Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Best "Homemade" Cheater's Dinner EVER

Into a crockpot, dump...

1/2 a diced onion
2 bell peppers, in 1-inch pieces (I used one red and one green)
1 pound of chicken boobs, in 1-inch pieces
1 jar of Trader Joe's simmer sauce (Marsala is what we had tonight) (No extra water!)

Set that sucker on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours, make yourself some rice, and prepare to be amazed at dinnertime. Seriously. It's that good.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Thirty-Six Days to Go

We're two-thirds of the way through summer. Can you hear my sigh of relief?

I'm not a mean mom, truly. I enjoy hanging out with my kids. And we've done some cool stuff this year--toured the WWII submarine in Baltimore, explored every nook and cranny of the National Zoo, gone on nature hikes and tree-spotting expeditions, made birdhouses and feeders and hung them in the yard, and a bunch of other things. We've hung at the pool and in the yard and inside in the AC with a good movie. We've been to the lake a half-dozen times and have a full week there planned soon. Next week, we're going to a puppet show at a local theatre and then picnicking under the trees at an adjacent park (complete with carousel), and I haven't given up hope on getting out to a local farm for a day or on exploring some of the Smithsonian museums once mid-August is here and the tourists start to head home.

Truthfully, though, we miss our routines. All of us--the kids more than I, I think. These stretches of time, when Mommy's working or cleaning up the house or just breathing for a bit, are tough. They miss their school friends, many of whom are in all-day camps to accomodate parents who work in offices. They miss horsing around at lunchtime and playing games in PE class, and honestly, they miss learning. I'm trying to find lessons for them and we have learned a bunch, but I truly believe they miss that structured sit-in-your-chair-and-listen learning time.

DS will return to school with his new foot orthotics. He'll have to switch them from his school shoes to his gym shoes, and I'm colossally worried that the other kids will use that as an excuse to pick on him. (Can you spot the lady who was the picked-on kid in grade school?) He still can't tie his shoes--his fingers get all bunched up and in their own way. But he's playing soccer for school this year and is beyond excited for that. He's also discovered his talent for golf--he's very good at it--and his ego has taken a boost there too.

DD goes back happy as a lark. Mommy, on the other hand, has a head full of worries. The child cries at the drop of a hat--literally, sometimes. She throws tantrums over the damndest things. Things no sane, normal person would give a second thought. She has the attention span of a gnat, as an old theatre director used to say when I was in high school. She just today learned to put her own shirt on, and that was after weeks of tears and screams and thrown garments. She's terrified of failure. She gets overloaded...I'm not convinced we won't get some kind of sensory problem diagnosis sometime in the not-too-distant future. So I'm scared of what the year will bring for her. And us.

Our pediatrician, whom I love and adore, is on an eight-week paternity leave. I don't want to ask these questions of the others in the practice. I'm sure they're wonderful doctors, but they don't know us. It's a shot in the dark for them, and frankly, I can shoot at my own darkness, thanks.

So here we are, 36 days from school. I'm not sure if I'd rather slam the front door and keep them here with me forever, or fling it open and shove them up the street and into the (hopefully loving) arms of their teachers.

One more month. Guess we'd better make the most of it.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Thursday 13

13 Drugstore Products I Adore

Boring. Sorry. Busy and lazy today...

  1. Cetaphil. Both the cleanser and moisturizer. Fabulous stuff. Happy face. :)
  2. Off Smooth & Dry Insect Repellant. Isn't sticky and nasty and smells good too.
  3. Maybelline mascara--the stuff in the pink and green tube. Thousands of makeup artists can't be wrong.
  4. People magazine. And Us. And OK! *blush*
  5. Physician's Formula eyeshadows. Literally the only brand out there (yes, I've tried them all) that doesn't irritate my eyelids.
  6. Coke. I haven't had one in a long time, but few things make me as happy as a cold bottle of original Coke. Sue me.
  7. Secret Platinum. I wasn't so sure about this the first time I bought it by accident--the texture made me wary. But it's everything it's cracked up to be, and I'm hooked.
  8. Herbal Essences moisturizing shampoo. The new formula rocks (and thank you, Big Company, for ditching the stupid faux shower orgasm commercials!) and smells like the beach. What more could you want?
  9. Yellow #2 pencils. Simple. Classic. Effective. And somehow comforting.
  10. Intuition razors and refills. I know...spendy. But they save me such time in the shower. Which means I get a shower, with kids around. Happy happy me!
  11. Crayolas. Where else can you spend $1 on two kids and have them entertained for hours? That's exactly what a new box of crayons does, at least in my house. The best bribery ever.
  12. Office supplies and organizers. I'm addicted. Have been for years. It's an illness.
  13. Advil. A girl's best friend!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Swinging Freely

I was cleaning up the family room last night when I heard the distinct whirrring and whining of DH's cordless power drill in the kitchen. Entering the room (power tools in my kitchen are rarely a good thing), I found we'd reached another family milestone.

The end of the babyproofed era.

One by one, DH removed the childproof latches from the lower cabinets and drawers. Good call--the kids have been able to operate them for awhile and we didn't need them anymore. And if we're all being honest, DH and I had long figured out that a good hard yank on the cabinet knob released the latch all by itself, and we'd been opening our doors and drawers with brute force for a couple of years.

I'm pretty sure those latches were the last scraps of babyproofing equipment to be on our house, although I'd have to really do a close walk-through to be sure. The crib came down quite some time ago. Most of the outlet covers were chucked almost as soon as they went on, and what a royal pain in the rump those things are! They lasted only marginally longer than the toilet locks (and to those of you scoffing at the thought of toilet locks...scoff while ye may. Clearly, you've never had a toddler whose idea of fun is either chucking things--and by "things" I mean entire rolls of toilet paper--into the potty or "washing" her hands there. I used to scoff, too. Enjoy it, my demonchild-less friends. Your time will come.).

Course, by the time I got around to making dinner last night, I'd forgotten about the missing latches. So I gave the middle drawer our customary really hard yank and sent myself flying back into our breakfast bar. Good times, my friends. DH, at least, thought it was hilarious.

This morning, I remembered. (Score!) Gently opened the cabinets the way God intended. Quietly. Smoothly. One-handedly. And shut them with the most delicate whisper of a "whump," instead of the jarring SLAM! to which we've become accustomed. Ahhh...swish...whump. It's almost meditative, the sound of my drawers opening sans locks. Womb-like, even. Swish...whump. Swish...whump.

I suppose this moment should make me sad. I guess I should be pining for the day there were little fingers cramming themselves into the cabinets, just searching for something sharp or heavy or hot with which to maim themselves. But the whole baby/toddler thing never did it for me. All that screaming and barfing and random danger in places you never dreamed could be treacherous. I much prefer this, when they can play for hours in a whole other room and I don't have to lock up my pots and pans to keep everybody's innards inside their skin, where they belong (cleaning products are in a way-high-up high I need to get on my tiptoes to reach...just in case you were thinking of calling social services or anything. We're not babyproofed but we're not all grown up either.).

So there it is. Freedom rings for my cabinet doors. Another child development phase comes to a close, and we all made it out breathing and looking forward to the next. Miracles never cease.

Anybody need some slighty used cabinet locks?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Shooting Stars in My Head...

Woke up to no dial tone today. This came after yesterday, when I'd either dial a phone number and be connected with another random number, or when I'd dial like a "3" and get a "This call cannot be completed as dialed" recording. Well humpf! Half an hour on the phone with Verizon determined that our FIOS box was shot. It's been replaced (they're quick, if nothing else) and things seem to be working now. Fingers crossed.

Lindsay Lohan...oh my gosh, TRAIN WRECK! I feel bad for the girl, honestly. Her mother is unbelievable and I can't imagine that anyone growing up with that kind of pressure and constant ego-feeding wouldn't end up all screwy. At the same time, I'm really worried about the people my daughter will look up to when she's a little older. I mean, come on. Britney? Lindsay? Another half-nekkid drunk singer/actress? Sad times in famous-people land.

Did you guys hear the news story from here about this guy whose rape case was dismissed for lack of an interpreter? Did you also hear that while he spoke another language (African, but I'm not sure which) as his native tongue, he's quite fluent in English and has been working here for years and years in a job that requires him to understand the language? And that news crews who've interviewed him have found no problems either understanding him or being understood by him? Yet another case where criminal "rights" are put ahead of victims--you'll never convince me that his lawyer didn't demand a translator for exactly this reason. Knowing he spoke a rare language made it unlikely that a translator would be snapped up in a "reasonable" amount of time on last-minute notice. And it worked. Such bullshit going on in our courts. It's no wonder people still turn to vigilante justice. I hope this is overturned and that this guy gets put away for a very long time (prosecutors have DNA evidence against him in the repeated rape of a seven-year-old girl). Makes me sick.

Have you emailed Roger Goodell and demanded Michael Vick's suspension yet? You can do it here.

I've become addicted to Google Reader this week. What a great tool! Makes procrastination so easy!

Looks like the Gap discontinued its boyfriend cut of jeans. Color me very sad--they fit me just right and were sooo comfy on my disproportionate lower half. Honestly, I'm getting sick of this deal where a different fit of jeans is stylish every year. Pick one, stick with it, thankyouverymuch. Skinny isn't working for many people and we're not even going to talk about tapered. Which leaves straight, bootcut, and reverse/boyfriend. I'm good with any of those, but for the love of God, tell me which!

Bought a vat 'o plums at Sam's Club yesterday. And dang, are they yummy. Even the kids eat them. Unfortunately, so does the WDCL, so everytime I bite into one, she's in my face. Nothing like having 85 pounds of horrendous breath and brown fur smashed up against you when you're trying to contain plum juice dribbling down your chin and it's 90 degrees out with 600 percent humidity. I literally have to hide to eat them. And then, I'm reminded just how pathetic I've become... :)

Monday, July 23, 2007

I Weep for my Brain

DD: Mooooooooooommm!!

Me: Yes?

DD: The Boy wants to fight me.

Me: Tell him you don't want to fight.

DD: Boy! I don't want to fight. (pause) MOOOMMEEEEE!! He shooted me!

Me: (Thinking that I just told him not to shoot her with his watergun) Did he shoot you with the watergun?

DD: NO! He shot me with the GOLF CLUB! And YOU just don't underSTAND!!


Saturday, July 21, 2007


Looks like I'm having dinner at Citronelle next month. For a serious Food Network junkie like me, this is like two steps from heaven. I've adored Michel Richard for years--eating in his restaurant is something of a dream come true.

I'm so stinkin' excited!! Cross your fingers that it really happens!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Lemme Show Ya Where Else You Can Floss, Doc

I don't know what it is with me and dentists.

Last year, DH went to a dentist for the first time in...awhile. She found all kinds of problems with his teeth. Recommended pulling most of his fillings and replacing them, among other things. Had a thousand reasons why this was a good idea. So he agreed and started in, letting her pull out his old silver and replace it with a white composite.

All was well until the bill came. Seems our insurance company didn't see the sense in this and deemed it "cosmetic," and, therefore, optional. Not covered.

Huh. We wrote the check and, just for kicks and giggles, had DH visit another dentist, who came recommended by two neighbors. Surprise of surprises, Dentist #2 didn't see any reason to pull those old fillings. Even did his own series of X-rays to be sure. Nope, work not needed.

It's the oldest scam in the dental book--convince people their old fillings are defective and replace them, for big bucks. I mean, with flouride and all, what else are you gonna do to keep the old income train chugging along?

Lesson learned.

Fast forward: three weeks ago, DS went to the pediatric dentist to have fillings put in four of his teeth (I swear to God and all the saints that I brush his teeth religiously.) and sealants put on the other back teeth, to avoid the whole cavity thing in the future. The sealants, the dentist said, wouldn't be covered by insurance.

Fine, said I. Do what the boy needs.

An hour and $506 later, he had hole-free, sealed-up choppers. All was right with the world.

Until yesterday. When I thought about this some and got all riled up. I mean, what, exactly, am I paying for with the insurance company if they're not going to cover basic treatment?

So I called them. And get this: most of the $506 wasn't for sealants, but for those blasted cosmetic fillings again! Because the cavities were in his very backest teeth and because those teeth are baby teeth, the insurance gods thought silver fillings would be fine, thanks, and covered only the cost of those. Something like $400 came out of my pocked for tooth-colored fillings.

I was never given the option of silver fillings for him. In fact, the type of fillings to be installed was never discussed.

Pissed off am I.

Today, I called the dental office manager. We had a loooooooong chat about necessary treatments vs cosmetic treatments, and baby teeth vs. permanent teeth, and the basic concept of full disclosure and honesty, particularly where my credit card is involved.

"We don't use silver fillings," she said.

"Why's that," I asked.


Because you can attack my damned wallet easier that way, that's why!!

Here's the thing: Going to the dentist is a lot like taking my car to the dealer. I don't know nothin' about no cars. So I need to trust the person doing the work to tell me exactly what's wrong and exactly how we fix it. Without ripping me off, wasting my time, or padding the numbers at all.

I won't bore you with the rest of the conversation, but our previously-scheduled December appointments have been cancelled, and I'm looking for a new pediatric dentist. And from talking to a bunch of people today, I'm learning this isn't that uncommon. Unfortunately, having one's teeth taken care of has become akin to visiting a used car dealership by the side of the highway.

Buyer beware. How sad is that?

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


We all have 'em...those days that leave us whimpering on the couch, wondering just what's next. The ones where just when it seems things couldn't possibly get worse...they do. When brick after brick falls down from the sky and every blasted one whomps us right in the head.

I haven't had one of those days. But between the teeth (mine and DS's), the lack of insurance payment on the teeth (insurance is the devil, I tell you!), the two cars needing way spendy service, the freezer going while we were out of town, the lawnmower dying at the rental house, and a bunch of other piddly crap that just adds up after awhile, it's starting to feel like one of those months.

When this happens, I turn inward. I organize my house so that it's neat and welcoming. I spend time doing things I enjoy--we spent this morning at the zoo because nothing makes me quite as happy as seeing baby pandas and free-range monkeys and sea lions bouncing about and doing their thing, and the kids get free animal crackers, which makes them happy to tag along. I read, compulsively. I listen to music, loudly and unabashedly, sometimes dancing right along no matter if the neighbors behind my house can see through my kitchen windows or not.

And then, there's comfort food. Ice cream is at the very tippy-top of the list as far as I'm concerned. There's a reason my buddies Ben & Jerry are packaged in a very holdable-on-the-couch pint that seems to fit my palm perfectly and be the perfect little respite for my spoon between bites. (are you listening, Edy's? Time to think about the potential of the double-churned lines, my friends)

Mashed potatoes are up there too--I lived on them for two full days after the Dreaded Root Canal, and not just because my gums were sore. Grilled cheese sandwiches, creamy clam chowder with lots of potatoes, lasagne (made by someone else, thank you very much), those yummy Pepperidge Farm mega soft chocolate chip cookies in the white bags, lemon pound cake with powdered sugar glaze. Peanut butter and margarine sandwiches on super-fresh Wonder bread, with old-fashioned rippled potato chips alongside. Frosted Flakes in cold, cold milk.

It's a good thing bad months don't happen much, huh?

Last night, I whipped up a loaf of banana blueberry oatmeal bread. Smelled heavenly and made a dandy breakfast alongside a bowl of fresh cantaloupe. Also made a nice snack this afternoon. Tonight, it's tuna-noodle casserole with extra bread topping and parmesan. (Stop shaking your head--it's a Susan Powter recipe for heaven's sake.) Tomorrow night, I'm going out for sushi. I'm Jonesing for some yummy tuna and salmon wrapped in rice and seaweed paper, maybe with a cup of miso for good measure.

Being home with my family, the WDCL curled up on my bare feet, watching a good movie and paging through a foodie magazine, with something ultra creamy and yummy in a bowl...that's comfort for me.

What's yours?

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Change of Heart

Inspired by some friends who have much larger hurdles to vault than I, I've been trying to get my kids to eat some new foods. Grown-up foods. Things that don't come in colorful boxes and live in the freezer until their date with the microwave. (I hear you cringing, Alien.)

Some of it's gone well. They've embraced grown-up chicken off the grill and the pasta sauces we eat. They both agreed yesterday that my fruit and yogurt smoothies are way better than Danimals. DS likes turkey sandwiches, sometimes, and DD thinks plums are OK so long as their skins are removed before they touch her plate.

And some if it...not so much.

For lunch yesterday, I had a piece of barbecued chicken and some garlic and olive oil couscous. Both kids like rice. Both kids like pasta. The couscous seemed like a no-brainer, so a spoonful went on each of their plates last night at dinner.

I DON'T LIKE COO-COO! yelled the four-year old.

I don't like it either, Mommy, said the six-year-old, at least trying to be gentle about it.

Uh-huh, said I, rummaging around in the freezer and giving them a peek at the container of Edy's there in the front (DH's consolation gift to me when our stuff melted into an ooey gooey mess this weekend.).

Their eyes widened ICE CREEEEEAAAAAMMMM!!!

Can we please have some ice cream? Amazing how the manners come out all shiny and golden when there are frozen treats involved, isn't it?

I pondered. You can have some...if you eat all your dinner, said I.

They pondered. I went back to wiping down the countertops. After a minute, I heard spoons clinking against plates.

Mommy? The four-year old. I kind of like coo-coo!

Me too! said the six-year old. I kind of REALLY like it!

Rock on...

Monday, July 16, 2007


The dichotomy of my iPod...we came home from the shoe store this afternoon and I flipped on my iPod and started chopping vegetables for dinner.

Song 1: I Wanna Be Sedated

Song 2: I Will Survive

Maybe you had to be there, but it gave me a chuckle. :)


DH and I spent the weekend at the lake house sans kids. Which sounds great--and we did have some fun--but we were painting, for the most part. And lemme tell you, the lofted ceilings that look so grand when you're buying a house absolutely suck when it comes time to paint it. Up, down, up, down, up, down. By last night, we were both tired and really sore.

So we drove home the two and a half hours, planning to unpack the car really quickly and head up to my mom's to get the kids. But we came in the house to find the entire freezer defrosted.!

Spent two hours throwing everything in the freezer away and then chucked most of what was in the fridge, just in case. Then, of course, we had to scrub down the kitchen, since most of what was in there was drippy and sticky and probably bacteria-laden. Lovely.

At least my fridge and freezer look squeaky clean. And they do work--somebody must have left the freezer door a little bit open when we headed out of town Friday. Somebody. *ahem*

Today, I'm heading out to restock. In a month where two massive dental bills and two massive car maintenance bills hit on top of our normal bills, I am not excited about this.

Being a grown up really stinks sometimes. Literally.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Dear Editors:

My guess is that you wouldn't ask a surgeon to perform a test procedure on you with the stipulation that you only pay if you like the result, before you hired him to treat a medical condition.

And I'm thinking that when you have your kitchen remodeled, you don't get the cabinets installed before deciding if you want the contractor to handle your countertops (again, with a pay-if-I-like-it clause). You see the samples in the store, not in your very own workspace, right?

In fact, I'm going to go out on a limb here and assume that your employer pays you each week, whether he or she likes your printed piece or not...typos or not. Cuz you're a professional and you get paid to do what you do, yes?

Me too.

Stop asking me to write "just a test article" for free. Stop sending me contracts that say you don't have to pay me if you don't like the article I turn in. Stop treating writers like a you could just run out your door and pick up a dozen people to craft your features and they'd all do a fine job. At least as good as I would.

Like your doctor and your contractor and you, I'm a professional. I don't write for the sheer joy of it, much as I'd like to. My mortgage company has issues with that, see? I might work out of my home, but I work, just like you, and I've done it for 15+ years now. I have a whole web site of clips you can peruse to see if you like what I do, and I'm happy to mail you whatever sample you'd like so you can judge my abilities.

I don't work for free. I'd hope no writer would work for free, even to get a foot in the door. No other profession I know of is asked to do that. It's insulting and degrading and ridiculous.

Don't even ask.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Hit by a Bus

I had part 3 of my tooth work done today--the saga that started with an abcess, went to a two-day root canal, and continued this morning with some filing and snipping and cauterizing of my gums (yes, it's gross. No, I'm not making it up) and mold-taking and cementing on of a temporary crown.

I really loathe and despise having my teeth worked on. It's not really that the work is horrible, although it is. But Novocaine (or whatever they're using these days to numb patients) really doesn't sit well with me. The initial shot gets my heart racing and my hands shaking--the root canal guy said it's full of epinephrine and is raising my already-high blood pressure. An hour or so into it, I get all loopy. Not quite drunk loopy, but like 4 a.m. and no bed in sight loopy.

And then several hours later, when it begins to wear off, I crash like a four-year-old full of Pixie Stix. Wham! I can't concentrate. I'm sleepy. I get a headache. I growl at those around me. There's a rumbly in my tumbly, only not the hungry kind. I sweat a lot. And I generally feel like crap until I can sleep.

Today, I'm alone with the kids and DH is out until at least 11 p.m. (my procedure was at 10:30 this morning). So I won't sleep for quite some time. Which means I feel like crap. And my mouth hurts--my jaw from being open so long, my gum from being shredded, and my tongue, for reasons I can't explain.

I stopped at Safeway on the way home from the dentist's office and picked up two new activity books for the kids. They're watching a movie right now and coloring, and I imagine the rest of the day might look just like that. Enter the Mommy Guilt, right? Beautiful summer day--the heat and humidity broke last night and it is absolutely gorgeous outside--and we're watching TV in the house. Very nice.

Anyway, I don't have anything of substance to share today. I hope to be a bit more coherent and sunny tomorrow. Pray that bedtime comes quickly, wouldja? And remind me next time to not try and save a tooth. Yank it and be done. This blows.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Help Me...I'm Meeeelllllllltinnnnngggg

Oh my GOSH, it's hot. Miserable hot. Move the daughter's tea party inside the house hot (yes, we did!). Hot and humid and icky poo yuck, even for D.C., which isn't generally known for summer comfort anyway.

I'm watering my lawn. We never water our lawn. But I put in all kinds of new plants this spring and we're going to lose them without a little sprinkling. I feel so guilty about it, but my guess is Al Gore's gardener is watering his grass too, so it's all good. I'll admit...I made special arrangements to water a patch of clover in the middle of the backyard for the two baby bunnies who are living under my shed. They love clover, and they're so darn cute!

We were supposed to go blueberry picking at a local farm today. Not happening.

I'd take the kids to the pool but we belong to the Y, and it's going to be packed today. My daughter's still afraid of the water...packed and splashy isn't going to work. The mall's going to be that way too and I really don't need to be spending any more money, which I'd do with all the end-of-season sales. I thought about taking them to a local theatre, but the only tickets left for today are the $18 ones. Too spendy for an hour's entertainment.

We're heading to Wal Mart this morning, but after that...I might have to raid my rainy-day New Toy Closet (yes, I have one. Filled to the brim with birthday and Christmas gifts that aren't opened immediately but are saved for boring icky November days and days like today. It's fabulous.). I also see a run to Blockbuster in my immediate future. The kids are going to lose their minds stuck in the house.

Hot, hot, hot. Drippy, stifling hot.

Course, I watched paramedics whisk my neighbor's two-year-old out in an ambulance last night after a weird seizure. Need to call her later today. Kind of put things in perspective, you know? I'll take a little hot...

Monday, July 9, 2007


Bellowed in my ear at 5:30 this morning by my daughter who is, indeed, four today. Happy birthday, my love. *yawn*

Thursday, July 5, 2007




Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Brain Farts

The personal transformation continues...some neighbors had a party last weekend. We (shockingly) were invited. But we'd already made plans to be away for the weekend. A year ago...two months ago...that would have eaten away at me. I'd have been plagued by thoughts of what we were missing and how much fun I could be having with the group. But--and this is 100 percent true--when we got home Sunday night and I peered over the fence and saw the picnic tables and other party remnants strewn across another yard, my first thought was, "I'm so glad we were away and I didn't have to deal with that." Go me!

The other half of this transformation: my body hurts. I did an exercise video yesterday morning, helped DH cut down and chop up more mulberry tree last night, and walked early this morning while the kids were sleeping. There's a dull ache in my muscles. All of them. But man, it feels good. And if I can get to my goal weight, I'm piercing my belly button. :) Age and minivan be damned.

Dear W: *shaking head* That's all I got.

We're getting a weekend away!! We have more painting to do at the lake and my mom agreed to take my kids for two nights so we can go up alone and get it done. I love my children dearly and truly, but I'm so excited! I think we're going to rent Jet Skis as our one fun thing. Jet Skis rock!

I'm taking DS to the dentist today to fix his four cavities and seal his teeth. Cross your fingers that my little man doesn't hurt, OK?