Monday, September 27, 2010

My Birfday

Last year was unbelievable. It would have been pretty hard to top, had I not married the best husband ever, like, fourteen or so years ago.


But I did, and he did. Topped last year, I mean.


Two days before my birfday, my friend, who just happens to live next door, took me to lunch at a Japanese grill and sushi bar. Two more friends met us there for lunch and a show.


It was so much fun and the food was un. believe. able.



He did lots of tricks, and made a volcano out of fire and an onion, and had a little plastic toy "pee" on the fire to put it out.

Ooooooooh. Fire!


He made the raw meat slither across the grill...

He made a Mickey Mouse out of the fried rice, and stuck his spatula behind its mouth so that it sang Happy Birthday to me.

He also made a heart out of the rice, and made it beat, too. It was cute.

He flipped his knives and threw eggs in the air, and broccoli in my mouth. I caught it. Go me.

Yum!

Double yum. I haven't been able to get this out of my mind. I went back on my actual birthday and had it again... and then again, two days after that!

Oooooooooooh, sooooooooooooooup! Yes, that's me. One of the rare pics of myself on Ye Olde Blog. I will never win any Miss Photogenic contests, so, enjoy it while you can.

Fascinating, I know.

My friend, who just happens to live next door, gave me a gift basket filled with all kinds of goodies. Jewelry, Jelly Belly Jelly Beans (which are the ONLY jelly beans I like!), cute little packs of candy, and a really cool "gourmet" bottle of water.

Can water be gourmet? I think, once the price of a bottle of water nears double digits, it can be classified as gourmet. Like the ones in the hotels? That you'd rather drink the water from the toilet before cracking open that puppy? Kind of like that.

Later that evening, Hubs and I went to a fayn-cee restaurant at the top floor of the tallest building in our town. The Girl Scouts were kicking off their year, and had appointed as their chairperson a really special lady running for District Attorney of our county. She wanted Hubs there, and so I crashed the party. Just kidding. I was invited, too.

Anyway, since a certain little girl in our house had just signed up for Girl Scouts the day before, and will be attending her very first meeting tomorrow after school, we were really excited to go.

Fast-forward to my actual birfday.

My brother-in-law and sister-in-law brought their beautiful baby boy to town, and we, along with about 392 other people, went back to that Japanese grill and sushi bar, where we all stuffed ourselves silly and enjoyed another dang good show. And by "we," I do not mean Cullen. Cullen most definitely did not enjoy the show. Once the chef stoked that fire, Cullen. freaked. out.

Up until that point, he had been enjoying himself, and stuffing himself silly. Luckily, we had so many people with us that they gave us the back room with the really huge grills. We were the only party there, so we had the whole room (and lots of tables) all to ourselves.

I have discovered that my children love some Japanese food. Each one of them devoured an entire bowl of soup. Cullen ate mucho steamed rice; Christian ate all her fried rice; Cavan ate half of mine. Christian ate all her chicken; Cavan ate half my shrimp (they gave me about 15 GIGANTIC pieces); and Cullen wouldn't touch his chicken because by that point the fire of death had chased him from the grill. They also tolerated the veggies fairly well.

And now that I have updated you with their gastronomic choices, I'm sure you'll rest easy tonight.

I saw Hubs crack a few smiles, and he admitted to me that he liked the place enough to go back.

Wait.

Anyone else hearing a choir of angels?

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Cullen's First Day of School

Usually Cullen is up by the time I take Christian to school.

Not today.

Maybe it was the steady drum of rain outside the window. Maybe it was the soothing song of the wind.

Or maybe it was the fact that his brother cried off and on throughout the night and they just needed more sleep.

Doesn't matter; I woke two sleepy boys as late as possible this morning, while still allowing us to get to Cullen's school on time.

I tried to force-feed them breakfast (neither one of them seemed terribly hungry) and then got them dressed in cute little matching outfits, right down to their little shoes. Yeah. I'm one of those moms. Honestly, what's the point of having more than one kid if you don't dress them in matching outfits??? Isn't that what The Children's Place is all about???

We took the obligatory "First Day of School" pictures, starting at the traditional spot in front of the French doors:
Then he ran off.


But I caught him again in front of the entryway.


He was obviously done with the picture-taking, so I suggested a few more with his newest prized possession: his John Deere lunchbox. Side note: he has two. His Aunt Kelsey and Uncle Rick gave him one, and our sweet neighbors gave him another. He loves them.


Apparently John Deere lunchboxes make picture-taking tolerable for one more picture.

Finally we were ready to go. We got to the school (amid torrential rain. Can I just tell you how much fun it is to unload a preschooler, a toddler, and 18 bags of stuff from a car in the blowing-sideways rain? Not fun at all. That's how much.) and went inside. Cullen was carrying a snack basket for his teacher:

I surely wish it was full of diamonds and bracelets from Tiffany's, but it just had a bottle of water, popcorn, peanuts, a granola bar, a can of Pringles, an apple, and homemade chocolate chip cookies. The best chocolate chip cookies evah. They don't compare with diamonds and bracelets from Tiffany's, but it's what I could afford and had time to whip up.


I'm not gonna lie. It was a bribe. And, knowing Cullen as I do, I'm not one bit ashamed to admit that.
So we walked into his classroom, and I told him to go give his teacher her gift bribe.
He walked in, loudly proclaiming, "HEY MISS JENNIFER! I'M HERE! HERE YA GO, MISS JENNIFER! I'M HERE! I'M HERE, MISS JENNIFER! I'M RIGHT HERE! HERE YA GO!"
Wow. Type here that many times, and you begin to doubt your writing abilities, but I digress.
Miss Jennifer was holding a teary-eyed boy who seemed on the verge of calming down. Cullen took off to play, and I went to put his backpack away.
I pointed out Cullen and Ganket to her, and told her that I knew they didn't want the kids to carry their security blankets around with them all day, but suggested it might behoove her to make an exception for a bit. She looked at me like I could not be more lame, since he was happily playing with tools. Poor woman. She had no idea what was about to rain down upon her. I mentioned that I wanted to kiss him goodbye, but thought it might make him upset.
She called him over to put his nametag sticker on his shirt. Big mistake. Apparently, nametag stickers remind him of his days at the concentration camp church nursery, and he immediately began experiencing flashbacks FREAKING. OUT.
Hubs says he doesn't like to be labeled.

I got the heck out of dodge, before they could give me a refund and boot his butt out.
I was deliriously happy to be going to Ladies Bible Study at church. I haven't been since I was pregnant with Cavan, and have been missing it so much. I met a friend at her house and we went to her new shop, then to Mickey D's for an early lunch.
That's when it happened.
I got...
THE CALL.
It had been two hours since I had dropped him off, and he hadn't stopped crying. They weren't sure what I wanted to do. We decided I would come pick him up after his lunch (no Bible study for me this week) and try to extend the time he stays on Thursday.
When I got there, he was a blubbering, snotty, grody mess of little-boy tears. I watched him through the window, sucking his thumb and following his teacher around as he cried. He finally noticed me standing there, and ran to me. I scooped him up and hugged him and kissed him and held him and loved him.
He's three years old. He went to school for three hours, and says he's done. Finished. Not going back.
But, since I have plans for Thursday that don't include him, we'll see about that.
Maybe I should check out a jewelry store before then.