Monday, December 30, 2013

New Year's Resolutions, I Have Them

2014 will be the year I make everyone in the world an un-categorized glazed pastry.

Morning Readers,

The very creative title of today's post is brought to you by sleep training the baby.

Sleep training, if they don't sleep, you don't sleep.

And now back to our regularly scheduled show.

How was everyone's holiday? It was a high octane Christmas around the Split level, complete with yours truly getting sick, right at the end of it all. But nothing says "party" like the acoustics of someone in their late, late, late twenties sounding like they're about to shove off this mortal coil, so let's throw some streamers around.

I hope each and every one of you got exactly what you asked for. A bookshelf, a toaster, a renewal subscription to Readers Digest so your bathroom time can go from mundane to an adventure, all good things. However, if you ended up with two Sham Wows and a ketchup packet, I have just the thing to fix you up. That's right, it's time to take a look at the resolutions I've made for the upcoming year.

 Resolutions For 2014*

1.) Instead of selling kids and buying new ones, work on being a better parent.

2.) Sell the Split level and buy a house that, preferably, isn't sinking into the ground.

3.)  Work out, at least once, or tell someone I worked out and listen to them laugh hysterically. Laughter's good for the soul, so I suppose that could be my one good deed for 2014.

4.) Go three or more days without flattening my side view mirrors, as I pull out of the garage.

5.) Run a marathon. Walk a marathon. Watch a marathon on TV. Turn channel to see what's featured on Monster Quest.

6.) Use ironing board for something other than a drying rack for clothes I'm too lazy to take to the dry cleaner. Consider loading it up with canned goods and other non-perishables.

7.) When yelling at people who live here, try to get person's name right on the first attempt. Everyone here is still trying to figure out who "Stephen" is.

8.) Do one truly good deed. (Note to self: This morning, I let the baby have the animal cracker shaped like a camel, when I really wanted the animal cracker shaped like a camel. Not that that counts. Nope, that totally counts. Feels nice to already be able to cross this off the list.)

9.) Stop wondering where Dora's parents are.

10.) Finish painting cabinets I started in 2013.

*As always, the author retains the right to not do any of these things because she wakes up one morning and decides they're stupid and she'll drink coffee instead.)

Until Next Year, Readers!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Top Ten Tips For Navigating the Grocery Store Before Christmas

If you're smarter than me and staying inside before Christmas, please enjoy this awkward, yet royalty-free image of Santa.

Afternoon Readers,

Is everything around the Split level mass chaos? Yes. Thank you for asking.

With one present left to buy, the van breaking down, and not a shower to be seen for me in the last couple days, things are, um, going. Not to worry, I found a few minutes to pen some tips for grocery store survival in the next couple days.

Not that any of you would head out to the store this late. I know I didn't, wouldn't, *coughs guiltily*, did and barely made it out alive.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Baby Report Card

"Watch it, Frank. He'll rip off that nightcap and slap you with it faster than you can say, "Who the hell wears a nightcap anymore?"

Afternoon Readers,

Have you gone crazy from the holiday planning yet? With almost all the gifts bought and absolutely no intention of baking anything from scratch, I think I'm just about to knock on the door of efficiency.

Or maybe I'm about to knock on the door of the liquor store.

Yes, I do talk about liquors stores a lot, but everyone needs a hobby.

One thing I do try to do every year is a little festive cleaning. Dust here. Throw moldy things in the fridge away there. Nothing says, "Welcome Baby Jesus," like dumping two pounds of decaying pasta in the trash can. At least, I've always thought so. I may not have busted out the Nativity scene this year, but that doesn't mean the freezer is gonna smell like frost burnt nuggets.

In case you hadn't guessed, minimal cleaning, no manger, and scrapping the baking are all hallmark signs of having a toddler in the house. Just as I'm on the cusp of the twins mostly behaving themselves, Doc has decided to become increasingly interested in maiming himself before Christmas.

His report card is in, and things are looking grim for the smallest, chubbiest, and loudest in terms of wanting a cookie Kellerman.

Monday, December 16, 2013

We Interrupt This Program For A Special Announcement
Morning Readers,

If your Monday's been a little rough so far, I think it's important to note broken candy canes can be turned into stir sticks for coffee.

*Broken candy canes can be found in the wake of most small children who wanted a "big one," but keep smashing said candy cane via overzealous opening techniques. (Also called The Peppermint Trail of Despair.)

Besides snow, wine, presents, sleeping in, and winning the lottery, you'll be hard-pressed to find something better than candy canes this winter.  But, what if I told you that, on January 1st, 2014, you can buy a ticket to a most excellent blogging conference?

What if I told you I'd be there?

Ok, forget I said that and come anyway.

How I got to be part of the faculty, I'll never know, but what I do know is if you want to be a part of one of the most spectacular blogging experiences of 2014, you'll pack your bag and head to Baltimore this summer.

And I promise I won't just walk up and start shaking your hand, unless you ask me too. But please ask me to, because I'm a nice person and I've got a ton of candy canes to pawn off on you.

Get thee hence and check it out here.

All right, the baby has candy cane stuck between his toes. Gotta run.

Until Next Time, Readers!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

A Schedule of This Week's Events

The office of the secretary who schedules my week. I fired her.
Afternoon Readers,

You may remember I wrote a post on Monday which seemed fairly organized and punctuated by semi-clear thoughts and only thirty-seven typos. Unfortunately, today's selection will be headed the opposite route, recounting this week's events in the only way a sleep-deprived brain can.

On crack. Coffee. Meth. Careful reflection.

The plague found Kellerman house this week, and things haven't been pretty. Granted, the baby was sick a few days last week as well, but I watched A Simple Plan over the weekend, and was so enthralled by the stellar performance given by one Billy Bob Thornton, I blocked out the sleepless nights and rode the high only a well-executed screen play can bring.

Basically, everything's been in upheaval, and all of the children have taken to a careful choice of crying, coughing in my ear, or not sleeping at all.


Monday, December 9, 2013

How To Make Sure Your Small Children Are Disappointed At Christmas

"I've been walking all night, but someone has to deliver the straightjacket for that Kellerman woman."

Afternoon Readers,

Ahh, there's nothing like the smell of bleach in the afternoon. Am I right, or am I right?

That's correct. I'm wrong, it's horrible, and I'm blinking through the fumes in order to write this post. Dedication, it's what's for second lunch.

You'll recall the main drain flooded in the basement not too long ago. Now that the water's evaporated and left a disgusting sludge on the laundry room floor, Husband drew the short straw and gets to bleach the floor. Ladies, keeping your man around is all about finding little tasks for him to do that make him feel special. Sewage, romance, they're basically interchangeable around here.

And while he's working on tending them there home fires, we have time to talk about how I'm only five percent ready for Christmas.

If you've already completed your shopping, have everything wrapped, and are now drinking home made eggnog while reading this, you may stay. Just know it's very frustrating for me, and I'm booking you as my personal assistant for next year. Congrats!

Now then, all I do know is that Mrs. Claus poked around Amazon and, at least, finished buying things for small Kellermans. I simply threw three units of world peace in my cart and hit the road.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

What the Aztecs, Mayans and the Whiskey Vendors Knew: Paige's Top Five Chess Tips

"My wife's at home blogging again. This Bearded Chess League of the Greater Midwest" is a lifesaver."
Afternoon Readers,

How are you? If you'd like to be better than what you answered (assuming you humored me and just shouted at your screen), go ahead and add this...

Any cider will do.
to this....
Only use this whiskey.
...and if the rest of 2013 doesn't knock your socks off, I wash my hands of any and all responsibility. Serve it up hot and thank me later. What?

Oh, you thought this was a post about chess. It is, I was simply trying to get my good deed for the day out of the way. The rhyming there was unintentional, but the drink recipe serves as a very important back drop for what Husband and I spent all our free time doing last weekend. It started here:

Monday, December 2, 2013

The Ballad of Rainbow Pink

Not our actual tree, parquet floors or full moon.
 Afternoon Readers,

First off, I'd like to start today by congratulating Ashley Emmet on winning Black Friday's book giveaway! You showed that Rafflecopter you meant business, and there are some Cankles headed in your direction.

If you didn't win, it's ok. I'll be giving away another copy before Christmas, and the second place winner gets to babysit the kids for a period beginning on 12/7/13 and ending12/23/13.

We survived the holiday weekend, but I'm being proactive with combatting any weight I gained, by cooking up all the noodles and cheese in the house and eating all of it today. Less temptation for being sidetracked when I'm cleansing the house of chocolate tomorrow. The Spirit of Holiday Eating, it's upon me. Yes, all Kellermans are now ready for Christmas. I simply wasn't ready to go whole hog yet.

"Whole hog" here is a euphemism for getting a Christmas tree. Shoddily written? Absolutely, but the world's 158,002,502nd best wordsmith does what she can.

Doesn't change this scenario...

Friday, November 29, 2013

Turkey Hangovers and a Giveaway

Soon to be no pie.
Afternoon Readers,

Q: What do you get when one woman eats her body weight in pudding and mashed potatoes?

A: A lot of smeared mascara and motivation to do absolutely nothing of merit. Be glad this blog doesn't lean heavily on pictures of the author, because I walked by the mirror this morning and swore I'd seen more pulled together looks on animals still inhabiting the vicinity of Chernobyl.

So, the name of the game is recovery today, but that doesn't mean I can't contribute to the madness of Black Friday, from the confines of the Split level, safely eating the rest of the pie. As it happens, At Least My Belly Hides My Cankles now has a matte cover.

"But, Paige, what does this mean for me? And why are you distracting me with stupid sentences when I could be laying on the couch with a fork and the last of the stuffing?"

I'll tell you.

First of all, it means that if you have a Cankles with a shiny cover, you're now the proud (maybe) owner of a limited edition book.

Secondly, it means I'm giving away a copy here on the blog this weekend. Keep it for yourself, give it to a friend for Christmas or Hanukkah, use it as a cooling rack for pies just out of the oven.*

I'm sorry this news isn't more exciting. I was going to give you the last of the apple cider too, but I poured it over cinnamon whiskey and drank the whole thing last night. Such is life. I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday, but now's the time for pulling the baby out from under the coffee table and brewing the afternoon coffee.

*Pie may also melt and adhere to cover of book. However, this may contribute positively to the reading/eating experience. If it works out, feel free to trademark the "Pie Book". I know it's my idea, but I don't have the energy to see it through to the end.

Until Next Time, Readers!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Steak First, Ask Questions Later

"I see bacon, eggs, and quiet desperation in your future. Possibly celery."

Evening Readers,

"Good evening, mam. How can I help you?"

"Yes, I believe I left my purse in one of your carts and walked off so I could get to my Diet Coke and Aunts on a Log that much faster?"

"Ahh yes, here you are."

"Thank you. Initially, I thought someone would walk off with it, which didn't bother me too much because my possessions are, as you can see, relegated to an old Taco Bell receipt and petrified jelly beans. But then I realized I'm going to dinner, and I really need my ID so I can self medicate."

Friday, November 22, 2013

Red Letter Day

"In my professional opinion, I'd say your house has come down with a case of Pain-in-the-ass-itis."

Morning Readers,

I'd like to state, here and now, tea is no substitute for coffee. 

Yeah, I said it.

I'm not trying to split you all into steeping and brewing factions, but lets just say I had to settle for pumpkin flavored leaves for the last two days, and the results were disastrous. You may have even felt the Earth move slightly off its axis, prompted by my head repeatedly banging off the doorway.

On Monday, besides dropping the fact Husband likes to forget to take me on our dates, I mentioned I'm painting the cabinets in the kitchen. One of you sweet Readers asked that I take a picture and show the end result, and seeing as we'll be moving in the next few months or so, showing bits and pieces of the Split level seems like a good idea.

After all, you, my dears, have followed our beloved money pit for so long, don't I owe you a peek before we shove off?

Monday, November 18, 2013

The Date Night That Never Happened
"Oh, my wife left me because I went on our date night without her. La la la."
Afternoon Readers,

I've always felt that the strongest marriages are built on miscommunication. Experts disagree, but it's only through gross amounts of misinterpreted verbal exchange we see one of the party gets left out of plans to have fun and stays home to paint cabinets instead.

Subsequently, both Husband and myself are so stunned by the quality and coverage of the paint, all misgivings are forgotten, and I accept the bag of trail mix wrapped with a decorative ribbon, which is presented in hopes of atonement.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Moving and Shaking

"The times you're having your foundation worked on are also great times to make cocoa from scratch."

Morning Readers,

I'm happy to report that, at 9pm last night, the foundation people finished pushing the Split level back out of the ground and setting it right with the world. The process was fairly smooth, with only a few minor hiccups.

I'm almost seventy-eight percent sure they meant to warn me before they picked up the entire house and dropped it.

I feel that's normally something you give the old heads up on, but I also misquote Hall and Oats songs occasionally, so I'm not not totally in the loop.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

"And now, our newest song, written by the lovely Mildred, "Holes In My Backyard". And a one and a two and a..."

Morning Readers,

Good news. While standing on one foot and testing whether the trim on the top of the cabinets could be ripped off, I discovered a boxed gift set, containing a shaker and mix for chocolate martinis. As this was supposed to be a present for a friend back in 2007, I think it's safe to say they'll never miss it.

Party for one at the Kellerman house this weekend, hosted by my bad memory and Stirrings Company -est. Nantucket 1997.

Now then, everyone who listened to a chorus of jackhammers ring out costly amounts of repairs yesterday, raise your hand.

Wow, that was a few more of you than I thought.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Fanmail Friday: Don't punch your kids

Morning Readers,

The cup of coffee I poured before I started writing this is gone. Kaput. Mainly because the baby has decided to mutiny and not take a morning nap. Instead, I drank most of that liquid gold while listening to him yell at me from his crib ...these could have been insults or plans for world domination.

His English is still non-existent, so I'll keep you posted.

Then again, it was probably insults. He knows my nose is slightly crooked.

Right, so you know what we haven't done for a while?

Besides anything productive. I don't even know why you're forcing me to say the p word.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

The Turning of the Turning Points

"You see that Katy? That's our future on the horizon, and it looks like Windex and interest rates."

Afternoon Readers,

I strongly believe the last few days can be summed up with this quote:

"I did a lot of tired things and now I'm very tired." - An Excerpt from Sundance's thoughts on Halloween

Where the Split level's concerned, a lot of big decisions have had to be made fairly quickly. And I'd be a huge liar if I said it hasn't left me mentally exhausted. Not Jack-trying-to-haul-a-substantial-Rose-onto a-floating-door-in-the-freezing-Atlantic type exhaustion, but I haven't been getting a solid eight hours either.

I'm more like the ticket taker on the Titanic who, no doubt, looked around and said, "Really? Get a summer job, they said. Make a little money of your own, they said. No ever saw the world on a paper route, they said."

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

Afternoon Readers,

A princess, a crayon and a bumble bee all walk into a bar.

And the bartender says, "Thanks for coming to pick up your mom."


A little bit.

Probably going to spike the apple cider later with some bourbon.

The motley crew I just described are beyond excited, and it's probably my fault for fueling them up this morning with pancakes, syrup, and overly-high expectations of how fun it is to run through the rain and beg things off of strangers. 

I'm going to spend the day running around, buying a two pound bag of candy, dressing people up, sending them out to get more candy, and subsequently eating the candy I bought by myself.

I might even get a shower after everyone goes to bed, but you know me, I hate spoiling the end of any good, horrifying, possibly unsanitary story. 

So, from myself, Husband, Belle, the Crayon, and a baby who doesn't realize he wants to be a bumble bee, but will be forced into that fuzzy costume no matter what...

Happy Halloween, Readers!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Put a Cork In It, Kid

"Now, Mrs. Kellerman, if you'll step this way, we'll let you blindly pick out one of three insults you can live with for the rest of the day."

Morning Readers,

I have to admit, being a perfect parent would go a little smoother if my children would stop saying things like, "You, leave me alone."

Sometimes, I don't think any of them realize I'm trying to look better than all the other parents of young children, and they shop lift a tin of mints anyway.

I suppose they get points for only clogging the toilet one out of the last three times they tried this week. Then again, soggy toilet paper and petty theft are dull in contrast with the talking back that's been happening on a daily basis.

The baby gets a pass. He's sitting in a salad bowl right now, and looks adorable. 

Before I had children, my Big Book of Parenting came with tables and charts, lists and vin diagrams about how my kids would respond to me when I spoke. For instance, page. 748 had clearly printed-out dialogue for years three to four:

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Zombies and Harlots: A Free Chapter of Horror

"Paige, I really feel like you picked hunting zombies over cleaning up after the kids a little too quickly. But, let's get a move on."
Morning Readers,

On a scale of "I just stuffed the baby's shoes full of marshmallows" and "I still haven't cleaned the pee off the play kitchen that was victimized last night," I'd say, this morning, the Kellermans are operating at about a...

"Why are you two kicking each other in the face again?"

Moving on.

Halloween's right around the corner, which means I'm about to bathe myself in Kit Kats. However, because I can't pull out that giant bag of chocolate, pretend it's for trick-or-treaters, and then eat it by myself in a closet just yet, I've decided to hand out something else instead.

"Is it a Halloween themed post on how to craft pumpkins from felt, Paige?"

Do I run six miles every morning?

So instead, please sit back and enjoy "Zombies and Harlots," chapter four of At Least My Belly Hides My Cankles: Mostly-True Tales of An Impending Miracle, and I'll see you all next week.

Lights, please...

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Explosion on Register Eight

"Ok, I looked up "disaster" in the dictionary, but what do you mean you're never going back to the store again?"
Morning Readers,

Fun fact #250

If you try taking pen marks off your dining room table, using only a Magic Eraser and wishful thinking, it'll take the finish off and leave you with a table that only makes you cry in certain types of light.

But enough bragging about my shellacking skills. Let's talk about what's in the cabinets.

Because we don't have a pantry.


I'm not really sure. I think the builders of this lovely abode were too concerned with putting it on a crappy foundation to worry about things like shelves that hold ten pounds of canned goods and possibly a large bag of flour.

Circa 1969....

Friday, October 18, 2013

We Made You Breakfast

"Hello, room service? Yes, we'll need two bowls of cereal. Oh, and bring a bottle of Scotch for our mother."

Afternoon Readers,

     Plans to deal with the Split level are up and running, but that doesn't mean I haven't lost massive amounts of sleep, staring at the back of my eyelids and wondering whether we really should pack everyone up and join the next passing circus.

The only problem I have with this is that the baby just learned how to walk and wouldn't have a talent to contribute, besides letting us shoot him out of a cannon and running to catch him before he landed in someone's lap and slapped them in the face.

You see my dilemma.


No, I'm not worried about the rest of the family. We look fabulous in sequins.

So, I blame the astronomical sleepiness which contributed to my huge lack in judgement, when I fed Sundance breakfast this morning, and decided to shut my eyes for the few minutes before the boys woke up.

*Idiot alarms of the world go off in unison*

I suppose it was the first sloshing sound, or perhaps Sundance yelling, "Get the towel," but, either or, I knew I didn't want to open my eyes.

So I lay there and listened to my fate:

"She's gonna love it."

"Just pour a little more."

"Makin' the breakfast."

There are times in this parenting gig when you know you were irresponsible and the mess awaiting you is totally your fault. So you accept it. But there are other times when the scale of what awaits you is so huge, you're not sure who let you have children in the first place.

As the baby and I walked down stairs (me in a shirt and no pants, and him in pants and no shirt), the twins presented their work with such a flourish, I had no words.

Mostly because I'd stepped in chocolate milk and was completely disoriented.

And then I found my words, and they were something along the lines of, "What the hell?"

Sundance smiled from behind the coffee table. "We made you breakfast."

I surveyed the middle of the living room. "Ahh, yes. We're not close enough to Christmas, so I was wondering why all the condements are open and put into groups."

In the center of the spread, stood what I surmised to be the main course. I've broken it down into a quick recipe here so you can make it for your family, if Fear Factor announces they're coming to dinner at the last moment. Or, if you make meth and can't remember how to cook:

Don't heat the oven. 

1. Spread a base of expensive cookies from the bakery on a flimsy plastic tray.

2. Sprinkle cookies with a generous helping of chocolate-covered raisens you were going to eat while writing later that evening.

3. Season with half a bag of Skittles.

4. Evenly spread a layer of off brand Lucky Charms over a solid, not-safe-for-diabetics base.

5. Carefully, pour chocolate milk over the entire tray. Put any extra chocolate milk in a a pretty white bowl next to the main course. I don't totally understand toddler culture, but I think this may have been for dipping.

6. Prepare the yogurt glaze. The baby was supposed to eat the yogurt, but, seeing as the children don't particularly care what he thinks right now, he can eat bread crusts.

7. Gingerly drop dollops of yogurt over the now heaping and highly unstable masterpiece.

8. Lay out all empty containers. This not only creates ambiance, but also informs the resident adult that a large part of the grocery shopping the day before was a huge waste of time.

"We just wanted to make something for you."

They were the words which stopped my head from spinning all the way around. There's nothing I find more annoying than things that are my fault, dished up with a large helping of good will and smiles from children who think underwear on their head is the height of fashion. 

And now, I must leave you all and continue the house hunt. I also have to work on finding some pants.

Until Next Time, Readers!


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

In Session

"We'll now take a short recess for the new episode of Bubble Guppies."

Afternoon Readers,

While I deal with the financial Rubik's Cube that is our house situation, I've found my thoughts over the last week have been somewhat short of linear, and more along the lines of, "I think I left the house without shoes on again."

Move or stay? Fix the foundation problem or continue blogging from China? I can only hope the Chinese government welcomes us with open arms, when, much to their amazement, the Split level comes flying out of the ground and positions itself, teetering, somewhere on the Great Wall.

The children, as it turns out, don't particularly care whether the house is collapsing, and continue instead to make ridiculous requests. This week, I tried desperately to form them into a counsel of sorts, but I'm afraid we're getting nowhere.

*Bangs gavel*

Thursday, October 10, 2013

This Week's Inventory of Broken Things

"The kids have broken everything except our spirit and the starch we attack our collars with."

Afternoon Readers,

Before plunge, headlong, into all the serious things we usually cover here at the blog, I need to take a minute and congratulate the winner of The Biggest Fall Reading Giveaway Ever.

*drum roll*

*more drum rolling for effect*

*still more drum rolling while I get more coffee*

Congratulations, Sandy Dewrock! You're one lucky lady, who's mailbox is about to be assaulted with all sorts of shtuff. Perhaps "assaulted" is too strong a word. Nothing you won is particularly dangerous to handle, unless you like to throw books at people who wander onto your lawn. But you know what? We never specified what you're allowed to do with your winnings, so, if you feel you must throw a copy of my book at the back of some poor person, just make sure to tell him or her they can also get one for Kindle.

Now then, where was I?

Oh yes, time to take this week's inventory of broken things. A lot of people ask me what I do when I'm not writing, and, after a peel one child or another hanging like a sloth off my back, I'm always happy to answer...

"I watch my stuff get broken."

"You do?"

"I do."

"Sounds rough."

"It's awful."

"Saw a lady like you on TV once."

"Oh, really? I didn't. Because my TV is broken."

Kidding, the TV's not broken yet. But stay tuned.

Watching things shatter around the Split level has become a spectator sport with only one spectator, who cries herself to sleep at night. The children don't seem to think anything's amiss. Careful observation confirms they might actually consider the ongoing destruction as work of some sort.

This is only an educated guess, as, occasionally, I'll hear, "We're workin'," right before the sound of something exploding.

Things Broken This Week

1. One Coca Cola glass shattered on the bathroom floor.

2. Hole in the living room made larger by a baby who's taken a sudden interest in remodeling, and developed a taste for old termite damage.

3. Two coffee cups broken by the author of this blog. She blames her frazzled nerves and children screaming like they're being impaled by 15th century broad swords. 

4. One dining room table indelibly marked with pen.

5. One Halloween costume ripped, after the wearer swore it would not get ripped if worn before Halloween.

6. One packet of cocoa from 2012 exploded on the computer. The keys are still working ...for now.

7. Three noses almost broken due to various face planting techniques.

8. One of Husband's razor attachments broken, which he won't know about unless he reads this.

9. Disk drive removed from this laptop. Disk drive refuses to go back in.

10. One part found mysteriously floating around the bottom of the dishwasher. Dishwasher still works, so I chock this piece up to being non essential. None of the children seem to be to blame for this, but I can't rule out the baby's new obsession with trying to lock himself inside of said machine.

11.) One sweat jacket drawn on with washable marker which turned out to not be washable.

12.) Approximately ten new food stains added to the living room rug, two new ones to the couch, and one fairly suspicious-looking one in the twins' room.

Now that I see everything typed out, it doesn't really seem so bad. At least, that's what my coffee cup tells me. But he's really not that realiable. After all, he's simply a surviver at this point, and probably won't make it to next week.

Until Next Time, Readers!

Monday, October 7, 2013

I'd Be Pleased To Welcome Gwyneth Paltrow

"Paige, what's that lovely scent wafting from the kitchen? Ahh, yes. I thought it smelled like a budget."
Afternoon Readers,

Things ran on a pretty even keel at this weekend. Nothing blew up, I put on a real shirt with buttons, and Husband watched the kids while I went to the grocery store by myself.

Never fear, just because the Kellermans didn't experience anything tragically comic this weekend, doesn't mean I have nothing to share with you today. Actually, I'm taking this opportunity to announce that my super sweet friend, Ilana from the blog Mommy Shorts, got her own TV show.

And you're all like, "Hold on, Paige. I need to insert some applause up in here."

*This space reserved for blog author to get up and get coffee while her Readers are cheering various announcements, good news, or hoopla of import*

So Ilana says to me, she says, "Paige, who would you interview, if you could interview a celebrity your living room, like I do?"

Thursday, October 3, 2013

The Midnight Tango

"If you're taking requests, "I'd like to hear, My Children Don't Sleep, and Now I'm Hallucinating."

Afternoon Readers,

It's a stormy day here in Kansas, and, while the winds are slightly intimidating, I refuse to be concerned with the weather unless it busts out a window and knocks over the box of Reeses Pieces I'm eating.

I'm actually hoping for a thunderstorm. I find them delicious and exciting. Not as exciting as candy-coated peanut butter, but thrilling enough to press my face against the glass and whisper, "This is really dirty glass. Who's supposed to be cleaning this place?"

Monday, September 30, 2013

The Biggest Fall Reading Giveaway Ever!

Morning Readers,

Do you love reading?

Enjoy free stuff?

Did you miss the boat on summer's GIGANTIC, multi-blog reading giveaway and you want another chance to win?!?!

Well, we've delivered, except for one tiny difference - this time, it's EVEN BIGGER! Even more of your favorite bloggers have joined together to bring you the hugest giveaway on the innerwebz - you are not going to believe this prize package. Seriously. Now that the kids are back in school, maybe you find yourself with a little extra free time for reading grown-up people books with grown-up people words in them. Maybe, as the autumn air gets chillier, you're looking for an excuse to snuggle up inside under a blanket. Whatever the reason, one thing's for sure: you need some great stuff to read. Thus, we bring you...

First off, we've collected practically an entirely new library for you - nine (9) (NINE!!!) new books to make you laugh, cry, and forget that you were supposed to turn on the crockpot because you're just plain having too much fun.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Why You No Spell Good?

Then and there, Ralph made a silent pledge to come back next year and know how to spell fedora.

Morning Readers,

Who wants to hear a formative childhood story?

Ok, I just counted one hand out of the five of you reading this, so I'll continue.

Long ago, in a faraway land - or possibly the exact same town I live in right now - there lived a young home schooled girl who was entered in a spelling bee. It was the very first spelling be she'd ever set foot in, so she dawned her very best stretchy pants, matching top, and just a dash of scrunched up socks over Keds. Her middle name might as well have been "Pizzazz."

She just hoped no one asked her to spell it. That's like four z's.

Monday, September 23, 2013

The Woman Sits Alone

Bob didn't understand why Marlene liked going to the theater by herself, and Marlene wasn't impressed by Bob's "Themes on Yankee Doodle Dandy" he tried to keep her at home with.

Afternoon Readers,

While I wait for yet another specialist to arrive and give me an estimate on this situation, I thought I'd check in and see how everyone's weekend was. If it was anything like mine, you flipped out on your spouse and, in the few minutes he took to stare at you because he had no idea what you were talking about, threw your hands in the air, grabbed the keys, and pushed that seven seater to the movie theater as fast as it would go.

Oh, you did normal things like clean the gutters and make turkey sandwiches? Odd.

Husband stared at me dumbfounded. "What do you mean you're going to a movie by yourself?"

Thursday, September 19, 2013

In the Meantime, We're Still Sinking

House had contemplated running down those stairs so many times, but there was always someone watching.

Afternoon Readers,

"Ranch flavored rice cakes. Like paper, only ranchier."

Instead of telling you what I'm eating, from now on I'll just be shooting really questionable taglines your way.

Things have been a little busy around the Split-level lately, primarily due to the fact our home is slowly but surely sinking into the ground, with possible plans to implode. We first discovered this problem last November, and, being the prompt people with absolutely no self-preservation instinct that we are, have decided to fix it a year later.

The first day of this month was spent Googling, "How to lift a house off the ground using only leg muscles, will power, and a spatula." They say you can find anything on the internet, but I'm here to tell you Yahoo Answers came up a little short, so I began scheduling foundation specialists instead. They were all quick to comply, and soon I had four of them lined up and ready to see our little spectacle.

So far, we've entertained three guests, and, in a nutshell (or nuthouse ...however you want to look at it), this is where we stand so far:

Monday, September 16, 2013

Date Night For One: An Entry From the World's Shoddiest Movie Reviewer

Afternoon Readers,

It's 11am, do you know where your coffee is? I do. There's a pot of it already in my belly, so let's get started.

No, this post has nothing to do with coffee, so I apologize for that first sentence. It was misleading. 

Instead, take my hand and walk with me to a brand new topic. That's better. Now that we've turned the corner, you can clearly see we're about ready to talk about movies. Shh, don't lie. You can clearly see it. And really, if you'd just stop trying to tie me down to something concrete I could ask you something.

Do you and your other half enjoy watching the same movies?

Husband and I watch quite a few of them together, but I'll readily admit there's a divide when it comes to certain genres. For instance, if my love suggests we watch a gangster movie, I'll usually respond with something like, "I can't. I need to take the van through the car wash."

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Lose a Kid, Gain a Potato

"These two lost her. Said they were out getting corn dogs."
Afternoon Readers,

We lost Sundance last weekend. There's really no nice way to put it. I suppose I could say "misplaced," but that makes her sound like a set of candle stick holders received as a wedding gift, stuck in the attic, and the topic of much debate around Thanksgiving. As in...

"I told you not to store the candlestick holders somewhere we couldn't find them. Aunt June will be here for turkey any minute, and she'll want to know we didn't reject her gift with a certain amount of disdain. But seriously, who needs pewter shaped like an ape's hand extended in a sign of welcome and peace?"

Monday, September 9, 2013

The Socially Awkward Couple

"I'll grab my apron with the dudes on it, and you go put those spongy rollers in your hair. Together, we'll dominate this gathering of strangers."
Afternoon Readers,

I just got back from the grocery store. It was eventful, but as I'm still recovering from exactly how eventful, let's just talk about that jaunt on Wednesday.

At any rate, getting distracted by today would be a mistake because then I couldn't tell you about the weekend. And if that happened, how would you know I curled my hair for the first time in three months?

Oh, you're too kind. I will happily tell you all about it.

Friday, September 6, 2013

The Kellermans Do Bed Bath and Beyond

"It says here that we can bring the children into the store because they enjoy replacing all their breakable merchandise once a month. Interesting."

Afternoon Readers,

I'm going to sit down and take a breather before I go make the Hamburger Helper.

I know what you're thinking, but sometimes you've got to make those fancy dinners to get your man running back home at night.

So, until I hear those beloved, booted footsteps hankering for rehydrated sour cream, a time out's in order to tell you about the day's events. Oh, and about my efficiency. My efficiency which leads to phone calls such as...

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

To Doc on His First Birthday

Morning Readers,

They say one is the loneliest number, but careful observation has confirmed that one is only lonely if it doesn't have to survive being punted across the room by an older brother and sister.

Today, Doc Holiday celebrates his first and most auspicious birthday. And while we did give him new pajamas with puppies on them, I'd also like to send him my warmest congratulations on one full year of survival.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

There's A Chance I Might Win Something

"Now that you mention it, I did win that "Knit a Scarf For A Hamster In Under A Minute" competition a few years back."
Morning Readers,

I'm taking a break from watching Sundance dress up in my maternity clothes from last summer to share some exciting news.

At Least My Belly Hides My Cankles just might win something.

I know what you're thinking. Why are my maternity clothes just sitting in a tub by my bed? The attic. It's a long trip, and Rubbermaid containers make great sidetables.

Oh, the book.

Well, at first she didn't want to enter, but, "Book," I said, "Book, I'm going to enter you in this contest because I believe in you. And also because I have no idea what I'm doing."

She went on to explain how it was a little narcissistic, but when she thought about it, the publicity could be good, and, as long as her cover was displayed in a size that didn't make her look fat, she was ok with it.

You know, you write something, and then it turns out it's completely ungrateful.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Excuse Me, Waiter...

"I usually take mine with a little cream and sand ...but not too much sand."
Afternoon Readers,

I'm not sure if I ever mentioned it, but my dear companion, Mr. Coffee, died suddenly a while back.

Exactly. If that can happen here, it can happen in you house too.

I'll let you process your shock quietly before we move on.


Now then, like most large, coffee-related changes in my life, it was tough to grapple with. Since kicking cigarettes (No applause, please. Every day is a day I try desperately not to spark a rolled up Post-it note with "Camel" scrawled on it simply to get a hint of the experience), coffee has been the Universe's way of feeding my fix. So, a reliable coffee machine is most importante to my existence.

Enter, Black and Decker.


Friday, August 23, 2013

2013: A Dryer Odyssey

After Bill suggested she start drying clothes outside, Marlene began to wonder whether the line was strong enough to tie up a full grown man.

Afternoon Readers,

Well, the bets are in, and in the race to break first, the dryer beat out the van, the other car, and microwave by a long shot.

Don't worry, all other appliances are still putting in the effort to quit working, but we're really proud of the washing machine's soul mate for biting it before either one of us could say, "Did you time the dryer to run all night without stopping?"

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

What I Was Up To Yesterday

Afternoon Readers,

I'd like to quickly mention that when the settings get messed up on one's TV, if the language has been switched to French, it's ten times harder to fix the problem.

So, yeah. I'll just be over here eating frosted animal crackers and lamenting the twenty minutes of my life I'm never getting back.

But, I didn't pop in today to tell you about electronics. Why would I do that, when I can give you advice about things I know nothing about?

Yesterday, I got the chance to join a panel of moms on the local morning show. So, if you're in the market for getting advice about sending kids back to school from a person who has no kids in school...right this way.

Until Next Time, Readers!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Mamas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up and Beat Kindles

My Kindle didn't have a face, but if it had, maybe it would've looked like Emily Dickinson.

Afternoon Readers,

I've said it before and I'll say it again, the minute you become a parent, accept that all your stuff will soon be broken.

It's not all bad. For instance, when you own absolutely no worldly possessions, you no longer have to choose between sitting on the couch or sitting on the love seat. The children un-stuffed both of them last week, so communing with the floor it is.

It's a simple life filled with shirts with buttons missing and side tables with no decor.

Just kidding. You don't have side tables either. Sacrifices must be made to keep the integrity of a nice game of "Climb the Mountain: If you fall, you get left behind edition."

Thursday, August 15, 2013

To My Friend

Morning Readers,

While Sundance is occupied banging a stick against the porch and Butch is flushing the toilet for the third time (note to self: check to see if bathroom is flooded), I'd like to take a quick time out to say something about my friend.

If you don't know what a friend is, it's someone who helps promote your silly little book while her husband is dying of cancer. It's someone who, while she made the most of the time since a December diagnosis, took the time to tell me how she was proud of me.

What? Um, no. I'm proud of you.

On August 12th, Courtney lost her husband, Scott, and both their children lost their dad.

I know I joke a lot about the trials and tribulations of every day life, but the truth is, they'd be so much harder without my partner in crime. Husband may talk a lot in his sleep, but he's here to work hard, love us, and put up with my obsession with hummus, and for that, I'm grateful.  There's a good chance the blog would shut down the day I rolled over and saw an empty spot next to me in the bed and realized it was that way forever.

So, today, I join the rest of the blogging community in asking for your help. Courtney is now saddled with a mountain of medical bills, and I know we've all known how crushing those can be. If there's even a dollar you can throw at the link at the top of the blog, please know that it's appreciated astronomically.

Courtney didn't ask us to do this, but it's the least we can do. Because that's what friends are for.

By the way, you can get to her lovely blog, right over here.

Until Next Time, Readers.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Husband's Secret Life

"I mean, I love it, but new Peplum and a shark's tooth necklace can only ease the shock so much."

Afternoon Readers,

My mind isn't made up yet, but I'm just not convinced Dunkin' Donuts coffee is better than my regular Folgers dark Colombian blend. One smacks of delicious pastries, and the other of illicit cocaine dealings in the deepest jungles somewhere, but I'm on the fence.

Or is it that, after five cups in a row, it's hard to tell the flavor of any coffee?

Doesn't matter. I'll gladly kill all taste buds in my mouth for the shot at more caffeine and an even greater fighting chance at staying awake to rear the children. Surveys show that children who are raised by parents who aren't sleeping have a better chance at success and not wandering into the street.

But, let's not dwell on the fact I got up with the kids a total of five times last night between the hours of 1am and 5am. Instead we'll turn our attention to the captain of the Kellerman household, and examine his secrets.

Oh yes, he has secrets darker than his lush head of hair, a cloak-and-dagger lifestyle he tends to divulge only when he's fallen into a deep sleep and I'm trying to watch Conan and not feel awkward about laughing out loud by myself.

For, you see, while most people's spouses are snoring, I'm reaping information such as...

Friday, August 9, 2013

Unhappy Little Trees

Morning Readers,

I think I've figured out why the fake plant is dying.

Balding and sad, the source of the living room's right corner palm tree's malaise seems to be the children picking its leaves off and stabbing each other with them.

Shocking. I know. The fact I own two fake palm trees usually catches most people off guard.

"Two?" They say.

I nod. "Two."

"But you know nothing about plants."

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Though I Walk Through The Valley of the Toilet

The Kellermans are here to look at the stained glass and use your bathroom.
Afternoon Readers,

I'd like to start today by saying that the warnings on self-tanners, which clearly instruct the user to wash their hands after using said tanner, aren't joking.

It's like I have traffic cones for hands.

Let me direct you this way, where we'll talk about this weekend instead.

When Sunday came around, Husband wasn't feeling well, so I did what any rational person would do and proclaimed, "Mom's going to church. Who's coming with me?"

For a woman who stares at the popcorn ceiling at night and plans how she'll don a wig, glasses, clean pants and hop on a jet to escape the children by the time Wednesday comes around, I do a terrible job when it gets down to brass tacks.

Friday, August 2, 2013

A Punch is Worth A Thousand Words

"And now we'll sing a little song I penned, called, "We Fight So Much, Mom Had To Be Committed."

Afternoon Readers,

You don't know because you don't live with us (prayers of thanksgiving should be saved for the end of this post, so you don't get sidetracked with your enthusiasm and forget to read these finely-crafted words), but Doc doesn't like Cheerios.

That was my reaction as well.

And, call me a stickler, but I'm not totally satisfied with, "Bweee," as an answer to the question,

"What's it like to be un-American?"

National staples aside, the children are up to far more annoying things than not eating cereal, or ripping the cereal boxes open vertically, or pouring raw oatmeal all over the floor before I make it out of bed. Prompting me to shout things like, "Why do we own raw oatmeal?", before realizing my robe's flown open, grabbing the broom, and giving up before 9am.

Nay, the fighting.

The fighting will kill me.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Pillow Talk

"It's cool, I guess."
Afternoon Readers,

It's wonderful you've decided to join me on a Wednesday because yesterday I was making big decisions.


Oh, I forgot. For all of you who are new here today, I make all my big decisions on Tuesdays, write about them on Wednesdays, feel guilty about them on Thursdays, drink them away on Fridays, receive validation from Husband about them on Saturdays, ask for forgiveness on Sundays, and start re-evaluating new topics for life decisions on Mondays.

So it made sense then when I stripped the cases, held up my bedroom pillows and asked the wall, "What are these?"


I shook my head. "No, these are orange and disgusting. Who sleeps on these? This one looks like a tater tot. Or a giraffe with polio."

Monday, July 29, 2013

Sundance the Bride

"You'll never even know it was your wedding day."
 Afternoon Readers,

I'm not sure how many of you are married, thinking about getting married, or planning a wedding right now, but after you order the cake, book the DJ, and buy two tons of colored almonds, please remember to also invite the Kellermans.

Please note: Surveys show marriages we witness have a one-hundred-percent success rate, mainly because all of those couples are terrified we'll show up to a second wedding.

This past weekend was a mad rush to get the kids where they needed to be, Husband into dress shoes that fit, and a running start to  get my Spanx from my ankles to a position on my body where they'd try to make a difference.

My knees have never looked so thin.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

General Chaos

"I have nothing under control, so I put corn on this hat instead."
 Morning Readers,

You know how sometimes you wash your hair before you go to bed, braid it, sleep on it, and wake up thinking you'll look like Gisele Bundchen, but the result is more like Ron Perlman from the old 80's TV show Beauty and the Beast?

And you look in the mirror and think, "Really, hair? I would've settled for looking like a bad version of Linda Hamilton from 1980's Beauty and the Beast."

Yeah, me either.

Control. We have none. This is especially true when one has small children to tend to and a wedding to get ready for, all in one week. Are my Spanx clean? I don't know. Does Butch have socks to wear under his shoes? Beats me. Will Sundance show up wearing her new dress as a skirt and a purse as a shirt? No doubt.