Things I’ve Learned This Week

** Summer break is the equivalent of a homefront civil war.

** August is a REALLY long way away.

** Babysitters make everything better.

** If I had a penis, it would be a “ginormous” one, according to my son anyway.

** BP sure must like the taste of feet in their mouth.

** It’s not easy to shit out Scotch tape.¬† Just ask the dog.

** Sand & ass bombs are not a good combination.

** My life involves entirely too much shit (literally).

** Cheese fries may very well be the nastiest food on the planet — I can’t even look at them, much less ever eat ’em.

** Skin cancer has scared the living beejesus out of me.

** The lights in our basement playroom were on for 3 straight days, 24/7.  Sorry, Mother Earth.

** Starbucks REALLY needs to start delivering to me first thing in the morning.

** Kids have WAY too much energy.

** Everything, and I do mean EVERYTHING, always goes wrong when the hubby has a business trip.

** My husband is going to bring me a fabulous present from Paris (did you hear that, Honey??!!)

** Sadly, smiling seems to have gone out of style.

** I should wear a fancier thong if I’m gonna flash a crowded street of cars.

** If you’re seven, swim evaluations are called “swim evacuations“.

** My personal assistant REALLY needs to come back from vacation.¬† Oh wait, that’s right, I don’t HAVE a personal assistant.

** The kids’ bathroom was attacked by toothpaste.

** I believe I set a record number of “fucks” said within a seven-day period.

** There’s a mafia of mosquitoes out to get me.

** I cannot do it all.

** Despite what I might think, God does not give me more than I can handle.

<< WHAT DID YOU LEARN THIS WEEK???? >>

Crap! School’s Out

Well, it’s that time once again — time to wrap up yet another year of school.¬† I swear I don’t know where the hell the time has gone, but I feel like I was just bawling my eyes out at kindergarten graduation.¬† And now?¬† My babies are about to officially become big ol’ second graders.¬† And if I start to get too sappy about this little milestone, well then all I need to do is spend more than five minutes with the little hellions to be snapped right out of my sentimental haze.¬† Cause good God almighty, these kids have summer fever coming right outta their miniature a-holes.

Just what do I mean by “summer fever” you ask?¬† Well, say you poured ten cups of sugar into a giant bowl, topped it off with some sprinkles of crack-cocaine, fed it to two seven-year-olds, and then had them chase it with a case of Red Bull.¬† Yeah, that is what I’m talkin’ about!¬† They are literally bouncing off the walls with excitement 24/7.¬† Honestly, I had no idea that human beings were capable of talking this freaking much.¬† And would it have killed God to equip these flippin’ kids with a damn volume button?¬† Sheesh, a person can pop only so much Advil before it becomes treacherous to her health, ya know.

And as if the hyper activity weren’t enough in and of itself, I’m also being bombarded with every paper and notebook under the damn sun that’s being sent home each and every day.¬† I really wish I could talk the teachers into using my round filing cabinet system more often.¬† Call me a bad mom, but I don’t need to save every frickin’ handwriting paper their pencils came into contact with.¬† To be fair to the teachers, though, I totally get that they’re just trying to get the crap out of their classrooms so that they, too, can get the hell out of dodge for the summer.¬† I just wish it wouldn’t end up scattered all over the floor of my living and dining rooms.

There WAS something positive, however, about the clearing out of the desks that occurred.¬† My son finally came across the Mother’s Day present that he made for me in art class and apparently forgot to bring home.¬† Nothin’ like a little appreciation for mama, even if it IS a month AFTER the fact.¬† But hey, I’ve learned through experience to just take what I can get.

So when that final bell rings today, I’m left with just one question:¬† How in the name of my last shred of sanity am I gonna survive the next two months??!!¬† We’re either gonna have an amazing summer together, or they’re gonna eat me alive on a silver platter.¬† Regardless of what happens, though, I’m gonna be sure to wear clean underwear and stock up on wine so I’m prepared for either scenario.

Kiddieland

msin307l¬†¬† ¬†¬†Yesterday was Day Two of the hub’s grand idea < insert sarcasm > for a family “staycation,” so we took the kids to Kiddieland, which is a run-down amusement park paradise for small kids that is apparently going out of business after this year. My kids have been begging to go to Kiddieland after seeing umpteen thousand commercials advertising the hell out of all the fun they were sure to have there. Much to our surprise, everybody else in every surrounding suburb also decided to hit up Kiddieland yesterday for one final hoorah. ¬†

¬†¬† ¬† What a warm and fuzzy welcome it was to arrive at the park at the exact same time as every other family, only to have to wait in a ridiculously long line that stretched all the way through the parking lot. ¬†As usual, the weatherman had completely botched the forecast, and it was way hotter than predicted. ¬†Standing around on black concrete in the boiling sun was a bit of a bubble burster for the kids. They wanted to get into Kiddieland (damnit!), and this waiting around in line was not at all part of the fun the commercials had promised. ¬†It also didn’t help matters much that the heat of the day was cooking up a stomach-churning stench of trash that wafted through the air. We hadn’t even gotten into the park yet, and I was ready to leave.

¬†¬† ¬† Once we finally bought our tickets and made our way to the rides, the kids were in seventh heaven. ¬†They were finally tall enough to go on pretty much every ride there. ¬†The problem, though, was that all those people who were waiting in line with us at the entrance were now waiting in line with us at the rides. ¬†I swear that I have never seen a bigger bunch of rude people in all my life. ¬†Amusement parks are without question a gigantic stage for the world’s most barbaric behavior. ¬†I can’t even tell you how many adults tried to cut in front of my kids in line. ¬†They’d try to play the dumb card and pretend like they didn’t see the huge-ass zigzag line that swirled around and around behind me. ¬†They seriously had no shame. However, I had had it and was not at all afraid to literally put my foot down and show these people their respective places AT THE BACK OF THE LINE! Then, the people who were actually following the rules of waiting in line were not necessarily following the rules of respecting personal space. Nothing grosses me out more than being hot and sweaty and having some other hot and sweaty stranger rubbing up against me. ¬†I had my own stink to deal with, thank you very much! ¬†I wanted everyone to just back off.

     The other fun aftereffect of having a massive amount of people in one space was a wreck of a mess in the bathrooms.  And with little kids guzzling LOTS of lemonade, there was no escaping multiple trips to the toilet.  Half-way through the day, there were only a few stalls that actually had any toilet paper left, and most of the ones that did were stopped up or overflowing.  Plus, the floor was covered with filthy dirty water, making me question why it was that I decided to wear flip-flops there.  Each time we had to make a little pit-stop, I told my kids that we had to be in and out in record speed.

¬†¬† ¬† Despite the heat, filth and rude behaviors all around us, my kids had an absolute ball. ¬†I loved watching them grin ear to ear and laugh till their little faces hurt on all the rides. ¬†Yeah, they may have argued and fought a little here and there while standing around waiting to go on the rides, and yeah, there may have been a fit or two thrown over who got to sit with whom, and yeah, we may have threatened to leave the park a few times if they didn’t get along with each other, but overall, they got a kick out of every little bit of it. ¬†I guess the commercials painted a pretty accurate picture, because Kiddieland was all about fun for the kids. ¬†It certainly wasn’t about me and my pounding headache, dirt-covered feet, aching back and growling stomach. The fact that my kids relished the whole experience made all the blood, sweat and tears worth it. ¬†I had to laugh to myself, though, as were were finally exiting the park at 7:30 last night, when I read the words on this woman’s t-shirt. ¬†The shirt said, “All this stress and no one to choke.” ¬†Ha! ¬†I coulda used that back when we stood in the log ride for 45 minutes….

25 Things I Love About Summer

2008-05-01¬†¬† ¬†¬†Unfortunately, where we live, the summer goes by in the blink of an eye. Cold, gloomy weather dominates much of the year for us, so we try to soak up the summer sun as much as we possibly can for the short amount of time that it’s with us. ¬†I’m starting to get sad that it’s already halfway over! There are SO many things I love about this time of year, so, now, I proudly present to you…25 THINGS I LOVE ABOUT SUMMER:

1.  Chilling at the beach with other moms while the kids all run around in a little wolf-pack the whole afternoon.

2. ¬†Lazy mornings where we stay in our pj’s till almost lunchtime, simply because we can.

3. ¬†Grilling out — doesn’t EVERYTHING just taste better when it’s grilled?!

4.  Being able to run pretty much any and all errands in nothing but my swimsuit and cover-up.

5.  Having the kids eat dinner on the patio so that the squirrels can clean up all the dropped crumbs for a change instead of me.

6.  Watching my kids entertain themselves for hours in the backyard with nothing but a broken tree branch.

7.  Lemonade stands and seeing all the little neighborhood entrepreneurs hard at work.

8.  Being able to go for a run outside without having to wear a thousand different layers for warmth.

9. ¬†Knowing that those filthy dirty little piggies on my kids’ feet at night are the result of a helluva lot of fun.

10. ¬†Going for ice cream and watching the chocolate drip down my kids’ happy faces.

11.  Bike rides to the park, even if they result in bloody knees and even more band-aids.

12.  Driving with the windows down in the car and watching my kids howl with laughter while the wind whips their hair.

13.  The peaceful sound of the locusts in all the big trees we have around our house.

14.  Finally seeing all our neighbors out and about, who are, like me, usually hibernating all winter long.

15. ¬†Our Fourth of July party in the backyard — exhausting but tons o’ fun.

16. ¬†Eating my hubby’s homemade guacamole and drinking margaritas.

17. ¬†Less sickness and viruses among my kids — so nice to have a break from all that.

18. ¬†Picnic lunches — pb&j’s for everyone (me included)!

19. ¬†Summer camps — hey, mama needs a break sometimes!

20. ¬†Watching my kids’ faces light up like crazy when they run into one of their teachers, who really do have lives outside of school, much to the delight/confusion of my kids.

21. ¬†Longer visits at Grammy’s house — more QT together is always a bonus.

22.  Chasing after my kids through the beauty that is the Botanic Gardens.

23. ¬†Fresh blueberries — my memory needs all the help it can get!

24.  Flip-flops!  Need I say more?!

25. ¬†Spending as much time as possible with my kids before they’re all grown up right before my very own eyes.

Bite Me

abr1662l     

¬†¬† ¬† I absolutely LOVE summer! ¬†I love going to the beach, wearing flip flops, and hanging out in the backyard with the kids. ¬†One thing, however, that goes along hand in hand with summer is the invasion of the mosquitos. ¬†I am almost always attacked by the little suckers, and my poor kids, it seems, are taking right after me. ¬†I guess we’ve just got really sweet tasting blood or something. ¬†This year, I am becoming convinced that the world’s entire mosquito population has decided to congregate in and around our particular house.

¬†¬† ¬† Every time my kids walk out the door anymore, they are instantly bitten by a mosquito or two. ¬†And, lately, it seems that every time they wake up in the morning, they’ve added another bite or two to their expansive collection. ¬†I have checked every square inch of their bedrooms and can’t find a single bug, dead or alive. ¬†I don’t get it! ¬†As much as I hate to use the stuff, I’ve been spraying them from head to toe with Off when they go outside. ¬†I don’t know what’s worse, the potential dangers of that Deet stuff inside the spray or being eaten alive by the damn mosquitos.

¬†¬† ¬† And each bite they have tends to swell into a REALLY red and REALLY large bump. They’re even getting bitten on their little faces! My daughter has a ginormous bump on her cheek, and my son has two massive ones right on his forehead. ¬†And of course, they are whining and complaining incessantly about how badly they itch. ¬†I listen to it ALL DAY LONG! ¬†And telling them not to scratch is like telling a dog not to pee on a fire hydrant. ¬†I’ve tried everything to make the itching a little less irritating for them — I’ve applied hydrocortisone cream, dabbed on Calamine Lotion, blew on them, and even put the old handy dandy “x” on the bites with my fingernails. Nothing makes it better. ¬†I’m at my wit’s end.

¬†¬† ¬† I’m wondering if the neighbors would think it’s weird to see my kids running around in the backyard wearing mosquito nets. ¬†I’ve run out of options at this point, and I can’t very well keep them indoors all summer — we’d all end up killing each other. ¬†So, to the little buggers who are literally sucking the fun out of our summer, can you please just buzz off already??!!

Oh, Snap!

     Since yesterday was yet another gorgeous day here, I took the kids over to the beach after school to meet some of their friends.  We live in the Great Lakes area and are very fortunate to have a huge, beautiful beach just five minutes from our house.  My out of town friends are always surprised when we take them to our beach because it truly is like a Florida beach.  We practically live at this beach in the summer because we are all secretly beach bums.  

¬†¬† ¬† The outside temperature yesterday was a perfect eighty-five degrees, with nothing but sun and blue skies overhead. ¬†The sand was even hot under your feet. ¬†The water temperature, though, was quite another story. ¬†It was flat-out, freaking C-O-L-D!!!! ¬†The other moms and I wouldn’t even let our kids get in the water because it was so flipping chilly. ¬†So, it was nothing short of an “Oh, snap!” moment when my daughter’s little friend’s favorite bucket got swept away and ended up about a half mile away from the shore.

¬†¬† ¬† Now, in my head, I was thinking how much that sucks that the bucket was gone. ¬†Even though the little girl was clearly upset, you couldn’t have paid me to drag my ass through that freezing water to fetch a damn plastic bucket. ¬†This little girl’s mother, though, immediately whipped her skirt off and started out after the bucket. ¬†I told her that she deserved the Mother of the Year award without a doubt — I mean, we’re talking about wading through fifty-five degree water in a bikini! ¬†Unfortunately, though, the bucket had sunk by the time she got all the way out there. ¬†I felt so bad for the mom, whose chattering teeth and pissed-off look said it all when she got back to the shore. ¬†She admitted that it wasn’t worth it in the end.

¬†¬† ¬† And just as I was saying how she’s a better mom than me for going in after it, I looked up to see my son’s Croc floating away in the lake, as well. Son of a bitch! ¬†A shoe is a bit more essential than a bucket, so I, too, was then forced to drag my bikini-clad derriere into that frigid water. ¬†Luckily, I was able to retrieve the shoe, but I had to spend some time thawing out once I got back to the beach. ¬†It was seriously like an ice bath in that lake! ¬†We then moved EVERYTHING we brought to the beach far, far away from the water. ¬†No one was going back in, unless an actual person was floating away. ¬†Oh, the things we mothers do for our kids….

rhan1182l

Hot Stuff

dre0202l

It was such an unbelievably beautiful day here today. ¬†It was so warm that it was like we fast-forwarded Spring and dove right into Summer, which is more than fine with me. BRING IT ON, MAMA NATURE! ¬†I am so sick and tired of winter and everything related to it (the boots, the coats) that I could never see another snowflake again and be a better person for it. In the midst of my excitement over the amazing weather, I could have sworn I heard the whiney complaints of my children about the heat being too much to bear. Oh, no they didn’t! After being trapped indoors for the past six months, you mean to tell me that I have to sit and listen to bitching and moaning about a little sweat? ¬†Suck it up, people! ¬†This is a little slice of Heaven! ¬†I actually heard my son tell my daughter that he thought it was too dangerous to be outside because of the heat — as if I need another drama queen in the house. Oh, but I didn’t let it stop me from enjoying the last bits of the day though. After running like a mad woman all week long, I made an executive decision to tune out the negativity. ¬†I poured myself a glass of wine, plopped my tired ass in a chair on the patio, propped up my flip-flops, and finally finished my Us magazine from two weeks ago. ¬†Life was good…at least for the ten minutes that this lasted anyway….