Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sunday Sound Out

From Chicago, home of Abe Froman, the Sausage King, it's Sunday Sound Out with your host, the famous opera singer, Dawn Meehan! Fat lady sings - get it? Opera singer, fat lady, Dawn Meehan? No? I thought it was funny.

How did you come up with the names for your children? Are they all named after cities?
Yes, I used a copy of Rand McNally. it a tattoo on Brooklyn's head?!Austin has some really nice teeth!!!
Hee hee, yeah there was a tattoo on her head in that picture of her and Austin. I mean, there wasn't really a tattoo on her head, but I was goofing off with and put a tattoo on Brooklyn at the same time I whitened Austin's teeth. I just forgot to take the tattoo off before posting the picture.

(Yes I know this is my second comment)Your hair is to pretty! I love your hair! I also feel the need to tell you that I'm the same way about barf... Whenever my sis throws up I can't even be NEAR it or I'll throw up! Sometimes even the THOUGHT of throwing up can make me nauseous... And it does. I've actually (Thank the Lord!) not thrown up in a long time, as of now. I've got a record of about a year and a half! I'd better stay away from those Black-n-White cookies...
Wow, a compliment on my hair AND a Seinfeld reference!!! You get 48 points for that!

Still wondering who the two babies are from last week's SSO.
Oh duh! I totally forgot about that!

This one's Brooklyn (like most of you guessed)

And Miss Lexington...

and hey, when's the big 40???? soonish? You can ask that on your sunday shoutout!?!
I have no idea what you're talking about. I'm in my thirtys. MY THIRTYS, I TELL YOU!

Did I miss something? Are you getting a divorce? :/
Yes and yes. But on the bright side, I think I've finally gotten the hang of remembering to take the garbage down to the curb every week.

By the way, what differentiates a Greek fisherman cap from a regular one?
A Greek fisherman cap has the word "Greek" in it.

Have you ever noticed on America's Funniest Home Videos, that the most outlandish stunts involve the male sex?
Yep! In fact, I wrote something about that in my book. To quote my daughter, "Boys are stupid." I love my sons, but yep, they come up with some pretty stupid ideas.

B was practicing her snowboard moves by jumping of sand dunes on the beach the other day. Maybe you need to live closer to the ocean?
I agree!!!

And did you ever think you'd need to have such a rule??! :) [no snowboarding in the bedroom]
At the age of 2, Clay managed to start a golf cart and drive it into our camper. It only surprises me that I didn't have to institute this rule earlier!

Dawn, didn't you ever do anything that inventive when you were a kid?[snowboarding in my bedroom]
I don't think so. I once squirted a packet of ketchup at a girl in grade school and had to go to the principal's office. One time I chased my sister around the house with a straight pin. And once I was playing with my lamp (much more fun than my toys, I guess) and I burned a hole in my carpet with the lightbulb. I think that's about it because I was the awesomest of awesome kids. Stop laughing, Mom!

Another reason to love Target - did you know that Shaun White has a boys clothing line at Target????
No! Cool! I'll have to check it out!

I have 1 question, have you ever packed up those kids and moved houses? I'm moving across Canada soon and i have a 4yr old and a 15 mos old.. Any advice?
Nope. Not yet anyway. Not sure what will happen in the not-so-distant future though. My only advice is to take this opportunity to "accidentally lose" any annoying toys that make lots of noise and go through batteries like crazy.

OK, how to you get these statistics and how do you increase your searchability?
I use to see where my visitors come from. As far as increasing your searchability - I have no clue. Maybe write about new glasses or my glasses or her glasses or her contacts or her contact lenses or new contacts or my contacts or new contact lenses or my contact lenses.

BTW I saw your tweets and wanted to say that there IS a Barbie dog that poops. In fact the same poop is also the food. Quite disturbing. My daughter has it, but thankfully we "lost" the poop/food.
I've seen that dog. Yeah, that's not gross and disturbing at all. A dog that poops out the food so you can put it right back in the dog's mouth to poop out all over again. But now there's another one. It's some sort of potty training puppy and it comes with paper that turns yellow and brown after the dog "goes" on it.

I have a SSO question. Dear son has lost his last tooth. What do people do with their kids' teeth? Throwing them away seems callous. I worked hard to build those teeth. Saving them is also gross. When I come across that baggie with the dead teeth, I get a little chill. What have you done with them Dawn?
I made them into great, fashionable necklaces!

OK, if a baby tooth necklace isn't your style, check out the awesome designs at The Vintage Pearl! Leave a comment on my post HERE for a chance to win a $50 gift certificate from The Vintage Pearl!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

I Can't Find a Bathroom!

Do you remember your dreams? I tend to go in spurts when it comes to remembering my dreams. I'll remember vivid details about dreams for days or even weeks on end, and then I won't recall a single dream for weeks at a time. Lately, I've been remembering every detail of my dreams. Last night, I had a recurring dream. Maybe some of you have had this same one?

I dreamt that I needed to pee, but I couldn't find a bathroom anywhere. Everywhere I went, the bathrooms were full and people were waiting to use them. At one point, my friend Julie and I met another mutual friend's mom. For some reason, she was a little old lady (in real life, she is not a little old lady). This sweet, little old lady looked like she should be baking or knitting or sitting in a rocking chair with a shawl about her shoulders regaling the younguns with tales from days of yore. Instead, she sat at a table talking to us and dropping f-bombs that shocked the heck out of me and Julie. She told me it was good I was getting divorced so I could marry Doug. (I have no idea who Doug is in real life.) Just an aside here - no, I didn't have pizza, pickles, and ice cream before bed. I have no idea where this stuff comes from.

We decided we'd better get up and use the bathroom before beginning our long drive. I have no idea where we were going, but I know it was going to take a long time to get there. I couldn't find an open bathroom though. I walked in a stall, but the toilet was missing. There were people standing in lines and blocking the other stalls.

Then I saw Jonathan Merkh, the vice president of Howard Books and for some reason, I wanted to avoid him, so I ducked behind a potted plant. (Sorry Jonathan, I would never avoid you in real life. I can't control Dream Dawn.) Then I found a bathroom but the door wouldn't lock and there were tons of people standing around outside the door because there was a party going on. A girl told me that it cost $2001 to use that bathroom. I didn't believe her so I checked the price list and discovered that you could also tan in the bathroom for as little as $5.

The same girl told me that people behind a two-way mirror would make a videotape of me while I was in the bathroom. I turned around to check and see if there was indeed a two-way mirror in the bathroom. Not that I really cared, mind you. I mean, I really had to go! But when I turned around to see the mirror, I noticed there was a bed in the bathroom and a coat and three Greek fisherman caps had been left on it. I found it strange that people had left their coat and hats behind. (Yeah, it didn't phase me that it cost thousands of dollars to use the bathroom, or that people hung out behind a two-way mirror in the bathroom, or that there was a bed in the bathroom. The only strange thing was that there was a coat and a couple hats there.)

Next thing I know, I'm in the hallway of a school and it's filled with all these school desks. I saw a sign for a bathroom, but the desks were blocking the door. I pushed my way between the desks and saw Jonathan again. I quickly turned the other way so he wouldn't see me. My friend Doreen called to me. She was sitting at one of the desks. I told her I was trying to get to the bathroom, but she informed me it wasn't a bathroom. (I'll show her! It's MY dream and if I want it to be a bathroom, then it'll be a bathroom!) I didn't believe her and continued to move toward it. There were tons of drawings taped to the wall and covering the door of the bathroom, so I started pulling them off. After moving the drawings, I saw that the sign didn't say "bathroom" after all. It said, "damaged water slide" and there was just a hole in the wall and not a door to a bathroom.

This is the point when my alarm clock went off. I woke up and immediately thought, "OH MY GOSH I HAVE TO PEE!" I don't know how I made it to the bathroom in time! This is not the first time I've had a dream like this. In fact, every time I have a dream in which I have to pee, I can't find a bathroom, or all the bathrooms are out of toilet paper, or have broken doors. Then I wake up and really, really have to go! I feel so frustrated in my dreams that I can't find a darn bathroom, but I guess I should be thankful. What would ever happen if I found a perfectly acceptable, functioning bathroom in my dream? I'd probably relieve myself in bed! Oh ew! I guess it's a good thing that I go on an all-night quest for a working commode after all.

Girl World Tour Winners!

Here are the winners of the tickets to the mother/daughter event on March 2!

Laura G.

Email me HERE for details!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Weird Things People Google

I just realized I haven't done a post about the strange things people google that land them on my blog in a long, long time. Sooo, I checked my stat counter and this is what I found...

I'm 30 years old and live at parents won't let me shut the door with my date
Stop complaining. You're 30 years old and you live at home. Be happy you have a date!

jeff foxworthy anal leakage
and this brought people to my blog because...?

how to spell phenomenal

mom and boy have a very boring day
I know I google stuff like this all the time. I just love reading about boring days!

what to pack fer my 8 yer old lunch to scholl
Pack yourself! Seriously, go to school with your child. Pay attention in English class.

i'm running away
Wait for me!

how to make a pretend driver's license
also entitled - how to land yourself in jail and pay a hefty fine

testosterone surge; guy stuff
Understandable how this brought them to my MOMMYBLOG!

do you have to get approval at self checkouts for condoms
Not if you know how to use the self checkout properly. Read my tutorial!

felt marker stain removal woo hoo!
Yeah, I get pretty excited about removing stains too.

sunglasses as headband dmv picture
Hey! Some people look good with sunglasses on their heads. Some people think it's setting a fashion trend. Okay, okay, some people just forget their sunglasses are on their heads when they get their driver's license picture taken.

accidentally washed and dried cigarettes
and I thought diapers were bad

when you are bored blog
Hey now! This brought someone to MY blog??? I think I resent that.

how do you get balmex out of a carpet
a strategically placed potted plant

i can only see my 6 pack when i lie down why?
Really? How did you manage that? I can see mine all the time. Even when I shut myself in the bathroom and lock the door, they find a way in.

things you don't say to your husband
"Does this make me look fat?"

what do you do when windows movie maker has xs where the pics are supposed to be
Scream, swear, and throw the computer through the window. At least that's what I did. Although, come to think of it, it really didn't help anything.

how to tell if your a mom
Do you spend all day in a minivan driving kids here and there?
Do you find yourself humming Jonas Brothers songs?
Do you know all the characters on Phineas & Ferb?
Is your house one giant mess during waking hours?
Do you have peanut butter, macaroni & cheese, and fruit snacks in your pantry?
Have you ever uttered the phrase, "Because I said so!"?

getting rotten chocolate milk smell out of the car
Buy a new car

dont want to buy a book just want help or suggestions on how to potty train a puppy

You do realize that putting the words "buy" and "book" in there will bring up an assortment of books you can buy on dog training, yes?

i don't know the real author of this but it is what my mother and father always said to all seven of their children
Ummm, because I said so?

can't swallow a dentist
Who can?

And in the category of LESS IS MORE - Google a tenth of those words, people!...

if someone backed into my car and bent the license plate do i call my insurance company

the doctor said on the colposcopy test that it look like oreo cookie crumps with white
This one also falls into the EW category and the Learn How to Spell category

new glasses or my glasses or her glasses or her contacts or her contact lenses or new contacts or my contacts or new contact lenses or my contact lenses
Or wow, or speechless, or oh wow, or seriously???

time to come out, he told me & i said i'd only been in for 6 minutes & he said that's not true. you've been in the whole day & i shrugged & said all i could remember was the last 6 minutes.

Holding A Heart I Hope Now That I Took It Out, You Will Keep It Cuz I Don't Have A Clue How To Put It Back. And If You Don't Want It Cuz It's Full Of Blood. Don't Worry Cuz I Can Wash It Off, And Put A Ribbon
Uhhhhh? What not to put on a Valentine's Day card?

Monday, February 22, 2010

The One with All the Snowboarding

Are you into the Olympics? We have Olympic fever here. The kids and I have been watching (and in some cases, REwatching) the events. Jackson especially loves the snowboarding events. He watched Shaun White win the gold medal in the half pipe at least five times. Then, being a pain-in-the-butt creative, active, athletic individual, he tried to recreate the half pipe event. In his bedroom. Yeah.

When I heard the thuds (you know, the kind of thuds that can only be made by kids launching themselves from the top bunk), I rolled my eyes and put on my headphones to drown out the noise went back to their room to see what hair-brained idea they'd cooked up this time.

Uh huh. Let me get this straight. When I ask you to pick up the games scattered on the family room floor, you tell me you can't because they're too heavy. Yet, you can remove two mattresses from your beds and arrange them in a half pipe. Or more like half a half pipe. A quarter pipe, if you will. I see. Makes perfect sense.

Sure, I was mad. But more than that, I was intrigued. I was fascinated by the inner workings of a child's brain. Just why would any kid think this was a good idea??? "Why?" I asked. "Why, why, why? Why on earth did you do this? Didn't you, even for a moment, think - Mom's not gonna like this?

"Well, we put the mattresses on the floor this time instead of just jumping off so we won't get hurt," they boasted. It was as if they really believed they'd done no wrong. What's the big deal, Mom? We're playing nicely. We have cushioning in case we fall. We've got all the bases covered!

Yes, I can see you're hard at work, perfecting your skills so you can make it to the 2018 Olympics, but did you guys happen to notice the light? Do you see anything wrong with it?

"Yeah, that was an accident," they admitted. "But it had nothing to do with the snowboarding," they quickly added. "Clay just threw his puppy up in the air and the light came off the ceiling."

"So puppies can snowboard too?" I asked.

"Noooo," they said as if I was daft. "The puppy just wanted to watch us, but he needed to be higher so he could see."

Uh huh. Makes perfect sense to me. We've since instituted a No Snowboarding in the Bedroom rule.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sunday Sound Out

From Chicago, the city that experiences blizzards, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions (just making sure you're paying attention) in the same week, it's Sunday Sound Out starring your host who is made entirely of Legos, Dawn Meehan.

What is the name on Brooklyn's cake? I know she has a nickname but can't think of what it is? Oata? (and can't remember the story behind that?) :)
Yeah, it's Oata. The kids call her that. I can't for the life of me, remember how it started though. I asked her if she wanted me to write Brooklyn or Oata on the cake and she said Oata. They have all had goofy nicknames over the years. For the longest time, Lexi called Austin Barney. She just couldn't say Austin. (Lexi had some big-time speech problems and spoke Lexinese until she was 3 1/2.)

Oh and I have a question, usually how long does it take for your family to finish the HUGE cake you made?
The leftover cake sits on the kitchen counter and every time one of the kids walks by, they stick their fingers in it and eat a glob of icing. I actually don't even like cake. So, basically, the cake sits there until I can't take the icing crumbs on the counters and floors anymore, and then I throw it away.

I'm curious, how do you get your signature at the bottom of your blogs?
I signed a piece of paper, scanned it, and sent it to my web designer. And now, it just shows up whenever I write a post!

I hate to ask, but how did you do the manuscript? Couldn't you just print another copy at home.
I suppose so, but it would've taken me much longer to do it myself and would've probably cost $20 in paper and ink. Besides, if I hadn't gone to Kinkos to get it copied, I wouldn't have seen the Mel Gibson look-alike. By-the-way, he didn't appreciate it when I told him I loved him in Lethal Weapon. I may have freaked him out a bit, in fact.

So you didn't type it [manuscript] on your computer? You can save it like 50 ways that way.....
Well, see, this is how it worked. I typed it on my computer. I saved it. I sent it to my editor. She printed it out and made some changes in pencil to the hard copy. She sent it to the copy editor who made some changes in a different color pencil to the hard copy. They sent it back to me. I made some changes in my spiffy green pencil to the same hard copy. Soooo, I could have Kinkos copy the manuscript and be totally done in 5 minutes, or I could spend 2 1/2 years, looking back and forth between my document and the hard copy, while noting all the various changes and incorporating them in my document. I opted to have Kinkos copy it.
Get all that? Doesn't it make you want to run out and buy the book? :D

I'm a long time reader, but never comment.
Well, why not? Don't you know we bloggers love comments? We live for that kind of stuff. We're basically insecure and need dozens of strangers telling us that we're smart, funny, observant, awesome, and have shiny hair and skinny butts. Okay, well maybe the last two aren't necessary (or even true).

I'm surprised TLC's "Dirty Jobs" hasn't done an episode on the job of "Mommy" - it's the dirtiest job by far!
No kidding! I've thought that myself! Think Mike Rowe could handle being a mommy?

What a good kid Savannah is! That is one awesome daughter and sister!
Yeah, she's a keeper!

I totally get this vomit scenario. And have you had swine flu? One of the hallmarks seemed to be the kids complaining that their eyes hurt.
All 6 kids had swine flu this fall. It was fun. And by fun, I mean completely NOT FUN! Brooklyn always complains about her eyes hurting when she gets a fever. It's her "thing".

Where does one find a friend who would be willing to come over and clean THAT up? Wow, are you ever blessed!
I am blessed several times over! My sister Deb, once cleaned up after Austin when he had rotavirus and I was 48 months pregnant with Savannah. It was awful! She stepped in and cleaned everything like it was a piece of cake. I'll spare you the details of the hideousness. But she didn't even have kids at the time and she handled it way better than I ever could have!
Then my friend Karen cleaned up a huge pukefest when Jackson had rotavirus and I was 39 months pregnant with Lexington. I tried to clean him up, but ended up vomiting way more than he did to begin with. Karen stepped in and cleaned him up while I continued to cover the parking lot in technicolor splatters.
And last week, my friend Eric came by and offered to clean up barf for me.
Hmmm, you'd almost think that "vomit tolerance" was a prerequisite to being my friend.

Do you have a title for the new book yet??
Yes, yes I do! It's You'll Lose the Baby Weight and Other Lies About Pregnancy and Childbirth

You are hilarious!
I know this isn't a question, but I felt the need to include it here. Although, I don't think I'm hilarious so much as it's just funny to read about someone stepping in barf, I guess.

I love the title of this post. Was that an intentional Friends reference? (You know, since all the episode titles start with "The one...")
Yes, and stayed tuned for tomorrow's post - The One with All the Snowboarding

Oh, this never-ending illness thing. We're playing the same game over here, and it looks as though Round 14 is on, as of this morning. Alex is all wheezy and Max is coughing.
How wrong is it that I wondered how Justin was after reading this? If you know what I'm talking about here, then you may just watch a little too much kid tv also.

Wait - you're scared to eat because of the vomit germs but Savannah's taking possibly germ-infested cookies to the poor kid who's in hospital? Nooooooooo......
We only sneezed on them two or three times. Four tops.

Im sorry Dawn but I think your kids vomit more than any other kids on earth!
Nah, it just seems that way because I have so many. Think about it - if each kid threw up once a year, I'd have someone barfing every other month.

does the school not inform the kids which dances are formal and which ones aren't? it seems odd that austin wouldn't be aware of this.
Y chromosome

And speaking of the dance, Austin had a great time! He said he was really glad he went and he even danced. :) I'd love to post a picture of him with his totally cute date, but I didn't ask for permission to do that. She's beautiful and she wore a really pretty dress. She and Austin matched and looked very nice together. After her mom and I embarrassed both kids by taking a thousand pictures, they left for the dance.

About 15 minutes later, I got a call from Austin that he forgot his ID at home. He called from her phone because apparently he forgot his phone as well. I ran his ID up to the school and came back home, opened the fridge to get some pop, and saw the corsage sitting there! Ugh! I tried calling his date's cell phone to tell Austin that I'd drop the flowers off if he wanted to meet me at the front door. (I wasn't about to go inside and search for him for fear he'd actually die of supreme embarrassment.)Unfortunately, no one answered the phone, so I just ran the flowers out to the car when they dropped off Austin after the dance.

I think I need to work on Austin's gentlemanly behavior though. He didn't open the door for his date. I guess that's not too bad as long as he didn't say anything like, "Hey babe, get me some punch, will ya?" while they were at the dance. Still...

Anyway, here's a picture that he gave his okay to post.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Fashion Faux Pas

After dragging Austin out to the mall last night to shop for attire appropriate for a high school dance, I learned it was a wasted trip. Apparently, things have changed since I went to high school back in the stone age. Either that, or we just do things differently at my kids' high school, as opposed to the high school I attended. We're not all fancy schmancy around these here parts, I guess. According to my research (standing outside the high school and asking random teens what they're planning on wearing to Turnabout), this is a very casual dance. One of Austin's friends is even planning on wearing a polo shirt and shorts! I guess less than half the girls even wear dresses to this dance, and most of the boys wear casual shirts and pants without even a tie.

Can you imagine if Austin had shown up in a coat and tie while everyone else was wearing khakis and polos? He would've killed me. And he'd probably never leave the house again. He'd be a 30-year-old guy living in my basement with his cat. (Not that there's anything wrong with that...)

Sooo, it's back to the mall tomorrow to return the almost $200 shirt, tie, pants, coat combo and get something a little more casual. Man, it was so much easier picking out Savannah's 8th grade dance/graduation/confirmation dress. She found one she liked. It was cute. It wasn't sleazy. It was way cheaper than the stuff I got Austin last night. Voila!

And, on another note, please tune in tomorrow to Margaret McSweeney's Kitchen Chat. Her guest will be Marc Klaas. I know most of my readers have young children and I think this show will be helpful to all of us and give us tips on how we can help keep our kids safe.

"A mile a minute - that is how fast your child can disappear." Haunting and truthful words posted on the website for Klaas Kids. On Friday, February 19th, Margaret McSweeney will interview Marc Klaas, father of Polly Klaas who was kidnapped and murdered in 1993. As a legacy to his daughter, Marc founded KlaasKids Foundation to help stop crimes against children. Please tune in to Kitchen Chat with Margaret McSweeney Friday at 11:00 am CST!

Learn about effective ways to keep your children safe from harm and find out what you can do to help stop crimes against kids. Please tune in and call in with your questions for Marc this Friday 11-12 CST on Kitchen Chat.

What to Wear???

Poor Lexi was up all night vomiting, which means, of course, that I was up all night as well. Every time I dared to drift off to sleep, Lex would throw up again. Or Brooklyn would wake up crying that her eyes hurt, or she'd wake up coughing. Or Lex would come in my room and say something like, "Mom. Mom! Mom, are you awake?"

"I am now."

"I don't feel well," Lex moaned.

"I kinda figured that out when you threw up for the 8th time and your spleen came out. Can we go back to sleep now?"

Brooklyn seems to be feeling a little better today, but Lexi pretty much slept all day. On the bright side, this is a terrific diet for me. I can't bring myself to eat for fear that I'll get her puke germs. I want my stomach to be as empty as possible should that happen.

And Kimmy is still in the hospital. Savannah's making cookies for her right now.

Here's the post I started writing last night before Barf-O-Rama 2010 started.

So, a couple weeks ago, Austin nonchalantly informed me that a girl had asked him to Turnabout and he had said yes. I was so thrilled because

A. apparently Austin isn't so weird at school that girls completely avoid him (I guess he saves his weirdness for his brothers and sisters here at home)

B. he totally stepped out of his comfort zone to say yes and I'm really proud

C. I could blog about what an idiot I am because I have no idea what I need to do as the parent of a kid going to a dance

I'm totally new to this! I have no idea what you're supposed to do! I guess I'll be an expert by the time Brooklyn gets to high school, but Austin's my first and this is all new to me right now. So, I asked Austin, "When is the dance?"

"I dunno. In February."

What time is it? Is she arranging things because it's Turnabout, or do you need to plan things? Are any of your friends going? Are you meeting at her house? Are you guys going out to dinner before the dance? Afterward? What do you wear to these things? What color is her dress? Are you supposed to get her flowers? A wrist corsage is a normal thing to get, right? Do you need to pay for tickets in advance? Or does she pay for the tickets because it's Turnabout?"

Somewhere during the middle of my interrogation, Austin hit himself upside the head in absolute regret for ever telling me anything. I'm pretty sure he made a mental note to never go to another dance in the future. I'm positive I heard him giving Savannah the advice, "Next year, if you go to a high school dance, just tell Mom you're going to the movies with friends."

So, finally, he told me the theme is black and white and the girl's dress is black and pink. Ok, I can order flowers for that. But what on earth is he supposed to wear? I only have one friend who has a child who has gone to Turnabout. He told Austin to wear pants, a sport coat, and tie. So, I took Austin and Jackson to the mall this evening to outfit Austin for the dance. I've decided that I do not like shopping for menswear. At all. How on earth are you supposed to figure out what color pants go with what color shirt and tie and coat??? Is he supposed to wear black and white because that's the theme? Is he supposed to try to match his date's dress? Ugh, it is so much easier to just pick out a cute dress for a girl. I mean, it can be tricky to find one that isn't too expensive or too slutty, but even taking that into consideration, it's much easier to outfit a girl.

Anyway, Austin tried on the giant stack of clothes I piled into his arms while Jackson and I played hangman on my phone. Well, I played hangman, while Jackson played Make-Up-Nonsense-Words-That-Mom-Will-Never-Guess. He was happy that he stumped me with "yumtaco". "YUMTACO"!

Really, Jackson? What on earth does yumtaco mean???"

"It means that I like tacos and I'm hungry. How much longer do we have to stay here? Austin's been trying on clothes for four hours!" It was not four hours, by-the-way.

Anyway, we came up with clothes that met with Austin's approval. I double-checked with the helpful salesman who assured me that Austin looked good and I wasn't completely blind or stupid for choosing that combination of colors.

Now, what are the chances I can learn to tie a tie by this weekend?

Calgon, Take Me Away!

I started writing a post about taking Austin and Jackson to the store this evening, but I was interrupted by puking and crying kids so it'll have to wait until tomorrow.

It was Brooklyn's birthday today. Unfortunately, she's been running a high fever since Sunday night, so her birthday celebration included a little trip to the doctor this morning. Her lungs sounded clear despite her nasty cough and although her throat was red, she doesn't have strep. In other words - She has a virus. Give her rest and fluids. That'll be $145. She slept most of her birthday.

Lexi stayed home from school today because she wasn't feeling well. She didn't have a fever or anything, but still, knowing how sick Brooklyn is, I figured Lexi was probably next to get it. About an hour ago, I heard that most awful of all sounds - retching.

All I can say is, "THANK GOD SHE MADE IT IN THE TOILET!!!" As poor Lexi was throwing up, Brooklyn woke up, crying that her eyes hurt. I kind of ran back and forth between the two of them until I smashed my foot into the vacuum cleaner that was sitting in the middle of the room (Yeah, yeah, if I'd put it away, this wouldn't have happened. Whatever!). I think I broke my toe.

Now, I'm going to look up one way airfare to the Bahamas check on the girls and pray that no one else gets sick.

Actually, it's not all that bad. Savannah's best friend had a seizure at school today and is spending the night in the hospital. I guess I can handle a couple kids with viruses. Praying for Savannah's friend "Kimmy Gibbler".

Monday, February 15, 2010

The One in Which I Puke

I was sleeping soundly when somewhere in the dark recesses of my resting brain I sensed a presence in my room. I cracked open an eye to see Clay's face a mere inch and a half from my own. After screaming bloody murder and after my heart rate skyrocketed to the equivalent of any athlete's after an hour of aerobics, I asked him, "Why are you trying to kill me?" "What's wrong, Clay?"

"I threw up lots of times", he said in tears.

Oh great, I can't clean that up. Now we have to move.

"Please, please, please tell me you made it to the bathroom!" I begged.

"Yeah, I threw up in the bathroom," he said.

Breathing a sigh of relief, I asked him, "Are you ok now? Does your tummy feel better?" Maybe I shouldn't have let him eat 50,000 cookies and a box of Valentine's Day candy for dinner.

He said that he was fine and felt much better. I told him to go back to sleep, in that case. I quickly fell back asleep and forgot all about the barf-o-rama.

This morning, I awoke and shuffled, eyes still half-closed, through the kitchen. I was heading for the coffee maker, but stopped short as my foot hit something squishy. I looked down and realized I'd stepped in barf. OH! MY! GOSH! The gag reflex has never hit me so fast in my life. I hopped toward the bathroom, my foot covered in disgusting yuckness, and promptly threw up.

Then I did what any sensible person would do in this situation. I cut off my foot.

A little later, Lexi told me that the toilet in the kids' bathroom was covered in vomit. I simply closed my eyes, felt around for the doorknob, and quickly shut the door. Then I barricaded it with yellow caution tape. No problem. Situation resolved. We have another bathroom. We're fine and dandy until someone gets sick in there at which point we'll clearly have to move.

Actually, one of my best friends in the world came by and offered to clean it for me. How awesome is that? But I didn't even need him to do that because while I was at Fed Ex this afternoon, Savannah cleaned it. When I got home and she told me that she'd cleaned the toilet, I asked her, "HOW??? How did you do that without throwing up?" She rolled her eyes at me and said that vomit doesn't make her throw up. She has a new job.

And why was I at Fed Ex? Because I had to overnight my pregnancy manuscript to my editor. So I walked in, filled out the form to mail it, and realized that I didn't have a copy of it. For some reason, my publisher doesn't do things electronically so all I had was this one hard copy of the manuscript. My mind started whirling with visions of these horrible scenarios. What if the Fed Ex truck flipped over on the way to my editor, and gas spilled and the truck exploded? My manuscript would be in a big mushroom cloud somewhere over the tri-state area and I'd have to rewrite the whole thing! Or what if the Fed Ex plane went down in the ocean near some desert island and Tom Hanks decided to read my manuscript to entertain Wilson until they got bored with it, then he'd use it for kindling or worse - toilet paper. I decided a copy was definitely in order.

"Um, excuse me sir? Would you please make a copy of this so Tom Hanks doesn't use it as toilet paper?"

The guy behind the counter didn't even blink at my request and simply asked, "black and white"? Apparently this is a common request in the Fed Ex world. Interesting.

Now, I need to get Brooklyn some more medicine because she's been running a fever all day and keeps crying that her eyes hurt. The fun never ends around here, I tell ya!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Sunday Sound Out

From Chicago, the city that remembers Valentine's Day as the anniversary of Capone's shooting spree on Bugs Moran (yeah, that's something to be proud of), it's your host Dawn Meehan who is dressing up in a diaper and wings. (Ok, I'm not really. Wouldn't want to scare anyone. Tell you what, how about I post a picture of some of my babies in a diaper and wings instead?)

Any guesses who this is?

How about this one?

I know you have probably posted it before, but I have to know what kind of shoe that is you are wearing in that picture. I love the black rainbow effect and must have them!
They're my Dansko clogs and the color is "petrol". They're the most comfortable shoes I own and they make me tallish so I love them!

Or were you being even more health conscious, and just didn't want it for the fat content? [ordering my chicken sandwich without mayo]
I'm not especially fond of mayonnaise, plus I was following the rule that if you order something without mayo, it magically makes it healthy. It doesn't matter that there's bacon on the sandwich as long as there's no mayo. And, of course, everyone knows you negate the calories and fat in anything by washing it down with a Diet Coke.

That is funny and delicious and culturey. Yesterday when I was making peanut butter, banana, honey, cinnamon sandwiches for me and the kids....
On purpose?

Poor Lexi - did she eat it on her own toast?
Nope, I guess she didn't eat it and I was too tired and half-asleep to even notice that she didn't eat it. She never said anything to me. Silly girl.

Remember, if you're in the Chicagoland area, make sure you leave me a comment HERE to win tickets to a mother/daughter event in Naperville with parenting expert, Rosalind Wiseman. Attendees will receive a gift bag featuring free samples of Dove go fresh deodorant, a one year subscription to Family Circle, and parents will receive Queen Bees & Wannabes: Helping Your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip, Boyfriends, and the New Realities of Girl World and daughters will receive Rosalind’s debut young adult novel Boys, Girls, and Other Hazardous Materials.

And because I didn't have many questions this week, here are a few pictures to fill the space...

My silly birthday kids

Clay's treasure cake (Austin helped to decorate this one!

Brooklyn's Little Mermaid cake

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Making Toast - the Sequel

After staying up half the night, working on my manuscript (It's gonna be an awesome book, if I do say so myself!), I was less than awake and alert this morning when the kids got up at the crack of dawn. That's just an expression - "Crack of dawn". It means really freaking early. It does not mean the kids woke up next to any particular cracks of this particular Dawn. Anyhoo...

Lexi informed me that we were out of cinnamon/sugar for toast. "Can I make some more, Mom?" she asked.

"Sure", I mumbled in my sleep-induced haze.

"Should I use ground cinnamon and salt?" she asked.

"Mmm hmmm... Wait! Salt? Noooo", I said, waking up a bit.

"I mean SUGAR!" Lexi quickly corrected. "Ground cinnamon and sugar, right Mom?"

"Yep, Lexi."

She ran off to mix a batch of cinnamon/sugar in our little shaker.

Fast forward to lunch time. Clay said he wanted cinnamon toast for lunch. I toasted the bread, spread the butter, and sprinkled on the cinnamon sugar that Lexi mixed this morning. I smelled something strong. What is that smell? I wondered. I sniffed the bread and turned up my nose, cringing at the "cinnamon". Lexi used ground cumin! Mmmmm cumin and sugar sprinkled on toast. It's got a Mexican flair. Yum! All it needs is a little Vegemite...

Girl World Tour

Moms & daughters (ages 8-14) are invited to join Rosalind Wiseman, an internationally-recognized author, mom and expert on teens & parenting for a fun-filled evening of mother-daughter bonding. In addition to celebrating Rosalind’s latest books, the tour will feature an interactive discussion about confidence, friendships, sweat-inducing moments and common mother-daughter challenges. A Q&A session and book signing will follow. The two-hour event is sure to get mothers and daughters talking, laughing and connecting.

Attendees will receive a gift bag featuring free samples of Dove go fresh deodorant, a one year subscription to Family Circle, and parents will receive Queen Bees & Wannabes: Helping Your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip, Boyfriends, and the New Realities of Girl World and daughters will receive Rosalind’s debut young adult novel Boys, Girls, and Other Hazardous Materials.

Girl World Tour
Date: March 2, 2010
Location: Jefferson Junior High School
1525 North Loomis StreetNaperville, IL 60563-1316
Time: 7-9pm

I'll be there with Savannah and Lexington. If you're in the Chicago area, come join us! In fact, leave me a comment here about one of your greatest challenges/sweat inducing moments with your tween, and I'll pick 5 random winners who will each receive a set of mother/daughter tickets to attend this event in Naperville, IL on March 2nd. Good luck!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Want Fries with That?

It was one of those nights. I was busy all day and never had the chance to sit down and eat lunch, let alone plan out dinner. After school, I took Jackson to the library for his Battle of the Books meet. Thinking I was going to have to rush home and get Savannah to confirmation class (it ended up being cancelled because of our 149 feet of snow), I opted to stop at McDs for a quickie dinner. I couldn't bring myself to order a salad, you know, because of the 50,000 feet of snow outside, but I thought I'd try to be sort of good by getting a grilled chicken sandwich without mayo.

I wonder what it would look like if I'd asked for extra mayo?

But being the ever-so-resourceful woman I am, I simply wiped the mayo on my dry, cracked, bleeding hands. It's quite the moisturizer!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Don't Get Lost Again

When my good friend, Kelli told me about this contest, I HAD to pass the details on to you guys! The grand prize is a Garmin GPS! All you have to do for a chance to win, is tell a story about a time you got lost. Those of you who have read my blog for more than a couple months, have undoubtedly read my stories about getting lost. I'm totally directionally impaired. I got lost walking to the train station in Chicago. I got lost driving in Chicago. I got lost on my way to NIU to visit a friend. I hit Lake Michigan on my way there. Those of you from Chicagoland know you can't start on the north side of the city and get to Dekalb via Lake Michigan. Don't ask. One time, I got lost 3 blocks from my house! (Yeah, maybe I shouldn't tell people about that one...)

Anyway, here are the contest details. Check it out and good luck!!! :)

In Deliver Us From Evil, the new suspense novel from author Robin Caroll, Roark and Brannon face chilling odds: they’re trapped in a blizzard with a killer (or killers?) hunting them down! Being lost could be the least of their problems.

To celebrate the launch of Deliver Us From Evil, we’re offering one (1) Grand Prize winner the chance to never be lost again!

Our contest prize is a brand new Garmin nĂ¼vi GPS. This popular model has a 4.3-inch widescreen, is Bluetooth enabled, and includes a helpful traffic feature.

To enter, simply tell us about a time when you got lost! Your story can be about a hiking trip gone awry, a wrong turn down a dark road, a missed connection in a foreign country, even a can’t-find-my-car-in-the-mall-parking-lot adventure:)

Our judges will select their top five (5) favorite stories as finalists, and then we’ll open the polls for voting. The finalist story that receives the most votes wins!

This contest is open to people at least 18 years old that reside in the United States and Canada. Contest started February 01, 2010 and ends February 17, 2010 @ 11:59 pm (PST)

Entry site:

A New Chapter

So, a lot of you have written and asked what's going on with me and Joe. In a nutshell, we're getting divorced. As much as I long to share the details with you (because it's cathartic for me, and because I want those in similar situations to know they're not alone), I just can't write about it here. It's not that I don't want to be authentic, or that I'm trying to pretend that everything is fine and dandy. Things are not fine and dandy right now. But my kids occasionally read my blog and they don't need to be reading any negative stuff about their dad or details about the divorce.

Plus, I started this blog to share the lighter side of life and there's really nothing funny about what's going on right now. I know you guys all have your own drama and your own strife. You don't need to read about mine. I want to provide a little escape from all the ickiness of life and share the funny stuff instead.

Thank you all for all your support and your prayers. They're very much appreciated! I feel like you're all part of my extended family. I never would have thought I'd have thousands of cyber friends I'd never even met, but I do. You are. And I'm very blessed! :)

Monday, February 8, 2010

Sunday Sound Out

From Chicago, the city that never shuts down even when they're expecting a foot of snow, it's Monday Sunday Sound Out starring your host, the woman who ate Vegemite and lived to tell the tale, Dawn Meehan!

Did you know, there is someone in the middle of the ocean viewing your blog right now? Do you have a line to Atlantis? [map at the bottom of my blog that shows where in the world my visitors are coming from at any given moment]
Nope, that was just me. I finally lost it and took off for Bora Bora. I was just checking my blog from there.

I'm still stuck on the breastmilk and pinkeye thing. How exactly does a conversation like that go? Dawn, suggestions?

"Are you still breastfeeding your daughter?"
"Oh good! Hey, could I borrow a teaspoon or so of breastmilk?"
"You know, so I can, ah, put it, you know, in my eye."

This is the point where your friend takes her baby and her boobs, and makes a hasty retreat.

Oh and last year the makers of Vegemite had a competition to name their new product - Vegemite mixed with cream cheese (gross thought I know).
Yes, Vegemite with cream cheese is gross unlike the plain Vegemite which is the most disgusting thing I've ever tasted just delightful.

If you could work out a way that us Aussies could mention Chicko Rolls, the whole Vegemite-disgust thing will seems tame...
OK, I looked these up and somehow they seem more normal than the Vegemite. An eggroll filled with vegetables and mutton doesn't seem too strange. (I'd replace the mutton with chicken or rename them Mutton Rolls, personally.) The sleezy girl on the motorcycle in the advertising is worse than the thought of a mutton roll, however.

At what age did your kids stop taking naps?
I don't think they ever took naps. Honestly, the boys all stopped right around the time they turned 2. My girls went a little longer. Brooklyn's almost 4 and hasn't napped for over a year, but still, if we go somewhere in the car in the late afternoon, she'll fall asleep. Of course, she'll wake up and stay awake until 3:00am then. It's a trade-off.

Was the girl driving a silver or goldish car? I've had 3 accidents in the last 28 years of driving. All the same scenario as yours and all with silver/goldish cars. I must not be able to see them.
Yes, it was, as a matter of fact! And I drove along the same route today for the first time since the accident and noticed there are a bunch of bushes that totally block your view! I didn't notice that they obscured the road so much until today. Ugh.

I would love to know your routine. With 6 kids I bet its hectic. I only have 4 so its crazy busy here. Oh, and what kind of coffee do you brew at home. From one coffee lover to another. :)

I get up at the last possible minute, drive the oldest kids to school in my pajamas, come home, get the other four ready, take all but Brooklyn to school, come home, put Little Bear on for Brooklyn every single day without fail even though she's seen it a kazillion times, do laundry, play dress-up with Brooklyn, clean, play Barbie, pay bills, go through email, fight with Brooklyn to put on her coat so we can pick up Clay from school, come home and make lunch, empty dishwasher, tell Clay and Brooklyn to put the cushions back on the couch, run errands or work, more laundry, phone calls, pick up the kids from school, help with homework, watch Lexi's fashion show, make dinner, yell at the kids to help clean up the amazing messes they've made in the short time they've been home, drive someone to a friend's house/confirmation/the store/practice of some sort, listen to Jackson whine because I won't let him play video games because he was horrible and beligerant the night before, bathe the little ones, unclog a toilet, read to the littles/make the older ones read, put them to bed, work, put them to bed again, work some more, make a plate of nachos, put them to bed yet again, pour some wine, keep working until I can't keep my eyes open any longer (usually 2ish), go to bed and start all over again in 5 hours. Oh, and these days, I'm powered by Dunkin' Donuts coconut coffee some days, and others, it's Green Mountain Island Coconut, Mountain Blueberry, or Golden French Toast.

She [my friend Margaret McSweeney] kinda looks like Kirsty Alley... don't cha think?

Oh my gosh, yes! I never really noticed it before, but yep, she does!

Good on you for trying it [Vegemite] though. Do the kids like it? Are they game to try it? Could be a good dare (or punishment?) to do. ;-)
Oh, I love it (your idea, not the Vegemite)! I never considered using it as a punishment. It's like EXTREME castor oil! "Stop fighting now, or you're both getting spoonfuls of Vegemite!"

Would you prefer some Tim Tams instead??
Even if Tim Tams were dirt-covered worms wrapped in a tortilla, I think I'd prefer them.

so what IS vegemite?????? can you post the ingredients list??
Brown Goo

Tim Tams however are different, how can you go wrong with chocolate biscuits with whipped chocolate in th emiddle? And yes, you do have to bite both ends off and suck your coffee though them... it's the law.
Is that kinda like breaking apart an Oreo, scraping the cream out with your teeth, putting the halves together and dunking them in milk?

Ok.. an Aussie here.. and well Vegemite is unreal!I love it, I eat daily! Though yes its an acquired taste im told. A bit like eating Peanut Butter Cups.. I just dont get that.. they are not nice for me!!
:::THUD::: Peanut buter cups are not nice?!?!?! What manner of nonsense is this? Peanut butter - good! Chocolate - good! "You got peanut butter in my chocolate! You got chocolate in my peanut butter!" Two great tastes that taste great together!

It looks to me that you have put way too much on that toast.

Seriously?!?!?! It's too thick because you can SEE it?

Any idea when your new book will be available? I have 3 kids and I would love to get it for a first time pregnant friend! (in a "haha it's too late to turn back now" way) lol
Hee hee hee! Yeah, I think it turned my first editor off having kids forever. Oops. It'll be out this fall. :)

you mention that you havent tried Nutella yet, you can spread that on real thick.
Nope, I used to buy Nutella all the time. The kids love it. I think I stopped buying it back when I was following the all-natural diet for Jackson because it has artificial vanilla. I'm surprised Lexi & Brooklyn haven't asked me to get it in a long time.

I found it funny to see that Kraft makes it [Vegemite]. I've never seen it mentioned in my Food and Family magazine! ;o)
I know, right?! That was definitely not one of the products I got to sample when I visited the Kraft kitchens last year!

Were you bummed after the party and clean up because your babies are growing up????
They are not! Who told you that? My babies are still my babies, darn it! The fact that I just bought my oldest "baby", a pair of size 12 shoes means nothing. Nothing, I tell you!

I'm from the Philadelphia area, so next I guess I'll need to send you some scrapple! Also an acquired taste, from what I hear. I love it though!
Scrapple? I've never heard of it, but I'm a little hesitant to try anything that has the word "crap" in it. I could go for a nice cheesesteak though. The best cheesesteak sandwich I ever had was one I ordered from room service at the Four Seasons hotel in Philly. Mmmmm

And for my Australian readers, I may not like your breakfast spread of choice, but you've got the coolest accents ever and I'd love, love, love to visit your country! Those of you who've been reading my blog for a long time, remember the project that Austin did a couple years ago where I asked readers to send me information from their state or country? I saved all those awesome letters and all the information you guys took the time to send us. All this talk about different foods from different countries is making me want to pull those out and go through them again! Maybe I'll send Austin up the attic to pull them out tomorrow. :)

Here's a link to the podcast of my interview with Margaret McSweeney on Kitchen Chat (the interview dated 1/30/10). And also check out the interview with Rebecca Darr and Rita Canning from Wings (dated 2/5/10).
Click HERE.

Wings (Women in Need Growing Stronger) is an organization that provides shelter and services for women fleeing domestic violence. WINGS gets 300 calls from women every month and they unfortunately don't have the funds to help every one.

This year is WINGS 25th anniversary and they have many exciting things planned. The first thing they are doing is giving away a dream home or one million dollars to a lucky winner in the Chicago Dream Home Raffle. Can you imagine winning a million dollar dream house? How awesome would that be?! And there are over 100 other prizes too, including cars, a Harley Davidson motorcycle, jewelry and dream vacations! You can buy your raffle tickets
HERE. And when you buy a ticket, you're not only entered in the drawing, but you're helping WINGS. (Not to mention a little tax write-off) It's a win-win!

Pre-Sunday Sound Out

My parents took Brooklyn and Lexington for the weekend. The girls had a great time at Yia Yia and Papa's. My sister and I always loved going to stay with our grandparents when we were little, and I know my little girls created memories that will last forever. But I really, really missed them while they were gone! Another friend took Jackson for the weekend and even brought us dinner 2 nights, and took Clay to a movie too so I could work on my manuscript. Oh my gosh my house was quiet! I mean eerily quiet! Austin and Savannah are teenagers, and therefore sleep half the day. And Clay just wandered around bored without his sisters to play with. Sooo quiet! And unbelievable easy and uneventful with only three kids!
I haven't gotten so much writing done in ages! Thank you, thank you, thank you, guys!!!

I got about 2/3 of the way through my manuscript and am feeling pretty good about what I accomplished. I also wrote a couple articles, and of course did the requisite laundry, cleaning, shopping for school project supplies, and dropping kids at Superbowl parties.
I started writing my Sunday Sound Out, but decided to call it a night when my head hit my keyboard. I now have QWERTY stamped on my forehead. Or, well, I suppose it's YTREWQ actually. Anyway, check back tomorrow, er, um, later today for my sound out.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Vegemite is Evil in a Jar

Hello there! I've been MIA once again because, well, let's see here... I just couldn't think of anything to write on Thursday and then I thought of something to write for Friday, but I was busy baking cakes and getting ready for the birthday party I had for Clay and Brooklyn on Saturday. Which brings me to Saturday. By the time guests left and I cleaned up, I was too burned out to blog. And on Sunday, I fell asleep by 10:00! I know! Then, on Monday, my computer broke. I wasn't sure what was wrong with it. I could turn it on and it would work for maybe 15 minutes or so, then it would shut off. I wouldn't be able to turn it back on for several minutes. When I could finally turn it on, the same thing would happen.

I spoke to my computer geek friend (always good to have computer geek friends) who told me to take the battery out and see if it worked while it was just plugged in. Nope. The same thing happened.

I told him that my laptop felt exceptionally hot and he thought it might be the fan causing my computer to turn off as it got overheated.

As it turns out, it was the fan. Know why the fan stopped working? Earlier in the day, I'd taken some compressed air to clean my keyboard and I sprayed the air into the vents on the back and bottom of my laptop as well. A TON of dust flew out. I thought I was doing well to clean it. Apparently not. I just blew the dust around until it jammed up everything. My friend was able to resuscitate it and clean it out well. I guess I had a small herd of rabbits in my laptop. Do rabbits run in herds? Groups? Colonies? I dunno. I had a dust bunny the size of Texas in there.

So, back to my perfectly legitimate excuses reasons for not blogging. Last night, I got my computer back and spent hours going through a backlog of email. I finally called it quits at 2:00am when I was having a hard time keeping my eyes open.

So, here I am. But not for long. I just received my pregnancy book manuscript from my editor and need to make some final changes, so I'm going to be busy (well, busier than usual) for the next couple weeks. But I'm so excited to get this book all ready. I'm finding myself laughing as I reread it and I can't wait to share it with everyone. For those of you who don't know, it's called You'll Lose the Baby Weight (and Other Lies About Pregnancy and Childbirth) and it's a hilarious (if I do say so myself) look at having babies.

Oh! Before I get back to the ole manuscript, I have to share some Vegemite with you. Yes, a reader sent me some Vegemite after I asked on my blog what the heck it is. Because someone took the time to send it to me, I had to try it, right? I mean, even though it smelled like evil, I think proper protocol dictates that one must at least try it. Now, all my Australian friends have told me repeatedly that the secret to consuming Vegemite is to spread it thinly. First off, you have to kinda wonder about a product that has to be spread thinly. If it's so good, why do you have to make sure it's so sparse it can't be seen by the naked eye? I mean, I've never told anyone, "The secret to peanut butter is to spread it so thinly that you can't taste it." That's just silly. Right? Someone back me up on this!

Anyway, I followed all my Australian readers' advice and used it on buttered toast. As per the Australian recipe, I spread it as thinly as I could. I took a small bite. Now, mind you, I was only trying this because a reader was trying to poison me nice enough to send it to me. If it hadn't been for that, there is no way I would put this stuff in my mouth. It smells AWFUL!!! It looks like meconium and smells like rancid soy sauce and vitamins.

I chewed and tried to swallow, but my body violently rejected the putrid concoction. I spit it out and stuck my head in the sink, gulping from the faucet like a person who'd been stranded in the dessert with no water for a month. No dice. I could still taste it. I brushed my teeth. I brushed them again. And again. I squirted the tube of toothpaste in my mouth and drank a bottle of mouthwash. This happened on Friday. I think I can still taste it.

Thank you, Australia, for the umm, experience of Vegemite. Next time send me chocolate.

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