Thursday, July 31, 2008

Things I've Learned This Week

Because I'm all about spreading knowledge and sparing you the pain of obtaining that knowledge:

1. When you put on a top in the morning and realize that people will see that you haven't shaved your armpits in two days, but feel too lazy to get back in the shower to shave the pits or to pick a new top, do not consider using hubby's electric razor. For the record? Men's facial skin and women's armpit skin are not the same thing. The electric razor will remove your hair, but it will also remove enough patches of hair that you look like you've been shaved by a rabid piranha.

2. After you've donated layers of epidermis and dermis to hubby's Norelco razor, don't decide that you still need to wear deodorant. This will cause you to look like Macaulay Culkin in Home Alone and scream loud enough for your dog to think that someone is attacking you and make him barrel into the bathroom so fast, he slams into the wall.

3. Don't laugh at your dog when he's potentially caused himself a permanent brain injury trying to save you. His feelings will get hurt.

4. Don't tell your toddler when you hang up with his lover's mother that you were in fact speaking to her. Lie and say that you were speaking to the scary mall Easter Bunny or the mascot at the Frisco Roughriders' baseball games. It is better to cause fear in your child's heart than have to deal with half an hour of sobbing at how he wants to go see Knute and how he needs to play with Knute. Telling your child the truth will result in your toddler telling you that he likes AFF more than he likes you.

5. I don't care what anyone says, but the only thing better than cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory is $1.50 cheesecake from the Cheesecake factory. When's their next 30th anniversary celebration?



Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Jumping Into the Giveaway Pool

Lots of bloggers are having giveaways. Some are having photo caption contests. Others have offered naming rights of their child, but only on their blog, not in real life.

And since I'm very, very competitive, I thought I'd take it to the next level. I am having a giveaway. But not ANY giveaway. I am offering naming rights of my second born.

How's that for having the chance to have an impact on my life? This child could possibly carry the name you suggested for the next 100+ years. Are you in?

Besides having a gorgeous child (I saw his face yesterday on the ultrasound, trust me, this kid will make you wish I was the one who had 17 kids instead of that crazy couple with all the "J" named kids) carry a name you suggested, I'll also throw in a $25 gift card to any store you want. Even if it's the kind of store that will get you your very own Duncan. Your pick.

So the rules of the game? Well, really, are easy. If you were going to name your son (or if you have a son and love his name so much that you think mine should share it), send it in!

My only limitations are this (because you know there had to be some!):

- No name in the top 50 popularity list
- No crazy names like Nike or Vulva (well, you can suggest them, but you won't win)
- Ideally, it should be pronouncable in French, since I get grief from my family all the time for not giving Little Man a name that my grandparents can pronounce. Note that this will not necessarily eliminate the name should I decide that it's the one. And I will not name my kid Jean-Michel. He is being raised in North Texas after all, and I'm not giving the bullies any additional reason for kicking his ass.

Your suggestions can be emailed to me at at gmail dot com. Please don't post them in comments, because should your name be chosen and you become the winner, I want Tiny Man's real identity to be kept anonymous and would not want his real name ever having appeared in my comments.

So why am I doing this? Well, to be perfectly honest, right now, I'm at a dead end. We currently have a short list of four names, and even though I like them fine, none of them feel like "the one." And if I have to read the baby name book one more time, my eyes are literally going to start bleeding.

Help me. Name my child. Will ya?



Monday, July 28, 2008

Houston, We Have a Delivery Date

So it's done.

This morning, my doctor scheduled my C-section. I knew it would be that week, I've known that since practically the day I found out I was pregnant. But now? Having actually put an entry on my Outlook Calendar that says "c-section"? Well, that's practically got me pooping my pants.

Ready or not, this baby's coming.

And right now? I totally don't feel ready for it. I'm ready to have a panic attack. The kid doesn't have a name, his crib isn't put together, the clothes aren't washed.

Hell, his baby album isn't started and his birth announcements haven't been pre-ordered yet.

Anyone have a paper bag?

Yes, I know the date's not until October 21st, and some of you might scoff at me panicking. But see, October 21st? That's like coming up really fast. Because my parents and niece are arriving August 8th. Then after they leave, I only have three weeks before Little Man's birthday party. And then a month after that, I go on maternity leave. Oh dear God, I'm not prepared for this.

I really, really freaking need a drink right now.



Friday, July 25, 2008

A Cupcake Story

I've talked before about the bakery across the street from me and how it cruelly started a happy hour every afternoon, so that my pregnant hiney is lured with the promises of buy one, get one half off cookies, and cupcakes and other pastries that taste like they've been baked by Martha Stewart herself.

Tuesday was cupcake day of the happy hour and I suddenly decided that Little Man and I must enjoy a cupcake on the long ride home.

I was so excited to surprise him with this, which goes to show I'm really not as smart as I claim to be, because seriously, at what point am I going to learn that my toddler isn't like anyone else's.

As we were walking out of the school, I told Little Man that I had something for him in the car (note that I did avoid the use of the word 'surprise'). I said "do you want to guess what it is?" and Little Man looked confused. I said "I'll give you a hint, it starts with the letter 'C' and so it starts with the 'ka' sound."

Little Man frowns for a second and says "Is it a Ka-donut?"

So this isn't going like I was hoping it would. Because now I have to break his little toddler heart and tell him that no, it is not in fact a donut, or a Ka-donut.

Defeated, I finally just tell him "No, it's a cupcake.

- Ooooh! I like cupcakes. But I like donuts too."

Right then.

We get in the car, and I give Little Man his chocolate cupcake, topped by a cloud of light-as-air frosting that looks like it came from the pages of a food magazine.

I get in the front seat of the car and as I'm driving off, I devour my cupcake, the one that's caused me to sit in a puddle of drool from having dirty fantasies about the things I would do to it with my mouth, my tongue, my digestive track for the past 10 minutes.

After I finished devouring my cupcake, I turned to Little Man to see how he was enjoying his and stunned, I see that he's still clutching his, intact, between his hands.

"Don't you like the cupcake," I stammer.

"I like cupcake. Cupcake is good.

- But you're not eating it," I wail.

Little Man looks at me in a way that betrays that he's really an 80-year old trapped in the body of a toddler.

"We don't eat in the car," he scolds me. "Cars are for sitting and driving."


"But Little Man... This is Mama's car, we've always eaten in it. I mean, I ate my cupcake, so I'm allowing you to eat yours."

Toddler glares at me.

"Cars are not for eating. Cars are for sitting and driving."

Right, yeah, you've said that already kid. And considering no one he rides with ever has that rule, I've got no clue where this logie is coming from.

Little Man then states that he will eat his cupcake in his house. Because apparently he will be paying the mortgage from now on with his offshore investments, so it's his house now.

I looked at him defeated and simply said "whose child are you?" but received no response.

Wouldn't you know it, but that boy clutched that cupcake the entire 30-minute ride home and never took a bite.

When we finally got home, he climbed up on the couch, demanded a napkin and proceeded to devour almost the entire thing in five minutes.

I've never understood so little about genetics.



Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The One Where I Write About the Big "O"

I've talked before about how much better my love life has been this pregnancy. Compared to the first one, that is, where I practically had a sign that said "do not touch" around my neck during the entire nine months.

But this time around, I've been very frisky. And Sweetie Pie, who the first time around wasn't really into it either, terrified that he'd somehow harm his unborn child, has gotten over his issues too, and has been perfectly content with how things have gone.

A few months ago, my favorite Ohioan blonde wrote that during her last pregnancy her big O's seemed to fizzle. I remember thinking "man, that's weird." And thought it was ironic that it would happen to the horniest pregnant woman North of the Mississippi (or whatever river Ohio is North of, I don't know American rivers, people, I'm from Canada, give me a break. OK, I don't know Canadian rivers either, really, but who does?).

I'm sad to say, that I've now had my O's kidnapped too. I've tried putting pictures of it on the side of a milk carton, but the picture of fireworks doesn't fit. Besides, they don't even make milk cartons anymore, so that's not going to work.

I then called "America's Most Wanted," because I really, really don't want my O's back.

How does one lose their O, you ask? Well, it's kind of hard to explain, except that I'll put it this way. I've gone from having such powerful ones at the beginning of this pregnancy that if a breeze blew near me within a 48-hour time period, all of my nerve endings were still so sensitive that they'd feel like they were on fire. It was the kind of O's that made me concerned that maybe I was having an aneurysm at the same time, because surely my grey matter must be coming out of my ears from the sheer force of it.

Now? It's a little like when you open a pop can. You know that small fizzle? It's like it's there and then poof, just as quickly it's done. And it leaves me really, really frustrated. I've tried everything, people, I mean everything, including using my battery operated boyfriend in the shower, my favorite one, his name is Duncan. Like Duncan Hines, because I like him as much as I like frosting.

But even Duncan only provokes the opening-of-the-can fizzle. Poor Duncan. I'm sure his feelings are hurt.

Luckily, with Beebop having gone through it before me, I know that all's well that ends well and that hers came back post baby. But seriously, four months without fireworks? That's a freaking long time, people.

So if you'd like to donate some O's to me. Please put them in an envelope, mail them to me and I will release one right when my can fizzles. And that way, maybe I can live vicariously through all of you.



Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Who Needs TV When You've Got Toddler Entertainment

Recent Little Man gems:

When asking for his music CD in the car: "Can you put on my ABCD?"


A song comes on that has a line that says "the elephant slurps the water."

Little Man: "I don't slurp the water.

- No, you don't, you have good manners.

- Yeah, I careful in the water. I don't slurp, I walk very slowly so I no slurp.

- Uhm, I think you mean "slip."

- Yeah, that's what I said.


"Little Man, you need to go wash your hands.

- Open donkey!

- ??????"

A little later:

"Hey, Little Man, dinner's ready!

- Open donkey!

- ???????? (lightbulb goes off over my head) Do you mean okie dokie?

- Yeah, that's what I said, open donkey."


"So Little Man, did Daddy drive you to school this morning?

- Yeah.

- Was it fun riding in Daddy's truck?

- (pause) Daddy drive really slow."


"Little Man, did you have fun playing with baby M.?

- Yeah. But he TOUCH MY HAIR! (looking very offended)

- She touched your hair? Isn't that ok?

- No, it not ok.

- Oh. Do I need to have her killed for her crimes?

- Yes, thank you Mama.

- I was just kidding.

- It not funny."

Apparently, the dude takes his hair very seriously.



Monday, July 21, 2008

Minus Three Months: My Letter to Tiny Man

So this is it, kid. We're now in the sprint to the finish line. Which is really, really terrifying in many ways, because it means that in 90 days, my life will completely change. No longer will I simply be woken up by the wails of a toddler who has to go potty and won't get out of bed by himself; from that point on, I'll be woken up by the screams of a newborn too.

And yet, as much as the paragraph above is probably making uteruses across the universe shut down in sympathy, I have to tell you, I'm really looking forward to it. I remember holding your brother while feeding him in the middle of the nights, around us, just darkness and silence that was only punctured by his tiny sucking sounds. I still cherish those memories, and I'm certain there will be times during the teenage years where they are what I hang on to in order to prevent me from killing you boys. I look forward to sharing my nights with you to, your small hands, sweet face simply an outline in the dark, and me getting to rock you and sit in awe that I created you.

Someday, you'll hopefully have a child of your own, and you will understand how the world changes so completely when you realize that you actually made another human being. And that everything you accomplished in your life no longer matters at all, that your every purpose now, no matter what, is to keep this being from harm's way and get him to his 18th birthday with minimal physical and emotional scarring. And it's the biggest honor there is, something I never could have understood before I had children.

You've seriously mellowed out during the past few weeks. You've become more like your brother, where you kick only a few times a day, which I take it as your way of saying "yo, I'm still in here." You always kick when I'm eating, which I take to mean "hey, thanks for the grub lady, I was starving!"

The other day, I asked your brother if he wanted to say hello to you. He stood in front of my belly button and yelled "HI BABY!" You went nuts! It was like you realized that the chipmunk voice you've been hearing had finally paid attention to you, and it was like this was the greatest moment of your fetal life. I then asked your brother if he wanted to give you a kiss, and when he kissed my belly, you began to kick really hard in response. I told Little Man that you were kicking to say thank you. He stared at me for a second and said "Baby kicked my kisses?" I tried to explain to him that kicking is the only way you have to communicate from inside my tummy, but I'm thinking you might have miffed him. So should he kick you in retaliation at some point during the next 18 years, don't be mad at him, ok? It's kind of all my fault.

Your father finally got to feel you kick for the first time last week. It seemed your only form of entertainment was to make sure you avoided your father feeling your movements. Every time you would kick, I would tell your father to hurry and put his hand on my belly. And every time, you would stop. So I then switched to motioning to your father or snapping my fingers at him and getting him to feel silently. But somehow, you're connected to my brain or can feel my arms' movement, so that didn't work either. And then finally, one evening, as you were kicking, I made all sorts of weird faces at your father and mouthed at him to come over and he caught you kicking. I'm not sure why you'd withold this from your Daddy, really, because he was so happy to finally feel you.

Unless you're doing it because you're going to be a Mama's boy. Which, if that's the case, then that's fine. I have absolutely zero issues with being adored by both of my boys and crowned the family matriach.

I love you, my Tiny Man.



Friday, July 18, 2008

The Only Reason to Be Friends With Republican Ultra-Catholics

Last night, Little Man and I headed to AFF & Knute's house (and I guess Puppy's too, by default, although, we all know who is least likely to run that house, really). Telling Little Man that he gets to see Knute is always a major test of his potty training, because he practically piddles himself from the excitement of getting to play with his buddy.

Little Man truly believes that Knute walks on water. I mean seriously, my kid, who's not the most sociable child in the world laughs so hard at Knute's antics, that he usually ends up with a major case of the hiccups.

Last night, AFF was asking Little Man about his school girlfriend. This is a re-enactment of a conversation between my favorite Republican Ultra-Catholic Ultra-Conservative Mama friend and my liberally raised son:

- So Little Man, I hear you have a girlfriend."

Little Man nods his head, too busy watching Knute to give a proper response.

AFF, not being the type to give up: - So what's your girlfriend's name?

Little Man: - His name is Knute."

I'm pretty sure that's the last time I get invited for steak at AFF's house.

Especially when I finish this post by adding that on the way home, Little Man added "I'm totally going to make that Knute kid my bitch."



Thursday, July 17, 2008

Working on Becoming Queen of the World

I'll be the first to admit, that I run my household. I think that is true for most women, but it's really, really true in my case.

Sweetie Pie isn't meek in any way. I think he just decided years ago that with a wife who has French blood coursing through every square inch of her veins, that it was just easier to let me do my thang and then he can actually get some peace and quiet ever so often and get to watch on TV a bunch of sweaty men wrapping their legs around each other's necks in a cage while weird people cheer them on.

This weekend, I have my annual girls' weekend with my three best friends. This has been a tradition for us ever since my bachelorette party, when we decided that we needed to get away once a year.

And we have. And I always look forward to it. It's my second favorite holiday after Christmas.

This weekend is it.

Of course, as life tends to happen, our weekend has turned into one night.

Which is fine. We can do one night.

Until I found out on Monday, that Sweetie Pie has to be out of town now over the weekend. Which means that I now have girls' night and a toddler that needs tending to.

But it's all good, Sweetie Pie's sister is always up for babysitting overnight.

And quickly realizing that I now have a whole house to myself!!!! SQUEAL! I decide to have the girls just stay at my house rather than a hotel, saving us the money and then we can turn into 11-year old girls playing Ouija and consuming too much candy. Oh, who am I kidding, we're all moms in our 30's. We'll be passed out by 9:30 after discussing who would be more fun to have an affair with: Paul Walker or Tom Brady (the correct answer, is obviously both at the same time, duh.)

So with my slumber party plans set, Sweetie Pie announces to me last night that he will now be coming home on Saturday night.

What? Hell to the no! This is unacceptable! I don't care that he brings home half the bacon and therefore, the house is technically half his.

This weekend, this is my house and my party and he cannot come home. No way, no how.

This is the part where I told him that I don't care where he sleeps, but it sure as hell ain't here.

This morning, I got an email from my sister-in-law confirming her plans to pick up Little Man on Saturday afternoon. She then added a PS to her note, which said that Sweetie Pie had told her that he had nowhere to go on Saturday night and that she had offered her brother her spare room.

I emailed her back, thanked her for taking care of my two men and told her that Sweetie Pie's favorite night night story is "Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See" and that he should be burped after every beer.

I think I deserve an award. I've found babysitting for not one, but two of the men I'm responsible for.

I think that deserves me some kind of award.



Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The World Might Just Turn Out OK

I saw this on one of my Twitter feeds this morning. When the news seems to tell us the sky is falling every single day, when it seems there's hatred everywhere you turn and all hope is lost for humanity, along comes a dude that makes you think maybe the world isn't such a bad place to bring a second baby into.

Where the Hell is Matt? (2008) from Matthew Harding on Vimeo.



Monday, July 14, 2008

When You're Two, There's No Such Thing as a Rhetorical Question

"Little Man, I need you to stop jumping on the couch."

Cut to toddler jumping up and down on the couch, just asking to fall off and bash his skull against the coffee table.

"OK, seriously, how many times am I going to have to tell you to stop jumping on the couch before I put you in time alone?

- Three times!"

Well, at least now I know that when my requests are being ignored, I'm only two requests away from winning the argument.

And for the record? This marks my 700th post. How freaking crazy is that?



Friday, July 11, 2008

Toddler Miscommunications

I discovered this bakery across the street from us has Happy Hour from 3-6 p.m., where every day a new treat is buy one, get one half off. To a pregnant woman, this is the equivalent of free mojitos served in David Beckham's tighty whities.

After much debate, I decided that I must have yesterday's special, which happened to be a cookie.

And when I say cookie, I use that term extremely loosely and incorrectly, because this "cookie" was like biting into an angel covered in puppies. It was the world's softest shortbread, the kind of shortbread that makes your tastebuds weep with joy at the realization that they are finally alive. And it was covered with black and white fondant, turning it into a piece of art that most starving artists would wish they could claim as their own.

I bought two cookies and I was very excited to surprise Little Man with his. I picked him up and when he was taking his sweet time, showing me every single item on the shelves of the classroom. I finally blurted out that I had a surprise for him in the car, which of course, helped to speed the leaving process considerably.

I gave him his cookie and he properly thanked me and then gobbled it up most of the way home.

A few minutes from home, Little Man sat there contentedly, black fondant dotting his cheeks and chin. Suddenly, he said "I'm ready for my surprise now.

- Uhm, well, baby, uhm, the cookie was your surprise.


- The cookie? That's not a surprise. That's a snack."

Well, I'll never make that mistake again.

Later that evening, I suddenly decided that I would teach Little Man how to tell knock knock jokes. Because what is more annoying for people without children than a toddler who knows one crappy joke and tells it over and over again? And I figured it was long overdue for my kid to be that kid.

CW: "Knock knock!

LM: ???????

CW: You're supposed to say 'who's there?'

LM: Uhm, Little Man's there.

CW: No, no, you're supposed to say 'who's there' after I say knock knock.

LM: Oh, okay. Daddy's there.

CW: Oh, screw it. It wasn't that funny of a joke anyway."



Wednesday, July 09, 2008

911, What's Your Emergency?

I believe I have officially been blacklisted from 911. Should I call 911 in the future, I will get a recording that will say something along the lines of "Catwoman, we know you think you're doing your civic duty, but please go back to dreaming of chocolate glazed donuts and the dimples in Paul Walker's ass and hang up the phone now."

I couldn't write this post last week, simply because there was a mad man on the loose in Dallas, one who had shot at 5 or 6 cars. No one had been killed or seriously injured, miraculously, but I still didn't feel comfortable writing this post where it might seem like I'm making light of the situation. For the record? Only thing I ever make fun of is myself. And my husband, because hello, he's a man, how can you not mock him. And Little Man, because why would you have children if you're not going to use them as blog material? Makes you understand a little better why the pope's against birth control. He's just afraid the world's going to run out of blog material, is all. The pope, he's really into reading blogs. Little known fact.

But back to the matter on hand.

Last week, a Dunkin' Donut opened by work. I noticed that it had opened just as I was on my way to a doctor's appointment. One where I was going to be weighed. I knew that I had to deny myself the yumminess of the donut, because seriously, weighing in is bad enough without an extra 500 calories of carbs and fat in your belly and icing drying on the corner of your mouth.

But I promised myself that I would celebrate another successful weigh in at the doctor's with a donut. This is where if I still had any male readers, they would be confused by this statement. Luckily, I scared them all away months ago when I discussed vijayjay oozing, so it's all good.

On the way back, I stopped at the Dunkin' Donuts and hummed and hawed for about 10 minutes trying to pick the perfect celebratory donut.

I chose a Boston Cream Donut and was on my way. By the time I'd left the parking lot, I'd already taken my first bite, but I was stunned to find that it contained no yummy cream filling. Deciding I must have bit the donut on the wrong side, I rotated it 180 degrees and bit on the other side. No cream again. By the time I had eaten the whole donut, it was clear something tragic had happened and I'd gotten no Boston Cream in my donut.

I briefly considered going back, but terrified that they'd simply give me another donut, which would help make my ass even bigger, I figured I just needed to mourn and move on.

Until the next day, where I decided to take the whole office down with me and get a dozen donuts for the office. Because I'm sweet like that.

So I come out of the Dunkin' Donut parking lot, which is across the street from my company's campus and sitting at the red light right by work, I notice the license plate in front of me, because it starts with the letters BFF. And I think how cute! I wish my license plate said BFF!

When I look up, I notice that it's a Honda Prelude, the car all of the newscasts have mentioned is the model seen in all the shooting, and on the back window, someone has drawn in shoe polish the words "I'm sorry" and the image of a gun.

I think to myself "well, that's really weird!"

When the light changes, I find myself next to the vehicle, since I had to turn into the campus and on the driver's window of the vehicle, the owner has written "Fate has chosen YOU!"

My blood stops cold. The news reports of the shooter start flashing through my head.

Part of me thinks that it's just someone who thinks the situation is a big joke, because if you were some crazy gun happy person, would you advertise it on your car?

The big part of me is disturbed, and the thought of all these people who see something weird and do nothing about it haunts me, and I decide that I couldn't live with myself if something happened.

So I call 911. And this is the conversation that occurs:

- 911, what's your emergency?

- Uhm, yeah, I was sitting at this light and the driver of the Honda Prelude in front me drew a gun on the back window.

- He drew a gun? Who did he point the gun at Ma'am and what is your exact location?

- Oh, he didn't point the gun at anyone, it's in shoe polish.

- (pause) Ma'am, I don't understand. Did he point the gun at you?

- No, because it's a drawing of a gun on his back window in shoe polish.

(awkward pause) I just thought it was freaky and he wrote on the side window "Fate has chosen you."

- Ma'am did he point a gun at you or anyone else?

- Uhm, no, it was just a drawing.

- He pointed a drawing of a gun?

- No, there was no pointing, he was, uhm, driving. I just thought I should call it in if there was a cop around to stop him. Because of the, uhm, shootings. And just in case he was the guy behind the shootings who'd just gotten brazen enough to advertise he's the guy.

(awkward pause)

- Well, ma'am, you'll be glad to know that a suspect was arrested in the shootings last night. But let me get your information in case the police want to ask you any more questions."

Moral of the story? When someone has the drawing of a gun on their car in Texas, don't call 911 and use the words "someone drew a gun."

And for the record? Those donuts I got? They had the Boston Creme in them. And they were really, really good.



Tuesday, July 08, 2008

I'm Not a Bitch, I Just Play One on TV

So I'm starting to think that maybe I'm not as good or nice of a person as I like to think I am.

The other day, Sweetie Pie was getting Little Man into his car seat when I yelled at him "Do you have Little Man's sunglasses?"

This wasn't in the same kind of yelling I do when I'm throwing pots at the man's head. There were no words that rhyme with "mo fo" and "shithead" used. It was just a situation where a loving wife had to raise her voice because her husband was more than two feet away from her, and we all know that men can hear their wives as well as bats can see.

Before Sweetie Pie even had a chance to answer, Little Man yelled back at me "Mama, are you being mean?"

Sweetie Pie thought this was quite funny. I? Was not amused and told Little Man that I was not being mean, that I was in fact being nice and trying to find his sunglasses. He thought about this for a second and said "Mama sound mean."

Well crap.

Then that night, we went to dinner at the in-laws. My sister-in-law and brother-in-law brought their Wii over so that I could kick everyone's ass I could make them all cry we could play some friendly tennis.

My sister-in-law had made "Mii's" for everyone, which is your Wii character.

Mine? Was a brunette very angry looking big headed creature.

I was shocked. "Why does my Mii look so mean?" I asked.

Sweetie Pie once again laughed. Althought, that was probably the last time he did so, since I then savagely ripped his vocal cords out of his stupid scrawny neck.

Which apparently doesn't make me look any sweeter.



Monday, July 07, 2008

Redefining Motherhood

I know that I've posted about this before, maybe around the time that my blog was reviewed by a humor site. The reviews were decent, a relief to my fragile ego, because seriously, my work health plan only covers a few therapy sessions a year, and I need those to get over my addiction to Paul Walker's abs and my desperate need to suck tequila out of his belly button.

The criticism I got was that I was a Mommy blog. And you have to say this last sentence with a look of disgust on your face, like you've just licked a skunk's butt hole.

Apparently, Mommy blogs aren't humor blogs. They're Mommy blogs. (you are doing the look without prompting at this point, right? Because I already have a toddler to teach these things to, I can't worry about all of my readers as well.)

This was news to me. I guess when I was single, I didn't think mothers were very funny either. I remember being 22 and at my very important communications coordinator job, in my Ally McBeal way too short skirts, and this lady I worked with had a four-year old and two-year old, and she would talk about them incessantly. How they did whatever and it was so funny. Or when I'd ask her if she'd seen some all-important show the night before, she'd tell me no, because she was putting the kids to bed, and well, this is going to sound archaic now, but 10 years ago, we didn't have Tivo. I know, right? How did we go on with our lives?

I didn't think this woman was very funny. I thought she was a bore actually. And I vowed that I would never become uncool. In fact, I didn't think I really wanted kids back then, because unlike cats, you totally couldn't just leave them in your apartment to go clubbing all night. And really, who would want to live their lives like that.

And I've mentioned this before, but one day, I was married. Still not sure how that fully happened. I know there was booze involved and a very large diamond and an Elvis impersonator. Surprisingly, in the last sentence, I'm only kidding about the booze. I was sober, making the whole thing even more bizarre, because I can barely commit to a Starbucks order without second guessing myself on whether I should have gotten a caramel macchiato instead.

Then one day, I was sitting on the couch, a Johnson & Johnson commercial came on, one of those that's black and white and the mother is happy and the baby is happy and he's splashing in the sink and an announcer says softly "you've always fallen for the tall, dark and handsome type, so who knew the love of your life would be short and bald. A baby changes everything."

And I started bawling. Just like that. All of a sudden, this uterus I'd had for 26 years was screaming to be invaded. Me, the person who tolerated babysitting because it meant money for clothes. Me the person whose idea of hell was Chuck E. Cheese. I wanted a baby and I wanted one so badly I could feel it in every fiber of my body.

A few months later, a tiny little human being moved into our house, one who screamed if I didn't hold him every hour of every day. Who kept me awake for days on end. Who didn't tolerate me even taking showers so that I'd go many days without washing my hair.

I don't remember loving those days. I don't remember going through those days with love in my heart and this sense of fulfillment, I was too busy trying to survive. But I know that I never sat there and thought "holy shit, I've ruined my life." I was just being and all of a sudden, I who had gone years without taking pictures would spend hours photographing toes the size of pixie dust and grins that were really gas. And I'd stare at that little boy for hours on end, in shock that I had made him.

Even crazier? I wasn't that different. Sure, all of a sudden I was no longer the cool girl who knew all of the hot spots. I no longer had much conversation other than my child. But as far as I'm concerned, I'm just as funny as I was before. If anything? I think I'm funnier. Because I was kind of a bitch before. OK, I still am a bitch. But I was more of a bitch back then. If anything I've been taught as a mother is that I have to laugh more. Life's too short to not find the humor in being force fed a teething cookie that's mushy with baby drool.

The first time I went to a Mommy play date, I dragged myself there not really wanting to go, but I could no longer afford to go to the mall every day like I had for months and I needed to get out of the house. I expected to go there and be surrounded by "mothers." Shudder.

But when I got there, I was stunned. Those "mothers" were actually people. They were gorgeous, but without spending hours in front of the mirror or being in the best shape of their lives. They didn't care they had spit up on their shirts and they talked about drinking too much wine once the baby was (finally) asleep. They were sassy and funny and smart and didn't talk about how perfect their kids were. They were real. They were like me.

And finally, my illusions of mothers were shattered. Mothers aren't my mother. Mothers are women like me.

The Internet has also brought a slew of women who've broken the "mother" mold for me. Like this one,, a successful hysterical writer who makes motherhood look bitchin' cool, because seriously? When you're writing skits for Chelsea Handler, you're not "just a mom."

And then this morning, I was watching the Today Show, and they were talking about Dara Torres, a 41-year old mother who not only qualified for the Olympics for a fifth time, she also broke an American record. The woman has this rocking body and abs that make Paul Walker look out of shape. And when asked, she says her daughter is still the most important part of her life.

Just a mother? My ass.



Friday, July 04, 2008

A Sign of Maturity

A local grocery store is having a scratch off contest, where you receive a scratch off card every time you make a purchase. If you don't win the first time, you have the chance to enter a code on the Website and be entered to win $50,000.

I scratched off my card, lost, and threw it out without giving it a second thought.

Until the other morning. Where I began daydreaming about what I would do with $50,000.

And this is where I realized just how much I have grown up. Because only a few years ago, I probably would have dreamed of a Burberry purse and Manolo Blahnik shoes and other things.

But as I laid there daydreaming of that $50,000, I found myself putting a bunch of it aside to pay the taxes on the win. And then maxing out Sweetie Pie and my contributions for the year to our Roth IRA retirement accounts.

Then I paid off our vehicles. And used a chunk to deposit in the Little Man and Tiny Man's college funds.

Then I made a decent payment to our mortgage, figuring it would help shorten the length of time of our mortgage.

And then all that was left with that imaginary dough was enough money to pay for the distressed hardwood floors I've been coveting.

That's it. That is my one "fun" purchase with an imaginary 50,000 dollars won.

Hardwood floors.

It's no wonder freaking AARP (the association of retired persons)sent me a freaking membership card last week.

I am officially old.



Thursday, July 03, 2008

Boobie Spanglish

Little Man had Spanish camp all of last week and apparently, one of the things he learned was this song titled "Hola Amigos." I was not provided the lyrics by the camp teacher, so I have no idea what the words are actually supposed to be and my Spanish is so rusty at this time that it's hard for me to guess the real lyrics, but I'm thinking the second line of the song isn't actually "boobies," because in the three months I spent in Barcelona when I was 18, at no point was I greeted with the words "Hola, amiga! Boobies!" But Spaniards are more uppity and formal than Mexicans, so maybe it's just a cultural difference.

Untitled from Catwoman InTexas on Vimeo.



Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Thirty-Four Months: My Letter to Little Man

You're officially a master manipulator. When you were much younger and couldn't fall asleep, you'd wail. Eventually, you learned to call out "Mama!" or "Daddy!" But this month, you've taken the whole thing a step further, and now you'll cry out in the most heartbreaking voice "I need my Mommy!" interspersed with sobs. And really, how can anyone remotely human not crack and run upstairs and sit with you when you do that?

You've also learned how to blame people, which I'm guessing you've learned from me, because I like to blame your father for everything, including typhoons in Asia and the fact that gas prices are so high. But it seems you're already light years ahead of me, because I think I was at least eight years old before I started blaming my mother for everything wrong in my life, but you, my little evil genius, you've mastered this skill two months shy of your third birthday, a feat I'm considering reporting to the World Guinness Book of Records, except that I'm worried that the fact you've mastered this talent might not be considered a positive milestone to most people. If you lose a toy and you tell me you can't find it, right away you accuse me, "You lost it!" And when I deny it, because seriously dude, I'm too busy losing my own stuff to have time to get to losing yours, you accuse me again, which I'm warning you now, if you don't cut it out, I'm going to slap a libel suit on your recently potty trained behind, and that'll take care of the next important lesson in life on my to-do list, which is, of course, that falsely incriminating people is bad.

You have also mastered the art of color coordination, to the point that when I now take you shopping, I rely on your opinion before I buy anything. I'm sure people think it's a little weird for me to turn to someone who's not even three-feet tall and ask "do you like this maternity shirt?", but seriously, I trust your taste much more than mine. A lot of times you'll look at the item of clothing I've presented you with, you get this look in your eyes like "seriously? you're even thinking of blowing the money equivalent of 12 pints of ice cream on this hideousness?" and tell me very firmly "no, I don't like this." Ever so often, I will hit the jackpot, like on Saturday when I found this pink peasant shirt at Old Navy and I showed it to you and you looked at it and said "that's a handsome shirt! Yes, I like it!"

And you know what? You were so right, because I wore that shirt on Monday, and I literally felt like a Grecian goddess who could do anything in it. And when I put it on, and you saw me, you said "oh Mama! You look so handsome!" And if that's not the best compliment a Mama could ask for, well, then I don't know what is.

However, in typical fashion, you don't do things half-assed, so you've taken the art of color coordination to a whole new level. And by that, I'm refering to, of course, your current obsession with matching your potty reward M&M to your outfit. I'm dead serious here. If you're wearing your yellow shirt, only a yellow M&M will do. Sometimes I'll get away with giving you a color that matches your shorts, but when I do so, I have to be prepared to explain my logic to you, and hold my breath as you take the M&M, hold it against your shorts for comparison, ponder it for a second, before you claim that yes, it is indeed acceptable. I'm guessing that I'll be stuck eating all of the orange M&M's, simply because we're an Aggie family, and obviously orange is the color of the devil, and therefore you are not allowed to own any items of clothing of that color.

You've also become obsessed with wearing sunglasses, something that you wouldn't have been caught dead doing just a couple of months ago. Now, the second we get in the car, you ask me for your shades, you put them on yourself and I always feel like I'm driving some kind of celebrity around afterwards, because your face morphs into one of complete seriousness with a hint of boredom, the way all of the celebrities seem to look, leading me to think that I've let you watch too much Entertainment Tonight during your short life.

Last week, we finally got around to taking you to the beach club in our neighborhood. Although you'd gotten to the point where you loved swimming again when we were in Hawaii, that was more than two months ago now, a lifetime to you. And every time we've brought up going swimming, you'd say "I don't like to swim, let's play on the computer instead." But Sunday, we somehow coaxed you into letting us change you into your bathing suit by convincing you that this would be fun, and wouldn't you know it, after 10 minutes there, you were latched to my back splashing away in the water, laughing and you shouted with glee "I like swimming! Swimming is fun!" Which, uhm, I hate to say this, and I'm really going to try hard to limit the number of times I say this during your lifetime, but I've got to do it in this case, or else they'll revoke my Mommy card: I told you so. For the record? I don't spend my life doing non-fun stuff, which is why our house looks like a war zone 90 percent of the time. Stick with me, kid, and you'll see that life ain't that bad.

You and I have spent the last week planning out your third birthday party, in a way that would make most people think that we are planning a wedding. We have discussed themes at length and the benefits of a Finding Nemo theme versus a cowboy theme. We've discussed guest lists and who would be seated next to whom to encourage good toddler conversation during the feast, which we've decided after mucho debating to outsource to the fantastic chefs at Chick-Fil-A. I can tell from these at-length discussions that you've inherited my party planning gene. I suspect that within a few years, you and I will be going insane with all-night brainstorming sessions about the goodie bags. And for the record? I can't wait! As long as you always let me have the last word, of course.

One of my coworkers told me that it was ridiculous for me to speak to a toddler about his birthday party two months before the fact. That I'd get you all riled up about something that was a lifetime away. And sure, you don't understand the concept of tomorrow yet, let alone two months from now. But at the same time, you haven't woken up every day asking me if your party is today. The only issue was when I brought up your cake and discussed potential cake looks for each theme and you said "Cake? Let's go get Little Man's birthday cake right now!"

Luckily, there's plenty of ice cream in this world to distract you enough until the big day.

This morning, there was a sad story on the Today Show about a mother who died trying to protect her baby. And stories like this always shake me to my core, just like stories of injured or lost children always get to me. I ran into the bedroom where you were eating grapes and watching Mickey Mouse and I kissed you and hugged you while tears pricked the back of my eyes. You looked at me and grinned. I told you that I loved you very much and asked you if you knew that. Because although I tell you multiple times a day, sometimes I worry that with all of the disciplining I have to do that you might forget that more than anything I love you with every fiber of my body, and that I always will. You smiled again and nodded. I asked you if you knew that I loved you with all of my heart and you smiled again and said "yes, Mama love me with big heart and I love Mama with my little heart."

Well then, we're ok. But once again? I have to tell you, I love you, my Little Man.


Tuesday, July 01, 2008

News Flash: The Bachelorette is Not Appropriate Toddler Watching

For the past 18 months or so, Little Man, Sweetie Pie and I have had a tradition. We eat dinner together (and by eating dinner, I mean Little Man eats one bite of food and says "I'm done" and then gets down and proceeds to whine to Sweetie Pie and I that he wants ice cream, until I beg the dogs to eat the child so I can just have some peace and quiet) and then once an acceptable amount of food has been eaten by all humans, and the rest has been dropped on my silk-covered kitchen chair cushions for the dogs to eat up and add more slobber stains to, Little Man requests some show that involves animation and high-pitch voices that make our windows vibrate that he watches it on our bed, and Sweetie Pie and I watch historical documentaries whatever I want to watch in the living room.

Ever so often, Little Man decides that he wants to be with us instead, which is a little like a cat deciding that he wants to follow you to work, it simply does not happen.

Last night was one of those nights, and of course, we all know by now that Monday nights are sacred in this household, because that is the night my crack, The Bachelorette airs (dear God, only one episode left, how will I fill my meaningless life after next Monday???)

Little Man said that he wanted to watch Mama's show, the name he calls anything that isn't animated, because clearly the kid's already figured out who controls the satellite signal in this house.

He then climbed on the sofa and proceeded to snuggle with me and his stuffed frog.

All was well, until halfway through the episode, Little Man observes "she kissing a lot."

Sweetie Pie glance at each other.

"Uhm, yeah, she is, isn't she?" I stammer. I then wonder why The Bachelorette has to act like such a whore, when clearly an almost three-year old is in the room. I mean, where are her manners?

Little Man then adds "I going to kiss Madeline."

Sweetie Pie and I silently laugh, as Madeline is Little Man's new girlfriend at school. She's blonde and blue eyed and looks like she could be Little Man's twin, which means that they would have gorgeous children together, should this relationship survive the next 20+ years.

But then I realize that dear God, my child who remembers everything will go to school tomorrow and try to kiss this poor innocent girl who probably hasn't even thought of holding Little Man's hand (at least, she better not have, or that hoochie is going to have to deal with me.)

So I say to Little Man that he can't go around kissing people, that there are only certain people he's allowed to kiss.

He looks at me, a little surprised, and says "Who can Little Man kiss?"

So I start rattling off names. Mama. Daddy. Nonnie. Papaw. Mamou. Dadou. Aunts and Uncles.

"Nobody else?"

"Nope, nobody else, Little Man."

Little Man ponders this for a second. "I not kiss Satan's Dog and Old Dog?"

Exceptions were made for the dogs, to the great relief of both Little Man and Satan's Dog. Old Dog, however, was greatly disappointed and asked for an appeal to my decision.