Monday, September 29, 2008


I hope Aleita has a good day at preschool today. Last week, she tried to lead a revolt. She moved to a new room - - the “Penguins” room - - a few weeks ago. Prior to that, she had been in the “Bears” room for about a year. So far, the transition to a new environment had gone pretty well. She had had a few rocky moments, but overall, things were no better or worse than they had been for her in her previous classroom.

Apparently on Friday though, Aleita reached an impasse with one of her teachers in the Penguins room. With much fanfare, she announced that she was leaving and going back to the Bears room. She removed her plastic cubby that contains her extra clothes and sunscreen, grabbed her pillow and blanket from her cot, and removed her name from door of the classroom.

In an effort to completely overthrow the Penguin room, she attempted to organize a faction united around her cause. As she dragged her things down the hallway to her old room, she yelled, “Follow me boys!” to her friends in the Penguin room. The teachers reported that the other students were all too stunned and afraid of reprisal to participate in her uprising.

One of her teachers went down to the Bears classroom and explained the Aleita was defecting from the Penguin room. Aleita dumped her stuff right inside the door, hugged her previous teachers and announced, “I’m back!” I can only imagine how difficult it must have been for them to contain their excitement. Kudos to them, however - - they played along with her upheaval plans and invited her to join them for the art project they were just starting to work on. During the art lesson, they made several comments to Aleita that they were so glad she had come back, but they were surprised that a FOUR year old would want to be in the room with THREE year olds….but that was ok…..she must like THREE year olds and acting like the THREE year olds do. From what we were told, they laid it in pretty thick for her. About 20 minutes later as the art project neared completion, she announced that she was returning to the Penguins room after all and that had decided that she needed to be with the other four year olds after all.

Her teacher in the Penguins room welcomed her back, but did so conditionally. She explained to her that there would be no more renegade action on Aleita’s part, and if she chose to leave again, she would probably have to just stay with the three year olds from now on. Aleita promised her that she was back to stay and vowed to stray now more.

There is a special place in heaven for preschool teachers. God bless them for their patience and ingenuity and of course, for being willing to put up with my crazy child.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


Someone told me to get your Crocs clean, put them in the dishwasher and run them through a cycle. All four of us have Crocs and they were all in need of a cleaning, so I put them in and ran it. Bad idea. They shrank. If someone tells you that this is a good idea, tell them they are wrong.

Monday, September 22, 2008


At age four, my youngest child is already so mischievous that I am afraid what is going to happen as she gets older. Yesterday, I went into her room to get her clothes out for church. I selected an outfit from her closet amid her protests and laid it on her bed. It was a really cute pair of bib overalls and a little pink shirt, but she instantly registered her dissatisfaction with my choice as soon as I had pulled it from the closet. It was one of Maggie’s old outfits, and I remember Maggie looking so cute in it - - for some reason or another, Aleita has decided she hates it and never wants to wear it. I have only endured her grumbling and made her wear it one other time, and yesterday, I was determined to have her wear it at least once more before she outgrew it. I told her to go use the bathroom and that I was going to get myself dressed and that I would meet her back in her room in a minute to put her clothes on for church.

After getting dressed, I returned to her room to find her on the floor playing with her cars. “Did you go potty?” I asked.

“Yep,” she replied.

I turned to get her outfit off the bed and it was gone. I glanced over at her dresser which is where I sometimes set her clothes before getting her dressed and it wasn’t there either. I retraced my steps back into my own bedroom to see if for some reason I had carried it in there with me when I went to get myself dressed. The outfit was no where to be found.

I returned to Aleita’s bedroom and asked her if she had done something with it. She looked at me and then immediately looked down and just shrugged her shoulders. “Aleita,” I said, “where is your outfit for church?” She responded, “it’s not here.”

“Yes, I can see that,” I answered. “Do you happen to know where it might be?”

She begrudgingly set the car down she was playing with and pointed at the dresser. “Did you put it one of the drawers of dresser?” I asked. She shook her head no. “Then where?” I asked her.

“Back there.” she answered.

I got down on my hands and knees and looked under the dresser, and sure enough, the outfit was behind the dresser. “How did it get back there?” I questioned her.

“I think maybe I throwed it a little,” she admitted. Yes, she had indeed thrown the outfit behind the dresser in a feeble crack at not having to wear it. Her dresser is quite tall and at an angle in the corner of her room, so it required some effort for me to move the dresser and retrieve the outfit.

She was disappointed that her attempt to avoid my choice for her church clothing had been thwarted. She whined as I lotioned her up and dressed her in the aforementioned dreaded outfit. She had a pouty look on her face as I said, “step back and let me look at you.”

Now wouldn’t you know it - - - after all that, the outfit was too small. The pants were just a little too short and the belly just a little too tight. When I told her I would have to change her, she did a little dance around her bedroom saying, “woo hoo! Get it off! Get it off! Get it off!”

She ended up wearing another lovely little outfit to church that day - - a skirt along with a shirt that she sometimes grumbles about wearing, but today, she happily put it on if it meant not having to wear the original outfit selected.

Saturday, September 20, 2008


With Maggie being seven years old (almost eight), I know that our time is limited as to how much longer she is going to believe is such things as the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny, and Santa Claus. I have expected questions regarding the feasibility of such from her any day, but so far, she has shown nothing but unfaltering belief in a tiny winged creature that exchanges money for teeth, a large rabbit that hides plastic eggs full of candy, and a fat guy in a red suit that is pulled around by reindeer in a sleigh on Christmas Eve to bring presents. In almost any other regard, Maggie is pretty sharp and seems to be very perceptive about sensing subtle nuances about situations that others her age usually don't pick up on. I'm actually quite surprised that she hasn't shown even a shadow of doubt about these time-honored children's figures.

I had to hold back a laugh while we were shopping at Target today. The kids, of course, always ask to go look at the toys once we are done getting whatever it is we actually came for. As long as we're not pressed for time, I have no problem letting them longingly stroll through the toy aisle - - always the Barbie aisle for Maggie, and action figure aisle for Aleita. Today as we walked through the toys, Maggie and Aleita continually commented to each other about various toys that they wanted. They are both actually usually quite good about understanding that they are just LOOKING at the toys and that we will not actually be PURCHASING any that day. I have seen a few kids have melt downs in the toy aisle over the denial of that moment's heart's desire, so I am at least glad that my kids understand that throwing a fit will in no way further their cause of getting what they want. Anyway - they were both talking about which toys they planned on asking from Santa for Christmas. As we left the toy aisle, Aleita spied a large camping tent hanging from the ceiling above the sporting goods department. "I am going to ask Santa for that tent!" she declared.

Seeing the price tag of $299, I said to her, "that tent is pretty expensive, you know."

Maggie very nonchalantly replied, "That's ok, Mommy. Santa can buy anything he wants."

"Is that so?" I asked her.

She looked at me as though I had an IQ of 15. "Mommy, " she said, "how do you think I got my bike last year? It's not like you and Daddy could have bought it for me."

I shook my doltish head to show that I understood. Perhaps Santa will come through for her, but somehow, I am guessing not.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


OK - I know I have no room to judge what others do with their children when it seems that I can't keep my youngest from acting like a heathen for the babysitter....but sometimes, I just can't help myself. This past Sunday evening, Chris and I took the kids out for supper at La Fondita. We were sitting there, enjoying our dinner, when a man and woman came in the door with their daughter. As they entered the restaurant, Chris and I looked at each other at the same time and smiled. It is funny when you reach the point in your marriage when you know you are thinking the same thing as your spouse and that no words have to be exchanged to verify it.

We both were smirking at the fact that these folks had a four-year old child who was sucking away on a pacifier. Before they even sat down, the mom asked the little girl if she needed to head to the potty. The child took the pacifier out of her mouth long enough to clearly answer, "no." If your child is old enough to have toilet control, I think it is time for the binky to go. It never ceases to amaze me though when I see kids as old as five or six, still plugging away on a pacifier - - - and that parents have no shame letting them do it in public. When Maggie was a baby, we let her have her pacifier until she was about one. When we switched from the bottle to the tippy cup, we took away the pacifier. Sure, we went through a rough couple of nights, but after three or four days, she did just fine getting to sleep without it at night.

Now - - all that being said - - I still have a four year old who sucks her thumb. We have tried everything imaginable to get her to stop, but to no avail. Most of the time now, she only does it when she is really tired - - but she does it so unconsciously that she doesn't even think about it. I feel like I say a hundred times a day, "Aleita - get your thumb out of your mouth." She complies when you ask her to take it out, but within minutes, she has forgotten about it and back in it goes. Thumbsucking was very convenient when Aleita was a baby - - we never had to get up in the night to find a dropped pacifier in the crib or fumble around in the backseat to find it in the car - - it was quite easy for her to self-soothe. Now that she is older though, I would really like her to stop, especially before she does any permanent damage to her teeth. People keep telling me that she'll stop when she gets to school because the other kids will shame her into quitting. I wouldn't be so sure about that. I have seen more than my fair share of thumb suckers in the public schools these days - - and I'm not just talking kindergarteners either. When I taught 4th grade, I would always have at least one or two thumbsuckers in my class.

So as I sit and pass judgment on those four year olds with pacifiers, I know there is someone else watching me with my four year old thumb sucker and doing the same thing. Perhaps I need to move out of the glass house before I wing any more stones, eh?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


“Everything is funny as long as it is happening to someone else.” - - Will Rogers

This thought continually occurs to me as a write about my youngest daughter Aleita’ s behavior. I keep getting emails and comments from several of you, letting me know how funny you think her behavior is, and that you find these stories about her really amusing. All I can say is that you think it is funny because you are not me. But I digress. For those of you who read yesterday’s entry, I imagine you are coming back today in eager anticipation of my follow up to Aleita’ s shenanigans with the babysitter. For those of you who didn’t read yesterday’s entry, you should probably start there, as today’s blog is a continuation of yesterday:

OK –so even after Aleita decided to strip naked and run around the house instead of take a nap, our babysitter, Ashley, still bravely decided to come back for round two the following week. Punctual as usual, she showed up right on time at 9AM. Aleita had been properly punished for her craziness the Saturday prior, and she, Chris and I had a “come to Jesus” meeting right before we left for the game in which I hoped we instilled the fear of God into her. Apparently this child just ain’t that God-fearin’.

Chris called home just after half time to see how things were going. At that point, Ashley reported that things were going pretty well - - the only trouble being that Aleita was throwing fits when she didn’t win one of the games they were playing. I had no help for her on that one, because she does the exact same thing for us. In general, I have found that most four year olds aren’t what you would refer to as “good sports.” They don’t play a game because it is fun necessarily, they play a game because they want to be the WINNER. When they don’t win, they get very upset. I think Maggie was about six before she was able to not pout when she lost a game. Overall, if fit-throwing for losing a game was the biggest problem she had encountered, I thought we were doing pretty well. Ha. The fat lady hadn’t sung yet.

Even though we had talked AT LENGTH with Aleita that she was going to lay down and take a nap, she decided she would again forego one. The clothes did stay on, which is a bonus. Ashley said that she and Maggie played together in her room instead, which was fine because at least they weren’t causing trouble. As the afternoon went on, however, things started to erode somewhat. Maggie and Aleita convinced Ashley that we allowed them to have chips for a snack, so between the two of them, they consumed half a bag of cheesy puffs and some Doritoes as well. Aleita then took it upon herself to feed the dogs mid-afternoon. Dandy, our puppy, only gets half a scoop full of food at each feeding, but apparently she was feeling generous, so she gave him a full one. She also fed Dempsey as well. I, of course, didn’t realize this until Maggie brought it to my attention about two minutes after I fed the dogs again that afternoon.

The real kicker was the call we received about fifteen minutes before we arrived home. In an effort to get them out of the house and active, Ashley got their bubbles out and let them play out in the yard. A harmless activity, right? Well, almost. At some point, Ashley went back inside the house to get something and looked out the large picture window in the living room, just in time to see Aleita crouched behind the tree…but instead of BLOWING bubbles, she was DRINKING her bubbles. Yep – the whole container. (I would think they would taste awful too, but she seems to have an certain affinity for bathwater as well, so go figure.) Freaked out, Ashley called her mom, then called us. We assured her we were almost home and would soon be able to put the brakes on the crazy train for her.

We had reserved Ashley for another 9AM game in October, but I am going to call her and let her off the hook and I will probably just stay home with the kids. I don’t think I can stomach that feeling of dread in my stomach of wondering and worrying all day what mischief Aleita will have dreamed up in our absence. Would I come back to find the dogs shaved, or perhaps wearing my makeup? Would she decide to try to bungee jump from the porch roof? Would she take her trike out of the garage and go tooling around the town? I just couldn’t stomach the anxiety all day.

So for those of you who have already been there and done that, have a good laugh. For my friends and family who have children yet to reach this precious point in their lives, try not to chuckle too much. Your time may well be coming.


Monday, September 15, 2008


A week ago this past Saturday was the Illini home opener against EIU. Chris and I have season tickets, and have been looking forward to college football season starting up again. The game against EIU was at 11AM, and so we had our babysitter, Ashley, at our house at 9AM. Ashley is a teenager from our church, and does a good job with the kids. She has a sister who is exactly the same age as Aleita (they are only a few days apart in age, as a matter of fact), so we knew she was used to four year old behavior. It was a beautiful day - - sunny and in the high 70s - - so we had come up with activities designed to get the kids out of the house and moving - - and hopefully, to wear Aleita out.

We asked her to walk them over to the intermediate school and let them play on the playground for as long as they wanted. We put their library books in a bag and asked her to take them to library to take their books back and check out new ones. Our library also has a small kids’ play area, with a stove and grocery store, so the kids enjoy spending time doing that as well. I told her she could let them play there for as long as they wanted. I gave her money for the restaurant in town and told her to take them to lunch there. I told her to come back after lunch and lay Aleita down for a nap. I even sat down and explained to Aleita that she was going to take a nap that day and not to argue about it.

I left home that day, headed for the football game, confident that I had given my rambunctious four year old enough to do to properly wear her out so that she would A) be too busy in the morning to get into too much trouble - - and B) be worn out enough that she would lay down and take a nap in the afternoon without too much objection. Silly, naïve, foolish mommy.
We got a call near the middle of third quarter of the game from Ashley. She had laid Aleita down for her nap, but it seems Aleita had other ideas. Within minutes of putting her in bed, Aleita had stripped herself naked and was running around the house without a stitch of clothing on. Attempts by Ashley to get her redressed and in bed were futile, and so a phone call to Mommy and Daddy was finally made. Chris had Ashley put Aleita on the phone and proceeded to chew her butt for a few minutes. His words to me were, “I think if I could have reached through the phone and choked the child, I just may have done it.”
After he got off the phone with her, according to reports from Ashley, she did at least get herself dressed, but refused to take a nap. She did at least stay fully clothed, though her behavior was not much improved. Once we got home and Ashley left, Aleita’s butt got reintroduced to the wooden spoon (they hadn’t seen each other in awhile.) She also got all the toys taken from her bedroom. The worst punishment came the next day when Chris and Maggie went into Decatur after church for lunch and some shopping, and Aleita got to stay home with me and have a cheese toastie for lunch instead. As she realized they really were leaving without her, she threw herself to the floor in a sobbing heap and proclaimed, “I wish I weren’t such a bad girl!”

Me too, kiddo. Me too.

Now you would think that after a proper punishment and lots of discussion about behavior, Aleita would have learned her lesson and been better the following week when we again went to a home Illini game. Yes, you may think that, but you’d be wrong. Come back tomorrow and I will fill you in on Aleita’s behavior this past Saturday for our babysitter, the brave (and probably underpaid) Ashley.

Thursday, September 11, 2008


As I have mentioned (several times) before, my girls have very different personalities. Maggie is very much a girly-girl and loves to play with dolls and Barbies, doesn’t much care for getting dirty, and loves to wear pretty dresses and sandals. Aleita, on the other hand, is somewhat of a brute. She likes to play with Power Rangers and Superheroes, loves to play outside and get dirty, and loves to wear “fast” tennis shoes. The girls have already decided their costumes for Halloween this year. Maggie is going to be a cheerleader, and Aleita, Batgirl.

A few weeks ago, Aleita was delighted to find out that they were going to have “Superhero” week in her room at her preschool. That week’s theme was devoted to reading about Superheroes, doing art projects related to Superheroes, and even playing dressup like a Superhero - - by far, her favorite activity that week. I couldn’t resist getting some pictures of her when she brought her “costume” home. She was slightly devastated when it had to be thrown away after she had played with it until it fell apart.

It's a bird! It's a plane! It's SUPERLETA!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


In an email to me this morning, my friend Karen very tactfully made fun of the fact that I sometimes tend to dress my girls in matching outfits. The matching outfit thing may seem to occur more often than what it actually does, due to the fact that I have a propensity to want to take their picture together when they’re all cutesy matched, so there just happens to be quite a bit of photographic evidence to support that conclusion. Karen also accused me of being one of “Those People.” You know “Those People” - - they are the ones that you see doing stuff with their kids that you swear to yourself that you will never do - - because it is the stuff that only “Those People” do. She admitted to me, however, that this past weekend, she joined the ranks of “Those People.” Seem she babysat for her niece and had ended up taking a slew of pictures of her niece and her own daughter in.. . . .you guessed it - - matching outfits! What can I say? I can’t help it - - they just look so dern cute when they are dressed alike.

It is funny that she sent me that email though. I just had a conversation with my husband a few days ago about this very same topic. I had dressed the girls in cute matching dresses for church and commented to him that I wondered how much longer they would tolerate me dressing them alike. Right now, they love it when they dress the same and often request to do so. However, I know there will soon come a time when they will find it embarrassing and immature to do so. I can only speculate about who will be the first one to object - - Maggie, because she is older and more mature, or Aleita, because she is so headstrong and fiercely independent? Only time will tell.

For now, Maggie & Aleita enjoy their "Bobbseyness." When one wears a shirt or dress that they each have alike, the other will beg to change in order to match her sister. I know, I know . . . those days are numbered.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


I understand that people mourn and grieve in different ways. Far be it from me to say that anyone’s method of coping with a profound loss of a loved one is strange or anomalous. However, I have to state for the record that if one of my loved ones dies in an automobile accident or by some other manner on a public roadway, I hereby and solemnly promise not to attach an array of stuffed animals and artificial flowers to the nearest utility pole. I will not staple up a picture of my loved one that, within a matter of days, will literally melt down the pole as it succumbs to the elements. I will not tack up a hand-lettered sign that I made with a permanent marker on a piece of construction paper that reads, “REST IN PEACE, BOO.”

I guess I just don't understand how folks find it cathartic to assemble a collection of stuffed animals and other memorabilia that will weather and mold within a few weeks and create an eyesore that will be allowed to remain for months or years because no one wants to be the one to disturb someone's public display of grief. That is just not the commemoration I would want to leave to someone I cared for deeply. Seeing dirty teddy bears, gnarled-looking dolls, and faded flowers permanently adhered to a pole would likely not assist me in the grieving process or allow me to conjure up positive images of my dearly departed. And if, God forbid, I should lose my life on a public roadway, I will come back and forever haunt every one of you who straps a janky stuffed animal or bargain-bin bouquet of plastic flowers to a pole in my honor. Oh yes, I will.

(The same applies for putting one of those ads in the paper with my picture and a sappy poem about your tears building a stairway to heaven to bring me back or some other missive publically lamenting your sorrow for me - - I can not be completely sure, of course, but I am fairly certain that once I am in heaven (God willing), I will probably not be reading the classified section of the Herald & Review. Pure speculation, of course.)

Monday, September 8, 2008


I sat down at breakfast this morning with the kids and was working my way through a bowl of Oatmeal Squares as I perused the paper. There was nothing too exciting on the front page, and within a few minutes, I had opened the paper to A3 to see the headline “Decatur Woman Found Stabbed to Death.” I shook my head and I thought to myself, “just what Decatur needs. . . another murder.” I began to read the article to find out what had happened when I saw the name of the murder victim. I sighed deeply and closed my eyes for a second, then read the rest of the article. The murder victim was one of my former students that I had when I taught elementary school.

I suppose it should come as no surprise. Even when this young woman was nine years old, I knew then that she would end up dead or in prison before she had really had a chance to live her life. This young lady never stood a chance. There was no father figure in the picture, and her mother was a crack addict who was in and out of prison for drug and petty theft and burglary charges. Her mother liked to fight and encouraged her children to do the same. She had two younger sisters for whom she carried a good deal of the responsibility of raising - - one of which was mentally disturbed, and the other who was moderately affected by cerebral palsy. As a teacher, I can tell you that there are some students that really register with you - - some that you will never forget as long as you live. For me, this young lady fell into that category. She was fiercely intelligent and witty and had a beguiling sense of humor, but unfortunately, the circumstances of her upbringing had left her angry and belligerent most of the time. She had the ability to be a natural leader among her peers, but she simply had such a short fuse that she alienated most of the young people her age from her. She was the kind of child that had the potential to one day go onto college and be successful - - but as a teacher, I knew that the chance of her overcoming her upbringing and rising above her life’s circumstances were slim to none.

I wish I would have been wrong....but I hope she has found the peace that she never had in her lifetime here on earth.

Thursday, September 4, 2008


Diet Coke, Diet Coke. . . how I love you so
You make me oh-so-happy when I am feeling low
‘round 8AM each morning, as I’m still shaking off the sleep
Out of my office and down the hall, every morn I creep

Cold and waiting to be opened , to quell my caffeine jones
In the fridge - my special stash that is mine and mine alone
When the can is gone my eyes can open all the way
Just my little ritual to begin the day

A little caffeine jolt the silver Diet Coke is packing
Just don’t buy the gold can because the caffeine’s lacking
The gold just lacks that rush that I need to start my day
If offered one I’ll shake my head and turn and walk away

I like the kind with lime but the cherry kind, no thanks
You can keep that kind all for yourself - towards the bottom's where that ranks
I like Diet Coke - - not Pepsi - - I spot the difference right off the bat
I think Diet Pepsi lacks that something special and to me it just tastes flat

I was never one for coffee, and although I do like tea
My morning Diet Coke is by far the drink for me
So if you’re craving some caffeine to get your morning started
Don’t sit there dozing at your desk and feeling all downhearted
Grab the lil’ gem in the silver can that helps get you on your way
And then you can be just like me with your Diet Coke each day.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


A few weekends ago, we joined my friend Michelle and her husband Scott and their kids, Nathaniel and Lucille, at Scovill Zoo - - thought I would post a picture Michelle sent me of Maggie, Nathaniel and me on the carousel.

Monday, September 1, 2008


There was a time when Chris and I had contemplated the possibility of increasing the size of our brood. A few years back, we had a long discussion about whether or not we wanted to have one more child. We ultimately decided that two was a good number for us, and as such, there will be no more niños becoming part of this Hale household. I knew I had finally come to peace with the idea when I was able to bring myself to getting rid of baby stuff. I wil admit that I have hung on to a lot of the girls' clothes from when they were little babies because I just can't bear to part with many of them. However, as my friends and relatives have had their babies, I have offered up high chairs, the swing, carseats, strollers, the playpen, Exersaucer, bouncer, etc. to those without. It was kind of difficult because to me it signified a definite end to a period of our lives - - no more rocking babies, giving bottles, hearing first words, seeing first smiles and was hard at first, but I knew it was the right thing for us. Before long, I felt peace with it. (Besides, I was amazed and excited when I saw how much room it freed up in the basement.)

As Chris tends to remind me, I would probably totally surrender if we had three kids. At least with two, we are even - - one more, and we would be outnumbered. What he is referring to though is the fact that my resistance has significantly weakened between child #1 and child #2. When Maggie was younger, I was much more apt to correct her conduct or give a stricter punishment for misbehavior. With Aleita, there are things that I find amusing that I used to hand out punishments for - - I know - - life is so unfair for the oldest child. I used to be able to control my laughter, but I think I have just gotten worn down.

Case in point - - a few nights ago, we had just finished having dinner. I was cleaning up the dishes, and Chris got up from the table and started to head downstairs to change the laundry from the washer to the dryer. He was about two steps out of the kitchen when Aleita let out a belch loud enough to wake the neighbors. There was a few seconds of silence that followed, which she broke with, “Whoa…that was a good one!”

Chris hightailed it back up the stairs to remind her that we say “excuse me” when we burp, and not “that was a good one,” as well as the fact that we don’t belch at the table. He arrived just in time to see me head into the bathroom, dirty plate and spatula still in hand. I had tried just turning my back to her, but I knew I was shaking uncontrollably with laughter and didn’t want her to figure out that her comment totally cracked me up. I was very close to letting out audible laughter, so I headed into the bathroom and set the plate and spatula down and flushed the toilet to cover the sound. After about a minute, I regained enough composure to rejoin them in the kitchen. Chris just looked at me somewhat disgustedly and shook his head and said, “You are so weak.”

I fully admit it. And as for that belch, she was right….it WAS a good one.