The Legend of the Spinnerettes

Remember when They were spiders a few weeks ago? Remember when I said I was still picking thread from things days later? Really, I still am, but I just don’t say much, I just grump and grumble, checking my clothes before I leave the house for any stray “webs” and roll the remnants of the Spinnerettes into little knots and toss em away.

Well, tonite, my vacuum had enough. Done. Kaput. Gave up the ghost. Made the ultimate sacrifice. Giving the play room a once over, I headed into the guest room, and before I knew what was happening, yet another spool of thread was flying maniacally across the room, sucked into the twirling voracious rpm’s of the vacuum. Ever seen it? It would be kinda fun, the way the spool bounces across the room and hits the walls, willy-nilly, if only the vacuum wouldn’t then make that awful noise. That horrid noise, followed by the acrid smell of electric things getting too toasty.

In the fraction of a second it took me to kick the kill switch on ol Bessie, she sucked down almost a whole spool of nice, tan, cotton quilting thread. Thick thread, in case you’re not in the know. Rrrrrrrrr Kzkkkkkaaaaaa. Grind. Wheeze. Silence.

The Legend of the Spinnerette’s lives on. Ol’ Bessie has left the building.

Notes from California, Disneyland Edition

AWOL Mama checking in here! I’m still alive, just on vacation with the family. I’ve got a log jam of words banging around in my head from not writing for so many days, but this is going to be quick anyway. We’ve logged onto a wi-fi somewhere in Anaheim, and I’m doing a stealth posting on a pirate airwave on a borrowed computer from a hotel right, and I do mean right, across the street from Disneyland. We are here! Hooray! The babies are all asleep, worn out from their first day in the magic kingdom…

Pirating an airwave isn’t illegal, is it? I mean, it’s air, right? And pirates go with Disneyland, so Yo Ho, a pirates life for me! This is my first trip to Disneyland since new years eve 1999-2000- the longest stretch of my life without going to the park. My family are all Disney freaks- right now there are 10 of us in a family suite at the hotel, and uncle Freddy isn’t even here.

The best part of this trip is seeing my children light up with joy at the same things I loved as a kid. After a little trepidation, my kids were so totally gung-ho for all the rides. Jeffrey even rode Big Thunder Mountain, smooshed between my both brothers, with his hands high in the air. Eric was delighted with Dumbo and with the Buzz Lightyear ride. Abby slept and burped and didn’t care much for the blops of water that splashed on her in Pirates of the Caribbean, but otherwise has been most agreeable.

It is flippin HOT here, and I think I have sweated about a gallon pushing around babies in strollers, but I have a lot of help from my family, so three kids without the husband in Disneyland isn’t the disaster it has the potential to be. Tomorrow I’m seriously considering going out and buying a new stroller just for this trip- I have the new Silver Cross I bought a few weeks ago with us, and it is awesome, but Eric is using that and I have Abby in an older Peg Perego I borrowed from my cousin- and it’s not working so hot for five days in Disneyland. Dropping a hundred bucks on another stroller doesn’t delight me, but neither does being miserable for almost a week of walking all day. There is a Target up the street from Disneyland that opens at 8 tomorrow morning, and I may hijack my cousins car and make an irresponsible purchase. We’ll see…

The “shower” at the hotel when we got back tonite was actually more of a “spit and spray”, but after the HOT, I have never been so grateful for being “spit and sprayed” upon. Ah, cool water! Cool Anaheim water, at that!

I’m off to the Land of Nod- the babies are already there, and I go to join them. We’ll be in the park for a million hours tomorrow, so my poor feet and noggin need a bit on beauty sleep. Yo Ho, Yo ho, a mama’s life for me…. 

Notes from California Part 2, Chapter 1

Let me just state for the record, the DVD player was worth it’s weight in fruit snacks on our flight. Never has my little wild goat been so sedate on an airplane as he was yesterday… he walked down the jetway himself, entered the plane without leaving claw marks on the doorway, and buckled himself in his seat. He drank his juice, ate his contraband granola bar, popped his ear-buds in his little ears, and watched Stuart Little 2 for the entire flight. Hallelujah!!

In a mere two hours, we were safely on the ground in California and I was neither toally wiped out, nor ready to sell my children. My arms were not strectched out rubber bands from wrestling with a maniac child hell-bent on getting out of an airplane at 30,000 feet. It was the best flight ever.

We are all settled in, and had a super-crazy day yesterday, with all the travel and family goodness. I’m at Dumbs house right now, submersed in joy at his super fast, super gigantic computer and the delights thereof. He’s lying on his bed behind me, arguing about doing laundry with our cousin Michael, in his total bachelor room; huge computer, stacks of DVD’s, laundry, baseball gloves, history books and his funky hat he wears to play some game online. We like to tease him about his hat of funkness. but hey,I got me some free computer access!

My boys are sunburned already from playing ball in the backyard with Dumb and Dumber and half a dozen other friends and cousins. We have not real plans until next week when we head to Disneyland. I’m hoping my dad can sneak a fishing trip in for the boys- even if they don’t catch anything, who but a grandpa should teach boys to fish??

Being with family is so wonderful. It’s been two days, and no one has even gotten ticked at anyone else yet! Yehaw! Here’s to a wonderful week…

My Rose Colored Glasses

Ta-da! I did it! Now I know you all were expecting some sort of rhinestone encrusted Elton John jobby, so don’t be disappointed. I’m crummy at this digital photography thing (give me an SLR any day!) and I didn’t get the rhinestone heart on the left lens to show up well. Oops. But it’s there, you can see it. I guess it’t the right lens in the picture! For me, these are flaming flamboyant! And who doesn’t love the world better looking through rose-colored glasses?

Cheap Sunglasses

My daughter is bringing out something surprising in me: I am softening towards things pink and, maybe, just maybe, I am enjoying, a little bit more than I used to, being a girl.

Yesterday, I wore a pink sweater to church- a big deal, since my wardrobe consists mostly of black, white and gray. I also wore heels, a pencil skirt and my hair up- what gives? I actually felt kinda pretty. Oh, and the topper- pink rhinestone sunglasses I got at the dollar store! Oh-yeah! What’s happening to me!?? It was fun, and many of my friends complimented me- I think they were just coveting the sunglasses, but whatever. (Oh and the sweater came from Stephen King’s Thrift Shop!)

I’ve always wanted to be more adventurous than I am. To have the courage to be less than ordinary. My wild curly hair has kind of forced a crazy look on me, but I always wanted to be more Carrie than Charlotte. So now that I have a daughter, I am aware of how I feel about being a woman and mother is going have a direct bearing on how she learns and see’s herself. It is also causing me to re-examine my own relationship with my mother, and try and cull the good things worth keeping, but that’s another idea for another day.

It’s not that I want my daughter to think she has to be made-up and in a pink rhinestone sweater to be feminine. Not at all. But I’m thinking I have been kind of lopsided in my femininity- my intellect is nurtured, by creativity is nurtured, but I often neglect the parts of being a girl that can be fun, too. I can read Goethe and Dostoevsky, run my own business, be woman of faith, a mother, a wife AND sometimes sport pink rhinestone sunglasses. Here’s to breaking down our own barriers, whimsey and being well-rounded!

Date Night

My husband and I went on a date last night. We got a sitter, got the Monkeys in their jammies, packed up Abby with us, and took off. Oh, how good it felt. It doesn’t matter what we did, or where we went- we just drove around for a long time, enjoying the quiet. We don’t get much quiet these days. Conversation was organic, and sprung up as inspired, rather than smushed in between kid-tastrophes. How nice it was to be away for a few hours.

Abby slept most of the evening, delightful little doll she is. We got a bite to eat, did a little shopping in peace and quiet, and when we got home, the Monkeys were in bed, sound asleep. The perfect Saturday night.


Tuesday I took the Monkeys to see “Cars”, and I am still recovering. Not from the movie- it was cute and we’ll add it to our arsenal when Costco gets the DVD, but recovering from the experience of taking a 2 year-old, 4 year-old and 7-week-old to the movies. By. Myself.

It was a rookie mistake, but I’m no rookie. I am however, still asking myself “why?” and trying to calm down the tic that has taken over the left half of my face. Let’s just say Eric won’t be going to any movies for, oh, say, maybe a few years. Jeffrey was enthralled and well-behaved, and Abby, well-fed and snuggled in her seat, slept through almost the whole movie.

The saving grace was that it was a noon matinee on a Tuesday- anyone who didn’t appreciate a child rolling on the floor and occasionally biting his mother- could easily have moved. I paid my king’s ransom for the tickets and the king-kong sized popcorn, and I wasn’t going to leave. Enough said.

So, if you have little ones who can sit still for more than 22 minutes, have a go at it. The animation is stellar, per normal for the Disney/Pixar mix, the story is cute and has a good moral, there are some genuinely funny moments- I really liked the tractors and the glow-in-the-dark cars. Beautifully done.

But if you see a woman with a string of red-headed boys and a baby somewhere on her body, you might want to find a seat somewhere else. Away. Far away. Enjoy your movie.

Stephen King’s Thrift Store

Mr. King would turn the new thrift store up the street into some sort of Needful Things novel, and he would undoubtedly do a much better job painting a word picture than I will, but I have to try anyway.

Last night I went to check out the new place, always in the market for cheap dress shirts for my Monkeys. When I walked in, the place just felt, well, weird. I kept thinking- weird…Weird. It was an older building, but recently had been refaced and painted white- everything inside was white- shiny, new, bright white. But it smelled old, musty and aged, like the pages of an old book. Like a thrift store. The contrast was, weird.

As I walked around, I was startled to see really old stuff. Things that in other thrift stores, you see marked Vintage, and marked way up. Clothes my grandmother wore when I was a small child, things I’ve seen in faded photographs from when my mother was young, caftans and hot pants and beaded cocktail gowns- seriously vintage stuff- at 1971 prices- $2 here, 50 cents for something else… Strange. And it was really old stuff- things you could put on e-Bay and get a fortune for. There were records, 45’s, comic books, all looking resonably new- but they were 30 or 40 years old. I found two “Light Bright” games from when I was a kid- still in the box, marked $2.00. I would have bought one, but where would I get the black paper? Strange.

Everything about the place was “out of time”- the music over the speakers was oldies- Jefferson Airplane, Strawberry Alarm Clock, Santana- I just kept shaking my head to try and clear the cobwebs.

There were plates and dishes from my grandma’s when I was young, there were baby clothes made of organza and obviously handmade. Little dresses, again handmade, smocked and immaculate, for $1.99. The fabric was old, but they were all clean and pressed. Weird. The books were old, like from the WWII era, and there was a lot of surplus-like stuff, but all from bygone times- like someone cleaned out storage lockers from 1955… Electro typewriters for $15, big, bonnet hairdryers for $5.00, and a desk lamp I almost bought that looked like something from Ed Harris’ desk in Apollo 13.

I kept walking around marveling at the strangeness. I picked up a dress shirt for Eric, and when I went to pay, the checker-girl was reading. She was reading “Go Ask Alice”. Out of place, out of time. Weird.