Monday, September 18, 2017

Fear Not.

Juanito is going to be in ArtPrize again this year, and today he went to hang his piece up downtown. Yay!

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Sunday pre-ArtPrize tradition

For years now, it's been our tradition to walk around on the Sunday before ArtPrize starts to see the stuff that people have set up early. This year, none of the kids felt like going, so just Beth, Juanito, and i went. People may say that we're crazy for going before it's even started yet, but there are some very distinct advantages:

1 - We go to the big venues, and those are the places that, once it's Wednesday, will be packed or at least fairly busy pretty much all of the time. So this way we get to see stuff close up, without fighting through crowds, and we get to look for as long as we want without feeling guilty for taking too long.

2 - There are sometimes interactive exhibits, and we get to actually interact with them! This year, there are a couple of rocking chairs made from giant rocks, and we all totally got to sit in them, take our pictures with them, and have fun. Henceforth, there will be lines to try them out.

3 - Pictures! We can take pictures without having to wait until just the right second, when there's nobody walking in front of you.

So. Yep. We're dorks. But it's worth it. 

Friday, September 15, 2017

ArtPrize begins!

ArtPrize officially begins on Wednesday, but there are a few places that are having "preview week," which means we can get a head start. Most of the places, we're kind of like, "Meh, we can see those as we're walking around," but we DID want to go to the art museum. Thursday nights are free, and they have all of the ArtPrize stuff up already, so Juanito, Katrina, Beth, and i went to see it. It was lovely to be able to walk around without giant mobs of people - it was basically just us and one other guy there.

Over the past few years, i've come to not expect much from the GRAM, because so much of what they've had has just been dumb. And this year, again, there's nothing that i absolutely love there. I liked a couple of the things, though, and that's a step up from some years. Probably the weirdest and worst thing there is a guy who will be dressing up in a fox costume and writing "poetry" on pages ripped out of dictionaries. The poetry is stuff like, "Twilight is overrated," or "Color blindness ahhhhh." And i don't like poetry in general, but that is just .... not even poetry.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Bug Boy and Open House

Katrina and Zane's school had an event today wherein they encouraged kids to dress up like superheroes. Zane was all, "I don't like any actual superheroes, so i'm just going to make up my own." And hence: Bug Boy.

Tonight was the Open House for City, which meant that i got to walk around to each of Houston's classes to meet the teachers and get a 10 minute "this is what we'll be studying" spiel from each of them. Houston loves all of his teachers this year, and i liked them too. However...there was one class for which i was the ONLY parent there, and it just happened to be the class where the teacher is 7 feet tall and very intimidating-looking. I seriously considered just running away. (He was very nice.)

The algebra teacher was explaining all of the homework that the kids have, and she mentioned that they'll have projects for each section. I was all, "Projects? How do you do a project in algebra?" So when i got home i asked Houston about it, and he was like, "Huh? What project?" Me: "Um, like, a project? With pages to do? You were supposed to turn it in already and it's worth kind of a lot of points?" Him: "I have no idea what you're talking about." Me: "Like...something that you were supposed to turn in? And everyone else would have been turning it in? With, like, a few pages stapled together?" Him: "Nope. I don't know what this is." Me (becoming concerned that he's already missing important assignments): "Maybe she didn't call it a project to you? Maybe she called it, like...a packet?" Him: "OH! Yeah, i turned that in."

Sometimes i don't think that he does language the same way i do.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017


This boy. It is week 3 of school and there have already been two (2!) mornings when he was convinced that he was too sick to go to school. I forced him to go again today, and he was fine. Because of course he was. But every time i make him go to school, i live in fear that the nurse is going to call me with a judgmental tone of voice and be all, "Houston just threw up. Because you forced him to go to school. You terrible mother, you." (I might be paraphrasing.)

ANYHOW. Today was "Future day" for spirit week - the stupidest day ever, because HOW do you dress like the future without spending loads of time or money? - and so Houston had me draw a bar code on his hand. The future, y'all.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Spirit Week

This week is spirit week at City, and today was "decades." The sophomores' decade was the 60's, so Houston borrowed some pants and a scarf from Beth, paired them with a turtleneck, and he was HILARIOUSLY AWESOME.

I asked him what people at school thought, and he said that they all asked him why he was wearing pajamas. He responded, "These are a 60's thing. Look it up." And when they did, they were all like, "Whoa. It IS a 60's thing!" According to Houston, most people just wore a leather jacket and called it good.

Sunday, September 10, 2017


It's apple picking season! Houston, Katrina, Zane, Beth, and i headed to the orchard after church and we picked a giant bag of Spy apples (Zane's favorite) and a medium bag of Honeycrisp apples. I think Zane ate almost nothing but apples for the rest of the day.

Tonight was the first night of this year's student ministry meetings. Houston is in Anthem, Katrina's in the.element, and Zane is in Fifty6. Beth and i have moved up to the.element with our girls this year as well. I love having girls that i've already known and loved for 2 years, and it's nice that they're a bit older and less out-of-control, but at the same time, i miss my people from Fifty6 - the pastor, the family leaders, etc. 

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Harry Potter

We are getting very near to the end of the very last book of Harry Potter, and we've reached a point where everything is happening and we just need to keep reading and finish it. And so today i read three chapters with the kids. Zane is loving it, but he is also the wiggliest child in the world, and at one point, as he was scootching on his back under the coffee table as i was reading a vitally important part, i finally stopped and said, "Dude. This is important! I don't think you're even listening!" And then he gave me an excellent synopsis of what had been happening. So.

Friday, September 8, 2017

The finale

Tonight we watched the final Twilight movie. There was much eye rolling and giggling and mocking of actors. Beth brought vampire teeth for us all, along with "Congratulations on watching all of the Twilight movies!" certificates.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Book club

Book club tonight! We read "After We Fall," and while nobody actually hated it, it was definitely not well-liked by anyone either. We all kind of talked about how miserable and awful everyone was, and once that was discussed, there wasn't a lot more to say.  So instead we talked about stupid baby names and cures for neuroblastomas and other random stuff for most of the time. This year we've had almost entirely depressing books. Some of them have been really good, but they're all super sad. Next week we pick the books for the next year or so, and we're all trying to come up with good non-depressing options.

So this morning, Houston tried really hard to convince me to let him stay home sick from school. He was all, "I feel terrible. My stomach hurts. And i feel like if i go to school, i'll just be falling asleep and be miserable and not do well in anything. And i have a test in Spanish...." I made him go, because he's not sick; he's just really tired because he stays up too late and can no longer just sleep all day because it's not summer anymore. By the time i got home from work and asked him how his day was, he was completely chipper and smiles and "Great!" I have the hardest time with him, knowing when to make him go to school and when not to, because sometimes i've let him stay home, and he sleeps and then he's fine, and sometimes i've forced him to go and he calls me an hour or two later because he's thrown up. So i'm always nervous when i make him go, and i'm always relieved when he doesn't immediately call.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Bugs and the library and me

The bug guy was at the library recently, spraying bug-be-gone stuff, and he found a "nest of millions of baby spiders" in the basement. My co-workers were telling me about this (i wasn't in the room when he was explaining), and they were all, "He said that he tried to spray them, but they kind of scattered." And i said, "Aw. Poor spiders."

They looked at me like i was crazy, and i remembered that most women are NOT married to Juanito.

Ever since then, i've become the go-to person when there are spiders/insects around. I rescued a moth that very day, and then the next day i moved a giant (GIANT) spider outdoors. I think everyone thinks i'm weird, but since most of us are women, i'm kind of useful.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Labor Day

Today was Labor Day, which meant that there was no school. Yay!

Houston went to a friend's house for the afternoon. Meanwhile, Katrina and Zane decided to do a whole "dance party," complete with games and prizes. They were totally excited about it, and it was completely cute and fun.

Since it was Labor Day, we decided that we should do the traditional thing and grill for dinner. Beth came over, and we had chicken and steak, and it was delicious. 

Sunday, September 3, 2017


This afternoon, Katrina and i rearranged my room. I used to rearrange it fairly often, but it's been the same for years now - long enough that the kids can't even remember it being any other way. And the best part of rearranging is that it forces me to clean the room really well - sweeping underneath furniture and everything! And then, to reward ourselves for a job well done, she and i went to get Frostys at Wendy's.

Besides that...the kids played on the computer, i cleaned up the house, Juanito and i made a quick trip to Goodwill to drop off some of the stuff we've had kicking around, and Juanito made waffles for dinner. So all in all, a good day.

Mindbenders and a birthday party

Last night i was chatting with my friend Karla, and she mentioned that they had gone to the Mindbender Mansion exhibit at the local museum and that her family had all loved it. And i thought, "Hey! *I* love puzzles! My kids love puzzles! We have tomorrow off...." And so this morning/early afternoon, we headed to the museum.

(First off, the museum has changed its pricing, and now all kids under 17 are "kids," AND if you live in the county, you get a cheaper price, and all of that is awesome.)

Everyone loved it. It's this huge exhibit with a ton of logic puzzles and brain teasers and other fun puzzle-y things. We mostly moved around together but solved things on our own, except for a few of the very hardest challenges. There was only one that we never figured out - building a structure out of giant nails to balance on the head of another nail. There were a couple that i worked on for ages before finding out that there was no solution, which is both super frustrating and also somewhat vindicating. Some were really easy and some were hard, and it was super enjoyable.

And then this afternoon we went to a birthday party for my niece and nephew (Eloise and Micah) who are turning one this week. They are adorable. They each got their own little cake to eat, and it was hilarious watching the difference between the two of them. Micah just attacked his cake and devoured it as quickly as he could shove it into his mouth. Eloise, meanwhile, delicately picked at her cake for quite a while (though she would have just shoved her whole face in it if she could have reached) before finally starting to eat it while holding a fork. So ladylike.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Pizza-Movie night!

We have been working our way through the Twilight movies, mercilessly mocking them and talking through large portions of the movie. Every half hour, Juanito exclaims, "I mean, he's one hundred and twenty! It's so inappropriate!" Tonight was number 4, which meant that we had to fast forward through a few scenes (honeymoon), and it meant that it was the one where she had to drink blood. So Beth ordered these blood bags online, made red juice, and POOF! We all got to drink "blood" and be as gross as Bella.

The kids didn't have school today. They have an extra-long Labor Day weekend, which meant that we only have 4 days a week for the first 2 weeks of school, and that's actually kind of nice. The kids were all pretty tired by today, especially Houston, who again slept until 2:00.

I spent the afternoon switching out most of my summer stuff for winter, because we live in Michigan and it's now September, and already the end of August was chilly, so i expect that it's going to be fall weather soon. Sigh.