Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Tuesday Random 5: Stomach Bug Edition

1. A stomach bug ripped through the Intrigue house this weekend. It was U-G-L-Y. Ugly. Up all night, multiple loads of laundry, bowls and buckets at every bedside ugly. I’m still raising praise over here that The International Man of Intrigue stayed well for exactly 24 hours longer than the rest of us. That man isn’t just a national hero, he’s a hero on the homefront. Cleaning up after three of four Little Explorers, taking care of the baby, and even cleaning up after yours truly was a monumental task, and he rocked it. 

2. The International Man of Intrigue did, unfortunately, get the bug like the rest of us. He did it in International Man of Intrigue style, though. The last thing he had to eat before joining the barforama was Girl Scout Trefoil cookies dipped in Nutella. He hasn’t had a thing to eat in about 24 hours. He was just moaning to me about how nothing sounded good. Ten minutes later, I caught him in the kitchen, eating the Tootsie Rolls I use to bribe Gertrude Bell to get out of the car at school. That man loves his sugar. I’m making a mild dinner for our stomachs, and he just announced he thinks he’ll have some cereal. By cereal, he means Fruity Cheerios, which are basically Fruit Loops. 

3. One of the most disappointing things about how insanely bad I felt this weekend was that I didn’t  even feel well enough to read a book. Ever since I was a kid, whenever I feel sick, I like to retreat under a blanket on the couch and read. This week also happens to be Banned Books Week. What better excuse to read? Yesterday, I was finally up and around, and checked out “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian” by Sherman Alexie from the library to read on my Kindle. It holds the number three spot on the most banned books of last year. So far, I’m enjoying it and not seeing what makes it particularly offensive.

4. I know this falls into the realm of First World Problems (FWP), but I was rushing around this morning and wanted to grab a cup of coffee on my way to my morning Bible Study. Unfortunately, Dunkin Donuts was the only convenient place on my route. Now, I love Dunkin, but they don’t offer any alternatives to cow’s milk. Dairy is not Dorothy Gale’s friend on a good day, let alone the first day back to normal food after the stomach nasties. While we’re at FWP, is it’s definitely one that I’m excited that Starbucks is testing coconut milk in select markets! It’s about time! 

5. I’m a bit at a loss for a number five today. I think my brain and body are still a bit out of sorts. How about a round of “What are you watching/reading?” I already said I was reading “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian” by Sherman Alexie. I just finished “Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk” by Ben Fountain. I loved it. The descriptions were inventive. It was raw and gritty, a biting satire. It reminded me a bit of a modern day “Catcher In The Rye,” if Holden Caulfield were a 19 year old infantry grunt. Strongly recommended if you like that sort of thing. We’re kind of in between shows at the moment. We’ve been watching “Torchwood” as a filler. It’s a British show, a spinoff of Doctor Who. It’s fun, but we’re definitely not hooked. What are you reading or watching that you love?

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Tuesday 5: Really random

It's Tuesday again, and I'm a bit sleep deprived. Even though I'd rather have a nap, I can't let my Fellow Adventurers down, so here's the Random 5: 

1. POTUS is coming to Tampastan tomorrow. Surprisingly, he hasn’t contacted the Intrigues about his visit. My husband being The International Man of Intrigue and all, I’m surprised he doesn’t want to come over for a beer. I’m waiting to see how this will impact The International Man of Intrigue, both in the traffic and security that’s bound to be around tomorrow, as well as anything going forward.

2. I may have mentioned that, around here, we believe that Gertrude Bell is part fairy. Not Disney fairy, but sprite. Last week after she got ready for bed, I heard her crying on the stairs. I went over to see what was the matter, and she looked up at me with tears in her big brown eyes. “I don’t want to grow up,” she sobbed. It was all I could do not to grab her by the shoulders like in this scene from Billy Madison. Don’t worry, I collected myself in time to ask the proper questions and have the proper parental response.

3. I owe The International Man of Intrigue a debt of gratitude today. I’m the one in charge of getting up with kids in the night during the week. He needs his sleep so he can go to the office and save the world. I stay home and save the world, and if everyone is crabby and sleep deprived, I can make them take naps. The International Man of Intrigue doesn’t get to tell crabby Generals to take naps, although I’m sure they’d like to get in a few zzz’s at the office. So, it’s an arrangement that works for us. On the weekends, he gets a kick in the back of the shin and then we mumble argue for a few minutes about who got up last, and only then does one of us get up with the offending Little Explorer. If it seems like we’ve put a bit of thought into our system, it’s because we have. We have four kids and they all have had drastically different sleep patterns since birth. Amelia Earhart slept through the night from about 8 months. Gertrude Bell didn’t sleep through the night until after her THIRD birthday. Arthur Dent took up permanent residence in our bed about the time we moved overseas. We were a household of the sleep deprived. We tried every trick and method, to no avail. Eventually we realized we’d have to wait it out, but we needed a system. That system has changed through the years, but it’s basically designed to keep either one of us from losing his or her respective poop due to lack of quality REM. Since the older Little Explorers more or less sleep through and in their own beds, this has brought about our current arrangement. The problem is, Laura Ingalls Wilder has been going through a rough patch lately. I’m not sure if it’s teething, or that she was sick last week, but her sleep schedule is way off. She was very consistently sleeping through the night. We topped her off with a bottle before we went to bed and she’d wake up when the other Little Explorers reached jet plane decibels the next morning. It’s been almost a week of her waking up at least three times a night. After being up with her for several hours around 1 a.m., when she woke up at 4, I did the shin kick. I begged for mercy. The International Man of Intrigue got up with her. He’s my current (and usual) favorite person in the world. 

4. I was at the store yesterday and noticed that halloween decorations and candy are out in full force. Do you like to dress up? The International Man of Intrigue and I go for funny costumes. We have been Dolly Parton and Willie Nelson, a 7 month pregnant pageant queen named Miss Conception and her cheesy 70’s pageant host, a Hawkeye from M*A*S*H redux and a nurse, and, most recently, Amy Farrah Fowler and Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory. What will we be this year? Who knows. Generally, we come up with a genius idea the week before and I spend the week running around trying to pull it off. Any suggestions?

5. I, Dorothy Gale, have a very old fashioned hobby. I love to cross stitch. It’s not your grandmother’s hobby, though. While you can still stitch things with flowers and borders and fonts, there is something for everyone now. I lean towards the irreverent. I stitched a sampler style piece for the girls’ room that says, “Stop Freaking Out.” My latest project is a tiny picture of Anna and Elsa that says “I love my sister.” On the drawing board is a sampler with the words to “Soft Kitty” from The Big Bang Theory for Arthur Dent. And perhaps, since his name is Arthur Dent, a little something from The Hitchhiker’s Guide. Do you have any unusual hobbies?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Tuesday 5: Doctor Who Party Edition

The Tuesday 5 started off as The Tuesday Random 5. Sometimes I like to give them a theme, though. This one is for Doctor Who lovers. If you don't watch The Doctor, you'll find this one pretty weird and unintelligible.

Saturday night we had a few friends around to watch the premier of the 12th Doctor. It was a little late, but well worth the wait. We decided to make a theme party of it. I love theme parties. Back before we had Little Explorers, The International Man of Intrigue and I used to throw elaborate Halloween theme parties. It's been a while since we had a theme party, but I think this random Saturday night party turned out awesomely nerdy!

1. Every party needs some great decor:

 Our Front Door: It's bigger on the inside.

 On the wall in the bathroom: Don't Blink!

 Some fun blue party supplies

 Driveway art

 Leading up to the house-Don't Blink

 Bad Wolf!

 Had to include the welcome mat: Hello Sweetie!

The Crack in Time courtesy of Arthur Dent

 Laura Ingalls Wilder was convinced I hung these just for her

2. What's a party without games?

 Tumbling Tardis Game

3. Costumes! I had a Tardis blue skirt with a patch pocket with the Police Box sign printed on it. "The Brits" came in Doctor Who themed t-shirts. Our other neighbors came as Amy Pond and Nine. And, The International Man of Intrigue came as Eleven:

4. Swag Bags! What's better than sending home guests with some goodies?

Dalek and Tardis candies. This silicone mold was a little bit too big to make decent candies, but it was still fun!

And mugs! I painted these, so they're not perfect, but they'll definitely cheer up a morning cup of coffee!

5. FINALLY, the most important part, FOOD!!! We had to stick to the theme!

Tardis blue corn chips and Dalek-table Dalek Garlek dip by yours truly.

A traditional (and insanely delicious) meat pie made by Amy Pond.

Strax and Dalek cookies made by Amy Pond. The Strax cookies were real maple and the Dalek cookies were espresso.

I also made Bow Ties Are Cool pasta salad.

And Cucumber Cassandwiches with Moisturize Me Olive Oil spray.

 The Brits contributed Jammy Dodgers, Jelly Babies, and marshmallow Adipose Babies,

as well as fish fingers and custard. Don't worry, the fish fingers were actually amazing cookies!

We didn't have any pictures of the blue Sonic Screwdriver cocktails made by Nine or the Wibbly Wobbly Timey Wimey Jello shots I made, but they were yummy!

So, that, my friends, was our little Doctor Who gathering to watch the first episode starring Doctor Twelve. We really enjoyed him. Anyone else watching? What did you think?

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Tuesday 5: All American Edition

Fellow Adventurers, the thought crossed my mind today to skip the extended blog version of my Facebook Tuesday 5 today, but then it occurred to me that all 10 of you might miss it. It also occurred to me that I am thankful for spell check, or I’d always spell occurred as occured. Finally, but most importantly, it occurred to me that if I didn’t do the extended blog version I was going to have to wash the pots and pans in the sink. Tough call.

1. I’m a bit fuzzy today. I’ve mentioned, before, but I’m positive my kids hate it when I sleep. Hate it. Laura Ingalls Wilder slept through the night just fine, but I was up multiple times with Arthur Dent and Amelia Earhart. Thank goodness they had cleaned and organized their rooms this weekend. Every mother knows the joys of crossing a Barbie and Lego land mine field to get to a child’s bed. 

2. Speaking of Legos, today the new Lego catalog arrived at our house. This is cause for much rejoicing among all in the Land of Intrigue. For me, it’s also the cause of great angst. I love Legos as much as the next gal. Santa brings me my own set every Christmas. The problem lies in the fact that there is just one precious copy of the catalog delivered. If you ever want to see my kids engage in a mixed martial arts battle to the last Little Explorer, toss the new Lego catalog on the floor in between them all and watch them scrap. Thankfully, the threat of me taking it away seemed to bring a little peace to the situation. Peace and trepidation. They know that once mom and dad lay hands on that, we will hog it for weeks.

3. Gertrude Bell has been singing “Yankee Doodle” all day long. Unfortunately, but hilariously, she thinks his name is Cranky Doodle. “Cranky Doodle went to town, riding on a pony…”

4. Today was my MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) kickoff meeting! I am so excited to have that little part of my week back. I get so much out of the Bible Study and the fellowship with other moms. Plus, the food is delicious. Also, my most favorite thing? Being kid-less for a few hours. I love my kids like crazy, but I love having that little bit of time each week to be inspired and renewed, and I feel like a better mom that I get that time without kids. 

5. The Little Explorers love to watch old school G.I. Joe. Wherever would they get the idea to watch that? Surely not The International Man of Intrigue, who turns it on and curls up with the kids on the couch on Saturday morning. While they were watching, I was sitting on the couch next to them, reading a book, also about war. If you’re interested, I can recommend it as gritty but compelling: Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk by Ben Fountain. As I read, I could hear the television, but wasn’t really paying attention. Something burrowed into my brain. It took me a second, and then I looked up. “International Man of Intrigue, did they just reference “The Art of War” on G.I. Joe?” He smirked and said, “Yes, yes they did.” I wonder if Sun Tzu would be amazed to know he was referenced by name on an American cartoon, assuming that he knew what America and cartoons were. 

Now you know, Fellow Adventurers. And knowing is half the battle.