Category Archives for "Sunday regurgitation"

My weekly “best of” post

Weekend regurgitation: Musings on Lady GaGa in the outfield

I’ve mentioned before that Mother Nature has been busy peeing all over our area for about two months now. Yesterday was no different and found us sitting for an hour and a half in the cold, pouring rain, watching Helena’s softball game. Any other year, the game would have been cancelled but seeing as how almost all of their games this year, as well most of their practices, have been cancelled, rescheduled and cancelled again for rain, I think the softball league was just bound and determined that everyone would see this one game through, even if it meant that the girls needed to grow gills to catch a fly ball.

But once the thunder boomed, it was over. The field horn blared, the game was called for rain, the kids swam off the field and everyone sloshed their way back to their cars.

Once we successfully reschedule all of these practices and games, I estimate that this softball season will end sometime in the spring of 2013.

I leave you with a post I wrote last year about Helena playing softball. And yes, I’m aware that Friday’s post was all about softball too. I’m sorry about that. But it was either softball or the ginormous abscess that suddenly appeared on the back of Helena’s ear and screamed SURPRISE and tried to hug me when I went to change her earrings earlier this week.

You’re welcome.

Happy Sunday, everyone!


Vertigo sticks and their relationship to softball. Or lack thereof.

(Originally published June, 2010)


Helena, my nine year old, has played softball for at least five years now and she’s doing pretty darn well. She even pitched a game this week where she struck out the first batter with her first three pitches.

I didn’t get photos of it because I was too busy programming all the Division I and II colleges for women’s fast pitch into the speed dial on my cell phone.

However, there are still moments when I feel like we’ve been transported back in time to her very first season, when the girls were clueless as to what to do, how to do it, why they had to do it whilst standing far away in a field where nothing ever happened and, most importantly, who could land the best cartwheel while wearing a glove?

Sometimes I wonder if Helena is really paying attention? Or is she mulling over the lyrics of Bad Romance and wondering what a vertigo stick is and why Lady GaGa wears big, wooden, bedazzled jock straps on stage? And should she ask her mom about it?

I’m glad she hasn’t because Lady GaGa confuses me. I don’t know why she wants anyone’s psycho or vertigo stick and while there’s some debate as to my possession of the former, I’m pretty sure I’m not equipped with the latter. I’d rather avoid the entire subject so I wouldn’t have a clue as to what to tell Helena other than HEY, I KNOW! HOW ABOUT WE DISCUSS HOW DADDY PLANTS HIS SEED IN MOMMY’S BELLY AND MAKES A BABY GROW INSTEAD? WITH PROPS? AND A POWER POINT PRESENTATION! AND THEN WE’LL EAT COOKIES!

Its just seems to me that sometimes, Helena appears … preoccupied.

You know … daydreaming.

Somewhat distracted.

Otherwise engrossed in other, more riveting activities.

Sometimes she’ll even do something that makes me break out in a panic sweat while envisioning her head engulfed in a swarm of creepy crawlies but then she’ll telepathically holler RELAX, MOM. I DIDN’T WEAR ANYBODY ELSE’S HELMET. I’M JUST I’M BORED OUT OF MY GOURD to calm me down.

Thank you, Helena. Now please stop touching your head because it freaks me out.

Sometimes, I simply worry that Helena just isn’t actively engaged in what’s happening around her.

But then, something will happen, such as a pop fly will soar overhead and travel in her general direction like a heat seeking missile and suddenly, my worries are lessened, my fears are alleviated and my concerns are put to rest because there is no doubt in my mind …

Helena is totally in the moment.




Weekend regurgitation: Whirlpool Jet Tour – even the name is sopping wet

Either Mother Nature is incontinent or suffering a rampant bladder infection or just plain bitchy, I have no idea. All I know is that she’s been peeing all over our neck of the woods for, ummm … let’s see … FOREVER.

Helena’s softball season started about three weeks ago and so far, six practices and four games have been canceled, rescheduled and canceled again and again, due to soggy field conditions. Same with the fifth grade’s Cooperative Games Day which was rescheduled twice before being canceled for good this past Friday, leaving me with a deflated ten year old yelling WHY’D I EVEN BOTHER GETTING OUT OF BED THIS YEAR?

I leave you with a multiple choice quickie I posed last year involving another occasion when we found ourselves sopping wet except that time had nothing to do with Mother Nature, unless Mother Nature is a 6’2″ husband who quite possibly failed reading comprehension in school.

Happy Sunday, everyone!


Who’s game for another multiple choice quickie?

(originally published June, 2010)


Review the facts and the exhibits provided below and then answer the question(s) to the best of your ability. Or just guess. Whatever.


  • Nate planned this excursion himself and surprised his wife and two kids with it on the morning of.
  • Contrary to public opinion, Nate’s wife is in favor of spontaneity, provided it is thoroughly researched to within an inch of its life and comes equipped with a contingency plan. And a few Xanax wouldn’t hurt either.
  • This excursion did not come with a contingency plan.
  • No Xanax either.
  • At check-in, the Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour employees processed the family’s paperwork and suggested they place their change of clothes in a locker adjacent to the dressing room.
  • A change of clothes falls under “research” and totally qualifies as a contingency plan.
  • Someone insisted “The website didn’t say anything about a change of clothes.”
  • This would be the same person who once adamantly insisted to the point of obnoxiousness that The Wedding Song (There is Love) was written and recorded by Art Garfunkel when it was, in fact, written and recorded by Noel Paul Stookey, a fact proven with incontrovertible evidence discovered by this person’s wife in May, 1999 in the music department of Barnes & Noble, located next to the cafe, across from the children’s section. Not that this person’s wife is keeping score or anything.


EXHIBIT #1: The website for WhirlPool Jet Boat Tours

The website for Whirlpool Jet Boat Tours


EXHIBIT #2: A close up of Exhibit #1 with added highlights:

What's that, Nate?

Which of the following is most likely to be true, based upon the foregoing facts and visual aids and, if applicable, any prior knowledge you may possess of the dysfunction known as FOR SHIT’S SAKE, WHAT THE HELL,  NATE?

  1. Nate will be getting Hooked on Phonics for Father’s Day.
  2. Hitting a Class 5 rapid head on and having approximately 50,000 gallons of the frigid Niagara River rush up and out your shorts like a mini tsunami is like having a wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am quickie with a Viagra infused Abominable Snowman, which is not necessarily a bad thing.
  3. Walking around Niagara Falls afterward with sopping wet shorts is not unlike carrying your own personal, portable air conditioner on your ass.
  4. Having your own personal, portable air conditioner on your ass is actually pretty convenient when it is holyshitcanitgetanyfreakinghotter° outside.
  5. There may be some truth to that whole “every cloud has a silver lining” thing.
  6. Nevertheless, Nate is no longer allowed to run amuk on the Internet and plan spontaneous excursions that expose his wife to nature, especially the wet kind.
  7. The fact that Nate is attached to his laptop by his umbilical cord pretty much negates any reinforcement of #6.
  8. As a direct result of #7, odds are that Nate’s wife will be spontaneously exposed to nature again at some point in the future.
  9. In light of #8, if Nate ever wants to wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am his wife again, he better hope that #5 goddamn well turns out to be true.
  10. All of the above.


Weekend regurgitation: At least this one comes with a warranty and won’t vomit down my shirt

This weekend, we celebrated Mother’s Day a week early by welcoming a new member into our family. I feel like a brand new mama all over again, minus the engorged boobs and discombobulated bladder.

I brought her home and plopped her down on the kitchen table and just as I had done with Zoe and then Helena and finally Oliver when they were shiny newborns, I stared at her lovingly and frantically thought, What the hell am I supposed to do with it now?





Meet my new baby:

Everyone calls her the Verizon iPhone 4 but I’m going to call her LuLu Belle because ever since I was young girl living in Hilton where cow tipping was considered an Olympic sport second only to getting pregnant on back country roads, I always said that if I ever had a cow myself, I would name it LuLuBelle because that sounds like a happy albeit slightly mentally challenged heifer, don’t you think? so, after plunking down more money than I ever thought I would plunk just so I can check my email on the fly, I pretty much had a cow in the Verizon parking lot and then I named her LuLubelle.

The end.

According to my kids, I must now feed her a steady diet of apps, starting with stuff called Angry Birds and Fruit Ninja and Words with Friends and they’ve even offered to babysit my little LuLu 24/7.

I leave you with the post I wrote over two years ago, when I was just starting to learn how to text. I’m happy to say I’ve improved muchly since then and text quite a bit now, although I still tend to text with emotion and I still use an overabundance of exclamation points and I still use correct punctuation and my thumbs are still rendered immobile by laughter and if I text you with What would you like for dinner tonight? Pasta? Chicken? That beef you liked last week? I KNOW!!! How about lasagna? With a salad and some garlic bread? OH, AND WAIT UNTIL I TELL YOU WHAT HAPPENED TO ME TODAY!!  So, what do you feel like eating tonight? and you text me back with “Dunno,” I will still break your thumbs and glue them to your elbows.

Happy Sunday, everyone!



Here’s the 411 on text messaging in our house

(originally published April, 2009)

.I don’t like to text.

I don’t like writing abbreviated code, much less reading it. By the time I figure out that CU L8R means “see you later” and “NETHING” means “anything” I could have been on the next sentence already. Maybe even the next paragraph, depending on whether I cleaned my glasses and took my ginkgo biloba that morning.

But I live with two people who love to text.

Nate, because he suffers from constipation of the mouth and thinks uttering the words “negative” and “affirmative” and “say again” constitute actual conversation.

Zoe, because she’s fifteen.

And so, whether I like it or not, texting has become a standard method of communication in our house. And while I don’t necessarily love the idea (hence, the “like it or not” phrase above – try to keep up) I have gotten used to it.

But as with everything else, I have had to lay down some rules to keep order in this house. Because I am all about order.

And donuts.

And ordering donuts. I’m hungry.

My rules, in no particular order, because they are all equally and vitally important and carry the same penalty of death or immediate dismemberment upon the slightest infraction:

  1. Do not text me when I am sitting next to you. I checked the inventory list and we were both born with a larynx and a complete set of ears. If we don’t use these things, they’ll disappear. Evolution, anyone? I don’t know about you, but I like my larynx and I especially like my ears. I have nice ears – they’re about the only part of my body that doesn’t need surgical intervention. I am not evolving without my ears. Where the hell am I supposed to hang my glasses or my Harry Mason earrings? So stop being selfish already and think of the greater good.
  2. Do not text me when I am sitting opposite you. See #1.
  3. Do not text me when we are in the same house. Physically move your person to my location. See #1 but insert “legs” everywhere you see “ears” with the disclaimer that I don’t like my legs, I would like surgical intervention on them and I have no intention of hanging any kind of earrings from them, Harry Mason or otherwise. Or my glasses.
  4. Do not text me when I am driving. I realize that you won’t always be aware that I’m driving if you are following rules #1, #2 and #3. However, if you text me 33 times asking “where r u?” and I don’t answer, chances are I am driving or I am dead. Either way, you are going to have to wait for an answer.
  5. Do not text me when I am laughing. You know perfectly well that when I laugh, I lose all motor function in my thumbs and they just hang there like miniature dried up albino sausages. No, I don’t know why. No, I can’t help it. I’ve complained to God and last I knew, I’m number 1,643,557 on his to-do list, right after finding a cure for Conan O’Brien’s hair.
  6. Do not wax philosophical on the reasons why I bite my nails. Think I could text with two inch talons? No, of course not. This would be one of those “silver lining” things everyone keeps talking about.
  7. Do not text me, asking what “wax philosophical” means.
  8. Do not get impatient with me. Just because I have opposable thumbs doesn’t mean I know how to use them, especially on a keypad that is sized in direct proportion to an American Girl Doll. Who’s bright idea was that?
  9. Do not tell me to calm my texts down. I cannot help it that I am an emotional person. I need to text in such a manner that you can clearly see my eyes popping out of their sockets, or feel the veins bulging in my neck or hear my brain smashing into smithereens when it explodes through my face, even though you are across town. For instance, “I AM FURIOUS! BATHROOM IS A DISASTER! YOU KNOW THE RULES. I AM SICK OF BEING IGNORED AND TAKEN ADVANTAGE OF! COME HOME AFTER SCHOOL IMMEDIATELY! NO PHOTO CLUB! I AM PISSED! MOM,” satisfactorily conveys that my mood has been raised to DefCon 1. “Upset. Come home,” doesn’t even register on the scale.
  10. Do not text me from someone else’s phone. That way, I can avoid automatically hitting “reply” and erroneously sending the above text to your friend while she’s at lunch. This would be the same friend who is not in photo club, has a pristine bathroom and a mother who doesn’t curse, and who is now petrified of me.
  11. Do not tell me I overuse exclamation points. See #9.
  12. !
  13. Do not, under any circumstances, reply to my text of “OK – there’s a green one and a brown one. The green one looks great against the walls but the brown one looks great against the couch. They’re both on sale. There’s only one of each and they won’t hold them for me! They’re closing in five minutes! I don’t know what to do! Which one should I get?” with “affirmative.” Unless you actually want a scavenger hunt for your genitalia after dinner.

That pretty much covers it.





Weekend regurgitation: A James Bond, Mission Impossible and Snoopy combo

Every day I become the human personification of Einstein’s definition of insanity by trying to play the game of fetch with Oliver. It goes something like this:

  • I throw the ball and excitedly call out Get it, Ollie! Go get it!
  • Oliver chases after the ball.
  • Oliver retrieves the ball.
  • Oliver runs back to me with the ball in his mouth.
  • I declare enthusiastically Good boy, Ollie! Give me the ball!
  • Oliver collapses onto his stomach and shimmies to the couch with the ball in his mouth.
  • I firmly demand  Ollie, give me the ball! Give me the ball!
  • Oliver plays dead.
  • I plead Drop the ball, Ollie! Drop it! C’mon! Drop it!
  • Oliver plays dead.
  • Oliver plays dead.
  • I stomp off.
  • Oliver spits out the ball and contemplates it.
  • I begin to praise him with Good boy, Ollie! Now, give me …
  • Oliver immediately pushes the ball under the couch with his nose.
  • For the rest of the day, Oliver follows me all around the house, whining and whining and whining some more because his ball is under the couch.
  • Lather, rinse, repeat.

I leave you with the post I wrote last year when Oliver was a four-pound, pliable ball of fur who could squish under couches and retrieve all wayward balls. Unlike today, when Oliver is a seven pound, less-pliable ball of stubbornness and ball retrieval is now performed by a none-of-your-business pound, rigid, misshapen rhombus of middle-aged, frustrated estrogen.

Happy Sunday, everyone!



The name’s Chamberlain. Oliver Chamberlain.

(originally published April 2010)




Weekend regurgitation: Putting our money where her mouth is

I have to take Helena to the orthodontist this week. He’s been monitoring her teeth for potential braces for the past two years and at our last appointment, he informed us that this summer will be GO TIME.


I leave you with a post I wrote last year when we were still waiting for the last of Helena’s teeth to fall out. Expensive little suckers that they are.

Happy Sunday, everyone!



She’s going to give the tooth fairy a hernia

(originally published April, 2010)


At Helena’s last dental appointment, her dentist observed that as Helena was almost ten years old, she would soon begin losing another round of baby teeth in the coming months, specifically those baby teeth located immediately next to her barely used adult teeth. After a minute during which my skin crawled up one side of me and down the other, I nodded silently and mentally prepared myself for the waves of horror, gagging, hysterical sobbing, emotional turmoil and all around psychological trauma that usually accompanies the shedding of deciduous teeth in our house. Then there was Helena’s reaction to think about as well.

Turns out, my kids are totally OK with having body parts fall out of their orifices and pretty much rank the whole process of losing baby teeth right up there with Christmas and snow days. In fact, they’re not above buying Chiclets and hot gluing them onto their gums in order to prolong the entire disgusting cycle.

I don’t do teeth. I mean, I don’t mind my own and I don’t mind looking at other people’s teeth if they’re shiny and white and permanently affixed in a smile that is at least two feet outside of my personal space but loose teeth? Or teeth that are wobbly? Imminently rootless? Have we met? I don’t feel an affinity for anything that falls out or is yanked out or is spewed out of my kids’ mouths unless it sounds like I love you or YAY! It’s my turn to do the laundry! But stuff like spit, vomit, excuses, teeth, and the words “boogar,” “fart” and “Oh yeah! I forgot! I need to make a pioneer costume and bring in 12 pounds of churned butter by tomorrow morning for school,” are enough to make me gnash my own teeth right down into my liver.

By the way … did you know that puppies lose their teeth? Why did no one tell me this before we brought Oliver home? THIS IS WHEN YOU FIND OUT WHO YOUR TRUE FRIENDS ARE.

I couldn’t remember the details of this second phase of baby teeth shedding from my eldest daughter Zoe, having successfully blocked out the entire episode with loads of therapy and Xanax so with Helena, I had no choice but to assume her second set of deciduous teeth would be much like her first. I mean, we all know the drill, right? First comes an excited hollering of MY TOOTH IS LOOSE, MOMMY! LOOKIT LOOKIT LOOKIT accompanied by a tiny little movement barely noticeable to the naked eye. Then comes a slightly bigger movement that could actually constitute the beginnings of a wiggle. Then comes a full fledged wiggle, followed by a bigger one and then an even bigger one until one day, the tooth is suspended outside the child’s mouth by a thin, bloody, sinewy, stubborn membrane which is then poked and prodded 24/7 by an overeager tongue attached to a six year old who has already spent the tooth fairy money six ways to Sunday in her head.

The entire process takes about three to four weeks until one day the six year old comes running off the bus yelling I LOST MY TOOTH, MOMMY! LOOKIT, LOOKIT, LOOKIT and flinging her backpack onto the kitchen table whereupon she proceeds to yank everything out of it, including a cheese stick from three weeks ago. She continues to desperately search for the tooth which, as best you can understand from the hysterically happy shrieks now bouncing off the ceiling, is secured inside a bright yellow, plastic, mini treasure chest, courtesy of the school nurse. And no sooner do you get this piece of information when you see a flash of bright yellow whiz past your face as the mini plastic treasure chest flies through the air, plummets to the ground and breaks open at which point, you can do nothing more than stand there in frozen horror as the tooth in question rolls out, grows fangs, cackles and then scampers across the floor to plant a big, wet, juicy, french kiss on your big, bare toe.

I’m a little fuzzy on what happens next but I’m pretty sure it consists of lots of yelling and screaming and crying and scrubbing of feet with bleach before you eventually pass out from the grossness of it all and ultimately winds up with your six year old standing over you with concern written all over her face, over which she has scribbled MOM! ARE YOU FINISHED? I’M NOT ALLOWED TO GET COOKIES ALL BY MYSELF, YOU KNOW.

But I’m here to tell you that the second phase of deciduous teeth is nothing like the first phase so be forewarned. First of all, that adorable six year old who labored for an hour over a colored picture to hang in her bedroom window to help the tooth fairy find her bedroom in the dark of night? She has turned into a 9¾ year old who uses the tooth fairy’s OCD tendencies to her advantage when negotiating the fair market value of her tooth, based on three sound principles: (1) time is money; (2) every minute the tooth fairy does not have to spend in a hazmat suit while using salad tongs to retrieve a tiny piece of dead enamel from under a pillow increases the value of that dead enamel exponentially; and (3)  a tooth that can be thrown down the garbage disposal before witnesses is worth far more money than one that simply vanishes into thin air one day, only to magically reappear one week later in the most unlikely of places like, say, atop the tooth fairy’s cream cheese bagel, coincidentally on the same day that the 9¾ year old was grounded earlier for a multitude of reasons, not the least of which was practicing psychological warfare without a license.

Second of all … the teeth themselves are a whole different animal. These teeth can do in thirty seconds what it takes the first set of baby teeth three weeks to accomplish. Like this past weekend when Helena walked by me and said in passing Hey mom, I think I have a loose tooth and I managed to keep my skin from crawling out the door while responding Are you sure? Which one? and she stopped dead in her tracks, slapped her hand to her mouth, turned to me with blood gushing down her chin and replied DA ON AT JUS  ‘ELL OUT O’ NY NOUTH and sure enough, there in her hand lay the bloody remains of a tooth that had indeed bit the dust at warp speed.

And then there was last night when Helena sat down next to me with 23 teeth in her mouth, got up to get ice cream and sat back down with 22 teeth and a gaping bloody crater in her mouth.

I’m not sure what’s going on but we’ve got cream carpets here so I re-purposed Helena’s Easter basket by making her walk around with it hanging from her nose at optimal level, just in case.



1 2 3 22