Thursday, May 29, 2008

A Vignette Into My Mind's Eye

"We do not remember days; we remember moments."
~ Cesare Pavese

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Parenting Tip: Mind Your KEYS and Q's

(*Updated to add photo below.)

Never leave your car keys in the ignition, even if you are parked in a friend's driveway;

But... if you DO leave your keys in the ignition while parked in a friend's driveway, NEVER let your toddler escape from your clutches and jump into the DRIVER'S SEAT while you are rushing to get home because HOLY FUCKITY FUCK your brother's school bus is coming in LESS THAN an hour and we are at least 40 minutes away from home!!!!!;

But... if your toddler DOES escape from your clutches while the keys are in your car's ignition, ALWAYS make sure your car doors are UNlocked before you retrieve the little shit button-pushing-escape-artist and strap her back into her car seat and then CLOSE.THE.DOOR thereby LOCKING said toddler in your car;

(BONUS PARENTHETICAL TIP: It would also be helpful if you plot the sun's path ahead of time so you can make sure your car is NOT parked in the BLAZING SUN in off chance that you DO to lock your toddler in your car with the keys in the ignition 45 minutes before you are supposed to be home for the school bus;)

And... if you DO lock your toddler in the car (in the BLAZING SUN) with the keys in the ignition, do not ALSO lock your cell phone in with her because you will need it to make frantic phone calls to ALL of your neighbors as you desperately try to find someone to retrieve your kindergartener off the school bus;

AND... if you DO lock your toddler AND your cell phone in your car, FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY do NOT lock your camera in with them because teh internetz will need pictures to go along with your blog post!!;

AND!!!!... if you DO lock your toddler and cell phone and camera in your car remember to be gracious and thank the nice police officers who were subjected to the repeated phone calls from your panicked BFF pleading that they "PLEAAAASSEEE HURRY UP IT'S HOT IN THE CAR!!!!!";

(Even if they DID drive right past her block with their lights and sirens blaring as if to torment you just a *little* bit longer for being such a moron as to lock your toddler in your car with the keys in the ignition;)

(And ESPECIALLY EVEN if one of them flashes you a look of condescension that spoke volumes as to what he really thought of your stellar parenting skillz.)

Thank you officers. 
My sweaty, heat-flushed toddler thanks you.

I was locked in my Mom's car and all she got was this stupid AFTER-photo.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Friday, May 16, 2008

The Incredible Shrinking Woman

I've lost 1.5 inches!
And not in the *good* places!
(In fact, I seem to be e-x-p-a-n-d-i-n-g South of the Border according to the doctor's stoopid BROKEN!!!! scale. Dammit.)
The inches I've lost are in HEIGHT.
I used to be 5' 8.5".
I KNOW! Right?? That's not just TALL... that's goddamn STATUESQUE.
And all goddesses should be statuesque.
Put me in stilettos and I'm a FREAKIN' AMAZON!!!!
Fear me.
But... no longer am I a statuesque fearsome Amazonian goddess.
Now, I'm just 5"7' thanks to my twisty scoliosis-riddled spine.*
I feel so... average.
But, there's still hope I can regain my tallness.
I have gone back to seeing a chiropractor for my scoliosis.
(As is Hansel for his allergies & asthma. And Gretel because... well, she is TWO and there is NO WAY she is going to let her big brother be the only one getting his back cracked like popcorn!)
My twisty spine was straightened out once before, and it will be again.
Dr. Cougar (as in John Cougar Mellancamp because when he cracks my back it HURTS so GOOD!!!) has his doubts, but I don't.
My back and muscles know what they're supposed to do.
In no time, the only thing that will be twisted will be my sense of humor.

Aside from finding out I am now vertically challenged, yesterday's presurgical clearance physical was all good.
Barring any freaky results from my blood work (results will be in today or Monday), I'll be good to go under the knife for my little procedure in early June.

Next up... figuring out how to tell the kids.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

What Makes a Mother

[This is an "Edited to include Stepmoms" version of an email that has made it's way into by inbox numerous times over the years. I decided it's time we were represented.]

This is for the mothers who have sat up all night with sick toddlers in their arms, wiping up barf laced with Oscar Mayer wieners and cherry Kool-Aid saying, "It's okay honey, I'm here."

Who have kissed boo-boos and made macaroni and cheese every night for dinner because it's their favorite.

For all the mothers who run carpools and make cookies and sew Halloween costumes. And all the mothers who DON'T.

This is for the mothers who gave birth to babies they'll never see. And the mothers who took those babies and gave them homes. And the "bonus" mothers to their husband's children.

This is for the mothers whose priceless art collections are hanging on their refrigerator doors. And for those who smile through the innocent announcements of "Look what I made for Mommy!" and "I am going to give this picture to Mommy this weekend!"

And for all the mothers who froze their buns on metal bleachers at football or soccer games instead of watching from the warmth of their cars. So that when their kids asked, "Did you see me?" they could say, "Of course, I wouldn't have missed it for the world," and mean it.

This is for all the mothers who yell at their kids in the grocery store and swat them in despair when they stomp their feet and scream for ice cream before dinner. And for all the mothers who count to ten instead, but realize how child abuse happens.

This is for all the mothers who have struggled through the issues of co-parenting with their husband's ex-wife. And who continue to love these children in spite of being told she has no right.

This is for all the mothers who sat down with their children and explained all about making babies. And for all the (grand)mothers who wanted to, but just couldn't find the words.

This is for all the mothers who take their children shopping to buy their (bio)Moms a birthday/Christmas/Mother's Day gift. And who say "It's ok." if they don't get something in return.

This is for those mothers who understand that divorce is painful. And who let their children go through the normal grieving process without taking it personally.

For all the mothers who read "Goodnight, Moon" twice a night for a year. And then read it again, "Just one more time."

This is for all the mothers who taught their children to tie their shoelaces before they started school. And for all the mothers who opted for Velcro instead.

This is for all the mothers who teach their sons to cook and their daughters to sink a jump shot.

This is for all the mothers who sent their kids to school with stomach aches, assuring them they'd be just FINE once they got there. And for those who dropped everything when the nurse calls an hour later because their (bio)Mom cannot be reached.

This is for mothers whose children have gone astray, who can't find the words to reach them. For all the mothers who bite their lips until they bleed when their teen informs you that they wish to live with their Mom instead of you and their Dad.

And for every Mom who has ever heard the phrase "But she's not my mother."

What makes a good mother anyway? Is it patience? Compassion? Biology?

Or is it in her heart?

Is it the ache she feels when she watches her son or daughter disappear down the street, walking to school alone for the very first time?

The pride she feels as she watches from the back row of their first ballet recital or school play?

The panic that comes at 2 A.M. when she just wants to hear their key in the door and know they are safely home after their first college road trip?

Or the need to flee from wherever she is and hug her child when she hears news of a fire, a car accident, a child dying?

The emotions of motherhood are universal and so our thoughts are for young mothers stumbling through diaper changes and sleep deprivation...

And for mature mothers learning to let go.

For working mothers and stay-at-home mothers.

Single mothers and married mothers.

Mothers with money, mothers without.

Stepmothers and "Bonus" mothers.

This is for you all. For all of us...

Hang in there. In the end we can only do the best we can. Tell them every day that we love them. And pray and NEVER stop being a mother...

"Home is what catches you when you fall - and we all fall."

Friday, May 9, 2008

Freud Would Have a Field Day

Me: "Hi Dad. I wanted you to know that I'm going to have breast augmentation surgery next month."

Dad: "Good for you! Make sure you wear low cut shirts when you come down to visit. I want to get tons of before pictures."

Me: "And I'll be sure NOT to wear my regular padded bras so you can get a true comparison."

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

A Mother's Day Quote for Stepmoms

"A stepmother might have to rise above a little more than everyone else to make everything go smoothly and for everyone to feel comfortable. It's one of the nicest gifts they could give."
- Elizabeth Howell 

Here's hoping we all find the strength to rise above the challenges, adversities and animosities to make this Mother's Day a good one ... especially for our stepkids.

If you need a little more inspiration, go read A Stepmom's Say and see how she's grabbing the bull by the horns this year. 

Monday, May 5, 2008

Little Hans(el)

Umm... Mommy, I can see your bra.
I straighten out his blanket and settle in next to him for our shoulder-to-shoulder nightly chat.
"It's OK honey. It's no big deal."
Umm... Mommy? You might want to button your top button 'cuz I can see your bra.
He averts his eyes and he continues his protests.
"Hansel, it's OK. I'm your Mom."
Well, Mommy ... sometimes when I see people's underwear or bras my penis sticks straight up. And that's kinda a bit of a problem.


I quickly search through my repository of parenting wisdom.
This is one of those special teaching moments that we all love SO much as parents. 
But all I could do was think of how I had JUST recently showered with Hansel and OHMYGOD did he have an erection the entire time and I didn't notice?!?!?!?!?!?


The response I came up with...?
I *giggled* people!
Like a school girl.
And then exclaimed "REALLY?!?!?!?!?!?!"
He *giggled*.
Then we both *giggled*.

Hello, Dr. Freud. Nice to meet you. Loved your theories. They've prepared me well, as you can PLAINLY SEE.

Behold my mad parenting skillz.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Mother's Day Gifts for Stepmoms

Mother's Day is around the corner.
I know it's a holiday many Stepmoms dread.
(For many, MANY reasons.)
What does one buy for a Stepmom?
There's an abundance of Mommy bracelets, rings and charms out there.
I have my fair share of them.
But there is not much for Stepmoms.


I found the perfect gift, and blogged about it in this is post from August 2007
I love it. Of course I bought it for myself but it was summer and there were no major holidays coming up and I am impatient. 
Cinderella loves it so much that she wants a matching necklace that represents ME. With my name and birthstone. 
Oh my gosh! It's like SO cyoooot and if I get my own then like we can match and stuff!!
So go here now, browse and around and tell Beth Wicked Stepmom sent you.

And, I would be remiss if I didn't suggest that you might possibly find something here
(I know. Shameless plug! Sue me.)