Some observances

1. If they didn't call it "psychotherapy" they might get more people interested in it

2. When being reevaluated for early intervention services, it's not really fair to say a kid "can't yet open a door" when the doorknob is still out of his reach

3. Number 2 doesn't really matter, if he scores well, but still

4. Screeching at a child does not make said child want to comply

5. Screeching at a mama does not make said mama want to comply

6. No.'s 4 and 5 create an ugly ouroboros of mama/daughter communication (at least in this household)

7. It is important for your children to memorize your home phone number, but the importance loses its value if the oldest kid uses this knowledge to call you from school every other day to freak out about money and rashes. (Money for my milk! [use your lunch account], Money for a picture day pennant! [ugh], There are spots on my back, can my teacher put lotion on them? [uhhh…])

8. As soon as you tell your kid's trach nurse that he hasn't been sick in FOREVER, he wakes up with his eye sealed shut and green stuff leaking from his trach hole

9. There are no retroactive things one can do to make one's nurse happy after one's dog eats said nurse's breakfast bar

10. It takes a really long time to print custom temporary tattoos

11. Shouting "GET OVER HERE, YOU LITTLE BITCH" at a piece of grass on the kitchen floor that refuses to succumb to the vacuum is neither helpful nor a good learning experience for your impressionable audience

12. When asked if you would prefer Tai Chi or meditation and you respond, "Actually, I just want to hit things and break stuff" you get to watch eyebrows raise high, high, high onto foreheads

13. Acetaminophen is a wonder drug


hair pick resurgence
the young boy's hair resists, tho
fie on you, Nature!

For the past several weeks, the wee one has been very intent on growing out his hair. I even took him to a super hip place to get his hair did. The sailor-suit wearing tattooed man de-scraggled the wee one nicely, so that his hair could grow out evenly.

The problem is, I have misunderstood the plan for the wee one's hair. I was thinking he was going for a sort of Disney Channel-chic, you know… one of those early Zac Efron hairdos, or maybe even (God forbid) some kind of Justin Bieber thing.

But no.

The wee one and I were talking about his plans the other day and he was expressing dismay at how slowly his hair was growing. I, on the other hand, have been impressed with how quickly his hair has been growing.

"What do you mean QUICKLY?" he asked with disdain. "It's just laying on my head."

"Laying on your head?" I asked. "It's growing over your ears now, and your bangs are longer…."

"But it's not growing up! Why won't it grow up?!" he asked.

"Grow up?"

"Like a disco ball, mom. I want disco ball hair. That's why I've been carrying around that hair pick in my backpack." He said this all very accusingly, like I was purposely keeping him from growing an afro.

A) He carries around a hair pick in his backpack?

B) Hooray for diverse elementary schools, where young boys can envy their peers' "disco ball hair"

C) WHEW, that was a close call, J-Devil Bieber and your ass ugly hair

So now I feel bad. I've been encouraging him to grow out his hair, not knowing that I've been encouraging Mr. I-Have-The-Most-Non-Disco-Ball-Worthy-Hair-Ever to grow an afro. Dude.

I'm terrified that one day he's going to buy an afro wig and wear it to school. THAT'S going to be fun to explain to the principal.

A hair pick in his backpack…. this kid always keeps me on my toes.

Maybe he'll go for a fauxhawk?

Probably not.

We’re going to be on Ellen!

About a million years ago, I wrote a letter to the Ellen show. I actually wrote it two weeks before Ike got his trach. I find this darkly hilarious because the letter is all about how shitty our luck was and how everything was terrible. LITTLE DID WE KNOW….

Anyway, it's taken from then until now, but I actually heard back from someone! I've been keeping it under wraps because I didn't want to jinx it, but holy shit you guys, Ellen wants us on the show!!

The producer is calling me back at the end of the week with a shooting schedule. Holy shit.

I thought you'd get a kick out of the letter, so here it is in its entirety. Please, let us all pause and laugh hysterically at the SHIT LUCK I brought upon this house by writing this letter, all thinking to myself, "Well heck, there's no way things could get worse."

Ha ha.

Cynically cynicalness aside, here's the letter in all its glory:

Hello, Ellen's Producer-Minion!

I find myself in something of a
vortex of suck, and I thought that really, things are in such a surreal
state of constant WHAT? that writing a groveling email to the Ellen
show is a completely expected and required next step.


I'm writing this because I need someone to figure out
how to destroy the black cloud hanging over my house. I'm not sure if
Ellen can do some kind of voodoo dance, or if she could get Steve
Spangler to create a science-y black cloud sucker-upper, but I know she must
have some tricks up her sleeve.

Here's a quick rundown of the drama:
Last July my son was born three months early. I had already spent 5 weeks in the hospital, then he spent 8 weeks in the NICU.

Not fun.

But he's OK. Yay! And my other two kids are almost recovered from the ordeal. I may never recover. Holy crap, that sucked.

Fast forward to January 2009. After creating a "Suck it, 2008"
Facebook group for everyone else who had a terrible year, I was really,
really looking forward to 09. But then, in rapid-fire succession, I
came down with mastitis and my infant son came down with croup.

Back into the hospital he went.

The wily croup didn't go away, though, so we were off to visit some specialists.

was just diagnosed with laryngomalacia (sounds scary, but is not. It
means he has a floppy larynx. Crazy, right? It always sounds like he's
gasping for breath, but thankfully it doesn't actually affect his
breathing – unless he has croup). So there's that.

AND THEN, THEN, one week after the baby was discharged from the hospital, my husband was laid off.


what brings me to you. I know Ellen can't create a job for him. And I
know she is probably un-practiced in creating non-floppy larynxes. But
maybe she would like to mention my book on the air? I actually have two
of them. Haiku Mama (because seventeen syllables is all you have time to read) was published by Quirk Books in 2006, and Mike Stellar: Nerves of Steel is launching on June 23rd (Random House Books for Young Readers).

I know she probably doesn't have time to read them and that's why
I'd like to offer to mail her not only copies of the books, but my
friend Amy The Librarian as well (Amy was also recently laid off
because apparently my bad luck is contagious). Amy is pretty tiny and
will probably
climb into a box if I use donuts to lure her in it and trap her. She
can follow Ellen
around and read the books to her, just like the announcers on those
Geico commercials. Then, if Ellen likes one of the books, she can
casually throw it into some conversation on the show. "What, Lauren
Graham? This piano medley reminds you of wanting to buy and read Mike
Stellar: Nerves of Steel
by KA Holt? But of course!" A million billion people will
then buy a copy of the book, and all together they can put them in
slingshots and shoot them at the black cloud over my house.

I don't need to be on the show or anything, my social ineptness is
quite amazing. I would probably turn red, fall down, possibly catch on
fire, roll into a flock of geese and then have to be landed on the
Hudson. Not pretty.

But maybe Ellen could mention one of the books. Amy The Librarian
and I would be happy to reciprocate by mentioning Ellen on our podcast.
And since we podcast in our Hanes underwear (because we have no money
for clothes), we are hotly anticipating a Hanes sponsorship soon. This
will bring us some fame, of course, and we would be happy to share that
with Ellen.

I look forward to hearing from you, Producer-Minion. I am buying donuts to lure Amy the Librarian into the box, as we speak…

All my best (which might actually be contaminated with my effed up luck, so watch out),

Kari Anne Roy


What did you think? Funny, yes? Also, all a lie. We are not going on Ellen. April Fool's!

(The letter is real though, I just never had time to send it.)

(Note: I got Ike's birth month wrong)

(Also note, Amy and I do not have a podcast, though we constantly threaten to start one.)