Tuesday, March 31, 2009

dust in the wind

Firstly, thanks to everyone for the happy thoughts and comments yesterday. Things were uphill for the rest of the day, so it must've worked.

Secondly, our remodel. Things seem to be coming along quite well. The bathroom is essentially a blank slate at this point. Well...blank except for the copious amounts of dust. It's a good thing that I mentally prepared myself for the dust because, DANG. There is a lot of it. Luckily, it's mostly contained to the demolished bathroom and the mudroom for now. Starting tomorrow, it will travel to the bedrooms as closet framing and demolishing will start while the plumber is here installing the tankless water heater and moving the pipes. Right now, the builder is pulling up the subfloor to access the plumbing, so I'm hoping that no critters decide to invade my home through the gaping hole tonight. That's all I need...a badger wandering into the house while M is out of town.

Lastly, I'm off to work on a top-secret project. I needed something to work on during S's naps while the renovation is going on (because the computer will be shut down to keep it away from the dust tomorrow), and I have found the perfect thing. Of course, if I told you what it is, I'd have to kill you.

Oh, and seriously, who are the people starting the rumor that Michelle Obama is prego? Bump? What bump? If people think that she has a baby bump, they must think I look 8 months gone. Wow.

Monday, March 30, 2009

you know it's going to be a long day when...

  • In the first morning of upstairs bathing for the remodel, the smoke alarms go off. At 5am. There is no fan in that bathroom, and the steam set the suckers off. (The alarm in el bano is linked to the alarm in S's room.) Poor M was dripping wet from the shower, dismantling the smoke alarm. I am happy he wasn't fried.
  • You wake up freezing because you accidentally set some sort of crazy program on the thermostat when updating the clock from the time change. It was 60 degrees in the house this morning. It is 32 outside. Not a great combo...especially when I have clearly contracted S's cold.
  • When making coffee to try to warm up, you accidentally hit yourself with the scoop of coffee thereby spilling it all over the floor and then you whack your head against the cabinet when getting out the dustpan to clean it up.
  • You are worried that the backache you've been experiencing is not actually a backache but something internal because as Miss Clavel would say, "Something is not right."

Friday, March 27, 2009

the round-up

Okay. I made some delish cinnamon rolls. It's been on my to-do list for awhile. That is, finding a friggin' to-die-for recipe has been on my list. I've been working on it in spells for over a year. My trouble was that the bread part of the recipes was never good enough. Never. Not even close. I was having a lot more success making cinnamon roll biscuits, but it still wasn't right. Then, ta-da. I was inspired by Blue Yonder to just use a good bread recipe. So I did. I was making Ina Garten's Honey White Bread last night (from Barefoot Contessa At Home), and I decided to use half the recipe to try cinnamon rolls to take to Carole's this weekend. Lucky for me, there were a few that didn't fit into the pie plate to freeze, so I popped them into ramekins and baked them this morning. I am a happy mama. The kind of happy only achieved through homemade baked goods in the early morn.

The downside to this morning is that S woke up with some chest congestion, and I'm having to listen to her very astutely to make sure she doesn't need to hit the pediatrician's office. We'll see.

What else? I am in love with Spring. I always love Spring, but I feel so consumed by it this year. Every morning, I wake up to birds singing outside, and I smile. I look out the windows and I see new grass, and I smile. I leave my sweaters inside, and I smile. I see S's naked legs in dresses, and I smile. And then there are the daffodils and the crocus and the hyacinth. Be still, my heart.

Lastly, the remodel officially starts Monday morning at 8am. Kiss the awful shower goodbye...it's the first thing to go. Woo hoo. Again, happy mama.


Sight: S pulling weeds
Sound: those lovely birds, S counting to twelve
Smell: cinnamon rolls, wild onions
Touch: kneading dough
Taste: warm bread and brie

Have a great weekend, peeps.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

driving without a license

S's new favorite activity is driving. If the car was moving, I'd be Britney Spears.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

make believe

So, many of you know that Saturday was Thanksgiving 2. I'm ready to declare it a perfect holiday, and I cannot adequately express how grateful I am that Yum invented it. It's all the delicious food from my previous favorite holiday, Thanksgiving, without any stress or expectation. It was great. Here are some pics. There are no pics of food. Sorry.
Even the Thanksgiving nutcrackers made it to the table.
The kids table. Complete with flowers. All the grown-ups had were the nutcrackers.
Ouiser says, "Cheers."

Friday, March 20, 2009

coolest ever

I'm not sure if you know this, but I'm pretty much the coolest person ever. The only thing that might make me seem cooler is this shirt...

Thursday, March 19, 2009


She may not have shoes yet, but S has a dress to wear this Easter. She has an adorable 3/4 sleeve brown cardigan to wear with this dress. I think my first stab at legitimate embroidery turned out pretty well. Oh, and for the record, I really want to order these shoes to complete the ensemble.Later, peeps.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


I try not to jinx myself by expecting things to turn out a certain way. I honestly think that too much and specific expectation leads to a lot of unnecessary misery. So, I'm trying not to jinx myself by hoping that S and I will have days that look like this in the future. I can imagine few things more fabulous than spending a day with S, sketching in a lovely and quiet place.

A girl can dream, right?

Also, I think it's official: Thanksgiving 2 is expanding beyond the Boston area. I'm pretty sure there will be deliciousness happening in DC this weekend as the Toddler Tamers visit the Feathernesters... I am so crazy excited about the mere idea of Caramel Pecan Pie. I can barely contain myself. Of course, turkey sounds pretty fantastic, too.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


I am hungry. I usually wait for S to eat breakfast. However, it is 9:20 and she's still asleep. My stomach is growling. I need to surgically remove my butt from this chair and get some cereal.

For those of you worried, she has made a few sleep sounds, so I know she's alive up there.

Also, for those of you worried about more important matters, we do have Guinness in the fridge to celebrate St. Patty's Day.

Monday, March 16, 2009

hopeless for wanting

I may have mentioned this before. If I have, bear with me. I saw Benjamin Button with my aunt. Throughout the flick, she kept seeing pieces of furniture and stuff, leaning over to me, and whispering, "Ooooh, I want one of those." About halfway through, I leaned over to her and said, "you are hopeless for wanting." I am having one of those days. A day where I am hopeless for wanting. I don't spend a lot of time thinking about things what I want, but I'm seriously "wanty" right now.

I think it started the other night. I am, as I've chronicled, a smidgen stressed about this whole remodeling concept. I'm so sick of new ideas and talking about it that I could explode. So, the other night, as I watched the MacBook commercial where they talk about it being the world's greenest notebook, I said, "hey. How about we scrap the remodel and blow all the money we would spend on crap we just want?" Then we tried to make a list of stuff we want. Other than the MacBook, a rug for the dining room, a new dishwasher, and a couple of odds and ends, I was done. However, the wheels have been turning, and now I think I want one of everything I see. Well, not really everything, but I was drooling so much on Anna Maria Horner's website that I had to skedaddle off of there in a hurry.

I am hopeless today. Hopeless for wanting. That is all.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

surprise for mommy

I have one of those silicon oven mitt things. It is pink. Yesterday, S and L were playing with it. I just got it out to move an oven rack. I put my hand into the oven mitt and found a handful of goldfish crackers jammed into the fingers. I am still laughing.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

an update and the big 3

Firstly, Feathernester totally called me out on my empty fridge yesterday...without having read my post. We spent a solid half an hour trying to understand why her fridge is always devoid of space and mine is always devoid of food. It was good times, folks.

Secondly, this morning, Feathernester and I discussed the three most embarrassing moments of my life. I will now share, but I fully expect to get some funny stories in the comments to this post. If no one shares, I will declare you all chickens, and I will make my daughter make chicken noises at you every time she sees you. Here goes:

1. Those of you in KY know that the town to the west of Lexington is Versailles. Those of you outside of KY would think this is pronounced like the French city and palace. It's not pronounced that way in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. There, it's ver-sales. It took some getting used to. Anyway, back when I was a working stiff, I had to call a company that we had ordered some nursery furniture from. One of the items was the Versailles crib. I was on the phone with someone there, and I asked about our "ver-sales" crib. Then I mentally crawled into a hole to die as the woman explained to me that it is pronounced the French way. I seriously wanted to die. I probably should've gone home sick at that point. I can't believe I'm admitting this on the internet.

2. When I was a working stiff in Memphis, I was making phone calls to musicians about playing the Blues Ball. On my list of calls to make, most of the numbers had a corresponding name of an assistant or manager to talk to. I knew most of them. Unfortunately, BB King (yes, that BB King) was on the list, and there was no one listed to ask for. I didn't notice that until I had already dialed the number and someone answered. I got all tongue-tied, and I asked to speak to BB. Just like that. "Um, is BB available?" I'm pretty sure I remember the guy who answered laughing out loud as he did a mental eye roll and said no. Like, who just calls seriously famous people and asks to talk to them? Apparently, I do. So, if anyone out there has Robert Pattinson's number, just pass it along. I'll tell him you said hi as I get laughed at for being a total idiot.

3. This is truly the worst one, and it's a Memphis story, too. When the Memphis Zoo was getting their pandas, it was a HUGE deal. FedEx had a special plane and a panda tracker online. Everyone was talking about it. Everyone. So, I woke up one morning, and as I was listening to the radio, getting ready for the same job that I didn't get fired from for asking for BB in front of my boss (I think I forgot to mention that part.), I kept hearing about some emergency situation with the pandas. Apparently, the pandas arrived a day early, and as they were transferring them from the plane to the vans, they got loose! They had run and they were in Shelby Park. There was, luckily, a group of high school students at the park, and they had surrounded the pandas and were waiting for someone to come and get them. There were people calling into the radio station who claimed you could see the whole ordeal from the road. "OHMIGOD," thought I. "How could this happen? Does Fred Smith (Mr. FedEx president and CEO) know?" I had to call my boss. She would know what was happening. After all, she and Mr. Smith were like totally best friends. She was in New York for the week, but I called her and woke her up. She said she'd call me back...she'd call Fred. Then I called M, who worked for FedEx at the time.

Okay, here's where it gets really good.

I relayed the whole story to M. Then he very calmly said, "Ouiser, do you know what today's date is?"

"April 1st."


"Oh, shit. I called PAT!"

I hung up, and I frantically called my boss, who had already called Mr. Smith. It's safe to say that the words she used were not flattering, ladylike, or kind. It was not a red letter day for me.

So, there you have it. The most mortifying moments of my life thus far. Having read over them, it would seem that I should avoid the use of telephones forever. I should also avoid having jobs. Both phones and employment lead to utter humiliation.

Happy weekending.

Friday, March 13, 2009

his girl friday

There are some weeks when Friday can't get here fast enough. This really is one of those weeks. I thought I was going to have to run away last night because S had a serious case of the "hey mommies." She absolutely required that I hold her hand for the better part of the night. I think it was mostly because I was focusing my attention on adult conversations with M and my aunt M. S can't really stand for my attention to be focused on other people. Other tasks are okay to an extent, but apparently I should only converse with my two-year-old. Riveting, I'm sure. Anyway, I am happy as a clam that Friday is here.

FIVE SENSES FRIDAY (it's been awhile)

Sight: my fridge, which looks, as Feathernester likes to remind me, "like a single boy's refrigerator." (she's not wrong, it currently contains minced garlic, one apple, leftover peas, milk, juice, coffee creamer, eggs, tortillas, and some condiments.) the fact that our fridge is always borderline empty on grocery day means we aren't wasting food. i really like that.

Sound: the John Denver special on NPT last night. sunshine on my shoulders does make me happy.

Smell: food, specifically walking in the door and smelling that someone has cooked. i know i've mentioned this before, but very few things make me happier than the feeling that i walked into a place and someone cared enough to cook, even if that person was me. i want S to always feel that way, warm and loved when she walks into the house. i hope M feels that way, too. he should...as he has June Cleaver for a wife and dinner pretty much on the table every night when he walks in the door.

Taste: sweet potato concoction for last night's dinner. oh my. the homemade bread didn't hurt.

Touch: eskimo kisses. should i be calling this something different? it seems decidedly un-PC.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

oh, God. that just happened.

I have just had the grossest experience thus far of mommyhood. Let's not forget, I have had my mouth puked in. I have been snotted in the face. Parenthood is really not something that should be entered into lightly if you have a weak stomach. Either way, my stomach just turned.

S pooped. It happens a lot. No big deal.

Somehow, though. Somehow I managed to get some poop on the back of my hand. I don't know how it happened. What I really don't understand is how I didn't notice.

I wiped my face with the back of said hand. Then I saw the hand, and I nearly barfed. Barfed. Right there in the kitchen. My stomach is still all swimmy just from thinking about it. It is going to be a heck of a day.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

i'm glad someone else said this for me

Some days I'm not a big fan of Simple Mom. Some days the posts aren't applicable to me and my family. Some days I don't care. But some days. Some days that blog speaks to my soul. It says just what I need for someone to say. Today is one of those days.

I'm not about to say that we aren't somewhat kid-centric around here. S's sleep schedule demands it in terms of our time, and because no one can be happy when a toddler is blatantly unhappy, keeping her happy is a big part of our life. However, I live in fear of being like my neighbors. Granted they've got four kids, so it's different, but they live at the mercy of their kids. All of them are involved in what seems like an endless stream of extracurricular activities. It's exhausting to watch them come and go at all hours of the day and night, all year long. I want S to be involved and well-rounded, don't get me wrong. However, I don't want her to be worn out, and I especially don't want to be worn out. I know myself well enough to know that exhausted Ouiser is no good to anybody. I don't function properly if I'm run ragged. So, this little post made my day. Enjoy, peeps.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

so little to report

There is just nothing exciting going on here. Here's the rundown of the past few days:
  • My aunt M brought me one of my grandma's old sweaters a few weeks ago. It's a pretty awesome sweater. It's a DKNY and it's super warm and long and it reminds me of my grandma. The problem was moth holes. Loads of them. My aunt knew the sweater would fit me, and she thought I might be able to do something about the holes to make it wearable. So, I've taken up a little embroidery/crewel work from a book I borrowed from Feathernester. I've been creating eyelet holes, and it actually looks pretty cool. Plus, there is something that I truly love about the fact that I've been able to sit on my porch swing during S's naps with a basket of embroidery thread and some needles and just do something. It's been fantastically domestic and fulfilling.
  • S busted her face for the first time yesterday. She managed to mangle her upper lip and the space between her upper lip and her nose. Her nose, chin, and bottom lip are unscathed. I don't even pretend to understand the mechanics of a fall that left her with those injuries.
  • I went to the gym yesterday. It was an occasion.
  • S had Kindermusik this morning. Ms. K played an Indian song when the kids were playing with the scarves/silks. I used mine to cover my face, and I shimmied around like a belly dancer. S thought it was completely hysterical. She laughed through the entire song.
  • M, S, Mr. Feathernester, L, and I went to the farmer's market in Nashville Saturday morning. It was great. We also played at the Bicentennial Mall. The girls had fun going up and down the amphitheater steps. I sat on the steps, staring up at the capitol building, and I watched an errant plastic bag float across the lawn. I sat there thinking how bizarre it is to sit, staring at one of your great loves (home) while simultaneously seeing one of the things you hate most (garbage/waste/litter/the fleeting nature of plastics in society and what that says about society). It was a lot to think about in that one tiny moment.
I'm hitting the showers, peeps. Until the next bullet point update...

Friday, March 06, 2009

since i was berated...

As Scarlet Lily chose to totally call me out on my recent lack of blogging, I feel obliged to post something today even though I have nothing of interest to post about. Nothing. Nada. I feel stagnant in the brain. Here's what's going on with the Ouisers:
  • S can now count to four. She could previously count to five as long as you weren't particular about the inclusion of the number four. She refused to say it. Yesterday, she miraculously started counting, "1-2-3-4." We were so excited you'd think she'd just mastered classic guitar or something. We are thrilled. Well, we were. Now she counts, "1-2-3-4-6." Apparently, the number five ticked her off badly.
  • S loves her dollhouse. She's been ignoring that dollhouse for a couple of weeks, and I was feeling like a sucker. I thought she didn't like it. Now, though, she lays on the floor and just plays her little heart out. She takes the dining table out of the kitchen and the family has picnics with lots of exotic animals that visit the dollhouse from Noah's Ark. It's fantastic, I tell you.
  • The concept of remodeling and adding onto our house has me tied in knots. I can sincerely say that the only thing that has ever confounded me so thoroughly is probability.
  • I made brownies this morning, and they are everything that I hoped they would be, which means they are 9 inches by 13 inches of heaven with walnuts.
  • S refused to eat her dinner last night. It was our first experience of her looking at it, poking it with her fork, pushing her bowl away with her nose scrunched up, and declaring, "I don't like it." She refused to even taste it, but she did stick it to her tongue once and make a face. It was gnocchi. Her loss.
  • I watched my beloved Rachel Maddow for the first time last night in months. I just love her. If I lived in California, and I wasn't straight and married, and if the CA Supreme Court would repeal Prop 8, I'd marry that girl. That's a lot of "ifs." I'll stick with Mr. Ouiser. We're MFEO.
  • I am going to clean up the popcorn/yogurt/cheerios and milk/barbecue sauce mess that my child has left me with.
Peace out, peeps. Have a great weekend.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

the little things

I know that all the other mamas out there feel this way, but sometimes it's the littlest things that make parenting so wonderful. It's amazing how tiny little happenings make up for all the annoying things about having a toddler. I was walking around picking up the house a few minutes ago, and I stumbled across this...
For those of you who are confused, that's Ariel and Cinderella...riding S's tricycle. Her bike helmet was sitting on top, but I moved it to snap a picture. Even princesses have to be safe, right?

I love that kid of mine. Love her.