Thursday, June 30, 2011

Circle Stah

Here's another odd thing about my Wee One.

You see, I think he might be a burgeoning wizard.

Hear me out.

Just for clarification this shirt says "Yankees, yuck!"
Photo by beloved Kelly and Derek.

You see, the Wee One is at that irritating age where he believes that he is the boss of the universe and nothing pleases him more than ordering me around.

He adores handing me crayons or chalk and dictating what I draw.

Where does the wizard come in, Melissa? Well, here's the odd part - all he wants me to draw is something he calls "circle stah."

If this were Salem, MA in the 1600's we might be in trouble.

See what I mean?


"Nuddah circle stah, mama!"


Listen, you draw 300 pentacles in your driveway and see if you don't start to wonder.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

This 'n' that

Oh that Wee One.

I tell you, if he weren't cute, I'd list him on Craig's list.

Lately he's been a little snack-happy in the car, requesting a seemingly endless stream of pretzels, goldfish, and fruit bars. I thought perhaps he was having a growth spurt.

Alas, no.

The little bugger has discovered he can drop food into the hole in his car seat where the buckle comes through.



After my initial shock and horror wore off, I contemplated clean-up (and murder).

The clean up of this mess required the use of:
1) dustbuster
2) shopvac
3) spray cleaner and paper towels
4) soapy sponge
5) sunshine

Alas, Blogger won't let me upload any more photos this morning so the rest of the Wee One's antics will have to wait till tomorrow.

Blogger fail.

Can you believe I actually posted that hideously embarrassing photo on the internet?

Someone's probably going to alert child protective services.

What's the grossest thing your kids have ever done? Do tell. Improve my self-esteem.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Binder

We have been very lucky the past few weeks to be able to get away and rely on our beloved family to watch the boys.

Between Buffett and the wedding, we've had two fabulous nights out - child-free!

In order to make things easier for those brave folks who offer, oh-so-kindly, to watch the boys - I have created:

The Binder

It looks innocuous, no?
But think of it like a life raft.

The Binder contains everything one might need to know when it comes to the care and feeding of my two littles.

First and foremost, what to do in an emergency! (Sorry, I'm a nurse.)

This page has our street address, the boys' vital statistics
and the number for poison control.

I know this seems silly, but what I have learned from my life as a nurse is that emergencies do happen, and the best way to get through them is with an idiot-proof plan, because in an emergency, your brain just doesn't function as well as it normally does.

The rest of the binder is not so scary.

It contains a page of directions for using our tv. With diagrams!

Fancy, no? Thanks Hubs.

It contains a run down on diapers, meal times and three pages describing the bedtime routine.

How to get them in bed unscathed.

And of course there's an assortment of local places for take-out, and some cash.

I could go for pizza.

I included a page of "translations" i.e. if the Big Boy asks for "da udder mama's cereal" he means the granola/wheaties mix.

I know this may seem like overkill - but I gotta say - those who have watched the boys seem to have appreciated it.

I want those beloved folks who care for my little guys to relax, have fun, and feel appreciated. This is my way of making things easier.

Hooray for the binder!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Monday! Bleh!

Happy Monday, folks.

How are you?

How was your weekend?

Mine? Oh, I went to the most beautiful wedding. I laughed, I cried, I gorged myself at the buffet.

The bride is from Columbia so I was blown away by the colors (she wore yellow shoes!) and the lovely flowers.

Photos? Alas, no. I forgot my camera.

Blogger fail.

Here are some amusing things the boys did this weekend to make up for my failure:

The Big Boy eats everything with a spoon. Including popcorn, crackers, and Teddy Grahams.

The Wee One, on the other hand, eats nothing with a spoon. Sadly, including yogurt and oatmeal.

Who needs a spoon?

And my favorite moments from the weekend were brought to  me by the Big Boy, who desperately wants to play mini-golf thanks to a recent episode of (you guessed it) Handy Manny.

We didn't get to a mini golf range this weekend, but that didn't stop my boy.

Chipmunk holes = golf course.

Come on! That's hilarious! Can you imagine what the poor chipmunks were thinking?

Now tell, what did you do with your weekend?

Friday, June 24, 2011

Friday Moments

Friday moments with Soule Mama again today.

If you have a moment or two to share, please leave a comment with a link.

This week I'm only going to share one  moment. Gasp!

Our first haul from the CSA. I finally joined one and I can hardly contain myself. It's awesome!

Happy Friday!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Time flies

It dawned on me the other day that the Wee One is twenty-one months old. Twenty one. Nearly two.

When his brother was this age, I had just brought home a newborn.

I look at the Wee One now, and I can't seem to imagine the Big Boy ever being that ... well... wee.

It has happened - time has flown.

Just like everyone warned me it would.

So big.

In the morning when I pluck him from his crib, we talk:
"Good morning" I say.
"Good moah-nin" he replies - talking around his binky.
"Are you my baby one?" I tease, sticking my nose in his neck and tickling him.
"No!" he says, squirming.

Despite the binky,  blanky, and crazy crib hair - he really isn't a baby anymore.

I blinked, and here we are.

The dismantler at work.

And the Big Boy?

It's hard for me to write about how big he is. My heart starts to ache and my eyes sting.

Sappy Mama.

Lately he's been practicing social skills with me:
"Hi!" he says, "What's your name?"
"My name's Mama" I say (having been scolded previously for introducing myself with my real name), "What's your name?"
Suddenly he is shy, but he answers, then he runs off, satisfied.

Yesterday when I picked him up from the daycare at the gym he was playing with a few other boys who all knew his name.
Oh, there he goes.

Time, time, time.
Always marching on.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


Blogger won't let me upload photos this morning, so my planned post will have to wait until manana.

What to do instead?

Parenting Haiku!


What is in your mouth?
Yuck! Give that to me right now!
Don't eat off the floor!


A horrible smell.
What have we been feeding you?
Wish it was Dad's turn


Baby smells like garlic
Wanted Hummus for breakfast
His breath is awful


Don't dismantle things!
How on earth do I fix this?
Not Handy Mommy


Hey! Stop hitting him!
Go to your room this instant!
Count to ten, Mama


Why are there no wipes?
Who used the last friggen wipe?
Alas, it was me


Stop picking your nose
I can still see you. Now stop!
Because I said so!


Don't wipe that on me
Go wipe it on a tissue
Now I need new pants


I hope you have enjoyed parenting haiku.

Please feel free to leave your own haiku in the comments!

Hopefully, I'll be back with photos tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Father's Day

I am very lucky to be surrounded by amazing Dads.

And we raised the roof, celebrating them on Sunday.

The fam, chill-axing in the shade.

Here are some shout-outs:

My Uncle-in-law Steve, who loves my boys so much it makes my heart swell. And who is so handy, his house is a Wee bit like the Jetson's.

My Father-in-law Phil who is one of the most dedicated people I have ever met. He has worked on his music every day, every day, since long before I was born.

My Bro-in-law, whom I call "Brothah" who is  facing parenting challenges that would make a lesser man bolt.

My beloved friend Nick, who loves his "girls" (daughters and wife) in a way that makes me smile a sappy, goofy smile just thinking about it.

My beloved friend Ben, who has walked a parenting road that is often frightening.  Yet he and his wife walk on with grace and laughter - truly inspiring.

My beloved friend Jim - who also walked a treacherous parenting path - he never fails to make me laugh. And look - you made the blog!

My grandfather - the Wee One's namesake - truly a man's man. Inspiring isn't quite a big enough word, but it will have to do.

My own father - who taught me to love books, my most beloved  past time. Roomba-tinkerer, gardener-extraordinaire, experimental chef. I love you, Dad.

And of course, my own beloved Hubs, he teaches me so much. He is often a much braver parent than I am, "Come on," he says, "Let's take them to Boston! It'll be fun!" I am terrified, but he is right, it was fun. Love you, Babe.


If you'd like to leave a shout-out, please leave a comment. I'd love to shower some dad's with praise, and hear about the great things they do.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Big Weekend

For those of you who are Buffett fans

"Come Monday, it'll be alright.
Come Monday, I'll be holding you tight."

Happy Monday!

So yes indeed, my beloved sister and brother-in-law took us to Jimmy Buffett on Saturday night.

Thank you.

Also, a  big thank you to beloved sister-in-law and mother-in-law who took care of the littles so Hubs and I could sneak off with our lei's and cooler.

It was awesome, of course.

First off, beloved sister removed the carseats from her car so we could all go together.

Now, you mamas know this was a brave move - under the carseats and the-backseat-in-general, it's pretty questionable when you've got kids. And sister's car - it did not disappoint.

You just never know what you're gonna find.
A french fry and some gum!

Now, I don't mean to brag or anything - but we rocked the tailgating.

There may have been real coconuts from which to sip our fruity beverage.

And then of course, there were the pirates.

Giant pirate on the left - he's 6'6".  I asked him.

The concert?

Well you know it was fab.

Buff (I call him Buff. We're pretty tight, Buff and I) he rocked the stage barefoot and in a Bruins jersey.

More than once he joined us in the over-zealous "We got the Cup!" chant that kept breaking out.

Oh, it was all good. Such fun.

Yes, yes - we celebrated father's day too -  but I can only fit so much on the blog today - we'll discuss father's day tomorrow.

"Come Monday, it'll be alright.
Come Monday, I'll be holding you tight.
I've spent 4 lonely days in a brown L.A. haze
And I just want you back by my side... "

Friday, June 17, 2011

Friday Moments

Friday Moments with SouleMama again today.

If you have a moment or two to share, please leave a comment with a link.

Yesterday we had a run-in with nature!

I was leaving my house when a big, giant turkey vulture landed in my neighbors yard.

He was totally scary and huge. I wish I had something better than this lame cell phone photo - but hey - at least it's something.

"Go see him?" says the Wee One.
"Ahh, no."

 This week seems to have passed in a blur, I can't believe it's Friday already, but we had some great weather and lots to do - so here we are.

Here's the Big Boy safely playing with his screwdriver, but don't be fooled.

What I didn't manage to get a photo of was him dismantling the garage door locking mechanism.

He looks so harmless but he's like an evil Bob Vila.

And what's the Wee One been up to?

Well, yesterday I took the two children to radio shack for an oh-so-brief stop for one item. His highness wanted to "Git down" in order to touch everything. When I said no and held him firmly in my arms, he slapped me.

In the face.

When I scolded him for hitting, and threatened him with a Time Out, he pinched me, instead.

Oh man, we've got a long journey ahead.


Any good plans for the weekend?

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Reading: A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

A Discovery of Witches: A Novel
Oh gang, I just finished the most fabulous book. A Discovery of Witches is a little bit Harry Potter, a little bit Twilight, a little bit Nora Roberts and a little bit Davinci Code.
Sure it required my embarrasing book camouflage, but it was so good that embarrassment bedamned I am telling everyone about this one.
This is the story of historian Diana Bishop, a witch who shunned all things magical after the mysterious murder of her parents during her childhood. That is, until she inadvertently calls a powerful, magical manuscript from the stacks of the Bodlein library at Oxford and attracts the attention of every magical creature around, including the handsome, debonair, stop-fantasizing-Melissa-he-is-a-fictional-character, Matthew Clairmont - vampire scientist.
A rollicking adventure ensues where Matthew and Diana fall in love (forbidden of course), and escape the clutches of a series of evil witches and vampires.
Oh it was great. Well written and full of history (Harkness is a history professor), with enough DNA related science to rouse the science geek in me.
Warning: this is book one of a trilogy, and the second one isn't due to come out until 2012. Dang it!
I'm sad it's over, and eagerly awaiting number two.

What are you reading? I could use a recommendation.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


When the Big Boy turned three, I declared far and wide that three is worse than two.

I talked about it with friends.

I blogged about it here.

I accepted it as a universal truth of child-husbandry.

Recently, though, as the Wee One approaches his 2nd birthday, he has begun to exhibit some rather challenging behaviors, and I have decided that three is not worse than two.

There are 2 reasons for my erroneous conclusion:

1) There was a brief lull between the two-year-old-naughtiness and the three-year-old-naughtiness.

And though it was brief, it caused me to immediately forget all the previous naughtiness due to my overwhelming gratitude.

2) As the Big Boy made his way through the terrible-two's, I got used to it and became adept at managing him. Unfortunately, when he turned 3, all my techniques were useless.


So let me make it clear, for I fear I may have misled my beloved friends and readers:

Two is not easier than three.

Here are the rules of engagement:

* My needs are to be met instantly lest screaming ensue
* I might just scream anyway.
* If I drop something, I scream.
* If you say no, I scream.
* If he has it, I want it. More screaming.
* I have two volume levels: loud and screaming.
* Give me that, now.
* Cuddle with me at your own risk, I cannot differentiate between hugs and headbutts, kisses and biting. I think pinching is affectionate.
* I eat things I find on the floor.
* Do not leave me alone. Especially near the toilet.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Rainy Day

Over the weekend, it rained.

And nothing makes my beloved Hubs more restless than a rainy, unstructured, weekend afternoon.

"House project!" he steadfastly declared, and off we went to Lowes to gather up the necessary supplies.

(In case you need a refresher, please see this post for my formula regarding the number of trips to the home improvement store you will need to make in order to complete a home related project.)

The Big Boy could not have been more delighted.

(Please excuse the quality of these photos, my cell phone ain't no fancy iphone, okay?)

Overseeing the procurement of hardware.

Horse Whisperer, meet Tape Measure Whisperer.

"Wook at dis, Mama!"
"What is it, Bud?"
"It's sumpin!" 

In the end, the leaky pipe stopped leaking and the Big Boy is now well-versed in the basics of plumbing.

Success, I would say.

Monday, June 13, 2011


Hey Gang.

I know, I know. It's Monday.

How was your weekend?

Us? Well, we joined a new fitness center ( pool! )- and I took the Big Boy with me to fill out the paperwork and go on the tour.

You know the tools came with us.

"Dwopped my hamm-ah."

The lovely woman giving us the tour thought he was hilarious, as he pointed out "slotted scwews" and tried to dismantle every doorknob and electrical outlet we passed by.

The Wee One, on the other hand, spent the weekend basking in the sun, and avoiding the paparazzi.

Not ready for my close-up.

It was good, though a bit rainy.

And along with the slow emergence of the Wee One's two-year molar's, a few other oh-so-classic two year old behaviors are rearing their ugly head.

Unexpected, violent, inconsolable tantums.



Good thing he's cute.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Friday Moments

Friday Moments with Soule Mama again today.

If you have a moment or two to share please leave a comment with a link!

This week the boys have been fighting a lot. They fight over toys. They fight over books. They fight over snacks. They fight over me.

Fight, fight, fight.

So this week's moments are dedicated to brotherly non-fighting moments.

I'm fairly certain he wasn't thinking about stabbing him
in the ear with that screw driver.

Not hitting!

The shop vac brings men together.

There, moments like these can help me ignore the bruise on the Wee One's arm from where the Big Boy bit him earlier this week. Dear Lord.

Hope you have a good weekend ahead of you.

Thanks, as always, for stopping by.


Thursday, June 9, 2011

Boys and their toys

When it comes to clothes and toys for the kiddos, I am frugal. A tightwad. A cheapskate. Stingy.

Between freecycle, hand-me-downs, and the consignment store - I don't buy much, and I never buy new.

And here's why:

We have a house full of toys, a playroom, a garage full of balls, golfing equipment, t-ball equipment, hockey equipment, chalk, 3/4 of an acre of yard to explore, and a playset/fort with a sandbox - and what do my children play with?

The dirty, old shopvac.

Umm Guys? Did I mention we have a playset with a fort?

"I got dit!"he says, emerging triumphantly from the garage,
dragging the wheeled monstrosity along behind him

In a moment I will take the nasty old thing away, but first - the camera!

"Dis is Sneeze - Ah-choo! Ah-choo!" says the Big Boy,
mimicking the shop-vac character on Handy Manny perfectly.

Umm Guys? Anyone want to play catch? Go on the swings? Anything?

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Hope and lies.

Sometimes parenting hurts my heart.

Sometimes I say things and I feel like I am standing over a large precipice on a flimsy bridge of words, hope, and luck.

Here's what I mean:

A bee buzz's nearby and the Big Boy is frightened, he whimpers, runs to me and says,
"I'm ah-fwaid of bees, Mama!"
"It's okay, Bud" I say, "Mama will protect you. Mama will keep you safe."
I teach him to hold still, watch the bumbler fly away and sing, "Shoo fly don't bother me" until he laughs and runs off.
Mama will protect you. Mama will keep you safe.


I wash the Wee One's hands, then my own. I clean a needle and some tweezers with alcohol.
He cries and fusses with the splinter in his palm.
"It's okay, Bud" I say, approaching him with the needle hidden in my hand, "Mama will fix it. Mama make it all better."
Mama will make it all better.


I bring the boys to the gym. Lugging diaper bag, snacks, cups, sneakers, and yoga mat. We've been coming here 3-4 times a week since the Big Boy was 8 weeks old.
"Mama?" the Big Boy says, "Can you not weave?"
"Sorry, Bud." I say, "I gotta teach today, but I'll come right back. Mama always comes back."
He begins pestering the beloved daycare gals for pretzels and I sneak out.
Mama will always come back.


He is sweaty and shivering with fever. I scoop him up and put a cool, satiny blanket between us. Walking slow, steady laps around the first floor of the house until he grows still and heavy in my arms.
"Shh, baby." My mantra. "I've got you. It's going to be okay. Shh."
It's going to be okay.


I kiss the Big Boy goodnight and let him close the door. He hesitates, "Mama?"
"Yeah, Bud?"
"Glow-worm will not come in my woom."
"No, Honey. Glow worm won't come in your room, remember he's just a toy."
"Dare's nuffin to be ah-fwaid of."
"That's right, Bud. Love you."
There's nothing to be afraid of.


I feel it is important for my boys to trust that I will always be there. That I will keep them safe. That I will ease their pain.

But the truth is, he's going to get stung, get scared, and I won't always be there to catch him when he falls.

It's scary, parenting. I want them to feel happy and safe in the world, but unfortunately the world isn't always a happy, safe place.

I'll do my best for them, but I can't change that one simple fact.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

If you can't beat 'em Part Deux

I sense "If you can't beat 'em" becoming a recurring theme here at BMM, yes?

Probably not - I have a mind like a sieve and will most likely forget and never do another one again.

But it surely, it is a good idea.

Anyway, another area in which I am trying (with a wee bit of success) to outsmart my three year old is in the area of nutrition.

The Big Boy is currently subsisting on: milk, cereal, grapes, baked beans, fairy dust, sunshine, pool water, and air.

His consumption of cereal is phenomenally large, and posed a challenge. High quality cereal is prohibitively expensive, and affordable (cheap) cereal is a nutritional wasteland.

What's a mama to do?

Why improvise of course!

The Big Boy loves cereal with little bits of granola, so I cooked up a big batch of of sweet-yet-secretly-healthy granola and mixed it with some Wheaties.

Yummy and secretly nutritious!

The Big Boy is not a fan of nuts or seeds, so I searched and tweaked until I came up with a nut-and-seed-free granola.

Here's the recipe: 

4 cups oats
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch of salt
1/4 cup ground flax
1/4 cup wheat bran
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup apple juice
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Mix the wet ingredients in the bottom of a large mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients and mix until everything is evenly distributed (I found getting in there with my hands to work best here).
Spread the mixture onto a non-stick cookie sheet and bake for 45-60 minutes. Stir the mixture every 20 minutes to ensure even browning.
Allow to cool on the cookie sheet, then store in an airtight container.

Sneaky mama scores one for the team!

Monday, June 6, 2011

If you can't beat 'em

Happy Monday, Gang - how was your weekend?

Mine? Well, you know, cuddles and tantrums, sweetness and frustration, lovely kisses and smelly diapers. The usual.

As you may know - the Big Boy is officially obsessed with Handy Manny and "fixing things".

He carries his tool box everywhere, and introduces himself to strangers by saying, "Hi! Deeze are my tools!"

Recently, Hubs allowed him to play with a real screwdriver - and that, my friends, was that.

Over the next few days he began pulling the screws out of everything.

After I discovered the doorknob of the garage door in pieces on the floor - Hubs and I agreed that he needed a nice, safe, non-destructive way to play with his screwdriver.

A piece of wood. A few holes. A few screws.
One happy boy.

And you know  the Wee One is not one to be left out of the fun

"Dis my scwew dwiv-ah!"

Now, if only I could figure out where all the screws in this alarmingly large pile of miscellaneous screws belong.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Friday Moments

Friday moments with Soule Mama again today. If you have a moment or two to share, please leave a comment with a link!

This week I'm only posting two photos. (Progress towards "this moment's" lofty standards, I do say), although sadly, that's not why I'm only posting two pictures.

This week, the children have been ... well... a bit needy. Clingy. Demanding. Going through some sort of teething, developmental milestone, pollen/sunshine overload. I don't really know. But something.

They have been out of sorts. So this has been my week.

I look down, and there he is.

And the other one is never far away.

"Mumma? Muuuuuma? Mama! Uppa!"

We're hanging in there, but this week has been a little bit more like survival than a lot of fun and laughs.

I hope this weekend is a good one for you, got any good plans?

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Right now

Inspired, as always, by Soule Mama.

Right now I am ...

tired. My children are like roosters, up with the sun.

happy to have homemade iced coffee waiting for me in the fridge.

scratching an assortment of mosquito and mayfly bites.

worried about the rather bad heat rash on the Big Boy. Think he might be spending portions of today with no clothes on.

daydreaming about our summer beach vacation to cape cod next month.

Ready to go!

wishing that either 1) rice krispies were easier to clean up or 2) the Wee One didn't like them so much.

practing patience. Both the boys are requiring me to work very hard lately. Patience, mama, patience. The Big Boy wants to do everything himself, come hell or high water. And the Wee One just wants Mama. Mama? Mama?! Mamamamamamamamamamama!

cheering the Bruins. At least until 9:30, then it's bedtime, sorry guys.

anticipating the glorious produce at the farmer's market this month.

watching the Wee One devour his fourth bowl of Rice Krispies.

resisting the urge for some more iced coffee...

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


Oh the glorious weather.

It feels like summer.

I would like to lie in a hammock, perhaps read a best-seller and take a nap.

My children, on the other hand - they have no such desire.

The bike needs a tune up.

The snow-blower needs to be "winterized."

"Bud, it's May. It's summer. Leave the snow blower alone."
"Yeah, but we gonna nee-dit next yee-ah."

The boys have gone completely tribal. We even had to move the buffet outside.

"Wook, Mama - gwapes!"

They barely have time for a pit stop.

"I gotta fix dis."
"No! Wanna go!"
Ahh summer.

Bug bites despite the bug spray.

Dirt in the bottom of the tub at night.

Filthy socks.

Sweaty, post-nap baby hair.