Sunday, October 19, 2014

He's Up All Night To Eat Candy

Vaughn posted this pic of his gangsta's paradise
(12 year old style) to Instagram
Jacob has always said he wants to be the house that the kids hang out at. After Vaughn's slumber party, we may be rethinking that idea or, at the very least, be down for sharing the wealth. Vaughn had four of his friends spend the night after the Harvest Fair at school and on the way home they were already talking about how they were planning on staying up all night. We thought we had arranged a pretty decent compromise with a 12:30 "lights out" and 1am "no more talking" rule. What we didn't count on was that, in addition to a bounty of chips and candy, they also smuggled in a 2 liter jug of Dr. Pepper which they, somewhat bizarrely, passed around and chugged in the downstairs bathroom. For kids who are never allowed to drink soda with caffeine, this pretty much sealed the deal on being up all night. It also meant that Jacob and I didn't sleep particularly well, especially after one poor kiddo puked at 4 am. It was hard to be mad though - they drew on each other when one would drift off to sleep, texted girls, and generally had a blast. I'm not sure all the other parents were thrilled with the situation when we had to fess up to the debauchery at pick up this morning.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Office

Vaughn is twelve and a half and he is texting, Instagramming, pre-teen but I'm happy to say he's still down for a good cuddle. In Hawaii, we started watching The Office together on Netflix and it's kind of become our thing to watch a couple episodes a night while munching on junk food together.  It definitely feels like we are in the waning days of him hanging out with us so I'm going to ride this train as long as possible.
Snuggle time in Maui

Monday, October 13, 2014

Jacob Crosses Over

This was an actual conversation in our house tonight:

Scene: Disgusting, slobbery dog with her even-more-gross tennis ball jumps up on our bed.

Me to dog: Yeah, I don't want you up on our bed with your dirty ball.

Jacob bursts into uncontrollable giggles.

Me to Jacob: Ummmm..what's so funny?

Jacob (not very convincingly): Nothing

Vaughn: What are you? Ten?

It's good to know Jacob can still hang with the best of fifth-graders. The dog had no response.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Maui Pt. 2

We've returned from what was possibly the laziest vacation ever. We managed to do a little something every day but a whole lotta time was spent laying around the condo. In fairness, it was 90 degrees every day with 85 percent humidity in the morning.

I dragged my new mandolin with me so I forced myself to "play" each day; but this generally consisted of watching a ten minute YouTube video, playing the three chords I've learned for a few strums, and calling it a day (with a silent promise that I'd get serious once I get into lessons).

The happy couple looking fabulous
When he wasn't uploading pictures to Instagram, Vaughn's thing was to have 'rap battles' with Jacob that entailed both of them furiously writing away for a bit and then facing off to recite their raps over beats generated with Garage Band. They got better but neither one of them were particularly consistent with either rhyming or cadence. But then, what do I know? (Not much but I'm pretty sure incorporating "Powell's Books" into your rap isn't very street. Jacob).

The activities surrounding the wedding were very fun. Most days people did their own thing but we all met up to watch the sunset and toss the frisbee (which I cannot do but am not half bad with a Nerf football). The wedding itself was lovely and fun. Vaughn was an enthusiastic ring bearer and Jacob performed his ukulele song flawlessly.

It's always tough to come back from vacation. I think that both Jacob and I are working on figuring out how to live life so it doesn't feel like we're living from vacation to vacation. It was kind of a drag to step off the plane into pouring rain and I'm sure this will be a groggy week at work, but it's always good to be home.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Maui Pt. 1

There is a sticker on the bulletin board in our condo that says, "Please take off your Shoes before entering but no switch to better shoes when you leave." What does that mean? Jacob and I can't wrap our heads around it. It seems to imply don't steal any of the shoes in our house but that doesn't seem very hospitable. I guess it is just one of the mysteries of the island.

I've come to Maui with three basic goals (outside of the obvious of seeing our dear friends Lindsay and Sarah get married): Don't drown; don't get eaten by a shark; don't get sunburnt. The first two seem pretty easy but the last one is going to be rough. Luckily we've packed FIVE tubes of sunblock for 7 days here so I'm hopeful. The bulk of the guests at our condo complex seem to be over the age of 65 and I'm amazed at the their ability to bask in the sun like leathery honey baked hams next to the pool.

It's our first day here and our timing is all off. I barely made it to 7:30 last night before crashing out hard. Jacob woke up at 3:30 in the morning and would not stop pestering me to get up until I sternly told him he was annoying me (kind of like the verbal equivalent of hitting a puppy with a rolled up newspaper - NOT that I would do that. It's very old-school thinking and besides, anyone who has spent any time around any of my many animals over the years knows that I have no patience for discipline. Or training of any sort).
I think this crab is actually dead

Just as they did the last time we were in Maui, the boys took advantage of the time change and headed out to play basketball at 5:30 am.  I left not much later to walk the trail that runs along the ocean. It is insanely hot and muggy here so it was nice to get up before the sun was too high in the sky. There are plaques along the trail detailing interesting bits of Hawaiian culture and history. At one stop, I read about Eddie Pu (or "Mr. Aloha" as he was also known).  With a ti leaf wrapped around his forehead and only a towel, a walking stick and a bag of trail mix, Eddie walked the entire circumference of Maui each year for decades. I made the mistake of paying over $9 for a modest bag of trail mix during our first visit to the store so, while I hope to do a bunch of walking, it's going to have to be with a cheaper snack.

There's a lesson in this somewhere

Vaughn drives me crazy when he leaves his dirty clothes all over the house. Truth be told, all three of us are slobs but unlike Jacob and I, he can't be counted on to jump in and pick up. After numerous requests to remove his clothes from the bathroom went unmet, I instituted the new rule that all dirty clothes needed to be worn on his head until they were taken to the laundry basket where they belonged.
Vaughn is unphased by my new rule

We take Vaughn to a concert and he is not impressed.

There's been a serious decline in the quality of Vaughn's musical choices in the last year. Previously, he could be counted on to basically listen to whatever we did but now he's getting his own tastes and opinions and they are leaning toward hip hop and pop. When this came on I threatened to lock him the basement with a bunch of punk rock albums until he came to his senses but now I've thrown in the towel and just grit my teeth as he sits in the front seat and commandeers the car radio.

The other night we decided to take him to go see Soundgarden and Nine Inch Nails and I hoped the energy of the show would maybe have a slight deprogramming effect on him. On the way there, we gave in and let him download the 'Explicit' version of the new Eminem song. Up until now, we've made him get the clean versions but I realized
that all kids hate having their music censored because their parents are all bunchy about the lyrics or message or whatever (how many times did I miss out on "Relax" by Frankie Goes to Hollywood when it was in constant rotation in the '80's?). Jacob also pointed out that we were taking him to a show where the lead singer growls about wanting to "fuck you like an animal." Parenting is a constant barrage of contradictions.

Anyway, despite having a pretty good time, he had been at a water park all day and started wearing down early. We had to cut out about a half hour into Nine Inch Nail's set, which made me sad since I missed them in high school when I had the flu. I don't think we changed any hearts or minds last night- but we still had a pretty good time.