Wordless Wednesday- Now! With Words! Give the Gift of Words.

I fail at Worldess Wednesday…again. But this was too fun and important to push it till Thursday!

Tuesday morning I was frazzled. Frazz.led. I woke late, for some reason the wee person decided to sleep past 6. Hmpf. Why when I can sleep in does he wake with the first rays of sunlight, but if I’ve got somewhere to go he sleeps in? That little trickster!

My eyes puffy, I raced about getting ready. One of those mornings where you reach for one thing on the shelf and everything crashes down. The culmination of which was the quick destruction of my new MAC Studio fix as it flew from my hand (of it’s own free will!) and shattered into a million NC15 pieces on the newly mopped kitchen floor.

Curses!

Next up I was stymied by the ticket machine at the Metro. Seriously, have I been Yo Gabba-ing so long that I have forgotten how to buy a simple ticket? S’okay. I’m good at other things (I console myself). I had a taste of what life is like for TOTT (I’m dropping the first T.) morning in D.C. is loverly and I felt tres importante as I headed into the National Press Club.

Moments earlier I had tossed my beret in the air a la Mary Tyler Moore.

I was there because:
a. I was offered free coffee and muffins.
b. I was going to meet Dave Barry. I big puffy heart surrounded with little puffy hearts Dave Barry.
c. I was asked to come to the launch of the brainchild of The Pearson Foundation and Penguin Books; a new website. And I honestly, truly, thought it was cool.

I never miss a chance to slather on some lipsgloss and scarf some free muffins. Do you? I thought not. Plus it’s just freaking cool to get to go places like the National Press Club. Yes, I took pictures of the napkins.

I am not a dork at all!

As much as I have tried to keep my munchkin away from the ‘push’ (computer) he is drawn to it like Oprah is to putting pictures of herself on the cover of O. He cannot resist.  We play on PBS, we visit Memo, I try to keep it to educational hist, but I do admit to one desperate 20 minutes post toddler-noggin bash America’s Funniest Home Video’s baby compilation. Mr. Max thinks it’s way funny when babies fall over.

I’m a big reader, in fact the whole fam damily is, so when I was approached to check out this site I was like heck yeah y’all! Sign this girl up.

(Did I mention the free coffee and muffins? And Dave Barry? And oh! Amy Tan? AMY TAN, PEOPLE!!)

The premise is so simple it’s utterly brilliant. Go to We Give Books, read a book with your kid on the site and a book is donated to a child who needs one. You even pick the place you want the book to go! The books are right there in front of you, fully illustrated, click to turn the page and when you finish a book is donated. Even without the free muffins and coffee I would be excited about this.

Dang, I think is a great idea. Teaching my son to read, and to love reading is one of my top priorites and raising a child who is caring and understands how his actions both positively and negatively affect others is tops too.  wegivebooks.org does both of those.

While I was sitting amongst some of my very favorite local blogging women – a powerhouse room to be sure- I was thilled and fascinated at the study they had done about rasing ‘good’ kids. Good Kids. I want Max to be a good kid. We were provided with the top ten key findings for parenting skills for raising good kids, philanthropic kids.

1. Explain how they can help other people by their actions
2. Encourage them to speak up in family discussions
3. Speak to them about the colunteering and charity that you do, and why.
4. Support them on things that they care about.
5. Tell them why we are proud of them when they do good things.
6. Encourage them to be their own person
7. Set goals for them to achieve
8. Talk to them about the way their actions make other people feel.
9. Talk to them about always considering other people’s views.
10. Explain the importance of giving to others.

And most importantly, to walk the walk. Behave as you would like your child to behave.

Did you hear that? It was the sound of me patting myself on the back because this jibes perfectly with my child raising philosophy, which is of course modeled after the way my mother and my husband’s parents raised us. I have already set into action many of these, age appropriately af course!

Max is still so small now, but when he is older I can see how empowering it will be for him to choose each day who he wants to give a book too! We’re reading Spot’s Day Out adnauseum these days anyway,  how lovely it will be to give another child a book! We read, enjoyed, and donated three books that evening. Mr Max sitting on my lap happily crying  “puppy!” every time we turned a page.

Today he’s already asked for “book push!” So I introduced him to one of my favorites, Corduroy. He loved it. I can already tell we will be using this site a lot!

More and more content will be added, the site is still brand new and books for older kids are being added very soon. It’s such an easy way to help, you can even set up book clubs for your children’s classrooms that are PRIVATE. wegivebooks.org is very concientious about online safety and protecting our children. The site is easy to use and set up so that children, who are freakishly tech savvy, can navigate the site on their own as well as with a parent.

Listen, I can blah blah blah all the livelong day about this. But I’m asking nice, go check it out. Give a book to a school library, to Haiti…choose any of the campaigns you like and you can select a different one every time you log on. It’s such a worthwhile cause, and honestly? It’s super cool, and honest and for reals Mr. Max and I had a lot of fun reading together. So go check it out, and tell em Minky sent ya!

Carrie Bradhaw? P’shaw! Minky in the City.

I really enjoyed being in the city, grabbing coffee and chatting with interesting people over the age of 2. But man, I missed that sweet baby. I talked to him on the phone and experienced his two toddler sides in two seconds. The sweetest ‘hi mommy!’ followed by baby dictator commanding ‘abu both sides!’ For those who don’t speak Max, that means “Nurse me woman! And don’t be stingy! Both sides!” He’s really pretty Stewie about the whole sitch.

I swoon for him. And I swoon for Dave Barry too.

Someone needs to learn to stand up straight, and it isn’t Dave Barry.
So I ask you, pretty please to head on over to wegivebooks.org and join Minky’s Readers! I’ve got a challenge for you! Join the group,subscribe to my little blog and fan me on Facebook, then post a comment here telling me you’ve accomplished these incredibly difficult tasks with your wegivebooks.org username and the reader (and thus giver) of the most books by June 1st will win a present from little old me! Now this gift is not affiliated in anyway with MomCentral, The Pearson Foundation, or Penguin Books. It’s just from me to you, to thank you for participating in a cause I truly believe in. Trust me, no gift is needed…you and your child will enjoy reading and giving books for years to come, but who doesn’t love a present?
Think I gave you guys the link enough times? Check it out!
* I was honored to attend through Mom Central, I was given breakfast, tickets to see The Rockbottom Remainders and a gift certificate for attending and for writing about We Give Books, but ya know what? I would have done this for nada. It’s an incredible site and cause.
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I’m not a (just) mother, I’m a Performance Artist.

I am filing this one under:

Did you click that? Do, I’ll wait. Are you smart enough for it? Cause I am not. I am an artist, an actor, a writer and I do.not.get.it. At the end of the day to me it’s just a naked chick on a bicycle, and a woman wearing a dress that she can pee in sitting on a wooden chair for 15 hours a day being silent.

What?

One of this artists past pieces was to carve with razor blade on her stomach. Sweet! Now I know that in junior high I wasn’t just cutting…I was creating. I was doing a performance piece! Shame those doctors weren’t smart enough to understand it.

And thus I’ve decided that I myself, am ready for my very own New York City art exhibition, because I do more than just sit in a chair peeing in my dress. I sculpt every day. So do you. And my sculpture is a living one.

My son.

 Each day I sculpt his mind, his self esteem, his feeling of being loved, his feeling of being secure. I also teach him not to touch hot things, to stay out of the dog’s water (or at least I try), I sing to him and with him, I laugh at his antics and comfort him when he cries.

Each night when he goes to bed he is a little more sculpted, a little more formed than he was just 24 hours earlier. Then, like any good sculptor or painter, I let my artwork rest, and in the morning greet him with fresh eyes.

Each morning I am astonished at how beautiful my little sculpture is. Even better, I’m inspired in new ways every day of things to do, things to teach, and best of all ways to simply enjoy the most amazing art ever created.

Wouldn’t it be lovely if every child was as cherished as ours? As painstakingly taught and sculpted to be caring, to share and to go through the world kindly?

Forget standing naked in a New York art gallery, I’m planning on doing some performance art this afternoon at the playground.

This piece shall be titled:

Stolen Moments and the joy of the wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!

I hope you’ll sculpt today too!

Audition..AUDITION!

*The title of this post is to be sung to the tune of Tradition from Fiddler on The Roof.

Has Spring sprung for good?

We’ve been singing a lot of Fiddler round these parts as the wee one has suddenly begun adressing everyone as ‘the’. As in The Mommy. The Daddy. The Bob Bob. And as every loving family does, we are beginning to referr to everyone and everything using the Lexicon of Max.

Everyone is a geek about something and I am a geek about religion. So the fortuitous culmination of both Easter and Passover Seder on Sunday was a joy of much glee for me. (See? Geek) Plus an actual quote from the Seder is “Lean to the left and drink” which makes it far groovier than the Easter Mass (which I love btw). I totally dig that my kids gets to grow up in a multi denominational family.

My mother in law is Jewish and I’m slowly discovering that I know disturbingly little about her faith. Despite my fascination and all my study of religions I’ve never really delved in to Judaism. (My main fascination is the Christianization of indigenous cultures and especially the Catholic Church and Popes- the good the bad and the ugly. Let’s me honest…things are a little ugly over at the Vatican rightaboutnow, eh?)Anyway, I could write a book called Everything I know about Judaism I learned from Dub’s Mother. From my little childhood mind it would include things like this:

  1. Hanukkah can be spelled a couple of different ways and I am sure to misspell each way at least once before deeming it ok…but it’s probably not right.
  2. Hanukkah is AWESOME! We light candles and sing and then get presents. What is not to love? Plus?  Dinner at Dub’s house with Potato pancakes and apple sauce. Delish.
  3. Dub and I get to find the Matza and that is good for yet another present, usually a chocolate present. Again, what is not to love? 
  4. Dub’s Mom lets us decorate for Hannukah by painting the windows. Repeat, we get to paint on the windows.
  5. Passover, so cool. Bitter herbs- sign me up! YUM! 
  6. Getting to be with the whole fam. Sweet! 
  7. Again, we get to find the Matza and get a present. (maybe we only do that at Passover…I was a poor student.)

Not that Dub’s mom wasn’t a great teacher, we were just more interested in giggling and eating and talking about boys. Oh, how things have changed. (Not at all, except now the boys are 20 months old and way cuter than anyone we ever had a crush on. Sorry past crush boys.) So my lovely mother in law set about teaching me a little here and there and it is fascinating. I just love religions. (GEEK!)

Max even chimed in with a Dai eh nu or two of his own. Also? There is no way I spelled that right. No way. I myself had to be reminded that it is not Bah Ram Ewe, which is totally from the movie Babe and not religious at all. My kid is way smarter than me. (Thank God.)

After a delicious meal and some super yummy vegetarian matzo ball soup we headed off to bed. I had an audition this morning and wanted some sleep. Too bad Max was all hyped up from the Seder. (at last years Seder he called me Momma for the first time, I’m definitely pro-Seder.) So we were up half the night, but I made it on time Starbucks in hand to audition for the part of the stylist.

Clearly I was the only one there who watches the Rachel Zoe Project. I may have been dressed a little…ummm, Los Angeles? But it went well and as always I love auditioning. The thing I don’t like is getting there. I have all my stress about finding the place, once I’m there I’m golden!
Lietrally, because while I won’t wear fur like RZ (eeewww. My grandmother left me furs; including one particularly icky one of a full fox that was biting it’s own tail. We donated them to the theatre department of my mother’s alma mater. Cause there ain’t no way I’m ever wearing that!!) I do indeed like to drip with yellow gold during the summer season.

And fake tanner. The summer is all about yellow gold and fake tan. Now you know.You’re welcome.

All in all this weekend was a lovely juxtoposition of two beautiful religions and it ended with a rendition of Audition! Audition! Even if I don’t get the part of the stylist, I’m thrilled to have been cast as The Mommy!

Sisyphus! Oh Sisyphus!

Before I had a baby I always thought of Sisyphus whenever I did laundry. As soon as I managed to finished it all and had it put away there were many more loads to be washed. Sigh.

So naive. 

One tiny baby not only increases the laundry exponentially but the same tiny baby brings a Sisyphusian (Sisyphian?) element to activities never before thought imaginable.

Example one.
 Every morning, every afternoon and at least 10 times in the evening The Stinker and I have the same battle of wills. Yesterday I won round twenty. Today I lost round one.

Submitted for your approval: (please note the Cheerio on the right shoulder, he’s saving it for later.)

“Who me?”

“But Mommy, you told me to wash my hands!”
Like Puppy, like baby. 

In case you’re wondering, yes, he does kiss his mother with that mouth.
He is obsessed with the dog and the cats, a.k.a. “Dawg!” and “Mo!” (All cats are Mo. Ya got one cat named Mo then all cats in the universe are clearly named Mo. That’s logic y’all! It’s adorable, but has proven embarrassing a time or two, say when you’re at the mall and there’s a guy and say he’s wearing a shirt with like a tiger on it and Max joyously cries out “Mo! A Mo!”) I am fighting the good fight, but like Sisyphus, that rock just rolls down the hill every ten minutes or so. 
It’s a dang good thing my little rock is just the sweetest thing around. 

Uh…who am I again?

I seem to have lost myself a bit. I know this is for certain because just three minutes ago my local NBC station announced that it is moving the Ellen Degeneres show to 3 p.m.

Hello??? That’s the same time that General Hospital is on ABC!! Whatever will I do! I love me some Ellen, but as I may have mentioned I am Ambassador to Port Charles! (Drowns in fictional ego boost)

I was for real and for true upset at this move and for a few minutes considered writing them a letter to give em a piece of my mommy brain addled mind! (I write a LOT of letters, I’m always penning some missive when, as Zach says I’ve been ‘notoriously wronged’. hmpf)

Not to mention that King Max loves Ellen, so depending on how late he sleeps in (in direct relation to how many time he is up at night) we either watch it and snack pre or post nap)

Shortly after being all upended by my tv listing time change, I thought…what.the.heck? (Lent!) Am I seriously upset about ELLEN? Who in the fickety frack am I? When oh when did I become such the stereotype of the SAHM? Now, not that it’s a BAD thing to be…but clearly reading back the last few posts I am indeed a pj wearing, no make up applying, daytime tv stay at home mom.

And when did that happen??
 I thought about my past, the good parts and the bad. The crazy times with WWJD post college and the easy going lovin lifestyle we had pre-baby. The dinner parties, the shows I did, the auditions and of course…home sweet home, Los Angeles.

The King let out a barbaric yawp above the rooftops (okay fine, it was just a big dramatic yawn) and I hurried him down to the royal crib where he proceeded to not want to ‘Boo’ (nurse) but instead cuddled in my arms, giving me many, many kisses…most closed mouth and sweet but the occasional wet sloppy one snuck in there. He wiggled up in my arms and proceeded to tell me…I don’t know what, but it was VERY important and involved Daddy, Bob-Bob (grandpa) and fooball, Elmo and happy Mommy. (hey! At least I’m happy mommy!) it could have been a Shakespearean Soliloqy; it went on for ages, a good ten or so minutes and was basically awesome. Finally after one last big smack, he laid down to bed with a plaintive ‘Mommy’ rolled over and passed out.

And then I realized, oh! this is who I am now. It may be less glamorous than my previous life, I certainly have less need for earrings and stilettos, but more need for tickle fights and cuddles.

Seems like a pretty good trade to me.
I love him crazy.

Have you ever..

Have you ever been so tired that you well…have no recollection of certain things? I fear I am losing my mind, my brain is quickly turning into an Elmo addled bowl of mush.

(Goodnight mush)

Last night while playing with my oh so sweet baby I popped on one of my tiaras to make him giggle. He likes the sparkle. Andyes I said one of.  I have more than one. I have many. I am a princess, deal with it.

Also? You should all order some tiaras because, for reals, vacuuming is way more fun whilst wearing a tiara. 

This morning I achingly roused myself from my way too comfy, way too snuggly, way too warm bed to
respond to the shaky new voiced cries of King Max. I got him up and brought him back to my oh so snuggly bed to cuddle. We snuggled and giggled, enjoying our morning routine. Finally we crawled out of bed and headed up stairs for a wonderful breakfast of oatmeal and banana. You can’t keep King Max from a banana, he will cut a **** (ARGH LENT!) to get to a nana. I got my coffee and settled down with him to munch and ran my hand through my hair. Where it got stuck. On my tiara.

Can I put that on my resume? Can sleep whilst wearing a crown? 
Good Morning, your Highness.

I wonder if I can talk The Lying Liar who Lies in to calling me Her Royal Highness along with Madame Ambassador.
Oh who are we kidding, he already does.


*It should be noted that this is not the first time I have forgotten I was wearing a tiara. Not too far in the distant past I sat through an entire dinner with my WHOLE FAMILY while wearing one, until I realized it and embarrassed said “why didn’t you guys tell me I was wearing it?” My father in law said “oh, I didn’t even notice, it’s so natural on you.”