I am a person who is serious about promises. I don’t make promises idly, and once I make them I do everything I can to keep them. Which is why this morning was such a disaster. When I break a promise, the kids know that Something Is Wrong.
And yeah, Something IS Wrong, but this was my first slip with the kids in this particular episode, and I felt horrible about it. A promise is a promise, and I broke it, and there was nothing to do but apologize and wish I was a better, more together mother.
And curse the &*#%@! ants, which aren’t even ants, they’re raisins, which probably wouldn’t be the source of so much trauma if they would just stay dessicated grapes instead of disguising themselves as insects.
Backing up: Remember the 20 Days of Virtue? The diet with no refined sugar and limited carbs, no white flour, blah blah blah blah? I’m actually still on it and doing fine. (Remarkably easy to stick to a diet when you don’t want to eat anything.) So the last time we went for groceries, I was buying all kinds of veggies, and the kids begged me to buy celery. Personally, I am not a huge fan of celery. In my mind, celery is just a particularly fibrous form of water. Whatever. But they asked, and it costs something like twenty-seven cents for a whole bunch of it, so into the cart it went.
Tuesday morning, Chickadee begged for “ants on a log” for her school snack. But we were running late, so I made her pick something else. She came home talking about it NON-STOP and to MAKE IT STOP I told her she could have ants on a log the next day (today).
“Do you PROMISE?” She knows a brush-off when she hears one, that girl does.
“I PROMISE. I’ll wash and cut up the celery tonight. Okay?” She was satisfied.
And I completely forgot to deal with the celery, of course.
Then this morning we all overslept. The kids overslept because they’re kids, and that’s what they do when I don’t wake them up on a school day (on a weekend, they’re up at the crack of dawn). I overslept because I’ve decided that the only time it’s really worth sleeping is, say, between 3:00 and 6:00. I mean, sure, I could get a good night’s sleep, but why would I do that when I could toss and turn and fret all night long? I like to be on the cutting edge of these things, you know.
So: no time for ants on a log. Many tears. Many wailed choruses of “But you PROMISED!” Many admissions that yes, I promised, and no, I wasn’t keeping my promise, and yes, I’m a bad mama. And a bag of raisins (ants) instead? Puhleaze. You’d think I’d offered a baggie full of live maggots.
Remind me to cut up the celery after this, mkay? If I don’t deliver tomorrow I think they might hurt me.
* * * * *
I spent a portion of my day today chatting with Ben, who had this gem to offer at one point:
I think it’s kinda like boiling a frog. You put the frog in a pot of
cool water, and turn up the heat so gradually he never tries to hop
And I–jumping to the obvious conclusion that Ben not only had some really good drugs but had been holding out on me–jokingly responded that he was referencing boiling a frog as if that was something everyone was familiar with, and was this a custom where he comes from? Ben then proceeded to share directions, some debunking, and what might be a secret cult.
I accused Ben of having too much time on his hands, but really, apparently there’s a whole world of amphibian-poaching out there just waiting to be discovered.
* * * * *
Excellent example of why you should not play “I Spy” with your children when you are taking ativan even if you’re pleased to be feeling well enough to actually just play:
I spy with my little eye… something that starts with S!
[after much incorrect guessing and clue-begging]
Okay okay… here’s a hint… it comes out of your nose!
[I’m really glad that was just a hypothetical example, even if it did make the hypothetical kids in the not-at-all-real example laugh hysterically for ten whole minutes.]
* * * * *
In the continuing saga of the DVR that I barely know how to use but seems to be enriching our lives (“Better living through television!”) nonetheless, I allowed the children to watch an episode of Teen Titans tonight. I tried fast-forwarding through the commercials for them, but unlike Little House on the Prairie–which airs on the Hallmark Channel and therefore carries commercials for motorized scooter wheelchairs and life insurance and old lady skin care products–Teen Titans air on the Cartoon Channel and therefore has commercials for gooey snacks and marshmallow cereals and Star Wars Legos where the light sabers actually light up.
If I try to zip through the commercials, they holler at me. So, fine. It’s half an hour; they want to watch the commercials, I don’t care.
We’d been through several rounds of “Will you buy us–” “NO.” when a commercial came on for the Sylvan Learning Center. Monkey asked me to fast-forward it, and ever the pinnacle of maturity, I responded, “Oh NOOOOOO, you wanted the commercials, you’ll HAVE the COMMERCIALS!” and went about my business. I went to the kitchen for a minute and when I came back, the commerical (which I’d missed, but I’ve seen them before, those commercials where the parents get the kid’s good report card and they hug and kiss and praise Sylvan) was just ending.
I sat down at my desk and Chickadee turned to me in earnest.
“Mama! I’m not being challenged enough in my classroom curriculum.” I managed not to laugh, but I think I blew out several small blood vessels in my left eyeball. “You should call Sylvan,” she went on, “because they can help even with advanced students such as myself.”
Yes, I’m sure they have a special place at Sylvan for advanced students such as her who weep bitterly when they are denied silly celery snacks.
I’m gonna go have some more ativan and cut up some celery and look for frogs.