Sunday, January 4, 2009

Sunday Sound Out

I can't believe it's that time already - the time of the week where I answer your most pressing questions.

With 6 wonderful, loving, concerned children how do you go to the bathroom alone...IF EVER!
It's not so much the going to the bathroom alone that's a problem. It's the constant knocking on the door and, "Moooom, so & so is bugging me!" that I can't seem to get rid of. I use ear plugs now.

what video camera do you use to film those precious moments of the kids? Is it the flip you had in your purse?
I usually use my regular camera to video tape small segments. I use the Flip now and then too. It's very compact and easy to take along, but it doesn't zoom very much so I can't get close shots with that.

And ummm where did those close up pictures [before and afters of Savannah's teeth] come from? Were those from the ortho

Dawn, I'm having my second annual giveaway for a free caricature on my blog. Would you mind giving me a mention on one of your blogs?
Oh crud! I'm sorry I forgot about this, Rick! Everyone, head over to Rick's blog, Organized Doodles, and enter to win a drawing done by him! For those who don't know, Rick did my "old woman in a shoe" drawing that used to be the header on my blog. It's now one of the featured pictures on my virtual refrigerator. He included each kid and and personalized it. Awesome, huh? Now, go check out his blog right now (contest ends this evening!) and enter to win your very own!

Do boys ever really learn to use their brain? I mean really?
Nope. They don't.

I'm going to give you the psychological reason for this kind of behavior that I learned in my psychopathology class last term. Boys do dumb stuff.
There ya go! That about sums it up! :)

"At the age of 10, my entire fifth grade class went to a soup kitchen, a non-profit organization helping feel homeless people five days a week." So helping "feel" homeless people is good?? lol..
Oh my gosh, how on earth did I miss this??? Oh, I'm slipping. I'm so disappointed in myself. :::shaking head:::

And just so ya know. I'm not from Wisconsin and I say "soda." Actually most of the country does say, "soda." There is something wrong with people who say, "pop." :P
Just the really cool people say, "Pop". ;)

I live in WI (2 hours from the Dells), I do say "soda", but not once in my life have I said "yah, hey der"
And there you have it, folks. One of the 12 people in Wisconsin who do not say, "Yah hey der".
Just kidding. We're from IL, so we're required by law to tease people from WI just as they're required to tease us. But it's also a law that people from IL have to vacation/camp/swim/ski in Wisconsin. We head there several times a year. :)

That skin on fire thing doesn't sound right to me! Was there too much chlorine in the pool? Do the suits look bleached out?
I think the chlorine levels were probably fine. I'm sure a big place like that is good at properly maintaining the pools. I think some people are more sensitive than others to the reaction of the chlorine on the bacteria in pools. As I get older, I'm more and more grossed out by public pools. It's like bathing with a few hundred strangers. Ewww. I have to shove that little tidbit to the back of my head in order to jump in.

Whatever happened to the banana that Clay made a souvenier out of?
This banana?

I'm glad to hear it was an inside park. Reading your Twitters I kept getting images of a water park in Wisconsin winter and shivering. :)
Uhhhh yeah. This is how you swim outside in Wisconsin in January...

Actually, the hot tubs led to outdoor pools that were open so the kids did swim outside in Wisconsin in January.

Billy Ray Cyrus? You mention his name in passing with no details? What's up with that???!!!
LOL! I'm sorry. I forget that not everyone follows my Twitter stream. I Twittered that we'd seen Billy Ray Cyrus's look-alike at the waterpark. I was just joking on my blog. It was only a guy who thought he was Hannah Montana's dad. I SO wish I'd gotten a picture of him (mullet, cheesy goatee and all!)

the inside of the park with the giant wave pool

the inside of one of the other parks


I know it looks like she has to pee, but actually she was standing there saying, "I cold! I cold! I cold!"

See the water coming out of Clay's mouth? This is how you get diarrhea - drink disgusting pool water. It's just a matter of time now...


the gang

the ice rink (parking lot) of the hotel we stayed at last night

We had a ton of fun at Wilderness with our friends. We love camping/vacationing with them! Jen, Chris, Maxito, Brandon, Sean, and Em, you guys are the BEST!!! But I wasn't all that impressed with the Wilderness. Housekeeping stunk. They didn't clean our rooms, empty the coffee pot, bring more towels or anything. I think they just made the beds. They seemed understaffed for the number of guests and parking was a nightmare. Overall, although the water parks were cool and the kids loved them, the hotel was "eh". I'll admit that there were plenty of lifeguards and they did seem pretty attentive. The food there was pretty gross (I had a chicken salad sandwich with hair the first day. BARF!) and overpriced. Thankfully, we brought food, ordered pizza one night and went out for a couple other meals.
The Holiday Inn Express we stayed at last night to avoid driving home in an awful ice storm, was wonderful, on the other hand. It was just a Holiday Inn, but they checked us in quickly, especially considering we didn't have reservations and there were several people who pulled off the highway and were looking for a room. We changed rooms a couple times because of Joe misunderstandings and they were great about that. The beds were comfortable, they brought up our requested cot right away, and the pillows were bigger than maxi-pads (unlike the Wilderness). We called housekeeping to ask for more towels and the guy apparently teleported to our room because he was there in less than 5 minutes! The rooms were nice and clean and they offered a big complimentary breakfast complete with beverages, omelettes, sausage, biscuits & gravy, cinnamon rolls, waffles, cereal, etc.

And (here's the kicker) our room at the Holiday Inn Express was less than half of our room at The Wilderness!
I've decided I'm going to install a lazy river that runs around my house this summer. That's my plan.
I forgot to mention! Manic Mommy is holding her second annual blood drive now through February 28! Go HERE to check out the details! By donating blood, not only will you be helping others, but you'll have the chance to win several prizes. The grand prize winner will receive luxury accommodations for six days, five nights at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort in Florida! How cool is that?!


Cookie said...

OMG! I can't believe that I made the SSO 2 weeks in a row (First with the shredded cheese on baby Jesus and then with my soda vs pop (and we all know that soda is correct and pop is just wrong)). Now I really do feel like a celebrity. I'm sure the Today show will be calling any minute!

oh and GO EAGLES!!!!

Anonymous said...

I have to disagree with the comment that most of the country says "Soda". They do not, nor do they all say "pop". Here in Texas, as in a lot of the south, pop is something a balloon does, and soda is used to clean wine stains. Coke, diet coke, dr pepper, sprite, pepsi, etc. are collectively referred to as "cokes". Make no real sense, but it's sort of like Kleenex can be any kind of tissue.

Rick said...

Thanks Dawn. You're a friend - a bunch of the gang has been popping over and signing up in time. Your help has put me over the top of my goal.

Stay Tooned


Lisa said...

LOVE the waterpark pix! That Brooklyn sure is a cutie pie! My best friend works for a company headquartered just outside of Green Bay. He went to a training deal last year and called me up when he got to his hotel....." YOU WILL NOT BELIEVE THIS!!!! THERE'S A WATERPARK INSIDE MY HOTEL!!!!!". We laughed ourselves silly for at least 15 minutes over this. I mean, we live in COW-LEE-FOR-NEE-YAH (said in my very best "Governator" accent), so the idea is just a little foreign to us.... LOL!

Jerri Ann said...

Ok, I have a few things to say here...I'm sure you aren't familiar with me or my blog but..I've always got my trap running for some reason.

Anyway, my first thought is, I don't say soda or pop. I say coke. Conversation:

Me: I want a coke.
Husband: What flavor of coke?
Me: Dr. Pepper (or Sprite)

sometimes it goes like this:

Me: I want a coke.
Husband: What flavor of coke?
Me: Coke coke that's what I want, a coke....

I'm southern, maybe that's why...but so is my husband and I make his eyes twirl when I tell him I want a coke and then say, I mean a Dr. Pepper coke.

Second, we were given advice last year about which stands for vacation rentals by owner and we will never ever travel again using hotels. We've gone to the beach, the Gulf of Mexico, 3 times since then, stayed in 3 different places and all 3 have been absolutely wonderful. One of my favorite parts is we have a full kitchen and we usually only eat one meal a day out and that way we can eat where we want to instead of having to cut back so much in the food department. Another biggee for me is that I can wash our swimsuits daily or at least run them through the rinse cycle of the washing machine in the condos so they don't fade. And, finally, the last day we are on vacation is always reserved for RESTING. We've taken so many vacations that we need a vacation when we got home to get over the vacation that our new rule started about 2 1/2 years ago and that was that "the last day of vacation is for resting". We don't sight see or anything on that last day.

And, the trips we've taken to the beach, while we hung out by the pool and were simply back and forth, in and out of the condo, I did all of our laundry. So, when we got home, all I had to do was put the clothes out of the suit cases into the closet or dressers. That part really rocks.

We have been able to get huge condo's, one big enough for the 4 of us plus a friend and her 4 kids but we usually do it in the early off-season but we can get a week in a 2 bedroom totally maxed out, all services provided for $600 or so.

We've had smaller places for cheaper rates but that was an awesome deal I mentioned above.

We just returned from Gatlinburg Tenn where I used to get our place. Of course, being the talker that I am, I spoke with several people while standing in lines and no one, not one person we met was able to beat the deal we got. Out of the 4 or 5 families I talked to, most were paying double what we paid and for less.

We paid $70 a night for a 1 bedroom condo, no washer and dryer in this one and we had to carry our own sheets but other than that.....the people we talked to were in hotel rooms, some with and some without little bitty fridges and microwaves while we had a full kitchen and one of the family's had a double room for $130 but the others were all paying more than that.

Then, we were planning to leave on NY Day and when we saw the traffic, I called the lady who owned the condo, asked her if she had someone coming in that day and she said no. I told her the situation and asked if we could stay. I told her I would mail her another check for the extra day. She said for me not to bother, it was going to be just sitting there empty that night anyway and not to worry about it.

And, you think there probably isn't someone in some of the places you would like to go but these condos are everywhere, I mean everywhere.

So, order yourself a coke, any flavor coke you like, and then peruse the for a place next time....I promise you won't be diappointed.

ClistyB said...

I know the trip was a gift from the inlaws so you had no obligation to review the Dells, but I think they owe ya a night or two on them (once the rashes subside!)for the publicity.
Ya even had me looking at their website, and I live clear out in Utah!
#2 Didn't the inlaws get a little ticked that it took so long for you to use the passes?
#3 How about a countdown clock to the release of your book? Maybe not now, but as it gets within weeks...

Dawn said...

Hey Clisty,
My parents gave the kids the money for the trip. I don't think they were upset that it took us a year to get there. They knew we had a lot of stuff going on this past year.
And my web designer had already thought to put a countdown clock on my website! Great minds think alike, I guess. :)

Anonymous said...

there's a whole country north of the 49th parallel that says "pop", not "soda". trust me there is nothing wrong with us!

Marti said...

Are you sure the rash is not bed bug bites from the hotel room? Hoping it is nothing and has cleared up by now, but it was the first thing that came to mind when you described the hotel fiasco.

Michelle said...

Ahhh, the Holiday Inn Expresses! They're my favorite hotels when traveling with family and/or on business in the boondocks. They're great -- except for the ones that are converted properties ;)

Again - glad you made it home safely!

Liz's Random Thoughts said...

We in the wonderful Pacific Northwest say pop. Not soda nor soda pop. Its pop. :)
Now heres the question...why the heck are there so many different names of pop?
Maybe we should just call it as we want it. Instead of 'hey want a can of pop?'
Go 'hey want a can of either, MT Dew, Code Red Mt Dew, Diet Mt Dew, DR Pepper, Diet Dr Pepper, Root Beer, Diet Root Beer, Coke, Diet Coke, Diet Coke caffeine free, Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Diet Pepsi caffeine free, Sprite, Sprite Zero.....or maybe not....

jennyonthespot said...

Holy cow, do you know how long it took you to write that post? Do you? I am going to start calling you "Bionic Woman"

BTW, what does "bionic" mean?

Happy New Year!

Anonymous said...


Next time you go to the Dells, go to the's 100 times better than Wilderness. We just went over Christmas and it was great. They have a new big indoor theme park and just one HUGE waterpark with stuff for little ones and big kids (like yourself). Plus, they have a Damon's restaurant on site, and other restaurants that looked good. They also have a cute little pottery shop for kids to paint their own pottery. Ask for a room near the main lobby elevators and you won't have to walk 1000 miles to get to the attractions within the hotel. It's little pricey, but worth it, especially now that your makin' the big bucks with your new found fame! Check 'em out at

~Andi in WI

Anonymous said...

well, we swim outside all year in Iceland :D

It's really nice, just a tiny bit cold but the water's warm.

On Stage said...

Sorry to hear the Wildnerness housekeeping was poor. We went last summer and stayed at Glacier Bay- time shares at the Wilderness resort. My sister rented the time share through E-Bay. She got an incredible price! The condo was awesome!!! Three very clean (as in spotless) bedrooms, full kitchen, whirlpool tubs, huge walk-in showers and a fireplace. We brought our own food which saved lots of $$$.

If you go back, try E-Bay... totally worth it!

As far as Wisconsin, I remember a song on the radio one of the Chicago stations used to play.... "Hey there bratwurst head, have yourself a beer. Hey there bratwurst head, drive your old John Deere!"

mJ said...

hahaa...i know this is 5 days late, but..HAPPY 2009!!!

ive been reading your blog for...2 years since i found the pokemon post by accident. yay. and i was...18 then! haha

i was wondering if your book is available here in Singapore? [it's a country in south east asia btw]

take care!!!

Anonymous said...

And you were complaining at how expensive Disney was?!! Now you see that you get what you pay for. Disney is actually an awesome value for all the entertainment value that you get.

Julie Sturgeon said...

Soda, pop, Coke ... I just call it caffeine.


Anonymous said...

I'm from WI, and what you are describing is a "Sheboygan Accent."
Typically you'll such phrases as "ya hey, youse guys" or "dis, dat, deese and dose." I agree, it is a law on the books somewhere about giving flatlanders a hard time at every opportunity... "at least we don't have to pay to drive on crummy roads!"
My family loves waterparks. I've heard the Kalahari is great. We weren't crazy about the Wilderness either. If someone gets separated from your party, the place is so big you won't find them until Spring! We literally bumped into someone we thought was a bear in the wave pool there. It turned out to be just a really hairy guy. Nothing like long back hair swaying in the waves to make you lose your lunch! We like the Tundra Lodge in Green Bay or the Lodge at Cedar Creek in Wausau. Both are clean, reasonable and family friendly.

Alicia From De said...

Ahhh the on going soda vs pop dispute! I am from Delaware and we all say Soda here, in fact the majority of the east coast says Soda,the middle of the countrysays pop, and the west coast calls it SodaPop. Gotta Love it,LOL

Anonymous said...

and the Deep South calls it 'Cold Drink'! HA!!
But my X-In-Laws who lived all their lives in Northern WI said "Yah hey der", esp my FIL - but then they were German (him) and Dutch (her) and barely spoke English!! LOL!!
from Sparkle

Keri Wyatt Kent said...

Just my opinion, Dawn, but Kalahari has nicer rooms and a bigger water park. When the kids were younger we used to go there with about 30 families from our neighborhood. Very fun.

Anonymous said...

I agree, we didn't like Wilderness much and we go every year. We prefer Kalahari and Wolf Lodge. Try those next time and also hit the road early, it makes a world of difference!

mommeeof9 said...

One of my fellows soldiers when I was in the Army 20 years ago called it "sodie pop" He was from West Virginia, so maybe it is a regional thing.

We call it soda, but I grew up all over the country, so I don't really have an accent. Hubby grew up near Binghamton, NY and has a slight New England accent.

Jayne V. said...

Hi, Dawn,

My kids developed the same itchy-rashiness when we went up to Great Wolf Lodge ion the Dells! I didn't even think about the chlorine causing it. My two are little, so we thought maybe the lifejackets were to blame.

Love your blog!

Candi said...

Re: the first question of your Sunday Sound out. "With six loving, concerned children how do you go to the bathroom alone"... my first thought was, after 3 children and 2 surgeries, when I have to go NOBODY in my family gets in the way if they value their lives. It's like Moses when the Red Sea parted. Everybody is running to get out of the way!

Angie said...

I had to throw in my 2 cents about the soda/pop/coke debate. Linguists have done surveys and mapped out the usage of these terms across the US. No, really. Check it out: I'm from a coke region, myself. When I worked at Taco Bell in High school I took orders like this:

Customer: I'd like a nachos bell grande and a coke.
Me: What kind?
Customer: Sprite

Of course, when I loved to central Illinois I had to make a conscious switch to "soda". Didn't figure that out until my fourth coke that was actually Coke instead of rootbeer.

Anonymous said...

I live in "pop" territory but babysat a couple of summers out of state, apparently in "soda" territory when I was younger, somehow soda stuck. I get teased alot saying soda in pop land.

I bet the dry winter air had much to do with your skin issues on your vacation. I used to be on swim team in high school, it was in winter & it really bothered me then too. We have a pool in the backyard and it doesn't bother me all summer. And, yes we do treat it with chlorine.

franby said...

dawn! Your kids are too cute.

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