Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Can you help me?

The title of this post would suggest that I need some help. I do, actually. I need a lot of help. But for this discussion, those in need of help are my children. I know in a few years I will regret this feeling, but some days I wish they would just leave me the heck alone for a few minutes! My goodness! I mean, they've only been awake for a couple of hours and have needed more help from me than I have energy to spare. Mom, I need you. My kids need me to lay next to them to go to sleep. They need me to walk with them to the bathroom. They need me to prepare food for them. They need me to get them a drink and a pencil and to change the channel and to find their favorite book and to sit next to them. They usually wait until I am in the middle of something else or have walked to another room before they tell me what they need. And if they don't get what they need right away, they are impatient. They need to yell to the other room so I can come to them and they can remind me what they need. Please, you are old enough to wipe your own butt! You are able to find your own doll. You have the ability to walk to the kitchen and push the button on the water cooler and get yourself a drink! Is it just me? Maybe as a child of a full-time working mom, I learned to do things for myself more than others. Am I expecting too much of my girls? Am I giving them too much responsibility at too young an age? As I sit and write this, they need hand lotion. Guess what - the lotion is in the same place it has been every day of your life!!! Can you get it? I mean, I am able to do it, so should I? Or am I setting them up for bad behavior? Am I making them into the type of people who don't know how to do anything for themselves? Funny, I met someone once who told me his kids are not allowed to start a sentence with the world "Dad". Well, my kids never start any sentence with that word because every sentence they utter starts with Mom. I know one day I will miss this. I will miss them needing me for every little thing. I will want them to need me. I know, I know! You can remind me of it in 10 years!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Remote Control

Child won't take a shower. Child won't do reading log for school. Mom says no more television for child for the rest of night. Child goes to sleep. Mom sits down to watch the favorite TV program she's been waiting all day for. Mom realizes angry child has hidden remote. Mom - 0 Child - 1

Leisure time

Apparently, there is quite an uproar among women these days. Now, it isn't the type that might cause us to run out and burn our bras. Let's face it - no one is running out and burning up that $50 bra - that kind of stuff happened in the days when most ladies were rocking the playtex and crossing their hearts. The problem? Some sociology professor who found that moms have about 40 hours of leisure time each week they don't even realize. I didn't even bother to read the study (because that would cut into my leisure time) but saw some of the highlights. What this PhD considers leisure time to many would be laughable. Like, you get it during a root canal or while sitting alone in a broken-down car waiting for a tow truck. I was discussing this today with a friend. She's got four kids of her own and had three more (including my daughter) at her house to play. I had to laugh because she made the girls cupcakes with homemade frosting. She admitted she used cake mix. Are you kidding? You made the chocolate frosting yourself? You did that while I was home sitting on the couch watching Dr. Phil talk about the sociologist's study about moms and leisure time? Wow.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Little Women

What is it with little women and big cars? I'm not talking old ladies that can't see above the steering wheel without sitting on a phone book. I'm talking 30ish and 40ish ladies who insist on driving SUVs the size of school buses. I remember visiting one of my dearest friends and hopping in her new Expedition. I love my girl Caroline, who might be five foot on a good day. I swear to you, the girl had to stand up to back that car out of a parking space. I nearly peed on her leather seats! Listen, girls, I know mini-vans aren't the coolest mode of transport and maybe you want the four-wheel drive or something. But, if you have to step on something to get into your car (even if it's a running board attached to your car) you are too short to drive it! Are you trying to make up for something? Like men who get sports cars when they go through mid-life crises or try to buy big, flashy things to make up for shortcomings in other areas (wink, wink). What are you doing? Why do you need this giant car? You move the seat up as far as it will go. You need assistance to get in and out. It's too big! Get yourself a Civic and face reality!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Fashion tips?

I wonder what I put my mother through when I was a teen. She must have been mortified by my (lack of) fashion sense. In my defense, it was the 80s. I did wear flourescent stuff and legwarmers and skinny stonewashed jeans with big sweaters. What am I going to do when my girls grow up? Why did I have to have two girls? I don't know if I can handle it. I mean, the muffin top look still seems to be a style around these parts. And the other day, I saw a strange outfit. It was about 70 degrees and the girl was wearing shorts. Well, I guess someone would call them shorts. To me, they looked like underwear. But, she's wearing this teeny tiny shorts and a denim jacket. I don't get it. If you're hot enough to wear shorts, do you really need a jacket? Does that look good? Today, my oldest wanted to wear high-heeled boots to school. Negative, sister. Then, she said she would wear high-heeled sandals. Um, that's a no. But, all her friends wear high heels to school. Great, good for them. Okay, they're not pumps or anything - it's a stacked heel, but the reason I said no is because they were knee-high leather boots and she would have been sweating like Patrick Ewing on the foul line! Wasn't it enough that I let the girl wear a tank top to school? Apparently not. Because some kids get to wear spaghetti straps and some are wearing shorts and some are wearing flip-flops. Really? You're 8. Get over it. Put on your Chuck Taylors and get on the bus.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Just leave it

My kids have got me pegged. They pretty much know if they leave their crap around long enough, I will pick it up. How do I know this? I asked my 8-year-old daughter why she leaves her laundry and toys and papers and books and stuffed animals and games and whatever else she owns all over her bedroom floor. Here is her response: "If I leave the mess, you'll clean it eventually." Huh? What kind of sucker does she take me for? Sure, I pick up their stuff from the living room and put it back in their bedrooms. Sure, I clean up the messy bathroom sink when they're done brushing their teeth. Yes, I have gotten the vacuum out to clean the paper scraps and food crumbs they've dropped on the floor. And of course I take the folders and homework and neatly put them in the backpack. And when I step on a little piece of something that they've left on the floor, I curse and yell and fume while I pick it up and put it back where it belongs. Wait a minute. I'm exactly the kind of sucker she takes me for! Come to think of it, just this morning I told her she needed to clean her room. She told me she didn't want to. Then she said she'd do it "later". Then after she'd gone, I went into hang up her laundry and found myself gathering up the dolls and other random junk from the floor. I couldn't help myself. I started to rationalize that if I put away stuff for her little sister, I had to help clean this room, didn't I? I had to actually force myself to stop. It hurt to put the dirty clothes back on the floor when I knew very well that I could easily walk to the bathroom and toss them in the hamper. I wanted so badly to organize the pile of papers on her desk and to neatly stack the books in her bookshelf. But, I had to walk away. Good for me. I get sick every time I look in that room and my blood pressure is probably skyrocketing because of the added stress of thinking about it, but at least I'm no sucker. Right?

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Just like me

When, as a mom, do you let your child go and do things the way they want? When do you let them become their own person? Is it when they start dressing themselves and you have to let them wear the Tinkerbell outfit with the snow boots when you really want them to just wear normal clothes? I wonder. Because I sometimes see moms that wear the same color outfits as their kids. I will admit, I did that once or twice myself. In my defense, it was at Disney World and I wore the same color as the girls so we would be easier to find. But, I don't think I would ever do that otherwise. Would I really wear a matching shirt? Probably not. Then I started wondering about it when I noticed a lot of little girls have the same exact hairdo as their mom. Is it because the mom cuts the daughter's hair? Or is it because they go to the hairdresser at the same time and just get the same cut? Or could it be because you just automatically style your daughter's hair the same way because you're so used to doing your own the same way? I guess it's not such a bad thing to have the same hairdo, unless yours isn't that flattering. It's kind of like giving your daughter an old name like Blanche or Myrtle.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Getting Ready

Why is it that men can be ready to do anything in under 10 minutes? If you told a man that he needed to pack for a week's vacation, he could be done in minutes right? No matter where he was going, he'd have a suitcase stuffed and ready to go. Then he'd wonder what was taking us so long. The guy doesn't think about sunblock. He doesn't have to worry about packing for the kids. He'll wear the same t-shirt three days running but doesn't realize that your child will only wear the red shirt with the blue shorts and the white shirt with the dinosaurs on it if it's raining outside. Did he pack baby shampoo? A first aid kit? The favorite blankie? The stuffed bear that must be on the pillow at bedtime? How about books to read? How about the DVDs to watch on the plane or in the car? How about snacks and sippy cups? Of course not. He's sitting on the couch watching the Knicks game wondering what is taking you so long. He doesn't need makeup or moisturizer. If he forgets a razor or deodorant, he'll pick it up at the hotel. Easy breezy. He doesn't care about shoes or the right outfit for every setting. He doesn't need products to keep his hair from frizzing. This guy has nothing to worry about. He pees standing up. He doesn't get emotional. He never feels fat. And he can pack in five minutes. Boy, men sure do have it easy!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Figured it out

I've learned the secret to not letting your kids drive you crazy. Oh, you're still reading? You think I really know it? Here it is - simple as can be. Ignore them. Apparently, this is the key to blissful motherhood. Do you not see this nearly everywhere you go? The kids that are screaming and running around and knocking things over and wrestling with each other and putting their filthy hands all over the cookies at the party. Where's their mom? Oh, there she is - over in the corner chatting it up with someone else. Her back is turned, so she doesn't see her children. She's laughing and talking, so she doesn't hear her children. She looks so relaxed, this chick. I think she might even have a tan! I know her nails are done and her hair looks good and I'm sure she just got those highlights in her hair because I don't see any roots. Are those pants actually ironed? When the heck does she find the time? And, wait, why is this other mom looking frazzled? Oh, she's the lady asking the maniacs to stop running around and knocking the little kids over. And they keep screaming and running and she's looking around wondering where their mom is and when the lady's going to rush over and apologize for not tending to her crazy kids. But there's no lady and the crazies just keep running and screaming and the attentive mom is trying so hard to stay patient. That must be why she's got a vein popping out of her forehead. So, there's the secret. It's like the lost fountain of "I could give a crap" and more and more moms seem to be finding it and taking a sip. I'm going to grab a glass.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


My kids can pretty much get me to do anything. Even things I really, really, really don't want to do. On Sunday, we went to an indoor waterpark in Lake George. It was fantastic. They loved it. Me, I could have just sat on the sidelines and read a book. I mean, I liked it too, but I could have lived without it, you know? They had so much energy. I wanted to take a nap - I don't know why, but playing in water just wipes me out! But, as tired as I was, I kept doing it. I kept running back up the stairs and going down the slide. The little one wanted me on the green slide and the big one wanted the blue slide. So, back and forth I went - racing them to see who could get to the bottom the fastest. I paddled down that lazy river about 100 times and I even went on some giant raft down a giant tube that made the girls scream like crazy. Apparently, I suffer from vertigo (who knew) but I kept doing it. I kept climbing up the stairs and waiting our turn. I held onto them while they screamed from terror or joy or whatever it was that made them scream. And as much as I wanted to just steal away and sink into the hot tub, I didn't. I played along for hours and hours - just for those silly girls.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

A Mother's Job

What's the saying? A woman's work is never done? Did a woman coin that phrase because it's so very true or did a man coin it because he wanted it to be the way of the world? As a mom, our jobs are never, ever done. There is never a time when you can sit on the couch with your feet up and a drink in hand because everything that needed to be accomplished has been. There is always something more that could be done. And if it's not something we as moms put on our to-do lists, it's tasks others give us to do. Yesterday was one of those manic days for me. Laundry, grocery shopping, dishes, meeting, cooking, driving kid to school, picking kid up from school, going to a friend's house, continuing cooking. It was just a marathon day. But, you think you've gotten something done because you've done three loads of laundry and a load of dishes. Then you realize that you've got to fold that laundry and put it all away. And you've got to unload the dishwasher and put all of that away too. And then you realize that you need to mend something that was in the laundry. And the wine glass in the dishwasher reminds you that you need to get a gift for your husband's co-worker. And the trip to the grocery store has you forgetting at least one important thing on your list so you have to go out later and get it. And the dinner that you thought was going to be ready isn't ready so you've got to go back out and get something to replace it. And the meeting that you thought was going to be a breeze gives you five more reports to write up and e-mails to send. And when you're checking your e-mails you realize that it was library day at school and you forgot the books so you have to dig through the house and find them and then drop them off. And when you're digging, you find more laundry that has to be done. And then you find a calendar that reminds you it's your turn to bring snack to pre-school so you have to go back to the store to get something to feed 8 kids. And then you realize that you haven't started the new dinner that you just bought. And, just when you think you're about to lose your mind from all of that, you kids come home from school and ask you to find the television remote!