Monthly Archives: February 2014

If you give a boy a cookie…


dyl.1There is an old Bread song where lead singer David Gates poses the question, “If a picture paints a thousand words, then why can’t I paint you?” which is how I feel when I write this blog at times. Would posting a picture convey what I’m talking about more than my attempts at writing? On occasion, I believe that’s the case. But not today….

Every few years or so, we rent a dumpster to get clear out some of the larger amounts of clutter we’ve accumulated over the years. Usually when this happens, we also decide which clothes from the last twenty years we are willing to give to charity. This year’s clear/clean out took place in November, when we needed to clear out attic space in order to allow new furnace lines to reach our upstairs bedroom-for the first time ever. As we were going through all the old plastic containers, determining what to keep and what to donate to charity my husband came across a little electronic nick knack from the boy’s second Christmas. A small photo frame, with a picture from his first Christmas, that when you pressed a button his tiny boy’s voice came on and said, “Merwwy Chwistmas Momma, I wuv you!”. As you might imagine, I kept hitting that button over and over again, listening to the little voice that belongs to my now big, giant of a son; trying not to cry because the years spun by so fast. “Where did you find this?” I asked. “Upstairs…in a box” My husband replied. I quickly made a copy of his voice with my Ipod, for fear the frame’s battery would die, then asked my husband to hide it again-for a future surprise; A time capsule, a memory, a reminder from days gone by.

“Doll today is your brother’s birthday…” I said this morning as I plugged in the crockpot. “Today is bubba’s brithday?” she asked. “Yes. Be nice to him.” I suggested. “Hmm, I didn’t get him anything…” she thought for a moment before flippantly saying, “Oh well” and moved on. “You don’t have to “get” him anything, just give him a hug…that will be enough” I replied. 20140228-143105.jpg (The boy loves hugs-to give them, to get them-to smother you with them….so much that his sister will say when he walks into a room “No hugs, NO HUGS!” much to his dismay). “UGHHHH” she replied as her knees bent forward in buckling fashion as she pretended she were being shot. “Doll, it won’t kill you and he’ll think its a mighty fine birthday present. Also, you could make him bday card during recess…” I offered,  opening my Ipod photo file to show her the one she gave him last year. Rolling her eyes she said, “Like that’s true now…” smirking, as left for school.

15…dear God, where did the time go?



growth takes time…


This morning on the way to school, the boy switched radio stations to land on his favorite drive to school station-NPR. I’m not sure whether he likes listening to the headlines of the day or rather uses this as an excuse to not listen to “my”music on the ride to school. Whichever the case may be, his like of this station has afforded us some good conversations in the past.  This morning our conversation began like this, “Boy you must show your math work on tests, so the teacher can see how you developed the answer” I said “I don’t need to show the work…its all up here” he said pointing to his head. “Well if that were the case you would have answered the question correctly–which you didn’t.” At this point he turned on the radio, no doubt in an effort to stop the lecture. “Well mom, I am just an animal” He retorted trying to sound funny and failing. “An animal of limited intelligence?” I replied. “On average, people are dumb mom” He explained. “You included?” I asked. “No…but everyone else is…” In the meantime, different voices and stories echoed in the background.

“Case in point!” the boy said, referring to a news blurb “Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer says she has vetoed controversial legislation that would have allowed business owners in her state to refuse to serve gays and others if those customers somehow offended the proprietors’ religious beliefs.” “What is THAT about?” He asked. “In an attempt to protect business owners from being sued for refusing service to those of the LGBT community, they created a derisive law which offered to discriminate against the LGBT community under the guise of religious freedom. The problem is, they….” I was saying and watched as the boy turned up the volume on the radio; essentially drowning out my explanation. “Is this your way of saying you’ve heard enough?” I asked. “Yes.” He replied.”You’re the one who asked me….” I began. “True, but I gleaned enough off the radio and you to be satisfied..and besides everything you say sounds like a lecture. Can’t we just listen to the radio in peace mom?” Which we did the rest of the way to school.

Evidently I fall into the “dumb people” class-in my son’s opinion…which is about right for me-his parent.



sleeplessness in reality….


Yesterday morning I had the rare opportunity to work out-which gave me a large amount of energy last night-so much so, I had trouble winding down. As such, I found myself watching Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, a Jerry Seinfeld webshow, which is exactly what the title suggests. While some of episodes were quite funny and illuminating (Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner) for me, the show was simply something for me to watch while trying to wind down.


The doll entered the kitchen midway through the final episode of the first season, visibly upset and wanting to talk. “Why are you up? Did you have a nightmare?” I asked. Standing there holding herself she barely shook her head up and down and then took a seat next to me in the kitchen. “What was your dream about?” I asked. “I don’t know….people dying” she whispered. “People dying, like from a zombie attack (a dream she has when she was 5)?” I asked and was admonished immediately. “Like your dad and I dying or your friends?” I queried. “My friends at school…” She explained. “Ah..were you at school when this was happening?” I wondered. She began to shake her head up and down and I invited her onto my lap so I could really offer comfort to her. Rolling her head onto my shoulder she began to heave and cry in earnest, wrestling out all the fears which had just awakened her while I rubbed her back and whispered reassurances to her.

“Doll, I’m fairly certain you attend a school where that kind of thing won’t happen. In addition, you’re the type of person everyone likes, right? You try to be friends with everyone…” “I….try….” she hitched out. “Yes and the kids agree-why else would your friends write all those nice things on your picture if they weren’t true? Plus did you know I ran into Ben’s parents the other night and told them how happy you were for him, that he was accepted into the technology program at a different school? I told them how sad you were to see him go, but hoped he would have a better experience there.” I explained. “I’m tired of seeing him bullied by the other boys for not playing sports. He’s a really nice boy mom” she explained. “I know doll…that’s what I mean. Just continue to be the nicest person to everyone-accept their differences and don’t make fun of anyone.”

She lifted her head from my shoulder-which was pretty drenched with tears; wiped her eyes and nose on my sweatshirt sleeve and then sat up. “Is that why kids shoot up schools?” She asked. “Doll, who knows what goes on in anyone’s mind. However, one of the things that impressed me about you and your friends is that you already recognize you’re weird-and you accept one another’s weirdness-because that’s just who they are.  I think there are some kids out there who are different/weird but are made fun of instead of accepted for who they are.”

“That’s just sad” she said in a quiet voice.

Sensing our time drawing to a close I pulled her back into a hug, rubbing her back again and said, “Doll, just be nice to everyone. Don’t be afraid to be a friend to the kid who is bullied-make him/her feel as if they have worth. Don’t be afraid what others think-because deep down you know what is right right?” Once again she shook her head in agreement, squeezed me tight in our embrace and then kissed me goodnight. “I love you mom…” she said as she departed the room and I reiterated my love for her as she left; saddened by nightmares based on reality these days, instead of characters from books of fiction.



Twice a week while visiting with Mrs. P; we watch as one of the neighbor girls next door, walks into her backyard, plays with her hair and head angles and then takes a selfie picture with her cellphone. Well to be honest, she takes several while maneuvering in and out of the different sunlit areas of the yard. The girl who is way too self involved taking pictures of herself, never acknowledges us peering out the kitchen windows, amused at her machinations.  She is always way too busy looking great for someone else to see later.

20140225-133201.jpgI read that 2013 was the year of the Selfie. I know I was guilty of taking one or ten or more pictures of myself 20140225-133444.jpgover the course of  last year-but had no idea I was part of a trend. Whether it was a new haircut and color or me showing off something more (my blessings-aka kids), I enjoyed the use of this technology.  Does this make me self involved and conceited? Perhaps…or maybe just trendy, for a change.

But I have to say, the best “selfie” I’ve come across in a long time, was the one the doll handed me on Saturday. A little embarrassed, she explained how during a girl scout meeting a large groan could be heard when her troop leader announced each girl would be creating a self portrait–yet when the time came to wrap the project up, all the girls groaned they weren’t given enough time to finish their works of art. Now I know what you’re thinking…this is a self portrait, not a picture taken with a camera and put out into the world. True. But, judging from the comments written on the side of the matting by her friends, I’m inclined to believe this is a better representation of who the doll is-and her friends have her described to a T-she’s everything they believe and more (spelling be damned).


the learning curve…


Cross your fingers the kids will have school for a full week without closure-this week. You know, I’m almost scared to write that sentence…thinking I might jinx the weather reports. But in all honesty, we need the kids to get back into a routine. This having  an extra day off due to snow or cold; in the middle of the week, is wrecking havoc on their grades.

The boy for example can’t seem to get back into the rhythm of studying for quizzes and tests and his grades have been reflective of that. Last week he called home from school to explain why he missed his ride home. Evidently his teacher prevented him from finishing a test in class, due to inappropriate behavior. Instead he was requested to come by after school to complete the assignment.  When I arrived to pick him up, the following conversation ensued. “What happened in religion?” I asked. “Well Esos was building a ladder toward heaven…” he began. “What? No, just tell me…” I replied. “I’m trying to…” He replied and then began again. “Esos was building a ladder toward heaven, which essentially was a stairway to heaven, which I mentally linked to the Led Zeppelin song (Stairway to Heaven) and accidentally chuckled out loud. Sr. B heard my giggle and her eyes bugged out of her head. Before I knew it she had grabbed my paper and told me to come back after school to finish the test.”

Trying not to laugh out loud myself I said, “Have you ever thought something was funny, yet kept it to yourself?” “Yes” he replied. “THIS-was one of those times…” I said and laughed. “Mom her eyes really bugged out too!” The boy added with a smirk. “You know bay, sometimes its better to keep your thoughts to yourself.” “Yes…so I have learned.” He replied

So, have we all learned…

Why Shouldn’t we…


Writers block.

Boring kids.

Happy kids.

No Drama.

Drama-but nothing you should write about.

Harpy parent.

Stuck on idea, but can’t find words…


Start again…anything?

Save Draft. Start again.


Ideas-ha! Foreign concepts more like it!


Fill in the blank offers certain qualities.

Oh subject, subject where art thou?

What’s going on with Kansas and Arizona?

“We believe in things that we can’t see…Why Shouldn’t we? Why shouldn’t we? Hands that heal can set a chained man free Why shouldn’t we? Why shouldn’t we? And we believe in peace w/in every heart Why shouldn’t we? Why shouldn’t we?  Burning brightly, brightly in the dark Why shouldn’t we? Why shouldn’t we? Come on Children, open up your eyes God is all around, Buddha’s at the gate, Allah hears your prayers, it’s not too late…Why shouldn’t we?”

Blog is late, really late…. Get. Back. On. Track.

Really love the . effect

Damn. Sam. DamnSam. Damn


Mary Chapin Carpenter…

And we believe in things that will give us hope, Why shouldn’t we, Why shouldn’t we? Let your voice be heard, celebrate your voice…Why shouldn’t we? Why shouldn’t we? So come on darling, feel your spirits rise, Come on children open up your eyes, God is all around, Buddha’s at the gate, Allah hears our prayers, it’s not too late, Why shouldn’t we? Why shouldn’t we?”

Entitlements…the boy told me this morning kids should be entitled to quality education without paying for one. I told him I was entitled to have him come home with straight A’s since I was paying his education not him. He was not amused.

Hahahahhahahaha. But I was.


Discrimination why aren’t we past this?

Hello? Brain to hands…come on write something, anything…


Maybe the weekend will offer something worthwhile…


Mean Mommy’s memoir 2/21/14 is lame.


the nature of complaints…


Had a nice interlude laughing with the tellers at the bank on a slow President’s day Monday. My teller, in an attempt at making small talk, asked me if the weather outside was warm. “Compared to the windchill factor weather of a few weeks back, the answer is a definite yes…however the air is still cold-not ready for shorts any time soon” I said with a chuckle,  before adding, “Crazy to think that last week at this time, the windchill had us 80 degrees colder than it is right now–and yet its still cold outside.Don’t you think an 80 degree swing should account for something more like warm instead of still cold?” I asked which brought on a few chuckles. “I read that this summer is supposed to be the warmest on record too-a great swing for our area”. Another teller interjected into our conversation. “We had a really warm summer a few years back with continuous 100+ days though…” I replied. “Yes, my sister was pregnant during that summer it was awful” another woman added. “That is why I will never complain about cold temperatures…” My teller said. “I’d rather have to wear a sweater than be unable to cool myself down.” All four of us nodded in agreement.

As I finished up my business at the bank, I said, “Considering we live in Northwest Ohio, if we didn’t have all this weather craziness to contend with, just think what our complaints could be?” They all nodded before one of them said “I’d rather not…” and we smiled in agreement before parting company that day.