Family


It is almost the end of 2011.  I thought I would do a quick review of our life this year.

Decorated Christmas Tree

Happy Holidays!

Rogan started working this year for the State Library.  He was named a Mover and Shaker by the Library Journal.  He has published several articles and even cowrote an RPG book.  He has presented at several conferences, and has been asked to speak at more in the next year.  He is working too many hours and has too much stress, but I am proud of all of his accomplishments.  Rogan was in the parking lot of Walmart one day this fall and saw a man with a box of puppies.  He brought two of them home.  We are now up to five dogs in the house and I am officially sick of house training dogs.

 

Rhiannon finished 12th grade this fall.  She has changed hairstyles at least four times.  She is not sure what she wants to do with her life, so is in the process of “finding herself.”  Currently she watches the girls for me four hours per day during the week, so I can get some work done that requires concentration.  We also let Rhiannon pick out a cat from the humane society, where she volunteers on Saturdays, as an early Christmas present this year.  We are now up to two cats and my allergies are not amused.

 

Rowan started kindergarten this fall.  She is smart as a tack, picking up her ABCs, learning to write, learning about new animals in the documentaries and learning programs on the iPad.  She isn’t reading yet, but that is only a matter of time.  I cut Rowan’s hair this summer, so it is shoulder length and much easier to brush now.  Unfortunately, when I cut it most of her curls went away 😦

 

River thinks Rowan doing school is interesting at times, but she never wants to join in.  Maybe next year she will garner some interest in learning herself.  We may need an extra iPad or two!  River didn’t want me to cut her hair when I cut Rowan’s, so I am still struggling with hair brushing with River and her tangle of curls.  Would help if she would let me brush it more often.

 

Me?  I’ve been working more hours, picked up extra work from one client and in the last month gained a new client.  Things are looking up in the work at home front.  I also started testing recipes for a website for a cookbook author.  (I haven’t been keeping up with the recipe testing very well the last six months, I hope they don’t kick me from the program.)  The last few months have also seen a significant improvement in how I feel with the PPD/A.  I am on an upward curve and hope this means the end of the evilness that is my hormones.

 

I am sure I have missed a lot of what has gone on in our lives, but that is a broad overview.  I hope you and yours are all happy and healthy and that this continues on into the New Year!

Well, hello there, strangers!  I suppose you are now thinking one of two things – 1) Whoa, I forgot I had this blog on RSS/Email notification.  2) What happened to HER?!

I know, I know, I have been a very, very bad blog mom!  No updates, if you discount the Wordless Wednesday posts with no updates in them, since October.  I am still here, though!  The holidays, as usual, kicked my butt.  This was the second year since losing my beloved grandfather and I get in a funk.  Plus, life kicked me in the butt, it was crazy here the last few months with the two little ones and the oldest finally finished her 11th grade work and is now a SENIOR!!!  (How did she get this old without me noticing??)

We had another chicken go broody and hatched four eggs.  We lost all four chicks to the hawks around the area.  We have also lost a few of our hens, as well.  We are now down to eight chickens.  Rogan and I have decided when the weather turns warmer (it has been freezing almost every night since right before Christmas) we are going to fence in their coop and start keeping them in the pen and safe from the hawks and the neighborhood dogs (this is entirely the chickens’ fault, as they keep flying over our “jailhouse” fence -out from under the protection of the tree cover of our yard- and over to the neighbor’s yard and in an empty field across the road).  We may order some more chicks this spring.

I have started garden dreaming.  I have catalogs, both paper and virtual, I am going through and trying to decide on exactly what to plant this season.  I am planning on expanding our largish-small plot and maybe do greenhouse hoops we can cover in the winter and have a year round garden!  The little ones are getting old enough now that I can spend a bit more time on gardening – and I am planning a separate herb garden and a kid’s plot for them to learn how to work the earth.

I will confess to weakness and admit I have not been using my clothesline since it got cold.  Our laundry room is outside in an alcove off our carport and it takes all I have to just walk out there and do laundry.  So I have been succumbing to the luxury of using the dryer more and more.  We have to run a small heater in the room with the double doors shut so the water line does not freeze on us, but I still find myself having to run an empty load before I can start on the day’s laundry to clear out ice in the line (we do not have a hot water line, only the cold line).

We also discovered at the beginning of the month we need to replace our septic tank and field drains – they are original to the house, so are about fifty years old or so.  The field drains are being blocked by all of my precious trees’ root systems in that part of the yard.  We are looking at about three grand for that.

Plus, we bought the little ones some wooden blocks and building sets for the holidays.  Right before the septic tank issues one of them tossed a block and it hit our HUGE picture window in the living room and cracked it – we are talking about around two to three thousand if we replace it, as it is now structured (also original to the house and is only single pane and had spider cracks running through it already).  This is where I beg you for work, or to recommend me to anyone who needs administrative or bookkeeping work!

Paperwork and Headaches

Bills, Bills, Bills

So, it looks like any refund we get from the IRS is spoken for this year.  The house is starting to remind of two movies – the first obvious choice is The Money Pit and the second is Baby Boom – where the ad executive moves into this great old house in the country, only to discover everything is breaking down.  (Did I mention the kitchen floor also needs replacing, because the subfloor is starting to buckle?)

Oh, well.  I suppose this is the price you pay for living in an older house.  We have a project lined up to replace the two prong outlets with three prong ones (which requires a lot of rewiring).

 

House Falling Down

The Money Pit

 

Oh, and something no one really warns you about when you move from the big city to the country – and have a house surrounded by woods – is critters.  Yes, I theoretically knew there would be creepy crawlies, but was not prepared for my new arch enemy – MICE.  Apparently my chickens (and dogs and cat) suck at killing these things before they get into the house!  We have tried traps of all kinds and we keep the population from getting out of control, but we still seeing them scurrying around in the corners sometimes.  I have ordered a product from my favorite online store – Greenfeet – that is supposed to keep them from coming into the house, due to the odor of the herbs and cedar in the product not agreeing with their olfactory senses.  I should be getting it in this week and will let you know how it works.

Saturday Recipe will hopefully continue soon, but some posts may be teasers – I am now a recipe tester for one of my all time favorite recipe sites and will not be able to disclose the recipe for you until it is published on the site.  But I will show you some pics and give you some tips (like how to truss a chicken and how to chop chocolate blocks).

I hope you will not delete me from your feed and will continue on with me in this journey of learning homesteading and country living and homeschooling (oldest will be graduating soon, but the middle one will be starting kindergarten this fall!).  I will give you all the good AND the bad of it all (like mice!).  You will see me fall on my face and learn from mistakes.  So, stay tuned – same bat-ish time, same bat channel!!

 

Casserole Time

Fresh Food Is Not Always Appreciated By Children

It can be HARD to be a parent.  I remember days of driving two hours to work, trying to fit in pumping three times during the work day, stress of budget deadlines and monthly branch finance deadlines, dealing with operations managers who were busy and didn’t get around to clearing discrepancies in estimated costs of import/export items we shipped, and then driving another two hours home, cooking dinner, breastfeeding the baby and feeling so guilty about only spending a handful of hours a day during the week with my family.  High stress job, mommy guilt, low milk supply problems due to stress and guilt (and forgetting sometimes to eat at work because I was busy and forgot the time) and postpartum depression – these were some of my issues, but there are a whole spectrum of other issues women – and men – have when trying to work outside the home and still have a quality family life, whether or not they have children, and to try to be healthy and kick the fast food monkey on our collective backs.

 

So what is one to do when you find yourself in this stressful situation?  Some people run, some do yoga, some meditate..and, yes, some turn to food or drugs or alcohol.  I don’t recommend turning to drugs – just FYI – they are illegal and you will wind up in jail with a bunk mate named Bubba(ette), also, they are very bad for your body.  Alcohol is equally bad, it can cause you to disassociate yourself from your family – and, if you are a mean or morose drunk, you can alienate those whom you need most.  Food, though it may be bad for you in excess and if you eat just junk/fast food and is right up there with the other two, you can turn into a good thing.  When I’m upset or stressed I do one of two things: Cook/bake or clean.  If you have visited my house lately, you know I have been going with the first instead of the later….but that’s another story.

Last night I had a bit of a meltdown (ok, ok, Rogan, so it was more than a bit!  Sheesh! :P)  I made baked teriyaki chicken and mashed sweet potatoes (from an 8lb paper bag purchase I made a few weeks ago at the Farmer’s Market) and the 4yo started about how she didn’t like this or that or the other.  The 17yo has been a challenge to cook for since she was about the same age – I have to not cook things Rogan and I would love to eat (ie, things made with hamburger meat, mushrooms, lots of garlic, onions, etc) because she doesn’t like something it is made with – and I just broke.  14 years of hearing “I don’t like that” came crashing down on me.  Add the 4yo and 2yo going through a “I may or may not eat with you, but I WILL ask for something to eat when it’s time to go to bed”, and it is enough to drive even someone without PPD over the edge.

I declared I was going to stop cooking, buy a ton of boxed cereals and just let everyone pick their own for dinners!  (Rogan took me out for coffee to let me calm down, that was how bad it was!)

Um, yeah.  Like that’s going to happen.  We have a box of MultiGrain Cheerios for the toddlers to keep them out of my hair for them to snack on during the day.  Occasionally, I will go nuts and buy something in vein of Apple Jacks, but I try to keep that to a minimum because I will eat them because of the sugar content.

I cook.  It is what I do.  I am tempted to cook what I want and let them eat something else, but then my Southern upbringing (sometimes I sound just like my mother) rears it’s head and I hear myself saying, “You will eat what I cooked, or you can go hungry!”  I never actually follow up on that statement, so don’t go calling DSS on me!  But it is tempting.  They usually run around (yeah, family dinner time with two toddlers running around like wild animals, screaming and hitting each other is soooo relaxing) and don’t eat.  Around 8:30-9:00 they will ask for food.  They usually get a peanut butter sandwich (the teen just raids the food pantry and fridge at all hours of the day).  I am soooo not good on the tough love parenting thing.

So, tell me.  What do you do to cope with the picky eaters (kids or spouses) in your family?  Do you cave to the “happy, happy, joy, joy” kids meals, or do you make different things for different eaters, or do you put your foot down and they eat what you decide to cook?  Also, tips for getting toddlers to sit at the dinner tape (without resorting to duct tape or rope or chains) would be greatly appreciated.

kissing

Marie Claire Asks If Overweight Couples Should Kiss Only In Private

I have been going back and forth about whether or not to write about this very hot topic of  a blog post on Marie Claire’s Website which started out about a tv show and people “with rolls and rolls of fat kissing each other” and went on to say “I think obesity is something that most people have a ton of control over. It’s something they can change, if only they put their minds to it.”  I write mostly about local events/places and parenting and homesteading and slow food.  Though I suppose this could, in the other writer’s eye, have something to do with food.

The piece’s author, Maura Kelly, has publicly apologized for the post, which has so far garnered over 1100 comments (most of them calling her a bully, a sizest and some even getting very personal and nasty).  When I first learned of the article Tuesday night and read the article I was livid, I admit it.  I have had three children and have been on strong antidepressants.  I am overweight.  Not because of what or how much I eat, but because of the pregnancy weight I haven’t lost on top of medication which is proven to cause weight gain.  No amount of “putting my mind to it” will change these facts.  Luckily, my doctor switched my medications and I am on the road to weight loss, but it has nothing to do with will power and my eating or exercise habits.

But what has upset me the most, and what has really prompted me to write this post, isn’t so much that Ms. Kelly feels the way she does, it’s the fact that someone in the Marie Claire ranks approved this article.  Not only did someone in Marie Claire approve this article, they are unabashedly unapologetic about about posting an article which bashes overweight people.

I do not buy this magazine, or any like it.  I believe these publications give the teenage and young adult women of our country a bad body image ideal, one model was allegedly fired for being a size 4.  The fashion industry sets it’s plus sized modeling for a size 6.  More to the point, my 17 year old daughter who DOES read magazines such as this, thinks she is fat because she is a size 8!  Way to go fashionistas and designers of the USA!  You are promoting anorexia better than Twiggy ever believed possible.  Between magazines which feel the need to photoshop already skinny models, to sizing standards for models, to the authors of articles such as this one which makes overweight people feel ashamed and worsens their already low body images, our young people are set on the cusp to make eating and exercise disorders the new drain on America’s healthcare.

To paraphrase a well-known quote: All it takes is for one person to remain quiet.  I am through being quiet.  What about you?

Hey ya’ll.  Sorry for being absent for a while.  Let me catch everyone up on what has been going on at Casa de Hamby.  We have been very busy, each and every one of us.  Writing, potty training, chicken problems, kid problems, new businesses and new jobs OH MY!  All in all, we are doing well.  We are healthy and happy.  And that is what counts, right?

Busy Office Worker

Busy, Busy, Busy

I have been busy doing some articles for Untrained Housewife.  I am mainly focusing on doing a series on essential oils and their uses.  I will also be doing a series of product reviews there, as I did earlier this year for Eco Smart Safe Plant and Garden Bundle.  So keep an eye on the site for more from me in the next month!

I am also working on a post on safe c-section births for Kimberly over at It’s a Beautiful Wreck for her month long series. (I promise, Kimberly, it’s coming along!)

 

roll of TP

Potty Time

Yes, it’s time to talk about….poop!  We are in the midst of potty training our two year old, River.  She often yells out, “Pee NOW!” throughout the day for the last few weeks.  When we were potty training Rowan the easiest way to get her to go potty was to let her go bare bummed throughout the day.  As is often said in the mothering community, every child is different.  This is also true for potty training.  River could care less about pee running down her legs at this stage in the game.  This is also true of…poop.  Elimination Communication may work for some mothers, but I play WoW stay so busy, I sometimes miss her cues.  Other times, I see the cue, but she refuses to move from the spot where she is currently crouched down and pooping.  She is doing a good job at staying dry for most of the day, but the River pee flows at night, often soaking through onto me onto the mattress.  Good thing we have a mattress protector!

My birthday was Tuesday – no I will NOT tell you how old I am! :p  So, if any hybrid car manufacturers *cough* Toyota *cough* Honda *cough* want to talk to me about a sponsorship, give me a shout!  It would be an awesome opportunity for me belated birthday present!  I am also open to sustainable kitchenware and gardening publishers Help me get to BlogHer11!!! Rogan got me a wonderful cast iron Japanese tea pot set and Teavana’s Peach Tranquility loose leaf tea.

 

Hen
I Love Lucy


The baby chickens are no longer babies.  They are juveniles now.  I think at least one is a rooster, I am naming it Fred.  I am going to have to either find it a new home or we will be having it for Sunday dinner.  Ricky, the rooster, who was named for the two hens Lucy and Ethel, may have to go, as well.  He is one mean cuss!  Warhol, our original rooster, has been run off by him and he not only chases the lil ones like Warhol did, but he also attacks them – as well as Rogan and me!  I can’t have him hurting the babies – and don’t like being run up on from behind and scratched, either!

I am also working on a plan to fence in their roost, only letting them out for short periods during the day.  Ethel’s babies roost up in the high tree branches, so the fence is nothing to them – or the other chickens.  Putting up the steel cage fence prison yard was done to keep the chickens out of the neighbor across the way’s yard, but they still wander over there after flying over the fence! *sigh*  I know you can get their wings clipped, but I just can’t do that to them.  Plus, they lay their eggs all over the place – when we find one spot, they start laying somewhere else.  So having them fenced in will force them to lay where we can find their eggs.  After all, it’s eggnog season we don’t want eggs going bad when they lay them in out-of-the-way spots – or be surprised by baby chicks coming out the woods by the dozen that would be cool though.

Rogan has started his own business, in addition to working full time at the library, and he now has a part time contract job working for the State Library.  He has been working hard with the board for the last few years helping to get SC LENDS off the ground.  He is now helping to maintain and upgrade the system and help new libraries coming into the consortium with all the IT do whatis whats it called technical stuff and project management.

So, this is what I have been doing for the last little bit.  What is new in your world?  Any potty training tips out there?  Please comment, I don’t bite.

When I was a baby, I slept with my mom until she remarried when I was four.  My stepfather didn’t approve of cosleeping, so I was moved to my own bed.  I always looked forward to my step father being out of town, because I got to share her bed again.

When I became a mother for the first time at age 21, natural parenting and attachment parenting were neither things I had ever heard of.  I naturally gravitated toward breast feeding and cloth diapering.  Also, even though I was given two cribs, my daughter slept in the bed with me.  And she continued to do so, off and on, until she was about nine and Rogan and I started living together.  Even then, having her own room and her own bed, she still climbed in with us when she was sick.

A few years later, my husband and I had our own child together.  A coworker gave me her old crib.  We set it up in our bedroom.  She may have been placed in it a half dozen times.  She slept with us.

A few more years and our third daughter was born.  She became person number four in our king sized bed.

Now, our third child is two and our middle child is four, they both still sleep with us.  The now seventeen year old will climb in the bed and snuggle with me occasionally, but she sleeps in her own room.

For me, cosleeping has always been about parental bonding.  Parenting styles differ around the world, and even from one home to another on the same street, so I have never told anyone cosleeping was the only way to go.  But, for me, it makes me a better parent.  And, with my postpartum depression, makes me feel closer to my children – they must love me and feel I am a good momma if they snuggle up so sweetly to go to sleep, right?

Anything which makes for better parenting is a good thing and should be encouraged.  I mean, we go into our pregnancies thinking we will do everything possible to raise our children with love and understanding.  It’s just that some of us have different definitions of how to accomplish this feat.  Unfortunately, attachment parents seem to be constantly bombarded with criticism for their parenting techniques.  I mean, come on!  There are so many parenting issues we have to put up with out there from the so called professionals – from how long you breastfeed to whether or not to vaccinate your children to the current hot debate regarding circumcising your child at birth.  Everyone in the world will weigh in on your choices, and most of them will be against your parenting style.

Just like in the 70s when Dr Spock told parents to not spank their child and our grandparents told our parents they would spoil us, today our parents tell us we will spoil our children for carrying them in slings and cosleeping.  Who knows what the next generation of parenting techniques will be – which we will accuse OUR children of using to spoil our precious grandbabies.  All I know is this, if what you choose to do does not harm your child and makes you both feel closer as parent and child and everything you do for them is from love, then you are doing it right.

There is no cookie cutter approach to raising children.  And there will always be someone there on the sidelines telling you what you are doing wrong.  The trick is to raise your children as lovingly as you wish and ignore the nay sayers.  I didn’t say it was an easy thing to do, my skin is still mighty thin at times, but it is something you can work on.

I could tell you stories all day about breastfeeding comments (like the pediatrician who insisted on sending a can of formula even though they knew I was breastfeeding and also insisted I give a bottle a water after nursing – to rinse her mouth out!!) or cloth diaper comments and especially cosleeping comments.  But the thing for you to remember is this is your child.  Do what is right for your family.

If you would like to learn more about attachment parenting, see Attachment Parenting International’s website.

Hi,
This is the Daddy here.  I don’t intrude on Melinda’s chatting with the interwebs much.  Mostly because she scares me.  Really, if you want blog gold I’ll start posting the things she says in her sleep sometime.  But, that’s not the point.  I did want to share this tidbit from the other week that was … well, you’ll see.  I typed it up a few Saturdays ago and am just getting to posting it now.
—————-
I left the house today with a goal and an intention.  I intended to commit a crime.  I failed but not for lack of effort.  Now, to be fair it wasn’t a real crime, but one of fashion, the kind that would make Tim Gunn make that exasperated sound in response to something that fills his soul with pity and despair.  Yes, I know who Tim Gunn is and I watch Project Runway despite being fairly close to the opposite of ‘metro.’
You see, my three year old daughter, the girly girl who lives her life in pink and shades of pink has a pair of ‘flower shoes’ that are way too small for her.  They weren’t when she first got them.  They were also a less muddy version of pink.  I approved of them.  Now, I feel differently.  Now, I despise them.  Were my feelings any stronger they would be hate.  I get the stares, or at least imagine them.  My daughter loves them, continues to love them despite the fact that they are so small on her feet that they are hard to walk in.  I imagine that people are staring and thinking, “oh, that man won’t get his daughter new shoes, he should die of the un-funny kind of syphilis.”  I would take a knife to these shoes were it not childish to do so.  I’ve tried throwing them away and somehow, every time my daughter intervenes no matter how asleep she should be.  I let them rot and someone else cleans them.  My goal today was murder, to murder the shoes, and to coerce my daughter into holding the knife.  Those weren’t the crime.
Oh, and let me be clear the child has shoes.  Presently, two pairs.  One that fit perfectly and a pair a little big that she can grow into.  But, a) she never wants to wear them and I tire of the fight and b) I can never find the bloody things!  Now, my wife has correctly pointed out that this is adequate.  She is frugal and has a talent for finding the bloody things that I don’t have.
Back to the matter of crime.  The crime was crocs.  I first became aware of crocs shortly before the middle child was born.  It wasn’t a concern for a long time.  Now, it is.  I don’t like crocs.  I loathe them.  If I found myself needing to kill a man with a screwdriver because his death would better humanity and I found him wearing crocs I would think, “that’ll just make this easier for me to do.”  I don’t see any circumstances in which adult humans should wear these things.  Sure, they’re practical but there are times that dignity is priceless.
But, practicality and the reality of children that leave their shoes outside have worn me down on the circumstances of my child wearing them.  I had to run the store today, first the DIY store for some items and then Wally World for some basic groceries.  The three year old was going with me so we had to find her shoes.  Naturally, they weren’t where all the shoes are supposed to be and finding them turned into a quest that felt distinctly familiar – like a process I’d been through many, many times before.  Yeah, because I had.  I latter found them in the yard which is where they usually are if the teenager or the grandparents have had her out there but also leaves a lot of space for trying to find them in.  So, in the meantime I went to the store and broke down – I’d buy crocs and with the promise of new shoes she had to agree to throw away her old ones.
So, I went to Wally World and approached their eight rows of shoes.  And found bunk.  Seriously, they had maybe two pairs of shoes in her size and they were in boys colors which got about as far with my three year old as Andy Warhol at a Rotary Club.  And they weren’t even crocs.  After five minutes of trying to talk her into shoes I already knew she wouldn’t ever wear I wanted to set fire to the place.  Still, I went through the dance knowing I would lose.  And did.  I left dejected.  You would think I would have been thrilled to be saved from my own moral failure but like a the long term dieter that finally gives in to the urge for the double chocolate fudge cake but FRAK IT, it’s time has come … and then finds the bakery out because no one thought anyone liked chocolate anymore … I just found myself in the middle of a huge commercial chain going WTF WERE THEY THINKING?!  Had right thinking people such as myself killed crocs just in time for my fall from grace to mock my pointless and petty internal failure?  I felt like the universe was mocking me.  It probably was.
In fact, let me point out that these plagued scions of the fashion world, crocs, were no where to be found.  I found one adult pair.  That’s it.  One.  Does no one buy them anymore?  Looking around I saw them on children’s feet.  Seriously, WTF?!
I ended up at a place called Shoe Show.  Really, I don’t even know if this is a real chain or anything.  I’m imaging Tony Soprano is getting the proceeds from the place.  They sell the shoes half off, claim them full price on the books, Tony’s money comes in, clean money comes out.  Still, I’m OK with that because they had cheap shoes.  But still not crocs and no flip flops in her size but they did have two pairs, matching in complimentary colors so I bought them.  They’ll go with her outfits but I still can’t leave them outside.  Still, I think it’s a win.  And Tim Gunn would be proud.

I left the house today with a goal and an intention.  I intended to commit a crime.  I failed but not for lack of effort.  Now, to be fair it wasn’t a real crime, but one of fashion, the kind that would make Tim Gunn make that exasperated sound in response to something that fills his soul with pity and despair.  Yes, I know who Tim Gunn is and I watch Project Runway despite being fairly close to the opposite of ‘metro.’  You see, my three year old daughter, the girly girl who lives her life in pink and shades of pink has a pair of ‘flower shoes’ that are way too small for her.  They weren’t when she first got them.  They were also a less muddy version of pink.  I approved of them.  Now, I feel differently.  Now, I despise them.  Were my feelings any stronger they would be hate.  I get the stares, or at least imagine them.  My daughter loves them, continues to love them despite the fact that they are so small on her feet that they are hard to walk in.  I imagine that people are staring and thinking, “oh, that man won’t get his daughter new shoes, he should die of the un-funny kind of syphilis.”  I would take a knife to these shoes were it not childish to do so.  I’ve tried throwing them away and somehow, every time my daughter intervenes no matter how asleep she should be.  I let them rot and someone else cleans them.  My goal today was murder, to murder the shoes, and to coerce my daughter into holding the knife.  Those weren’t the crime.  Oh, and let me be clear the child has shoes.  Presently, two pairs.  One that fit perfectly and a pair a little big that she can grow into.  But, a) she never wants to wear them and I tire of the fight and b) I can never find the bloody things!  Now, my wife has correctly pointed out that this is adequate.  She is frugal and has a talent for finding the bloody things that I don’t have.Back to the matter of crime.  The crime was crocs.  I first became aware of crocs shortly before the middle child was born.  It wasn’t a concern for a long time.  Now, it is.  I don’t like crocs.  I loathe them.  If I found myself needing to kill a man with a screwdriver because his death would better humanity and I found him wearing crocs I would think, “that’ll just make this easier for me to do.”

I don’t see any circumstances in which adult humans should wear these things.  Sure, they’re practical but there are times that dignity is priceless.   But, practicality and the reality of children that leave their shoes outside have worn me down on the circumstances of my child wearing them.  I had to run the store today, first the DIY store for some items and then Wally World for some basic groceries.  The three year old was going with me so we had to find her shoes.  Naturally, they weren’t where all the shoes are supposed to be and finding them turned into a quest that felt distinctly familiar – like a process I’d been through many, many times before.  Yeah, because I had.  I latter found them in the yard which is where they usually are if the teenager or the grandparents have had her out there but also leaves a lot of space for trying to find them in.  So, in the meantime I went to the store and broke down – I’d buy crocs and with the promise of new shoes she had to agree to throw away her old ones.So, I went to Wally World and approached their eight rows of shoes.  And found bunk.  Seriously, they had maybe two pairs of shoes in her size and they were in boys colors which got about as far with my three year old as Andy Warhol at a Rotary Club.  And they weren’t even crocs.  After five minutes of trying to talk her into shoes I already knew she wouldn’t ever wear I wanted to set fire to the place.  Still, I went through the dance knowing I would lose.  And did.  I left dejected.  You would think I would have been thrilled to be saved from my own moral failure but like a the long term dieter that finally gives in to the urge for the double chocolate fudge cake but FRAK IT, it’s time has come … and then finds the bakery out because no one thought anyone liked chocolate anymore … I just found myself in the middle of a huge commercial chain going WTF WERE THEY THINKING?!  Had right thinking people such as myself killed crocs just in time for my fall from grace to mock my pointless and petty internal failure?

I felt like the universe was mocking me.  It probably was.  In fact, let me point out that these plagued scions of the fashion world, crocs, were no where to be found.  I found one adult pair.  That’s it.  One.  Does no one buy them anymore?  Looking around I saw them on children’s feet.  Seriously, WTF?!I ended up at a place called Shoe Show.  Really, I don’t even know if this is a real chain or anything.  I’m imaging Tony Soprano is getting the proceeds from the place.  They sell the shoes half off, claim them full price on the books, Tony’s money comes in, clean money comes out.  Still, I’m OK with that because they had cheap shoes.  But still not crocs and no flip flops in her size but they did have two pairs, matching in complimentary colors so I bought them.  They’ll go with her outfits but I still can’t leave them outside.  Still, I think it’s a win.  And Tim Gunn would be proud.

Next Page »