Sunday, August 27, 2006

Up, up and away!

There’s something so humbling about standing beneath a hot air balloon as it slowly rises and sways toward the sky, its colorful sheath expanding and intensifying with vivid colors. The fierce blast of heat is startling, electrifying and captivating all together. Behind the din of children laughing and cameras clicking, I grabbed a moment within myself to feel the calm excitement of flight and allowed my soul to soar above the barn roofs and tall pines. My children were so happy and beautiful tonight. My husband kissed me a lot. It was as if our stumbling blocks took flight in one of those balloons, far far away from where we stood.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Quote of the Day.

As most children do, my kids say some pretty wacky stuff on a daily basis. I wouldn’t be living up to the fantastic reputation of an insane Mommy Blogger if I didn’t share every tedious and you-had-to-be-there moment my children bring me.

Me: “You’re doing a good job taking care of your new glasses.”

Boy: “You’re doing a good job giving me popsicles.”

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Shopping for supplies.

It was just another trip to the Mega Super Store with three energetic children in tow to buy another cart chock-full of the necessary goodies that keep a house a home. You know things like body wash, frozen ice-pops, jet-dry and tampons. It’s amazing how quickly a shopping cart can magically fill itself with things you didn’t even realize you needed. Like two packages of 88¢ silly putty and a preemptive bottle of Drano. I digress. Thanks to the recent arrival of the crimson tide, I knew the shopping trip would have to take a turn for better or for worse towards the super embarrassing feminine hygiene products aisle. Not embarrassing for me as much as for my ten year old Boy because, at 30 years old, I’ve become quite accustomed to chucking super 50 packs of extra absorbent maxi pads and fresh mountain spring scented tampons into my shopping cart. It’s not that I want or need to smell like a fresh flowery meadow on a sunny spring morning, I just grab the prettiest box. After spending a good twenty minutes in the outdoor toy aisle allowing my kids to compete for the “most hula-hoops worn around one’s waist at one time” World Record (much to the toy department employee’s chagrin) and riding around on pre-assembled bicycles while singing Irish drinking songs, I decided it was time to finish the shopping and get Papoose home for his afternoon nap. I supervised the hula-hoop clean up and called for them to follow me a few aisles over because I really just wanted to grab my box of happy plugs and be on my way. But no, Mega Super Store wasn’t going to make this easy for me were they? It seems they’re having their semi-annual buy one-get-five-free sale on tampons. Arg! Super absorbent? Double pack? Pink box? Regular absorbency? Fancy blue box? I just couldn’t make a snap decision with so many pretty colors and low prices flashing before my eyes. As I was getting close to narrowing my choices, my Boy walks over to the giant wall of plugs and begins inspecting the bright yellow smiling price tags. He seemed surprised at first, then alarmed, then confused. I hurriedly grabbed a double package of Kotex regular absorbency with the colorful red flowers, nonchalantly tossed it into the cart and began wheeling in the opposite direction. He looks down at the box, looks up at me and says “Mama, I didn’t realize band-aids were so expensive.”

I wuv him.

Monday, August 21, 2006

It's been one of those days.

The kind of day when you keep glancing at the clock while counting down the hours until all the small wonderful children will be safely snuggled in their beds, and guaranteed to be out of your hair for at least eight consecutive hours. It’s been the kind of day where you have successfully justified a 7:00 pm bedtime for an almost eight year old.

Let me preface by saying I love every one of my children more than life. Without them, well, I’d have to go out and get a real job.

But my control freak daughter’s tyrannical behavior has pushed me to my absolute limits. I’m so done. Saying she’s a difficult child is like saying hemorrhoids itch. I don’t often talk about it here because, by the time I get around to blogging, I’m usually enjoying some alone time and the very last thing I want to do is relive, through my keyboard, the kind of day she’s handed me. I could tell you that whatever request I ask of her must be repeated no less that three times for her to actually follow through to some degree. No matter what we’re doing, I can count on my Girl to test me each time, because there’s always an off-chance I may be persuaded. I could regale you with stories of her slapping the baby back because “he hit me first” or punching her big brother repeatedly because “he kept trying to change the game.” Or trying to control everybody and everything in a ten foot radius until we all feel like we’re trapped in thick, black sap. There have been days when no matter how many hugs or kisses I gave her, she’d still be angry and controlling. There are the days when she just wakes up angry at me and all I can do is exhale and let the hurricane winds blow because she’s just a freight train on a steep downhill trajectory. I can try to sidestep it, give her what she wants whenever she wants it in order to keep peace, but that’s really unfair to the well-behaved kid. He behaves yet She gets whatever she wants? Yeah, I would be confused too. Basically said, if she doesn’t feel like molding her square head into my round parenting peg, she won’t. Come hell or high water, that child meets me with defiance at every turn. And she lies. She sneaks. She manipulates. Yet she’s got me so tightly wound by the heart strings it’s unbearable. I love her incredibly despite.

I see her father in her and it alarms me. He’s alone and angry. I don’t want that for her.

So I bit the proverbial bullet and made a mental health appointment for her. I’m not looking for a diagnosis because there isn’t one. The child is an angel at school, trust me, I thought the teacher was making up stories too. Share with friends? Check. Compromises? Check. Respects authority? Check. At home? Not so much. And I’m thinking what have I done wrong? Because aren’t all mothers at the very root of their children’s neurosis anyway? I breastfed her, I smiled and laughed with her, I played with her, I fed her nutritious food, I co-slept with her and I rocked her and sang her “Sweet Baby James” every night for the first three years. Where did I go wrong? Why is my daughter so mean and controlling? I’m making myself completely vulnerable here, but I feel like it’s my fault. I worry about her behavior every single day.

But then I forget that I only contributed half her dna.

I’m afraid she’ll grow up to be like him and not like me. I’m can be flaky and anxious, but I know how to love others. I’m afraid nothing I do will make her be what I want her to be.

Back to today’s appointment. My father came to lend a hand with the boys so I could get her head checked. We promptly headed out the door, into the garage and as I yanked open the side door to the minivan, a brazillion fruit flies flurried into my face and all over my body. I screeched and gasped in horror as I saw the inside of the van was swathed in flies. The windows, the seats, the ceiling. Swarming, crawling, buzzing. Why? Because she refused to throw away her fucking banana like I asked three times yesterday. Just another pleasant result of my daughter and her blatant refusals to comply. It was lovely. My reaction was lovely. I think I may have screamed something about being “so frigging sick of kids ruining my shit” half a dozen times while running around in circles swatting flies off my head.

So, after de-flying a stinky van, we made it five minutes late to her appointment just to find out the doctor was called out unexpectedly and we’d have to reschedule. Thanks for calling me Ms. My Pants Are Too Tight and I Still Feather My Bangs Receptionist. Of course I felt like bursting into tears because at this point, I still felt bugs all over me, I didn’t think I could handle one more day of my super-rebellious-difficult-spirited-defiant-controlling child, I couldn’t get my father back to baby-sit later in the week and, well, I still felt bugs all over me. I could feel myself welling up and I stood there not knowing exactly what to say as she kept asking when we could reschedule, “no, my son has an optometrist appointment tomorrow, no, we have a soccer game on Wednesday evening, no, I have an appointment Wednesday morning with my own crazy doctor because can’t you see that MY marbles are about to spill out onto the floor?!”

I held it together while in the waiting room because I didn’t need Ms. I’m Still Stuck In The 80’s Receptionist thinking I’m the crazy one just trying to blame it on my child.

My husband gave me permission to start drinking an hour ago. But I’m still sober. The past few weeks have been unnerving and stressful, to put it mildly.

Thank garlic school starts in one week because I’m going to lose it if somebody doesn’t give me looney pills soon.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Turns out, white men CAN dance.

It’s an oldie but goodie always worth a second or third look. Watching him again cracked a 12 inch smile across my face, and evoked those memories previously filed under V for Video Dances, C for Ceebers or L for licking MJ’s Thriller album cover. You know, the one with the baby tigers on it? No? I’m the only one who did that? Moving on.

Click play and enjoy the most awkward years of your life flash before your eyes.

More Funny Videos &MySpace Layouts

Thursday, August 17, 2006

You know you're married to a Geek when:

*You actually understand the meaning of “bit torrent” and no longer think it’s some kind of horrible mouth sore.
skype for long distance phone calls is normal.
*You bought this
t-shirt not just because it was super cute, but because you actually knew what it meant.
*It was the sexiest thing your husband’s ever seen you wear.

*When your husband asks you to do a bandwidth test, you do so without a problem.
*You consider sitting across from one another, each on laptops while sharing files “quality couple time.”
*There are three computers in your living room and you’re not one bit freaked out.
*You have nothing but pity for all those people with adware and spyware eating up their hard drives.
*You know you’d be one of them if not for your resident Geek.
*Who knew a building a .NET Framework could be so sexy?

On the tips of golden leaves, he whispers.

To hear him, I step quietly onto the dewy front stoop in the early rises of a crisp August morning, and I watch the steam from my first cup of coffee escape into the sunny fog that rises above the river. He speaks softly through the panicked shrieks of the sparrows: gather! collect! forage! He murmurs in hints of yellow and orange flecks painted against the thick green canvas of summer’s end. He rolls with laughter as small shivering children covered in goose bumps revel in the last days of the outdoor pool. The morning sun struggles to warm the listless sunflowers swaddled in nighttime dew, and the evening chill brings hurried retreats for a comfy sweater. In the beginning, his presence may go unnoticed unless you truly listen. He walks lightly, almost floating above the ground without snapping twigs or crunching dried leaves, and on warm sunny days you’d never believe he’s lurking under the tall pines, waiting until sunset to fling his cool beard over the treetops.

Although false, mistaking the fields of goldenrods for wild summer flowers may give you a chance to inhale summer’s last perfume before the thick tang of autumn fills the air.

soft chilly whistle
I recognize your footprint
you’re always on time

Unlike the warm breath of spring and summer, Old Man Winter never makes us wait. Always prompt, fiercely predictable and forever on the trail of the painted maples, his icy kiss forces our heads into fleecy toques and our hands into woolen mittens.

Summer’s end brings short-lived days filled with raspberries and barefoot tree climbs.

These are the last moments to watch ants scuttle atop mushrooms.

Before we know it, the bikes and trikes buried beneath banks of white will have given way to sleds and boards.

Early yet for many, but for this corner of New England, he’s already wiped his feet on the mat and settled himself in the recliner for a long winter’s slumber. And yes, we’ve actually gone trick-or-treating in our snow pants before.

Stop the music please.

I’ve had enough of this twisted little game of musical houses. Between hurried decisions to place offers on houses that almost felt right and offers on our own slice of heaven that keep falling through cracks of disappointment, we came to the end of our rope last night. Calling our dedicated realtor to say we were taking our house was off the market wasn’t easy, in fact it sucked rotten potatoes. In the end you’ve always got to do what’s best for yourself, but knowing what she’s gone through for us was cause for a twinge of guilt. It’s not her fault The Big Jerk my husband’s CEO decided to yank the rug out from under our feet at the last minute. It’s not her fault remodeling our existing house costs less than buying another one of her beautiful four bedroom castles. It is what it is. I’m sure the arrangement of white roses and thank you note is little consolation.

So we turn the page in our Life Story and begin writing the next chapter entitled Get Out the Backhoe Cowboy, Mr. Contractor’s Digging a Giant Hole in the Backyard. Wheeeee! I can’t help but be excited after all we’ve been through in the past week, and even better, my face is starting to clear up. Granted I’ve been drunk before dessert most nights this past week, and I’ve almost certainly consumed more alcohol in the past few days than I have in three consecutive New Year’s Eves, but the warm fuzzies helped to dwarf the ringing in my ears and the constant looping of worry and unknowing in my brain. But tonight I put down the bottle of pinot grigio and relax because it’s all good. School will commence as scheduled, we maintain our four year’s worth of equity and we get to play a game of giant legos with the home we already love. Of course I’ll be singing a slightly different tune come November when the hammers won’t cease and the baby can’t nap. Sky lights, whirlpools and heated floors oh my!

Sunday, August 13, 2006

My haiku has acne.

five steps of arbonne
still waking to oil and boil
my skin has lost faith

a meadow of fair
gives way to imperfection
and splotches of stress

the mirror won’t lie
as I paint the scarlet spots
and hide beneath paste

when the seas are calm
my clear skin shines through

until then pale number five

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Good Morning.

Isn't it a beautiful morning? Fresh with the promise of new beginnings, do-overs and fresh cups of Kenco coffee with extra half 'n half. I slept well last night, dreaming only briefly of exorbitant amounts of money slipping through my trembling hands. I woke early to my fully conscious toddler slapping my head with the remote control. And because I speak monkey fluently, I knew this was a request for the Wiggles movie to commence. There’s something oddly comforting about drifting in and out of consciousness while listening to four full-grown men sing about teddy bears and wombats.

This morning, while sipping my creamy mug of go-juice and poking at the newest stress pustule that has taken up residence on the very tip of my chin, I thought about things. Well, I’m always thinking about things, like the consistency of baby poo, a good sale on deli cheese or how many towels I can actually stuff into the washer before it spins out of control and blows up. But this morning I was thinking about mortgagey things, housey things and remodeley things. Instead of trying to keep this leaky dingy afloat in the sea of broken deals and other peoples’ decisions, why can’t we just take control? Why shouldn’t we just take control? It’s our goddamned house. It hasn’t sold and chances are it isn’t going to sell before the snow flies. There are materials in this house that I’m not finding in more swanky, expensive homes, like ceramic tile and hardwood floors. The view from our living room window is phenomenal; you see uncluttered mountains and rolling green hills for days. Maybe my itch for change and Bigger and Better won’t bring about the castle in the sky I’ve imagined. Perhaps I’m not seeing the potential this home can offer us; maybe I just need to take out the graph paper and put on my visionary hat. I just don’t know.

There is one constant in the mucky pond of indecision; we can’t move away. Although this narrows our housing opportunities, it does open a door of possibilities we hadn’t considered before.


Daunting word, infinite potential.

My face feels like it’s melting, and due to a nervous stomach, I’m emitting the most offensive bowel bouquet ever. Zits and farts. I’m sexy.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Wouldn't it be hilarious

if, after almost six months of being on the market, our house finally sells? And how amusing would it be if we signed a broker agreement with a realtor in the Prospective New Town so we can look at five new homes? And how funny would it be if, on the day that we accept an offer, my husband’s CEO unexpectedly shoves a giant poker stuffed with hot coals and a message reading “actually, you can’t move four hours south and work from home like we’ve been telling you for almost a year, and if you do then you really don’t have a future with this company” up his butt? I can’t imagine this getting any more comical, can you? Well, deciding to continue selling our house and having only three weeks to find another one around here is still pretty funny, right? I get a fuzzy little chuckle when I think of dragging my three tired children around to look at house after house. The one that smelled like ferret piss was, by far, the funniest. I snicker even more when I think of that call we made to our realtor saying we’ve decided on the beautiful ranch located at 106 Sucker Lane, so here’s our offer. But you know what splits my sides the most? Rolling on the floor with uncontrollable gagging fits of laughter when our realtor calls us back to tell us the sale of our house just fell through. Yeah, that’s the really funny part.

Kids? To bed.

Alcohol? Down my gullet.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Oh shit.

An omen? A foreboding prophecy about to come true? ‘Cause I totally can’t stop shoving these tasty little snacks for lazy people in my face. I had an ingrown toenail surgically removed twice as a teenager, and I hate cats! The cat killed me, didn’t it? Little fucker’s paying me back for ruthlessly torturing it with the vacuum my wacked sense of humor. Off to burn sage and sniff garlic…..

'What will your obituary say?' at

It's been two weeks

since my Girl returned home, yet her presence still feels almost foreign and unfamiliar. Her small body sprouted suddenly upward within the past two months and she has left behind virtually all traces and reminders of the small little girl she once was. Elbows and knobby knees have taken an entirely new role when standing next to her. And those legs. Oh those legs that once held onto the faint whispers of baby fat and Wiggles dance moves have given way to long, lean and tanned appendages that haven’t quite found their purpose. She’s clumsy and awkward as her budding pre-teendom struggles to emerge and her mother struggles to accept. She’s only barely eight years old and yet, every so often I catch a passing glimpse of the young woman she will become and it’s agonizingly beautiful. Watching your daughter grow into her own is like sowing and nurturing the most exquisite flower garden. Other than a slight ‘tude adjustment, she’s quite irresistible.

All three of my proverbial ducks are back in a row and it hasn’t taken long to reshape and replace the chunk of my heart that went awol for a few weeks. My sweet Boy is taller, smarter and ever the wonderful big brother he left home as. It would be a drastic understatement to say he’s a joy to have home again; he keeps the Papoose out of my hair so I can actually shave my legs or pee. Thrice the laundry it seems, double the grocery bill and a mother who can exhale in relief. Sometimes I try to explain the frustrations and exceptions that a blended family experiences, but I don’t know why I bother. It can’t be gotten unless you’ve got one.

Sweet August, humid is thy name! Remind me why we didn’t set up the pool this year? Right, something about selling the house and the kids being gone. Funny, the house is still ours and the kids are home. Ay-yi-yi!