Monday, November 11, 2013

Poor defenseless pretzels!

Yesterday Lilyanna was eating some of these:

Which for the record are THE BEST gluten free pretzels out there. In fact the non-gf people in the family like these better than the regular pretzels because they're crunchier.  

Anyway, as she was playing with her pretzel sticks she was making them talk to each other. This was the conversation two of the sticks had as per Lilyanna:

Pretzel 1:  What do you want to do?
Pretzel 2: I know! Let's go shopping!
Pretzel 1: Great! Where should we go shopping?
Pretzel 2: Let's go shopping in Lilyanna's mouth!
Pretzel 1: Great idea!

And then she stuffed them both in her mouth and crunched them to bits and swallowed.

I was reminded of this story of Caleb from about the same age.

So out of curiosity. Are everyone's children having creepy conversations with their snack foods at this age, or is it just mine?

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Gifts for Geeks!

Tonight Nathaniel made a radio using his snap circuits.  He was absurdly pleased with himself. As well he should be. It is pretty cool.  He asked if I thought he could earn a scholarship for college now. I informed him that if he'd built the radio from scratch without directions, then, yes. But as he followed directions from a kit, probably not so much. Anyway, if you're looking for a gift for your geeky kids I definitely recommend these.

They come in a bunch of sizes, so you can start small if you don't want to invest too much money initially, and then add on as you go.  We also got a power cord to go with, so we didn't eat through batteries. Totally worth the few extra dollars!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

The Master of Toast!

Today, some of us were able to go out to Dayton to listen to Todd compete. I don't honestly know what level of competition this was, except that he had to win 2 other competitions to get to this one.  He was one of 8 speakers in the humorous speech portion.  And after hearing them all, we knew there was only one woman who could possibly beat him.  He did come in 2nd place, but because the other woman was so good, he felt okay with it.  Our kids were the only kids there. In fact it seems that most people in Toastmasters don't bring their friends and family to cheer them on at these sorts of things.  The kids were well behaved and Lilyanna had to be physically restrained so as not to run up and jump on Todd every time he was back on the stage.  It was sweet to see them interacting together tonight.

Friday, November 8, 2013

A New Favorite

Last night I received a text from Todd while I was at dance with Caleb.

It said, "Lilyanna just prayed 'and bless that my toys can talk'."

Benjamin and Nathaniel declared it their new favorite family prayer.  

Goodness, but she is cute!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Misappropriation of my kitchen tools

Today for science Caleb dissected an owl pellet. For those of you who are uninitiated into the world of owl pellets, let me explain.  Owl "pellets" are little regurgitated lumps of bones.  It's like dissecting a furball, but this has rodent bones and fur in it.

For this reason, I wasn't overjoyed with the fact that Caleb grabbed my most favorite cutting board to use for his project.  (Granted he grabbed my least favorite steak knife, so I guess that's okay.)  And I should be grateful for the fact that he grabbed anything and didn't just start doing this on the living room carpet, right?

He found a skull and jaw bones and teeth and a few ribs and shoulder bones.  After carefully separating them all and showing me every one, he then dumped them all in the compost and announced "That was fun! Let's finish history now!".

And my cutting board is awaiting severe sanitizing in the dishwasher at this moment.

I may have a very slight appreciation for my Grandma and her anger at her son who used her pressure cooker to get all the flesh off of a cat skeleton.  It's definitely not on the same level, but I can imagine.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Afraid of Boating?

Tonight after I finished teaching piano lessons, I called down to my kids to come up from playing in the basement so we could walk over to the middle school to vote.

The boys decided to walk to a friends house instead, but Lilyanna came up the stairs willingly.  She kept telling me that she was afraid of boats.  I was confused at this but thought perhaps it was a continuation of a conversation her brothers had been having.

Still as we walked towards the school she kept telling me she didn't want to go on a boat and that she was afraid of boats.  I finally said, "But Lilyanna, we're not going on a boat, we're going to VOTE!"

And then I realized. She'd been misunderstanding me. So we stopped on the sidewalk and I had her look at my lips to see the difference in the words I was saying.  She was visibly relieved and walked happily to the school with me.

She was even happier to receive a sticker after I voted.

There would have been no sticker after boating.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Election Day in the Smith House

When Todd and I were first married we were a little more in line politically speaking. Still different, but not quite as different.  I was a bit more conservative and he was a little less so.

One of the things about marrying young is that you get to grow into adulthood together. In the process I've gone more left, and he more right. Happily we still love each other and more importantly like and respect one another through it all.

While typically Ohio is a political hotbed, this particular election day in our town there's nothing very exciting. School board members, etc. The only thing that I really care about is voting for more funding for our amazing library.  I wasn't sure if the election was even on my sweet husband's radar.

Here is a conversation he and I had last night before bed that sums things up pretty well:

Me: Are you going to vote tomorrow?
Todd: Oh, yeah. I guess I have to go just to cancel out your vote.
Me: I'm planning on tripping you when you walk out the door to the polling place.  Just so you know.

And there you have it.

I'm secretly hoping that the fact that it's so dark when he gets out of work now will make him just come home instead. I'm torn between wanting him to be an upstanding citizen and wanting him to NOT cancel out my vote. ;)

And just for because, here is my favorite voting song:

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Because sometimes you just need a meme when you're trying to write 6 out of 7 days.

Momental Books

Write about five books that left a lasting impression from five different times of your life (or more if you've lived longer). Don't limit yourself to the "best books ever". Books can leave an impression for other reasons. This meme was inspired by A Diary of a Mad Mammy.

First Book Read to Me - I don't know the very first book that was read to me. My parents always read to me! Including The Hobbit by age 5.  (I dressed up as a "Mommy Hobbit" for my preschool Halloween party. None of my fellow preschoolers understood it, despite the fake fur glued on my flip flops.) I do remember requesting that they read Little Ballerina so often, that they finally made a tape recording of themselves reading it. (I provided the xylophone sound for when to turn the page on the recording.)

First Book I Coveted - I think I started buying my own books around the time The Babysitter's Club books came out. My Mother didn't deem them worthy and they came out so frequently that she left it up to me to decide if it was really worth $3.50 every few months.

The Teen Years - When I was a teenager, I felt like everything I read had to have meaning. I spent a lot of my teen years with Kurt Vonnegut after I'd read all the classics I was supposed to read for school.  I think I absolutely adored Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy just because of how funny it was. Intelligent and nonsensical by turns, but still very funny.

The Roaring Twenties - In my early 20s, I rarely read except for on breaks from college.  I remember one winter reading From a Far Land which only heightened my then obsession with all things Asian.  I also read everything written by Margaret Atwood one summer.   I started the Harry Potter series when I was pregnant with Benjamin and then once I was home with baby Benjamin I read Memoirs of a Geisha.  The summer I was pregnant with Nathaniel, I read everything by Mary Stewart except her most famous Crystal Cave Series. I loved all of them for different reasons.

The Thirties - Several years ago I started keeping book journals. In my 30s, I've filled up 3 journals of books that I've read and enjoyed. To pick just a few is almost impossible.  I guess the books that affected me most were Cry the Beloved Country, The Speckled Monster, The Well-Trained Mind, and Enchantment.

I'm supposed to tag people, but whatever. Life is short. Go read a book instead. ;)

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Lilyanna's First Day of School

 So, I'm a couple months late posting this here, but this is a picture of my little girl so excited on her first day of school she could hardly contain her joy! While it looks like she's popping a pose here, this was just one of the few pictures I managed to take that wasn't blurry from her dancing and jumping around that morning.

Here are the less posed looking ones:
"Mom, let's get out the door already!"

"C'mon! Get off the stairs and let's go!"

"Do I have to stand still for a picture?"

"Okay. I'm still. And I smiled. LET'S GO!"

 And we finally did go. Caleb and I dropped Lilyanna off at her school and then he and I headed to Northstar for a celebratory first day of preschool smoothie and a side of sweet potato hash.  Of course we brought our school work with us, too. But everything is nicer when you're at Northstar.

Friday, November 1, 2013


Today begins National Novel Writing Month!  I did it a few years ago and enjoyed the challenge, but have not had the chance to do it since then. But every November I feel a longing to join in the madness!

This is the year. I'm ready to do it again!

The goal for every adult doing NaNoWriMo is to write 50,000 words for the month.  I have several stories already started. So, I'm going to take one of those and add one page each day. Or at least that's the goal. ;)

It's not too late for YOU to join, too!

Wish me luck!