Monday, May 26, 2008


This morning, Francesca was buttering her toast and commented on our choice of margarine:

"I Can't Believe It's Not Butter? Mommy, is that a joke??"

I was howling. I forget sometimes that she is learning to read. Plus our kids are mini-advertising geniuses. They know EVERY sign, brand, slogan...Scott and I thought that was so funny. She got confused, because of course, it LOOKS like butter. No further explanation needed.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Mud puddles are so much fun

Right now I am soaking their clothes from TBall. Their sneakers are in the washing machine. I hate mud. They love mud. I run from mud, they run towards it, embrace its' mushiness and jump in headfirst. Ugh. Francesca was scooping up great big handfuls of mud and sand that was supposed to be the squares enclosing the TBall bases. She was supposed to be playing third base, not squishing mud through her fingers. I guess mud is part of being a kid. I think it was way more fun when I was the kid making mud pies, not the mommy praying for it to come out of the clothing. To my mommy, I now apologize for all the mud pies I made. I can just imagine all the cleaning that came along with them!

I really hope the field is dry on Friday when it's time to play our next game!

Sunday, May 18, 2008


We went to the PC Coach Diner after church this morning. Gavin protested a little, as he wanted to go to th IHOP in Larchmont. However, with a vote of 3 to 1, the diner won. I love IHOP, but didn't want to wait 45 minutes to be seated. So over a leisurely breakfast of eggs and hash (them not me, I don't touch the stuff) Scott told the children how him and I used to come to the diner in our much younger years, late at night, for our old standby of iced tea and fries with cheese and gravy.

"That was when I was wooing Mommy, guys."

"Wooing, daddy??? Did you mean mooing? What's wooing?"

No Gavin, he told him, wooing was when I was trying to get mommy to like me and date me. And give me kisses!

"Kisses!!! Eww!!! That's disgusting! Why would mommy want to give you kisses???"

"Well, Gavin, if mommy didn't like me and give me kisses, you and Checka would have never been here..."

"EWWWWW...still, why did she have to kiss you?? That is really disgusting!"

And that is a discussion best left alone for a few more years!

Friday, May 16, 2008

The Master of His Domain

Gavin and I ran into Stop and Shop quickly last night before we went home. I had to pick up dessert for my religion class - it was our last night and we were having a pizza party (and I did not bake it myself, geez sometimes I disappoint myself). Anyway, Gav was happy. The lady who sliced our cold cuts gave him a piece each of bologna and turkey. Ah, what a life. Bologna and turkey just for smiling and saying please...

In the meat and poulty section I spied chicken breast for $1.99/lb. What a deal. Who cares if I had to buy 3 lbs. or more - we have a deep freeze! So there I am mulling over whether I want to buy the chicken, and Gav is getting antsy. Now that he has finished his little snack he wants to make a beeline for the OJ and grab some to take home. I asked him (why I don't know) if I should buy the chicken.

"Gavin, should mommy buy chicken?"

"I don't know mommy. I am not the master of chicken. You are."

"OK. What is daddy the master of?"

"Steak. Daddy is the master of steak because he cooks on the grill."

"Are you the master of anything?"

"Oh yes, Mommy! I am the master of cold cuts!! I am the master! Now get me some more bologna!!"

Then I started giggling to myself, thinking of the Seinfeld "master of his domain" episode. I couldn't even explain to Gavin WHY I was laughing.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Francesca's Birthday Party - the recap

Our weekend was hectic. I stressed all week about the weather. If it rained, how was I going to squeeze 13 kids (plus an assortment of parents) in my living room?? Saturday morning when I woke up I was soooo happy to see the sun. It wasn't really shining yet, but it was trying to peek through. The day started off good - went to Weight Watchers and didn't gain. Didn't lose, but hey, can't win 'em all. I am still down 25 lbs. which is a major accomplishment considering I will eat almost anything that isn't nailed down. My kids and husband are proud of me too - 2 weekends ago, we went to our friend's daughter's birthday and Francesca proudly announced as we walked through the door, "MY MOMMY LOST 25 POUNDS. DOESN'T SHE LOOK GREAT??" Thank God we were the first guests to arrive....Anyway, back to the party. After WW, T-Ball and various trips to pick up balloons, beer, ice, the cake and Garden Catering, we were home and ready for the party to begin. Both kids were itchy with excitement.

All of our party guests arrived and all the kids hung out on our swingset. It's so nice to see kids just playing - no XBox, no computers, no heavily scheduled activities. Just playing. Running and jumping and swinging and yelling. Lots of yelling. After a quick lunch of Garden Catering chicken nuggets, fries and potato cones (my favorite) the Bear Bus arrived!! The kids loved the Bear Bus, and we loved that they came to us!! That took about 45 minutes or so, and then the kids decorated sand pails with foam stickers. Then we had cake. And fruit. A watermelon bowl to be exact. Scott decided to make a scalloped watermelon bowl at 11PM the night before. Gavin loved that more than he loved the cake. He couldn't keep his little fingers out of it.

After that party was over, we had about 1 hour before our family party started. Time to make some Sangria!!! Yum-O, as Rachel Ray would say. That was fun too. Francesca had a good time, Gavin crashed and fell asleep on the living room rug. We covered him with a blanket and left him under the watchful eye of our nephew Nick (or "big scary Nicky" as Gavin likes to call him. I guess when you are Gav's size, someone as tall as Nick is scary. Nick is tall. Gavin comes up to like his, maybe his hip. Anyway, Nick is tall!) Scott and I were exhausted that night. But the kids had fun. We had fun. Francesca is already planning her 7th birthday! Poor us!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The birthday cake dilemma

I ended up ordering her a Barbie princess cake from Harrison Bake Shop. You know, the cake where there is a Barbie standing straight up in the middle and the her dress is the cake. The thought of doing all that baking and decorating and praying that it looked good was just too overwhelming yesterday. But I am baking 25 cupcakes right now for her to take to school on Friday. They will get iced tomorrow night. I still have to bake some sort of cake for our family party Saturday night but that is no big deal. As long as it has a candle in it, Francesca will not care if it is a Bundt cake or a 27-layer cake.

Scott comes home tonight. It's a good thing, because Francesca was pretty peeved in the middle of the night when she walked into our room looking for her daddy. Once she woke up a little and remembered he was not there, she huffed and then snuggled under the covers with me. Humpfh! I guess I am not the one she wants in the middle of the night (mostly because I tend to sleep through her calling us)...

Monday, May 5, 2008

Am I nuts?

Without knowing the question, those who know me would say yes. Francesca's 6th birthday is coming up this Friday, and I have a whole load of baking to do. Friday it is her turn to bring snack into her kindergarten class. Our school has (supposedly has I should say) a healthy eating initiative, so I can't just send her with a pack of Oreos Double Stuff. I have tried, since the beginning of the school year, to send healthy stuff. She has brought in Go-Gurt's, bagels, pretzels, HOMEMADE low-fat, low-sugar chocolate chip muffins (see how nuts I really am?) and most recently mini yogurts. One of the memos sent home by the principal stresses how we should make sure that if we are baking for the class, we use applesauce instead of oil and "healthy" ingredients. Yeah, OK, are they going to test my cupcakes' fat and calorie content? Anyway...Her Royal Highness Princess Francesca Audra has decreed that she wants "fruit kebobs" for her healthy birthday snack. While this is a great idea, I will not be responsible for one 5 year old poking another's eye out with said kebob skewer. No way. I have to figure this one out.

Meanwhile, I have her birthday cake to contend with. Scott suggested I buy a bakery cake. Oh no. I make a damn good cake. I am a good baker. I may not be perfect, but I can bake. She wants a princess castle cake - with turrets. So I have been looking online for recipes. From what I can see, this castle cake is going to be a little labor-intensive. I haven't committed to this cake just yet, but I think I will need to start baking the layers tomorrow night, freeze them for a few days and then decorate late into the hours of Friday night/Saturday morning in preparation for her birthday party on Saturday. Then get up for TBall Saturday morning. Then have 15 kids at our house for the "Bear Bus" birthday. Then have our families over that night. I am nuts. Did I mention my husband is in Las Vegas on business??? I have to bake the Princess Castle Cake. When she was 2 I made her a Crayola Crayon box cake. When she was 5 I made her a Ladybug ice cream filled cake. For Gavin's birthday last year I banged out Thomas the Tank Engine. I think it's time to go print that recipe and make sure I have enough flour, sugar and vodka (for me not the cake) to see me through the weekend! Check back next week for pictures!!!