Thursday, May 31, 2012

Oh. Hi Summer. You're Back. *heavy sarcasm*

Ah, summer vacation. I see you are back, you Minx. I know you are all popular and everyone loves you. I get it. You are all hot and steamy and fun with your sunshine and your maxi dresses. But like every great super have your faults. Like no school. And lots of sweating. And lots of hours of to fill with entertaining a two year old.  You roll in and get everyone worked up into a lather and we are all excited for pool time and beach trips and tans. But then you stick around. And a few weeks in, we are all just sitting around, staring at our kids, remembering why we heart Winter so much. 

It is not that I don't love my child. But when you come around, its all Honey Badger and Mommy, all the time. There is no two- mornings-a-week break. There is no time to enjoy a trip to the Teeter alone. There is no time to sit and sip a cup of coffee with a little Facebook and Today Show. There is no using the bathroom alone. Seriously, bathroom time, originally designed to be a solo process, becomes a round table discussion when there is a two year old involved. And I don't love that. That doesn't make me a bad person.

Today was the last day of school. Summer, you have officially arrived, and I am not entirely pleased to see your sunny disposition and glowing face. Yes, there will be family time and lots of fun. Yes, I will have a great time on vacation and playing outside. But there will also be lots of long days. Filled with a hot sticky two year old who is constantly jonesing for popsicles and to be carried. Worst combination ever. There is potty training to start and a big girl bed to transition to. There are changes afoot and they will be emotionally trying and I am certain will involve a fair amount of poo on my couch.  When I see the back of you, heading out to be replaced by Fall, I will have a little girl on my hands, not a toddler. And I can't say I totally love that either.

I can't stop you, I can only brace for what you bring. Which I hope will be lots mornings at the pool and lots of long naps in the afternoon. I will try to look past the 100% humidity, public venue timeouts, and the peeing on the floor that you will inevitably bring.     Happy thoughts of Fall, that cool lady, will keep me going.

This is exactly what it looks like when I ride my burro at the beach. 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Even Kid Haters Can Say Hello

People of the world, prepare yourselves. I have a rant/public service announcement/helpful hint.

I don't care if you hate kids. I don't care if the sight of their sticky hands makes you squirm and their innocent little faces make you want to shudder. What I do care about is your unwillingness to acknowledge a child when they are saying hello/smiling/waving at you. You know who else won't stand for it? My child. I promise she can out last you. This has happened twice to us in the last two weeks and it makes me really angry. Both times Lady Baby was politely and obviously trying to say hello to an adult who refused to engage. Because obviously two year olds are out to ruin everyone's days with their happiness.

The first time was a man at a local coffee shop reading his paper. She walked up to him, said "hi," and he ignored her. She leaned her little face onto the edge of his table and said it again. Crickets. A little louder this time. More ignoring. This went on for at least 8 hellos. Finally he glanced at her and winced out the worst half smile of life. Then he have her a head bob. A head bob. She's two. She doesn't understand the subtle nuances of communication. A head bob doesn't get it. I had to basically drag her away from this guy's table, while she continued "hi" on loud repeat. The whole time he was radiating a "kids are tiny warriors in satan's army trying to ruin my morning" vibe. Not cool. 

The second time happened today at Whole Foods. A was sitting in a booth across from the checkouts, having finished her fancy free range quinoa and tofu lunch. Her Highness, riding in her plastic-race-car-with-basket-attached chariot, spent the trip around the store greeting her subjects and reveling in the excellant crowd participation. She spots this woman, one last person that has not had the honor of a hello from the Queen. I see a little chubs hand wave out of the side of the car. The woman stared straight at her. I see a second wave. More staring. This went on until I was also staring, waiting to see who was going to crack first. She didn't smile, she didn't wave, she sat. She stared. She sat and stared. I know she can communicate. I saw her talking to another woman while I was in line. She was a statue of "I refuse to acknowledge anyone who was born after 2009." Alice didn't have a chance to get out of the car-cart to beat the woman into submission verbally because I whisked her out the door. But I was hot. A little wave back wouldn't have killed you.

News flash for those who hate kids. They are going to turn into grownups someday. Every interaction they have helps mold them into the person they will become. When you ignore someone speaking to you it is rude. Why would you want to teach a child that it is ok to be rude? Children are our future. Did Whitney teach us nothing? I have no need for every single person on this earth to think kids are awesome. What I do have a need for is basic decency. Is that really too much to ask? Seriously. If my child's gorgeous little face make you want to vomit, that is your business. You being rude to her is my business. I think next time I will allow her to honey badger he or she who shall not communicate until they have no choice but to carry on a full five minute conversation with her about bracelets and yogurt and when she pooped. While that will probably only increase their distaste for the young, it will teach them a valuable lesson. Most unpleasant social situations can be avoided when you have good manners.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Survival Living Is Not Really My Thing

Katniss, I am not.
If there is one thing I know about myself, it is that I would never survive in the olden days. Or in a post apocolyptic world. I guess that is two things that I know. But since the olden days and a post apocolyptic world are kind of same-same, I still count it as one. You dig? I would have perished at a young age had I been born in a time without modern conviences. Like faucets. And stoves. And flip flops. Who is with me? Yeah for 2012.

1. In the olden days everyone made their own shoes. I cannot fathom that process. I can only assume it involves tanning leather (ewww) and sewing it all up. This is actually something I have thought about more than 5 times, because I cannot comprehend having to do that for myself. I would be shoeless, padding around the forrest. This means I would be even more in need of a pedicure than I am now, which is a serious issue. Then I would get cut, and it would get infected, and I would get gangrene, and my fate would be the same as that guy they let die in the tent on the other side of the bay in The Beach. I prefer to rely on the shoe section at Target. It just seems safer. 

2. I would have to build fires all the time. There are several problems with this. The first is the obvious. What a pain in the ass. I am cold...hang on I will build a fire. I am hungry...hold on, gotta find some wood. I need to send my BFF a message with smoke signals that I'm going to be late. Where in my flint stone? Its too much. TOO MUCH. Not only would I die, but I would die cold, hungry, and no one would know because I couldn't get my smoke signals going. The next issue is my basic fear of fire. I would not be comfortable starting one in a forrest and possibly burning down little deer houses and rabbit dens and my log cabin community (Smokey the Bear, y'all). The last problem is I am not at all comfortable in my ability to use pieces of nature to start a fire. I have a hard time working those grill lighters sometimes. I cannot imagine two sticks would be easier.
Dear Lord, you have to have some sort of
pelt as well? Um, no.

3. Plumbing. Really no explanation needed. Back in day no water was at the ready for things like bathing and using the potty. Huge buckets of water had to be hauled to and fro. I am not much for hauling anything to and fro. And I am sure I would spill my buckets at least once or twice a week, causing me to become the outcast water waster. Then I would be lonely and thirsty and really have to tinkle.

4. See #3. No bathing/brushing on the regs. And this lady prefers cleanliness. I don't have that awesome hair that can go days without a good scrub. I am lucky to get twelve hours before I am a lank greasy mess. Also, if it was the old days, there would be no hair cuts, so there would be even more greasy mess to contend with. Don't get me started on tooth brushing. This is a vital part of my existence. A stick would never suffice. Greasy with bad breath is a bad look for me. Not hot. (There was going to be a pic of bad teeth but when I googled it I almost passed out. Don't do it.)

5. I would be unfortunate at best. The first issue is that I have terrible vision, so I would be blind. That is probably why I am spilling all the water and can never find my flint. Also, I would be barren (for more explanation read THIS). Last but not least, I would have terrible very bad teeth for which in modern times I wore braces from 5th grade to 9th grade. Yes, you read that correctly. Therefore I would be blind barren spinster with a jacked grill. This is a fact. I asked hubs and he confirmed that he would definitely never have gotten together with me in those circumstances. I would be the old aunt with lots of cats in her log cabin/cold stone manse/tent.

6. I would almost definitely eat something poisonous. People had to forage in the woods for food. That is a little more intense than rolling down to the Teeter for my organic apples and toaster waffles. While the foraging would probably be enough to kill me, terrible judgement when I am really hungry would be the nail in my coffin. When I am starving everything goes out the window. The other day I had nothing for lunch and then I ate 1/4th of a bag of miniature marshmellows at 3pm. Did I want them? Not really. Did that stop me? Unfortunately not. I was starving and it was there. So I can only imagine what kinds of crazy things that I would eat while I was out searching for berries that don't cause the runs and root vege that doesn't taste like feet. Since I seriously doubt my abilites to find those things, I would more than likely get so ravenous and I would eat something like cacti or poison ivy. The latter of which I am very allergic. 
But it would make such a tasty salad.

7. Childbirth with no epidural. Really don't need to say much more. However, due to #5 I would probably not be procreating. But if I did find a hunchback with one eye and a bad breath (no teeth brushing) I would be forced to birth our 13 children with no drugs. Only a leather belt to bite on and some corn liquor to drink. Barren with cats sounds way better. 

8. No TV. Related: no DVR. It was a sad dark time.

Now that you all know that I am not equipped for survival, I am taking applications for people who want to add me to their post apocalyptic clan. Please get in touch quickly just in case the Mayans were right. I want to have my travel plans arranged pre-December 2012. Thanks in advance.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Moms that Make the Rest of Us Look Good

Doubting whether you are good mother this Mother's Day?  These movie moms will make you feel wayyyy better about your mothering abilities.

Footloose: What kind of mother moves her teen son to a city where music and dancing is illegal? Especially when said son has a rockin' tape collection and serious leg kicking abilites.

Star Wars: Seriously, you should tell your kids if their daddy is the biggest a-hole in the Empire. You could have at least left a letter pinned to their blankies. That is the kind of thing a kid needs to know.
A heads up for the twins would have been nice.

Home Alone: I don't care how busy you are. If you get all the way on the plane without one of your kids you suck.

Carrie: Some moms push their religious views a little too much. It's all fun and games until she loses it and catches the house on fire.

Back to the Future: Mom's shouldn't hit on their sons, even if he is from the future.

The Exorcist: If you hear scurrying in the attic move out immediately. It is so not vermin. If you don't, prepare to clean up a lot of green vomit.

Ferris Bueller's Day Off: Obvious favoritism. Poor Jeanie. It's no wonder she had all that plastic surgery later in life.
Jeanie before and after. If only Ferris hadn't been so high maintenance
the nose could have been saved.

The Graduate: Thanks for seducing one of my classmates Mom. Stay classy.

The Hangover: I don't care how much you like your new husband. If you have only known him for 12 hours you should not leave your baby in his closet while you run out for coffee.

Raising Arizona: No matter how bad you want to be a mama, it is not appropriate for your husband to steal someone else's. Even if they have a litter.

Sixteen Candles: Forgetting your daughter's 16th birthday is inexcusable. Seriously. Inexcusable.

Grey Gardens: If you are going to be a hoarding cat lady, fine. But don't make your daughter feel bad for wanting to move out. Just think, with her gone there's more room for you to fill with magazines and empty picture frames.
Mama, don't let your babies grow up to be hoarders.

Dirty Dancing: Don't sit around not paying attention to anything that is happening with your kids and then all the sudden take credit for Baby's dancing skills. Not cool. Someone should put you in the corner.

The Lost Boys: I know you are lonely, but there have to be better guys in Santa Carla than the head vampire in town. Seriously, mom. Standards.

Steel Magnolias: Though she redeemed herself with the whole donating the kidney thing, it would have been nice for her to stop her daughter from picking the worlds most hideous bridesmaid's dresses.
Don't be distracted but the hawtness in the pink ascot situation. Direct your
attention to the disasters in a row behind him.

Black Swan: Laying out your grown daughter's clothes and taking her earrings out for her and treating her like she was 10 can possible damage her psyche. Who knew. 

You are welcome, ladies. Now go enjoy your handprint cards, pancake brunches, and coupon books of hugs and vacuuming.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Teaching Love

I debated about whether to write about the Amendment 1 elections. I understand that y'all don't come here to read my views on politics.  I write mostly about parenting.  However, this has turned into a parenting issue. This morning I realized something very important. One of my most significant jobs as a parent is to teach my daughter love and tolerance. I have watched the politics of this amendment play out in the news, over dinner tables, and on Facebook. I have seen angry words flying around and lots of negativity on both sides. I am guilty of anger towards the other side myself. But I feel like I would be remiss if I did not take this opportunity to use my voice for what I believe is a basic truth: love, above all else, is the most important thing. This is has nothing to do with my religion, my background, my race or my gender. It has everything to do with me being a human being who wants the best for other human beings.

While I cannot understand why anyone would vote for the amendment, there is nothing we can do at this point but move forward and work to bring change. I recently read that lawmakers believe that the outcome of the election will be reversed in the next twenty years because this was a "generational" election. Therefore, the older the voter, the more likely they were to vote for the Amendment. I certainly hope that is true. I would like to believe that most people my age, no matter what their politics are, understood the ramifications of the amendment and its far reaching implications. Therefore, it is likely that the children of today will be the ones to change this law. By instilling the need for love and tolerance in my child, I am working to make the world a better place for all people. I will continue to show her that it is never okay to discriminate against others and that we are all the same down deep. We are all people who need love, support, and understanding. My hope for my children's generation is that they understand how important it is to lift others up instead of tearing them down. It is important to come together to change things instead of drawing lines and never budging. I hope she grows up understanding that no matter who she chooses to love, I will always love her. I hope I don't have to watch one of my children or grandchildren suffer because of what voters yesterday decided. I hope that I get to see my child's generation take over the world and make it a better and more loving place to live. I hope I get to see her going out and using love to change the world. I hope this amendment is reversed before she grows up so that she doesn't have to worry about choosing between love and healthcare. 

I am proud to have voted with my head and my heart. I am happy that I can look future generations in the face and tell them I stood up for what is right. When my grandchildren want to hear what life was like in the old days, I hope they cannot fathom that America was ever so backwards and old fashioned. I hope they cannot imagine a world where this type of thing could happen. I hope they are proud that I stood up for love and tolerance just the way I have taught them to do. 

Sunday, May 6, 2012

I'm A Cheetah

Life is a blur. I feel like I run through my days. One second I am wishing I didn't have to get up, then the next second I am falling into bed exhausted. How does that happen? I thought once I was  home all day things would be calm. And easy. And so much less stressful. This however, is just not the case. Possibly because even though I am "home," I am home very little. Thus the days passing by at light speed. 

I don't like living like I am in a crazy race. I feel like I can see the finish line way off in the distance, but I can't get there. The faster I run, the further I go, the more that seems to be between me and that finish. I am not even sure what is at the finish. What is there? Someone please tell me. Peace? Bliss? A masseuse and cupcakes and a vodka cranberry with lime and a quiet place to take a nap? If so then I will keep running. If it is more work, then I'm good, thanks. May as well run in place. 

I have no idea how to slow down. I have to take care of Her Highness. I have to work. I have to go to Target for diapers and cat litter. I have to maintain at least a walkway through the house and at least enough room on the counter to set the takeout boxes. Nothing seems negotiable. Everything seems mandatory. Hubs uses the phrase "work smarter not harder." After I practice an enormous amount of self control to keep from performing a ninja cat throat punch, I reflect on the truth of it. But the truth of it is, I am not sure how to do that either. I feel like I make very good use of my time. Just this morning I magic eraser'd the tub during my shower. I had some time to kill while I did my bi-yearly hair conditioning (it's just Aussie 5 minute miracle, but in the words of Michael Scott, "no time... no time.). I do minimal standing around staring at the mess and the stacks of papers. I suppose I could get up earlier and do more pre-Honeybadger wake up, but sacrificing sleep does not usually go well for me. If there is one thing I need, it is a solid 7 hours or more. I am open to suggestions and ideas. Maybe an assistant or two and about 4-5 extra hours in the day. See what y'all can do to get that going.

I'm a cheetah, yo.
These are things I am doing to try to preserve what time I do have and make life easier:
  • I stopped tweeting. In the battle cry of mother's everywhere, "its too much." So, no more Twitter.
  • I have refrained from joining Pinterest. As many know, I am a fool for a craft project. However, I fear if I fall down the rabbit hole that is Pinterest, you may not hear from me until 2016. 
  • I stopped reading. Not intended to be a time saver but I just can't get my eyes to stay open. But it is saving me some time.
  • I have gotten a haircut that does not require use of the flat iron. Hello 3.2 extra minutes.
  • I try not to say yes to everything that comes along. Its ok if we don't make it to the children's museum or a birthday party. 
  • I have stopped cooking dinner. Okay, that is just because I have not been to the grocery store in like a month except for milk and granola bars. I am trying to remain positive.
I don't want to be the mom who is too busy to play or enjoy my child. That is why I still take the time to snuggle Lady Baby. I will not sacrifice that for errands or cleaning or working. If she asks me to play with her, I usually do. She spends a lot of time playing independently and has never needed to be constantly entertained. I don't want her to ever feel like I am too busy to be her mom. I don't want to look back and regret not devoting enough time to my family. There are enough regrets in life, I don't want that to be one of them.

Until the time that everything gets done and there is nothing left to be crossed off my list (which I imagine will happen when I am 84 and three quarters) I suppose I will keep up the marathon. I am open to suggestions, ideas, rants and hugs. I am thankful for friends who take time out of their own marathons to help manage childcare and enjoy the occasional night out to decompress. I appreciate having a husband who attempts to bring a modicum of organization to my hurricane of a life, closet, car and house. I am hopeful for the future that we will either win the lottery or I will be discovered and paid handsomely to write, instead of using what little time I can scrape together to do it here for free (not that I would abandon y'all if I was famous. I would totes take you with me). Then I could spend my days watching my butler open my mail and my assistant give the cat her 'betes shots while I sit and read and drink lattes. One can dream...I suppose until that day, I will run. Run like the wind. Actually it is probably more of a plod, but you get me.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Kid's TV is Super Weird

My TV seems to rotated between Nick Jr, Sprout, Disney Jr and Kids on Demand. Before you read this I would like to issue the following disclaimer: My child does not watch TV constantly. When she does watch it we are normally snuggling right after she gets up or right before nap/bedtime which is why I have seen all these. Or I need to go to take a shower/send an email/or want a second to pee alone. Stop judging me. 

Special Agent Oso...He is way too portly to be an effective super secret agent. His vest won't even zip. No one would intrust any missions to that guy.
Notice the rotund belly. 

Mickey Mouse Club House...Where do they all live? I think the senseational six may be homeless. They are always hanging out at the Clubhouse, and bouncing around Mickey Park, but no one seems to have a home. Except Willie the Giant. He lives on a farm in the sky. Cause that makes sense.

Doc McStuffins...She should not be able to physically walk around with a head that size on such a tiny body. I do enjoy that her mom is a doctor and her Dad is always in puttering the kitchen. So 2012.
Doc, thy head is enormous.

Handy Manny...Where the heck is Sheetrock Hills? It is on the beach, near a lake, close to the desert, with tree filled parks, a majority hispanic community, and it snows in the winter. And the tools talk. But only Manny's tools. I still don't understand why none of the tools in that minx Kelly's hardware store talk. Seems circumspect. 

Little Einstiens...Worst. audio. to any show. EVER. After 5 minutes my ears are bleeding.

The Wiggles...A cross word about The Wiggles shall never pass these lips. I love them. I am thinking my next husband may be a Wiggle, as I am quite partial to Anthony (go figure). Never mind that they made upwards of $40 mill last year. 
Future wiggly husband.

Yo Gabba Gabba...I have several friends who do not permit their progeny to watch this one. I couldn't care less, even though it is weird as all get out. But the tunes are catchy and teach a good lesson. Who can argue with "Be kind to everyone, and you will will have some friends" ??? No one, thats who. I can get past the androgenous DJ Lance, with the extra low-crotch pants, and Muno, who looks like an item straight out of an Adults Only film. 

Lazytown...This one is so bizarre I had to take it the interwebs to figure out what the deal with it is. It is from Iceland, the land of Bjork. I feel I owe to myself to visit there someday if they can churn out both Sportacus and Bjork. 
Me no likey the weird puppets.

Chloe's Closet...I have nothing to do with anyone who calls their duck lovey "Lovely Carrot." It defies all logic. 

Cailou...Terrible whiny Cailou with his big bald head. I feel a bit sorry for him. He obviously has a condition since he is eight and hairless, but his baby sister has a head full. It is, however,  no excuse for his incessant whining.

Blues Clues...I hate the color of Steve's collar. I can hardly watch the show because of it. I do love the word skadoo, so that kind of makes up for it. Dont' even get me started on Joe. 
It's terrible. A weird khaki-yellow- old white sock-color. Just look away. It's too much

Curious George...This is the new fan fave at our house. Since when does a museum guy have enough money for both a NYC apartment in a building with a doorman and a country home? Has this been addressed and I just missed it? I am not sure how that is possible since I seem to have seen every episode twice and we have only been watching it for about a month. Also, everyone acts like its so normal to have a monkey running around solving problems. It bugs.

The Freshbeat Band...It is a bit of an assault on the eyes, but the tunes are actually quite catchy.Her Higness likes to dance to it, which is entertaining in itself. I imagine at least three of the four stars will go on to reinvent themselves and have albums and torrid affairs and either have a sex tape or end up in rehab. My money is on the red head...she seems a little pent up.

The Backyardigans...It took me at least 7 viewings to figure what Austin was supposed to be. Also, it bugs that they are all real animals except Uniqua who is a mystery alien thingy. As if a mother moose would ever let her baby play with a mystery alien thingy. Ridiculous.
Austin is on the far right (he's a kangaroo if you can't figure it out either.)
Uniqua is second from the right. Weird Alien Thingy.
The middle one is Pablo, who I mistook as a penguin, until my mother told me he was a blue bird.

Sesame Street...Anything that shows Elmo is going to get some airtime at our house. Elmo is a two year old's version of meth. If you don't believe me go to the toy aisle at Target any time of day. There will be at least one kid screaming "Elmo" at the top of his lungs. I love Sesame Street because it really is educational. It taught Lady Baby how to do the Hokey Pokey, or as she she calls it, the Hopey Popey. She is pretty much ready for life with that under her belt. Not to mention it is an hour. 'Nuff said. 

At some point I know she is not going to want to snuggle with her blankie and milk a few times a day to watch her shows. She is going to be all, "mooommmmm, I can't sit in your lap. I'm 14." So I will take these fleeting moments and treasure them, even if it means I am subjected to torture of both the eyes and the ears. Small price to pay. 


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