Friday, December 14, 2012

Elf Drama

This morning the unthinkable happened…

Carter touched the Elf!

He came into our room saying “Um, guys, I found Kebbie.  He’s on the dining room table.  I touched him.”

I was half asleep still but when I heard that I bolted upright.

“What?  You touched him?  Did you really?  You know he loses his magic if you do that.  Why would you touch him?”

“Because I could easily reach him.”

Oh, well then…yeah, if you can reach him then that’s a different story.  In that case you should totally just screw with the powerful forces of Elf Magic…no big deal.  Do you have no soul?

I still thought he might be kidding so my husband went downstairs with him and asked him to recreate the touching scenario.  And he did it again!  Like, all casual and stuff. 

I’m sorry, have I been killing myself to scare the shit out of you with that doll for nothing? 

I’ve tried to be a decent parent (sort of) but despite of all my efforts… I’m raising an Elf Toucher! 

I hope the other moms around town don’t get word of this.  I can’t take the staring and whispering behind my back.  When he commits his first felony they’ll interview the neighbors: “Oh, we totally saw this coming.  We knew he was a bad ass from a pretty early age.  Did you know what he did when he was FOUR?  HE TOUCHED HIS ELF!”

He headed off to school and I was left trying to come up with a solution to the problem.  I got some online advice about calling Santa, sprinkling magic dust on him, telling Carter the Elf died…stuff like that…

I finally decided to tell the kids that Kebbie is sick from being touched.  I set him up next to the scene of the crime.  I even added a little note to boost my credibility:
What?  Too much?

Carter came home from school and I showed him the consequences of his actions.  I had no game plan as to how I was going to make the Elf well again but I thought I could wing it.  I wanted to see if he even cared that he had put Kebbie at deaths door.

Turns out he did. 

First he suggested that we sprinkle some magic on some snacks and feed them to Kebbie.  I asked where he was planning to get the magic from…he said a magician could do it.  Obviously.  I’ll just grab the next magician I see walking down the street.

Well, magic or not, he was set on the snack idea.  He also gave Kebbie his favorite guy to snuggle up with in hopes that would make him feel better:
He truly thought this was his best idea ever...

Then he decided to share his sandwich with him: 
How does that saying go?  Feed a cold, starve a fever, cure unmagical Elves with ham?

Then: “Mom!  I’ve got a great idea!  We can give Kebbie toys to play with.  That will make him feel better!”

He included a guitar so Kebbie could rock out if he wanted to...

And the toys kept coming.  Because more toys clearly equals more chance that he will not be on Santa’s shit list for ‘effing up one of the Elves:

Desparation is beginning to sink in
He even tried to bribe him:

Dude...I will pay you THREE CENTS to get the hell up and pretend none of this ever happened!

He also suggested letting Kebbie sleep in his bed and, my personal favorite…he asked me to put Kebbie in my car and drive him to the Dockside…which is Carter’s favorite restaurant and also a popular local bar. If cheap burgers and beer don’t make you feel better then I simply do not know what will!!

I think Kebbie is going to make a miraculous recovery tonight.  The fact that he keeps talking about how to heal the Elf made me happy.  I mean, he truly felt bad and was suffering.  Which is what all this crap is about, right?  Making your children suffer?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

PJ Time

I love my pajamas.

Wait…before we get into this let’s make sure everyone is pronouncing that correctly. 
Of my many, many parenting failures the one I am most upset about is the fact that my children say “Pa-JAM-ahs” instead of the correct pronunciation which is clearly “Pa-JAH-mas”. 

It’s my husband’s fault.  He has a stupid accent. 
I don’t know where he got it from because he’s from New Hampshire.  And not like way up in the sticks New Hampshire.  His town touches Massachusetts.  If you were standing in his childhood home you could throw something and HIT Massachusetts. 

But he unfortunately passed “pa-jam-ahs” onto my children.  I’m considering taking them in for speech therapy.

Anyway, back to the point of the story.  I love my pajamas.  And my kids love theirs. 

If we don’t have anywhere to be we stay in our pajamas all day long.  It’s cozy. 

Recently, however, I’ve been feeling like maybe we should put on clothes more often.  Like, maybe I’m being lazy and using it as an excuse to stay in my house and not have to take the kids anywhere.  Because dressing them is a pain in the ass. 

Grant went through a thing recently where as soon as I got him dressed he would run away and rip his clothes off.  And then we have Carter who insists on wearing shorts and soccer socks in the middle of December.  But everyone agrees on pajamas.  And if they’re the feety kind then you don’t have to deal with socks. 

Socks suck.

When I plan to have a pajama day know what really helps?  Rain.  Or at least clouds.  Nothing makes me feel like more of a lazy jerk-off than hanging in my PJs on a beautiful sunny day.  Sometimes the day will start cloudy but end sunny.  That’s really a problem because I’ve already committed to pajamas…so then what does one do? 

The other day I decided to dress the kids even though we had nothing to do:

“Where are we going?”

“Nowhere, why?”

“But we’re getting dressed…so where are we going?”

“I just want to be dressed and feel like a productive member of society.  Sometimes people get dressed even when they’re not going anywhere.”

“Oh…really?  That’s funny.”

I know, right?  I think it’s a silly idea too.  I don’t see the point in putting on clothes if I have no intention of showing anybody the product of my efforts.  Getting three people dressed is work.  And the point of doing work is to have that work appreciated by others.  Most times when I get us all dressed the only ones around to appreciate it are the dogs…and they don’t really seem all that impressed. 

Today we had a pajama day.  Around 11 o’clock some Jehovah’s Witnesses knocked on our door.  When I answered a man in a weird looking hat gave me a look and remarked “Oh, just getting out of bed?”

I was caught completely off guard so I did what I always do when I’m caught completely off guard…I lied.

“We’re all sick today so we decided to stay comfy.”

About halfway through his speech I suddenly got really angry at him for his comment.  What the hell!  Why do I feel like I need to impress you with my wardrobe choices?  You’re the one who knocked on my door in the middle of the day and interrupted my life. 

So I stopped him…

“Ya know what?  No one here is sick actually; we just like to stay in our pajamas.  And I’m not interested in your pamphlet.”

I closed the door on that bullshitting hat-wearer. 

Who do you think you are?  You WISH you were in your pajamas right now!  In fact, I'm of the opinion that Jesus wore nothing BUT pajamas!

If they ever come back here again when I’m dressed I’m going to make them wait on the porch while I change.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Tales From the Tub

Ok the title of this post is misleading.  Because my children take showers and therefore aren’t technically in a tub. 

They used to take baths, though.  They used to love baths.  But they also used to cover every surface of my bathroom with water.  They simply could not keep themselves from splashing.  And I simply could not keep myself from wanting to kill them every night. 

So…we switched to showers.

Showers are so much better for us.  We turn on the water, put the kids in there and shut the curtain.  They still try to splash, but there is no pool of water for them to get their hands on so it stays mostly contained. 

They play in there for a while before we soap them up.  It’s a nice little break actually.  I can’t see what they’re doing in there and you know what they say: Outta sight…didn’t ever happen…can’t be held responsible. 

A lot of times I’ll just plant myself on the toilet with a glass of wine and listen to them chat…and fight.

It’s usually Grant who screams first.  Carter is a jerky big brother but Grant is a cry baby little brother.  It’s not a great combination. 

One night I heard Grant scream and then I heard this:

“Grant, I didn’t punch you.  I just peed on you.  Relax!”

God, Grant!  Can’t you even be peed on without screaming?  My theory is if someone absolutely HAS to pee on you the best place for that to happen is in the shower.

Then there was the night I heard Grant screaming and then heard Carter saying sorry over and over.  My curiosity got the better of me on that one so I investigated.

Carter was in there holding the showerhead which was busy spitting aquatic bullets at Grant.

I was unaware of the fact that my showerhead contained a ‘machine gun’ setting but Carter apparently found it and was unintentionally assaulting his brother. 

And that day goes down in history as the only time Carter has ever attacked his brother by accident.

Aside from the occasional urine and bullet spray incidents they actually play really nicely in there.  And of course if they’re gonna play they need…trucks…


Used to be my shower was the only place I didn’t have to deal with this bullshit. 
When the shower is over Carter likes to do this thing where he sits down in there and tells me:

“I just want to sit here like an old man for a little bit.”

Like an old man?  Wet, naked and sitting on the floor of a shower?  What the hell type of old men have you been hanging around?

Maybe we should give baths another try.

Monday, December 3, 2012

All I Want for Christmas

This is the first year my kids have really gotten into the Christmas spirit.  And by “Christmas spirit” I mean…they’ve learned how to ask for things from Santa. 

It’s the first year they have realized that the catalogues that come in the mail have pictures of toys in them.  And that those toys are potentially available to be brought into our home. 

Carter first discovered this fact a few weeks ago and since that time he has not let the Toys R US “Big Book of Toys” out of his sight. 

I made the mistake of telling him to take a marker and circle anything he wanted to ask Santa for:

“Here, mom, I finished circling.”

“Ok, let me see…wow…57 circles, huh?”

Wanting nineteen thousand things from a store like that was bad enough.  But then the specialty catalogues came. 

You know, the ones full of “educational” toys that are supposed to transform your little angel into the toddler version Albert Einstein.  I guess that’s how they get away with charging 87 dollars for a set of two blocks. 

Carter looooooved that magazine.  Naturally. 

“Mom, I want this car transporter.  I’ve never had this one before.”

“That’s nice.  Jesus!  60 bucks for one wooden car?  I’ll whittle you a damn car transporter before I’ll spend that!”

“And I want this construction site…and this airplane…and this!  What is this? I want it.”

That’s a kite, honey, and I bet it’s the best kite in the whole gosh darned world!

But you’re not getting that kite…know why?  Because kites are stupid.  That's just a fact.

I tried flying a kite with them once.  After I ran around my yard like a fool for 20 minutes trying to make it fly the damn thing stupidly hung in the air for all of three seconds.  The kids were unimpressed and I was winded…so no more kites.

But I digress…back to my spoiled child…

 “I’m going to get all this stuff.”

Sure.  You can get all that stuff.  Then know what else you’re gonna get?  A job.  Nothing like explaining to your four year old that Santa is on a budget.  They totally and completely get the concept of money, right? 

“Ok, Cart, you can either have that kite or a college education.  Your choice.”

Then there’s Grant. 

Grant isn’t interested in looking through the toy books.  Grant only wants one thing: “A blue Jeep that I can ride on.”

A $300 blue jeep that he can ride on.

I’d rather buy the thousand dollar puzzle that was hand-crafted by Tibetan Monks.  Because I have plenty of places I can store a puzzle.  And I don’t have anywhere to put yet another ride on toy. 

“We just got a toy like that.”

“That one was for Carter.  I want mine.”

Yeah, well we got that for Carter’s birthday after he asked for it relentlessly for two months.  He just wore us down.  Are you prepared to be that much of an asshole?  Cause then maybe you’ll get your jeep.

Not everything they’ve asked for it out of Santa’s price range.  Some things are just out of Santa’s sanity range…

Carter: “I want a saxophone for Christmas.”

Me: “You’re not getting one.”

Carter: “Well, I’m asking Santa for it so it’s not up you.”

Santa, you jack ass, listen up and listen good…if you bring that kid a saxophone I will hunt you down, punch you in the nuts and donate all your reindeer to my nearest zoo. 

Think I’m kidding?  Try me, big guy, just try me.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Thoughts About Time Out

Dear Mom,

How are you?  How’s your day going? 

Ok, enough with the pleasantries…I feel it’s time we had another little chat.  Today’s topic of conversation is Time Out.

We, the children, are unsure where this ridiculous idea came from but we want to sincerely express our opinion that: Enough is enough.  (We know you like that phrase.)

Honestly, we’re just confused as to what it’s supposed to accomplish. 

In the beginning you really had us going.  We truly feared that if we moved from that step before the timer went off something bad would happen to us.  Come to think of it, that could have been because you actually TOLD us the police would come and get us if we didn’t sit there for the full two minutes…

Regardless, we sat. 

I bet you thought you were really something, huh?  Eventually, however, we smartened up. 

There was the one day when I personally tested that theory by moving my butt off that step no less than 7 times before the timer went off.  Nothing happened.

And I know for a fact that you saw me because you did that thing where you turn your back to me so I won’t see you laughing…you’re bad at that, by that way.

Over the years I think we just wore you down. 

The timer stopped being set so our “punishments” got shorter and shorter.  (Except that one time you sent me to my room for time out and then forgot about me.  25 minutes is an excessive amount of time don’t you agree?  Good thing I have so many toys up there or I would have been REALLY bored!)

Don’t get me wrong, you put in a great effort! 

I liked the time you put me in time out and then played with all of my trucks in front of me.  And you kept saying things like “Wow, trucks are so fun!  I’m glad I’M not in time out!”  That was a really nice touch.

The problem with your method is that you let me out after a set amount of time.  I don’t have to sit on that bottom step till I’m sorry, I just have to sit there till I’m done.  If I had to stay until I was sorry you’d be climbing over my little body in order to get up to bed that night. 

Please know that if I threw a matchbox car at my brother it’s because he deserved it.  I’m not sorry I did it…I’m sorry I got caught. 

So, I mean, please feel free to continue using time out as a discipline tool but know that you’re wasting your time.  Cause I can do four minutes standing on my head, with one arm tied behind my back.  It’s a cake walk, lady.  Just thought you outta know…


The Management

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Top Ten Reasons I Hate Santa

Happy Holidays! 

It’s a wonderful time of year, isn’t it?  I absolutely love it, the lights, the music, the smells, all of it! 

Oh…except for Santa…I hate that asshole.

 Here are my top ten reasons why that guy can take a hike:

10.  I despise the word “naughty”.

You can’t tell me you enjoy saying that word.  It makes me uncomfortable.  It’s terrible and I hate having to say/sing it this time of year.  I don’t refer to my kid’s behavior as “naughty or nice”.  I say their being “bastards or tolerable”.  If you ask me Santa needs to modernize his vocabulary. 

9.  I don’t have a chimney.

I know my kids don’t really realize this fact yet.  But when they do they’re going to ask questions.  And when Carter has a question he’s relentless.  It’s like the Spanish Inquisition…complete with torture in the form of “Why…why…why?”

 And then I’ll be so bullshit at Santa for starting the rumor that he enters through the chimney.  So I’m preemptively hating him for it. 

8.  He is always happy for no reason.

I don’t trust overly happy people, they are clearly hiding something.  What does Santa have to be so God damn jolly about anyway?  He lives in the coldest place on the planet and his only companions are a bunch of funny looking elves and an old lady.  I don’t imagine there’s any good eye candy in that place.

No one smiles all the time unless they are constantly on drugs…perhaps he’s constantly on drugs.  The whole “flying reindeer” thing could be one big trip.  Something to consider…

7.  He has ninety-four different names and no good explanation as to why.

Kris Kringle?  Santa?  Father Christmas?  Papa Noel?  In my experience the only people who need that many aliases are criminals.  I think Santa is really a con man named Barry from Toledo.

6.  He makes my kids think it’s acceptable to walk up to old men, sit on their laps and take presents from them.

Fellow parents, ever think maybe we shouldn’t be encouraging this behavior? 

“Hey kids, don’t take candy from strangers…unless it’s Santa.  And don’t let anyone put you on their lap…unless you’re gonna get something for it in return.  Glad we had this talk; that should clear things right up for you!”

You suck, Santa.

5.  I have to make that jerk cookies.

In case you missed it…I don’t bake.  If my life depended on my ability to bake I’d probably have to throw in the towel. 

But nevertheless, every December I have to DRAG myself to the store, BUY pre-made cookie dough, TURN ON my oven and BAKE!  And you can’t just make him any old cookies…you have to put sprinkles on them.  And you have to let the kids do it so they feel like they’re part of the process.  All that leads to is a huge mess in my kitchen and a plate of burnt sugar cookies that vaguely resemble Christmas trees.   

Santa, you’re getting store bought this year and you’re gonna like it!

4.  He doesn’t bring ME anything.

And I make a list.  Which proves that I believe. If that bitch from the “Santa Baby” song can get a light blue ’64 convertible I think you can manage to bring me a little something.  So feel free to drop those diamond earrings I’ve been asking for into my stocking this year, Kris.

3.  Santa brings all those toys…but he doesn’t stick around to clean my playroom afterwards.

Once again, Big Guy, all you’ve given me is work.  I’m the one who has to clean and organize and find a place for all the crap you just left for my moderately well behaved children. 

Why don’t you send me one of those elves that you work to the bone all year as a house keeper?  Speaking of that, how many labor laws do we think you’re violating?  Help me clean up or I’m going to talk the elves into forming a union…then you’ll be totally screwed. 

2.  He takes January to November off.

Yeah, sure, it’s great to threaten the kids with no toys for one month a year…but what do I do when they’re bratty in, say, the spring? 

Because threatening them with mom being mad at them is a joke.  But tell them that some magical fat guy is going to put them on the naughty (Gag!) list and they shape up.  And during the Christmas season you can see Santa wherever you go.  So the threat is real. 

All I’m saying is that mall Santas should have to put in an occasional appearance in the summer.  Let’s not be lazy fellas, put more effort into scaring the children year round, would ya?

1. Santa takes all the credit.

Who shops, wraps, bakes, cleans, cooks?  The parents.  Who gets all the credit? SANTA!

I’m sorry, Papa Noel, did you brave the stores and run people over with your double stroller in order to get the perfect gift?  In fact, you did not.  Did you stay up till 1 am assembling a Little Tikes Cozy Coupe Truck last year?  Did you?  Speak up…I can’t hear you.  No?  You didn’t? 

That’s cause you’re awful. 

But on Christmas morning when the kids are psyched out of their minds about their toys they thank YOU!  And you let them! 

Stop being such a conceited ass.  Maybe this year you could drop a little note about much they should appreciate everything their parents do for them.  Is that too much to ask?

So there you have it.  My Top Ten reasons I think Santa needs to clean up his act.

Merry Christmas to one and all!

(Except you Mr. Clause…except you.)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

He's Baaaaack!!

It’s the time of year again…Elf time!

Last year was our first year with the ever popular Elf on the Shelf.  I know most of you are familiar with this but a quick recap for anyone who isn’t: You get a creepy elf doll and you tell your kids he’s a secret agent for Santa who flies to the North Pole after they go to bed to update the big guy on their naughty vs. nice status.  Then you back up your story by moving the doll around your house so the kids think he’s alive.

Ours in named Kebbie.  No idea.  That’s just what Carter named him. 

Last year I wrote a blog about him ( He Sees You When You're Sleeping) and how I think its bullshit that parents only get to scare their kids into behaving for one month a year.  Don’t get me wrong, I try to threaten my kids all year long.  But that elf dude adds credibility that is simply not available in June.

This year, however, I have a different attitude towards Elf on the Shelf.  I don’t simply see it as a way to enforce the idea that Santa is always watching.  Know what I think it really is? 


It's work because you have to move him all the time.  Can’t have the kids thinking the scary magical doll DIDN’T fly back to Santa that night now can you? 

Hey parents, you’re not too busy this time of year or anything right?  You can add “remember to move the damn elf every single night” to your holiday to-do list can’t you?

If you forget to move him then you better hope you notice before the kids do.  If he’s in the same spot as the day before then you have come up with an on the spot explanation for that:

“I don’t know guys, maybe he got into the eggnog last night and he’s too hung over to move.  Why don’t we go get him a Big Mac and see if that helps…”

We forgot to move him all the time.  Then I would have to have my husband go juggle knives or breathe fire to distract the kids while I climbed a bookshelf or some other shit like that. 

Here’s a question: Why does he HAVE to move?  What if he just happens to love that particular spot on top of the hutch?  I have a favorite place I sit when I’m chillin’.  Why is it so freaking inconceivable that old Kebbie just stays in one place?

Because that would be easy.  And that’s not the point of parenting during the holidays.

Now, I see these moms out there who get super creative with their elves.  Good for them.  Here is part of a list that someone posted of their ideas of how to do up Elf on the Shelf:

1. Marshmallow fight – marshmallows everywhere

2. Pillow fight – feathers everywhere

3. Nerf gun fight – darts everywhere

4. Laundry fight – clothes everywhere

Are you kidding me?  The idea of anything “everywhere” makes me want to die.  And I can barely remember to move him from one shelf to another shelf.  You want me to stage a marshmallow fight in my kitchen?  Not happening.  But you go ahead and enjoy throwing clothes all around your house.

This is as creative as we got last year:

 It kind of looks like he's contemplating jumping.

I should have said “See that, kids? Kebbie is thinking about ending it all because you two are so bad.  Do you want that elf’s death on your hands?  DO YOU?”

Now THAT is how you scare your kids into embracing the holiday season!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Daylight Savings

It has just occurred to me that I’ve never written a blog about daylight savings.  This surprises me because I like to write blogs about things that I hate.  And I hate daylight savings. 

First of all, daylight savings was clearly invented by someone who had some serious angst towards their parents.  Why else would anyone want to create such a horrible thing?  It was obviously meant as a punishment.

If you’re not a parent (Congrats!) then this twice yearly phenomenon probably doesn’t affect your life too much.  Maybe you’re a little sleepier when you spring ahead, but that’s about it right?

For parents, daylight savings is earth-shatteringly God awful.  

It often takes a lot of work plus a few small miracles to get your kids on an acceptable sleep schedule and we parents really don’t appreciate that being messed with.

When Carter was a baby I would drop whatever I was doing in order to be home in time for his nightly routine in order to keep him on schedule.  It didn’t matter if we were out running errands or at a friend’s house for dinner and drinks.  I would stop all activity and leave. 

Did you hear me?  I would PUT DOWN ALCOHOL in order to be home.  This is serious, people.

So when you’re finally able to move heaven and earth and coordinate your life around your baby’s sleep habits daylight savings time is a massive kick in the balls.

I think it’s so nice that some of you got an extra hour of sleep this weekend.  Know what I got?  A kid in my face at 5:30 instead of 6:30.  I then had to get up in the pitch black. 

I tried to explain the situation.  But trying to explain daylight savings to a 4 year old is's much like trying to explain daylight savings to a 4 year old:

“It’s dark out.  Go back to bed.”

“But I’m awake.”

“Yeah but you shouldn’t be because the clock says it’s too early for me to be hearing your voice. You should be sleeping. “

“But my eyes are open.  See? Can I have pancakes?”

Later that day I got to read all the status updates about the refreshing extra hour of sleep you childless people enjoyed. 

You liked falling back?  Well I hope you like falling back off the cliff I’m going to shove you over if I hear one more word about how rested you are!

Around 5:30 that evening, when it was once again pitch black out, I started thinking about how it was actually 6:30 which meant the kids should be going to bed in about an hour.  But of course I couldn’t put them to bed then, I had to wait.  Otherwise they would be up at 4:30 the next morning.

Welcome to “Falling Back Day” or as it’s more commonly known: THE LONGEST PARENTING DAY OF THE YEAR!

I cannot tell you how many of my fellow moms posted about how they had to start drinking way earlier than normal to survive that day. 

See?  See what you’re doing to our livers with this bullshit time change?  I hope you’re happy Mr. Daylight Savings Man!

Monday, October 29, 2012


I hate puzzles.  I hate the ever loving shit out of puzzles. 

You’ll notice I swore nice and early in this entry.  That’s how strongly I feel about those damn things.

I was not a puzzle do-er in my youth.  They never appealed to me.  Mostly because I have no patience. 

At all. 


And now as a mom my patience level with them is at an historic all-time low.  It’s frustrating enough not being able to put the pieces together yourself…but watching someone else struggle with this task?  It’s excruciating.

Here are some examples of things that give me the same feeling as when I watch the boys do puzzles:

-Getting lemon juice in a paper cut

-Cold ice cream on a sensitive tooth

-Stubbing your toe over and over in the same place

-Being water boarded

Those wooden ones where you put the wooden alligator piece on top of the picture of the alligator are ok.  I’m down with those.  But jigsaw puzzles? 

“Oh my GOD…are you kidding me?  That piece isn’t even the same COLOR as the piece you’re repeatedly trying to match it up with.  The sticky out pieces have to go INTO the holes.  You can just JAM two sticky out pieces together!  Don’t you know you have to do the edge first?  Turn the piece around…no…the other way…keep going…TURN IT AROUND!  What are you, 2? Just let me do it…”

I sometimes think that doing puzzles with the kids is a good idea.  Then again I sometimes think having twenty margaritas in one sitting is a good idea.  Turns out, neither of those things ever ends up being a good idea. 

The other day I got a few new puzzles and was determined to put in an effort.

At first the kids were excited because it was something new and different.  You can only play with the laundry baskets and the vacuum attachments for so long before you seek alternate forms of entertainment.

The first one we tackled was shaped like a T-Rex. 

“Boys!  Let’s do this dinosaur puzzle!”

“Yay!  Ok!”

5 minutes later…

“Mom I don’t like this puzzle, we’re gonna go play trucks.”

Wow, kids.  Way to follow things through and not be quitters.  Your work ethic amazes me. 

I refused to let them quit.  You would have thought I refused to give them food and shelter.  Cause they reacted the same way.  They screamed and cried as I forced them to sit there and endlessly match up pieces of dinosaur. I actually wanted to join them but it didn’t seem like the adult thing to do…so I swore instead.

“I fucking hate puzzles!”

“You don’t say fucking, Mama.”


At this point they were just done.  And after I searched through 58 all green pieces before I found the exact all green piece that I was looking for, I was done as well. 

I think TV was invented by someone with an aversion to puzzles.  And I’d like to buy that person a drink. 

Monday, October 22, 2012

The Walk

Hello friends!

It’s an absolutely gorgeous day here in New England!  October is my favorite month; the leaves are at their peak and everything looks and smells and feels divine. 

Today is perfect.  Not too cold, not too hot.  It’s one of those days where you think “Hey! I’m gonna surprise my kids and walk them home from school! And it will be so fun because we can crunch the leaves together and take in the sunshine and enjoy the day!”

I decided to bring our dog Toby with me. I was so proud of myself.  I thought: “Wow!  Look at me!  I’m a mom walking with her dog to pick her kids up from school on this beautiful day.  Is this is straight out of Parents magazine or what?!?!”

Well, I left the house a little later than expected and ended up having a jog the last leg…up a big hill.  So I arrived late and dripping with sweat.  But no problem, I still made a point to mention to all the teachers that we would be walking home that afternoon.  I expected to receive some sort of parenting medal for my intentions but all I got was “Oh that’s nice”. 

Whatever people, I know you’re impressed by my efforts.  Maybe you just don’t want to make all the parents who DROVE here feel badly.  I understand. 

I grabbed the boys from their classrooms and headed outside.  A few of the kids wanted to pat Toby so I stood there a little while before I realized…my children were missing.  They were literally almost to the end of the street without me.  I got them back quickly because I think they take away your “I walked my kids home from school” award if you lose them in the process.

Ok, everyone get the dog petting over with?  Great.  We’re off. 

We started on our fun, fun walk home but then a car turned the corner and it was…my husband.  He was running errands during his lunch break and was in the neighborhood.  Naturally the kids thought it was so awesome that Dad was picking them up.  Only that wasn’t the plan.  The plan was to walk.  Guess who now hated that plan?  EVERYONE!

Mike then got to drive away leaving me with both kids screaming “We want Daddy!” and Grant literally crumpled in a heap on the side walk. 

Thanks for the visit, hun!

At least I got to throw their backpacks in his car so I didn’t have to carry them…

After we had been walking/dragging Grant for a few minutes Carter announced that he was tired.  And thirsty.  But I had planned ahead for this and brought water…which was in the backpacks…which I had just put in Mike’s car. 

It was at this point that the intense and uninterrupted whining began: I want to be the leader! No, I do! We don’t want to walk.  We want lunch.  Carry me.  I want to hold your hand.  I don’t want to hold your hand.  WE WANT TO BOTH HOLD YOUR SAME HAND!

This was clearly not what I had pictured when I made the fateful decision to take this walk.  Come to think of it, you can’t even see the sidewalk cause of these friggin’ leaves.  And the sun is too hot.  I’m melting.  Stupid sunshine.

We were almost home when Carter started wheezing.  He’s asthmatic.  But it was ok because I foresaw this happening and had brought his inhaler.  And put it in the backpack.


Alright kids, let’s keep moving.  I can SEE the house.  Surely nothing more can go wrong before we reach our front door.  (OMG Danielle!  WHY did you just say that!  That's like the horror movie equivalent of someone saying "I'll be right back".)

“Mom!  I have to go poop!”

Seriously, Grant?  I don’t even have words to express how much I want you to be kidding.  The thing about Grant is that he holds everything in until it’s an emergency.  The look on his face told me it was an emergency.  And turns out I was right.

He did it.  He did it right there, 50 feet from our house.  And then naturally he couldn’t just WALK like that.  He had to move around and scream and cry until…it fell out his pant leg. 
I am now officially the mother who's kid pooped on the sidewalk. 

But it’s ok, cause I had brought a bag for Toby just in case.  And I had put it…


I hate walks.  If anyone needs me later I’ll be diving into a glass of Shiraz and doing a few laps.

Friday, October 19, 2012


Dear Mom,

I thought it was time we had a little chat.  I know for a fact that people in the workplace receive performance reviews from time to time and I don’t see why we shouldn’t start applying that policy to our home. 

You’ve been employed here for 4 years and overall I think your efforts are satisfactory.  There is, however, one area where I feel there is room for improvement…and that is time management. 

I frequently hear you state that you don’t have time to complete your tasks, that there aren’t enough hours in the day, that you can’t “drop everything” to meet my demands.  This attitude is simply unacceptable. 

When I make a request there needs to be nothing more important going on in your life.  It’s not my fault that you’re in the middle of doing the dishes or folding the laundry.  Those are tasks that need to be completed on “your time”.  When you’re on my time I expect efficiency. 

When I say “I want a snack” that is what I want.  I don’t see how I can be any more clear.   I didn’t say I want a snack “when you’re done” or “when you get around to it”, did I?  The number of times I have to repeat myself in order to be heard is ridiculous.  How can we run a household with such a lack of respect for each other?  When you go to the hospital do the doctors say “I’ll save your life…when I get a chance”?  No.  They do not.  And this is the exact same scenario. 

Remember that time I needed the TV louder and you were using the potty?  And I had to literally bang on the door and scream for, like, two whole minutes until you did what I asked?  These are the kind of situations that I’m talking about.  If you had better time management skills you would have been able to pee and turn up the volume simultaneously. 

Now, I know you are a big fan of this “patience” thing.  You keep asking for it to be implemented in our day to day operations here at the house.  I don’t know what your previous employer’s policies were regarding this issue but I can tell you right off the bat we don’t operate like that here.  Stop sending out memos about it as they are simply ignored. 

And for the record, you are not allowed to punish your children for taking matters into our own hands.  Take this morning, for example.  I know you heard Grant’s request for Cheerios but you were just “too busy” taking a shower to comply.  So you can’t be surprised to learn that I took care it for you.  To be honest, I’m getting a little sick of picking up the slack around here.

I could reach the cereal and I could reach the spoons.  If you want us to eat out of bowls then you'll have to be more attentive now won't you?

So to sum things up: It would be greatly appreciated if you could find a way to meet all requests at the exact moment they are made.  Now means now, after all.  And that is when I want things.  Now.  Right now.   

Glad we had this talk.

The Management