That’s My Girl!

See this girl:Ivy with an Easter Egg

This morning, after she left for school, I found she had left this sweet, little package for me:

"to mom these bunny ears are for you Ivy"

“to mom these bunny ears are for you Ivy”

The ears of her chocolate bunny, left for her mother to enjoy!

Isn’t she the best, kindest and most thoughtful daughter ever?!?

Or… last years genius talk of it being bad luck not to let your mom eat your bunny ears really sunk in and she’s worried about finding next year’s basket.Ivy with bunny Snowberry

Either way, I washed down my lunch with a set of bunny ears. I’m going with best daughter ever on this one!

(Read all about my “Evil or Genius?” plot from last year and then try it on your own kids- it seems to be working!)



Since this is likely to be the post that has you all backing away slowly through the blogosphere trying to put as much distance between yourself and the crazy, cranky lady as you can manage I’d like to thank you all now for being such friendly, loyal readers. But perhaps there is someone out there who also hates cheerful messages so, forgive me if you can, I’m just going to dive right in.

I hate inspirational messages printed in unlikely places.

My tea bags for instance. When my tea tells me” savor,” “be good to yourself,” “relax” I feel my eyes start to roll in my head. I find it to be the equivalent of someone asking me how I’m doing yet not actually caring about the answer – but worse. For instance, the lady at the checkout. I find it unlikely that she cares about how any of us are actually doing today. It’s just polite conversation. If that same checkout lady instead spewed random, cheesy sayings I’d not only think she was a bit wacko but I’d be mildly irritated. I would find it difficult to believe that when she advised everyone to “Be true to yourself.” that it was anything more than a nice sounding bit of fluff to end a conversation with. I’d also be annoyed that she felt qualified to comment on my life (because, yes, I am just that crabby). Perhaps, since it was an actual, real life person, after I rolled my eyes it would make me smile. More likely I’d finish my eye roll on the way out the door as I moved on.

If it was a person.

When my tea bag tells me “peace” it isn’t someone who looked at me and thought I might need a nice inspirational message to help me through my day. It’s not even a person being polite. No, it is a tea bag. A tiny piece of paper printed by a machine and inscribed with sappy messages because of some sort of marketing campaign.

I’m not feeling the “love.”

That said, the irritation that my tea has brought me this week has nothing on the chocolate.

We almost always have a bag of dark chocolate in the house. Those little individual wrapped pieces that are just perfect for popping in your mouth when you think perhaps it might be a good idea to either scream obscenities or eat your own offspring.  The chocolate gums up your mouth stops you from saying something you’ll regret later and with a moments break common sense can rule again. Our current bag has little “love notes” written inside the wrapper. “Sleep late tomorrow.” my chocolate advised me today.

I’m sorry is there a prize at the bottom of the bag I didn’t know about? A nanny perhaps? Because without one how will I ever take such wonderful advice? WHY ARE YOU TEASING ME CHOCOLATE?

So I eat another one. I eat another one, mind you, not because I’m calmly sitting and enjoying my afternoon with a cup of overly cheerful tea and a book. No I’m eating another one because I’m taking a moment to lower my blood pressure before diving into the fray of my three kids all of whom are in some stage of upset  The cat has thrown up on the rug, the dogs are scratching at the door wanting in and my chocolate has just pointed out the fact that I will be waking up early to start it all over again. And this wrapper. This wrapper tells me to “Love every moment.”

The way I look at it is thus. Yes, I have beautiful, healthy children who are growing up fast – thank God. You know how people say women forget the pain and the details of childbirth in the euphoric glow of their new baby? I remember childbirth, it was great. However the hours between two and three this afternoon I’m hoping my brain selectively deletes in favor of the wonderful time we all had just before bed.

There are many moments of life to love. I refuse to believe I have to love them all, no matter what my chocolate tells me.

I Need More Dark Chocolate

It’s true what they say.

As my children age I am getting less intelligent.Ivy black and white

Or as my eldest says, “YOU’RE JUST STUPID!”

Sadly that was as I was asking her to do something totally outrageous like get in the car for swim lessons and not after one of our dreaded circular conversations when it might (in a nicer manner of course) have been warranted.

Ivy has two snack times now and, my feelings on that aside, I needed some clarification on exactly how it worked.

“Do you need to bring a snack for milk break too?” I ask.

“No”,she says as she laughs, “They pass one out.”

“Oh, so you only need to bring one snack.”

No!“, and she laughs harder shaking her head, “There are two snacks!”


“Mom…” she laughs as she shakes her head.

“No really. When do they pass out snacks?”

“MOM! At snack time!” -giggle, giggle-

“But, then when do you eat the snack you bring?”

“At snack time!”

“So you do need to bring two snacks?”

And so the conversations goes round in circles while the first grader laughs at her oh-so-ridiculous-mother that doesn’t know a single thing about snack time.

Clara is more patient with me.

She knows that sometimes I just don’t get it. When that happens she raises her eyebrows, look to the heavens and says, “Actually Mom…”Clara black and white

Every now and then Ivy will pipe up with a gem like this: “How many ten minutes.”

And I, admittedly, panic.

It’s early in the morning. I have no idea what we are talking about. The question makes no sense to me. Is it better to pretend I didn’t hear? Or do I ask for clarification and risk the circular conversation before I’ve finished my cup of tea? Will she find my stupidity this morning amusing, frustrating or will it bring on tears?

“Actually Mom…”

“No Mom, mini-corn dogs are a healthy lunch.” Ivy says laughing at my disbelief.

“Actually Mom..”

And then Jane chimes in.Jane black and white




What, who me?!





Then, just like that, in the midst of the chaos I can practically feel it happen -poof- there goes another batch of brain cells.Clara and Jane black and white

Fortunately I’ve done .45 seconds worth of internet research on sub-par sites and discovered that dark chocolate is good for your brain.

Unfortunately we are out.

Somebody forgot to get more…

Evil or Genius?

Yesterday after dinner I came up with my most brilliant mothering move ever.

As I handed over Ivy’s chocolate Easter bunny as a reward for a clean plate I said: “Just so you know you should always let your mom eat your chocolate bunny’s ears or it’s bad luck.”

Ivy: “What do you mean bad luck?”

Me: “You’ll never find your Easter basket next year if you eat your own ears, you have to let your mom do it.”

Ivy headed back to the table chocolate bunny in hand looking thoughtful and unconvinced but moments later she was back, presenting me with her bunny so I could eat the ears for her. As she took her ear-less rabbit back to the table she explained the situation to Clara and I was gifted with another set of ears.

The Easter bunny had splurged, those were some damn fine chocolate ears.

I figure if I can keep this up for the next few years I’ll have them brainwashed before they start thinking about it too much and I’ll have three sets of chocolate ears to look forward to every year.

It could be pointed out that my girls are smart and may start questioning this “bad luck” thing. But, I would in turn point out that there are few depths that I wouldn’t sink to for some good chocolate and I have a direct line to the Easter Bunny – we can make a basket very hard to find.

Full of my great scheme (and chocolate) I told John what I had done and he called me all sorts of rotten names and threatened to out me to the kids.

Later a friend who had witnessed the brilliance of my bunny ear munching told me she was very impressed.

What do you think? Was this the most genius chocolate ear stealing scheme ever, or am I an evil chocaholic who knows no boundaries?

Weekly Photo Challenge: Happy

Weekly Photo Challenge: Happy

These are a few of the things that made me happy this Wednesday.

Notable absences are:

Trip – Who is with my brother in Montana happily hunting without me.

Ivy  – Sadly I missed the photo of her and Clara collecting eggs together. Kids playing together while doing chores makes me happy, happy, happy!

And the Ducks  -I challenge you to watch a line of duck walk around and not be just a little bit happier. I also challenge you to get within photographing distance of my ducks without panicking them out of there cute little ducky line.

Hope you also had a happy day!


In terrible mothering moments of the week I forgot to include Jane in my post. Of course she is a part of my daily happiness – she smiles lots, she giggles, she’s easy going, content and oh so easily overlooked in the chaos of the rest of the house.

On a positive note I haven’t forgotten her anywhere – yet – but I do take roll call when we get in the truck!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Regret

I have been thinking for awhile it would be fun to try one of the many, many, online weekly photo challenges. Just a way to have a little fun with my camera and improve my picture taking skills a bit.  This week I noticed that WordPress hosts a photo challenge so I thought I’d join in. Then I saw the theme of the week was “regret” and I thought I’d start on a week with something a bit easier. Regret, fortunately, isn’t something I have a lot of. Mud, frustration and insanity I’ve got in scads but I’m pretty good at having no regrets. But a challenge is a challenge so I’d been thinking about it this week.

Then today I finished the last of my fancy Valentines Day chocolate and I was very much regretting my inability to ration my chocolate and make it last.  Apparently I’m not without regrets after all but at least I had a subject!

At nap time today I took my brief alone time to set up my tiny photo shoot and in the five minutes I had before kids woke up crying, demanding sustenance and asking five million questions about my tulip and empty wrapper, I managed to play with settings on my camera I don’t normally use and remind myself of a few basic things.

Like backgrounds.

They should always be checked for unseemly dark blobs!