Thursday, November 26, 2015

If ever an object is missing...

Last night I made some pies for Thanksgiving. I am a messy crust maker, so I had cleared a lot of counter space to make the crusts and had moved the dish-drying mat off to the side.

I finished my Thanksgiving pies (pumpkin pecan and raspberry) and was going to move the dish mat, etc. back into place and I couldn't find the dish mat anywhere.

Oh well. I figured maybe Chris had put it in the dirty clothes to be washed or something.

This morning, Sophia woke up around 8:30 and came dancing out of her bedroom, holding the dish drying mat. She had taken it to bed with her. I haven't laughed that hard in a long time. If ever something is missing, ask her first!

That same thing is true with the remote control. It has gone missing for days before, and one time I asked Sophia where it was and she pulled it out of some mysterious hiding places. "I put it there so Heidi couldn't get it!" 
But a dish drying mat to bed! least it only has the clean dishes put on it, right? 

Wednesday, November 25, 2015


Sophia really likes jello. This is not something she inherited from me. Even just looking at jello jiggling around on a plate makes me a little uneasy. But not Sophia.  Typically when I do get jello for her I buy the already made stuff that is conveniently in little cups all ready to go. A week or so ago, Oma gave her a package of jello that had to be made at home. She was super excited and asked me multiple times to make the jello for her. I did. And then we had it for lunch.

Interestingly, jello does not maintain the same shape when it is homemade as it does when it is already made in those nice little containers. Or perhaps I am a failure at following simple two-step directions (1. Add hot water and stir, 2. Add cold water and refrigerate for 4 hours). But either way, we ended up with jello soup. Sophia thought it was great fun. As for me... I think I'll probably never make jello again. Until I forget about this experience a year from now and try it again.

This is after I removed the jello plate and switched for a cleaner plate...

Monday, November 23, 2015


There is a TV show called Scandal on ABC. I have never watched it, nor will I. One of the nice things about not having cable TV is I get to be blissfully ignorant of all of the terrible, polluting, time-wasting, mind-emptying, morally bankrupt things that are airing on TV. Also, we don't watch anything on TV except for Arsenal... so... it would be kind of a waste to have cable. 
Anyway, apparently this TV show had its pregnant main character abort her baby, with the song "Silent Night" playing in the background.

Why don't you go back and re-read that last sentence, and really let it sink in. The character murdered her child, to "Silent Night". Everybody reading this knows what that song is about, right?  Let's take the third verse here as an example of the general tone of the song:

Silent night, Holy night
Shepherds quake, at the sight
Glories stream from heaven above
Heavenly hosts sing Hallelujah.
Christ the Savior is born,
Christ the Savior is born.

This is a song dedicated to the beautiful night when Christ's birth occurred. The shocking and horrific irony here is enough to make my stomach turn. It's bad enough that this was aired on (what sounds like) a fairly popular television show, but to glorify abortion as if she is somehow doing something that is appropriate and acceptable is disturbing. I'm not sure if I can possibly make clear what happened here. If this is not shocking to somebody, what is? Why have we allowed ourselves to become so numb to infanticide? This is horrific. HORRIFIC. HELLO, AMERICAN CULTURE. THIS WOMAN JUST KILLED HER CHILD ON TELEVISION. And we're all applauding it like a bunch of mindless lemmings who believe that whatever makes us feel good must be okay. Just stop and be grateful to God for a minute that YOU managed to survive abortion, and then return to the fight and try to help these innocent children who are being torn limb from limb for no other reason than they are an "inconvenience".

This may seem like a bird trail, but it's related. Last night in church was our Thanksgiving Praise service. Sophia was sitting with a couple that is friends of ours because I was in the back helping cut up and plate pie slices. She had to go to the bathroom at some point during the service, so Katie (my friend's name - there are lots of "Katies" in our church) took her and then when they were heading back in, they decided to sit in the back to not disturb anybody because service was almost over. She had brought her baby doll to church with her and left it in the seat when she went to the bathroom. She looked up and Katie and asked, "is baby Anna going to be okay?"  Katie was telling me about this conversation after the service, and made the point that Sophia, a 3 year old, is able to be concerned and care for a doll better than many, who disregard their child as an inconvenience.  And she's sadly right.

Stop supporting ABC and this TV show. Stop supporting abortion and saying silly things like, "I would never do it but I would never stop anybody else from making that choice". This isn't a gray issue. Either it is a person, or it isn't. If it is a person, we all need to stop dead in our tracks and see the horror of what we are doing. If it isn't, then those who are saying it isn't a person have some work to do in proving otherwise. I have yet to see anything but a human come from conception. Love your babies. Thank God for the wonderful way he decided to start people.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Reasons My Children Are Crying

I told her to get out of the bath tub. (Sophia 9/20/16)

I cleaned up her breakfast that she had left sitting out for 2 hours so I assumed she was done with it... (Sophia 9/19/16)

She wanted to use the water bottle her sister was using. And had been using all day. (Sophia 9/18/16)

She wasn't allowed to use the rocking chair...after she pulled her sister off of it (Sophia 3/20/16)

I told her she couldn't have a second bag of fruit snacks (Heidi 3/19/16)

She closed the doors, and then was mad that they weren't open (Heidi 12/14/15)

She couldn't carry all of the snoopy toys at one time (6 character set) (Heidi 12/11/15)

She wanted to bring her "purse" (full of items including 3 stuffed animals), Bitty Baby diaper bag, baby Anna, a dog with flower print, a barking dog, a pig bear, and a stuffed elephant for her baby with her when we left the house to Heidi's doctor appointment. Mommy said she could bring her dolly and one other item. We were 10 minutes late to the doctor appointment. (Sophia 12/08/15)

She wanted MOMMY to get her water (Daddy got it...) (Sophia 11/29/15)

She wants to be as tall as Daddy, RIGHT NOW (Sophia 11/28/15)

She wanted to stay in the bathroom buck-naked and play with the Christmas tree decoration instead of getting into pajamas (Heidi 11/24/15)

She wanted to watch a longer movie before naptime and her sister had picked out Veggie Tales
(Sophia 11/24/15)

She wanted to push the button on the Roomba to start it before bed but Mommy did it (unaware that she wanted to) (Sophia 11/22/15)

She wanted me to go into her bedroom and get her pig bear (Sophia 11/20/15)

She wanted to sprinkle cinnamon on her oatmeal (Sophia 11/19/15)

I won't let her play with the smoke detector (on the ceiling) (Heidi 11/19/15)

She wanted to get out of the car the other way (Sophia 11/18/15)

She dropped her toy out of her crib at night and couldn't get it back (Heidi 11/18/15) 

She couldn't carry her pig bear AND her candy (Sophia 11/18/15)

She wanted Oma to give her 2 hugs and kisses, instead of just 1 (Sophia 11/17/15)

Thursday, November 19, 2015


We had a water fight in the backyard and had all been spraying each other with the hose. At one point, all had settled down when out of nowhere Heidi grabs the hose and charges at Chris:
Heidi: Hey daddy! Boo ya!!

Heidi: Sophie, why do you want to be a missionary?
Sophia: because I believe in God
Heidi: I believe in God, too! That's why I want to be a police officer.

Heidi (upon discovering a ladybug in the bathroom): The ladybug was on the flusher! It magically appeared!!

Not sure I would consider a ladybug on the "flusher" of the toilet a magical occurrence, but it sure made my little Heidi happy.

Me: How much do you like popsicles?
Heidi: One thousand and fourteen one hundred

Heidi (praying at dinner): "Dear Jesus, thank you for making Pooh Bears. Because God made Pooh Bears and He stuffed them. Thank you for Pooh Bears. And people too. Amen."

Heidi: Mommy, when I get boogers in my hand I just do this *rubs hands together* and they go away magically!

Heidi: Where are we going to find the body?

Uhhhmmmmmmm......? I don't even know what the context was here, but I overheard it and laughed out loud.

Me: Here, Heidi. If you chew some gum when the plane takes off it will help your ears pop.
Heidi: *looking horrified* I DON'T WANT MY EARS TO POP!

Heidi: Mom, this didn't make my ears pop!

It was almost as if she was saying, "Silly Mommy, my ears didn't pop when I chewed gum!" Ok, Heidi.

Heidi (talking to Sophia): Oh yeah? You're stup...endous!

I'm thinking to myself... haha. Nice save, Heidi. I was about ready to jump on that one!

Erica was over and helping Heidi get into her snow clothes. The following conversation happened:

Erica: Ok Heidi, let's put your mittens on.
Heidi: My mom so dumb
Erica: That wasn't very nice! You need to speak kind words.
*Heidi just looks at Erica, confused.*
Erica: What did you say?
Heidi: My mom so dumb for me
Me: Oh! She sewed them for you!

Me (pretending to be Heidi's horse): *Neigh!* Thank you for taking care of me Heidi! *Neigh!*
Heidi: Mom, horses don't talk.
Chris: Heidi, do you know where Jesus is now?
Heidi: Tallahassee?

Heidi: Daddy, can you read the New Mexico book?
Chris (already in bed): Not tonight sweetheart.
Heidi: Mom, can you force him to read it?

Heidi: Mom, if we see a bird can I invite a bird inside so we can pet it?
Me: Heidi, if you invite birds in and they come in you can pet them.
Heidi: Yay!!
(Boy am I glad the birds didn't call my bluff).

Context: Heidi was wearing some footie pajamas and got out of bed to go to the bathroom. When she finished she had pulled on her pajamas but had not zipped them - she had just buttoned the button at the top so they were flapping open. I was telling her to finish up zipping and then this came out:

Heidi: Mommy we don't want to see your axial skeleton in bed. We don't want to see your cranium vertebrae rubs and sternum in bed or you'd be naked with nothing on.

She was describing to me why she should not be naked in bed, and using anatomical names. Love it.

Heidi commenting on looking at the pictures on the living room wall: There's Sophia. There's me. There's Bethany. And you married a guy that's named Daddy!

Heidi got a duck keychain from the (third) dentist last week...
Chris: Why did you take the duck's head off?
Heidi: Because it was quacking too loud...

Chris: When Jesus came He made peace with sinners
Heidi: He made peas? I don't like that

This kid is so smart it blows me away. She is barely 3 and here's a recent exchange we had. We were at the church preparing for an event for ladies. I was in the kitchen putting yogurt into cups. There were some donuts on the counter cut into quarters.
Heidi: Can I have some donut?
Me: Sure, which one? Pink sprinkles or chocolate?
Heidi: Pink.
*10 minutes later*
Heidi: Can I have more donut?
Me: Yes, which one?
Heidi: Chocolate.
*10 minutes later*
Heidi: Can I have some more donut?
Me: That's enough donut.
Heidi: But I am eating it in an AB pattern! I need to have pink donut!

WHAT? Her reasoning was amazing. She connected it to an AB pattern. I gave her another donut quarter.

Heidi was looking at a book with characters from Elena of Avalor. Each page had a different character and she read it to herself out loud in the way you would read "Brown Bear, Brown Bear."
Heidi: Isabel, Isabel, what do you see? I see Potato ("Mateo" on the show - she calls him "Potato") looking at me. Potato, Potato, what do you see? I see I-Step-On (really, Esteban) looking at me. I-Step-On, I-Step-On, what do you see?

*Looking in a bag of Hi-Chew candies*
Heidi: Are there any bingo ones? Bingo! Bingo!
(Bingo = Mango)

Heidi: Mom, can we ride the alligator?
(This is what she calls 'escalators')

Heidi potty trained almost instantly. Last night she went to bed in underwear. She woke up in the middle of the night, around midnight, to go potty. She ran out of toilet paper and had to change the roll; she came into my room with no pants on, holding the spring piece that goes in the middle and a new roll of toilet paper.

Heidi: Mom, the yucky thing was on there and I needed a new one. This isn't working quite right.

She calls the old toilet paper tube, the cardboard brown piece, the "yucky thing." Not sure why it's "yucky" but I guess it is. So adult sounding!

Heidi: Knock knock
Sophia: Who's there?
Heidi: Princess Jasmine
Sophia: Princess Jasmine who?
Heidi: Princess Jasmine!!!!

Sophia trying to teach knock knock jokes to Heidi, who views it as an opportunity to announce who she is

Heidi (praying): Dear Jesus, thank you for Sofia the First pull-ups. I like them because I really like them. Amen.

Heidi: Mommy, when you kiss Daddy that's yucky. Blech.
Me: What if I kiss you? Is that yucky?
Heidi: No

Chris: What is Proverbs 1:7?
Heidi: The fear of the Lord is no sneezing
Chris: Close! The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, fools despise wisdom and instruction. Let's work on this one. What is 1 Thess 5:17?
Heidi: I'm not sure
Chris: Pray without ceasing
Heidi: Pray without sneezing

*Heidi speaking to Chris*
Heidi: Heidi is going to get married and you dance with me. 

Chris shaved for a conference he is going to next weekend. He hasn't been clean shaven since he came home from COT/CCII last summer (August; almost a year ago).
Heidi came up the stairs and saw Chris; she looked stunned, and just stared at his face while walking past before finally saying...
Heidi: You... you look funny

Heidi: *hands me a pita chip*
Heidi: are you hungry?
Me: not really, no.
Heidi: why are you eating a chip?

Heidi: Bethany can't have blueberry yogurt. That's my favorite. Bethany can have banana peach yogurt. Not blueberry.

Heidi: *brushing my hair*
Heidi: Mom your hair is so beautiful. Like a princess.
Me: Wow. Thank you, Heidi!
Heidi: Mom, your hair is turning so white!
Me: ...

Heidi: Can I have a Christmas Tree?
Me: Umm...
Took me about 10 minutes to figure out she meant "Rice Krispie Treat"

Heidi: where is pooh bear go?
Me: I ate him
Heidi: no, you did not.

Well, I'm not fooling her anymore!

I was preparing dinner, turkey sandwiches, for the girls and had purchased mini peppers at the store. They go crazy for these peppers.
Sophia: I want peppers!
Heidi: *misunderstading* You can have my peppers, Soophie!

Melt my heart. She LOVES peppers and she offered to give her peppers up so her sister could have them.

*Heidi jumps over my legs that are extended out on the ground.*
Heidi: Mom, I play ballerina!

*Sophia fell on the stairs*
Heidi: Sophie! I help you! I help you Sophie!
*Heidi reaches her hand out to Sophia on the stairs*
Heidi: Oh, poor Sophie! I love you Sophie!
*Hugs Sophia*
Heidi: Oh, I sorry Sophie! Poor Sophie! I love you! We best friends! I love you so much!
*Hugs Sophia*
Heidi: Sophie is the best sister! I kiss your owie.

Heidi was so worried about her sister. I was just adoring every second of this exchange.

(Sophia stayed with the Carpenter's to meet us at the church meeting later. Chris called me and I heard Heidi crying in the background).
Me: Why are you crying?
Heidi: *SOB* I miss Sooooopheeee!
Chris: Why do you miss Sophie?
Heidi: I wa-wa-waaant her *sob*!
Chris: Why do you want her?
Heidi; I want to pway wif heerrrr!

Heidi may have a harder time with Sophia going to Kindergarten than I will.

Sophia went to Anna Grace's house to play today, leaving me with Heidi and Bethany at home.
As Sophia was walking out of the door, here is the conversation:
Heidi: Where Soophie go?
Me: She is going to Anna Grace's house
Heidi: I go to Anna Gwace's house?
Me: No, Heidi. Not today. Just Sophia.
Heidi; Soophie not want go to Anna Gwace's house.

I almost laughed out loud. She was trying to get Sophia to stay there by telling me Sophia didn't want to go to her house. Then all day was we were traveling around, Heidi would ask, "we go to Anna Gwace's house??" She missed her sister!

(At Sherri's house, after lunch when the girls were eating a cookie)
Dave: You left a lot of crumbs on your chair!
Heidi: You're welcome!

Heidi was in our bed with Chris when I came up to bed tonight (11:30). I moved her back into her own bed because it's Saturday night and we need to rest. Bethany woke up in the process. I was sitting in my bed nursing Bethany when I hear:
Heidi: I telling mommy!
*girls' bedroom door opens*
Heidi: mommy! Copper sleeping in my bed!

Ha. Copper just got tattled on. Also, now he's sleeping on my bed. 

Heidi: I'm Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Jasmine.

The named has evolved.

Heidi: I not Heidi. I Mickey Mouse Cinderella Jasmine

Well okay then.

*Heidi toots*
Heidi: Daddy stinky, Mommy!

Daddy wasn't even in the same room! Lol!

Heidi and Sophia were looking at my parents' wedding picture. 
Sophia: who is that, Heidi?
Heidi: princess!

Heidi's new favorite phrase is "I'm not sure" and it's adorable to hear from a 2 year old. Heidi, where is your duck? "I'm not sure..." Heidi, what are you doing? "I'm not sure..."

Chris had run upstairs to tease the girls and they went screaming and running after him. On her way upstairs Heidi stopped to grab Pooh Bear.
Heidi: Come on, Pooh Bear! Wet's go!! 

Papa: Want a piece of pizza?
Heidi: One more. Two more. A couple one. One more bite pleeeeaaaassee?? A couple one? Only one. One more bite?

(She was really excited about having pizza).

Chris: Who is praying at dinner tonight?
Heidi: I PRAY! Thank you for this food. Thank you for this food. Amen.

Heidi wanted to pray at dinner. The following conversation ensues:

Sophia: Dear Jesus...
Heidi: NOOO
 (she was upset that Sophia was praying)
Heidi: Thank you for dinner, thank you for noodles, Amen.
 (she was happy that there was mac 'n' cheese at dinner)

Heidi (upon seeing a bicycle on Uncle Dan's computer): No more bicycles!

She said this is a sing-songy voice. Dan is not supposed to be buying more bikes, but he is a tiny bit of a bicycle addict ;)

Heidi was asking "Uncle" for more of his cheese popcorn. 
Heidi: *while using up one finger* one more time popcorn? 
Dan: I already gave you one more!
Heidi: *holding up 5 fingers* only two more?

Dan came downstairs and sat at the kitchen table, in a different seat than Heidi was sitting in, but they tease each other about what is "theirs". Heidi look at Dan and said, "Hey, that's my seat! Heidi's seat. Right now."

Heidi saw Arsenal on TV: Daddy, that's you!

and then saw a Nashbar magazine with a biker on the front of it, held up the magazine to Dan and said: Uncle, that's you!

Heidi (while I was talking to Bethany): Aww baby "Befny" so cute!!

At dinner, sisters being sisters.
Heidi: *Making random noise really loudly*
Sophia: I CAN'T STAND THAT NOISE! *plugging ears and screaming*
Heidi: Haha. It's funny.

Which, of course, made Chris and I laugh out loud to declare herself funny while intentionally annoying her sister. Which only egged her on.

Heidi: *Continuing random noise*
Sophia: HEIDI! STOP!
Heidi: It's funny!

*Bethany is crying. I am changing her diaper*
Heidi (to me): Mom! Baby is crying!

Yes, thank you Heidi. 

*While tucking Heidi into bed*
Heidi: I love you, Mommy...
Me: I love you too sweetheart.
Heidi: so much.

Sophia (with her kindle camera, to Heidi): Say Cheese, baby!
Heidi: Cheese baby!!

Heidi was playing with Nana's iPad with an Elmo app, drawing letters, etc. and playing very nicely. Sophia came into the room and Heidi IMMEDIATELY grabs the iPad and runs to the other side of the room.
Heidi: No! My turn now!

She was just being overly prepared for sister to try to get a turn...and she wasn't ready for it!

We were reading a counting book, one of her favorites with Donald Duck.
Heidi starts counting: Two, six, sebey, eight, nine, ten, eleven, telve!

Having breakfast at Erica's house and Erica is drinking coffee. 
Heidi: coffee?
Erica: No, no coffee for babies 
Heidi: why?

The girls' spent some time with the VerWays while Sherri was in Israel. She learned how to say Emily very well. Much to Andrews dismay when Heidi was back with them, he tried to teach her to say Andrew but whenever we'd say, "Heidi, say 'Andrew!'" she would say "Emily!"

(Heidi grabbing a cracker right out of Chris' hand)
Heidi: Thank you

It's time to start one of these for Heidi!

Me: it's nap time, girls!
Heidi: uh-oh

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Mini Getaway

Earlier this summer Chris reserved a camper cabin at a nearby county park, Whitetail Woods in Farmington, just so that we could see what it was like to "camp" in (the word "camp" here is used loosely).

I am not a camper. I have never been one to throw on a pack and go for a week through the wilderness. It isn't so much the time without showering or the sweaty smelly everything that bothers me; what bothers me and really stops me from camping more is bugs. I don't like bugs at all. In any form. And especially spiders (which I know are technically not bugs - spare the lecture). 

As an aside, Chris and I went camping overnight with our hammocks this summer and his bug net was not on properly so he woke up with a daddy long leg above his head. If that had been me, I would have ruined my hammock and bug net and possibly have broken limbs trying to get out of there.

So I'm all for this, because you sleep inside and it's temperature controlled and there are flush toilets and running water. Also it is November, so really there aren't a lot of remaining bugs. And an amazingly warm November at that.

The cabins really are quite cute. There is capacity to sleep 6 (full bunk beds and two twin beds) and a table inside of the rooms. The twin beds are couches that fold down into beds. There is a nice deck on the outside of the cabin, lots of big windows, and lots of big shades in case you don't want your neighbors to see you (and vice versa) through big windows). The bathrooms are nice and bug-free, with flush toilets and running water.

Once inside, Sophia almost immediately claimed the top bunk of the bunk bed and just had a grand ol' time playing up there (too much fun, really, and had to be reminded to NOT JUMP when she was on the top part. Mommy had lots of mini heart attacks). We got settled in (with the help of a wheelbarrow that they keep chained to the cabin) and once we had established our beds and the cabin a little bit we went for an afternoon walk.  Sophia collected pinecones, and brought back almost an entire grocery bag full of them. My "lection" (collection), she called it.

There is a little playground area for kids which Chris aptly described as a parent's worst nightmare - it involved sand with lots of big rocks and tree stumps dispersed throughout it. A "nature" playground. And they had a little cement block with an inspirational quote from Dr. Suess to make the sand, rocks, and tree stumps seem like much more than they are. Well played. It brought to mind the episode of The Office where Dwight decides to open up a daycare inside of the building and has a chest full of plastic spoons and forks from the kitchen. When questioned he explained that to adults, it's just utensils, but "to a child's imagination, that is Mr. Fork and Lieutenant Knife".  But really, it was cute. And the little wooded area behind it had some wooden forts built up where the girls had a fun time (while I spent time worrying about a stick poking out somebody's eye).

After this we went back to the cabin where we had some Mountain Home freeze dried dinners - Heidi and I shared a BBQ one and Sophia and Chris shared a Teriyaki one. Then Chris attempted to make an apple crisp freeze dried dessert...and followed instructions to a 'T' but ended up with a large burned caked on piece in the center of the pan which took well over an hour of scrubbing and boiling white vinegar in the pot to get out. But I got it. After this, we decided it was marshmallow time. It was the first time that Sophia had roasted marshmallows. She really thought this was great fun but thought the fire was too warm and spent some time scooting away from it.

The weather really was an amazing thing. We were out at the park wearing fleece jackets, and at night I was wearing just long pants and a hoodie, and I was comfortable. Last year on these same dates the temperatures were about 20 degrees colder. And what was even BETTER was being able to go inside into a temperature controlled bug-free environment once we extinguished the fire. The girls really slept quite well; Chris and I did not because instead of sheets we brought sleeping bags, which were difficult to use and the slippery sterile mattress surface. If you go to these cabins, or, a reminder note to myself: just bring a sheet set. Also, pillows.

The following morning, we packed up fairly quickly and had McDonald's breakfast. I spent the rest of the late morning and afternoon shampooing the carpet at home. What an exciting life we lead ;) but the shampooing was life-changing for our apartment. I practically don't recognize it anymore.

Overall, I recommend these little cabins (which are booked out for a year) and I'd love to go again, maybe with another couple and to spend longer than an evening there (primarily because of all the make ready required to go and stay out there). I could see it being a lot of fun to do some hiking around in the summer or snow shoeing/cross country skiing in the winter.

The back deck of Camper Cabin #2!

My musician "playing the drums"

Sophia kept using walking sticks, so Heidi had to as well

A great image of the "playground" with the inspirational quote

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Poor Customer Service - My Open Letter To Comcast

Dear Comcast,

As a customer of Comcast for multiple years, in one form or another, I find myself more and more frustrated by your business practices. I am sure that letter from an aggravated customer is not something new to you, and when you are in the business of providing Internet this is to be expected. Nobody likes to be without Internet or to have internet problems. However, the customer service policies held in place by your company are infuriating.

You seem to have no consideration for the time or other life activities of your customers. I am a working mother with two small children, a one year old and a three year old. We were on a “promotion” (isn’t everybody?) for the past 12 months and when the promotion “ended” our bill went up from $60 per month for Internet to $90 for Internet.  A 50% increase is, frankly, unreasonable. My husband called to cancel the service and was put on the phone with a “retention specialist” who informed us that there really was not much that could be done because of the current promotional rates going on. We decided to cancel services through Comcast, and instead of a traditional home WiFi network use our mobile phones as hotspots and just increase the data on our cellular plan. The changes were made, and I went to a Comcast service center to return our rented devices.

I drove to the Comcast service center, on my day off, with my two daughters, and waited for about 10-15 minutes just to drop off equipment. When it was my turn to approach the counter, the service representative asked me why we had canceled. I informed her, and she said, “Well, let me see if I can do something”.

Understand that, as much as I appreciate the customer service worker at the Inver Grove Heights, MN location (and her friendly personality), I am incredibly frustrated by this process. What is the purpose of having a retention specialist, who is apparently handcuffed, only to have another Comcast worker give me a different story and be able to adjust my bill to the old rate? On top of which, between my husband and I we have wasted a significant amount of time between conversations with Comcast and with our cellular phone provider, as well as time wasted packing up equipment to return it. In addition, this particular Thursday is the only work day I have off for the next week, and I am spending it not enjoying my children, but trying to figure out Internet problems.

The Comcast employee at the service center was able to get me another “promotional” rate, and with the rental fee of the modem was back to the same rate that it was previously.  We had been told on the phone that there was no fee to disconnect/reconnect; I was told at the Inver Grove Heights center today that there actually was a $15 reconnection fee, which she waived (perhaps there is a lack of clarity as to what your policy is). My husband changed the data plan with the phone company again. And I returned home to set-up the new system, which the employee assured me just involved plugging it back in as it was and then following the step on the receipt.

I plugged in the modem, and I will spare all of the details but the instructions did not work, and after a 50 minute phone call with two different individuals (here is the service number so that you know I am not exaggerating my claim of 50 minutes: CR526630578) I finally had working internet.

What is so frustrating about all of this is ultimately NOTHING CHANGED. My rate is still the same and I still have Internet provided through Comcast. What is the issue then? To have everything remain the same, it took multiple phone calls, a trip to Comcast, a change in the cellular phone plan (and a reversal of the change), and half of my day off (and time with my beautiful daughters that I cannot get back) wasted. And that is just on MY end. What on earth business sense does this make? What a waste of employee time and energy. You could have saved yourself a lot of money if you didn’t jerk customers around in this thoughtless manner. Your Comcast Customer Guarantee sounds nice, but it has not been put into practice.

I would like to reiterate here that my frustration is not with your customer service employees. The individuals I interacted with today were very friendly and helpful. My frustration is with the way your company is running business. I don’t understand the whole “promotional” price thing and why it is valuable to have people call and complain to get their rates back down. Why do you encourage this behavior? And why do you waste the time of your employees?

My husband and I will be re-evaluating our service contract with Comcast, as we are not locked into it and have 30 days to cancel.  The dilemma I am facing now is, do I really want to go through all of this again in a year? To have to figure out which service person is going to be the one who is magically able to decrease my bill once the “promotion” is over?


Katie Pitts


I checked my Comcast bill online and it still reflected our increased amount. When we had called to cancel the Comcast bill, we were told that since we canceled before the service month started we wouldn’t have to pay (because we weren’t using the services). Apparently, Comcast did not say that we had canceled, and put into the system that we “changed” our services. So now, even with all I went through today with getting the system set back up, we are still charged the higher amount.

*beats head against wall*

Saturday, November 7, 2015


One phrase that I did not anticipate I would say often as a parent is: "Put your pants on". Just one of those things. Children are remarkably comfortable naked. Like, everywhere. And it's been a challenging thing to address with Sophia in an appropriate manner.  It is made more challenging by the fact that Heidi is still in the age where it's okay to go around naked (and I often let her do so after bath so she can "air out" a little bit) but Sophia has really left that stage but doesn't really understand why.

So, I find myself often saying things like "Why don't you have pants on?" Or "Get your pants on!"  with remarkable regularity.

I think part of it might be that she is a girl, too, because she likes to change outfits. A lot. Today, she came home from dance class in one outfit, and changed into another outfit almost right away, and then right before dinner changed again, and each time she feels it is necessary to change her underwear too. Which, really, I prefer to her wearing the same pair for over a week but it also means that if I'm not careful to catch all of her wardrobe changes, she runs out of clean underwear in about 3 or 4 days.

Then, because I am a mean mom, I asked her to change out of the outfit before dinner and either into her previous outfit or into pajamas. She eagerly did this, because she loves pajamas and would probably wear them all day if she could.  Later this evening, I had to run a load of laundry and noticed that the outfit she had on for about 2 seconds was in the clothes hamper (also, a good thing... because I guess it could have been on the floor). I asked her to put it away and she looked at me, absolutely shocked, and said "Mom! That's dirty!" Sigh. I'm just going to choose to be grateful that she isn't picking out clothing covered in food stains and telling me it's clean.

Friday, November 6, 2015


I know that these records will be stored elsewhere, but I just want to put it here as well.

Today, November 3, 2015, in Minnesota, the temperature was at 70 degrees. (I know at the top it says November 6...when I added some more pics to the post just down it changed the publish date. Ack.)

Heidi was able to wear her favorite froggie summery outfit to daycare today. In November. In Minnesota.
At Miss Sherri's house. She was pointing at the birds and making tweeting sounds.

She just loves this shirt. I'll ask "What's on your shirt, Heidi?" and she'll look down, point, and say "bibbit"

Heidi Taking a selfie

"Tough Love"

Well. Sophia is 3, and sometimes that means she acts like a 3 year old. I know, shocking.  Yesterday she had one of those classic, knock-down-drag-out world-is-ending type of temper tantrums.

Heidi took a very late morning nap, mostly because of the activities that we were doing throughout the day, so I postponed their afternoon naps for a little bit. This did not work out well for Sophia. Typically they go down for the afternoon sometimes between 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. I put them down a little after 3 p.m. We had just finished up "Shrek" and I said "Ok! Time for nap!" and Sophia heads over to her crayons and coloring books and says "No, I'm going to color".


"Sophia, that is not what Mommy said we are doing. It is nap time. You may color when you wake up. Please go into your bedroom".

Initiate Phase 1: Water Works

Initiate Phase 2: Screaming

"NO! I don't HAVE TO take a nap!"

*Sigh*. At this point, when it gets here and there is direct defiance, I am fairly certain that some discipline is going to be necessary.

But disciplining is SO HARD. I think you never understand the "this hurts me more than this hurts you" stuff until you actually are a parent. It's hard to do. It's like when you were a kid and you had the one chore you hated but had to do... that's kind of what discipline is. I have to repeat the Proverbs 13:24 to myself all the time. "Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him." That is STRONG language. Whoever does not discipline their children HATE them? Ok. Just focus on that. Just focus on that. I am disciplining for her good. I am disciplining because I love her. Please Lord Jesus help me to remember that.

So, I give one more chance. "Sophia, it is time for a rest. I will ask you one more time before we have a consequence; please go into your room for nap."

"NO!" (Stands next to couch and stands with her face buried in the couch).

So then it's time for a consequence, and she knows it, and she SCREAMS like she's being tortured. Before I've even done or said anything. Because she knows that she was not behaving the way that she should.

I mean, we are talking, SCREAMING. In my ear. For MINUTES. 

Normally after discipline we talk for a while too. What did we do wrong, what can we do differently next time, and we pray together, and we hug and kiss, and that's that. But that moment just was not happening this time. For normally such an even and level-headed kid, she was a firestorm of a temper. There was no calming down. There was no discussion. Just screaming. There was also threatening. "I'm going to get Daddy..."  She often does this to whoever is disciplining her. She has failed to realize so far that if I don't carry out the discipline, then Daddy does.  We have done that before where if she gets in trouble under Daddy's watch she will ask for me, or vice versa, and the other parent will lead the disciplinary actions... but it's always the same response from us.

And I didn't know what to do. All of the books that you read about disciplining, and my previous experience up to this point, have led to a nice, normal, happy response that seems to have a good outcome.

After several minutes of screaming and temper tantrum, I kind of gave up waiting for the calm discussion time. Also, I knew she was dog tired needing a nap, which was certainly fueling the response here.

I led her into her bedroom. Put a blanket on her. And said "I love you, have sweet dreams" which I'm not even sure she heard through the screaming at me. Then, after closing the door, she moved herself over to her bedroom door and pounded on it. With each pound she would scream again. This was a doozy. Around this time Chris was leaving for school, and he gave me an empathetic look then said, "Good luck!" Thanks. Can I go to Biblical Greek for you, please? I'll learn about Greek verbs and you can continue this.

She pounded on the door screaming for about 2 minutes before I went in and explained that that behvavior was unacceptable and it was time for a rest. She continued to whimper for a couple of minutes laying down, then drifted off to sleep.

Whew. That exhausted me. And her. That was definitely a classic 3-year-old parenting moment (or I sure hope so...that's what I told myself and it wasn't just my terrible parenting).

She woke up a different girl. After she woke up she snuggled in my arms and we talked for a little bit about the tantrum earlier. But I wouldn't mind going for a long while without another one of those instances. The interesting thing about Sophia is she is so tender about things like that; she usually says something along the lines of "I am sorry for fighting you, Mommy. Will you forgive me?"

This too shall pass, and is all part of raising children.  The moments of dancing and singing and painting toes and having my hair brushed all significantly outweigh the challenges that come from moments where I feel completely lost. I just think back to moments where Meghan (poor Meghan, she's the only one who was this age when I was old enough to remember) had tantrums where she literally fell to the floor and cried, and she turned out lovely!