Archive for July, 2010

fer cryin’ out loud

buy these kids some decent blocks already!

Think of the architectural possibilities if the kids weren’t limited to building pyramids or fort-like fences–bridges, cathedrals, museums!  With these (heavy) cylinders as their building blocks, the kids’ potential is being sadly limited.  I mean, once you’ve built a Pestsäule out of Yuengling cans, it’s really hard to go anywhere but down.


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note to self:

hide the tape next time.

At least designing fashion footwear kept them occupied for an afternoon.

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playing with your food

I always forget about it, but lunch for the kids at The Mad Hatter in Durham may just be about the best deal around.  For $3.95 the kids get their protein, side of fruit, drink, and the Amazing-Decorate-It-Yourself Cupcake.  Yes, you read that correctly, the kids get to ice and decorate their own cupcakes with an assortment of sprinkles served up to the kids in an array of tiny cups.

Pretty, it isn’t, but in terms of entertainment and bribery (“Strange how you haven’t touched your fruit.  Makes me wonder if you have room for your cupcake…”), the cupcake decorating absolutely cannot be beat.

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if it’s july,

then we must be picking blueberries!  Last weekend we made our annual pilgrimage out to Cedar Grove Blueberry Farm north of Hillsborough.  I love taking the kids to this farm for many reasons (for instance, the berries are raised “naturally” or without chemical sprays), but what brings me back year after year is the sheer height and scope of the blueberry bushes.  In fact, the word “bush” does these plants an injustice.  They don’t resemble bushes as much as they do trees. Other places where I have picked blueberries have these tame little scraggly shrubs; the blueberry bushes at Cedar Grove are magnificent, the redwoods of the berry world.  The bushes easily top out at seven feet and frustratingly tantalize you with plump fruit just out of your reach.

So last Sunday, we all donned our hats, carefully picked out our buckets, and started picking.  Unlike last year when they just snacked straight off the bushes, the kids were amazingly into the berry picking this year.  The bottom of little w.’s bucket quickly disappeared and little e. prided herself on getting the berries off of the low-hanging branches.

Within an hour, we had picked 12 pounds of luscious berries which should keep us stocked up for smoothies and ice cream toppings at the very least for a month or two!

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ice, ice baby

As it has been so damn hot lately (hello, North Carolina in July!), all I have been able to think about this week has been ice cream, fla-vor-ice pops, popsicles, push ups, Locopops

We used up our mega supply of fresh cherries the other day by making some homemade cherry cheesecake frozen yogurt which was super tasty largely due to the presence of in season fruit and the creamy greek yogurt.  Now I have my eyes set on these Martha Stewart treats.  Hello, watermelon bombe!  And how cute are these little sorbet fish?

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go, gadget, go!

When I was a kid, one of my favorite shows (aside from “Little House on the Prairie” and “Facts of Life”) was dear, clueless “Inspector Gadget.”

Imagine my giddiness when I got the brainstorm to purchase the DVD for my son for his birthday!  Yes!  Don Adams’s voice and lots of extendo-appendages!  How can you lose?

I am happy to report that the DVD has not let me down.  After watching the intro a mere two times, both kids can hum the theme song and shout out, “do DO!” at the appropriate time.  Musical prodigies I am raising.

More than anything, I am loving watching something with my kids that I liked when I was younger.  My son often asks what I liked to read or do when I was his age, and usually I either can’t think of anything or what I think of is so lame (I used to pretend to be a school bus and pick up the pine cone kids and take them to school) that I end up fibbing.

And the “Inspector Gadget” cartoons are still pretty hilarious.  My dad might not admit it, but I heard him chuckling over the pirate episode that he and little w.  just watched.  Good, gadget-y fun!

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is there something wrong with me…

if I’m thinking of buying a toy with this description for my son?

Product Features:
Box of classic practical jokes
Includes hand buzzer, magic ink, snake in a can, pet vomit, fart whistle and goofy teeth
Also includes squirt ring, squirt gum, x-ray specs, dribble glass, money snatcher and pet poop
Kids love playing jokes on their friends and family
Great gift for boys age 5-12

Love that last line about for whom this gift might be appropriate.  Thanks for the heads up–and to think that I almost bought this for my mom.  What was I thinking??

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