28 June 2011

Perpetual Embarassment

Yes, I seem to live in a state of perpetual embarrassment. As the years go buy, I hope that at some point I will cease to care quite so much. But now, just as when I was a teenager, I just always seem to be embarrassing myself.

I had an article I wrote featured on the front page of a website I write articles for, chosen out of thousands of others. At first I was delighted but when I read over it this morning I noticed a stonking great big grammatical error in the second sentence. As if that isn't bad enough, I now have to wait for their admin to approve my edit, it could be another 24 hours, so until then everyone who sees it on the front page and clicks on it can see what an awful writer I am. Here is a photo of the error so that you can share in my embarrassment long after it gets corrected (why am I posting this?):

And this is the article in question.

G is working a lot as he has a massive project going on at work. On Saturday he left  for work early and it was just me and the wee ones again. We'd had that ridiculously hectic week of talent shows, beach party and much more and the house was looking pretty much like a bomb hit it. On any normal day, I would have got my stuff together before heading out. On that day I was feeling quite down and thought it would cheer us all up to just get out of the house and try a new playground close to us that we had been meaning to go to for ages.

We had a great time and when we got back I decided to start my chores by vacuuming sand out of the car. I had just plugged the vacuum in when a neighbor I had never met  walked past with her two children. We got to talking about all sorts of things and the kids were enjoying playing together. To my horror Littlest Bean took my neighbors daughter into our house to play. This was quickly followed by everyone entering the house and going in EVERY ROOM. I wanted to crawl under a rock, I felt so humiliated. I don't think the house has ever been in such a mess. There were clothes and cheerios on the floor, and every room was upside down. I usually try to keep things pretty much in order and always try to rush around before G comes home, but he has not been here very much. I was so embarrassed I couldn't sleep that night thinking about it. I'm still not really over it, pathetic.

Yesterday when we were walking home from a friends house we bumped into some other neighbors we are friends with. Cuddles proceeded to lift my knee length skirt up and climb underneath it. I was holding wet kids paintings in my hand (or course I was) so really couldn't do much about it. Yes, that was embarrassing too. It's not the first time either, last week it happened with a mercifully longer skirt at the supermarket in front of an old man.

It's not just these one off situations that embarrass me. I get embarrassed when I go into LB's school and don't know where to stand, I get embarrassed speaking in front of a group of more than two people. I get really embarrassed when talking to someone about my blog or any other online venture. I would usually rather say I don't do anything than risk being thought of as an idiot.
Here's to the day I get over it.

Secret Project

Coming soon my latest project, because I can never not be coming up with something...BUNTING!

That's right. I'll make you some, it's gorgeous. Adds a little je ne sais quoi to any room :)

I have made some for Littlest Bean for her room. She has a relatively new obsession with Harry Potter, especially the character Hermione Granger. She decided to graduate from her pink and purple girly room to a wizard room. My friend recently came home from a trip to Singapore and gave me yards or beautiful sari silk so I have used a small portion of it to make very "wizardy" bunting for the wizard room. The silk was actually pretty difficult to work with but it's so soft and pretty.

OK so here's the wizard bunting. This isn't really the style of what I intend to make more of. I just had the tassels in my cupboard so used what I had.

25 June 2011

Surfing Dolphins

Firstly I did promise I'd let you know how the talent show went. Littlest Bean did great. She was a little nervous and rushed through it a little but she did look like she was enjoying herself and I am over the moon that she was brave enough to get up on the stage all on her own and do her act, twice in one day. (She doesn't think she is brave but we know otherwise).

Yesterday was the last day of Kindergarten, I can't quite fathom this, someone said she's now officially a first grader. Cuddles and I spent most of the day hanging out at the school, there were lots of games, a pizza party and (shock horror) another talent show put on by the first grade. Don't get me wrong, the talent shows are incredibly sweet and I often have a tear in my eye as I watch the performances but that is 3 in one week with Cuddles squirming on my lap. After the marathon of the last day was over and we had said our goodbyes to LB's beloved teacher we headed down to the beach for the end of year party.

It was a beautiful day for the beach, the sun was hot, there was a light breeze and the waves were CRASHING down, even the dolphins were surfing. If it had just been the three of us I'd have probably sat down and chilled a little on my beach blanket while i watched the kids playing but this was altogether different. I'm not saying it was unpleasant, it was exciting but a bit frightening. The waves were huge and crashing with a lot of force, the sand slopes steeply into the water making it more dangerous and violent. Imagine 40 five and six year olds with their younger siblings high on the last day of kindergarten, on life and on sugar. We had to pen them in like sheep, all but one of us in our regular clothes having had no intention of getting wet (the Pacific is COLD). It was a little too scary really, although there ended up being about as many adults in the water as children so they were being very well supervised and limited to where they could go. One mum stood in the water being smacked in the back by the waves, fully clothed, for the full 2 hours we were there.

Today my task is to vacuum the sand out of the car, we'll see if I get around to it.

22 June 2011

The Mime

(warning: this posted is heavily-hyphenated)

Today Littlest Bean is performing in her Kindergarten talent show. She is going to be a mime, I'm full of all sorts of pride, mainly I am delighted she isn't following blindly in my footsteps and doing ballet. She chose something that isn't particularly girly and nobody else is doing, and pink for once is not making up any part of her outfit.

The outfit, prrrrt. I couldn't decide whether to buy her something or make do right up until school pick-up yesterday. I picked her up after school with Cuddles in tow and had this stroke of genius, go to Khols with your 3 and 5 years olds, who are hungry AND tired, and shop for clothes. The shop thankfully is visible from the school so we were there quickly and nobody ever goes there so there was loads of parking. Cuddles actually wanted to sit in a cart and everything was going swimmingly.

It quickly transpired that Littlest Bean thought we had come shopping for a bikini for her to wear to the end-of-year school beach party (yes she's 5 not 15), so I had to take the wind out of her sails a little. We couldn't find quite what I wanted for the costume but LB's eyes became wide at the endless rails of drop-waisted, synthetic, faux-cardiganed, black and neon dress-things. Whilst i found these dress-things vulgar to say the least she obviously couldn't believe her luck at the beautiful and extremely grown-up dress-things-a-six-year-old-would-wear at the end of every aisle. Crap. She is shy and timid at school (at home and with close friends the complete opposite) and had just been telling me about playing on her own at lunch. I want to boost her self-esteem and make her feel good about herself so I didn't want to veto all her ideas if a zebra stripe with neon pink faux cardigan dress-thing would make her feel good about herself. Here is the actual dress-thing LB fell totally in love with. According to the site I think I should be calling it a mock-layer dress-thing but that seems overly complicated. Her argument was that it had white and black horizontal stripes, she is right,  but I've never seen a mime dressed in one of these.

Now I hadn't slept well the night before last, which severely hampers my ability to make decisions. What followed was a huge parenting fail, two trips to the changing rooms, circuits made around and around the children's section, me flitting from saying maybe to making her choose between getting what I wanted her to get AND a new swimsuit or her mock-layer dress-thing only. We had tears, almost from me, I put things back on the rail, I put them back in the basket several times. I almost gave up and just left. I realized the price of the dress-thing was really high, especially as the material was not nice at all. I would have bought it for her in the end, but whereas everything else in the store was about half price, these were two for the price of one. Two mock-layer dress-things? No thank you. After about 45 minutes of sheer ridiculousness with two actually surprisingly well-behaved but bored kids I managed to make a decision and bought her a tshirt with horitzontal zebra stripes (closest I could find), a matching skirt (because I'm THAT weak) and a swimsuit, it all came to $25 so not bad. I don't want her to wear the skirt for the mime but she is going to anyway. I am split between laying down the law and helping her confidence at school. She has a black hat to wear and I'm going to paint her face like a mime so I'm sure she'll look fine and it will be great.

I need to go and buy some red lipstick to paint a little heart on her lips and then head to the school to help get her ready. Hopefully Cuddles will reign it in a little today, he has to attend the talent show twice, that's asking quite a lot of 3.5 year old boy. I'll let you know how it all goes.

16 June 2011

June Gloom, May Gray and a Rainy Day

Today is a gray drizzly day in Southern California. This is not too unusual for June as we have what is called June gloom. Unfortunately there is also such a thing as May gray so by July we are really ready to have our sunshine back. We usually visit family in the UK that time of year and get rain for two weeks. Rain in the UK is good because it makes leaving easier!

This afternoon I am heading to Littlest Bean's school for a parent conference. Rather than being spoken to by her teacher it is Littlest Bean who has prepared a presentation for me. She is pretty excited, as am I, apparently I get a snack! I just have to get past the Spanish tutor first though as she has after school Spanish and I both forgot to have her do her Spanish homework and forgot to pack her Spanish folder in her backpack. Mummy had a girls night out last night, what can I say. I think we all turned onto summer break mode about a week ago even though they have a full week to go yet. Even her kindergarten teacher has stopped bothering to send them home with homework, which is just fine by both me and Littlest Bean. One of the last efforts to be made this school year is to put together an outfit for her mime she will be performing next week at the school talent show. I am very excited for her, I don't know where the idea came from but I am over the moon that she chose to do something so original, and she's really very funny. I need to find a stripy black and white top and a black beret. Black ballet shoes would be pretty awesome too. We have black leggings already, several pairs. Let me know if you have any cool suggestions for the outfit.

A couple of weeks ago they did a school-wide project called Living Museum where all the kids researched a historical character and dressed up as them and made a poster board with a head cut out. They positioned themselves all around the school and they all had a button you could press and then they gave you a speech about who they were. LB was Martha Graham, she dressed up in a long dark dramatic skirt and had her hair in a bun. Then last week we had the "Spring" (I think that term is debatable) Concert. It was beautiful. LB's class sang Stand By Me and Tarantella. It is really moving listening to a group of young children singing.

12 June 2011

Littlest Bean gets her own blob!

Sorry for my longer than usual silence. Writing The Story took up all my will to write and I haven't had a lot to say for a while.

Yesterday I helped Littlest Bean make her own blog. She is beyond excited. She loved making it, choosing the background and text and all the different colors. She would have stayed up all night filling it up if I hadn't limited her to two posts before bed. She was literally bouncing up and down on the sofa (she is not allowed to do this) screaming about "my blob my blob". For the record, she knows it should be called a blog but thinks "blob" sounds better. When she was tucked up in her bed she asked me to sneak into her room in the middle of the night and take a photo of her sleeping so that she could put it in her blog in the morning, i didn't.

When I woke up this morning there was a note next to my head which read "get up so we can go do my blob".

I have been enjoying practicing making blog buttons, I have made one for me and one for Littlest Bean. Click on the "All About Sessie's Life" button and it will take you to Littlest Bean's blog. My next task (apart from fielding the constant requests from my daughter to work on her blog - she's as bad as me) is to work out how to provide the HTML so that anyone can add my button to their blog.

I was very touched when at the end of her first post, my daughter said I had made her the blog because she is special. I didn't say that to her, it is just what she understood, I am so happy I was able to make her feel special. I don't need to tell you how special she is :)

PS. Sessie decorates all the photos she puts on her blog with this great free online photo editing site called Picnik. I also use it to make the blog buttons.