Thursday, June 30, 2011

Charlotte, NC

Alarmingly, we may be moving to Charlotte, NC.

Not because of my neighbor or Rick Scott, although they both made the decision much easier.

My "fun" research of other places to live set forth a crazy domino effect of events that resulted in a very promising job interview for Mr. Ashley next week and a very real possibility of us moving before the school year starts. As someone who was raised on a very tiny island and who now lives in a very small city just a few miles away...the thought of living somewhere else (especially somewhere with skyscrapers) is frightening. And exciting. But scary.

I might actually see a full round of seasons before I die!

I am afraid of cold, snow, ice, not wearing flip flops, escalators, public transit and I don't like bare trees! All of the houses up there have carpet and I hate that!

What if I don't make any friends? I have friends here, people who are understanding and accepting of my quirkiness and anti-social tendencies. I will have one friend in the area and interestingly, she is one of you. Out of the many of you I have talked to and connected with, only one of you ended up meeting me for dinner and at waterparks and at birthday parties and that is exactly the one I ended up desperately needing advice from to make this work. And she's fine with me being such a weirdo. So there's that.

But, where will I live? What schools will be lucky enough to help raise the Ashley boys? HOW THE FUCK WILL I GET ALL OF THIS DONE??  And how DID people move before Google?

So...what do you know about Charlotte, Closeteers? Mr. Ashley would possibly be working in Pineville. I've read greatschools and citydata and craigslist until my eyes feel like bleeding, now I want to hear it from real live people who "know" me. Tell me anything that may be helpful and if you're some sort of area school expert, email me so I can harass you frequently.

Edited to add: I'm going to list some specific questions, some not even Charlotte related, to maximize your helpfulness:

1. What areas would you consider?
2. How important are school ratings to you? Big Kid's been to a 6 rated school and a 10 rated school and I personally thought the 6 rated school was better for him--but maybe my perspective is skewed since learning isn't a challenge for him? Maybe it will be a different story with little kid? So what rating is too low to consider or how important are these things?
3. Does anyone have general moving advice for me? On packing, boxes, moving trucks, and/or traveling with 2 dogs (one stiff with arthritis and unaware of her huge size and the other one a total freaking whiner), a cat who hates cars and pees all over herself inside of them, 2 kids and a hedgehog?

Feel free to contribute any additional information, related to Charlotte, schools, moving, pets or whatever else you feel like talking about.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Dino Attack

I was wondering if letting little kid watch Jurassic Park would be a bad idea.

Now that I've spent 15 minutes discussing the various places he would hide from dinosaurs and watching 8-10 routines of how he would handle hand-to-hand dinosaur combat, I know that letting little kid watch Jurassic Park was a bad idea.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Time Travel

"Where would you go if you had a time machine?" I asked both boys, expecting interesting or philosophical answers.

"I would be a baby again so I could drink milkies!" little kid answered instantly, not even needing a moment to think.

Big Kid had to think about it for a minute before excitedly declaring that he knew what he would do. "I would go back in time and convince Bill Watterson not to retire."


"The creator of Calvin and Hobbes."

"So...little kid, you would go back in time to breastfeed and Big Kid would save a comic strip?"  They both agreed that this is what they would do.

Universe, please don't ever let my kids get a hold of a time machine.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Summer Style

Aside from the incessant talk about poop and waking up every morning to people wrestling on my bed ("Can you not step on my head while I'm sleeping?" "I did NOT step on your head! I just stepped right NEXT to your head!"), being a stay at home mom during summer is the best gig going.

Pool, movies and reading every day with some beach and gym time thrown in when I'm feeling motivated....ahhhhh. It's like being a kid again except I make all of the rules and can eat ice cream for breakfast. It is awesome and I am lucky.

Unfortunately, my socks and workout clothes are clean so I have to get ready to go to the gym, but here's a photo of a little outfit little kid threw together the other day:

  It's a lot like living with a rock star (but with way less drugs and glamor.)

Sunday, June 12, 2011


"little kid, stop! That's the emeny!" Big Kid shouted while they played video games.

"En-em-y," Mr. Ashley corrected.

"Emeny!" he repeated back.

"No, it's EN-EM-EE. Enemy," Mr. Ashley persisted.

"Emeny, I know."

"No! E-N-E-M-Y. En-Emy," Mr. Ashley insisted.

"Okay, I'll just say foe instead."

"That will work."

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Watch Out, World!

Here comes the future!

Even though I think pre-k graduations are silly, I cried a little. To be fully honest, I cry at ALL school assemblies. It's embarrassing and weird. I just get so proud and overwhelmed with emotion that I cannot contain myself. I have a major love/hate relationship with school events. This one was so sweet though! 

Big Kid has been beside himself about it since the graduation gown first came home. Months ago I mentioned the possibility of having little kid wait one more year to start kindergarten so he wouldn't be the youngest and Big Kid was adamant that this was what should be done. He has argued time and time again that he should get one more year to be little and that he loves him being in pre-k because it seems so small and sweet there. 

As we adjusted the mortarboard in the parking lot, Big Kid's eyes filled with tears and he grabbed my hand.
"Please, mom. Please. Just one more year of pre-k. I just want him to stay little. Please!" 

"Big Kid, he's ready. His teachers say he's ready, he says he's ready--we had the same doubts about sending you and you were ready. It's time to be excited for him about the next step of his life. He will do great in kindergarten." 

He faked a smile for pictures but wept during the slideshow they showed before the ceremony and said it made him too sad. It was bittersweet for me too.

But I think we're all going to be all right. 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

What They Said

During a rare moment of silence in the car, little kid suddenly said, "Like they said in the old days," in a conversational tone.

I waited, curious for him to finish and wondering where he heard that phrase but the silence resumed.

"What?" I asked.

"What?" He asked.

"What did they say in the old days?"

"I don't know. You were alive back then. What did they say?"

"I don't know," I answered, feeling confused. "What were you just talking about when you said 'Like they said in the old days'?"

"Look, I'm only a 4 year older! I don't know what they said in the old days!You're...really old. You should know."

"I'm not that old. I was just curious about why you said that."

"I said that because you are old. You's askin' me 'bout the old days and you's old. Just ask yourself!" he answered matter-of-factly, sounding irritated.

I'm still confused about what happened there. I'm also insulted, I think.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Scary Thought

Missing Links

We've got 3 early release days until school gets out for summer (don't even get me started on how pointless 3 half days are) and I've got a head injury from cleaning out the refrigerator. I'm 85% sure I've got (or had) a concussion, it's been 4 days and the inside of my head still hurts like heck where the freezer door slammed into it. So excuse the recent neglect and the unorganized mess this post will surely be, I'm probably brain damaged.

I was going to do a list of links for you all but then I discovered that all of the links I have saved to show you over the last 3 months are not saved. This is a great disappointment. I've got 2 for you, which is pretty pathetic but it's better than nothing! Right? The rest are probably lost forever and there was some great stuff in there...but now you'll have to take my word for it. But here:

Admirable parenting: I can only hope to do something even half this grand one day.

Kaleidoscope maker: So fun! It is impossible to make an ugly one.

and here's a biography Big Kid did on an important person; he chose his brother:

little kid is my rough 4 year old brother. He was born in 2006. He is pretty rough for a 4 year older! He has two freinds named Ryan and....Ryan. :D 
He is in pre-k. He is always curios. He is also funny.  
I know when he is mad. Thats because...sorta hard to describe it. Well his Eyes get very low. That is how I tell when he is mad.  
A lot of people call him chooch. I still call him little kid.

(But he used his brother's real name, of course.)

I'll be back and better soon, I hope!

And don't worry, I have learned my lesson and will never clean out the refrigerator again. That shit is dangerous!