Posts Tagged ‘Rollie’

Back to the Grind

Monday, January 4th, 2010

No, not school. It doesn’t start until tomorrow. No, I’m talking about full on dieting and workouts. And stripper poles. I know I’m not alone. I usually prefer to run or bike or hike outside to anything in a gym. I pretty much detest working out in front of the tv. Not enough room, kids try to join in and make me frustrated. However, i wasn’t about to go the gym today (too busy) or run outside (too cold, plus what would i do with the kiddos?) so I took my friend Dawn‘s advice and worked out at home.

So, I got the kids all riled up, and cleared the ottoman off the rug in the basement, and looked through the workouts on Comcast’s on demand.

Oh. My. God.

If I had known that Carmen Electra’s Strip Tease workout was on here, i would have done this with kids on rainy days LONG ago. There is very little funnier than a four year old girl and six year old boy doing a strip tease dance to Carmen Electra.

Do you want the DFACs number? I am sure you can Google it.

After that, we did Carmen Electra’s Hip Hop workout for good measure. Tiller got a little frustrated with the quick moves in that one, but Rollie totally rocked his awesome moves. He can really cut a rug, in case you’ve forgotten. If I had any balls, I would set up a video recorder to get me doing it too, because I am by far the best hip hop dancer on my street. Never mind that everyone on my street is 80. (Lauren excepted, but if you would like to challenge me, you will have to bring Jake up tomorrow for a dance off.)

We finished it up with a yoga workout. Rollie kept talking, and falling over, but actually seemed to like doing it. Tiller didn’t; She made her Barbies do the moves instead. Rollie asked why there was no talking, and I tried to explain about meditating and concentrating on breathing, but I am pretty sure that I lost him when I began talking about breathing through your eyes.

This wasn’t exactly the great workout, complete with pouring sweat and shaking arms and legs that I was looking for, but it is better than nothing and fits the bill as far as working out every day.

Anyway, I can’t recommend this On Demand workout stuff enough if you are stuck inside or unable to go to the gym, or just if you are bored and want something to do with the kids. Or if you just need a big belly laugh.

Lego nerd

Sunday, January 3rd, 2010

I swear to God, Rollie and Todd have been playing Legos for five hours straight. I am completely amazed at rollie’s focus and Todd’s infinite patience.

File Under PIFH

Thursday, December 3rd, 2009

You know . . . Parenting is fucking hard.

One of the hardest parts of parenting for me is when the kids get in trouble, and I have to revoke a privilege that was to beneficial to me. Example A:

I am working on a work project AND the school newsletter today. Todd is working late all week, and so it seemed a perfect evening for us to attend the elementary school Spirit Night at a local pizza place. The kids love it, because they get to see their friends. Parents love it because they don’t have to cook. Restaurant gets free publicity, and the school makes money off the whole gig. A win-win-win-win, if you will.

Except that while i am trying to wrap up my work, Tiller figures out how to turn on the damn singing dog.

He sings that “City Sidewalks” song . . . “Silver Bells,” I think. He sings it in a really annoying St. Bernard voice, and there is barking in the background. My mama loves these things, and thought it would be funny to give us one.

Yeah, mom, hysterical.

So, the kids push his little paw, and he barks and sings Silver Bells. The kids love it. They love it a LOT. They love it every time they push the button, which is approximately four times a minute. Over and over.

And the gift that keeps on giving is that they then proceed to fight over who gets to push the button, who gets to hold the dog, etc. So, i am trying to finish my work downstairs in the office, and the kids are upstairs trying to kill each other over a battery-operated St. Bernard that sings (and woofs!) Silver Bells. I hear the mocking tone in Rollie’s voice. I am sure he has Silver Bells dog overhead and tiller is below, jumping to reach it. I hear the thumping on the hardwoods. I hear the shriek. Nope, not pain. The shriek of anger. Pure, unadulterated four year old ire. It is blood-curdling. I fear for Rollie’s life. Then i hear the all-too-familiar sound of tinkling glass.

I run upstairs to lift them, both in their socks, out of the wreckage of two glass ornaments they have knocked off the tree. Except that they didn’t get knocked off. Upon further questioning, it seems that Tiller, in her little temper tantrum, punched two of the Christmas ornaments.

I have to hide a smile at this. I get tickled at the thought of little Tiller – wearing a red polka dot dress with pastel-striped tights and pink dora shoes that light up, a ponytail on top of her head, and enough makeup from our earlier dressup session to work at a whorehouse – throwing a fit and then punching the Christmas tree. I manage to hold it together.

I had told them to stop fighting. I had warned them that children who fight and are mean to each other don’t get to go to Spirit Night. And now i have to put my money where my mouth is. UGH. Terrible parenting feeling. It is the same feeling i get when I have to leave a restaurant with a kid who is being a jerk. Or the grocery store when I have a full cart.

Rollie, upon hearing that they lost the privilege of going to Spirit Night, went up to his room and pitched his own fit, throwing his bobble head Braves guy (Hudson, i think) against the door so hard that it broke. He wailed even harder when I went in calmly, picked up the pieces, and tossed the whole thing in the trash. I guess he thought that if he threw his stuff, mama would whip out the Krazy Glue and fix it up again. WRONG.

So, here I sit, with two kids in their rooms, sobbing their guts out, tearing their rooms up, and me downstairs working until i have to cook them dinner. All because I have to keep my word and be consistent.


In the Spirit of the World Series

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

I saw my own high stakes baseball game yesterday. The River Cats took on the Thunder, I think. River Cats are a rust red color. Rollie is #9. I was so proud – he is really improving in his fielding skills. He helped make two outs in one inning! (This is huge for t-ball.)

The shortstop fields the ball. . . To Johnson, the Shortstop

He bobbles it!

He quickly recovers!

He recovers.

Scoops it up!
The throw to second!

And the throw to second!

The runner’s out!

The runner is OUT at second!!



Coach Fred comes out to bump the rock!

Coach Fred approaches to hit the rock!

The fist bump!

The fist bump!

But you win some, you lose some.

 Line drive, right past Johnson at 3rd!

Line drive, past the third baseman, Rollie J!

Look at him hustle!

Look at him hustle!

It's heading into the outfield!

That’s gonna be an error on Johnson, folks!

This is gonna be an error on Johnson.

The left fielder picks it up.

The left fielder comes in to back up Johnson.

We just keep on telling him it’s not about winning, it’s about how you play the game. You always wear your helmet to bat. You wait patiently in the hole. You listen to the dugout mom.

You Put on Your Helmet and Wait Patiently In the Hole

You practice your swing when you’re on deck.

You Practice Your Swing On Deck

You choke up the bat and keep your eye on the ball.

Eyes on the Ball!
You swing for the wall!

The Swing! He Gets the Hit!

You run it out, no matter what.

The Play's at First!

Don’t worry about where the ball is, just run it out!

Run it out!

You make sure you touch the bag!


And you lead off a little at third, keeping your eye on the batter, and listening to the coach for the go-ahead.

You Lead Off a Little When You're On Third Base, Eyes on the Batter

I am so proud of my boy. He’s really getting it. And I think he is enjoying it, too. And that’s the best part.

Nicest Thing Anyone’s Said to Me in Ages . . .

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

Tiller just said to me, “Mama, you sure do make great paper airplanes.”

I just love the low-tech paper airplanes. You fold a couple for each kid (making sure to reinforce with some Scotch tape, or else you will spend all afternoon refolding them) and then send them off to decorate them with crayons and markers. Then it’s off to the backyard for flights, while I sit inside sneezing me head off.

They totally get into it! Added plus: Tiller is flying hers in her ballet tutu. Rollie just improvised decorating his by taping a Hot Wheels car to the top of it.

Fuckin’ awesome.

Then Rollie said, “You do make the best paper airplanes, you and Daddy.”


I feel that there will be a bit of an airshow out back this weekend. The Dogwood Girl fleet WILL dominate.

Obama Speech Review, by Rollie

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

After all that school speech hubbub, Rollie came home from school and didn’t say a thing about it. I didn’t ask, because I knew Todd would want to hear what he had to say about it, too, and you don’t ask a six-year-old what happened at school that day more than once and expect to live. You would die a slow, eye-rolling, sighing death, petulant death.
So, I held off until we sat down to dinner. (Yes, despite my being less-than-traditional in many ways, we do try to sit down to dinner together. Sometimes it happens.)

Me: “Rollie, did you do anything interesting at school today?”
Rollie: “No.”
Me: “You didn’t get to hear a big speech or anything like that?”
Rollie: “Yeah.”
Me: “Can you elaborate?”
[Rollie rolls his eyes.]
Me: “Who did the speech?”
Rollie: “Barack Obama. He was on TV, but he was really at a school in Arlington, Va.”
Me: [thinking to myself, “well, he must have been paying attention enough to get the President’s locale. . . “] “So, what did you think of the speech?”
Rollie shrugged and gave it a thumbs down.
Me: “Why didn’t you like it?”
Rollie: “It was boring, boring, boring.”

All further attempts at discussing the speech with Rollie were met with adamant resistance.

I am thinking that maybe jason B. was right. The kids didn’t get it at this age. They were bored.

That being said, I think that there must have been some discussion of educational goals at school, because later that night, I overheard this discussion between Rollie and Tiller:

Rollie: “Tiller are you going to college?”
Tiller: “No! I don’t want to go to college! I want to stay here with mama and Daddy!”

While this is disappointing in some respects, I would probably be okay with this. As long as I can make her wear footie PJs and silky nighties with strawberries all over them, and cuddle on the couch, forever and ever.

Missed the game, but hit the Galaxy

Sunday, August 30th, 2009

On Rollie’s actual birthday, we were supposed to take him to the Braves game, but it was pouring and we decided maybe we should bag it and just take him to dinner. Anywhere he chose. He chose Galaxy Diner. And he wanted a banana split, dang it.

Braves clobbered the Padres and we missed it. But we had fun anyway.

Six Years of You

Thursday, August 27th, 2009

9:00 a.m. Six years ago today, i was pretty much being ripped apart by a bowling ball. A bowling ball that was not numbed by any amount of drugs for a couple hours. Rollie, you were that bowling ball. And you were worth every second of the worst pain of my entire life.

By the time you came out, my pain was being managed and I was tired and so very happy to see you. I still grieve for those hours that you were not in my arms, but they had to make sure you were okay, and you being okay was most important. Six years going by makes it clear that all of those details and all of the guilt I poured over myself at the time was for nothing. You turned out perfectly and completely and totally YOU. And you are wonderful.

Alvin, Simon, Theodore, Rollie

I really feel like this was the year that you became a true boy, no longer a baby, or a toddler, or a preschooler. You started Kindergarten this year! You rode the bus for the first time! I was so terrified, sending my baby boy off with some person i have never met before. And that night, when i kissed you goodnight, you whispered “I want to ride the bus forever. I never want you to pick me up at school again!” You loved the bus. You still do.

Happy Rollie

You have learned so many wonderful things this year. You already learned to read way back when you were four, but now you are reading longer and longer books. Sometimes the words that you read amaze me. You sound them out just perfectly, and even use them in the correct context sometimes. I will never forget the night that I walked into your room and you were reading the Tales of Beedle the Bard. At five! I wasn’t sure whether to worry that it was too graphic for you, or swell with pride that you could read a real short story book, with few pictures! You are like a sponge with the reading and you retain so much. It amazes me. At school, you are ahead of the game – They are teaching letters, letter sounds, colors, shapes, and the like, and you can already read. I worry that you won’t be challenged enough, but when I see that you are still sensitive, and still on the same emotional level with the other kids in your class, I know we made the right decision. Plus, so far, you are not struggling with your homework very much, and that is a relief to me.


Yes, you have homework. We never had homework when I was in kindergarten, but a lot seems to have changed for parents and kids since then. I hope that your Daddy and I are making good decisions for you, but sometimes it is scary for us. We want so badly to give you all of the tools you need to be a happy and well-adjusted kid. You also started taking French this year, and you have an hour of it a day. i am hoping that you and I can have some secret French conversations around the dinner table. You are already coming home every day with new French vocabulary words. There are still things to learn, though: You still can’t tie your shoes and you get very frustrated when we try to teach you. And your dad and I have been pretty bad about helping you learn to ride a bike. We need to get on that.

Boy at Waverly

You have really turned into an active, energetic little boy. You learned to swim a little last year, but this year, I can sit out of the water and watch you, and you do just great. You put your head down in the water and you can jump off the side and swim back by yourself and swim the entire length of the pool! You dive for rockets, and you were so fun to watch at the pool this year, because you played with the other kids so well. This was also the first year that I could put a lifejacket on you and let you swim in the lake while I sat on the dock. You and Tiller swam for hours in the lake last time I was there. It was a joy to watch you swimming and playing the same exact games that Aunt Lisa and I used to play right there, too. You took your first ride with me on the Jetski this year – I think you were a little freaked out by it, but I am sure you will grow out of that soon and be scaring me with your fearlessness. I know I was terrified riding around on that thing with such precious cargo, but I want you to learn to have fun, and be cautious, but not fearful. I try to teach you that by example, but sometimes Mamas get scared, too.
Rowdy Rollie Rodeo
You played soccer last Fall and this spring and loved it. You are pretty good and we call you “The Cheetah” because you are so fast. Your team was called “The Dream Team Tigers” which we have really gotten a lot of laughs about. This year, you are playing soccer and t-ball (Go, RiverCats!) and I am really enjoying you learn to catch and throw and learn the rules of the game. Just last night, you made your first base hit and you played pitcher and got an out at first. I was beaming. The best part of all, though, is sitting in the bleachers in that moment when light and dark are just about even, then the lights on the field flutter on, and you and your team-mates are running around the bases, playing pickle and laughing (giggling, really) and I just see the joy on your face, and the fact that you are happy, and comfortable with who you are.
Boy Loves Tractor
I know that won’t last forever – that kids are mean, and you have to watch movies about bullying at school for a reason. I know that there will cliques and hurt feelings, mean things said, and unrequited crushes. I just hope that you will have a foundation given to you by your Dad and me that leaves you with a sense that you are a wonderful person, and that you have self-worth. I hope that you always have the strength to know who you are, to be your own person, and to do the right thing, even under difficult circumstances.

Rollie with Flower

10:00 a.m. I was still at Northside waiting for you to join us. The room was unlit and I was hurting, but it was getting better. Daddy and Aunt Lisa were there. The rest is a blur of visiting grandparents and MASH re-runs, until you came out and changed my world forever, at about 5:30, I think.
At about 5:30 today, we should be getting ready to head down to Turner Field. Your birthday party is Saturday morning at the pool, but we have kind of started a tradition of taking you to a Braves game on your birthday. Last year, Daddy and I surprised you with it, but this year, all four of us are going. Even Tiller. We haven’t told you yet, but I can’t wait to see your face when we do. It will be Tiller’s first baseball game, and I’m sure she will love it, but you will be the star tonight. I can’t wait to see you eating peanuts and hot dogs, and yeah, we might even get you a coke. It is your birthday, after all.

I love you, little buddy. More than you will ever know, at least until you maybe have a child of your own. And then you will ache with it, and swell with it, and wrestle with it. I hope that I am there for you when the time comes, because I am so proud of you and I know how proud I will be then.

Your Mama

Are you an aunt, uncle or Grandma or Papaw, who can’t get enough of baby pictures of Rollie? Here’s a set of some of my favorites.

This Time Six Years Ago

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

I was at the Ob’s office, waiting to get on the list to check into Northside for an induction. I finally knew that I was going to the hospital and I would be able to see my baby in the next 24 to 48 hours. I was nervous, happy, relieved, and scared shitless.

Not half as scared as I should have been.

I had to go home and wait for the call that they were ready for me. We went in that night. We slept in a room at the hospital and they induced me the next morning.

I didn’t have any earthly idea how much my life was about to change, drastically and irrevocably. Forever.

Johnson Family Comedy Hour

Monday, August 24th, 2009

I think I mentioned how the kids’ Knock Knock joke skills are horrendous. . . Here’s the proof: