Saturday, April 5, 2008

Moses has left the building

And yes, I am aware that everyone already knows this. I realize that everyone knows internet things long before I do. However, I feel a little nostalgic at the passing of Charlton Heston.

And here's my favorite bit from the news article:

"Charlton Heston was seen by the world as larger than life. He was known for his chiseled jaw, broad shoulders and resonating voice, and, of course, for the roles he played," Heston's family said in a statement. "No one could ask for a fuller life than his. No man could have given more to his family, to his profession, and to his country."

Heston revealed in 2002 that he had symptoms consistent with Alzheimer's disease, saying, "I must reconcile courage and surrender in equal measure."

With his large, muscular build, well-boned face and sonorous voice, Heston proved the ideal star during the period when Hollywood was filling movie screens with panoramas depicting the religious and historical past. "I have a face that belongs in another century," he often remarked.

Publicist Michael Levine, who represented Heston for about 20 years, said the actor's passing represented the end of an iconic era for cinema.

Airport Security was the easy part

It turns out my kids are scared of people in uniform. They seem to think that any deviation through security could result in being shot to death on the spot. I'm thinking of qualifying for a concealed weapons permit. So I can be armed at all times. I can see that change doing wonders for the amount of obedience we are currently lacking. Because everyone knows that intimidation is the cornerstone of good parenting. I'm just saying.

So, security went swimmingly. They removed their shoes, surrendered their gameboys, kept their hyperactivity under control, and sauntered through security as if they've been traveling their whole lives. Warming my heart even further, they calmly reclaimed their things and quietly stuffed them back into their bags. At which point they stood in a herd blocking all other travelers from exiting the security line while I anxiously tried to cram my laptop back into my bag and slide into my shoes so that I could start kicking them out of the way of other travelers.

Having navigated security, it was then time to address the broken arm issue. It's amazing how quickly ibuprofen changes this kid's attitude and how well a jacket can work as a sling. Tears to hyper in 15 minutes. It was magic, I tell you. And because of the pain, he also slept the entire flight.
And yes, it is possible for me to carry the camera bag, Nate's backpack, my bag of clothing, my laptop bag, and the Nintendo DS case. I could not, however, carry Nate who cried along beside me through 3 airports. Did you know that JetBlue airlines does not own any ace bandages in any of their airports? It's also good to note that no gift shops sell them. Antacids, hemorrhoid cream, tweezers, but no ace bandages. At least not in Long Beach, Boston, JFK, or Orlando. Just so you know.

In the interest of full disclosure, I should also bring to your attention that if you forget to get cash before you leave on a trip, you should stop by an ATM in the airport. It is unwise to completely forget that you have no cash and then promptly pick up a rental car to your hotel. In Florida, there will be at least 4 toll booths between the rental car place and your hotel. Or a bank of any kind. Not that you would have any clue as to where a bank might be. Although I will take one more opportunity to praise navigation systems, without which I would still be lost in Florida somewhere. In case you're wondering, it isn't possible to play stupid on every toll booth between you and your hotel. They keep track. At some point, preferably before the embarrassment of the first toll booth, you really will have to shake down all of your kids for cash, promising with crossed fingers that you will pay them back. This would not be a good time to brandish your concealed weapon, as that actually constitutes armed robbery. In all 50 states.

The hotel was tons of fun. At least once we realized that our children were smart enough to return to the office when they couldn't remember what room we were in. Next time, I'm packing a sharpie and writing their room number on their hands. And naturally, we traveled through 3 airports and 4 time zones just to sit around playing gameboy as a group.

Which made no sense to me when this was waiting outside:

But hey- it's vacation. What do I care if they want to spend it inside playing video games? I took that opportunity to take a nap. At which point another child disappeared. Possibly lured by the siren song of the water slides? I can reassure you that security handled the matter with utmost compassion and diplomacy, right up to the point where said child was found hiding under a bed in the room, pouting. And yet again, I contemplated the joy of handgun ownership. Not to make use of it. . . they hope.

Said child undead, we took off for the beach. Which was lovely. Warm water, decent sand, highly poisonous man of war jellyfish:

And being as it's deadly to people, even weeks after it dies, Tyler was compelled to touch it. Repeatedly. Because he loves the adrenaline rush. And the adoration of the crowd. Teen years are gonna be fun. Note: I should point out that he never touched a tentacle, only the top part of the sea creature, which has no stingers.

Please excuse our little "edit". His exposed buttcrack embarrasses him. Unlike Nate, who is quite willing to expose his entire butt at the beach. He loves a little wind on his crack.

And on that note, I will finish this marathon post tomorrow. . .

Friday, April 4, 2008

Bones are not supposed to be bumpy

Compression (buckle) fracture of the radiusHard to see in this view
More pronounced in this view
Totally bumpy in this view.

It's tiny so I'm not sure if they will cast it or leave it in a splint for 3 weeks. It's a pretty simple break, as far as breaks go, but enough already!!!

And Tyler feels pretty badly. It actually was his fault. But I'm not reminding him of that fact or anything.


I would love to say we are home safe and sound, but I am currently on my way to have Nate's arm x-rayed (and it is still tender to the touch even though he hit the palm of his hand and not the arm itself, so I am not hopeful we are getting off easy) and Ellie's ankle x-rayed (she twisted it on the water slide and has been limping for 2 days, but walked on it all day yesterday, so I think it's just sprained. I kind of have to be positive before I send her on a 280 mile bike ride on Sunday though).

Someday, I might have time to post photos of the trip.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Math Problems

1) If you have one Nate who is excited for vacation, and add one Tyler who is hyper from a sugar high and place them on a closed playground in the mall, how many broken (OK, no x-rays yet, so potentially broken) bones will you deal with during vacation?

2) If you place 2 kids on a flight to JFK and the rest of the family on a flight to Boston, how many total extra miles will 6 people have traveled to go from San Diego to Orlando? Feel free to estimate and round.

3) If each child is allowed to bring one bag, how many bags will Mom be carrying while trying to make the connecting flight from Boston to Orlando?

More to come. . .

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Traveling light

I must confess, I am a novice at "flying with kids". For several years, while traveling for work, I have watched moms go through the airport with 2 or 3 kids. Although I have mostly admired them because they have all seemed pretty patient and easy going, I secretly shake in fear at the thought of dragging 5 kids through any type of security.

But, the time to face my fears has come. Should the airport be anything like our trip to WalMart yesterday (and as an aside, let me be the first to say that I constantly forget how agonizingly painful WalMart is with 5 kids. I mean honestly, I get that women forget the pain of childbirth and end up cursing themselves with 5 children who are only beautiful- or even bearable- when they are sleeping, but however in the world do I forget that they are total monsters in WalMart? Every time, I think, "We'll just run in and grab a few things and it will be fine." And 2 hours later, when I have finally peeled Evan off the video games, wrestled Nate out from under the cart, had my feet removed at the ankles by Tyler's awesome cart navigation skills, and Ellie has been reduced to tears because I have said no for the 656th time to countless items of crap ala WalMart, I remember vividly why I always wait until they are asleep to navigate the madness) I will park the car in long term parking and be arrested for child abuse before we ever see the terminal. Is it so hard to just follow simple directions like, "stay with me" and "stop tipping the cart"? OK, so tomorrow I imagine it will be more like, "stay with me" and "stop setting off all of the security alarms before you get us arrested!" but, you get my point.

In addition, we are only going for a couple of days, so I have to veto 95% of what the kids want to pack. For some reason, they believe that shorts can not be worn twice without washing them. And that, my friends, explains a LOT about the laundry!