From the category archives:

IT’S NOT EASY BEING ME

It seems that while I was on my little blogcation, my blog decided to break itself. Or go on strike. I firmly believe the latter is true. Since coming back, I’ve been unable to upload a single picture and a blog post without nice colorful pictures? Well, that would mean you would just have to read my drivel with no visual breaks. Today, my blog is still broken so that means one thing for you….oodles and oodles of drivel.

Sorry.

So since I can’t share any shiny pictures with you, I’d thought I’d share some of my parenting tips for summer so that you can feel better about yourself as a parent. You may thank me later…or take me off your reader, your call.

Summer always starts with the best of intentions. We will get the children out of bed at a reasonable hour, we will take them to do one fun thing each day, we will work to ensure numerous playdates and above all, we will encourage them to partake in the endless bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables available this time of year. It’s nice to dream. Below is a list of what summer really turns out like around here:

  • Starting off with that “endless bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables” nonsense….we think it’s a great idea.    The children, however, would beg to differ.   The only fruit they are eating is strawberries and the occasional watermellon.    Miss G will happily snarf down cantelope if I can muster up the energy to cut it into just the right size bites but will think twice after her brother pronounces it “slimy”, “gross” and “weird colored”.   (Did I mention he is color blind?    We call it orange, he calls it a shade of “blech”.)
  • Bathing is optional.    Days can go by without these children meeting a bar of soap.   We know we’ve let them ripen past their due date when they begin to smell slightly like stale corn chips.    Then it’s a one hour negotiation session to get both of them to shower and wash their hair.
  • The pool counts as a bath.   But only before they smell like corn chips so like days 1 and 2 of not bathing.    And sometimes day 3.   But never 4 because that would make me a bad mother.   Oh wait.
  • Prior to summer, the bottom half of our house is all mine.   Things must be neat and tidy, crumbs from cookies, pretzels and pop tarts are not allowed in my area.   Neither are sadly deflated juice packs.   In summer, you could forage for a week in our den and manage to gain weight eating the leftover bits left on the floors, thirst would not be a problem either because there is absolutely no reason to drink all the juice in the Capri Sun package even if your Mother reminds you that there are children who would love to have a luxury like a cold juice.
  • Regarding above guilt trip, it doesn’t work in the summer.     Or any other time of the year for that matter.
  • Bedtime?  What bedtime?    At some point, The Man and I are laying half dead on the floor covered in cookie crumbs and exhausted from trying to force them to eat when they finally migrate upstairs….which I might add is neater than downstairs now.    (Trust me, the visual is frightening….)     It’s never before 9:30 or so which leads me to my next point.
  • Early to bed and early to rise.    We’ve covered off on the early to bed thing, let’s talk about mornings.   Or mid mornings.   Or whenever they manage to migrate back down to the bottom of the house, smelling of corn chips with dragon breath and demanding a sugar coated breakfast.    Shortly after breakfast, the sugar crash sets in and mayhem erupts right outside my office door and usually when I am on the phone with a client.
  • We have a general rule in this house that after you whine eleventy million times, “I’m booooored” all fun is immediately halted.   I’m happy to announce that they reached their limit on week two of summer break and we are now officially giving the finger to any form of entertainment that might present itself.    We may revisit this again in a week or so.

So there you have it, a partial list of my summer parenting skills.   Now…go give yourself a pat on the back,  print out this post and use it as a threat against your children should they start to act up.    I promise you they will straighten up at the thought of going to live with  Aunty Stiletto for a week or so.

You’re welcome.

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Haunted House Tour

by Mary Anne on October 30, 2009

I’ve been accused of having a serious problem with Halloween. You decide.

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This is my dining room table once we unearthed all the decorations. As you can see, I even decorated my daughter for the decorating. Redundant? Yes, but you didn’t come here for perfect grammar did you? Also, the blurry thing on the side is the cat making a break for it before I tried to decorate her too.

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This is Zed the Zombie that will great you at our front door. “Zed’s dead, baby…” 10 pts if you can guess what line that movie is from.

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This would be my chandelier covered in tiny ghouls…here take a closer look….

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Do you want to know how long it took to get those creepy little guys up there? No. You really don’t.

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I love that this bony lady appears to be flipping us off…she has such a bad attitude, she fits right in around here.

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That’s the banquet in our dining room. Has anyone seen The Man lately?

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Oh, that’s right, I forgot about that “little fight” we had…

We also have a party for our friends every year at Halloween. Throughout the house, you will find pictures of famous people who “went to the other side” since the last Halloween.

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Before you think the entire house is totally creepy, it’s not. It is decked out as well but mostly with cute stuff like this:

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and this…
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and these guys….

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To be honest, I think that one little pumpkin is just shocked at the staggering amount of alcohol behind him.

After seeing all this, do you think I have a problem?

Okay, maybe I do.

Hope you have a spooktacular Halloween!

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It’s finally here…time for BlogHer. I’d love to tell you that I’m ready for this but that would be a complete and total lie.

I’ve made it this far without wardrobe panic. To be honest, I haven’t really thought about it at all. Until last week when I found out I was going to have the chance to attend the Nikon Night Out party hosted by none other than Carson Kressley. (Note to loyal audience: If at this point you are saying “Who is Carson Kressley?” TSM is now giving you the side eye while quietly informing you he was the fashion expert on “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy” and soon to be my new gay boyfriend…then kicking you in the shins with pointy stiletto for not knowing better.)

I would very much like to see him make this face upon meeting me:

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…and not so much this face:

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I thought I had it all under control but the stress finally set in this last weekend when “ohmygodohmygodohmygod..i’mgoingtomeetcarsonkressley!!!” started playing in an endless loop in my head. I did what any normal person would do and found an A List Blogger to drag into my home, plied her with wine and then dragged her into my closet and subjected her a miniature fashion show. (Because if you are foolish enough to actually enter my home, I like to make sure you are entertained with a small nervous breakdown.) I’m talking about none other than the most fabulous Allison Worthington who was the person kind enough to invite me to such a fancy party and whom I greatly hope to not embarass while there, but I think we all know the odds of that happening are slim at best non-existent.

Anyway, I have it down to two outfits now.

The first is very SJP/Sex in the City:

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…which scares me a little because honestly, I am so not SJP/Sex in the City. I’m more TSM/Yawning at 10 in the Burbs.

The second is the safer choice, more “Little Black Dress Meets Heavy Metal”:

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…but again, it’s the safe choice, I’d blend in more, and also is accompanied by a pair of equally painful shoes.

See my dilemna? So tell me which outfit you think is most appropriate for my planned stalking of Carson Kressley…and you may want to warn him I’m on my way as well.

Also, let me know if you are going to be at BlogHer so I can stalk you too! I’ll be easy to find, I’ll be the one complaining about how much my feet hurt…can’t wait to see you guys!

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I’m baaaaaaack!

I know, try to control yourselves.

It was a great week. It started off shaky when we had to drop the kids off at camp. I handled it with all the panache I expected….which is to say I was a total basketcase.

The crying started in earnest on Saturday while I was packing them. Putting twenty little outfits together, each individually sealed in plastic bags.

Stop it with the eye rolling. I had my reasons.

For Mr. C, it’s that he is totally and completely color blind. Left to his own devices, he will appear in an outfit that will make you ask if his name is Mort and if he is, in fact, a retired 75 year old banker getting ready to search for shells on the beach in Miami, white socks and all. Miss G on the other hand has two fashion theories. First of all, short is good and secondly, shorter is better. Call me cah-razay, but Mort the retired 75 year old banker from Miami and his sidekick, Daisy Duke, seemed to not be the best representation of my family.

By the time Sunday morning rolled around and it was time to go, I had pretty much lost it. Found my giant black sunglasses to hide behind and started my mantra of “You will not lose it at camp, you will not lose it at camp. No, really. YOU WILL NOT LOSE IT AT CAMP….”

Really?

Oh yes, I would.

Here’s the thing you should know, the camp we send our kids to really is the happiest place on earth. I’d put Disney up against it any day. When you arrive, there is a pretty long line of cars filtering in and all the kids hang out the sunroofs to wave at all the camp counselors who are greeting you on horseback, from boats as they water ski by or handing you cookies as you enter the gates.

Every single one of those happy people caused me to cry until I was a heaving mess hiding behind my big dark glasses in the back seat because on camp drop off day, the only word that applies to me is unstable.

I would have killed for an experience like this when I was a kid. I went to Camp Grady Spruce here in Texas and when you pulled up and got out of your poorly air conditioned car, you walked through a dusty parking lot and were greeted by a line of surly people with buckets full of sulfur they dusted all over you to keep you from getting eaten alive by mosquitos which subsequently made you stink and turn an alarming shade of day glo yellow as your parents peeled out of the parking lot laughing at you getting to spend a week in an un-airconditioned cabin.

Wow…that sentence was a gramatical nightmare, huh? Sorry, punctuation is not my forte when remembering the horror of summer camp as a child.

Anyway.

Here are a few pictures of them as we dropped them off at their cabins.

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This is Mr. C’s third year to go to camp. I love the “Oh here we go again” look on his face. He looks a little sad. But you can also see he’s hesitant, sort of like, “This situation could turn south any minute now….” This was taken moments before he gave The Man the secret signal to get me out of the cabin before I melted down. He’s a smart boy.

After being forcibly evicted from Mr. C’s cabin, I headed on to the next challenge, unpacking Miss G. We got her to her cabin and got busy while she socialized. I should tell you that we let each of the kids pick out stencils for their trunks. Mr. C went with a baseball and pokemon theme, Miss G chose dolphins.

Naughty, naughty dolphins.

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Folks, this is a Christian camp we are talking about. We raced to get that trunk stored away before anyone could ask what was going on with Flipper and his little lady friend.

Finally unpacked, The Man asked Miss G for a final hug and kiss at which point she completely and totally ignored him. His only purpose in her mind was to get the crazy lady in the big dark glasses she sometimes calls Mommy out of there before a scene started. I can’t be sure but I think she would have given us the finger at that point if a.) she knew how and b.) she was not at aforementioned Christian camp. Come to think of it, I’m not sure that second point would have mattered to her. She calls it like she sees it…the apple definitely did not fall far from the tree with that one.

The Man did manage to drag me out of there before I embarassed us too much and I’d like to thank all my friends who saw me that day that were kind enough not to laugh in my face, because I totally deserved it.

With the reality of an entire week to ourselves, The Man and I did what any responsible parents would do while our kids were away at camp.

We got on a plane and headed to Napa.

Come back later this week and I’ll share our travels throughout the wine country and tell you about the hotel room that caused me to think we were on an episode of “I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here”.

We are so totally the new Speidi.

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And This Is Why I Plan On Wiring My Mouth Shut

by Mary Anne on June 15, 2009

Great news. We survived week one of Summer.

It was a stretch. The fights started almost immediately and I have to thank none other than The Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders for saving my sanity. How is this you ask? Well, because in this house we are all about the cheerleader (which, in case you have forgotten, was a place I never thought I’d find myself), we decided to take it up a notch and enroll Miss G in Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader camp.

They did save my sanity. My personal sense of self worth? Not so much.

Try feeling good about yourself in the face of this:

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And this:

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Now try doing it on a “fat day”. On top of that, I’d like to add that these beautiful young women appear to not perspire. At all. The room we were in was pretty hot, and I’m not sure but I think that maybe, perhaps, possibly….I experienced a tiny little hot flash because suddenly my hair frizzed, my clothes became soaked and my makeup ran down my face creating sad little puddles of color all over my boobs. I could tell you it would have run straight off to the floor if my boobs weren’t swollen too but that would be overkill. I don’t need this kind of grief in my life people.

Oh wait, did I just tell you about my swollen boobs? Sorry, that sorta slipped out. Dammit.

The best part of this entire experience (aside from the stellar performance turned in by Miss G) was that Mr. C was standing right next to me and had the exact same view. Watching him trying not to watch was hilarious. He tried. He failed. He enjoyed it almost as much as his Dad did. Chip off the old block, that one.

Here’s the worst part. Those girls? Are so nice. Had I gotten even the tiniest hint of attitude, I would have totally been able to throw out the line, “Yes, but I have a great personality!”

Which, you know, would have made me feel better for at least :15 seconds.

Oh, and all you Daddy bloggers? Whether or not you are Cowboy fans?

You’re welcome for the pictures.

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