momantic comedy

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Let’s talk about Pancakes

Pancakes.  They are a staple in this house.  While the directions point out, “just add water!”, I need to feel good about what I am feeding my kids, so I throw in some eggs and milk and call it a balanced morning meal.  Once my husband and I even went so far as to chop up some spinach and add that to the mix.  The kids ate them!  We should do that more often.  But this post isn’t about healthy trickery.

My kindergarten-age kiddo usually only eats cheerios in the morning on school days.  It is quick and we need quick at 7:12am.  After we drop him off at school, we come home and I have TIME to make his sister something more fun for breakfast.  (Read: she will not eat cereal.)  But she must be blabbing about her morning meals, because the other afternoon we found this taped to the fridge:

He apparently could only find Barbie paper to write on.

When the kids have their annual check up appointments at the pediatrician, the doctor always asks them, “Who is the better cook?  Mom or Dad?”  They look my way, I hold my breath, then they look at the doc and shout together “my Daddy!” and I flinch.  The doctor always laughs, and writes this finding in the kids’ files (yes, in a filing cabinet at the Pediatrician’s office is the notation that my husband is a better cook than me).  She looks at me and says: “So, they don’t like your fancy cooking?”  Fancy?   If that’s what we’re calling it these days.  Example:

This was supposed to be a Pancake. I mean, it IS a Pancake.

I am not very good at this.  The mixture is always too runny or too thick, too lumpy, or not lumpy enough.  Maybe it’s the pan.  Some of my pancakes burn and stick to the pan.  But some of them halfway make it and I serve them.  My husband’s pancakes?  Perfect and pretty and adorned with chocolate chips.  You won’t see a picture of THAT on this blog.  He doesn’t need anymore culinary props.  But it never occurred to me that my kids might not be so fond of my pancakes.  Slap some syrup on anything and it is delicious, right?  A pancake is a pancake is a pancake.  A little crispy on one side?  Serve it with the other side showing!  The kids never know, and eat it anyway.  I was secure with this assumption.

Last month, on a day like any week day, I was getting ready to make a batch of pancakes.  I had the mixing bowl out, the whisk was clean, the pan was sprayed and heating, the eggs were ready to be cracked.  As I started mixing, my 4 year old daughter sat down at the table with a piece of paper and a pen.  She was writing something.   I asked her what it was.

“Um…it’s a menu for the breakfast you are gonna make me.  This page is for Burned Pancakes.  I don’t want one of those today, ok Mom!?!?!???!!”

Fine then.  Message received.  Loud and clear.  I think I offered her a granola bar.

RITZ

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Morning Mama

Last night I retired to the bedroom at 9pm.  I slept all night soundly and peacefully in a room that was a perfect 68 degrees.  I woke up at 7:00am on my own with no alarm clock, no crying kiddos, and the husband already at work.  I did yoga in the living room for 30 minutes.  Alone.  Then I had hot apple cider, read the funnies in the paper, and I made an omelet with fancy cheeses and had time to whip up a fruit smoothie.  I took my apple cider to the porch and sat on the swing and waited for the kiddos to wake up so I could make them perfect waffles.

as  if.  I WISH.  the only person who would believe this is my mom, who would exclaim “yay!  you deserve this!”

here’s how it really went down.

Husband and I went to bed at 10:30pm, which is early for us.  And by went to bed, I mean, at 10:30pm we turned off the TV in the living room, closed the blinds, washed some dishes, let the dog in, locked the doors, checked the doors, checked the kids, got our PJs on, and yes, brushed our teeth (no energy for flossing).  So, we’re talking, 11:20pm, finally counting sheep.

And the temperature?  Freezing.  Because i had the bedroom window open.  Because the dog has terrible gas.

At 2:00 am, we woke up to the dog staring at us.  She had to go out.  So out she went, and we went back to sleep.

At 4:50 am, the baby woke up.  I fed him, put him back to sleep, stumbled back into my room, wondered for a quick second whatever happened to the dog, and then I quickly passed out.

At 5:30 am, I was awoken by some pretty nutty panicky sounds:  While my husband was ironing his work shirt, the iron sparked, shorted out, and burned the plug off.

At 6:15am, I went back to sleep.

At 6:45am, darling kid #2 screamed that they were trying to get dressed and “I don’t have any underwearrrrrrrrrr!”.  i got up, zombie walked to their room, opened their drawer, pulled out the top pair, handed it off, and zombie walked back to bed.

At 6:47am, darling kid #2 whispered in my sleeping ear if they could eat a graham cracker in the living room while watching TV?  I got up, and made it so.

At 7:00am, the baby woke up.  And my day officially started.  And I made breakfast.  And this mess happened:

yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay.  but i DID get my hot apple cider.  and kid #1 slept till 8.

RITZ

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Impress the Teacher

the Summer before my oldest child was about to enter the colorful world of Preschool, we got a call from his new teacher.  she called to say YAY he was in her class and that she wanted to COME TO OUR HOUSE and visit with him before school started.  he was almost 4.  and child #2 was almost 2.  so, ya know, picture my house.  the inside of my house.

i panicked a little, but i had about a week to get it organized and get that smell out of the carpet (milk? moldy cheerios?).  i made sure the kids books were put away on their little book shelf, that their toys were organized, that the kitchen was clean (what if she helps herself to a glass of water?), that the dog poop was picked up (what if she wants to throw a ball around in the backyard?), and that the bathroom was de-grossed.  in our house, the fancy guest bathroom moonlights as a kids bathroom.  so, yeah.

on Home Visit day, i made sure to remain calm and not scowl at the kids and give them whatever they wanted to avoid tantrums at all costs.  i had an urge to run to the hardware store and grab a few plants to brighten up our porch, but decided a better plan would be to just watch out the kitchen window for her and then hurry her in so she wouldn’t linger long on the flowerless porch.  but i got distracted (darn!) and before i knew it she was knocking and spent a few seconds on the porch.

my soon-to-be preschooler ran and hid.  double-darn.  i picked up my 2 year old, opened the door, and invited the new Teacher in.  she was happy and all smiles and just what you’d want in a Preschool Teacher.  i showed her the living room and said i’d go find my preschooler, and she said “that’s ok, let him come out of hiding when he is ready.”  nicely done, Teacher.  so we chatted a bit and i relaxed.

and then my preschooler came out of hiding.  crawling down the hallway.  under a blanket.  like a moving pile of laundry.  into the living room, and stopped at the Teacher’s feet.  well, this was new.  i am pretty sure i blushed.  but the Teacher just laughed and pulled the blanket off and said “hey there!  what a cutie you are!”  and he giggled and joined us on the couch.  phew.

the Teacher asked him his name and proceeded to ask him if he knew what Preschool was, if he was excited.  he said yes and yes.  and then she asked him what he likes to do the MOST.  well, i knew this answer!  basketball of course!  and it was going to be a GREAT answer, show that he plays outdoors, is athletic, can play with a team.  he’s GOT this.  and then he said:

“play video games.”

oh geez.  i had spent so much time preparing my house, i forgot to prepare my kid.  before i could say “psst, what about basketball?” the Teacher said “oh yeah?  what is your favorite video game?”  please say Elmo, please say Elmo…

“boxing.”

WHAT.  WE DON”T LET HIM PLAY THE BOXING GAME.  is this kid for real?  i was stunned.  and quiet.  i was too quiet.  i should have said something.  the Teacher was very kind and nodded and said “my kids like that game too.”  she didn’t look my way, but if she did, she would have seen my eyes doing the morse code for “this kid is a liar”.

and then she asked him if he likes books, and he nodded, and i let out a sigh of relief.  i morse coded to my son: tell her we read all day every day!  tell her!  he stayed quiet.  the Teacher brought out her very own book that she brought.  and she read it to him.  and then asked him a question at the end.  and he stared blankly at her.  come on, you’ve GOT THIS, answer the question.  but he just laughed and said:

“awkward!”  giggle giggle giggle.

and i wanted to hide.  my husband has a running joke with our son.  and it consists of this word.  they just say “awkward!” at random things and then laugh.

so, yeah, that happened.  all in all she was very sweet, and my son was in her class for 2 years, and child #2 had her too.  and she never did get that glass of water, play in the backyard, or use the bathroom.  but if i hadn’t cleaned them, you better believe she would have.

RITZ

 

 

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Valentine’s Day is a great day to visit the Dentist

i saw the dentist 6 weeks after i had my third child.  baby #3 slept through the whole appointment.  i was cheered by the staff for having such a sweet baby.  my baby behaved.  my mouth…not so much.  the inflamed gums, the unflossed teeth, the plaque.  the dentist nicely acknowledged i just had a baby!  i wasn’t sleeping!  who has time to brush?  so an appointment was made to come back in four months when i for SURE would have my life back together, my hormones in check, and ample time to make nice with the floss.

i canceled that appointment.  pushed it back 2 months.  i don’t even remember the conversation, something about “i don’t wanna”, and ta-da, i had an appointment on Valentine’s Day.

so with my two older kids tucked away at school, baby #3 (now 7 months) and i trekked the 15 minutes to the dentist.  he cried the whole way.  i nursed him in the car in the parking lot, an old lady smiled at me through the window, yay, and 10 minutes later, a happy baby and i strolled our way to our appointment.

baby #3 was well behaved again!  for 5 minutes.  and then it just got uncomfortable.

see, i KNEW the dentist would want to take X-rays.  it had been 2 years, fine, i get it.  but the MOM in me didn’t feel comfortable having X-rays done while i was still a nursing mom.  call it my mommy instincts, call it neurotic, call it lack of sleep, even cheap if you will, but no rays were gonna X me that day.  and i said so.  to the hygienist.  and i thought it would end with her and she’d cross it off the dental to-do list, and we’d be good.  but noooo she had to tell boss lady.  fine, so the dentist comes in and says, “hi!  you are due for X-rays today.”  and i politely declined.  the conversation went something like this:

“um, no thanks, i don’t feel comfortable with having X-rays, cuz, i’m still nursing.”  and i pointed to the baby in the stroller for back-up.

“oh.  ok.  the X-rays won’t affect your breast milk supply…”

“well, I just don’t feel comfortable…”

“did you read somewhere or hear something that would lead you to believe X-rays are not good for nursing moms?”

“nope”

“ok so…i’m just trying to understand…”

“it’s just how i feel.”  and i smiled.  to show her my teeth.  just clean them!  i wanted to shout.  while the baby is still happy!

“ok, so, your mom instincts, that’s ok, i don’t want to force you to do anything you don’t want to.  we’ll just do the cleaning today.”  Finally!

so i reclined in the dental chair and got comfortable.  and then baby #3 got uncomfortable.  and he cried.  and they handed him to me to hold.  while i was reclined, in the dental chair, with my eyes closed, and my mouth open with dental tools scraping away.  i tried to bounce him on my legs.  he bit my finger.  and then the dentist called to the hygienist to come back in to the room, for sure to take the baby and calm him down, right?

“do me a favor?  get the camera and take a picture of mom and baby, they are so cute here in the chair!”  seriously?  when i get the promised copy, i’ll post it here.  i am SURE when i get it, i will LOVE LOVE LOVE it and immediately tape it to the baby book, but at the moment, it was just insane.  i heard her squeal when she got the baby to smile for the camera, but i couldn’t see, nor ask, cuz, you know, eyes closed and mouth open with  instruments scraping.  anyway.

so the teeth cleaning is done and i am standing with the baby doing the mom-sway, bracing myself for the dental lecture.  something about i need to floss, no more excuses, do it for my family, do it for my country, yada yada.  and then she said this:

“you know, when you don’t floss, your gums become inflamed.  the toxins that cause inflammation of the gums, they can seep into your breast milk.  and since you are so concerned about your breast milk…”

touche.  well played.  see you in 6 months.  for X-rays.

RITZ

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when i grow up i want to be a mom and blog about it

and so here i am.  i am a mom.  i have a husband.  we have 3 kids.  and they have turned our simple life into a Comedy.  sometimes i laugh at the antics, sometimes i do the mommy-scowl (while husband laughs), half the time i shake my head with the mommy-sigh, but at the end of the day when they are tucked in their beds and the dishes are half done, my husband and i laugh until it’s dangerous.  (i’ve delivered 3 kids naturally.  i have an incontinence issue.  ok?  glad that is out there now.  awesome.)

it has been suggested to me to start a blog and tell some Tales of Mom.  maybe that’s what i should have named my blog.  i wrote down probably 25 different title suggestions for my blog.  Wine and Cheerios, Momtastic, Momdays, Mom Circus, Family Cir-(oh wait, that’s already a title of something else.  and only NOW do i get WHY it is so named.  and i nod in recognition.  like looking in a mirror people!)  i digress.  often.  anyway, so it hit me, i love a good Romantic Comedy, and my life is definitely a Comedy.  sometimes Romantic, often Dramatic, mostly Neurotic, but ALWAYS Comedic.

while i am not quite familiar with blogging, save for the $2-a-blog writing i did for a greeting card website (no lie, i was also asked to write a weekly newsletter for $1 for each submission.  i requested $10.  i was denied.  i quit a few weeks later.  there are some serious grammar issues within these parentheses),  i do realize that my family stories are fresh in my mind for only a few days.  the details start to fall by the wayside, and so writing them down, here, will preserve them for my family for however long we’d like.

i would love for you to join me as i recount the goings-on in my little simple life…my very own Mom-Com.  my Momantic Comedy.

RITZ

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