The Bad Mommy

I work only to pay for his therapy later.

Location: Novato, California, United States

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Lego Geeks

Today's fabulous discovery is this - The Marin Engineering Center, home to every Lego piece or part known to humankind. One of the other Cub Scout moms had mentioned it in passing several months ago and recently forwarded the link. For $9 an hour, your child can build ANYTHING, including a variety of sets that they have available for use. A very reasonable price, considering that the available materials include battery packs, leads and various things to hook up to make battery-controlled machines. C was ambivalent about going, initially. I suggested that we just take a look and if it seemed awful we could leave. We walked in and his eyes got big. He disappeared into the aisles of legos and when I suggested he take his coat off, he shrugged it off without once breaking eye contact with his project. I left and headed off to my own version of Lego Heaven - Marin Fiber Arts, where I spent an hour and a half hanging out with Warren and Barbara and making a baby-sized version of this for the grandbaby due next spring. I drove back to get C, who didn't even bother to look at me when I walked in. "No, Mom. I'm not leaving." So I headed out to Macy's (just across the freeway) and that's when it got a little more expensive than $9 an hour.... I found a beautiful purple cashmere sweater on a very good sale. All in all, a very fun day. C was persuaded to leave after 3 and a half hours of fun and is ready to go back any time. I'll have to remember it for the next time I need to go shopping or just need a nap :-) It would also be a good place for a birthday party. A Bad Mommy might also consider dropping him on the way to work and picking him back up on the way home at night....

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Dear Santa

C's letter to Santa this year, verbatim and in its entirety:

Dear Santa,

I could not think of something to ask for, but I knew you'd get something good. I also wanted to thank you for everything the elves made (thank them too). They did a great job. The Gingerbread house mess was funny.*

With all true Belief**

C----- F.

*This is a reference to the letter Santa sent to C, which detailed a mess the elves had made decorating gingerbread houses.

**I attribute this to C's reading all twelve Lemony Snicket books in the space of less than a year.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Did I Mention That It's Been Pouring All Day?

Let's recap: We have a fabulous cat door that, most of the time, allows the cats to come and go as they like, opening from the outside only when our cats stick their heads close to it and the magnetic key on their collars makes a connection. There are alternative settings - the door can be locked in both directions; the door can be set to let the cats out but not back in; and, as we know, the door can be set to let the cats back in but not let them out in the first place.

Slick has figured out that he can't get out of the house once he comes in. So he spends most of his day sleeping on the mat outside the sliding door into the back yard. In the evenings, he goes in and out every five minutes (more frequently if he can get someone to open the door more frequently) because he's panicked at the thought that he can't get out the cat door.

Max ( who's dumber than a box of rocks) still can't understand why he can't get out the cat door. He bumps his head against it repeatedly and then sits next to it and cries until someone gets him and locks him back in the bathroom for awhile. Under protest, he uses the litterbox but he waits till the last minute, entertaining all of us with the kitty version of the potty dance.

Maggie, who under the best of circumstances goes outside only when absolutely necessary, is extremely unhappy with having to share the litter box and has made that feeling known by peeing on top of any towels left on the floor. (In spite of this, no one is picking anything up any more than usual.)

It's not that I don't love them all. It's just that they're exhausting.

For those who are interested: Max got the drain removed on Monday. His stitches look good and we're remembering to give him his twice daily doses of amoxicillin. He gets the stitches out January 2 and hopefully will stop looking like the victim of a bad facelift....

Monday, December 19, 2005

Why yes, I am nuts; thank you for asking

In the last 24 hours I've made 4 double batches of gingerbread cookie dough, 5 lbs of royal icing and 5 lbs of flood icing (in a dozen different colors) and have assembled 8 gingerbread houses. Tomorrow night we'll roll out the cookie dough and cook the gingerbread cookies and on Wednesday C and 3 of his friends (ages 6-9) will destroy the dining room decorating everything. I've got a disposable plastic tablecloth on the dining room table and am planning to roll plastic out on the floor before we get started. In spite of how it sounds, I think it will be fun.

In other news, M took Max to the vet this afternoon to get the drain removed. The vet was fast and worked within the five minute grace period that Max permits and so the drain came out without anybody having to lose his fingers. The stitches will come out on January 2. For now, Max remains collar-less and therefore housebound. He is NOT happy about that. In fact, the better he feels, the less happy he is about being confined to the house. I don't see how this can have a happy ending but I'm too tired to think about it tonight.

More on Max

So Max has been living in the bathroom for a couple of days. Yesterday we figured out how to semi-lock the cat door - none of the cats can use it to get out but they can all get back in. This means that as long as no one forgets and lets Max out, he's free to run around the house. So C made signs for the doors:

NO!!!!! Max is having a(n) (ugly) situation. He does NOT want to be disturbed. So please DO NOT DISTURB and DON'T LET HIM OUT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Mad Max

Friday morning Max (our ten year old cat - named after Mad Max) comes in and hides under a piece of furniture. After I wake up a little bit I take a look and realize that he's got what looks like a bloody gash on his face. I call the office and say I'm not coming in, drop C at school and come back for Max. I take him down to the vet and they say it looks like he got into a cat fight a WEEK ago (are you getting why this is called The Bad Mommy?). The injury wasn't very obvious till it abscessed, necrosis set in and the fur around it fell out. He was good for the vet for the first five minutes then he tried to bite him so Dr. Wonderful gave Max a shot of kitty valium.... I left him there so they could scope out the extent of the injuries. Forty five minutes of surgery later, they shave half his face (the abscess was the size of a silver dollar), stitch him up (18 stainless steel stitches), put in a drain and after I paid the $400 ransom they gave him back. He's housebound now for at least till next week (when the drain is removed) and not very happy about it. Let's face it - he hasn't had to use a litter box in years and really, he was just fine with that. But he can't wear his collar, which means he can't get back in the cat door so he's confined to the bathroom most of the time. We'll see how long all of us can stand it.

Silent Night

C and I were in the car the other day. From the backseat: "Mom, you know how they sing 'Holy Infant, so tender and mild'?" Me: uh huh. C: "Well what's that all about? It sounds like they're going to EAT him."

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