Jokes by Levi

What did the ice cream say when the banana asked when it could come over?
Only on a sundae!

What does a drama king wear to bed?

What do you call a swashbuckling rat?
A pi-rat!

What do you call a shoe that has a problem?
An is-shoe! (An issue)

What do you call a video game that you play with more than one person?
A "we!"

What do you call it when someone listens in on Christmas Eve?

And one contributed by a friend:
What's brown and sticky?
A stick!

Levi called me into his room saying, "Oliver's a quarterback." Oliver was on the bed on his tummy with 4 quarters on his back.

What does a crocodile say when it wants to be a rooster?

Friday, May 30, 2008

In The Past Few Days . . .

Oliver has insisted that he really has had a broken leg (not) and that the speed limit in Africa is 200 mph. He also woke me up this morning with the news that his guinea pig was under my bed. This despite his being expressly forbidden from getting his guinea pig out without adult supervision due to rough treatment and the fact that I am sick of retrieving Enrico from under and behind things. Ah, the mind of a 5 year-old.

Location Lag

It's similar to jet lag but instead of your brain being puzzled by time, it's puzzled by location and time zones. I keep doing things like seeing a CO license plate and thinking, "Boy, they're far from home." Duh. I also got really frustrated the other day when the east coast company I was calling wasn't answering. I kept getting an annoying voice mail telling me their business hours were 8 am-5 pm. So WHY, at 3:15 pm, weren't they answering the phone? Because I was no longer on eastern time like them.

My mom and stepdad's whereabouts haven't helped any. For the past 2 months, they've been in New Zealand so when we talked to them, it was always the next day--they were 16 or 17 hours ahead of us. Now they're back and in a matter of days have been in SF and now in Georgia. Given that I can't seem to remember what time zone I'm in, imagine my trying to figure out what time it is where they are.

Mom called the other day from SF and said, I wanted to call you and was trying to figure out what time it was in Baltimore--only you don't live there anymore. She called me this morning from Georgia. It was 9 am here and I thought. "Boy, they're up early." Well, yea, if they were on Mountain Time--but it was already 11 am there. So we're all kinda wacked out time-wise. Sorry if I call you at some strange hour--I cannot yet be held accountable for time or location related errors.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Toothless Wonder

Oliver lost his first tooth 2 days ago. It seems like it was loose just briefly. The kids came flying down the stairs shreiking and I braced myself for whatever conflict was brewing but it was just the falling out of the tooth, apparently aided by Levi's (requested) slapping Oliver in the face (!?).

We have a little silver container with a tiny gold fairy on the top that we put teeth in for the tooth fairy. Oliver was looking at it yesterday and exclaimed, "Oh, so that's what the tooth fairly looks like!" Our tooth fairy brings gold Pochantas dollars and, much to his delight, Oliver found one under his pillow this morning.

What We're Up To

Well first, I'm overdue in introducing you to the two new members of our family, Enrico and Caruso, the guinea pigs. (They're girls but that's what happens when you pick names and then find that there are only females at the pet store.) Their names come from a series of books we've just discovered about a golden hamster named Freddy and his companions, Enrico and Caruso, the guinea pigs. We're having a good time with them. Levi sits on the couch with Caruso on his chest and watches TV. Oliver's guinea pig is a bit less fortunate--we've discovered that O really isn't ready for pet ownership! He has to be closely supervised with Enrico to prevent rough treatment! He intends to be sweet to her but it just doesn't seem to turn out that way yet!

As is typical of springtime in Colorado, our weather has fluctuated wildly between hot and sunny and temps in the 80's to days like today when it's cloudy, rainy and 50 degrees. During the hot days, the kids have been obsessed with water fights in the backyard.

From a book called Howtoons, a present from Grandma M, Adam and the kids made marshmallow shooters from PVC pipe. You insert the marshmallow, give a good hard blow and the marshmallow comes flying out. Saturday was spent between water fights and shooting mini-marshmallows all over the yard. The dog was very happy about this. The kids experimented with shooting them onto the roof, at each other, seeing how far they could propel them and seeing how many they could blow out without stopping up the shooter.

Beware of an ambush by water or marshmallow when you come visit.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Live Music

We are continuing to delight in our little town here. Last night we were the lucky recepients of 2 tickets to a live taping of "etown," a weekly one hour radio show aired on public broadcasting stations. Etown is s non-profit with a "mission to educate, entertain and inspire a diverse audience, through music and conversation, to create a socially responsible and environmentall sustainable world." They are based here in Boulder.

We were lucky enough to see performances by Jakob Dylan (yes, son of Bob) and Joe Ely & Joel Guzman. If you haven't heard Joe Ely (as I hadn't), take a listen via Amazon or iTunes. He's from West Texas and his music is a wonderful combination of all sorts of genres--rock, country, blues, folk, zydeco and more. He's recently been playing with Joel Guzman who can jam on the accordion, something I didn't know was possible. They were a particular pleasure to watch because they took so much pleasure in playing.

If you are interested in hearing this etown recording or others, visit their website at to find a local PBS station that airs the show.

It was lovely to leave the Boulder Theater (an old movie theatre turned performing arts space with the original old-fashioned marquee outside) and stroll down the Pearl Street Mall past people eating at outside, playing music on the mall, and gathered to visit and talk.

Are we happy? Yes, we are!

Friday, May 16, 2008


Well, I'm standing here making pancakes and they look distinctly anemic--they're sorta limp and they keep coming out really dark but if I turn the heat down, they don't cook through the middle. (They taste fine though!) Now, I don't really know what the issue with my batter was b/c it stayed pretty runny too. The high altitude instructions caught my eye after it was too late to amend my ingredients. And, frankly, I probably would have ignored them anyway in a kind of, pshaww, could it really make a difference way?

You'll wonder if I learn from the past when I tell you the story that these pancakes made me recall. When I was a teenager, I lived in Aspen, CO with my mom and step-dad, Jack. When he was a child, Jack's favorite birthday cake was a chocolate cake with caramel icing. His grandmother would always make this for him and it made him feel special. I decided to make one for him for his birthday. By this time, I was experience at baking--breads, muffins and cakes. So . . . I made the cake and it turned out fine.

Then on the to caramel icing. I followed all the directions in the sage book, The Joy of Cooking. The icing finished, I put it onto the cake. And it slllooowwwwlllyyyy ran off of the top and down the sides to end up puddled around the cake. Hmmm. Not to be beaten, I scooped it all back up, spread it and quickly stuck it into the fridge, thinking the cold might help it harden a bit. 5 minutes later a peek into the fridge revealed the same scene. Once again, I piled it all up again, spread it, and rushed it into the freezer--with the same result. I was stumped.The cake was good if not pretty. You had to cut your piece, put it onto it's side and spread your own icing.

This was 1979 and Aspen still had what I will always think of as a "real" bakery. You hardly see them anymore--one with the glass cases full of pastries and cakes and breads. And a real live baker, wearing a white baker's hat and covered with flour. In Aspen, this was Mr. Cliff Little, owner of Little Cliff's Bakery. Shortly after my icing failure, I was in town and went into Little Cliff's to ask Mr. Little what had gone wrong. I explained to him what had happened and he laughed and patted me on the back. "Honey, you can't make caramel at altitude. The boiling point is too low and you can never get the sugar to the candy stage!"

Well, it made me happy to know that the icing failure was nothing I had done wrong--expect for trying to cook it at 8000 feet!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

What's Wrong With This Picture?

We went to Target today and the kids each left with a new Nintendo DS cartridge. I left with a toilet plunger and a toilet brush. What did I do wrong?

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Poop (Yes, You Read Correctly)

Parenting my 5 year-old isn't completely fun these days. He's hit the stage where bodily fluids, solids and noises are of constant and extreme fascination. Now, I know this is a normal developmental stage (why, oh why, did Mother Nature include this one?) but Oliver seems to be inhabiting an extreme end of the stage. Remember those nice bell curves someone taught you about long ago? It starts low on the left, rises up to the top, and then drops back down, down, down, showing the far, far outliers on the right. Well, go as far right as you can and you'd find O's point.

So first it was an fascination with diapers, what babies do in diapers, did he once wear a diaper?, and what are those things attached to the public bathroom walls (changing tables). He'll still stop me as I'm looking at a magazine and pass a photo of a baby with a diaper obviously showing. What's that?, he'll ask, though he clearly knows. And then we go through all the questions above.

He's discovered all the words for burping and passing gas and throwing up. He burps VERY loudly, VERY frequently, and then sings a little excuse-me song that, rather than begging pardon, highlights the act even more.

Sorry folks but here it comes--he also farts. LOUDLY and proudly. He turns to you and sticks his bottom out to do it. He sings the excuse-me song. He and his brother laugh uproariously. He comments when he does it, Levi does it, the dog does it.

Today in the car, he even proclaimed to have "barfed" twice although actually he's never thrown up in his life. He's so proud of it now. I'm sure he won't be so happy about it once it finally happens but right now he's insistent that he's part of the those-who-have-barfed club.

I can't figure out whether to ignore it (hard to do because it's really unpleasant to downright disgusting) or to add fuel to the fire in hopes that it'll flare and then burn down. Though I know that with boys this type of humor never dies, is it too much to hope for a lessening of the obsession?

At this point, I've gone for adding fuel to the fire and we are reading "The Truth About Poop," a kid's book, courtesy of our local library. He LOVES it. That's about as far as I can go in the if-you-can't-beat-them-join-them department.

Please, someone help!

An Another Thing . . .

about moving. I have this notion that if I could only get everything put away once then I could get it back that way again. So I'm in a constant state of frustration and catch-up. I think that someone needs to disabuse me of the notion of a non-cluttered June Cleaver house. After all, we're not a family who is out of the house from 8am-5pm. We're here, day in and day out, playing games, coloring, playing with play dough, doing projects (and therefore creating more clutter), playing with the guinea pigs, playing with the dog, hauling books and DVDs and books on CD home from the library. And if we're not here, we're at museums and parks and wading in the creek. We're swimming or hiking. We're walking the Pearl Street Mall discovering our new town. Which also means we're NOT here to clean up the mess.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

There's A Problem With Moving

Okay, well, there are LOTS of problems with moving but here's the one I'm facing down the hardest right now. The first few days after the boxes arrive, you put your head down, ignore the kids and let them watch lots of TV, eat pizza or go out, and make lots of progress. But that can't go on forever, especially when the kids actually start complaining that all you're doing is working and you aren't playing with them.

Daily life starts to happen. Despite the unpacked boxes and the general clutter of unpacked items yet to find a home, the dog needs to go on a walk, meals need to be made, grocery shopping needs to be done, the kids need books from the library, laundry needs to be done, bills paid, addresses need to be changed, driver's licenses need to be obtained (THAT'S a whole other story), blah, blah, blah. Oh yes, and I need to get some sleep. So . . . the unpacking grinds down to a glacial pace.

A grueling work week for Adam makes a grueling week for me at home with no relief. Last week he was gone 7am-11pm most days and then left yesterday for a week-long trip to Europe. Upon leaving he said, "Maybe you can make some more progress on this while I'm gone," indicating the "stuff." Yea, right. The only way I'll make progress is if someone takes the kids for an entire day and leaves me home alone and I don't see that happening in the near future.

In vast display of anal behavior, we decided to save the packing paper and boxes since we'll have to move out of this house once we buy one. So we've both been on our hands and knees spreading packing paper flat, rolling up the stacks and rubber-banding them together. I believe this has taken as much time as unpacking.

When we moved to our Fulton house from Columbia, we did a VAST weeding out. And once again, 6 months later, did the same upon our move here. NOW, we are here with just a small shipment of personal household goods and still I wonder, WHERE DID ALL THIS SHIT COME FROM!!!!????? When things come out of storage, anyone who looks at something and says, "Oh, I forgot about that!" has to immediately throw it in the trash.

Okay, so that's the problem with moving.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Welcome home to me!

How do you know when you're "home?" I knew it when I first moved to Colorado in 1978 while still in high school. There was something about the vastness of the sky and the afternoon shadows on the mountains that made my heart sing. I felt like my heart and soul had been born there. I think it takes a mountain for me to be "there" because the sight of Mt. Hood and Mt. St. Helens and Mt. Rainier gave me the same tickly feeling when we lived in the Pacific Northwest.

I've always wanted to come back to Colorado but I didn't really think it would happen--so imagine my continuing surprize to find myself here. Boulder sits right up next to the "front range," the first range of mountains in the Rockies. Look west and there they are. The taller peaks just behind the first are still snow covered. What a beautiful sight every day.

Boulder if the perfect combination to me--a small town with all the offerings of a larger city at hand. And Denver is just down the road. Boulder is loaded with parks, open space and trails for walking and biking. It seems like everyone has a dog and a bike. I'd like to know the number of dogs and bikes per capita. Today we were out for about 2 hours. We drove about 30 miles total and I counted 55 bikers out on the roads. I'm told I haven't seen anything yet.

Bikers and pedestrians reign supreme and the car is the second class citizen. Boulder makes it clear with huge day-glow green and red signs with flashing lights at cross walks that pedestrians have the right of way.

Today we ventured up into Boulder Canyon in search of Boulder Falls. We didn't find the falls b/c our directions were not at all specific but we did have fun playing along Boulder Creek which runs down the canyon and then into the city of Boulder. The Boulder Creek Path is a greenway with a paved path that runs from the canyon down through town for 15 miles.

We are living in a house we've rented in an area of Boulder called Gunbarrel. It's a community a few miles northwest of Boulder. We have wonderful neighbors who have taken us in whole heartedly. We've already been to 2 parties and a cookout!

Everything has fallen into place for us since we got here--great neighbors, great colleagues at Crocs, people offering us their baby sitter lists (!), and just being tickled to see the mountains every day.

So . . . welcome home to me!