#AtoZChallenge: S is for Sick

Little Man has always had some concerns about germs, but he’s very inconsistent. One on hand, he’ll question the staff at the doctor’s office about how often they sterilize their equipment, and on the other hand, he’ll eat something off the floor without giving it a second thought. I’m not talking about eating a cookie he dropped off a clean floor at home, which isn’t that bad, but more along the lines of scooping up cheesecake with his fingers off the floor at Walmart (which he did with Spidey-like reflexes). The gross factor is through the roof with that one.

Last week my husband asked for a drink of Little Man’s Gatorade. Little Man had just let me have a sip, but he still shot down my husband because of germs. My husband wasn’t sick or anything, so he asked why, and the kid explained how he doesn’t mind too much about drinking after girls, but that drinking after men or boys is usually out of the question because they’re extra germy.

Those are some interesting points; the thought of beard dipping makes me gag, but as far as I know, no one Little Man knows has a beard long enough to dip. For the record, Little Man has grabbed his dad’s drink plenty of times– usually after wiping off the straw or cup rim with his shirt, which we’ve explained doesn’t exactly kill the germs. But that’s where the “inconsistent” part comes to play again.

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#AtoZChallenge: R is for Rollercoaster

Do you remember the first rollercoaster you rode? The first major one I remember riding was the Cyclone at Carowinds, when I was seven. It was fast, went upside down a couple of times, and — most importantly — was scary.  In my mind, I was officially one of the big kids for riding it. For years to come, I never shied away at rollercoasters, no matter how tall or fast they were.

That changed. Hello, anxious mind — ruining, among other things, all things thrill-related.

The last time I went to Carowinds, I spent quite a bit of time looking up the odds of dying or being severely injured on a rollercoaster and discussing the many things that could go wrong while waiting in line. (Dying is one in 24 million, in case you were wondering, but having the thing tower over you makes those odds seem much higher.) I don’t get too worked up on some of the older rides, but the newer ones that tower over 200 feet tall? Yikes. A few people in front of us left the line, which my husband chalked up to my chatter. So, if you’re eager to get on a ride faster, skip the Fast Pass and become the harbinger of doom.

When Little Man was four, we got season passes to Carowinds since he was finally big enough to ride a lot of rides. He was excited to find out that he was tall enough to ride one of the small rollercoasters in the kiddie area. The morning before we made the drive to the theme park, Little Man told us that he had a concern, which isn’t too surprising, as he’s a lot like me. His particular concern that morning wasn’t anything that had ever crossed my mind, though.

Luckily he managed to get through the ride with everything intact, and then rode the same ride another half dozen times.

Are you a fan of rollercoasters and other thrill rides?

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#AtoZChallenge: Q is for Quiet…Not

There are three things a mom wants: rum, Netflix, and peace and quiet. (There might be an “and” in that last one, but we’re still counting it as one item.) Okay, so maybe other moms don’t all want to be couch potato boozers, but they at least want the last thing sometimes, and if there’s one thing you can count on in life besides taxes, it’s kids not being quiet.

Answering an important phone call from your doctor’s office? It’s gonna sound like you’re at a rager from all the background noise. Trying to send an email — or write a blog post — and need to focus so you don’t come across like you’re drunk typing? Obviously this is the time the kids will decide to work on their banshee wailing. Or maybe you want to catch up just a little on all the sleep you’ve lost over the past nine-plus years? They try to set a new record for decibel level.

The one with the monitor is Baby Girl’s version of The Feeney Call.

“Q” is definitely not for “quiet” when it comes to rousing Mommy.

Thanks to Welcome to the Nursery for the inspiration for this doodle!

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#AtoZChallenge: O is for Obey

Last summer the kids went to vacation bible school. When I’d pick them up each day, Little Man would tell me about the lesson for the day, while Baby Girl would mostly focus on the fact that they had snacks. (This is still what she mentions first when picking her up at preschool — snacks are important.) One day Little Man told me that the lesson covered The Ten Commandments. I asked if he could name them all, and while he remembered a few, a couple were probably not quite chisel-on-a-stone-tablet worthy (and a couple others should probably be chiseled on a tablet and dropped on some people’s heads).

Which non-biblical commandment is your favorite? Mine would have to be #9.

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#AtoZChallenge: N is for Name

Remember Rumpelstiltskin? It’s one of the more screwed up stories I remember reading as a kid. A dad says his daughter can spin straw into gold, the king says she has to do the gold spinning or he’ll kill her, and a little creepy, unnamed dude makes the magic happen by taking something that belongs to the girl as payment. (Because obviously someone who can spin straw into gold needs a ring or necklace.) And then the little creepy, unnamed dude wants the girl’s firstborn to work his magic one last time, which she agrees to. She then marries the king who wanted to kill her, gets pregnant, and the little dude wants her to uphold her promise. Naturally she doesn’t want to and has to guess the dude’s name to keep the baby.

Spoiler alert: the name is Rumpelstiltskin.

Okay, so I probably didn’t need to summarize that story since everyone likely knows it, but I do like to emphasize the screwedupness of some of the stuff we read as kids, so there’s that.

Now for the relevant stuff.

If Baby Girl became a creepy little dude who went around doing favors and taking firstborn babies, victimized miller’s daughters would have a hard time guessing the name she calls herself, too. She has a a bunch of nicknames she’ll use, and rarely will she use her real name when asked. At first it was cute — well, mostly it still is — but I’ve been pushing her to say her real name, just in case she gets separated from us. So far that isn’t working out too well.

Here’s how her name has progressed since she started talking:

See? The miller’s daughter would be screwed.

Mostly Baby Girl will use parts of that mouthful, but occasionally she’ll go with the unabridged version. I imagine that when she learns to write her name in a couple of years, she’ll shorted that up a bit to either her real name (which isn’t Ona, in case you were wondering), or maybe SBOKKSP. Or, maybe I’ll just teach her to write “Batman” and have a laugh at her teacher’s reaction.

Did you have a funny or cute nickname as a kid?

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#AtoZChallenge: K is for Kid Goals

Both of my kids have goals. Ever since Little Man was a toddler, he’s often talked about the things he’s wanted to do. Becoming a scientist and curing cancer, creating a Death Spray, and holding a human heart are a few of the things on his list. Baby Girl hasn’t been quite as verbal about her goals as Little Man, for obvious reasons, but she has expressed that she wants to be a doctor and go to the gas station for all the snacks (not necessarily in that order). That’s a little less exciting (and devious) than creating a Death Spray, but the girl’s got goals all the same.

Here are a few other goals they have:

He’s still working on the beat boxing thing.

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#AtoZChallenge: J is for Joker

There are two things my family loves: Star Wars and superheroes. You’d be hard-pressed to go in any room in our house and not find something related to one of those two subjects. (And on the off-chance that there wasn’t a toy or comic book or whatever lying around, then you’d most certainly see something related to Lord of the Rings, so there’s that. Dork Central over here.) There are often discussions about the better superhero, villain, or Star Wars episode. And, if, god forbid, you confuse Star Wars with Stars Trek or mix up your comic book worlds — suggest that Iron Man is a Justice League member, for example — then prepare to be dead to us all.

Okay, maybe that last line is an exaggeration. But there will be judgment and appalled looks. We try to keep the looks concealed, but if you call us “Trekkies” while we’re talking about how awesome the latest Star Wars movie is, then all bets are off.

Little Man still sings my praises for being a cool mom. I’ve yet to grow up and act like a typical 30-ish mom — and probably won’t — so we have a lot of shared interests. Namely the stuff listed above, but we also share the same dry sense of humor, plus a love of The Office and old school video games. This stuff makes me the-bomb-dot-com (and that comment definitely proves the whole “dorky” thing isn’t all talk). Anyway, while singing my praises one day recently, he paid me this little compliment:

I can’t remember what I said to warrant that comment, but I can only imagine that it was equal parts amazeballs and sinister. (As sinister as a 33-year-old stay-at-home-mom can get, anyway.) At any rate, I know it was a compliment and that my heart went Grinch-mode and grew three sizes.

That mash-up would look slightly terrifying. (+1 to Baby Girl for knowing that this was supposed to be Mommy Joker/Wonder Woman when she saw this.)
For the record, I actually have dressed up as Wonder Woman and the Joker for Halloween — just not at the same time. A few years ago I went as the Joker and my husband went as Catwoman (not the Halle Berry Catwoman, though). We also did the superhero thing as a family this past Halloween:

What nerdy interests do you guys have?

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#AtoZChallenge: I is for Illness

Despite making a list with topics to write about for almost every day of this challenge, I’ve only used 3 of the 8 topic ideas I’d planned. For whatever reason, the original idea isn’t going to work out, so I’m left scrambling at the last second trying to find a new topic. Clearly I should have just skipped planning altogether and winged it.

Since the “I” for today isn’t going to work (I accidentally used it for part of another post), I asked Little Man for suggestions. He considered it for a moment and suggested “illness.” Since one of us has had a virus or some other illness for the better part of the last four months, it’s no surprise that particular “I” word was at the forefront of his mind.

“Yeah, girl,” Little Man said,  “You know how we’ve been getting sick all the time. Ooooh, you could draw how we get sick on purpose, too, that way we can get out of school.”

Uh, what?

“You each got the flu twice since the beginning of the New Year to get out of school? Plus strep?” I asked. And then there were other various stomach bugs and colds. That would be pretty hardcore.

Little Man looked rather sheepish. “Well, not exactly like that. But we were happy to get sick because we did get out of school.”

“Hmm. So there was a silver lining with getting the flu.”

Illness it is, then.

Rather than give you a visual of the behind-the-scenes flu puking action (maybe I’ll save that for another day), I’ll write a little bit about how Baby Girl keeps claiming to be sick. Most of the time she looks for excuses to go to the doctor, because she loves the doctor — she even walks around with a stethoscope half the time. (Last week she said she needed to go to the hospital over a scratch.) Sometimes, though, her illnesses appear when she wants something.

Like on Sunday:

I was cracking up over her sudden illness that could only be cured by a popsicle, but things turned south after I said she was full of crap. (Oops.)

Thought bubble not shown: “Out of all of the four-letter words I’ve said, ‘crap’ is the one you’re offended by?”

Yeah, she got the popsicle.

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#AtoZChallenge: H is for Hulk DNA

Like a lot of kids, Little Man has a love-hate relationship with school. He usually enjoys going — and often comes home excited about the things he got to do — but is less than thrilled with other parts. Namely having to get up in the mornings, staying for seven hours, and going for five days per week. (Half days two or three days per week is what he thinks would be suitable.) Oh, and the homework — he hates that, too. He considers it a form of medieval torture, and in kindergarten — when he’d come home with an hour’s worth of homework that required cutting, pasting, and coloring — I didn’t disagree.

During a complaint session back in first grade, Little Man gave us some interesting reasons for why he shouldn’t have to do the school thing.

You can’t say that the kid doesn’t have his priorities in order — Hulk DNA should definitely trump working on handwriting.

What are some excuses your kids (or you as a kid) came up with to try to get out of school?

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#AtoZChallenge: F is for Fe

After soccer practice one night this week, I was helping Little Man get dried off after his shower when he commented that his belly was sore. He had mentioned running a lot at practice, so I said he’d probably overworked his abdominal muscles. I showed him where they are and he rubbed over them and was apparently impressed by what he felt, as he made this comment:

That’s right. The slender nine-year-old who hasn’t gained a pound all year has abs like iron. Boom.

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