Thursday, August 30, 2007

Flat Like a Pancake...

So Hubs is out of town again *sigh* It's not his fault. Actually, he's gone for a really good reason. My FIL is getting re-married and Hubs is the best man, so he kind of has to be there. I was hoping to go, too, but we just can't afford it right now (especially with all the uncertainty of whether or not we're staying in, where we're going to go, etc). I still felt really bad having to tell my FIL I wouldn't be able to make it, though I'm sure he understood. To make matters even worse just about everyone is sick right now. A is actually the only one who hasn't displayed any symptoms, so he's sure to be sick as a dog this weekend. Lucky me! Plus, this is back-to-school shopping weekend. I had hoped to avoid it, but C really needs some new clothes (her old stuff is starting to look pretty shabby after a long, hard summer of playing!) and she only has one pair of shoes that still fit, and trust me when I say they look like absolute shit. So it's going to be an interesting (and by interesting, I mean stressful and sucky) weekend for me. The only good part is that Hubs feels so guilty for leaving me alone with the kids again that he will be kissing my butt when he gets home (or maybe not now that I've written about it. Way to go me)

Pu's Interpretation of Baby Talk

Waaaaaaaaah! = Oh my god. I'm dying over here, lady. Get off your ass and feed me!
Waaaaaaaaah! = It has been .2 seconds since my last cry and I am still not being fed. What kind of crack house are you running here!?
Waaaaaaaaah! = Okay, this is getting ridiculous. I have been crying for, like, at least 5 seconds, and I have yet to be fed. I want to speak to your manager!
Waaaaaaaaah! = What do you mean there's no manager here? What is this Orbitz customer service? You people are so incompetent. It has been at least 7 seconds since I started crying and I still have no food.
Waaaaaaaaah! = Okay, I know that Dad is out of town and that J is insane and C has been sucked into the mind-numbing vortex known as tv, but doesn't anybody realize that I am the important one here? I am dyyyyying of starvation. It has taken you 10 seconds to feed me and now I have worked myself up and I cannot eat until I have been comforted.
Waaaaaaaah! = Did you hear me??!! I said I must be comforted first! Comforted, I tell you! Now I will do nothing but cry until you stop trying to stick that nipple in my mouth and snuggle me.
Waaaaaaaah! = Snuggle meeeeeee!

*pausing to receive comforting snuggles*

Waaaaaaah! = I know you finally figured out that I needed to be calmed first, and I am actually eating now, but I feel that I still have some crying left in me. I must continue to cry sporadically while you feed because I am upset. I have no idea why I am upset, and neither do you (which is half the fun), but it seems like this crying thing is working out pretty well for me so I am just going to stick with it for a while until I can get J to cry, too. Then you will have a crying baby and a crying toddler, and you will have to choose which one to pay attention to. And it better be me!
Waaaaaaah! = You are not paying enough attention to me! You must look at me while you feed me. You must coo in a high pitched voice and say things like, 'Who's the cutest baby?' using the same voice inflection as Scooby Doo. You must stroke my cheek and ignore that red-haired toddler who is hogging all of your attention.
Whimper, Whimper = Fine, so you have caved into all my demands. Clearly you have no spine, and I must think of other things to cry about.
Waaaaaah! = Now I have gas.

Conversations With 'Toddler-With-a-Cold'

Me: Good morning, sunshine!
J: Humph! *rolls over and hides under covers*
Me: What should we wear today. Ooooh, how about a pretty dress? You love your pretty dress.
J: No.
Me: Okay, how about some shorts and your pink shirt? *enticingly* It's your favorite shirt....
J: No.
Me: Okay, then you can just stay in your night-night clothes all day if you want.
J: No.
Me: Then what would you like to wear?
J: No.
Me: Fine, you can just be naked.
J: No.
J: Ses'me Steet!
Me: Oh, you want to wear your Sesame Street outfit.
J: No.

J: A'les yucky.
Me: What's wrong with Alex?
J: A'les wet. Ew!
Me: Did he spit up? *discovers that A has not, in fact, spit up. Rather, he has wet himself and the last blanket that is not in the wash* Oh, shit!
J: *helpfully* Shat!
Me: Don't say that.
J: Shat!
Me: *trying to clean up the mess while fending off J, who is trying to be helpful by handing me back all of the soiled clothes I am throwing on the floor* God dammit, Jesus Christ!
J: Jeeeesa. *pause* Shat!


Some More Amusement to Help Waste Your Workday...
Butt Minus, hee.

Something you will only find funny if you happen to live in Amsterdam and/or are a fan of Lost (only 6 more months, aghhhhhh!)

If you haven't heard about poor Miss Teen South Carolina then you must live under a rock. --
how sad is it that this is what passes for news in the States*

*I guess those South Korean missionary hostages being released by the Taliban after the South Korean government bought them off isn't quite as exciting as making fun of a teenage girl who fucked up a pageant question.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

No VSP :(

If you were wondering whether or not the VSP program for '08 came out (as I'm sure you all were), it did and, of course, I am not eligible. Seems the AF finally got a clue after making so many personnel cuts last year that we were practically bleeding intel officers. After over a year of kicking people out left and right they finally realized, "Hey! There's a war going on and we're getting rid of all our experienced people. Perhaps that is not the smartest move?" So, all operational AFSC's (which includes yours truly) are now off the list of folks they're willing to cut loose seeing as they're now down to 65% manning for intel captains. Way to go, AF! I remember when we first had all the mandatory info meetings about the force shaping program, and the officer in charge would get up and declare vehemently that the AF WAS NOT going to make the same mistakes they did last time (in the mid-90's when they got rid of a ton of people after the 1st Gulf War). This time it would be different! This time they had a plan! Oh, how I laughed and laughed. Somehow it seemed fairly obvious to me that one's military should probably not start giving out incentives to get rid of people while, you know, there's a war going on! But, then, I actually have a brain, something that the folks at AFPC clearly lack. So now they've finally gotten a clue, just in time to screw me. Figures.

At any rate, we're now in the process of trying to igure out what the hell we're going to do. Right now I'm sort of hedging my bets as to whether I'll stay in or not. My boss is trying to see if there's any way I can get a guaranteed state-side deployment. If that's a possibility, I may stay in a bit longer. If not, well, I've already started putting my resume out there. I figure it can't hurt to see what I'm worth on the outside.

Drama, Drama, Drama

I think all of my children are born with the drama queen gene. A is clearly learning from his older sisters and has learned how to manipulate Mommy into doing just what he wants. He likes to fuss and cry so that I go to all the trouble of getting ready to feed him, then he'll refuse to take the nipple and just sit there and smile at me so that I can't get angry because he's just so darn cute. Or I'll have him in my arms but be paying attention to something else and he'll start twisting and fussing until I look at him. Then he'll smile really big as if to say, Pay attention to meeeeeee! Of course, being a drama queen has its advantages for us parents. For example, it's very easy to distract J when she's throwing a tantrum. All I have to do is start pointing out old boo-boos and she will hold up whatever body part it is for kisses and forget all about whatever it was she was throwing a fit about. Very useful!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

A Year of Pu

As many of you may be aware, I had a birthday on Monday. I am now one year older and one year sexier (and have added one more kid to the mix). I feel very accomplished ;)

Hubs took me to a nice romantic restaurant in Hermosa Beach. The service was lacking a bit, but we had a very secluded table with no one else around and the food was decent. Plus, there was nary a child to be found! I also got a new pair of sunglasses, some new sandals, one of my fave beatnik books (Naked Lunch, the restored edition), and a black purse that I can actually carry in uniform so that I no longer have to attempt to stuff the contents of my purse into my pockets every work day (yay!).

In other news, C leaves tomorrow to fly all by herself to Abq to visit the old folks home..I mean, the grandparents ;) She is extremely excited to be attending the Grandma & Grandpa Pu Joint Cooking & Baking School for Grandchildren. She hopes to earn her degree in 8-Year Old Prep Cook/Baker in just three days! (Well, she's flying back on Sunday, so, really, she doesn't have much of a choice) I, on the other hand, am extremely apprehensive since C is not exactly known for her shyness. Hopefully she gets a good seatmate who isn't too annoyed by the the constant chatter he/she is sure to be subjected to. I imagine many crying baby flights will be ion my karmic future to make up for this!

Anecdotes From Pu's Corner

#1 Why you should always be careful about the expressions you use around children
Me: *after instructing said kiddos on what to do* And, hop to it!
C: *whispers loudly to T as they scamper out of the kitchen* She said we were supposed to hop!
Me: Not literally!

#2 I must admit that while things have calmed down somewhat since we downsized tha family, things are still a bit hectic when we are all squished into a small space. Yesterday's car ride home was just another example of why god created radios with the ability to turn the volume waaay up ;)
Me: So how was your day?
C: I wish the world was edible.
J: *having been denied the ability to buckle her car seat seatbelt by Nature and Mom's quick fingers* Meeeee do it!! Meeee wanna do it!
Me: It's already done! Now why would you want the world to be edible?
A: *realizing that someone else is crying in some near proximity and that he must automatically top them for loudest crier* Waaaaaaaah!
C: Because then I could eat everything like the trees, the sidewalk, the playground...
J: Meeee do it! *begins kicking my chair rhythymically* Meeeeeeee!
C: the house, my sister, the beach, the sand...
A: Waaaaaaaaah!
Me: *attempting to ignore the screamers in the backseat* What about clothes? What would you do if someone ate your pants?
C: *in a 'duh, Mom' voice* Well, everyone would just wear two pairs of pants. That way if someone ate your pants you would still not be naked.
J: *daunted by A's cryin' throwdown begins sniffing pitifully* Me do it. *sniff* Big girl. Big girl do it. *sniff*
A: *not yet realizing he has won the crying competition* Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!
C: Or, I could just wear a skirt.
Me: What if someone ate both pairs of your pants?
C: *looks at me like I have lost my mind* Who would do that?
Me: Ah yes, how silly of me. Clearly eating two pairs of pants is out of the question.
C: Yeah! You'd get a stomach ache.

#3 J's vocabulary expansion

J is at that stage now where her vocabulary is growing leaps and bounds every day. I think toddlers learn something like 10-15 new words on average per day. Our conversations have gone from...

J: Momee! Momee! Momee! Momee! Momee! Momee! Momeeeeeeeee!
Me: What!!??
J: *proudly* Bubbles.


J: Momee, look'it! Momee, look'it! Momee, look'it! Momee, look'it! Momee, look'it! Momeeeeeee, look'it!
Me: What!!??
J: *proudly* Me bo' bubbles.

#4 More Humor From the Mind of an 8-Year Old

C: *pointing to the backseat* Mommy, there's something down there!
Me: What?
C: Just look, Mommy! Look down there.
Me: I can't right now, I'm driving. Just tell me what it is.
C: Mooom! I'm supposed to say l'ook down there', and then you say, 'Under where?'
Me: Why?
C: Just do it! Pleeease, Mom.
Me: Fine, under where?
C: Hahahaha! You said underwear!
Me: *sigh*

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

HR Hatin'

So for about a month now the AFPC (AF Personnel Center - our HR peeps) has had August 15th posted as the date when the fiscal year 2008 VSP (voluntary separation pay) plan is supposed to come out. As many of you know, I have been waiting for this program to come out so I can put in my separation paperwork and get a nice, fat chunk o' change. I wanted to make sure that I was first in line so that I could be guaranteed a slot (the AF is being much smarter about getting rid of people who have overages in their career fields and mine only has a few slots left after the FY 07 program closed out in May). So I tried calling my local personnel office about 50x both yesterday and today, and, of course, no one answered the phone or returned any of my messages because they are HR and what do they care about my career? So I sucked it up and got the kiddos up early and headed on down to base first thing this morning to make sure I got my paperwork in. When I get to the MPF (personnel office) the two civilian ladies working the customer service desk (who don't bother to get up and answer my question for 10 minutes -- EVEN THOUGH I AM THE ONLY PERSON IN THE OFFICE -- because one of them is on the telephone) have no idea what I am talking about. In fact, they don't even know what the VSP is. This is the customer service section, people. This program (for FY 07) has been out for over a year and they don't know what I am talking about??!! Finally, one of them suggests that I go upstairs and talk to the folks in Separations (who I had also tried calling with no success). So I go up there with questions in hand and receive the same blank stare from the girl in uniform at their front desk. ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!?? These are the people who are supposed to be helping me and they don't have the first freaking clue what I am talking about. Can you seriously be that incompetent at your job? Finally she locates someone who actually knows what I am talking about and it turns out that AFPC has not yet released the message for the FY 08 program (in spite of the fact that the website has been saying it will be released today for the last damn month). Not only that, but he has no idea when the message will be released, what it will say, or what information I'll need to provide them with when the message is actually released. So I got the kids up early (meaning I stayed up after A's 5am feeding since it takes me that long to get everyone ready) and drove all the way to base for nothing all because AFPC didn't bother to update their website on, you know, the 14th of August and because no one would answer their goddamn phone. If I hadn't had the kids with me, I might have just let a few choice words fly (which would probably have been quite stupid since I will eventually have to go through these people to put my paperwork in even if they have no idea what they are doing). I can't believe that my HR department is so damn incompetent. Okay, that's not true. HR is almost always incompetent, but it's still very frustrating!

In other news, Hubs is on a business trip to Toronto this week, so I am all alone with the kids, wah! Plus his cell phone is getting roaming charges out there (I guess b/c he's in another country), so we can't even talk that much since we don't want to run up our phone bill :( Hubs is my beacon of sanity in an otherwise poop and puke-filled world. I miss him so much!

Monday, August 13, 2007

2 Down, 3 To Go

Of course the last one still has another 18 or so years before I can legally kick him out of the house, but who's counting? ;)

The step-kiddos left this weekend (in case you hadn't grasped that fact from my ever so obvious post title), and we are down to just our three. In fact, today is my first day sans kiddos in god knows how long (okay, technically there is a newborn in the house but since he sleeps for longer than a fifteen minutes at a time, he no longer counts!). Ah, sweet freedom! I can't remember the last time I had a good twenty minute stretch without hearing:

"Mom, I'm bored!"
"Mom, he/she hit me!"
"Mom, he/she is teasing me!"
"Mom, J/V/C/T won't share!"
"Mom, J/V/C/T said I'm a poop/booger/fart-head/nose/butt!"
"Mom, I'm still bored!"
"Mom, 'Nessa/Ca'tin/Tommy hit/bonk face/head (or some toddler-speak combination thereof)

Let me tell you, a baby screaming is nothing compared to hours on end of yelling at 4 insane children:

"Stop jumping on the bed!"
"Stop running in the house!"
"Don't hit your sister/brother!"
"Stop mauling your brother. Faces are not ticklish!"
*screaming at the top of my lungs* "Stop screaming! The baby is sleeping!" --and if that sounds counterproductive, let me tell you, it is.

At any rate, I do actually have things to do today (I go back to work on Thursday *sigh*). So I'l leave you with some pearls of wisdom I gleaned from someone else's blog (linked to by my sis MR):

Top 10 Toddler Rules of Possession
1. If I like it, it's mine.
2. If it's in my hand, it's mine.
3. If I can take it from you, it's mine.
4. If I had it a little while ago, it's mine.
5. If it's mine, it must NEVER appear to be yours in anyway.
6. If I'm doing or building something, all the pieces are mine.
7. If it looks just like mine, it is mine.
8. If I saw it first, it's mine.
9. If you are playing with something and you put it down, it automatically becomes mine.
10. If it's broken, it's yours

Monday, August 06, 2007

Quick Pics

I know I've been incognito for the last month, but I promise a nice long update when everyone leaves this weekend. A few things you may have missed: J turned 2 and A hit the two month mark. Hope you all are slightly less frazzled than I am!