But, noooo. No powers for me.

I’m a bit of a comic book geek.  Not the all-out cosplay-at-Comic-Con comic book geek, but I know my way around a superhero or two.  And I’m enough of a geek to wish I had superpowers myself. “Vida,” you say, “all moms wish that.”  I know, but I’m talking specifics here. Like, what I would do if I were:

1) Batman.  First off, I wouldn’t mind just being Bruce Wayne, billionaire.  But if I were the Dark Knight, every time I ended up in a bad conversation with a mom who thinks she’s better because she makes her kids PBJ with jelly she hand-crafted from the organic grapes she grew and peanut butter from a poor village that gets all the proceeds on bread that she baked with wheat she stone ground, I would throw a Batarang at her, whisper “No one cares about your grapes.  I’m Batman” and then disappear into the night.

2.) Jean Grey.  To have telepathy AND telekinesis?? To be able to clean the house with my mind!?!? How effing awesome would THAT be? And then, THEN, when people came around and destroyed all my hard mind-housework, I would turn into the Phoenix and destroy them all. Then I could clean up that mess with my mind.  This is all win. Except I’m not sure that I would want to know what everyone is thinking. Especially when I’m around my mother.

3.) The Incredible Hulk.  People would go out of their way to be nice to me.  Because of the whole “You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry” thing.  Also, I think it would be interesting to be green. Oh, and I would get to see things from the Big Man’s perspective. (I did marry my own personal Hulk.  But he’s not green, just Irish.)

4.) Martian Manhunter.  This guy is my favorite.  He can turn into anyone, phase through walls, be invisible, fly, and has super strength.   Everything a mom wishes she could do.  Kids trying to tell on each other? Turn invisible and fly away. Wonder what your kid is up to in his room? Phase through the wall to invade his privacy.  Oh, oh, and he can read minds, too.  Wanna know what your significant other really thinks of your favorite sweatpants? Of course you don’t.  But you could, if you wanted to.

5.)  Ironman.  Traffic. ‘Nuff said.

6.) The Joker.  Okay, so he’s a villain.  But how awesome would it be to get to be crazy and everyone just accepts it.  Then when you do crazy stuff, they put you in Arkham which has the worst security known to man, so you’re out again doing crazy stuff.  And your kids don’t question you, they’ll just be all, “Oh it’s just Mom being insane.  Just do what she says. You know she has that gun with the boxing glove on the end. And that flower that shoots acid.” That would be cool.

Yeah, ask me why you have to do the dishes. I dare you.
Yeah, ask me why you have to do the dishes. I dare you.

7.) Storm.  The weather could always be my excuse for not doing something.  A potluck picnic that I don’t feel like making anything for?  Well, too bad, because it’s raining.  Kids have to stay home for a snow day?  Nope–a freak heat wave coming right up.  Some jackass being rude to the wait staff at Cheesecake Factory for no reason?  Let’s see how he likes a lightening bolt for dinner.

8.) Wonder Woman. Because–you know what, forget that.  I already AM Wonder woman.

Who would you be?

Image courtesy of deviantart.com

You’re not the boss of me.

My sister Birdie and I were having a conversation about our lives being at home with the kids.  Then she asks me:

“Do other women get, I don’t know, weird, when you tell them you’re a SAHM (stay-at-home-mom)?

“Weird?”

“Like, the time one of my friend’s friends told me that being a SAHM was a waste of my education and women died in the sixties for me to be able to work or something like that?”

“Not anymore. Wait, did she say died?”

“Not really.  But that was how she was acting.  She was foaming at the mouth and pointing and everything.”

“What did you do?”

“I left.  The only other option was a roundhouse kick to the face.”

I know it's not a roundhouse kick to the face. But it IS Van Damme.  You're welcome.
I know it’s not a roundhouse kick to the face. But it IS Van Damme. You’re welcome.

Ya’ll, I have been in that position before.  No Bueno.  I don’t get it.  You know why?  Because for some reason, I had this silly notion that staying home with my kids was a choice.  Can I tell you guys something?  I have never, EVER in my life heard a man yell at another man for being a SAHD.  NEVER.  I have heard men say, “That’s cool, man.  I could never do it, though. How’s your Fantasy NASCAR coming?”  (Which is how I found out Fantasy NASCAR is a thing.) That was it.  No berating about how he is wasting his life and education.  And I get it, the fact is that men have always had options that women didn’t have.  (BTW, you should see how the women at the park act over the SAHDs.  Why does it seem like the SAHD is instantly hot, but the SAHM is a frumpy housewife?  Well, guess what, SAHM can also stand for Sexy As Heck Mom.  How about that?)

But, um, wasn’t the point of women’s liberation to have a choice? Maybe not, I don’t know.  And I’m going to be dead honest–I don’t know because at this time in my life, I don’t particularly care.  I do know two things.

1.) I can do whatever the green beans I want with my life.  I can move to Vegas and become the world’s most stretch-marked showgirl.  I can try out the hobo life; this city has plenty of bridges to sleep under.  I can write the Great American Novel.  What I decided to do was be here with my children.  I happen to like them and I think they like me.  Or they fake it to get fed.  Either way, my husband didn’t force me to be the little wife in the kitchen. As my physique shows, I don’t really mind being in the kitchen.

2.) My daughter is also well aware that she can do whatever the green beans SHE wants to do with her life.  She’s not looking at me and thinking that she has to do what I do.  Wondergirl is even sure that she wants to get married. That may change–she’s only ten.  She wants to own a salon and spa.  I personally see mercenary in her future, but I like the idea of free facials. Maybe her salon will be her cover.

Anyway, I just had to get that off my chest.  Let me get off this soapbox before I fall.  I have to go break up a fight, anyway. You know, because Wondergirl is also confident she can bet the crap out of any boy, even though her mom is just a lil’ ol housewife.

Wondergirl’s Greatest Hits

 

I’m back, and it’s good to be home.  Vacation was actually pretty uneventful.  I love uneventful.

While we were gone, Wondergirl turned 10.  Ten years of sweet, sassy and sometimes downright scary. I mean, this was the girl who, five days ago, managed to be unhappy in the Happiest Place on Earth, because the gate lady couldn’t tell that she had turned ten the day before. Of course, it’s always something with her.  Has been since birth.  Listen, when she was–

One year old:  Wondergirl had gotten used to Grandma buying her clothes.  Grandma shops at Macy’s and Nordstrom–even for babies.   So when Nana (the Big Man’s mom) got her a couple of outfits from Target, Wondergirl refused to wear it.  She acted like we were trying to put her in sackcloth and ashes.  However, since she wasn’t born into an independently wealthy family, she has gotten used to wearing clothes from Target.  (It was either that or go naked.)
Three years old:  Potty training.  I tried to be nice about potty training with her, but a week into that, she was still having on-purposes.  You read that right–she was going to the bathroom in her pants on purpose.  I know this because she would walk into the room, look me dead in the eye, and go for it.  And then keep looking at me like, “Now clean it up.”  The last time, I handed her a pack of Little Mermaid underwear, knelt down to her level, and told her “If you mess these up, we are going out back for a fistfight.”  It never happened again.  She never even wet the bed.
Age five:  Kindergarten.  Ohhh, Wondergirl’s first day of school.  I can’t tell you how happy I was.  We went all out, too.  My Little Pony Pencils, Hello Kitty backpack, Hannah Montana pencils (you know, before she became Skanky McSkankerson), you name it.  Then we got to school and discovered that school supplies were community property–it all went into a big pot for everyone to share.  OH, she was upset.  And she held a grudge against her teacher until Christmas break.  Whenever anyone asked her how she like her new teacher, she would say, “She’s okay, for a thief.”
Seven:  Wondergirl decided that she was going to pick a fight with Kid Sensation, who was three at the time.  Poor kid didn’t know what hit him (her fist). The Big Man sent her to her room for the rest of the night.  When I go upstairs, Wondergirl had pushed a super sweet little note under her door, apologizing for everything and describing her parents in the most glowing, adoring, terms.  Wait, no, none of that happened.  Well she did write us a note: “Mom and Dad.  I am not coming downstares until you uhpolajize to me and let me play on the commputer. You can bring my dinner to me. Not Love, Wondergirl.”  I corrected her spelling with a red pen and shoved it back under the door.
Nine:  Wondergirl confronted the school principal because she didn’t get the teacher she wanted.  She was transferred to the other teacher’s class the next day.
I love all of it, though.  Wondergirl is who she is and is completely comfortable in her own skin. All in all, I think she’s pretty amazing. I took me decades to get that kind of confidence and chutzpah.
This is what I think of Wondergirl. It is also what Wondergirl thinks of Wondergirl.
I have to admit, though, that I am terrified of the next ten years.  Maybe I’ll look into perpetual mild sedation.  For me, I mean.
P.S.  For some reason, WordPress Italicized my post.  I don’t know why and I don
 
 

 

Kids on a Plane.

I’m going on vacation. Nope, that’s wrong, I’m taking the kids on vacation. Let’s be honest, taking the kids on vacation and me being on vacation are two entirely different things. Oh, and did I mention my parents are going with us?

I have never been on a plane with my kids. I’m scared, you guys. I don’t know what to expect. The Destroyer can’t sit still at all. When he is sitting he idles, like a motor. Wondergirl can’t sit by either of her brothers without using her fists in some way. Kid Sensation, well he’s okay. He doesn’t say much, but then Wondergirl makes him cry and by that time my last nerve is completely shot. This is when we drive to the grocery store that is two miles away. I have no idea what to expect on a 6 hour flight.

Of course I have all the requisite electronics and you better believe I’m paying for in-flight TV and such. But what if that doesn’t work? I checked the TSA website, and it seems they frown upon bringing duct tape and rope on board. So now what?

Google, is what. Pinterest, is what. I looked at all kinds of tips and suggestions, and all they did was confirm that everyone else is a better, craftier parent than I am. All I can do is imagine my kids’ response when I present them with a mini soccer game made out of paper and straws. I keep hearing Piper Laurie’s voice in my head, “They’re all gonna laugh at you. They’re all gonna laugh at you.” And since I don’t have Carrie’s telekinesis, I would just have to sit there and take it.  Hurt feelings and all.

Funny
After I show them my homemade game that I tried to copy off of Pinterest.

We’re leaving tomorrow. Help! For the love of all that is good, HELP ME. Otherwise, Wondergirl may hijack the plane with a plastic spoon, a rubber band, and a napkin and make the pilot take us to Paris (that’s her dream vacay).

Hmmmm…I might let her. I’ve never seen the inside of a Parisian prison before.

Suggestions welcomed, encouraged and begged for.

Torture for Breakast.

I try to be a cool mom every once in a while. Not too often, because I don’t want my kids getting confused and thinking that we’re friends or something. We’re not friends, The Destroyer. Playing a Mortal Kombat together does not a friendship make. Especially since I rip you to shreds every.single. time. Bwahahaha. Raiden wins.

Evil laugh aside, I thought that I’d be completely unlike my own mother and get my kids the junk cereal of their choice as a treat. That’s a cool mom thing to do, right? They chose Cinnamon Toast Crunch, which I felt was a bit of a cop out. I mean, CTC is pretty close to Life cereal, and I wouldn’t put Life in the complete junk category. I couldn’t believe it. What kind of kids do I have? I was like, “You guys, how about Coco Puffs? Froot Loops? (Called such because to use the word Fruit would be such blatant false advertising that the box would spontaneously disintegrate on the shelf) Cookie Crisp?” I mean, come on. I was giving a chance I would have killed for at their age. With my bare hands.

Let’s stroll down memory lane, shall we?

My mother, code name Supermom, always made sure we had cereal that she deemed “healthy.” Debatable. The point is, they were the worst. Here they are, in order of horrible:

 

8) Rice Krispies. Rice Krispies were the masquerade of the cereal world. You get all pumped up, what with the “Snap, Crackle, Pop!” sounds. You thought they were going to be good, but then you found they needed sugar. Tons of sugar. Then, all that sugar sank to the bottom and left a sugary, grainy mess that your (my) mom made you drink cause wasting milk is bad.

7) Wheaties. Also trickery of the worst sort. I thought they were going to be amazing because Mary Lou Retton was on the box. Oh my god, I remember when I finally persuaded my mom to buy them, I WAS SOOOO PUMPED. I came home and could barely sleep cause in the morning I was about to win Olympic gold after my Wheaties breakfast. Wheaties are bran flakes with an awesome name and awesome athletes on the box. Athletes like Mary Lou Retton. You guys, Mary Lou Retton is a LIAR. LIIIIIAAAARRRR! She was smiling on the Wheaties box like this cereal wasn’t nasty at all. Wheaties are glorified bran flakes. They should have been called Brannies.

mlr
You broke my heart with your lies, Mary Lou.

 

6.) Regular Shredded Wheat. Not the Frosted Mini-Wheats (which I’m not particularly fond of), but that big ol’ cardboard brick that settled in the middle of your bowl and proceeded to suck ALL of the milk out of it. So then, you had a soggy cardboard brick. That, of course, you couldn’t waste. I have to say though, that Shredded Wheat wasn’t half bad when flavored with tears. Mmmm, salty.

5.) Chex. My mom for some reason, had a thing for wheat. So we had to eat Wheat Chex. And really, there’s no story behind this. They were gross from day one.

4.) Regular Cheerios. They smell like pee. Why do babies love them?

3.) Cornflakes. Instant sog. My mom would get sooooo mad when we wouldn’t put the milk away, but we had to explain to her that if we put the milk away, the cereal would be corn-flavored paste by the time you turned back around to eat it.

2.) Grape nuts. It has been firmly established that there is nothing grape or nut about this cereal. I think they should rename it. How about Molar Breakers? Or Nasty Molar Breakers—that has a nice ring to it. I think my mom still has a box that we refused to eat.

1.) Weetabix. Jesus, was this cereal bad. Listen, I was quite a picky eater as a kid. I didn’t like anything. But this was the only thing we ever begged my parents not to get in the store. I mean we James Brown begged—please, Dad, please, no, not Weetabix­—down on our knees and everything. There was no amount of sugar, no redemption at all for these dry, brown, nuggets of suffering. One time, when she was about six, my baby sister Birdie had a nervous breakdown at the table just to avoid eating her Weetabix. My other sister went back to bed for the rest of the day. And so I sat, alone, with the Weetabix box taunting me because I couldn’t come up with an escape plan. I wish I could say that I rose to the challenge and triumphantly choked down the oblong-shaped horror. But I didn’t. I just sat there until lunch.

I think my parents may have been sadists. Why else would they have bought this stuff? (Being rotten little brats could not have been the reason, at all.)

I know some of ya’ll have a breakfast of hate. Please share, it’s the right thing to do.

 

Too Lazy for, well, everything really.

I’ll admit it.   Mid-summer makes me lax.  I mean, I’m a slacker mom on my BEST day, but  July rolls around and I’ve been looking at these people for a month straight. I  pretty much give up on life, and it turns my usual laziness into an art form.  I’m looking at Kid Sensation right now.  He’s watching Thomas, his shoes are on the wrong feet, and he’s wearing a tie.  Normally, the shoes, at least would bug me.  Probably the tie, too.  But right now, I am too lazy to try to care.

Me. From Independence Day to Labor Day.

I don’t mind being lazy, but these past few days I have caught myself doing things that non-summer-lazy me would never do. My mother would be so ashamed.

I re-washed a load of laundry because I didn’t feel like putting it in the dryer. Putting clothes in the dryer requires slight bending at the waist, and who feels like doing that? Not this chick, not this day.

I watched two hours of judge shows because the remote was on the other side of the room and I didn’t even feel like calling one of the kids downstairs to bring it to me. Divorce Court is actually kind of entertaining.

I starved because I didn’t feel like driving to the drive-thru. The kids ate PBJ, but I didn’t feel like making one of those, either. Actually, that’s not true. I didn’t starve. I ate a slice of deli meat for lunch instead of making a whole sandwich.

I wore flip-flops with sweat pants so I didn’t have to tie my shoes. And I wore said sweat pants in 90-degree weather to avoid shaving my legs. The legs that I only shave to the knee in the first place.

When I did wear my sneakers, I made Wondergirl tie them.

I got irritated because I had to enter my passcode to call my husband. Then I was too lazy to leave a message when he didn’t pick up.

I left a passive-aggressive note to my kids that read “!”. That was the entire note. I’m pretty sure they go the gist of what I was trying to say, though.

I froze because the nearest blanket was behind the chair. Pretending not to be cold took some effort, though.

I laid in bed until my husband got up so I wouldn’t have to make coffee. Even though I was the one who drank the last cup.

I let the kids watch two movies in a row to avoid parenting for three hours.

Oh, and I blog instead of doing housework of any kind.

What’s your summertime lazy?

 

 

 

 

Oooooh. Scary.

So I was driving home the other day, you know, just me and Gretchen enjoying the summer sun. I’m cruising through the intersection, I have the right of way, I’m not speeding for once, and all is right with the world.

Until this chick in a Miata coming in the opposite direction decides she’s not going to yield and she’s going to turn left. Now, ya’ll know how I feel about Gretchen and the laws of physics. And there was no way a collision would have ended well for that lady and her Miata. So I held up my hand so Miata lady could see it and clearly told her to stop. I did not stop—she had no choice but to stop. Then she–dunh, dunh, duuuuhhh–flips me off.

My question is: what did she accomplish by flipping me off? And this extends to most people when they drive. I mean, does it help in any way? Nope. Honestly, it doesn’t even bother me a little bit—I will probably laugh at the person flipping me the bird while they eat Gretchen’s exhaust.

This is pointless, is what I’m saying.

Also, why be so blatantly wrong in the first place?  She was sooooooo wrong, and I’m not sure why.  But here’s my theory about Miata Lady: Ol’ girl probably thought that her car was fast enough to turn in front of Gretchen before we got to the intersection. And that plan straight up failed. So she got mad at me, and gave me her middle finger of death. Only it wasn’t of death. It wasn’t a finger of anything. It’s. Just. A. Finger.

Oh, and if she really was about her green beans, she would have taken the hit. That I can respect. That would have taken some cojones. Cojones of titanium. I mean, I would have visited her grave and everything if she had stone cold said “Yeah, I’m turning here and no one can stop me.” Of course, Gretchen would have stopped her in the worst way imaginable, but what a way to go.

Much better than a middle finger.

Yeah, I know it’s supposed to be a giant “Eff you” or whatever, but really, “eff you” doesn’t much hurt my feelings anyway.

Now, if she had gotten out of the car wearing booty shorts that said “Juicy” on the back even though she was clearly well into her fifties—actually, no. Age has nothing to with this. Those shorts would have hurt my feelings no matter who was wearing them.

Or if she was wearing that same coral lipstick that all overly tan women like her seem to wear, that may have offended me a bit.

Shortalls may have hurt my feelings. (I know they are supposed to making a comeback, but let’s face it, no thank you.)

A confederate flag would have hurt my feelings. Especially if unaccompanied by a red ’69 Charger.

A bumper sticker with the word Oprah in a circle and crossed out would have definitely hurt my feelings. I would probably have had to fight her.

So, I am putting out a call to everyone to be more creative than the middle finger. Cause, you know, it’s just a finger. Boring, is what it is.

And who wants to be boring when be offensive? Not me.

Gettin old. Part two.

Another post about getting old.

I might be obsessing a bit. I know that “40 is the new 20” (HEAVY on those quotation marks) but as I head into my 35th year, it sure doesn’t feel like it. There are all kinds of things that I could do when I was in my twenties that my body isn’t having now.

1)     Drinking cheap liquor.  I used to be able to chug any ol’ swill the bartender would throw at me. And not get hung-over. I mean, it could have been in a jug with XXXX marked on it and I could drink it and be fine. I would even be fine the next day.  And ya’ll, when I partied, I used to get duh-runk.  Not drunk, duh-runk.   Now?  Nope. One, I can’t make it past tipsy anymore. Two, the last time I tried to do cheap stuff I stated to get hung-over while drinking it.  This wasn’t after a few drinks, folks.  I was on drink one with this crap and I was seriously getting ill.  (I won’t name the brand but it rhymes with Bonarch.) Or the time I went to someone’s house and they served Alco-pop in wine form, and I drank it to be polite. (Also because the only person there I liked was the host, so I had to drink something.)  I drank two glasses of that mess. In my twenties, I would have been able to drink it and it would have been all good. But since I was thirty-three at the time, I got a headache so bad I was convinced that I had all of a sudden developed a brain tumor.

Image
This. I’m sure some of the bars I went to served this. And I drank it.

2.     Not sleeping.  Confession:  Sleeping is one of my favorite pastimes, followed closely by napping and dozing.  But when I was in my twenties (early twenties—I was married with two kids by the time I was 25) I could go out, party, sleep for a couple of hours, and then go to work. Once I went home, showered, and then went straight to work.   Now?? Ain’t happenin, Jack.   If I get six hours of sleep, I can function—barely.  Four hours of sleep and my brain begins liquefaction and starts to trickle out of my ear.

3.     Losing weight.  No lie, when I was 22 I stopped eating red meat for a while and lost 27 pounds.  That was it, I just stopped eating one thing.  I don’t want to give the wrong impression here—I wasn’t eating any healthier.  I still ate Popeye’s chicken, McDonald’s fries, Ivar’s fish and chips, Baskin Robbins’ ice cream—I ate crap, is what I’m saying.  Exercise? Not even.  These days, if I want to lose five pounds I have to give up anything delicious.  Diet food can be good, or even tasty, but let’s face it—it is never delicious.   I have to pretend like I don’t hate exercise.  And I have to do these things for weeks. And if I stop for a couple of days, I gain it all back plus five. 

4.     Flexibility.  When I was 26, I took up yoga for a few months.  I actually got pretty flexible within that amount of time. I was no contortionist, but I could place both my hands flat on the ground behind my feet.   But a few weeks ago, I started having to stretch because of that herald of aging:  back pain.  Every single time I do the stretches, I feel like the Tin Woman trying to touch her toes. Every. Single. Time.

It’s okay though. Because one thing I can do now, I couldn’t do then—not care what other people think about me and what I do or what I have. (Well, it’s easy for me not to care about what I have. Thanks to Kid Sensation and the Destroyer, I can’t have anything nice. NOTHING.)

I also have Spanx. Seriously, you guys. I love Spanx.