Friday Fragments: Disney Stepmoms, Betsy Ross, and Friends

I haven’t had a chance to blog much this week so I’m condensing the posts I would have written into little snippets for you to read today.



Kelly has been out of town a lot the last couple of weeks so I’ve been the sole disciplinarian. We’ve had a pretty good week, but for some reason we had some “issues” last night that led to me posting these status updates on Facebook and Twitter:

Reduced one child to tears because I wouldn’t let them ride bikes because they hadn’t done what I asked them to do.

Another child is crying because I won’t let her go to a drop-off, 5-hour party for a school friend whose family I’ve never met or talked to (she’s 7!).

So even though I know I’m making wise parenting choices, I feel like a Disney stepmother.

Can I get a witness? Like my friend Gretchen always says, “Parenting is NOT for sissies!” But Daddy gets home in a few hours so this “Bad Cop” will have backup. I’m so thankful for a husband who takes his parenting job just as seriously as he takes the one they pay him to do. I’m also thankful for mom friends who text, Tweet, post on my Facebook wall, and call me to express encouragement and mom solidarity support. I can’t imagine any people I’d rather be doing life with than you all.


Who knew she made pizza, too?!

I had about eighteen Cub Scout badges that needed to be sewn onto uniforms. (Did I mention that Kelly and I are co-leading a Webelos group this year? I definitely didn’t see that one coming. By-the-bye, we’re selling popcorn. You can order online and have it shipped to your house! Let me know if you’re interested. My boys would rise and call you blessed.) Around here it costs $3 per patch to have it done by someone who actually knows how to sew. Eventually, I plan to buy my own sewing machine and have someone teach my daughter and I how to use it. She is fascinated with people who know how to sew, I guess since her mother has been asked not to even sew on buttons anymore after her last attempt resulted in a thread snarl so large that the button could no longer fit through the buttonhole. Her mother also has the rare ability to iron wrinkles into clothes, so she tends to avoid all things fabric-related. But my across-the-street friend assured me that she could at least teach me how to hand sew the patches. I walked over for a quick tutorial and then after the kids were in bed, I sat on the couch and sewed while I watched some of the new fall shows I’d recorded on the DVR…..until 2 a.m.  Speedy I am not. I have a new respect for Betsy Ross.  But I actually enjoyed the process! In fact, I want to learn some sort of mindless needle craft that I can do this fall. I used to love to latch hook, but I’ve never found a use for my finished products. Let’s face it: craft manufacturers are not churning out super cute latch hook patterns and  I’m long past the unicorn and rainbow stage of life. Anyone have any good ideas of an EASY handcraft to try?


from (which sounds like a weird place to purchase soup)

We’re supposed to get some fall-like temperatures this weekend and I’m excited. The change in the air makes me want to pull out all my fall decorations and make some soup. I was thinking one of the vegetable variety. Do any of you have the best vegetable soup recipe ever that you’d be willing to share? I’d reciprocate with a really good chili recipe that I tried last week.  I’m also jonesing to pull out some of my pumpkin recipes. ‘Tis the season! Although I’ve heard rumors that the pumpkin crop was bad again this year. I hope we don’t have a repeat of the Great Pumpkin Crisis of 2009 and part of 2010! Those were dark and scary times that I’d soon as not repeat.

4.  HAIR TODAY, GONE TOMORROW. I cut off all my hair this week. Well, that sounds scarier than it actually was. I didn’t cut my hair, I paid a trained professional to do it. I’d been trying to grow it out, but I had so much happening on the top of my head that the stylist and I agreed that the easiest thing to do might be to cut it all off and start from an even base. It looked like I had four or five different cuts going on simultaneously. I had one thing happening with the bangs with some weird mullet-looking thing in the back with some other funky wonkiness on the sides. So now it’s chin length and we’ll just see what happens from there.

I’m telling you about my haircut because I noticed something funny. I have never made a major hair decision when I was in a place of emotional calm or when it was just an everyday day. The day my family dog died, I died my hair red. When I was pregnant with my first child and preparing to move further from my family than I’d ever lived, I cut off all my hair. I did that again when we moved to Boston. Sad about a college breakup? I had my hair permed and layered, which by the way should never be attempted even during a time of emotional stability. This week? Well, it’s been a good week, but it’s had more than it’s fair share of unexpected news, changes in plans and lots of mental stuff, good and bad, that I have to eventually sort and process. So I cut off all my hair. I figure it costs about the same as a counseling appointment and at least I look different on the outside when I leave. Does anyone else do this or am I alone in my crazy ways?


It’s Albany’s birthday. I could send you to her  work page  to see a picture of her looking resplendent in her gorgeousness. Or I could direct you to this post I wrote about one of our family secrets. But instead I think I’ll show you one of the pictures that I’ve saved to keep us both humble:

We had decided to make “green” velvet cake. I’m not sure why. Maybe it was Saint Patrick’s Day. It doesn’t matter. It was as disgusting as it looks.

I love and miss you, Albany, and I hope you get to do something today especially for you. Wish I were there to be part of the party!




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6 responses to “Friday Fragments: Disney Stepmoms, Betsy Ross, and Friends

  1. nwhannas

    Wow…that’s some nineties big hair is what that is. 🙂 Happy Birthday Albany!

    Lurved our chat. And you.

    You avoid fabric, and i avoid the kitchen. Unfortunately, my best recipe for any soup comes from Central Market, down the street.

    But I did read and love Same Kind of Different as Me, so we’re still friends.

  2. I don’t have a great vegetable soup recipe, but Rachael Ray’s chicken & rice stoup is amazing:

    Also, I think you are amazing. Even more than this yummy stoup. I miss ya. 🙂

  3. Making wise parenting decisions is always difficult, followed by doubt & frustration (if they were just perfect little children, we wouldn’t have to resort to those tactics! However, since they to are born with a sin nature, their battle goes on.) But if it was easy there wouldn’t be the challenge… or the need to depend on God. There will be ample opportunity to be their friend when they are adults, but the discipline you dole out now prepares them for the real world & teaches them respect for authority whether they “like” that authority or not. Hang in there, Girl! You’re doin’ good!!!

  4. Laurie

    Hello! Great blog. Just wanted to say when my son was in scouts they had something called “Badge magic” (?). It was a sheet of sticky stuff and it made the regular patches iron on. It was great for someone who didn’t sew. Although, it would seem like you are an expert now!

  5. Becky Brumley Smith

    I used to cross stitch all the time. It is an easy craft if your looking for something to do. Like any of us need one more thing to do. I have also made some of the sequin and bead embroidery kits that are for Christmas stockings and ornaments. I love to make little craft stuff. My first period class has to read for fifteen minutes each morning (MIRP: monitored independent reading program). I am going to attempt to make them each a bookmark. Haven’t decided if I am going to just do a paper thing and laminate it, or something fancier.

  6. See how long it’s been since I’ve read any blogs?!
    I often feel like a Disney step-mother, and need friends to remind me that’s a good thing.
    And I made a green velvet cake once!! for St Patrick’s day. And the college student who ate it called her mom the next day, panicked over her green poop. 🙂

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