Monday, July 28, 2008

Sooner or later, it had to come out.

We, as a family, often come up with strange names for ordinary things. This is probably true of all families (to some extent), but having grown up with a father who thoroughly enjoyed word-play (except when we were playing dumb or trying to spin things in our favor--then we heard, "Young lady, don't you bandy words with me!"), I especially enjoy toying with semantics. When we were kids, sometimes my siblings and I would ponder just one word at a time, saying it over and over until it became strange. Try it--just pick a word and say it a bunch of times until it makes you think, "What were they thinking when they came up with that word?" Every now and then, one of our family words eeks out, and everyone around us gets just a little taste of how weird we can be. Weird, but in a good way.

When the Frog was little, "The Wizard of Oz" was really "Mizzer Bozz." Her blanket was her "Minky." It's apparently a commonly used word for toddlers, as I've seen numerous products marketed using that exact term--mostly through work-at-home-mom-type small businesses, like this one. But there were lots of others. Much like the Monkey asks for his Ohs, and loves to have maish-meeyows in his hot chocolate, we also have our various situational plays on Reepicheep's nickname (Eaticheep, Sleepicheep, Gooficheep, etc...), we also have family words for foods. The Pickle said, "Dit-dew," for thank you. They all have their unique speech patterns, and siblings tend to feed off of siblings.

My latest craving has been carbohydrates, and lots of them. Mostly noodle in form, but occasionally with rice snuck in there for variety. (Ooh....from noodles to rice. The options are astounding.....) But specifically, the one thing I desire above all other carbohydrates are Taco Bell's Cheesy Fiesta Potatoes. I long for them. They haunt my dreams. My waking hours are spent contemplating their Tremendously Processed Non-Dairy Artificially Colored Cheese Flavored Substitute, mixed with full-fat sour cream, perched atop a mound of fried potato chunks. I positively shudder with delight merely at the thought!!

Monkey has a multi-purpose word to refer to both tomatoes and potatoes. That word is "pantato." It's adorable. Say it out loud, and you'll never go back to the way you were. Last week, My Darling took pity upon his overwhelmed bride, and he took me to the Taco Bell. I had been searching for a pet name for my favorite treat, and the name came to me on the way to the drive-thru. That name was: Pantatoey Goodness! You know you want to say that one....I could not wait to get that hot, gooey Pantatoey Goodness into my hands. I know exactly how bad they are for me. It's just that I don't care! They're so good it's frightening. I did, however, refrain from actually saying the words, "Yes, may I please have an order of Pantatoey Goodness?" into the speaker. I figured if I had, I'd be letting all of the Taco Bell employees know what a wacky woman they were dealing with. Since enough people in my life already know this, I chose to keep my secret well-guarded.

Fast forward to this evening. At suppertime, we sat down to a fabulous meal, prepared by My Darling. Lovely pork chops, grilled to perfection, seasoned only with freshly ground pepper and sea salt. Green beans, opened and heated like the professionals do, by the Frog. And a delectable foil packet, fairly bursting full of red potatoes, which had been drizzled with olive oil, salted and peppered, and grilled into tender morsels. Oh, yes, the term exploded at the table.

Daddy was seranaded, as best he should be. Arias were brought forth on the spot by grateful children, thanking him for the Pantatoey Goodness. And now I hear my children singing about the attributes of Pantatoey Goodness from various corners of the house. Monkey, upstairs in the addition, working with his Daddy, pounding around with his hammer, and singing at the top of his little voice, "Paaaan-tatoey GOOOOOD-ness!!" The Reepicheep, putting away the clean dishes from the dishwasher, and chanting, "Pantatoey, pantatoey, pantatoey goodness!" The Pickle, vacuuming the chair feet (we have dogs...the pads on the bottoms of the chair feet collect fuzz...), and singing to himself, "Pantatoey goodness, pantatoey goodness, pantatoey goooooooodnesssssss...." The Frog is the only exception. She merely looks upon her brothers and sister as though they're completely looney. Alas, being my children, she may be at least partly right.


My Darling is going hammer and tong at the addition. Reaching the milestone of 20 weeks of knitting on the Wee One last Sunday (which makes this Week 21) tripped a switch in his head, I think. Tonight he brought home his latest awesome purchase: gorgeous, industrial quality French doors for our bedroom. He finds these spectacular deals at a Habitat for Humanity store. When people remodel or misorder, they can donate the usable leftovers to this store. We, the frugal consumer, spend about 80-90% less at this store to buy things that we need for our project, and Habitat for Humanity gets all the profit. Not a bad deal, eh? These doors, which would easily have been in the $1000 range retail, set us back a mere $250. Nothing to sneeze at, certainly, but a heck of a deal, for Pete's sake!

At the moment he's working on closing up the last's a tricky part of joining the wall of the addition to the roof of the existing house...hard to explain, but if you saw it you'd probably say, "How in the world are you going to engineer that?" It's amazing to me. My Darling is literally building this house out of his head. There are no blueprints. There is nothing on paper, except what he draws out for his own calculation purposes. God has blessed him with an ability to picture something and then just build it. And He's seen fit to bless me with this wonderful husband!!

Hopefully the weather will cooperate this week...not too much rain, not too much heat, just the right amount of breeze and a smattering of cloud cover would be just about perfect. If all goes well, he might get the roofing done, and that would make him a very happy husband, indeed.

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