Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Raising Those Funds

It’s back to school time! Know what that means?

It means last week when I picked up the kids and looked in their backpacks I found two crappy magazines filled with overpriced junk that I now have to sell to my closest friends and family.

If you just read that and think you may fall into one of those categories I won’t be offended if you suddenly cut all ties with me, block my phone number, unfriend me on all social media sites and go into witness protection just to be safe. 

It’s what I would do.

Unless, of course, you really need a decorative doily declaring your love for olives.  If that’s the case hit me up, I’ve got you covered.

It’s at times like these when I’m really glad to have my best friend in my life.  Cause I called her up this morning and said:

“Do you want the $25 candle that you can get for $7 in the store or the $32 dollar mug that says “Hooray! I’m happy that we’re friends and shit” or something along those lines on it…??”

Do other people promote their children’s products like that?  If not I suggest you start cause I was able to sell her two owl shaped candle holders that she probably didn’t need and will most likely use infrequently.

Ok, ok, I know there are some of you out there saying “Don’t be so mean…schools need to raise funds!”

Yes, I realize that.  I just wish they didn’t have to raise funds by selling a spatula that has one end specifically for peanut butter and one end specifically for jelly.  Us jerks who cross contaminate the two scoff at this idea. 

What do you do if you need to make a quick PB&J and your fancy spatula is dirty?  Does all hell break loose?  Although, if you’re the type of person who owns this culinary wonder you’re probably also the type of person who runs their dishwasher frequently enough that this will never be an issue.  Good for you.

And Carter’s fundraiser has little rewards for those kids who sell the highest number of unnecessary garbage to their unsuspecting relatives.  So if you don’t sell stuff your kid may end up being the only asshole in class without a keychain shaped like a smiley face.  And then I think a member of the PTO comes in and explains to him that his parents didn’t care enough about his well-being to make their friends buy $15 wrapping paper…

I really want my kid to feel rewarded for all of the work that I’M doing harassing the shit out of people so I asked my husband to take the catalogue into work with him.

“You remember that I’m an engineer right?  My workplace is 95% males.  Did you want me to try and sell them the plate with a poem about family on it or the $21 lip gloss?” 

Don’t be silly honey! Neither of those.  I was just hoping you could hock a couple subscriptions to Women’s World Magazine…

Obviously I have to buy something from this marvelous selection of fine items.  I was gonna go with a pan that makes your pancakes look like little smiley bear faces but eating things that are smiling at me freaks me out and I don’t want to pass that on to my children:  Oh come here little cute bear! You look so nice and friendly! I bet you have a cuddly family and everything too, huh?  Ok…I’m gonna stab you in the face now…

I came to the chocolate section and thought, ok now we’re talking, finally something I can get on board with.  But it was $12 for 12 puny little chocolates.  Are you kidding me?  They better be made with, like, angel tears or unicorn breath for that price. 

The moral of the story is if you see my number come up on your caller ID any time over the next two  weeks you should probably just ignore me.

Why can’t this be a thing…
I would overpay for wine any day of the week.  There's always next year.

Monday, September 16, 2013

The Trip of a Lifetime

Congratulations…you just had a baby!

I know things are overwhelming right now but I wanted to be the first to tell you to pack your bags…cause you’re going on a trip!

Are you excited?

Well don’t be. 

Sorry, I know I just got you all hyped up with my big trip news but now I have to also be the one to tell you that the trip you’re going on sucks.  It’s awful.  And you’ll be on it for a while.  What am I talking about?

Why, the Mommy (and Daddy) Guilt Trip of course!

It seems like every time I go online I see a new blog, quote, story, picture, hieroglyphic detailing how great moms should act…

“Enjoy your kids now because this time won’t last” or “You only have this day with your kids once so don’t waste it”.

The message here is that good moms make every moment count with their kids and never need a break because if you take a break or aren’t having fun during every single second then there is something wrong with you and just THINK of all the moments you lost!

Parenthood has its ups and downs.  You’re going to enjoy a lot of it.  But there are going to be moments where it’s not as fun and you’re gonna want to throw your hands up and scream “What the F!?!?” And then the internet will show you an example of parents doing it “right” and you’ll be like “Oh, yeah.  I totally forgot I was supposed to feel guilty for everything I’m not doing for my kids.  Thanks so much for reminding me, Internet!”

When I see those kinds of posts the guilt automatically sets in.  Because I usually come across them at the end of a long day where my kids fought to the death for hours and I screamed a lot.  And on those days I don’t want to stop time and take in every detail.  I want them to go the hell to sleep already so I can sit in peace and quiet and drink my wine.

But then they’ll finally be asleep and I’ll read something about how I’m supposed to be savoring every  minute of my time as a mom and then I’ll think about the day I had and get all sad and think “SHIT! I totally forgot to enjoy my kids today!”

Let me tell you something, it’s really hard to enjoy someone who is telling you he wishes the police would come arrest you because you said he couldn’t have another cookie. 

But nevertheless when I see one of my friends has reposted some sappy quote about motherhood I automatically start to tear up and vow that tomorrow, tomorrow I will enjoy everything my kids do. 

I’ll even enjoy the annoying thing Grant does where he sits on the toilet and slams the vanity door open and shut over and over just to be an asshole and make noise cause he knows I hate it when he does that and also, he’s definitely going to break it off one of these days and we can’t afford to replace it right now…

But guess what?  The next day, oddly enough, I STILL DON’T ENJOY THAT!

And I yell at him to stop.  But then I remember the thing I read about the mom who used to yell at her kids all the time but she realized how bad it was for them so she stopped…and then all of a sudden rainbows sprung up all around the town and the world was a happier place. 

Right.  No yelling.  Got it. 

But then Carter is teasing Grant and I calmly ask him ten times to please stop being a douche to his brother but the message is not getting through so I MUST yell.  And then I immediately feel guilty because the internet told me that only nasty troll moms raise their voices to their kids. 

And wanna know what else?  I didn’t enjoy that moment with my offspring either.  So two strikes for me. 

One thing I try really hard to do is read to my kids every day.  You’re supposed to do that, ya know.  But some days are just busy and exhausting and I’m not even sure if I said the word “book” that day, never mind actually open one.  And when they ask me for a show before bed instead of reading I say yes. 

But then I start feeling guilty because, come to think of it, did we read yesterday at all?  When was the last time I sat down and read to them?  That bookshelf is looking a little dusty.  OH MY GOD! Their brains must be at least half mush by now. Can I double up on the reading tomorrow?  Does this work like that?

There have been nights where I literally lay awake worrying about all the things I’m feeling guilty over:

-Have my kids eaten a vegetable this week?

-I haven’t ever taken my kids to a museum.  Everyone else takes their kids to museums. 

-I let Carter eat that M&M he found on the floor at Target.  If he gets dysentery from that I’m gonna be screwed.

-Today I told Grant to hurry up.  According to recent internet data you’re not supposed to rush your children.  I hope I didn’t royally F him up for the rest of his life.  I probably did though.

Once you have a kid you feel badly about everything.  You’ll see other moms doing it “better” and you’ll wonder why you can’t keep up. 

But you never know.  The mom who you look at and wonder how the hell she always has homemade organic snacks for her kids might be looking at you wondering how you managed to shower AND blow-dry your hair this morning.  (And you’ll look at her and say ‘Cause my kids love TV, sucka!'...and then you'll feel guilty about the fact that your kids watch too much TV.)

Other moms aren’t doing it better, their doing it differently.  And it’s ok that you sometimes yell (a lot) and sometimes don’t enjoy your kids (cause sometimes they suck) because there are plenty of times when you don’t yell and you enjoy the crap out of your kids because they’re funny and adorable and snuggly. 

So let’s all stop letting other people’s versions of the perfect parent define our self-worth.  This just in: There is no such thing as "doing it all". You make sacrifices, you let some things go and focus on what is important to you and your family...which may or may not be what's important to me and my family.  And more power to ya!

Let’s stop feeling guilty and bad about ourselves because someone on the internet tells us we wasted our day not soaking up every aspect of parenthood.  Enjoy the good, screw the bad, drink some wine.  Now that’s parenthood in a nutshell.