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Let Them Be Chickens

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So, it’s official.  I am officially on the PTSA board of our school as of today.  I am still wondering if I have done the right thing, and also just what I have gotten myself into. My default is to jump in with both feet, and have already been brainstorming some fundraising ideas.  I was told to relax, hold back, and take a “let’s see” approach.  That’s not really my style.  On one hand, I am chaos personified.  I’m the mom screeching into the parking lot at the last minute, but I get there.  I am the mom who gets it done, even if it doesn’t look pretty.  There is some method to my madness, and I usually need at least a baseline plan in place to keep the stress levels down.  I’m not very structured, but I need a basic idea of a plan to get started.  At the moment, I’m floundering and I feel dazed.  I’m not a fan. I will therefore sit back, and try very hard not to think too much about things.  It just won’t be easy.  I’m more of a doer than a not think about it type of gal.

After getting voted in, I was chatting with a mom friend about the changes, about summer, after school care next year for her daughter, and she asked how I manage to work from home when the kids are home.  She was surprised by my answer.

“Well, the older one will play video games or read and entertain himself pretty quietly, and the younger one plays outside or with the neighbor kids.  I’m trying this whole “free range parenting” thing out.”

She looked stunned.  The video game comment gave her pause and a raised eyebrow.  The free range parenting comment made her appear quite surprised.

The fact is, my son is an old soul.  He is extremely smart (way smarter that me, to be honest).  He’s responsible, a rule follower, and very mature.  (Not like me).  He gets great grades and is respectful and kind.  That, along with some chores, is his “job”.  As long as he is doing his job, and his grades are good, I don’t sweat the small stuff.  I let him play video games with his friends after school.  Sure, I keep the time down to a decent amount, but I let him play.  It’s a form of socialization, and he enjoys it.  It’s also sparked an interest in coding, which could be good for him.  He accompanied me to the apple store and jumped into a coding class there.  The instructor was very impressed with his knowledge and demeanor.  I may take him for more.  Currently, my son and his bike have disappeared down to the school to go hang out on the field/playground with his friends.  He has his sister’s ipod which has wifi, so he can text me if he needs me.  I’m only a few minute drive away.

The little one looks most forward to racing outside each day.  I can see her from my home office window.  I can call to her.  We have a system, and it works.  She never leaves the front of the house without telling me where she is going.  There are also a group of great kids in the neighborhood that she plays with.  The parents know each other, watch out for the kids, and text each other when kids are on route from one house to another.  It’s working.  I now have a happier child, who enjoys being outdoors and playing with friends.

For years, I have struggled with balance.  Work vs home, fairness  with the kids, and a constant battle of how their childhood is vs mine was.  When my son got older, my daughter was still 4 years younger, so it was easier to keep them both inside.  With my work schedule, there wasn’t any time to just hang with the neighbor kids.  Growing up, I raced home, did homework, and jumped on my bike.  I rode the back roads about a mile from my house to my best friends, and we would go back and forth between our houses, playing, riding, laughing, and making memories.  I did this when I was about 8 or nine.  My parents trusted me to do right, to call when I arrived, and to do be responsible.  And you know what?  I WAS.  I DID.  I called, and I was responsible.  I knew quite clearly that bad behavior, or not doing as I should would eliminate my freedoms.  Looking back, I believe my mom would drive the neighborhood to make sure I was safe and keep an eye on what I was up to.  I fell off my bike once and she was there in minutes, without a phone call.  (no cell phones when I was a kid, folks!).  Nowadays kids have technology at their fingertips.  Luckily they have ipods and the neighborhood is a wifi hotspot, so they can text me if they need me.  That’s more than I had as a kid.

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The fact is, kids were kids, but in many ways, we were more grown up than today’s kids.  We had more freedoms and we learned to handle those freedoms appropriately.  We learned responsibility.  We had street sense.  The small freedoms I received made me feel more grown up, and I behaved better.  Why? Because I didn’t want to lose the privileges I had been given!  Cause and effect is an important learning tool.

It occurred to me one day my kids might not really know how to cross the street safely.  As in, which lane cars drive in, where to look, how to listen for cars, how to double check.  I was horrified.  The fact was though I was always with them and guided them. I started teaching them more street sense.  How to manage if I wasn’t there.  How to be safe, and to help their friends be safe. I started taking them on bike rides, to learn the layout of the neighborhood, where cross walks are, and how to read the traffic signals.  It’s an ongoing lesson, but an important one.  I keep an eye on them, but I am allowing more freedom and choices their way as they get older.

I notice other parents doing the same more than before.  Maybe I’m just more in tune with it because giving the kids so much freedom is a bit daunting at first. The fact is, I am raising future adults.  I have to balance teaching them a healthy dose of reality (ie. stranger danger, car safety, etc) vs teaching them to be independent and responsible.  I need to teach them that outside is where magic happens.  Healthy habits, spending time in nature is good not only for the body, but for the soul.  Not to mention, they sleep AMAZINGLY now.

I’ll still be nervous.  I’ll still keep an eye on them when they don’t know I am watching.  At the end of the day though, this free range parenting, allowing the kids more freedom and responsibility has thus far been a good thing.  The better they do, the better I will do. There are parents allowing their kids to navigate the city by themselves, take the subways, etc.  I’m not there yet.  We’re keeping with the neighborhood and going from there.

 

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Little Assholes and The First Ride

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bikeSometimes. kids are little assholes.  As parents, our jobs, should we do it successfully, is to not raise little assholes, but it has to be said, some parents are failing mightily.

Let me explain.

This is the year I have been giving the kids a bit more leeway and independence.  I let them play out in the neighborhood more, my son goes on bike rides with his friend who lives around the corner.  Now that they are a bit older, it’s time to trust them more, and I know they will keep an eye on each other.  I can watch them out the window, or from the front stoop, but they are feeling more responsible and independent.  Part of this was their age, but a big part was knowing at even the little one’s age I was always out playing or riding bikes with friends.  I went out right after homework and stayed outside until the street lights came on.  I had no cell phone.  I was fine.  It taught me responsibility, street smarts, and I got fresh air.  My friends and I all looked out for each other.  It made for a good childhood.

My children, on the other hand, haven’t had as much of that.  With my work schedule, they got home close to dinner time.  After homework, it was already starting to get dark.  I was nervous about them being outside while I was cooking.  There weren’t too many kids on the street.  The result? Too much screen time, not enough fresh air.  Another result? My daughter is almost 8 and couldn’t ride a bike without training wheels.  This never bothered me, and it didn’t bother her either.  That is, it didn’t bother her until the asshole neighbor kid started commenting on it. Then of course, the other kids had to tell the tale of when they learned how to ride a bike. I watched my daughter’s face crumble a bit, then tighten with resolve.

That night, I knew.  I grabbed a wrench and took her training wheels off.

The next day, I took her outside and started showing her how to balance on her bike.  She was nervous, but I could see strains of confidence beginning to appear. Just when I thought we were almost where I could start teaching her to use the pedals, the asshole kid came up.  He started again with the brag.  Not even a humble brag, but a full on, almost neener neener kind of brag.  I tried to be an adult.  I told him she was learning, and it would be more helpful if he cheered her on.  I said “let’s keep it positive!”.

He persisted in his assholish behavior.  I told him to go home.

At that point, I picked up her bike and wrangled it in my car.  “Hop in” I told her, “we’re gonna learn how to ride that bike!”  I drove down to an office park, knowing on a Saturday it would be a ghost town.  We got down to business, practicing balancing.  There was some whining. Some self doubt appeared for both of us.  And then, just like that, her feet hit the pedals.  Remember that scene in Forrest Gump when the braces come off and you see that sudden realization and determination in his face?  That was the same look she had.  Within 10 minutes, she was whizzing around the parking lot.

I clapped.  I cheered.  I danced.  I teared up a little.

I was just so damned proud.  I was proud of her for sticking with it.  I was proud of her grace when that kid was giving her balls.  And, if I’m honest, I’m proud I was able to teach her.  Riding a bike for a kid is a big deal.  I always figured I’d never be able to teach them, and that my husband would be the one to do it.  Yet I managed to teach both kids, and I think they’ll remember it was something I was able to do for them.  Kids remember our successes.  They remember (and sometimes land in therapy because of) our failures.  We don’t get an instruction manual.  We’re winging it every day as parents.  So that little success of “I can do it! I can teach her how to ride that bike!” was LIFE for me in that moment.

Parenting is just like writing a novel.  There are characters and stories, twists and turns, heroes and villains, successes and failures. We as parents work tirelessly, endlessly on our greatest works of art.  Our kids.  We love them, nurture them, and hope that their story will have more smiles than tears, more success that failures.  We are just one character of many in their story, but we play very important parts to that story.

When we got home, she hopped on her bike, and rode is smoothly down the sidewalks and back.  The kid who had given her a hard time came by and was shocked to see her riding without training wheels.  The other kids in the neighborhood also looked surprised.  “You learned to ride that in one day?” he asked her.

Yep, my mama taught me how.”

Best sentence I’ve heard in a long time.

 

 

 

 

 

Little old lady (me) and the flu (them).

A former coworker/friend of mine declared that she considers her birthday her actual “New Year”.  She said that every year on her birthday she takes stock of her life, sets some goals, and makes some changes.  She also takes some time for self care and to celebrate another year.  I wondered why she did this on her birthday as opposed to the standard January 1st, but I surmise it’s because in a sense, a birthday is a bit more of a personal day.  The more I thought about her practice of her birthday New Year, the more I liked the positive atmosphere that surrounded it.

Tomorrow is my birthday.  My 44th birthday to be precise.  And it’s such a weird damned birthday.

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For starters, I have two kids currently suffering from the flu and I feel like we are just trying to make it through each day this week. That flu is no joke.  It’s spreading like wildfire and I had been hopeful we’d make it through unscathed, but I was wrong.  It’s been a rough few weeks.  The brakes went on our car, and the check engine light was on.  We got all that fixed, just to then get a screw in the tire and the check engine light came back on.  Car taxes are due, car emissions is due (can’t get it done with the check engine light on!) and of course money is extra tight because we both missed work after my surgery.  Add to that issues with an  bpd stalker, and other nonsense, and it’s all…well, exhausting.  Oh yes, and my house is a wreck, but that’s par for the course.

I’m tired, y’all.  I’m just tired of it all.

Yet I know that this too shall pass.  Well, except the messy house part, because let’s be real honest….it hasn’t had much improvement since I started this blog.  I have two kids, two pets, work full time and I work opposite hours from my spouse.  This is how it’s gonna be if I’m honest.  The kids asked me what I wanted for my birthday.  “Well, I’d like to get a massage or something relaxing, come home to a tidy house, and eat cake with you guys”.  Their response? “we’re going to apologize right now.  cake and a massage may happen but you’re out of luck on the house bit.”

It’s funny.  I don’t feel 44.  Not even a bit.  Well, at least not mentally.  The husband and I were talking tonight and we agreed neither of us feel this old.  We talked about how things were when we were 34, and how did 10 years slip by so darned quickly?  My theory was that we had kids, we had the lives of parents of 2 kids, and life moves FAST.  Maybe we were too busy to see those 10 years fly by us. We see other people at 44 and we don’t feel we quite look that old yet.  Vain assholes, aren’t we? For real, though.  How many of you have seen someone you thought was way older than you and you find out they are in fact younger than you?  Happens to me quite a bit.  Sometimes I wonder if I look far older than the person I see in the mirror.  Perhaps my increasingly poor eyesite is fooling me into thinking I look half decent, only to live as a swamp beast in the real world. Well, I comfort myself with “at least I can’t see what a travesty I may look like”. As a friend put it today, “I still feel like a 15 year old.  A 15 year old that gets beat up everyday, but a 15 year old nonetheless.”

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Of course with all the crappo stuff going on, it doesn’t feel very birthday-y.  In fact, it feels a bit like I want to skip the day altogether.  The extra layer of suck that’s lingering over my head is that honestly, I miss my mom.  She’s been gone almost 12 years and I still miss her daily.  I think she was almost more excited about my birthdays that I was.  After all, it was also her day too in a sense.  She always went big for birthdays.  Any birthday was a big deal to celebrate in her eyes.  Birthdays=life=worth some cake and some fun!  With her gone, somehow things sparkle a little less.

By the same token, I am happy to have this birthday.  Happy for another day.  Many people won’t get that tomorrow.  One of my best friends, who was my age, didn’t get to see 43, and he won’t see 44 either.  It does make you appreciate a birthday when you look at it that way.

So tomorrow is the first day of another age for me.  How will I spend it? Working, at least for part of it.  My husband is sending me out for some “me” time, whether it be a massage or a pedicure, or going to see a movie.  Then tomorrow evening it’s back to hang out with my favorite sickies for some cake and laughs.  I haven’t had much thought towards goals for this year.  Perhaps tomorrow when I have some quiet time I’ll give it some thought.  All I know for now is it’s time to take stock of what is working and what isn’t, and move accordingly.  Right now, I’m in a swing of bad luck, but in the grand scheme of things, life’s really quite awesome.  I have always found that life is a series of elevators.  What goes up, must come down, and even when things are down, they typically go right back up again.  Life is always moving. Sometimes people are on the ride with you, and sometimes not.

I may be a little old lady at 44.  I love my early nights, my heating pad, and yes, I wish people would sometimes get off my lawn.   Sure, we may be in a sea of humidifiers, vicks, tylenol, essential oils, tamiflu, car problems, money issues, and other stuff, but we’ll find out way through. I’m determined to get us all through what life throws at us.  That being said, I guess I am looking forward to another year.  Things have been pretty fabulous so far.

Living the “Yes” life.

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I know it’s been a while since I posted.  I’ve been pretty busy.  Yes, yes, I know that is what everyone says, but in this case, it’s true!  Aside from the usual working mother of 2, wife, and the normal day to day chaos, I have been trying very hard to live the “yes” life.  I thought perhaps it’s time to do an update on how it’s going.

I started this after lamenting about the extra weight that has cropped up on my the past 10 years or so.  After mulling it over and feeling a bit sorry for myself, a memory of a conversation I had with my mother popped in my head.  She once told me how proud she was of me for my determination and independence.  I remember her telling me how I seemed to just set my mind to things and DO them.  It seemed logical that I could apply this mentality to losing some weight.  I talked myself into it.  I COULD do it.  I just needed to set my mind to it, and to make a plan.  I realized I am not a big fan of the gym, but I like being active.  The first thing I did was start going to an Aqua Zumba class on Mondays.  You know what?  I LOVE it.  LOOOVVVVEEEE it.  It makes me feel great and I have a good time.  I actually look forward to Mondays…how is that even possible?  The AZ class led me to take a deep water fit class.  I started losing a bit of weight.  I realized, now that I was a bit more active, that much of my problem thus far was that I wasn’t doing much at all before I started the classes.  I had gotten up, dropped the kids off, and gone to work all day.  Then I would come home, get the kids fed and ready for bed, and then watched TV.  I wasn’t doing much for me.

I needed to make some changes, and it started with the mindset that I would say “yes” more.  Because I was saying yes more, I felt less guilty when I had to say no.  When my son’s soccer coach couldn’t coach this season, and nobody else volunteered.  I said yes.  I have help, and I had some learning to do, but I am doing it!  I will tell you…it’s the best damned thing ever.  I love it.  It’s not always easy, and 10 year old boys will give you a run for your money, but on the whole, it’s been fantastic.  I feel ike I have done something positive, I get some excercise, and it’s been so much fun.  My son said he was proud of me.  That was worth the price of admission right there!

I am saying yes to plans, and finding ways to do things for me, as well as the kids.  I took a trip to NYC 3 days ago to go see one of my favorite authors do a reading.  Before, I likely would have made excuses, but this time I was determined to go.  One night to myself to do something I enjoyed was a complete recharge.  I notice that since I have been saying yes more, I am finding time to not only do more things with the kids, but for myself as well.

The end result?  I am happier.  I guess what they say is true, a happy wife is a happy life, because our household seems happier.  It also seems healthier.  The kids are supportive of me going to excercise classes 2x a week (the Y has a childcare room they go to for an hour where they draw, play or hang out).  My husband is supportive as well.  We’re all eating better.  We exercise more.  My son, who never learned how to ride a bike, learned (in the rain) because he asked me to teach him, and I said yes.  I had always thought it would have to be something my husband taught him, but nope!  I set my mind to teach him and it worked!  I am trying to silence the negative inner voice in my head and replace it with a positive, happy one.  It’s a work in progress, but it’s getting better all the time.

Have I lost weight?  Yup, so far it’s 16 lbs.  I gained 3 back, then lost them again.  It’s a process.  Hopefully it will keep disappearing with a bit of work, and staying active.

Ok, so I haven’t quite gotten the hang of saying yes more to the housework.

Can’t win em all.

Live the Yes life.  You won’t be sorry.

 

 

 

Hello Loveys!

Well, the first few days of school have come and gone.  My oldest blended in seamlessly.  Actually, he asked us to walk him in on the first day, but after we got just inside the building he announced “ok, I got it from here”.  Secretly I wonder if my husband bribed him with a pack of Pokemon cards to humor me, because I had a tough time with the little one starting Kindergarten.  I’m not sure why it hit me so hard.  Maybe it’s because she looked so little and vulnerable, or maybe because she voiced nervousness, and I was worried if she would enjoy school.  The first day, I went through the car line, and she hopped out, announced “Bye Mommy! Have a great day! I love you, and try not to cry!”  To which I responded by tearing up, trying to catch a glimpse of her in the rearview mirror.  I promptly hit the curb.  My son announced “Did we just hit the curb?  You really need to pull it together.”  And so it began.

My last post was about my fear of getting things in order for the new schedule.  It’s been…..ok.  I tried a few crockpot meals. Once was a success, and the other was an utter failure.  I realized I am not a fan of one pot meals with meat and veg and potatoes all together in the crock.  Everything looked the same color and it skeeved me out.  Oh well, Rome wasn’t built in a day.  The kids didn’t care too much, as I had made the strange and unusual decision to go have ice cream before dinner.  Why? Because it was as hot as the devil’s asshole outside and sometimes, you have to be a rebel.  Ok, I’ll admit it.  I think I was also fueled by the happenings of the day, which were fueled by asshats and sanctimommies. You get that, sanctimommies?  I gave my kids ice cream.  Before dinner!  Take that bitches!

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Let me explain.  Today was, as I mentioned, hot as hell.  Especially for the Northeast in September.  Schools actually closed at half day because it was so hot and despite us paying ridonkulous amount of taxes, our schools have no AC.  Old buildings, building codes, money, safety reasons all contribute to why the schools have no central air or even window units.  Most of the schools in the surrounding towns announced a half day last night.  Not my stellar town, though.  They waited until school was about to start in 5 minutes.  Way to give us time to plan!  Now, I found this irritating, but not as irritating as some.  This was probably due to me assuming that my town would shut down half day but not announce it until the last minute.  I expect this sort of thing, and mentally prepare.  It was inconvenient.  It was piss poor communication.  It was frustrating. I get it.

I went on Facebook, which should be the bane of my existence but is really my addiction, and saw numerous posts on the school and town pages by parents.  I scrolled through the posts and saw lots of people who were pissed that they were told after school started that it would be an early dismissal.  There was one mom, however, who was determined to be the ANGRIEST MOM OF ALL TIME about it, and she demanded that we all bombard the Board of Ed with phone calls.  She was saying such thing as “I will not be calm when it comes to my children!”  Her anger spiraled until it was clear she simply had to be the biggest, baddest mommy of them all, It made my brain curl.  We’ve all seen these moms.  The one that has to be the MOSTEST. They have to be the bestest, the mostest, the most on top of it all, the most defensive of their kids, the most of it all.  They are mostly annoying.   Usually I let it go like water off a duck’s back.  IMG_7008

Another mother posted that while it was frustrating, to call the BOE with our frustrations but to keep in mind it’s the first few days of school, and it should improve.  The other mother got mad.  She will NOT calm down when it comes to her babies!! Calm mom explained she is calm because getting upset on facebook isn’t helping anything, and that if she is calm about the communication flub, her kids will feel calm and that she has control of the situation.  I thought about it.  She made a lot of sense.  That’s when angry mom threw out the gauntlet “I’m glad I don’t have YOUR parenting skills!

Wait…what?

OH NO SHE DIDN’T!  Sweet shit, she DID.  and that is so not ok with me.sc

Look, I have people in my life that I know deep down find my mothering skills not to their liking. I’ve had comments made to my face, and some behind my back. Some I’ve never heard.  The fact is, I have gotten angry about it, but have learned to laugh it off.  I do what I need to do to raise my kids the best way I know how.  I raise them to live in a real world.  I pad that world a little bit, I shield them from the ugliest bits, but they see a lot.  I do what millions of other moms on this Earth do…I do my best.  Sure, there are times I look on something and go “I probably wouldn’t do that again” or “I can do better”.  But I do the best I can with what I’ve got.  Today, my kids ate ice cream before dinner.  And then they snacked on fruit.  Not my best mothering moment, but a happy memory was had by all, they felt like they “got away with something special” and no harm was done.  Tomorrow they’ll get extra broccoli or something and the world will be balanced.  🙂  This will make another mother’s head turn in a 360 degree swivel, and that’s ok.  Not your kids, not your mommy choices.   Sometimes I see other moms doing something that wouldn’t be my style.  I shrug, not my kids, not my choice, not my style, but not my business either. Maybe I don’t agree with that one thing for me, but I DO like how they do such and such.  As long as the kids are healthy and not harmed, it’s not my place to comment on someone else’s parenting.  The fact is, commenting on someone’s parenting is a very, very bad idea for the most part.  Even if the comment passes in the blink of an eye, it’s remembered.  It’s pretty much in bad taste, and a high risk for getting a swift talking to or worse.

Sanctiangrymommy felt differently.  She tossed that comment out there and I, even though it was addressed to someone else, got MAD. It is not ok to shit on someone’s parenting just because it differs from yours.  Even if you think “she’s crazy for doing that” you just don’t say it.  I’ve caught myself on a couple of occasions, and immediately felt guilty.  Who am I to judge?  Maybe it’s the fact that I often second guess how well I am doing.  I work full time, my house is a wreck for much of it (clean enough to be healthy, messy enough to be lived in, yet never good enough for me to be comfortable.) I am often running kids from one place to another, trying to get it all done, and sometimes only succeeding in some of it.  I, like any other parent, sometimes go “Am I doing this ok??” The fact is, I am questioning myself plenty, because I love my kids more than life itself, and don’t want them in a lifetime of therapy or worse. It’s easy to compare yourself to the next parent and say “well at least I am doing that better”.  It’s wrong, but it happens.  Everyone wants to believe we are doing the right thing, because the thought of failing isn’t just failing ourselves, but our kids too.  None of us want to fail our kids. I don’t need other people questioning my parenting, and I surmise you don’t either.  Today made that so clear to me. It’s the sense of self righteousness that angry mom had that she could just roll that insult out there.  To just lay those shitty words out there in a public forum, to a woman she doesn’t know.  Her opinions mean nothing.  But those words just sat there.  Her judgement. Sitting there.

“That is NOT OK”. I responded.

“Puhleeze” she wrote.

I reiterated…that what she did was NOT ok. I kept saying it.  It’s ok to be frustrated, angry, upset, but it is not ok to shit on another parent’s parenting skills that way.

Calm Mom messaged me.  She thanked me for being the one person who stood up for her.  Nobody else did.  I sat…waiting.  Where were the parents, banding together to say “It is not ok.  We are all doing the best we can!”?  I dunno, but not one was to be found.  It bothered me, all damned day.

Seeing other parents supporting each other makes me happy.  Parents that admit their foibles and struggles should be supported, not torn down.  We should be able to laugh good naturedly at our mutual stumbles and strides.  Sometimes, I need some emotional support, to know that I am doing a good job, and I’m sure any of you reading this might enjoy the same.  If you see a mom getting picked on, do what we tell our kids to do…stand up and say something.  Try to be less judgy when it comes to what other parents are doing. Be mindful that what works for one family dynamic may not work for another.   We all do this parenting thing a bit differently, with different styles and views, but we all do it with love. With hope.  It would be nice to do it with some support.

Be kind, be mindful.

What’s up!

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Well hello Loveys!
It’s been too long! I am so sorry I have been MIA these days. For the most part, because of my husband’s schedule, I operate kind of like a single mom but with help. I don’t know how you single parents do it, I swear! Between work, kid stuff and my failure to thrive as a housewife, I am constantly in a state of chaos. Here’s some of what’s happening with me and as usual, my tv recap.
This week I pulled my son out of school and took him to the amusement park for the day. I did this for a few reasons. First, he has had excellent behavior reports every week of the school year, as well as a good report card. Second, I promised him a day with me some time ago and never got to pull it together until now (so I gotta go big!). And third, it’s nice to get “awesome mom” points sometimes! (Total random side note…I am on the train to NYC and it smells like Cornish Pasties. British or Irish followers might understand that). Anywho, the day was awesome, until I cracked my toe into something and hit my knee going down a water slide at top speed. I came home limping but the boy had a smile on his face that made it all worthwhile. I am famous for weird injuries and it’s no wonder my mom called me Calamity Jane when I was a kid.
Today I am headed to the city to a book signing. The fact it happens to be in a bar is a total score. Oh wait, conductor just said our train is stuck on the tracks!! Well, isn’t that ducky!!! Ok, so my day may be spent trackside today instead. Honestly, this doesn’t surprise me. On the way to drop my kids off this morning, there was an Audi pulled over on the entrance ramp to the highway. The door flew open and a guy fell half out, hitting his head on the cement. Suddenly he popped back in the car and when I drove up and asked him if he was ok (probably had my “bitchy rest face” on) he looked at me and said “yes!” Like nothing ever happened. Smiled at me, too. How do you fall half out of your car and hit your head on the ground, only to play it off like nothing ever happened? Dude, you have a pebble on your forehead. I then dropped my kids off. Keep in mind that with them both having car seats/booster, and me behind just over 5’2, I could not see what was between the seats. When I moved the seats from my car to my friend’s, I became acutely aware that my darling children had begun and empty juice box hoard between their seats. One of them, however, neglected to fully empty one, and orange juice had spilled in my car. I am now fully aware that my car is at the commuter lot, baking in the sun, and I am trying to prepare my self for the wretching, heaving and swearing that will likely occur upon my arrival back to my car. My quickie clean up is no match for hot bad orange juice.
So, on to tv! Rhonj aired. I really enjoy that franchise, but it also stresses me out. Jac’a bleached asshole comment made me laugh out loud. The Caroline downsizing thing….if I’m not mistaken, aren’t her and AL having issues? T and Mel made the right choice in getting the kids together on neutral ground. There is no way under that scenario would I send my kids to the other one’s house. I do think it’s sad that T’s girls have a lot of negative stuff to say about Mel. On camera, Teresa seems to try not to bad mouth Mel, but when the kids speak, you can see she clearly does talk badly about her. All her “talking head” interviews are the same. I can’t believe Mel’s still worried about being called a stripper. Look Mel, you’re
Hot, you have a great husband and kids that love you. Your house is awesome and you have a good deal. If I had your body I would walk around naked all day, just because I could, capiche? The bigger fuss you make, the more ammo you give people.
A quick note on OC…anyone see that Vicki is getting sued because ER and Brooks defrauded money out of her business partner (effectively getting money to pay off Brooksie’s past due child support). I seem to remember Vicki stomping her big ol’ judgement boots all over Gretchen about Slade’s child support. I guess to hide her hypocrisy she’s helping Brooks pay it off. This should be interesting. I am not a Vicki fan. She is a flaming hypocrite, plays the victim, and she exhausts me.
Well, my train started to
Move while I was prattling away here. Sorry for the typos but I wrote this on my phone and frankly, I don’t have my glasses on to be able to proofread it. Autocorrect is not my friend. I am almost at Grand Central. Hopefully I can make it through the day without any calamities. Oh yes…any of you remember the women who I took supplies to after Hurricane Sandy destroyed her home? I am seeing her today, along with the author that brought us together! We talk almost daily and have become extremely close friends. I know that many of you have asked me how she is doing. She is getting by. FEMA was a nightmare. They have found a rental and will be moving into the new rental soon. Her husband isn’t faring great, but he is ok. I will keep you posted.

Love
Messy xx

Life Lessons from the Real Housewives?!?

The Mr. doesn’t understand my love of Real Housewives.  He lightly scoffs at my desire to watch multiple seasons, simultaneously.  I’ve tried on occasion to explain why I enjoy the shows but I’ve never really been able to articulate why.  Tonight I gave it some thought, and I realized that even during the madness of some episodes, I have learned some great life lessons from some of the housewives, and one in particular that I will get to later.  Love them or loathe them (or at least who they are on TV)  there is much to be learned.

From Gretchen and Tamra, I learned that sometimes, misjudgements on someone can cause a series of problems that can be difficult to get past.  Yet they CAN be overcome.  Sometimes friends can come from the most unlikeliest of places, from the most unlikely of histories.  A bit of humble pie and a willingness to admit mistakes can turn a relationship completely around.

From Kyle Richards, watching a loved one battle addiction is a constant battle of two opposites….the fight to help them and to hide the embarrassment they cause themselves, and the knowledge that sometimes you have to let go enough for them to hit bottom so they can get help.  That’s one of the hardest parts of loving an addict.  When you most want to hold them tight, to help them you must often let go.

From Jacqueline: She kept trying to have a baby, and held the hope no matter what happened.  When it did happen for her, it wasn’t necessarily what she envisioned.  She jumped into the mode of finding out whatever she could to help her son.  Nick is a beautiful little boy, and I have no doubt her efforts will help him to succeed in the long run.  This reminded me that sometimes, life takes you down a different path than you might have expected, but it’s just a different way that may make you take a bit more notice of the world around you, and will be just as amazing.

From Ramona: While people say they like a straight shooter, who tells it like it is, they kind don’t.  Sure, we all say we want the truth, but sometimes the truth needs a touch of padding and love behind it.  Blasting out what’s YOUR truth doesn’t mean it’s everyone’s truth.  Sometimes saying something hurtful even though it may have some truth to it doesn’t make you a hero…it just makes you kind of an asshole.

From Kim Z: Married men are never good for single gals.  A man that will cheat on his wife has a flaw in his morals and lacks courage.  Is that someone you want to be with?  The fact is, if you’re spending all your time with Mr wrong or someone you know is Mr. Right Now, a REAL Mr. Right isn’t going to want to get involved with you.  This goes for anyone in a relationship.  Don’t waste your time because you don’t want to be alone.  Someone who is right for you and has a strong moral character isn’t going to be around you if you’ve got one foot in a relationship with someone else.

From Cat:  If you say Bollocks, you will score points.  Immediately.  But only if you do it in a British Accent.

From Teresa: oh T, where do we begin?  Families have fights.  But loving people means that sometimes you have to recognize that relationships change.  Nobody can destroy you.  Only you can destroy you.  Never tolerate a spouse who talks down to you, treats you badly, or possibly cheats.  Why?  because while he’s treating you like garbage there’s a better guy who will treat you like a treasure!  Lastly, if everyone around you is saying you’re messing up, sometimes, you gotta look inward and figure out what they are seeing that you’re not trying to project.

Lastly, my favorite of all….comes from Lisa Vanderpump.  One night, after the Laid Back Kid had done me wrong, disobeyed his momma, and made me really angry, we talked it out.  At the end, I told him “always remember one thing…mommy loves you.”  I make sure to tell them that often.  I hope that becomes a catch phrase that when I start it, they finish it.  When I am gone, and they have strife…I want my kids to hear my voice in their head saying “always remember one thing…mommy loves you”

Thanks Lisa!

Night Loveys! xx