Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Le Parkour, primarily considered a philosophy, includes the physical practice of traversing elements in both urban and rural settings. The goal is to move from one point to another as quickly and efficiently as possible. This discipline was created in France, Sarcelles, in Smooth and Evry by David Belle, Sébastien Foucan, and the founding members of the Yamakasi. It is inspired by "the natural method of physical education" by Georges Hébert. It was then spread world wide by films, television reports, and amateur videos on the Internet. (Wikipedia)

I first heard of this while watching an episode of The Office. I had to laugh because I feel like every single time I take Chase anywhere he is doing this. I just didn't realize it had a name! Nor did I realize it was a sport.

He runs and jumps and rolls from point A to point Z. He slides down hand rails, kicks through doors, and rolls down slopes. It is so tiring even being next to him. I wish I had the amount of energy he has. I can honestly say he never falls, or trips, or stumbles. He must be very coordinated indeed. All I know is by the time we arrive home I feel very, very spent!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Don't Meet Your Meat

The chicken theme follows me every where I go. A couple of weeks ago after grocery shopping, we somehow lost a pack of chicken breasts and a box of oatmeal. They had gotten covered by a bag of clothing in the back of the van.  A couple of days later we smelled something horrible. I looked in the back and saw a hole chewed in the oatmeal container and oatmeal strung around the floor.

"Great," I thought, "There is a mouse in here and he ate the oatmeal but had no water and then died of thirst."

 I figured he was in there somemwhere and I had to find him fast. I got pair of gloves and started sorting through the clothing. Instead of a dead rodent, I discovered the long lost chicken. Autumn and I gagged all the way to the trash. It took days for that smell to give up and go was so gross.

Today a friend called and said he had a very strange favor to ask. Earlier  he brought four chickens to the slaughter house to be processed, but they didn't get noticed and everyone left for the night. They were still in a dog carrier on the back porch. He wondered if I could swing by and grab them. I wondered how lucky can a chicken get? They survived a slaughter house?! He needed me to go pick them up because they weren't allowed to be on the back porch all night. I guess they have strict rules about live animals hanging around there causing trouble. He said he would bring them back the next day. :(

Lynden is very unique because the cemetery, the funeral home and the slaughter house greet you as you drive into town. I hate it..I try to go the back way whenever possible. I tried to talk my friend into giving the chickens a reprieve. Why kill them after they had been so faithful? Not everyone sees things my way. He told me they only lay an egg about every four days so they were of no use. Why throw feed to chickens who don't give back? I saw his point but my question is.....What do dogs give us? I don't see them laying eggs, nor do I know of anyone who milks their cats. And hey, his chickens were more productive than my dumb chickens who lay "none eggs a day," and then just keel over.

 I decided to stop being a baby and go pick them up. I told him I would bring them to him that night. I couldn't have them at my house because I would get too attached. I loaded the kids up and drove to the processing plant. It was almost dark as I turned down the gravel road behind the cemetery. Of course it was beyond creepy. Why wouldn't there be huge barrels, piles of metal, cages, and heaps of wooden pallets? It looked as if they tortured the poor things for information before they knocked them off.

We pulled around back and got out of the van. I kid you not, I could smell blood. I stepped over a skull of some kind, teeth and horns still intact. It's hollow eyes could barely see me through all of the dirt and grass covering it's face. Chase put his shirt over his nose and started gagging. Autumn told me to hurry up because it was the scariest place she had ever been to. We walked up the steps and were met by thankful clucking sounds. Little did those birds know I was only the transporter, not some hero.

I couldn't lift the carrier so I had to employ the help of the kids. The water, urine and poop spilled and poured onto the kids' feet because I lifted first. (oops) They screamed all the way down the steps.  The chickens were clucking with relief, and I couldn't bear to look them in the eye.


.Autumn said ,.

"MOM!! This is NOT going to help the bad smell in our van at ALL!!!"

Once we got home we opened the back so they could have air...which seemed a bit silly to me. As we were walking in the house Autumn pointed out how crazy it was that our friends had to kill their chickens to get them to die, and ours just did it on their own...

Well, I am supposed to meet him in ten minutes with the chickens, so I guess I better get going. I could say they broke out somehow and ran away, then hide them in my hen house. But I am too overwhelmed and busy to start some underground chicken sanctuary.


OK................I brought the chickens to the specified location. I unloaded them, so grateful to get that smell out of my vehicle. He kept talking about that darn soup they were going to be made into. It just didn't sit well with me. I could understand a DINNER, but just SOUP?  Before I knew it I was saying these words...

"Well, you could always let me have them...I mean I have lots of room and the chickens I have don't lay eggs anyway."

I looked over at the chickens. Their little faces were peering though the bars at me. I knew I had to step it up a notch. I told him they would have five acres in which to free roam and a beautiful hen house to retire to each evening. He reminded me about the bully chicken I have. What if it picked on them? I pointed out that the butcher is WAY bigger of a bully then some hen, and they stood a better chance with me. (Yeah right)
He called his wife to see how set she was on getting chicken stock.

"I'll buy her some organic soup and bring it over!" I yelled.

Wow...I thought, this is getting silly. Why were these birds so suddenly important??? I didn't mention to him that my chickens don't really survive that long. But really, they didn't have a lot of options at this point. He called his wife and she agreed to let me have them as pets. You might be wondering if I am against eating chicken. Or if I eat it....

I'm not
I do.
I know, it's crazy.
It just boils down to one thing......

I can't eat meat I've met.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

AAA Loves Me

I lose my keys on a daily basis. I  learned my lesson today....maybe. I lost them last night after we got back from running errands. Chase realized he forgot his candy in the van right as he came through the door and needed to go back out to get it. The keys were already long gone. He was having a mini melt down and I was checking my regular spots. The refrigerator, the dryer, the bathroom counter, the mud room floor. I went out to the van to see if they were on the seat. Nope. I gave up for the night, feeling a teeny bit frantic. I don't like being without wheels.

I told myself they would  pop up while I was cleaning. I finally accepted that with all of the nooks and crannies around here, they could be gone forever. Maybe they fell onto the floor of the van and I couldn't see them from outside. I didn't want to waste time looking in the house if that was the case. I decided it was time to call AAA. Yes, I was at a safe location  It's just that I really need to go to the pumkin patch, so could they please hurry, I asked her.

They guy came out and had the van unlocked in about ten seconds. The alarm starting blaring. But with no KEYS I couldn't turn it off. Right at this point Tayler's boyfriend, Kyle pulled up... smiling. The AAA guy asked me if we had the Classic or Plus membership. I didn't know. He asked for my card, but I told him I couldn't find it. I saw Kyle covering his smile out of the corner of my eye. Mind you, we are yelling the whole time because the horn was going off. He disconnected the battery, and told me he could come out Monday and make a new key for $300.00 dollars. I kicked myself for not going to make a spare key for $3.00. Ugh........

I decided to inspire the kids to help me. I told them I would give $20.00 to anyone who found the keys. It was better than paying $300.00 to a total stranger. (Don't judge me...bribery works) Right as the words left my mouth Kyle said,

"What are those?"

There, in plain view, were my keys on a dining room chair. The chair wasn't even pushed under the table, it was up against the wall for the world to see. I stood there blinking....I had walked by there dozens of times.

"Ok! You get $20.00 Kyle..." He shook his head and told me to consider it a gift. Two things went through my head.

1) I am thankful it was Kyle who found them. My own offspring would have told me to cough up the cash.

2) I am going to make a spare key. TODAY.

I looked out the window and saw the brake lights of the AAA truck pulling onto the main road. I am glad he wasn't here to witness the finding of the keys the second he left. It's better he doesn't know he wasted 30 minutes of his life.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Camp Out Sleep Over

Autumn decided to have a Camp Out for her birthday party. I thought it sounded like a fun idea. She went with my friend Wendy to pick out her decorations. She came back with red and black. That is what she wanted, but I thought it was a bit scary looking. I would have talked her into brown and green, or any other color combination possible. Wendy told me they had a plan to make it look like a camp fire. I knew my feelings about it were correct when Tayler pulled the stuff out of the bag and said,

"Wow, what's with the devil party decorations?"

I asked her if it was really that bad. She said it was pretty freaky. It didn't seem very little girlish. The thing is, we have no party store in town, and I didn't have the time or energy to go exchange it in Bellingham. The Old Me would have had a melt down over it and just done it anyway. But I am trying to let little things slide. You know, the Grand Scheme Of Things and all. Besides, Wendy said she had a plan. The red foil grass looked like fire. (Yes, and that was scary to me) But she said she would bring sticks with marshmallows on them to put on the table. Fine......Tayler went to the store for white streamers to cheer it up a bit. It helped....a little.

I was busy making the Sleep Over Cake. It was a sheet cake with four girls on it. The bodies were made from Twinkies, the heads were Vanilla Wafers, and the pillows were Marshmallows. They had cute little decorated faces and little jelly belly feet. It all would have been perfect had it not been for the other theme we had going on.  I walked the cake over to the table covered with the black table cloth. Sure enough, there were broken sticks over the fake fire. As I set the cake down it was very clear to me I had just combined two different themes. Suddenly their little faces looked afraid. Pleading with me to pick them up and fast. I had just set them on top of  burning sticks. My Sleep Over Cake now looked like a tiny human sacrifice cake! What could I do?? I was out of time! Maybe it was just my imagination....Still, I met the parents at the door so they wouldn't see the table and take their children back out to the cars. Tayler said we should have put BYOD on the invitations.

Bring Your Own Dove.

Very Funny.

I was so glad to get to cake time so I could remove the decorations. Sometimes you just don't see a plan unfolding incorrectly until it's too late. The girls didn't seem to notice. I do love theire faces in the first picture though! SO serious. So afraid.
Here, I will add one more to prove it was a light hearted and happy time for all.