Friday, July 28, 2006

Wednesday night I am at Strathmore Hall for their free outdoor concert series with my husband and son. Headliner: Trout Fishing in America. We find a place on the lawn and while he and Kev fetched over-priced BBQ and hotdogs, I took note of the picnic spreads of other families brought in paper (not plastic) bags emblazoned with "Whole Foods Market," "Trader Joe's," and "Balducci's" containing clusters of mini grapes and gourmet chips. Campaign workers for the Democratic candidate for county exec handed out fans. Really? at a Kids concert? This might be going too far?

I had never been to Strathmore Hall before and didn't know what to expect, but my first impression was this Montgomery County crowd might be a bit snooty and not "get" Trout. When Keith and Ezra took the stage I quit making crowd observations and just enjoyed the show. Most of their repetoire are songs for kids, but not the Insy Weensy kind, they do songs like "My hair had a Party Last Night" and "Alien in my Nose," songs kids (and adults) can really identify with and enjoy. (We have 8 of their albums :)
Have a listen here.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

My husband and I took our son to Chesapeake Beach Water Park last night. Kev loves water parks and we use them as leverage, "Do you want to go to the water park? You need to go to bed... You need to get up... You have to brush your teeth." It's hard to negotiate with a autistic child without a solid prize involved. We never actually take the prize away, he always complied with our requests. We can usually milk about a months good behavior out of a trip to a water park.

Chesapeake Beach Maryland is in "Southern Maryland," land of big hair, and definitely out of the direct influences of the big city. Therefore it was quite easy to pick my bald-headed boy out of the crowd, since he cut his own hair again over the weekend and to salvage it, I had to buzz it down to the nubbins. In neighborhoods closer to the Beltway, you will often see boys with the close-trimmed look. But not so in CB.

He had cut his hair with kid scissors while under the watchful eye of my parents while my husband and I played golf with my brothers on Saturday. My daughter, Fern, was quite upset. I think because, 1. Grandma and Grandpa should have been watching him better, and 2. Having an older autistic sibling is hard enough, but one with self-cut hair is very hard to deal with and embarrassing.

She's away at camp for two weeks and when she gets back, she'll have a week without her brother around.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Number 8 at Glenn Dale is a par 5 485 yard hole, 395 from the red tees. I came up about 10 yards short of making the green in regulation. A nice wedge shot put me close for a possible par, but then I 2-putted it. argh! The hole before is 159 yard par 3. I was on the green from the tee (yay!) but then proceeded to 4-putt (boo).

I started off by myself last night and by the time I rounded the dogleg on 4 I could see a foursome ahead of me. They had finished 5 when I was ready to start it, but 6 was a long hole so I still hadn't completely caught up with them. I wasn't hurrying, though. They were on the tee at 7 when I aapproached the green on 6. One says to the other, "Should we ask her?" My mind just goes crazy, ask me what? Why do I continue to golf when I'm that bad? Am I available for dinner? What time was it?

"Do you want to join us on the next hole?" Ah. "Although she may not want to." They were a loud but nice group of guys. I had already heard them earlier from 3 holes away and told them so, we got along just fine. By the time I finished 6, they were on the green of 7 so I joined them on 8, the par 5. I was just thrilled I hit 3 good shots in a row in front of these guys and come that close to the green. I'm still smiling. I got a 7 on the last hole and so did one of them, so I guess I'm not completely out of my league. And I'm having fun, and that is what counts.

Friday, July 21, 2006

The funny snippet for the day:

The Health Unit here at work has their suite on the same wing as my office. Across the hall from their door is an alcove with a scale in it so it's not uncommon to see someone with their shoes off weighing themselves. This morning as I walked past, there was someone there and on the floor next to them were two dozen-sized boxes of Dunkin Donuts.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

I keep seeing little snippets of life that are funny, but only mildly so, and therefore don't stand on their own well.

Like the guy I saw at the pool the other day with a towel wrapped around his middle. The towel was a Chutes and Ladders game board. If I were a guy I don't think Chutes and Ladders would be my first towel choice for drying off. We have that same towel, and it get put into rotation a lot when we grab a stack for the pool bag. We got a mini golf towel the same day.

Does anyone ever play the games on their towels? Even when it comes with all the game pieces? The pieces just get lost in my house and when I come across a stray foam child game piece months later, it always takes me a while to remember where it came from. Does anyone really keep track of stuff like that?

Friday, July 14, 2006

Today is Fern's 11th birthday. She woke to the noise of an incessant ringing next to her ear this morning. It was a new cell phone in its box wrapped in tissue paper. I was standing in the hall listening to her trying to figure out what was going on, then ripping into the paper. The phone stops ringing and the call rolls over to voice mail. Darn. I dial again, she's still ripping. I hear this quiet chirp of excitement; she can't get the paper open fast enough. Finally she answers.

I caved. She wanted one, I got her the phone. What kind of parent am I? I wavered on it for a long time. She's been riding her bike to the pool where we're members which is about a mile away crossing a 4-lane road (with fast traffic), so having her a phone call away if there were an emergency was good. But on the other hand my parents didn't worry about me when I was her age, I didn't need a phone, why does she? She can use the land line to call her friends. I guess it came down to $10/month is an OK price for knowing your kid is alright.

What do you think?

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Gold-star parenting day!

This morning I dropped off Fern at skating daycamp. She'll be 11 on Friday and I'm trying to be aware of that "don't embarrass me, Mom" stage so I'm not really affectionate in public with her anymore unless she takes the lead. She's sitting with some friends and I whisper in her ear that I'd put some money on her tab at the snack bar for lunches. She says thanks and I turn to leave. She calls me back and I see she's blowing a kiss to me. We have this game where blown kisses are like arrows. When it lands on you, it hurts, so the receiver will make a funny face of pain, and may even say "Ow!" So, here comes this kiss from across the room and I have to play along, right? I catch the kiss with the appropriate act of pain and send one back. She catches hers with a loud "Ow!" and I get a round of approving smiles and giggles from her friends and a smile from my daughter that says, "Isn't my mom cool!"

Monday, July 10, 2006

Friday was our 16th anniversary. My husband and I celebrated on Saturday by playing golf and having dinner. We chose the 9-hole White Course at East Potomac Park in Washington DC. We both played horribly because the course was in such bad condition. Standing water everywhere, the bunkers doubled as ponds. In dry conditions you'd expect a bounce and a nice roll, but the ground as wet as it was, the balls just stuck in the muck.

On to dinner. We ate at Zola at 8th and F street. The food was very good. And the bathroom scale is still telling me I ate too much. That the and 4 pairs of pants I tried on this morning before I found one that fit.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

There were 92 pairs of underwear in a recent load of laundry I did. Then I found another basket of socks I never matched and found enough underwear in there to bring the total up to 120 fresh clean pairs in my house.

Why on earth did I count them? I don't know. Once I saw those stacks growing... I guess I just felt compelled to count.

I will not count the matched socks.

I won't.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

What was my point?

I started my past post trying to write about my weekend at the beach in Chincoteague and ended up writing about last years trip to the same place for Pony Penning Week. I have all these blog entries in my head, but when I sit down to write, they get jumbled up and a bunch of nonsense comes out. What was my point? I can't remember. Do I ever have a point?

I'm not as disciplined at CG is with her blogs. She takes notes, keeps back-ups, and if she's had a boring day, she'll always have a good story to tell anyway.

I was at her rained-out pool party yesterday and when her basement flooded, so I was worried about mine, too. I kept wanting to go home and check it out. We're in the same neighborhood, so when her power goes out, you can bet mine was out too. My husband kept reminding me there was nothing I could do about it anyway and not to worry. OK. I'll try not to be anxious. Our power was out only about 45 minutes versus the 5 or so hours at CG's house, so my basement was dry, the sump pumps worked. My husband was right not to worry.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Friday afternoon I abandoned my post as house-sitter and went to the beach. OK, I got my family first, then we went.

Living in Maryland, the usual destination is OC, aka., Ocean City, (not Orange County like on TV). We like the small town feel of Chincoteauge in Virginia. Assateague Island across the channel is where the beach is which is a national seashore/refuge so there are no huge hotels or loitering teenagers. Just beach. And wildlife.

The Chincoteague VFD raises money every year by rounding up the wild ponies on Assateague and swimming them across to Chincoteague on the last Wednesday of July. The new colts and fillies are auctioned off, then later that week the adults are swum back.

These babies can go for a lot, usually $1000 - $1800 each. The foals that are too young to leave their mom are auctioned, then returned to the herd. The whole process is fascinating, and they've made Pony penning week a long standing tradition, I'm just baffled this small town's VFD needs such funding. If such numbers are kept, I'm sure they would be high on the list of dollars collected per residents served.

Anyone know?