Category Archives: garden


Since the summer is about half over (and there are less than six months until Christmas), I thought it would be a good time to evaluate my summer goals.  After careful deliberation and on the advice of my legal counsel*, I’m invoking my Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate myself, especially as it pertains to #1 Keep the garden alive, #3 Make a scrapbook of Dylan’s preschool years, and #5 Paint my bedroom walls.

In my defense, I’ve read one chapter book to Dylan.   Captain Underpants has become an unlikely (and strange) hero in our house.  I’ve lounged in the pool at least once, and I actually finished a book (“Bossypants”).  By the way, Tina Fey is my new hero.  I don’t have a Vitamix 5200 yet, but a girl can dream.  (And it’s practically Christmas!)  In the meantime, I’m eating tons of kale…and the boys aren’t.   Finally, I’ve successfully avoided hurricanes so far, but I can’t take any of the credit.  As a Mama, I can control a lot of things (wait, can I?), but not the weather.

* I don’t actually have legal counsel.  If I did, I’d have a proper will and a plan for the guardianship of my children** should Mike and I simultaneously combust.  I’d also cleverly trademark The Runaway Mama so the brand wouldn’t end up on wine bottles, sneakers, or cruise and hotel packages without my permission (or profit).  And because postnuptial agreements are so hip these days, I’d also have my legal counsel draft one of those.  It would stipulate a maximum number of loads of laundry that I’d be required to wash, dry, fold (ugh!), and put away (the worst!) within a seven day period before someone would have to take over until the next seven day period began.  It would also specify that I’d receive compensation for every pair of socks I picked up off the floor that weren’t mine (they’re never mine) and for every single “tattle” I was needlessly told by either of the children.  It would also instruct that no one was allowed in the bathroom with me if I made a specific hand gesture (raising one finger…the one in the middle).

** I know, I really need to take care of this.

How are you doing on your summer goals?  Have you started your holiday shopping yet?


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Filed under books, Christmas, food, garden, goals


I need to update you on a bunch of random stuff, including the casserole, Father’s Day, my financial, um, situation, the garden, and summer goals.

As it turns out, my casserole leftovers were quite yummy.  It tasted so much better than the night I cooked it.  In other words, it got better with age…

…just like Mike.  Happy Fathers Day!  We started the day with cards and pictures:

Dylan made this picture of a spider web for Mike  – yes, a spider web – at camp:

Then omelets with hot Italian pork sausage, baby spinach and mozzarella (Mike’s request), turkey bacon, Morning Star veggie sausage patties, and croissants (Dylan’s request):

Made by Yours Truly!  I may need some casserole practice, but I’m damn good with eggs.

Then Mike went straight to his computer to do computery things.  (For comparison’s sake, on Mother’s Day, I went to the mall and bought a pair of expensive shoes.)  About Mike’s role as a dad, I can say this:  He works his butt off to provide for his family (and he’s a gifted paper airplane maker to boot), and Dylan, Riley and I couldn’t be more fortunate and proud.

Later in the afternoon, I took the boys to Target to give Mike some space and to buy a zillion and one things, including Mike’s Father’s Day presents from the boys.  Apparently, Mike requested a really awesome Beyblade with sharp edges and a Star Wars Snowspeeder.

“Daddy’s gonna love this,” said Dylan.

I’m gonna love this,” said Riley.

(Editor’s note:  I wasn’t going to buy any toys – as if these kids need any more – but Daddy insisted.  He did.)

We ended the day at our favorite local bar & grill to celebrate with three generations of current and future dads:

Cheers to Grandpa Tom…and to Uncle Ken and Grandpa Barry who we’ll see in San Francisco in ONE MONTH!

On to less celebratory topics…

My spending:  I added up my household expenses for the week and, well, I don’t really want to talk about it.  Just know that I’ll be adding it all up on a weekly basis for a while.  Back in my Weight Watchers days, keeping the food journal was always the deciding factor in whether or not it was a successful week.  I’m hoping the same will be true here.

Now let’s talk about the garden, another slightly depressing topic.  On Saturday, we completed “Take Two” of our garden project.  Not “Phase Two” (the herb and vegetable garden); rather, “Take Two.”  Almost all of the flowers I planted a few weeks ago died.  Green Mama, I am not.  Mike planted new flowers yesterday afternoon without gloating too much (just a little bit) about how all of the flowers he originally planted survived and all of the flowers I originally planted died.  Boo.

Good luck, Take Two:

We (Mike) also planted a beautiful yellow Bromeliad plant Dylan’s teacher gave me at the end of the school year as a thank you for being the classroom’s healthy snack coordinator.

Supposedly, these plants are hard to kill.  We’ll see.  Mike planted it, so I’m hopeful.

A quick “Summer Goals” update:  I bought a “Captain Underpants” chapter book for Dylan.  After initially rejecting the book because it was “black and white on the inside” and asking me to bring it back to the store and buy a toy instead, which made me a very Angry Mama, Dylan let me read a few chapters before bed last night and He. Loved. It.  By the way, there’s a lot of poop, fart, and wedgie humor in this book, which is fun, but we made a deal to only do “poop, fart, and wedgie talk” at home when we’re reading the book (just like how we only pee on trees in our backyard).  We even did a pinky shake to ensure compliance.

Finally, here’s the “Who shot J.R.?” cliffhanger:  I have less than 72 hours to pack for a four-day family trip to Legoland.  Yikes!  Those of you who know my history of packing anxiety are well aware of what a frighteningly short period of time I’ve left myself to get my s–t together.  (New readers can catch up here:  “Everything AND The Kitchen Sink” and “Mastering the art of…”)  Will I get it done?  Without blowing my budget?  Or losing my mind?  Is this all just a dream?  Speaking of which, last night I dreamed I was pregnant again!

To be continued…

p.s. The pregnancy dream isn’t the cliffhanger.  That really was a dream.

Anyone watching the new “Dallas” on TNT? 

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Filed under anxiety, books, cooking, dads, Father's Day, food, garden, money, packing, shopping, toys, Uncategorized, vacation