Dad In Charge

I have to say that my husband is GREAT about letting me go and do my thing on the weekends to have a break from the kids, and I am REALLY grateful for that. However, he is WAY more laid back about certain things than I am. The house, for example, often looks like a damn bomb went off upon my return, and he often keeps the kids on a MUCH longer leash than I typically do. And this past weekend was certainly no exception to the go-with-the-flow-Daddy-on-duty routine.

On Saturday afternoon the hubby packed up the kids and the pooch and headed over to the dog beach while I went for a nice, long run by myself. When I got home, however, I found my kids changing clothes for the THIRD TIME THAT DAY. Apparently, they decided to get into the freezing cold waters of Lake Michigan with the frickin’ dog. WTF?! Where was their dad when they decided to take this little polar bear plunge, you ask? Good question! I would LOVE to know the answer to that as well, but I never got a straight answer.

Yet another example occurred on Sunday, when we all decided to take a family bike ride together. My husband, AKA Mr. Speedy Gonzalez, was naturally the leader of the pack, whereas I was moseying along at the back of the bunch. We were no more than a block from our house when my daughter completely ate pavement when she made too sharp of a turn around a corner. I jumped off my bike and yelled to my oblivious husband to wait up and then proceeded to comfort the screaming kid at my feet. So, when my son later asked me why I always ride my bike so slowly, I simply explained that SOMEBODY’S gotta keep an eye out for any unforeseen accidents since their father seems to think he’s Lance Armstrong.

And then the real kicker was when I came home from the grocery store on Sunday evening to find two buck naked (and might I add VERY MUDDY) children waiting for a shower. The nonchalant explanation I got from my husband was that the kids were playing in the mud in the backyard. Oh, of course! Why didn’t I think of that? Cause that type of productive activity is something that’s TOTALLY encouraged around here. Do you know that I’m STILL trying to get the mud off my son’s caked shoes? Yeah, good times.

So I guess if I want to look on the bright side of things, nobody has lost a limb or burned the house down (yet anyway). I should just be happy that I get a moment here or there to escape by myself, right? Besides, he’s an amazing papa, and I can’t blame him if the hospital forgot to send us home with our how-to parenting guide when the twins were born seven years ago.


Holiday Hanky Panky


     Every year at Christmas, my husband always puts panties in my stocking.  Some people get candy; I get thongs.  Now, normally this wouldn’t be any big deal.  I don’t know about you, but I’ve never been known to turn down a new pair of undies, especially when they’re pretty ones. However, when your father-in-law and your own dad are sitting right there next to you as you pull out these new skivvies, it can be a little uncomfortable, to say the very least.

     I remember one particular year when my twins were about three years old and very curious about anything and everything.  My husband had taken advantage of the five for $25 sale at Victoria’s Secret and had picked out various colors and patterns of thongs to place inside my stocking.  One of these pairs just so happened to be hot pink, which has always been my daughter’s absolute favorite color. I’d gone first in opening the contents of my stocking that Christmas morning, all the while cringing with each pair that I unwrapped alongside my father-in-law and my dad. After I finished, we all turned our attention to my mom as she unwrapped her stocking’s goodies. And at just about that same time, my daughter decided to take it upon herself to pull on that hot freaking pink thong right over the outside of her pajama bottoms and run around the living room like a damn lunatic. We all laughed and tried our best to just shake it off, but you could cut the tension in that room with a butter knife.  I knew that my father-in-law and my dad had absolutely no desire to see that thong being modeled by their daughter-in-law/daughter, much less their three year old granddaughter.

     Then there was the year when my husband tried to buy me a pair of Hanky Panky’s.  If you’re not familiar with the Hanky Panky, it’s supposedly “the world’s most comfortable thong”.  They’re very pretty, made of stretchy lace fabric and are labeled as “one size fits all”. My husband just knew that I’d most certainly want to surround my ass in this type of self-proclaimed comfort.  Somehow or another, though, the lady at Nordstrom’s sent him to the wrong department (completely unbeknownst to him), and he ended up buying me a pair of “plus” size panties.  (Side note: I am 5’2″ and have a petite frame.) When I pulled these panties out of my stocking, I couldn’t help but be confused by their size. As I held them up to scrutinize them, my husband reassured me that these panties were “one size fits all”.  I tried my best to be appreciative and remain optimistic that these “plus” size panties would be able to accomodate every sized ass in America, but deep inside, I really had my doubts.  Once again, I could sense the uneasiness of the older male figures in the room and calmly shoved the thong to the side until I could get to the root of the problem.  Upon further investigation later on, I discovered that they were, in fact, actually “plus” size panties and ended up exchanging them for my appropriate size.  Even though he severely screwed up, I gotta give the man some points for at least trying, although he’s damn lucky I’m so understanding!

     My father-in-law has since passed away, and because of my dad’s cancer treatments, this will be the first year I’ve EVER been without my parents on Christmas morning.  As sad as it will be that we’re not all together, I’m sure my dad will breathe a small sigh of relief to not have to watch me pull out another fancy new thong from my stocking this year.  I guess we’ll just have to videotape the whole event so he doesn’t miss all the holiday Hanky Panky fun.

Hell On Wheels


     We didn’t have a ton of money when I was growing up, but my parents worked their asses off and literally bent over backwards trying to give me as much as they possibly could.  So, when I turned sixteen, they cashed in an insurance policy and bought me a very used little silver Datsun that they had totally spruced up and pimped out.  I was beyond excited to have my own wheels to drive myself to and from work and school.  Little did I know at the time, though, that this particular ride had a whacked-out/cracked-out mind of its own.  

     I may have mentioned before that I am a tardy person by nature, and back in high school, this was certainly no exception. So when I was finally ready to race out the door and hop in my car, I needed some serious cooperation on its part to zoom me off to school in a quick flash.  However, this demonic car of mine had very different plans for me. One morning when my mom very nicely offered to go out and warm the car up for me, she realized that even though the key went in, it wouldn’t come back out. It was seriously just plain stuck. Since my dad often traveled for business through the week, my mom and I were left to our own inventive problem solving abilities.  We tried like mad to get the key to come out, but it was just not happening.  We even attempted to use liquid dish detergent to serve as a lubricant (I know your minds all immediately drifted to thoughts of sex there with the mention of the word LUBRICANT).  That didn’t work either, so we just ended up turning the car off, leaving the friggin’ key in the ignition, and having my mom drop me off at school that day and the remainder of that week until my dad got home from his trip.  And so began the tale of my psychotic little devil of a Datsun.  

     I can’t remember exactly how my dad managed to get the key out of the ignition, but somehow he did.  However, that was only the beginning of the problems with that unreliable piece of crap car.  One day when I drove it to school, I couldn’t get it to shut off. The key came out, but the engine just kept on running.  I tried over and over again to get it turn to turn off, but it was bound and determined to keep on going. Naturally, I was already late, so I had to just leave it running, lock the doors and race into school. Since this was back before the convenience of cell phones, I had to go to the school office to call my mom at work.  She couldn’t get away from work, so I just had to leave the stupid thing running in the parking lot for the entire school day. Can you even imagine how humiliating that was to try to walk out amongst my peers with my held high and climb into a possessed shitbox on wheels?  The one nice thing was that it was already nice and toasty for me when the school day finally ended.  Somehow, by the time I got home that day, the little demon decided to give its engine a rest and eventually shut off for the night.  (Hell, maybe it had even run out of gas by that point.)

     Unfortunately, though, the problem did not go away.  It actually got to the point where I’d drive it to my job at the mall on the weekends, pull into the parking lot, take the key out, lock the door, and just walk away, even though it was still puttering away like the Energizer Bunny.  My dad would come to the rescue with his Midas touch, since he was the only one who could get it to finally turn off. He always said he’d laugh hysterically when he’d see that little silver beast just humming right alongside all the other parked cars in the lot.  Eventually, he ended up installing a push button starter on the crazy thing so that it would actually turn off when it was supposed to.

     We were all so glad when we finally got rid of that abominable heap of metal.  It was extremely hard to keep a straight face when we sold it to some poor unknowing sap of a buyer.  She had no idea that she was about to learn the true meaning of hell on wheels.  Regardless of how much of a pain in the ass that little car was, it’s just one of the many examples of how much my parents were always willing to sacrifice for my happiness.  I completely understand and appreciate that way more now than I should have back then.

Changing of the Guard


     I know I may complain about him being sloppy and about how much he procrastinates, but I gotta hand it to my hubby for steppin’ up to the plate this past weekend.  He must’ve realized that I was at the absolute end of my very frazzled rope with the new puppy and him being out of town ALL last week.  It was WAY more stress than I had envisioned, and I realize now in hindsight that the timing could not have been worse. I was like a shaken up bottle of Diet Coke just waiting to blow my top.

     Since I was so sleep deprived, the hubs took it upon himself to get up with both the dog and the kids at the first sign of day on both Saturday and Sunday.  He even herded them all to the backyard so the house would stay nice and quiet for me.  Good man. Mama needed her sleep, especially after that little rendezvous with Benadryl (necessary for the itchy bumps the dog hair caused me) and one too many glasses of Chardonnay.  He also spent a significant chunk of time trying to work on training the dog, only to come to the same conclusion as me — that we have, in fact,  purchased an insane baby alligator.  

     Now, that’s not to say that everything was all sunshine and rainbows.  The kids, of course, decided to make up for lost time with Daddy and show him how well they’ve learned to let things go in one ear and straight out the other.  I could hear his frustration mounting over having to repeat the same damn thing about two hundred and fifty thousand times.  Of course, I just sat back and observed because we all know that payback’s a bitch.  I was so glad that he was getting a little dose of just what all he’d been missing — one big happy, albeit apeshit, family.  

     I had to just overlook the fact that my kids were running around the backyard still wearing their pj’s well into the afternoon.  And I had to just bite my tongue and turn the other way when I saw that the pile of crap on the kitchen counter may very well have rivaled the Sears Tower in height.  And I had to just let it roll off my shoulders when my husband came back from the grocery store with quite possibly the cheapest toilet paper ever manufactured — seriously, we might as well just wipe our asses with sandpaper.  None of these things could overshadow the fact that the man was giving me a much needed breather.  I was so beyond grateful to have any kind of break whatsoever from the constant chaos that has become my life.

     My gratitude was only compounded after I ran into a friend of mine on Sunday who was complaining about her lazy husband.  She was out trying to run errands and said that he was literally calling her every three to four minutes to tell her to come home and feed the kids lunch.  She was on the verge of tears as she told me that she was really sorry but she needed to run.  I stood there in awe at the audacity of the whole ordeal.  Could the dude really not slop together a flippin’ pb&j for the kids?  Seriously, any moron can do that. Thank God my husband can not only make a mean pb&j, but he can also fire up some chicken nuggets in the microwave like nobody else’s business.  Now, he may not sail the boat exactly like I do, but at least he keeps it afloat long enough to give the captain a little catnap.

The Hot Dad


     Get a group of stay at home moms together, and it doesn’t take much to snap our attention out of the Groundhog Day routine that otherwise consumes our daily lives, especially when the distraction comes in the form of a hot dad on a Harley.  Call it pathetic; call it cheap; call it what you will. But, it’s a little hard not to notice a buff-looking hunk of a man amongst a sea of overly exhausted mamas.

     One day this summer when I sat in the carpool line waiting to drop my twins off at camp, I heard the revving of an engine somewhere in the not-too-far-off distance.  When I glanced in my rearview mirror, I was suprised to see that there was a Harley crammed right into the row of minivans behind me. I was even more surprised to see that the driver was a very tanned, very toned and very H-O-T dad who appeared to be dropping off his son, as well.  I had never seen this guy there before, because believe me, I would most certainly have remembered him.  I immediately asked my kids if they knew the little boy, and, unfortunately, they didn’t have a clue who he was.  When motorcycle man pulled up to drop off his little guy, all the camp counselors erupted into applause.  Judging from the gigantic smile on the kid’s face, he must’ve felt like the coolest kid on the planet making an entrance like that.  He got everyone’s attention, that’s for damn-tootin’ sure.  I never found out who the kid was, and I never saw Hot Dad again after that…until last week, that is.

     Since the elementary school is only a few blocks from our house, we typically walk to school every day.  As I was walking with the kids one morning last week, my neighbor down the street told me she wanted to introduce a new dad to me.  I honestly didn’t think a thing of it because I guess I just assumed it would be a regular average-looking Joe.  When we got up to the school, I was busy kissing the kids goodbye when I noticed out of the corner of my eye that my neighbor was walking in my direction. My jaw practically hit the ground when I turned around and came face to face with none other than Hot Dad!  I rubbed my eyes to be sure what I was seeing, and I think I may have even gasped out loud.  My neighbor introduced him to me and told me that he was her soon-to-be brother-in-law.  It took a minute for me to actually process this turn of events, but I finally put two and two together and realized that this was most definitely the dude on the Harley.  I asked him if he’d taken a little boy to camp on his motorcycle, and he blushed, asking me if I’d heard all the cheering.  (I wanted to tell him that yes, I was cheering right along with them!)  What’s even more ironic is that he used to be a personal trainer at my gym, and he said he recognized me from there. Of course, it only made sense that Hot Dad was a gym buff who worked hard to get a body that looked like that, right?!

     As I stood there talking to this extremely friendly (and don’t forget extremely H-O-T) guy, I couldn’t help but notice that every mom’s head had practically fallen off her body trying to get a load of this tasty piece of eye candy.  When you’re used to seeing the same group of women with an occasional hum-drum dad thrown in the mix every single day in and day out, a fetching foreign specimen such as the likes of Hot Dad is gonna cause quite a stir.  It’s like throwing a vial of blood into a swarm of mosquitos.  I ended up meeting his fiancee a few days later, who, naturally, is just as gorgeous and just as sweet as he is.  They truly are a beautiful couple, I must admit. And even though they take turns dropping the little boy off at school, I still have the off-hand chance of catching a glimpse of Hot Dad.  I’m usually slow-going in the mornings, but the prospect of running into him should most definitely put a little pep in this mama’s step.

Nucking Hot and Futty


     Some of you may not believe me if I told you.  Some of you think of me as just another whacky mama.  You see me as someone who ass wipes for a living, whose shirt often doubles as a napkin and/or a Kleenex, who accidentally moons people in places like the bank or the doctor’s office, and who has her public bathroom activities recapped and shouted out for all to hear.  Now, granted, all these things are, in fact, very true.  However, last week I was notified that someone thinks of me as more than just nucking futs.

     I have been chosen to join a group of very talented and very funny writers. The awesomely hilarious men of Hot Dads have selected me for their Hot Mamas Award.  No, I didn’t win millions of dollars, and no, I didn’t get an all-expenses paid vacation, but I do get to be on their Hot Mamas list of writers, which, to me, is a huge honor.  I highly recommend that you check out these gifted people when you get a chance. They’re all listed on the Hot Dads site, right alongside me, the nucking futty, but H-O-T mama that I am. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to get back to cleaning skid marks out of these Spider Man underwear….

Signs of Parenthood


     When you become a parent, your whole world is turned upside down. What used to be sacred no longer holds the same kind of importance. Priorities change, and your focus shifts.  You learn to pick and choose your battles and let go of things that aren’t worth getting your panties all up in a bunch.  And as much as you’d like to think you aren’t just automatically catagorized as Mommy or Daddy, there are tell-tale signs and all kinds of red flags advertising that you are in fact someone’s procreator.  

     You know you’re a parent if:

  • You’ve walked around all day completely unaware that you have dried up snot on the sleeve of your left shoulder.
  • It is perfectly normal to have a pirate eye patch on the floor of your dining room.
  • Your grocery cart is filled with things like chicken nuggets and yogurt tubes.
  • You’re blaring The High School Musical soundtrack in your car without even realizing it.
  • There is a purple slingshot sitting smack dab in the middle of your kitchen table.  
  • Sleeping in to you is anything past 7:30 a.m.
  • You get excited to run an errand as long as you get to do it alone.
  • Your purse contains broken parts to REALLY old McDonald’s toys.
  • You have Webkinz tags piled up all around your computer keyboard.
  • Rainbow Goldfish are a staple in your pantry.
  • You call a penis a peeper and a vagina a hoo-hoo.
  • Juice boxes sit proudly next to the wine and beer in your fridge.
  • Time out no longer has anything to do with sports.
  • You’re like a walking TV Guide for every kid’s channel on t.v.
  • Nobody even bats an eye to the fact that there’s a pair of pink Dora underwear lying on your coffee table.
  • Caffeine is your very best friend in the whole entire world.
  • You could put together an afternoon snack with the crumbs and food remnants in your car.
  • You’d give up a pinky finger for a good, cheap babysitter.
  • Your DVD collection has everything from Pulp Fiction to Madagascar.
  • You no longer care that your blinds are covered with dust.
  • You can get up from a meal to wipe someone’s ass and go right back to eating without even a second thought.
  • Poop is always a popular topic of conversation.
  • You’ve forgotten what silence sounds like.
  • You spend WAY more time with your washing machine than you do with your friends.
  • You’re more worried about lice than you are about crabs.
  • You could doctor a boo-boo with your eyes closed.
  • You say things like boo-boo.
  • The best part of your day is when it’s over.
  • You love your little one(s) so much that your heart hurts.