Sticks and stones

I drive a minivan. I fought it for the longest time. I crammed my children into a SUV because I wasn’t going to be that mom. I was still cool. With the right Spanx and a little Botox I was still hot. Then, for the same reason people wear elastic pants I got a van. I wanted to be comfortable. I am comfortable when my kids are not arguing. If they couldn’t touch each other there would be less fighting. “His elbow is in my spot.” His elbow is connected to his arm. There is nothing I could do about that except get a vehicle with more space. I fell madly in love with my minivan. I have also memorized dozens of movies that I have never actually seen.

I’m not embarrassed of my ride. Well, that is not always true. I was humiliated today. I was walking to my van after a doctors visit. I made an appointment because I have  had a weird sensation that something was stuck in my throat.  I am convinced that the people who edit WebMD are former soap opera writers.   They are constantly trying to kill me off.   It turns out it was what’s called a tonsil stone. Yeah, it is as disgusting as it sounds. It is like a kidney stone on your tonsil.  I hear anybody can get them. At least that is what my friends tell me when we meet for the early bird specials.

I was walking to my car when I saw a handsome man step out of a BMW.  I may have stones, but I was rocking a new pair of shoes and looked damn good. He noticed. I got to the minivan, but kept on walking. I don’t know why I cared what this person thought, but I did. It was nice to have someone who didn’t look like a troll pencil topper check me out. It rarely happens when I am wearing Bermuda shorts and sneakers. So, I made a split-second decision to strut to the end of the parking lot and swing back around to the van.  He would be gone.  I would look cool.  That was the plan.   Unfortunately, my sexy shoe got stuck in a small pothole. I never win anything valuable, but I hit the ‘unlucky bastard lottery’ once a week. My ankle twisted and I stumbled forward, arms failing. I didn’t hit pavement, but my confidence went crashing down as I limped back to my minivan.

#Disgusting

Something was trending on Twitter last night that should serve as a wake up call for all parents. I noticed the pound sign (old habits die hard) hashtag #Twitterpurge.

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Apparently, this is a “game” where people shame others by Tweeting naked pictures. Most of the photos were of young women. I highly doubt the pics were intended to be part of a trending topic. The girls were probably naive enough to think they were sending a photo to one phone. Perhaps, a boyfriend asked for a picture. Maybe they thought it was a good idea. Here is proof that it is not. It is absolutely disgusting that anyone could be this malicious. It should serve as a lesson to young people about the danger of social media. The word “private” doesn’t exist in cyberspace. My kids can expect a long lecture about what should and should not be shared over the internet. I have no problem scaring the s**t out of them. Fear can be a good thing.

(A note to the perverts out there who willingly posted pictures of their junk. You should probably do a little manscaping before taking that shot. Your tree doesn’t look that big in the jungle.)

I guess we didn’t have it so bad growing up. Sure, we had to deal with a busy signal on telephones and had to use a card catalog to find a book in the library. (If there was an emoticon to show my disdain for Melvil Dewey I would insert it here) I didn’t have to worry about cyber bullies. A few kids once wrote nasty things about me on the chalkboard at school, but I never had to worry about Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.

I hope the losers who posted photos of underage girls get arrested. They are too stupid to realize that sending or distributing photos of a minor is a crime. It’s called child pornography, a**holes.

Been there, done that

I felt like I was in college again this week. I wasn’t drinking watered down alcohol at a bar while men wearing excessive hair gel hit on my friends. I was trying to put my 4-year-old to bed after a night at the drive-in movie theater. A friend and I set up lawn chairs in the back of her husband’s pickup, got the kids situated with blankets (because Mother Nature is f**king with us again) and snacks. They looked so damn cute sitting there for all of 5 minutes before they decided it would be more comfortable in the minivan. Being a mother means working a waitressing shift that never ends. I was “in the weeds” all night. I suppose it was my own fault for bringing a chair. A chair is comfortable and children don’t ever want you to be comfortable.

My daughter was excited about the movie until the snacks were gone. Then, she had to build a tower with rocks. It was as if the future of the world depended on it. A lot people were counting on her. I wasn’t annoyed at all that I spent money for her to do something she could have done at home for free. She had fun and that’s what matters. That is what parents have to tell ourselves so we don’t lose our minds.

My daughter fell asleep on the way home. I knew I was f**ked. Now, I had to carry her in the house, make her use the bathroom and change into pajamas. We would just roll the cavity dice and skip toothbrushing. I managed to get her into the bathroom upstairs and that is where a struggle ensued. Her eyes were open, but she wasn’t awake. She refused to get off the toilet. Putting an overtired child to sleep is like taking care of Snookie after a night at the club. She was slurring her words, “I’m need to live here.” I tried to be patient. “Come on sweetie, you need to go to bed.” She had a death grip on the toilet seat. I managed to pry her fingers from the porcelain. Then, the bicycle kick started. She was trying to kill me because she wanted to live on a toilet. Think about that.

I carried her kicking and screaming to bed. She passed out within seconds. She would sleep in her clothes that night and didn’t remember a thing in the morning. We’ve all been there.

If you like this, you will love that

I love Netflix. The original programming is brilliant. I could not live without the wide selection of children’s movies and TV shows. It is the best medicine when a kid wakes up vomiting at 3 a.m. I had to watch infomercials when I was a kid. The Shamwow doesn’t have the same calming effect. Hell, we could only watch cartoons on Saturday. You were f**ked if you overslept and would have to wait another 7 days to see Richie Rich or Heathcliff and Marmaduke. We didn’t have TVs in the car either. When my 14-year-old was a toddler we rigged a TV/VCR combo in our SUV. We were ballin’. It was attached with a bungee cord to the center console. Thank goodness we never got into a fender bender. That sucker would’ve gone flying. Who the hell thought that was a good idea? On that note, who the hell thought these movie recommendations were a good idea? Is Netflix headquarters in Colorado?

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Decisions, decisions. Should the family watch a few brutal murders or some steamy lesbian love scenes together?

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If you like the Cleavers then you must hate other races. Wtf?

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Movies for kids 8 – 10 who are serving time at juvenile hall?

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And if chess really gets your blood pumping, wait until you see “Secrets of Henry VIII’s place.”

No shoes, no service

I make a mental checklist before I leave the house with my kids. Snacks. Check. Drinks. Check. Sunblock. Check. Apparently, I need to add shoes to the list. I ignored my own advice that “it goes without saying” never applies to children.

I decided to take my children to a local amusement park after work. It was a spontaneous decision based on guilt. Another Mom posted a picture on Facebook of their “perfect day.” Oh yeah, watch this b**ch. I raced home, packed a bag in record time and told the kids to jump in the car. I expected my children to be bursting at the seams with excitement. During the 45 minute drive to the park, my teenage son complained that he couldn’t bring a friend. My 4-year-old whined about having to go in the water. My usually negative 7-year-old son was the only one who was excited. He was so excited that he forgot to put on shoes. Who does that? He walked from the house, through the garage and into the car. At no point, while tiptoeing on the cement, did it dawn on him that he was barefoot? I didn’t realize he was shoeless until I parked the car. “Oh, Mom,” he said “I don’t have any shoes on.” Translation: “Hey Mom, I am about to f**k up your day. Good luck solving this problem since we are an hour away from home!” If I left now my daughter would lose her mind. The inner child in me wanted to stomp my feet and cry. I took a deep breath, “It’s okay. I will buy flip flops inside. ” He climbed into the wagon and we made our way to a gift shop. It had flip flops to fit everyone from “The Littles” to “The Jolly Green Giant,” but not the size we needed. Are there a lot of grown men in a size 13 forgetting to wear shoes, too or is the person ordering inventory a Kardashian? We continued on through the park. I was desperate and even thought about swiping a pair of shoes from a bench. I could just borrow them. I said I thought about it. I didn’t do it. Luckily, another gift shop had water shoes in his size.

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It turned out to be a great day. There is nothing better than the sound of your child’s laughter. Of course, I will edit this story for Facebook omitting anything negative. You can’t tell the truth to “friends” you haven’t spoken to in twenty years.

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Drag race

I lost a race. It was a spontaneous drag race in a plaza parking lot. I didn’t even know my competitor. He was driving a family sedan. I was in the minivan. We pulled into the plaza at 8:15 a.m. Target was the only store open at that hour. He wasn’t there to shop and neither was I. It takes a lot of strength to leave a Target store without making a purchase. Those damn red clearance stickers have the power to hypnotize. I don’t even remember buying a gigantic ceramic owl or glass carafe, but I only paid $5.

We both needed coffee. There is a Starbucks nestled inside our local Target store. We pulled into the parking lot at the same time. I was already running late to work because I spent 15 minutes searching for My Little Pony. Obviously it’s not my little pony. I am not a female Brony. In case you don’t know, a Brony is a man who is obsessed with Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie, etc. For me, collecting My Little Pony figures when you are a grown a** man is a deal breaker.

I made eye contact with the man in the sedan. Then, I gunned it. He accelerated, too. I pulled into a spot near the entrance and jumped out. I got halfway to the door when I realized I left my wallet in the van. I had come too far to give up now. I ran back, grabbed some money and sprinted to the store. I actually caught up with him. Then, he dropped his keys. Victory would be mine! I could see the Barista waiting at the finish line. I tried to pass him on the right, but he swiveled his body, buttocks in the air, toward a row of carts. I had to go around. Then, a store clerk appeared out of nowhere. Did she drop down from the ceiling? I thought about knocking her over, but being detained, handcuffed and photographed would definitely put a kink in my schedule. He made it to the counter first and to make matters worse, what does he pull from his pocket? A list. He had a f**king list. I got behind “Mr. Let me go get a drink for every person I have ever met.” I would not be taking a victory lap that day.

Share a Coke

It is amazing how a certain song or smell can trigger memories. In my case a bottle of soda is giving me flashbacks. I am addicted to Diet Coke. A friend once warned me that Diet Coke can get rust off pipes. Imagine what it is doing to your body. Great! I can drink it and clean the bathroom. Recently, drinking my favorite beverage brought back bad memories. This is why I have a sour taste in my mouth:

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It’s not because I am being asked to share. However, after spending $1.50 on a bottle, you can bet your a** I am drinking every last drop. I can’t believe the name “Linds” is on a Coke bottle. I’ve never met a Linds in my entire 32 years (or something like that) on this earth. Spellcheck is baffled, too.

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Growing up I could never find the small bicycle license plate with my name. I was just “THAT GIRL” riding down the street on a banana seat. Companies didn’t make cups or bracelets with my name either. I was the bastard child to those in the personalized merchandise industry. I resented my mother for giving me a name that wasn’t recognized. I could’ve had a personalized magnet if I were an Ashley or Erica. I bet those b**ches have a Coke can.

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Late for an important date

We were late to the 4th of July festivities. Like most families we arrived wearing matching red, white and blue clothing. Is there really any other way to show you’re a proud American than to dress kids who aren’t twins like twins? We decided to forgo face paint. I don’t love anything enough to look like Coco the Clown.

I understand it is important to be on time. I want to be on time. I don’t need another passive aggressive person making jokes. Bravo to you for always being early. You have secured more restaurant tables than anyone I know. I never intend to keep you waiting. I am usually ready to leave the house on schedule. My children cause the delays.

Some people may say things like
Well, you’re the parent

You are in charge, not them

They need discipline

To them I politely say, “F**k off.” I have to pick my battles or I would constantly be at war. I choose to fight over things that could cause them bodily harm. I will have you know I have zero tolerance for running with scissors or playing with fire. Plus, a tantrum is both mentally and physically exhausting. Now, I am not only late, but sweating. There is no greater challenge than putting a kid who has morphed into a “wet noodle” into a vehicle.

If I told you the reasons why I’ve been late you wouldn’t believe me. Here are a few legitimate excuses I have had over the years. I can’t make this s**t up.

We were late because…..

1.) my daughter realized at the last minute that she didn’t look like a zebra. So, she had to change her clothes.

2.) My son couldn’t find his favorite dinosaur that looks exactly like all of the other f**king dinosaurs in the f**king dinosaur bucket. It is not to be confused with the f**king train bucket or the f**king superhero bucket.

3.) My daughter needed me to write her name on her water bottle so nobody would steal it from my hand. Apparently, safeguards must be in place because Aqua Fina has a high resale value on the streets.

3.) My daughter thought she had to poop after we drove to the end of our street. She was wrong.

3.) My daughter’s imaginary friend wouldn’t get in the car. That b**ch can walk.

4.) My son couldn’t tie his shoes. They were Velcro.

5.) My son didn’t get to open the car door

6.) My daughter didn’t get to open the car door

7.) Because my daughter needed to perform a musical/circus act before she could get in the car

8.) Because my son needed a snack: he wanted crackers, but they weren’t the right shape. He couldn’t eat squares that day.

9.) Because the dog told my daughter he didn’t want us to leave… in Spanish.

10.)Because my daughter looks like a zebra.

The look, the feel

I hate that it had to come to this. I didn’t want to do it, but I had no other choice. I swear I exhausted all other options. I hid my husband’s noisy pants.

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It is a pair of warm-up pants. Does he play professional basketball? No. Is he a professional football player? No. He isn’t warming up for anything. They make a loud swish, swish, swish sound with each step which is great when children are asleep. Imagine running through The Louvre wearing corduroy pants. It’s obnoxious.

I bought him these pants years ago. I clearly didn’t think it through. I also don’t know what I was thinking buying my 4-year-old daughter a whistle yesterday. I could have cut out the middleman and saved $5.00 by having the store clerk punch me in the head. These pants drive me insane. But they are comfortable Overalls are comfortable, too, but I am not related to Honey Boo Boo. It’s time to let them go.

I will replace the warm-up pants with a quieter pair of cotton pants. It is the fabric of our lives.