Friday, September 13, 2013

7 Quick Takes - We Are not Good Role Models

Some Quick Takes.  Seems this week was full of incidents to make us look like bad role models in the realm of parenting.  Take heed.

*************** 1 ***********
So, I'm beginning to think this rural, fake farmer lifestyle we have adopted may be scarring the children.  Even if it isn't, it most certainly is training them to be the scary outcasts when they get older. 

Most days at pick-up, the little boys and I get out of the van and visit the two giant dogs, Diesel and Izzy, who live in the yard next to the school.  For the past couple of weeks, we have not seen even a glimpse of the "smaller" dog.  Today, Turken began wondering where she had gone.  The only solution he could come up with...completely seriously...really, he was deadpan...

"Maybe Diesel ate Izzy."

Yes, our dogs have proven themselves to be killing machines in the way they dispose of every creature which enters our yard.  For the record, Roy the Wonderdog is NOT cannibalistic.

Gotta say, I'm a wee bit nervous that this will be his yearbook picture someday.

Why, yes, this is Turken's face on Pugsley Addam's body.  A big THANK YOU to Anna at My Life and Kids for the tutorial.  I will get better at it with practice.  And the fun I will have...

*************** 2 *************

In my blogger dashboard, there is a section where I can see the stats of how people found my blog.  Sometimes the search words are odd, sometimes they are spot on.

One stat that doesn't surprise me, based on the fact that most of my readers first started following me because of this one post, is the number of people who find me by searching "pig waterer".   Every single week since I wrote about the day our pig drowned itself, at least a few people have gotten here with that search.

Lately, a lot of people have been finding my blog by searching "miley cyrus chicken butt".   I wrote a post to my boys in response to things I'd seen written about Miss Cyrus, and you know I've written plenty about chickens.  I don't remember ever saying the word "butt", although I have alluded to it plenty of times. 

How, Google, do you put that all together to send these people to me? 

If they want to see "miley cyrus chicken butt", you should be sending them to Lizzi.  She's the one who actually posted miley and chicken butts in the same post!

**************** 3 **************
I know you've all been waiting anxiously for the update on Fort Knox: Chicken Pen Edition  A couple of nights ago, COW was out there making the pen super-duper impenetrable.  (Yes, he climbed on the roof of the coop and dropped into the pen, seeing how we didn't put a door in.  Doors are penetrable!) 

Really, all he did was put up the last of our netting, then crossed his fingers AND his toes.

The result...

This will keep them in, unless they manage to fit through those holes where the nets come together.  If they get through those, there is a chance they will hang themselves.

See how good and stretched to the limit those nets are?  What do you think will happen when we get our first snow storm and 8 inches of snow lands on them? 

When he was finished, he realized he was really stuck.  Poor COW.   He couldn't get out.  The net stretched so far, I couldn't even help him by giving him a ladder.  When he started talking about squeezing through the little chickens' door, I begged him to wait until I got my camera.  He refused, and just as he was about to duck his head in, I saved his sorry rear.  (Ooh, I almost said "butt")  All he had to do was take the fence off a few nails and he could walk right out.  (I figured it out when I had to get a chicken back into the pen, which happens to be the day we discovered Fort Knox wasn't exactly Fort Knoxified.  (See how it all came around?))

****************** 4 *************
Each week, I write little notes for myself about what to include in my 7 quick takes.  This week I wrote the word "heat" since for the last few days Indianapolis has been having an identity crisis, thinking it was Africa.  Later, while driving, I thought of something quite clever and hilarious to write about the heat, but didn't write it down.  I have no idea what clever and hilarious thing I am supposed to tell you right now, but I promise, when I remember, at a time and place where I can write it down, (always dicey, as I usually remember things while in the shower or driving) I will let you all in on it.
************ 5 ***********

You know how when you were a kid you took that annual, state-wide, standardized test?  (Ours was the IOWA test of basic skills.  (I can remember the name of a test I took 30 years ago, yet I can't remember what clever things I had to write about "heat".  Of course.)  Each year, your parents would get an envelope with the results.  That's not how they do things anymore.  It's all computerized.  The parents are given a sheet and a password to look the scores up.

Well, when we got our paper at the end of the last school year, the site hadn't updated yet, so I couldn't see their scores.  I promptly threw away the paper and forgot all about it.  My kids do well in school, so I wasn't really worried.

Yesterday, the middle school English teacher pulled Buttercup to the side and told her that on last year's test, Buttercup scored the highest score she has ever seen.  This woman has been teaching for about 25 years.

Later, the principal pulled Buttercup out of line when her class walked by the office.

Principal:  "Did you and your parents look at your scores from the ISTEP test last year?"

Buttercup:  No.  I don't think they even have the password.

P:  Well, you scored a perfect score on the Language Arts portion.  It is a rare day that we see that happen in any grade, let alone 7th.


P:  If your parents can't find the paper, have your mom email me.  I'll give her the password.

B:  OK.

Guess who is going to have to email the principal. 

I'm thinking something along these lines...

Dear Mrs. Principal,
I am the slacker parent who didn't look up her daughter's score on the ISTEP.  Seems we should have.  Will you please send us the password so we can see it?  And perhaps send the ones for our other kids, too?  That would be great.
No, Buttercup wasn't adopted.
Have a lovely day,

**************** 6 **************

It rained.

Cuckoo and I played in it.

In our pajamas.

So did some of the chickens.  They were cool cucumbers when it was simply sprinkling, but when it really started to pour, they lost their minds.  I realized that the author of "Chicken Little" did not do the hilarity of chickens who think the sky is falling justice.

Sorry, I only had my big camera and not my phone.  No video.

****************** 7 **************

Lastly, a cautionary tale.

Each year for Christmas, we get Giant some sort of calendar or book which has a new fact or joke each day.  Last year, my mom got it for him instead.   We didn't think anything of it.  Until this week.

I found a page torn out of it for August 15 on my dresser.  (I'm guessing it was there on the morning of August 16, but I just noticed it this week.)  Turns out, she had gotten him a Whoogles calendar of funny internet searches.  (red flag #1)  He had left that particular day for me to read because it was a search for "why does my mom fart so much".  Haha.  Funny. 

But then I read the commentary underneath.  There were a few inappropriate words in the description.  (red flag #2)

I immediately went to Giant's room to have a closer look at his calendar.  The search for that day (his birthday, no less) was "I want to have a baby in..." and the description read, "Want to know the real reason she's no longer interested in sex?"

His birthday was September 11.  It took us NINE MONTHS to figure out he had a calendar never meant for children.  Fortunately, he always keeps the days he ripped off, so I grabbed the lot of them and will be going through to see what kinds of talks he and I will have to have.

I'm just praying he didn't take any that he thought were extra funny to school. 

Dear Mrs. Principal,
I am so sorry about the "joke" Giant brought to school and showed around the classroom.  No, talk about vasectomies is not appropriate for 6th graders to be discussing.  See, though, it wasn't our fault.  His grandma gave him the calendar.  Know that she got an earful, but you are welcome to call her at 555-5555 to give her a list of better gift choices.  Really, we would greatly appreciate it.  She's terrible at giving gifts. 
Yes, I am her biological child.
Have a lovely day,

Moral of the story:  Confiscate any and all gifts given by a relative until you have thoroughly inspected them. 

Just like Halloween, when you inspect for razors or other dangerous materials in the candy. 

OK, we don't do that either.

Like I said, don't follow our example.  On anything.

Have a lovely day!


  1. I can cope with the weird-ass pictures of your kids as members of the Addams family. I can cope with your bizarre lack of door on the new chookpen. I can even cope (nay, admire) you leaving COW in there, even though you totally knew the way out.

    I can forgive you not bothering to find out that Buttercup's the most incredible scholar of amazingness, and I can let you off the hook for not remembering what hilarity you were gonna write about the heat.

    I don't mind that you let Giant have a crappy, adult calendar (I daresay it's been a fascinating education for the lad...) and that you let the kids have razor-laden Halloween candy.

    But dancing in the RAIN?! The cold, wet, nasty, damp, miserable RAIN?!?!!?

    I'm outta here! That's just taking it a step too far.

  2. I love your email to the principle. Especially the part about Buttercup not being adopted. I laughed out loud.

    Have a fabulous day and weekend. :)

    1. Glad you liked it. Wish I didn't have to send it. :)

  3. Ohhh, the calendar is priceless!! Love it!

    Indeed, I sometimes wonder if we scar the kids for life, that they will be weird, nerdy kind of kids. But then again, it will be their choice whether they want to game with us or rather put on make-up with their friends ;-)

    1. I'm glad you liked it.

      We can only do so much. I am learning right quick that the older they get, the more choices they have to make on their own.

  4. Haha! Great post! And congrats to Buttercup - that is so awesome!

    P.S. - I think you should put together a gift-giving guide for your relatives. And then maybe post it. Because it would be hilarious!

    1. Thanks!

      Oh, that is a great idea. I will put it on the list of things to do at Christmastime. (And thanks for the vote of confidence.)

  5. Please tell Buttercup that she is awesome...I know she would want to know what I think; she lives and dies by my comments. :)

    And why not just go ahead and address all issues in one need to clog up the principal's email with multiple ones from you. LOL Oh the calendar...too funny. And not really...but kind of because it's not my kiddo. :) That's the kind of friend I am.

    1. I will. She does. :)

      I expect nothing less from my BFF. :)

  6. I was going to write something clever and hilarious but......I can't remember. ;P

    You crack me up. Congrats to Buttercup! Cuckoo is SO stinking cute!!!

    1. Hardy, har, har. :)

      I'll let her know.

      It's actually pretty dangerous he's so cute. It's really hard to discipline that face and personality.

  7. I am thankful for the dictation feature on my iphone, so I can record ideas. Unfortunately, I usually only record part of the idea, thinking that will help me jog my memory for the rest....

    I took the Iowa Test of Basic Skills, too. But I didn't live in Iowa. (Congrats, Buttercup!)

    My brother has given my son completely inappropriate gifts since he was in late-middle school. I'm so happy....

    Chicken Little reference? Brilliant!

    1. Oops! How'd I miss this? Sorry about that, Dear Dyanne.

      See, that's my problem, too! I have to write the entire post when I think of it, as little notes aren't cutting it anymore.

      I took the test in Ohio.

      I think it is a brother's job to do so. This past Christmas, my "leader in his Mormon stake" brother gave my oldest a t-shirt that had two eggs on the front and said, "Hey, let's go get scrambled". Seems since he isn't allowed to wear such things, he gives them to my kids.

      So glad you thought so. I was quite proud of that reference, myself. :)

  8. I just want to let you know that I LOVE your blog. I found you through overholt8. You write well, and your stories are wonderful. Keep it up!

    1. Well, you just made my day! Thank you so much for letting me know you exist. :)

      And if you are a friend of Jen, you are a friend of mine.


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