Thursday, October 31, 2013

I think I'm going to throw-up while simultaneously crying. This won't end well.

Today I ran out the door at 7:28 to try and get to the new sunrise chapel at OC by 7:30. I wanted to support the students that have put it together - because they deserve it.

In order to do that, I slapped Mia's vampire make-up on her face, ran to Bode's room for 2.9 seconds to see him in his costume, and on the way out the door I yelled over my shoulder to remind Andy that the Halloween parties start at 2:45 and I can't come this time because I have a bible study at 2:15, and he will have to be the mom, and to be sure and start at Bode's class and then go to Mia's because it's Bode's first class party and he needs you the most, but don't forget about Mia because she needs you too.......

And then I started crying. And I haven't been able to stop.

I swear sometimes I think I can't do this. This whole working mom thing. This whole mom thing. I feel guilty when I'm fulfilled by my work, and I feel guilty when I love my kids more. I feel guilty when Andy has to do the laundry, and I feel guilty when it takes a ring around the toilet to remind me that it needs to be cleaned.

And don't even get me started about graduate school. If you remind me that I chose to do this, I might end your life, accidentallyonpurpose.

I used to do laundry on Wednesdays and clean on Fridays. Now I do bible studies on Wednesdays and more bible studies on Fridays. It's good, meaningful work, and I am proud of it. But I was also quite proud of my clean house and my clean underwear.

When will this whole life thing get easy?

I don't like to get on rants about how hard it is to be a woman. But, dang, it's hard to be a woman. Your heart is always in two different places.

I remember when Mia was first born, lying in bed listening to Andy talk to one of his buddies on the phone. They were talking about the new movie they just saw, and the book they were reading, and the new album that just came out. And I burst into tears because I had nothing going on but this little crying, pooping, bundle of stress and complete joy and I couldn't imagine ever getting to watch a movie again in my entire life.

And today, I'm crying because I have more going on than I ever wanted - most of it good. And the thought of sitting still long enough to see a movie doesn't even sound fun anymore.

We tell each other all the time that we can't have it all. But the irony is, we have no choice but to have it all sometimes. Not all of us have the choice to be an employee or a mother or a student or a mentor or a leader or a domestic engineer maid.

I guess what we need to tell each other (and ourselves) is that we will have it all whether we want it or not. What we can't have is perfection. That illusive b**** that dangles itself in front of us and whispers in our ear that we are almost there...that if we try just a little bit harder we will get it.

Perfection is the devil that is trying like crazy to keep us from experiencing grace.

Today it almost won.


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Halloween is over. Thank goodness.

Halloween gets so overdone around here that by the time the actual day rolls around I'm so over it.  In fact, I started thinking about it and realized my children have never actually trick-or-treated in their lives.

I see this as a victory.

There's trunk-or-treat at church, trick-or treat in the OC dorms, and a costume parade at school. I declare that enough for one holiday.
Leave it to Mia to be a demented looking vampire. Although I'll take this any day over a princess.
OC trick-or-treat is like a huge college reunion. If that college reunion were in a tiny, cramped hallway of your old dormitory. Which it is.
 Mia's friends are sweet things like sock monkeys and Mary Poppins.

 The boy cousins had a Star Wars theme this year. At the rate these little nerds are going, they will be dressing as Star Wars characters for at least ten more years.
 Halloween costumes are cuter the smaller they are. Case in point: Cohen as a shark.
I would say I love Halloween because I get to pilfer through my kids candy buckets, but let's be real, I'm a grown up now and I can buy myself candy whenever I want.

And I do. A lot. Like, almost every day. Ok, fine, every day. Fine, multiple times a day.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


I think I can sum  up our life the past week or so via Instagram pictures.

I accompanied Bode's class to the pumpkin patch. In true Oakdale fashion there were more adults there than children. 
Bode has turned into quite the politician. He spent the entire trip high-fiving, winking, hand-shaking, back slapping, and fist-bumping his friends. It was equally creepy and adorable.

My child officially came in last place at the Oakdale Rocket Run. I was a little under the weather so my sister came to town to run with the kids. She said at one point they were so far behind that their wasn't a single person in view from any direction. If you know Mia this will not surprise you one bit. She's much too busy daydreaming to care about a silly race.

Ringo thought he was the bombdiggity the other day when he realized the batteries on his shock collar were low and he could blow right past the invisible fence.

He spent the rest of the day locked in the garage, so the joke was on him. Sucker.

Life has been busy but so, so blessed.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

My Latest Reads

Continuing with my obsession with terrifying memoirs I read this little ditty about growing up inside Scientology. I'm not about to open up a religious can of worms on this blog, but, yikes. Yikes, yikes, yikes.

I re-read this book just to try and conjure up some more strength to survive living with Mia for the next nine years. Every parent of a girl should read this. It's so spot-on. This book inspired Tina Fey to write the movie Mean Girls. Yah, it's that depressing.
 Next on my list is Wiseman's companion book, Masterminds and Wing Men. All about boys and their weird relationships with each other.
If anyone wants to start a support group for Moms of girls (or guys for that matter), I'm in. Because, geesh, sometimes this parenting thing really blows.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Mia's latest reads

One of my favorite things about Mia is her love of reading. She is in that glorious phase of life where she wants to do nothing but read all day - and actually can.

Oh to be nine-years-old and have nothing on your to-do list but take out the trash and read. 

I'm not bitter....
Last Sunday Mia read Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing and Superfudge in the same day (Ok, fine, I let her read all the way through church and it wasn't the bible. My secret's out).
*By the way, don't let your kid read these two Judy Blume classics if they still believe in Santa Clause. She kind of blows that theory out of the water. Thankfully, I ruined the whole Santa Clause thing for Mia a long time ago.
This month we are reading Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia Maclachlan together. It's one of my favorites.
Of course there is the Harry Potter series, of which Mia is obsessed. At this point she has read through book four. The rest will have to wait until she is a little bit older, as the subject matter is too mature for a nine-year-old (in my opinion).

The Land of Stories books by Chris Colfer, are Mia's "second favorite after Harry Potter, of course."

Two new ones she's reading are George's Secret Key to the Universe by Lucy and Stephen Hawking and

Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. This is the fist book in a series about what happens to Peter Pan after the movie.
And in case you were curious, so far the only book Bode has shown the least bit of interest in reading is the Lego Star Wars Character Encyclopedia. The other day I tried to get him to look at some animal books with me and he said, "Mom, I'm not like Mia. I don't like to learn things."

Duly noted, son.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Slumber Parties; A love/hate relationship

Some of my most vivid memories of adolescence have to do with slumber parties. Also, these memories are the reason I am an anti-slumber party mom. 

Slumber parties bring out the worst in girls. Every slumber party I ever attended was spent fighting about something, but the worst one was when a girl wrote "I hate somebody here" in lipstick on the bathroom mirror. The next 8 hours were spent in a drama triangle of accusations, secrets, and tears.

Didn't you just love being 13? Don't you wish you could just go back and relive the fairy tale? Yah, me either.
However, as much as I am anti-slumber party, I also understand that slumber parties are a rite of passage and every girl has to experience the horror at some time in their life.
My plan for Mia's first slumber/birthday party was to not leave these little rugrats alone for a single second. I also just went ahead and laid out my expectations to all of them that the next 16 hours we were going to be in the drama-free zone.

Thankfully, these little girls aren't quite to the "Moms are complete idiots" stage and were cool with me nosing my way into every thing they did or said.
And finally, my hours of browsing Pinterest paid off. The girls decorated cereal bowls with sharpie markers (then we baked them in the oven for two hours on 350 - so easy)...
 and made their own trail mix to eat while they watched Mary Poppins.

The next morning we had a cereal bar and used our decorated bowls to eat out of. (And by the way, don't waste your time with a cereal bar for eight and nine-year-olds. They only want to eat Lucky Charms - all day every day.)
I swear every year of this kid's life is my favorite, and I am certain nine will be no exception.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

They are so close they share Sea Monkeys

You know you have a best friend when you can't stand that she has not yet had the sheer pleasure of owning her own sea monkeys, and so you stick your hand down into a filthy, slimy, murky, germ infested sea monkey castle and scoop out a handful of the wonderful mystery that is the sea monkey, and give them to her.
And together, you create a make-shift sea monkey castle for your BFF's new pets and you carefully divide the 1/8th of a teaspoon of a food that comes with them and put it into a tiny baggie so your bff's sea monkeys can thrive in their new environment.
Now that's love.