Monday, June 30, 2008

Dumb Head

I am waaaaaay too easily entertained! Between the "dododo's" and the weird organ thang that's going on, I could listen to this song over and over with a giant smile on my face, tee hee.
"Dumb Head", bwahaaahahahaaa!
I have sooooo been enjoying the brief stint I've had pretending my children are at some Swiss boarding school for the summer (instead of Grandma's for the past 2 days...), and am trying to squeeze as much enjoyment of my alone time as I can until they return in an hour or so (and so what am I doing with my precious and rare chunk of ME time? Blogging... der).

In the meantime, here are some very cute pics of Ms Maggie pants, who isn't nearly as cute in person once you factor in the puppy spazticity (she opened the back room door last night with her schnozzle, a new trick, and let in about 80 gagillion mosquitoes-- I spent the better part of 30 minutes squashing them and pretty much freaking out at the sight of them, knowing they'd be keeping me up all night... that, and she ate a brand spankin new eyeshadow I splurged on- dangit! How does a dog eat eyeshadow? And why?)awwwww..... cute little demon puppy:-)

Still no ideas for the vacation we're taking next week. I figured we could load up the bikes and take a new bike trail each day and check out the cool stuff each town has to offer (Monday, Madison bike trail; Tuesday, Racine; Wed, drop Grace off for 5 days at Lifest and go camping at Point State Beach for more bike riding; Friday, Milwaukee). I've gotten no raves from the children (except Grace, who is only eagerly anticipating the 5 days of non stop concerts and general mayhem until 2 am-- better her than me, is all I gots to say about it...)
I figure that since we're not spending any big $$ on hotel rooms or kennel costs, we can really splurge on museum entry, trying different restaurants, renting kayaks, taking a boat tour, etc and etc, but *meh*-- nobody is all that interested but me.
On a side note, I discovered there's a great vegetarian restaurant in Brookfield I'd like to check out: Cafe Manna and Dandelion in Madison-- personally, I could spend the whole week biking to great restaurants and pigging out, but that's just me:-)

And HEY! I paid off my car loan to-day, tra la la!
Nothing is more lame than owing someone $$, so my life is a little less lame than it was yesterday, a vast improvement in my eyes.
And not only that, but it's a shortie week and we're closer to the weekend than usual:

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


First the rains came, then the lands became inundated with flocks and evil swarms of bloodthirsty zombie spawn-- so freaking many that I've taken to dressing in head to toe coverings, like a FLDS-slash-headscarf wearing muslim in my attempts to keep them from biting me, some 100+ at a time.
When I was picking strawberries this afternoon, I could run my hand along my headscarf and crush whole hand fulls of them at a time, while dozens dive bombed for my eyeballs. Ewwwwwwww!
It's not bad enough that the strawberries, instead of the golf ball sized ones I had last year, are now quarter sized and smaller due to the flooding-- but I'm being eaten alive and left itching in my attempts to get them off the plants and into the freezer. Boo.
So far, I have 2 large ziploc bags, with probably a couple more to go before they're done. And while they're sad little strawberries, only a shadow of their former selves, they'll taste just fine in their next lives as strawberry margaritas and strawberry rhubarb pies... and I honestly should be grateful that the plants didn't just up and die having been under water for the better part of a couple weeks.
Sigh! I also got about 2 large bags of chopped rhubarb in the freezer, also not happy that it was temporarily an aquatic plant for a spell...

So I'm trying to plan a vacation for a chunk of time I've had reserved for over a month-- and I have absolutely NO idea what to do. None. Nada. Zilch. We're going to Chicago to see Cirque Du Soleil over the 4th of July weekend, but there's no holiday festivities going on (go figure...), and other than wandering around in Grant Park, Millennium Park, etc, I have no clue what to do in the Windy City. I'd like to check out Old Town/Greek Town, maybe China Town and a Japanese grocery (the kids love Japanese candy a la Woodmans), and maaaaaaaayybe take the kids to see Blue Man Group. But then after we return home, what to do for the remaining 5+ days?

I was thinking about going the tourist route and heading to the Wisconsin Dells-- we've never been there during the summer and might like the Mt Olympus theme park, Wisconsin Ducks, Wizard Quest, etc, and oogle the "waaaaaaay worse than dinky strawberries" outcome of the flooding in the area... do that for a couple days, hike at Devil's Lake/Parfrey's Glen for a few hours and then head back home to rescue the chickens. After that, we can do a day trip to Milwaukee (art museum, ride bikes by the lake, drool over the mansions of the rich and fabulous, take a class at Whole Foods, etc and etc), ride the Glacial Drumlin Trail and then wind up the week with a big nerd-a-lee trip to the Renaissance Faire, childhood workplace of old (and thus a nemesis-- I kindof reached my saturation point for that place years and years ago... but the kids like it).

I'm also trying to plan a trip to Peninsula State Park for the end of August-- love their bike trails, and both kids know how to sail so maybe we can rent a sailboat for the day, etc....
There's so little time available to take actual vacations, thus it's just so much easier to travel to familiar places vs head to parts unknown. That, and the kids aren't exactly gung ho travellers, making it hard to navigate uncharted waters with two boat anchors in tow, if ya know what I mean (one heavy object being a teenager who is horrified she can't get a signal to text her friends or find an outlet to plug in her straightener, and the other would rather be home playing on his computer) Sheesh! Kids these days...:-)

I'm hoping to head to the Craftacular that's happening this Saturday up in Madison, wheeeeeee! If anyone is up for a roadtrip, lemme know-- fun times and good food await us in Madison:

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

hey dere

Blogging from camp this week; I can't tell you how excited this makes me, compliments of my handy new iphone. Technology for me is like a warm, fuzzy blanket, one that makes me feel that the world is far more safe and orderly than it probably is, especially since I'm holed up and responsible for the health and well being of 100-some kids in the woods and all....
This is such a great time to relax and catch up on reading and other stuff I've put off, all those magazines I've let sit, some from early 2007.I'm eyeballing a book on beekeeping and one on Quebec, both I'd like to explore in the near future. I've tried to be more contemplative in my stretches of free moments, but invariably, if my thoughts aren't interrupted by the occasional head injury, my ADHD riddled brain changes channels before too many solid thoughts can form-- typical!
The latest quandary du jour is whether to send the boy child to a different school, a Montessori program that would hopefully lead him to his tribe of creative thinkers vs the typical rough and tumble kids he doesn't jibe with in his current school. He doesn't want to go, of course, but when your lil dude says it's cause the kids will hate him at the new school as much as the old one, makes you think the kid needs a change even more than you thought, n'est pas?
School sucks major ass, that's all I can say; from the hellacious days I was forced to endure my ownself to struggling daily alongside the kids-- the asscrap never ends.
Enough about that...
I'm still figuring out how to blog from the phone; Ill try and post photos of camp if it's possible.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Blue Girl Group?

I'm watching a documentary on PBS, and I've discovered a new occupational goal:
I want to work with Blue Man Group.
Because while I find working in the grown up world slightly fascinating (only because it doesn't make a whole lot o sense to me), my personality is still too much on the "mucho grande" side for many in the workplace (altho GI has been awesome! Some very cool ladies and docs there...).
I seem to have a limited shelf life for a lot of places; I've seen too much of the world, my perspectives are different, and my filters don't always work the way they should (probably moreso the last one than the rest, tee hee).

But anyhoo, I miss art. I miss interacting with the world in an interesting way... cause there's only so much fun I can whip up in these parts without being irreparably branded in the Burlington Circles (not that I wouldn't eventually find that entertaining, in retrospect).

If I wasn't so afraid of injury and my parts weren't already cranky, it would be way fun to start a Roller Derby team: I prefer to skate on ice, but the local roller rink is a nice substitute-- and how much fun would it be to kick some girlie ass after an exasperating day fighting the man AND evil girl children (not that the boy child isn't becoming a stinky teenie weiner his own self)?

And if I wasn't such a lazy, fearful slug I'd be well on my way to SOMETHING more than working and fruitless cleaning o the Casa K (a nod to: I have a "Casa K" of my very own, so I'm not a big fat copycatter, I swear).

...Working, cleaning, and feeding the next generation of slugs-- that's quite a legacy there.
But I know if I wasn't always stuck in the "Go--See--Do" pattern that keeps me spinning in circles yet never really getting anywhere, I might actually be able to pinpoint a goal, a destination, something I'd like to accomplish before my attention wavers and I'm off to the next flight of ideas--- wheeeeeeeeeeeee!

What's another thing I'd like to do??

Oh yeah! I'd like to start having house concerts in the back part of the property; rent a port-a-wizmo ('cause I don't want strangers fingering my oddities in the domicile), build a little stage, and have folks over for a concert. There was a cool guy who was having some house concerts for a while, but I think his white carpets and overloaded potty eventuallybecame a deterrent for having strangers over. Nice guy... living his dream of doing something cool-- and a local guy, too.

When we were in Austin (story coming soon, I promise), we stumbled upon a fantastic little store in the barrio where I used to live in an Airstream trailer (best living space ever!).
When we checked it out, as I am a huge suck for vintage clothing and such, it turned out that the owner was having a little party in the back-- complete with bands and authentic Texas Bar-B-Que.
Within a few minutes, she knew our life history, we knew hers, and she was hooking us up with some Lone Stars, offering us some weed (totally legal in Austin, I swear...), and shoving us in the direction of the food-- all while sporting the most delightful southern drawwwlllllllllll.

Ah! Southern hospitality, only to be found in glorious Texas. But how fun is that, to have your yard full of people, having a good time (and with no Martha Stewart Maneuvers? That's my special little problem... "hardcore hostess syndrome", SO not a good thing). I'd move back to Austin in a heartbeat-- too bad it isn't going to happen anytime soon, boo.
To be continued...

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Home Again:

Our trip to the Motherlands was very nice; the weather was beautiful and I tried to cram as much into our short afternoon as I could:
Burgers at the Spot ($20 for 4 burgers and 3 root beer whirls! ...and no-- they were NOT all for me-- I had 3 hungry adolescents and their raging hormones to feed. Boy howdy! It's expensive to eat junk...).

Surprise, surprise: turns out the kids didn't want to hang with me (snif!), and once I was able to contain my sadness, Maggie and I headed off to the lake for a walk.

She was AWFUL, btw:
She's a larger girl, so people don't think she's a still a puppy, and since she's a country dog, she's never seen so many people, animals, or citified (aka "not afraid") birds in her life... thus she was fairly HYSTERICAL the whole time trying to jump on, lunge at, and otherwise freak out every living creature who happened to be near us. Argh! Needless to say, my hands are raw from trying to hold her leash, and 1/2 of Kenosha thinks I'm a psycho "Dog Whisperer" wanna be, as I expected her to heel and not wander aimlessly on her leash as most pet owners allow their dogs to do.

Funny, tho-- there seem to be only two types of dogs who live in the city: little tiny pipsqueak/floofey dogs who pull on their leashes, dragging their (completely ridiculous looking) owners around, and scary looking pitbulls. Thank goodness, the pitbulls were far and above the best behaved; perhaps because their brains are larger than a co-co puff and no small children were in range for dining upon.
But where are the other kinds of dogs? The medium sized, Maggie sort-of *useful* pups (i.e. hunting dogs, etc)? Do you think there's an "ankle biters and children eaters only" ordinance on the city books?
Hmmmmmmm...maybe THAT'S why the nice city folks were looking at Maggie and I so strangely....yeah, that's probably it.
Other Kenosha highlights:
The kids and I drove around my favorite cemetery, and checked out the beautiful old tombstones and Dad's gravesite:
This one's my all time favorite:

We also made a visit to Isetts Park, playground of old:

Check out these AMAZING old pieces of playground equipment, upon which I learned at a wee age that metal is an excellent conductor of heat and gets booty blistering hot:
See the painful, sharp edges, perfect for slicing open your scalp? They just don't make 'em like they used to..

And the harsh laws of gravity, as in "when you suspend yourself from the monkey bars upside down and slip, you will not fly upwards like a fairy, but come crashing down on your silly head and see stars":
p.s. once upon a time, I remember my butt fitting into those *leeeetle tiiiiny* bebbe seats and screaming: UUUUUUUUUUNDERDAWG!!!

We also made a poorly advised trip to Woodman's, beloved Grocery Store of Bargains. They have the best organic produce/natural foods selection, and at super prices. Sad to say, tho, it was a fairly sucky trip for two reasons:
#1, the place was a mob scene; it was nearly impossible to get around without running someone over
and #2, grocery prices really HAVE gone up, boo! (somehow I thought this was some urban legend I would manage to escape; guess not)
The kids and I then picked up some food at "Pacific Wok", which was quite lovely. Their sushi was tasty, altho not nearly as bodacious as what we attempt to make at home (ours is always SUPERSIZED, prolly cause we don't really know how to make it civilized like you should), and the teriyaki steak was tasty. I would have liked more veggies, but I'm surely in the minority with that one... I would totally go again (but skip the "steamroller", that was yuckky times 1,000,000).

Ok... one more photo:

This sweet little girl had her rear leg AMPUTATED yesterday (the day before this photo was taken). Insane, truly. She's hopping around like nothing ever happened, trying to keep up with Maggie and just generally being the same happy go getter she was when she had all four appendages. Really, a huge testament to the indefatigable nature of dogs. Lovelovelove this girl!