Our school had a very high-end fund raiser last weekend, so I wanted to look even more marvelous than usual . This involved almost an entire day of dreaded grooming activities with products I generally ignore (wax, eye pencils, blow dryer, strapless bra, etc...) The fake fingernails had somehow found their way into my grocery cart the day before. Well, why not? I've never managed to grow a nail past the end of my fingertip, and I thought it would look SO exotic and sexy. Saturday afternoon before the event, Nathan was gone, playing with a friend; Sara was reading, so I unwrapped them and got started.
The left hand was easy, although I was a little shocked to discover that the stuff that holds the nails on is actually Superglue. Really, who are they trying to kid? I'd know that smell anywhere. S***, I'm Supergluing plastic slabs to the ends of my fingers. Is this wise?
Sara wandered into the kitchen as I was finishing my left hand. "Ew. That's creepy. " "What! See how elegant my hands look! You don't like that?" "Well, it may look OK on some moms, but on you, it looks creepy. You never have long nails." Sigh. This is not recommended on the package instructions, but I went and got the nail clippers and cut them down little. "Better, but still creepy, Mom."
The right hand was WAY harder. My already clumsy left hand was further inhibited by the claws I had just glued onto it. I Superglued the tip of one finger on my left hand to the cuticle of another finger on my right hand and hopped around the kitchen, painfully pulling them apart. The nail wouldn't stay on the middle finger. And it didn't just drop off - it would spring off energetically. I was pretty much at my wit's end by the time Nate arrived home and the mother of his little friend walked him to the door. I went out to thank her and wave good-bye. As I did so, the nail shot off. She was clearly freaked out but too polite to say anything.
I won out in the end. My nails looked great on the night, as long as no one looked closely enough to see that a couple of them were on kind of crooked. But now, I have them and they are not necessarily a plus.
1. I am overly enthralled by them. I stare at them, click them, drum them, gesture more than usual, point a lot. I must be getting insufferable 2. They get stuff under them and even (since I didn't spread the glue evenly) behind them. One finger looks like it has a broken blood vessel under there, but I think it's tomato from the marinara I made last night. 3. Inserting and removing contacts? Ass wiping? Hair washing? Picking up sheets of paper? Typing? Especially typing. How do people with long nails do these things? 4. I bite on my nails a bit; but unlike a real nail that will just splinter off, these things are tough. If I gnaw hard enough, I can I can make them into misshapen shovel-like masses, covered in tooth-marks.
Luckily, they have started coming off already. I haven't lost any for a couple of days, but three of them came off right away on Sunday. I snapped one off while scrubbing the stove top, one while putting way groceries, and one while loading the truck after a Costco run. In that case, I picked it up, looked at it bemusedly and stuck it in my pocket. I don't remember which coat I was wearing, though. I suppose I will find it one of these days and it will scare the hell out of me.
Nathan is learning to read, using these little phonics books that we get from the library. They're a bit contrived at the best of times: "The squire struts down Stream Street." His latest book, "Stan the Squid", is really taking us to the outer limits. He's a school custodian.
Obviously a widely respected member of the community.
Here, 4th grade is devoted to Utah Studies. Generation after generation, new groups of kids take on the perennial "Salt Dough Utah" project (hereafter referred to as SDU).
I suppose that, for kids that are kinesthetic learners, there is a point to the whole thing. Besides testing my ability to accurately cut a 12 x 9 inch piece of cardboard. Nate wanted to make one, too. Unrestricted by a two-page packet of "SDU Guidelines" like his sister, he just made whatever the hell he wanted.
After rolling, SDU needs to be trimmed.
You can see that Sara has already added part of the Uinta range. Utah is a pretty easy shape. Woe betide the child who has to make a salt dough Alaska, Florida or Hawaii. But think of Salt Dough Kansas. Roll, trim, and you're done.
Now the Oquirrs... and the Wasatch...
Nate made Utah not as it is, but how he wishes it were. Lots of arches.
Rivers are formed with a Popsicle stick.
Then, after some time to dry ("several days!", read the instructions. More like 30 minutes), it's time to paint.
Orange = Colorado Plateau = great camping
Brown = Great Basin = more great camping
Green = Temperate Alpine = kind of crowded camping
Purple = Mountain Ranges = why camp when you can ski?
Now all we have to do is get it to the school in one piece.