Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Technology… a two edged sword…

Web Cams at school…

The good news is that Mom can keep an eye on you during the day, so she knows that you are safe and having fun.

The bad news is that Mom has proof that you can do chores without complaining, like getting your nap mat ready all by yourself.

The really bad news is that you have big, poufy cheeks and even with low resolution, she saw you smiling through the process. BUSTED.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Can you hear me now?

Last week I did the one thing I have never done before. No, I did finish all my ice cream. No, I did sneak upstairs to watch a movie at 3 pm without the hubby and the kids instead of spending quality time with them. No, I actually killed my cell phone. I am debating if it was my fault or if it was my cell phone’s way of telling me that it didn’t like me much.

I have never been shy or secretive about my love for gadgets – although I must admit that I am not as geeky as other people I know. Still, the gadgets can only be purchased when there is an actual reason to purchase them rather than just having a collection of items in my home. I mean, if it were up to Sunshine, we would live in the Jetson’s home, but I can’t afford his dreams of electronics…. Bill Gates can’t afford his dreams of electronics. So, when I need an electronic device, I get the coolest item out there, but I won’t go and get an iPhone (although I would LOVE one) just because my phone is still working and I have a contract. It’s called discipline. It’s called budget. It’s called many-nights-hoping-that-I-can-get-my-hands-on-one. Still, like I have said before, the children like to be fed and clothed (who knew?) so I can’t splurge all the time.

Still, earlier this year I dropped my Motorola Q phone one time too many (after 2 years with it with a toddler at the time!) and the screen cracked. Shit. I was still living in the Appalachia Region and the AT&T service up there is spotty at best, so I couldn’t take the chance to get the iPhone. So I went to Verizon (my service provider) and got myself an Droid. Pretty cool phone. Now, I don’t like going to places like Sears and being offered a $30 insurance plan for a $40 item that already comes with a 1 year warranty, so I always decline those. I can’t remember if I got insurance offered for my new phone… it doesn’t matter, I didn’t get it. I renewed my contract and off I went with my $600 phone for the low price of less than $200. Then, two months later, we moved to a metropolis where AT&T service is great. Crap.

So now I have the wrong phone (but still pretty cool) and I am stuck with the contract. Sigh. I’ll live. There are other worst things in the world than not having the right phone right? Right. Like not having a phone at all… Enter my dad (parents are always guilty of what happens to you, right? I am getting ready to be blamed for my children’s mishaps). He is sick. He is going from one doctor to the other. Daily updates. So, like a wonderful daughter that I am, I carry my phone with me all the time. When I am at work, I usually take my phone out of my purse and leave it on my desk until the end of the day, but since my dad is sick, I was carrying it with me now. Put it in my pocket if I walk away, you know, just in case.

Last week, I forgot about my phone in my pocket. I went to the restroom. As I go to sit I hear PLONK! Yep. Phone went straight into the toilet. After that 1 millisecond between CRAP! I dropped my phone in the toilet and SHIT, I HAVE TO PUT MY HAND IN THERE TO GET IT!!! I thought of the plan, the expense, my dad, and took it out. The phone was in there a total of 2.3 seconds. It seems that if your phone is on and it comes in contact with the water, it is immediately fried (I think that the people who design these things don’t have any children. Really? Who designs a phone that won’t survive 2.3 seconds in water?) I didn’t know that. Here I was in the stall, pants around my ankles, pulling toilet paper like crazy trying to dry this expensive piece of communications, all while I desperately needed to pee.

I wrapped up the phone in paper towels (yes, I peed AND WASHED MY HANDS THOROUGHLY too) and brought it back to my desk. I googled “phone” “toilet” and saw that there wasn’t a lot of hope for me or my phone. I took the battery out and when I got home I put the thing in a bag of uncooked rice and on top of a warm place for 3 days like the hope-mongers on the internet had suggested. At the end, I had an expensive paper weight. I went to the store when they told me about the “insurance”. Since I didn’t have it, I could get a refurbished phone for about $300 or a new one for $600. I walked out without a phone. I went to e-bay, craiglist… the phone was the same cost. Stupid phone. I could’ve gotten a cheaper phone, but with work, I need data processing. Stupid phone. Jumping out of my pocket onto certain death. Every person that heard about my phone being dead asked the same stupid question: “Did you have insurance?” No… if I had insurance I wouldn’t be sitting here trying to give my chest compressions (I told people it had fallen into a bucket of water, not in the toilet)?

Finally, one if the IT guys at work told me that they have some spare phones in a drawer downstairs. Would I want a phone? All I had to do was transfer the number to it! Yes! YES I DO! He came upstairs with… A DROID!!! He told me: “If you have the chargers for this one, you can have it.” So now I have a phone again. Exactly the same phone. Free of charge. Gotta love the IT guys! They are the angels of electronics! (I hear choirs every time they save my work!)

And by the way, did I mention that the same weekend my phone died, so did the hard drive to our PS3? That one was under warranty. Not a good weekend for electronics in our home. But when we got the Wii and got the extended warranty offered, I TOOK IT.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I don’t need no stinkin’ lists…

I am not old. I don’t care that my birthday is coming in a couple of weeks and I am pushing 40. I am NOT getting older. Sunshine turned 40 this year and after I the kids made sure to let him know that it was a BIG number, he just jokes and tells me that when you get “that” age, the mind is the first thing to go. I don’t believe him. I am sharp! I can remember ANYTHING!

When I go grocery shopping, I take a list because Sunshine is in charge of cooking in our home (I can cook, but this is his one of his departments) and he knows what he needs. I LOVE grocery shopping, so I take care of that with the list he compiles for me. Still, I don’t need any other lists. Armed with this knowledge, Mini-Me and I headed to the store to buy 2 things: a pedometer (I lost my new one 2 days before I start my walking program at work) and a disposable cell phone (that’s another story). As we were walking out, my shopping buddy asks me: “Do you have a list?” A list? “Son, (use your best Blazing Saddles voice here) we don’t need no stinkin’ lists…” So off we go to Wal-Mart.

I walked in to Mecca the store. Of course, we don’t need a cart or a basket for just two things. As I walked in, I remembered: nail files. I need nail files. So we go to the Beauty Section. As we go through, I see the body lotion. Oh, I need that – so we take two. As I look for the nail files I remember I need lipstick and eyeliner. Check. So we get the items and the nail files. Mini-me is walking with me with a dazed look on his face as I start picking stuff from the shelves. He offers to help. Awesome. So we have the stuff and head towards electronics. Crap. Skywalker needs a white T-shirt for school. Oh, I’ll get that on my way out. We talk to the guy in electronics. What’s the difference between this crappy expensive phone and that less crappy and more expensive phone? Oh, Ok, then, I will take this one. By the way, can we pay for these other items here? No, Mini-Me, we are not getting any DS or Wii games today. Oh, yes, here is my card. Yes, thank you and have a good day too.

We were on a mission. We went, we saw, we purchased, we conquered. Leaving the store, we noticed that it was pouring outside. That’s cool. I take Mini-Me’s hand and make a mad dash to the car. Have you ever noticed how slow children move when they are getting in the car? I mean, they are in the car already, so they are not getting wet anymore, so what’s the hurry to sit in the booster seat and get their foot out the way of the door? I shoved put Mini Me in the car and jumped into my seat. We laugh at how wet we are. We head home.

Ten minutes down the expressway I realize it. I forgot the pedometer. Damn it. And the T-shirt. Crap. Don't tell Mini-Me... he might start calling me old.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

I see London, I see France…

What makes you a male or a female? Is it the XY chromosome combination? No. Is it having a beard or not? Nope. Is it wearing make-up? Nah. Is it having a penis? Of course not! Is it the ability to have babies? We could go forever talking about the physical and psychological characteristics of what makes a human being a male or a female. In this world, where the lines are so blurred (I mean, men giving birth and wearing makeup, and we all know at least a couple of women that could use a shave) we constantly wonder what is it that makes us one gender or another.
Mini-me has the answer. This last weekend, he wanted to help me with some bags after our shopping trip to the grocery store. He slung the bag on his shoulder and said: “Look Mami, like a girl purse!” I said to him: “Are you a girl then?” His response (pretty loudly of course): “Of course not, silly. I wear underwear and girls wear panties.” “Is that what makes you a boy or a girl?” “Yep” “You’re a girl; don’t you wear panties, Mami?” Softly: “Of course I do”… And then I thought… but if I did ALL the time, I wouldn’t be having this conversation in the middle of the cashier area in Wal-Mart, with 20 people laughing at me because you wouldn’t be here for it… but I wouldn’t have it ANY other way.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

What do you mean my dad is NOT Superman?

Maybe I should say: What the HELL do you mean my dad is not Superman?? My mom just called 5 minutes ago. My dad has prostate cancer.

My mom and dad are regular blood donors - the kind that gives blood once every 6 weeks. Sometime last month my dad was refused because he was anemic. My dad is NEVER anemic. He has been turned away because his hemoglobin is high, but never because it is low. So he got some tests done and the PSA came back high. Last year's results were normal. My Brother-the-Doctor told my dad to get checked out right away. That was sign #1: my brother getting involved like that. Ask any good doctor and they'll tell you the same thing: "I don't treat family members. It's too personal." Then he called in a favor with my dad's doctor (they did their residence together). That freaked ME out: my brother doesn't do that. After the exams, my dad's physician told him that there was something there that needed to be checked out by an urologist. Also, he needed a colonoscopy. My dad called me to tell me that he had an appointment in 2 days. That was sign #3: I knew the office he was referred to. There is a waiting list for new patients that is about 2 months out. I didn't tell him.

Finally, the biopsy was last week. Results were going to be available today. My dad told his doctor to schedule his colonoscopy, BEFORE the biopsy results were back. He said that if it turned out that he did have cancer, no one was going to put nothing up his butt.

After yesterday's colonoscopy he sounded great on the phone. He was upbeat and even told me that if indeed he had a "little bit of cancer" at least the colonoscopy was done.

Today my mom called from the doctor's office. I asked her how my dad was doing, "he's scared". I asked her how she is doing, " I am sad."

The thought of my mom being so sad is just as bad and scary as my dad having cancer. Him being scared about it is worse than ANYTHING. I have a very close relationship with both my parents. I call my dad EVERY day. I asked him last weekend if it bothered him that I called him so much and his response was, "Not unless I am in the bathroom or have a doctor's finger up my ass." My dad is funny, smart as hell, and very loving (BTW, he doesn't answer the phone if he's, uhm... busy... he just calls me back.) He adores my mom and his kids (although we know that my mom goes first). They just celebrated their 40th anniversary.

I am sitting here at work, trying to keep a straight face. Trying to compose my thoughts. I am OK for now, but I can't help to get watery eyes every so often. That's my dad. He is my Superman.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

I have NO idea where he learns some of this stuff... I swear.

ince we are now settling into our new home and our new lives, we are trying to spend some quality time together as a family. For the last couple of weeks, we have been treating ourselves to dinner on Sunday night and sampling some of the local restaurants in the new neighborhood.

Last Sunday we tried a little Italian place close to our house. Good food but overpriced – it was just pasta after all, and even if you flew it in from Italy, I know it is NOT worth that much money… but I digress. The place has several TVs inside of the location, giving it a casual if not even sports bar atmosphere. All the TVs were tuned in to different sports. One of the TVs was tuned into a dirt bike competition. Skywalker was sitting there and asked, very casually if he could have a dirt bike. I almost chocked on my $13.95 eggplant parmesan. I had to decline his request. Then the negotiating began:

S: “But Mooooom, why not?”
Me: Because you are too young and it’s dangerous.
S: But my friend So-and-So has one and he is one year younger than me!
Me: What is his last name?
S: Dangerous
Me: What is your last name?
S: My mother is a pain… (That’s what it sounded like when he said the last names)
Me: Are they the same? No? Then that’s why he has one and you don’t.
S: But Mooooooommmmm….

At this point Sunshine jumped in and pointed at the TV… just in time for Skywalker to see a major accident replay. “THAT is why you are not getting a dirt bike,” he said. Skywalker’s response? “You guys don’t let me have anything.”

Since I don’t like such generalizations, I asked him what he was talking about. “I asked for a dog and you also said NO.” Ah, the DOG conversation. I reminded Skywalker about his failed attempt on being a pet owner, which ended with us having to give away his guinea pig… less than a year ago. “Oh,” he said, “but you won’t let me have a cell phone either! I have to wait until I’m 13!” I reminded him that I had promised to THINK about it when he was 13 not that he was going to get one then. And then, my son pouted. Sunshine and I just started laughing at his reaction. We were once again the “meanest” ever (so if any of you thought you had the title this week, we have usurped it). As I paid for the delicious dinner that I had just provided my son, including the dessert that HE wanted, I told him that once he could have a dirt bike, a dog, AND a cell phone – “Yeah, I know, when I can pay for it myself, in my own home,” he said. (Have I said this THAT many times?)

As we walked home from the restaurant, my NINE YEAR OLD SON turned around and said, “You know, when I move out, I AM going to have a dog, AND a cell phone, AND a dirt bike… I will have a nice pad, where I can entertain the SWEET LADIESSS…” Sunshine caught me as I simultaneously tripped, choked on my own spit, had heartburn and had this image of my son:

“Let it go. Don’t worry,” said Sunshine, “with that repertoire, the line of ladies will  probably be a bunch of posters taped to the wall.”

Monday, May 24, 2010

When can a furnace NOT burn any fuel?

Hello, my name is Loving Wife, Working Mom and I am going through menopause. Who would’ve guessed? Not me! And at 36! Well, I saw the signs coming and I have been having symptoms, but I thought that it was just the beginning of a LONG journey, not that I was going to be catapulted into this torture. I have to say that menopause is just another cruel joke from Mother Nature. The more I think about it, the more I think SHE is a bitch, although I have my suspicions that it was Father Nature, but men did not want to be blamed for all the crap women go through (they already go through that at home) so they changed it to a female. I can assure you: no woman would’ve blamed on her own kind the monthly bloated feeling, the hormonal mood swings, the headaches, the damned discomfort of wearing a diaper or a plug for days at a time, the weight gain, the carrying of the kid for 9 months (sometimes more), the swollen feet, the extra fat that takes years to drop off (unless you have a trainer and your job is to look good and brain wash 13 year old girls into thinking that losing 30 pounds or more in 6 weeks in time for the Oscars or the latest Victoria’s Secret catalog is normal) – and THEN… after YEARS of putting up with this crap, in the name of childbearing, then, you are handed with the Golden Ticket of menopause.

Five years ago my doctor told me that I had secondary infertility. The reason: my hormones were about 10-15 years older than my body and my eggs were “aged”. In other words: unless your eggs are made of wine or cheese, this was not a good thing. Still, God blessed us with another son when we weren’t looking. Fast forward 3 years and all of a sudden, at the age of 35 I was having symptoms that I couldn't explain and refused to admit, but were clear signs: including this burning sensation in one ear and a funky buzzing in another. My heart (which is very sensitive to any hormonal changes) was having a tough time keeping up. Finally, my GYN did a test and there it was: I was going through menopause. Not peri-menopause like a lot of women my age, but menopause. My hormonal age never slowed down and here I was. I was able to talk to my doctor into a partial hysterectomy and she agreed. It’s not like I was allowed to use my uterus anyway, so why keep it there giving me troubles? Out it came. Best decision I've ever made after saying "Yes, I'll marry you".

The symptoms abated for a while. Then, the bitch, Mother Nature (why MOTHER, WHY? WHAT DID WOMEN EVER DO TO YOU???) upped it another notch. Women in menopause have difficulty losing weight. Oh yeah, I said: take that, I will watch my weight and exercise more often and all that. She scoffed. Now, I am having hot and cold flashes. Holy shit. Last night I woke up at 4 AM drenched in sweat. Not glistening, not mildly bothered, not covered in dew… SWEATING. I thought that the air conditioner had broken. I rolled over and saw Sunshine, bundled next to me like an Eskimo in a wind storm in Antarctica. What was going on?? I kicked off all the sheets off of me and laid in bed trying to catch a breeze from the fan, which is usually at full blast, but I swear I didn’t feel anything. I ended up getting up about 40 minutes later and went to the Y to work out. Might as well. It’s not like I could sleep anyway and I was already sweating.

So please, Mother Nature, explain this to me (or any of your bastardly minions out there) how can it be that you can raise my core temperature to the point of sweat rolling down my back, but not burn a single calorie in the process? What are you burning in there? Hopes and dreams? So I got a hysterectomy and tried to get my hormones under control – are you so mad that I don’t get your monthly curse that you have now the urge to punish me? Until what age? Haven’t I done everything you wanted me to do so far? You defy the laws of physics.

And as I sit here, under an AC vent at work, with two women next to me in sweaters while I am dabbing by glistening forehead, I wonder why you didn’t spend this enough time and effort in channeling this heat/energy source in some other way, so we can harness it and use it for fuel instead of dumping oil into the Gulf. If this is payback, let me remind you Mother Nature, that I am pretty sure that it wasn’t a woman that designed the Hummer.

Friday, May 21, 2010

I usually don't do this, but I do...

Quick one today:

How many times have you gotten a chain email that starts: "I usually don't forward these, but this one is special" or "I don't believe in these, but I wanted to make sure..." Listen. If you are going to send me the fairy godmother email with the pukey little cats with wings at the bottom, and the one with the "scroll down and count down while you do this prayer" and the "the phone will ring in 10 minutes I swear" crappy ass emails, at least have the cojones to say: I have no other reason to send this to you other than the fact that if I got it, you will suffer with me. At least, I can appreciate your honesty. Oh, and by the way, if the ONLY time you are going to email me is to send me these messages, don't be surprised if you are tagged as SPAM and never hear from me again. I just deleted you from my contacts.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

To move or not to move

I am now having nagging thoughts about Mini-me’s daycare situation. You see, Mini-me was born in October and is currently in the PK4 group at his daycare. The center does not have a Kindergarten group, but they have a 5 year old group – you know, for the children like Mini-me, who miss the state’s Kindergarten deadline. On the other hand, there is a center close to our house that DOES have a Kindergarten program that starts later in the school year. Mini-Me would probably qualify for this group. You would imagine that it would be an easy decision, after all, I already have a son older than Mini-me and I can base my decision based on experience, but unfortunately, it’s not that easy.

Mini-me has the advantage of being a second child, so he has someone to learn from and try to emulate, therefore he is definitely more advanced than his brother was at the same age. Not only that, but having a brother 5 years your senior, can definitely influence your thought process and learning curves as well as you have a less neurotic mother who lets you explore and experience more of your surroundings including but not limited to playing with Lego’s past 3 years old but way earlier than the age on the box, allowing you to use your brain in ways your brother was not allowed to UNTIL he turned the age on the box.

To add to this, Mini-me is über-smart (his old teacher’s assessment although I concur). The kid has always been a smart one… and I am not only talking about being a smart-ass although that also applies at times, I mean SMART. Mini-me is the type of kid that can figure something out by looking at you do it… and if it’s something mechanical, watch out. The kiddy gates were no good in our home: he figured them out in 3 days. The covers for the electrical outlets: 1 day. Since he likes to hang out with me, he has been “helping” me make brownies since he is about 2 years old. When he was about 2 ½ he asked me if he could crack the eggs into the bowl. Since I didn’t care about the mess that day I told him that it was fine. Then to MY surprise, the kids cracked 2 eggs into the bowl… perfectly… on the first try. He has been doing it ever since.

So… smart-wise the kid is ready, but how about emotionally? Socially? Skywalker is very immature. In Puerto Rico we compare maturity to the ripeness of a fruit (because if we can, we compare everything we can to food) and he is greener than an unripe avocado (I should add this one to my list of folk sayings…) So even though his birthday is in September, the question of his attendance to school was NEVER raised. We knew he could benefit of being in a grade lower – his maturity couldn’t handle anything else. But Mini-Me? According to his old teachers, he is ready. He was playing mostly with the 5year old kids that were waiting to go to Kindergarten this year and got along with them great. You see, Mini-me knows he is four, but he refuses to act like a four year old.

To add to the dynamic, there is the recent move. We just started him in this new daycare a couple of months ago. Should we move him again? He is very resilient, but is it fair to him? Distance or hours of care are not an issue (I don’t know if that is good or bad, because a huge difference would tip the balance one way or another). His current daycare is less than a mile away, and the other one is 2 blocks away. His current daycare is $195 a week (gasp) the new one is $226 a week (gasp, pant) but really, that is only a $124 difference a month – not bad considering that the second daycare is considered a “private school” and not quite a daycare at that age. The more I ask, the more ambiguous are the answers to my question.

My window of opportunity is closing. I need to make a decision soon, as the spots on the school being considered get filled quickly… Decisions, decisions….. AARRGGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Chocolate is always good, son.

I have always wondered if it would become an issue for my kids to be part of a multi racial family: especially nowadays when it seems that the Hispanics have become the target of choice. My children do not look Hispanic at all, but I certainly can't deny my heritage (and no, I don't have J-Lo's butt - THANK GOD!).

I have been trying hard to make sure that the kids meet people of all racial backgrounds and so far, they are blind to any differences, or so I thought.

Last week we were in the car riding home from my brother's house. I was sitting in the back seat with Mini-Me so my dad could ride in the front with Sunshine. All of a sudden, Mini-me looks at me and asks:
-Mom, what color am I?
-What color is my skin?
-Uh.... I don't know.... what do you mean? (thinking of the famous "where do babies come from question)
-You know, my skin... what color is it?
-Well, honey, I think it is a VERY light brown with some pink.
-How about you, Mom? What color are you?
-I guess I am a darker brown.
-My teacher told me she's black. But I don't think so.
-What do you mean you don't think so?
-She's not black. She is chocolatey. I LOVE chocolate and my teacher is VERY nice too.

It took me a second to understand that he thought his teacher was being literal to the color of her skin, and that he did not agree with her description. So, I guess is not about being blind to what we see, but embrace the entire person and love every part of who they are. Thanks buddy, and by the way, you are right, I love chocolate too AND I think your teacher is Awesome.

Friday, May 14, 2010

The shrimp does what?

Ah, the joys of speaking two languages! Some people say that one is fluent in a language when you can a) understand songs in that language and b) have dreams in that language. Both of these are true, but I have to add another caveat: you are officially fluent in a language when you understand the folk sayings. You see, this is just the cultural part, not the language per se part. Take Sunshine for example, he doesn’t know tons of Spanish other than commands that we give the boys: sit, stop, time for a bath/shower, eat, milk… and of course the words that come out of my mouth when I am either angry, REALLY angry, or when I stub my toe… words that I wasn’t aware I kept saying until the day Skywalker dropped some toys he was carrying (he was probably 3 or 4) and he said “Coño!” – clear as day. Sunshine didn’t bat an eye; he just looked at me and said, “I know he didn’t learn THAT one from me…” After that, I was more careful. I still say them, but not as often… I mean, you can’t help it when you step barefoot on a Lego or when the recipe called for ½ teaspoon and you just dumped ½ tablespoon and that was the last 2 cans of pureed pumpkin in the city… but I digress.

I was talking about folk sayings. Since I am all about edumacating those around me (I love that word…) I decided to share some wisdom with you. I have already shared some of these words with my husband and my best friends. Most of them quote them religiously now and get the same raised eyebrow look that I get from anyone who doesn’t understand (and that they gave me the first time they heard them). The following sayings are translated directly from Spanish, which makes it fun. Some of them are shared in different countries. When you say one of these in Puerto Rico, nothing else has to be said. The circle of wisdom is complete. But words of wisdom they are, so brace yourself! You are about to be enlightened in Puerto Rican wisdom:

1. Shrimp that falls asleep, the current drags him away – If you are not paying attention to what is going on, you will face the consequences – they don’t have to be fatal ones, just sucky ones. You know, you snooze, you lose.

2. Pigeon pass – another form of not paying attention, but in this case, you are a sucker for it. For example, when you check your receipt leaving the store and realized that you weren’t charged for an item, you say, Pigeon pass… and walk away. Or, when you give someone the chance to do buy the first lottery ticket and they don’t but you do and then you win? Pigeon Pass.

3. Taking me/you for a low hanging mango – when someone (me or you) is taken for a fool (or someone is trying to).

4. Is not the same to call the Devil than to see him coming – Not the same to say you can handle or deal with something than to actually have to handle it/deal with it (and of course, you can’t). In other words, be careful what you wish for.

5. I don’t have hairs on my tongue – “Yeah, you heard me, I said it, so what?” or speaking the truth bluntly.

6. Changing oranges for bottles – made a bad deal, got something of lesser value for something of higher value.

7. The front light is the one that shines – A favorite of Sunshine: Do now what you can do now or you might not have a chance later: for example, “Kids do you need to go to the bathroom before we leave” “No!” “The front light is the one that shines!” (And if they don’t go, then they have to go and there is no restroom in sight… that gives you liberty to say: “I told you that the front light is the one that shines” again).

8. There is a cat trapped in here – Something is fishy here…

9. Slower than a tar drip – No need to explain… have you tried to drip tar?

10. That’s another $20 – That’s a different story altogether.

11. The monkey knows the tree it climbs- is perhaps best understood as ‘no-one knows the truth of a situation better than those involved in it’. Which is similar to:

12. Nobody knows what is in the pot, except the spoon that stirs it.

13. They even took the nails from the cross – This one is based on a true story. Many years ago, San Juan was attacked by pirates and they ransacked the city. They even took the gold nails that were in the crucifix at the Cathedral. Therefore this means: they took EVERYTHING.

14. Although the monkey might dress in silk, monkey it still is - This would seem to be a comment that no matter how a person tries to present themselves, they cannot hide their true nature.

15. Whoever doesn’t like soup, he gets 3 bowls from heaven. – Similar to when it rains, it pours.

16. Without pants on - it is used to mean something said without prejudice but also without tact, bluntly honest

17. Let’s see how the copper is beaten – we’ll have to wait to see how things turn out.

18. The eggs were priced at a quarter – Things got bad.

19. To be barer than the knee of a goat – Without ANY money.

20. While the ax comes and goes – While we wait

21. To tie the dogs with sausages – to do something stupid, that makes no sense.

22. When Columbus puts his finger down - in Plaza Colon Old San Juan there is a sculpture of Christopher Columbus. The sculpture shows depicts him pointing towards the sky. The expression is used to signify that something will never happen.

23. This one is an answer: When my kids ask me where are we going, or where am I going and I don’t want to tell them (because they just need to get in the car after me asking them 20,000 times or because I am not in the habit of informing there of EVERY one of my comings and goings): “To old age”. I usually say it in Spanish: “Pa’ Viejo”. They know what it means…

24. To make hearts out of guts – to make the best out of a bad situation.

25. Thinking of pregnant little birds - used to describe someone who has their head in the clouds or who's daydreaming.

26. Tell me who you hang out with and I’ll tell you who you are – your reputation is tied to those you keep company with

27. So much swimming, to drown at the shore - used to describe someone who has come very close to completing something and yet failed at the end.

28. It is not easy taking Rambo's knife away from him, but it can be done. – I told you we were wise.

Now, be aware that these are not the only ones. There are MANY more… these are just the ones that I feel comfortable putting in a blog… we Puerto Ricans can have a pretty filthy mouth. I grew up listening to many of these (I still get #23 from MY dad if I ask where he’s going and he doesn’t want to tell me).

Now you can use these. Wow your friends with your newly acquired pearls of wisdom. Just don't put them in a fortune cookie, that's just the wrong culture. But you can put them inside a mofongo... mmmmmm.....

Fried foods? That's another post...

Thursday, May 13, 2010

After all this time, I am back.

Like the rainbow and the sun after the rain, I am back.

Like the lost puppy everyone oohs and ahhs over in the news, I am back.

Like the first sprouts in the garden, I am back.

Oh, who are we kidding….

Like the 3 feet of snow that fell in Colorado in May, after you thought it was all done, I am back.

Like the garlic bread you had for lunch yesterday, I am back.

Like that pimple that you thought you had taken care of before ID picture day, I am back.
 (OK, I won't gross you out with a picture of THAT)

Like the cough that you tried to quench with some Robitussin and now you are in church, I am back.

Like the kid you thought had graduated and moved out of the house and now you had turned his room into your long awaited sewing/craft/reading/pretty guest room, I am back.

But just like all those things, I am GLAD to be back. I have missed you all. So...Be ready now. If I can continue to get away with writing my blog at my new job at least a couple of days a week, I would get a sweater, because it’s cool, Baby!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Old McDonald had nothing on me...

There was a lady who had a blog
And then she went and got a new job…
And work late here and work late there
Here work, there work everywhere work, work
There was a lady who had a blog

There was a lady who had a blog
And then the doctor told her she had to jog…
And jog/swim here, jog/swim there
Here jog, there swim everywhere YMCA
There was a lady who had a blog

There was a lady who had a blog
And now at work she had no way of sneaking time to blog
And no more time here, no more time there
Annoyed lady here, annoyed lady there
Hoping that this passes quickly because she is
Missing her blogging and her blogging friends

Friday, April 23, 2010

Lessons in life #35789

Dear sons,

Here are some other lessons in life I want to impart:

1. Giving me a bear hug when I am not ready and in the wrong place can quickly turn into the Heimlich maneuver.

2. When you start making comments about my body parts, then you are a) getting too old to watch me get ready in the morning or b) going to learn a quick lesson on  not telling women how certain parts look... especially the ones we can't see in the mirror.

3. Climbing into bed with your sleeping mother is ok if it's almost time to get up. Using your elbows on her chest, belly or full bladder to get comfortable... not so much.

4. Trying to get your mother to listen to a complicated story (as told by a four year old) is not going to bode well for you when you just woke me up with an elbow to my stomach. Believe me I am trying to listen,  but since you seem to be awake for more than an hour and I haven't had my coffee, I might miss some of what you are saying.

5. Getting flattery with your mother will secretly work... so telling her at the crack of dawn that you need "someone pretty" to help you hold your book, and then looking at me with those big, sad, brown eyes will get your book held by me - after all, I haven't had my coffee yet. Use this power as much as you can now, it will lose it's effect once I am fully awake.

6. Laying low until I've had my coffee will allow you to play video games until the school bus comes or I leave for work.

7. Answering "yes" to all the morning questions (Did you brush your teeth? Is your backpack ready? Did you comb your hair? etc.) will get you additional video game time. You just don't know it.

All that... in about 45 minutes this morning... Class dismissed. Now go to the "other" school and learn the other stuff. Our class will resume later on today.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Where in the world...

So after my initial glitch last week, I am now full force at work. I am still trying to get used to the new atmosphere and the new “culture” at work but so far so good. The hardest thing right now is trying to get used to my new company.
My last job was based in a smaller company, with some regional offices and a larger multi-state presence.
With this job, I work in a massive company, with regional offices AROUND THE WORLD. Exciting, right? Of course! Until you realize that you need to make an appointment with someone in India, and that they are (wait, let me count…) 9 hours ahead… or the person in Denmark who I called on their cell phone as per his email, and ended up waking up because it was 10:30pm their time… or like today, when I was “chatting” with another person in New Zealand and I found out that they are 16 hours ahead… YEP, I haven’t finished my day and he was already starting TOMORROW.
I keep looking at my newly printed world time zones map (God knows I don’t need to wake up anyone in China – yes, we have offices there) and I marvel how such an image that can fit in my 8.5 X 11 inch paper, can think that it can contain the wonders of the world.
Now, if you excuse me, I have to go turn off my cell phone… That guy from Denmark might be vengeful...

Saturday, April 17, 2010

If you think I'm a dummy, then YOU are the dummy

So I have been now at my new job for almost 2 weeks. I have been through the ringer already and I think I might even survive this new adventure.
For four years I was the ruler of my roost. I knew almost everything and everyone. I set the pace; I was the go-to person. Now, I am the newcomer. I have no idea where to get paper for the copier. For 3 days I used the pen I carry in my pocket book because I didn’t know how to get a pen or where to go get one. Now, I am a feeling a little bit more comfortable.
There are many systems that need to be learned and I have not had a lot of training. It has been a somewhat sink-or-swim experience. Gratefully, the other colleagues that I have met have felt my pain and have refused to completely leave me astray. Someone calls me every day to see how I am doing and when I call with a question, they are happy to help. Either these are the nicest people in the world, or they are just scared that I might leave and they will have to take over my work load.
Now, there seems to be some people who think that because I am new to this workplace, that I must be new to work in general or at least to this type of work. I am fresh meat. I am the new kid on the block. I think that they are trying to see how nice I am and how much work they can get me to do that I am not really supposed to do. I am new – not an idiot.
It started with a simple request: “Can you send something for me via UPS?” Now, see, my new company is HUGE. We have computer systems for everything. So I thought, “Why not? That way I’ll learn how to use the system.” Then, as I got busier, I forgot all about the shipment. Today, I came back from lunch to find an envelope on my desk with a yellow sticky note with the shipping address. I walked over to the employee and told him that I couldn’t do the shipment anymore because I have not been set up in the system, and considering that I still don’t have access to half of the indispensable programs, that I didn’t know when I would be able to help. As I stood there, trying to hand over the envelope, he smiled and looked at me… and didn’t move to take it back. I kept trying to give him the envelope, but he kept giving me reasons why NOT to take it back: he could wait; it would be a good learning opportunity; someone else used to do those shipments for him. I got tired of discussing it and suggested that he then take the envelope to the person who did the shipping before. His response: “She’s just around the corner. You know, maybe you should take it and become her friend so she can teach you how to do it.”
I stopped smiling.
I extended the envelope one more time and told him no. He then tried to GUILT me into it! “Oh, I just thought that since we are in the same department, and you are sitting right THERE… that you were supposed to help.” My response: “No. I work in the EXECUTIVE suite, and I report to SUPER BOSS, not you or the team. My location is temporary until they finish remodeling the suite and I leave your sorry ass over here with the LITTLE PEOPLE.” Finally he took the envelope.
I walked away to talk to Super Boss about something else. When I came back, there was a cubicle meeting between 3 of the other workers that dissolved rather quickly once I came back. Two seconds later, one of them offered me some candy. I thought maybe they had spat on it or it had fallen to the ground, but I took one, because I am new, but I am not stupid. I am a newcomer, but I am only a bitch if you make me.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

I am so glad it's not a fashion show, but must you rub it in?

Every Tuesday and Thursday I go to a water aerobics class... they kick my butt... When I go, I wear a Speedo bathing suit... No, not one of these....

One of these....

I know that not everyone that goes to the Y has achieved their weight loss target (me included) but can someone tell the 19 year olds not to wear these?

There's no need for that kind of slap-in-the face. Leave it for the beach, bitches. I makes me want to drown them.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Homework- with a smile

Sometimes you empty your child's backpack or cubby at daycare and find a note from the teacher asking you to do something for your child. The first instinct is to panic: when am I going to find time to do this?? Doesn't she know that I have a routine at home that barely leaves me time to myself (and go exercise, because it gets me out of the house for a selfish reason: ME) before I come home take a shower and try to read 3 pages of a book before I pass out with my nose against my Kindle's screen??? But then you get a homework assignment that you don't mind at all.

Today's assignment came from Mini-Me's day care: "Write a letter for your child to be read during Mail Time tomorrow. Put it in an envelope and address it to your child."

The hardest part is to put something into words. You start making up this beautiful letter in your mind (as you take a shower from your workout). It is so beautiful, that your tears are mixed in with the shampoo... then you remember that he is FOUR years old... and that this note is going to be read in the classroom. Can't be sappy! Can't embarrass him in front of all his new classmates!

I do have a stack of letters for each one of my kids. I keep them, sealed, in a file folder. One day, I will give it to them. I have written about their birth, a particular difficult time in their life (for example, if they get in trouble) about my hopes and dreams for them... these letters are hidden. Not even Sunshine knows where they are, but should something happen to me before I give them their letters, they can be easily found - it's not like there are too many places where I can keep private things around here.

So I tried to summarize my feelings for him, in a way that he can understand and like:

Dear Mini-Me:
I love you because you are very special. One of my favorite parts of the day is coming home after work and giving you a big hug and a kiss.

I am very glad that we are family because you are very funny. You make me laugh.

You are also an awesome helper. You help me with the garden and the tomatoes. You dig the best holes and can water the plants really well.

I also like baking brownies with you. You are good at cracking the eggs in the bowl - and don't even get shells in it or anything! You also mix the brownies well. I laugh when you get chocolate in your face from licking the bowl and the spoon.

I love you, Mini-Me! See you very soon!


Monday, April 12, 2010

Heard at our dinner table

Around our home, sometimes it’s hard to keep a straight face…

Skywalker: Mom, I met a new friend at the pool today!
Me: Yeah? What’s his name?
S: I don’t know. I can’t remember… but I do know that he’s deaf.
M: How did you talk to him if he was deaf?
S: He had those plastic things you put around your ear so you can hear.
M: Honey, that’s called a hearing aide.
S: A what?
M: A hearing aide.
S: A hearing what?
M: Aide.
S: I’m sorry, a what?
M (Turning to Sunshine): Maybe he needs one. (Then to Skywalker): Aaaiiidddeee…
S: A hearing… WHAT?
Mini-Me (Who was sitting RIGHT next to him, at the top of his lungs): AIDE! A hearing AIDE! Geez…
S: Ohhh!… A hearing AIDE…

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Still here

I swear I am around…

This last week has found me in the biggest flurry of activity this side of the millennium. Last week was my last day of work at my old job and I headed down to my new location with Mini-me. We ran every errand possible in 2 days, including taking Skywalker to the orthodontist (no braces this year, but definitely next) a Chinese noodle lunch at this little hole in the wall restaurant (YUMMY) and time at the local swimming pool (Hey, not everything has to be a boring errand).

By Friday we were back on the road but this time it was all of us. Can’t say that we were together because we are still moving stuff down and we need two cars. Sunshine is the one who drives the mini-van, so we took his seats out and now we have a cargo van. That meant that the boys rode with me. Amazing how two children only have to deal with a two hour car ride, have books, electronic equipment and music and will still find time to 1) get bored, 2) annoy each other to the point of fighting and 3) make up in 2 minutes later because they are still bored. This cycle repeated itself at least 10 times. I just changed the music so it would only come through the front speakers and decided to ignore my children for the rest of the drive. As a matter of fact, somewhere in the first hour I told them that unless a) someone was bleeding or b) someone was in danger of bleeding, not to say the word: MOM. At least until we got back to the house.

Once we got there, we had a “camp-out”. Since Sunshine had taken all the furniture out the weekend before, we all slept in our old rooms, except that we did so in air mattresses and sleeping bags. Since I had a bathroom close-by and Sunshine made sure that my mattress was extra-comfy, I didn’t mind it that much.

The Easter weekend was a blur.

Sunday night, Sunshine unpacked the cars while I supervised. HA! Not too bad. He has been doing it for 5 weeks now, so it was easier and faster than me trying to figure out where to put anything. He just gave me a tour when he was done.

Then, I had a rude awakening. We had decided to avoid extra costs until we resolve our house situation. This included no TV/cable/dish or phone or internet. The TV part was not too bad, because we have Netflix for the occasional movie, video games for the boys and to be honest, we are not spending that much time at the house anyway. Then, it occurred to me that I do my banking and pay bills online. Crap. We had no choice but the get internet. I was hoping we could fly by without it, but no such luck. Sunshine was able to get everything installed on Monday – so that’s another reason why I haven’t been heard of or seen since then. 

Monday was my first day at my new job and it was so busy and overwhelming with all the information I had received and am still learning that I couldn’t talk when I got home. I tried to read, and I was too tired. I tried to watch a movie, and I was too tired. I tried to talk about my day, and I couldn’t make a coherent thought. I decided to go exercise at the local Y and cannot tell you what was playing on the treadmill’s TV… something about the news – I think they were in Spanish.
Work has been like that almost every day. Finally today, although I have not been able to learn as much as I have to, at least people have stopped dumping information on me, so I can at least digest what I do have. So… finally today, I get to see how you all have been doing, and I am so glad that whatever is left of my oozing brain is enjoying reading your blogs.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

That’s all folks! But it's just a see you later!

I am now sitting at work waiting for the last 15 minutes of work to be over. As bad as it got some days (especially when my Work-Husband found out I was leaving), I enjoyed working here. My co-workers were warm, caring and supportive (especially through the crazy health crisis in the last couple of years and during the unemployment). At the worse, they even “adopted” our family during Christmas time, to make sure that the kids had presents under the tree.

I didn’t know how much of an impact I had on those around me until my good-bye reception this afternoon. How wonderful to see all those people there. And the loot! They love me! I got tons of hugs and someone even cried.

I am glad that my parents will stay in the area. I actually look forward to a new chapter in my life, but I am glad that it was based on this wonderful time.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

It’s not like I ever had a chance, but…

Growing up in Puerto Rico, we swooned to the cuteness of the Menudo boys. We would fight over our favorites and would “assign” each other the group members. We made plans to find them, make them fall in love with our wonderfulness, marry them and be the envy of all the girls of the WORLD!

I can tell you that yesterday, a lot of worlds were crushed and a lot of worlds were jubilant. When Ricky Martin announced that he was gay, I am pretty sure that not a lot of people were surprised. Actually, I don’t think anyone really was. We were all in the know without him saying anything. Still, the announcement cemented that knowledge and all the girls’ hearts died a little. I am sure that there are a lot of men out there that gave each other high-fives yesterday: the ones that will say every day to their in-denial-wives/girlfriends “I told you so!” and the ones that have been dreaming all this time about finding him, make him fall in love and marry him and be the envy of all the girls/homosexual men in the WORLD!

Still, at least we can all enjoy the eye candy… Right?

Monday, March 29, 2010

Over the bridge and through the woods...

As my quick post explained yesterday, we are now in full transition mode. We are in the process of relocating and that means that most of the furniture is out of the current home and since I still have some days at work, Mini-me and I are staying at my parents’ home. Here are some things I have learned so far:

1) When you stay at your parents’ house, you are not on the top of the food chain anymore. You are not even close to the top. They go first, then the kids, then you.

2) When at your parents’ house, you seem to lose any ability to raise your children properly, even if you are doing EXACTLY what was done to you. If you correct, you are too harsh. If you don’t, then you get THE LOOK. It takes your children .3 seconds how to play the system. Can you say ice cream for dessert… before dinner?

3) If it takes your children .3 seconds to learn how to play the system, it takes them .1 second to realize that your parents are the boss of you. Take that time and cut it in half if the child is as smart as Mini-me. If your child smiles at the moment of realization, you can now expect a direct correlation to the times that they system will be played against you.

4) When at your parents’ house, you don’t get to watch your favorite shows on TV – you don’t even get to hold the remote.

5) If you decide to do something else other than watch TV with them, you might be the recipient of a guilt trip, including “Puppy dog” eyes…

6) When at your parents’ house, you get to sleep in a tiny guest bedroom. The sewing room/plant/junk room is bigger than yours. You might be lucky if you get some space in the closet, but don’t count on it.

7) You don’t have privacy from your children. EVER. Since they are sharing the tiny guest bedroom with you.

8) You might be told to buy food for you and your children, since you might not like what the eat (even though you and your children eat there all the time). When unpacking the groceries, you might be informed of the menu during your stay (which includes what you will be eating) and none of it includes ANY of the stuff you just bought.

9) They cook for you.

10) Your kids are taken care of like nowhere else in the world.

11) You are greeted in the morning with a smile.

12) You get hugs and kisses at any given time (the kids might get more, but you will land several yourself).

13) You get to see your parents’ pride for you in their eyes when they catch you playing with your children.

14) You feel safe.

15) You feel taken care of.

16) You feel loved in a way that doesn’t happen anywhere else, even in your own home.

Sunday, March 28, 2010


Sitting at my mom's; watching a movie with her (Dot the i), while Mini-me and my dad have already called it a night.

Sunshine was able to clear the entire house of major pieces of furniture, so now Mini-me and I are staying at my mom's for a couple of days (until Thursday) while I finish the last couple of days of work and Mini-me and I move with the rest of the crew.

It's been a couple of stressful days. With the move and all the packing and then having two households it is hard for me to keep the migraine at bay. It is amazing how having two jobs doesn't help to cover two homes. No wonder this is the life of the rich and famous only... and we are neither.

We are now in the desperate time of our lives where we need to sell our house NOW and deal with the issues as we go- choosing who is going to get paid is horrible... once we sell the house we'll be fine... is getting to that point.

At least the family is together...

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

My Lucille... She is my Preciousssss.....

It’s official. My husband and I are sick, sick people. There is no cure for us. Please tell our children we love them.

We are devastated by the realization that once we move out of our home this weekend, we will have to leave behind one of our most treasured and loved family members: Lucille. Who is Lucille, you ask? Only the most wonderful, beautiful, reliable, dependable…. Stove. Lucille is my Electrolux Dual-Fuel, Double oven, stove. She is more than a stove. She is – well, Lucille. I named her after Lucille Ball, because every day, since she was delivered I walk into our home through the garage, into the kitchen, and I see her there, gleaming and welcoming, and I can’t help but to yell… Lucy, I’m home!

Lucille is everything a cook/baker like Sunshine and I ever wanted. She has two electric ovens and a gas stovetop. You access the controls by touching a screen, and the controls light up and chime “Ding!”. It’s your own Star Trek Enterprise control board. Her oven racks are mounted on ball-bearings, so when you have a heavy turkey or when you are making a flan and you cannot have water fall into the pan, there is no jerkiness pulling the item out.

She dries out herbs. She can even jerk meat (not that we ever did that). She truly is remarkable. Pricey, but remarkable. We saved our pennies for her… and now she must stay behind. She is my Preciousssss……

So you can understand how this has impacted us, here is the actual email conversation that Sunshine and I had today:

S: Want me to bring home egg bread on Friday?
LW: :) yes! Maybe the problem that you have been having is needing to rearrange the recipe to reflect the change in altitude.
S: I made one on Monday that turned out good. It is the absence of Lucile in the mix…. I think I have got a good relationship with the new appliance and am producing better product now…. ;-}
LW: It’s a new thing. Treat her nicely too. No one can replace Lucille.
S: She is a special one.
LW: All we can do is hope that someone will be nice to her also.
S: Okay… I’ll leave my emotions for her there [at home] when we move. Me and the new oven are already friends.
LW: Don’t let her know that. It might be… too.. painful….
S: is a special experience for sure…. Her burners were a thing of beauty too. Those big iron grates…
LW: The “whoosh” when the gas ignited…
S: You just made my hair stand up on end….
LW: I am tearing up…
S: We’ll get through it together.
LW: I don’t know…

Who said we are not a match made in heaven. Anyone who can take time off their day to have THAT conversation with me, is MY kind of man!

Do you have an inanimate item that you love???

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

He is Human too.

As Easter approaches, I am always in awe of the great sacrifice that was paid for my Salvation. I am not usually one to preach or be too open about her faith (as a matter of fact, I will only talk about the Wonders that God has done in my life when people ask me), but Easter seems to be different.

This time and Christmas time remind me that Jesus was a man. That he had a mother. That she worried about Him the same way I worry about my kids. I wonder what she was thinking when He was going through His tribulations and how many sleepless nights she spent worrying and crying for his safety and sake, even though he was doing everything for ours.

In all His glory, he started small. Gained a space in her heart first, then to gain ours. Here is an image that I treasure. I just wanted to share. I just hope I always have space for Him.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Old Man Winter, you suck.

Spring was here. I swear. I have flowers to prove it. And you had to come and ruin it for me. I knew it would be overcast and that was OK. I knew that it wouldn't be warm and that was OK. Spring came around. The calendar said so. The pagan people in Asheville said so. Easter is next week. Some birds were trying to eat my newly planted garden looking for nest material. You were out. But NOOOOO, you had to come back today. Like that garlic roll that I had at lunch and I can still taste 5 hours later. I can take the cold, the overcast day, but for you to come back and make it SNOW today. And an inch of top of that! That's was just cruel and unfair. To me, it was as if you lifted your cold dress (yea, I called it a dress, not a tunic), turned around and mooned me. Your cold, Old Man Winter. After all those posts where I defended you and snow and how much I love it. I don't care if you dump 30 inches of that crap in December. But today was one inch too many. I don't care that it didn't stick. See if I care next year. I hate you and my tulips hate you. Enough said.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

It's here, IT'S HERE!!!!

Yes, I feel it in my bones, and I have proof of it! SPRING IS HERE!

After a horrific day yesterday, I walked up to the front door to find this:

I looked around and noticed that about 50-60 bulbs will flower in front of our home.

Today, it is 65 degrees and the day looks like this:

So I did what every person in the area is doing today and prepared our boxed garden. Some people around here have gardens so big that they use tractors and tillers... and that's their backyard garden! We are selling our home and are moving from the house in 2 weeks, but I can't leave the garden the way it is, so... I did what any normal person would do. I went to the garden center...

Parsley (Got 2 types)




Last year we had 5 other tipes of vegetables, but I remained under control this year. I will only be around to take care of the plants over the weekends, so I needed what I call "edible weeds".

Before long, my hands were looking like this:

Love it! There is something about dirt. To me it looks better than my rings (but not by much. Diamonds ARE pretty, after all, and they ARE a refined type of dirt).

So after spending several hours outside (Mini-me was with me for a couple of them- he also LOVES to garden), I dragged my feet inside, just to grab some water and sit back in the sun, just to find this:

THAT did NOT last long.