Friday, July 29, 2011


Better late than never, eh? Our own Liz points out that the 4th blogiversary of Wednesday Whining in this space was on July 11! Passing the cake and festive beverages with tiny umbrellas. This community has been lovely and fabulous through all the ups, downs, and whoopsies.

Congratulations to Liz, for accomplishing the dreaded house-moving operation!

The Old Skool Award this week goes to Days, who complains: "My "i" key works only intermittently these days. Phooey." Keyboard dysfunction is indeed a classic.

Riding to the rescue in yet another tragic case of undergarment dysfunction, Liz retains her crown as The Bra Queen, providing solid advice and support (heh!) for the afflicted. Liz also notes that festooning the household with drying bras is a great way to embarass the offspring. ;) The general consensus is that Victoria's Secret deserves a cluesticking for pathetic performance in appropriate undergarment fitting, and forgetting what it's all about; one suspects that "comfortable fit" is nowhere on the list of corporate business objectives.

Lemonade Out of Lemons Award goes to Esperanza, who finds an up side to the chicken pox: "Chicken poxy kids are getting me out of lots of stuff I didn't really want to do anyway. And people are bringing us food. Lovely!"

Heat Wave Award to all who have suffered from extreme temperatures this week, and particularly to Amy, whose air conditioning died. She reports: "One thing I have learned is that I am a muuuuuuch more pleasant person when there is A/C." Amen.

Intrepid Gardener Award goes to Neighbor Lady, who is bravely planning to replant for fall harvesting.

Sue wins the Family Dysfunction Sweepstakes this week, for her encounter with Control Overdrive Sibling, who is a candidate for the Amazing Relative Hall of Fame after telling Sue what time she was allowed to leave a family event. Runner up is Esperanza, for her close encounter with Must Always Be Right. Cluesticks to all Those Relatives; we've all got one someplace in the family tree.

Esperanza wins the Cabin Fever Award for extended parental duty with the Baboos, and the added misfortune of not much to do nearby when she did get relief. But she did manage a delightful afternoon out of the house, alone, and even some trashy summer reading (uninterrupted!) by the river. Yay!

Liz is on a roll this week, and she wins the coveted Elevated Risk of Mullet Award for her excellent backup plan for escape in one's own home, one that JenR approves and Days plans to add to her bag of parenting tricks.

Perils of Potty Training Awards go to Esperanza and Amy. All we can say is that kids are really individual in this area. And accidents happen even after official achievement of the goal; sometimes distraction or stress are behind them. Much sympathy from the Pixie Nation.

Hugs to Neighbor Lady, whose daughter is having some scary symptoms, and who is having some anxiety; and to Days, who feels out of the loop, and is having leg pain. We hope you both have fabulous getaways at the shore and the lake! Fingers crossed for Neighbor Lady's daughter, and for Sue, who is waiting on ultrasound results.

Have a great weekend, and we'll see you next week, when the fabulous Liz will host!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Moving On

Hi, Pixies! Looking forward to this week's crop of whines and anti-whines.

This week, my featured whine is trying to find temporary housing for my daughter, for her fall internship across the country. The internet is a glorious thing, bringing craigslist and websites galore, but ohmydog, I will be so happy when we can sign a lease and write a deposit check. We have serious sticker shock, since BigCity is so very expensive compared to her sleepy college town. We have become familiar with the metro system, walking distances, decent vs. iffy neighborhoods and suburbs, the devotion of landlords to long-term leases, and "sorry, that place is taken already."

AW: This is a Learning Experience for daughter, who is doing the heavy lifting on finding housing for the first time. AW: A friend in BigCity has been really helpful with neighborhoods, transportation, features, and other tips.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, my cousin got the last truckload to his new place this weekend. My son came to borrow nice clothes from his dad for a wedding.

Spot the cat is missing his late uncle Earl, and worrying his fur. But he has also gotten brave, and started chasing the senior cat around, which is pretty funny, except to her.

What's going on at your place?

Friday, July 22, 2011

Boxes, Poxes, Squawkses

Happy Birthday Week to Sue!

A round of applause for KLee, who wins the Best Anti-Whine Award for the excellent news that JF is away at his new job orientation! Congratulations to him.

Best wishes to Liz, who wins the PackPackPackPack Award for her superhuman pre-moving efforts. This award includes however many pitchers of margaritas it takes, and complimentary service from the Moving Fairies.

Esperanza wins the Pox Docs Don't Rocks Award; her poor Mini is afflicted despite vaccination, and "Dr. Google is a quack" for suggesting the case would be very mild. Sending an ocean of calamine lotion via Pixie Express. Yay for grandparental backup.

Rack Attack Award goes to Amy, who found a Perfect Bra for the big reunion event, except the underwire makes a noise described as "squick-squawk". We defer to the advice of the resident Bra Queen, Liz, to unload that bra and find another.

Sue wins the coveted Elevated Risk of Mullet Award for putting it this way: "Take it back and tell them it's talking to you." Runner-up for Mullet is KLee, who observes on the related topic of underwire hating that "gravity is a harsh mistress, and droopage is inevitable."

This Kid's a Keeper Award to Neighbor Lady, who warmed our hearts with this report: "Watching my 7 year old son doing the video game "Just Dance". Beyond cute!!!!!!! Of course if he thought I was actually paying attention, he would stop immediately. Having a laptop open on your lap makes it seem like you're doing important work, ya know?"

Back to Civilization Award to Sarah, who forgot she hates camping, but survived the experience anyway.

Free At Last Award to Liz, whose "terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad boss got canned..." Couldn't have happened to a more deserving fellow. ;)

The Cluestick Posse is saddled up and ready to deliver yet another message to the insurance industry, on behalf of JenR. They lose the paperwork, then have the gall to send a hefty denial of claim because they don't have the paperwork. This burns our butts.

Condolences to all who are suffering from the heat wave, sleepless anxious nights, loss of the spring chicken designation, headaches, less-fun family occasions, bra complaints, or any setback leading one to consider duct tape as a solution.

Monday, July 18, 2011


My youngest first cousin just moved to a house very close to us! Or at least, they started moving. Nothing at all was packed, but they eventually managed 2 truckloads and some carloads. His mom brought cleaning supplies, his sister brought her family and major tools, an in-law family showed up to help, and a lot of things got done -- even if there is still a lot left at the old place. Good cousin times! And they have appliances, baby.

Anyway, my other cousin's husband and I got into an animated back-and-forth about dinner on Saturday. He was the grillmaster; he had to re-shape and season the burgers, drizzle sauce just so on chicken wings, and he insisted on personally doing the broccoli just right. I graciously acceded to almost all his conditions with a grin, but refused to concede the corn, which the little cousins had husked earlier to help me. It was very funny, and I thought at last we were getting to know one another well enough to joke. Except I heard later that he is serious about his control issues, leading some to worry about warfare and/or whether I was offended. Oh, well. All's well that ends well, no?

Things I brought to the house party: duct tape; paper towels; stepstool; rake; house broom and dustpan; hammer; push broom; garbage bags; shelf paper selected by the young cousins; hand soap dispenser; old mats for front and rear doors; leftover holiday paper goods; food; assorted home repair items. The food was the most popular, obviously.

I bought the white duct tape a couple years ago, when I was abruptly made the person in charge for this cousin's wedding. Think it was a pixie who recommended it, in case of "catastrophic wedding dress failure." That story delighted the heck out of the handyman; he repeated the phrase "catastrophic wedding dress failure" 2 hours later, laughing heartily as he taped the hole between the kitchen and the hornet nest in the attic.

Sorry for rambling on; it was a big weekend. What's new out your way?

Friday, July 15, 2011

Pixies Conquer the Universe

It's been quite a week here in Pixieland, featuring ever so many events.

JenR wins the Old Skool Award for an appliance classic: "Washing machine suddenly went from 'hey - is the washer done yet?' quiet to 'OMG, who put a jet engine in the laundry room' loud."
Kudos to JenR's mom, who took their laundry home with her.

Esperanza wins Best Use of a Kitchen Item in a Household Emergency, for pressing a flexible cutting board into burglary service when Sweet's door would not unlock. Brava!

The coveted Elevated Risk of Mullet Award goes to Liz, for this: "W: Feeling overwhelmed. AW: But am actually merely whelmed, so that's a good thing."

Girl Talk Award to Sue, who's got an ouchy one. Thanks to all who weighed in with sympathy and tips. Fingers crossed that the antibiotics do the trick.

Liz wins the Mad Moving Skillz Award for advance preparation, having a list and checking it twice, and even finding a tip list from a previous move! Runners up are JenR, with the excellent advice to pack 2-3 days of necessaries and keep them apart from the Giant Piles of Boxes, and Esperanza, who suggests making beds first thing so they're ready when the moving family is ready to collapse.

Keeper of the Lexicon Award to Esperanza, who declares "pus" and "palpate" yucky words.

Speaking of yucky, Purple Kangaroo wins the EWWW, Bedbugs! Award for discoverying that the hotel from which her beloved had returned was reported to have bedbugs. Thanks, we think, to Sue for explaining how to do a bedbug check. Ick.

Cluesticks to the journalist who published a photo of Neighbor Lady's kids, with names, without permission. Glad there was a good response. Big Cluesticks to KLee's tour guide, who thought fixing problems on the tour was not his job. Hmph.

Congratulations to all the Pixies with good news this week, including: Sue, whose son visited, and who has lined up a dream trip to see her favorite band; Neighbor Lady, who is having a nice summer and enjoying her CSA; Esperanza, who reports that Mini peed on the potty!; KLee, whose JF landed a job! and who had a great experience on the long-awaited trip; Sarah, who had a wonderful time with visiting friends; and Amy, whose tooth fairy has decided on a routine, in advance of need. Good thoughts for Sue's friend, who gets a visit home from the hospital this weekend.

Fingers crossed and healthy baby thougths for JenR's little pumpkin. We're glad that Amy's Tater is feeling better after his asthma adventure in the ER.

See you next week!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Mid-Summer Edition

Where is this summer going? Hard to believe it is almost mid-July.

That means I'm terribly behind on work things, and need to go into superhuman overdrive. Gah.

Big anti-whine: daughter got a fall internship in DC! Very exciting news, and it gives me a chance to go see the sights (and visit friends) as I get her settled in! The internet and some friends have been helping us figure out the metro, costs, places she might find short-term housing (safe, furnished, close to transit). Yay!

Now she is starting to worry about living in a big city she doesn't know. She spent an entire school year in a foreign country, but this will be the first big adventure that is not part of a program offering housing. I'm sure things will work out.

In more piddly whines, the closest supermarket is closing; they will move to a megastore, which is still under construction and nobody can say exactly when the move will happen. The market decided to stop stocking lots of goods, so it looks like the aftermath of a hurricane warning, with empty shelves everywhere. Grumble, grumble.

What's new with you?

Thursday, July 7, 2011

"Let's Go Back to the Cowardly Old World, Please" Awards Banquet

Hugs and sympathy and chocolate to kathy a., on the death of her elderly beloved kitty. Grieving and carpet replacement are not mutually exclusive, so go right ahead.

Antiwhine Awards to p_k, who surely deserves some. Hooray for fabulous days, blogging, and the word "benign" uttered by a doctor. And to NUD (good to hear from you, btw) for the healing elbow!

Sue Makes Lemonade Award to (duh) Sue, for turning a broken elevator into a dinner date.

Mullet Award also goes to Sue, for "Scared the whoozits out of us," just because it made me laugh. And I think it sounds Canadian, though I can't tell you why.

And Sue gets the triple crown this week, because she also wins Old Skool for the universal auto-dialing doofuses. (Our home number is listed under the church listing--you don't even want to know what kind of sales calls we get. And the number of times I get called "Mrs. Parsonage").

We are appointing a Insurance Cluestick Posse for any and all insurance whines. Bureaucratic idiosyncrasies, annoyances in triplicate, id numbers, and other complaints will now be handled by this special posse. Goodness knows, they have enough to keep them busy. Apologies now to the 0.2% of insurance people who are kind and competent. It must be lonely work.

And a month's worth of Moving Whine Awards to Liz. (Feel free to whine again before it's all over, but I wanted to make sure you had enough awards to get you through the process). Stressful, stressful, stressful. Plenty of chocolate for you, too.

Hooray for friends who know what we need, catch-up lunches, massages, and Whining pixies!

Apologies to anyone who was left out, and be sure to check in next week.

Monday, July 4, 2011

It's a Brave New World Whining

Last week one day, during the peaceful and quiet naptime, the Sweet Baboo opened her door and said, ever so sweetly, "No sleep, Mommy." She's been in a big girl bed for several months, has been able to climb out of it for several months, has been able to open the door for several months, and has been staying awake during naptime most of the time for several months. She just now put it all together and is popping out of bed like a jack in the box. The one day she did fall asleep, she was up two hours past bedtime, popping out of her room periodically. We keep sending her back to bed, to no avail.

Alas, the end of la siesta.

This morning, on my way to get an awake and talking Mini up from her crib, I glanced over at Sweet's room. Her door was open. Her bed was empty. After I recovered from my someone has stolen my child! momentary panic attack, I looked around. She was sound asleep, on the couch. I had not heard her over the monitor, nor could/would she tell me if she had been up playing in the middle of the night. I guess I'm sleeping on the couch for a few nights.


In antiwhines (she dooms herself by posting this on Teh Internets), it is Day Sixteen of No Potty Accidents. Dare we hope that she may be declared potty trained? Not exactly, as she's missing the part where she announces that she needs to go. It's only been a year, what's the hurry?

What's happening in your new worlds, pixies?

Friday, July 1, 2011

Fireworks Edition

Happy Canada Day! Happy Fourth of July! Here's to a great long weekend for all, and the kickoff to official summer! How do you plan to celebrate? We have a barbeque planned, and our city hosts its annual music festival and fair on Monday, just a couple blocks from the house.

Bon Voyage to KLee, who is on the plane for the fabulous GS trip to London and Paris! Woooo hoooo! We are jealous, and eagerly awaiting a report after her return.

The coveted Elevated Risk of Mullet Award goes to Sue, who confesses a small addiction to an ongoing criminal trial -- she can stop at any time, really -- and remarks: "My favourite is still the Fifth Amendment statement when it starts with "On advice of council..." People listen to their lawyers! How cool is that???" HA hahahaha ha. Oh sure, it happens sometimes, but let's just point out that the world would be a happier place if people consulted lawyers before they did things that brought them to the attention of law enforcement.

It was Fajita Week here at the Whiner's Ball. Esperanza wins the Best Anti-Whine Award for "leftover pie," the consequence of spending the weekend cleaning and cooking for guests who never showed. The Cluestick Posse has been dispatched to visit the errant guests. The Old Skool Award goes to Days, who forgot the cerveza for the traditional end-of-school celebration dinner. We hope that emergency supplies were acquired. Hooray for end of school!

Sue wins the Earworm Award, for You Are My Sunshine. Thanks for sharing, Sue. Bad Bad Leroy Brown. MacArthur Park. Anything by Neil Diamond. You're welcome.

Kudos to Esperanza's Sweet Baboo, for nearly 2 weeks accident free!

Bad Day (TM) Award to Amy, who is juggling summer-addled children, a cat who does not respect boundaries regarding bodily fluids, and a job. At Sue's suggestion, this award comes with complimentary margharitas. We are very relieved that the cat only managed to destroy something of little sentimental value.

Proving again that Pixies Rock, JenR stepped up with useful allergy med advice for Esperanza. Sue practiced self-care by sending regrets to an unnecessary meeting. Esperanza faced the fact she cannot care for one more mammal at this time. Much kindness and caring was dispensed. Y'all are great.

Hugs and a cheer for Days, whose donkey finally arrived with the test results, and things are holding steady. Plus, she reports a hot getaway with her beloved, complete with grandparental babysittage! Have fun!

Thoughts, prayers, and crossed fingers for KLee's JF in his job hunt. Sounds like an excellent interview this week.

And he's not the only one -- Liz reports a good one, too. Yay!

Condolences to all facing flaky guests, workplace woes, summer juggling, tiredness, crankiness, financial matters, black thumbs, tantrums, food issues, illnesses, losses, and any other woes.

See you next week!