Arkie Mama: Many thanks

to Little Rock Mamas Shareese, Hilary, Katherine and LaRhonda for volunteering to help out at Friday night’s Boo at the Zoo. We saw so many cute costumes!

During our time at Boo, we handed out glow bands, sponsored free carousel rides and took photos of trick-or-treaters for our costume contest. There’s still plenty of time to enter (through Nov. 7) so make sure you submit your children’s photos here.

First prize is a $250 gift card to The Little Gym; second is a year’s family pass to the Little Rock Zoo and third is two free haircuts at Pigtails & Crewcuts.

Also please make sure to vote on your favorite costumes! The kids (and their parents!) will appreciate your support.

Arkie Mama: I have a mass flu clinic question/complaint

Namely — why did the babies and toddlers have to leave the comfort of their cars and wait in a long line — in the rain, no less — to get their vaccinations?

I was told that health workers thought it would be easier to vaccinate small children if the parents held them.

Uh, hello?

As the mother of a child who fights all shots, I can say with some authority that a car seat and seat belt would have offered more in the way of constraint than my weary arms. (Because I thought it was a drive-through clinic, my 4-year-old was in PJs and bare feet. I had to hold him in that blasted line for 45 minutes. By the time it was our turn, my arms were shaking from the effort.)

Meanwhile, the adults-only cars cruised through in comfort while we stood in the rain.

After the E-man was vaccinated, we had to go home and change clothes, because even with an umbrella, we had gotten drenched.

Don’t get me wrong — I’m very grateful for these mass clinics. I just think it would have been better to allow kids and parents to remain in their cars during the process.

Arkie Mama: Yes, it really happens

Even eight years of marriage, Hubs and I still contend that pottying is a private endeavor. That’s not to say I don’t poke my head in to grab my toothbrush, but he yelps when I do that, just as I do when he turns the tables.

Which is why, nearly five years ago, I had a sinking feeling each time I remembered the pushing part of my son’s delivery.

While much remained a blur, I distinctly recalled hearing my doula say to the nurse: “Oh, I’ll get that.”

What, I wondered, was the “that”? Could it be … no, surely not.

Months later, I worked up the courage to ask Hubs.

“So when I was pushing during the E-man’s birth, did I — well, you know?”

“Yeah,” Hubs replied with a smirk. “You did.”

Pause. {blink, blink}

“Why didn’t you tell me?” I wailed.

“Because you were postpartum. And hormonal. And I wanted to live,” Hubs said matter-of-factly.

Perhaps this incident was the reason for my abnormal interest in Hubs’ first colonoscopy.

I read him the infamous Dave Barry colonoscopy column. I watched him chug his first round of the prep and then began asking every few minutes — rather gleefully, I admit — if he was feeling the effects yet.

“No,” he said smugly. Again and again.

And then he disappeared into the bathroom for hours.

“Why is Daddy still in the bathroom?” little E-man asked.

“Well, he has to go to the doctor tomorrow,” I said evasively.

“Because he can’t stop pooping?” the E-man inquired.

I found this so hilarious that I insisted on telling Hubs about his son’s conclusion through the bathroom door.

Hubs wasn’t nearly as amused.

The next morning, I sat in a waiting room, flipping through magazines while Hubs underwent his procedure.

Just as I finished my third People, a nurse summoned me to the recovery area. I found Hubs curled up peacefully on a gurney.  Only curtains separated him from the neighboring patients.

“He needs to pass gas before we can let him go,” the nurse informed me.

I felt an evil grin spread across my face.

“Really?” I asked.

“Yes,” she said. “When he wakes up, I’ll bring him some Coke.”

Important fact: Hubs’ horror of emitting bodily noises rivals my horror of pooping in delivery rooms.

I leaned over my sedated husband.

“Guess what?” I whispered huskily. “You have to toot before they’ll discharge you.”

I giggled manically. Hubs didn’t stir.

I opened the novel I’d brought along. When the nurse returned with the Coke, we finally roused Hubs.

“You still haven’t tooted!” I cackled.

The nurse looked at me oddly. Perhaps my enthusiasm unnerved her.

When she left, I resumed torturing my spouse.

“Did you hear what she said? You have to toot before we can get out of here. So get busy. I promise, I won’t laugh at you.”

Of course, when he ripped the first one I promptly collapsed into hysterics.

As he continued to make a joyful noise, a patient in the next cubicle asked the nurse what was going on.

“There’s a colonoscopy patient next to you,” she explained.

“Sorry!” Hubs called out groggily.

I snorted and snickered and carried on like a junior high boy until the doctor walked in and shot me a puzzled look.

“Everything looks fine,” he said.

I pulled myself together long enough to listen to the doctor. Then I drove my sleepy husband home.

Hubs doesn’t remember any of my juvenile recovery-room antics.

But now, at last, I consider us even in the Arena of Indignities.

Arkie Mama: Mouthwatering Mondays

My friend Cindy, aka Mom on a Wire, gave me this recipe, oh, about three or so years ago. This is my contribution in the chili department. My husband makes a mean venison chili, and while I can’t hope to beat that, this one does me proud. 

White Chili


chicken breasts


one can diced green chilis

one cup chicken broth

2 cans white cannellini beans (or white northern)

can diced tomatoes

can of corn

1/2 cup sour cream

1 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon oregano

1/2 teaspoon cilantro 

1/8 teaspoon red pepper

salt, pepper to taste

(I use a bit more of the red pepper!)


Saute onion and chicken in oil. Add broth, green chilis and spices. Simmer 5 minutes. Drain and then add beans and corn. Add sour cream. Add two to three tablespoons of flour to thicken. Add diced tomatoes. Heat through. Top with cheddar cheese and tortilla chips.

For more mouth-watering recipes, click the button below. It will take you to A Southern Fairytale, where you’ll find more delicious recipes!


Arkie Mama: Hot doctors vs. the grandpa variety

So several weeks ago, I found a tick in the crease of my inner thigh.

Due to the rather intimate location, I had to ask Hubs to remove it for me. Nothing says romance like having to ask your spouse to pull out a parasite that’s taken up residence dangerously close to the ladybits.

It’s been three weeks, and the bite still itches, prompting me to ask Hubs nightly if he’s sure he got the whole tick out.

My greatest fear? That it’s either infected or I’m coming down with a raging case of Lyme’s, thereby requiring me to visit my family practitioner — who is male and YOUNGER than me — for an inspection of said bite.

In days of old, I never cared much about the age or gender of my doctors. Now, however, I’ve become a bit obsessive, Googling each new physician to see how old he is.

Ladies, I have been the not-so-proud, much-older patient of countless doctors in recent years.

Back in July 2007, I wrote this post on my old blog. It still very much applies.

Chunky matron seeks …

… older, wrinkled, grandfatherly sort of doctor — must be at least 65 or look it — to serve the many health needs of a nearsighted, allergy-prone, mole-checking, still-of-reproductive-age hypochondriac.

Hot or even mildly cute young doctors need not bother to apply.

I’m on a hot-doctor roll these days, and I say now: “ENOUGH ALREADY! My ego is fragile. My body isn’t what it used to be. I’m not in any condition, mentally or physically, to disrobe in front of men MY AGE. Or … *sob* … younger.”

In recent years, I have —

— been to an ER inhabited by the most beautiful medical staff ever. Granted, I was very drugged, but I swear I must have accidentally landed on the set of Grey’s Anatomy.

— gone to a dermatologist to report all suspicious moles, only to be passed off to Hot Doctor No. 1. One of the moles in question was ON MY REAR.

— been referred to an orthopedic surgeon — yes, another hottie — with whom the following dialogue took place:

Cathy: Yeah, the shoulder is improving, but I still can’t … you know … reach my arm all the way behind my back.

Hot Doctor: (Looks puzzled.)

Cathy: You know — (*reaches behind back with good arm and mimes fastening a bra*)
(oh for pete’s sake, Cathyyouidiot, entire crowds have gathered around your hoo-ha during childbirth. Just say it. Bra. B-R-A. arrghhh…)

Doctor: Yes, well, just — (*doctor mimes fastening a bra in the front and then sliding it around the chest*)

Cathy: That’s a pain in the ass. (did i just say that?)

Doctor: OK, well, just buy one that fastens in the front.

Cathy: Um … yeah.

(Oh, great. I haven’t even hit 40, but I’m reduced to buying the Arthritis Bra? I mean, look at it:

The grandma bra

The grandma bra

I am SO not ready for that. Still, I wasn’t about to argue this point with Hot Doctor when I couldn’t even say “bra.” Because then what if I actually had to say “breasts?” Ack!)

I was still blushing when I reached the car.

Have age and childbearing really turned me into such a prudish, stammering moron?


I mean, clearly I have no problem talking about any number of very personal issues right here in cyber-public.

And countless male co-workers who’ve had the misfortune to sit next to me during my pregnancies probably know waaaay more about my girly bits than Hubs ever will.

(Wanna see a male reporter haul ass across the newsroom? Just say, “Mucous plug.” Works every time.)

And I have no problem discussing any number of health issues with older, ordinary-looking doctors — like whether certain acts of marital bliss … *cough* … during pregnancy really do shoot air into the va jay jay, which, as we all know from the Devil Pregnancy Book, is a bad thing because it can lead to one getting an air embolism. Down there. And you could like, die.

It’s just that the young doctors make me feel so self-conscious. A lot of them don’t yet have kids, so you just know they’re totally unfamiliar with a woman’s postpartum pooch or nipples that no pasty could cover.

Where is my senior citizen crowd of medical professionals? We must banish all these McDreamy and McSteamy types who make me blush and babble. Bring the gray-hairs out of retirement. Please. Now.

Because if I ever decide I want a tummy tuck, or maybe to have the girls hoisted back up to ye old place of glory, well, I’d rather my doctor be so ancient that he sees my 37-year-old body as positively youthful. (“Oh, my dear. You certainly don’t need any work done yet. These are the breasts of a 30-year-old. Truly. But if you insist…”)