Wednesday, June 30, 2010


After Sunday's ice cream disaster, I owed Ryan some chocolate ice cream.

So I picked him up after school, and we went to Sprinkles and he poured his own chocolate frozen yogurt, and poured on his own American sprinkles.

$2.94 well spent.


The premiere of Eclipse was last night, and I had a prized ticket to see the Twilight Triligoy in XD. Twilight at 7:15 p.m., New Moon at 9:30 p.m., and then, finally, Eclipse at 12:01 a.m.

Mindy and Erica brought their little Edwards with them.

Mine stayed at home, hiding somewhere in the house. He apparently doesn't appreciate the fact that Team Danger has adopted him as a castle guard.

Loved the leather seats.

Loved the huge XD (Xtreme Digital) screen.

Loved the company.

Loved this guy's shirt.

Loved the romance.

Loved the Cullens.

Loved Edward more than ever.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Monday, June 28, 2010

"When I Grow Up, I Want to Be a Little Boy." -- Joseph Heller

lSo after the Swim Meet Saturday morning, Alex had his first official Cub Scouts activity, a Belt Loop Bonanza. Apparently, in addition to the badges he can earn that I am supposed to magically sew on to his uniform, he has to try and earn "belt loops."

He missed the beginning of the Bonanza because of the swim meet, but was still able to earn three loops: for soccer, marbles and hiking. 

We learned lots of interesting things.

For instance, I don't think I even knew that "marbles" was a game you could play - we've only ever used them to fill up a jar.

And here is what Alex says he learned about hiking in the near triple digit heat late Saturday morning:

1. Never put your hand into a hole in the ground.
2. Never hike in the summer.

Both boys fell asleep in the car on the way home, exhausted. They couldn't nap for long, though, because it was almost World Cup time!

We had a little World Cup party to watch the US play Ghana.

It was just a shame the US didn't play better. The kids lost interest even before half time, and kept pestering us to go out in the pool. Dave finally took pity on them, and went outside to supervise. Thanks, Dave!

At least we had fun visiting and swimming with everyone.

After everyone left, the cars had not even left our driveway before Ryan was asking to go to "Toy Rust" (aka Toys R Us) to pick out his promised new LEGO toy. So Alex, Ryan and I hopped in the Mommy Van and went Lego shopping.

Netflix had sent us "The Adventures of Clutch Powers" two weeks back, a 1.5 hour long LEGO commercial  masquerading as a movie.

LEGO: The Adventures of Clutch Powers

Alex and Ryan *LOVE* Clutch Powers, so much that we've kept it out a long time. They have been concerned that their LEGO knights collection was inadequate, and discussed, at length, the best way to get more knights. (I have pointed out that they could borrow from the Playmobil Knights, but I was told that is not allowed. No... the knights must have little yellow heads, and must be LEGOs.)

I had given them each a cap of $15 per toy, or told them they could combine their money and get one $30 toy to be shared. Happily, after a five minute argument that the $109.99 castle was over the $30 budget, they both picked out the same $9.99 value set, complete with three knights each, a cart, and, oddly, a unicorn. Do knights hang out with unicorns? Seems odd to me.

LEGO Kingdoms 7949 Prison Carriage Rescue

Sunday morning, Carl took the boys out to "I-Bop" for breakfast, and I slept late. Glorious. Carl had to work in the afternoon, and I was in a particularly good mood after the long sleep, so I told the boys they could pick what we did for lunch.

Yes, I'm a sucker.

We then went to Amy's for some ice cream.

Which was lovely, until ...

Ryan dropped his ice cream.

Alex offered Ryan some of his, but Ryan didn't want the "dead" Junior Mints crushed into Alex's ice cream. So we went to buy him a new ice cream, but the line was then out the door. And we had to meet Carl at the theater, where we were seeing Woody, Buzz, Jessie and friends.

So I owe Ryan one chocolate ice cream with sprinkles.

Toy Story 3 was great. I cried - A LOT. I especially loved Spanish Buzz, and the Barbie-Ken storyline. She actually had some brains in her little plastic head, and I'm still laughing at how she manipulated Ken. And the fact that Ken kept calling it "his" dream house, when surely all mommys seeing this know it is Barbie's dream house. Oh, how I loved my Dream House.

But my favorite part of Toy Story 3?

The popcorn.

Monday -- the Root of all Evil

Alex is going to Tae Kwon Do camp this week, which means I can take the boys to the 8AM swim practice, rather than the 7PM practice. I haven't been liking the evening practices, as we are just getting to bed too late. Somehow the boys aren't as exhausted as I imagined when I signed them up for the swim team, and  they aren't simply collapsing in bed as soon as we get home, exhausted. No, instead they are up until 9-9:30 pm every night, and in addition to not being good for the boys, I am getting hardly any Annalynn time.

So this morning, Alex goes outside to grab the suit he wants to wear. Alex comes back, and Ryan decides he needs his suit that is outside, too. So Ryan goes out the back door. I then remember Alex needs a second suit, for camp, and I then go outside. A few seconds later, Alex decides to join us, and shockingly, closes the door right away. I've spend the last two months yelling at them almost non-stop to close the door after them to keep the bugs out of the house, and do they ever listen to me? Noooo.

But today, the one time the bottom lock happens to be turned to the automatic "lock" setting, Alex decides to close the door.

And we can't get back in. We are all shoeless, Ryan is naked, and Alex is in a bathing suit. (Ryan, at least, is able to put on the bathing suit).

But wait!

This has happened to us a few years back, when Carl went off to a concert and the three of us were swimming, and he locked us out. We learn from our mistakes, and took multiple steps to make sure this NEVER happened again.

I go searching for the back door key that is hidden.

Except its not in its place.

So we go the front of the house, and look for our keyless entry garage door pad.

Except its not there.

And I remember how the battery needed to be replaced, and how it is sitting inside the garage.

We go looking for our front door key that is hidden (there are different locks for the front and back doors).

Except its not there.

And I remember how we took that key out of its place last week when we left for Port Aransas and couldn't find Romeo, and gave that key to Jeff so he could let him in later that day.

So we go to Jeff's house, and hope that he is still there (its 7:45 a.m.).

Jeff is home, and he has our key!


Carl left through the garage this morning, so he didn't remove the top dead bolt.

So we can open the door two inches, but no further.

We use Jeff's phone and  call Carl.

Monday is the one day of the week Carl actually goes into IBM to work. Any other day of the week, none of this would have happened anyways. Carl is not so thrilled to receive my phone call.

Alex, meanwhile, has found some plastic pipes on the ground near the garage Carl bought at Home Depot yesterday for ... I don't know ... one of his eighty-nine different projects.

Alex tries to use the pole to knock the lock off.

Doesn't work.

Jeff generously goes to his house and gets some screwdrivers, to see if we can unscrew the safety lock.

The screws are long.

Two inches long.

There are three of them.

Its hot.

Very hot.

Jeff is sweating.

I am sweating.

My hair is frizzing out of control.

Two screws are out and FINALLY, Carl arrives home, and hits "open" on the garage door opener.

And we didn't make it to swim practice.

Oh, and to make my morning even better, the Entertainment Weekly I've been eagerly anticipating arrives in my mailbox.

Except there is no Edward and Jacob on my cover.

I have received the Bella cover.


Who on earth at Entertainment Weekly thought this would be a good idea, to make two covers? And to make one of the covers without either Edward or Jacob? I mean, SERIOUSLY. Bella??!!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Swimming for Ribbons and Legos

Saturday started  bright dark and early. I woke up at 4:45 a.m. and we were in the car headed to the swim meet by 5:50 a.m. for our 6:10 a.m. check-in at the Wells Branch pool.

I was "volunteering"  as part of my mandatory 24 hours of volunteer time per swim season, and it was the easiest job I've had yet - at the Volunteer Station, handing out the job assignments and badges. Which meant Carl was on little boy duty, pepping them up for their swims, bringing the towels from the tent to the lanes, etc.

Ryan was scheduled to swim in the very first heat of the morning, promptly at 7:01 a.m. following the National Anthem at 7:00 a.m. So at 6:55, Carl is carrying a crying Ryan to me at the Volunteer Station. Ryan won't swim, unless he is swimming with Alex.

I take over, get Ryan back in line. His coach comes up, and asks me if he is going to swim. Ryan screams "NO!" and since this is a relay, if he won't swim, he's letting down three other kids. So she is about to pull him, and substitute another, late arriving child whose parents signed him in too late to swim in the relay race.

And I cracked.

I offered Ryan a new Lego toy if he would swim.

And like that, the tears stopped.

The smile came out.

And Ryan nodded, and said he would swim.

And damned if the boy didn't swim his heart out in the relay race.

Three minutes later, its Alex's turn. Alex is one of the better swimmers in the 6 and Under group, so he was on the Primo Numero Uno team for their bracket. He is normally a great diver, and he was their 4th place swimmer, and they had a HUGE lead when he got ready to dive in.

Except... my usually great diver didn't dive. he just ... belly flopped.

 He still swam great, and they won their Heat and came in first place. But when we asked him why he didn't dive (because it cost him several seconds not diving) he responded, "But the pool says, "NO DIVING."

And it does. EVERYWHERE. (See above picture of Ryan starting his swim in the green goggles) So I'm super proud of him 1) being able to read, and 2) actually following the rules he is reading, but... thank GOD they still won their race!

Since Alex was the last in the relays, they handed him all four "Heat Winner" ribbons, to share with his team mates. This made quite the impression on Ryan, and he apparently thought about nothing else for the next hour. For when it was time for Ryan to swim his solo Freestyle 25M, he didn't need any bribing. Sitting perfectly on the bench in his place, he leans over to me and says, "I'm going to get a ribbon, Mama."

And damned if he didn't swim all the way across the pool without stopping once, with actual "Over Rover" arms, and win his race.

And a ribbon.

So, bribing my child to swim was potentially *not* the best parenting decision I ever made.

But it worked.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Pirate Week at BB Gun Camp

I joined Alex for lunch today at BB gun camp.

Every day after lunch, they have "Sing Song." As this week was Pirate Week, the boys had made pirate hats and swords during arts and crafts. They wore them today as they watched the other skits be performed and sung the camp songs.

"Aunt Trudy" had the campers teach the visiting parents the Camp Doublecreek song. Little does she know that this song has been sung so many times Chez Team Danger that not only do I know it, but Ryan can recite it, too. (side note: I alternate between thinking its cute and sad that Ryan sings every word to the Spicewood school song and the Doublecreek song. I don't think he even realizes that he isn't old enough to be a part of theses places yet.)

Then they sang Happy Birthday to the campers who had a birthday today. As a treat for you on your birthday, you get to run around the campgrounds while everyone sings to you. I suppose some might look at this as a treat. This, however, would not be my idea of the perfect birthday celebration.

Then some bad pirates arrived, looking for buried treasure. The good pirates arrived on a pirate ship (golf cart) to rescue the campers from the bad pirates, and to keep the treasure safe. A battle ensued. The good pirates won, and the treasure chest full of Smarties was opened. There was some unhappiness for some of our first grade boys (Alex included) when all the treasure was thrown far away from where the first grade boys were sitting. All was better, though, when additional treasure was found.

Then the first grade boys put on a skit. (I lucked into a good Friday to go, as this was the first time in three weeks they did a skit). To the tune of "Boom Boom Pow," the boys waved their swords in the air.

Or they just watched their counselors wave their swords in the air. Note to self that Alex is not a born performer. This does not bode well for the upcoming Daughtery Arts summer camp.

Then it was off to horseback riding.

Alex got to ride "Buddy" today, and from what I can see, this was pretty cool for him. Apparently Buddy is THE most fought-over horse at Doublecreek.

I was fairly impressed with his horse riding skills. He handled the reins well, told the horse "Whoa" when he needed to stop, and would pat the horse when he was supposed to.

The piece de resistance, for Alex, is that in addition to horseback riding, they are also apparently learning how to do danger tricks on the horse.

They call it "around the world," and WHILE THE HORSE IS MOVING, have the children turn around 360 degrees in their saddles.

Safety Mommy did not approve.

Thursday, June 24, 2010


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