Wednesday, July 29, 2009

When I say draft, I don't mean beer. Sadly.

Well, we're off to a shotgun start for the fall in the household; three boys in football over here. That means three times the laundry, three times the dirty shoes tossed haphazardly all around the first floor of my house, three times the large helmets as centerpieces on the dining table, three times the water bottles growing unknown plankton and scary life forms left in indescribably scented gym bags. Fun. Really.

Honestly, this week has been almost a mini holiday. Especially after the first day, when as usual, I think I know everything and insist that my husband and iPhone toting, Outlook calendar czar that he is (did I forget he trained most of the government workers and NGO people on how to freakin' USE Outlook when we were in Indonesia? Who do I think I am anyway?) got the time wrong. "It's not 6 - 8, it's 5 - 7! Sheesh! How could you forget!" I cackle relentlessly. I don't care what your stupid iPhone calendar says.

And this went on for several weeks. So, hubby comes home in time to load the truck with 5 tons of equipment (keep-the-preschooler-and-toddler-occupied-for-two-hours equipment, not football equipment mind you.) We take two cars in case someone (ME) needs to make a hasty escape with screaming babies (I have been severely traumatized over six years of sports toting small life forms. I'll admit it). We venture into the car; bicker over the iPhone on where to park. Get there; you can hear crickets. No one's at the Inn.

Go home for 30 minutes because it's too stinkin' hot to loiter in an open dusty field in Southern California during July. Trust me. What do I do? Nothing really, in that short amount of time, but,.. sit down,.. ahhhhh. That was nice. VACATION OVER!

So far the wagon full of goodies is working and the newness of the field is making for some serious uninterrupted eye ball time as we parents scan three different fields searching for our helmet encrusted boys. I usually find I've been tracking the wrong kid for a good 20 minutes until they take their helmets off. Thank goodness for water breaks, or I'd never figure out who they are. (no, they are not wearing jerseys with their names on them yet, smarty pants friends.)

Girls so far are waaaaaayyyy easier than boys when dragging them to millions of events they have no interest in whatsoever. Then I realized what it was; K, the youngest, most nefarious and wiggly of the boys was constantly trying to chip down my walls of steel with "Can I go to the snack bar" every 30 seconds until I would finally relent. I tried everything to get him off my back; giving him his four quarters and telling him when they were gone, they were gone - I've never seen quarters weigh more in my life. Or, "you have to wait until half time/the second quarter/intermission/the six inning,.." whatever,.. just to have "Can I go to the snack bar?" replaced with "How much longer until (name your poison)?" I've brought our own snacks, but nothing is as tasty as that snack bar candy. Especially if $1.00 buys you a bucket load of sour gummy worms. Heaven, I'm telling you.

So, as this revelation dawned on me, and I shared my insight with my beloved, what should happen? K runs over, rips of his helmet in prep for his water break and looks at me with astonished, saucer-sized eyes: "MOM! Did you know,... there's a SNACK BAR HERE?"

Anyhoo, the girls are troopers. I have learned, however, that I don't care how fun you try and package organic carrot/applesauce (visualize toothpaste tube in a dayglo orange that you can squirt directly down your throat - fun!) - kid's still don't like it. And the Ginger Cat Cookies I bought? They're SPICY! You know what that means. Now I have to eat the entire barrel by myself. Thanks, Trader Joe's, for nothing. I'll go back to microwaved chicken nuggets and crackers in the shape of talking sea sponges toted in a tuperware container, thank you very much.

So, here in Y-town, there are two teams in each division of Junior All American Football. It doesn't really matter what team you get on; I or II, until you reach J's age. Then the fun begins. We've had coaches calling; assitant coaches calling, neighbors and friends on behalf of rabid coaches, all to get the okay from us parental units that they can have our powerhouse 12 year old. According to them all, J is a 'top pick' and perhaps the 'best 12 year old available.' Which is cool. But it would be a lot cooler if he were, oh,.. say 18 and going to college and it wasn't Randy and Tony calling but Notre Dame and Princeton with full ride scholarships instead of promises to make him a better football player and make him cry during hell week.

But, I'm excited for them all; it' ll be a great year of playing - this is the SECOND year in a row the kids have played in a) the same city; b) with the same kids and c) with coaches who know who they are. What a new concept for us. So, I don't know what y'all are doing during your Saturdays this fall, but we'll be watching six hours of football in various stands in the county. Go TBIRDS!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


They're there; trust me. They are just a little petite. My kids are short on words and hair in the early years. But long on spunk.

Spunk is what's happened to me over these last long weeks. You know you haven't blogged in a long time when you go to type into the Nav bar and 'facebook' is automatically assumed by your fingers. You know it's been a long time since you've blogged when you go to type in the name of your very own blog, and the autotype doesn't come on because even your computer can't remember the last time you logged in to do a new post, or even check in to say hello to those old dusty ones.

I'm back. I swear. Some day, I'll actually even down load a couple of mobile pics from the ol iPhone.

The summer has been packed with a kind of sado-masachistic 'je ne sais quoi':Tar Pits and dentists, a variety of summer camps and hernia checks at the doctor (not for me, thank goodness, I'd never subject myself to such torture.) San Francisco City trips and entire backpacks with expensive electronics stolen; long days at work and the pool.

I spent a while trying to figure out the whole sports physical thing for three boys down here in Southern California, land of the 'oh, you want your one year old to come in for a well baby visit? We have some time available in 2011 - when she's three." I couldn't get the guys in with their named doctor at the Clinic I've signed some sort of devilish pact with and NO ONE would allow me to see any other doctor there, sneak in to an urgent care or coyly sign up for the pediatric walk in clinic. It was like I was married to the doctor in some hasty ceremony in Vegas, but not as fun because there wasn't a Vegas impersonator. So I cut the cord; I found an awesome place and it wasn't too jarring that everyone who works at the new doctors' office is not above the age of about 12.

Same with the dentist - good grief - the woman was 13. I'm sorry, did you say something? You think it's me? Just because I'm hitting the big 4-0 in a couple of weeks doesn't mean that everyone is suddenly appearing prenatal to me - or does it? Kind of like the warning on your rearview mirror - Objects will appear further away - there goes my youth; so far away.

But seriously, who has time to worry about such vanity? Just this morning I was up at 5am powering up the laptop, defrosting hamburger and putting a fresh load in the wash - and it's supposed to still be summer. My mother-in-law used to tell me horror stories about staying up all night to finish things in her house and she also has five children. I haven't done that yet, but it's getting close.

For the most part, the kids have been on their best behavior, which is disappointing when you're looking for inspiration for blog fodder. Hopefully next month will be better. : )