Are they interested in hiring 30-something SAHMs, too?

KFC pays college women for ad space on buns

Women on college campuses are being paid $500 each to hand out coupons while wearing fitted sweatpants with “Double Down” in large letters across their rear ends.

The nation’s largest women’s group doesn’t like it one bit. “It’s so obnoxious to once again be using women’s bodies to sell fundamentally unhealthy products,” says Terry O’Neill, president of the National Organization for Women.

Seriously, you simply must click on the link to see just how scantily clad these young women are. NOW is outraged over sweatpants and white t-shirts? I’m not a fan of words across a person’s backside, but if this outfit were the most immodest thing my daughters ever wore in public, I would count myself a lucky momma. And thinking back to my youth, would I wear those sweatpants for $500? Are you kidding me? Do you know how much pizza and beer $500 can buy?

Decaffeinated

It’s not a good thing, ever, to wake up and find out that your coffee maker is broken. To have this happen on a Monday morning is even more foreboding. I think I’ll cancel any plans this week and hide under the bed.

Anybody love their coffee maker? There are so many choices…

Wake me up when it’s over

Only 142 days until February 7, 2011.

What is February 7, 2011? The day after the Superbowl.

Fifteen years of marriage, and never an issue during the football season. Oh, perhaps some temper tantrums or grumpy Monday/Tuesday mornings, but nothing that didn’t wear off by afternoon (73% of all Packer fans experience bipolar disorder…85% of all statistics are fictitious…). And I like football, especially if junk food is involved…or good company…

But then I grew an adolescent football junkie. If I hear one more name or statistic or find my browser opened to Yahoo fantasy football one more time, I’m.going.to.scream…

AAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh, yeah, and what do you say to two young boys when they want to know why Ben Roethlisberger was suspended for 6 games (reduced to only 4 because he’s been a good little boy)? Football has ceased being fun for me.

Quiz answers

Post-vacation weeks tend to be a little crazy. Almost makes me wonder if going away is worth it. But it definitely was. “Stay-cations” are nice for their low cost and if you have catch up work to do around the house. But that’s work. If you need a break, and we all needed a break, nothing beats getting away from visual reminders of your to-do list, having your place mysteriously tidied up while you are out at the beach, and eating out or preparing extremely simple meals.

So, it was not intentional that I have left the vacation quiz unanswered for so long. I’m sure everybody is wondering how they scored. In a word: pathetic. Don’t feel badly, though. Some of the questions were tricky!

Here are the answers:

#1 The car is packed, the kids are loaded up, everybody is ready to go. What last chore is Michelle doing before leaving on vacation?

a. Hand washing all the dishes because you can’t leave the house with the dishwasher running.
b. Folding a last load of laundry so the clothes in the dryer aren’t wrinkled when we get back.
c. Cleaning out the cat’s litter box.
d. Shampooing the living room rug because it will have plenty of time to dry while we’re gone.
e. Scrubbing out the kitchen garbage can.
f. Au contraire! I’m the one honking the car horn impatiently waiting for everybody else.

{Notes: I always walk out the door with appliances running and would only worry about clothing in the dryer if it belonged to Bill and I – not the kids. We don’t own a cat. I might have been scrubbing the garbage can, but not this time. Often I am ready to go and impatiently waiting – but usually for day trips, not getaways. And the rug was in a deplorable condition. I’d been wanting to scrub it for weeks.}

#2 What important item did Michelle forget to pack?

a. Sunscreen
b. Cell phone charger
c. Kids’ toothbrushes
d. Her pajamas
e. The blender
f. Camera

{Notes: except for the blender, all of these items have been forgotten at some point by me, so very tricky question.}

#3 What non-essential did Michelle not pack that she was delighted to see at the hotel?

a. Cast-iron skillet
b. DVD player
c. Foot massager
d. Bathrobe
e. Feather pillow
f. Mini-reading light

{Notes: I couldn’t care less about a skillet or a DVD player. A bathrobe would have been nice, same with a mini-light. But I really really like feather pillows and the king bed had one – the rest were polyester filled. It made my sleeping experience so much better.}

#4 What item did Michelle pack that was pure wishful thinking and likely won’t be touched?

a. Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan
b. How to Paint Like Monet dvd (and canvas and paint, too)
c. Waterproof hand weights for stepping up your pool workout
d. Fishing poles
e. Writer’s notebook
f. Contact lenses

{Notes: I always feel obliged to take some sort of self-improvement item. I’ve been trying to get through a reading list, and Pilgrim’s Progress is the second book on it. I even lowered my standards to the first half of that book, but it’s still slow going. Not an exciting read. I’d rather read Melville. Oh, wait, he’s #8 on the list. Joy.}

#5 Lastly, if Bill and I can get a babysitter today, what activity do we have planned?

a. Horseback riding on the beach
b. Sunset kayak tour
c. Bike riding
d. Dinner and a quiet stroll
e. Horse-drawn carriage ride in historic Fernandina
f. Lounging by the pool drinking frou-frou drinks brought to us by the wait staff

{Notes: a very tricky question, since we discussed all the options with much seriousness. However, the expense of doing a, b and e was excessive…and I won’t even tell you how much we paid for the babysitter (I am much too embarrassed). The evening we went out followed a day wherein I ran 7 miles and walked around a zoo for 3 hours, so I was not eager to go for a bike ride. And it was so hot, that we were very happy to sit in a cold restaurant, drink frou-frou drinks there, and slowly stroll along the beach back to our room.}

Denise, the last one to comment, got TWO right. Some of you got one right, and some of you got none right. I said a Hail Mary for each person who participated and one more for each right answer and then a decade for everybody just because I was running 7 miles and had to do something to keep my mind off looking at my watch and calculating just how much longer I’d be shuffling around out there. And now, I have to go do 8 miles, and I have very little motivation to do so. I’m sure I’ll pray for you all again, because that’s what I do.

Have a great weekend.

Cheerleading, Survivor-style

Girl, 6, Removed From Cheerleading Team After Parents Object to ‘Booty’ Cheer

The cheer?

“Our backs ache, our skirts are too tight, we shake our booties from left to right.”

I wouldn’t even want my teenaged girl chanting that.

The parents complained and the solution, proposed by another parent, is that the girl be kicked off the team. So they voted, unanimously deciding to boot her booty. Kicked off the island, sent packing. This is reality cheerleading. Only the vulgar survive.

They did say she could try out again next year. How nice. The parents, fortunately, think they’ll skip the humiliation. “We’re probably going to look to get her into gymnastics,” said the mom.

Good idea. Gymnastics still seems to be about strength and agility and balance. And most places are perfectly happy to take your money to teach the skills.

Maybe cheerleading is different in different places – I know baseball and soccer are very different, depending on where you live. I suggest if other adults think the sexualization of children is “cute” or amusing, then better to be voted off when she’s 6, than have to fight the culture for years and years.

Worthy distractions

I’m trying very hard to minimize interruptions while I’m teaching. I don’t mean the internet or the phone or whatever. That’s actually not too bad…for example, Bill called today during Jenny’s reading time (a tedious and unpleasant daily ordeal) and I waved Fritz and the phone off.

Even Peter and Mary aren’t too bad with snack and entertainment requests.

No, the worst offenders are the older kids with their “I need help”s and their “Can I do art instead of math”s and their “She breathing so loudly I can’t think”s. We’re working on it. Maybe in 10 years, we’ll have order and discipline.

However, my children do have permission to interrupt if it’s really important. Like the house is on fire. Or somebody is bleeding profusely (tough call, though…sometimes I neither want to know nor care about injuries caused by lack of intelligence).

And hawk sightings. Really. It’s tough to be 12 and to know that Mom will kill you if you bother her, but know that Mom would really want to stop school to watch a broad-winged hawk. Especially when they are uncommon but migratory at this time of year.

Fortunately, I recognized his hopping from foot to foot as either a desperate need to go to the bathroom (but he’s too old for that) or that he wanted to tell me something very exciting, so I stopped, and we watched the hawk. Very cool.

Fun Friday Quiz

It’s Friday and for once, I’m not happy about it. Friday is halfway between Wednesday and Sunday which means our vacation is half over!

But since it’s Friday, I thought we could have some fun and take a quiz. Quizzes are fun, unless you are in school, and this is not a school quiz. This is a how-well-do-you-know-Michelle quiz. The first person to get them all right wins a t-shirt that says “My blogger friend went on vacation and all I got was this lousy t-shirt.”

If you really want it, that is. Otherwise, I’ll just say a Hail Mary for the intentions of any person answering any question correctly. Better than a lousy t-shirt.
Alright, here we go.
#1 The car is packed, the kids are loaded up, everybody is ready to go. What last chore is Michelle doing before leaving on vacation?
a. Hand washing all the dishes because you can’t leave the house with the dishwasher running.
b. Folding a last load of laundry so the clothes in the dryer aren’t wrinkled when we get back.
c. Cleaning out the cat’s litter box.
d. Shampooing the living room rug because it will have plenty of time to dry while we’re gone.
e. Scrubbing out the kitchen garbage can.
f. Au contraire! I’m the one honking the car horn impatiently waiting for everybody else.
#2 What important item did Michelle forget to pack?
a. Sunscreen
b. Cell phone charger
c. Kids’ toothbrushes
d. Her pajamas
e. The blender
f. Camera
#3 What non-essential did Michelle not pack that she was delighted to see at the hotel?
a. Cast-iron skillet
b. DVD player
c. Foot massager
d. Bathrobe
e. Feather pillow
f. Mini-reading light
#4 What item did Michelle pack that was pure wishful thinking and likely won’t be touched?
a. Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan
b. How to Paint Like Monet dvd (and canvas and paint, too)
c. Waterproof hand weights for stepping up your pool workout
d. Fishing poles
e. Writer’s notebook
f. Contact lenses
#5 Lastly, if Bill and I can get a babysitter today, what activity do we have planned?
a. Horseback riding on the beach
b. Sunset kayak tour
c. Bike riding
d. Dinner and a quiet stroll
e. Horse-drawn carriage ride in historic Fernandina
f. Lounging by the pool drinking froufrou drinks brought to us by the wait staff
And now, I’m off to watch the sunrise over the Atlantic Ocean. Have a great weekend.

Vacation Time

Things To Take
Bathing Suits
Sunscreen
Kites and Beach Toys
Books for Pleasure (I’m reading The End of the Series of Unfortunate Events and the first Ranger’s Apprentice book)
Rum
Gin
Bikes
Running Shoes (6 1/2 weeks until the Army Ten Miler)

Things to NOT Take
The Dog
High Heels
Sewing Machine (I did consider it, though)
Cook Books
Blackberry (he left it on his desk…please pass the smelling salts)
Alarm Clock
Math or Latin Textbooks

Root, root, root for the home team

Fortunately, the home team won.

Apparently, the home team routinely has Monday matinee games with $1 admission. And $1 hot dogs, drinks and chips.

I’ll have to remember this next spring, since today was the last game of the regular season. The Savannah Sand Gnats did make it into the playoffs. Maybe I’ll pay them some attention.

We just happened to get the paper today for free. And I actually sat and read it. And I noticed the $1 admission, so Bill and I decided that would be fun.

And it was. I love minor league ball.

We also just happened to run into a season ticket holder who was unloading his extra tickets. He gave us 5, so we got in for $3. Spent $11 on hot dogs (Fritz ate three), $9 on chips (Fritz ate two), and $14 on drinks (it was hot).

The key to appreciating baseball is being able to slow down, relax, and not think about all the things on your to-do list.

And having “your” team win helps, too.

Random Saturday

Bad night for sleep. First, Katie came into our room because she was scared. Bill had her sleep on the floor next to him. Then Jenny brought Mary in because Mary was scared. I pulled Mary into the bed. Jenny went back to bed, but couldn’t fall asleep, so she checked on Katie (in the top bunk) and freaked out when she saw the bed was empty. She came back to our room, so we put her on the floor next to me. She was shivering with fright, and asked where the dog was. I assured her that Greta was in her usual spot in the corner, on guard against all bad guys. I got into bed and lay on my right side facing out, Mary to my back, Jenny just under me.

I heard a noise, so I opened my eyes. Jenny was standing right in front of me, and it startled me, so I yelped. Bill, fast asleep, heard my cry of alarm, so he abruptly sat up, yelling, “HOO? WHA? HUH?” This scared the daylights out of Jenny, who screamed and jumped into my arms.

This is one of those scenes in a movie that you think is silly because it wouldn’t really happen. And then it does.

The three of us haven’t gotten much sleep since 4 am.

*******

As soon as Bill gets back from his bike ride, I’m heading out to the store to buy the last few things I need for my month of meals. I have 2 more dishes to prep and the sauce for some meatballs to make, which means I’ve completed 27 1/2 meals. I’m pretty pleased with myself, although I admit to being a geek when I make a batch of chili and get excited that the huge amount is enough for two meals so I’ve already made a meal for October!!

It’s a good thing I’ll be done today, because my meal plan begins tomorrow. I’m not done blogging about it…I just need more time. Still flying by the seat of my shorts.

*******

There are some really really wonderful people in the world, and my family is fortunate enough to benefit from their generosity. Time share/condo owners have donated off season beach rentals to a program called Warrior Vacations. Next week(end), we will be staying for free on Amelia Island in Florida for 4 nights. We are all looking forward to this time away, although I have predicted at least two crises from Bill’s work to interrupt things. Bill had yesterday off, and there were two crises just for yesterday. The holiday weekend is still young. Who knows how many more there may be?

I had planned my meals as easy to take along for the trip, but now I’m doubting that we’ll have a full kitchen there. If we do, I’ll probably hit a local grocery store for some easy foods. This means that my September month of meals should last me through the first week of October. Cool.

*******

Except for one child who needs to finish a novel for Religion and one child who needs to take a math test, we have finished three full weeks of school. Due to visitors and other distractions, it took us 3 weeks to do the first week, but we’ve been on track for the second two weeks. I’m pretty happy about this. I’ve arranged the school year in groups of 3 to 5 weeks followed by a catch-up week…or a week off if we’ve stayed on track. Next week will be gloriously light. I will have the kids bring some reading along, but other than that, we can have a guilt-free vacation.

Should be lovely.