Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Only in Ohio

Some MacGyver-esque drunkard in Ohio is facing DUI charges after crashing a bar stool he was driving -- HE WAS DRIVING?
MARCH 31--In a law enforcement first, Ohio cops this month arrested a man for drunk driving on a motorized bar stool. That's right, a motorized bar stool, which can be seen right here on my very own blog. According to cops, Kile Wygle, 28, crashed his bar stool near his Newark home earlier this month and called 911 due to his injuries. When an officer arrived and asked Wygle what happened, he answered, "I wrecked my bar stool." According to a Newark Police Division report, Wygle's homemade ride is powered by a Briggs & Stratton lawnmower engine. Wygle noted that the bar stool could hit nearly 40 miles per hour, but that he was only going 20 when he wiped out late in the afternoon on March 4 (a witness told police that he spotted someone driving a "strange motorized machine" before the crash). A plastered Wygle, who failed a series of field sobriety tests, was charged with DUI and driving with a suspended license, both misdemeanors. His bar stool was not impounded.

ONLY IN OHIO! O-H-I-O! I live here people, I live here!

Happy Birthday Daddy

All our free offers for meals and deals have poured in for Jeff's birthday this week.I am not one to say no to free meals, even at Red Robin. We loaded up the kids and we invaded Red Robin where we scored Jeff's dinner, gratis. The kids were more than willing to sing Happy Birthday to him and if you read yesterdays entry about volume and decibels you will be glad you missed our celebration.

Dinner was everything you would come to expect from eating at Red Robin.It is not good or bad, it just is!



It was loud, loaded with kids and serviced by a teenage waitstaff. It was all fun and games when the kids earned a balloon on the way out- we make sure they understand that only kids with excellent table behavior get a balloon.



I have said it before and I will say it again, I am not above bribing and rewarding my children when necessary- and at Red Robin balloons are a necessary evil. Just ask Natalie-she was enjoying her red balloon until it was unexpectedly released to heaven. You have never seen such a meltdown with tears, screaming and tantrum like behavior. I would have shown a photo of her reaction but in all honesty I did not want the reminder or evidence. It was that GAWD AWFUL! The drama that ensued was confirmation of why we only get balloons when we are leaving!

We went from Red Robin to Cold Stone for dessert. Who am I to turn down free ice cream....ever! Cold Stone at Creekside in Gahanna was a ghost town. We were the only people in the place at 7:30 on a beautiful sunny evening. Jeff was wondering why the place was so dead. I explained that not everyone had a coupon for $4.50 worth of ice cream and not everybody makes their kids get the ice cream filled cupcakes that are 6 for $9.99. He was confused and then I pointed out that the smallest scoop at Cold Stone is $3.50 without any schmushed candies, or a fancy waffle cone. I did the math and I would guess that most scoops are about five bucks by the time it is all said and done. Then, the marketing genius said, "hummmph, no wonder!" "Who can afford to take a family to Cold Stone for $5 bucks a head?" Thanks to the 6 pack filled cupcake special and the free scoop that Jeff shared with CJ, we managed to come out of there for ten bucks flat- and there were 7 of us.




Happy Birthday Daddy! We love you enough to endure Red Robin and spend ten bucks at Cold Stone....woooo hooo! Party On!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Loud, Louder, Loudest

It is loud in our house. It was loud before we added the triplets and Charlotte but nowadays it is down right deafening. It seems as though there is always some kind of "background noise" like a DVD or kids program and music, ceiling fans, doorbells, cell phones, the dishwasher, the washer and dryer, the garbage disposal and then we add: Toys that make noise, high pitched signing, books with buttons that have animated sound, trucks that beep and honk, a duck that says AFLAC when you squeeze it, jumping, clapping, silly laughter, stomping, dancing, shouting, slamming doors, banging instruments, louder singing and constant fighting.

Our kids are great with distinguishing the difference between an inside and outside voice when we are in a public place. Fine Dining- no problem, Doctors' Office- no problem, Library- no problem, when it comes to voice control on the road, we got it covered! To outsiders our kids are relatively peaceful and quiet. They are well behaved and well mannered outside of our home- which is a blessing. Come on over to our house and you will experience the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde of sound for your listening dis-pleasure. It is really lively here in the homestead-- lively is a nice word for deafening. Ever wonder why I am always out of the house with four kids three years old and under on my hair-brained field trips? Field trips are quiet compared to our house.

As I watched Jeff engaging the kids in some kind of weird singing and physical torture game, I turned on the video cam and tried to capture a glimpse of the decibel level for reference. What you need to know is this: As soon as the camera was rolling, they all got vastly quieter.
video
Make sure your speakers are adjusted and then you can hear what I mean. Listen to this an imagine that this is toned down.
video

Jeff has always been hard of hearing- or at least he pretends to have selective hearing and sub-par listening skills, but now, after 3.5 years of constant child related chaos, I think we have a REAL problem! I am beginning to think he is really losing his hearing from prolonged exposure to living in our home. At what point is it just too loud around here? Should I squash their creative playing style and musical prowess for the sake of our ears or should I just get ear plugs and get used to it? What??? Speak up guys, I can't hear you!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

How NOT to spend a Saturday Night

When Mitchell was complaining of pain in the center of his chest after swallowing food earlier in the week, I assumed he has some reflux issues. We are Jewish- digestive problems are common and are usually food related. I told him to lay off the spicy crap and drink more water- sure, I could have made him some chicken soup but I didn't. His trouble did not get any better so I took him to our Pediatrician extraordinaire on Friday. She knows if we are in her office it is for real.

She suggested an Upper GI test and we were fortunate enough to be scheduled for Monday afternoon. This test was ordered to rule out a hiatal hernia, and esophagus damage. Since his pain was associated with eating and drinking we had to believe that there was an underlying cause. She had a hunch that his antibiotic (a doxy drug) may have caused some irritation, especially if it did not dissolve in his stomach and instead was jammed and dissolving in his esophagus regions. Made sense to me.

On Saturday Mitchell's pain went from mild to major and then he started to have constant pain even when he was just sitting and watching the NCAA games. Drinking and eating were impossible and when he took me aside and asked to go to the ER I knew it must have been B-A-D!

We spent 5.5 hours in the ER at Childrens' Hospital. He got the Upper GI ahead of schedule and as we passed the time in the triage room we watched the teeny weeny little television that had a horrible picture and even worse sound. We anxiously watched some of the Basketball games thinking the doctor would pop in at any moment. Tick Tock, Tick Tock as we saw Villanova advance in the Tourney, then we were flipping betweenTBS' My Big Fat Greek Wedding (edited and with commercials) and the Nickelodeon Slime Awards. At one point I wanted to open a vein and just bleed out- after all I was already in the hospital. We sat,we sat, and we sat some more. I even resorted to doing the kid puzzles that were in our exam room. This is the hidden treasure poster that contained the most random trinketsand of course I had to finish finding all the blasted crap, like a spoon, a straw hat and a thimble. TORTURE folks- it was pure and unaltered torture. Tick Tock, Tick Tock.

As it turned out there was not really a definitive diagnosis for Mitchell based on this visit. The Upper GI did not conclusively find a problem. He did not have a blockage, no signs of swallowing roofing nails, no mass of undigested Chipotle stuck in his pipes and from all guesses it was normal looking inside his gut. We were given a few scripts to help with the pain and to coat his tract- and he is on a liquid diet until our GI consult next week.

Ahhh Parenthood- in addition to the glamorous moments of cleaning up poop, pee and puke, sitting in an ER ranks right up there. We hit the 24 hour CVS pharmacy after 11:00 p.m. on the way home which is like shopping in Las Vegas after dark in a seedy alley- you would not want to go alone. I grabbed his meds, hustled home and I logged onto the computer and called it a night. Trust me, spending a Saturday Night (or any night for that matter) in the Emergency Room is not blog worthy. I am just documenting this so that you realize my tales and tribulations are not always rock star quality. This was not dinner at Le Cirque, Backstage passes at a Broadway show, or riding in first class on the flight to a tropical destination- it was parenting 101. Maybe if George Clooney had been working our ER tonight I may have chosen a better blog entry title. Waaaah.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Our Three Stooges


Have you heard that there will be a new Stooges movie? My office could not stop over analyzing the news. Sean Penn will be cast as Larry- which does seem odd. Since all the Slutskys are stooges people it was a lively topic over coffee.

While everyone was chatting it up about the new film, I searched my computer files for this photo. This was our very first photograph of our triplets. At the time of the ultrasound I was bleeding and we feared I had gotten my period and were no longer pregnant. The sonographer was astonished to find three gestational sacs, and no sign of a miscarriage. I was stunned and Jeff was, of course, making jokes. He was naming every possible set of threes: Huey, Duey, Louie, and Alvin, Simon, Theodore, and Jesus, Mary and Joseph, but as the ultimate Three Stooges fan he was fixated on calling these embies Larry, Curly and Moe.He jokingly told the sonographer to label them as such- And she did! We later discovered after the results of our CVS testing, that it was really Larry, Curly and Moe-reen.

I can't wait for the Daddy Stooge to take my three stooges to the new movie! With the kids stooging, wiggling and giggling for two hours in a dark, crowded theater without Mommie, I wonder who will cry first, the kids or the Daddy? Nuyck Nucyk Nucyk

Magnolia Bakery Vanilla Cupcakes- The Gluten Free version

My kids love cupcakes- they love, love, love them! When I make muffins- I call them cupcakes and they gobble them up too. I am not sure if it is the smallness and cuteness of a tiny self serving sized cake, or if they just like baked goods.

I have been toying with a vanilla cupcake recipe for months. Most of the GF mixes are dry and crumbly like a Passover style- blech. So, I adapted the famous Magnolia Bakery in NYC recipe to make it gluten free and fabulous. Thanks to the amazing Jules Nearly Normal Flour which measures equal to tradtional wheat flour, this recipe is a version of the delish regular variety- only gluten free, moist, tender and very vanilla-ish.

Cupcakes:

2.5 cups Jules Nearly Normal Gluten Free all-purpose flour
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 vanilla bean scraped of the seeds
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Line 2 (1/2 cup-12 capacity) muffin tins with cupcake papers.

In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar gradually and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the dry ingredients in 3 parts, alternating with the milk and vanilla. With each addition, beat until the ingredients are incorporated but do not over beat. Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the batter in the bowl to make sure the ingredients are well blended. Carefully spoon the batter into the cupcake liners, filling them about 3/4 full. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cupcake comes out clean.

Cool the cupcakes in tins for 15 minutes.Remove from the tins and cool completely on a wire rack before icing.

I usually choose a cream cheese style frosting but I saw this all natural gluten free mix and used it according to the package directions, but added 4 ounces of softened cream cheese to the mix.The colorful sprinkles seen are gluten free and free from all synthetic dyes. These turned out amazing!
The kids ate a few of them for dinner as a special treat- I said we are having dessert now and dinner afterwards and that is the ultimate suggestion to a three year old, or two, or three!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

R Bistro is Our Bistro in Indianapolis

Jeff and I had the pleasure of dining at R Bistro- the menu changes based on the availability of fresh ingredients and the food is as artistic as it is delicious. The rave reviews on line do not do it justice. As a connoisseur of the independently owned small restaurants, this particular venue is a first rate example of dining heaven. We joked that this is "no Olive Garden."

I was sure of one thing when I made the dinner reservation-

I was certain that the group of people at our table would be incredible, I was not as confident about the meal until we sat down and devoured it. I had every intention of showing you all the glorious photos of our gourmand selections but in my haste to consume the amazing items I only had the where with all to take one picture. Please accept my apologies and enjoy the image of the sea scallop nachos-lavosh triangles grilled and topped with pesto and guacamole and the freshest seared scallops. They were almost too pretty to eat. There were three bottles of a fab cab and a few cocktails too, so the conversation was at an all time high. I was planning to write a post that was more of a glowing restaurant review than a sermon, but after eating at R Bistro in Indianapolis I decided to curb my creative rant about the cuisine (sans the pictorial of the entrees)- and focus on the good time we experienced in the bistro itself.

We were joined (we were coming apart Jeff? hee hee) by
Steve Rizzo, Scott and Tammy McKain, and our Consumers' Choice Award co-workers from Columbus. The insane laughter was generated from Steve's impressions and jokes. Enjoying dinner with a professional stand up comedian should be done at your own risk- trust me. It was hard to eat because we were all laughing so hard. Our crazy table of nine people was just off the kitchen in the back where none of the other patrons would be disturbed by our squealing and giggling. That was a wise decision from our hostess.

Start Sermon now: I love hanging out with Tammy and Scott. We went to their lovely wedding a few years ago. Ever since we watched them exchange vows we have been fans of their friendship. Since they met on-line and have a moderate age difference between them too, we have so much in common. Quite simply, we are two couples in love, but more importantly we genuinely like our spouses. I like and love Jeff and the same is true of the McKains. We like hanging out with our husbands and these husbands love and respect their wives. It does not matter where we eat, or what we do, we just connect- and that is so refreshing and just plain cool. Have you ever had dinner with another couple that fought and were miserable? There is nothing worse than being a referee to your friends. With the McKains it is effortless to have a great time. Keep in mind that Tammy and I were in high school when our husbands already had careers. It cracks us all up to do the math and comparisons but when we are together there is not an age difference at all- it is just everyday life, real moments and pure joy. Our dining at R Bistro would have been aptly called OUR BISTRO based on how much we adore saying us, or we or our. As in plural, a team, or a couple.

Next time you are in Indianapolis I recommend R Bistro, and if you go there double check the sign out frontWe may convince them to change the spelling to OUR BISTRO.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Eli is an Early Reader

Let me tell and show you exactly what I mean. My baby bird, the micro-preemie is reading at age 3 and half. Eli recognized his name spelled out in letters on a wall near the food court at the zoo. He saw this sign and pointed to it, and said, "Look Mommie, my name, my name!" I turned to see this:While it is not really ELI the word DELI contains his name with the letters in the correct order. I am glad I did not name his Ebekenezra.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Farewell Old Friend

The Step 2 company has discontinued making the choo choo wagon. This happened a few years ago and it caused a riot of black market choo choo sales on eBay. Used wagons were selling for $500. Keep in mind that the train cost about $99 for the two passenger purple and green wagon, and the orange trailers were about $50 each. Talk about an example of supply and demand. Once the price plateaued at around $500 for months, the Step 2 company started making them again and the new productions sold for about $150- which meant the supply was available and the demand was exhausted. If you sold your used wagon during the discontinued time you stood to make a killing after your kids used the wagon for months. I had a feeling history was repeating itself. I decided to strike while the iron was hot.

Now that the price of these used wagons is sky-rocketing I thought it wise to say good-bye to my old friend. I listed and sold our beloved 4 car wagon on EBay. It was time. The triplets would much rather walk these days and when Charlotte sees them walking she says, "me too!" and she walks along side. The only time we really have a need for such a contraption is when we take all the kids to the zoo.

This past weekend we took the wagon, loaded with kids to the zoo. As you saw a few days ago the weather was ideal, cool enough to pull all four cars around the whole zoo. We bid a sentimental farewell and gave the kids the last hoorah.


I was sure to dress the kids in the orange "my parents are exhausted" shirts (times 4) so that everyone and their uncle would notice us. After all it was our final good-bye and I felt as though I might miss all the attention we attract. I am a mom of multiples attention whore, right? Oh, NOT!

As you have seen a million times on this blog, the choo choo wagon with four cars is a must have when you are schlepping four kids three and under anywhere. The choo choo wagon train is a mom of multiples best friend. This is a highly coveted piece of gear for those with twins, triplets, quads or a litter.

So long old friend I bid you a fine farewell. Keep on Chugga Chugga Chuckin along. I hope your new family loves you as much as we did.


PS- Please take note of Jeff's sweatshrit- it says Old Guys Rule-so it was especially funny (to me) to see 4 cuties with "my parents are exhausted" being pulled around the zoo by "Old Guys Rule." Maybe I should just say, FML!

Monday, March 23, 2009

FML

Amanda introduced me to a new website. It is called fmylife.com, and it is hilarious. People publicly post a few sentences about situations where the end result is FML= fuck my life. I am mildly addicted to the hilariousness of it. I would like to think that my own life can be ever so fucked sometimes, but reading the trials and tribulations of random people lifts my spirits and gives me a really good laugh. It is a 5 minute diversion from Facebook and real life. Check it out- you can thank me later.

for your reading pleasure and example:

Today I noticed that my daughter was making funny noises which oddly resembled sex sounds my wife makes. When I asked her what she was doing she said "I'm pretending to be mommy from last night." I was on a business trip last night. FML

Today, I was babysitting a 7 year old girl and we were eating chocolate covered nuts. She kept on chewing the nuts and wondered where the chocolate was. I told her to taste the chocolate you suck on the nuts. Then her parents came home and the first thing she said was "I learned how to suck nuts!" FML

Today, my boss called me in to tell me I had got a raise. I bought a $1500 Chanel bag. Two hours later he called me in to tell me he was kidding. FML

Today, I had just reached in my purse without looking and to grab a granola bar at work why my boss walked in my office. We were talking for a few minutes as he kept giving me strange looks and looking at my hand. He left and I realize I hadn't taken a granola bar out, but a tampon instead. FML!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Exhausted Parents try to Exhaust their children

In an effort to wear the kids out Jeff and I took them to the zoo. It was the perfect day to schlep all four kids out and around in the beautiful sunshine. We are still trying to maximize our annual zoo membership.

The kids were in complete awe of the tiger behind the glass. He was pacing back and forth as if to try to scare the kids.

My crew got an up close and personal visit with this amazing creature. This alone was worth the "price" of admission.

The picnic lunch I packed was a hodge podge of gluten free goodies and it was nice not to buy outrageously over-priced and unhealthy food.
Poor Jeff needed a diet coke so badly, and yet at $2.50 a bottle in the vending machine he respectfully did without, I was proud of him. We are in a recession so spending $2.50for a 20 ounce bottle of poison, I mean Diet Coke, is a bad idea.

Since "the husband" was with us, I made him take pictures of me with the children. See, kids, I really went places with you.


Since I am normally the one behind the camera it is a refreshing change to see myself in the photos on the blog. Damn, I look cute.

After the zoo outing we took our own monkeys to the McD in Dublin. They played and played until their eyes were droopy and they could barely walk to the van. We loaded them up and drove home. This is what it looks like when the exhausted parents return the favor on their children.


I would have driven for miles and miles just to keep them asleep for another hour or 2 or 3 or 4 hours(?)

Instead of going home and letting them make an enormous mess I drove to the neighborhood playground and let them soak up more sunshine.



They played so nicely for over an hour. I was able to sit back, relax and enjoy the sun too. It was almost dinnertime when Jenska, Andrea and Jessica came to join us.



My kids absolutely adore these girls. It is such a treat for them to get undivided attention from someone besides Mommie.

The kids are in bed as I type this. They were/are legitimately exhausted. My evil plan to overstimulate them has worked. Great Success as Borat would say. I am off to bed now- I need an orange tee shirt that says, My Children are Exhausting.

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