Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Potent Quotables

This post is purely selfish.
A collection of quotes from my kids that I stuck on Facebook that I want to remember:

Nathan holds the door for random kids entering play area and says, "I'm 5. I'm awesome. Come on!"

Emi: "Nathan! I turned on Alice in Wonderland so you can see the Queen's underpants!"

"Daddy, guess what? I burped like Mr. Keith!" ~Emi 

Me: "Did you know that, four years ago, you were in my tummy?"
Emi: "I made you a gold ladder."

Emi: "My ear hurts."
Me: "Why does your ear hurt?"
Emi: "Because I need to stick my finger in it."
Emi: "That's better."

Ms. Regina gave the babies little bags of candy and stuff at Build and Grow this morning. It included a safety card. Nathan used the pictures to read the card to us in the car. He did pretty well with it- don't put your hand in a blender, don't touch fire... then he read the picture on the back: "Don't let a giraffe get your phone because it could drop on your head and break your phone."

Me: "Nathan, you're amazing."
Nathan: "Yes I am."
Me: "Are you humble?"
Nathan: "Humble? No, you silly."

‎"Everybody looooooooves me because I don't show my business." ~Nathan 

"Aaahh! I do NOT want a fresh one!" ~Em

Me: "What does that say?"
Emi: "Emi."
Me: "What are you doing with that marker? I worked hard to paint your name on that."
Emi: "I'm just putting the L and the Y. I'll put the Y first."

Nathan: "I have a neck pickle."
Me: "What does that mean?"
Nathan: "Neck. Pickle. Aaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh!"

‎"I set my tummy to private. No more tickles." ~Nathan

Emi: "The monkey king is holding Stitch!"
Me: "OK, first of all, that's a baboon, not a monkey. If you're going to be my kid, you need to know the difference."
Emi: "Baboon is holding Stitch!"
Me: "His name is Rafiki. Rafiki is Swahili for 'friend'."
Emi: <withering glance> "And Stitch!!!!"

"I'm not pretending. I'm really asleep." -Emi 

Emi: "Where's daddy going?"
Me: "Daddy's going to work in _his_ car."
Emi: "There's no work in daddy's car!"

Emi: "S-I-N-G"
me: "What does that spell?"
Emi: "Bananas!"

Doss: "So is Mr. Keith your hero now?"
Emi: "No, he's still a police man."

Nathan: "I'm drawing a naughty picture."
Me: "You're drawing a naughty picture?"
Nathan: "It's for Scar because he's being ugly." Ohhhh. "It says, 'You need to go to time out.'

‎"Is that real like a pickle?" ~Nathan 

<talking about chili>
Doss: This is what I'll make you when you come home from college.
Emi: No, daycare.

<during a discussion on Easter eggs>
Me: Sometimes they have MMs inside them.
Emi: Sometimes I have MMs inside me!"

Out of nowhere, Nathan got right in Doss's face and pointed to him. My baby said sternly, "THIS... is a finger."
I'm so proud. I think that was his first joke.

‎"Hug me a lot more time." ~E

Me: "I'm going to take a bath."
Nathan: "Are you gonna melt?"

‎"Ding dong, rub your eyes, get out of here." ~Nathan sings the Lizard de Boz

‎"We're out of town. We need to go get some more." ~Nathan

‎"My purple lickstick is falling off by itself. I'll put on some more." ~Emi with her new grape chapstick.

Nathan: "I didn't get any time outs today!"
Me: "Yay, Nathan! Good job!"
Nathan: "Mommy, here's a circle money for saying, 'Yay".
My little behaviorist. I'm so proud.

‎"Emi, what do you want for Christmas?"
"Ummm... hot dogs."

‎"MommyDaddy, it's portend lightning storming!" "Yes, it's betend storming." ~Nathan and Emi

‎"Momma, put up my neighborhood." ~Emi asking me to put the hood of her shirt on her head

‎"Emi, say War Cam Eagle." "Roarcat Eagle!"

‎"Roar Eagle!" ~Emi

‎"I need more diamonds*!!!" ~Emi 
*note, she meant dimes

‎"I'm a princess! Cock-a-doodle-doooo!" ~Emi

My kids call dimes "diamonds." And that the boy calls septagons "sexygons". Best speech delay ever.

So Emi always says, "Where's Papa going?" and I say, "To the fair," and she says, "To win a prize?" and I say, "Yes." Today, I beat her to it: "Emi, where's Papa going?" "To the prize store."

So I said, "Doss, Emi wants a biscotti," and she got furious.
"NO! I want a cookie!"

2 toddlers mesmerized by the Grinch... Emi is cheering for him...

woke up this morning to a little voice in the bed next to me saying, "My tummy's falling off." What does that mean?

‎"What's the magic word? Porndogs!" ~Nathan (who has some trouble with the /k/ sound)‎...and again, at CityFest, they had roasted corn on the cob. So the boy runs around saying, "Corn! Corn! Corn!" But, you know how he substitutes /p/ for the /k/ sound? Yeah.

‎"Mommy, fix my hair" <hands me a toy drill> ~Emi

"Oh, I got salt on me. I bet I'm delicious."- Nathan

‎"I having a naughty... I need grits." ~Emi 

‎"I pwecious. And brudder pwecious." ~Emi

‎"That's not Hermione. It's MY my-nee." ~Emi

‎"You can bite me." ~Emi (this was a legit offer, not an insult)

Monday, May 21, 2012

What would Mr. T say about this?

It's the last day of school and I'm staring down three months of full time mommery with my babies. Will it be fraught with adventure or rife with drama? (Is the peanut butter icing-covered rice cereal treat I just ate affecting my word choice?) Only time will tell.

At times like this, I like to reminisce about my own childhood summer vacations. Then I realize I can't remember much from back then, so I just think about the good t.v shows we had. Did I hear you say, "Shirt Tails"? The eighties were a magical time filled with the greatest characters in the history of television. And I just can't help but wonder... what would Mr. T say about this?

Yeah. That about sums it up.

And this is why I shouldn't blog when I am tired, cranky, and/or full of sugar.

Thursday, May 17, 2012


Immense was my disappointment when the Bloggess announced her book tour and Atlanta wasn't on it. Nowhere near us was on it. But I can't get to nowhere near us, especially on a school night. Disappointment. Disappointment all.

Then, a marvelous thing happened. The book tour got extended. And a stop in the ATL was added. On a... Wednesday night? That's a school night. Meh. Wednesday night!

The plan was simple, really. Drive to the south side of Atlanta after work. Meet up with Tamara (finally), drive together up to Buckhead, saunter casually up to the Bloggess, and say, "Hey. I made you these cupcakes." Then, I would act all nonchalant as she swoons in awestruck delight at my Bloggess-themed cakery. I mean, what could go wrong?

The plan worked perfectly. Kinda.

I made the cupcake toppers on Monday night. On Tuesday night, I baked some devil's food cupcakes and some peanut butter icing. I put them all together, put them in a box, and took them to work with me... because they would melt in the car.

If you don't know what these things are, you need to read the Bloggess's blog. Except the chocolate chip ones. Those are pretty self-explanatory. And what happens when I run out of steam and can't pull off a lady garden cupcake topper.

After work, I hit the open road and went to meet Tamara. This part of the plan would have gone much more smoothly had I actually given her the correct city in which to meet. Yeah. I got the city wrong. BUT, despite my epic geography fail, we met up and headed to the bookstore.

We weren't late. But there was NOWHERE to sit. Or stand. It was awesome.

We hung out behind the podium with some other fans. I'd read a tweet that said somebody Kathryn somebody was going to do the introduction and I was all, "Whatever, I don't know what that is."

Ummm... yes, I do.

Kathryn Stockett, who wrote The Help, did the introduction. Why yes, I was starstruck.

After the intro, the main event unfolded. The Bloggess herself stepped up to the microphone and did a charming and endearing reading from her book. She read the part about the psychopath at the bathroom door. (See? Now you're all intrigued and itchin' to read the book.)

I was RIGHT NEAR her... just on the wrong side.

After the reading, the line was long to meet the Bloggess and get your book signed. Luckily, I already had a signed copy of the book because my better half got me a copy for Mother's Day. Thus, the line was long for me to get a spatula signed. Don't judge me.

We waited in line for-stinkin'-ever which you would think would have been fine because we were in a book store and there was plenty of reading material for entertainment. You would think. Unfortunately, our waiting area was situated in the aisle that featured bibles and travel books. That's less entertaining. Plus, I was holding a box of a dozen cupcakes while we waited... both hours...

Eventually though, the line moved and we made our way through the children's lit area (ironic much) where the reading and signing was happening. Finally finally finally, it was time for me and Tamara to meet the Bloggess.

Awww... aren't we cute? Wake up, Copernicus!

I wish I could say I was sauntering and confident and the coolest person that she'd met all night. But no. I got jittery and nervous and somehow ended up in timid mode with a, "Ummm... I made you this..." when I put the box on the table. Then this conversation happened:

Bloggess: "Is this a cake?"
Me: "Yes... well, it's cupcakes."

Bloggess: "Is it really or is it something weird?"
Me: "Really."
Bloggess: "Is it something dead?"
Me: "I'll open it."
Bloggess (leaning away just in case it really was something dead or monkey pox or something): "OK".

I opened the box and she looked at the cupcakes. And, just like my most secret of hopes, she seemed to like them. She looked at them all and knew what they were (duh, it's her blog that inspired them). And I apologized for sugar Copernicus (Sugarnicus) falling over and denting his icing, but the real Copernicus was there and didn't seem to mind.

But then, something cool happened. Nay... epic.

The Bloggess, in front of God and everybody, pulled out her phone and tweeted a picture of my cupcakes... with her Tardis phone.

and I have pictures to prove it!

And she said, "Are you a baker?" and I was all, "I'm thinking about opening a bakery one day," and she was all, "You should open a bakery!" and I was all, "Write that on my spatula!" and she did. Then I made a really inappropriate joke about the Sharpie drying on the spatula and we all laughed and went on our merry way.

Wanna see the spatula? Maybe I'll hang it on the wall of my bakery one day.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

If Ryan Seacrest can't sell his house, what chance do I have?

I mean... really.

Maybe I should go on a cake show... become an internationally renowned cakerator... and people will be lined up by the... threes... to buy our place.

The place where magic cakes are made and superstardom is launched.

But then, you know, I'd have to be on t.v.


Monday, May 14, 2012

He said I should write it down

I had these conversations with my husband today. He thinks they're worthy of blogging. I don't see the weird. 

Me: "Don't say no. I found a deal. "
Him: "O...K? "
Me: "We can get two adjoining cemetery plots for a thousand dollars. Let's buy them now. "
Him: "... "
Me: "A thousand dollars! For both! I mean, that's just the real estate. They charge like five hundred every time you open them up, but a thousand dollars is a good deal. We should get them. "
Him: "You've been shopping... for cemetery plots?"
Me: "Yes, because I was looking at the funeral home website and I saw their pre-planning section but it wasn't working."
Him: "I see."
Me: "Give me a thousand dollars. And, I want a pink headstone that says, Ow! Ow! Ow! Get off!' and has the deathly hallows symbol."
Him: "You've thought this through."
Me: "But we have to buy it now because if I die tomorrow, there's no way my mom will let you get what I want."
Him: "Uh huh."
Me: "And we need to plan yours too because when you die, I'm going to be really mad at you and you'll be lucky to get a Hefty bag."
Him: "You should write this in your blog."


Me (bringing laptop into our room to show him): "Look. This is a good deal."
Him: "You're shopping for headstones?"
Me: "You can design them online! I want this one. It's eight hundred cheaper than the other site."
Him: "This is what you're doing in the living room?"


Me: "This one is even better! Just enough pink in the granite to be classy."
Him: "You're still doing this? Oh, look. All lowercase letters and everything."
Me: "I should go ahead and buy this now. It's a good price and it's exactly what I want."
Him: "It says you died on Halloween, 2003. What was it? Razor blade candy?"
Me: "That's the genius. I get to be 26 forever. This is exactly what I want. No changes. I'm going to buy it now. We can keep it in the living room."
Him: "You died a year before we got married."
Me: "So my name is wrong. Huh. OK, I can be 27 forever, but that's my last concession."
Him: "Great."


Me: "Look! For only three hundred more, this one has a permanent vase so you have to bring me flowers forever!"
Him: "Great. You should write this down."

I can only assume that my husband wants me to blog this so that he can remember my wishes for when I bite it. He should know me well enough by now, though, to know that I'll have this thing settled before I turn 28.

It may also be possible that he wants me to blog this so that he can show his friends how awesome his wife is. That way, nobody will question why my pink headstone bears the title "Benevolent Despot and Superhero".

Sunday, May 13, 2012

I Like Mother's Day ALOT.

I like Mother's Day. It's better than Christmas (don't judge me!) but not as good as Halloween. This year was the best Mother's Day yet- with the imminently notable exception of losing Aunt Roberta (my daughter's namesake) yesterday. 

I didn't get to see my mom today, but that's OK... we're going for a Mother's Day redo next weekend... so it's the holiday that just keeps on giving. 

My superkids and awesome husband got me some great gifts. We went to a fancy lunch at Niffers where the superkids were encouraged to color on the walls. And I made a cake. I took some time to make a cake, just for fun:

It's an alot. And it was fast and fun to make.

One thing I almost never get to see after I make a cake, is how it gets eaten. This Mother's Day, I went supermom (or crazymom) and let the kids have this cake:

challenge accepted.

my kids love fondant

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Dear OCS,

Dear <school system where my kids will start next year>,

I promise that I will do my absolute best:
- to respect my kid's teachers as the experts.
- to remember that I have NEVER seen what my kid is like in a classroom when I'm not there.
- to expect the best from my kids.
- to teach my kids that education is valuable.
- to thank my kids' teachers.
- to be as involved as I can without being a nuisance.
- to give others the benefit of the doubt, even if I don't receive the same.
- to show my kids that they and their teachers are on the same team.
- to thank the staff at their schools... not just the faculty.
- to hold my children accountable for their successes and mistakes because I am the parent and it's MY job.

Feel free to remind me to check this list.
- Mandi

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Coming up for air

I have been remiss in posting since the surgery in March. And now, six weeks later, here's what I think:
It. Was. Awesome.

I've had not one moment of regret since the surgery. I'm healing uncharacteristically well. All in all, a great experience as surgeries go. And I've had a LOT of surgery.

Best of all, the doctor told me that I would feel better after this operation. He said it would be like having an extra hour in the day. He was right. I can cake until midnight and not have to take any breaks to rest my back. It's mind boggling. 

No regrets. Except that I didn't do it sooner.

But, I've been busy. I mean, BIZZ-AY.

I was listening to someone vent on the phone last week, and she told me that I don't know what stress is. I was, I admit, taken aback. I mean, I've been actively working to manage my stress over the past few weeks... and if I don't know what stress is, then what have I been doing? Then I realized... she doesn't really know what my life is like. I don't think anyone really does. So here, for posterity, is what my life was like in the beginning of 2012:

I had my gall bladder out on New Years eve- suddenly, I was in a LOT less pain. I hadn't known how sick I was.

I have a four year-old and a five year-old. Both are going through alternatingly socially awkward and clingy phases. 

I work full time as a teacher of kids who... are not the best decision makers. And, more bothersome, they have NO IDEA how great they are. And I can't figure out how to convince them. Of course, the spring includes such iconic teaching experiences as adolescent hormone spring fever and the pinnacle of the educational experience: state testing (where I floated to different classrooms, administering tests for teachers who had to be absent).

I'm enrolled in two classes in business school: Business Communication which involves making speeches and fake job interviews and Microeconomics which involves far more marginal cost than benefit. I finished the term without losing my 4.0. 

I had my second surgery of 2012 in March and am still, technically, in recovery.

I'm still making cakes- I've set the limit of one big or two smallish cakes per week to try to keep my sanity. But I hate telling people no... and I end up sometimes doing 5 cakes in a week including a last-minute wedding cake. 

That's a lot of stuff to cram in a week. I know what stress is. 

I wish I had more time to go to the gym. I wish I had more time with my husband! But we're doing the best we can.