Circus Confessions: What Mommy did…


I may have hidden some of the chocolate the children got at their Christmas parties.  It may now be gone.  I also may have had more coffee.


It is also possible that I gave my one  year-old a vanilla cream cookie before lunch, as a result of her loudly expressing her displeasure that I was not able to make a sandwich and cut up oranges at the speed of light, and all with one arm (because she wanted to be in the other).  Additionally, it is also possible that the vanilla cream cookie is all she actually ate, as who wants peanut butter and jelly after you have eaten a vanilla cream cookie.  I may have had diced up peanut butter and jelly for my own lunch.


Circus Break: Morning Coffee

Y’all know how I feel about my coffee.  And sometimes, just sometimes, I like to have a little snack with my mid-morning cup.  So I head to the pantry and take out some nice, organic wheat and cheddar crackers.  I pour them into small, snack sized bowls.  Then I hand them to the kids, dash back to the kitchen, and cut myself a nice slab of leftover birthday cake.  🙂 


Virtually undetectable by those among us with short legs, when eaten at the breakfast bar. 


Happy Wednesday!


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!


How to Eat Sandwich Cream Cookies Without Your Children Knowing

Step 1:  Store cookies in a ziplock type freezer bag.  They do not make the tell tale crinkle noise when opening.

Step 2: Open pantry door only as wide as your body.  Retrieve a napkin and gently ease open the bag of cookies and retrieve desired number.  (This should be no more than you can conceal in one hand, if it becomes necessary to do so.)  If young voices questions what you are doing in the pantry, call out “getting a napkin.”  This is not a lie.  You are actually getting a napkin.

Step 3) If line of sight is clear, move quickly to the breakfast bar and place the napkin on the bar top.  If children enter during this process, curl fingers around cookies and use body to covertly shield your hand.

Step 4) Place cookies on napkin, in center of breakfast bar. Do NOT stack cookies.  This makes them taller and easier for young ones with short legs to see from a distance.  Spread out flat they are nearly invisible to a child shorter than the breakfast bar.  I can’t help you if your children are already too tall.  If you have a method, please share.  That day is coming faster than I would like.

5) Loosely cover cookies with available scrap paper, magazine or bill.  I prefer to use bills that have already been paid.  The ones yet to be paid are too depressing for cookie eating and will ruin the experience.

6) Pour desired beverage (coffee here).

7) If child asks what you are chewing, quickly take a sip of beverage (be careful if its hot).   “Just drinking my coffee….”



The Return of the Coffee

Are you sick of hearing about my coffee yet?

After several days of boiling water and coffee grounds in an attempt to make some semblance of coffee without a coffee pot, the coffee hiatus has come to an end.  Waiting on my porch this afternoon was a large box containing a piece of technology that stands out all fancy-like in this house.  (We got a fabulous deal on an open box one from Amazon Warehouse, 1/3 of the price of a “new” one.  Though this was brand new, just had been returned and had been retaped.)  It grinds, it heats, it brews.  I can tell it how long to grind the beans, how fine, how long to let it brew.  Most wonderfully of all, its automatic goodness ensures when I descend the stairs with two kids needing diaper changes, one demanding juice, and most assuredly someone whining about something (tags on a shirt, someone looked at him, its Tuesday, can’t have ice cream for breakfast, wants to talk to Daddy on the phone, doesn’t want to talk to Daddy on the phone…) no matter what, there will be hot, delicious, rich, nutty goodness waiting patiently to be poured into my “Mom” mug.  (Which reads “Sleep deprived Mom, Beware.”  Ok, I added the “Beware,” but it should be there.)

And so this evening I had to try it out, big mistake.  The coffee is delicious, but there’s a major downside.  Its 11:00pm and now, thanks to the coffee, I can’t sleep.  Oh well, it was worth it, and at least there will be coffee in the morning!  Better look into some decaf beans….do they make those?


Catch-up Ketchup

I’m pretty certain that Circus Boy #2 is going to be a comedian.  That child is constantly looking for humor, constantly trying to be funny.  And while most of his jokes are things like “how did the alligator get into the tree?  Because of California!”  (All his jokes are random things with a punch line of “California” or “When I punch his eye-out.”  The later I am really not thrilled with, not sure where it came from.)  But he does find humor in just about everything, and has been known to churn out some good ones.

This past Saturday, for example we put the circus on wheels at the city’s 17.5 mile multi-use trail.  The big boys rode their little 12 inch bikes.  Mr. Ringmaster ran with them, to keep them on the right side and play block to the few bikers who seemed rather annoyed with the obstacle they had to pass and whizzed around us. (Most bikers slowed and cheered the kids on, but it was a little nerve racking becuase of the few who didn’t so I’m glad he was right with them.  What’s the deal with the attitude anyway?  I checked the rules, its a multi-use trail.  No minimum speeds or anything.)

Circus Boy #2 had to really work to keep up with his brother, as he still rides with training wheels.  But as Circus Boy #1 tired, he began to close the gap.  As he did, he yelled, “I’m catching you!  I catch up to you!”

Then his 3 year-old brain caught on the unique sort-of-homophone in the phrase “catch up.”

“Haha!  I said ketchup!  Ha!  I ketchup you!  I ketchup you! I ketchup you!  You are ketchup!”


We thought it was a pretty funny glimpse into how his brain works.  Sometimes he does come up with a good one. No California, no punching eyes out, and no potty words either!


The Ringmaster Gets Politcal: Temporary side show

I said I wasn’t going to do it.  I was not going to talk politics in this blog.  But I can’t stand it, I’ve got to.  It’ll be brief, I promise.  If someday I ever run for office this could come back to haunt me.  (Ha!  I’m way too emotional to run for office, confrontation makes me cry.)  Anyway, excuse the brief sideshow. 

I’ve got a cranky, teething baby who is only sleeping in my arms.  So, I’m holding her, and I decide to kill some time on google news and catch up on the news (duh).  (I like google news because you get it from multiple sources of various political leanings.)  So I was reading about the cell phone record monitoring and I just can’t keep my mouth shut anymore.  I have my 22 loyal readers to vent to, so here goes.

One little, two little, three little scandals, four little, five little, six little scandals….What the “heck” (replace with exclamatory word of choice)  is going on here?  They (NSA) admit they are/were monitoring the the cell calls we make.  They’re tracking e-mails and internet use.  The IRS can’t produce receipts for its expenses (ironic, how would the IRS proceed if you couldn’t produce your receipts?) and the IRS spends tax payer dollars on hotel rooms that cost per night as much as my family’s entire budget for 3 months.  The IRS is targeting/harassing specific political groups. American citizens were attacked with drones rather than being given their constitutional right for due process.  Then there’s the he said she said over Benghazi.  Its scandal after scandal after scandal and it reeks of years and years of the quiet erosion of the rights granted to every American citizen via the Constitution. 

Why are we not rioting in the streets over this?  Seriously!  We’re being lied to, spied on, and stolen from.  The Constitution might as well be toilet paper.  It’d actually probably get more attention as toilet paper when people curiously wondered why there was writing on the little square of paper they were about to use to wipe their rear-end.

What country are my poor kids going to be left with?  This is ludicrous.

I had a very liberal social studies teacher when I was in high school.  Ms. Fallis.  I say “liberal” because, if you’ve gotten this far you’ve probably realized I lean towards the right.  But even so, it was in her class that I began to appreciate the uniqueness of this country.  I remember her talking about how special this country was and that very few other places on this earth could experience peaceful transition of power every four years.   I remember her showing us the video of Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, and emotionally emphasizing the idea that a single individual could slow down even the most corrupt political machine, at least for a time.  I still love that movie.  She used these things to illustrate the brilliance of our founding fathers.   And I still have perhaps a romanticized notion, but also a great deal of respect, for the work those men did in creating this nation.  They did all they could to protect YOU AND ME, the future citizens of this nation, from a corrupt government that would lie, and steal, and misuse power for their own personal gain.  The problem is, whenever life got hard and things got scary, we said “Save me!  Take these freedoms away.  I don’t care, as long as you protect me and give me what I need.”  Every time you get protection, you give up a little freedom.  That’s just the way it is.  We’ve allowed this (and by this I mean that laundry list of scandals previously mentioned) to happen.  We should be ashamed.  And we should act to stop it now, if it can be stopped. 

Ok, so that was significantly more than I intended to say.  You can now return to your regularly scheduled programing.