Saturday, November 29, 2008

Do You Have a Belly Button?

Today at dinner the topic of conversation turned to belly buttons. I'm not sure how this topic got started. My kids love it when I say "belly button" in Japanese (hey so) and chase after them until I grab them and tickle their tummies or belly buttons. I think my 6 year old pulled up his shirt for some reason and exposed his belly button. My husband asked him to sit right and eat dinner. I said that I couldn't play the belly button game during dinner (I know, I'm such a mean mom).

My husband asks my 6 year old if he know what kinds of animals have belly buttons. My 6 year old doesn't know. My husband explains that "warm blooded" animals have belly buttons. My 6 year old isn't sure what "warm blooded" means. So I try to help. "Animals that are born from their moms have belly buttons. Animals that are born from eggs do not have belly buttons," I say.

My 6 year old seems to understand. He says, "so snakes don't have belly buttons."

"Would the dog have a belly button?" I ask.

My 6 year looks at the dog (we're dog sitting until Monday) and thinks. He finally replies, "Yes."

My 4 year old has been sitting at the table and now wants to join this conversation. "Mom doesn't have a belly button," he says.

"Why not? She has a mother," my husband replies.

"Because she's a grown up," is the 4 year old's reply.

I don't know how to reason with his logic. Apparently all grown ups don't have belly buttons. They must fall off somehow when we turn 18! Who knew?!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

What Time Is It?

When I came home from my class tonight, my 6 year old was anxious to tell me what he learned while I was gone.

"Mom, guess what I did," he said.

First I took a quick look around. Seeing nothing out of the ordinary, I asked, "what did you do?"

"I changed the clock," he replied.

"Which clock?" I asked.

"The one in the kitchen."

"Does daddy know?" I asked. My husband was supposed to be watching them while I was gone.

"No. I think this will be my trick for April Fool's day."

"But it's Thanksgiving, not April Fool's Day." I pointed out.

"That's OK. Daddy doesn't know that."

And he was probably right.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Dog Worries

I started dog-sitting today. This dog is my absolute favorite dog to watch. She is great with kids and so well trained. She doesn't bark and doesn't pull on the leash. My kids were very excited when the dog and her owner rang our doorbell today.

The dog was very happy to see us. She ran around and around and squealed with delight. It must be great to be a dog. Never have to worry about letting your emotions get the best of you. Never having to worry about what other people will think. Never having to worry about jeans making your butt look big (they always do. That's how jeans are made). Never having to worry much about anything.

What do dogs have to worry about? Hmm... "If I pee on this carpet, I might have to stay outside in the rain"? "If I help myself to the leftover sandwich on the counter I might get hit with the newspaper."

It must be nice to be a dog... except for that sleeping on the floor part. Oh! and that peeing outside on the grass part. Um... And eating off the floor and letting little kids run after you doesn't sound so good either.

Monday, November 24, 2008

How Many Things Can You Handle?

Lately, I feel like I'm on a new game show called, "How Many Things Can You Handle?" The players on this game show are moms and the object of the game show is to see how many things that mom can handle at one time.

Last week my husband was sick. We also had a tree take down part of our fence. I hired someone to remove the tree. My husband was better and he fixed the fence. I'm glad he was able to do it this weekend because last month, I agreed to dog-sit over Thanksgiving. It's much easier to dog-sit when you don't have a big hole in your fence.

Then I got sick. When I get a cold, I get a bloody nose and terrible headaches. It's a lot of fun. I stayed in the house recovering while my husband was outside with the fence and the kids. My 4 year old jumped from the swing set and landed on his face. He came in the house covered with blood and mud. I called the dentist who said to wait till Monday to bring him in (He's fine. No damage to the permanent tooth.).

My 6 year old has half days this week. Who's idea was idea was it to give the elementary school half days right before Thanksgiving?! Don't they know that we are busy preparing for Thanksgiving and we don't have time for half days?!

This morning I woke up ready to take my 6 year old to the bus stop and my 4 year old to the dentist. Then I realized that my 4 year old has wet his bed. He doesn't do this often. In fact, he wasn't sure what happened. But he was sure that it wasn't his fault. He told me that all of his clothes were wet. And he was a little annoyed at me for making them wet. I had to explain to him that he peed in his bed. His older brother had fun repeating that for everyone today.

I didn't have time to get any errands done while my 6 year old was in school. So after lunch I took both kids to the bank and then to the dollar store (I also need to plan a birthday party) and then to the library and to the jewelry store. At the dollar store I asked the kids more than once to not touch anything. Finally I took my 6 year old and made him stand right in front of me. He wasn't happy about this. Then he started to say that he wasn't touching anything bad. He put his index finger on my arm and said, "see it's OK to touch you." I tried to ignore this. Then he put his finger on the checkout counter, "I can touch here." And then on the lotto machine... I thought I was going to scream. I took the kids in the kids and slapped their hands (The 4 year old was copying the 6 year old). I told them that I still needed to go to the library but they weren't allowed to pick anything out. Who's crazy idea was it to give these kids half days?! Really! I would like to have a word with that person.

So after that I needed to add a trip to the liquor store on my list of errands. And that concludes another fun round of "How Many Things Can You Handle?"

Friday, November 21, 2008

I'm Sick

My husband gave me his cold. Now I'm sick. He took off from work earlier this week because of his cold. I don't get sick days :(

The tree people came and removed the tree that broke my fence. Hopefully my husband will be able to fix the fence this weekend. We're supposed to dog-sit starting on Wednesday. It will be much easier if the fence is fixed before the dog arrives! And hopefully I'll finally get to take a sick day this weekend.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

It's Official!

Today I went jogging in the rain. So that makes me an "official" Seattleite! (Doesn't that sound a little too much like satellite? But that's what people in Seattle call themselves.)

A while ago, I read an article about the healthiest cities in the U.S. Seattle ranked somewhere near the top. Seattle is known to have a big "Organic" trend (they even have organic pet food stores now!). And I think the number of teriyaki joints outnumber the burger joints around here. You can find coffee on every corner, but might have to drive 30 minutes for the nearest Donut shop.

But it's not just the food people eat. Seattleites are also known for their exercise. The area around Seattle is full of hiking and bike trails. Many people even ride their bike to work. Most streets have designated bike lanes. And the buses even have bike racks in the front. So bikers can take their bike with them when they ride the bus. (The first time I saw this, I laughed. In NYC there aren't many bike riders and I have never seen a bike rack on a bus!). Yes Seattle is also know for its rainy season, but that doesn't stop people. They continue to have baseball games, outdoor recess, ride bikes and go camping in the rain.

I once thought that I would never adjust to doing things outside in the rain. On the east coast when it rains, we go inside or use umbrellas. I once went Christmas shopping with my sister in NYC. It was raining. We went from Macy's to Rockefeller Center in the rain. Our paper shopping bags were wet and ripping and we had to dodge all of the umbrellas on the sidewalk. It was typical New York and I loved it! I've been told that only tourists use umbrellas in Seattle. Well this morning I went for a walk and a job in the rain without my umbrella. I feel like I passed some sort of initiation ritual and I'm officially a Seattleite now.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Follow the Leader

I went to my dance class tonight. I've been taking belly dancing for a while now. The class I currently take is for tribal belly dancing. It has a very natural earthy feel to it. Nothing is choreographed. We dance in a troop and follow the leader from cues she gives. Dancing together has a great sense of unity or sisterhood. It had to describe in words.

The troop takes turns being the lead dancer. When my my turn came up, I started one move and then felt my coin belt was coming loose. I could feel it getting ready to fall to my ankles. So I did a move that would cause all of the dancers to face the back wall and hopefully give me a few seconds to tighten my belt.

My plan didn't work. All the dancers saw my quick reach for my belt. And they did want any troop of tribal belly dancers would do... They followed! So everyone started to move their hands on the waist until they realized that I wasn't actually starting a new dance move, I was trying to keep my belt on! The teacher had to stop the music so we could all laugh. Later that night when it was my turn to be the lead again, my teacher motioned for me to start the "tighten your belt" move. Guess no one is going to forget that dance move for a while!

Monday, November 17, 2008

He Called You a What???

My first grade son came home from school today and the following conversation took place.

First grade son: Mom, another boy in my class was calling me names today.

Me: What did he call you?

First grade son: He called me an agent. But not the kind of agent who spies and spies and stuff. The other kind of agent.

Me: (totally confused) What other kind of agent?

First grade son: You know, the kind of agent from Ay-ge-na.

Me: Oh.... You mean he called you an Asian from Asia?

First grade son: (almost in tears) yeah.

Me: (thinking this is not a good time to point out that my son actually is Asian) Well, that boy doesn't really know what he's talking about. He doesn't even know the difference between Asian and an Agent.

First grade son: (not looking convinced) I told the teacher.

Me: What did the teacher say?

First grade son: That if he does it again he'll get a yellow face. (They get a green smiley face if they stay out of trouble all day, a yellow face for misbehaving and red is even worse.)

Me: Ok, you let me know if he does it again. But try not to listen to what that boy says.

My son is half Japanese and half white. And he has dual citizenship. So he is Asian! It breaks my heart to see my kids so upset and hurt by other kids' teasing. But sometimes I don't know whether to laugh or cry!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Tag! You're It!

I don't usually like doing these things, but tonight I was a little grateful to find that Michelle at Honest and Truly had tagged me, otherwise I have no idea what I would write about. I try not to complain too much on my blog and well.... My weekend hasn't exactly been fun. I'm still waiting for someone to remove that tree that ruined my yard last weekend. I had to go to a birthday for a 7 year old. My husband was sick this weekend and he has unrealistic expectations. I think he should know by now that if you tell the kids to find something to do and leave you alone, they will take that to mean, "Go ahead and break everything you can find, just don't block the TV."

So here is the Tag:

The rules? Answer the following questions in one word and then pass it on to seven others.

Where is your cell phone? Purse
Where is your significant other? Sofa
Your hair color? Blond
Your mother? Betty
Your father? Jerry
Your favorite thing? Donut
Your dream last night? None
Your dream/goal? everything
The room you’re in? Office
Your hobby? Couponing
Your fear? beingtaggedagain
Where do you want to be in 6 years? vacation
Where were you last night? bowling
What you’re not? Tall
One of your wish-list items? vacation
Where you grew up? Philly
Last thing you did? shower
What are you wearing? Pajamas
Your TV? on
Your pet? none
Your computer? working
Your mood? normal
Missing someone? No
Your car? Old
Something you’re not wearing? skis
Favorite store? Macy's
Your summer? Over
Love someone? Yes
Your favorite color? Green
When is the last time you laughed? Today
Last time you cried? yes

And for my tags:

I know you're supposed to have 7, but I don't always follow the rules :P

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

A Perfect Match

It's Wednesday, so that meant today was Chess Club day at my son's school. After helping my son, I went over to see how my neighbor's son was doing. My son taught my neighbor's son "everything he knows" about chess. So my neighbor's son doesn't really know how to play chess.

My neighbor's son was very excited to see me come over and told me that he won the first game.

"That's great," I said.

Then the little girl he was playing against told me how the boy didn't actually win. "He just captured my king. But you really need to capture the queen to win."

So it appears those two chess players were a perfect match.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

New Landscaping

This is what I woke up to find this morning. A tree fee in the greenbelt behind my yard. The tree was close to my fence. The tree feel from the roots. The root system went up creating a crater in my back yard and pushing the fence up out of the ground. 3 panels need to be fixed. I know it could be worse, but what a pain! Anyone know any good tree removal companies???

Thursday, November 6, 2008


A friend from high school contacted me today. We keep in touch through email, but I haven't spoken to her in years. It was a strange familiarity to hear her voice again. She told me that another friend from high school had died this week. Her name was Erika.

Erika and I went to the Catholic high school in my town for our freshman and sophomore years. We didn't have any classes together and never really knew each other. We both happened to transfer to the same public high school for our junior year. We were put in the same orientation and almost immediately became friends.

I hadn't talked to Erika in at least 10 years. The friend I spoke with today told me that Erika never married. She lived in Arizona and she was happy.

It is strange to think that someone my age could just die. Erika was alone in her apartment the night she died. She called 911 and was found dead when the paramedics arrived. They are doing an autopsy but it appears to be a natural death. When did we become so old?

I know it is selfish of me to think this way, but how could this happen to my friend? my age? my classmate?

Even though I hadn't spoken to Erika in many years, I feel like I just lost of piece of my past. She is the only person who knew about trips to the post office and singing Springsteen in the snow, oh and the Mann Music Center.

I will miss you, Erika.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Club Chess

My son's school had their first Chess Club meeting today. My son got a Chess set last year for Christmas and has played a little. At 6 years old, he knows how to set up the board and how to move all the pieces. He just needs to work on strategy.

I learned how to play Chess when I was about 5 years old. My father was an avid Chess player and he would play with me. Of course being so young and knowing how to play chess got some attention from my dad's chess playing friends. I loved it! Then when I turned about 8 and could still play Chess, it wasn't quite as exciting. No one cared anymore. My father stopped playing as often and so I stopped playing as well.

So it's been a few years (ok, maybe a few decades!) since I was really into playing Chess. And this past year I have taught my son the rules. I also taught him that the game is called "Chess" and not "chest" as he had been saying. We play every once in a while. I beat him every time and he enjoys it. One time his friend asked me to play. I was able to beat the much wiser 7 year old friend too.

My son and his friend loved going to the Chess club today. They played for 45 minutes straight and no one wanted to leave when it was time to go. When I got home, I searched online to see how my son could play on the computer. I thought I would give it a try first. The level options were, "easy," "normal," "difficult," and "crazy." I thought, "I'm not a bad Chess player. Let me try, 'normal.'" I lost 3 games in a row. In less than 10 seconds per game. So I switched to "easy." I lost again, but it took at least a few minutes this time! I guess after not playing for so many years and my toughest challenge being a 7 year old, I really lost any skill I may have once had! I need some practice! But please don't tell my son. In his mind, I'm still the best Chess player he knows!

Halloween Pictures

Here is a picture of my kids in their Halloween costumes.

And here is a picture of all the candy they got!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

My First Time

This year was my first time voting. Unless of course you count voting in school elections. I know most of you don't believe that I'm 22 year old so I really have no excuse for not voting before, other than I'm lazy.

In the past I worked and couldn't or wouldn't take off work to vote. Then I had kids and my husband worked and I wasn't going to take my babies to wait in line in the cold. It never seemed worth it to me. I also didn't follow politics very well and considered my uneducated vote fairly worthless.

Then I moved to Washington. When I got my new WA driver's license (And I didn't even have to take a test!) they asked me if I wanted to register to vote. "Sure." Then the man asked if I wanted to vote by mail. I had never heard of this option before. He told me that lots of people in Washington register for the absentee ballot so they can vote by mail. So I signed up.

About 2 weeks ago my ballot arrived in the mail. Then a booklet came in the mail with a brief biography and a statement by each candidate. Last Thursday I sat down at the kitchen table with my pen, ballot and booklet. I read through each candidate and made straight lines on the ballot. I went to the grocery store and dropped my ballot off at the collection box in the front. Voila! I voted! No waiting in line! No standing in the cold! No punching holes halfway through!

I admit that it did take about an hour to sit down and decide. But that's it. I heard that Starbucks was giving out free coffee, Krispy Kreme had free donuts (and I LOVE Krispy Kreme donuts) and Ben and Jerry's had free ice cream for people who stopped by with the "I voted" sticker. I didn't go to any of those places. Have I mentioned that I'm lazy??? Now if only all of those places would make an exception for us Absentee voters and start sending their freebies in the mail... Things would be perfect!

And in case you are wondering who I voted for, I voted for Obama. I had to. When you move to Washington, it's a requirement that you become a Democrat!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Falsies

1. When you purchase false orange eyelashes to wear for Halloween, don't believe the box that says, "self adhesive." These eyelashes do require additional eyelash glue that costs more than the fake eyelashes.

2. You will discover #1 only after trying for 15 minutes unsuccessfully to put the eyelashes on. You might press too hard on your eyelid and start seeing spots.

3. The spots will go away.

4. Your neighbor does not have eyelash glue that you can borrow.

5. The store will be sold out of the overpriced eyelash glue.

6. Once you finally get a tube of eyelash glue, you won't have time left to try again to put the eyelashes on. You will be late for the Halloween Party at your son's school that you offered to help with.

7. You will lose one of the eyelashes before you get home from the store that has one bottle of eyelash glue left.

8. Eyelash glue says it is clear, but it comes out white and makes a nice paste on your eye lids when dry.

9. Don't try to apply eyelash glue on in the car while driving 2 kids from one Halloween party to the next.

10. Thinking about eyelashes falling off, missing eyelashes and eyelash glue will cause you to forget your camera in your son's classroom.

11. Your husband won't notice all the trouble you went through for the festive Halloween eyelashes.

12. False eyelashes come off very very easily.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

What's for Dinner

I woke up with a headache this morning.

My husband took my son fishing.

My husband is cooking this for dinner.