Friday, October 31, 2003 :::


For the first time in the last 84 years, Halloween in Michigan is a balmy 70 degrees. It's downright tropical. In contrast, the other 84 years have been cold, very cold. Usually raining, sometimes snowing.

As a result, costumes in Michigan involve layers. Several of them. As a child, my mother continually ruined my costume by piling on clothing underneath. Coats, long underwear, wool sweaters. I distinctly remember the year I was, by default, a Sumo Wrestling Ballerina.

Of course, now that I'm a mother, I also wrap my children in several layers before we go trick or treating. This is the first year I can remember where layering would really put you at risk for heat stroke.

And of course, it figures, this is the year I dressed my son as an Eskimo.

He was kind of warm.

::: posted by Melissa at 6:45 PM

Thursday, October 30, 2003 :::
::I Knew It!

I always suspected this is what 'Going On Location' meant in the ad world, but now I know for sure.

FYI: Pants is 'Andy' in this scenario.

::: posted by Melissa at 3:09 PM

Wednesday, October 29, 2003 :::
::Trick Or Treat!

This afternoon I'll be taking the children to my husband's office to parade around in their Halloween costumes.

Once I made these really great costumes. It was my Tour De Force. A turtleneck onesie, some fiber fill, a little felt, yellow tights and feather boas and Voila! Chicken and Egg!

I'm not sure if you are aware of this, but it's no accident my initials are M.S. like a certain Martha Stewart.

Now my children want to have control over what they wear for halloween...and I'm uninspired by their desires. A dog...again and a lion... Also, somewhere between the Chicken and the Egg year...I've gotten lazy, really lazy.

So, we're going to this thing at the office. My children are really scared of new things and new people. Hmmm...I just can't imagine where they got this trait?

They are afraid of upper level management, cubicles, anyone in tech support, graphic designers, senior graphic designers, anyone who relies on a mouse and the double click to make their living and Jesus Christ puh-leeze keep any and all Creative VP's away from them! Oh, they also don't like automatically revolving doors and all Halloween decor and if it makes a noise or looks like a witch, they will wet their pants.

This is what our trot through the office is going to look like:

Max: 'We GO HOME NOW???? We go home now????'
Madison: inaudible whining, punctuated with the occasional, 'Trick or treat.'

Me: 'It's okay...this is fun! We're having fun!' 'Oh! Hello boss, hello other charge of our family's well being and nice to see you again. Yes, this is my puppy and my lion....well, yes [Fill In This Blank With Some Excuse...he didn't nap long, they have an aversion to management, he hasn't shit in like 5 days'd be grumpy too!, etc, etc]'

I've bid a fond farewell to my friend Zoloft, and I think I've done pretty well without the antidepressant in my life. However, perhaps an antipessimism would better serve my needs now.

Trick or Treat!

Update: As predicted the boy repeated like a drone: 'We go home now?' Over and over. Unpredicted, a writer from the office repeatedly offered me a job...although, when I asked if Jeep was hoping to use 'Fuck' in their newest campaign, he seemed to back off. Madison, was nothing but charming and sweet and I underestimated her newfound maturity. Also unexpected, the overwhelming jealousy I feel that my husband spends his days in a space free of Hungry Hungry Hippos and surrounded with other adults capable of forming meaningful conversation...and not "Wee doh way's" AND he makes money. Damn him.

::: posted by Melissa at 2:15 PM

Tuesday, October 28, 2003 :::
::How Cool Is This?

I have a very talented friend and he is very good at drawing pictures. He should be selling his designs to many many greeting card companies.

We got this halloween card today, and not only is it well also makes me kick myself in the ass for never having 'A Very Fez Halloween'

A drink in hand and a Fez on your head makes everything fun...even if you are seriously lacking any skin or internal organs.

Upon further consideration, I think the only way my mother in law could ever be tolerable to me is if she were wearing a Fez, all the time, and if I were drinking several of those drinks.

::: posted by Melissa at 11:43 PM

::Hot or Not?

Is Velma from the Scooby Doo cartoon hot? I feel so disillusioned suddenly.

I am not talking about the 'Hollywood Velma'

Just plain old Velma Dinkley.

Hot or not? Seriously.

::: posted by Melissa at 8:01 AM

Monday, October 27, 2003 :::
::I've something up my sleeve...

It's certainly nothing very exciting like the big Que Sera Sera move to But for me it is.

I went to Movable Type and asked them to free me of my Banner Ad heckling.

Brenna, a tech support gal, heard my cry, and she tried. Really she did. She was attentive and seemed amused by my frazzled nature. When I said, 'Explain this to me like I'm a relatively intelligent four year old...okay maybe five.'

Her answer?

Type Pad

It's looking mainly like I want it to and it does a lot of the things I like about Movable Type...only I can be a fairly smart kindergartner and make it work! The problem now is switching my webhosting (again) to support the custom DNS I need to make the Domain Mapping work correctly. See, I'm not sure you'd hear a lot of 3 year olds talking about that, but a fairly smart 4 year old...okay.

The very best part of my new little place? My dear friend Jerry made me a really cool illustration of a little drink I like to call the 'Four O'Clock' in, drinking after 4pm as a stay at home mother is within the realm of 'okay'.

Watch for it...I'm assured it will take no more than 3 days. Brenna said so....but in 4 year old days...that's forever.

::: posted by Melissa at 10:07 PM

Thursday, October 23, 2003 :::
::'Why did you push me down Mommy?'

This guy had a really interesting and well written thought to write about. You can read it here.

I already read it and when I went to make my comment to it, I remembered a really good story along the same lines.

There is a lot of crying and yelling in my house. Dinner time involves a lot of crying as the children and Pants poke their food with their fingers and announce it is not edible in anyway. (Because my children have inherited tastebuds in their fingertips to go along with my husband's amazing genetic fluke, tastebuds in his ear drums).

There is crying and yelling when we brush hair in the morning. There are many tortured screams from my poor little constipated son. Truth be told we are torturing him by making him poop, but it seems to me that going a week or more without pooping is torture all by itself.

I shudder to think what the neighbors hear coming from our house...especially since they do not have children. Of course, I think our current neighbors are pot heads so probably they don't even notice.

Anyway, it got me thinking how a concerned neighbor could misread the screaming and crying and think something horrible was happening in my home on a nightly basis. Perhaps that concerned neighbor would feel it her duty to intervene. I can only imagine inviting the case worker into the house to give her a demonstration of the poop ritual or the nightly dinner routine. I'd certainly hope the case would be dismissed upon witnessing what I endure every night at the dinner table.

This got me thinking about a time I publically 'abused' my daughter in the aisles of Target.

She was three at the time and we were winding our way through Target. I was walking and absentmindedly looking at the shelves. I wasn't looking where I was going and I tripped right over my daughter. As I tripped over her, she fell to the ground. At which point she began screaming, but not just cries of pain.


I tried to calm her down, to stop the stares; 'I'm sorry, I wasn't watching where I was going. I tripped over you, I didn't kick you.'

She would not be stopped; 'YES YOU DID!!!! YOU KNOCKED ME DOWN AND YOU KICKED MEEEEE!!!!!!'

At which point I started to talk loudly while trying to comfort her; 'Sweetheart, MOMMY JUST TRIPPED AND BUMPED INTO YOU....uh...ha ha ha...I didn't knock you down, I JUST TRIPPED AND BUMPED YOU'

At that moment I felt very blessed that the people in that store either a) were entirely apathetic and calloused members of society who wouldn't recognize abuse if it slapped them in the face or b) were all familiar with the loud nature of children and maybe drowned out the sounds of what perhaps looked like a temper tantrum to their dulled ear drums.

Well, those things or maybe they heard all the yelling I did and realized what really happened.

Whatever it was, thank God I wasn't sitting in a courtroom defending myself against my daughter's indignant cries of injustice. I picture myself sounding defensive and incredulous and my daughter holding court with tales of how every morning 'Mommy, pulls my hair and yells at me.'

Of course, how do we discern the difference between real cries of abuse and those things that feel like abuse to a three year old? It's unfortunate how many times real abuse is overlooked in the exact way my daughter's screams in Target were overlooked.

::: posted by Melissa at 1:59 PM

Wednesday, October 22, 2003 :::
::Memory Lane

Our engagement party invites designed by my lovely husband with nothing more than a computer, a photo booth and a very lovely ring.

::: posted by Melissa at 2:06 PM

Tuesday, October 21, 2003 :::
::This must be all over the blogging world...

I got this from Pants via his boyfriend John.

Thanks guys...aren't they sweet?

Arnold Is Coming

::: posted by Melissa at 3:05 PM

::He's got another thing coming...

If my son thinks 2 years and 7 months is long enough to nap in the middle of the day...I'd like him to sit down and have a chat with my nicer, funnier sister in law...who at 30 something still naps in the middle of the day, that is, when she's not 'working the bears'

Dear God, I know I only come to you in times of crisis, but I know you understand. You know how I am about sleeping, you know how i am about quiet afternoons to myself. All I want is 2.5 hours of quiet each and every afternoon. I swear I won't ask for anything else, unless something else really big comes up.

::: posted by Melissa at 2:09 PM

Monday, October 20, 2003 :::
My cats would love me if I made pajamas out of this fabric.

That is all.

::: posted by Melissa at 1:33 PM

Thursday, October 16, 2003 :::
::Vacation, Though I Use The Term Loosely

How to sum up the wild ride that was the 'Summers End Of Summer Vacation'?


By the mayhem it looks like this:

No sleep, crying children who panic if not sleeping in their own rooms. Huh, kids of mine who don't adjust well to change? That's so odd.

A shower with only scalding hot water. So hot in fact that it set off the smoke alarm. No big deal...however the smoke detector trips the burglar alarm. A very loud burglar alarm. A very loud burglar alarm requiring a code to get it to shut up. Across the bay, from miles around you could hear the kick off of the Summers End Of Summer Vacation

It was so exciting, the neighbors from a mile away came by to see what we were up to, the police came by and so did the Sutton's Bay Fire Department. The police man kindly questioned the fact that we were staying in a home we didn't have the alarm code for.

I had to admit, it was a good question and I didn't have an answer. When I told him about the fact that I hadn't slept more than 3 hours at a time the night before, he seemed to at least take pity on me and didn't arrest me. Probably because he knew that if they arrested us...they'd be watching our horrible children and no one at the police station would be getting a wink of sleep while my kids were on duty.
He left us with the screaming siren letting the world know that the Summers were in town.

Tantrums, never ending, relentless tantrums. By both the boy and myself...I am not good with sleep deprivation. Thus the fact that our family will forever be a foursome.

Then there was the dinner...after we'd spent the day at 'Michigan's Only Premiere Indoor WaterPark' A day which required a stay at a hotel, when we had a perfectly lovely cabin on the lake to stay in. It was a simple question really, one we thought we knew the answer to without even asking it. But sometimes as parents it's nice to be stroked for being so 'fun'. So he asked it.

'Did you have a fun day?'
Her answer? 'No'

There were two moments on that 'vacation' where I thought I might do something rash. One was the 2am tantrum the boy had. The other was that moment where my 4 year old daughter transformed herself into an unimpressed teenager and told me that she wasn't having any fun.

God Damn it...someone better be having a whole lotta fucking fun because I'm pretty fucking tired and pretty fucking broke and I would rather be sitting in a lovely recliner watching the lake and reading a whole bunch of books and maybe eating a dinner that doesn't require 'props'. Since I can't do're going to have some fucking fun if it kills you and me both.

She seemed to pick up on the 'Losing My Hold On Sanity' vibe at the table and quickly changed her tune.

I'm sorry God I was ever a teenager.


By the fun times the vacation looks like this:

Hours spent on the floor doing puzzles and wrestling and enjoying all the good parts of having kids without work calling or the house beckoning or other committments interfering.

Two of the most common questions on a vacation with myself and Pants are: 'What do you want to eat now?' and 'Hey, do you want a drink?' These two things make a lot of the other things disappear. Although I was still exhausted.

Watching our two beautiful kids play in the sand and surf, in their clothes because, well, we're on vacation.

Saying yes more than no.

The scenery, the silence, the flashlight that looked a lot like a dildo.


By the images, our vacation looks like this. Go, look, see the magic.


As a bonus question: I will pay one million dollars to someone who can correctly translate 'Wee doh way' from Maxlish into English. He said this over and over and over during his hundreds of tantrums.
Pants and I have only been able to come up with one translation: 'Take me from this place, I am the devil's spawn and I curse any and all fun times. Die! Die! Die!'
But when we asked him if that was what he was trying to say he just said....'Wee doh way'....sometimes he'd even conjugate it, like a verb.
'Way doh wee'
'Wee doh whoa'
'Wee do wee'

What does it mean, what does it MEAN?

::: posted by Melissa at 4:47 PM

Friday, October 10, 2003 :::
::On Vacation....Finally

As I type I'm sitting out on some lovely adirondack chairs, overlooking Little Traverse Bay...drinking a bloody mary, waiting for Pants to finish the waffles we'll be eating. We're up at the cabin of a friend, in Sutton's Bay (take your left hand, hold it up...we're right above your pinky...kind of at the top knuckle of your ring finger...I love living in Michigan). We spent our honeymoon here and we concieved our second child here a little over 3 years ago.

There will be no conceiving this week for a few reasons. A vasectomy comes to the top of the list, however, we also won't be conceiving because my children are HORRENDOUS at sleeping anywhere but their own beds. The last two nights I have slept a total of 5 hours...and this is after drugging them with Children's Nyquil. I'm going to have to Roofie them very soon.

You may ask, as Pants has several times, why I'd bring my laptop into paradise. I ask you this...if I didn't bring my laptop, how would I look at porn? If I didn't bring my laptop, how would I have found this? How would we know where to eat? How would I plan and research our itinerary? How would I read up on what the fuck has happened to the shoreline here...which reminds me of a really bad receding hairline. It's very very sad.

Not to mention the deadline I am meeting this evening..all from the cliff overlooking the bay. I love my job.

As an aside, I can read emails, but can not, for some unknown and irritating reason, respond to anyone.


::: posted by Melissa at 9:10 AM

Wednesday, October 08, 2003 :::
::My brother stole my diary

I swear I had this exact dairy and the entries were so similar it is truly scary and sad and cute all at once.

***Update: I've gotten a couple of emails about my spelling of Diary. Have you looked at the link. The young author spells Diary 'Dairy' which is exactly how I spelled Diary as an 8 year old. Work with me.

::: posted by Melissa at 2:56 PM

::the feline beings

Today, the black cat looked at me and said, with a totally straight face:
    'You know, it's not like your shit don't stink.'

I started to argue with the cat, but then I realized you can never win an argument with a cat. Something I have in common with cats since you can never win an argument with me either. Also I stare eerily into your soul.

Anyway I've decided maybe I've been complaining about how bad they stink a little too much since one cat is now answering to the name, 'Peee Freaking YOU'.

I don't know, maybe I've hurt their feelings.

The other reason I didn't argue with the cat. I think it's crazy enough that I truly do imagine what they might be saying if they could talk. Having imaginary arguments is crazy, even for me.

In my imagination my cats use every single banned word and phrase on the list.

They also talk a lot about eating as in, 'Hey, are we eating now? How about now? What about now? Hey, fresh food? Got anymore of that stuff? Where's That Guy, does he have food?'

If the cats could talk they would also throw in a lot of 'What the's...?' A perfect exclamation for both 4 year olds and cats.

::: posted by Melissa at 1:48 PM

Tuesday, October 07, 2003 :::

::The Magic's Gone?

I know it's silly to compare my relationship to other's relationships. It just that I read this and ever since then...

I mean I still love my iBook and he still makes me feel really good. He warms my lap like no one else and that glowing apple...still says 'I Love You'. But it's just we never talk all night. Sometimes I don't even think my iBook understands me at all. You know, he's been here since early this summer and he's never made me breakfast.

I know it's silly but it's those little things that say 'I care about you' I mean, God knows I've given every ounce of myself to iBook...would it really be too much to say 'Hello' to me when I come home? I just don't think that's a lot to expect out of a relationship.

I was happy with my iBook, I still am. But when I heard how good it was over there....I wonder if our relationship is as good as it can be.

::: posted by Melissa at 9:41 AM

Sunday, October 05, 2003 :::

::I Prefer Showering Alone

I'm really glad people get married. I'm so thankful that people I like or am even aquainted with find their true loves and decide to walk down the aisle together. Weddings are happy and joyful and remind me of how I felt when I started this little adventure and I'm happy to see other souls full of that same joy.

I just have a couple of problems...

Why do we have to play stupid games in order to be happy for other people? Couldn't we just eat a little food, open a few gifts, 'Thank you thank you!' 'Welcome, welcome'. With a couple of drinks thrown in to make a little conversation run smoothly?

Which brings me to my other shower complaint. Is it too much to offer me a drink or 3 if I'm expected to spend a day playing stupid games and carry on inane conversation with 20 people I don't know and will most likely never see again once the wedding is over?

I hope the bride knows me well enough to know that I will require at least a glass of wine if not a bloody mary to endure this event.

This will not be the worst shower I have ever attended. For that there is a tie between the shower I attended for my cruelly insane sister in law and the other shower I attended for a dear friend...thrown by my other odd sister in law and attended by a woman who literally makes my skin crawl just hearing her say 'Why, hello!'

However, this shower will be added to the worst shower list if:

a) There are no drinks

b) There is more than 45 minutes worth of 'ooh'ing and 'ahh'ing over assorted housewares.

c) We play any games involving any physical form of activity, any 'Team' oriented activity or, and this would be the worst...any game involving the following title: 'How Well Do You Know The Bride and Groom?'

My attitude could not be worse nor my sense of impending doom any greater.

::: posted by Melissa at 12:01 PM

Friday, October 03, 2003 :::

::I don't get it.

If our cats were of American Indian descent...they would be named something like...






I swear to God...if you listen closely...they snort like little pigs while they eat (all day every day....they never stop eating). Also...these furry things can fart on command which is a lot like what I imagine living with skunks to be like.

Perhaps if I had them before I had children...I'd be more in love with them. Mostly I am in awe of them and the deathly smells they shoot out of their asses.

PS. Hey, Blogger Banner Ads...can you please refer to a 'Feminine Odor' problem in the next batch of Banner Ads....because the 'Divorce' ads weren't enough..nor the 'Asian Bride' ads, please start implying that because I am smelling the ass of my cat, somehow my female parts are actually the issue.

Wait a minute...I just put together a really nasty slang relation between the smelly kittens and the female issue the Banner Ad refers to. That is it....Banner Ad...these nails are coming off and the shit is needling bitch.

Dream Host...please, please....finish my transfer.....I'm arguing with my Banner Ad.

::: posted by Melissa at 12:33 AM

Thursday, October 02, 2003 :::

::I Did Not Love The 80's

If I could go back in time, I would march right back to 1988 or so.

First I would tell Me to stop doing horrid things to my hair. The Hair Crisis of '89 comes to mind...a perm and highlight gone so horribly awry it hurts me to look at it. Even the adorable baby in my lap doesn't change the fact that I did a horrid thing to myself and my hair still has not forgiven me.

Next I would tell Me to ease up on the obsession over body size, since really at 15 I didn't need to be worried about my weight. I needed to harness all that obsession for right around 29 as I approached 30 and birthed two rather large children.

I'd tell the teenaged Me to focus all that energy on keeping her eyes open in photos. Because this pose really isn't going to serve her very well.

I would tell Me that although failing gym, twice, is kind of day it will explain so much about who she is and she'll be kind of proud of it.

I'd tell my 15 year old self that survival was all she needed to do in high school. I'd tell her to relax, because as it turns out...high school was as shitty as her life would ever be.

So instead of worrying that the rest of her life would be spent as an insecure child with a bad perm...she should instead just try to blend in and hang tight for the future...and while she's doing that...again, it would really behoove her to spend hours in front of the bathroom mirror practicing keeping her eyes open in pictures so that maybe this horrendous moment in her history could be erased.

I might also gently mention that an eyebrow wax is only $15.

::: posted by Melissa at 12:05 AM

Wednesday, October 01, 2003 :::

::It all makes sense now.

I don't know how or why it happened...but today it all made sense.

Since the first day of school the kindergartner has been talking about her favorite game at school, 'Living Sinus' or 'Sinus' for short. I couldn't imagine what on earth she was playing at school.

I did have a thought that it was like the Colossal Colon, but instead of a colon it was a larger than life sinus cavity the children could frolic and learn in. Which in a way made sense since the teacher appears to be struggling with a lifelong allergy issue.

The idea was making me angry, because if they can afford to bring a life size sinus into Kindergarten...why can't we have brand new iBooks for all the kids?

I don't know how or why...but tonight I realized it isn't Living Sinus my nearly 5 year old is studying in school. Rather, she's studying Living Science.

Now, if only I could figure out what the hell she means when she says she likes 'Smoking crack in the bathroom.'

Ah, kids!

::: posted by Melissa at 9:47 PM

Up in the attic today, I found our engagement photos.

Yes, they're photo booth shots, and yes we used them for our engagement party invitations...I'll show you those sometime. This was before we had our friend Joe.

::: posted by Melissa at 7:59 PM

Where Neurosis Lives

Outfitting Very Small Brides Since 2003!
(also a lovely wedding keepsake)
Miss Periwinkle



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