Wednesday, May 30

At Band Camp...

Doodles: Can I have some beer?
Adam: No. Beer is for adults. Like wine.
Doodles: I'm an adult.
Adam: No, you're not.
Doodles: Some people say I'm an adult.
Adam: Who says that?
Doodles: Some people you don't know. They're far away.

Let Me Tell You a Storyland...

This past weekend the family took the Live Free or Die state by storm. (Did you have to click on the link to find out which state that is? Shame on you!) After swim class on Saturday, we loaded the munchkins in the van and started driving. We timed it perfectly for Pie's nap--we'd hit the road just as it was time for her to drift off. And it worked! We didn't count on her waking up after 45 minutes, making her one overtired cranky toddler. But I'm getting ahead of myself. At this point, she was a charming delightful child who decides there's too much going on to nap. Both kids are amazing on car rides. Pie snoozes and Doodles just looks out the window daydreaming, occasionally asking for snacks or a particular song. I had my iPod, and was playing my "Just for Fun" playlist, which is not Adam's favorite playlist. Doodles, though, liked it. "Who's singing this song?" he'd ask when he liked a particular song. And then Adam would just cringe when the little voice from the back seat called out, "Can you play Spice Girls again?"

After three hours, we arrived at Storyland. Most of our friends had made their virgin treks to Storyland the year before, and I had heard dreamy children raving about the place. I was expecting something worthy of a gothic horror novel or, at the very least, a Simpsons episode. But I was surprisingly wrong. It was bright and cheery and generally a really fun place.

I was a little concerned because not even a week ago, I had taken Doodles to the zoo, and there he wanted to ride the Merry Go Round. We were the only ones on it, which was a good thing, because after thirty seconds of it, Doodles decided he didn't like Merry Go Rounds and he wanted off. The operator obliged. Of course, we had already planned our trip and I didn't think it was worth canceling over one aborted Merry Go Round ride.

Turns out I had nothing to fear. Doodles found the pirate play area right away and Pie does not have her brother's aversion to Merry Go Rounds. We stayed at the park for about two hours (enough for three trips for Pie on the carousel) and then headed to dinner at Flatbread Company (Mmmmmmmmmmm! And it turns out there's one not too far from us locally.) Despite the wired, overtired children, dinner managed to be a qualified success, and we got out of there before Pie hurled my cell phone into the open fire pit oven.

Things quickly went downhill. Starting at 7 p.m., Pie screamed. Not a little. Not mildly. Top of her lungs, get me the hell out of here, what are you doing to me screaming. Thank goodness we were in one of the kid friendliest hotels I've ever seen. You could walk down the halls and hear screams echoing from each room: high-pitched infant wails, sirening toddler tantrums, whining preschool fits. It was a beautiful thing. I tried Ming Ming, I tried sleeping with her, I tried patting her back, I tried ignoring her. Finally, two hours--yes TWO HOURS OF SCREAMING--later, Adam picked her up, and took her out of the hotel. The minute they stepped outside, Pie started pointing to the hotel, screaming, "Sleep! Sleep! Sleep!" but Adam wasn't falling for it and he put her in the car where exactly 19.3 seconds into the ride, she passed out.

Meanwhile, Doodles is trying with all his might to fall asleep in his queen-sized bed. He keeps worrying about Pie ("Mommy, Pie is crying! Mommy, put Pie next to me. Mommy, why don't you move Pie's crib closer to my bed?") and it's pretty noisy in the room. Finally, by 9:30, both children are asleep in their respective beds, and I, in my exhausted glory, go to sleep myself.

And I sleep well. Until about 1 a.m. When I hear a thump. And a cry. "Doodles!" I say, getting up in the dark. "Doodles, where are you?" I'm hunting around on the floor next to the bed, but I can't find him. He's wailing, "Mommmy! Mommy!"

"Doodles, where are you?" I go to the other side of the bed, trying to feel around on the floor. "Adam," I hiss, "turn on the bathroom light. Doodles, where are you?"

"Mommy, I'm stuck!" The light goes on, and I don't see Doodles anywhere. I get down on my hands and knees. There, lying underneath his bed, is Doodles, properly trapped.

"Oh, baby!" I whisper, unable to control a little laugh. "How in the world did you get there?" I reach under and pull him out and make a mental note that he's definitely not ready to have the bed rails removed at home.

The next morning we head back to Storyland for more fun. The train around the park. The flying shoe ride (on which Pie, three seconds in, yelled, "All done! All done!"). The Loopy Lab Show. The antique cars. The ball room. Doodles managed to eat pizza at three of four meals.

At about 12:30, things began to head downhill. Pie refused to sit in the stroller. Pie refused to let anyone other than herself push the stroller. Pie became furious if you tried to prevent the stroller from hitting other people. By 1 p.m., Pie was angry and she made sure the world knew it. I got ice cream for everyone, including a vanilla cone with chocolate sprinkles for me and a vanilla cone with chocolate sprinkles for Pie. Notice that Pie and I had the same thing. Notice that Pie REFUSES to eat her own ice cream, but will only eat mine. Notice that Pie WAILS if I try to eat her ice cream instead of my own. Notice that the people around us are laughing as Pie pushes the ice cream away, no, takes it back! No, pushes it away! No, takes the cone and FLINGS it to the ground and then loses that last shred of rationality she may have had when we throw out the ice cream that was facedown on the ground. We carry her out over our shoulder, with her wailing the entire way. Needless to say, she opted out of her nap that day.

I'm going to break out of my sarcastic shell here and actually write about something seriously. You know, I debated whether to tell this part of the story or not. It's odd, because I generally think I put on a shiny happy face here. Most of my life I don't blog about. The serious stuff, the private stuff, the stressful stuff remains separate from this. But here it goes: We got back to the hotel and after it was clear that Pie wasn't going to nap, we put a movie on for the two to watch (the hotel had a free DVD movie library) and I headed out to do a little shopping (the hotel was on the grounds of an outlet mall). I came back and everyone was restless, so we decided to head to the pool. There was an outdoor heated pool and jacuzzi and the kids were psyched for a swim. We got in, swam for a bit, but the weather was a little cloudy and no one was that into it. We decided to bail for more fun pastures. "Doodles, do you want to keep swimming or go ride a train?" I asked him, knowing full well what the answer to that would be.

The pool was about three feet deep and it had a wall around the inside of the pool that was probably about a foot and a half deep. Doodles was walking out along the wall. It all gets fuzzy here, but I though he was walking out with Adam and Adam thought he was walking out with me. I get out of the pool, turn around, and there's Doodles bobbing in the water. I scream his name, Adam dives for him (Pie is already out and in her towel) and luckily there's a guy in the jacuzzi who is able to quickly reach Doodles and pull him out.

Doodles was shaky, but breathing and alert, but obviously terrified. "I got my head under water! I couldn't breathe!" But what seemed to shake him the most was, "Mommy and Daddy weren't there! Someone else got me!" Oh, my, the guilt doesn't go away on that one! It was the most terrifying moment of my life and immediately brought on flashbacks to when I was six and a neighbor boy drowned in a pool at which my family was swimming. He didn't make it; I have to keep reminding myself that Doodles is fine. But I can't get that image out of my head of him in the water and it's nightmare-inducing horrifying.

He's mentioned it a few times since then, but he says he still wants to go to swimming class on Saturday, which is a good sign (not that we'd let him skip it--we don't want his fears to fester). And he immediately perked up when I asked him if he still wanted to go on a train ride. But still, it's a hard thing for a mom to shake. Don't think I ever will.

Okay, now that that's off my chest, let me go back to my normal frivolous blogging.

That afternoon we took the 55-minute ride on the Conway Scenic Railroad. Doodles was mesmerized. Pie was kept mildly appeased with Tootsie Roll bribes. Dinner was a mild affair--Doodles's French fries were round, and therefore inedible, but he managed with another dinner of pizza and the evening was saved. And Pie was so exhausted that she fell asleep the instant we put her down. No tears!

The next day we decided to stop off and meet my MIL at the Portsmouth Children's Museum, which was a huge hit with the kids, and oddly enough, despite it being about an hour away from home, we ran into not one but two friends while we were there. Doodles was in heaven, running around the place with his buddies. Lunch at the Friendly Toast, and then back home where we returned to life as usual. You know, screaming, whining, refusing to eat. But all in the comfort of our own home.

Wednesday, May 23

A Couple of iPods to Go with Your Ming Ming

Doodles suddenly is curious about ming ming. "Mommy, can I have some ming ming?" he's been asking lately. I know that a lot of moms think that you should let an older child br*eastfeed, as he will have forgotten how to suckle and not find it a pleasurable experience, but (resisting the urge to say, "Ick"; you guys will recall that I'm not thrilled to be bfing Pie, never mind throwing a preschooler into the mix) let's just say, that's not for me. We had a bit of a conversation about how he used to have it, but doesn't anymore, but there are all sorts of things he can do that Pie doesn't or can't do yet.

Then the questions took a turn for the, well, weird.
Doodles: Mommy, when Pie stops ming ming, are your ipods going to be soft and mushy?
Me: My what?
Doodles: Your ipods.
Me: Sweetie, what's an ipod?
Doodles: Those [pointing to my chest]. Hanging down. The thing that gives Pie her ming ming.
Me: Honey, those are called br*easts.
Doodles: Well, will your br*easts become soft and mushy?
Me: Let's hope not.

Then, at the YMCA, we were sitting in the viewing section watching Adam and Pie take their swimming class, waiting for when Doodles's class starts.
Doodles: Mommy?
Me: Yes?
Doodles: Why are the girl bathing suits different?
Me: What do you mean?
Doodles: Why are girl bathing suits bigger?
Me: [trying to whisper because there are a ton of parents around] Remember when we talked about private parts and how they should be private? Girls have more private parts than boys. We can talk about this at home later.
Doodles: Oh. Do men have ipods?
Me: Remember, they're called br*easts. And we can talk about this at home.
Doodles: Oh. Do men have nipples?
Me: Sweetie, let's talk about this at home? It's best to talk about private parts at home.
Doodles: Why?
Me: Because not everyone likes to hear about private parts. We can talk about this at home.
Doodles: Okay. But do boys have nipples?

Can one of you take this one?

Sappy Entry

I always write about the worst of my children, when really, there's tons of good stuff. I had a moment that truly brought tears to me eyes, so I'll relate to you in all its mushy glory, no sarcastic commentary.

We're at a playground and Pie is having a blast. She's climbing on climbers that are too big for her. She's watching the babies sleeping in their strollers. She's having a wonderful time and doesn't want to leave. Doodles is at a stage where he comprehends things, and he understands that if he wants to watch a show, it's time to go, so he climbs in the stroller. Pie enters the stroller kicking and screaming.

"Walk! Walk! WALK!" she screams, tears streaming down her face. Normally, I'd let her walk but we're over a mile from home and her idea of walking is going three steps, yelling, "Stop!" and then standing there. For a beat. Or two. Or twelve. It's now been over a minute. And finally she yells, "Go!" and takes seven stops. And then stops. But it's past the time to start dinner and I don't want to keep the kids up late, so, No. Pie cannot walk.

So she scream. And screams. And screams bloody murder. She's twisted in her stroller seat. She's mauling poor Doodles, trying to push him out of the stroller. She's screaming, "NOOOOO!" and "WAAAAALLLK" loudly enough that people a block away are turning around to stare at us.

I start to sing to her. "Noooooo!" she shouts. As you recall, she's not a fan of my singing.

Doodles promptly claps his hands over his ears and moves as far away from her as he can while still staying in the stroller. This goes on for three blocks. Then he suddenly grabs her hand. "Oh shit!" I think. "He's going to bite her!"

He holds her hand so violently I fear for her and worry about when to step in. But I resist, because I want them to work out their own problems and within seconds, I realize, he's trying to hold her hand. When she won't let him, he turns fully in the double stroller and hugs her with both arms. "It's okay, Pie," he whispers in her ear. "It's all right. It's all right." He pats her back and gives her two kisses on the cheeks. For five blocks she's screaming, but it's lessening and he's nestling her head into his shoulder as he whispers, "It's okay, Pie. It's okay." He's patting, he's rubbing her hair, he's hugging her. And finally, on block six, she starts to calm down.

By the time we're halfway home, she's no longer crying and she's working to get her shoes off. "I can help you, Pie!" he says as he leans down to undo the Velcro. He pulls at them and in desperation says to me, "Jenny! I can't get her shoe off!" I comply and pull of her shoes and he follows suit, pulling off his shoes and socks. When she can't get her socks off, she becomes agitated again, so he begins to sing to her. Within seconds (and my help getting the socks off), she's not only calm but singing with him. The minute he's done, she says and signs, "More! More!" So the rest of the way home Doodles sung to Pie.

Man, those two. Sometimes, I could just eat them up!

Clean Work

I don't like to talk about work on my blog, because, well, it's highly unprofessional. But let me break that rule for just a moment to set the scene for you. Doodles will be missing a day of school this month for a Jewish holiday (Shavuot), which means one fewer workday for me, which has me in a bit of a tizzy. When you only have two working days a week, each one really counts. I have 250 pages of a proofreading job. I have a 9 a.m. phone interview for an article I'm writing. I have a meeting with a new client about an upcoming project. I have 13 miniarticles due to a Web site I write for. And I have a six hour work day. Adam has already left with Pie for daycare and I drop Doodles off at 8:30 a.m. at preschool, which means I have a bit of hustling to do, as it's 8:13 a.m., and I need a shower (I did run. No matter how busy I am--or perhaps I should say the more busy I am--my run is vital to my mental well being).

I get into the shower and begin washing as fast as I can. Doodles pops his head into the bathroom. "Can I shower with you?"

I'm scrubbing quickly as I say, "Sweetie, I am soooo behind today. I just can't let you shower with me. I promise you can tomorrow!"

"Okay," he says and he wanders back off to his train table.

I'm just rinsing the conditioner out of my hair, cognizant that it is 8:21 a.m. and that if I leave in three minutes, Doodles will be at school on time and I'll be home with 20 minutes to spare to prep for my interview, when a little voice pops up. "Mommy, I'm going to take a shower with you."

I peek out of the shower to witness my son standing there, naked as naked can be. "What are you doing!!!" I yell. "Get dressed! Get dressed RIGHT THIS SECOND!"

To his credit (or to the credit of the utter panic in my voice), the boy did get himself dressed again.

He got to school on time. I finished my phone interview. The proofreading job is done. But I don't know how people do this who actually have offices they need to report to and managers who know when they're still in their pajamas. I feel for you!


I have trained (more or less) that from 8:55 a.m. to 9 a.m. there is to be no speaking while Writer's Almanac is on. For those five minutes I insist on absolute silence in the car (because inevitably we are on our way somewhere). I've had a bit of luck with this. The other 12 hours and 55 minutes of their waking hour is filled with chatter, specifically questions. Specifically questions from Doodles. Specifically inane questions that I attempt to answer accurately for about the first 37 minutes before giving in to the pat answers of "I don't know," "Why don't you ask your father?" and "What?!?"

Doodles has a question matrix. Basically, column A is a noun. Column B is a verb. Column C can be just about anything. Column A's nouns consist primarily of the following words, although others can be added at any time: volcanoes, dinosaurs, pharaohs, trees, babies, grown-ups. Column B includes: born, die, have, make. Column C is completely random. So for instance, today we had: Did pharaohs die in space? Do trees have bones? Do volcanoes have bones? Occasionally, he throws a real question in there ("Mommy, why did the dinosaurs die?"), just to keep me on my toes and to keep me tuning out completely. Of course, half the time I don't know the answer to the question, to which my pat answer is, "Let's call Peter" (who is Doodle and Pie's grandfather). Peter doesn't know everything, but he thinks he knows everything, and right now, that's good enough for me.

So let me ask you: Do pygmy warthogs like to eat dessert?

Wednesday, May 16

Mom on the Run

Did everyone have a happy Mother's Day (well, at least all you mothers out there)? My mother's day was the best anyone could hope for--a new running PR! I ran a woman's race , 3.5 miles, and I finished in 26:44, for a record shattering 7:39 minute miles (my first race with under 8 minute miles). I finished 36 out of 396, 17 in my division (of 121). As a point of comparison, when I ran this race in 2004, I was thrilled to have run it in 33:38 (9:37 minute miles).

I know, I know. Who cares? Well, I do and it's my blog! You don't like it, just try and catch me.

Pie in the Mix

With Doodles, there was never much to do. An occasional, "No, Doodles!" or the shutting of a gate, and things were just hunky dory.

Not so with the Pie. Suddenly, I'm laughing at the idea of babyproofing. Who needs to babyproof? What the heck is a baby going to do? Now, toddlerproofing, that's another story! My God, is that girl into everything! Nothing is safe! The phone that has sat by my bed for the past four years? Now removed from the charger and placed every morning on an extra-tall dresser. My wallet on the kitchen counter? She'll pull the newspaper that she can grab a corner of and use it to knock of the twelve items it takes until the wallet comes crashing to the floor. We tell her she can't jump on the bed/couch/chair? She pushes toys over so she can climb on top of them and climb up and jump anyway. Not allowed to touch the stereo? That's fine. She'll go for the TV. Denied a nursing for three minutes. Drop on the floor, crying, screaming, "Miiiiiiiing Miiiiiiiiing! Mommy, Miiiiiiiiiinnnnnnng Miiiiiiiiiinnnnnnnng!" (In case anyone was wondering how that old weaning thing was going.) I don't respond fast enough. Duck! Anything within reach is going to be flying in seconds.

Protect your valuables. Lock up your maidens. Gird your loins. There's a Pie on the loose.

The Quirks of Kids

Me: You know, you guys are having some issues tonight. I'd like for you to keep your hands off of each other in the bath tonight.
More touching ensues.
Me: If one more person touches the other, there won't be a show tonigt.
Doodles and Pie are playing with their bath letters. I look down at my magazine, and look up when Pie is shrieking. She has a K and an M on her back and she's straining to get them off.
Me: How did those letters get on Pie's back?
Doodles: She put them there.
Me: Look at her. She can't reach them. There's no way she put them on herself. How, I repeat, did Pie get those letters on her back?
Doodles: Oh, that's right. There was a machine in the bathtub that put that on Pie's back.

Going to the playground, Pie let me put on her sandals sans socks. However, she had to be carrying with her at all times her socks, her sun hat, and a random green pair of shorts.

Doodles: I'd like to see a v*agina.
Me: No. V*aginas are private parts. You don't get to look at people's v*aginas.
Doodles: But I want to look at one!
Me: Remember we talked about how everyone has private parts that are just for them? V*aginas are private parts.
Doodles: Private?
Me: It's just like your p*enis is private and people can't look at it.
Doodles: No, but it's okay!! It's okay if people look at my p*enis!

After bath, I go for the moisturizer.
Doodles: NO! No! NO! I like dry skin! Don't take away my dry skin!

Wednesday, May 9

Stranger Things Have Happened....

My little baby sister has been in school for the past three decades. Seriously. She started kindergarten in 1976 and this fall she'll be finishing up her Ph.D. And now? Now she is gainfully employed. My little baby sister is venturing out into the real world with a real job. My odds were on Pie finishing school and starting work first, but there you go. The Tweedle Twirp surprised me. Tenure track and everything! Yeah Tweedle Twirp! Can I have an A?

Tuesday, May 8

They. Are. Trying. To. Kill. Me.

Doodles has a serious Band-Aid fetish. He loves to decorate his body with them. He usually has one or two on his belly, one on his forehead, perhaps one on an arm or leg. Adam called to me the other morning. "You've got to come see this!" I come upstairs to find my son happily playing away... with one of my maxipads stuck on his forehead. "Look, Mommy!" he said proudly. "I found a big Band-Aid!"

A new dinnertime tactic:
Doodles: Mommy, I can't eat my rockamole cracker!
Me: Why not?
Doodles: I'm scared of it! The cracker is scaring me!

Pie on the other hand has become the total prima donna during meals. She loves to eat, and I love that about her. But she's lazy as all get out. At dinner, she quit eating way before I would have thought she was full. "Don't you want more, Pie?" I asked as I picked up a piece of beef and brought it to her mouth. The little mouth instantly opened and she took the piece. Then she pointed to a pepper. And then a piece of zucchini. And then more beef. What a little princess! Demanding to be fed! And if I didn't move fast enough, wailing was involved. That girl should have been born to royalty.

Please note that this is Pie. Please note there is nothing beneath her feet. Please note that this does not dissuade her from going for the choking hazard I thought I had placed far out of her reach. She climbed the chair, reached for something in the middle of the table, accidentally pushed the chair away with her feet, but refused to stop her mission so she just hung there until she was able to grasp the choking-hazard that apparently was exactly within her reach. Apparently, "out of her reach" no longer exists. How is it she is so lazy when it comes to almost everything else, but she's willing to put in that extra effort when it means causing great trouble for others or potential injury for herself?

We had friends over for dinner on Saturday. Friends with a daughter three months older than Doodles and a daughter one month younger than Pie. Dinner was a disaster. My son was on a roll. Refused to eat. We warned him, no energy food, no dessert. Did he listen? Of course not. He did try to regale his friend with stories while she was eating, being quite distracting.
Me: Doodles, please either eat your dinner or excuse yourself from the table.
Doodles: [waving a finger at me] No! I'm talking to O.!
Me: Doodles, O. is trying to eat her dinner. Please either finish your dinner or excuse yourself.
Doodles: I just need one more minute!
Me: Doo--
Doodles: No! No! NO! I just need one more minute! [finger is going crazy and O. is staring ahead, pretending like she doesn't hear anything because she doesn't want to get into trouble] I just need ONE MORE MINUTE!
Me: Doodles, you need to excuse yourself right--
Doodles: No! Listen to my words! Listen to my words! I need one more minute! If I have to say it again, you lose a show!

No one likes my singing. We've now reached the point where if I sing along to the ipod, Doodles complains, "I can't hear the words!" If I sing to the Pie, she just screams and yells, "No no no no no!"

Doodles: I don't like having a sister.
Me: You don't?
Doodles: No. I don't want a sister anymore.
Me: Okay.
D: Okay?
Me: Okay. We'll take her back to the hospital.
D: We will?
Me: Sure. If you don't want her anymore, we'll take her back to the hospital.
D: Will they throw her away?!?
Me: No. They'll give her to another family.
D: Oh. What about her crib?
Me: We'll give that away, too.
D: Why?
Me: If Pie doesn't live here anymore, we don't need her crib anymore.
D: Oh.
Me: We'll probably have to send all her toys away with her, too.
D: Her toys!
Me: Yeah. The family that takes Pie will need her toys.
D: Oh.
Me: Do you think maybe we should keep her?
D: Yeah. I think we should keep her.
Me: That's good. Because I really wasn't going to get rid of her anyway.
D: You weren't?
Me: Nah. You guys are stuck with us. Forever!
D: Oh. Okay.

Wednesday, May 2

From the Huh? File

From the other room...
D: Heeeelp! Helllp!
I walk in and see his T-shirt halfway off but stuck over his head.
Me: What are you doing?
D: I need help taking this off.
Me: I see that. But what are you doing?
Doodles succeeds in getting the shirt off and proceeds to start taking off his pants.
D:I'm taking off my clothes, but not my underwear.
Me: Why?
D: Because that way I won't have problems with a lot of stuff.

And then on another occasion:
D: I don't poop anymore.
Me: What?
D: I don't poop anymore. I just hold it in till I don't have to poop anymore.
Me: Sweetie, that's not healthy. When you have to poop, you should go to a potty and poop.
D: No. When I'll just hold it in until my belly is filled up.

An HBS Superstar

I'd like you all to know that my husband not only watches America's Next Top Model, but he has an opinion on it. No, seriously.

A Cheeky Girl

Little Miss Pie has had a bad cough. A dry cough. She wakes up a bunch at night with it. She has it during the day, but we wrote it off because half the time she seems to be faking the cough. Doodles coughs for real. Pie mimics. Doodles mimics back. A little coughing fit, half real, half fake ensues.

Except that the other night, Pie coughed her way through the night. And when Adam went to retrieve her in the morning, there was blood all over her sheets. Three large patches of blood. Like the size of a CD. So of course I got those two out of the door in record time to make the walk-in at our doctor's office. (Have I ever told you how much I love our peditrician? Her office has a walk-in every morning at 8 a.m. where you can just show up for all those little ailments that have cropped up in the night; perfect for those day care days where you just don't know if your child is healthy enough to go in.) Doodles was thrilled to go: he adores the toys there.

So one of the docs sees Pie right away. I tell him about the cough. The nose that's been running forever. The pools of blood in her crib. "Mmm hmm," he says. "Mmm hmmm." He has on a large "One Fish Two Fish" tie and Pie is fascinated by it. He's quite good with her and even though he's not Pie's normal doctor, she's taken with him and his silly antics.

I'm waiting. TB? Pneumonia? A scary diseases I've never heard of?

The verdict finally comes: "Well," he says, "she definitely has a little bit of a wheeze to her. I can give her something for the cough if it's bugging her too much. Her chest, though, sounds clear."

"What about the blood?" I ask.

"Take a look at this," he says, taking a tongue depressor to her mouth. "See that?" He points to the inside of her cheek.

"Eww! What is that?" My daughter is diseased. She has a nasty growth inside her mouth. What kind of evil oral disease has my daughter wrought?

The doctor breaks it to me: "She's been chewing on the inside of the cheek. The blood is from her cheek."

I know that girl will eat anything, but this is ridiculous! We'll start giving her a bone to chew on before she goes to bed to help keep her from cannibalizing herself.

Ahh Choo

Let's talk about what I've brought to Adam in this marriage: my wit, charm, and beauty; a house; the means for him to get an M.B.A.; two wonderful children; a huge and eclectic DVD collection; an appreciation for Indian food; to name but a few.

Let's talk about what Adam has given me: allergies. No seriously. Allergies. Don't give me crap that allergies aren't contagious. Adam has given me his allergies.

Twice this week I've woken up and thought, "Damn! Evil hangover!" only to realize that I hadn't had anything stronger than a glass of water the previous night. But my head is aching, my brain is fuzzy, and my face feels like its stuffed with cotton. I'd write it off to a cold except this is the third spring this has happened.

Cough cough. Bastard.