finally fall

With the temperatures dipping down to the 60s in the mornings and reaching highs of mere mid-80s in the afternoons, it's finally starting to feel like fall around here. This afternoon we shook pecans down from the tree beside our house and posed with pumpkins--a purchase from Trader Joe's this morning when the "crisp" fall air was pumping into my brain like oxygen through a Casino.

Even though Tillie was less-than-thrilled with the whole sit-on-the-porch-beside-a-pumpkin idea, I'm all in for autumn! If this weather continues, I might have to take the plunge and enjoy my first pumpkin spice latte of the season.


from football to football

This morning Catcher had a football (in the international sense) game followed by a football (American) game. I don't have pictures from the first sporting event of the day because Catcher spent the first half in tears--of the blotchy, hysterical variety--on the sideline after having left his shin guards at home. When he finally recovered his composure and made it into the game, his little sister (pictured below) was storming off on a temper tantrum run of her own. It was approximately 9:00am. And that's approximately 2 1/2 hours into my day. Buckle up--it's going to be a bumpy ride.

When my son was finally speaking to me again (I think the post-game juice box helped), I hustled the gang into the car to drive to the far Northeastern corner of Austin for our inaugural flag football game. Now it was Scout's turn to pitch a royal fit, and it was 10:15am. Thank goodness we had brought an arsenal of books with us (as per usual) so I was able to catch a few minutes of the game in between reading to Scout and sending her back to my bag to fetch a new book.

Somehow we--or rather, I--made it through the game (both games) and routed the troops to our next destination: a family luncheon celebrating Alex's stepmother's mom's 13th wedding anniversary. (Is that confusing enough for you?) There was cake. Kids love cake.



I'll admit it. I was slightly freaked out when Catcher casually approached me in the kitchen this afternoon wearing his plastic, glow-in-the-dark fangs. Perhaps I was slightly more than slightly freaked out...I almost dropped the smoothie I had made for him on the floor. He must get his knack for frightening folks from his dad.


my eight-legged friend

We've been busy this week with Columbus Day (no school for Catcher...more "work" for me) and back-to-school night, which included another book fair at Catcher's school, so I've been slacking on the blog. During my down time, however, I did manage to snap a picture of my new spider friend who reconstructed her web that I destroyed with my big human head. The photos would be much cooler if I had a macro lens for shooting tiny buggy things, but that web was pretty stunning either way. And the spider is totally cute when she isn't creeping through my hair.


don't touch my nut butter

Alex was in Hawaii last week. As I was taking the children to get flu shots and dealing with an extraordinarily grumpy, feverish Tillie and a bossy Catcher with a rained-out soccer game (no problems to speak of from Scout), Alex was running on the beach at sunrise and drinking Mai Thais by sunset--at least that's how I imagined it. All was forgotten, however, when he showed up with the one thing that I specifically requested return with him from the tropical isles: macadamia nut butter. The challenge was not impossible considering Hawaii is the land of macadamia nuts, but sometimes husbands get the instructions wrong. For example, I'm grateful he texted "Macadamia Nut Oil?" from the Island Naturals store--the third store on his butter hunt, he reminds me--in Kona so I could respond "Butter. Macadamia Nut Butter" and avoid a potential crisis. We're approaching our ten-year anniversary, so his training is still underway (winky face).

But back to the butter...this stuff is phenomenal. It tastes amazing on anything. And by anything, I mean straight out of the jar and on the fresh baguette I smeared it all over for lunch today. I ate the whole baguette and almost 12 oz. of nut butter. I'm trying to savor this $15 jar of pure deliciousness, but that's pretty impossible. I gave Alex the evil eye when he dipped into it this afternoon. I know he had to smuggle it past TSA--just kidding, he checked his bag--but sometimes I become possessive of such things. Besides, it's the least he could do after touring volcanoes and sitting around on the beach drinking Mai Thais all week.


this was in my hair...

Bug Guide

This afternoon I took the trash out and walked right into a spider web. This is the spider that I found crawling in my hair (IN MY HAIR!). I think he--or probably more accurately she--was more scared than I was, but...no, maybe not. I was pretty freaked out. It looks all cute and happy-faced here, but I was convinced this spider was 1) poisonous 2) had bitten me and 3) left fragments of web and half-eaten flies throughout my tangled mess of a wig. Luckily I was wrong on all accounts. After I Googled "yellow and black spiky spider," this is what I discovered. Its name is was too complicated to pronounce for the non-entomologist community, but they also call it a crab spider. Thank you, crab spider, for being cute when I thought you were a menace.


never go to bed angry

One of those sage pieces of advice that old married people offer--usually unsolicited--to young married people just beginning their journey is "never go to bed angry." I totally support that theory in a romantic comedy starring Julia Roberts sort-of-way. But in real life I'm not very romantic and understand that sometimes one must go to bed angry...and hopefully wake-up with a fresh perspective. Although these "words of wisdom" are most often dealt to couples, it turns out that you can use (or not use, as the case may be) them on children as well.

The other night Catcher was extremely tired (but don't tell him!) and in a particularly snarky mood at five past bedtime. His pillow was lumpy; his Lego character was missing a helmet; his Stuffie was stupid; life was not fair. My brain went dead, as is often one's best option in these situations, and I simply pointed to his bedroom and told him to get in bed. By not engaging in a chess match of six year-old neuroses, I irked Catcher even more (obviously). He stormed out of his room--after storming into his room--carrying his pillow and slung it down on the living room floor. I'm sure this would have caused a greater commotion if it hadn't, in fact, been a soft pillow that he tossed onto the floor. He then stuck out his bottom lip, hunched his shoulders, grabbed two pillows from the sofa and marched back in to his room. After that I didn't hear another word (except maybe a few murmurs about things being unfair). When I peeked in on him an hour later, I discovered a young man who had gone to bed angry:

P.S. They're so sweet when they're sleeping, right? Even with their arms crossed and pouting.