February 24, 2010

Peep Show

Troubletron and I stopped by my uncle's house last night to return a car we had borrowed.  Upon entering the kitchen, we found this
Family and friends had gathered to create Peep Dioramas for the annual Washington Post Peep Diorama contest, aka the Peep Show.

As I watched them cut and glue and form and create, I thought I would probably like to make a peep diorama for the contest . . .  if I had something very terrible that I was supposed to be doing, and I needed something more fun to distract me from that terrible thing.

All I have to do is eat these.
Which isn't terrible at all.

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February 23, 2010

In Hiding

Sometimes I hide from the checklist of mundane things that must be done in my life.

Because I just can't stand doing those things.

Like folding clothes.  Or calling the leasing office to update our renter's insurance information.  Or opening the less pleasant mail.

But, then things arise that I hate to have to do.

Like going to the DMV.  Or changing my name on my passport and social security card.  Or trying to find reasonably priced panty hose that will last more than one wear.

And, then those regular things don't seem as bad.

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February 22, 2010

You've Got To Know When to Hold 'em

 . . though, I think knowing when to fold 'em is often the greater skill.

I know many people might think that teaching your children to gamble is inappropriate.  But, they're going to learn it on TV anyway--so we might as well let them experiment in a safe environment with Star Wars cards and Monopoly money.

If they're going to gamble, we'd rather them do it at home.
In a safe, albeit ridiculous environment.
No, these aren't Mardi Gras beads.  We're not THAT cool.
We just wanted everyone to be able to hone their skills.
And, maybe come away with a little cheddah
Ok, I won ONE big pot.  One.
It's hard to hone your skills though, when you get 45 texts per hand.
Don't worry.  Her jeans are supposed to be like that.
Of course, the player with the highest learning curve was Littletron, as he was the only player unfamiliar with the basic rules of Poker.

But, he was not intimidated.
In fact, Littletron takes very few things seriously.  Poker is not one of those few things.

I wonder where he gets that from.

Have I mentioned Littletron has a hard time focusing on things?

There was, indeed, time enough for countin' when the dealing was done.

And, time enough for fruit roll-ups.

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February 19, 2010

Everyone Was Groped

I forgot to tell you something.

Last Sunday, we sat down at the crafting table as a family to make homemade Valentine's cards for whomever we wished.  What I didn't tell you is that Littletron didn't want to make Valentine's, or really, to do anything that anyone else wanted to do.  At all.  Even if he wanted to do it first, if someone else joined in, he didn't want to do it anymore.  That's just his way.

But, anyway, Littletron didn't want to make Valentine's cards.  Even after I spent several minutes making him feel guilty about how sad his mommy, grandparents, brothers, and sisters would be if they didn't get a Valentine from him (I'm already guilting children.  Less than a year of Step-mother-hood, and here I am), he wouldn't budge.

Finally, after Troubletron intervened, Littletron agreed.  "I will make ONE Valentine.  ONE.  Got it?"

Fine.  One.

I wondered who his ONE Valentine would be to.
He cut out ONE small heart from some heart-patterned paper.  And, on the back he wrote:

So, his ONE Valentine is to everyone.

For a 9 year old, there is a lot of "groping" going on.
After examining the card, I have determined that he punched out one pink construction paper heart for every "aldalt"  and every kid in his family.  Then, he separated them into those "gropes."  But, he loves us all, no matter where we were groped.

Some people don't like to be groped with other adults.  But, I don't really mind it.

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February 18, 2010


I sort of got a pretend job.

I just blew your mind, I know.  And, now your brain is swirling with questions like, "what's a pretend job" and "what do you mean by 'sort of'?"

These are good questions.  And, I'm not too proud to admit that I don't totally know the answers.  All I know is that I'm being expected to do a lot of work, with no hint of getting paid in sight.

That's a step forward though.  Right?

Today on BotTron Photo

Black Frost

The white, snowy walls flanking every road in the land were beautiful a week ago.  Their winter-wonderlandish feel almost made the horribly dangerous driving conditions semi-pleasant.

Now, it's like driving through waist-high lung cancer.

February 16, 2010

Turning the Corner

Our love countdown is over, and now, as a blog, we are left to tackle more diverse topics (like my continued unemployment and how I'm so bored)(sometimes, do you think you already know everything about me?).

Since we've been blogging on theme for so long, I guess I have a few things to share to catch you up.


Troubletron received the only A in his class on his first English paper in college!  I guess all that wifely pressure really paid off.


  The movie remake of Land of the Lost, starring Will Ferrell and Danny McBride, got a bad rap.  There were some true moments of hilarital zen.  (Hilarital is definitely a word).


Last weekend, Littletron told me he didn't need to make any homemade Valentine cards, because he didn't have a Valentine.  Trying to be parently, I told him I was his Valentine.  His only response: "Gross."

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February 15, 2010

Valentine's Breakfast

Troubletron and I wanted to do something special for the kids yesterday morning, to celebrate Valentine's Day--to get everyone in the mood for the celebration of love.  So, we arose a few minutes early to make a delicious LOVE breakfast.

We started with the homemade pancake mix my sister-in-law made us for Christmas.

Troubletron plus powder equals disaster.

He mixed it up with expert speed, until it had reached ideal lumpiness.

We added a drop of coloring, and proceeded to create an entire line of:
. . . sort of heart-shaped pancakes.

Even though many turned out more like human hearts than cupid hearts (see first pancake pic above), I think everyone got the pink, hearty message.

A LOVE breakfast wouldn't be complete, though, without some Turkey Bacon.

Because that's something everyone loves.

We added a few shakes of purple sprinkles, and forced the kids to eat every single bite!
Because, apparently, they wanted doughnuts for breakfast.  Not pancakes.  And, when kids are told they can't have a doughnut until they eat all their pancakes, they are magically able to eat whole stacks of pancakes.

I enjoyed mine though (sans doughnuts).
Troubletron remained in the kitchen while I began eating, saying he wanted to finish up making the pancakes.  I thought he was being sweet, letting me sit down and eat while he finished up the work.

It turned out, however, that he just wanted to make one GIANT pancake for himself.

You can't tell from the photo, but it was at least 3/4 of an inch thick.  It was massive.  And, he ate every last bite.  Because Troubletron loves pancakes.

I hope your Valentine's Day began just as happily as ours.

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February 14, 2010

Countdown of Love, Day 1: V Day

Have a wonderful, love-filled day!

February 13, 2010

Countdown of Love, Day 2: Valentine's Haters

Each year, around mid-February, I am astonished at the number of Valentine haters that emerge from whatever hater rock they have been hiding under.

Valentine's Day is stupid.

Valentine's is a holiday made up by greeting card and candy companies to make more money.

Valentine's is just girls' excuse to make guys feel bad about how they show affection.

Whine, whine, whine.  It's the same every year.  And, every year, I ask these haters what hatin' has ever accomplished.

Valentine's Day has historical origins (whether saintly or not). The tradition of sending notes or tender handmade expressions of affection to lovers on February 14th has been going on for hundreds of years, long before Hallmark, Hershey's, or 1800Flowers.com fixed their greedy little eyes on our purses.  Maybe no one knows just exactly why Saint Valentine was martyred, or even if he did anything to help out lovers.  Does it really matter?

The day is what it is.  Fighting against it, when you have a significant other, only makes her feel like you care more about taking a useless stand against an old tradition than you care about her.  Is it really so horrible to be expected to express love on a particular day?

Love shouldn't be work.

I express my love everyday.

 I will express my affections when I want, not on a day when I have to.

Boo hoo.  Anyone who thinks that love isn't work doesn't know anything about love.  If you don't work on love, you certainly won't have to worry about having it for very long.  Expressing your love for another through little deeds and daily affection is also essential; but actual, lasting love requires thought and effort.

Not wanting to celebrate Valentine's day obviously doesn't mean you don't love your partner.  But, it does show that you are either not smart enough to take advantage of a societal built-in way of expressing your love, or that you are a stubborn jerk.

The joy in any holiday comes from the merriment you personally attach to the day.  If you think Valentine's Day is stupid, maybe you are a joyless, bitter cynic.  Or maybe you just don't understand love, and its need for constant work.  Either way, you need to stop hatin'.

Put down the Haterade, and embrace the day.

February 12, 2010

Countdown of Love, Day 3: Love THIS

Our final guest post was written by Jillian, who regularly posts on Sunny Little Rain Cloud.  Jillian lived in the apartment above me for a year or so when we were both attending university.   She's one of those people I lost touch with, but was happy to find again on Facebook ten years later.

As I walked across the platform to shake hands with the dean and get my empty diploma holder it seemed that most things were right with the world. I was 21, had a degree, a job lined up (that offered to pay back my student loans, offered a decent signing bonus and offered to reimburse my moving costs. AWE-some) , a new condo and roommates who were absolutely hysterical.

However, something was nagging at the back of my brain. I had come to BYU for the purpose of gaining an education, not a spouse, even though that goes against the grain of most Mormon stereotypes. I didn't go in order to get married, but I guess I didn't plan on leaving single.

Everyone finds their spouse in college, at least that was what I thought. Yet- here I was leaving college with no 'plus one.'  That was simply unheard of! That was the first time that ever felt unsure about romance and love.....and if any of that would ever include me.

Fast forward ten years and not much has changed. I still wouldn't describe myself as someone who is, howyousay, 'Lucky in Love.'

But does that mean that my life is empty of love? No- not at all. I love my life...even without a plus one or a viable reason NOT to have to stand amongst the 12 year-olds at wedding receptions anxiously awaiting the bouquet toss.

(Seriously- who thought of that? If you want me to leave your wedding, just ask. I have developed a super Spidey Sense about timing the The Great Toss and rest assured, that is my cue to exit stage anywhere....and not look back.  I really want to know, who thought that up. "Let's gather all of the people who can't form lasting relationships and let's THROW STUFF at them! That'll be great fun." Screw that guy. He is definitely on my List of People to Torture/Maim/ or Shave One Eyebrow Off Of.)

Over the course of the years, I have realized that everyone gazes longingly at lives that are different from the ones they have. Married couples with kids can only dream about picking up and going to stumble around Thailand for the summer, flying to Costa Rica to ride a horse to the top of a volcano and then watch a surfing competition later that day, taking a month in Africa to build a school and train the teachers, or jumping a plane to Puerto Rico to celebrate a friends 30th birthday (and to secretly see how many references you can make to Westside Story in one airport cab ride).

Bottom line- Romantic love is nice, it's pretty, and it looks good in movies (Yes-Channing Tatum I'm looking at you)  but it's not everything. Real love is something that takes work, whether it is loving the person that you are or loving the person that you have hitched your wagon to; it's messy and sometimes hurts. 

Silver lining- In this day and age, I don't think that the stupid quote, "A woman over age 30 has a better chance of being killed by a terrorist than of getting married," still applies.

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Pigeon-Toed: A Study