Saturday, April 30, 2011

Was I ever that young?

Since the weather was so nice today we decided a trip to the beach was long over due. like, 10 months over due.
The beach- where sun meets sand meets water in a trifecta of daytime AWESOME.
Normally I HATE sand. (I live at the beach and I hate sand, WTH?) At some point you have to give in. Mostly it's the work and effort that goes into a day at the beach with kids. I dread it.  But usually, the less planning the beach involves the more pleasant the trip. So we packed some chairs and towels.
We parked in the dollar store parking lot, which meant buying some $ store treasures. Like a sand bucket, shovel, bubbles and water. Then we walked to the beach.

This craptastic scene unfolded before us, it was like a I Spy book:

  • college girl with *ahem* glaucoma 
  • college boy thirsty for "rocky mountain water"
  • 50ish year old, over tanned woman in black string THONG strutting around
  • 80 pound skeleton college girl frolicking with boyfriend
  • overly fake tan girl who's friends kept saying "lay off the tanning" in which she replied "oh mah gaud, i'm totally white right now!"
  • All-organic snack noshing hippy parents with 1 year old child in cloth diapers
  • beanie wearing, long haired, board short sagging douche bag
  • dreadlock guy cliff jumping- barely making the cliff. 
  • surfer guy surfing same waves as the skim boarders
  •  mom making kick ass sand castle
  • people yelling in foreign language, possibly cursing
  • dudes peacocking
  • girls with bad posture. (side note- maybe girls should start peacocking... might improve alignment)
Overall a very successful day at the beach. We went, we played, we built, we got wet, we judged, we left. What else is there to do at the beach with kids? Luckily with the small amount of wares we had to carry we were in and out in a jiffy.

You know, I remember a time (barely) when I was young and hot and single and young and hot. I would go to the beach and the only thing my eyes would see were guys. When I go to the beach now all my eyes see are skinny bitches and little boys. Luckily, I know their eyes do not see me so I in no way feel self conscious about myself or my body. If I were surrounded by other moms I would TOTALLY feel self conscious and absolutely compare myself to the other moms around. I'm thinking that going to a youth beach is the best way to go. I can relax and know nobody is judging me (how can they judge me when they don't even SEE me???),  I don't have to worry about other kids throwing sand in my kids' faces, nobody cares how i'm parenting, and my kids won't stay long enough for me to worry about how sunburned we're getting. Which we're not because as a mom I pack 3 different types of SPF 5,000.  Spray, lotion and face sunblock. Guess who won't be waking up with a lobster back?? A hangover maybe (I love me some cold beer after a hot day at the beach) but save the aloe and asprin for the twentyteen year olds. 


Friday, April 29, 2011

Tour of shameless self promotion

So yeah, I did it. I joined a mommy blog directory. I don't know, it seemed like a good idea at the time. Although many ideas DO sound good after 3 glasses of wine. But alas, now I find myself in the arena of marketing and advertising. Both of which I did not study or obtain a degree in college. Now here I am reading "marketing for dummies" and watching a lot of Charlie's Sheen's tour clips. So far I've learned-

Rule #1: remind your readers that you are trying to gain readers, NEW readers, votes and clicks.  Daily reminders will serve this purpose
Rule #2: blast it all over your Facebook, myspace and twitter accounts. Send texts, emails, phone calls, faxes and pigeon couriers.
Rule #3: Do not bribe anyone, or create a contest for votes as this is an automatic DQ from the system. (no, not a delicious peanut butter and chocolate blizzard. Damn.)
Rule #4: Inform your audience that they can (and should) vote and click EVERY DAY and that is, in fact, the desired effect.
Rule #5: makes links highly visible on your page. Your audience can't click it if they don't see it.
Rule #6: do a blog entry about how you're trying to get your ranking up and how your readers can help  you.

I'm pretty sure I can do this. All I need are some sweet banners and a great header picture, and someone who knows about websites and how to make them great. Someone who understands the ins and outs of internet marketing and advertising... someone I know personally. Someone who possibly has a team of designers and creative artists and advertising portals. If only I knew such a person.....

I'm still tweaking out my website so be patient and don't freak out of things change.

So let's recap:

so when you see this button on my page 
<------------  click it and i'll automatically
                   get the vote. 

(go ahead... click it)
    when you see this button it's to rate me. I'll put both of them at the end of my posts. 

You know it took me 45 minutes to do this post trying to figure everything out? i'm not even sure if it's all going to work. If it's wrong, well, my feelings did it. 

Thursday, April 28, 2011

My feelings made me do it Part Deux

My kids like to ask me a lot why they have to wear seat belts. I know I should come up with some scary and clever answer. Something like, if you don't wear your seat belt your face will get slammed into the window if we turn too sharply. Or, if you don't wear your seat belt and we hit a bump then you'll crack your skull on the roof of the car. Or if I slam on the brakes you'll go flying through the windshield. But they would never believe any of that. So instead I used a good ol' standby:

 The Police will come after us.
No, not that police

I tell them that if they don't put on their seat belts than the police will take me away to prison. When really I'll get slapped with a fat ticket, high probability my car will get impounded, possible jail time. I'm old enough to know NOT to look up to Britney Spears as a parental role model. And honestly, I just have too much to do. Jail time would really cut into my to-do list. 

So the other day on the way to school my Son took off his seat belt to reach his backpack which was on the floor of his sister's side of the car. IMMEDIATELY his sister yelled, "MOM! He took his seat belt off!!!!"
I wish. I'd be running
 red lights
all over town

I bark out, "Hey YOU, with the seat belt off! Get it back on or the police are going to come after us!" (and then we're going to have to try to out run them, go on the lam, dye our hair and change our names. so. much. work.)
Of course my daughter has all the answers, she says to me,
"it's ok mom, if the police get us, I'll just tell the police that my feelings told you to do it."
What the what? That I did it??
"yeah Mom, it's ok. We'll just tell them that my feeling made you do it, and you're sorry and it will be ok."

We will save the feelings logic for law breaking that occurs under our own roof. Like when one of my kids spills their milk*, doesn't put their bike away, dumps out my brand new mineral makeup, or pushes their brother. And when I say "kids" what I really mean is "kid" as in "youngest, female offspring"

*coincidentally- my youngest terrorist child spilled her milk (after .5 seconds earlier she had been reminded to keep her cup on the table and not to spill) ((as I was writing this entry)) all over the: 
1) brand new table cloth 
2) recently mopped floor
3) recently polished chair

She ran downstairs. After my tirade she came back up to apologize... which went something like this
"Mom, I'm sorry my feelings made me spill my milk."

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

my feelings made me do it

These were my kids' Easter baskets. Like a smart mom, I made sure to put all my favorite candy inside. Knowing full well one of them doesn't like chocolate and the other doesn't like jelly beans. Naturally there will be leftover candy. So we've devised a candy system in our house. It's called "Candy Roll-over".

Here's how it works: any candy not consumed in one session gets "rolled-over" to the next day. Or holiday. Or into the trash. It all depends on how much I like the candy.  So daddy does a clean sweep of the loot and stashes it. Sometimes we use it as bribes, sometimes we snack on it late at night (I love to eat chocolate after a glass of wine. ok FINE, a FEW glasses of wine.)

The only flaw in this system is the location of this candy. A robber or burglar usually stakes out the joint before he robs it right? Marks the times and habits of the people coming and going? Well, those are my midget thieves. They've staked out our bedroom. I think they came up with a sort of coup of misbehavior so they would get timeouts in our room. They had to act fast- they only had a three minute window, but that's all they would need.

My Youngest Midget Thief was sent to time-out this evening. Upon her return she went to directly to her father- she wanted answers:

YMT- "Daddy! Why do you have my easter candy??!" she demanded to know.

D- "What are you talking about?" he said, a little too innocently... he knew she was onto him.

YMT-"Daddy, I saw it in your drawer."  Whoops.

D- "What were you doing in my drawer?" Busted.

YMT-"Uhhhhhhh, I wasn't in your drawer." This ought to be good.

D- "Oh Really?"

YMT- "No. I wasn't. My feelings were. They told me the candy was in there"

    Backstory: My baby girl has many imaginary things. A castle where everything there is better than anything you have here. Complete with an imaginary Pink mom and pink horse. She also has her feelings. This one is a little more difficult to explain. In a nutshell it is her scapegoat for EVERYTHING. If she trips, she says her feelings pushed her. If she pushes someone, it was her feelings. If she was somewhere she shouldn't have been, it was her feelings that told her to go there. If she was doing something she wasn't supposed to be doing, her feelings made her do it. 

"My feelings told me the candy was in there." My feelings made me do it. 
I would love to see how that holds up in a court.  Criminally insane, that's what she'd be called. Just look at her. The little candy-stealing-conspirator-feelings-blamer.

Calling in sick

I discovered I was getting sick on Sunday. Easter Sunday. The sore throat, the fuzzy head, the sleepiness... that was me.
By Monday I was full blown sick. On my way to take my daughter to her dentist appointment I got into a fender bender. My fault. Or actually, it was Nyquil's fault. Next came Costco, then Trader Joes, then home to drop off cold items, then I had to pick up my son, drop off and pick up dry cleaning, then back home, finish unloading the car and putting everything away. Enter Dayquil. A 2 hour nap later while the children merrily play with their toys and watch a movie I feel a little bit better. I look around me and realize this house isn't going to clean itself. I start with the dishes, then laundry, clean the Diva's room (discover all the clothes she has shoved under the bed), more laundry then dinner.
Feed family, fold laundry, bathe children, supervise teeth brushing, bed time stories, fold more laundry.

Enter NyQuil. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.
Upon waking up this morning I contemplate calling in sick. I imagine it will go something like this:

Speak to boss: "good morning honey, i'm calling in sick"
Daddy gets kids ready for school, makes their lunches and drops them off at school. I sleep for another 3 hours. I wake up and decide to make some tea and toast. I sit cross legged on my couch in big slouchy socks, sweat pants, and a knit sweater. I'm surrounded by used tissues, there are empty tea mugs scattered about and a plate of toast.  A dear friend picks my kids up from school and takes them to the park for 2 hours. I take a nap. A different friend comes over with flowers, does a load of laundry for me, straightens up the house, does the dishes and refills my tea mug.  Friend with my kids brings them home and makes dinner.
Daddy comes home early. Bathes children, supervises teeth brushing, reads bed time stories. He then puts away clean laundry. Discovers me asleep on the couch. Picks me up without strain, carries me to bed and refills my bedside glass of water.
The next day I wake up feeling refreshed.
The reality of today, thus far:
Wake up, drag self out of bed and make coffee. Realize I haven't showered or changed my clothes in 3 days. Prepare chocolate milk breakfast for kids and wake them up. Take shower. Get dressed. Get kids dressed. Make lunch. Everything goes very smoothly. We are actually going to be on time! 1st born- go get your back pack, I have everything else. 2nd born- get your shoes I have everything else. I feel so proud that this morning, in my deathly sickness I am rocking! I wait in car. 1st born comes back with ginormous toy, no backpack. 2nd born comes out with armfuls of toys and scarf, no shoes. SERIOUSLY??
GO GET YOUR BACKPACK! GO GET YOUR SHOES! 3 more trips in and out of the house they finally got it right.  We ended up being 15 minutes late for school.
Finally both kids are at school and I can relax. Until it's time to take the car in for it's estimate. My body obviously didn't get the memo that mom's aren't supposed to get sick.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Lets go to the movies

When you have babies there are some things you can and can not do. Movies are one of the things you can NOT do. BUT- when your youngest is able to sit through an entire movie at the movie theatre, you have just seen the light at the end of your toddler tunnel.

For a long time Big Daddy and I would take the kids to the movies. They would make it 15 minutes into it and then we would have to leave. We would proceed to the box office and inform them that our A.D.D. toddlers could not sit through the entire movie. We were then refunded all of our money. The beauty of this scenario is that, as far as the kids are concerned... we just went to the movies! They think we saw lots of 3 minute movies. Score 1 for us.

Now, at (almost) 5 and 7 years old they can sit through an entire movie. The new level of agitation is the "mom I need more popcorn, mom he/she has more popcorn than me, mom I have to pee, mom I'm thirsty, mom is the lady going to die? Mom do we have anything to eat? Mom is this a scary part? Mom! Gross!! make them stop kissing!!!"  The best part about this, is that they use that loud whisper voice. You know the one I'm talking about.

So I've made a "Movie theatre survival guide".   (I obviously, freaking love lists.) Also, apparently I've turned into one of those moms that packs her own snacks for the show. I never thought it possible. I'm dying a little inside because of it BUT- I get to leave the theatre with my sanity and money in tact. So here are the things you'll need for a trip to the big screen:

  • a peeled orange, segmented. The citrus smell is wonderful in a stuffy theatre. That, and it's quiet. 
  • a tooth cleaner. The kind with a pick on the end
  • buy the jumbo popcorn. If your family eats it then go big, or go home
  • buy the soda. Have them dilute it with 1/2 water. (carbonated or not) It's amazing how much Barq's root beer still tastes like Barq's root beer when it's watered down by HALF. 
  • take gummy snacks. I don't know why but for some reason it's like a pacifier for bigger little kids. I recommend Annies fruit snacks from Costco, but hide the box in your closet. 
  • any of their favorite snacks from home. i.e. goldfish, saltines, pretzels, whatever you have, because for some reason, as soon as the lights go down they are STARVING TO DEATH. 
  • baby wipes. With all the eating and doling out of food you don't want anything gross and sticky to end up on your clean yoga pants. 
  • and don't forget your flask

This should get you through that 2.5 break in the day when you are not folding laundry, wiping someone's butt, washing dishes or cleaning in any way. Don't worry though, that will all be waiting for you when you get home .

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Hair it is

I recently made a drastic change to my hair. Going from simple brown to reddish, reddy, red. It was red. Not really auburn, or burgundy. Just RED.  I haven't been this color for oh...... 12  years? So it was a little drastic. Anybody who knows me knows I'm all about the drastic. But not every lady is. Some women love to have the same hair style. It suits them, they like it, they'll keep it forever. That's fine.  I just think some people need to learn how to deal with others people's drastic hair changes.

Here are some "tells" that a person doesn't like/approve/understand your hair change:

"wow, you cut your hair"
translation: your hair was so much prettier long. I'm in shock.

"Oh my gosh, you're hair is so blond!"
translation: you look totally washed out. Also i'm jealous you did it before me.

"Did you dye your hair darker?"
translation: wow that dark hair totally ages you.

"I've never seen your hair so straight"
translation: you look like a troll

"I've never seen your hair so curly"
translation: you look like Richard Simmons

These phrases are NEVER good. EVER. Luckily for you, I've been changing my hair long enough to know the nice things to say to people when they change their hair.

Someone cut their hair short-
"Wow! Your hair looks FANTASTIC short!"
Reason: When someone cuts inches, nay, FEET of hair off, it is a hard adjustment for them. Do NOT leave any room in your compliment for doubt. They are probably really struggling with the shock of the cut so praise it. PRAISE, COMPLIMENT, PRAISE. Especially if they are unsure.

Someone went blonde-
"Wow! You look GREAT blonde!"
Reason: When someone goes lighter, like, DRASTICALLY lighter (especially if they were much darker before) they really need encouragement. So always be nice with the compliments.... because going blonde, really fries your hair. Their hair will never be as shiny again.  So let them feel good about it for now.

Someone went darker-
"Wow! Lovin' the dark locks! So sexy!"
Reason: There is something sultry and sexy about dark hair. Maybe that is the reason why they made the change. Even if they are not pulling it off at all they know how hard it is going to be to lighten their hair should they choose to do that. So embrace their darker do. Even if it makes them look like an evil witch.

Someone has curlier hair-
"ohh... mah... gad.... You look totally amazing with curly hair!"
Reason: straight haired people always want curly hair. So when they do it, applaud them for their courageousness. They'll want their straight hair back in a few days. So let them have their moment (or week... depending on how long they keep it).

Someone has straighter hair-
"ohh... mah... gad... You look totally sleek and sexy with straight hair!"
Reason: They are so use to more voluminous hair. They need the volume to make their big face smaller. They know it doesn't look good on them... but don't let them know that. One wash and it will be curly again.

When all else fails.... LIE. If you hate someone's new, drastic hair change... LIE. Tell them it looks amazing. polka dot hair? Beautiful. Skunk streaks? Stunning! Brassy highlights that cost $200? Breathtaking. It costs a lot of money and a lot of courage to change hair so be gentle with these fragile souls. Always compliment. Anytime you ask someone if they changed their hair they know you hate it. "you cut your hair?!" "no, I grew 3 feet. Of COURSE I cut it, but what do you THINK??"

The first thing out of your mouth should be a compliment upon realizing a friend's new hair. Period.  Remember the whole "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all?" It applies here. Only we're going to change it to:

 "If you can't say something nice, then hurry up and say 'I LOVE IT!' so they don't freak out and assume you  hate it instantly upon seeing it."

You can never go wrong with:
"I love it!"
"It's looks amazing!"
"you look phenomenal!"

And remember- NEVER address someone's new do' with a question. Unless that question is:
"Can I have your stylist's number to book an appointment for myself immediately?"

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Spring Break, you Bitch

Remember when Spring Break meant buying new bikinis, new shorts, booking a flight to some sunny, warm location and making sure you were current on your birth control?

Yeah me neither. But still, Spring Break means exactly that. A break in the spring time. Kicking Mr. Winter's butt out the door, shaking off our rugs and getting some nice, clean fresh air. Even if it just means reading a book in a lawn chair on the grassy part of your apartment complex with a pitcher of margaritas next to you. (yes... that sounds more familiar)

Now fast forward to the part where you're married, live in a house and have kids.

Are you done screaming yet? Me neither.

Ok. That was much needed. While it is nice to take a break from the chaotic morning routine of backpacks, missing socks, lost library books and chronic coffee breath.... SB (Spring Break) allows us to see the downside of parenting.

Since we're not going anywhere for spring break, I get to stay at home with my brood and drink Pina Coladas at noon and contemplate the dark side of SB.

Reason for popping a Xanax at 10am-
9:54 am "mom can I have gummies?" "mom, do you want to  buy these gummies?"  (as i'm writing this The Diva is asking me for gummies)
9:55 "Mom, can I get some play doh?"
9:56 "Mom, I'm starving, I need gummies"
9:57 "mom! she hit me!"
9:58 "mom, can I have those gummies you bought? my tummy is really starving"
9:59 "mom, can I have the gummies now? Why does HE get GUMMIES FIRT?!?!?"
10:00am "mom, mom, *tap* *tap* mom, mom, mom, mooooooom, hey mom, mom? mom, mom! *tap* *tap*"
considering having my name legally changed to "Please"

On our way to the park midget 1 says "mom, I need my bike"
me: "no you don't, you can play on the playground"
under his breath : "*sigh* I really needed my bike. shit"
him: " I said I...... shhhhhhhhhhhoulda brought my toys!"  
This one is getting a little too good with his swear cover ups.

To be honest: if you're going to stay at home with your kids for SB there aren't enough movies in the theatre, sidewalk chalk, water balloons, or vodka to keep all of you sane. I would like to say that I have a bunch of links to share with you of all the fun things you do with your kids for SB... but NO. This is a bitch and moan site. Go find some over-achiever-mommy blog to get that stuff.

Another downside of parenting is having to parent.  You know, I'm a much better parent when they're not around.
We are only on day 3 of SB and so far so good. There is still plenty of fighting, but they're also playing really well too. If the sun was out we might be having MORE fun. But NOOOOO. It's overcast, cold and even a little rainy.  Oh spring, you moist deceiver you. Good thing my kids are too young to know how AWESOME SB really can be. Instead they think we're playing hooky from school. That's right- I LOWERED their expectations and it worked. Me-1, spring break-0.

So today we're off to the toy store to buy birthday presents for a party tomorrow. I will also say repeatedly "no you can't have that, no you can't have that, or that or these. stop hitting your sister with that bat."
And then it will be Xanax time.

So next year we will be leaving for the entire week off. Somewhere sunny, warm, tropical..... and with a kids club.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Airport rants

I knew coming to the airport  today would offer up much fodder for my next blog post. It didn't disappoint me. Here are some airport rants, direct for your reading pleasure. 

People waiting in line at airport security- you do not need to stand closer to me in hopes that I will take one step forward because the person in front of me did this. I am quite comfortable with the amount of space I have accumulated in this line. Do not ruin it for me. 

Sometimes people forget to take off their watch, sometimes they forget to take out their laptop. Sometimes you are delayed in this line for 30 more seconds (possibly less) because of this. SO WHAT. Unless your plane is boarding AT THIS MOMENT calm the F*&% down. We're in this together. 
Which leads me to this.....

Whenever I get to the security gate and I have my buckets full of my belongings and I stand there waiting for them to wave me through the metal detector... I start sweating. What if I fail this test? What if the people behind me start yelling? What if they *gasp* start rolling their eyes and letting out audible sighs??? what am I supposed to do?
The pressure is too much and I've sweated through my shirt. Why did I check my damn bag??

Airport security, you know they’re smooth when they can unhinge your bra strap with out you noticing.  She must have experience. Why was she winking at me?

What about airport bars? Where the hell are the cool people drinking? Because they are certainly not at the bars that I’m at. Oh my god. I’m not cool. 

Have you noticed how everyone at an airport seems so hurried even though most flight are running late? Are you glad you hurried to the seat you’re going to sit in for an hour and a half? Don’t get too comfortable; your gate is going to be changed.

On flying with kids. People, families have to fly too. Until they make  a “business only” flight you are out of luck. So suck it up. Don’t you have kids? Don’t you know someone with kids? Are you aware of the amount of liquor parents consume because of that? It  is hard. Traveling with kids sucks so please aim your look of impatience, disgust and “over it” attitude somewhere else.  Please.

Attention douchebag: just because we are stuck at this god forsaken gate together does not mean you should strike up a conversation with me. I’m not sure what part of my “leave me alone” set up you didn’t get. Was it the headphones? The texting? The rapid fire typing on my laptap? I am busy and in a hurry I don’t have time to talk.  Even though I’m stuck here for at least another hour.

We need to be able to drink at the gate. We've got LOTS of time to kill. More time, more booze, more money for the airport... I mean,  does it look like we’re driving anywhere?  We have a certified pilot to fly our drunk asses to where we need to go. Call it, glorified air taxi.  The kind you don’t have to tip.

Why do strangers STILL ask us if we can “keep an eye on their bag while they talk to the gate attendant”? Hey- do you not hear all the announcements about not leaving your baggage unattended? Oh- but that doesn’t apply to you.

Also- loud lady on your cell phone- the person on the other end can hear you just fine. You don’t need to raise your decibel level. Lucky for us we all know that your rash has cleared up just fine. Good luck finding anyone who will sit next to you.

Lady with the expensive hair- you are not special, your social ranking does not get you any perks in an airport. You are a drone just like the rest of us. Now- if you were in a wheelchair that would be another story. Look into breaking your hip for your next flight.

Luckily not all flight experiences are this obnoxious. My flight home was quite uneventful and smooth. They did hand me a red piece of paper and told me I needed to hand it to the next officer I saw... which I did not. whoops. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Explaining autism to 5 year olds

So today was the day I spoke to the midget's kindergarten class about autism. Perfect timing seeing that this month is autism awareness month. I decided on Sunday that I would take on this undertaking. Monday I spoke with the teacher and requested that Wednesday be the day. Obviously not much time to prepare. I would have liked to have finished my power point presentation complete with puppets, music and sound effects... but alas, i'm only a slacker. 

So a half assed rushed 8 minute speech was all I could come up with. In preparation I asked myself "how would I explain this to a 3 year old?" (One of my favorite things to say to people when they have over-complicated something by assuming I have information that I don't). This is what I came up with....

This is a regular normal kid. His head is open so that information can go into his brain. 

This is a piece of information. Maybe it's someone asking you a question. Maybe it's someone sneezing. Maybe it's the light in the ceiling. Either way, it goes into your brain. One piece of information at a time. 

This is how a non-autistic kid's brain processes that information. One piece at a time. Nice and neat and organized.

This is My first born male autistic child. 

Because he is autistic, he doesn't have filters like the rest of us have. So his brain takes in all the information at once. Someone asking him a question, a drawing on the wall, a foot tapping, water running, the refrigerator humming, his shirt tags itching him, someone talking near him. His brain absorbs all of this at once.

So this is what his brain does with the information. It has to sort through it and organize and process it. And since his brain is VERY busy doing this... some parts can't do their job. The parts that tell him to use his soft voice, or the parts that tell him to be patient and wait. His brain is working very hard all the time.

But luckily, the part of his brain that isn't busy is the part that helps him draw well. So he has learned to draw his feelings. If his brain is too busy, he can get upset, and then his brain is to busy to put into words how he feels. So he draws it. 

This is a picture of his dad telling him he couldn't do something.
(this is not a 100% accurate depiction of that situation. but it sort of gives you perspective on how he felt about it)

He was able to draw a picture that said "when daddy told me to stop [hence the stop sign] it made my heart sad because I really wanted to do that"

So if this little guy ever yells, or screams, or stomps around.... just remember that his brain is very full, and very busy. It's too busy to tell his mouth to talk  softly. 
When you see him wearing his headphones it is to block out all the extra information that comes into his brain. That way he can think more clearly and all the parts of his brain are free to do their jobs. 

~Obviously this explanation is only part of it, is over simplified and probably not even medically correct. But since i'm his mother I obviously know best. It is only a small portion of his autism but since I wanted the kids to be able to relate to it and understand it, that's what I came up with. They totally understood. They said "ohhhhhh, so it's his BRAIN. It's just really busy!" "EXACTLY!' I told them. So in their sweet innocent eyes, He is totally normal... his brain is to be blamed. Another little girl said "So it's like his brain is trying to be the boss of him". Ok, now I know it's over their heads. 
But at the end of the day there is an explanation of why he does the things he does. They might not understand 100%, but they know he's just like them in every way.... his brain just very busy, all of the time~

I know I must have taught them something, but they'll never learn as much as I have. This needed to be done as much for my sake as it was for theirs. I feel like I can be a better parent to him and a better person. Sometimes, we just need to simplify things in life to understand them better. 

Monday, April 11, 2011

Who's Special?

Midget #1 has a thing in his kindergarten class called "who's special?"  Every week it's a different kid. They bring in pictures, favorite toys, favorite books, awards, trophies, etc. etc.
This week it's his turn.

Over the weekend I thought a lot about what I was going to bring in and what not. I was thinking "what makes him special?" Duh. His autism. Lately he has been having a rather difficult time in school. Many tantrums and fits occurred last week. I even cancelled all his speech therapy for the next few weeks.  While he was out on a "cool-off" walk, the teacher was trying to explain to the class that he didn't mean to scare anyone, that he wasn't going to hurt anyone (yeah- the outburst was THAT bad), and that he was just having a hard time. So talking to the class this week should be a good follow up.

I'm also going to have Big Daddy come in and talk to the class about how he has autism and look at what he's accomplished. Like.... People with autism can be normal grown ups.
(i use the term "normal" loosely- especially when it comes to Big Daddy ;) )

These are stickers for card making,
They are from Christmas and
they are suppose to make
presents with bows. He didn't
see it that way. 
I've been preparing my presentation complete with props, index cards, poster board and the midget's drawings. Man this kid can draw.

 It isn't just that he can draw, it's that you truly get to see what goes on in his head when you look at his drawings. The way he sees simple shapes or the way he sees things 3 dimensionally. It's crazy.  It's autism. It's amazing.

He IS special.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Where are you going Tulips?

So yeah, They're super pretty. But why do they hate my house? Why are they trying to escape? Is my house so awful? Is the air gross? I know my dog's farts are disgusting but really??

Maybe it's the yellow tulips. Maybe they're the ones causing all the trouble. Suppose purple tulips are of superior intellect and know more than the yellow tulips. Suppose the yellow tulips have bad breath and the purple tulips are trying to avoid the gaseous odor.

It's official. Purple is DEFINITELY trying to avoid the yellow tulips. why? I don't know know. I'm not a horticulturist. I'm just a lady who buys flowers, duh. But trying to integrate both colors into the same vase might have been a bad idea. See this purple tulip? It WAS in the middle of the group. Then it got the idea that it was going to high tail it to the kitchen. The purple tulips are not following the sunlight. They are fanning out in all directions (see photo 1)

I'm not too worried about it. Until I actually see them with a hobo bag thumbing it on the side of the freeway.... Then they're fine. I guess purple tulips are just free spirits and the more dominant of the species. Let them do what they want.

This las photo sort of reminds me of Midget #1 in his mainstream kindergarten class.

How to wear Yoga pants

I realize that Yoga Pants (YP) are a hot commodity among mothers these days. (and hot college girls with high and tight buns) They have become a staple in my wardrobe for sure.
They're soft, stretchy and the waist band doubles as a girdle. You can wear 'em around the house, to run errands, to work out and even to (shock) do yoga.

I know I live the better part of my day in workout clothes. Mostly because I workout. (I do not, however wear them when i'm not working out. Unless I'm bloated. Or my good clothes are dirty. Or I think I might end up working out if I can squeeze it in.)  But if you are one of the lucky few who doesn't need to work out (bitch) and you still wear YP, here are some helpful hints so the rest of the workout world doesn't want to CUT YOU.

Tip #1: DO NOT under ANY circumstances tell me you DON'T workout. because i WILL cut you on the spot. Lie to me if you have to. Honesty is not the best policy. Tell me you workout 3 hours a day to maintain your perfect figure. (I don't workout 3 times a day because I like to maintain a curvy figure, suck on that skinny bitches)

Tip #2: If you wear YP pair them with flip flops (yoga is done barefoot) or with worn in sneakers (so at least it APPEARS you have been doing some sort of activity that does not require a shopping cart)

Tip #3: Do not style your hair or wear makeup if you have on YP. Unless you're one of THOSE women who works out with a full face of makeup. In that case... whatever. Everyone knows you're a phony anyway.

Tip #4: I encourage you to at least TRY a yoga class. You will learn some lingo, and you will even feel justified owning 9 pairs of YP. Who knows, you may even want to try another class... after all... you have the wardrobe.

Now let's face it: YP are a 1/2 yard of fabric away from being leggings. There is such a thing as overkill. So exercise your YP wearing days with caution. Maybe alternate with jeans. Or actual leggings.

 I love my YP mostly because they love me back. I have 5 pairs of jeans that don't afford me that luxury. And don't forget, if you use YP for their intended purpose... you will probably fall in love with jeans all over again.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Loading Zone

This is a depiction of the loading zone at my son's school. It is very small, and extremely complex. Airports have less chaos. For some reason, Nobody understand this process. You drive up, you drop off, you pull out, you drive off. It sounds a lot like getting pregnant. So it should be easy.

For some reason the brainiacs who drop their kids off like to PARK in the LOADING ZONE. PARK!!!! They actually put the car in park, take out the keys and leave the vehicle unattended.
Or how about this one.... The morons who after their kid gets out, they just sit there. Meanwhile there is a butt-load of cars behind them waiting to get next to the curb. People- pull your ass out of the zone. So what if the person in front of you is still unloading. YOU can pull your car out and go AROUND them. (see diagram above) The through traffic will always let you in.
When I pick my wee-man up after school the ENTIRE loading zone is full of... you guessed it, PARKED CARS. futher muckers. And I KNOW the people in the 24 minute spot have been there longer than that because i've been circling like a hawk for 30 minutes. 

I just don't understand why it is so hard for people to obey the rules. I bet these people never park in handicapped spots and always keep their parking meter paid up. Is it because there are no parking police near the area? I'm seriously considering becoming an afternoon volunteer and telling these people to F-off when they try to park there.
I won't even say anything... i'll point to the sign like an air traffic controller guy with those long flashlight thingies. "oh what's that? you can't read? then you should not be driving. F off ma'am." or even "citizens arrest! citizens arrest!"

You would think these people would be in a hurry to get out of there. I always am. But i've discovered the secret. You can use it too, but it only works if your kid is in kindergarten. Here it is: drop them off 2 minutes before school starts. Trust me... the crowd is much, MUCH thinner around that time.
Maybe i'll just act like a cabby and start screaming at people out the window. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

I'm not a perfect mom

Nor do I want to be.

Sometimes my kids will go DAYS without eating a vegetable.
They've worn dirty clothes to school.
I've sent them to school with a Lunchable as their lunch.
I let them sleep on the couch because I haven't changed their sheets.
I am not a handwashing gustapo.
Sometimes they wash their own bottom, sometimes they don't. I don't always check.
I let them watch 2 movies back to back at home.
I bribe them with ice cream to bend them to my will. (i.e. leave this godforsaken park)
They don't take a bath EVERY night.
My car is dirty.
My house is covered in toys.
Midget #1 is late to school 99% of the time.
Diva yells "god dammit!" at the dog.
sometimes they eat cereal for dinner. (ok, a LOT of times)
My kids can refill my wine without spilling.

And you know what? I'm ok with that. I am normal. You know who is NOT normal?

Hand sanitizer moms. how do you think kids build up their immune system? I let my kids eat off the floor at a VERY young age for that very reason.

Mom's who pay an ungodly amount of money to send their kid to a school so they can say "my kid goes to "such and such" school"". Yeah?  And they know 3 four-letter words that they use  often behind your back.

Organic moms. I admit, i try to give my kids organic as much as possible. BUT- I will not deny them food when we are at parties, events, dinners, restaurants, etc. Feed them whatever you want at home but don't insult your hosts by bringing your own prepared organic dinners and snacks.

the "my kids don't eat sugar" mom
Yeah right. Turn your back and watch how much they suck down. they're doing lines of pixie sticks that would impress Charlie Sheen. WINNING!

Actually, sugar i DO monitor (but it is not off limits). Only because it turns my little ones into wee crackheads. I could care less what sugar does in the long run to my kids. Alzheimer's, tweak eye, diabetes, osteoporosis, whatever. What I care about is my spawn acting like jail bird monkeys running amuck while my uncle is showing his new snuff film*. Talk about rude.

Clean house mom. How is your kid doing without his Ritalin?

Volunteer mom. Get a hobby. You obviously are trying to hide a deep dark secret and therefore must portray a vigilant, volunteer image so no one suspects you have a dead body in your basement, or mold in your shower.

I know i'm leaving out a bunch of mom's. If i've missed any, send me an email and i'll make a new list.

All the reason's I listed for me being a bad mom... are all the reasons why my kids think I am AWESOME. Diva tells me on a daily, if not hourly basis, what a good mom I am. Today I washed and folded her favorite shirt. it WAS hot pink on the outside, and white on this inside (one of those built in shrug things on it) well.... in the wash the hot pink turned the white into regular pink. The only way she could have been more impressed would be if I said "abracadabra" before I pulled it out into plain view. She ran up to me, tackled me with a hug and said "YOU'RE THE BEST MOM EVER!"

She says this a lot which leads me to believe.... I am a perfect mom. Even if it's just in her eyes. I can live with that.
My kids love me for all of my faults. They don't love because i drive them to soccer, ballet, and art class on time. They don't love me because i parade them and their accomplishments around. They love me because I love them and my missteps are their reward.

*my uncle does not, in fact, make snuff films. Boring home videos, maybe, snuff films.... unfortunately no.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Hey laundry... you want a piece of me?

In a week...

If you do the math, a family of 4 can go through a load of clothing a day.
Add 2 loads for the weekly changing of linens.
Add dirty towels.
Add dirty dish towels for the spills.
Double the clothes for the weekend.
Minus 2 days working days of weekend (who does laundry on the weekend?? they're called "days off" for a reason)
Add 2 comforters at a load a piece because the dog urinated on them.
The total comes to = a laundry room that literally has arms, legs and is that a growl I hear?

Say that you are an Over Achiever Mom. (you know who you are bitches) You do at least a load a day, maybe two. You can stop reading now, this doesn't concern you.

Now let's say you're a Normal Mom. Your laundry pile is passing gas  and has definitely grown 2 feet in diameter in 2 days. It's time to roll up your sleeves.

First- start with a load of clothes. Once that is in, go ahead and sort. We all know how to do that. Getting that first initial load out of the way makes us feel like we accomplished something already. Well done, you are well on your way to a smaller laundry pile.

Second- the next load is linens using hot water.  You will alternate every load, clothing, linens, clothing, linens (and so forth) since linens are easier to fold. And also you won't have a clean clothes "pile-up" on the couch when  you're watching reruns of Real Housewives and you don't hear (ignore) the dryer buzzer go off.

Third- Don't bother with the children. Leave some food and candy in a bowl, 2 water bottles a piece, a balloon, and sidewalk chalk. Lock them outside.

Fourth- your last load can begin at no later than 6pm, you don't need to be worrying about laundry while you're watching Dancing With The Stars.

Fifth- Order a pizza

Sixth- Remember: you will never "catch up" on your laundry.

Laundry is a battle you will never win, but must fight anyway. Seeing how your family has clothes on their backs right now you are never caught up. (unless you celebrate "no clothes wednesday-friday-sunday")

Much like dishes if you think about it. You use the dishes, put them in the dishwasher (or hand wash them... heaven help you), then put them away. If you think you can keep an empty sink AND an empty dishwasher  you are INSANE, please check yourself into the nearest psyche ward or scientology church.

So fight the good fight, know you won't win but always celebrate advancements (like getting down to 4 loads, instead of 14) with a much needed glass of wine... or four, you earned it.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Diary of a Mini Van

Monday: Owner, midgets and hairy midget begin daily activities. Hairy midget sheds fur, small female midget spills fruit loops, owner has hot liquid in a mug with no lid.

Midgets evacuate, hairy midget runs around like mad man shedding more fur. Next stop hairy midget evacuates. Returns with muddy paws and wet fur. Runs around like mad man. Owner yells. Hairy midget piddles.

Next stop, owner stuffs bags into my rear end.

I become hungry. Owner feeds me.

Load midgets back into car. Make stop, all return with sand and mud. All dispense sand and mud in me. Midgets empty backpacks. Lunch box remnants litter floor.  Hairy midget destroys  styrofoam ball.

Next stop owner gets out and returns with many papers from small metal box. Disperses paper on passenger seat.

All evacuate.

Tuesday: Repeat, also, got midgets new toys... they didn't wait to open.
Wednesday: Repeat, also, it rained today.
Thursday: Repeat, owner had lunch in car and it rained.

Friday: Owner, midgets and hairy midget enter car. Male midget wading through trash, papers, wrappers, and packaging to find seat. Female midget discovers goldfish cracker in seat, consumes it.  Owner unable to find unoccupied cup holder. Holds mug of hot liquid in lap.

At one stop owner shoves heavy boxes and bags in my rear end. Beginning to feel like a cargo hold.

Owner removes heavy cargo, but keeps trash, papers, lunch box remnants, sand, mud, bottles etc.

My feet are dirty. My body is dirty. I ate 5 bugs. I can't see a thing through my glasses.
Tired from a week of abuse. Must get rest.

Saturday: Owner's male companion comes to inspect me. Leaves. Returns with large white bags. Empty's my contents. Uses strange loud machine to inhale sand, crumbs, fur and mud. Gives me a shower. Gives my interior a massage with an oil-like substance. Beginning to have a crush on Male companion. Male companion looks under my hood, sprays off my under carriage and massages my feet. I am in love.

Sunday: day off.

Monday: The bitch is back with midgets, hairy midget, and mug of hot liquid.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Things I'm grateful for now that i'm a parent

  • Doors with locks
  • Coffee (terribly under rated in my mind pre-midget days)
  • Netflix, on demand, apple tv, Hulu and my car's DVD player
  • A vacuum that I don't have problems with
  • Neighbors that only stay in their house 2 weeks out of the year.
  • baby wipes. The infinite uses of which is another blog entirely
  • Children's Benadryl.  I never even knew there was such a thing before
  • Mall play places. or McDonalds. or any indoor play place for that matter. 
  • Containers of cheerios. Many a hunger pain of mine these have curbed. 
  • Nick Jr. 
  • String cheese and fruit loops. Fruit loops- another blog for another day. 
  • Web MD
  • Friends with kids. (remember when you were the one who didn't have kids and you would only invite your friends' with kids to "parents night out" things? HA! don't you feel bad about that now?)
  • Wine. Now- I've always liked wine. But now I'm GRATEFUL for it. 
  • Date nights. Although this is still kind of an Urban Legend.
  • The ability to wear a shirt more than once without washing it.
  • Sleeping in. This almost NEVER happens. 
  • Husbands that my husband gets along with.
  • Any place that delivers. 
  • The time-out chair.
  • Microfiber and Leather. To sit on- not to wear. Although.....
  • Plastic cups.
  • Disposable tablecloths.
  • A husband who comes home and relieves me of my duties. 
  • Yoga pants

I would never have given any of these things a second thought before I had kids.  Now- life wouldn't be the same without them. And I am grateful.