We saw The Wiggles Live last night. Helen had a blast, and I had a very hard time convincing her that it was not acceptable to wear her VERY big Wiggles shirt to church this morning.

For about 1/3 to 1/2 of the show, she was completely overwhelmed and didn’t participate. But then she had to go to the bathroom, so she announced to the stage, “I gotta go potty, but I’ll be RIGHT BACK.” And then she told me, “You stay here. I gotta go pott, but I’ll be RIGHT BACK.” Um, no. I’ll be accompanying you on this trip, thanks… Helen is normally not particularly efficient in the bathroom, what with the novelty of the North American Potty Tour, but she was VERY efficient last night. And she fretted the entire time that Captain Feathersword might be gone by the time we got back to our seats. I hurried us back as quickly as possible, and she stood up and danced for the rest of the show.

It is SO much fun to go to children’s shows with little kids and see their awe and wonder at a live performance. I was overwhelmed a bit, too, just because I love experiencing life through the eyes of my children. She was awestruck.

And there were funny things in the show for adults, too — Captain Feathersword sang a medley of “Quack Quack Quack Quack Quack Cock-a-doodle-doo” in the styles of Mick Jagger, Ozzy Osbourne, and Metallica. And Jeff was “sleep-laughing” at one point because of what the other Wiggles were saying around him about what he was going to have to do when he woke up. I enjoyed the show a lot, and it was clear to me that the performers were having a good time, too. Of course, yesterday was stop #1 on their 2005 US Tour, so the show’s still fun for them. I imagine in a month, they might be a little less enthusiastic. But I doubt it. Kids were going NUTS, and it’s hard not to rise to that when you’re a performer. At least it’s hard for ME to not get caught up in it.

Raising Southern Girls

I failed with Helen. She doesn’t like to eat unless it’s junk food. Yesterday, when she discovered that the house was entirely devoid of junk food, she said, “Mommy, can we go to the grocery store? We need some junk food. Four junk foods. Tangly Cheetos, regular Cheetos, Fish Sticks, and Oreos.”

I’m not entirely sure how “fish sticks” got on the junk food list because, all things considered, among the things that Helen is willing to eat right now, they’re quite the gourmet fare.

Anyway. We went to the grocery store, and of the junk foods she mentioned, I only bought Tangly Cheetos. BAD Mommy.

Alice, on the other hand, is the Anti-Helen. She’ll eat anything.

Tomorrow my dad and brother return to town from 10 days in Oshkosh, Wisconsin for the EAA Air Show. Pete, who lives in Virginia, really misses Southern pit barbeque (not to be confused with Texas barbeque or North Carolina barbeque, which are both completely different). He has one particular kind of BBQ that is acquired 20 minutes out of town that he LOVES (Meridianville BBQ, for you locals). It is purchased from a shack next to a gas station as you head towards Tennessee, and yes, it is amazing.

(Yes, this story does actually have relevance to the Helen-won’t-eat-anything-and-Alice-eats-everything way that I started. Just be patient.)

However, we want to test his theory that Meridianville is the BEST, so Mom and I are hostessing a side-by-side blind taste test of three different barbeque joints (Gibson’s, Lawler’s, and Meridianville), and inviting several family friends that would enjoy seeing Pete.

I picked up the Gibson’s and Lawler’s today (all of these places are closed on Sundays because of Jesus, so we had to go obtain the barbeque today. Mom’s in charge of getting Meridianville’s), complete with slaw from both places (we’re also going to taste test the slaw). I also got fried okra from Gibson’s and turkey barbeque from Lawler’s for our lunch today.

We know from previous experience that both Helen and Alice like the turkey barbeque. Helen even had a sandwich today! I was impressed. And she even tried the white sauce. Things are looking up! Yay for Helen!

Alice-who-eats-everything continued her streak, and with true Southern Grace, she sucked down about 10 pieces of fried okra. That’s my girl. 🙂

Next Southern Taste Test for Alice: cheese grits. I have the materials to make them IN MY POSSESSION… We’ll probably have Breakfast For Dinner sometime this week. Wheeeee!

Warping young minds: it’s how I entertain myself.

Garage Sales

You know, you can get really great things at garage sales. In 1995, I met this guy on a garage sale outing (we were introduced by a mutual friend. I’ll tell that story in more detail on October 7). In 1997 I married him. That’s the all-time best thing I’ve ever found at a garage sale, obviously.

This morning’s haul was pretty good, though.

I don’t typically frequent garage sales, but lately my mom and I have been walking really early in the mornings. This morning we walked by a garage sale down the street and around the corner from my house, and so we went in to browse.

For $35, I got one of these, WITH a top:
Train Table

For $15, I got a LOT more track and train segments and accessories than you see here:
City Train Set

For $1 I got a book that Helen saw and wanted:
Seek and Slide On The Farm
(She has the “In the Sea” book, and LOVES it. So this is a nice addition)

And for $40 I got a bunkbed similar to this one (but without a ladder):
Bunk Bed
The one I got has a darker stain on it, and is pretty scarred up from living with a little boy for the past few years. But I’m going to paint it to match Helen’s bedroom furniture anyway, so the appearance of it didn’t matter to me all that much. We’ll store stuffed animals on the top of it for a while, and then if the girls want to be in the same room sometimes when they’re a little older, they can be.

I am SO excited.

One thing I’m kind of looking for (but I’m too cheap to buy full price) is a heavy wooden chest of drawers for Alice’s room. The one we have in there right now is just drawers stacked on top of each other inside a wooden surrounding frame, so it’s pretty easy for her to pull down on top of herself when she pulls the drawers out. Which she does, on a regular basis. If any of my gentle readers (or their friends) have a chest of drawers that’s heavy wood that you hate (appearance of stain or paint job not important, since I’ll paint it anyway), please let me know.


Sleep Week

When Helen was a baby, we noticed a pattern: One week, she would eat absolutely everything she could get her little grubby fingers on. HUGE amounts of food would go down her gullet, and she’d suddenly look very fat. We named this week Eat Week.

Then the next week, she’d sleep later in the mornings and take really long naps. After many meetings and much discussion, we named this week Sleep Week.

And then the next week, none of her clothes would fit and she wouldn’t look fat anymore. We’d move up a size (in shoes and clothes), and the world would return to normal.

Alice is following the same pattern, but not in as regimented a calendar schedule. We’re currently on Sleep Week. The Fat Baby has been sleeping now for over 2 hours, which is VERY long for a morning nap. She’s not been eating very much this week, and I noticed yesterday that some of her shoes are too small.

Hmph. Gotta get out the next batch of clothes from the archives… Alice is moving into the 18-months size more quickly than Helen did.