Teacher sends home letter about smelly students

A pre-school teacher is being criticized for a letter she penned to parents. Take a look:


I don’t see anything wrong with it. Sure, it would have been more professional to speak to the parents face to face. Perhaps, she suspected the parents would become argumentative or even violent. Maybe she couldn’t find them. Calling social services would probably be a waste of time. Would you take offense if your child was well taken care of? I wouldn’t.  She clearly wrote this note while being held hostage because there is no way a teacher’s handwriting can be that bad.  I don’t agree with the fact that she wanted the children to read it.  I also find it odd that she expects a 3 or 4-year-old child to sign his/her name?  Is that part of Common Core?

I heard someone say the teacher should expect to have children in her class with dirty clothes and/or bodies. After all, the school is in Buffalo, NY, a high poverty, urban community. My grandmother, who raised six kids alone after leaving an abusive relationship, always said, “being poor is not an excuse to be filthy.” They didn’t have much, but they had self respect. They bathed, clothes were washed and their house was clean.
When my husband and I were first married we didn’t have two nickels to rub together. He was a private in the U.S. Army. I think the cashier at McDonald’s made more money. We used a futon for a couch. At times, I washed clothes in the bathtub. There is no excuse.  Yes, there are good people who end up in bad situations.  There are good parents who have no where to turn.  If that is the case I hope they get the help they need.  However, after there are many more parents who just suck and should not be allowed to have children.

These children deserve better. They don’t want to, nor should they have to walk around looking like Pig-Pen. Perhaps their parents should trade in the flat screen TV for a bar of soap. Maybe they should spend cigarette money at the laundromat.

Kudos to this teacher! I hope the district doesn’t punish her for doing what is best for these children.

Legendary dancing

A friend described my dancing at a recent party as “legendary.” Now, I’m not sure if that is a good thing. Perhaps, he thought I looked like a circus freak having a seizure. I don’t really care. If there is music playing I am moving. How on earth can you stay seated when “Jump Around” is blasting through the speakers? (Note to self: jumping around after having three kids isn’t always such a good idea) I have rhythm, but never took dance classes. I’m tall and awkward. I don’t care. I’m not dancing to win America’s votes. I like to joke around. I may even drop to the ground and do air guitar from time to time, but what civilized woman doesn’t after a few margaritas? (Maybe that is why I haven’t been invited to join the local Rotary club?) Anyway, here is a little girl after my own heart. I think this tiny mama may have snuck a few Red Bulls before hitting the floor. Holy high energy Batman!





Vintage treasures

I will never forgive my father for throwing away our original Atari video games.   They were stored in a box in a corner in the attic.  We all moved out and he cleaned house. It brings a tear to my eye to think of Donkey Kong sitting alone in a landfill.   A friend of mine still has her vintage gaming system.  She pulled it out and her kids played for hours.  Her 13-year-old son mastered Pitfall on his first turn.  What the hell was wrong with us? I barely made it past level four.    An original Atari system sells for over $100 on Ebay.  It isn’t the only toy from our childhood worth bank.

Teddy Ruxpin is listed for $349

Heman action figures are listed for $5,300

An original Cabbage Patch doll is listed for $1,250

I still have my original Cabbage Patch doll.  My daughter plays with Ellen Adella.  (I can’t remember important milestones in my own child’s life, but I still remember the name of a doll born in a patch,  with a man’s signature on her buttocks.)  I couldn’t sell it.  My uncle bought me that Cabbage Patch doll.  Who am I kidding?  For two grand I would sell an organ.

BuzzFeed.com  has a list of 33 childhood toys that are worth a fortune now.   You may want to check it before unloading your stuff at a garage sale.   I have had one garage sale in my adult life.  I spent eight hours baking in the hot sun and made $50.  I think migrant farm workers earn more.   Old ladies tried negotiating items marked for a quarter.  “I will give you ten cents.”  I caved every time.   I don’t know what was more intimidating: their demanding tone  or  nude support hose.   I watch Law & Order,  Grandma is not always as sweet as she seems.


Minivan mix

I finally made a mixed tape for the minivan. It had a variety of songs from different genres: pop, rock, country and jazz. I overheard my 13-year-old and his friends listening to Billionaire by Travie McCoy, Featuring Bruno Mars. I think Bruno Mars has an incredible voice. Travie McCoy is from a small town in my neck of the woods. I added it to the playlist thinking that would impress a teenager who is impossible to impress. Song four played on the van’s CD player. (It’s a six disc changer bitches. That’s how I roll!) “I want to be a billionaire so f-ing bad!” (rhymes with trucker) I guess that means he really, really, reallywants to be a billionaire. My 6-year-old gasped. My daughter threw her hands over her mouth. I fumbled for the volume control. “Mom, what are you thinking?” he laughed. “There are different versions of that song.” I won’t pretend that I never swear in front of my kids. I try not to, but I worked in a newsroom for a decade. It’s a hard habit to break. To make a long story short, I am making another mix for our road trips. I heard Miley Cyrus has a new album. Hanna Montana doesn’t cuss, right?

“We Can’t Stop”

I have said this a million times while driving. It is usually followed by, Can you hold it until we get home?

It’s our party we can do what we want

So, off the bat I have to explain to my kids that just because it’s your party doesn’t mean you can do whatever you want. There are still rules.

(no drama)
It’s our party we can say what we want (Mike will made)
It’s our party we can love who we want
We can kiss who we want
We can sing what we want

Who is Mike?

Red cups and sweaty bodies everywhere

If it’s that hot inside and everyone is sweating, you may want to turn up the AC.

Hands in the air like we don’t care
‘Cause we came to have so much fun now
Bet somebody here might get some now

Get some? I can hear the question now, “What are they getting Mom?” Potato chips. What’s a party without potato chips, right?

(Okay, fast forward….)

And we can’t stop
And we won’t stop
Can’t you see it’s we who own the night?
Can’t you see it’s we who ’bout that life?

Bout? She should have proofread the lyrics somebody else wrote for her.

A short period of intense activity of a specified kind.
An attack of illness or strong emotion of a specified kind.

attack – fit

( fast forward….)

To my home girls here with the big butt
Shaking it like we at a strip club
Remember only God can judge ya
Forget the haters ’cause somebody loves ya

If they loved ya they would give you something other than dollar bills.

And everyone in line in the bathroom
Trying to get a line in the bathroom

Hanna Montana! Listen to Nancy Reagan and Just Say No!

Then, there is a part where she stops singing about illicit drugs and screams like a goat. So, we won’t be adding Miley’s new song to the minivan mixed tape.


Garage Sale Finds

My entertainment of late is browsing an online garage sale website. Here are a few of my latest finds :


How exactly does one play with parakeets?


For only $50 you can buy this Chuckie doll for your child. (Therapy will cost a lot more)


What goes better with jeans shorts and crocs than a fur vest? Plan on winning the best dressed award at the county fair.


I am just guessing, but I doubt the local convenience store appreciates you selling their shopping baskets.

Stroll for Strong

I finished a charity walk today looking like I ran a 5k. It turns out pulling a 6-year-old and 3-year-old in a wagon, up hills and across rough terrain is not easy. I was dripping with sweat.

Today’s event raised money for Golisano Children’s Hospital in Rochester, NY. This hospital and its staff are a vital part of our community. They do amazing work for a lot of families. I walked in support of my dear friend, Jennifer. Last year, her daughter Grace, born with CDH, was one of the hospital’s “Miracle Kids.” Grace passed away in February at just 17-months-old. I got teary eyed when I saw a poster of her at today’s fundraiser. I thought to myself, I can’t believe Grace isn’t here.

The Stroll for Strong is like a carnival complete with face painting, magicians and a dunk tank.



There’s food, ice cream and bounce houses. My kids spotted the play area the minute we pulled up. They sat patiently in the wagon until the walk was over. Then, they raced over to the play area. My 3-year-old daughter wanted to follow her older brother through the inflatable obstacle course, but was afraid. The sign said you had to be under 6′ tall and 250 pounds. I could go with her. We got halfway through before I realized it was a horrible idea. How was I supposed to squeeze through this carrying a toddler:


I decided to go first and pull my daughter through. I put my legs up, hoping to slide feet first. Well, my sweaty knees got stuck on the plastic. I did a face plant on the other side. My daughter, who apparently has trust issues, thought I abandoned her. “Mommy,” she cried. “Don’t leave me.” I didn’t leave her in the mall when she threw herself on the ground screaming. I didn’t walk away when she knocked coffee out of my hand in Starbucks. So, why would I choose to abandon her now? “I’m right here,” I mumbled. Each time I tried to stand my foot sunk deep into the plastic throwing me back on my ass. I was finally able to claw my way to a kneeling position. “Come on honey,” I signaled for my daughter to jump into my arms. “No. I can’t. I’m scared,” she screamed. I was about to have a panic attack. I had to get out of this damn bounce house.


It became a Bruce Willis movie.
“Listen to me. Calm down! You have to come with me,” I yelled, grabbing her arms and dragging her to safety. I met another woman at the exit who looked just as frazzled. We locked eyes and I said, “That was..” She finished the sentence, “Awful!” We both laughed. “We are the best mother’s ever,” she continued. I nodded in agreement.

I let my children play alone a bit longer. Then, we made the long journey back to the car. That is when it dawned on me. Grace was here today. You could feel her spirit everywhere. She is still inspiring people. Even on days when life seems impossible, Grace reminds us not to give up. She was even with me in that bounce house. Grace was and will always be in my heart.



I met a crazy woman this weekend. I am probably 50 mg of Zoloft away from being just like her. She was sitting in the hair salon waiting to have her roots colored. She greeted each and every person who walked through the door. She talked non-stop. Sometimes she spoke to other patrons. She would also announce her observations to the room. “The prices sure have gone up.” She appeared to be in her late 50’s. A button on her grey cardigan was dangling by a thread. A brightly
colored knit hat rested on top of her head. A few people seemed alarmed by her behavior. A guy in his 20’s giggled. I gave her what she desperately needed, someone to talk to. She asked me about my children and told me about her family. The red headed doll nestled under my daughter’s arm caught her eye, “What’s her name?” My daughter looked up at me before speaking. I have repeatedly given the “Stranger Danger” speech. I prefer the scare the hell out of your children method of parenting. I am not going to sugar coat it. If you talk to a stranger he will kidnap you. After working in the news business for a decade I am slightly paranoid and overly cautious. My gut told me this woman was harmless. I gave her the nod of approval. “Her name is Jesse,” my daughter said, proudly lifting her favorite doll into the air. “She is from Toy Story.” The characters from Toy Story are adorable. Well, that is, unless you wake up in the middle of the night to find this in your bed:


In a dark room Jesse looks a lot like Chuckie. I woke up last night to find her staring back at me. I screamed and jumped out of bed so fast I think I pulled a muscle in my back.

My 5-year-old joined the conversation. “Actually,” He uses this word often. It is his way of saying, You’re idiot, but I will correct your mistake. “It is from Toy Story 2.” As we got up to leave the woman yelled “Have a nice day!” Our hairdresser apologized, “I am so sorry about that.” There was nothing to apologize for. Maybe the world would be a nicer place if more people were like her. She was happy and didn’t care what anyone thought. A man with a thick mustache held the door for us. “Aren’t you cute,” he said to my daughter. Back off Chester! We left without saying a word to him.

READ MORE: CynicalMother.com

Bad choices grandma

My 5-year-old wants green hair. “It would be so cool,” he says. He also wants to drop out of school because he can count to 100. “I know everything.” Well, everything except how to say the letter R. He weally needs to stay in kindergarten. I am all about encouraging kids to express themselves, but I like his chocolate brown hair. I won’t let my children get weird piercings either. (Oh, you are one of those moms? Yes, I am.) Sure, it seems like a great idea to have a small curtain rod poking through your nose when you are 17-years-old. Fast forward several years and you look like this woman:


She was arrested in upstate New York for driving drunk with a 6-year-old in the car. Grandma should be banned from the liquor store and local tattoo parlor.

Leave a message

My goal is to raise my daughter to be an independent woman. I want her to have confidence, not to dance like a stripper at the Superbowl. I would also frown on her appearing on The Bachelor. Talk about girls with zero self esteem. You are fighting over a guy who makes a polygamist look monogamous. That dude is fooling around with every contestant in the house. Roses are $9.99 a dozen at Walmart. You don’t have to sell your soul for a flower. The lady on my daughter’s toy phone is just as pathetic as the bachelorettes.

The first message seems harmless. She is inviting a guy to go for a drive. Apparently it is 1950.

Clearly, he didn’t call her back. She tries bribing him with food.

She won’t take no for an answer. Honey, he’s just not that into you and is getting a restraining order as we speak.