Archive for September, 2010

It’s open season!

At our swimming pool, that is. Myles declared the swimming season open today by taking a spontaneous swim in his shorts. Shorts which, earlier, he had decided worked best backwards, because then he could use the back pocket as a front pocket. Ingenious genes, egh? As Myles dove in and we encouraged him and clapped for him, Coffee Guy and I looked at each other similar thoughts in our lovely heads. Our thoughts were something like,”I wouldn’t do that… but hey, he’ll live.” Clearly, Myles is the brave one in the family, plus he has all those “turn your shorts around to better use the pocket” genes. It is still a bit chilly in the pool, but the air is warming up nicely. Soon we will have the full blown knock-your-socks-off-and-put-your-hair-in-a-ponytail-before-you-sweat-to-death kind of summer that I love on our hands.

I really have no idea what great skill Coffee Guy is attempting to impart to his offspring here… but it all came tumbling down.

She’s a lazy bum, but she can’t help it. It’s in her nature. As I was thinking about Ella’s lazy bum, I saw something flash past… and in he went. Officially opening the summer of 2010 swimming season at The Carlson House.

Don’t worry… he’ll make it. He likes the doggy paddle. Looks scary, but it gets him around.

Not a parent in sight.

Oh look, there’s one… pushing his offspring in!

They look so cute when they’re wet.

Then there was some “surf stance” practice.

Just stick out that belly and ride the wave in. I did tell you earlier about the shorts, right? Anyway…

Eat your heart out Northern Hemisphere folks.




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My one weakness

I LOVE getting mail. I really really do. So much so that when we got back to South Africa after three months in America, I sent myself mail to cheer myself up. Most of the time I don’t even let myself wander onto Etsy because there will be ten thousand things I want and shouldn’t buy. That said, I had been wanting to get a very small necklace with my boys initials on it for some time. I wanted something I could wear every day that would be so small I would almost forget that it was there. Something that wouldn’t get pulled at and tugged off. Lauri at The Hummingbird Nest had my answer!

This makes the tags look like a “normalish” size, which is why, just for you, because I love yah, I took a picture of myself. I hate pictures of myself, as a general rule. I am not being a melodramatic girl either, I just don’t like ’em. Of course, I had to apply the “Prettyizer” action, and several others, from Totally Rad Actions in Photoshop first. Normally don’t like to use a bucket load of actions. Nuf said.

I am in love with the necklace. The hand stamped pouch it came in, the note Lauri wrote me. Mail is my one weakness.



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He used to hate me. Shut me out of his room. Wrestle me to the ground and keep me there until I cried, “mercy!” He ignored me and picked on me and was generally really mean to me whenever he had a spare moment. Look, even In this photo he looks like he’s about to break my camera, wrestle me to the ground, sit on me, and then fart on my head.But today he won a fancy really important award, so today he is cool. But just for the day. My brother, copywriter guy Brett Knutson, just won a Radio Mercury Award for his Fatpants campaign (click to have a listen). Apparently this makes lots of other copywriting people very jealous, because they toil for years on end and never get the fancy really important award, but my brother did… after less than a year in his current position. So there, nah na nah na na you toiling copywriters. That was uncalled for, sorry. My childhood is rushing back all at once. I’m just really proud of my mean big brother… who has a cool pass, just for today.

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I am pacing with anxiety.

The neighbors are chopping down all their trees.

My little secret garden is disappearing.

It used to be that they could not see into our garden (yard) and we could not see into theirs.

They have opened up a porthole into their world that is most unwelcome.

I do not want to see their washing on the line or their terribly painted peppermint green house.

I don’t want to put the faces to the the voices of their children.

I do not want this connection.

I do not.

Too much is changing, do not take those beautiful waving green trees.

They are mine too!

I do not want to hear the sound of an axe all morning long and wonder, “What will they be able to see, and what will I have to see, when the next tree comes down?”

I kinna feel like I am in middle earth and I am watching Fangorn Forest burn.

All this makes me sound like a terrible neighbor.

Really I’m not.

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We are officially out of the dark woods and dancing in a field full of sunshine covered daisies! Myles is scabby, but mostly scabless. Today he made his first public appearance in over a week, at church. The pastor didn’t even kick him out! I’m not sure if that was because Myles looked ok, or if it was because Pastor Drew was being nice due to the fact that his kids gave us the pox in the first place!

Tomorrow, Myles goes to morning preschool and I will dance the freedom dance while doing admin and mountains of laundry and taking care of Neo.

Happy Sunday!

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We’ve not only had the Chicken Pox, we’ve had a serious case of the cranks and our CRAPS have been off the charts! My CRAPS are down to about a two on the very prestigious Crankiness Rate Awareness Positioning System (CRAPS), of which I am the author. The CRAPS operate on a sliding 1-10 scale. One being little to no cranks on your CRAPS, ten being your CRAPS are plumb loaded with cranks. Variables include, but are not limited to: 

Amount of sleep procured in a 24 hour period

Amount of times edges of the mouth turn upward in a 24 hour period

Amount of times escape diversion from those infected with a worse case of the cranks than you is possible

Here’s what cured my case of the cranks and brought my CRAPS right down. It began last night with a hug from my friend Jo and supper with her adorable family at their FATY. Then…

Coffee Guy spent the morning with the kids and sent me away to a beautiful spa. This is the road leading up to the spa. I saw these trees and this road and my CRAPS began an immediate downward spiral.

Then I came home to this, and that was just fine. Believe it or not, his CRAPS are down too! Soon we won’t even need the CRAPS because we’ll be so happy.


Mrs. Crank

author and creator of the CRAPS system, patent pending

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I lied, it sucks. My post from day 3 made it sound like “all is well, I’m just sitting over here taking pretty pictures.” It wasn’t that rosy, but my One Line A Day Five Year Memory Book (which is normally filled with my literary genius) states it a little more accurately.

“Chicken Pox sucks. Day 3. Myles is on everyone’s nerves, including Ella’s. The house is a mess, and so am I.”

We needed a break from the house, and day 4 brought one! We packed up some of my freshly baked biscotti and homemade strawberry jam, and headed for “the farm.” Our lovely friends, Vashti and Martin, have entered the good life and now live in a cute little cottage on a big farm with horses and pine trees and big blue skies. Since moving to the farm just over a week ago they have gotten three adorable ducks all named after Harry Potter characters, a chicken named Tonks who also has Harry Potter origins and a piglet named Toothbrush. Best part is, they didn’t care that we have the dreaded pox… they might care in 10-21 days though! They will be festering and we will be finished. Hurrah! Sorry, Vashti.

Poor adorable Jesse and Joe, they have no clue about the itcheyness coming their way!

Yep, they’re real. Real cute little yellow duckeys!

Vashti is one of those people. She just oozes coolness and totally can’t help it. Before I met her I thought to myself, “Yeah, she’s way too wonderful looking to be my friend.” I still think that, but she likes me anyway. All that to say, I was so glad she was wearing this adorable blue dress. It’s makes the duck look fabulous. She looked fabulous too, but the duck… I’m stopping there.

Puppy is her name. Really. She could not help herself around Baby Neo. You could almost hear her saying, “But I wanna lick him REEAAAL BAD!”

That’s one happy chicken pox covered boy, and a happy momma. You can’t see me, I’m behind the camera.


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