Category Archives: Jack

Fancy Breakfast Friday: Scones

These scones were very buttery.  Other than that, nothing to get excited about.  They are called Honey Nut Scones, but I left the nuts out.  They were fine.  I had to put them on two layers of china to make them look pretty.  Today when I was trying to remember what I made last week it was a struggle*. Instead of talking about boring scones, I’ll share the crazy BEAR story from this week!

I volunteered to hike with the 4th graders on Wednesday. It was a gorgeous day, fortunately, because we left at 9:00 am and got back at 1:30.  On the hike up the hill towards the trail we were walking through a neighborhood instead of on a trail and I said, “You know… there is a trail we could be on.”  One of the teachers said, “The thing about the trail, is that it’s wide open and they can see how far we have walked and how far we have to walk, and they freak out.  If we walk through the neighborhood, they are distracted and they complain less.”  I should never second guess a teacher, they really know what they are doing.

On the way back we paused, and the teachers and the other mom and I had to huddle to hear this news: The school was on lockdown because there was a bear in the neighborhood.  There was a bear between us and the school.  We looked on my phone at a map of where the bear had been spotted and planned a route that went around it.  We asked the school to call us with any updates and we started walking again, this time trying to stay closer together instead of spread out across a 4 block area.  Soon we heard the bear was on the move, but we didn’t know where he was going.  When we crossed Broadway, we saw an animal control officer so I ran after him while the teachers got the kids in as small a group as possible.

The animal control officer was speaking Spanish to some construction workers and I assume he was talking about the bear (or oso) so I waited my turn to talk.

Animal Control Officer:  blah blah blah OSO blah bla?
Construction workers: No we haven’t seen a bear. (Turns out they spoke English. I am going to assume the animal control officer thought they didn’t understand him in English, when really they just couldn’t hear him over the jack hammer.)
Me: Hi! We are trying to get back to school, can you tell us the safest way to get there?
Animal Control Officer: No. I’m not gonna tell you that. Just make sure to make a lot of noise.
Me: (Shocked! I got the impression he didn’t want us to sue him if we got mauled by a bear, but seriously dude, we need to get 50 nine year olds to a school 3 blocks from here, help us out!)  Okaaaaaay.  What I am saying is, we want to avoid the bear. Can you tell me where the bear is, and we can not go that way?
Animal Control Officer: I don’t know where the bear is.
Me: Ok thanks.

Then I ran back to the group. Former Elementary School Mom and Local Hero, Camille, was telling the teachers where the bear had been and where it was going.  It appeared to be going from the school to the mountains while we were coming from the mountains to the school.  The bear was just a block or two North of us.  Fortunately! So we continued to the school, taking the shortest path across the park, just in case.

About 10 yards later someone spotted a praying mantis in a parking lot and tried to pick it up.  A heroic 4th grade teacher dove in front to spare the insect and said, “Let’s help it get back to the bushes over here.” It crawled onto her shoe and then her leg and she inched over to a bush to shoo it off while 4th graders screamed in shock and fear and delight.  I wasn’t too worried about sneaking up on a bear after that because of their nose level. Although if they were screaming about a praying mantis, I can only imagine what it would have been like if we had encountered a bear. Soon after that we were back at school and a very exciting field trip was over.

One note about the field trip – Jack let a friend wear his new fancy sunglasses and baseball hat and she looked adorable, or as Jack said, “She looks even cooler than I do when I wear those.”  I felt like I could see him age ten years while he was talking and it was bittersweet.  It reminded me of being in college and sitting around a table in the cafeteria watching super-hot Eric walk in with a girl who was wearing his baseball cap. We were all silently observing until Brian Burger said, “Ah the baseball cap. The lavaliere of the GDI.”

I was enjoying this memory so much that I didn’t even give my normal lecture about hat sharing and lice.  I am sure I will come to regret that when I am shaving Jack’s head later this year, and telling Dave he can go ahead and buy another bike if he agrees to spend two weeks combing my hair for nits every night for half an hour.  But Jack and his friend were so cute, and I didn’t want to break the spell.

*Wordpress wanted to autocorrect struggle to strugggle. Isn’t that odd?


Scream and Shout and Let it All Out

When we were camping last week, a little camper was being a little too rambunctious after 10:00 pm.  We said, “Jack, quiet hours started at 10:00, you need to be quiet.”

And he said, with a frowny face, “But I want to scream, and shout, and let it all out.

That gave me a frowny face, because I knew he was referencing a song, but I had to resort to googling the lyrics to jog my memory.

Breaking news:  Sky is blue, I am old, Jack is too pop culturally aware for a 5 year old.

Hey. Cool. Easy. Sweet.

Jack and I were hiking last week and he kindly offered to tutor me in the art of coolness.

Jack:  Mama, do you want me to teach you how to be cool?  Because I am cool, and I could show you how to be cool.

Me: Is that something you can teach someone? It seems to me that you are cool or you’re not, and it’s not something that can be taught.

Jack: AAAAAHHH! Help me!  My helmet is caught in a tree branch.

Me: Stop, I’ll pull you free.

…and scene…

Why was he wearing a helmet?  No reason.

I never did get that lesson though.

My Little Buttercup (has the sweetest smile)

Last night when Jack was getting in the car, I said, “Buckle up, Buttercup” because I find that to be a delightful thing to say.  What I mean is, “GAH!  Every time we get in the car, you need to buckle your seat belt, please don’t make me say it every time.  Just do it when you get in the car for the love of God.”

Me: Buckle up, Buttercup!

Jack:  Mama, didn’t you say that Buttercup was a name you should never call anyone?

Me.  No…

Jack:  Yeah, you did.

Me:  No, why would I say that?  I think it’s a sweet name, and I could sing you a whole song about it.  If your aunt and uncle were here we could do a choreographed song and dance routine.

Jack:  Maybe the bad word was Butterhead.

Me: Ummm, yeah, don’t say that.

Jack:  Yeah, that’s it, it definitely had “cup” in it.

Me: ?



I was at a baseball game the other day (every day) and I heard a mom say, “I have to send the family to Noodles just to have time to go to the grocery store!”  And I was like, “I hear ya sister!”  But I only said that it my head because I had never seen any of these parents before, which is weird.   Then I heard a dad say, “Ugh!  Noodles!  I refuse to go there!  You can buy 4 pounds of noodles for what it costs for one meal.  It drives me crazy, etc.”  And I said, “Those dry noodles aren’t going to cook themselves, jerk.”  Just in my head again.  Clearly, I needed to move someplace else, which I waited to do until one of the parents said Luke just made a lucky catch to tag a kid out as he stole home.

What is my point?  I have been watching a lot of baseball.  In the picture above, I am doing the pitch count during one rainy game.  So focused. Jack was playing with my phone and clearly, I have been so busy with baseball, I have not had time to blog, or get my eyebrows waxed.

Mas Tequila Boss


When we were in Mexico, Luke decided to participate in a ping pong tournament.  And by that I mean he said, “I’m going to win the ping pong tournament.”  Well, the only issue was that the tournament was at 4:30, and none of us had watches, and there were no clocks anywhere.  So, we just decided that after lunch we would spend the rest of the day at the pool nearest to the ping pong table.  That plan worked well and before we knew it, Luke had won the ping pong tournament and all was right with the world.  Oh, except for one little thing.  The activities directory had told Luke there was a prize and then he faded away into the sunset before any prizes were awarded.  I told Luke that we’d just find Luis tomorrow, and that he should just be happy with the bragging rights as an award.

That night we went to dinner at the fancy resort restaurant, and got on a 1 hour wait list.  So I ran the kids over to the buffet for an appetizer while Dave held our spot.  On the way back, we saw Luis, and he said, “I’ll be right back!”  Into his office he went to rifle through drawers for a prize.  I told the kids he was saying, “Shot glass? No.  T-shirt? No. etc.”  He came out with a tee-shirt, a plastic sun visor and a shot glass.  We said, “Thanks!” and went off to find Dave.  I told Jack to wear the visor and act like it was no big deal.    This translated into Jack putting the sun visor on upside down, hair everywhere, arms raised, head bobbing from side to side saying, “WHAT!?  It’s no big deal?!?!”

The king of subtlety.

Bonus Jack story, because I never want to forget the period of time (currently happening) where Jack wrote BOSS on everything.  When we were doing our Christmas cards, I gave one to Jack to write for his teachers at daycare, to go with some cookies.  He can write most of his letters, but he can’t really read or spell much.  So when he wants to write something, he tells me what he wants to write, and I tell him how to do it, letter by letter.  When he can’t remember how to do a letter, I draw it in the air, or try to form it with my fingers.  This explains why some of his letters look a little odd.  ANYWAY, he said he wanted the card to say, “To the boss of <Daycare name redacted>”  I told him how to spell it, and that was that.   But somehow, he remembered how to write BOSS, and now he writes it on everything.  His drawings from school say “JACK BOSS” on them, doodles say “BOSS” etc.   Dave and Luke and I find this to be totally hilarious, and we want to call him boss, and start using boss as a synonym for awesome, and everything else.  But, unfortunately, Jack thinks we are making fun of him, and he doesn’t like it.  And yet, BOSS lives.

I just want to hold onto this phase.  Pretty soon he’ll be reading and writing, and leaving for college.  But for now, I am loving this BOSS phase.


Here are some new terms, coined by Jack on our camping trip this past weekend.

Aerodymanic:  Jack leans over the handle bars and pedals like mad to become aerodymanic on his bicycle.

Stun-scream: When you sneak up behind Jack to apply sunscreen, he emits a rage-filled stun scream.

Good Eye

Yes, I started this blog post with a title of “Good Eye” and it’s not even going to be about baseball.  We have been living and breathing baseball these days, and so last night, on a rare night off, I was able to walk around the block with Jack, as he practiced riding his bike.  (With training wheels.)  When we turned the first corner, I saw that the clouds were a slightly faded pink, we had missed the best of the sunset, but it was still very pretty.

Me: Jack, look at those clouds.

Jack: Wow!  Those are beautiful! I want to touch them!  I bet they feel squishy.  I want to taste them.

Me: What do you think they taste like?  Cotton Candy?  (So cliche! So unhealthy! Try again.)  Um, or maybe strawberries?

Jack: I bet they taste like rain.

Then he looked up at me and said, “Good eye Mama.  Really great job, noticing those clouds.”

I thanked him.

A Long Time Coming

When I found out that we needed to be at a baseball tournament at 7:15 this morning, I suddenly felt so sorry for my parents and all the early Saturdays they went through for me. When I shared my feelings with my mom she said, “Well, that was a long time coming!”

This is a picture if Jack and I this morning – it was windy and 35. Jack is hidden under the sleeping bag that we luckily had in the car.


It warmed up quite a bit though – Here is Jack a mere 6 hours later. He’s still not interested in posing.


Dave and I both brought a sweatshirt and a jacket for Jack and he wore all 4 layers.

Spring is in the Air

I signed up for a CSA this year, I am going to hire some landscaping help for the yard, and I planted some seeds yesterday in a little teacup.  Two years ago, I had a very bad spring, and since then the garden has been in decline, and I am happy that this spring will be full of life.

The seeds on the windowsill are in the vintage teacup planter kit that I got when I donated to a very cool kickstarter project by domestic-construction.

Jack: Why is that teacup over there?
Me: I think the seeds will germinate best on the windowsill.
Jack: You are growing seeds in a teacup?
Dave: You know what germinate means?
Me: Do you know the word “germinate” or did you get it from the context of the sentence?
Jack: I looked it up on my computer.

For the record, Jack’s computer is just a keyboard with the cord cut off. It’s not connected to anything.