Friday, August 31, 2012

Sleep Overs

The person who coined the term "sleep over" was either an adult who never had children or they meant the expression as in "sleep is over and will never happen during the course of this evening."  I'm not sure which.

I'm blessed with children of two different genders. I have a daughter and a farting creature son.  Here's the thing I know with absolute certainty:  although both are absolutely capable of being disgusting in their own right, girls are marginally more civilized than boys.

A girl's idea of a sleep over is to eventually cuddle and giggle their way into the night. They whisper and talk in hushed tones fully believing the silly parent will believe they are sleeping.

Boys, on the other hand, are too busy making farting and belching sounds.  They don't have the good sense to even try to fake out the responsible adult.  This eventually leads to the parent having to threaten their own son while dropping veiled threats and innuendoes about the likelihood of ever having another "sleep over."

"Sleep overs" loosely follow this schedule:

6 PM:  Son's friend arrives
6:01 PM:  Boys begin running throughout the house with high pitched squealing that reminds mother that she has wine in the refrigerator.
6:22 PM:  Boys begin loudly playing video games.  Mother takes 2 ibuprofen with water.
8:12 PM:  Mother asks boys to get a snack, brush teeth, put on PJs.
8: 22 pm:  Mother asks boys to get a snack, brush teeth, put on PJs.
8:30 pm:   Mother asks boys to get a snack, brush teeth, put on PJs.
8:37 pm:  Boys loudly eat snack and put on PJs.  Proper dental care is overrated.
8:45 pm:  Mother opens refrigerator and then closes it.  She's just comforted by knowing the wine is in there should she need it.
8:47 pm:  Boys decide to dump every Lego on the bedroom floor so they can "find them better."
8:52 pm: Loud fart sounds and hysterical laughter erupt from the room.
9:15 pm:  Loud fart sounds and hysterical laughter continue to erupt from the room.
9:16 pm:  Mother continues to ignore the loud farts and hysterical laughter.
9:30 pm:  Mother asks boys to clean up Legos to make room for sleeping bags
9:41 pm:  Mother asks boys to clean up Legos to make room for sleeping bags
9:52 pm:  Mother asks boys to clean up Legos to make room for sleeping bags
10:00 pm:  Mother enters room against her better judgement to find sleeping bags on the floor covering 2 million legos and another 2 million legos have been tossed into her son's underwear drawer.
10:01 pm:  Mother tells boys to whisper or read quietly.  "It's time to slow down," she says sweetly.
10:01 pm:  Mother leaves the room, closes the door, and promptly hears fart sounds and hysterical laughing.
10:01 pm:  Mother decides one glass of wine would not hurt anyone.
10:30 pm:  Mother goes back to son's room and tells the boys it's time for lights out.
10:30 pm:  Mother leaves the room, closes the door, and promptly hears fart sounds and hysterical laughing.
11:00 pm:  Mother develops an illogical belief.  If she clenches her teeth and speaks without moving her jaw (creating a very attractive facial expression), She believes only her child can hear her.
11:01 pm:  With clenched teeth she says, "If. You. Don't. Put. Your. Head. Down. Now. You. Will. Never. Have. Another. Sleep. Over. ... EEEVVVEEERRR."  She hisses that last word because she is already sleep deprived and she is morphing into something scary and unpredictable.
11:02 pm: Mother's hissing has absolutely no impact on her son.  The other child asks her son, "Hey, your mom is talking funny. Why she sound like that?"
11:03 pm:  Mother gives her son "the look" (I don't need to describe that, right?).
11:03 pm:  Mother leaves the room, closes the door, and promptly hears fart sounds and hysterical laughing.
11:05 pm:  Mother realizes first glass of wine has had absolutely no impact on anything.
11:15 pm:  Mother sips second glass of wine while listening to fart sounds echo down the hall.
11:37 pm:  Mother passes out falls asleep to the sound of boys farting and belching.
9:59 am:  Mother sweetly tells the other mother that the boys were "delightful" and "we should do this again at your house."

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Most Ridiculous Commercial... Or Is It?

Most Ridiculous Commercial... Or Is It?

Do you remember commercials? I forgot what they were until I started watching the 2012 Olympics religiously every night as if it were my job and the fate of all Olympic gold medals rested squarely on my shoulders.

Do you remember commercials? I forgot what they were until I started watching the 2012 Olympics religiously every night as if it were my job and the fate of all Olympic gold medals rested squarely on my shoulders.

Yeah, commercials are those televised advertisements most people use as the time to tinkle and refill beverages or we fast-forward through them (thank you to the person who invented TIVO and the DVR).

It's been awhile since I've seen an actual commercial, but I'm sad to report they stink just as much as they have in the past. In fact, they are arguably worse now than previously. Apparently commercial writers are on to the fact that no one pays attention to them anymore so they have really lowered the bar on what passes for a quality commercial.

After watching an obscene amount of television over the last several weeks, I believe I have the authority to crown the worst commercial on television.

The winner is....(drum roll)...(suspenseful pause)...

The Air Optix contact lens commercial!

A man who is old enough to know better starts the commercial off looking absolutely grief stricken. Perhaps he has received a devastating diagnosis or maybe his wife and kids have been in a horrific accident or possibly he has made horrible investments and he is about to loose everything.

Nope.  This moron just fell asleep with his contact lenses in his eyes.
He stutters the following statement, "I never meant to sleep in my contacts."

The optometrist kindly tells him "Don't worry."
As luck would have it, this idiot fell asleep in contact lenses designed to be slept in.  Somehow he's managed to forget this tidbit since the last time he's been to the eye doctor.

I have absolutely no empathy for this twit.  Maybe I'm annoyed because the last time I fell asleep with contacts in my eyes I woke up and momentarily thought I had been miraculously cured of my nearsightedness.  At no point did I consider racing to the optometrist to confess my stupidity while looking like I might die as a result of my action.

I hate to sound sexist, (actually this is a bold-faced lie.  I really don't mind sounding a little sexist) but I don't think it's an accident that the commercial features a nearsighted worried man and a female optometrist.  There isn't a woman on the planet who would show this much concern over her own eyes.  She would be too busy changing diapers, cleaning up cat vomit, and wallowing in guilt to even consider rushing her eyes to the optometrist office after sleeping in her lenses.  Hell, she'd just be thrilled she managed to sleep!

The point is, this commercial stinks.  It's horrible.

On top of it all, the pathetic, worrisome man looked familiar to me.  Who is he?

Then while watching it for the 40th time it came to me.  The man looks like Paul Ryan minus the piercing, ice blue, frightening as hell eyes.  If Paul Ryan had brown eyes, he would be doing lousy contact lens commercials.

Then it hit me.  Is it possible this commercial was paid for by democrats to elect President Obama?  You only need to watch the commercial once to know, that worrisome guy is an idiot!

It could very well be the best subliminal message ever relayed via commercial!

Monday, August 20, 2012

A New School Year Begins

"So long, suckers!" I thought after dropping the kids off on the first day of school.

Yes, I'm grossly immature and expressions like "So long, suckers" just naturally pop into my brain.  Not proud, just honest.

My baby girl is now officially in 6th grade.   This means animal prints are totally cool and go with everything including other animal prints regardless of the animal.  This also seems to be the year when one day showering is thought of as a poisonous activity and the next day getting ready requires hours of primping and an assortment of lotions and gels.  This child seems precariously balanced between childhood and adolescence. The wind could blow her any direction.  I am literally holding my breath.

My sweet son is a 4th grader. By "sweet" I mean highly energetic with a dose of narcism and a dash of uncontrollable ornery-ness.  He has exactly 15,000 questions in the course of one day (that's 105,000 questions in a week, but who's counting?).  Recess is his favorite subject at school followed by Physical Education.  I may need to give his teacher diamonds for Christmas.

As for me, I'm a professional now. I've been dropping kids off at this same elementary school since my daughter was in kindergarten.  That's 7 first day of school experiences.  Yes, I am a pro.

Once upon a time, I cried dropping the kids off at school.  This is, of course, laughable now.  No more tears from me on the first day of school.

There was a brief, almost tearful, nanosecond today when I realized this was the last first day of elementary school for my daughter (assuming she buckles down and doesn't need to repeat this year).  The nanosecond passed quickly and I gleefully dropped my "angels" off at school.  I now reserve tears for the last day of school before summer vacation.

I was once a helicopter mom. I counted the hours waiting to hear a minute by minute account of their days.  My kiddos ALWAYS disappointed me in their remarkable inability to recount much of anything from their day.

At dinner I would prompt them with never-ending unanswered questions.
Eventually, I would resort to, "Did you learn anything new today?"
They would look at each other, shrug, and respond in unison with, "Nah."


So this year I am turning over a new leaf.  I am selling my helicopter.
I.Will. Not. Be. A. Helicopter. Mom.
I.Will. Not. Be. A. Helicopter. Mom.
I.Will. Not. Be. A. Helicopter. Mom.
I.Will. Not. Be. A. Helicopter. Mom.

Yes, I have my homework cut out for me.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Are We There Yet?

Long road trips are a time for family members to reflect on just how much they hate long family road trips.

I could go on and on and on about our recent long road trip, but I'm willing to bet it's remarkably similar to every other family's long road trip.

Here is one sentence summing up our recent road trip:
A 10 hour road trip morphs into an ugly 12 hour adventure due to traffic, mother nature, emergency pee breaks, and one vomiting son.

Who can't relate to that, right?  Just your typical 12 hour journey to hell and back.  Woohoo! Are we there yet? Nope, only 11 more hours to go!

After miraculously surviving that experience, I prepared for my post road trip pity party.  You know what that includes, right?

You arrive home from the long road trip and immediately begin drowning in dirty laundry and unopened mail, while trying to figure out where that strange smell is coming from...What IS that smell?

Just prior to that fun experience, my sister helped me put it all in perspective.

She has three children between the ages of 2 and 7.  In addition to traffic and thunderstorms, I know her trip included emergency pee breaks, unstoppable "Are we there yet?" whining, and crying (most likely from her husband).

Upon arriving home to an obscene smell and 13 pounds of junk mail, I texted her to see if she had arrived home safely.

Here is our text message exchange:

Me:  You home yet?

Sis:  We left at 3:40 AM.  Only 4 more hours.  Got stuck in McDonalds because Ellery's fairies wouldn't come out of the bathroom.

Me:  Huh?

Sis:  Ellery's fairies wouldn't come out of bathroom stall. This is a true story!

Me:  That's hilarious!

Sis:  Yeah.  Freaking hysterical.

Sis:  Line full of peeps waiting to pee and I have a sobbing 4 year old talking about her missing fairies.  Someday this will be funny, right?

Me:  I assume the fairies finally cooperated?

Sis:  Only after I made a big deal about seeing glittery flutters on her palm.  We looked certifiable.

So, dear readers, until you find yourself hours from home in a tiny stall with a sobbing four year old who refuses to leave without her fairies, consider your road trip a complete breeze!

At least right up until you realize what's causing that smell.  Then all bets are off as you realize traffic and a vomiting son is nothing compared to the cause of that smell.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Exercise with Children

My husband is a health nut.  Well, to be fair, he's really more of an exercise advocate. He has, and I am not kidding you, only missed 2 days of exercise in over 2 years.  2 years!

He frequently sends me links to articles in hopes of encouraging me to get off my fat ass and exercise more.   The latest article "Lack of Exercise asDeadly as Smoking, Study Finds" seems to suggest that instead of just feeling guilty about not exercising, I could have been chain smoking instead.  Is there no justice?

So recently, in an effort to get him off my back show him I value his every word, I started exercising with my children.  This was a hair brain idea and you should not attempt this at home.  Seriously.  Don't do this.

First, I convinced my 11 year old to go for a run with me.  I was hoping for a slow 2 mile jog where we would watch butterflies fly by us while talking about boys, puberty, and my love for her.

Yeah, I'm a numbskull. 

Instead my daughter viewed this leisurely trot as a sprint event.  From a distance I realized my daughter resembled a gazelle.  At least, that was my impression as sweat (or was it tears?) poured into my eyes creating a blurry vision of my little girl smoothly gliding away from me.  She was graceful, fast, and focused.  It was beautiful to watch until she was so far ahead, I could no longer see her.   

She was sweet enough to circle back around to me.  
At that point, she looked puzzled as she asked, "Mom, when did you get so slow?"
I would have responded but I couldn't breathe. 

Two days later my ego was nearly healed when I decided to take my 9 year old son to the bike path.  I thought he could ride his bike while I ran behind him.  Well, that's a total joke.  No way could I keep visuals on him.  I certainly tried but my legs were no match for my son's biking speed.  I did draw stares from other runners as they passed me.  I can only assume they were overcome by the smell of blood, sweat, and tears emitting from every pore of my body. 

My son waited patiently for me and then asked, "Geeez, mom, did you take a break or something?" 

Again, I couldn't form an adequate response since I was unable to breathe.

I can only assume exercise is contraindicated for my physical well-being.

To celebrate my renewed, albeit limited, interest in exercise, I took the kids out for ice cream.   

Shhhhhh.  Don't tell my exercise advocate!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Olympic Gold

I got Olympic gold. 
In fact I got several of them.  It was as easy as ordering a drink at a bar.  Mostly because my "Olympic Gold" is a drink at a bar.

Olympic fever is in the air.  Blessedly, that includes the beach bar at the resort where we stay during our summer vacation. Thus the "Olympic Gold" drink special.

Let's face it, if it weren't for the drink special, I would never get Olympic Gold.

For starters, I do not have the Olympic spirit.  As I watch an obscene amount of Olympics, I see cyclists crash their bikes, get back on, and continue racing.  I see swimmers swim and win a relay in the qualifying heat only to be excluded from swimming in the finals.  I see a footless man run a race, and I learn about countless athletes overcoming amazing stories of adversity in pursuit of Olympic gold.

On the flip side of the Olympic athlete is me.  I am a total sissy. 
If my bike crashed, I would curl up in the fetal position and cry like a baby.  I lack the Olympic spirit.  Completely. 

I also lack athleticism which is also apparently key to achieving true Olympic gold.

Excuse me, I need to take another swig of my Olympic Gold.
Mmmm.  Now where was I?

Perhaps I'm not an Olympic athlete because my mother didn't push me enough. 
While Olympians spent their childhoods perfecting their skills, my mother allowed me to sit outside and play in the dirt.  Yes, I am going to blame my mother for giving me a fun-filled childhood.  Mom, thanks a lot! 

Instead of trying to get my face on a box of Wheaties, my biggest challenge as a child was trying to hide as much junk as possible under my bed in an effort to make my room look clean.  This is no easy task and I suggest it becomes an Olympic sport.

In fact, there is an activity I want added as an Olympic event.
I would definitely make it to the Olympic trials if not go all the way to the gold.  After giving this an incredible amount of thought while sipping on my Olympic gold, I would like to recommend the following as the next Olympic sport:

Sock matching. 

That's right, people.  I could totally be a contender for gold if sock matching would ever get the respect it deserves.

I do the laundry for four people.  This means there are, at this very moment, 6,273 individual socks in my house.  I can match 6,272 within 5 minutes.  I hold on to the last sock indefinitely because I just know the second I throw it away its beloved match will be found.

Alas, there are not many 39-ish year old Olympians.  For this reason, if I want to experience Olympic greatness up close, my kids are going to have to bring home the gold.  I would like to propose the following activities be future Olympic "sports." This will up the odds of those two unambitious children being able to bring mommy home a gold:

-  Nose picking.  Gross, yes, but it's a talent.  You've got to lack all shame and be totally  committed to really digging deep.  I've got a child up to that challenge.

-  Lego scattering.  Please don't confuse this with actually building a Lego structure.  I'm talking about the ability to take a set of small Lego pieces and as quickly as possible scatter them throughout an area.  For the sake of argument, let's say the area is a house.  A bronze medalist may be able to scatter Legos to 2-3 rooms within a 20 second period, but a true champion can scatter Legos to all four corners of the house and leave a couple in the bathtub just for good measure. 

Yeah, I'm really proud of my Olympic hopefuls.

Now, please excuse me.  I'm about to get another Olympic Gold.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Olympic "Spirit"

The Olympics inspire hope, increase patriotism, showcase incredible talent, and remind me of how absolutely un-Olympian I am.

Perhaps it's the fact that I'm breathless after carrying loads of laundry up a flight of stairs.  Maybe it's the fact that when I chase my children, they never get caught.  Or maybe it's the realization that my definition of "swimming" includes a raft and a cocktail. The sad fact is, the Olympics puts my athletic ineptness into sharper focus.

As if that's not sad enough for me, now the Olympics is calling my libido into question, too.  Why does it always come back to sex?

Read this and you'll understand what I mean:  Will You Still Medal in the Morning?

Ok, I cannot lie. I am a little surprised.
I'm not surprised that gorgeous, young, physically fit athletes are having sex in the Olympic Village.  Nah, that's not surprising.  Have you seen these olympians? Sex between consenting, athletic, beautiful people happens all the time in my imagination, in the Olympic Village, and in works of fiction.

This is what surprises me: "At the 2000 Sydney Games, 70,000 condoms wasn't enough, prompting a second order of 20,000 and a new standing order of 100,000 condoms per Olympics."

Only 100,000 condoms?
Yeah, that's right.  Olympic Village needs more condoms.

Do the math.

There are more than 10,000 athletes at the London Olympics.
The Olympics last 16 days.
That's 10 condoms per athlete with less less than 1 condom per day per athlete.

Maybe I've been watching men's swimming and diving events too long, but I think they better order more condoms.  Any sexually frustrated housewife can tell you, the men's swim teams need their own supply of condoms.  Just one look at those wet, buff bodies and you will agree I need to stop watching every men's swim event.  I wish I could say I'm just showing my patriotism, but I didn't see a single skeet competition.  Not one.

Seriously, have you seen them swim?  Strong, hard bodies swimmers.  Seriously, I need to watch other events.  Somehow I don't think it should be men's gymnastics or men's track.

Ironically enough, I'm writing this while my husband watches woman's volleyball.


I am no Olympian.  A statement that shocks no one, I know.