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Just say, NO. June 6, 2014

Filed under: aging,funny,Parenting — ddl6 @ 9:31 am
Tags: , , ,

The older I get, the less I feel the need to explain myself.  I just don’t have time for that anymore.  Take it or leave it, that’s the truth.  That’s why, over the last year or so, I have taken to responding to things that confuse, anger or upset me with one simple phrase: “No.”  Yep, no.  It explains so much on its own, don’t you agree?  I do.  That’s why, for my first blog post in nine ding, dang months, I will list the things that I feel……no………just,no, about.  No explanations, just, no.  Here we go, in no particular order.

  1. Geese. No.
  2. Duck Dynasty. No
  3. The band, Florida/Georgia Line. No.
  4. Decaf coffee. No.
  5. Talking, non-stop, about how busy you are. No.
  6. Disney. No.
  7. Anne Hathaway. No.
  8. Coughs.  No.
  9. High rise shorts. No.
  10. Goat cheese.  No.
  11. Shopping with my highly opinionated daughter.  No.
  12. Not returning my texts.  No.
  13. Having to check my voicemail.  No.
  14. Snakes.  No.
  15. Peas.  No.
  16. When people say, “Where’s that at?”.  No.
  17. Using the wrong form of “your” .  No.
  18. Hair in the drain.  No.
  19. BJ’s (the store, people). No.
  20. Wal-Mart.  No.                                                  

I believe that covers it.  Take my word for it, it’s liberating to not have to explain yourself.  Just say, no. 

 

 

Mom Fail June 18, 2013

Hello friends!  It has been quite awhile since I have posted but I am back with a few stories to share. 

I want to talk about “mom (or parent) fails.”  Unlike “mom guilt”, “mom fails” are experiences that your children will, without a doubt,  point to when they are adults and say,  ” Yep, that was the moment she screwed me up.”  They are the moments they will absolutely tell their therapists about in their later years.  Honestly, I have so many “mom fail” examples that it was difficult to narrow them down for this post.  I have picked the worst (in my mind) of the bunch to share with all of you.

When my daughter was a baby, she would  scream bloody murder when she was in her car seat.  I mean SCREAM.  It was so upsetting, it had me in tears many times.  When she was about 18 months old, we were headed back from the airport in Washington state, it was about an hour drive.  Just like all the other times, she started screaming and crying at some point along the way.  I was so annoyed by this behavior at this point that I turned around and told her to knock it off, that mommy had had it.  She looked at me and proceeded to puke all over the backseat.  I was convinced it was the food she had eaten on the plane.

Fast forward a few months, and we were on our way to a new state.  Our car was all packed and Caroline was all set up in the backseat with her coloring books, books and puzzles.  We were not a half hour into our trip when she started whimpering and I said, ” Oh, no. Don’t start.  We have a 6 hour drive.  Look at your books and behave.”  Two minutes later, I heard a huge splash and she had yet again, puked all over the backseat.  ” Hmmm, another tummy bug?”  I thought.  Y’all, this happened about a dozen or so times over the next year.  I would scold her for crying and tell her to deal with it and to just read her books or color.  It wasn’t until my mother said,  ” You know, she probably gets carsick?”  Ummmm, no, that hadn’t crossed my mind once.  No, I just yelled at my poor carsick child every time she cried and felt sick.  Strike one.

When my oldest son was about 2, we lived in Atlanta, Georgia.  One morning, my husband and I decided to take Caroline and Cooper to a children’s museum downtown.  We packed up our bags and headed out.  We arrived downtown, found a parking space, took out the stroller, put Cooper in and set out through busy downtown Atlanta.  We were looking around and pointing buildings out to the children when we came to a busy street.  We stopped at the traffic light and waited to cross.  When the “walk” light came on, we stepped down off the curb and PLOP went Cooper right out of the stroller, onto his face on a busy street in downtown Atlanta.  Nope, neither my husband nor I had bothered to buckle him into the stroller.  Now, I know what you’re thinking, mistakes happen.  Yes, that is true but what made this mistake worse was that my husband and I could not stop laughing.  Of course, we picked up our sweet boy and made sure he was alright but we couldn’t stop laughing in the process.  Strike 2.

About two years ago, around Halloween,  my daughter asked to watch Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” video.  Now, my children are not easily frightened.  Honestly, they just aren’t bothered by things like ghost stories and such.  I agreed to let my daughter and oldest son watch the video.  I found it on the computer for them then pressed play.  Well, unbeknownst to me, my four year old son, Brady, had come into the room.  About 2 minutes into the video, he starts screaming at the top of his lungs and crying.  His hands were over his ears and he went running through the house yelling, ” Stop!!! Why would you show me that?????  WHY??????”  Now, it must be stated that Brady is a bit, okay, a huge bit, overdramatic. He started hyperventilating and rolling around, wailing and saying, ” Why, why, why, why????”  Now, he didn’t even actually see anything scary but it was enough to give him nightmares for a good month afterward.  Strike 3.

Last summer, on our way down to Florida for our family vacation, we decided to stop in Savannah, GA.  We walked around and explored that beautiful city and our kids asked to go on one of those trolley ghost tours.  It went around the city and basically gave a history lesson with a few ghost tales thrown in.  Our kids love history and we thought they would love it.  We were told that it wasn’t scary and besides, it was at about 6 pm so it was still light on that summer evening.  We boarded the trolley and set out on our adventure.  It was interesting and fun and the kids ( well, the 10 and 8 year olds) were really engrossed in the tales of the city.  At the end of the tour, the trolley stopped at an old ship chandlery ( a place that used to sell nautical items long ago) along the river.  As we were getting off the trolley, the tour guide stopped my husband and said, ” This is a staged part of the tour and it might get dark.”  Well, our kids aren’t scared of the dark so we decided to go on in.  We moved in to the old store and it was indeed dark and cold, with it’s stone walls and floors, but it was neat as well.  We took our seats in the back of the store.  Everything was lit by candlelight and it was a bit spooky, but the kids seemed fine……before all hell broke loose.

The “candle maker” came into the room and started telling a ghost story about a sea hag or “witch.”  He played his part well and told the spooky story to perfection, but the kids were enjoying it.  Then, a huge wind blew through the shop, the lights went out, doors started slamming and a witch flew by the window.  All 4 kids started screaming.  My daughter was holding onto my husband saying, ” Daddy! Help!” My oldest son kept taking deep breaths and saying, ” It’s okay, it’s okay.” and whimpering.  My 5 year old was sobbing and burying his face in my shirt crying, ” Mama, mama, mama!!!!!!”  My 3 year old just scooted closer to my husband, shoved his thumb in his mouth and sucked ferociously.  My husband and I looked at each other and just laughed.  Strike 4.

The final “mom fail” I will share with you, is referred to as the “circus day incident” in our house.  I believe, thus far, in my son Brady’s 6 years, that this has traumatized him the most.

Last year, when Brady was 5 and in preschool, the 4 year old classes all had a circus unit.  It was cute and they did circus themed crafts and read circus stories.  At the end of the unit, they had “circus day” for which they were able to dress up as a circus character.  As I mentioned, all the four year old classes were doing the circus theme and they all had circus day……..but on different days.

We carpooled with our neighbors to preschool last year.  My friend and I took turns dropping off and picking up our boys from school.  The boys were in different classes and they each always came home with many papers and crafts and since they didn’t have a backpack, sometimes their papers and art got mixed up.  Well, I picked up the boys one day and brought home what I thought were Brady’s papers.  I saw a paper saying that Brady’s circus day was going to be the next week and he was to come dressed as his favorite circus character.

Circus day came and we dressed Brady as the strong man.  He wore his Hulk costume and was excited.  My friend picked Brady up and took him to school that day.  I saw that his friend was also dressed for circus day and I thought nothing of it.  Well, Brady came home from school without his costume on because it just so happened that that day was NOT his circus day, it was his friend’s circus day.  Brady came in and asked, ” Why did you send me in that costume?  I was the only kid in my class in a costume.”  I apologized and explained that I read the wrong paper.  Brady was not understanding.  He said, ” Mom, that was embarrassing.”  He brings this mom fail up every few months and tells me just how humiliating it was.  Every time he has had to dress up for school since then, he grills me about the date and time asking, ” You’re sure? Remember what happened in preschool?” I will never be able to live that one down.  Ever.

There you have it, a few of my “greatest hits” if you will.  There are many more and if you ever want to feel better about your own parenting, just ask me about my “mom fails.”  I assure you that you will not be let down.

 

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.

 

Here We Go Again……… January 2, 2013

Filed under: funny,kids,New Year — ddl6 @ 11:22 am
Tags: , , ,

I have long since given up on making New Year’s resolutions.  I rarely keep them and then I just get angry with myself and I feel let down, but “they” say that if you write down your goals you are more likely to keep them.  I came up with the (completely original, I know) idea of writing my resolutions in my blog.  That way, my thousands (okay maybe A LOT less) followers can witness all my goals and call me out when I start to slide.  Just humor me, okay?

  1. I will start running again……..no, seriously. I mean it this time because my daughter wants to start running and she is driven and a little scary when she wants to accomplish something.
  2. I will remain calm when my children are hell-bent on driving me batshit crazy.  I will breathe…….and drink more wine.
  3. I’m a “grudge holder”.  If you wrong me,  I will remember it FOREVER.  I will try to forgive the people who are on my permanent shit list.  I’m not making any promises, but I’ll give it a try.
  4. I will not worry so much about EVERYTHING.  I really need to follow through with this particular resolution because all my worry is starting to affect my health and well-being.
  5. I will take more time for myself so I have more patience for my family.
  6. I will spend less time on Pinterest…….a little less ( I’m being realistic here, people.).
  7. When I look in the mirror I will no longer say, “If only my stomach was a bit more toned.  If only I didn’t have these dark spots on my cheeks.  If only I didn’t have the tiny wrinkles around my eyes.”  No more “if onlys”.  I will give myself a damn break.
  8. I will grow my highlights out and go back to being a brunette.  This will last for about a week, but it’s a tradition that I say this every year, so why break tradition?
  9. I will be less snarky.  Notice, I said less?  I am who I am.
  10. I will not let people’s lack of manners when driving throw me into road rage.  Actually, “carpool rage.”
  11. I will cuddle more with my” big” kids, no matter how often they roll their eyes and say, ” Come on, mom!”
  12. When my husband tells me I’m beautiful, funny or smart I will accept it.  Especially in front of my daughter.
  13. I will play football, baseball and basketball with my boys.  I will try to understand football for Cooper because he loves it so much.  Before you call me sexist,  my daughter is not into those sports.
  14. I will buy new bras.  Don’t ask.
  15. I won’t get behind on the wash.  I know, hilarious, right?
  16. Before I get annoyed or roll my eyes at someone, I will remember everyone is dealing with something.  I will simply love more.

There you have it, my resolutions.  Do you think I will be able to keep any of these?  Only time will tell.  If you are so inclined, share your New Year’s resolutions with me……..remember “they” say it helps to write them down and maybe this time “they” will be right.  Happy New Year.

 

37 Decembers December 9, 2012

Filed under: aging,birthdays,getting older,motherhood,Parenting — ddl6 @ 4:21 pm
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Well, it’s December, the month that I was born.  As I have gotten older, I have this love/dread thing with this month.  On one hand, I love Christmas time and I look forward to it each year.  On the other hand, it means I will be one year older…..sigh.

This whole getting older thing didn’t really bother me until about three years ago.  After I had my fourth child and  it dawned on me, that time of my life, the “having babies” part, was over.  I suddenly felt very old and very wistful.  I waited my whole life  to have babies and it was over, in what seems like the blink of an eye.  Now, that baby is 3 years old, I have a kindergartener , third and fifth grader and I’m left wondering how it all went so fast.  I find myself saying that a lot-“It goes so fast.”  I hate it when people say that to me, but it’s the truth.

My children are growing so quickly and I am feeling “my age” more than I used to.  I am trying to embrace getting older.  No really, I am, but it’s ding dang difficult when I am reminded I am no longer the Spring chicken I used to be.  There are many things the signify my getting older and I’ve jotted down a few……

  1. When I had my first child, I was always the “young mom”.  Honestly, by 5 or more years.  Now, with my youngest son, I’m one of the older moms.  I was waiting outside my son’s preschool classroom to pick him up.  There was a group of 5 or so moms, all with their baby slings and strollers and they were all freaking out because their 29th or 30th birthdays were approaching.  It hit me, that was almost 7 years ago for me!!! I felt sick to my stomach.
  2. If I have a couple of bad nights of sleep, it SHOWS.  I look like death.  The dark circles under my eyes turn black and puffy, the fine lines around my eyes are more pronounced, and my skin loses all color.  No more going a week and only sleeping 3 hours a night. That could damn near kill me.
  3. My dad.  He can never remember how old I am.  The last couple of years, when he calls to say happy birthday he asks ” Now, how old are you again?”  When I tell him he always says ” My God!  Are you really?  You’re getting up there, aren’t you?”  Thanks Dad.
  4. When I go shopping in certain stores the music is so loud I can’t even concentrate on what I’m shopping for.  Also, the stores are so dark.  What are they hiding?
  5. There are things that used to seem way too far off to worry about, but now they aren’t so far off.  In fact, they are rapidly approaching.  Things like getting a mammogram, getting glasses (my eyes aren’t what they once were), having a colonoscopy and Lord help me, menopause.  Ugh!
  6. I have moved into the 35-44 age bracket.
  7. I have always had a somewhat bad mouth but lately I find myself cringing at the use of the F-word and vulgarity in general.  I was reading a blog post someone put up on FB and every other word was an F-bomb.  I thought to myself ” Now, that is just gratuitous.”  Maybe that’s more of a sign of maturity?
  8. I like Richard Marx and other music on the soft rock channel.  Deal with it.
  9. When I indulge in more than 1 cocktail, glass of wine or beer the next 2 to 3 days are a recovery period.  Gone are the days when I could practically finish a bottle of vino myself.  My head hurts just thinking about that.
  10. I get heartburn if I eat too late at night.
  11. The kids that I used to baby-sit are now in college or graduated from college.
  12. I say things like ” Kids nowadays have no respect for their elders.”  Nowadays? Elders?  I also say ” Back in my day.”  when I tell my kids about when I was a kid.
  13. When I was younger, I would go to the beach and work on the perfect tan.  Now, I wear a wide-brimmed hat and I lather up with SPF 50.  I don’t check for tan lines at the end of a day in the sun.  I check for wrinkles and age spots.
  14. All the actresses “nowadays” are about 19 years old with 40-year-old leading men.  That annoys me.
  15. I drive a minivan………and I like it.
  16. My 20th high school reunion is less than 2 years away.  What!?
  17. When I go to a doctor who is younger than me, it makes me uneasy.  I think,  “This “boy” can’t possibly be qualified to write a prescription for me.”  I always feel like I need to ask to speak with a “grown up.”
  18. When I see Zac Efron without a shirt, I think ” DING DANG!”  and that makes me feel kind of pervy.
  19. I don’t know why this makes me feel old but it does:  I own and actually sometimes wear a tankini.
  20. I used to think ” I will NEVER have any kind of “work” done.  I will age gracefully and NATURALLY.”  That’s easy to say when you’re 28 and all hell hasn’t broken loose .  Now I think, “MEH, what could it hurt?”

I don’t mean to sound so gloomy about getting older.  I truly know that I am blessed to have lived 36 years and I thank God every morning I wake up and every night before I go to sleep.  I just don’t deal with change well.  I don’t even like to change  sides of the bed.  I will embrace all of the change though, for my children.  I will also “embrace” Botox, a good eye cream and push-up bras.  Merry Christmas and Happy Birthday to me.

 

Tantrum on Aisle Three December 4, 2012

Last week my three-year old, Blake and I were at Wal-Mart ( I know, I know, but I really needed taco shells). I was using the self check out and Blake was looking at all the useless crap they put by the registers.  He brought over a lollipop/airplane thing and asked me if he could get it.  Now, I have never once let my children get any of these items, yet they ask each time they are with me at the store. I said no, and turned back around to check out my groceries.  I felt something hit my leg and I turned around to see my usually sweet and funny three-year old with his little hands on his little hips and his face all scrunched up. He started jumping up and down like he was Rumpelstiltskin and yelling ” YES!  MY WANT THAT–NOW!!!!!!” I was in shock because although he is mischievous and crazy, he is not bratty and is not one to throw fits when told “No.” He was yelling ” YESYESYESYES!” over and over again.  I finished paying for my items and grabbed his little hand and forcefully “escorted” him to the car.  I gave him a good talking to and got into the car to go home.  He was asleep not 5 minutes later. I looked at his sweet little sleeping face and was reminded of all the fits that my other children have thrown over the years.  Coincidentally, most of them have been at Wal-Mart or Target.  Go figure.

My children in general, are not big public temper tantrum throwers.  Well, except for my 5 year-old, Brady. His tantrums were epic.  The kind that left me shaking and sweating and wondering if I should find a local priest to stop by our house for a little exorcism. Thankfully, he grew out of those tantrums and my other kids only threw a couple that were monumental.

When my oldest son, Cooper was about 20 months old, I took him to Wal-Mart with me to go Christmas shopping while my daughter was in preschool.  Now, I know you’re thinking that was a bad idea, but let me explain.  When his sister was little, I did all my Christmas shopping for her while she was right there in the cart.  I just gave her a book to look at and a snack and she was good to go.  She never fussed and was always very easy.  Well, Cooper was NOTHING like his sister.

We turned onto the toy aisle and things got real bad, real quick.  He was strapped into the cart and he was looking from right to left very quickly.  He started to pull at the buckle and yell ” Out! I want to get out!” He was pointing at any and every toy saying ” I want! I want!”  The tears came next, followed by pulling his own hair and  screaming.  I had never seen anything like it.  ” I want it mama! I want it mama!”  He wasn’t even pointing at anything in particular.  He started bucking up and down.  If he had been an adult, a 5150 hold would have been placed on him immediately.  It was ridiculous.  I got out of there as fast as I could, leaving a store full of staring people.  Needless to say, I did the rest of my Christmas shopping while he was at home with my husband.

About a year or so later, my sister was visiting us and she wanted to go to Target one afternoon.  I was pregnant with my third child and my daughter was 4 and son was 2.  We rolled into Target and decided to get the kids an Icee, with the hope that would keep them busy so my sister and I could shop. I now think that those things actually make my children monsters, due to all the dye and sugar in them, but I digress.  So we were walking along and browsing, the kids followed behind us drinking their Icees.  We walked past a toy display and my daughter asked if they could get whatever it was and I said no.  Well, that was the beginning of epic fit number two.  She started whining and asking why she couldn’t get the toy.  Then my son joined in, just for the hell of it.  My sister and I were doing our best to ignore them.  Somewhere along the way, my son started running with the Icee in his hand.  I turned and told him to slow down because he could fall.  Two minutes later, I heard a crash and a cry.  Sure enough, he had fallen down and his Icee was spilled everywhere.  Before I could stop her, my daughter tripped over her brother.  Her Icee flew out of her hands and landed with a splat right next to her brother’s.  Well, they started to have total and complete meltdowns.  The screaming began, ” MY ICEE!  I DROPPED MY ICEE!  I WANT MY ICEE!” The scene was awful: red Icee all over the floor and two kids lying down next to it, kicking and screaming.  I looked at my sister who was laughing so hard, tears were rolling down her cheeks.  I wasn’t mad because we both suffer from “nervous laughter.”  The more inappropriate it is to laugh, the harder we laugh.  So of course, I start laughing.  I’m sure it was quite a sight to behold.

I was trying to get the two of them to stand up and I slipped in the damn red liquid and fell down next to them.  That started them crying harder.  My sister was hysterically laughing at this point.  Then, the security guard came over and asked if we needed help.  I thanked him, but said that we were fine.  In retrospect, I should have accepted his offer .

Somehow, we managed to make it out of the store.  I was dragging both of them out of their by their hands.  They kept doing the ” dead weight drop” move.  The one where they let their bodies go limp and drop to the ground.  My sister (still laughing) picked up one and I picked up the other and we started to the car.  There was a cart in my way and I pushed it too hard.  I watched as it rolled right out into the parking lot, almost hitting a car that was driving towards us.  I couldn’t do anything about it though because I was carrying my flailing son.

We finally made it to the car and somehow, put them in their car seats.  My sister and I both sat down in the front seat, looked at each other………..and started to laugh.

The next temper tantrum also took place at Target.  This time, I had all four kids with me.  I try to avoid Target with kids, especially on a Saturday afternoon, by myself, but I needed to get a gift for a party that my oldest son was attending that day.  My husband was out-of-town, so I had to suck it up and go with the kids.  Before we went in, I had a talk with Brady,who was three at this point.  He had a problem with Target and toys and he knew it.  I kneeled down next to him, looked in his eyes and said ” Okay buddy, no asking for toys.  We are here to get something for one of Coop’s friends, not you.  Do you understand?”  He nodded his head, closed his eyes and took a couple deep breaths, ” Yes, mama.  I can do it.”  I felt confident that things would be alright so I buckled my 8 month old into the stroller and we were off.

We were browsing the toy aisles and I could see that Brady was barely holding it together.  He kept looking away from the super hero toys, saying ” I won’t ask for anything.”  Over and over.  Coop picked out a gift in a relatively short time and we headed to the check out.  I thought that all was well until we passed the dollar section and Brady spied his downfall……..rubber ducks.  Tons of them.  Great, I knew we were screwed.  He turned to me and pleaded with his big blue eyes, ” Mama, can I please get just one duck? Please, please, please? Just one?  It’s in the dollar section. Just one?” I sighed and said “Brady, come on.  Do you remember what we talked about?  We are not buying anything else today.”  His eyes started to well up with tears and he hugged the duck close to him.  ” Yes, I love him . I want it. YES!”  My other kids knew that things were going to get ugly, so my daughter took the stroller to the register and Coop followed.

“Come on Brady, let’s go.” He started full on crying and hyperventilating. ” No! I want a duck! Yes! Please mommy, please.”  So I pulled him over to the register where he sat down and began screaming ” I. WANT.  THE.  DUCK!!!” He had the duck in a death grip in his hands.  I tried to pull it away but I had no luck….with the duck .

At this point the other kids were so embarrassed that they moved away like they didn’t know us.  Brady was laying in the check-out line, screaming, crying and writhing around.  I decided to focus on paying for the toy I had. After the toy was paid for, I bent down and picked up my spazz of a child, which was not easy-that kid is built like a line-backer.  The poor cashier looked very scared at this display.  She looked at me and asked me if I needed a gift receipt. ” Uh, I think we’ll take our chances, but thanks.”  I yanked my bag away from her with one hand while trying to hold Brady with the other.  As we were rushing out of there, my daughter said ” Mom! He’s still holding the duck.” Sure enough, he still had the ding dang duck in his little hands.  I put him down and tried to pull the duck away .  He kept screeching ” NO NO NO!  I LOOOOOVVVVEEEE THE DUCK!!!!!!” I finally got it away from him and he started jumping up trying to grab it out of my hands.  I looked at him and at the duck and knew we had to get out of there FAST, so I made a swift decision………I threw the duck over towards the dollar section where it came from.  I picked Brady up and turned around to my stunned older kids and said “GO!” We hot footed it out of there in record time.

I’m happy to report that after the “duck  incident”, Brady never had another meltdown in a store.  Well, maybe a couple, but never one that epic.  The kids still reminisce about the time “Mom chucked the duck”  at Target.  It took me a couple of days to recover from that one and I still wonder if I hit some unsuspecting Target customer with a flying duck.

In short, temper tantrums are a part of childhood.  I feel lucky that my children have never made them a habit and I feel like I have earned another “badge of parenthood” for surviving the ones that they have had.  I still feel bad about the duck though……..

 

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.