My Convertible Life

Friday, July 31, 2009

Friday's Five: Girl Names

Among the many difficult things about having a baby is deciding on a name for the little pumpkin. In fact, this was one of the most stressful parts of becoming a parent for me.

So much pressure to find just the right name that suits the child and recognizes the family and works with our last names and isn't too strange or too common and something we could both agree on.

My children remained nameless for their first day in the world while we got to know them and tried to decide, finally caving under the pressure of the repeated calls from the person in the hospital's birth certificate office.

Several of my friends are expecting new babies in the coming weeks and months -- got me thinking about all the names we didn't use. Here are five of my favorite girl names that didn't make it onto Pippi's birth certificate:
  1. Leland: This name from my husband's family had been used for men and women in his South Carolina heritage. I liked that it sounded like a girl's name without being girly. And it's also the name of a town we pass on our way to the beach, which makes me happy. But somehow it just didn't suit our baby girl when she arrived.

  2. Tallulah Clare: We (I) chickened out and didn't use this one, but we seriously considered it. Not sure if we would have ended up calling her Tallie or Lula or TC. I loved how sweet and Southern it sounded, plus the names were a nod to each of our families (Lula from my husband's side and Clara from my side). But in the end, I worried it was too much and wussed out.

  3. Zella: I always liked Ella, as in Fitzgerald, and also thought it would be really cool to have "Z" as an initial. Then I started hearing all these new babies named Ella, Bella and Stella (all great names) and worried that it would be too confusing.

  4. Lila: This name just sounds so lovely in my ear and feels so sweet in my mouth -- it's so beautiful. I thought it was a nice compromise for Lula, but couldn't sell my husband on the name.

  5. Carson: Boy names as girl names are fun, although I'm sure some people (mostly the boys with those names) find it an annoying trend. Having a rather girly name myself, I often wished for a more neutral name like Spencer or Carson. Plus it worked for author Carson McCullers, but we knew too many boys named Carson and I couldn't convince my husband to go for it.
What's your favorite girl name that you couldn't or didn't get to use?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

A Good Substitute is Hard to Find

He just wanted to be helpful. I was making my lunch, and Junius asked if he could join in. Seemed like a good idea at the time.

But when I watched, stunned, as his eyes began to swell shut and welts broke out across his face, I suddenly realized he was allergic to my sandwich. A peanut butter and jelly sandwich, the kind I'd eaten a hundred times since he was born, the kind he'd never wanted to eat himself but had just helped me make.

Somehow we made it three-and-a-half years without discovering that Junius has a peanut allergy -- but last December, it was painfully obvious why he never liked peanut butter. He hadn't even eaten any of it that day -- just got a little on his hands closing my sandwich, then rubbed his eyes. After a quick dose of benedryl, a frantic trip to the pediatrician (thankfully it was a weekday and his breathing remained normal), an epi shot and a long nap, he recovered from the reaction unscathed. A few weeks later we visited the allergist to officially confirm what we already knew.

Since then, we've stopped buying peanut butter altogether, even though my husband and I both love it. Just seems too risky to have it in the house. But I miss the ease and the tastiness of a good PB&J for lunch. So when my neighbor offered me a sample of SunButter that she'd gotten in the mail, I figured it was worth a try.

Turns out I can't get Juni even to taste it -- he is understandably afraid of anything that looks remotely like peanut butter. But Pippi and I have really enjoyed it. Although you wouldn't mistake it for real peanut butter, it has enough of the consitency, texture and flavor to make a good sandwich. And in addition to being Juni-safe, it's also "nutritionally superior" to peanut butter (according to its website).

All that to say, if you're not allergic to peanuts, you're probably happier with the real deal. But if you're looking for a substitute, this is a good one.

Note: I have received no compensation from SunButter to write this post. There's a lot of hullabaloo these days about blogging with integrity. I'm assuming the six of you who read this blog aren't worried about that, but please let me know if you have concerns. Trust me when I tell you that none of the marketers seem to have discovered my little blog, despite my hopes for lots of free "blogola."

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Before and After: Outdoor Dining Chairs

I love a nice renovation project. Probably a good thing, given all the work we need to do to our house. Sadly, I don't have the carpentry, tiling, dry-walling, plumbing and electrical skills to tackle a lot of projects myself. But I can wield a paint can and staple gun with minimal risk to my personal safety, so that's usually where my solutions start.

We inherited a set of six chairs from my husband's grandparents several years ago. They lived in our shed (the chairs, not his grandparents) at three different houses. The chairs had great lines -- especially the slightly curved backs -- but the faded yellow paint was chipped and rusting, while the vinyl green seat covers were sticky and, well, ugly (see "before" photo above).

This summer I finally brought them out of the shed and into the light. After some scrubbing, I spray-painted them to match the legs on the table on our deck. Then I took the left-over fabric from our outdoor cushions, stretched it over the seat rounds and stapled it underneath.

Et voila! A brand-new-ish set of six chairs that we can use to eat dinner on the deck (see "after" photo at left). I think my mother-in-law will be proud of my craftiness and the fact that we were able to re-use some family furniture -- and I feel good about saving some money and keeping a few things out of the trash.

Now if I can just figure out how to get rid of the flies and mosquitoes, we'll be all set for some lovely dining al fresco.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Friday's Five: Beach Time

I'm on beach time, where the days and hours blend and melt one into the other. Where you have to check the paper to know what day it is, except that you don't remember the last time you looked at the news. So I'm pretending it's still Friday, even though it's Saturday night now and might be Sunday by the time I get this posted.

We've been at the beach since Wednesday, visiting with my long-time friend, Shannon, and her family. It's our first time here with four children (her two and my two), plus both husbands over the weekend. The definition of crazy fun -- sometimes just crazy and sometimes just fun, but always worthwhile.

Here are five things I love about spending time at the beach with a friend who's known me since my single days and continues to be my friend after all these years:
  1. Watching our kids turn themselves into little shake-n-bake babies, coating every inch of their sweet bodies with sand and loving every minute of it (see photo). Then bathing all four of them together in the shower outside the beach house, soaping and re-soaping until their tiny white tushies are all clean.

  2. Reading a book, an actual, wonderful, honest-to-goodness novel. Shannon finished it on Wednesday and I burned through the 400+ pages by Saturday night. Not only was The Help a great book, I finally made the time to read. Of course, it helps that Shannon and our husbands were there to entertain the kids so that I could read uninterrupted for more than 15 minutes.

  3. Staying up too late, talking about everything from Michael Jackson to forgotten friends to Punxsutawney Phil to our families to saving turtles to where we want to buried (or not) when we die. We might not have solved the world's problems, but it's way more fun than chatting on Facebook.

  4. Wearing a bikini on the beach, because it makes my husband happy to see me in one and I don't feel self-conscious around Shannon because she loves me in spite of myself. And she has probably had as many body-image issues as I have over the years (although hers are different ones than mine and she looks fantastic).

  5. Having a schedule, which sounds counter-intuitive for the beach -- but only if you don't know Shannon. She's a planner, in the most high-maintenance way, and I love it. We always know what we're going to do and when we're going to do it -- when the schedule is filled with nap times, snack times, trips to the pool and the beach, you can sign me up for that plan any day of the week.

What's best of all is knowing that we'll get to do this again next year and the next year and the year after that. We've been friends too long, know too much, survived too many tales to stop now. And I can't wait to hear her stories next year about her plan to become a figure skater performing at intermission during the Penguin's games despite the fact that she currently doesn't know how to skate. It's going to be brilliant.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

New Music Monday: Driving with Children

Okay, so it's not really Monday. But I composed this post in my head on Monday, so I think it still counts.

Will be spending a lot of time in the car with my children this week -- first, a quick trip to Nanna and PopPop's while I have work meetings, then an extra-long weekend at the beach with dear friends. All good travels, but Mommy has to do something to keep everyone entertained in the car since we won't have Daddy with us.

Here's what we'll be listening to while we cruise I-40:
  • Rockin' the Suburbs by Ben Folds: Junius likes listening to "Chuck's brother" -- and I do, too, despite the fact that I have to sing loudly to edit over all the cussing. We'll probably have to stop listening to this one soon (Juni's ears are too good and I really don't need him dropping the f-bomb at his Baptist pre-school), but the drums and piano are really fun for now. Need to talk with Big Bang Boom about recording a kid-friendly version of this album.

  • Greatest Hits by The Bangles: We have a lot of Manic Mondays at our house, so this just seems appropriate. And I figure this is a good opportunity to teach my children about the brilliance of the 80s. Or at least prepare them for karaoke.

  • Quick by Eddie From Ohio: EFO makes great car music, so you just can't go wrong with them. Plus this album features a gorgeous a capella song called "Great Day" that we played as we entered our wedding reception, so it always makes me happy.

  • Dear Mr. Sinatra by John Pizarelli: Junius refers to this one as the "Ring-a-Ding-Ding" song. Always need a little something jazzy in the car -- and I love watching their little baby heads bounce in the back seat while they pretend to play trumpet.

  • Cry Cry Cry by Cry Cry Cry: One of my sweet neighbors brought me this CD over the weekend -- have only listened to the first few tracks so far, but they're some really good covers by Richard Shindell, Lucy Kaplansky and Dar Williams. I'm hoping by the time we get to this one, the kids will be snoozing and I can just listen and enjoy.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

FREE ICE CREAM! Or, What It Looks Like to Host a Party for the Neighborhood

"The Aftermath"

96 people (including 41 children)
+ 2 scoopers (thanks to my husband and Monsieur D!)
+ 17 cartons of ice cream (plus 2 leftover for the host family)
+ 36 single-serve cups of ice cream
+ 2 bottles of chocolate syrup
+ 4 bottles of sprinkles
+ 4 folding tables (borrowed from helpful neighbors)
+ 2 containers of wipes
+ 9 scoops and scores of spoons and cups
+ 2 yards to play in
+ 1 beautiful sunny blue sky
The perfect way to celebrate a wonderful neighborhood.

We're thinking this might need to be an annual event.
Thanks, Edy's!

Junius scooping some ice cream for his Mommy.

Pippi... well, I think the picture says it all.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Friday's Five: Short Good Reads

"Everything changed the day she figured out there was exactly enough time for the important things in her life."

That's one of my favorite StoryPeople quotes by Brian Andreas. I have it posted on my white board in the kitchen to remind me, in the midst of the craziness, that I can choose how to spend my time. Lately, I'm not sure if reading just isn't as important as other things or if I simply haven't made the time for it. Either way, the only "literature" I've been getting lately has been the newspaper, my blog-reader and children's books.

So, given that a lot of us don't have sufficient free time to sit down and read long, juicy novels, here are five more from my list of good reads -- all collections of short stories or essays:
  1. Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris:If you live in Raleigh, I think you're required to read David Sedaris. Not only is he hilarious, but he grew up in the neighborhood next to the one I live in now.

  2. Wilderness Tips by Margaret Atwood: I discovered Atwood's novels first, starting with The Handmaid's Tale -- her short stories are just as good.

  3. Cowboys Are My Weakness by Pam Houston: Smart women looking for wild men to love. Need I say more?

  4. Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith by Anne Lamott: I don't read a lot of non-fiction, but Lamott's essays are irreverant and witty and clever and biting and hilarious and intelligent. Highly recommended.

  5. Plan B: Further Thoughts on Faith by Anne Lamott: Okay, so maybe this is cheating, but it's essentially "part 2" of Traveling Mercies so I thought it made a good #5. Same recommendation applies.
What are your favorite short(er) books to share with the time-challenged?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

It's Not as Big as I Expected

I came home this morning from taking Junius to preschool camp (it's bug week) to find this package on my doorstep. Who knew that ice cream for up to 100 people could fit in such a relatively small box?

And thanks to the magic of dry ice (and the gloves that Edy's so thoughtfully packaged into the top of the of the box), it all arrived safely unmelted and has now been transferred into the freezer.

Turns out I can get 12 cartons of ice cream plus 36 single-serve cups of light ice cream in my own freezer. Again, who knew?

So far we have 70 people signed up for the party, including children. Am feeling very popular at the moment.

Now if I can just keep myself from sampling every flavor before the party on Saturday...

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Second Quarter Meal Report

That which gets measured gets done. Or so they say.

The adage doesn't always work when it comes to public education (see: NCLB), but it turns out to be true for me for meal-planning. As I reported back in April, I started meal-planning (with help from a new dry erase board) for the first time this year. Wasn't sure it would take, but figured it was worth a try -- anything had to be better than too many nights of frozen pizza or hot dogs.

Now that the year is halfway through, we're still eating frozen pizza (8 CPK BBQ chicken pizzas this quarter, to be exact) -- but we're also eating out less, using more of our groceries before they expire, and eating a greater variety of meals. This quarter I also added a meal sharing plan with my neighbor on Tuesday nights -- one week I make dinner for her family and my family, the following week she makes dinner for us all.

Out of the second 13 weeks of 2009, we were out of town nine nights, had dinner out (date night, friend night or just take-out) eight nights, and got dinner from our meal-trade six nights. Of the remaining dinners, here's a sampling of what we had during Q2:
  • 27 different dinners
  • 18 nights of leftovers (a.k.a. good planning)
  • 8 different dishes involving chicken
  • 6 nights of hamburgers or hot dogs on the grill
  • 4 nights of tilapia with veggies
  • 3 nights of French toast with turkey sausage and fruit
  • 3 nights of sweet potato and black bean casserole
  • 3 nights of skillet meals from the freezer
  • and assorted other dinners
Must admit, I'm kind of proud of me. So what are you eating these days?

Monday, July 13, 2009

Junius Fest 2009

What starts with Buzz Lightyear and a Lightning McQueen lunchbox and ends with one very tired and slightly sandy four-year-old?

It's J-Fest 2009, a four-day birthday extravaganza!

Here's a list of the highlights from Junius's birthday and the three additional days of celebration:
  • Opening presents from the parents (mentioned above)
  • Receiving an early morning phone call from his girlfriend (at the end of which he said, "My mom needs to talk to your mom. I love you!")
  • Riding with the top down on a breakfast trip to Biscuitville with Daddy
  • Spending the morning at the park with KT and G (two of his favorite friends), plus a ride in Ms. B's car (which is nearly as exciting as playing at the park) -- including brownies and a Buzz Lightyear kite
  • Splashing at the pool for more play time with KT and G
  • Getting FOUR WHOLE DOLLARS in the mail (three of which will go into his bank, where he is "saving for college," and one of which he plans to spend on chips at the pool snack bar)
  • Eating dinner at Chick-Fil-A (with KT and the fam) -- including more presents, ice cream and time to run around
  • Listening to a sweet birthday voicemail (to which he tried to talk and respond through the answering machine)
  • Hosting a pool party with four grandparents, two parents, one sister and 12 friends -- including cupcakes, Chex Mix (his favorite snack) and juice boxes
  • Grilling out cheesburgers and hot dogs for dinner
  • Opening presents from friends and family, then trying to play with all of them at once because every single one is "just what I have always wanted!" (especially the "Mack" truck from the movie Cars)
  • Using power tools to help Pop Pop build a super-duper sandbox in the backyard, then playing in sandbox after Daddy filled it with more than 1,200 lbs of sand
  • More time at the pool, more cheeseburgers, popsicles and play...
The next morning, his first words to me were, "Did any more of my presents arrive?"

Dude can get his money's worth out of a birthday. Guess I can add that to the list of things he seems to have inherited from his mother.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Friday's Five: Story Songs

Just in case you're missing New Music Mondays this summer, here's another musical Friday's Five to tide you over.

I really like "story-telling songs" -- the ones that might be a bit long, but reward you with the double-entertainment factor of an interesting tale and some good music. Whether funny or moving or powerful or all of the above, they're fun for singing along with in the car, plus you can amaze your friends and family by learning all the words and performing a capella. Okay, maybe not so much on that last part, but it's worth a try.

Often there's a turning point in the story, when you realize things aren't going to turn out quite like you thought or maybe when things finally start to work out just as you hoped they would. It's not the refrain, but it's the line that sticks, gives goosebumps, rings in your ears.

Here are five of my favorites -- what are yours? (Links take you to the lyrics)
  1. "Johnny’s Camaro" by David Wilcox: The tale of Johnny's girlfriend, who discovers on a trip to Africa that she doesn't need a dude in a Camaro to be able to soar... "Man, she didn't know she could jump that high. Ah, but she does now."

  2. "The Queen and the Soldier" by Suzanne Vega: An honest soldier boldly questions his queen about the wars he fights on her behalf, but she isn't ready to face the truth... "But the crown, it had fallen, and she thought she would break / And she stood there, ashamed of the way her heart ached."

  3. "Shopping Cart of Love: The Play" by Christine Lavin: Her fiance ditches her for her roommate (and takes her car and her favorite sweater), but a disastrous trip through the grocery store's express lane turns out to be the best thing that ever happened to her... "So he grabbed me / And he dragged me / As as I was sobbing toward the door / When a soft voice whispered / 'I've got seven items, I'll take three of yours.'"

  4. "A Christmas Song" by Dave Matthews: It's an old, familiar story, but this song brings new life to the important tale of a young couple, their new son and the love that he would share with the world... "I came to shed a little light on this darkening scene. Instead I fear I’ve spilled the blood of our children all around."

  5. "Scenes from an Italian Restaurant" by Billy Joel: Okay, so this one is a little cheesy. But it holds such fun memories of my summer spent in Laurinburg. Follow along as Brenda and Eddie find out what happens when you peak too early... "They got an apartment with deep pile carpet / And a couple of paintings from Sears / A big waterbed that they bought with the bread / They had saved for a couple of years / They started to fight when the money got tight / And they just didn't count on the tears."

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Why Yes, Thank You, My Hair IS Adorable

"J-Fest 2009: Turning Four" update coming soon, but in the meantime I'll give you a little story about the Pip:

Although we waited until his birth to see if Junius would be a boy or a girl, we decided to find out in advance with Pippi. When the ultrasound tech said, "It's a girl," we were stunned into silence. Somehow, we'd both convinced ourselves it was another boy -- and we were excited about having a matched pair. We didn't tell anyone for at least a week, it was that much of a shock.

I was immediately terrified by visions of a moody, dramatic, teen-aged daughter whining and complaining and hating me for no good reason. I knew from experience that even daughters who really love their moms are sometimes unreasonably snotty to their mothers without cause (Mom -- I am so sorry!), and I just didn't want to deal with that.

Thankfully, my mama-friends with daughters talked me down off the ledge, so that by the time Pippi arrived I was delighted to have a baby girl. She's already a moody drama queen at age 16 months, so I'm sure the teen years will bring plenty of challenges (ahem, I mean growth opportunities?) -- but she's silly and sweet and sassy and snuggly in ways that are different from her brother, which is fun to watch.

She also brings with her all the fun, girly stuff. I mean, let's be honest -- girl clothes are soooo much cuter than boy clothes.

And then, this past week, our first experiment with pigtails...
Sadly I don't have a picture of her admiring her hair-do in the mirror, but I think the laughing photo gives you an idea of just how impressed she is with herself. Looks like we'll be waiting a little longer for that first haircut this time around.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Days Are Long, But the Years Go By So Quickly

His birthday should have been 10 days ago. He comes from a long line of late bloomers, so we shouldn't have been surprised when he didn't arrive on time. But I expected him every day anyway, pacing up and down my street, bulging in the outrageous heat, sure I would give birth any moment (as was my sweet neighbor, watching me go back and forth).

Finally, in the wee hours of July 8, after two days of painful back labor, my water broke. I heard the pop, as I lay propped up sleepless in my bed.

Twelve hours later with a mediocre epidural and all the pitocin they could give me, he still wasn't moving. Still no progress, no baby.

C-section, whirlwind, wedged in, it's a boy, whisked away. And then I blacked out. When I came to, not sure if maybe I'd died in the process, I was a mother. Just like that.

He was beautiful, round and tiny, with soft brown hair and huge hands. He was, as my husband first described him while I was coming out of the fog, "a champion baby." I knew I would always love him (he looked so much like his dad, how could I not?), but it took a little time for me to fall in love with him. Took some time to decide what it meant to be a mom.

I was overwhelmed, over-tired, unprepared for recovery from surgery. He only slept when we held him, so we held him day and night. He nursed around the clock for hours on end and refused to take a bottle. He cried and I cried with him. We accepted lots of help from friends and family.

Then one day, he smiled at me. And before I knew it, I was his Mommy and he was my love. And then he crawled and became a redhead and walked and turned blond and jumped and ran and used a fork and talked in sentences and pedaled his tricycle and slept through the night in his own big bed and made friends and used the potty and jumped into the big pool and ohmystars he's four.

Just like that.

Happy birthday, Junius! I love being your Mommy and I love watching you be you.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Super Junius Strikes Back

Yesterday afternoon at our neighborhood pool (which was poop-free, thankyouverymuch), Junius was having a grand time with his newest skill -- jumping into the shallow end while I stand in the pool with Pippi and cheer. Although it might not sound like a lot, it's a big deal for a little boy who was not the least bit interested in the big pool at the beginning of the summer.

While I was trying to keep Pip entertained (she was much less interested in being in the big pool than her brother was), another slightly-older kid in the pool must have made some sort of age-related comment to Junius. I missed what she said, but when I tuned in, this is what I heard...

"I'm not a baby!" he shouted, flashing his sternest, most angry-eyes face. "I went to Superhero camp last week! Rrrrrrarrr!"

Then he splashed the water and shot her another tough-guy look, while he hopped up and down because he's only just tall enough to touch in the big pool.

"That's right, you tell 'em," I said to Junius (I wasn't being mean, I was just trying to encourage him -- he's not usually very assertive, so we've been working on his ability to stand up for himself). "You say, 'I am Super Junius and I am four!'"

"No, Mommy," he said, as if explaining to a baby. "I'm not four yet."

Oh, right. Two more days of being three. My boy is all imagination, but he's still a stickler for accuracy.

Photo taken last summer when he still required swimmies and catching and lots and lots of coaxing.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Here Comes the I-love-you Man

Junius spent the past week at Superhero Camp through a great arts school near downtown. He had a blast, learning to fly, making a superhero belt and doing whatever else superheroes do. In addition to talking about Superman and the rest, they also talked about real life superheroes, like firefighters and garbage collectors and other people who make our lives better.

Every day he came home with a different stamp on the back of his hands -- his reward, he told me, for doing such a good job. On the last day, when I was admiring his hands, I noticed that the stamps that day were the ASL sign for "I love you" -- an image of a hand with the thumb, forefinger and pinky up, while the other two fingers are folded down.

That's so sweet, I thought to myself, that they're teaching the kids to be loving and kind superheroes.

When I asked Junius what the pictures were on his stamp, he lit up and announced, "It's a web-spinner hand, Mom! It's awesome!" Then he demonstrated by holding his hand out and pretending to shoot webs out of his wrist.

Sometimes, I am so not cool.

Friday's Five: Good Reads

As a kid, I spent summers at the library with a big cardboard box. Fill the box, read the books, return the books, repeat. I don't know for sure how often we went, but in my memory it was a weekly trip. I loved the summer reader programs because I could fill the chart after chart with stickers representing all the books I'd read.

As a teen-ager, college student and then high school English teacher, summer reading went nearly the same way. Different books, same process (only without the sticker charts). I loved the freedom to devour whatever caught my attention, from classics to trash.

Now that most of my reading involves Curious George and Sandra Boynton's hippos, I like to think back on some of my favorite selections and imagine the things I'll read when I manage to carve out the time. Here's the first five on my recommended reading list (in no particular order) -- more to come on future Fridays:
  1. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez: Read for a comparative literature class in college. Nearly fell off the bed when I got to the end of the book, it was just that good.

  2. Ellen Foster by Kaye Gibbons: Any book that starts this way is bound to catch your attention: "When I was little I would think of ways to kill my daddy. I would figure out this or that way and run it down through my head until it got easy." Taught this as a first-year teacher and still wonder how I got away with it.

  3. Old Dogs and Children by Robert Inman: Really wanted to name my future daughter "Bright" after reading this sweet and lovely book. Plus Inman was a newscaster in Charlotte, where I was living when I found his novels.

  4. The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood: My first high school glimpse into the idea of feminism, this story was both terrifying and empowering. The first of many Atwood novels and short stories for me.

  5. The Cider House Rules by John Irving: Another high school discovery and the first of several Irving reads to make me think about things outside the safety of my own world.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Is that poo in your pants or are you just excited?

Some of you have already seen what I'm posting here, either because you go to the same pool with me or because you saw my status on Facebook. But two days later, it still cracks me up, so I've decided to share it here.

It's the opening paragraph from an email sent to pool members by the pool managers on Monday. Not sure if it was intended to be hilarious or not, but I laughed until I snorted the first time I read it. Also, I think it's relevant to the story to know that the pool managers are a married couple with school-age children and she is a former NASA engineer and science teacher, i.e. they're "grown-ups" and not teen-agers.

Seems that we had a "code brown" at the neighborhood pool on Monday -- the second since the pool opened a month ago. So our pool managers are understandably frustrated because of whatever de-tox/sanitation process they have to go through to be able to re-open the pool.

And now, without further ado, the excerpt (emphasis, mine):
"We had to close the pool this afternoon because of another fecal incident. Our apologies to anyone who showed up during pool hours to yet another locked gate. These things do happen, but you could help us by reminding the younger kids to use the bathroom before they come to the pool and during the rest periods. It is a wonder of childhood that you can be having so much fun that you don't realize you are about to crap in your pants."
Did I mention how much I love my neighborhood?

Image from