Monday, December 22, 2008

Last Christmas

So, last year was just really icky. In my sheltered suburban life it was probably the worst Christmas season I have ever experienced. We just moved into a temporary rental while we searched for the perfect house. We were getting yanked around by a seller with, an unbeknownst to us, very moldy house. The rental was AWFUL. I mean awful. No, really, it was awful. After two days of living there we found that it was infested with fleas. Very stubborn fleas that took nearly two months to kill. D2 was crawling and just learning to walk at this time. It was seriously the most disgusting thing I've ever experienced - she would crawl around on the floor for a while, then I would scoop her up and pick the fleas off of her hair and clothing. ICCKKKK. I'm getting itchy just thinking about it. If that wasn't enough, there were very large over grown trees on the property that I swore was going to hit the house in a storm. During very bad storms, I would actually move my daughters cribs away from the outer walls of their rooms, just in case. Then there was the crappy electricity. Every morning Hubby would take his shower and a fuse would blow so he would have to shower in the dark. Ok, so that made me giggle, but still it sucked. Oh, and then there was the phantom phone line that would randomly call 911 in the middle of the night, sending a police officer to wake us up and make sure we were ok. Hmmmm..... and did I mention that the owner was going into foreclosure and we would get certified mail every other day demanding payment? Good times, good times.

Half of our stuff was in the f'ing POD. It was brilliant, actually, we used one of those portable storage containers to store most of our stuff while we staged our tiny home to sale. Then we left it in there while we lived in the rental from hell. It became known as the F'ing POD because nearly anything I needed and looked for was in it. The rest of our stuff came with us to the rental from hell, but most of it was never unpacked because I did not want it infested with fleas.

I never felt so disconnected from my life. New town, no friends, no computer, no land line. No stuff. I've been thinking a lot lately about this, and I've really been feeling for those in true need this Christmas season. I've given just a little more than usual. I was certainly not even close to being homeless, and no, I'm not saying I know what it's like to live on the streets, but I do know how horrible that feeling of displacement can be.

Last Christmas my Hubby held me together. I don't think I've ever leaned on him more. Between post partum hormones still out of wack, and just the awful experience we were going through, I very nearly felt like I was going to break. Hubby kept me together.

All of our Christmas decorations were in the F'ing POD. There was nothing to make the house feel even a little festive. But one night, while the girls and I were escaping at my parents house, Patrick went out and bought a fake tree and some ornaments, and a wreath for the front door. It was beautiful, a lit emblem of hope and better days to come. That little tree symbolized love to me.

This year I've been feeling such a huge sense of gratitude. My kids, hubby and I are not only flea free, warm and safe, but we have so much more. A great house in a great neighborhood, new friends. We put our little artificial tree up in the family room. Decorated it with some retro 50's type things, plus a bunch of kid friends ornaments. It's my little tree of love.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Life with D1

New Eyeglasses: $300
New Cell Phone: $200
Repaired Computer:$150
Repaired Garage Door: $125

Life with D1: Priceless

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Hungry, Hungry Hippo

So, when I was about four or five or six, my parents bought me some pretty cool stuff for Christmas. Two of the items I still have today. A child size rocking chair, and a hand sewn, numbered, 3 1/2 foot tall Raggedy Ann doll. I treasured them throughout my childhood. Now they are in D1's room, so that she can enjoy them as much as I did as a child. But on that particular Christmas day, when I found them under the tree, I did not quite see it that way. That year, more than anything, I really, really wanted The Hungry, Hungry Hippo game. It looked so cool, so fun, action packed and loud. After all the gifts and games were unwrapped, and I did not find the game I so desperately wanted, I had a full on tantrum. Said I hated all my gifts, didn't want to play with any of them, and I couldn't believe that Santa would do this to me. From my recollection, I slowly withdrew those statements, saying I hated everything but the doll, the rocking chair, the teddy bear and so on. From my Mother's recollection, I was a spoiled brat the whole day. Who is correct? I guess we'll never really know.

Years later, when I was 17, my Mother bought me the Hungry, Hungry Hippo for Christmas. It was a big show in forgiveness, something that must have been very difficult for her to overcome. D1 now plays with it when she visits her Mimi.

Looking back on that Christmas, I realize, obviously, that my Christmas was not ruined, however, my Mom's was seriously damaged. It's one of those things that I'm destined never to live down. She can hold it over my head to get just about anything, if she wanted.

So enter D1's fourth Christmas. Wow, I had to count that twice, has she really been with us for four Christmases already? It's all going by way too fast.

We got the girls a great play kitchen, musical instruments, lots of puzzles and craft supplies(which will be put away on a high shelf seconds after they open them - you don't think I'm that nuts, do you?), Plasma cars, and so on. Between hubby and I, plus the Grandparents, the amount of gifts this year are downright decadent. But D1 has started asking for something else. It was one of just two things she asked for in her letter to Santa. It's the Dora Prance and Fly Pegasus. It's a freaking plastic unicorn that comes with a Dora doll. According to the reviews on Amazon, if you put the Dora Doll on the back of the unicorn, the unicorn falls over. It's a piece of junk. An over priced piece of junk. $45! Before Thanksgiving, I told myself that if I found it for $29.99 I would buy it for her. I searched everywhere, checking multiple places online every single day, just in case the price was lowered. I bid on one through ebay. I searched Craigslist, I sent an email to my MOM's group asking if anyone had one their child no longer played with. I really, really tried, but I have not been able to find one for less than $39.99. I just have to keep to my original thought, I can't spend that much for a ridiculous toy that I know she won't really even play with for more than five minutes. But still, I keep thinking, is this it? Is this the year of the big karmic revenge? I told my Mom about the unicorn, and she said not to buy it, that D1 was getting lots of nice toys, and she needed to learn that she won't get everything she asks for from Santa, or the world for that matter. But I can't help but be suspicious over that advice. Did my Mom hang up the phone and start wildly cackling? "Revenge, so sweet, is finally mine!"

What if this is truly the only toy D1 wanted? Will I ruin her trust in all that is pure and magic? Will I crush her such a hard blow that she becomes a distrusting cynic at the ripe old age of three? Will this start a horrible trend of distrust for men the rest of her life? How can I possibly be responsible for such a decision? So my friends, please tell me - do I buy the plastic piece of crap for D1, to save her from a life of bad relationships, always ending because she can not trust a man? Is this really how it all begins? The weight of Motherhood is far too heavy!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Black Friday

So after a very nice Thanksgiving dinner, and time spent with my family, my hubby ,kids and I drove back home. After the kids were in bed, I settled down with a nice cup of tea and the newspaper. I went through them and jotted down the specials I was interested in, and which stores I should go to. I was kind of excited, I have never in my life gone shopping Black Friday morning. I was giddy with the expectations of die hard shoppers, fighting there way through crowds to get their little girl that prized Cabbage Patch doll. Oh wait, that was thirty years ago, god, I'm getting old. But you get the picture, I was excited. Ended up going to bed around 12:30. At 2 am, D2 woke hubby and I up with a cry so loud, I'm certain my old neighbors in Jersey heard her as well. Well, at least D1 did, and so she was also awake. It took close to an hour before we had both girls asleep again. Hubby fell back asleep the minute his head hit the pillow. I hate that about him.

I layed in bed, gripping onto my edge, while D1 sprawled across the middle of the bed and hubby snored happily on his edge. I stayed that way for 45 minutes. Then decided to get up and start my shopping. Might as well, right? JcPenney's was opening at 4 am, so I figured I could start there. Time to do my part to get this economy back on track!

On my way to the mall, I stopped at Dunkin Donuts and bought the big coffee. My favorite, toasted almond with extra half n half, one sugar. Goodness in a styrofoam cup. Hmmmm... I might have to stop writing this to go make coffee.....

I walked into JcPenney's elated . High on caffeine and consumerism. I watched women pawing through the chatke crap piled high on the display tables. This brought me back to my old job as accessory buyer. I was in charge of the crap, the boxed gift program. The manicure kits, sewing kits, change purses, all those sort of things. The program did very well, and I always tried to imagine who these people were that actually bought this junk in such high volume. Now I knew, and I was here, with them. One of the people. The common folk. ( I should have titled this entry The One Where I Come Off As an Arrogant Stuck up BIOTCH.) I giggled out loud. I walked around the enormous lines at the cash register, and headed towards the lighting department. Oh, did I mention that I wasn't at Penney's to buy gifts, but to buy myself stuff? Christmas, shimmas, I had to decorate my living room! Did I also mention that I have been looking for lighting for this room since we moved into the house back in March? I had decided that it was some sort of genetic flaw, some gene in the wrong place. I was physically incapable of deciding on, and purchasing lamps. But today was the day. I was going to do it! So I didn't like the ones I saw advertised, and I began to get this ill feeling in my stomach. I HAVE TO BUY LAMPS. My husband will divorce me, I'm sure. So I picked out some lamps that I didn't really love, but that would provide the needed illumination. Then I headed towards the window treatment department to order curtains for the living room. This is where I discovered the shoppers delight: NO LINES AT THE REGISTER!! I was once again giddy. As the woman ordered my curtains and rang up my lamps, I chattered on and on. Like a whore on crack. " I was so excited to be out shopping, wasn't this exciting?" And on and on. I'm sure the middle aged woman that woke at 3 to go earn some minimum wage was just as thrilled. Sure.

It was now a few minutes to 5 am. Next stop was either Babies R Us or Toys r Us to buy the girls those little mini sofas that roll out into mini beds - at half off - wahoo! Hubby and I were desperately hoping that if we left those in our bedroom, D1 would sleep on that instead of our bed. I'm sure it will work. For two nights, at least. I decided Babies R Us instead of Toys r US when I saw the insane line of people waiting to get into Toys R Us. Babies R Us had a line, but it was only about 10-15 people. Manageable. Still, when the doors finally opened, I could feel the thrill as everyone rushed to get their carts. I hurried to the back of the store and found a table of the mini sofas. Crap! Only one with Tinker Bell. Several Princess ones. I hate the Princesses. Tink rocks. I searched under the table and all around. Then a woman, dressed in lounge pants, a tank top that stopped about two inches above her navel and a leopard print bra sticking out, rolled over with a Tinker Bell sofa in her cart. "Excuse me, where did you find that Tinker Bell sofa?" "Oh, over there on that shelf, it's the last one" The last one, the last one? But I need TWO Tink sofa's! What do I do, what do I do?

So I followed the leopard print bra lady around the store. When she was immersed in the $5 boxes of wipes, sorting through scented and unscented, I stole the Tink Sofa from her cart. Threw it in my cart. I was about half way through the store when I heard her yell. My adrenaline was pumping. I was laughing wildly. Cackling, really. I STOLE THE TINKER BELL SOFA! Hee Hee. I heard her running. What should I do? I ran into the ladies room with both sofa's, went into the last stall, and climbed onto the toilet, so my feet were not seen. I stayed this way, clutching onto the sofas for thirty minutes. Then I snuck back into the store, into line and bought the sofas. VICTORY WAS MINE!!!!!!!! I was so excited, I finally had my own Black Friday story. One that would live in enfamy for the rest of my life!!!! How exciting was that?

Ok, so that really didn't happen. But f0r one brief moment I thought about taking that lady's mini sofa. I really, really wanted it. But I bought two of the Princess sofas instead. Sighhhhh.

The next and last stop was Kmart. Mobbed. I spent about an hour finding all the things I needed there. Then got into the wrong line. Stood in line for close to an hour. This is when it dawned on me that I was exhausted. Walking out of the store, it was finally light out. So bizarre, I've walked into stores with light, to come out with darkness, but never the opposite.

I got home and I was exhausted. What the hell was I thinking? Now I had to survive the day with two little ones on less than two hours sleep. I felt hungover. The post shopping crash.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Conversations with a Lunatic

So, this post is going to have no cohesion at all. Well, maybe a little, I mean, I'll try my best to have some sort of point. But I'm not making any promises. In fact, I can't even remember what I was planning on writing about. Crap. It's just that I would really like to post more, but D1 has become obsessed with, and if I come even close to the 'puter she starts screaming "I want my Noggin". Very annoying. So I try to store all this stuff in my head to write later, but later never happens.

Ok, I think I remember what I was going to write about. Here goes.

We are having our living room and dining room painted. I'm in love with the painter. I may ask her to marry me. I love that she's a woman, first of all. It's so much easier having her in the house. I don't care if she sees me in my jammies, and I don't even flinch too much when D1 decides to go streaking through the house. Plus, I have a real live grown up to talk to! She's very nice, and interesting, and responds in full sentences. I've been contemplating trapping her in my closet, and never letting her go. Ohhh, and in addition to painting, she also offers re-decorating services. She's one of those people who will take what you have, rearrange it, and make it look way better than it did before. I LOVE HER.

Ok, so that wasn't my point, either. My point was, that having someone else in the house has made me very aware of how I talk with the girls. Knowing that she is potentially listening, I actually HEAR our conversations more, like she, as a stranger hears them. The first thing I've become very aware of, is that I constantly refer to myself as Mommy, or Mama. You know, in the third person. Very annoying. I'm starting to wonder if I will start doing this with others. "Jen would like another martini" or "Jen will be ordering her filet rare tonight" Creepy. But then I was thinking, maybe it's a part of a whole denial type thing. Like, oh my god, I can't possibly be the mom here in this situation. I'm way too young and irresponsible to have two lives entrusted to me. I'm still in high school and planning on how to skip school, right? Denial is a strong force, but it shouldn't have to lead to such an annoying habit, right? Maybe my New Year's resolution will be to stop this. But, Jen will see, Jen has a lot of things she should resolve not to do. Jen thinks maybe this should be on the bottom of Jen's list.

Then, the other night at dinner, much loved painter was still there, working on the dining room, which is adjacent to the kitchen. The whole time I wondered if she could hear my conversation with D1 and D2 (husband was MIA). This I would have to list under things I never I thought I would have to say. Here are a few snippets to prove my point:

"D1, stop running laps around the table"
"D2, why did you put lentils in your hair"
"D1, where are your panties"
"D2, please don't put lentils in your ear"

I swear, I live in some bizarro alternate universe. How the hell did I get here?

The other thing I wanted to tell you about is my complete lack of conversation skills. I think I talked about this once before, but too bad, I'm going to do it again.

I can no longer hold a conversation. Part of the problem is that when I do actually get to talk to a real live grown up, either in person or on the phone, I'm very aware that my time to speak is very limited, interruptions can come at any moment, and very suddenly. You know how it is, your kids completely ignore you, till they see you are on the phone, or doing something more interesting than watch them watch tv. Maddening. But what has happened, is that even when I do have kid free talk time, I don't know how to hold a conversation. I talk rapid fire style, very loudly,(as if I'm talking over a screaming child) I skip from one subject to another, with no cohesion, rhyme or reason. Like a whore on crack. Not that I've ever been a whore on crack, nor to my knowledge have I ever spoken to one, but I'm certain talking to Jen is like talking to one.

Ok, I think I'm done, although I think there were a few more points I wanted to make. But now I forget.

Oh, one other thing. D2's verbal skills are really progressing. Of course I am proud of her, but a recent development has made me kind of sad. She has stopped her instinctive calling of MAA MAAA. It has been replaced with Mommy. Or rather, MOMMMMMIIIEEEEEE. Very cute, but a definite sign that she isn't a baby anymore. Makes me sad. Of course, I know the time will come very soon where I am called Mother, with eyes rolling and glaring. I should relish the Mommy's I hear called out.

Just one more thing. We've been going to Soccertots, which has been, well, interesting. Another Mom in D2's class is really nice, and I just love her daughter. A really easy going, happy little girl. But here's the thing. The Mom is pregnant, and I'm just dieing to ask what she is going to name her next child. Her first is named Dale. And it's been killing me NOT to ask if she will be naming the second Chip. I told hubby that the other day, and he said he'd divorce me if I asked. But come on, wouldn't you want to ask, too?

Alright, really, I'm done.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

To Eat the Apple

So, not unusually, I’m sure, my daughters LOVE to be naked. Little D2, when she manages to escape mid-diaper change, will run around slapping her hiney, gleefully chanting “bum,bum,bum!” While potty training D1, I allowed her to be naked quite a lot. She still prefers to be this way. She spends the majority of her time at home undressed, or half-dressed. I really do try to keep her clothed, especially with the colder weather. But it is a losing battle that I only half-heartedly fight. I know I have to teach her that it is not appropriate to spend your time naked. Certainly not with other children or adults, and definitely not in public, or even in the privacy of your own backyard, with others watching. I know this. I know it is our cultural ways, and this post is certainly not a pro-nudist statement on the woes of our clothed society. It is a statement on the woes of our perfectionist, beauty and body ideal obsessed society. So I apologize, my self deprecating or D2 antics are probably my better (please, be kind!) writing. This one may be a little sappy, more like a greeting card than a Jen Adventure. Consider yourself warned.

I love the absolute naturalness of their time spent without clothes. The complete lack of self consciousness. The way D2 will pause, mid play, completely naked, to stare at the TV in front of her. Holding her body in a comfortable stance. Her belly poking out, her dimply behind relaxed. Perfect. Unencumbered. Absolute beauty. D2 running around in circles, dancing, blissfully free. Before I know it, they will haven taken the bite from that apple. Self consciousness will set in. Embarrassment. The needed modesty to exist in our society. And with it, a part of their innocence. Their babyhood. Gone, forever.

What will take its place? Confidence in the capability, strength and beauty of their body, which is merely protected under clothing? Or discontent, hatred even, of the inadequacies they detect? Dimples, lack of muscles, cellulite? As someone who has battled with body image issues from a very young age, how do I raise confident, body accepting women? Will it be all my fault? Was it all my Mother’s fault for my issues? I think not. Where does it come from? Is it just a roll of the dice, a part of the way you simply are – just like a dislike of mushrooms, or a hot temper? Or is it a societal problem, starting from Disney and the Princesses, onto Hannah Montana and finally Vogue?

Is there a solution? Keep them away from all media? Please. Cinderella just seeps into them; they wake up one day, and love her. I think it’s something they put into the juice boxes of little girls. It’s simply there. Perhaps it’s up to me to introduce them to stronger women. Less physically perfect, but fierce and beautiful all the same.

I paused for a long time after that last sentence. Sad, but who are these women? Do I have to reach all the way back to Greek and Roman mythology? Do we have any present day examples? And please, not athletes. I don’t find them to be appropriate roll models, either. How upsetting, I can’t think of one.

For now, I will hold onto their little selves. Their freedom and grace. I know their perfect little bodies will carry them through amazing lives. Those bodies will be their vehicles to see, hear and feel so many amazing things. I will treasure that, for them.

Monday, November 3, 2008

I know, Halloween is over, this is not very timely at all

So I was too busy all weekend to post about Halloween, and I'm sure you are, like myself, very glad it's all over. I won't go into the full details of the day, but there is just one thing I just have to discuss.

D1 woke at 6 am on Halloween, ready to go trick or treating. Never tell a three year old a whole day in advance what she will doing. By 6:30 she had on some of her dress up clothes. The skimpy kind that have these little patches of velcro on the back to keep it on. She had on the Cinderella get up, to be exact, which features a little emblem of Cinderella, and a strip down the center bodice of sparkly sequins. Over breakfast she is insisting that this is what she will be wearing for trick or treat. I'm trying to get her to wear the Tigger costume, which coordinates with D2's Eeyore costume. Both the Eeyore and Tigger costumes are made of very warm fleece. A much more practical option in the cold weather.

I tell her "this costume is way too cold, it will be night, and very cold out" She says "but Mom, it has sparkles. The sparkles will keep me warm"

I was speechless. I was simutaneously sent back in time, and propelled forward. Thoughts of myself in college, abroad in London, wearing high heels I could barely walk in, a sheer shirt and mini, freezing my ass of in the December cold, all to look good at a night club came to mind. And suddenly the image of myself, but with D1's face popped in.

She's a club kid in the making, I can see it now. My little fashionista.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Freaking Orange Napkins That Say BOO!

So do you watch the show "The New Adventures of Old Christine" ? I don't watch it every week, but I catch it often enough. I've always thought it very funny when they feature Christine's lousy skills at volunteering at her son's school.

Found it funny, but never really related to it. Until today. I'm certain what happened today will be relived on some psychiatrist's couch 30 years from now as D1 laments that her Mother never really cared.

D1 had her Halloween party today. Last week a sign up sheet was put up for the parents to volunteer to bring something - a snack, juice, prizes, treats, napkins, and plates. The usual kid party fare. I quickly rejected the treats, prizes and snacks because it sounded like way too much pressure. I mean, it was the first party and all, what was the right thing to bring? I didn't know. So I did the lame (and cheap!) thing, and volunteered to buy the napkins. Which I did, that same day, in fact. Actually had anxiety over picking them out. Should I have consulted with the buyer of the plates to make sure they coordinated? I didn't know. So I went out on a limb and paid $2.78 for two packs of orange napkins that said BOO!.

All I knew about the day of the party was that I dropped her off in her costume, then I came back 30 minutes earlier than normal to watch the kids parade around and then go back to their classroom to sing songs. Somehow I read into this that the party was along with the song singing. And actually, I put some thought into this the night before. Do I bring the napkins when I drop her off, or will I get eyes rolled at me? Am I suppose to bring them when I come to see the parade, so I can help set up?

I finally decided that I would bring them along with me when I was dropping her off, just in case.
That's what I decided last night. See, I put thought into it - ahead of time.

This morning involved the usual power struggles of eating breakfast, using the potty and fighting with her sister. Plus extra angst around getting dressed in her Princess costume. While I was changing D2's diaper, D1 went into my room to use my makeup. Because everyone knows that Princesses wear makeup. Remember? D1 comes out with blue and black smeared all over her face. Arghhhh. I only get about half of it off. Too pissed that she dipped my over priced eye make brushes into my lipstick. (any tips on getting those cleaned? Please, let me know!) Then there is the fight over what to wear under the Princess dress. I want leggings and a long sleeve top. She wants no top and black stockings. Arghhhh. We finally agree on a top and multi-colored tights. Fine. She's doesn't let me brush her hair. Fine.

Actually on time, I get both girls buckled into the car. As I'm backing up the car, I realize I forgot the freaking napkins. Should I go back? Nah, too cold out. I'll just bring them with me later.

As we pull up, I try to put her tiara on, she crys that it hurts her ears. Fine. Just carry it. Oh, and you broke the wand? Fine. Just carry it that way.

We line up outside the building, with the other Mom's and their costumed children. 8 other little girls. A cheerleader, little bo peep and 6 other freaking princesses. Perfectly coiffed Princesses. With clean, shiny faces, styled hair with bobby pinned tiara's, coordinating and warm under clothes. Princesses that Disney would be proud to call their own.

As we are entering the class, I see that all the other Mom's have brought along their assigned party paraphnelia. Beautiful orange cup cakes, goody bags overflowing with treats. Plates, cups, the whole caboodle. I tell the teacher that I will bring mine later, when we come back. She gives me a puzzled look then says "oh, we'll just use our plain napkins, because actually, the party is BEFORE the parade".

I ruined my daughter's first halloween party because she did not have Boo! napkins. I just know this will be used against me. And I'm expected to sleep tonight? You should have seen the looks of the other Mom's. The Mom's who managed to brush their daughter's hair and stuff goody bags. The Mom's who washed their child's faces and decorated cup cakes. You know what they were thinking. I know what they were thinking - it was written all over them. "She couldn't remember some freaking orange napkins?" "She ruined my child's party!"

I don't know how I will live this down. For the Christmas party I suppose I could volunteer for something big, like the goody bags. I could redeem myself by stuffing those bags to near breaking with Santa chatkes. But what if I volunteer, and like three days later I get a call from the room Mom? " Uh yeah, the rest of the Mom's were talking, and we're just not sure you're ready for this responsibility, after your poor performance at the Halloween party. This is just much too important to our 3 year old's lives, to just hand over such a responsibility to a Mom like you. Perhaps you should just take baby steps, and volunteer to bring in the plates"

The Horror.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Guru For Hire

So, do you want to know what is my true ambition in life? My biggest dream? I want to be a guru. Your guru. Somebody's guru. Are you looking for one? I'm available. I'm convinced this is my true calling in life. What I was meant to do. I'm pretty sure I would excel. I could wear long flowy dresses, and dye my hair burgundy. Wear lots of clinking jewelry. Maybe even walk around with a pair of fairy wings. I think I could definitely look the part of a guru. From my mansion, I would tell people that I don't do it for the money, but for the good of mankind. I could even do infomercials, available for viewing at 1 am and 3 am. I could sell my books and framed photos of myself on QVC at 2 am. I would be the answer to every insomniacs dream.

I've put a lot of thought into this. How does one become a guru, do you think? I'm pretty sure I need some kind of specialty.

For a while, I thought I could become certified in yoga, tweak it a little into some sort of jenism and then become a guru. But I realized this would require me to get my ass off of my sofa become more flexible than I presently am. So I threw that idea out the door.

The secrets told in this blog definitely ruined my chances of becoming a parenting guru. Unless someone wants to know my secrets to getting your children to run around naked in the backyard and refuse to have their faces washed.

This blog also ruined my chances of being the next cleaning guru. Maybe I could take a stance on NOT cleaning. I'm pretty sure I could round up a few people to buy that one. Cleaning is a dredge to your psyche! Stop now!

Perhaps I can make up my own religion. Become a cult leader. I could use my blog as a sort of recruitment site. What would the basis of my religion be? I have unlocked the secrets of the universe! Enlightment can be obtained! It's a precarious thing, but if you are careful enough somewhere between 16 and 16.2 ounces of coffee you will see the light! Just be sure to add the right amount of sugar and half n half and astral projection will also be possible.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I need bam bams for my boo boo's on my ba ba's

So I think I've mentioned that I live in a very conservative suburban neighborhood, complete with a Home Owner's Association with rules out the wazoo and every other house proudly waving their McCain signs. And I know I've mentioned my very nice neighbor with the immaculate house. Should also mention that her children are always nicely (and fully!) dressed with brushed hair and clean faces.

Enter The Henny Crew. When playing in the back yard, I consider it a good day if both girls have on a shirt and a pair of pants. A clean shirt and pants and the heaven's are shining down on us. Clean clothes, shoes, combed hair and washed faces are, well are nothing, because it's yet to happen.

On Saturday, my sister, nephew and Mom came to visit for the day. The weather was just incredible, so we spent the day playing and talking in the back yard. Got some take out for lunch. Which after eating, the girls threw the empty hoagie containers and water bottles all over the yard. Gave the place that touch of Appalachia look. Real nice.

The girls started out dressed. Then D1 decided her ba ba's (yes, that's what she calls her nipples, sorry I'm not big on using the proper terminology for body parts. Please, it's the least of my problems) hurt her. So she took off her shirt. Convinced her Mimi that she needed band aid's for them. Or as she calls them, bam bams. Mimi wasn't getting the bam bam's fast enough, so D1 starts crying loudly, "I need bam bams for my boo boo's on my ba ba's! PLEAASSSEEE!" Try saying that three times fast. Mimi has bright green bam bams, which she places over each of D1's nipples. Looks sort of like, well, you know what it looks like, I don't have to say. I then chase her around for a few minutes, trying to get her shirt back on her, all the while thinking, please god don't let the neighbors see this!

About a half hour passes with both girls fully clothed. Then D1 takes off her skirt and panties. "Mama ! I have to pee!" "Ok, D1, lets go inside" "No Mama, I pee in bushes!" And so I chase her around the yard, telling her that we don't need to pee in bushes because we have a potty right inside. She escapes me and crawls under her Little Tikes Play structure and sits, not squats, and starts to pee. I'm screaming, "squat! squat!" She actually gets it, and at least doesn't pee all over her self. Before she crawls out she also takes off her shirt. I then have to chase my completely naked 3 year old around the yard to get her dressed. Completely naked except for the bam bam's.

I wonder how many neighbors saw us, and if they are notifying the HOA of these interlopers that have pushed their way into their fine neighborhood.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Blog in Real Life

So one of the tips I read about gaining readers for your blog is to have a link to it under your signature on your email. I figured I'd try this, and it has worked, I've had quite a few people tell me that they have read my blog,and actually enjoy it (wow!)

But this has created a few issues. One being that I often forget to delete it before sending emails to people that I don't really want to read it. AWKWARD. Although, I have to say that most of those have turned out ok. I've actually found quite a few supporters that way.

But the really awkward thing is, well, to sum it up, my life is pretty lame. I don't have a whole lot to say. The things I do have to say usually end up in the blog. So then I'm out, say with the MOM's Club, and I know that several of the Mom's read my blog, or at least have perused it once or twice. So there I am rambling on as I usually do, and I realize crap, I've already said this on the blog. How lame am I? What if I tell it a little differently or something? Will they think I'm a liar? Or just a bore? Cuz like I'm sure there lives are way more exciting - you know in their little stay at home Mom worlds, right?

Then I also notice often that after I'm with people that I know read my blog, that my traffic goes up. Are people checking to see if I write about them? Maybe this is just conceited of me to think, but I know that if I knew someone in real life that blogged, I'd totally do that. In fact, I think I'm going to befriend a blogger in real life, just for that reason.

So today I went to a meeting about the really cool Charter School they are trying to open in this area. One of the men there said to the group - "Jen writes this really cool blog" (how cool was that?) and one woman asks "what is it about?" And I think, hmmm.. I barely know these people - what should I say it's about? The writings of a neurotic stay at home mom who drinks way too much coffee, does embarrassing things and really has nothing of substance to discuss? Is that what it's about? So I just said it's a "family blog". They all looked so disappointed. This probably would of been a good time for that random lieing, errr, storymaking thing I've mentioned to kick in. I could have said "Since I'm now a stay at home Mom, I'm putting my Harvard education to use by discussing the research I did on Neuroscience." Hmmmm I can't even sound intelligent if I make shit up. Oh well.

Which, while I'm on the subject of that meeting. Can I tell you it made me realize something else? I'm totally losing social skills. Just 3.5 short years ago, I could stand up in a meeting and really push to have my thoughts and opinions heard and understood. I feel like I'm reverting back to that awkward 12 year old who was afraid of her own voice. Maybe I just spend way too much time in front of the computer. Or maybe it's my constant companions are 3 and 1 1/2. Arghhh. Event's like that make me think I really need to go back to work. I swear, I contributed nothing, and when I did speak up I stuttered. What the hell?

And now since this post has lost any semblance of cohesion, I want to mention - did you see how I started this post? With the word "so". I'm thinking, I could probably start every post with this word. It's such a great opener for our generation.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Getting Old

So my old college friend came to visit this past weekend - the one who had to cancel back in August. Remember that post? The one where I went on about how much we would drink? Yeah. I guess I can start to use our periodic visits as age markers. Haven't seen her in about 2.5 years. Our lameness has definitely progressed quite rapidly since then. They arrived around 10:30 on Friday. We quickly chatted and then both of us were in bed by midnight. She had a glass of wine, to help her sleep (yeah, not for the joy of it, just as a sleep aid.) I barely choked down a beer. The next morning we were all REALLY excited to drink coffee. Yep, coffee. Then she & I escaped from the kids and husbands to run errands. Yep, errands. Did stop for some killer lattes, though. WAHOO! We were wired!

Had a great day playing with the kids at the playground and walking around our town and neighborhood. Was able to exhale when I saw that D1 and my friends 4 yr old got along very well. They were actually very cute together - all huggy and kissy in that cute preschooler way.

Made a great dinner, where once I again I barely choked down a beer. Stopped after three quarters of it because it was making me sleepy. Yep, sleepy. Got the kids asleep by 9. Time to party! WAHOO! So we made ice cream sundaes and watched tv. Even stayed up through the opening monologue of SNL. WAHOO! Not the entire show, mind you, just through the monologue.

It really was a wonderful weekend. Very, uh, mature of us to conduct ourselves in such a restrained manner. Yeah, that's it, we were restraining ourselves from any wild behaviour.

Truly though, the weekend made me very happy. And it made me realize just how priceless an old friend who is getting old along with you can be. She was right along with me at age 20 partying and making all sorts of stupid decisions. She knew me when. And she still loves me now. Jammy wearing, coffee drinking, practical shoe wearing me. And I love her now, too. Sweat pant loving, bunion afflicted and practical car driving beautiful Suz.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Which One?

So Jen at Absolutely Bananas wants to know about our most embarrassing moment.


God, I have so many of them. It's like asking a wine connoisseur to name her favorite wine. I mean, can it really be narrowed down to just one? Although, I have to say that since my Hubby arranged it so that I was put under lock down, I mean put into hiding, no, no, that is to say I've become a stay at home Mom, there haven't been that many embarrassing moments. Perhaps I've just become accustomed to them, or Motherhood has given me a new found sense of confidence and therefore life's little imperfect moments just don't phase me. Or maybe I just don't get out that much. Or I just don't get out that much, and after spending many months going out and bringing my boobs out for all to see, I just don't care about the little guffaws. ( No dumb ass, I don't bring 'em out for fun, I was referring to breastfeeding.)

There was most definitely a short period of time in my life when it seemed like I was just living one big embarrassing moment. It was the first year after college. The year I moved in with my husband (then boyfriend) ,adjusted to life in Staten Island and started my first real job. Well lets re-word that, because can anyone ever really adjust to life in Staten Island? If you weren't born and raised there, that is? I don't think so. I still shudder at the thought. Ughhhh.

There was the time I twisted my ankle crossing 5th ave. Fell right to the ground. Had people practically trampling me, without one offer of help.

There was that time I won a free turkey at a drawing from work. Had to lug that 20 pound frozen turkey down 5 blocks, through two subway trains, onto the SI ferry then onto a friggin bus. You haven't lived till you've been a NYC straphanger with a frozen dead bird wedged between your legs, sitting on the nasty subway floor(the bird, not me!).

Then there was that time the SI bus ate me. The back doors closed shut, with my feet on the outside, standing on the ground, while the rest of me was inside the bus. Just a little awkward.

Or the time I made it all the way home, through that long ass commute, only to have my husband point out to me that I had a big ol' rip in the back of my black skirt, showing off my white granny panties.

I could never forget the time I was running late for work. As I entered the large waiting area in the ferry terminal, I could see the doors begin to close. I ran for it. And in very sloooooowwwww mooootiiiiooonnn I could feel myself falling, yet I couldn't stop running. I ended up flying through the air super man style, then slid a couple more feet along the ground. Missed that damn ferry. But got to spend the next 30 minutes waiting with a man who helped me up. Told me I reminded him of his ex-girlfriend, the one that was a pro-wrestler.

And a favorite with my family - the late night ferry ride after a really bad day of work. Thought I'd treat myself to a beer. Ended up spilling the beer all over myself. As I was cleaning it off of my skirt, realized I was spraying it all over the Wall St guy across from me. So I asked him if he wanted some. He just stared. What was I to do? I bought another one, and then sat there laughing my ass off. Laughing my ass of to no one else. The Wall St guy moved to another seat. Guess he didn't want to be near the crazy chick talking to her self.

Yes, 1997 was a very good vintage.

Friday, September 26, 2008


Help me.

It's been seven days since my captors have held me here in this place. At first they showed mercy upon me and allowed me to quietly work as their servant. But several days ago the melee really began, after I angered them by encouraging them to get some sleep, they have become quite insane. Their actions are completely irrational - I never know what to expect or how they will react to me.

I'm frightened.

The germ warfare is relentless. Just as I feel myself gaining strength, they reinfect me with their horrible colds and flu. I have been continuously ill this long, long week.

The larger one - the one they use to communicate with me - is using my lack of patience as a sort of torture. She is creating horrible messes that she then requires me to clean up. Seeing my fatigue, she has increased the frequency of these disasters, in order to break me, is my thought.

The smaller one is following the larger ones orders, I believe. She has also added to the torture by emitting these strange, high frequency sounds, screeches really, over and over.

They will not leave me alone for even one moment. Not even to pee or shower. I believe they fear I will escape. And the sleep deprivation, oh the horrors of this. I am beginning to hallucinate from the lack of sleep.

They have left crumbs of food all over the family room. In an effort to invite ants in from the deck. It has worked. Between my captors and the ants I will soon break.

My husband has managed to escape, he promised to send back up, but I fear he has abandoned me.

I've repeatedly asked what their demands are - what do they want in order to let me go. So far their only request has been cookies - but every time I give them some, they go back on their promise and do not release me.

Please send help..........

Sunday, September 21, 2008

I'm your Mother, not your....

Barf Bag. Ok, so that's probably not what Jen at Absolutely Bananas was thinking of when she provided today's prompt, but that's all I've got right now.

I have had the most disgusting five days of my life. Hubby was away this week - from Tuesday till late Friday he was roughing it at a Hilton down south. Eating steaks and drinking scotch, while I was just trying to stay busy so as not to go crazy.

Half way through my stint as a single mom, I awoke Thursday at 4 am to the sounds of D2 crying. As I went to her room, I remember thinking I don't feel so good. What greeted me in her room was a whole lot of vomit. The next five days proved to be a whole lot of stomach flu for D2,me,D1, my inlaws and finally hubby. Yes, in that order. Oh, except D1 and D2 keep re-infecting each other and continue to be sick. I have seen enough vomit to last the rest of my life. Unfortunately, with the girls only at 18 months and 3 years, something tells me I have a lot more in store. Hopefully soon they will understand the wonderful toilet as receptacle. Not Mom as receptacle.

I'm your Mom, not your toilet.

Now, if you are thinking, way too much information there, let me tell you, you should have seen the details I typed up and erased!

I'm their Mom, but that doesn't mean I'm unselfish. While they were so sick and feverish, it gave me some time with them that I would be denied if they had been well. Miss Wiggles herself, D2, allowed me to rock her to sleep. I got to hold her, and stare down at her sleeping face - with it's cherubic chubby cheeks and streaky blond hair. I held her long past the point she fell asleep, just staring and cherishing. D1, too, fell asleep on my lap while watching tv. I was able to stroke her hair and stare down at her perfect little nose, feel her soft hair.

So D1 and D2, when you turn 13 and decide you hate me, remember, I'm your Mom, the one who will always take care of you when you are sick. Always. So at 13, remember, I'm your Mother not your enemy.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


It's that time of year again. The fall and spring make me think of a lot of things. But since having spent time working as an accessories buyer, this time of year means time to change your handbag! It was a definite perk of the job - I had an endless supply of handbags I could wear test or buy uber-cheap. I didn't have to be practical and buy a boring black one that would go with everything. I could experiment, pick a fun color, and if I didn't like it, oh well, I'd find something new. God, I miss that. Have you seen what a good handbag costs these days? I have a horrible, horrible confession to make. And all my former co-workers, if they were to read this would probably be appalled.

The last handbag I bought myself was from Kmart. Yep, Kmart. Not even Target. Kmart. A black suede one that went with everything I wore. The horror.

Now back in my handbag buying days, I was still frugal. But it was ok, I could get buy with samples and clearance bags from Aigner. We studied, and sometimes,uh, "interpreted" other brands, including Coach. I had a healthy appreciation for Coach bags, thought they did a great job. But I never really wanted one for myself. Especially not their logo bags. I kind of found it desperate to be displaying to all the world exactly what handbag you were carrying.

Yeah, 4 years and 2 babies can make a world of difference.

Last Christmas, my husband for perhaps the first time ever, truly surprised me with a gift. It wasn't on my list, but I was absolutely positively in love with it. It was a Coach handbag. Tobacco leather trim with their jaquard logo fabric and big chunky equestrian style hardware. I LOOOOOVED it. I promised him I would take care of it, and only use it for special occasions. Then I promptly emptied out my cheap ass Kmart bag and threw it out. And didn't stop using the Coach bag till June, when it was time to change to a summer bag.

It surprised me how thrilled I was over that bag. I can't even explain it. I guess it made me feel like my old self. Not just practical Mom. Who cares if I have peanut butter smeared all over my shirt? At least my handbag is stylin'.

And now it's Fall again. I'm so excited. Time to bring out the Coach bag again.

I wonder if I'll get another one this Christmas????

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

And back up again

It's just been a roller coaster of emotions lately.......

just when I thought I was going to just sink into an enormous bowl of ice cream a pit of despair and never get myself out, I found another place to take belly dancing. Yay for me!

And, I recruited a new friend to join me! I wonder how she feels about creating a story line. Maybe we can be two biker chix. Our biker men signed us up for this class so they could do biker men things alone once a week. We could come in wearing leather jackets with fringe, and fake tattoo's on our arms. Drop lots of F bombs and pretend we smoke.

I guess the minivan with the soccer magnet badly parked in the lot will give that one away......

Monday, September 15, 2008


I'm so friggin disappointed. I just received a call. My belly dancing class is cancelled - not enough people signed up for it.

Now what? Hubby said good, now we could put the money towards the sump pump we just found out we needed. Yeah, wa-freakin-hoo.

I'll probably end up taking the yoga class instead, but been there, done that. I wanted something new.

That just sucks.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Back To Mom

Today I decided to follow a writing prompt from Jen at Absolutely Bananas. Her prompt asked What are you doing just for you? When I read the prompt, I chuckled, thinking of how I had made a promise to myself on THIS post to do the very same thing.

So actually, I'm finally doing something for me. I signed up for a class that starts in about two weeks. A class that at first I was very excited about, but now I'm getting REALLY nervous about. Yes, this gal, who is continually teased by her husband's family for having no rhythm, who can barely walk without tripping, is taking a BELLY DANCING class! Last month, when the community college course catalog came in, I perused it. Decided it was a good idea to sign up for a class. I thought about yoga, about painting, even a computer graphics course. But I kept paging back to the belly dancing class. So I figured, what the hell, I'm gonna do it. I'm really getting nervous, though. It dawned on me today that during the first class I might actually be expected to bare my belly. I guess I hadn't thought about that. In reality, this neglected, two pregnancy body needs at least 40 4 classes to be ready for the world to see. Then I thought, oh no! What if it's a bunch of late teen/early twentysomethings taking the class? I mean, who else wants to learn to belly dance? I guess I'll find out.

Then I started getting excited. Time for me! All alone! I won't even be spending it doing kid related activities. I mean with the MOM's club's night outs, I spend it with other Mom's talking about our kids. That's really the only time I get out. This is time to be the real me. Not the Mom me.

Maybe I'll indulge my fetish for lying to strangers (hmmm... haven't I told you about that yet? That's a whole other post) Maybe I'll tell them I'm single. An artist living in a loft in Bethlehem. I spend my time sculpting and throwing wild parties. Yes, I'm a struggling artist that pays her rent by working as a barista in some coffee shop. I'm way too intelligent for that job, but I just can't tolerate the idea of a real job. I mean how uninspiring. And I spend my summers traveling Europe, staying in the homes of other artists, drinking wine and eating nothing but olives and cheese.

Oh, crap, my entire wardrobe has been purchased from Target and Kohls. Somehow I think that will give away the truth. Hmmmm......

I said it was time to be the real me. I guess that's who I'll have to be. Jen, the klutzy, wacky, over caffeinated, Mom of two. That will just have to do.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me

Today is my 34th birthday, or the 7th anniversary of my 27th. You know, the year that one of the worst acts of terrorism occurred in the U.S..

This year was a good one. A quiet day. My husband and D1 woke me with flowers, waffles and coffee in bed. Who doesn't love coffee in bed? Then we took D1 to school and had the parent orientation while D1 was in class. My parents came up, watched D2 for us.

The rest of the day was a quiet one spent with the girls and my parents. Dinner was with the girls, hubby and my Mom. We wore party hats at D1's request and ate pizza. My birthday cake was the best chocolate cake EVER. Have you tried the chocolate cake from Wegman's? If you haven't, do it. It's simple yet PERFECT. Did I mention how much I love this cake?

Then the girls danced around in the family room for us and I read The Birthday Monster book to D1. The girls went off to bed, and then some really nice hanging out time with hubby and my Mom.

Perfect, really.

Some days I want to pull my hair out and run far, far away from this homemakers life. But other days, like today, it just seems way to perfect.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Cute Kid Moment

So, in theory, I don't believe in using food as a reward. I think it sends the the wrong message. In theory.

Anyways, about a week ago, D1 pooped on the potty - yay! This made up 3 stickers, which equals a prize. I was all out of prizes. But I was craving ice cream. So I gave her a scoop of ice cream as her reward. I also gave myself a scoop, you know, as my reward.

Of course after she earned 3 more stickers, she wanted ice cream again, but I went back to my theories, and didn't give it to her.

Last night, after I put D1 to bed, I helped myself to a bowl of ice cream. A few minutes later, D1 comes back downstairs.

She sees my ice cream, claps and says "yay Mommy! Did you poop? Good for you! You got a prize!"

Of course Hubby replies, "no sweetie, for Mommy actually pooping is it's own reward"

Monday, September 8, 2008

A Rant Of Sorts

I've mentioned it before, but I really hate cleaning. I always have - the rewards are so temporary. By picking up, making a bed, cleaning the floor, you've changed nothing, really. It's such a fleeting sense of satisfaction, a short burst of ain't this nice. Before kids, before I was home all day, my messiness was a source of annoyance. But I was able to explain it away. Oh, I'm too busy at work to keep my desk clean, I have better things to do. Fun things await me. Now I feel as if it defines me. This messiness is me. It deflates me, pulls me down. It's just always there, IN MY FACE. The list of things to do that I don't want to do. And then, when I do it, like I said above. It's SO temporary. And no, I'm not that person that coincides happily with her mess. No, I can't find where everything is, yes, it does bother me. I'm just not that good at it. Keeping up after the mess, that is. And I wish I could tell you that this blog is the blog of a before and after. You know, "I was a slob, then I saw the light and look how fabulous my life is now. I changed my life, you can to, just read my blog and click on the ads, and you too will be a converted ex-slob." Nope, that's not going to happen. Stop by again in another year, and I'll still be bitching about the mess in my house.

So my impromptu visit to my neighbor's house was especially maddening to me. We have a new neighbor that moved in next door. We have two things in common: 1) we are both new to the neighborhood 2) We are both stay at home Mom's with kids similar in ages. Her kids are 4,2 and 7 months. Her older kids are girls. Since they've moved in, we've met up in the yards several times for spur of the moment playdates. Her kids have knocked on our back door a few times, and D1 has shown up in their yard even more.

So on Friday D1 wants to knock on their front door. I say yes, figuring if they aren't busy they will say meet us in the backyard. I mean to this point we haven't actually been in each others homes, why would we start now? So D1 rings the bell and Mommy neighbor answers and says they are just getting ready to go out, but they have a few minutes so why don't we come upstairs. UPSTAIRS? Who invites near strangers UPSTAIRS?? So I suck in my breath, thinking, "Wow, She must be really secure or really laid back to let us UPSTAIRS" As we climb the steps I start to panic "what is this, no toys, no shoes, no CRAP on the way up?" Then we are up, in the bedroom the two older girls share. And it is CLEAN. Toys are not strewn on the floor, clothes are not hanging out of the dressers. It's clean. THE UPSTAIRS.

Did I mention this was an unplanned visit? So then Mommy neighbor invites me on a tour, to see the rest of the newly painted house. The master bedroom - the bed is made. Even into the master bath. It's clean, too. No little handprints on the mirror. Hubby hasn't left the newspaper by the shitter. Nothing. It's clean.

Did I mention this was an unplanned visit? Then back to the downstairs. The family room has a few toys neatly put away. The kitchen doesn't have any dirty dishes. No nasty food dried to the floor. It's clean, and did I mention this was an unplanned visit?

I went home, shuddering as I entered the family room, with a floor so littered with toys and kids clothes that the stained carpet was barely visible. My insides shook as I walked into the kitchen, with a sink full of dirty dishes, and bread crusts still under the table. "I'm a failure" I thought. " can't do this. I would absolutely flourish under the tutelidge of a live in maid. Life isn't fair."

And so for the rest of the evening, and into the next very rainy day I sulked. Barely cleaned a thing. Then in the evening I went to Targhay and found what I was pretty sure would change my life. Itso cubes are these 15x15 white cubes that EASILY hook together in a number of ways. You can also buy all sorts of accessories: extra shelves, bins, doors, casters, etc. So I bought twelve of them, plus a number of accessories. I brought them home and overhauled the playroom. Donated a bunch of toys, threw out a bunch of trash, even scrubbed the floor. Then I placed the Itso cubes neatly in the open door closet. Organized all the toys but function. IT WAS BEAUTIFUL. And so neat, organized, clean.

Then came today, I was going to tackle the messes and the dirt head on. I was optimistic once again. And I tried, lord did I try. But D1 & D2 just loved their new playroom. Loved it so much, they couldn't get enough of it. Or out of it. I don't know how many times I picked up toys and put them back into their designated ITSO cube. Countless times I took toys out of the family room and back to their cozy home. And I did, I tried to pick up all the food from under the table after lunch, and I even cleaned up D1's bedroom. I really, honestly put in a good fight.

So guess what? It's 9:00 pm and their are toys strewn all over the house, dinner debris is all over the kitchen floor and the dishes are piled up in the sink. And I just hate the thought of going back down there and cleaning it ONE MORE TIME. Only to start over again tomorrow.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Playground Politics

D1 had a rough time socializing - from about 18 months to 30 months she just didn't know how to interact with kids. She would get so excited to see them, desperately want to interact with them, but not quite know how to do it. She would end up hitting, scratching, pushing, etc. She still has it in her, on her bad days. And as all 3 year olds, it especially comes out during the trials of sharing. I thought with a little sister constantly by her side this wouldn't be an issue, but it is.

I had a really hard time with this stage. I felt like I was doing something wrong, or not doing something enough. I felt like other Mom's were judging me, thinking I was a bad Mom. I'd find myself over-reacting to her aggression when we were in public, just trying to prove to other Moms that I was on top of it, and was trying to control the problem. It wasn't fair to D1 and caused a huge amount of anxiety for me. After a few months of this, I found myself avoiding other Mom's and their kids. I would take D1 to playgrounds during times that I knew others were less likely to be there. I stopped going to activities with my MOM's group.

I was broken hearted over the thought that other Mom's in her playgroup (which we became playgroup drop outs over!) were unable to see my child as she really was. I mean, I knew she was this great, creative, funny lovable kid. But could others see it?

Today was a great day spent at the park with my MOM's club. But I still haven't gotten over the apprehension her prior months of aggression started. Sometimes I feel like I won't be a very good advocate for her, if that is ever needed in school or elsewhere. Each time I would hear a child yell or cry, I would check on D1. Not to see if she was ok, but to see if she was the one causing the tears. If she happened to be standing by the crying child, I would automatically wonder "what did she do". Today was a good day, though. To my knowledge she wasn't the cause of one shed tear.

This subject leads me to a topic that my older brother, lets call him OB (it's the way it should be) is actually kind of obsessed with. He has two kids, ages 10 and 8. While in my opinion, they are both great kids with some awesome characteristics, the 10 year old definitely gives my brother more of a run for his money. He's a handful, while the 8 yr old is more laid back and listens to her parents more readily. OB has seen both signs of the coin, and has come to realize that nature has a TON to do with your child's behavior, it's not all just nurture. His obsession lies in the parents who do not have "challenging" children. Now not all parents of easy going kids think this way, but I'm sure some do - they attribute their children's behaviors to their great parenting, and automatically assume the parents of challenging kids are doing something wrong. OB has seen the knowing glances between these "better" parents and wants to scream "it has nothing to do with you!" But where is the line drawn? Where can you say, "hey, she's like that because I taught her that" and give yourself some credit? Personally, I happen to know that my girls positive traits all come from my fabulous parenting. The bad stuff, on the other hand, totally out of my control. It's just the way they are, right?

Next week D1 starts preschool. I'm so mixed with emotions. Sad, because she is growing up and isn't my little baby anymore. Excited because I'll have a few hours just with D2 each week. Hopeful that she will blossom and just love school and learn so much. But I'm also so scared. Will she make friends? Will the kids like her? Will she get overstressed and become too aggressive? Will she listen to the teacher or just spend all her time in the bathroom smearing the hand soap all over the mirror?

You really , truly can't understand the magnitude of parenthood until your entrenched in it, can you?

Friday, August 29, 2008

A True Jen Adventure

I'm a MORON.

I really am.

This is why I named my blog The Adventures of Jen. Only I should have named it The Adventures of an Idiot or This chick must really have guardian angels watching her ass or The Adventures of a complete klutz or maybe What the hell was I thinking?

I was driving home from my Mom's club meeting - with a detour to Starbucks, of course. Just got off the phone with my Mom a few minutes earlier, so I can't even blame cell phone use on this one.

Anyways, I was heading down the road, approaching some railroad tracks. I notice the blinking lights in front of the tracks and think "shit, a train is coming. I have to stop" so I slam on the brakes. Then I'm sitting there for a few milliseconds thinking "I shouldn't have stopped, I had a minute, and I'm a little too close to the tracks, look the person behind me is way back there. " That's when it happens. I'm watching the little striped barrier coming down. "oh crap, I'm too close" Coming down on my car. My windshield to be exact. "Shit" Said very loudly. D1 starts crying "what is that, what is that" I'm freaking out. I put it in reverse, only to have it hit my front hood. Which if you are wondering, those barriers don't have one of those things like your garage door where it goes back up if it senses something too close below. But, the good news is that it does not come down forcefully. It didn't damage my car at all. Damaged my self-esteem, but not the car. (Had to add that in case hubby reads this - yes, car is fine)

The woman behind me followed me for about a mile, through several turns even. I wonder if it was to make sure she had my tag #, to have the proper info to provide the authorities. "that woman should not be allowed to drive with children in a car!"

So there it is. A Jen Adventure.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

A Flood

I almost lost it today. Seriously. D1 is REALLY pushing me. I really thought I was going to lose it on her. Had to make her leave the room, had to walk out of the room myself, before I :

A. Left the house and drove straight to Vegas, never to be seen from again.

B. Let loose a verbal assault that would lead to a good 5 years of therapy for us both.

Maybe I'm over-reacting. Maybe it's hormones ( I really, really hate it when people say that, though). Perhaps I just need a better sense of humor. Or maybe it's just as I've outlined in previous posts: I'm sick of cleaning up the freakin' messes.

This morning I put D2 down for her nap. Then stayed upstairs for 5-10 minutes picking up some things and mentally organizing my day. My parents were coming up in about an hour, in the evening my Mother's helper was coming over. Not having cleaned(what's new?), I was trying to mentally prioritize - "ok, who cares about mopping the floor and the handprints on the windows, I'll just clean the powder room, wash some dishes and maybe vacuum the family room."

As I'm upstairs I can hear D1 playing at the sink. Not something I like, but whatever, not worth running downstairs immediately for, I can stop her as soon as I get down there. WRONG.

I walk downstairs. She's on the couch in the family room, leaning through the cut out window that looks into the kitchen - and is directly at the sink. She has the rinsing hose in her hand. The kitchen is a lake. IT IS SOAKED. I'm not talking a few streaks of water. I'm talking serious water. HOMES comes to mind. Lake Huron is on the floor in front of the sink. Ontario is on the other side of the island, Michigan is under the table, Erie is on top of the table and Lake Superior is on the stove. I had the god forsaken Great Lakes in my kitchen. Water was dripping from the ceiling, running down the cherry cabinets. My toaster oven no longer lit up and smelled like it was burning - obviously now fried. The paper work on the desk was a big ink slurred mess.

I was pissed.

"D1 go upstairs. NOW" I had to walk out of the room myself. Call my Mom and freak out on her. Call my husband and freak out on him.

It took 5 jumbo beach towels, 3 large bath towels and 8 dish cloths to soak up the mess. And all of the towels were drenched. I still haven't gone down to the basement to see if any water damage hit the ceiling above the kitchen. I just don't want to know.

As I was cleaning up the mess, D1 came downstairs, her head held low.
"Mommy, I want to tell you somethin"
"Yes, D1"
"I sorry"
"Ok, D1, but can you tell me why you are sorry"
"Yes, Mommy. I sorry cause I want to come downstairs now"

Preschool starts in 12 days. Not that I'm counting.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Mommy Tantrum

So yesterday's post was not a healthy one for me. I kept going back to it, and re-reading the list of things D1 did. It got me all riled up. It served up a good ol' dose of self righteousness. No wonder I can't get anything done! That's why my house is always a mess! I can't even paint my foyer in an acceptable time frame! I can't even take a few minutes for myself! Ever! I can't put makeup on because she ruined it all! You get the idea.

Then in the late evening it turned into guilt. I must not spend enough time with her. How did she have all this time to do these things, anyways? I don't engage her in enough interesting activities. I let her watch too much tv. She's not eating healthy enough. She's jealous of her sister. I must not be giving her enough one on one time. It's obviously all my fault, and I even posted it for the world to see, and they will all plainly see it's my fault. I must be a bad Mom.


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

fluids, fluids everywhere, and I need a drink

I'm amazed when I visit other Mom's houses and see so much not baby proofed. Or rather pre-schooler proofed. Lotions out in plain sight, dish liquid next to the sink, hand soap actually left out in the powder room. Craft supplies left in an accessible place. I stand in awe of such things. Why? Well, let's just use the last month as an example.

In the last month, D1 has:

- poured laundry detergent all over our luggage for vacation
- sprayed sunblock on the grill
- sprayed sunblock on friend's grill (what's up with that, btw? why grills?)
- smeared chapstick on back of computer desk chair
- rubbed hand soap onto self,bathroom vanity and floor (twice, two different bathrooms)
- colored my bathroom walls with lipgloss
- gobbed butter onto kitchen cabinets
- colored on family room, dining room and kitchen walls
- applied entire tube of favorite lipstick onto self, lovey, sister, sister's lovey, washing machine and laundry room floor (my personal favorite)
- poured coveted half n half into hubby's used scotch glass
- emptied entire contents of jasmine scented baby powder all over her room
- opened a large herbal sachet over toddler bed

I'm not making this up, and I know there have been more, I'm just blocking them out for sanity reasons. And these have occurred with zealous baby proofing methods. Of course, the methods have gotten stricter as more infractions have occurred. So yes, if you happen to use the powder room in my home, you will have to ask for the hand soap. And yes, I no longer carry my favorite lipstick in my purse(for many reasons, but the main being that I have to buy a new tube). How do I stop this? D1 has supervised craft times almost every day. We paint, color with crayons, markers and chalk. We use glue and stickers. We have a water table where she can pour and dump water to her heart's content. It's obviously not enough. Please, readers, I will try any suggestions!

I try to think how this will translate into her adult self. How can she funnel this obsession with fluids and semi-solids into a profession that she will find rewarding? A chemical engineer that comes up with new paint colors for Sherwin-Williams? Product development for Maybelline? I'm most convinced that it will be mixed media artist. I can see the reviews now " the latest installment from artist D1 is a statement on anti-domesticity. She masterfully mixes detergent, soap, and cosmetics with acrylic paints to bring the wall sized canvases to life. They scream "no" to the perils of suburban living!"

Or maybe this is a gift to me. Perhaps she is training me for my next career. Am I meant to become the next guru of stain removal? The goddess of stain-free carpeting?

Only time will tell, but for now, I'm thankful gin & tonics are clear in color.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

My weekend

My college friend did not come this weekend. She called on Wednesday to give me the news. A close friend of hers daughter passed away. She was born with a genetic disorder that claimed her life after 10 short years. The funeral would be on Saturday, so my friend would not be able to come for the weekend.
There is just something about Motherhood. The moment you give birth, or perhaps the moment you hold your little one in your arms, immediately initiates you into a lifetime membership of caring. As someone once said, of wearing your heart on your sleeve. My heart broke for the Mother who just lost her daughter, tears came streaming down my face as my friend told me how she was unable to let her go, rocking her for more than an hour after her death. How she would not allow her to be carried out on the gurney, carrying her instead. I'm crying now, as I type this.
My brother and his wife just had their first baby last week. I was discussing with my sister how he has now become initiated. How you can not explain to someone without a child the instant, fierce love. The falling in love. And the forever caring. The un-initiated could never understand.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Old Friends

As I've been saying, I've really been missing my girlfriends lately. So you can certainly understand how excited I am for this weekend. An old college friend is coming for a visit all the way from Pittsburgh, Pa. She is bringing her husband, 11 yr old daughter and 4 year old son. It really hit home last week just how lonely I was getting when I realized that in my free time I've been fantasizing over the conversations we would have. Yes, I could fantasize about the hotty at the farmers market, but instead, I'm dreaming of juicy gossip. She is just one of my very favorite people in the whole world; sarcastic, self deprecating and intelligent. Her house may always be clean, and she may always wear a size four, but I just adore her. In order to maximize our conversation potential, and make sure it is a true (much needed!) gab fest, I've decided to make an agenda for conversations to be covered:

- amount of wrinkles and other ageing signs that are kicking us in the arse.
- our inability to lose weight (she doesn't need to, but I still like to hear how she thinks she does)
- food, and how much we love it. specifically chocolate.
- compare and contrast our husbands annoying habits
- our mutual friends love lives and children
- college days and the amount of beer we drank
- the amount of coffee we now drink
- how long it's been since we went out without our kids
- the sad thing that has happened to our breasts since nursing our children (this will probably result in an actual comparison if we manage to drink too much)
- latest embarrassing events - my intoxicated christmas, and her whatever, and what I really love is if she doesn't have one, once she drinks too much, she may just make one up
- the bad tv shows we secretly watch
- family politics

I can't wait!

Sex in the City, Part II

I'm so excited. A member of the Mom's club I've joined called me last night. Her parents have her kids, and she wanted a night out. She found out that Sex in the City is playing in a theater in Emmaus. Would I like to join her? (hmmm.... did she read my blog??) Of course I would!
The theater is one of those small, old fashioned, Main st type theaters. The kind that only plays second runs - you know, when the movie has gone out of most theaters, they pick it up. So I'm sure Carrie would liken it to buying last season's couture in a consignment shop, but I don't care. I'm actually going to see it before it hits Netflix. Plus, admission is only $3 - I'll have enough left over to even buy a box of Goobers!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Divine Intervention Needed to get my house Semi-Clean

I haven't told you about the day The Great Divine rang my doorbell. Instead of the usual ding dong, I heard a glorious orchestra and a beam of light came shining through my door.

It was my neighbor. The mother of an 11 yr old girl. She came to ask if I would be interested in having a little help this summer. Hmmm..... there goes that music again... aaaahhhh ahhhhhh.... "Would I be interested in having her daughter come over once a week as a Mother's Helper" aaaaahhhhhh ahhhhhhhh........ squinting through the tears and the ray of sunshine at her back, I replied "yes, that would be great" then this gift from up above adds " and I don't want you to pay her, I would like it to simply be a lesson in responsibility" aaaaaahhhhh ahhhhhhh. I think she thought I was a little creepy when I started kissing her feet, but still she kept to her word, and her daughter has been coming over every Tuesday morning for 3 hours. 3 amazing, soul feeding hours. Ok, not that soul feeding, I usually just end up folding laundry and cleaning my own bedroom. But still, I fold and clean with out a child undoing everything do, and I usually get to watch a talk show or other mindless dribble that isn't a cartoon. Very exciting in this little world of mine.

Here's the kind of funny part, though. I think my dear little helper is a bit of a germ phobe. That, or the filth of my house has propelled an otherwise normal 11 year old into an obsessive hand washer. So each Tuesday morning, I wake up a little earlier than usual to clean the downstairs (oh, please, you didn't think I would do the entire house, did you?). All the toys get put away, the floors get vacuumed, and if I don't have time to mop, I at least try to get some of the dried food off the kitchen floor. I even wipe off the table. But she's still constantly washing her hands. And I'm deeply effected by the fact that an 11 year olds opinion of my cleaning abilities actually matter. I wonder what she goes home to tell her Mom. Perhaps next year she'll volunteer her son to come over and clean my house once a week, you know, to teach him some responsibility.

Soon the summer will end, Tuesdays will return to simply being the second day of the work week and my house will once again be dirty on this day. Summer is such a fleeting time......

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Adjusting to our move

Most days I look on our move as a fun adventure. It's been interesting getting to know the area, and finding ways to meet people. But lately I've just been missing my girlfriends. I want an evening out with a little too much wine, and way too much gossip. Some giggles, cattiness and letting loose. I just miss my girls.

So I had a sudden great idea. I'll come up with a girls night. I REALLY wanted to see Sex in the City when it came out. But I didn't want to go by myself, and I didn' t know of anyone who also wanted to see it. Anyone that lived within a 20 mile radius, that is. My friends in NJ all went to see it. So I thought I'd send out an email to the Mom's Club I've joined, and see if I could arrange for a MOM's night out. Maybe afterwards we could even go out for a drink. How exciting does that sound? Hee hee!

But now I feel like a total loser. Sex in the City is no longer in theaters. How long has it been? Somehow missing the loop on that makes me feel so lame. The show that made hipness accessible to all and I missed out on it.

I'm going downstairs and eating too much chocolate.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Back Again and Potty Training

We spent a week away on vacation. Every year we go to Rehoboth Beach with my family. I've always enjoyed it, but since having kids, I really appreciate it since everyone helps out with the kids. It gives hubby and I a little more of a break. But then our first week back was challenging because D1 was used to being amused 24/7 by Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles and cousins. So last week she was up my you know what most of the time. I wasn't able to sneeze, let alone find some time for myself. This week is much better, though. I've been able to sneeze twice today.

We've been working on Potty Training big time. So far not much success. On Friday I took D1 to the Dollar Store and let her pick out a bunch of crap for prizes. We put stickers on her potty chart - 1 sticker for a pee, and 2 for a poop. Three stickers equal a prize. Today she peed on the potty twice. But no poo. In fact, very funny, she was so determined to poop today that she actually fell asleep on her potty. Bent over, leaning on her pink super ball. I kept thinking of myself, in labor, holding on to my birthing ball.

We have a time line for this potty training. The first month's tuition is due for her Preschool by the 15th - even though she won't start till Sept 15th. Kind of annoying, actually. I'm starting to think that it just isn't going to happen. Trying to come up with alternate plans to keep the girls occupied. But God, I really wanted the time to myself! D2 still naps in the morning, so I would have had at least a good hour two days a week to myself. The things I can do with that time!

Friday, July 18, 2008


I hate cleaning. In fact, I could confidently say that it's the #1 thing I dislike about staying home. The need to clean is just always in your face.

Therefore, the frequency in which I change my daughter's toddler bed is pretty sad. But since the appearance of a strange, pinkish stain on her bed earlier in the week, I've felt the need to do it. So yes, even with strange stain, it took me about 4 days to get around to it.

This is what I found in her small, converted crib, 3-sided toddler bed:

- two stains, one with unindentifiable dried on crumbs
- 12 books
-3 stuffed animals
-4 blankets
-2 pillows
- sippy cup with curdled milk
- pen
-small plastic bag with following message: "warning: to avoid danger of suffocation, keep away from babies and children. Do not use in cribs, beds, carriages or play pens." Good to know.

Hmmm... and I wonder why she's been coming into our room 10 times a night?

Thursday, July 17, 2008

In Over My Head

Somedays I just feel so in over my head. My daughters are "spirited". IE, they are nuts. active, into everything, destructive, inventive, curious, mean, loving. Yes, all of the above. On days when all those adjectives are turned into verbs coming at me all at once; I'm just in this way, way over my head.
The last 90 minutes kind of play out like this: The girls are eating lunch, so I sneak outside to get our pool bag from the purse, D #1 comes running out after me, now she's poking through her daddy's things in the garage.
"D#1, come inside."

"come inside"

"please, come inside"

"sigh" And I pick her up and in we go.

As I walk in, the phone is ringing, D2 is standing up in her high chair.

"D2, sit down"

"On, your bum"


"Sigh" and I pick her up and put her down on the floor.

As I'm talking to a new friend, I turn around in the kitchen and see that D1 has emptied the contents of my pool bag onto the floor.


"D1, please come back here and clean up this mess"

Still chatting (selfish me, trying to speak to another adult for 5 mins)

I walk into family room.



And phone conversation is abruptly cut short.

"D1, Time out. Don't leave the step till I say"

"ok, Mommy"

30 seconds later: "D1, I said not to leave the step"

"ok, Mommy"

"D1, Do you want to go to the pool?"

"Yes, Mama"

"then stay on this step till Mommy says it's time to get up"

"yes. Mama"

"D1, why did you leave the step? Now we can't go to the pool"

"sorry, Mama"

So crap, that didn't work. And now what the hell are we going to do? Alright, where did I put those water paints?

"D2, get off the steps, come follow Mommy"

"D2, off the steps"

"Off the steps"

Here they are!

"off with all your clothes, we are going to paint!"

"D1, don't put the paint on your sister"

"D1, you got paint in her eye!"

"D2, off the steps"

"D2, come lets paint"

"off the steps"

"D1, why did you paint all over your body?"

"Ok, time for a bath!"

"D1, stop turning the water to hot"

"D2, let me take off your diaper"

"Shit! Poo!"

"D1, I need wipes"

"please, hurry, I need the wipes"

"thank you"

"ok, wait, Mommy needs to add some cold water"


"Please, wait"


"ok, nows ok"

"D1, don't push your sister"

"D2, water stays inside the tub"

"in the tub"

"ok, give me the cup"

"D2, I mean D1, stop splashing your sister"

"D1, stop splashing so hard"

"D2, keep the water in the tub"

"in the tub"

"stop hitting your sister"


"stop it!"

"ok, time to get out!"

"wait, mommy has to give you towel"

"wait, you're getting water all over the floor"

"let Mommy put a diaper on"

"sit still"

ahhhh..... I'm in so deep, glub glub glub!!!!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

More thoughts on landing in the Lehigh Valley

"And all my friends have settled down, become their Mothers and Fathers without a
sound" From the song "A Horse in the Country" by the Cowboy Junkies

That lyric keeps going through my head again and again. Why? Well, I absolutely love my new house - it's a wonderful layout and lots of space. My neighborhood is beautiful with lots of mature trees and very quiet. But it's all so suburban. Don't get me wrong, my last town, Somerville, wasn't exactly living in the fast lane. But where I've landed reminds me soooo much of the town I grew up in, and this house is, as my sister said when she first saw it, "a grown-ups house" the neighborhood is full of mature adults rearing responsible children. It's all so, so suburban I guess. My life is becoming way more "domesticated" than I ever thought it would be. Mama extraordinaire. Wake up, clean the house, make breakfast, lunch, dinner, cut coupons, plan meals, take the kids to the community pool. It's what I wanted, space to breathe, a slow pace, predictability. But I'm afraid, too. Afraid my personality and eccentricities will be put on a shelf somewhere and forgotten. Gathering dust till I'm 50 or 60 and finally lose my mind and end up running down the street singing "Raspberry Beret" wearing nothing but my bra and panties and the beret I kept from college.

Is there room for all of me in this suburban development? It's a fight, I think, a fight to keep me out and about. Boy, my husband, the happy Chameleon, won't like it when I start waving my freak flag, but out it must go!

"She wore a Raspberry Beret, the kind you find in a second hand store...." by Prince, of course

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

awkward moment

Am I a bad Mom? My 3 yr old isn't big on naps anymore. She'll take one maybe once every 4 or 5 days. But I, I love nap time. It's my only time alone. So I let her lay in my bed for one to two hours and watch cartooons. Today I left her to watch PBS while I wrote some emails and checked out Facebook. I was probably locked in the spare bedroom at my desk for about an hour. I could hear drawers opening and closing and other mysterious sounds, but I ignored them.

Then came check in time. What could she be doing? I walked in to see my husbands socks all over the floor and my innocent 3 year old holding a condom. Yes, a rubber was in her hand - the packaging on the floor. Actually, on the floor were several opened packages and it's prior occupants. Oh god, and several more strewn across our bed.

It was all I could do not to laugh, and tell her she needs to respect Daddy's privacy and not go through his drawers.

Definitely time I made a decision on a new form of birth control........

How I landed in The Lehigh Valley

I feel the need to back-track today. My blog states that I'm a relocated Mama finding my way in the Lehigh Valley, yet I don't think I've explained that very well. I actually grew up in PA. I was born in Luzerne County, PA - coal mining country. But I spent most of my early years in a suburb of Harrisburg - for those of you familiar with the area, "the west shore". I went to college at IUP - which is in a very small town outside of Pittsburgh, Pa. There I met my husband. After graduation, we moved to Staten Island. The armpit of NYC. That is truly where my adventures, or rather, mis-adventures began. A sheltered suburbanite has no place in Staten Island. After 4 tremendous years in SI, we bought our first house and moved to Somerville, NJ. We lived here for close to 7 years. Moved in just before 9/11. Somerville was very charming to me - a small town, with the hipness of a revitalized mainstreet, close enough to the city to have a clue. Everything was within walking distance. It was a town that I felt at home in. We bought a very old fixer-upper in the middle of the enormous real estate boom. Threw tons of cash into the place, and after two kids quickly out grew it's small size. But as many a New Jerseyan can tell you, there was no way we could trade up and stay in NJ. Homes cost a fortune, and the taxes are just ridiculous. So we did what many before us have done - we moved to PA! My husbands job is just along the border of Pa & NJ, so the commute would actually improve for him. We sold our NJ home for almost double of what we bought it for, and purchased a sickeningly suburban home in Lehigh County. We paid 20K more for this house than what we sold our old house for, but more than doubled our square footage. We're adjusting, and liking it, so far. I'm taking baby steps into meeting new people - joined a MOM's club, but honestly haven't done much with them. Not sure what sort of people I want to meet, hoping some like minded people will simply pop out of the woodwork!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

The Wedding

So this is going to be a very self-indulgent, one sided view of my brother in law's wedding.

Daughter #1 was one of three flower girls. And as an absolute, unbiased truth, she was the most adorable of them all. Really, she was!

She was the youngest, but also the most beautiful. What stole my heart, though, was that she honestly danced the night away. In the middle of a huge drunken group, my little girl clapped, rolled and boogied. At the end of the evening, she was a picture of innocence, half-asleep in her Daddy's arms as they slow danced.

The reception itself was an absolute blast. I have only seen my husband that intoxicated maybe one other time (that of course is not to say that he hasn't been that drunk in my presence more than once, but only twice have I been more sober...) In his striped seersucker suit, he would have looked like quite the gentleman, if he hadn't been two fisting it all night. Yes, a gin and tonic does pair perfectly well with a Brooklyn Lager. And yes, he did commit the perfect party foul by dropping one of those G&T's on the dance floor. :)

As for me, I dealt with wardrobe malfunctions all night. You can dress the girls up, but you just can't take them out. I can't wait to see the photos of them peaking out! Oh boy! (or rather, Oh Girls!)

My favorite part of the evening was the ladies room. I have never been at a wedding with so many drunk chicks! I think they out-did the drunk guys. It was refreshing to be one of the more together gals at the event. Although my husband informs me that it's because we're old. Oh well.

All in all, it was a great evening, and I wish the couple much love and success in their future together!