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I love abandoning my children

Last night, Otto and I had a date night. AS PEOPLE DO. “People” being “people other than us,” usually, because we are not always so super-fantastic about that whole “nurture your couple relationship” thing. It’s not that we don’t love each other (we do!) or enjoy each other’s company (he’s my favorite!), it is just that we’re old and tired and outnumbered by the other three sentient creatures in our household.

We don’t go on a lot of dates, is my point. But we’re working on it, because I hear this rumor that someday my children might grow up and move out of the house. I’m skeptical, but it’s what I hear, so who knows. Should they ever leave, the idea is that Otto and I need to make sure we still like each other.

So, last night: Date night! On a THURSDAY! Like the wild and crazy folks we are. A date on a school night; it must be that we really, really, REALLY needed this time to reconnect and get romantic. Or that we had the chance to see Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood perform. Either way. (more…)

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The more you know!

As promised earlier, here’s a handy-dandy FAQ I made for you to help in getting through this season of fundraising with good cheer.

Hint: Be nice to the kids who come knocking on your door, even if you’re not buying anything.

Also: Can I interest you in some grapefruit…?

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A snippet to tide you over

A bit later today I’m going to have a super-useful piece up over at Alpha Mom—pinky swear—but in the meantime it occurs to me that I haven’t posted since last week, and sometimes that makes my father think that I am dead in a ditch somewhere.

(Hi, Dad! Not dead!)

Tuesday mornings are my favorite, because it’s the only morning when both kids have to get up and out around the same time. (It’s co-op day for Monkey. On regular homeschool days I just don’t bother getting him up until Chickadee leaves.) I love to eavesdrop on the two of them negotiating for counter space and such in the bathroom, because it seems to be the ONE time they consistently enjoy each other’s company. (I know. It’s weird.)

Overheard this morning:
Monkey: So you know how you used to have two kidneys?
Chickadee: I… STILL HAVE two kidneys…?
Monkey: Oh, yeah, well, I’ve been meaning to tell you something….

Later I reminded Chickie that people will come and go from her life, but her brother is forever. She kind of rolled her eyes, so I added, “There are worse people to be stuck with, you know.”

“I know,” she said. “… like you,” she added, with a smirk.

We were on our way to school, so I just slowed down a little and pushed her out of the car. I think that was fair.

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Happy Halloween! Everybody sing!

She’s just a bill, yeah she’s only a bill…

(more…)

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Seriously, quit it

Today I am tired of all the ways in which my family of special snowflakes is so extra snowflakey and specialish. Today I just want to be a regular family with regular issues and all of the same stuff that everyone deals with because half-grown humans are dealing with hormone poisoning and incomplete frontal lobes.

This means you get to delight in the one way in which our family is just like any other, and that means that over at Alpha Mom I’m helping you to clarify when you’re allowed to exist and when your teenager needs you to just stop it, seriously, GOD MOM.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go back to shopping for a Cloak of Invisibility.

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It turns out my life is dull

I don’t know if my life used to be more interesting than it is now, or if I just used to believe it to be more interesting. (Maybe don’t tell me. Allow me my fantasy that my life was once better than it is now.) I keep thinking, “I’ll write once something fascinating happens.” But guess what! I suppose this is middle age, yes? When you realize that your life is just not all that exciting…?

(To be fair, I actually had that epiphany over the weekend when Otto was watching Formula One and I plunked myself down on the couch next to him. The coverage cut to a new thermal imaging camera they’re using to show how hot the tires get on the track, and at the same time both of us went, “Ooooooooooh!” That was when I realized that what passes for excitement in your 40s is really nothing like what you imagined when you were younger. It was also when I realized that true love is also a far cry from what I once assumed.)

So until something thrilling happens (haaaa), you get snippets. (more…)

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Slacker? Genius? Smartass?

Back in the days of OH I COULD NEVER EVER HOMESCHOOL (haaaaaaaa!), my aversion to this idea was multi-pronged. Basically I was convinced that:
A) I am not patient enough to be my child’s main teacher.
B) Curriculum planning is probably hell on earth.
C) Spending all day, every day, with my child would strain our relationship.
D) Working and homeschooling are incompatible, even though I work from home.
E) There is not enough Excedrin in the world for this.

Spoiler: I was wrong. I mean, Excedrin comes in really, really big bottles (especially at Costco!), plus there are ways to deal with all of those other concerns. For example, we use virtual school classes, which means that my “curriculum planning” consists of going through the course catalog to pick classes, rather than actually writing syllabi. Also, when I need to get work done I just ignore Monkey for a while. Easy!

[As for patience, well, I still think I'm probably not patient enough, not really. But I'm a lot more patient than I was a few years back, which is just as good for me as it is for him. And when all else fails, there's that whole ignoring thing. Which I am totally joking about! Except not really.] (more…)

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Sometimes I’m a little punny

Some of the drama du jour ’round here has me thinking about what it means to be in the right, and how the older I get, the less important it feels to me. The kids, though, man alive. When they’re right they’re RIIIIIIGHT, and woe betide the person who tries to interfere with their convictions with pesky things like a differing opinion.

We’re working on it, and while we do, I started working on a piece for Alpha Mom, and then cracked myself up by titling it The Unbearable Rightness of Being. Get it? Get it?? It’s okay if you don’t agree that I’m funny, because I know that I don’t always have to be right. (See what I did there? SEE? Oh, nevermind.)

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Things which are ridiculous

My toenails; more specifically, my inability to paint them properly.
I believe in painted toenails. I don’t know why, because I almost never paint my fingernails and rarely wear makeup. I’m not exactly a get-dolled-up-regularly type, is my point. And yet, to me, summer = painted toenails. And given that I am far too cheap/lazy to get professional pedicures—hey, I have polish and passable eye/hand coordination—I do my own feet here at home. I am never either drunk or blind before I set out to prettify my feet, AND YET! What the heck is my problem? I manage to BOTH slop polish all over my toes AND miss entire sections of nails altogether.

I have been painting my nails for something like 30 years. You’d think I would’ve figured it out by now…? And when I paint someone ELSE’s nails—like on the rare occasions when Chickadee will allow me to do hers—I’m fine. This leads me to believe it’s some sort of angle issue, but I’m pretty bendy and not tall, really, so it’s not like my feet are all that far away.

[Somewhat-related digressions: Anyone else keep buying pretty colors in different brands because they're cheap and then getting annoyed when they chip? OPI + MIR = BFF 4EVAH. I am currently sporting Lincoln Park After Dark both to pretend Fall has actually arrived and because the stuff I had on before this was a different brand and was all chipped up by the time I took it off. Also---random recommendation ahoy---am I the last person on earth to learn about Gooey? I appreciate how it keeps the (good) polish on my nails even while I'm scraping it off the surrounding skin.] (more…)

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Hipster me this

[Before I get into the actual post, a great big sloppy thank-you to everyone who responded so kindly to my last couple of posts (and the corresponding post over on Alpha Mom). I am emerging from the fog and hoping I never have to switch medications ever again. Thanks for being patient with me.]

Remember how last summer Monkey got glasses and there was much rejoicing? There was also some self-flagellation, because he’d been having trouble seeing for a while, and I hadn’t kept up with yearly exams, but all of you assured me that these things can happen and the important thing was that it had all been resolved and it could’ve happened to anyone. I like you, have I even mentioned that?

So a couple of weeks ago when Monkey started complaining (again!) that he was having trouble seeing, I was all, “Oh, we’re probably due for your yearly exam very soon,” and then I went and checked and, yeah, His last exam was in June. Whoops. I like how I totally learned my lesson from before, don’t you? I went ahead and made him an eye appointment. And then listened to a week of “Mom! HEY MOM! Can you read that from here? Because I can’t! I can BARELY SEE IT!” (more…)

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