When Life Hands You Lemons, Make Sure to Buy a Yacht and Have Some Babies.

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Nobody looks this happy when they just had twins and an appendectomy in two rolls.

 

“Mom? Do you want to get married, like RIGHT away, or later?”

“Mom? How many babies should I have?”

“Mom? Would you get a baby OR a promotion? Which?”

I don’t know kid. I’ve asked these questions so many times…

Also: “Mom, would you get a sports car, or twins?”

I’ve asked that one too. Along with:

“When the babies come, do we need to make more money?”

“I have a baby girl! Should I have more?”

And this zinger:

“I just got a mansion and a wife, so do I buy a yacht or a sports car too?”

 

My kids are obsessed with Life. The game, not the actual breathing thing. They play it for HOURS on our living room floor, and I do my walking-over-them Mom thing with my usual laundry baskets and cleaning supplies. I have even vacuumed around their game and usually the vacuum makes them all nervous and they bark at it, but no one twitched.

Ok, wait. No barking, but you know what I mean. They hate our vacuum. It’s like the one in Mr. Mom only it hasn’t eaten anybody’s Wubbee. Yet.

I guess my point here is that this game is going to save us all before school starts. Even though it generates some really weirdo questions from a seven-year-old.

“Mom, do I get a wife NOW or try sky-diving? Which one is better?”

It’s moments like these that the Snark just quivers and practically begs to be released – free to run at full tilt at my children and take them out at the knees. But no, I quelled the beast, and answered,

“Marriage is better. But only if you really love her. And I would wait until you are good and ready. So, you know, like, your late thirties. Early forties. And, make sure you find her at church and go to like fifty or sixty bible studies together first. Also, YOU CAN ONLY HOLD HANDS THAT’S IT UNTIL YOU’RE MARRIED OK?”

The ask-ee was just staring at me, blinking a lot, when I took a breath. I was fully prepared to go onto my discussion of the pros and cons of an arranged marriage with our friends’ kids, easy-peasy, when he asked,

“Um, didn’t daddy go sky-diving? Back in college? Like, 18 times?”

I took a breath. The arranged marriage discussion would have to wait.

“Yes, kid. Go ahead. Knock yourself out.”

Later, I was explaining all of this to the husband, because all we talk about are The Children.

“I don’t really think the game of Life is actually teaching our kids anything about life, you know, in reality.” I said. You see, I’m very into making sure our children are always playing Educational Games that help Prepare them for the Real World so they can become Positive Contributors to Society.

And then the husband snorted. He knew the previous paragraph was hooey. “Yea right. Like Uno is helping them become better at flip flopping. And so, politics.”

“Or Monopoly teaches them about weird real estate options. And jail.”

“Or Battleship trains them for the military. Or drowning.”

I eyed him. His snark was so weak in comparison to mine. But he was trying. It was kind of cute. Except for the last one. That’s depressing.

Bless his heart.

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The kids go back to school in a week and three days. Not that I’m counting.

I am really good at counting though. Played a lot of Yahtzee as a kid.

 

This post was brought to you by:

Not enough caffeine, a ridiculous lack of focus, and a strong love for my children but Lord have mercy if you don’t hear from me again you’ll know they’ve gone feral.

 

 

Send in the clowns.

So, this morning, I was up with the chickens.

Literally. Chickens. SOMEONE in my very respectable neighborhood is HARBORING CHICKENS. I can HEAR you, rooster! I know you’re around here somewhere. And, as I want to buy eggs from these people, I will say no more.

Anyhow, I was up EARLY, y’all.

Wanna know why? Well, I shall tell you.

But FIRST:

I worked out:

IMG_5834.jpgThis is what Steve does when I do my HIIT stuff. He feels so bad for me, gasping away to the tiny girl on the glowing tv, that he reaches his paw out. As if to say,

“Dude. Take a break. Sit. Be still. Like me.”

NO, Mr. Fat Furry! I still have fourteen burpees to do, and they are so fun! And so aptly named! Kelli, al la Fitness Blender is a tiny and sweet girl who manages, somehow to be perfectly toned with washboard abs but still totally not annoying, gets me through something where I plank and slap my arms and sing the Star Spangled Banner, all at the same time. Then, she asks me to do a lateral hop, which sounds cute and like a bunny, but  only if that bunny has a death wish. And then, I die.

Nope. DIDN’T DIE.  Even after the hopping. I then had coffee, and I put on real, adulty clothes. Usually it’s all running shorts and tshirts with holes in them around here. But No!

Not today! Know WHY????

I’ll tell you. In a minute. But FIRST:

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BEHOLD. EYELINER. AND LIPSTICK. THIS IS THE BIGTIME.

Ok. I’ll tell you. I am substituting today. I know. I built all of this up to make you think I was meeting with California people who wanna make Bottled into a movie. Still waiting on that one.

AND this:

I showed up three hours early. Evidently I am not supposed to come until 12:30. I am just way too excited about this gig.

Wanna know WHY?

BECAUSE IT’S FOR MUSIC OH MY GOODNESS I AM GONNA GET SIIIIIIIING.

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Oh yea. You better believe you can google “Singing cats” and find lots of options. You’re welcome.

Have I ever told you? I have always kinda wanted to be a back up singer for Pink. I mean, I don’t think she even has backup singers, but in my head I made them up and I was one of em! Because that’s what my head can do!

My head can also put me in the lineup to interview The Rock one day and also, to win the Olympics in dressage, OR rhythmic gymnastics. Take your pick.

So, anyhow, whilst making breakfast for the wee cherubs this morning we had this conversation:

Blonde: Mom. Mom. You’re gonna be my teacher today.

Red: *silently chewing.* He doesn’t speak much until 8 am. That’s when he turns on and he doesn’t shut off until 12 hours later. Quite the battery on that one.

Blonde: Mom. MY teacher. I’m not gonna call you Mom though. And I will also be really good in class. So, you don’t need to worry about nothing.

Me: I KNOW. I am SO EXCITED. And I get to SING! Music teacher! BOOM!

Red: *coughing* Mom. I know it’s before I’m supposed to speak, but I gotta say-

Blonde: Don’t. Sing. Just no. Please. For the love of God. Do your duty. No singing.

 

It’s ok. I’ve got a backup plan. I’m bringing THIS:

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And I’m gonna tell them allllll about how I was first chair, and in KU marching band, and then?

I’M GONNA PLAY “SEND IN THE CLOWNS.”

My children will be so proud.

Here is, by the way, an obligatory first day of school pic. I know. I am just NOW posting this because I kept forgetting. That’s because I have way more important things to do. Like practice my scales and figure out if an interpretive dance while flauting is over the top.

Besides, this might be the last picture I have of them, because after this afternoon they might not speak to me again.

#Goals.

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There is no “Oh no we’re not” in ‘Team’

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Walking Night. Stay tuned.

Linking up with my happy place: Five Minute Friday.

Today’s theme:

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Well… of course it is.

Ok, here’s the story:

I still haven’t posted my kids’ back to school pictures yet. This is kind of against nature and I am very sorry. Every mom knows that is it the LAW that those pictures get posted on the facebooks, pronto, and here I am, still just trying to make sure they’re fed and in clean underwear before they head out the door.

So, last night was Walking Night. It’s this Thing that the labrador-retriever husband came up with to help us Stay in Shape and Be a Family, all at the same time. We are a Team, after all. We go out and walk together. Or, rather, the boys shoot off on their bikes, like little nutball savages, while the husband and I, who mainly operate like ships in the night, walk and talk.

It’s better to be ships in the day, I guess.

Sometimes we even hold hands. Like ships in love.

Anyhow. LAST night I also wanted to Take it Up a Notch, by adding devotionals to the whole thing. I like to Take it Up a Notch whenever possible because my life is not chaotic or jam-packed enough and this whole Notch business seems to fulfill some basic need in me to be basically Perfect.

Ok, I’m just gonna stop with the capitals thing now. It’s Annoying, isn’t it?

So. I had my devotional all ready. And it went like this:

Both boys were instructed to take a tube of toothpaste and squeeze it out, which they did with some glee. The Blonde informed me right away, however, that this was a terrible waste of money. I just love him. He is so like his momma.

Then, I said, in my church lady voice:

“So, boys, now I want you to put the toothpaste back IN the tube.”

I then made the very overused, this whole toothpaste gag has been so done before thing, analogy that once your words are out there you can’t put them back. It’s not actually a BAD analogy by any means. I had figured that since we were starting up school again and that they might, well, hear stuff and say stuff because school is basically the Child Thunderdome where they learn interesting concepts like “fart train” and such, that this whole toothpaste thing would be memorable and important.

Oh, and it was. It was really, really memorable, y’all.

It started when Red, who was playing with his toothpaste like it was fingerpaint, decided to paint his brother’s face with the gooey stuff. I laughed. Brother laughed. It was all good clean minty fun, right? Learning moment. It was a learning moment! And then Blonde followed suit with some of his gooey stuff, and that’s when the screaming started.

You see, gentle reader, toothpaste is MINTY.

Minty + eyeballs = screaming.

Let me provide you with a short re-enactment:

Red: OH NOOO MY EYES MY EYESSSSS THE PAIN THE PAINNNN!!

Blonde: NOOOO MAKE IT STOP MAKE IT STOP MY EYEBALLS ARE ON FIRRREEEEEEEE!

Red: I AM DYING! AS WE SPEAK RIGHT HERE  JUST GONNA DIE. FROM DEVOTIONALS!

Blonde: MOTHER I WILL NEVER DO DEVOTIONALS AGAIN! BAD! BAD!

Both: AS GOD IS MY WITNESS, I WILL NEVER DO DEVOTIONALS AGAIN!

 

And that was my first try at family devotionals.

Toothpaste: 1

Devotionals: 0

 

We will try again. We will fight the good fight. We’re like the military. We never leave anyone behind.

Also, we flipping MINTY FRESH.

We are minty team, and as I have explained, numerous times to both boys: We are all stuck with each other, I’m sorry, but you can’t just go live with another family.

But next time devotionals will involve four pounds of M and M’s, soft music, and maybe the Care Bears.

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The Force is With Me. Sometimes.

This post was brought to you by:

ALL CAPS and Overdramatization!!! Wheeeeee!!!

Ok. I gotta warn you.  I am going to do something on Momsie I’ve never done before.

I’m going to blame it all on Star Wars.

I have to. It’s the only way.

Let’s start at the very beginning. A very good place to start.

Yesterday I:

1. Ran three miles. Ok, two and a quarter and then kinda lurched the rest, but I’ll call if running if you will? Ok? We good on that? Ok.

2. Then, I made breakfast for two kids and actually managed to CLEAN UP THE KITCHEN BEFORE WE LEFT THE HOUSE.

3. And do you know what we did when we left the house.? I put TWO MORE children in my car (they are friends. I didn’t just grab random children, ok?) and we all went BOWLING.

4. And THEN we went and had a very healthy lunch at McDonalds. I sat on the other side of the glass and watched them run around like little rats in ratty Thunderdome. I ate my salad and contemplated my life choices, but you know.

5. And THEN: I decided to take them all shopping for back to school stuff. Well, I just bought stuff for my actual children, but you know.

Backpacks and shoes. So, now that our college fund is totally depleted, I bring them all home and make them snacks (healthy! I promise!) and by heavens I DESERVE A FLIPPING PARADE OK?

Where is my parade? Where? Maybe just a small one? Couple Shriners? One politician in a car much cooler than he is? PLEASE?

Nope. What happened instead:

There seemed to be a problem with one of the backpacks. And by “problem” I mean:

R2-D2 STOPPED WORKING. (“MOM. He’s upposed to light UP and blink at me! He is JUST LIGHTING UP. DER IS NO BLINKING. WHERE ID DA BLINKINNNNNNNGG?” And then he just looked at me as if I could just WAVE my hands over the thing and WAZAAM the blinking back in the backpack. Say that fast three times. And, by the way,  I so wish that was wazamm thing was a thing. Moms could use that thing, sometimes. But I guess that would make me Harry Potter, and it is kinda tricky, that. I mean, I liked the books and all but not sure Jesus would truck with me becoming a wizard. Anyhow. I’m kinda swerving on this, right?

Right. Anyhow. Back to R2.
IMG_5677.jpgLet me also explain that BOTH boys brought home the SAME backpack. And now ONE is not working. And, as you know, that means that ONE kid is now really REALLY Def Con 5 UPSET. The other one is smirking. And then you know that thing that you do, you moms? Where you try to comfort and pat one AND glare at the other one? Well. This maneuver is complex and I MIGHT have fumbled the ball a bit.

Oy vey.

I had figured to just do what Solomon did. Just cut the other one in half and it’s all good. I mean, it’s just STARING at me.

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Help.

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Is it just me, or??

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I dunno. Maybe it’s just me.

Anyhow, I settled the backpack issue. Don’t ask. It might have involved the negotiation skills of Atticus Finch. And also a Nutter Butter. But you know.

And THEN, the husband got home from an after-work-go-have-a-beer-with-the-colleagues thing (he’s a total normie and for that I am so grateful and he really did probably have at most a BEER or TWO like he said) but holy Corona, he leaned in to kiss me and I smelled it. Alcohol. And my eyes narrowed to tiny snakey slits of anger and judgement and I swear we both heard a rattle. Because I CAN judge at this point. Do you know WHY?

Do ya? Do you know WHY I CAN JUDGE NOW?

Because it’s past five o’clock and it’s been a DAY and I NEVER GOT THAT PARADE.

Also, I made tuna and stirfry for dinner because my children wanted to act like I was feeding them plague food again tonight.

So, the husband tells me, after a nice, healthy dinner paired with a side serving of snake, and a lottttt of soy sauce,

“Dear. I love you.”

And I responded with:

“That’s because you HAVE to. You’re MARRIED to me. That’s, right, Drinkie McDrinkerson. You are STUCK. WITH. ME.” (rattle, rattle)

AND then. As he slowly trudged up the stairs he called down, “Yes. I am. And I am blessed.”

“YES YOU ARE MR. DRINKY-PANTS. YOU ARE SO BLESSED.”

Like I said. This behavior was all R2-D2’s fault. Perhaps, if we had gotten the Captain America backpacks like I had SUGGESTED NONE of this would have EVER happened.

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AND WEAR MY BACKPACK. MINE. NOT THE ROBOT ONE.

 

I CAN be Wonder Woman. With help from #NetflixKids.

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I think I have convinced my children that I have super powers.

I do think, also, that all mothers actually DO deserve a cape. And maybe a sparkly head band or blingie metallic wrist bracelet thingies. I can rock the boots and big hair, I tell ya.

But along with the cute outfit, comes these wonders:

  1. Ears that can hear Sharpie being applied to a cat from fifty yards.
  2. Eyes in the back of my head. Always thought this was kinda creepy. I get it now.
  3. Ability to discern fake crying from real crying in less than three seconds.
  4. Ability to use the phrase, “Eat some raisins. They’re nature’s candy” with total aplomb.

In fact, I am the bomb at aplomb.

(Sorry, just had to. How often does one get to use ‘aplomb’ in the day to day? I am giving this gift to you.)

Anyhow.

The only* area of Wonder Womanness that I am failing at these days is, um, getting my kids to be generally nice and, well, kind and patient with each other. But… So NOT a big deal, right?

Basic kindness is overrated anyway. Just watch reality television for five minutes and you’ll see.

However, as I am aiming for utter perfection in my world at all times, I have found myself rather stuck on this problem with congeniality. They love each other, yes. They are related. Yes. But after school? They come home and just sort of hate on each other’s guts until dinner.

Okay. It’s driving me freaking crazy.

So once again, I have dialed up my favorite parental tool for help:

TELEVISION TO THE RESCUE!!!!

I snark, but I also must explain: my kids do only get to watch an hour (oh how they covet that one hour, my preshus) on the weekdays, and usually it is administered when they slide in the door after school because their little brains are all mushy and they have the social skills of a tired rattlesnake at this time of day. We eat a snack, and then we cuddle, and then they watch this new offering from the Great Netflixes:

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Can you imagine the meeting at Dreamworks for this?

Chris Gall (author of the illustrated children’s book series): Hey. What do kids love to watch?

Dude: Uh… construction trucks. Also, the donuts being glazed at Krispy Kreme.

Gall: Ok! Also, dinosaurs! They like those too, right?

Dude: Yep.

Gall: So…

Dude: Um, so… what you’re saying is…

Gall: Combo package!!

Dude: Dinosaurs Order Krispy Kreme? Co-branding! Brilliant! It’ll be a hit!

Epilogue: Chris Gall is still happily working and successful. Dude is NOT.

Netflix’s new show Dinotrux is set in the Mechazoic period, and it features Ty Rux, part T-Rex and excavator, who has a really, really good grip on how to be KIND.

In fact, Ty Rux WORKS WELL WITH OTHERS!  He SHARES HIS STUFF! ! He remembers that HE IS NOT ONLY FIRST!!!

And so on. You get the point? If I utter all the above phrases… it sounds like this:

“BWA WAH WA WAH HA WAHHH WAHHH I AM MEANEST MOTHERRRR EVERRRR.”

If Dinotrux gets in on the action? It soaks in. A little.

I’m not saying I’m using Ty as a surrogate momma, but these days, I’ll take all the help I can get.

Dinotrux also features this grumpy guy:Screenshot 2015-08-20 09.43.13

Notice his catch phrase. “What’s in it for me?” Now, this is rarely said out LOUD statement at our house. No one would actually have the audacity. But, it’s there.  This whole “ME ME ME ME” thing is pervasive, and, much like my laundry room after things start piling up, a bit rank. When my kids get tired they tend to… put themselves at the front of The Great Big Line of What’s Most Fair in Life, and they don’t understand when someone barks at them: “Hey, NO cutting!”

I am second,” is something my husband and I talk about. And TALK about. And we pray about it. I go in after they’re sleeping and lay hands on them and say, “Lord, PLEASE fix them. Just make them KIND! YES! Be HEALED! Like, now? Thanks! Amen!” **

Also: I subliminally insert “I am second” into their dreams re a hidden tape that plays at night… (Please don’t tell them. I read about this once in the great book, How to Brainwash Your Children, and we’re hoping it works.)

Thank you, Skrap-it for backing me up. Skrap-It is a Back-it, as it were.
(I am so sorry. I know. First the whole ‘aplomb’ cheesiness and now this…)

Your littles will enjoy Dinotrux. And you will enjoy it because it’s all about teamwork, playing fair, and PATIENCE. If we watch a bit more, I might be able to shut off the subliminal message tape.

But, I did notice the other morning that Steve the Cat meowed, “After you, my sweet friend,” to Bob the Cat at breakfast bowl… so perhaps not.

Thank you, Netflix!

As a Netflix Streamteam blogger, Netflix asks me to watch their fabulousness and them chatter about it. It's a great gig.

As a Netflix Streamteam blogger, Netflix asks me to watch their fabulousness and them chatter about it. It’s a great gig.

*Thank you to the lawyer for not making fun of my use of the word “only.” As if.

** So far this type of prayer has worked to make only ME a TEENSY bit more patient. It has not made the children perfect yet. I am thinking Jesus might be holding out on me for that one.

Wanna watch a trailer for Dinotrux? Click here!

What I learned this summer. Again.

Throw Back Thursday, y’all. Isn’t it funny how time just keeps marching on by?

Maybe not so funny. But life. Just life, afterall.

Soon I will post about my baby going to kindergarten. But, not today. Today I am just gonna look at old posts and pictures and glory in God’s blessings. And perhaps, feel a little heartbroken.

And take a very long nap.

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What I Learned This Summer

By: Momsie

Posted originally: July 31, 2014

1.  Do not fear The Big House Project.  Put on your Lord of the Rings soundtrack, bolster your Frodo resolve and hobbit courage, and begin your quest to vanquish the disgusting carpet in your living room.  You may be small, and the carpet may be evil, but fear not.  Goodness will prevail.

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That flying object above my head? It’s a sander. I don’t really know how it got up there, but no Momsies were injured during the Battle of the Shag Carpet.

2.  Sparklers still kinda scare me.  I have three boys (hubs included in this number, as always.)  I am out numbered on this notion.

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3.  Riding a carousel at the Royals game tends to make Red rather thinky.  After the ride was over, he looked up at me and said, “I wanna ride it again.  But a different horse this time.  So we can go farther.”  Poor dear.  Physics and all.

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4.  There will be shenanigans. Lots of them.  However: in this case, the wee ones were contained.

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5.  On a hot day, Momsie’s all “Let’s put out the sprinkler!  Now run through it, dear ones! Frolic!  Frolic about!”

The boys (aka savages) are all:

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Good heavens.

I just went inside to get some lemonade.  I returned to this.  What happened to the frolicking?

6.  My son got to be catcher.  IMG_2866

Which really just made me think this:

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6.  There will be actual naps.  Like, for real.  IMG_2914

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7.  Popsicles are a must.  Every day.  They cover a multitude of sins – even bad haircuts because sitting?  Very still?  Dis is hard.

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And, when you take your five year old to ENROLL FOR KINDERGARTEN this morning, you bow down low and thank Summer.

Thank you, just for the sweet, sweet blessing of time.

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summer, 2012

Time is a game played beautifully by children. ~

Heraclitus

Thursday Throwback and Netflix Streamteam – Wonderfulness

I have an addiction.

To school supplies.

I have a straight up, no chaser, hold my credit cards, holy cow MORE POST-ITS PLEASE addiction to anything office related.  Every fall, you might find me deeply inhaling the sweet pink rubbery goodness of a handful of bubblegum erasers (and yes, I KNOW that sentence sounds rather… wrong. But I stand by my statement. I’m not ashamed.)

Pink Pencil Erasers

I mean, look at them.

As some of you know, this was the first year for school for Blonde. It was epic. But really, every year in June  (or is it late May?) when the great television gods start up with their JC Penny and Target ads and even, I think, Sharper Image gets in on the game, I get all goosebumpy and happy.  It’s a glorious thing, School.

We should just skip all this summer nonsense and school all year long.

SORRY.  NO, I DIDN’T MEAN IT.

I was breathing in my erasers rather heavily and got a bit dizzy there. What I MEANT to say is:

One month, preferably July = Summer

All the other months= School. Because, pointy new crayons!

Except for December, obviously, because, well there is a lot to do.  Trees to decorate. Santa to contend with.  And baking all those cookies, ya’ll. There’s cookies just exploding outta everywhere  in December.  And I gotta try to figure out how to wrap a bike, usually, or maybe a new kitten.  Oh, yes, and the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Sometimes I forget that one. It’s busy.*

Oh, and also February. No school in February because that is just an awful month and we should all just go away in February to some place that is as non-February as possible. Even a new Trapper Keeper isn’t gonna dress up February.

Oh! but yes, School in February 14. Of course! Because these:

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And we get to decorate a box to put them in! Which means? Glue! Markers! Maybe even… GLITTER.

 

 

Ok, so I’m getting a little confused here myself. I think I need to make a calendar. I know! With new Sharpies! And A RULER!

 

Since I have the honor of being a Netflix Streamteam blogger, I was thinking of what kind of shows would pair well with my back-to-school fervor.  And immediately, this gem came to mind:

 

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Kevin is adorable. Winnie is just… winsome. The Wonder Years was a simply perfect show.  It had depth and also humor, and some episodes could give you a knot in your throat the size of Toledo, unless you were heartless or just completely unmoved by Kevin’s brown-eyed earnestness.

Do you remember the episode where Mr. Collins, Kevin’s beloved teacher, just.. he… I CAN’T EVEN. I CAN’T EVEN TELL YOU.  It was the best ugly-cry, cathartic, I don’t need therapy I just need to watch this, kind of show ever.

And don’t even get me started on the soundtrack.

I binge-watch shows that are about angry dragons and angry politicians and REALLY angry ex-science teachers…  I’M GONNA BINGE THIS ONE.

It’s … well, it’s just wonderful.

 

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*No. I don’t ever forget that one. I promise.