Force Sun Ray Attack

My husband and I went away this past weekend to celebrate our upcoming anniversary. The anniversary isn’t for a few more days, but we’ll be going on our family vacation right after our anniversary and didn’t want to do that much driving back to back. After much talk, we ended up going to Myrtle Beach, which is also where we’re going for our vacation — clearly we aren’t “variety is the spice of life” people.

One thing that you should know about me is that I’m pretty white. Casper looks like he’s been hitting up the tanning bed compared to me. Okay, maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but trust me — the non-freckled over parts of my body definitely have a ghastly pallor. It probably goes without saying that I burn very easily. Sunscreen, cover-ups or t-shirts, and shade are absolute musts for me at the beach if I don’t want to be slathering bottle after bottle of aloe vera gel all over my body later. (The shade is also a must if I want to hang out on the beach for more than 15 minutes without feeling like I’m going to puke — I don’t do heat very well, which can be rough living in the South.)

You’d think that between the umbrella, cover-up, and dusting of sunscreen so thick that other people gagged when they passed by the fog, that I’d finish the beach day unscathed. But, much like my ovaries, the sun hates me and was determined to find a way to mark me.

See all that lovely shade? Not pictured is the sunscreen fog, which I made sure to apply routinely. Also not pictured is my husband with the darker skin that doesn’t burn (not that I’m jealous), because I’m lazy and didn’t want to draw two people.

Those preventative measures were no match for the sun.

Forget force lightning attacks — we now have force sun ray strikes.

Where there’s a will, there’s a way, and clearly the Evil Kool-Aid Man sun was dead set on getting at me.

Technically the burn is on the inside of my left leg (which is even more in the shade), but that wouldn’t show up so good on the drawing, so artistic license and all that.

First things first — that isn’t much of a burn. I’ll acknowledge that straightaway. It stung like hell in the hot tub, but that’s about it. So, as someone who has had severe sunburns in the past, I know that I made out pretty good on this beach trip. But that’s not really the point. The point is — look at it. That leg was under the umbrella and multiple coats of sunscreen. Yet the sun worked its mojo and gave me that odd burn that looks like I’d broken out into hives or something. This is what happens nearly every time I go to the beach — lots of skin safety measures taken and lots of funky, splotchy burns.

All the sun silliness aside, we had a wonderful and relaxing time. It was nice experiencing what the beach could be like without two kids who are determined to stuff sand in your mouth and complain about the salt in the ocean water nonstop. I’m mostly kidding — I know we’ll have a wonderful time with the kids next week — but it was nice to get a break.

Did y’all have a nice weekend? 

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Mother’s Day Part One

I hope everyone had a nice, relaxing Mother’s Day yesterday (or a nice Sunday). My husband cooked me some of my favorite things (steak and bacon), plus ran a bubble bath for me and took the kids out of the house so I could enjoy it in peace, so I was a happy girl.

My family got me a few presents for Mother’s Day yesterday. One present has yet to be delivered, but my husband showed me a picture (so it counts) — an air fryer. This is cool because a) we can enjoy fried foods for less calories and b) I won’t risk burning the house down again trying to fry stuff. (There will definitely be a post for this one soon.) I was also given a gift made by Little Man that will get a post all of its own. And then there was an awesome gift that made me geek out — an R2-D2 measuring cup set.

The set looks exactly like an R2-D2 toy while assembled.

It comes apart into measuring cups and measuring spoons of varying sizes. Rather than attempt to draw a butchered looking R2-D2, you can view the real deal here.

I had barely taken R2-D2 out of the gift bag when the kids began clamoring over who would get to hold him first. Because obviously, the recipient of the Mother’s Day gift wouldn’t have dibs. And when they realized that he comes apart, well, all hell broke loose.

Apparently my kids’ arms do the Stretch Armstrong thing when they’re fighting over something.

Thanks, guys.

The next time my husband and I do any gift giving, we’ll have to make sure we give the non-boring gifts in private.

As a little bonus, I’m going to close this with a doodle from Little Man. He saw me drawing the R2-D2 and drew C-3P0 on his tablet to go with this.

How was your weekend?

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Happy Mother’s Day, Indeed

As much as I joke around about the kids’ clinginess and stuff, Little Man and Baby Girl really have a love for me that just blows my mind at times. I could do a post about Mother’s Day expectations vs. reality or one about the shenanigans my kids have been up to today, but I’ll save those for later and focus on the sweet stuff.

Little Man is a total mama’s boy. Always has been and, hopefully, always will be.

All. Nine. Realms. I want that on my tombstone.

And now for the toddler…

Yesterday I asked Baby Girl if she knew what tomorrow was, and she asked if it were a school day. I told her that it’s not (and won’t be for another three months — it’s going to break her heart when it sinks in that there is no more preschool for that long), but that it was going to be Mother’s Day.

“It gonna be Mudder’s Day?” she asked.

“Yep.”

She wrapped her arms around me and said, “You the best mudder I could have.” I didn’t think she had an inkling what Mother’s Day is, so to hear all that made my heart extra melty.

Yeah, poor Daddy.

Happy Mother’s Day to all you mamas and to anyone else who fills that role.

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Reasons The Toddler Is Pissed

If you look up “temperamental” in the dictionary, I’m pretty sure that you’d find a picture of a toddler next to it. Maybe even my toddler.

Oh, wait…

How about that? I wasn’t exaggerating after all!

True to the definition of temperamental, one minute Baby Girl is happy. The next she’s mad. Sometimes she’s mad over the reason that originally made her happy, which is confusing as hell and makes the whole “navigating parenting” thing much more difficult. Other times she’s ticked off for reasons that should never tick anyone off, ever. And, occasionally, there are times when she’s pissed for reasons that are beyond me.

Here are a few of the reasons she might be mad on any given day —

I have four younger brothers and sisters, so I get #1 — I completely understand what it’s like for a look from a sibling cause someone to see red. I don’t understand why, but I do know that it happens and isn’t just a Baby Girl thing. Even worse than looking at each other is looking at an object the other sibling is playing with/using with interest — this causes a reaction akin to road rage in children.

And for the record, with #3 — we’re talking about milk that has been sitting out for maybe ten minutes. The cup is still cool to the touch. I’m not a monster who makes kids drink warm milk. Cold milk is gross enough to me, but warm milk? “Disgusting!” to use Baby Girl’s new favorite word.

I mostly don’t get the others on that list. Especially #4. Who wants to go around wearing a shitty diaper? It makes her butt red and itchy, which she also complains about. Use. The. Potty. (And use it regularly enough that I can say stop saying “potty” in a sweet, high-pitched voice that is supposed to make you take interest in it.)

What are some funny things your kids get mad over?

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#AtoZChallenge: Whew, It’s Over!

April was a fun, albeit challenging, month. Who’d have thunk it, a challenge being challenging? Gasp!

Even though I started out with a topic for every post planned, that changed 20 times out of 26, and I ended up writing something on the fly. I suck at planning blogs; something that seems funny or interesting at the moment might not seem so funny or interesting in a week or two. As such, a handful (or two) of my posts were published shortly before midnight. One post was finished after midnight, but I cheated and changed the publish time to earlier. For shame! (I’ll also cheat at Monopoly, so don’t let me be the banker.)

I’ve done A to Z Challenges in the past on my old blog, and I enjoyed this one just as much as those. My only regret was not being able to keep up with as many other A to Z blogs as I would have liked. I started strong, but life happened. Maybe next year April will be less hectic on my end, or maybe I’ll find a couple of extra hours in my day. Or — more unlikely — I’ll plan and keep up with things better.

In case you’re new here and don’t feel like going back through all the posts, here is a summary of which posts were the most well-received through the month. I’ll include one of the doodles from each post, and you can click the link to read more if you want.

The post with the most likes was A is for Alphabet Store. This was on the first day of the challenge, so I don’t know if that’s why it performed so well or if some of y’all were just, ah, thirsty.

The most commented upon post was B is for Bulba. Kids learning about their anatomy is always good for a laugh.

And the post with the most views was A is for Alphabet Store, with D is for Dark Knight on its heels.

The post that I enjoyed creating the most was J is for Joker, mostly because the creepy Joker-Wonder Woman mashup cracks me up every time I see it.

Thanks for sticking with me through the month!

What was your favorite post that you created for the A to Z Challenge? Share below, if you’d like!

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#AtoZChallenge: Z is for Zzz

There are lots of ways to get on a toddler’s shit list. Nag her about eating her vegetables, make her hold your hand while walking in the parking lot, and tell her that you are washing her face (no matter how much she kicks and screams) are some good ways to get on the list. Wanna know the best way — the way that will make her look at you like she’s ready to hire a goon to chop off your thumbs? Tell her that it’s time to go to sleep.

Baby Girl has a black belt in fighting sleep. She’ll talk like she’s hyped up on coffee and just ramble, flap her arms like she’s trying to take flight, and even slap herself, all in the sake of staying alert. Other times she’ll try to Jedi mind trick me and tell me, “Mommy, I get up…I get up…” over and over while nodding. Lil’ Obi-Wan Kenobi, she is.

Sometimes this stuff is a bit frustrating (or worrisome, in the case of the slapping), other times it’s all I can do to keep from snickering.

Anytime something isn’t working, then she thinks the batteries have died. Time for the sun to get some a few new AAAs.

Child, you’re talking, crying, and squirming…pretty sure you’re awake.

So I’ve gathered.

Just to be clear, Baby Girl isn’t the only one who dislikes going to sleep — Little Man usually isn’t a fan, either. There are books to read, toys to play with, and video games to play, so who needs sleep? Not him. We’ve caught him reading under the covers many times using either a flashlight or a light saber (and it’s hard for me to get too bothered by that), and we’ve caught him playing a game on his tablet once (he slipped up and sent us a message requesting troops for his game — rookie mistake).

When he was four, Little Man tried to get out of taking naps in a way that I thought was pretty clever.

Well played, kid.

Do your kids hate naptime/bedtime, too?

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#AtoZChallenge: Y is for Yellowstone Park

Have you heard of the super volcano that’s going to erupt and end the world?

I have, courtesy of my 9-year-old.

The boy came home from school one day convinced that the super volcano underneath Yellowstone was going to erupt soon and when it did everyone on Earth would be dead within minutes. Everyone in the United States would be dead within seconds. And he was gonna kick back and watch it all happen, because, “it’s the end of the world — you can’t do anything about that.”

Thanks, Little Man — as if I didn’t have enough to be anxious about already.

After much fact checking, my husband and I thought we had convinced Little Man that while a super volcano erupting would indeed be catastrophic, it wouldn’t be the extinction event he was picturing. Nor is it likely. At all. We discovered tonight that our conversation didn’t really take hold, though.

At a cookout this evening, the end-of-the-world event came up. Nothing like birthday cake and mass death, right? Little Man asked his cousins if they knew about the super volcano at Yellowstone that could kill every body on Earth in seconds. They didn’t, and interestingly enough, there was no moment of panic from either boy. They went back and forth discussing ideas on how to save the world, and then had their cake. When I was that age, there wasn’t much on my mind beyond Teenage Ninja Turtles and The Baby-Sitters Club, and here these kids are talking about how to pull a Bruce Willis and prevent Armageddon 2  during a family get-together. Kids today and all that, amirite?

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#AtoZChallenge: V is for Vader

It’s no secret that the people in the Dorky household have quite a love for Star Wars. I remember the first time I watched Star Wars — when I was 20 — with the guy I was dating who would later go on to be my husband. I was in hysterics over the special effects (we watched an old VHS copy that hadn’t been remastered), and didn’t care too much for the whole space thing at first. (Despite my fascination with Star Wars and Lord of the Rings, I’m not generally a fan of the sci-fi or fantasy genres.)

But, that changed, and I became enthralled by the story. I couldn’t tell you how many times I’ve watched various episodes since then, but it’s been a lot. Naturally, we passed this love on to the kids.

Little Man got his first light saber when he was three. We had banned guns, but thought the light saber would be fine. As it turns out, being cracked across one’s knuckles with a light saber does a bit more damage (hello, burst blood vessels) than a toy gun. (Except for the time I shot my husband in the eye with a Nerf gun, anyway.) We let him watch bits and pieces of the Star Wars movies around that time, and Little Man quickly became obsessed with Darth Vader, but later moved to Luke, and now has focused his interest on Princess Leia. Cough, almost tween, cough. Baby Girl also loves Star Wars. I have an adorable video of her when the opening crawl comes on and she starts shouting “Star Wars! It’s Star Wars!” and dancing. She’s also pretty good with a light saber.

For today’s doodles, I’m going to share a couple of things that the kids have said.

Right, the heat from the food was exactly like that.

Baby Girl’s love for Darth Vader isn’t as great as her love for Batman, but it’s still up there. You can sometimes hear her marching around the house humming Imperial March, and she goes all fangirl whenever Vader appears on the screen.

One day she’ll figure out that things don’t usually end well when that red light saber appears.

Are you a Star Wars fan? Which movie was your favorite?

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#AtoZChallenge: U is for Uh…

Yesterday I mentioned how both of my kids have mad skills where talking is concerned. It’s like their mouths are driven by motors, and there is no off switch. That gets a little overwhelming at times for this introvert, but generally I’m pretty enthralled with their chatter (which you can probably tell given that my A to Z Challenge theme is Things Kids Say), since much of what comes out of their mouth is either interesting or funny or so smart.

For example, a couple days ago, Little Man was telling his sister how amazing she was for building something with Legos. That boy has become a Jedi master at making my heart melt. And then the kids were chatting away over what they wanted to be when they grow up when Baby Girl told Little Man not to be a scientist, but to be a doctor like her because he’s a big boy, which made me giggle.

Other times, though, they leave me speechless or monosyllabic, at least. “Huh?” “You what?” or “Uh…” while my brain scrambles to process what I just heard. I feel like my brain has been in the “Uh…” mode for most of the past two years with all the political craziness, so you’d think that I’d be a pro and react a little faster by now, but not really.

The first “Uh…” doodle for today was a couple years ago, when I was planning Little Man’s birthday party…

That’s me, your friendly neighborhood hacker mom.

And then there was this one, when Little Man was five.

Well played, kid.

The last one falls under the “Uh…” and “Gross” umbrella as quite a few posts Baby Girl related have.

This wasn’t as bad as the poop tasting, but is still pretty damn gross. In case you were wondering, after recovering from the initial shock, I got her foot out of her mouth and grabbed the clippers to trim the dead skin away.

What have your kids said that leaves you speechless (or close to it)?

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#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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