Friday, July 27, 2007


I just got home from dinner. At 6pm, we took our family to Buca di Beppo. For those familiar with the FAMILY restaurant, it is a FAMILY restaurant that serves Italian food FAMILY style. My son thinks it is the greatest place ever.

Tonight, we were there and poor Eva hit the tired wall. When Jack was little, he could fall asleep anywhere. Poor Eva, she just can't. So, she cried. And cried. Jon and I took turns taking her out to calm down. Keep in mind, Eva is not the only child in this restaurant. There were literally hundreds of kids running around and yelling and the restaurant is LOUD.

So, Jon brings Eva back and I was finishing my meal to take my turn when some woman yelled from the next table, "please pack up your food and take your screaming child home."

I said, "excuse me?" She then said, "I did not come out to dinner to have a child screaming at the next table."

I could not believe my ears. I politely turned to her and said, "well, maybe you should have picked a different restaurant."

I'm not kidding when I say that it was all I could do not to hurl something (or expletives) at her. I took Eva out so Jon could finish his dinner.

Five minutes later, when Eva was happy, I brought her back and moved my chair so that woman could have a clear view of my daughter.


Yes, Homer, I'd LOVE a beer

Here I am living my lifelong dream of being in The Simpsons. I had to make an avatar to do it but at least I'm there. Of course, I put myself where I would probably most likely be in the episode, Moe's Tavern.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Why You Should Never Leave Two Three-year Olds in a Room Together for More Than Two Minutes

Yeah, it's diaper rash cream and then covered with baby powder. Check out the dresser behind them. You can't see the rest of the room in this photo but you get the idea.


Jon and I took the family to Houston this weekend. One thing about the way we travel, if we have the time, we always take the back roads. I really think that it gives you such a good feel for the area.

As we left for our trip, I picked up our paper to read in the car. There was this article on "geotourism." What? Basically, it is a made-up word to describe pretty much how every person over the age of 30 traveled when they were 22. It's learning where the locals eat and play. It's going to Australia and instead of hitting your Starbucks (yes, they have them there, I saw them), you can find where the locals go for their coffee. For some reason, the world is so homogonized, we need a word for that.

So, back to Saturday. We hit the road early and headed down I-45. Jon had looked on a website to find where people had blogged about a good restaurant for us to have lunch off the beaten path. Boy, did he find one.

In Huntsville, TX, the New Zion Missionary Baptist Church has a BBQ restaurant attached to it. If you go there, please do not be confused with the Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church. As we found out, they have no restaurant.

I called the restaurant to get information on where they are. I was told to exit 45 at Montgomery Street, turn towards the Dairy Queen and drive until I saw a smoker on the side of a church. Now, I knew I was going to love it.

We followed the directions and sure enough, they were correct. It was a shack with a smoker in front right next to a church. AND was the food good! In addition, I give it an A++ on atmosphere.

Having spent much time in New Orleans, I always follow the rules that the more run down the restaurant, the better the food. That is definitely the case here.

I asked the guy how long they had been in business, he said, "well, there were some folks who started it when they were young. Then, they got old. Then, they gave it to the church."

So, if you want to experience "geotourism" right here in Texas, I highly recommend it!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

You're the Best Mom in the Whole Wide World

So, today, my son, who had been nothing but wonderful for a full 48 hours told me that I was the best Mom in the whole wide world. I nearly cried.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Mommy, Are You Awake?

I know that all moms of 3-year old children think that their kids ask alot of questions. I have to think that my son asks more questions than the average bear. So, I thought, is it just me? Am I just impatient or does he really ask too many questions? I thought I would track them for just one hour this morning to see. Here's the list. Keep in mind, this is just one hour of 12 that Jack is awake and I'm not recording the statements that occur in the hour. Also, each question begins with "Mommy".


Mommy, are you awake?
Will you please rub my back?
Did you sleep all night long?
Why is Daddy snoring?
Can we go to the den?
Why do you have that piece of paper?
What is that pen for?
What are you writing?
Can we watch TV this morning?
Why not?
Are these my big boy pants?
Is poo poo good for your body?
Can I go potty now?
Why does little bus make this noise?
Is that dog barking at the trash truck?
Why did the trash truck take my bat?
Is it because I hit my baby sister?
Am I a good boy now?
Is Maria coming today?
Why not?
Is she ok?
Why is she at her doctor and not mine?
Where does my doctor live?
What's that noise?
Is Little Fuzz (his sister) awake?
Where is my airplane?
Is this a regional jet or a 777?
Why do I have more in the diaper bag?
My diaper bag or yours?
Is Little Fuzz awake?
Is Willam coming today?
Will we be playing on the slip and slide?
Will he be bringing his swimsuit?
Can we go get Little Fuzz now?
Why are we by ourselves in my room?
Why is Daddy still sleeping?
If I am a good boy today, can I have my trash truck out of the closet?
Can I vaccum the room?
Why doesn't Little Fuzz eat chest anymore?
I'm too big to eat chest, too?
Eva is as big as I am?
Why can't I hit my baby sister?
Do I have a guitar like Smitty (from the Imagination Movers)?
Can we dance to the Imagination Movers?
What are you doing?
Why are you taking sleep out of Eva's eye?
Why is Eva lifting herself up on the bed?
When can I take Pancake (his stuffed dog) on a 777 airplane in the morning?
Why is Lightning McQueen a car?
Why do I have brown eyes?
Why do you have brown eyes?
Why does Eva have blue eyes?
Can I snuggle with you and Eva on the bed?

Yes, honey, I'd love to snuggle with you and Eva on the bed. Let's just please have quiet time for 5 minutes, heck, I'll even take 1 minute.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

The Note

So, I got my first note from a teacher yesterday saying that Jack was sent to the office.

I always imagined that at some point I would get one but when he's three???!!!.

I guess I should have been prepared. Towards the end of the school year, I got a note from Jack's teacher saying that one day, he had been put in timeout 8 times. He is in school FOUR hours and had timeout 8 times. But he was not sent to the office.

Yesterday, he was so bad, he was sent to the office. I can only imagine that since they did not send him to the office on the day he had 8 timeouts what he must have done to get sent there yesterday.


Flight of the Conchords - Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros

If I were only a rap star.... Too bad I did not think of these names earlier. Also, if I were to write a song, it would sound alot like this.

Most of you do not know that I have a rap name. It's Azz Kikah. On the street, I just go by Azz. Ok, by the "street" I mean in my living room or on the street outside of my best friend, Joseph's NYC apartment. So, I guess you can call it a "street" name but Chelsea is hardly the 'hood. Also, it is hard to have street cred when you thought of your rap name over Sunday brunch at a french restaurant in the West Village.

I guess I keep it so that one day, I can make up a story about how cool and hip I once was.

Monday, July 16, 2007

International Peace Conference

Well, I had quite a week. Jon's sister is the Executive Director of Nobel Women's Initiative, a collective of all the living female Nobel Peace Prize winners.

Of the 100 winners, only 12 have been women. Of those 12, 7 are still living and one is under house arrest in Burma. This week, three of the 7 came to Dallas to speak of peace. I was lucky to not only meet all three but get to spend considerable amounts of time with them one on one. It was an experience I won't ever forget.

There were many things that were interesting about meeting three of the most accomplished women in the world. First, what made me most excited was how down to earth each of them was. I know that everyone says that that they are just "human like the rest of us". But I have to admit, I was extremely nervous meeting them. I mean, what would I have to say? Let's see. Anyone read People this week? No? Well, I'm out.

These women were so funny and so amazing. One of my favorite conversations that I had with Jody Williams was which of the chores in the house we both liked/disliked. Now, that's a subject I have lots of knowledge on!

The unfortunate part of the conference occured early on. Betty Williams won for her work in Northern Ireland back in '76. She gave a great and very emotional speech about how much work she was doing to help refugee children. She has this amazing plan to create a City of Peace for refugee children. Not a pie in the sky city but an actual one. They have already had the land donated to them by the Italian government.

Anyway, during the Q&A portion, Betty was asked how it would be that Americans can get back in the good graces of the world. She said, "Impeach Bush". Everyone applauded. Then she made the comment, "man, he is so bad, I could kill that guy." Of course, the next day, front section, page 2 of the Dallas Morning News, "Nobel Peace Laureate wants to Kill the President". ugh. No mention at all of her Peace City or anything else. Day 2, it was on the front page of the paper. I was so angry. I mean, yes, she should have known better being in such a conservative town like Dallas and saying things like that where the media was present. It was just so frustrating. Never mind the irony in the title of the article.

Overall, it was a great conference. During Jody's speech, she made a call to action to stop talking about things and do something. It really made me think about what I can do here locally. While I am unable to run for anything, maybe I can support someone who is. I'll write my congressman more. He really needs some work. I'll fight Fidelity more to have them remove their money from the Chinese government who is supporting the crisis in Darfur.

It is so important, as a parent, to show your children that it is OK to get involved. While I'm often not sure of the example we set for our kids in other ways, Jon and I always take our children to vote. My daughter is 9 months old and has voted with me three times.

So, my thought today, whatever your politics, what are you doing? Whatever you talk about doing, don't be afraid, just do it. Think about where women would be if those brave ladies did not fight for our right to vote. To quote Yoda, "Do or do not, there is no try."

Hey! Well, I finally made this work. Quick post, here are the kids taking a bath together for the first time. I'll post more later.

Ok, also a pic of Eva.