  But I feel bad, and bloated, and unattractive, and unhealthy...the list goes on.  Most of the time the simplest thing is the best thing, so I'm ebracing the simplicity of this plan.  Keep you posted.

PS--I would give a whole, whole lot of money for a Dr. Pepper right now.  No fooling.