30 March 2009

Boogie Woogie

So, today after I ran back to the dentists office to pay the bill Kirk and I made a video. CLICK on it!

Katy had six teeth pulled today. That girl is a real trooper! It appears that one tooth, that had an exceptionally long root structure, did not exit her mouth willingly. She wrote in my journal, "That one hurt".

Poor kid! Just remember Katy, "Short term difficulty for long term solution!" (Thank you, Jessica!)

Top Secret Dental Investigation


ThatCyndiGirl, your intrepid reporter of all things necessary to know in life has just returned from a month-long research sabbatical in which I plan to explode wide open the secret clandestine world of dental hygiene education.

It has come to my attention that dental hygiene schools are setting us up for failure! Dental hygiene schools are actually teaching their students to rot our teeth! Read on for more details about my shocking findings.

I, of course cannot reveal my sources as the world of dental hygiene is fraught with as much danger and intrigue as any international espionage organization. What I have discovered has both shocked and horrified me at the same time. Here is a taste:

I have come to realize that my earlier suspicions about a certain dental hygienist at a certain dental office in the Metro really IS manufacturing confections in her very own kitchen. It seems that the only thing this heretic is NOT guilty of is operating a food service without a license. She is fully licensed,my friends, I believe because she went into this venture knowing full well that candy and other confections would be her literal bread and butter for years to come.

Even more shocking than her extracurricular endeavors, though is that THESE COURSES ARE ACTUALLY BEING TAUGHT IN DENTAL HYGEINE SCHOOL! Yes, folks, they are completely setting us up for failure. Ever wonder why they have a bowl of Tootsie Rolls by the check-out? It’s because those aren’t Tootsie Rolls, folks, for fear of copyright infringement, they are Rootsie Tolls and they know just what they are doing. Why do I keep getting cavities?! Some could say it is because of my kettle corn addiction, but that would just be blaming the victim, now wouldn’t it? I think it’s because there is no way I can say no to a “Rootsie Toll”. Who can? It’s chewy, it’s chocolate-y. They know what they are doing, folks and they are good at it.

I, for one will not stand for it. I challenge all of you to take a stand against this travesty.



Listen to Nancy Reagan and Just Say No to their devious dessert offerings!

Brush your teeth while you drive!

Floss in the movie theatre!!

I have taken it upon myself to let people know up front where my dental leanings lie, so I have made it a point of late to floss at bars.

I have it on good authority that guys find if absolutely irresistible to see a woman flossing her teeth while guzzling a Guiness.

28 March 2009

A Morning Meeting gets Refreshed

We had a mandatory meeting at work the other day. It was a mandatory “training” that they called an “opportunity session” for an “opportunity” to be sold insurance. This company, which is popular for using a particular bird to help get its point across, offered disability, vision, dental and cancer insurance. Sadly, they don’t offer the kind of insurance I could really use. They did not offer, for instance, Put Your Foot in Your Mouth Insurance nor do they offer OhMyGodYouActuallyWoreTHAT Out of the House?! Coverage.

First of all, I got there a few minutes early and they wanted to make small talk. I despise small talk, but particularly first thing in the morning. I don’t like it because at best it seems disinenguous and I really don’t like making small talk with someone who is here to sell me something. It is infuriating. I feel like it attacks and insults my intelligence. Let’s just be honest with each other: You are here to make as much money as possible. I am here to spend as little money as possible. Our very missions are at odds; we must deal with that fact. How’s about we don’t dilly around with each other, eh?

I declined the accidental insurance. After he was done with the sales pitch I kindly asked for the declination form.

Then it started.

I guess he didn’t see the swagger in my step or the sleep in my eyes, but he went for it anyway.

Apparently, Mr. Insurance Guy woke up with a deathwish. Apparently, Mr. Insurance Guy decided that today would make a lovely day for an arse-whoopin’ from a chubby redhead.

This is what he said to me, “Well, if you have decided that one hour’s pay per month is too much to spend for your family’s peace of mind…..”




LOOK, Barney, I wasn’t the one who was named after a dancing dinosaur, so lemme just tell you straight up right here, right now: cancel my subscription. I’m tired of your issues.

And get the message out to the other insurance guys:

I am putting you all on notice. ThatCyndiGirl is not to be trifled with, especially in the morning when she hasn’t had enough sleep and has had about two carafes of caffeine less than is required for her personality to be fully functional."

I had spent the better portion of the previous night, a time when I should have been knee-deep in a dream about Mike Rowe of Dirty Jobs fame, attempting in vain to achieve blessed slumber. I knew that if I fell asleep at midnight I could actually get a full 8 hours sleep and still make it out of bed in time to get ready and be at the meeting on time.

By 1 am rolled around I knew that I could still get a good 7 hours in if I could just fall asleep at that very moment. Yet, sleep eluded me.

At 3am I thought about how only getting 5 hours of sleep would leave me feeling groggy and irritable, but I soldiered on, anyway trying to fall asleep.

As the clock hit 4:30 am I wondered if just staying up might be a better option, but the thought of driving then trying to sound semi-coherent on zero sleep dissuaded me from that option.

Sometime after 4:30 I fell asleep which left me precious little time for actual slumber. This lack of sleep may explain my menacing mental meanderings.

The upside to the meeting was sitting next to Kristina. I don’t believe I have ever met someone so perpetually perky........ but in a good way.

She brought this tea from Starbucks (and they are a whole other rant altogether!) called Refresh. She admonished me to try her tea because, as she pointed out, she “doesn’t have cooties”. Kristina really needs a tea named after her called Perky Peco. I saw her one time when she was ticked off about something. It was hard not to laugh. It was like looking at a pissed off poodle. She somehow musters the courage to be a nice person even when she is in a bad mood. Truly, a better person than Yours Truly. Which, is why we asked her to babysit our chitlins. We don’t trust them with just anybody. Or, rather, I should say, “We don’t trust just anybody with our children”. That sounds better, makes them sound less like tiny criminal masterminds and more like the valued offspring that they are.

26 March 2009

TAGGED! 12 Things About Me

I think it was about a year ago when Alana tagged me. I might take forever about it, but I don't forget, so here is my list:

12 Things About Me:

1) Cottage Cheese gives me the willies. I find that it's lumpy albino appearance leaves me feeling vaguely violated and like I can't trust it. Especially when it is plopped unceremoniosly atop a lettuce leaf.

2) Being in the water is so calming that, if I could, I would live in the water and never, ever come out. (hence Claire's waterbirth) If I had it my way I would have waterbirths, waterconceptions, waterteethcleanings and watersleep.

3) I learned to drive on a stick shift because my brothers told me I couldn't. The words, "it is virtually impossible to pass a driving test in a stick-shift in Illinois" sounded like a challenge to me.

4) I am not athletically gifted, but that doesn't stop me from trying.

5) Sitting still for too long feels like torture.

6) I LOVE to have my hair brushed.

7) I am a vegetarian, except for chicken. Well, and fish.....and steak, I LOVE STEAK!

8) In a tragic genetic mishap I was born without a fashion sense.

9) No amount of dance classes will ever be sufficient to cure me of my CKS (Chronic Klutz Syndrome). My hips and shoulders remain perpetually bruised from my frequent run-ins with doorframes.

10) I have a deep-seated loathing for belly buttons. Yours, mine and everybody else's. It is just a whole lotta' grossness in one puckered little valley.

Yuck. My dream guy is that dude on Kyle XY who is without naval. AAAAAhhh!!! I think I could love him forever!

11) I have written many a haiku about my hatred for the belly button. I realize that this is a continuation of Point Ten, but until I work through my Naval Issues with a therapist and puppets I just can't let it go.

12) I adore alliteration, love limericks and am positively perky about poetry.

23 March 2009

Miss Linda and the Chocoguacolate Moose

My neighbor Linda asked me if I wanted to go to a Women’s Luncheon with her. I only agreed to go because:

A) I really like Linda and any chance to talk to her is worth any thing else that might happen that day and

B) I am eternally curious about what normal people think is fun. Particularly, I am fascinated by the luncheon crowd. They are a different breed and, since Linda seems like she is ‘not so much the Luncheon Type’ I thought we could have fun making fun of the food.

Big mistake. Linda picked me up because it was at some local country club. I had no idea a country club even existed in my area. I said this to Linda and she agreed. She is a very down-to-earth, no-make-up kinda’ person who I am VERY comfortable with. She was very comfortable that day. As we were walking in she confessed, “Oh, no, I still have my barn shoes on!” I looked down and, sure enough, there was mud caked on her shoes. Ah, a woman after my own heart as I was carrying a 4-month old Claire and still sporting maternity clothes. I should note here that I was nursing Claire at the time and, as nursing requires extra calories and all, I was perpetually as hungry as a famished farm animal. I thought about grabbing a snack before we left, but though, “hey, it is, after all, a luncheon, I’m sure they will feed us!”

Famous last words.

First they brought out a salad that was actually VERY good and for me to rave about salad is truly a culinary achievement. It had some sort of sauce that defies description. It was almost like tomato based gravy. Then they fed us some other vegetable dish that was okay. What I did not realize going into this affair was that this particular seminar was based around one central theme. I had mistakenly agreed to go thinking that the central theme was, "eating lunch".

Oh, how wrong I was.

The central theme was "Eating Raw Food and Leaving Cyndi Famished".

At some point near the middle they brought out this super-expensive fancy blender that costs more than my first car. Everyone ooh'd and aah'd and planned how they were going to spend a chunk of their kids' college fund on this Vitamix blender.

I'm a heretic because I was sitting there thinking that deep fryers don't put you nearly in the hole like a fancy blender and fried food just tastes better than spinach smoothies.

Then the coup de grace: what they called chocolate mousse. After eating it I think I would have preferred chocolate moose. As it was passing by my nose I could smell a vegetable in there. THEY PUT A FREAKIN VEGETABLE IN CHOCOLATE!!!

Chocolate mousse: it was made with cocoa powder, not actual chocolate. I am told that the healthy types do this because it saves fat and calories. WHO EATS SOMETHING CHOCOLATE TO SAVE FAT AND CALORIES?!

The chipper lady leading this discussion asked, with no hint of irony I might add, “can anyone guess the special ingredient?” I had already leaned over to Linda and whispered, “It has avocado in it”.

My pudgy hand shot up, and Veggie Lady asked me, “Can you guess the secret ingredient?” I replied, with flat affect, full confidence and monotone voice, “its avocado”.

Veggie Lady’s face was suddenly crestfallen. “How did you know?” she gasped.


How do I tell her that when you mess with a fat girl’s junk food WE ARE GONNA KNOW!! How do I tell her HEY LADY, WHEN YOU TRY TO SNEAK VEGETABLES INTO MY CHOCOLATE I WILL FIGURE IT OUT?” What am I? 2 years old?

I just replied, “Good guess”

The worst part was that for the entire luncheon, during the introduction, during each speech and particularly during the salad course I could smell steak. Not just steak, but possibly the most delicious steak ever smelled by a human. The aroma of this specific cut of meat had been hand-cut, delicately seasoned and cooked to perfection.

All while I was busy eating vegetables. Here I sat, just a stone’s throw away from high-quality beef and I was eating like a rabbit. Linda is REALLY into health food, so I thought it would be uncouth for me to ask her to stop at McDonald’s on the way home. I knew that I was really WAY too hungry when the wildflowers on the side of the road started to look appetizing.

But, hear me now, Linda: if you ever invite me to one of those seminars again I WILL GO, but only because I like the ride in the car with you so much. I’m making my new list of questions for you as we speak! And, really, after a few dozen health-food-type seminars and I am bound to start changing my ways! I would ask you my questions now, but I have some Ranch dressing covered Twinkies calling my name.

22 March 2009

Workbox number configuration

Now, this will mean nothing to you if you havn't completely consumed the Workbox System Kool-Aid, but here is what I meant on the boards about the number config.

The kid takes the velcro number off of the workbox when it is completed, mind you! and puts the number on the chart.

The numbers have a lower right hand configuration on the chart and when the velcro'd number is put on it is more of a center config so that it is easy to see, .....from a distance......by a mom who may or may not need bifocals......that the chart is

1. completed

2. not completed

3. in some sort of limbo betwixt the two.

In this image three boxes have been completed, which is quite a feat considering that Katy had to do them all while cocking her head to the left!

20 March 2009

A dentist in my hula hoop

I went to the dentist on Monday and was pleasantly surprised that the dental hygeinist that I previously described as having the “warmth of a snake with a belly ache” is actually a wonderful person. At second glance she has the warmth of a freshly baked muffin. She applauded my fine flossing technique.

Hey, you jam a metal pick into my gums and you definetely get my attention and I become a flossin' fiend forever more! As usual, they keep the temperature somewhere around Frigid and when I mentioned the icicles forming on my fingers they offered me a blanket.

Not JUST a blanket, it was like a twin-sized swatch of fluffy heaven. The underside was as soft as a puppy’s ear and less likely to pee on my lap or nibble my baseboards. I fell in love with that blanket so completely that I thought, “toothbrush goodie bag be damned, I’m leaving with this blanket!” I tried to walk out casually with it thrown around my shoulders. When questioned I informed the office staff that I came in with it and it was part of my superhero costume, my cape of Great Hope. They weren’t buying it. As I tried to beat a hasty retreat they stood on the hem, snapping me back into the office.

"You almost forgot to make your follow-up appointment!" said they.

Super Haiku Girl is foiled again! But, I’ll be back!

And, for your edification and enjoyment:

A Dental Haiku:

Plaque be damned, I floss
Not even popcorn can hide
I love that mint Glide!

I find it interesting that the dental hygenist has a name that is frequently shortened to the moniker, “Candy”. It makes me wonder if she is secretly at home crafting taffeys and caramels-all a part of our dental downfall, just to ensure her job security.

Speaking of names, they call the Dentist Dr.Joe, a tradition I will continue here unless he wants a free plug for his gig. Every. Single. Time I hear them call him "Dr. Joe" it makes me think of Dr. Ruth, so I have to think of it like this:

"Dr. Joe, who is taller, more masculine and less German than Dr. Ruth. Oh, and whose speciality seems to be teeth, not bedroom antics" which makes it so much more mental work than just calling him Dr. Lastname.

But, what do I know?!

And, speaking of people who are all up in my grille of late, I went to Wal-Mart tonight, that bastion of all that makes me balk, to stock up on shaving crème.

It’s just like Alanis Morisette said, I had a cabinet full of razors and a simple smattering of shaving crème. So, off to the evil empire. As I stood in the aisle, perusing my potential purchase I was accosted by this woman who kept moving closer and closer with each breath.

She stood to my right and moved right into my personal space. She kept peering closer and closer as she gazed into my chest. I looked into her face and was met with the gaping maw that, in better days, probably hosted her teeth, but now held only the memories of dentin past. I nervously thought, “Look, lady, you can have the last can of Flirty Mango with Olive Butter (WTF is olive butter, anyway?!) Skintimate shave crème, I’ll let it go if you will just GET UP OFF OF ME!”

Instead I kept moving my torso backward, although my feet remained planted firmly within aisle five. As she continued to advance I realized that I was getting dangerously close to doing a backbend and I had yet to put my arms up to catch myself in graceful backward descent. She was, firmly and without apology, within my hula hoop. Now, for those of you who don't know about your own hula hoops, it is a technique we use with clients/children of clients to teach them about their personal space and how they can safeguard it. In short, people are only allowed "inside your hula hoop" if you give them permission. I am most certain that my perusal of shaving products did not constitute an endorsement of her advances.

Suddenly she blurted out, “Is that necklace of yours supposed to be apart like that?” I told her that, indeed it was and she scuttled off, no doubt to help other customers who required a Wal-Mart employee peering into their breasts.

In other news, Kirk Cameron owes me two dollars and sixteen cents.

I take paypal.

I was schnuckered into watching that stupid FireProof movie. OhmyNOODness! That right there is two hours of my life that I will never get back. First of all, I wasn't able to suspend disbelief long enough to buy Kirk Cameron as a manly firefighter. If they had cast him in a role of telemarketer perhaps, or the guy who dresses up like a hotdog for some restaurant, okay, but a FIREMAN?!?! No, not happening.

Here is a man who clearly does not wrinkle the sheets, ifyouknowwhatImean.

13 March 2009

Ode to a Laminator

So, I got a laminator for Christmas. I'm thinking that right about now only my homeschooling mom-peeps can truly understand what a momentous occasion this is. Today I used it for the first time. (yeah, I had to kinda' warm up to the idea. I generally fear technology.)

I laminated the kiddo's workbox charts.

OhmyNOODness! I am swooning. I am deep in hot plastic-coated love. I am going to laminate everything I own tonight and if Kirk sits still too long he, too will be encased within hot plastic. I'm gonna laminate recipes, pictures and my social security card. RULES BE DAMNED!!! I am woman, hear me laminate! When I worked at Blockbuster, back we still heat-laminated the new membership cards we laminated everything we could find that would fit into those tiny pouches. Bugs? DONE Paperclips? DONE Junior Mints? DONE to a cholate-y goodness. It smelled like hot chocolately love in there when we laminated the Junior Mints.


In other news I finally got my haircut today. It was a mess. As Hillary waded through it with a comb and a prayer she kept asking, "So, HOW LONG has it been?" I told her, "so long that I can't remember how long ago it was......."

I DO remember that my last trim was sometime before Election Day, so it was last year. I really do need to remember to get my hair cut more often. They deserve some sort of humanitarian award for not smacking me in the back of the head after dealing with my mane.

Thank you, Hillary. I do appreciate your efforts. I look sorta' like a redheaded Tinay Fey. I'm just about to run for Governor of Alaska because, as you know.....

"I can see Russia from my house!"

11 March 2009

Workbox Kool-Aid

Just go along, Cyndi, all the cool moms are doing it.

I have consumed the Kool-Aid. I couldn’t help myself. One moment I was innocently reading a thread about some crazy Workbox system and the next moment I was transported down some rabbit hole and being handed a shoebox full of sugary liquid and told to “chug-a-lug, Cyndi, chug-a-LUG!”

So, I did. Because for the past, oh, 33 years or so I have been searching for some sort of system that will help me get organized.

Sidetracked Home Executives was ‘too many details’.

Flylady made me want to curl up in the fetal position in the corner while sucking my thumb. (I still have nightmares about all of those emails! In these horrible dreams I am being attacked by a huge housefly with coiffed hair and sweatpants and she is killing me with spam, both of the inbox variety as well as the unknown meat-in-a-can sort.)

Then I heard about Workboxes.


I can’t help it. They said it was a good idea, so I went for it. When I told my mom about it I heard that sudden intake of air in which I knew that her next words were gonna be, “and if all of the Five in a Row moms robbed a bank would you do it, too?!”

Well, yes, Mom, I WOULD. These are my peeps, after all. It’s not like we are out smoking behind the science building. We are organizing our children’s school day and what could be more important than that?! And, really, MOM, I would love to continue to explain all of this to you, but I gotta’ go. The other homeschooling Moms are picking me up. We are headed out for a joyride then we’re gonna go jump off of a bridge.

I’m not sure why. They told me it was a “Physics Experiment”.

Jake's haircut

In an ongoing effort to save money I decided to cut Jake's hair. He doens't care as long as there is ice cream at the end.

I forgot just how much he moves while "sitting still". I will just say now that the end result is not really what I was going for, but here is how it turned out. Here are the before and after shots:

10 March 2009

Workbox pics

These aren't laminated yet and the pages aren't cropped or anything, but here they are:

04 March 2009

Physics of Fear.....or Trixie the Brave

I held down the fort quite nicely while Kirk was on his TDY to Turkey. All was well and I made the mistake of thinking, “this is going okay, after all!” Then it happened. That fateful night I took Trixie out for her last nightly constitutional of the day. As I looked back to the front porch I saw IT.

And it was staring at me.

Now, everytime I tell this story this spider gets bigger, but suffice to say it was at least as big as a bear paw (the pastry) or a really big quarter. And the look on his tiny face was menacing. His look said, “I can take you. Fear me”.

So, surveying my options I quickly realized that the other two doors leading into the house were locked and my only option was climbing into a window. The window on our front porch leads to the bathroom and it is a tiny window. I feared that I would be ensnared in a Winnie the Pooh in the honey tree siutation, so I opted out of that one. But, I remembered that Katy and Claire’s room is not far from the front yard. I reasoned that I could go to Katy’s window, knock just lightly enough to wake her, but not hard enough to wake Claire, (shyeah, right!) have Katy open the window, hand the pooch up and over the windowsill and shimmy in myself. Forgetting, of course, that the window is too high for me to climb into unassisted and maybe Katy could hand me her trash can and I could invert it and use it as a step-stool.

Perfect plan.

Except for one thing.

I don’t dust the outsides of the windows. (Oh,yeah, you can all just gasp now in shock and horror. Good for you, if you go around dusting the outside of your house……in a stated that popularized the term “duststorm”.)
I now realized that it was likely that I would be forced to pass through a spider web, possibly FULL of spiders just to aviod the one on the porch.

Plan B. We will RUN AS FAST AS WE CAN to get back inside and I will leap over the spider. I explained to Trixie how we would have to get a good running start and leap over the spider at just the right time to clear his nasty little body to get ourselves to safety. We discussed the velocity necessary to jump over the spider, but not crash into the front door. We argued about arc and just how high the arc needed to be to complete our plan safely. I explained our plan, complete with sign language and some translations into Spanish. (Trixie, is, after all, from Panama and I can never tell how much English she has picked up. Spanish is her first language.) So, sure that Trixie understood we now attempted some practice jumps.

There we were, leaping all over the front yard like a chubby sprite and her faithful canine companion. Confident that we were ready to execute the jump of a lifetime, one that would undoubtedly deliver us from fear, we began our run. We ran full-out to the porch and, as Trixie approached, it was obvious we spent too much time in negotiating the physics of the jump and not enough time in practice. That intrepid pup ran right past the spider. She never even attempted to become airborn! As she passed the spider it jumped onto her right rear paw. I saw it and gasped. My first thought was, “oh, Trixie!” but my brave pup just shook the spider off and went inside. Brave indeed. I knew now that just being in her presence was going to make ME braver still just by virtue of proximity.

I had the courage to jump. I knew I could do it. I ran, I leapt into the air, completing my arc with as much grace and fine form that one would assume of a chubby woman in her 30’s. I landed a little too close to the front door, with the door handle in my grasp and quickly retreated inside.

To keep this from happening in the future I decided to keep a supply of coffee cups on our front porch. Kirk came home three weeks later to find 5 mugs, each trapping a scary spider within.