Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Even in Imperfection, There is Perfection

I'm not usually the sentimental type. I hate getting all mushy and ooey gooey and sappy. I save that for the King. He's the one who cries at Hallmark commercials. Me? I like to think I'm tough. But, sometimes I let my guard down. Sometimes I really do take the time to put aside the sarcasm and silliness and think about things at a different level. Don't get too used to it, though. It won't happen much.

This time of year is one of those times. With all the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it's easy to forget the true miracle that happened, which is the whole reason we celebrate Christmas in the first place. We forget about that tiny baby, born to a virgin mother, laying cold in a manger. We forget what purpose he would serve during his short life on the earth.

Instead, we worry about buying just the right presents, hanging the lights, sending out the cards, baking the cookies, and planning meals. I was that way, too, until about four years ago. The Christmas of 2003, The Beast received a gift. It was something I'd always had, and didn't think much of. Number One and The King had it, too. In fact, I didn't know anyone who didn't have it. It seemed like such a simple thing. It was something I suppose I'd taken for granted. That is until the day I realized that my sweet baby didn't have it.

The Beast was born with a very serious hearing loss. At the time he was born, his hearing loss was moderate to severe, meaning he couldn't hear my voice or the beautiful voice of his father as he sang. He couldn't hear the rain falling, the phone ringing, the dogs barking, or the church choir singing. He was so perfect, though, as he laid in my arms calmly sleeping. He was oblivious to the world around him, and seemed to be just content in his imperfection. It was perfect for him.

That Christmas, just after he turned three months old, The Beast got his very first pair of hearing aids. I remember how much the words to the song, "I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day" suddenly meant to me. I wanted my perfect little baby, even with his slight imperfection, to hear the bells, too. And he did. When The King and I took him to the audiologist so she could give him his Christmas present, we were so worried that he'd hate them, or that they wouldn't work or...oh, I don't know. We just worried. But, as we placed those great big hearing aids into those tiny little ears, he opened his eyes and looked straight up at his daddy...and he smiled.

That was four short (and VERY long) years ago. The Beast eventually lost the rest of his natural hearing and has since received a cochlear implant. Again, he was given a gift that I'd only ever taken for granted. His implant gave him even more sound and clarity and independance. He reminds me every day to take NOTHING for granted. Each and every morning, when I place his aid in one ear and his cochlear implant processor on the other, he says two tiny words that remind me of what I should be saying, too. He says "Thank you".

Four years ago, when we first learned that our tiny little angel couldn't hear, it was such a shock. How could something so perfect, so peaceful, and so pure have any imperfections? We know the answer to that question now. There is no imperfection. It was because of what he didn't have that we learned what we do have. And that is pure perfection in my eyes.

I hope you enjoy these little videos of our angel now. He's all "grown up", at least as much as you can be when you're four.

And This is Why Some Halos are Perfect Just the Way They Are

The Reason Some Angels Have Crooked Halos

This White Boy CAN'T Dance...But I Love Him

This White Boy Has NO Rhythm

Can you see Number One? He's the short kid between the African American boy and the other tall boy. (Both kids next to him seem to have some sort of idea of what is happening).

The King, as many of you know, is a VERY musically gifted man. He has this gorgeous tenor voice that makes me swoon every single time I hear it. He can sit down at a piano and play gorgeous pieces of music causing me to stop what I'm doing just to listen. His musical gifts were one of the many things we'd hoped to pass on to our children. The worst case scenario was that they'd get my genes. I can't carry a tune in a bucket. It's bad,VERY bad when I sing. Even The Beast will ask me to stop singing when he's got his hearing aids out. That is BAD. So, Number One is finally old enough to join the music clubs at his school. He got a head start this summer when we signed him up for an enrichment program taught by his teacher at school. He has really enjoyed drumming, but we've never really gotten a chance to see him do it. (Well, we did once over the summer, and he did okay. But it was a VERY small group). We did get to witness his lovely talents this past week at his school's performance for the holidays. Look closely at the video. The short kid in the front who just really not keeping up, even a little, is my little Number One. He works so hard and is so focused. He has a passion for it. As for skills? Well, maybe they'll come. Until then, I think this is proof that he has inherited some of his mother's genes. It also goes as a fabulous example of the fact that some white boys just have no rhythm.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

And still MORE pics of the new guy

We got him blessed this past Sunday because the King's parents were in town. I didn't realize how much work it really is to go to church with two kids who are too young for nursery, and one who thinks he needs to be the social butterfly in the middle of services. I'm so not going back until Pretty is big enough for nursery and Snort learns to nurse without having it spray all over everyone there.

Friday, November 30, 2007

A few more pics of the new guy!

And, here's the new guy!!!

I'm pleased to introduce the newest guy on our team. Snort was born November 23rd weighing in at 7lbs. 9.8 oz. and 19 inches long. He's a champion nurser and couldn't be any more perfect!!!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

And I Thought I Had Parenting Woes

I haven't had much to talk about lately. I'm irritable, or at least that's what my kids tell me. At least I have a legitimate excuse. This kid is STILL inside me. I'm okay with that, though, because I have to actually deal with him when he comes out. Anyway, I haven't had much to say because I've been so busy being grumpy.

All that changed this morning when I got a message from my friend, Lee. Man, does she have parenting problems. Actually, it's more like pet parenting problems. You see, her cat is a tramp. A hussy. A Tom Cat's dream come true. Worse, she's also a kitten factory. This cat just had a litter four months ago. Guess what just happened again this week? You guessed it. Another litter.

Now, I know Lee. She's a good mom. She has morals, ethics, and values. How could her cat have fallen so far from the straight and narrow path landing in a den of iniquity forced to wear a scarlet letter and shame the family forever? Was she on too much catnip, and just slowly lost her way? Was she angry that her litter box was never quite fresh enough and felt the need to get back at Lee for it? Does she have low kitty self-esteem and can only find personal joy and satisfaction in the temporary moments of mating? Did Lee and her family just not scratch behind her ears enough?

Really, asking question after question isn't going to solve the problem. The damage is done. The kittens are here, and Lee's cat has no idea who the father could possibly be. We are considering calling the Maury show. He is always doing paternity testing, and may be Lee's only hope in getting any kind of kitten support for all these babies. Who is going to pay for the litter, the food, the water, and hopefully the Spay and Neutering of these kittens?

We have some ideas who the daddy could be. First, there's Al Cat. He's always lurking around dark places, hanging out in dumpsters, and is a generally unpleasant fellow. I'm not sure he's washed behind his ears in ages, but all the females think he's all that and a bag of Friskies. Gross. He swears he can't be the daddy because he was in the litter box that night. Whatever, Al. That's what they all say.

Tom Cat could also be a possibility. He just roams the neighborhood not really bothering anyone, but always sort of fluffing his tail when the pretty females come by. He always has a look in his eye like he's up to no good. He swears it can't be him because he was neutered once already. I'm sure he thinks that means he's out of the woods, but my friend, Amy, got pregnant after her husband got neutered. And, yes, her husband is the daddy. So, it's entirely possible Tom could be the daddy.

Then there's Morris. He basically keeps to himself. He thinks he's going to be famous doing cat food commercials, and is always trying to show off for the females and is offering them copious amounts of Friskies and Meow Mix. He probably laced it with catnip so he could have his way with them. He swears he was picked up by animal control and was in the pound the night the kittens were conceived. Likely story. I just hope he's not the daddy, really. What kitten wants to grow up with a daddy in the pound? Poor little kittens.

So, we're still waiting to see if Maury contacts us willing to do a show about Lee's cat who seems to have gone astray. Hopefully we can find out who her baby daddy really is and put all this behind us. Oh, and maybe Maury will help contribute to the fund to get Lee's cat spayed. I'm not saying Lee is condoning this behavior by giving her birth control. She's just doing what she can to make sure no more kittens are brought into the world.

Until we do hear anything, is there anyone out there who wants a fatherless kitten from a good home for their kids for Christmas?

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Apparently not everyone got the courtesy memo

Okay, I know I can be slightly irritable when I'm eight months pregnant. Okay, that may be an understatement. There are men on death row who cry when they hear I might be around. That said, let's look at a few things that may be contributing to my wrath. People! Rude people are the few things that contribute to my current mood.

Since no one has apparently ever taught these people about common courtesy, I've taken it upon myself to do so. This post will remain here for a while, so those of you out there in cyber space who are contemplating saying something totally rude can come back and review the rules.

The first rule of thumb is to remember that I am NOT a walking pet. You do not have permission to walk up to me and stroke my belly before ever even telling me your name. It's not like I'm a public park. If you feel the need to rub something, go to the pet store. There are some snakes there who get very little physical attention. Leave my stomach alone.

The next rule is please think before you speak. Women who are roughly the size of a small planet don't need reminders from strangers or family members about how big we really are. We are sore and tired and nothing fits us anymore. It doesn't help us when you walk up and say, "You are so HUGE!! How long do you have left? What?! That's forever. You're going to be a whale!". Let me tell you something, people. Our bellies are not the only things that are suddenly changing. Our boobs have ballooned into something even Hooter's girls don't want. We have vericose veins in places we didn't even know veins existed. We don't sleep well at night. We have stretch marks that resemble maps of New York City. We DO NOT need you to point out what else about us is not as it should be.

Another very important rule: Do NOT ask us what we're naming our unborn children if you aren't 100% sure you have something polite to say about it. I had three dirty old men ask me what I'm naming this baby while sitting at a table near me. I told them, and they proceeded to reply, "Oh no! I wouldn't do that if I were you." Then, they carried on a very loud conversation about it. Newsflash, men! I never asked your opinion. I chose this baby's name with love, and I'd appreciate if you'd shut your mouths before spewing forth something so rude that I'm forced to unleash my wrath on you.

I'm sure there are more rules I'd like to share with you. But, this is a good start for now. Spend some time getting to learn them and live them. You will thank me later.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Let's Talk Urine Samples

I'm a grown woman. I've developed a sense of balance and physical control over my body. I'm not obese (though I do currently resemble a beached whale), and I think I'm doing pretty well. That said, I'm also almost 35 weeks pregnant.

For those of you who have never been pregnant, allow me to fill you in on something. Every single time you go to the doctor, you will have to present the nurse with a urine sample. Those of you who are men and have your own hoses which you can direct any way you want won't see any big reason for concern here. But, we ladies know there is a HUGE concern with this.

Picture it: A woman the size of a small country walks into the dr.'s office. She's already very aware of her size before she's asked to step up on the scale and assess this week's damage. In her mind she's cursing the Hershey company up and down. It is, after all, their fault she ate all that chocolate this week. Once her weight has been announced loud enough for even the Deaf kid she's got with her to hear (yeah, I can say that. I really do have a Deaf kid. Dang, he's cute, though), she swallows her pride and just avoids looking the nurse in the eye. She figures all the damage is done, and is just glad to be over the horrible part. That's when it happens. This poor, sweet, very pregnant woman is handed a cup. I'm not even sure you can call it a cup. It's really more like a measuring spoon. Good grief! There are scientists with the world's strongest microscopes that couldn't see that thing it's so small. Is she being offered a refreshing glass of water to wash down the humiliation of having stood on that scale? No, that would be too kind. Instead, she's being told to take that teeny tiny teacup-lookin' thing and pee in it.

Okay, so she takes a deep breath. How bad can this be? Well, bad. She's also got her kids with her who feel the need to see and touch EVERYTHING that's happening in the restroom. Humiliated, she takes the cup and heads in. She drops her pants and sits down on the cold, already alarmingly wet seat. That's when it happens. She realizes she's too round around the waist to even see her woo hoo, let alone place a cup in just the right place to catch any of her urine. She does her best, but apparently that's not good enough. By the time she's done, there are three drops of pee that happened to bounce into the cup when it was rebounding off her hand.

She's now soaked up to what feels like her neck in pee. In reality, it probably stops closer to her shoulders than her neck, but who's really judging here, right? She has to figure out how to dry the outside of the urine collection cup, clean off her hands, and still not get pee all down her legs when she stands up to do the desired task. In desperation, she uses some toilet paper to dry off the cup, then goes about taking care of herself. As hard as she tries, her leg is still nauseatingly wet. She makes sure she spends an abundant amount of time lathering up with that anti-bacterial soap that smells like a nursing home. Because she felt like she'd gotten pee up to her neck, she decides to just go ahead and wash her hair while she's in there. No sense taking chances, right?

Finally, feeling like a complete loser in whale's clothing, she waddles out to the nurse's station for her blood pressure and to be sent to a room where more humiliating exams will take place.

So, why do I tell this story? Because, ladies and gentlemen, this has been my experience for the last several visits to the doctor. Yesterday, though, I made history. Yesterday, I provided a urine sample in which the entire outside of the cup remained dry as did my arm and leg. Yesterday, my friends, was a red letter day...unless you count what the scale told me.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

I'm putting out a single's ad

We have a family member who has been acting "different" since July. I know it's because his best friend died, and he's just been lonely. He's always been good to the kids, and even lets them call him Miztur Biggz. He's friendly, but very shy. I would dare to say he's actually painfully shy.

Anyway, since he's been acting so funny, I thought it was time to take him to the dr. He didn't want to go, but I tricked him into it. It had gotten so he wasn't even taking the time to take a bath, and something had to be done. So, the doctor looked him over and told us he's lonely and that's causing him to be depressed. He said we could put him on a lifetime of Prozac, or just help him find a companion.

A companion! Now why didn't I think of that?!?! It's true that he's lonely since his friend died, and he doesn't get out much. I mean, he goes out for fresh air, but never really leaves the area. I don't think he has ever been to Wal-Mart.

So, I took it upon myself to create him a Single's Ad. Here it is. Any ideas on how to improve it? I really want him to have luck in this area.

Hi! I'm a SWM with brown eyes. I'm physically fit, but somewhat larger than other guys like me. I love to run, but also love a lazy day of just hanging around with friends. I'm a little bit shy when I first meet new people, so it takes me longer to meet new friends.I love long walks, cuddling, and licking my privates. If I really like you, I'll sniff your privates, too. Some people say this is an unattractive trait, but it's just a part of me. I really am looking more for a long-term relationship with someone who is not interested (or able) to have children, but enjoys cuddling up and sleeping in my bed with me. I've included a picture. Please call if you're interested.

Oh, did I forget to mention that this is our Chihuahua, Miztur Biggz (his real name)?

Monday, October 1, 2007

It Takes Talent to Stump Poison Control

Our's is the only family I know of that can potentially leave poison control totally stumped...and live to tell about it. The good news is that every bazaar incident that happens in this house is just one more thing for me to blog about.

Last week, Number One was outside playing with the dogs in the backyard. You need to understand that the dogs' side of our backyard is really more of a jungle, and you can never be entirely sure what sort of deadly animals might be lurking there. Some of the weeds are tall enough that I often wonder if our chihuahua will ever find his way back to the door when it comes time to eat. Unfortunately for me, he appears to have an amazing sense of smell, and always returns without trouble.

Anyway, Number One had been outside having a lovely bonding time with his dog, Miztur Biggz (that's the chihuahua), and they wound up playing on the dreaded jungle side of the yard. Since he found his way back inside the door, I figured it was a bonding time without incident. About twenty minutes after he came inside, I realized that I was wrong.

I was sitting on the couch moaning about the pains of pregnancy (a whole other blog entry), and enjoying the peace and quiet when suddenly a blood curdling scream came from the playroom. The King figured Number One was just crying wolf, but the tone of that scream was enough for me to know something was clearly wrong and pain had somehow come into the situation. I threw my huge body off the couch and waddled as quickly as possible to the playroom. The King decided to sit back and wait it out until he was sure there was something involving blood happening.

When I got in there, Number One told me he couldn't move and it really hurt and pointed to his ankle. (This is the part where I realized I was right, and summoned the King to come in and offer his fatherly assistance). Apparently, some sort of crazed killer caterpillar had attached itself to Number One's shoe or sock while he was out in the jungle. This thing was bright green, and had spikes covering every inch of its body. Oh, and it had a bright red stripe on it's side toward the bottom. Whatever it was, I quickly realized I couldn't touch it because those spikes would wind up in me. Number One, however, had managed to make contact with it and his finger was swelling up as I watched. This made the King and I both nervous because we know Number One is deathly allergic to pretty much everything except chicken and steamed asparagus.

The King quickly ran and got some tissue to remove it from the sock and headed to the toilet to flush him. Being the quick thinker that I am, I yelled to him to put it in a ziplock baggie, so we could go to google images and try to identify what we were dealing with. Realizing that I must be a genius, the King agreed and followed my instructions. Before going to the computer, he was smart enough to suggest giving Number One some Benedryl. (Hey! He's gotta' be a pretty smart guy. He did marry me, afterall).

After a few minutes of looking, it was very clear that we were dealing with the Io Moth caterpillar. There was no doubt at all. Once we knew what this crazed thing was, we did a little more research to see if he was horribly dangerous. We quickly learned that each spike had poisonous venom on the tips, and that we should consult with Poison Control.

Here's a newsflash, people: Poison Control doesn't get many calls about venomous attack caterpillars sticking their spikes into small children. They were able to tell me that the spikes didn't have enough venom to kill him by entering his bloodstream, but that they did need to be removed from their skin or else it would feel like he had fiberglass under his skin and in his muscles. Um, that sounds painful.

So, we called Urgent Care and made an appointment to get the spikes removed. It's a good thing the venom wasn't spreading to his bloodstream because we had to wait almost an hour and a half after his appointment. And to top it all off, the doctor couldn't see the spikes in his finger anymore. So, she sent us home and credited our account.

I know you're all wondering what happened to the spiked villain in this story. Well, I'll tell you. We brought him with us to the appointment so the doctor could see what she was dealing with. It was creepy crawling all over the inside of the baggie. Yuck!!! I think it might have flipped me the bird once, but I was fine with that. I knew I had the power to flush him at any time. I didn't have to flush him, though. He met a much better fate. I believe he was lovingly placed in one of those bright red biohazard trash cans. So, whatever happens to the contents of those cans is what happened to this bug. I don't feel bad. He cost me most of my night, caused my kid's finger to swell to the size of an overstuffed Polish sausage, and has forced us to consider weed whacking the jungle in the backyard. I simply repaid him the favor.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Can you find our missing poop?

I always put the Beast into a pull-up before putting him to bed. He tends to poop at night. I'd let him just get up and use the bathroom, but that would require him actually getting up and using the bathroom. That would also mean I'd have to allow for him to get out of his room. Doing such a crazy thing would leave room to potentially destroy the whole house in my sleep. So, there's a doorknob cover that Number One can open, but the Beast can't.

On the nights that he poops, he kind enough to get up and remove his pull-up and place it on the dresser for me to find in the morning. Sort of like a "Aren't ya' glad you got out of bed this morning?" kind of gift to help me start my day off right. After taking off the pull-up, he'll usually put on some pair of underwear, not typically belonging to him. Again, a gift.

This morning, I found his pull-up on the dresser like always. He was in underwear, and remarkably it actually belonged to him. What a surprise!!! He'd even put his jammie bottoms back on. Again, this was shaping up to be a great day.

Well, it was going to be good until I looked more closely at the pull-up. Upon closer inspection, I found a poop stain, but no poop. Anywhere. Now this is not the type of kid to just put on underwear without just cause. On the contrary, it's all I can do to get him to change anything. If he changed that pull-up, there was poop in it.

So, the question remains: Where did the Beast put his poop? He has a history of hiding it in sock drawers. I'll have to look there. He also loves to put questionable items in his brother's bed. Hmmmm...but where in the bed would he have hidden it? Or perhaps he's got it in some special place where it can fossilize and his sister can eventually think of it as a rock to build with . That will be a pleasant surprise for me, won't it?

For those of you who are interested in being future FBI agents, your services are officially requested. Any profilers out there? Get into this kid's mind for me. Where is the poop?

Thursday, September 20, 2007

I know what you really want to read about...and I'm okay with it.

People say they want to hear all about me and how the King and I are doing. We know the truth. What you really want is to see and hear about the kids. I'm okay with that. They are far more interesting than me anyway.

Let's start with Number One. That makes sense since he did come first. (Well, the King came first, but I'm certainly not his Mama. I'm his Weefy). Number One is all boy. He's come a long way in the past couple of years. For the longest time, I was just sure he'd be in prison before ever graduating high school. Now, I have some hope for him. He may graduate high school. College will remain to be seen. Just to be safe, though, I have encouraged him to befriend a local district attorney at church...just in case.

Number One has developed talents that I would never have guessed for him. He just started his school's gifted program. I know. Who would have thought one of MY kids would ever wind up there? Most people figured kids coming from me would be riding the short bus. Nope. Not this one. He's studying archeology, and really seems like he's enjoying it. He has discovered that digging through a person's trash can tell you a lot about that person. Um, that's nice to know. It can also give you diseases and possibly get you arrested. (Again, the reason he's befriended the one guy from church).

Number One is also doing amazingly well at soccer. It's taken us three and a half years, but he's no longer picking dandilions while the ball goes whizzing by his head. He actually knows what he's doing and plays a tough game. His favorite position is goalie, and he plays it surprisingly well. He's also in his school's drumline and has just started piano lessons. Thankfully, I've gotten really good at drowning out too much noise.

Other interests for Number One are basketball, cooking, Food Network, and sewing baby clothes. I'm really not sure where he got all those from, but he's just sure he's going to be the next Food Network star. Who am I to discourage him? That could bring in good money and insure me a great retirement.

The Beast just turned 4 this month. I'm shocked! It seems like he was just born. I still remember his blessing day like it was yesterday. I still can't say I'm sure he'll be out of prison. But, I can say I'm sure he will escape easily. Seriously, this kid could have gotten out of Alcatraz much faster than those other guys. And he wouldn't have gotten wet in the process. He's amazing. He has recently taken up karate to help increase his balance and gross motor skills. Ummm....we have a long way to go on that, but he's enjoying it. He hasn't figured out yet that he can use it on his siblings. Again, he's still new at it. He shoul have it figure out sometime soon.

His speech is totally understandable, and seems to happen all. the. time. It appears he has quite a case of verbal diarrhea. Hmmmm...wonder where he got that. He still needs to develop some vocabulary so he can express himself better, but we're working with him on that. It will be nice when he gets to a point where he can tell me all that's running through that busy little brain of his.

He is quite the little engineer, like his dad. So far, he's disassembled the bunk beds, figured out every lock on the house, and used glue to create...um...well...okay, I don't even know how to describe it. But he creates a lot. He also is amazingly skilled at computers and handheld video games. I never cease to be amazed at the way his mind works. Oh, and he likes to play with things he finds in our "special drawer" in the bedroom. Who knew a condom could double as a candy dispenser to give as a gift the the neighbors?

Then, there's Beauty. She was not ever given the memo that she's a girl apparently. We got her a baby doll for her birthday. She uses the head to bang up against the crib bars to tell us she's awake. Nice. She loves to play with balls, blocks, cars, and trucks. Can you tell she's got older brothers? It doesn't help that she's about to have a younger one, too.

Beauty is my earliest walker and she's good at it. I think she believes she needs to be doing exactly what her brothers do. Great. I really needed that. She is into everything. And I do mean everything.

She's very talented, too. She can sneak up behind the Beast, steal his cochlear implant processor right off his head, and get away all before he has a chance to realize it's even gone. That's fast. She can also add some very creative decorations to Number One's homework. And can this kid poop! Hey, that counts as a talent when it comes in multiple colors, right?

We are very excited for Number Four to come the day after Thanksgiving. I'm trying to convince my doctor to let me have the surgery in the afternoon. He thinks I'm nuts, but Hello?!?! Have you seen the sales at the butt crack of dawn on Black Friday?!! These are not to be taken lightly. So, we'll see. We do have a name picked out. The King had a dream in which he heard the name. It took me some time to adjust to it, but I love it now. LOVE it.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Just Another Manic Monday...I Mean Wednesday

So, what is there to say? Not much really. Well, I guess there is always something to say. In the case of the King and I, it's more a matter of just not ever having the time to say it all. Number One is always busy with school, drumming club, piano, or soccer. He likes to make sure I'm always on the run. The Beast has a crazy, wild schedule, too. He loves going to school, and spends lots of time looking forward to karate. He can't seem to get enough of jab, jab, cross, kicking. He's just sure he's all that and a bag of chips. We can't believe how far he's come. This kid never shuts up...though we were told from the beginning that he'd never speak. Talk about irony, hun? Tinkerbell loves to drive The Beast nuts. Now that she's walking, she has even more creative ways of torturing him. Her most recent is taking his cochlear implant processor right off his head. What a stinker!!! She also delights in removing the keyboard from the desk when he's playing on the computer. No sibling rivalry here at all. Truth be told, they all do it to each other. But, they work together when it comes to torturing the King and I.