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The Talk, Round Two September 16, 2013

The day was August 26th, 2013.  It was the first day of school for all four of my little monsters.  I was broken after almost 3 months of them being at home and me not having a single linear thought in my head in just as much time.  I hadn’t slept well the night before because I was tossing and turning thinking about my oldest child starting middle school.  I was also a bit emotional because once again, the start of school reminds me that my children are growing and changing quickly.  What I’m trying to convey, dear readers, is that it was absolutely NOT the day to have the sex talk with my child.  Especially not the child with whom I had the talk.  Not.  At.  All.

I had been through “the talk” last summer with my daughter.  It wasn’t something that I welcomed by any means, but my daughter is a good listener and I knew that she would take it all in stride.  Now, my oldest son?  Out of all my children, he is the one I feared telling the most.  To describe him as inquisitive would be a massive understatement.  The kid gives us the third degree about everything.  He is constantly looking up words because not only does he need definitions he needs to know everything about the word, origin and all.  It’s the same with facts.  He wants facts and wants evidence to support the facts.  He is not a child who will accept the phrase, “Just because.” No sir.  He is smart as a whip but he is exhausting.

Knowing this about my son, I have dreaded having  the “talk” with him for some time.  He started asking about it this past summer.  I was a chicken and blew him off several times because I just couldn’t face what was ahead of me.  I didn’t think I had it in me to answer all of his questions openly and honestly.  You know what?  I was right in being afraid.  So, here is the story of my oldest son learning about the birds and the bees……..Lord help me.

As I mentioned before, it was the first day of school.  The kids were all home and happy after what was a good first day.  My two youngest sons went with my husband to the pool and I was left with the two oldest kids, my daughter and son.  My daughter wanted to make chocolate chip cookies for a back to school treat and asked if I could take her to the grocery store to buy the ingredients.  My son came along for the ride.  We had a good time talking and laughing about school, their teachers and their friends.  We started discussing school holidays and when they had school breaks.  My son asked if our friends, the Scotts (hee, hee) would be joining us for Thanksgiving dinner this year.  I explained that of course they were welcome but Mrs. Scott was due to have a baby around that time so it may not work out.  Simple enough…….or so I thought.

It was quiet as we pulled into the garage.  I got out of the car and opened the trunk to get the groceries.  My son appeared out of nowhere and asked, ” Mom, does sex have something to do with babies?”  I almost dropped the milk I was carrying.  My daughter grabbed a bag and as she walked away called over her shoulder,  “Will you just have the sex talk with him already?”  My son put his hands on my shoulders, looked me dead in the eyes and said, ” You have been telling me we would have the talk all summer.  I am not leaving the garage until you tell me how babies are made.”  I look up to see my daughter right behind us, just shaking her head in disgust,  ” Really mom, you just need to get it over with.”  She is a pain in the ass.

I looked at my son, took a deep breath and replied,  ” Alright. Put the groceries away and meet me in the living room.” He yelled, “Yes!” My daughter said, in the bored way that only an 11-year-old girl can really master, “It’s about time, don’t you think?”  One sex talk and now she’s the parenting expert.

I poured myself a drink ( just iced tea mind you, but I contemplated a glass of wine) and made myself comfortable on the couch.  My son sat on the chair opposite me, literally on the edge of his seat. I took a deep breath and began.

Me: ” When a man and a woman love each other very much and are committed to each other they may want to have a family.  So they have sex to make a baby.”

Coop: “So, only married people have sex and babies?  What about that girl up the street who has that baby?  She lives with her mom and she’s not married.”

Me: ” Um, yes, but it’s better to be mature and um, in a committed relationship before, you know, making a baby.”

Coop: ” You mean have sex? Do you make a baby every time you have sex?  Is that only what sex is for?”

Sweet Jesus, I was already uncomfortable and unprepared and it wasn’t even 5 freaking minutes into the discussion.

Me: ” Can you just let me finish before you ask anymore questions?  Save them for the end, okay?” I hoped he would forget most of them.

Coop:” Okay. So what is sex?”

Me: ” Well, I told you when two people love each oth..”

Coop, cutting me off: ” Yeah, I know but what IS it?”

Me: Why was I doing this alone? Where in the hell was my husband? ” Okay, so sex is..” I was cut off by my daughter yelling from the other room, ” It’s when a man puts his penis in a woman’s vagina!” I was seriously going to ground that child for life.

Coop, Wide eyes looking at me: ” What??? Is that true??”

Me, nodding my head: ” Well, yes, but..”

Coop, laughing uncontrollably: ” AHAHAHAHAHAHA!! No way! Really??”

Me, yelling over my shoulder: ” Hey! You let me have the talk with your brother! Knock it off!” I heard giggling from the kitchen.

Caroline: ” Okay, I was just helping.”

Me, trying to regain some control: “Yes, that’s what sex is and how a man and woman make a baby.  See, the man’s sperm meets with a woman’s egg and when the timing is right that makes a baby.”

Coop: ” How does the sperm come out?”

Me, well shit: ” Well, a man, he….um…..he…..see, what happens is..” Cut off again by the flipping sex ed teacher in  the kitchen.

Caroline: ” He emasculates. That’s when the sperm comes out of the penis.” WHAT???? This was rapidly going downhill.

Me: ” No, a man does not “emasculate.” Caroline, I mean it, NO MORE! A man ejaculates. Big difference, believe me.”

Coop: “So, is that like peeing?” Please, someone help me.

Me: ” Well, no it’s not. It’s a bit more complicated than that. It’s……it’s when….well, I…maybe we should wait until your dad gets home for this part?”

Coop: “Where do you have sex?”

Me: “Where? Umm….”

Caroline: ” On the bathroom floor.” Okay, that did it! Obviously, I had failed big time when I had the talk with her.

Me: ” What in the world are you talking about, Caroline? No Coop, it doesn’t happen on the bathroom floor. Good grief. It usually happens in a bed.”

Caroline: ” Oh, I thought it was on bathroom floor. Huh.” I guess that’s what happens when they don’t ask questions, they just make crap up.

Coop: ” So where did you and Dad make me?” Wait, did he just ask about me and his dad? Oh, this was going very badly.

Me: ” Coop, I think maybe we should wait for your Dad…really.” My head started pounding.

Coop: ” How do you do it? Do you lay down? Does a man get on top of a woman, like this?” He climbed on the coffee table and demonstrated. Jesus, Mary and Joseph (as my mom would say) I had to make this stop. ” Was Dad on top of you?” Why was he talking about me and his father????

Caroline: ” Ewww, I don’t want to know.” Finally, she had a good point.

Coop: ” Are you naked when you have sex? Were you and Dad naked?” Kill me now. Just kill me. This was a nightmare, an absolute nightmare.

Me: ” Umm, yes people are usually naked.”

Coop: ” Does the butt have anything to do with it?”

Me: For the love of God, “Umm, no.” Please, no more questions.

Coop: ” Do boobs have anything to do with it?”

Me: “No.”

Coop: ” How does the penis get in the woman? It seems like that would be difficult to do.” Sigh, why had I agreed to this?

Caroline: ” During our reproduction unit last year, Mrs. B said that when a man is attracted to a woman, his penis gets hard.” Really, why was I even there? She could have just had the whole talk herself.

Caroline: ” Also, I heard that men think about sex every 7 seconds.” She smiled at me like she was helping or something.

Coop: ” Does Dad think about sex every 7 seconds?” Probably like, every 3 seconds, wait! I had to get this whole thing back on track.

Me: ” Cooper, making babies is a very special thing that happens between a man and a woman that love each other. It’s a miracle. I think there are some questions that you should ask your dad because he’s a guy and he can explain some things better than I can.” Please, please accept that answer……PLEASE!

Coop: ” You and Dad had sex four times? How long does it take for a baby to grow inside a woman and be ready to come out?”

Me: ” Pregnancy is about nine months.”

Coop: ” So, the last time you and Dad had sex (why did he keep bringing it back to us????) was about 9 months before Blake was born? So, about 5 years ago? That was the last time?”

Me: ” Uh……yes.” Don’t judge me.

Coop: ” Okaaaay…….so the Scotts had sex recently?”

Me: ” Yep, I guess so.” As long as he wasn’t asking anymore questions about me and his father, I would throw the ding dang Scotts under the bus.

Coop: ” How long has Caroline known about this?”

Me: ” We told her last summer.”

Coop: ” Does G (his buddy) know?”

Me: “Yes.”

Coop: ” Does C (another buddy) know?”

Me: ” Yes.”

Coop, after thinking for a bit: ” Will I want to have sex?”

Me: ” Yes. Someday.”

Coop: ” Does Dad still want to have sex with you even though you aren’t having anymore babies?” I think I passed out for a bit.

Me: ” Cooper, I am not going to discuss me and your Dad with you.”

Coop: ” Okay…..can I have ice cream?” Now, that was a question I could answer.

Coop left the room and went outside to play baseball. Caroline was still sitting in the room with me. She smiled at me and said, ” Well, I’m glad that’s over with. Aren’t you?” Yes, yes I am. Two down, two to go……

 

Calgone, take me away…… February 26, 2013

I never get “free” time. Seriously, even when I get me time it usually involves doing something for my kids or they are all up in my ding dang business. I’m not complaining, it is what it is. I know when they are teenagers I’ll probably miss them pushing notes under the bathroom door while I’m trying to go. Maybe?

What I don’t understand is why they NEVER bother their father when he’s showering, pooping or on the phone. When I’ve asked them about this they have actually had the nerve to tell me that, ” Dad doesn’t want us to bother him.” What. The. Hell? What about my yelling, ” LEAVE ME ALONE FOR 5 FLIPPING MINUTES” has led you to believe that I want y’all to bother ME????

My husband says, rather smugly, that it’s because I have “allowed” this behavior to happen and now they don’t see boundaries. Please spare me. I am pretty sure I have set boundaries and they just don’t give a crap.

Last night I wanted to take a hot bath. When I tell my kids where I’m going they always act like I’m going on two- week trip to Siberia and they ask all kinds of questions that I’m positive that they come up with when I tell them I’m taking a bath: Did you sign my homework sheet? Can you look over my paragraph? Where’s Red Hulk? Can you make me chocolate milk? Can you play a game with me? These requests always come after they have otherwise been ignoring me for the last three hours.

Last night, my three sons were at a friend’s house, so it was just my daughter asking questions. Then she had the nerve to whine, ” But I wanted to take a bath! You’ll use all the hot water!” You’re damn right I’ll use all the hot water. Now, leave me alone. I got my beer and book and headed for 20 minutes of relative “peace.”

I had about 5 minutes of solitude when I heard my bedroom door slam open and see the bathroom doorknob twist back and forth (of course I locked the door). Then the rapid knocking started.
Me: ” WHAT? Who is it?”

Blake: ” Uh…..Blake Blake Kew-eee (Kelly). Is that you, mommy?” Who the hell does the kid think it is??? Bob, from down the street?

Me: ” Yes, it’s mommy and I’m taking a bath. I’ll be out in a little while. Why don’t you go play with your playdoh while daddy is making dinner?”

Blake: ” No, I don’t want to. Open this door, mom. I’m home from E’s house. Did you know I’m home?”

Me: “Yes, I can hear that you are home. Did you have a good time? I want to hear all about it when I’m out of the bath.I will come find you and you can tell me AFTER my bath.”

Blake: ” Well, we wrestled and played fuperheros (superheros). We watched TV and Fofie is fo funny(Sofie, the dog, is so funny). We were running”……..balh, blah, blah.

Me: ” Blake?” He was still rambling on and on. ” Blake?” Still going. ” BLAKE!!!!!”

Blake: Finally stopped, ” What, mommy?”

Me: ” Go downstairs with daddy, okay? I will talk to you in a bit. Go on, mommy wants privacy.”

Blake, quiet for a few seconds, then:” Um…….where was I? Oh yeah, then we played in E’s room and…..”

Me: ” Blake stop it! Leave the room now! I mean it!”

Blake: ” Mommy, get out of that bath, I hungey.”

Me: ” Dad is in the kitchen! Go ask him for some cheese or crackers. GO ON!”

Blake: ” What we having for dinner?”

Me, freaking out and yelling at this point: ” BLAKE, GO OUT OF HERE NOW!!!! DAD IS MAKING DINNER! ASK HIM!!! NOOOOOWWWW!”

Blake: ” Ooookaaay……….Mommy?……..Mommy?”

Me, growling: ” What?”

Blake” ” Can I have some almond milk?”

You get the picture? I spent 15 of my 25 minute bath trying to get him to leave me the flip alone. When I came downstairs my husband asked, ” How was your bath?” Blake smiled and said, ” It was great! Right, mommy?” Ding. Dang.

 

When They Grow Up January 16, 2013

When my kids start doing something new, I immediately think that it’s their “calling.”  When my daughter started building intricate buildings with Legos, I thought, ” She will be an architect!”  When my son started to really enjoy drawing I thought, ” He will be the next Picasso! ” All four of them like to argue, they will be lawyers!  The list goes on and on.  In reality,  they probably won’t be anything I have imagined.  It’s just my obsessive need to control everything, even the future, taking over.

My 3 year old son has recently developed a love of telling stories.  Granted, his stories are quite often nonsensical and sound like the ramblings of a mad man, but they are stories nonetheless.  He honestly has pretty decent timing when it comes to comical stories and he also likes to use new words.  Of course in my eyes, this all points to the inevitable fact that he will be a Pulitzer Prize winning author one day…….of course.

Today, he and I were eating lunch and when he was finished he jumped up from table, pronounced he had a story to tell me and that he had to go upstairs to get something for the story.  I waited patiently and he came running back to the table with his stuffed toy monkey.

“Mommy, I will tell you a fory (he will have to finish speech therapy before he does the press for any of his books…….of course) and it might be a yittle (little) fary (scary) for you.” I assured him that I would be able to handle it and told him to go on.

“There was a monkey named Jumper and he went into a bery, dart (dark) forrest.  It was raining and he fepped (stepped) in mud……and it hurt him.  He fought (thought) he heared (yes, he said heared) a giant!  Jumper hided in a cave wif bears and then he was bery, bery fiet (quiet).”  His voice dropped to a whisper and he was leaning very close to me.  I was literally on the edge of my seat, holding my breath, waiting to hear what would happen to Jumper the monkey.  My son took a deep breath and said ” Pee on your face!  Poop in the toilet! Hahahahahaha!” He then dropped to the floor, unable to control his own laughter.

Say what you want, but every Pulitzer prize winning author had to start somewhere.

 

 

Sick January 9, 2013

Filed under: boys,children,funny,parenting,sick — ddl6 @ 9:21 pm
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I am sick.  The kind of sick where I give up, raise the white flag and call my husband and ask him to come home from work so I can go to bed.  Not only do I hate being sick, I hate having to give up and lay down and admit that I’m sick.  Blah.

If you have kids, you know they really don’t give a flip when you are sick. They care in their own way, but they really just want you to get up and be mommy again.  I thought I’d share how my youngest, Blake, who is three, acts when I’m sick.

Today when my husband came home from work early to help me, I went straight up to our room to lay down.  My husband took the kids down to the pond to drive their remote-control boat.  The house was quiet, I was warm and comfortable under my blankets and I drifted off into a peaceful slumber.

About 5 minutes later, my three- year-old son, who has an uncanny ability to come in, cry, yell, poop, spill something, have a bad dream or WHATEVER right when I fall asleep, busted open my bedroom door.  When I awoke, there were little hands over my mouth and a whisper in my ear, ” Hi mommy, I home!   You fill (still) don’t feel good?”

Next thing I know he hoisting himself on the bed,using my body to do so.  He planted himself on my stomach as he took off his shoes.  Then, he started making himself comfortable and got under the blankets, kicking me in the neck and belly as he squirmed under the covers.  He put his head on my pillow, but my head was in the way so he accidentally smacked mine with his huge orb.

The final assault in this “attack” of kindness was him pulling the blanket up over my head, patting my face and saying ” I will take care of you, cute mommy. Don’t worry.”

I felt like I was in the preschool version of the movie Misery.  Hopefully, I survive his “care”.  I hate being sick.

 

Boys, Boys, Boys October 7, 2012

Filed under: boys,brothers,children,motherhood,parenting — ddl6 @ 11:57 am
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I consider myself a “boy mom.”  I have one awesome daughter whom I adore,  but I have had three boys in a row and I have been in” boy mode” for almost 9 years. I feel like I am part of a special “boy mom” club.  I always bond with moms of boys right away.  Most of my good friends are mothers of my sons’ friends.  I do have a couple of close friends who are mothers of my daughter’s friends, but most of them also have sons.  I feel like they “get” what it’s like to be a mom to boys.  I always feel better when my boys have teachers who are moms or dads to sons.

Boys really are, in my opinion, a whole different ball game, no pun intended.  As much as I told myself I was going to parent my girl and boys the same way, it just hasn’t worked out that way.  I had a lot of preconceived notions about boys before I had them and I have been proven wrong many times.  Raising my girl is not what I expected either, but that’s another blog post.

To be honest, I still can’t believe that I have three sons.  When I was younger and I pictured my life, it was always with two or three daughters.  Maybe that’s because I only had a sister and I wasn’t really around boys growing up.  I just never thought about being a mother to boys.

When I was pregnant with my first child, a girl, we didn’t find out what we were having.  I never said it out loud, but I REALLY wanted a girl.  I planned a girl nursery.  I had visions of ruffles, hair bows, dresses, pink, pink and more pink.  I would look at little girls and get so excited to have my own.  I just HAD to have a girl.

When I gave birth to my daughter, they had to take her quickly to make sure her lungs were clear because she had meconium (she pooped on the way out). For two or three minutes, we had no idea if I had a boy or girl.  My husband asked what it was and the mid-wife smiled, “You have a beautiful baby girl.” I sat straight up and screamed, yes, screamed “I GOT MY BABY GIRL!” To say I was excited would be an understatement.

I had my little girl and everything was going according to my “plan”.  I became pregnant with my second child and I thought ” Oh, another little girl…smile, sigh” Then we went in for the ultrasound and the technician asked us what names we had picked out. I told her ” Grace…………… oh, and Cooper.” As an afterthought.  She checked out all that she needed to and asked us if we wanted to know what we were having and we said, absolutely. She began to type in a name on the screen and she started with C. Hmm,I thought, that was weird, Grace doesn’t start with a C………wait……….Cooper? A boy?  I was having a……boy?  I immediately started to panic a bit.  What was I going to do with a little boy? Boys are wild and rambunctious.  Boys are loud and they wrestle. They pee everywhere.  They have a penis!  What if I had to start watching and liking football??? What would I talk about with a little boy?  How would we connect emotionally?  I was very naive and a bit sexist, if I’m being honest.

Our first little boy was born and he is beautiful and wonderful. He was followed by two other beautiful and wonderful little boys. Our home was quickly filled not with baby dolls, Barbies, princess dresses,but with trucks, cars, balls, blocks and so on.  But, those things were not purchased just for our sons, they were for our daughter as well.  My visions of baby dolls, frilly dresses, big bows and pink, quickly flew out the window when my daughter began voicing her opinion.  My girl is not now nor has she ever been, a girly girl.  No way.

I spent so much money on smocked dresses with matching bows for every holiday or event we had.  She would rip out the bow and hike up the dress so she could jump over couches , climb trees or wrestle. The dolls, baby cradles, purses, and shoes went untouched.  When she discovered her passion for reading, it wasn’t princess stories she wanted to hear and read, it was adventure and science fiction stories.

My boys are all, indeed, a bit wild and rambunctious.  They are loud and they do like to wrestle.  They jump off things that are too high.  They like to smash things just because.  They barrel down the stairs instead of walking.  They pee all over the toilet seat and the ding dang floor.  They love sports, especially football.  Yes, they are all “boy” and they are different from my girl in many ways,  but those differences make them wonderful.

I didn’t expect my boys to be tender-hearted or sensitive.  They are much more so than my daughter.  They love lovin’.  They love to cuddle and have “talks” with me.  They are caring, sweet and kind.  My daughter is all these things as well, but she has more of an edge than my boys do.  She has a much more independent attitude than the boys. She’s a tough cookie, and always has been.

My good friend and I have had many conversations about being mothers of boys.  We have talked at length about how having sons helps us understand men just a little better.  They really can’t help some of the things they do because it’s just who they are.  Being the mother of boys helps me understand how hard it is to be a boy today.  There’s a lot of pressure on boys to be strong, not to show too much emotion, to “suck it up” and be a” man.”  It’s not easy being a girl either, but I knew that.  I didn’t understand about being a boy until I had my sons.

As I mentioned earlier, I feel like I’m part of a special “boy mom” club.  I can’t tell you how many times, when I am out with my boys, women come up to me to make a comment.  Whether it’s, “Hey, I have 2 boys at home.” or ” You remind me of myself 20 years ago. I have three boys.” or “I have 8 grandsons.”  Women want to make a connection.  I don’t get that when I’m with my daughter.

My husband has four older brothers. Unfortunately, his mother passed away when he was very young and I have never had a chance to talk to her about her experiences as a” boy mom.”   There are so many things I wish I could ask her and learn from her.  I will always remember what my husband’s grandmother (his mom’s mother) told me when I was pregnant with my first boy. She said ” People always asked Sharon if she wanted a girl.  She always answered, ” My boys love me so much.  I get to be the queen of the castle.””  I think that is the best description I have heard about being a “boy mom.” My boys do love me, they tell me how great I am and they do treat me like a queen…….it’s good to be queen.

 

Liar, Liar September 30, 2012

My kids are horrible liars.  Really, they try to follow through with a lie, but they always break at the last-minute.  Their conscience takes over and the truth comes tumbling out quickly and usually with a few tears.

Now, I am not saying this is a bad thing and I’m not saying that they never lie or will never lie in the future.  They are kids and they are growing and learning and they are going to make a few mistakes along the way.  I don’t want them to lie but sometimes their brutal honesty can also be annoying.

I make a lunch for the three older kids to take to school everyday.  They still have not clued in ,not even my 10-year-old daughter, that they could throw away everything at school and I would never know they didn’t eat their carrots or apple or all of their sandwich.  They come home and empty their lunch boxes and go over every last detail of what they ate and why.  While I appreciate the honesty, there are a million and one things to do in the afternoon and discussing lunch just adds to the work.

My 5-year-old son is especially truthful.  If he and his 3-year-old brother get into a fight, he will be the first one to come downstairs and say, “I punched him in the back because he took my toy.  Then, I called him a Dumbo.” Okay, now go work it out and let me make dinner.  He will come home from a friend’s house and say ” So and so wanted to take cookies up to his room but I said we shouldn’t and then I told his mom.” Oh, I’m sure his friend and friend’s mom LOVED that.  That’s not annoying at all.

My daughter is the same.  She will be snotty or talk back, whatever, and we will send her to her room.  When she comes out to apologize she will come to me and say ” I wrote down that you and dad are jerks and that I don’t like you.  I was just mad and I’m sorry.” Sigh, that’s why she has a journal, to write down her feelings and we don’t have to see it! She is allowed to read before bed at night and we tell her what time she needs to turn out her light.  Now, we are usually downstairs watching TV  and she is upstairs in her room.  We would never know if she read for an extra 10 minutes, but she will come downstairs to tell us she read until 8:06 when we told her to stop at 8. Good grief!

My three-year old son is too young to lie or worry about his lying, but I will say, he OWNS all the crazy crap he does. For instance, I will see a huge dent in the wall and ask who did it.  He will  come running in, look at wall and with pride say ” My did that!”  Or toothpaste will be all over the counter and he will say ” I fezeed(squeezed) the WHOLE thing out by myfelf (myself)! My like blue fo(so) much!” No fear whatsoever.

Now we come to my 8-year-old son.  Oh boy, this kid is a thinker.  I mean he thinks waaaay too much.  He is very sensitive and struggles with doing the right thing and just being an 8-year-old boy.  Bless his heart, he will try to lie but it will eat away at him until he breaks.  He has a reading record to fill out for class everyday and he has to write down the EXACT time he spent reading.  It can’t be a minute off or that bothers him.  He has to read for 80 minutes a week and he usually reads for  80 minutes a day.  I want to tell him “Oh for God sake, just fill it out on Thursday night!  You’re good.”  But my kid is obviously a more honest person than I am.

This past spring, we had a crazy a sports schedule.  Different kids had to be at different places at different times.  It was brutal, as usual.  One night, the day after my husband’s birthday, 2 of my boys had baseball practice.  I took my five-year old to his practice.  My mother was visiting so she came along as well as my daughter.  My 8-year-old had practice later so he stayed home with my husband and my three-year old son.  We had to hurry through dinner and I had to leave without cleaning the kitchen, which KILLS me.  I asked my husband to have it cleaned when I got back and he agreed.  I knew he would make the kids do it.

My five-year old finished practice and we headed home.  When we pulled into the driveway, my husband was sitting outside, shooting the breeze with the neighbors, as usual.  He looked at me and waved and I thought to myself, ” If that kitchen is still a mess, I’m going to kill him.”  I waved to my neighbors and to him and asked through clenched teeth, “Did you get to the kitchen?”  He smiled and answered ” Coop’s doing it.” It’s a good thing the neighbors were there because I would have flicked him off otherwise.

I walked in the kitchen door and my 8-year-old was at the sink with his back to me.  My eyes went straight to my husband’s birthday cake on the counter.  Oh. My.God. The thing was destroyed.  The icing was all scrapped off and there were chunks missing.  My mother exclaimed ” My God, it looks like the locusts got it! What in the world?” My daughter’s jaw dropped at the sight of it.  I assumed my three-year had gotten into it.  I asked my 8 year if he knew what happened.  He turned around slowly and looked at the cake, not in my eyes, and said in a very quiet voice ” No, I don’t know what happened.”  I looked at him and the kid had the nerve to stand there in front of me with blue icing ALL OVER his face!  My mother had to cover her mouth and go in the other room to keep from laughing.  My daughter busted out laughing right then and there and said ” Oh, really Coop?” He looked at her then back at me. I said ” Are you sure you have no idea what happened to the cake?” He shook his head and his eyes started filling up with tears.  I stared him down and said ” Son, you have icing all over your face.” He started bawling and apologizing and he was sent to his room.  As I was tidying up the kitchen,I found blue icing smeared all over the cups, plates and silverware he was supposed to be putting away.

Just last week, Coop went over to his friend’s house.  When he came home later, I could tell something was bothering him and I asked if he wanted to talk but he said he was fine.  We had 3 practices that night, so in the rush of everything I kind of forgot about it.  When he came home from his practice that night, he still seemed worried about something.  He was following me around like he wanted to talk but wouldn’t spill the beans.  I figured he would open up when he was ready.

He went to bed and got up the next day and still seemed out of sorts but we don’t have time in the mornings before school for heart to heart talks, so I sent him off on the bus.  He came home that afternoon and was very quiet and contemplative.  I knew from experience he was about to break so I waited.  I was sitting outside reading the mail when he came up and sat next to me.  I asked him if everything was okay.  His little lip began trembling and he looked at me with his big blue eyes and said, ” Jake and I looked at an inappropriate magazine at his house yesterday.”  That was not what I was expecting at all.  Mainly, because Jake and his family are Mormon and they don’t even have “inappropriate” drinks at their house.  I am way more inappropriate on a daily basis than Jake’s entire family.  I said ” Okay. Where did you find this magazine? What was the name of it?”  He wiped away his tears, ” We were playing hide and seek and we hid in Jenny’s room.” Now I was really confused. Jenny is Jake’s older sister and our babysitter.  She is so mature, sweet and responsible.  I was intrigued and I asked him to go on. ” She had stacks of them in her room and the name of the magazine was…….. Seventeen. There were girls in bikinis.” He put his head on his knees.  I had to take deep breaths to keep from laughing.  This poor child.  He was probably thinking about this all night and day.  I hugged him and explained that Seventeen is a fashion magazine for girls.  That it’s not “inappropriate” but they shouldn’t have been in Jenny’s room looking at Jenny’s things.  It was very hard to keep a straight face.

I know the decision to tell the truth will not always be easy for my kids.  I know they are human and they will be confronted many times with taking the easy way out or telling the truth when it’s difficult to do so.  For now, I will just enjoy their innocence and hope that they keep being as honest as possible.