Friday, August 13, 2010

Another Summer Day

Urban Dad & I had slightly different mornings.  Feel free to vote for the one you would prefer:

1.) Get ready to go, wait for a few extra minutes as Urban Kid 1 frantically yells, "WAAAIITTTT!" because she wants to go with.  (such a chicago phrase that i've fully adopted... "go with."  next i'll be hitting my a's super-haaaaard and putting an "s" at the end of things; e.g. "nordstroms")

2.)  Roll eyes slightly as Urban Kid 1 comes out dressed for the prom.  Who am I kidding?  I'm just jealous that she can dress herself better at 6yo than I can at 40yo.

3.)  Walk to dry cleaners.  Drop off the three dresses that the Urban Kids insist on wearing every waking minute of every single day that we are not out on the playground.

4.)  Walk to Ulta. 
I'm sick of wearing Warmth even though Warmth (snickering tone here) is supposed to look so amazing on everyone.  Everyone except me.  So I rub Warmth (snickering tone whenever I say the word) on the back of one hand and Faux Tan on the back of the other.  Ask Urban Kid 1 which one she likes better.  "Faux Tan, Mom.  It doesn't have as much red in it."  Just tosses off the observation -- a fully correct one -- and looks at something else.  I decide to buy Faux Tan and give Warmth (guess my tone?) to Best Namma Ever! because she's one of the everyone-but-me that it looks amazing on.

5.)  Check out at Ulta.  Manager-type asks, "Where's the little one?"  I smile and explain that she's at home with Urban Dad, that we're going to take a break from bringing her into Ulta for a while.  (between you and me, it's impossible to look at anything, what with the shortest Urban thinking that the sample bar eyeshadows are fingerpaints and then launching her sunglasses when told they are not)  The manager-type smiles and looks sympathetic, which I consider pretty kind.

6.) Walk to library.  Hang out for a looooooong time because it's nice and cool.  Watch with pride as Urban Kid 1 takes book after book, reads them to herself, go gets a few more books, reads them to herself.  Hmmmmm.... who do ya suppose taught her to read?

7.)  Watch as Urban Kid 1 takes her library card out of her purse -- the only thing in her purse -- and checks out a pile of books, beaming with pride because she has her very own library card in her very own purse.

8.)  Walk past local school playground on our way home, lugging a bag full of books and hearing her complain (correctly) that it is entirely too hot.  See her friend S. there, who she hasn't seen all summer long.  It doesn't seem so hot all of a sudden.

9.)  Feel bad for her when she goes down a slide, but her dress goes up enough that her bare skin skids really fast on the searing hot plastic.  Perhaps dressing for the prom wasn't such a good idea.  S. has to go to karate, so U-Kid 1 decides she wants to go put an ice-pack on her tush.  Urban Dad calls her SkiddyTush once or twice, which makes her giggle.

Phone Call #1:  From his mom.  She's mad because Urban Dad put the ka-bosh on her 11yo standard chocolate poodle coming to live with her in the small, immaculate, luxurious, smell-free home.  Says that he's betrayed her, that it's as if he's taken away one of her children, that he's a bad bad man.

Phone Call #2:  From the Salvation Army rehab place where BIL #1 is now residing rather than go to jail (hey Lindsay Lohan! you're an amateur!!).  It's a six-month program.  BIL #1 has been there four days.  SA-Dude says that BIL #1 is saying in group chit-chat that his mother is worth $10 billion and that he used to play for the NBA.  Plants seed in U-Dad's head that BIL #1 may have burned out enough wires that SA may not be the place for him.

All of this said, the Blue Angels were practicing today for the Air Show and all four of us went for our almost-daily hit of Italian ice at the IcyBox. We walked the U-Kids over there, stopping several times to gawk at the F/A-18's roaring overhead while the girls cooed, "coooooool!" over and over.  And there was a fresh batch of chocolate-chocolate-chip waiting for us when we got there.

And that's the kind of stuff that makes everything feel better, right?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

She's Baaaaaack

{Puff, puff, puff}  Is this thing on?  {tap, tap, tap}  Anyone out there?

Y'know how you think that summer has finally come along?  And that you're so excited to have a "manny" for the summer?  And how that is going to open up bags and bags of time for you to ponder your little blog and do regular posts like you keep saying that you're going to do? 

Yeah, I thought so, too.  But as you can see, not so much, right?

Here are a few Cliff Notes of the summer so far.  I'll try to fill in some details as the summer wraps up.

1.) We did the annual Urban Family Road Trip.  The trip included couch-surfing at Best Namma Ever!'s house in St. Louis, inviting all kinds of people over on the 4th to watch Urban Dad blow up BNE!'s front yard (that man looooves July 4th),

saw a movie or two, took advantage of free child care, got Urban Kid 2's half-birthday pictures taken (her birthday is December 31, so it's silly to do it then -- she just looks like the Christmas card all over again), etc etc.

2.) We hit to road to Albuquerque, where Urban Dad's dad and stepmom live.

 We had a lovely visit with them and even had a just-the-two-of-us day trip to Santa Fe while the Urban Kids got some hang time with Grandpa and Grandma. 

breakfast in santa fe

Now, the last time Urban Dad & I had a just-the-two-of-us day trip to Santa Fe, we came back with Urban Kid 2.  I don't see that quite happening again, but if you ever wonder what that turquoise ring is on my right hand, well, Urban Dad gave that to me the next year so we can look at it and giggle (and ironically enough, it's Urban Kid 2's birthstone).

3.)  We went on to San Diego, the Big Goal of the road trip.  I had never been, and I loved San Diego, traffic and all.  We threw the Urban Kids into the Pacific Ocean, their first time in any ocean, and they absolutely loved it.  We also did Sea World, which was lots of good fun.  Then another day in the ocean.  We may fly back out there some time and just hang on the beach for several days.  It looks like the Urban Kids would dig a beach vacation.

4.)  We did a quick toodle up to northern CA, zipped across the Golden Gate Bridge and quickly bailed out of SanFran.  Keep in mind that we are Chicagoans, we live near Wrigley Field, we know traffic, but the traffic in SanFran freaked out even our hardy souls.  Yep, SanFran is its own animal.  We'll tackle that one separately in a future trip.

5.)  We headed to Colorado to check in on other in-laws and to meet folks that we've spent hours and hours (esp Urban Dad) with on the phone for the last several months, namely MIL's doctor and the CPA that is her Financial Power of Attorney.

 ***** side note:  did i mention that MIL was diagnosed with degenerative dementia and that BIL #2 found her a lovely place in Boulder in which to reside and that U-Dad is Medical Power of Attorney and that BIL #1 is a drunken, freeloading, wife-beating loser who was refusing to leave MIL's residence in Swanky Resort Town, CO and that U-Dad and Financial Power of Attorney need to put MIL's residence up for sale???  ******

6.)  We went to Swanky Resort Town, where Urban Dad had his drunken, freeloading, wife-beating loser brother arrested and thrown into jail -- where he'd just gotten out a few weeks prior, mind you.  He and Financial Power of Attorney then started assessing just what needed to be done to repair an otherwise reasonably nice place that had been turned into something resembling public housing (a sight...and smell...that I won't soon forget).  He and FPofA also started plans to start packing BIL #1's and his always-leaving-and-returning wife's stuff and getting it shipped the hell out of there.

7.) More details on #'s 5 & 6 to come later

8.) Listened to U-Dad lose.his.mind on always-leaving-and-returning SIL when she had the nerve to call him and ask why Urban Dad was being so "mean."  The Urban Kids may have learned a few new words.

9.) Headed to Boulder to see MIL's new place.  Urban Dad & I plan to save our money carefully so that we can end up in someplace as lovely!  BIL #2 did a truly wonderful job of finding a place for their mom.

10.)  Dinner in Boulder with MIL, BIL #2, his Groovy Kids and our Urban Kids.  Ate Chinese food on the deck and watched the kids jump and play on the trampoline while ignoring the elephant in the room that was "your son put your other son in jail."  The eldest Groovy Kid -- a boy who has worked my last nerve since his toddlerhood -- impressed me with his attention, kindness and patience that he showed Urban Kid 2.  Maybe he and I are both growing up a bit.

11.) Back to St. Louis and to the ever-loving arms of BNE!.  The Urban Kids then stayed at Grandma Camp for a few extra days while Urban Dad and I returned to Chicago to get our wits about us.

So how's your summer been?