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July 2006

Summer Vacation - White Bread vs. Whole Grain and Who Knew Shuffleboard Could Be So Sexy? - Day 18

It's been a year since my parents bought their house in a community about an hour away from us - spending most of their weekends last summer enjoying the "active adult community" life, semi-permanently.

They've since sold the house I grew up in and have been living "full-time" in "the village of high fiber and everything bran" since October of last year.

And I have to say, it's been the best thing that's happened to my family since Costco and Whole Grain Wonder Bread!

The kids and I try and visit with them at least once per week during the school year and nearly every weekend in the summer - they have two pools that alternate "kid-friendly times" and since there is fishing, boating and dozens of hiking trails located throughout their community (and one right out their back door) my kids feel as if they're going to camp.

Yesterday, my husband joined us in a late afternoon visit and I convinced him to go along for a quick ride to the lake (even though he really didn't want to go) where he was able to cool his jets - just a bit, mind you - and take the kids rowing.

Mini-Me was too young, so she and I waded in the water looking for turtle eggs and other "pretties" and happily waved to her sisters and brother - only after having promised Mini-me that we would go and play shuffleboard, after.


[nodding and smiling]

"Yeah...believe it or not the kids love'll see!"

The kids and I slept over a couple of weeks ago, when we were introduced to, "the joys of shuffle board!?!"

I know it sounds weird and all, but I swear to you there's something about the damned game that gets under your skin and becomes very...I don't know...addictive.

Once you start, you just can't stop!

My husband wasn't quite as convinced as I, that playing shuffle board would be fun.

"I'll make you a bet."

[suspiciously raises one eyebrow]


[reaches for shuffle-thingy]

"If I win, then you have to..."


"Oh, so, your manhood feeling a little we're playing for sexual we?

[leans forward and whispers in ear]

"And if you win, I..."

[holy crap!]

"You're on!"

And we had at it, while the kids cheered us on and Mini-me kept score.

"Momma has zee-woe points and Daddy do you white the numbuh forty-teen-and-nine, Momma?"

Losing aside - and guaranteed to wake up with a sore back (and neck) - the kids and I had a blast and my husband is looking forward to visiting my parents...MORE OFTEN...while I consider "indecent proposals" from my parents' my husband proudly relates his mastering the art of shuffleboard...according to "our new rules!"

Just goes to show're never "too old"..."too young"...or, "too sexy" play shuffleboard...unless you're doing it wearing black socks and sandals!

[gag me with a thingy]


© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

Summer Vacation - Spit, Shine, A Quick Polish and All Things DOOFUS! - Day 15

Yep - 15 days into summer vacation and it's finally happened - the spit has hit the fan as my children have officially gotten on each other's nerves!

Words most often heard from my mouth this week:

"Knock it off!"

"Chill out!"

"Because it's a bad word and mommy's a grown-up, that's why!"

"Keep your hands to yourself!"

"For the love of God!"

"Stop with the screaming, already!"

"Your brother is NOT your slave - GO GET IT, YOUR OWNSELF!"

And finally: 
"No, we CANNOT go swimming, today!"

Friggin' rain.

I can't blame the kids - feeling a bit closed-in, myself - it's just that our house (though warm...**cough**...and inviting) can quickly get a bit cramped, which isn't very conducive to four energetic little souls dying to get out into their big backyard...which is a bit squishy, at the moment.

As a matter of fact - what, with the historical sites, state parks, beaches (to name a few of our favorite haunts) shutdown this week - all of New Jersey is perhaps feeling a bit the moment, too.

Glad that's over - friggin' politicians!

'Nuf the sun shines once more, and our clan hits one of our favorite know...the one with the cutest little spray park.

Where Thing Two and Mini-me were able to finally cool their jets...and be friends...again.

And then get totally soaked, along with Little Man.

While Mini-me proves (once again) that...YES!...she can be very cute...and usually does get away with ALMOST anything.

And Thing One...though insisting she's too old for such caught by her mom enjoying a quick swing and... SMILING!?!?...egads, but preteen is a tough age...and herein lies a blackmail pic, if I ever saw one.

Then again, my kids are pretty easy-going about such things, and all it really takes for them (and me) is a bit of go along with their wet...and enjoy the summer home, with mom.


Well, if it wasn't for my SIL - who was lovely enough to make an appointment to get ourselves in on a little girly-time - I wouldn't have thought to take the time and know...something for me.

And when she called to make sure I wasn't going know...blow her off...I told her that I would meet her at place where people go to get their nails done...but, I wanted to clean up a bit first...and could hear the whole place roaring in the background as she yelled into the phone:

"You don't have to clip and clean your toe nails...YOU BIG DOOFUS! do you think a pedicure is, anyways?"

Yah...but, she's going to be touching I don't want her to think...



See, how prettiful my DOOFUS toes look...for once.

And I gots matching DOOFUS hands, too!

The color?

Well, suffice it say - after the manicurist stopped laughing at my clean toenails and I told her that ", something neutral, perhaps..." gave me the once over and said "Oh, you really want to be that BORING!" - I picked the hottest color I could find:

My Chihuahau Bites!

Hah - take that, you smarmy little polish-whore - boring my ass!  Just go ahead and ask me about the tatoo I'm getting, next week...go ahead...I dare you!

[picturing being poked with a needle (in THAT general area) and nearly puking on my chihuahuas]

Yep - perhaps they're right - I am a DOOFUS.

But, surfs up...again!...and my kids like me (today at least) because I'm taking them on another roadtrip (read: getting out of this full house of all things...squishy) this afternoon...and they seem to think I'm know...prettiful!

Have a great weekend and mind my DOOFUS dog - who already misses Aunt P. as much as I do and is keeping watch at the front door since I dropped her off at the airport early this morning -  he doesn't bite...but, will lick you up and down like a cheap pornstar!

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

Summer Vacation - independence, co-dependence and bubblewrap - Day 12

You may (or may not know) that I write a monthly column for The Imperfect Parent (I know, they are being extremely generous!) and my topic for this month's article is the fact that my brother and I spoke another language before learning English in school, even though I was born here in America.

And it was not as uncommon, as you would perhaps believe, now as it was in the seventies.

In fact, there are a lot of things that are done differently today - especially when it comes to raising children - perhaps, as it should be.

Unfortunately, as most parents already know...somethings never change...and the best we can hope for is that our children accept the fact that we (especially parents) are not perfect and (more importantly) pray that they learn from their mistakes, as well as ours.

For example, it took me a very long time to understand (let alone, admit) the fact that my parents' happiness has always - and I mean ALWAYS - depended upon the happiness of their children.

A huge burden for my brother and me, quite frankly.

Sounds awful, I know - how could I ever question such an honest, loving and unselfish way of being?!?

Well, suffice it to say that my brother and I have made our share of sacrifices, as well.

And as adults - though, there is no end to the love we feel for our parents - their dependency on our big happy family can be very trying on my relationship with my brother, as well as our relationship with our be sure.

Here's the thing.

My brother invited us (and my parents) to his house for the 4th of July and my gut reaction was to....screen his call.

With that said - and as awful as it still sounds - I was surprised to hear my husband - who absolutely adores my brother, btw - say, " your problem?"

And I didn't speak to him the rest of the morning.

What is my problem?

I didn't think I had one.

Until, we got to my brother's house and I quickly realized one thing - I am my worst enemy and that I was not happy, unless there was something that needed to be fixed.

Okay, maybe that's two things - but, what's up with that?

To make a long story short, we had a great time - DUH! - and my brother is probably one of the most happy, laid-back, un-troubled, no-nonsense people I know.

Being around him - and spending the whole day, together - was like a breath of fresh air.

And then my father started to cry.

"OMG...what's the matter?"

My father just shook his head.

"No, really...Apu...what's bothering you?"

He wiped his eyes and slowly looked around the room.

"Nothing...seeing you and your brother together...I'm just happy...and that's all I ever want!"

It took a while for his words to sink in - and then the goosebumps hit - along with the realization that my parents weren't as dependent as I thought they are and were merely exercising their right to enjoy a little happiness.  And what better way to do it, than through their children's eyes...on Independence Day!?!

So - as the fireworks burst and the warm wind wreaked havoc with my bangs - I allowed the spirit of freedom and the joy of being in the company of some of the most important people in my life to one...and hopefully be able to finally make peace with my sometimes obsessive-compulsive personality - as will my children - knock on wood.

[conking on head]

Because...according to my's pretty crowded in here, already.

But - as Mini-Me is quickly willing to prove my point - there's always room for bubble wrap! 

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.