Circus Funnies: All about jokes

Circus Boy #2 really likes attention.  He gets it any way he can, but first and foremost by (attempting) being funny.  So rather than subject ourselves, our family, our friends, his teachers and classmates to “POOPY!!!  HAHAHAHA” or “How did the alligator climb the tree into the sky and get on a really, really, really high airplane and go to the moon?  By California!! HAHAHAHAHA!!” and other things which make no sense at all and are not remotely funny, we decided to teach the boy a few jokes.  We started with these two:

1)  What game do you play with a wombat?


2) Knock-Knock, Who’s there?, Boo, Boo-who?

Don’t cry its only a joke!

Well, apparently he started to tell his teacher the wombat one, but didn’t tell her he was telling a joke, so when he asked what game you play with a wombat, she told him “I don’t want to play with a wombat!”  (Which, his retelling of, totally made me laugh.)

So he tried his jokes on us at home; the ones who taught him the jokes, mind you.  Except, that he had them a little….melded.

Mommy, what do you play with a wombat?

::sigh:: I don’t know, what?


::Pretend laughter:: interrupted by….

Don’t cry, Mommy, its only a joke!

HAHA!! ::Real laughter::  And Daddy nearly sprayed tea out of his nose.

That kid is good for a joke, even when he isn’t tell it right.

Anyone have any jokes a soon to 4 year-old would get?  He needs some new material.


Happy Monday!


(Support the circus, visit: https://www.etsy.com/shop/Takes2Stitches?ref=si_shop)


Circus Love: The little things

Stay-at-home moms (or dads) know what I mean when I say there’s a window of about 30 seconds between getting the last peanut butter and jelly sandwich on the table, and when the recipient of the first peanut butter and jelly sandwich finishes it and asks for more.  If that doesn’t happen, there’s the inevitable first catastrophic spill triggering the beginning of the clean-up routine.  During that 30 second window stay at home parents everywhere face the same fundamental dilemma; what can I make and eat for lunch in 30 seconds.  No, the handful of m&ms and swig of cold coffee are not a good option.  And granted, there will be “leftovers” consisting of crumbs and crusts and partially chewed pieces of sandwich that you didn’t realize were partially chewed (awesomely delicious surprise…gag).  But it sure is nice when you get some real food for lunch, even if it is scarfed down in bites between picking up the banana you just cut up for your one year-old off the floor.  (Guess what, she didn’t want more food after all….)   

Which is why I was so looking forward to lunch the other day.  There was leftover chicken alfredo in the fridge for me (real leftovers, not the pre-chewed, previously saliva seasoned ones).  As the children settled into their food, I could not wait to get to that fridge and pop that dish in the microwave.  I  knew there was some fresh parmesan cheese to grate over the top, and oh, it would taste so good.   But in my dash to the fridge I quickly decided that getting the cheese and grater and all out, would take up too much of my precious estimated 60 second lunch.  I pulled out the container and popped off the lid to vent it in the microwave.  You know what?  There, covering the top of those noodles and sauce was a beautiful layer of cheesy goodness.  Mr, Ringmaster, knowing I would eat those leftovers for lunch, grated cheese over the top of them before he went to work that morning. 

Thinking about grating parmesan cheese on a busy mom’s lunch at breakfast time, that’s love right there.

But alas, no leftovers (at least the good kind) today, and I just spend like 300x my allotted 60 seconds to write this post.  Kids are restless, time to go.  M&ms and a swig of coffee it is! 



Tea Paties and Baby Dolls: The Circus Gets Girly

ImageNo one will ever be able to convince me that there are no natural gender roles.  We’ve had a tea set and kitchen set since my oldest boy was small, never has it gotten so much attention as my 12 month-old daughter has given it over the last few months.  We get tea, her brothers get tea, and they’re nearly untouched and forgotten stuffed animal cast offs now get tea.  The baby dolls get fed spoonfuls of imagined mushed who knows what, and they are rocked and patted and snuggled.  The very same were chucked across the room after being dangled by a foot, in her brothers’ toddler years, despite my pleas as a mommy with their siblings on the way to please “be gentle with the baby.”

But that’s ok.  The boys have their tea party moments with her, and she can make a “vroom-vroom” toy car go with the best of them.  But I am so enjoying the girly aspects of play these days.  Here is a sweet a little felt tea and cookie set I made her for Christmas: ImageObviously, I didn’t make the plates and the tea pot, they are brother cast-offs.  But I was tickled with the way they came out, so I put a set up on my Etsy store.  http://www.etsy.com/shop/Takes2Stitches?ref=no-search-results  You can see more pictures there as well.  Next I am on to a doll blanket and pillow.  🙂

Don’t worry, the boys are getting in on the home-made Christmas gifts, too.  I’ve got fleece mittens with an embroidered Dusty from Planes in the works.

Anyone making anything for your own little ones?

Happy Thursday!


The Conservative/Libertarian Circus: Everything I need to know about government right now, I learned from a liberal.

12th grade, AP Government and Economics

Location: Upstate, NY


 My teacher was a huge fan of Hilary Clinton.  I mean huge.  And NY was in the middle of a Senate race.  We watched those debates.  We had our own mock debates, and we heard all the things our teacher loved about Hilary Clinton.  I was not a huge Clinton fan, and we all kind of thought our teacher was a little crazy, (how could you teach high school and not be a little crazy, says the teacher in me now) but still…. I ATE IT UP.

Or rather, my child self’s quest for utopia ate it up.  This would be the same child that once said, “Mom, why do we even have money?  Why doesn’t everybody just keep doing their job and as people get older the government will give them a job and then everybody can just go to a store and get what they want?  No more homeless people.  No more hungry people.”  Her response, “Yeah……they call that communism. “


Back to that government class, one fateful day.   Mr. Smith Goes to Washington was the video of the day, and we watched as Mr. Smith took out his iconic thermos and apple and the room buzzed, “filibuster!”  At that moment, our teacher stood up and paused the tape.  She looked at us, and spoke with the passion she usually reserved for Clinton debates with the right leaning teacher next door.  Her eyes got misty, begging us to understand this one thing, even if we ignored everything else she ever tried to show us. 

One single man (or woman as the case may be) could stand up and hold up the entire corrupt machine if he or she deemed it worth foregoing sleep, food, and bathroom breaks, and could continue this for as long as he could stand. 

She spoke of the courage such an individual would have.  She spoke of the brilliance our founding fathers had, knowing that man is greedy and easily corrupt.  She spoke of all the little fail safes they put into the founding documents, so that even if one single person dared to stand up to the government machine, there was hope.  There was hope that such a person could stand up and use their speech to convince other senators not accept the corruption.  There was hope that such a person could convince a nation of citizens who would contact their elected senate representatives and say “No more!” 

After all, who would stand for 20 something hours if they did not truly in their heart believe in the cause? Who could go an entire day without using the bathroom to fight for pork, or for plans to scratch someone else’s back, or for a bill which makes the moment better but the long term worse?  Who could talk for 20 something hours about a topic, if they had anything to hide about it? 

A filibuster provides a chance to get the discussion back on track, a chance to reveal manipulation and corruption. Discussion!!  Congress was never meant to be a figurehead body by which the President’s ideas get thrown into bill form and passed merrily along.  It was to be a place where legislation was born.  Where it was hammered out by discussion!  Not by magic, but by debating, by arguing, by PASSION.  It was the way our founding fathers protected US from a tyrannical government.  It was the way our freedoms could be safe. 


And now here I sit 12 years later, most definitely not liberal leaning.  And Ms. Fallis’ lesson fits better than ever.  Those folks in Congress right now, whom currently 81% of Americans don’t approve of, they’re fighting for you.  (Well, some of them are.)  They’re fighting to protect US, to protect our rights and freedom.  They’re fighting to protect our country by fixing the economy.   They’re debating elements of government to be funded by a budget bill.  That is their job, but we’re berating them for it!  Democrats and Republicans, liberals and conservatives, we should be thankful this debate is happening.  We should be thankful the fail safes our founding fathers gave us are working.  No one is rolling over and saying “Oh well, we have to get this passed so we don’t tick someone off, or because the man in the big white house on Pennslyvania Avenue says we have to.  Who cares what’s in it!” 

We should be looking at those folks standing and speaking for nearly an entire day and saying “Damn! I could not hold it that long!” And then it should dawn on us, that person must have something pretty important to say.  We should be questioning whose words hold more value; the person standing all night, risking urinating on the Senate floor, or the person who couldn’t even be bothered to be there, who is at home in a nice, cushy bed. 

Instead, the floor is dropping out from under Congress’ approval rating, when perhaps for the first time in almost a decade, they are actually doing their job.  We’re yelling at them to stop the shutdown.  Telling them to sit down and get the job done.  What we’re really yelling is “Give up!”  “Make this stop, either way.”  Then we’ll yell at them again when the economy tanks and we’ll say “Why didn’t you do something about this.”  They are finally doing that, ladies and gentlemen.  Finally.

(If anyone’s approval rating should be tanking, it should be the President’s, but I’ll skip going into the handling of this shutdown.   Parks and businesses which have no federal expense closed?  Amber alert, really?  But keep collecting your pay check…  Really?)

Now it’s time for you to get involved.  Call your senators and representatives offices; write them, facebook them.  Let them know how you feel.  Then, when the government “reopens,” don’t lose interest just because what’s going on doesn’t directly affect you in the moment.  All of this is happening because of the culmination of elements that didn’t directly affect us at the time. 

And don’t dismiss a person filibustering just because you don’t think you agree with them or someone tells you they’re crazy and insignificant; just wasting people’s time.   After all, you’re the one sitting down with a coffee, scone and potty down the hall. 


Circus Rules: On the ownership of the omelet

Circus Rule #3471:  You do not steal someone’s eggs and not eat them.


Mr. Ringmaster got out omelet supplies this morning.  “Add an extra egg” I called, thinking the baby could have some eggs with her breakfast.  He added an egg.  Chopped tomato and cheddar cheese later, with a little pancaked shaped egg flip, and the omelet was done.  Chop off portion for the little princess.

Circus Boy #1 enters stage left.  “Can I have eggs for breakfast?”  Chop off portion of omelet, place on plate.  Circus Boy #1 exits stage left for the dining room.

Circus Boy #3 enters with a point and a grunt, indicates, he would like eggs.  Mr. Ringmaster, at this point desperately hoping he is misreading the signals, offers various types of cereal.  Circus Boy #3 grows agitated.  Thrusting his pointer finger up toward the counter where the eggs are resting on Mr. Ringmaster’s plate, there’s no mistaking his request.  Mr. Ringmaster looks at me, “give him the eggs.”  And so three of the four circus offspring sit down to Daddy’s breakfast, while Daddy downs a quick bowl of plain brown rice cereal. 

But alas, they are not eating!  They’re looking at the eggs, they’re pushing them around on the plate, nibbling at a snail’s pace.  And oh no, Circus Boy #1 has run out of time.  He has to get ready for school.  And the littlest circus offspring, after eating about 50% of their eggs indicate their desire to get down with various versions of pointing and fussing. 

And so Mr. Ringmaster gathers up the poor, largely uneaten, chopped up and now cold omelet, gets a fork, and finishes it off.  “You realize that’s probably full of slobber, right?”

“Yeah, we call that seasoning around here.” 



What does dinner prep time look like in your house?  In this circus, it goes something like this:

Chop, chop

“MOOOMMMMYYYYY, I want a snack.”

Its too, close to dinner. 


Move baby away from the HVAC vent she’s trying to remove from the floor.

Clanking of pans.

“CAN SOMEONE COME WIPE ME?”  (I am the only adult at home, why does he not ask me (Mommy) to come wipe him?  Does he think his 5 year-old brother’s going to do it?)

Replace HVAC vent on the way to the bathroom to take care of Circus Boy #2’s hygiene.

Flushing, washing, then more chopping.

Move baby away from the HVAC vent she’s trying to remove from the floor.

“NOOO!! NOO! NOOOOOOO!” (Loud squeal)

What happened?

“He’s touching my truck!”

“He’s standing in front of the tv!”

Squealing, interrupted by….

fishing the toys dropped by baby out of HVAC vent.  Replace vent.

Whack!  (Circus boy #3 come up from behind and smacks Circus Boy #2 with toy car.  Why?  No one knows.)

Set one child at the table, one on a carpet, one on another carpet, distribute books. 

Dump vegetables in pan, get spoon.

Move baby away from the HVAC vent she’s trying to remove from the floor.

“WHAAA, He moved!!” 

“He looked at me!” 

“Can I have a snack? ….But I’m sooooo hungry.”

You are hungry because it is dinner time.  Sure is a shame I spent so much time in here instead of cooking dinner.

Replace vent cover. 


“Fall” from Circus: Hobbies of the Ringmaster

I love sewing.  Not mending, I really hate mending (as illustrated by the pile of clothing needing buttons, or hems, or seams repaired tucked into the back of my little sewing corner).  I don’t even really like garment making (though I’m getting better at that).  I really like the artsy stuff.  I like picking out fabric, I like matching up subtle colors in a pattern to bring them to the forefront of a design.  I like using them to add depth and shape to an applique object.  And most of all, (and this is a big most of all) I like projects I can actually finish on a mom of 4 little kids time budget. 

The colors, the fabrics and a little bit of creative time make me happy; a sliver of a break from being Mommy the cleaner-upper/cook.  Instead, I get to be Mommy, the creator of “cool” things.  The one who can turn a plain old shirt into a Transformers shirt, or put Handy Manny on a pillow case.  The one who can make the “cool” pajama shorts, which are cool because they don’t have a tag and can never be “put on backwards.”  I can make a boring towel fun, and make presents for teachers and Nana. 

Here is a shameless plug for some of the autumn projects I’m working on.  You can find them (and others) in my Etsy Store: https://www.etsy.com/shop/Takes2Stitches?ref=si_shop.  If you’re a crafty person, I’d love to hear (or, I guess, read) your feedback.