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2 kids. Memories of Wolf and Boo. Many dear friends. Three siblings. Two parents. Samarra the crazy dog. The Player and Pi the Cat. I love you all!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Have Finkle Will Travel

I don't know what a Finkle is, but this semi driver definitely is dedicated to his, or is one, or is transporting one.  Saw this on I-70 in Ohio.

 
A couple other highlights of the trip included:
 
1.  Great views of the pandas at the zoo...just two days before the female went into estrus and the indoor part of the exhibit was closed for hanky-panky or artificial insemination.  Depending on the quality of the hanky-panky.  Those zoo biologists have such good jobs!
 
 
 
 
2.  Seeing one of Sisi's heroine's airplanes:
 
Now it's quiz time:
 
Which of these is from the Zoo?  Which of these is from the National Gallery?  And which of these was waiting for us when we got home?
 
A.
 

B. 
 
and finally C.
 
 
Good luck! 
 
We arrived home safe and sound.  I will probably not choose to drive 13 hours again straight through until at least one of the kids can share the driving.  Since they couldn't share the driving, they got a chance to share in the clean-up:
 
 
and there was some of the 9" of snow still left for us to see, though it was a bit of a let-down:
 
 
at least the kids didn't have to shovel when we got home!!!
 
 
 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The District of Washington

License plate from DC seen today with motto on the bottom edge "Taxation Without Representation."  True.  But is that the district motto, for real?  Inquiring minds want to know.

The kids think that DC should be called DW instead, not wanting any homage to Cristobal Colon, a.k.a. Christopher Columbus, to be present in our governmental monikers.  Washington, D.W. just doesn't sound right to old ears, though.  Just sayin'.

We have visited the Air and Space Museum, the National Gallery of Art, the National Zoo, and the Natural History Museum in the past 3 days.  We are all somewhat overstimulated.  Today J-dude reached a new level of overwhelmed crankiness from which he is now recovering.  Sisi is still soaking stuff in like crazy.  I just have sore feet. 

Tomorrow, our last day of sightseeing, is still up for grabs a bit.  It looks like we will go back to the Zoo to see a few exhibits we missed.  And then...who knows.  Certainly we will watch some more of March Madness on our 7000 TV channels at the fancy schmancy hotel where we are staying.

Speaking of this hotel, it is a cut above my usual price-range and service level, and kind of a fun treat for me.  We have a little studio with kitchennette, king bed and sofa bed.  Free breakfast and 4 nights of free dinner as well!  Indoor pool, a kids room with ping-pong table, and very friendly staff.  I feel happily spoiled.

Friday we will head home to The Player, Three-Point, and Samarra.  And maybe some snow still on the ground!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Testing testing one two three-point-one-four

On Pi Day a scrawny hungry cat arrived at our kitchen door meowing for all his scrawny hungry self-worth.  He was invited in, fed, and decided to stay.  Once fed he seemed to immediately triple in size.  He summoned all kinds of energy to fend off our nosy and playful Samarra who barked and jumped and pestered him to chase her. 

So finally he did with hissing and claws and ears back.

She loved it. 

The humans haven't been quite as thrilled with the noise level of the play-territory-establishment-fights, but we decided to give it a chance.

We gave him a name (Pi, of course).  He got his bonbons removed (Sisi's term for neutering).  He got his rabies and distemper shots.  He is recuperating here in the lower level of our household while the playful and nosy canine is kept upstairs.  If they can eventually learn to get along then he may be a keeper.  If not, we have a very adorable cat with a great name who has all his shots to share with a lucky family.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

The Surface Area of a Family

It's been an interesting time here at the Hummus Household.  Cold viruses are living here among us.  The dog is having some kind of crazy shadow-and-light chasing phase that seems worse at dusk.  We miss our cat.  The kids have tolerated standardized testing beyond what would be allowed by the Geneva Convention. 

J-dude is trying to figure out the surface area of various bizarre shapes.

I think being one of the youngest kids in your class, getting put in a math class that essentially skips a year of math and throws you forward (based on previous years' torture test results), adjusting to junior high, adjusting to having laptop computers of your own for school, and having an old mom who is a math whiz....well, that just has to stink.

He's struggling in lots of ways.  I wish I had a magic wand.

By the way, it's Pi day...3-14, as in 3.14 the value of pi (rounded to 2 decimal places of course).

He's also sneezing, a sign that the cold virus is thinking of taking up a vacation rental property in his schnozz.

We are learning as we go.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Hard to Watch

This weekend we had a veritable film festival at our house, due to 2 of us being too sick to do anything except lie on the couch and stare at the TV screen.  We watched a favorite oldie (A League of their Own), a kid-appropriate homage to horror films (Frankenweenie), the latest popular kids film on DVD (Wreck-it Ralph).  And we watched a documentary called Bully. 

Bully is a film that everyone with kids in junior high or about to go to junior high should watch.  It is painful to watch.  And yet very important to watch and to discuss with your kids. 


The film follows the story of 5 families who have kids that are or were being bullied.  Two of the kids committed suicide.  One of the kids tried to committ suicide 3 times.   One of the kids fought back and ended up in jail because of it.  One of the kids and her family decide to move to a bigger town/city to avoid being bullied because she is gay.  One of the vice-principals interviewed is so clueless as to be dangerous.  The film-makers had to stop making the documentary and show footage to a kid's parents and school system to protect him.  Kids bullied one boy on the school bus even with the filmakers right there filming.


Here is the trailer:


Bullying seems to be accepted as normal behavior in some schools.  I am grateful that I live where that is not the case, at least not yet.

But I will definitely be keeping my eyes and ears more open from here forward.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Smashing Picard

 
I found this mug for 49 cents at The Mission Mart.  I thought it would be great to break it up for a mosaic.
 


What?  you say...smash this mug with Picard on it?  Perish the thought!

Oh wait ... it's okay...here is the other side:
 
Ok, damaged goods.  So I got out my trusty little hammer  (really a little hammer, not just a colloquial "little" hammer)
 
 
 
and I wrapped the damaged goods in a towel and here is what happened:
 
 
I boldly went where no mosaicist (?) has gone before...I smashed Jean Luc Picard! 
 
I will put him back together with Data and Beverly on a Mosaic Coming to Theaters er Blogs Soon!
 
 
 
 

Friday, March 8, 2013

Goodbye to Boo

Rest in peace sweet Boo Radley, a.k.a Boobah, The Health Inspector, The Booster, and just plain Boo.  I will miss your gentle pats on my head at 3 a.m., your independent outdoor nature, they way you grabbed our ankles when you wanted attention, and your ability to make The Player very happy.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Dog Gone Birds!!

My parents were here for a weekend visit.  While they were here we did a little bird watching out the kitchen window.  There was some debate about what a phoebe looks and sounds like.  And some confusion about whether the bird we saw at the feeder was a chickadee or phoebe.  I wasn't confused, actually.  I was completely clueless.  But my mom, my daughter, and The Player had an informed discussion about the topic.  I sat idly by until I remembered the web sites that have bird sounds...so I opened up my trusty laptop and started searching.  The dog and I had a great time listening to online bird sounds.  The dog listening to the bird sounds was even more entertaining than  the debate in the kitchen.  It looked something like this:
 
 
Actually it looked exactly like this:
 
 
There was bewildered searching for that sound...is it behind the computer?  Below? Inside? 
 
In the kitchen the decision was that the bird was a chickadee.  Out in the living room we never did figure out where that derned bird was hiding.