Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Doing the Math

Tonight, Baskin Robbins had their annual 31 cent scoop night. Now going out to ice cream is something only really rich and really stupid people who don't realize you can get five times as much ice cream for the same price at the grocery store do (at least that is what I have convinced my children). That is, unless the scoops happen to be on sale for 31 cents.

So right at 5 p.m. you could find yours truly with her two wiggly children in line in front of the neighborhood ice cream store, anxiously awaiting our turn.

**** Adorable Pre-Story****

While in the car on the way to ice cream, I was energizing my back seat crowd.

"Who wants ice cream, raise your hand!"

"Me!!! Me!!!"

"Who wants ice cream, raise your hands higher!"

"Me!!! Me!!!"

Scarlet interrupted our sporting ritual and said, "Mom, this reminds me of church." (No, we don't regularly head out to ice cream on Sunday)

"Why, Scarlet?"

"Because in church, they ask us if we want something and everyone raises their hand like this," she said while demonstrating how we sustain in Sacrament meeting.

Too funny


****Back to Main Post ****

So there we are standing in line with the best of the best type of crowd for the next 30 minutes. And let me tell you, it was quite the 30 minutes. It all started going downhill when I noticed the four year old boy in front of us wouldn't stop coughing. I should say rather he couldn't stop hacking up a lung for about 10 minutes straight. I held my children as far of a distance as possible, and the thought crossed my mind '31 cent ice cream sure wouldn't be worth it if my kids got that cough.'

And that is when he threw up.

It wasn't like a stomach dump, more like a cough so hard he gagged many, many times. His mom calmly pulled him to the side to let him get it all out behind a nearby column. And, when he was done, she wiped off his mouth with her hand, left his throw up for the rest of us to admire right where it was, and got back in line! I am seriously considering begging the people in front of us take cuts. Of course, everyone behind us caught the same scene so nobody was taking our place. I tightened my reigns on Rhode and Scarlet but stayed put the whole time wondering what horrible disease I was probably infecting my children with at the moment. Again, at one point thought, 'If my kids come down with whooping cough tomorrow, 31 cent ice cream probably will not have been worth it.'

Two families to go and Scarlet decided she desperately needs to use the bathroom. There is no restroom in the Baskin Robbins and the restaurant we are standing immediately next to has one of those 'Restroom for customers only' signs that was larger than the name of their store. The very nice lady behind us offered to let us run down the strip mall to find a restroom while she held our spot. With Rhode in my arms and Scarlet trailing, we ran the entire length of the strip mall. Of the 10 doors, only 2 held actual businesses and both were already closed. The rest were big empty buildings. Stupid economy.

So we trudged back in line and Scarlet luckily got a second wind and was able to hold it. I then though, 'If Scarlet pees on the ground and soaks her clothes and shoes right as we walk in this store and I have to order ice cream for her while she screams out of embarrassment and wetness, 31 cent ice cream would so not be worth it."

Thankfully, that did not happen.

We got our scoops without any loss of bladder control and headed out the door. Now you couldn't eat inside the store but I figured we would just pull up some sidewalk and enjoy our cones. That is when the wind kicked in, big time. We could hardly keep our cones upright much less pause to enjoy them. So the ice cream outing got moved to my freshly detailed car.

I opened the passenger door for Scarlet and, before I even had time to remind her to be careful, her cone snapped in two and the entire scoop of ice cream splatted onto my freshly shampooed mat.

We recovered the ice cream and shut the doors to keep the gusting wind out when we realized it was really hot in the car. So, I turned on the car to run the A/C wondering how much it was costing me in gas to eat my 31 cent ice cream.

Cones were finished without any further problems and both parties were pretty satisfied with their treat. Unfortunately, I couldn't help but run a few numbers as I buckled my kids into their car seats. If they do get sick from the crazy puker and I have to take them both to the doctor, if I decided to get my now sticky car detailed again, if I totaled up the gas burned while we enjoyed our cones, plus included the time it took to actually procure them...

Suddenly my 31 cent cone costs me about $85 a scoop.

But the truly scary part is Carvel is having a free ice cream day tomorrow and I'm not totally convinced the Nielsens won't be making an appearance.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Yeah, Definitely Made My Day

I picked Scarlet and Rhode up from Nursery today as usual. We are actually Nursery leader-less in our ward at the moment and that means a lot of fill-ins. This week, one of the members of the bishopric and one of the ward clerks were subbing. Now I explain this because this adorable little story I am about to share would probably not have happened with the typical Nursery leadership.

Anyway, as Rhode did his full sprint into my arms, our ward clerk Taylor shared this story with me:

Taylor: What do you got there Rhode? Is that a phone?

Rhode: Yeah

Taylor: Who are you talking to? Your girlfriend? (Gotta love male nursery subs)

Rhode: Yeah!

Taylor: Oooh! Who's your girlfriend Rhode?

Rhode: Um..... mama!

Rhode, at that moment realizing that I wasn't there with him, proceeded to cry for me in Nursery for the first time. Luckily, he was calmed quickly.

I am always going to be his favorite girl right?

Sunday, April 18, 2010

I'm Just Not Scary Enough

We finally wrap up a weekend of driving just hours ago. My kids spent a fun filled weekend with Aunt Cara and Uncle Ben and their three cousins. At one point, Scarlet was openly admitting she didn't really care if her true parents ever actually came to get her. And the entire 5 hour drive home was filled with requests to return to our "Utah home". I sometimes wonder if Scarlet thinks she is a millionaire's daughter. It is going to be devastating to this girl when she realizes one day that her parents do not own every single residence she has ever spent a night in.

But I made an important and disturbing discovery during the car ride home. Rhode was fast asleep and Scarlet was being unnaturally self-entertained while I concentrated on the road and the radio and Jon got his DS on. Jon then casually looked to his left to check in on the back seat situation and yells, "Kacey, pull over now!"

The man should learn not to give me panic attacks.

Assuming I had a dead or dying child in the backseat, I immediately pulled over... onto the left hand shoulder.

"What are you doing?! You can't park over here!" he yelled at me while I am desperately trying to remember how to Heimlich or CPR something. I had come to a complete stop before I figured out what all the commotion was about.

Scarlet had pulled the veggie tray from the back window ledge and had two handfuls, yes full fisted handfuls, of ranch dressing balanced precariously over every surface she could reach.

We cleaned up the ranch, wondering why in the world our 3 year old would think it would be just fine to wash her hands in dressing with us just inches away?

Everyone knows a quiet child in another room is 90% of the time doing something they shouldn't be. But in the backseat of the car? A mere rearview window glance away from punishment? That is pretty daring.

Later in the drive, after a terrifying left lane shoulder merging, Scarlet finally succumbed to sleep and Rhode kicked around happily in his car seat. I was on the phone with family while Jon continued saving the world on his 3 inch touch screen and just happened to take a glance back at the much too quiet son of ours.

He looked like one of the indians from Peter Pan.

He somehow managed to pull my purse from that same rear window ledge and grabbed my makeup compact. It is one of those really convenient ones that has lipstick, eyeshadow, blush and eyeliner all in one little handy box. Well... I should clarify... it was a really convenient little makeup box. Now, it is has smeared into one color, a horrible tannish brown that adorned both chubby cheeks, arms, forehead, shirt and legs.

Once again, I am literally inches away while he adorns/destroys.

I came to the only conclusion a parent could. My children are just not as afraid of me as they should be.

Now that I have explained, if you happen to see me walking around town in this over the next few weeks, you'll understand.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Teaching Religion

Religious holidays can pose difficulties for new moms and dads. What will our traditions be? How will be balance the fun celebrations with the not so fun religious observances? How will we create in our children lasting memories of family togetherness and righteous teachings and behaviors that they will then pass on to their posterity? How do you balance the Easter bunny with the resurrection and not lose the message amidst the frivolity?

I have no idea.

So, instead of giving myself an early aneurysm, we just went with the flow this Easter season. Egg decorating, searching, and Easter basketing ensued, with the occasional gospel lesson mixed in.

The results? Well, I'll let you judge.
Early in the week, right before dying eggs, we had a lesson called, "Feed My Sheep." We talked about how we are all Jesus's sheep and he is our shepherd. We shared ways on how we can "feed" each other. I was afraid it might be a little too parable-y for the kids, especially when Scarlet spent most of the rest of the week asking me, "Mom, you're a sheep right?" But, we hoped something had stuck.
Before we searched for eggs in the backyard, we read the story of the resurrection in the New Testament kid's scriptures. Scarlet then asked us to read the story over and over to her whenever we had a chance. We felt pretty successful at that point.

And while they snacked on deliciously sugary treats, we read the story yet again. We then realized why we were reading the same story for about the 20th time. She picked up quickly on the fact that mom and dad would stop doing just about anything if she requested the Jesus story be read. When your child looks up at you with big brown eyes and asks to learn more about Jesus, come on, you feel like a sinner for even thinking of saying no.
Scarlet has had a few questions inspired by her new gospel knowledge. We took a walk home from the park and passed by a construction site and a big water truck. She is always fascinated by the water truck and asked, "Mom where do they keep the water?"

"Umm, in the tube in the back of the truck. See it right there?"

"The tube?"

"Yeah, right back there."

She looked really concerned about that, then asked, "Is Jesus back there too?"

After a moment of hesitation, I caught on. "No, Jesus went into the tomb, not the tube."


Now she has the whole Easter story down solid and has even made a few connections of her own. I got to the part about Mary Magdalene looking for Jesus in the empty tomb when she stopped me, looked very closely at Mary and said:

"Mom, Mary went to find Jesus and He wasn't there. And Mary... Mary had a little lamb. And, mom, we are supposed to feed the sheep!"

That's close enough, right?