Friday, May 25, 2012

An XL in a M World

I must say, I’m lovin’ the flowy styles that are fashionable this season.  I am not a wife-beater tank top kinda girl, so having material that covers my, um, problem areas, is a bonus. 

I try to wear clothes that fit and are flattering.  You know how you can walk through a mall and see women dressed in jeans that are waaaay too tight, muffin tops and thong underwear hanging out the back and a bowlful-o’-jelly hanging over the top?  I’m not that gal. 

Picture if you will:  a dressing room, complete with questionable lighting and a trifold mirror, so the customer can confirm that it looks bad from the front . . . and the side . . . and indeed the back.  The other night, I carried in an armful of clothing items - because I am a rebel and I do not conform to the 6-items-or-fewer rule.  When was the last time you tried on jeans, or god-forbid a swimsuit, and found one within the first 6 items that you’d be willing to purchase, take home, and stuff your parts into?  It takes MANY attempts, and unless I’m going to lose 10 lbs. by making several grueling trips to and from the dressing room, I’d prefer just to take all my choices back at once, thanks.

So . . . I had a load of XL items and I began the arduous process of putting them on, criticizing my image in the mirror, and hanging them on the no-way-in-hell-I’m-buying-this hanger.  (Not to be confused with the Maybe-but-only-if-I-can’t-find-anything-else hanger, or the  f*ck-it-I’ll-just-buy-these-sweatpants hanger.)  I found a couple cute tops, and then it happened.

I tried on this little number:

This, my friends, is what happens when a size Medium ends up on the XL hanger.

I look like the Incredible Hulk’s conservative (and much cuter) little sister.  If I had worn it much longer, the buttons would have popped off and pinged all over the walls, no doubt knocking out the lights and setting off the sprinkler system. 

I did NOT purchase this top.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Livin' Life Like a Toddler

Wouldn’t it be flippin’ awesome if we could all live our lives with the enthusiasm that toddlers have? 

(By the way, I have a new nickname for Small.  It’s Baby Smalls.  It’s like Biggie Smalls, except much less violent and with a much smaller, better-behaved entourage.   From now on, I’m gonna live my life like Baby Smalls.)

  • I will ignore the dishes/laundry/vacuuming etc. so that I can sit for an hour and put muffin cups in the muffin tin, then take them out, and then put them back in again.

  • I will run everywhere.  Not for exercise.  Just because. 

  • I’m going to take a seat on the couch and then bark out what I want to watch.  “I wanna watch Jersey Shore!”  I will watch for 15 minutes, and then yell “I wanna watch Jeopardy!” until someone changes the channel.

  • I will sit on the potty at random times during the day, not do anything, flush, and then exclaim, “I did it!” while throwing my hands up in the air and doing a little dance/jump number.

  • I will wake up in the morning and exclaim, “I wanna ride inna car!”  I won't have anyplace I need to be, I just wanna ride.

  • In fact, every sentence I speak will be punctuated by many exclamation points.

“I wanna haffle!!!!”
“Daddys-a work!!!!”

  • I will wear my pajama top out in public.  Oh, I’ll put pants on, but I’m wearing this comfy top wherever I go, or I’m not going.
  • I will give people things. . . . like when someone's sitting on the couch having a conversation, I will deliver his/her wallet, or a fork, or a roll of toilet paper, and I will announce, “here go.”

  • I will hold the following one-sided conversation on other people’s cell phones:

“Ummmm . . . yes.  Ummmm . . . no.  Whay go?  Ummmm . . . no.”
  • We'll leave the house when I'm damn good and ready.  I don't care if we have an appointment.

  • I will eat every single ever-lovin’ raisin I can find today.  Tomorrow, not so much.  Tomorrow I won't like them anymore.

  • I will sneeze wherever I damn well please.

  • If I find food, I’m eatin’ it.  It really makes no nevermind to me if it’s been in the dog’s dish.  I’m sharing.  Sharing is caring.

  • I am going to walk up to family members and hit them.  Just because.  Then I’m going to give my sad, pouty face and announce that I need a hug.

  • I’m going to watch The Muppets every day.  Sometimes twice.  And I’m going to sing, “maaaaaan?  Ooooo Buppetttttt?”  at random intervals throughout the day.

  • I will pet the dog.  Really hard.

  • I’m going to start looking at people without turning my head – just moving my eyes from side to side.  It’s just more interesting that way.

  • Everytime I take a bath, I’m going to invite Mr. Bubble and bring some matchbox cars, a few Power Rangers, and an ice tea pitcher.

  • When I feel like singing, I’m gonna sing, and I’m gonna sing about whatever is on my mind. 

“Is Mater . . . . on my foooooot . . . daddys-a work . . . . ooooooo . . . I stinky . . . . . pretzels.”

The End.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

I Can Lose 50 lbs. in 2 Weeks, Right?

In the interest of trying to spend my morning with Small without having to watch any cartoon programming or oohing and aahing over various sandbox creations, we went out for coffee.  One of my girlfriends mentioned that she overheard some women talking about how excited they were that our neighborhood pool will be opening soon.

Here’s the thing about our neighborhood:  there are a LOT of beautiful people here.  I’m talking size-4 wearing, Louis Vuittion carrying, salad eating, good looking people.

F*ck.  I’ve got approximately 2 weeks to lose 50 lbs., and how did I spend my morning?  Carb-loading on bagels at Panera.

I have no doubt that many of my neighbors are at this very moment getting botoxed, waxed, and highlighted in preparation for Memorial Day Weekend.  They will show up at the pool in their bikinis, their giant bag of pool toys, and their healthy snacks.

Know why I love it?  Because I'm the ONLY person
at our pool who has one.  I don't even have my name in it!
. . . And then I’ll come rolling in.  I will no doubt be carrying oversized pool toys and everybody else’s beach towels, at which point I will have to take off running after Small, who will make a bee-line for the deep end.  I will also have with me my prized Dale Earnhardt, Jr. cooler, filled with Lunchables and Diet Coke.  While the other mommies are sunning and flipping through magazines, I’ll be getting my hair wet as I try to stop my children from beating the sh*t out of each other with pool noodles.  Small will find soggy goldfish on the deck and decide to give ‘em a try, Medium will complain “it’s no fair” when Large makes him be the man in the middle, and they’ll all three be asking me for ice cream in 45 minute increments. 

The Russian lifeguards, all hungover and exhausted because they had to ride their bikes to work, will ignore my children because it’s so hard to tell the difference between “swimming” and “drowning.”  In both instances, there’s a lot of splashing and flailing and a general tangling of appendages.  Here’s how one can differentiate:  when they're yelling, “help, I can’t make it to the edge!” they’re drowning.  When they’re yelling, “Mommy, watch this!  Mom!  Watch!  Are you watching?  Look!” they’re swimming.

Yep.  I can’t wait.


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

What I Want for Mother's Day: a Day Off

Mother’s Day is bittersweet for me.  I absolutely adore having a day that celebrates what a kick-@ss job I’m doing at keeping my children out of juvenile detention homes mothering.  My birthday is not until September; that’s a LONG wait for another day that’s all about me.  I know there are mothers out there who will scoff at me when I say I would like a kid-free day on Mother’s Day.  I know, I know; scoff away.  A GOOD mother would want to spend her day with her offspring.  Well, I spend the 364 other days of the year with them . . . on Mother’s Day, Mama wants a nap.

Since I lost my own mother, however, Mother’s Day brings a little sadness too.  It’s much better now than it was when she first passed.  I wanted to kick Jane Seymour in the face every time I saw her advertising her tacky Mother’s Day jewelry.  Didn’t she know that I didn’t want a constant reminder that my own mother is gone?  That Jane Seymour.  So selfish.

It’s been 6 1/2 years now since we lost my mom.  My family just spent last weekend walking in the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life, which is ironic because my mom woulda hated it.  Unlike me, she did not like a lot of attention, having her picture taken, or spending the night (in a tent on a football field) with a few hundred of her closest friends.  She would have hated seeing her name on an illuminated bag and she would have hated seeing her likeness on the big screen while Bette Midler sang "My One True Friend." 

Meh.  I does what I wants.

Our whole family participated, which sounds great in theory.  However. . . . Small was a nightmare.  My good little sleeper did not get a nap, so I tried to wheel him around in the wagon in hopes that he would snuggle up and fall asleep.  No such luck.  He’d toss and turn with his “kanket” and his “pappy,” then he’d jump out of the moving wagon and lie down in the middle of the track.  Other Relayers would giggle about how cute he was.  Yeah.  Friggin’ adorable.

I really feel for those families who are fighting the Cancer battle right now, or for whom the pain is still raw.  I can look back now and laugh at how I handled things in my own way, but it took me a long time to get here.

I have a tendency to make inappropriate comments when I’m uncomfortable.  It’s that tension in the air . . . I just can’t stand it and I’ll do say anything to avoid it.  

For instance:

  • My mom’s cancer was extremely advanced when we found out about it.  I was in a bookstore with some friends when I saw 1000 Places To See Before You Die, by Patricia Schultz.  I picked it up and thought, ‘hmmmm . . . she better get crackin’.”
  • About 4 days before my mom passed, we convinced her it was time to sign her advanced directive.  It was a tough time, wrought with emotion.  The nurse and the notary quietly stepped in, addressed the entire family, and asked my mom for the names of family members who could make decisions on her behalf and in which order she would like them to appear.  She named me, then my brother Slim, and then my brother The Redneck.  I deadpanned (no pun intended,) “so from favorite to least favorite?"
  • My dad asked me to choose my mom’s clothing and jewelry and to take it up to the funeral home since he had no idea what to pick.  My mom was a jeans and sweatshirt kinda gal, so choosing a dress was slim pickins.  Little known fact: the funeral director wants appropriate undergarments as well.  (This is a relief to me, as I find comfort in knowing I’ll be wearing clean undies when it’s time to meet my Maker.  It’s the least I can do for Him.)  I rifled through her drawers and laid out everything I wanted her to have, but then I thought to myself, there’s NO WAY she would want to be wearing pantyhose for All Eternity.  So I took her fancy black dress, her best jewelry, and a pair of Tweety Bird socks.

I miss her terribly. She was delightfully imperfect, impatient, and stubborn.  I’m not one to wax poetic and claim she was my best friend.  She was NOT my best friend.  She was my mom, and that’s much more rare.  

* A big THANK YOU to all my friends and family who donated to our team and who came and walked with us on Saturday.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Clean Up: Aisle 15!

Small is two years old now.  He is DEFINITELY in the Terrible Twos stage, but unfortunately, since I have two older children already, I know that the worst is yet to come.  Nobody tells you about the F*cking Threes.  I shouldn’t complain, because comparatively, Small is an easy kid.

But he still has his moments.

Last week I was at Target, (surprise!!!) and he was screaming because, in his words, “I wan git out!”  This was not a leisurely shopping trip; I had a list and everything and all I was trying to do was get. through. my. list. 

Trust me; I was well aware that he was screaming, but here’s the thing. . .  I shop at Target within the first few hours of their opening.  Most of the other customers are in a similar situation to mine – either with young children in tow or moms with school-aged children who are just trying to knock out some errands before the death knell also known as 2:50, the end of the school day.  So to the woman who made a point of leaving her cart in one aisle so that she could peak around into my aisle to see what all the fuss was about?  You can walk yourself over to Walmart if that's the attitude you're gonna have.

Seriously.  When are people going to learn that if they act all self-righteous towards me, I WILL write about them (passive-aggressively) in my blog that 75 people in the whole wide world follow.

More recently, my home was in desperate need of some sustenance . . . something besides chocolate chip Little Bites, a giant vat of Goldfish, and some squeezable yogurts.  I try to do my big grocery shopping when Hubby is home and I can go alone, but the timing just wasn’t working out, so I had to take Small with me to the grocery store.

I keep a giant bag of Tootsie Pops in my bag so that I can bribe him keep him occupied.  He’s totally playin’ me.  As soon as he gets in the cart he starts asking for a lolli.  Repeatedly.  “I wan lolli. I wan lolli.  Mommy!  I wan lolli.”  Since I knew this would be a longer shopping trip than usual, I broke out the lollies and procured the Greyhound Bus cart – the one with the car on the front. 

I don’t think members of the general population realize how much skill is involved in maneuvering the Greyhound Bus cart through a grocery store.  Show me some respect, yo.

Greyhound: Leave the driving to Mommy
(because your toddler sure as hell ain't gonna do it.)

He got in the cart willingly, and I made my way over to the smoothie bar, which is my second line of defense during a longer grocery trip. 

It was all downhill from there.

He had dropped his straw by the time we got back to the string cheese section, and while I had the cart stopped, he grabbed onto a display and started moving the cart at such an angle that it blocked the entire aisle.  And let me tell you something . . . the geriatrics that ride the shuttle bus from their retirement community do NOT appreciate a blocked aisle.  *Note to self: Monday is Geriatric Day at the Wegmans.

I pushed the cart faster and faster, knowing my time was becoming increasingly limited.  Frozen waffles?  Check.  Dino-nuggets?  Check.  Tater Tots?  Check.  As we were leaving the waffle/nugget/tot section of the store, Small started again with the “I wan git out.  I wan git out.  I wan walk.”  I relented, but with strict instructions to keep one hand on the cart at all times.

Ever given "strict instructions" to a two-year-old?  Tell me, how did that work out for you?

He started wandering, so I tried to put him back in the car part of the cart, but he didn't want to sit.  Now, those of you who do not have children may be thinking, but you're the mom.  You're in charge and you're bigger and stronger than he is.  Just MAKE him sit in there.  Those of you who are parents are picturing someone trying to put a cat in a toilet - all four appendages spread-eagled.

Ahem.  Moving on.

The spaghetti aisle, heretofore known as aisle 15, was crowded.  It seems that many people enjoy the pasta.  I pushed the Greyhound over to the side of the aisle and stepped forward to grab a box of rotini-shaped Carbs just as Small discovered another item that is located in aisle 15: spaghetti sauce.

This is pretty, he thought.  So shiny, he thought.  I wonder how heavy it is, he thought.  What happens if I pick it up, he thought.

In slow-mo, I yelled his name, “Smaaaaaaalllllll!”  (I even middle-named him, if I'm being honest.)

Nice try, Mom. 

Spaghetti sauce and broken glass.  Everywhere.

Clean up, aisle 15!  I’m surprised the clean up crew hadn’t been following us around the store.  Next time I should just grab one of those yellow caution cones (the one with the acrobatic man who is, apparently, falling, though he looks like he’s doing a Gene Kelly donkey kick dance move) on my way in and just carry it with me until I need it.  They broke out the big guns – the guy with his name embroidered on his shirt who carries the walkie-talkie.  Not just a patch, folks; embroidery.  You know how the most important person on the staff is the one who carries the most keys? . . . that was him.

After that, I grabbed three boxes of cereal and high-tailed it to the check-out lanes.  Later, suckas!  We won’t be back until we run out of waffles.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Everybody Contributes. Willingly.

So I need to come clean about something, especially in light of the Pinterest Post from the other day.

Yesterday I posted this picture on my Facebook page:

Now, luckily, most of my 391 friends know that I tend to be slightly sarcastic.  Sometimes.  

I did not post the photo so that people would think, "wow, what a great mother!  Her children are helping to clean the house they all live in, out of the goodness of their sweet little hearts.  What a marvelous way to teach them discipline, responsibility, and cooperation!"

If you thought that, please stop reading . . . NOW.

Otherwise, let me do some ‘splaining.

I bribed the boys with my marble system, which I stole from Disney’s Family Fun Magazine.

  • I told Large he could earn 5 whole marbles (!!!) if he vacuumed the family room floor.  The reason I needed the floor vacuumed, aside from the fact that we have white carpet in a house full of boy-dirt, is because the dog had peed on it.  Can’t use the steam cleaner until I vacuum up the loose dirt.

          Ask me if I’ve steam-cleaned yet.

  • Medium played in the sandbox on the deck and needed approximately 10 cups of water for his sand creation.  I’m not talking 10 “cups” of water.  I’m talking 10 plastic ballpark cups.  Since he could only carry two full cups of water at a time, he made several trips.  With every trip, more and more sand magically appeared inside my house.  I told Medium he needed to sweep the floor.  Notice there is no dustpan in sight.  Nope, we’re just moving the sand around from one location to the next.

  • Small just likes to push things . . . his little lawnmower, his ride-on car, his stroller, (my buttons.)  etc.  Lightbulb!  Let him push the swiffer around for a bit.  He doesn’t actually clean anything, but it makes him feel important.

The children completed their designated chores while I prepared a healthy, nutritious meal that they did not eat, and they earned marbles, which will eventually turn into $10 which they will spend on dollar-store plastic things that I will throw away the next day.   Everybody wins!