Yes, It’s a Thing. 

Took three of the kids to the dentist last week for cleanings and checkups. It broke my heart when my ten year old girl had two (small) cavities. It broke my heart because she spends 45 minutes brushing and flossing twice a day. The heartbreak was especially acute because my twelve and fourteen year old boys once again had no cavities. 

I don’t know if my fourteen year old actually brushes his teeth, but I know that something is going on because on most days he smells like a combination of deodorant and mouthwash. As for my twelve year old, it’s less clear. He brushes his teeth at night if I remind him, but I know for a fact that he does not believe that brushing his teeth in the morning is “a thing.” How do I know this? 

Me: “Brush your teeth after breakfast.”

Him: “I don’t think that’s a thing.” 

Me: “What’s not a thing?” 

Him: “Brushing your teeth in the morning.” 

Yup, as far as he is concerned, the morning brushing falls into the same dodgy category as the daily shower, the winter coat and utensils. (I’ll take Things That Exist, But Not For Me, for 500 please, Alex.)

Hence my heartbreak as those two boys high-fived each other in the waiting room while Little Miss Dental Hygiene made an appointment for a follow up. 

The dentist assured me that dental chickens always come home to roost. I’m not so sure. I’m not paranoid or anything, really I’m not. But let’s just say that girls who work hard only to be bested by boys who wing it…. Let’s just say that THAT better not become a thing. 

Unless it already is.   

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Lois.

Meet Lois. 

 The children had been begging for a dog but while I want a dog, I do not want a dog. My youngest is finally in school and the last thing I want is something else to look after. I’ve picked up enough poop, thankyouverymuch.

Enter Lois. Lois was a stray who lived in our yard with her two kittens. A certain child started feeding her, the kids were begging us to make an honest cat out of her, and next thing she knew it, Lois was at the vet and sleeping in a bed. Even though certain people in this house may or may not be allergic to cats, Lois moved in.  

Turns out, the kids are less than pleased with the turn of events. Maybe you should be careful what you wish for. 

“You love her more than us.” 

“She’s your favorite.”

“You never talk to us that way.” 

Wrong. 

Wrong. 

Maybe. I talk to Lois in the same sing-song way I talked to the kids when they were infants — helpless and dependent and grateful for whatever attention I could give them. Because Lois reminds me of them when they loved me unconditionally, when they ate whatever I put in front of them, when they were happy just to see me walk through the door. 

In short, when they liked me. All the time. Before they started yelling at me because I bought the wrong kind of rice. Before they asked me not to speak in front of their friends. (“You may not even make eye contact.”) Before the eye roll. Lois cannot roll her eyes. 

The great Nora Ephron said that it would be wise to get a dog when your children are teenagers because someone will always be happy to see you. 

You could get a dog, or you could get a Lois. 

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On the road again…

Facebookers, I see your happy family vacation pics and I raise you two: cleaning puke off a car seat and watching as two guys try and fix the dent in the car (made when I hit a pole earlier in the week) that is slowly shredding the tire.In my defense, I only ignored the dent because it happened when I was on my way home from the auto repair shop; the right door refused to open because of yes, all the dents. (I am nothing if not consistent.) 

(Big thanks to a certain neighbor and two passers by for helping out with that sitch.)

I have zero to say about the puking. It happens whenever she’s in the car for more than ten minutes. I put her on a bus to camp last week. She puked every day and three times on Wednesday. Needless to say, she is not going back. And that thing you’re about to suggest I try? I’ve tried it.

I romanticize these car trips in the planning. I have visions of singalongs, covered bridges and quirky bookstores. But in reality, one thing happens after another and before you know it you’re buying Febreze in Syracuse.

UPDATE: One week later we are driving home and I got to hold this: #StillWinning

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Filed under Minivans, Road trip, Summer, Uncategorized

Socks

One summer, a few years ago, I had the rather lofty goal of teaching my kids to load their breakfast dishes into the dishwasher.

I don’t need to tell you how well that went.

This year, I’m not even bothering with the dishwasher. It is only week two of the summer and I just want to never see this again.

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Personal Space

Summer means lots of things to me but mostly it means a complete lack of personal space. My home office, once a sanctuary of occasional productivity, has been overrun. I’d take a picture of it, but going in there makes me cry. I went to make my bed – albeit at noon – and found this.

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Summer SOS

Yesterday was the first day of summer and also the first day of summer vacation. Already, I am finding crap like this happening in my kitchen. 

In other news: anyone know how to remove spray paint from a computer screen? Asking for a friend.

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Filed under Summer, Uncategorized

A Teaser.

This is how I spent my Sunday:  What’s that, you say? Where are you?

That is a cage with a stuffed cat inside. You get to play with one of these when, instead of preparing for Passover, you spend the day with the cat ladies of New York City at the midtown ASPCA offices getting certified in TNR.

What’s TNR, you say?

Trap. Neuter. Release.

Yup. Three words I had never put together until a vet friend of mine told me about them. There’s a stray cat and two kittens in my yard and I’m trying to get them fixed a humane way so I don’t have 200 kittens this time next year.

In the meantime, I believe the mother cat is pregnant again. She is determined to sneak into my house when I am not looking and lay her babies in the living room.

Have I mentioned that some of us are allergic to cats and I am married to a man who does not believe in household pets that don’t swim in a bowl of water? 

I celebrated National Pet Day earlier this week by secretly giving away the family guinea pigs when nobody was looking. I had no choice. I had to make room for the cats.

Meow.

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