A special treat for the Boss

I picked Boss up from preschool and was told with big smiles all around that he went potty all by himself at school! He was so proud of himself that my heart practically burst. And so it was with that in mind we headed off to Starbucks for a very special treat.

It had nothing to do with the fact that I wanted a latte at all. Promise.

“It’s like snow…in a cup!”
Special treat

“it makes my brain cold!”
Sweet boy

Sweet boy. He’s growing up so fast!

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Sum Up Vol. one

This week we were singing along with the Holiday tunes on the radio in the car. The Boss growing ever frustrated that he did not know the words, waited patiently for a break in the song and then sang out “TODAY!” you know, like 588-2300 Empire TODAY.  He slays me.

He and Huckleberry hold hands now. He lines his Smurfs up so they hold hands too.

He is growing like a weed and everyday he is bigger and smarter than the day before, but when he really wants something he still signs ‘more’ just like he did when we was very little. My heart swoons at that.


He is incredibly snuggly in the morning. He thinks that sitting on his potty is the perfect place for some cereal. He takes time out of his busy schedule to make sure I know just where the Starbucks is.

Huckleberry is six months old today. How did this happen?Clear proof that time is not constant. Six months when you’re pregnant lasts an age. Six months of baby love is a blink of an eye. He is teething. It sucks. He can almost sit up and I no longer keep him in his car seat but take him out and put him in the shopping cart and stroller. So big! He is very patient with my tiny shoes for Huckie obsession. He looks at me with stars in his eyes, watching me wherever I go. But The Boss is his favorite.

Favorite memory this week: Boss got a Buzz and Woody punching bopper bag (or whatever you call em, you know what I mean right?) after a particularly successful potty training day and he was punching it and cracking himself up. Huck started laughing, not just a giggle or two but a full on laughing fit. This only made The Boss amp it up and honestly we encouraged him and soon the room was filled with the joyful shrieks of the big brother and the hysterical laughter of the little brother.

Please let me hear that often. It’s good for what ails me.

According toThe Boss

The Boss is a big fan of This Little Piggy.  I can’t blame him. It’s fun and involves tickling. Plus, Huckleberry sports some fantastical tootsies to piggy. I myself like nom on them. That’s not weird is it?It’s totally acceptable to nom on toes that are less than 2 years old. Less than 10 month toes are a pure delicacy I believe. So, back to the matter at hand- or foot as the case may be. The Boss is all over This Little Piggy-ing his baby brother.

It goes like this:
Huck feet

This little piggy went to Target.

This little piggy stayed home.

This little piggy got an icee.

this little piggy got none.

And this little piggy went pee pee pee all the way home.

the end of innocence

Swoon

Just yesterday driving in the car one of The Boss’ favorite songs came on. I didn’t know it was his favorite song, but he quickly informed me that it was and the kid knows every.single.word.

He sang away in the backseat but I was instantly transported back to my childhood and Wheels Roller Rink. You see, Wheels was the awesomest place ever when Sister Dub and I were little. I’m sure Mumsy and Sister Dub’s Mumsy just loved taking us there every Friday night. Actually I am sure they had a lovely little chat as Dub and skated in unending clockwise circles until BAM it was was reverse skate. We practiced skating backwards, circles and figure eights. Crying our little 7 year old hearts out in the back corner by the lockers when no one asked us to couples skate.

Le sob.

Anyway.

One such Friday night I was really getting my groove on, rocking my skates with the pom pom attachments and coolio denim jeans with roller skate appliques on the back pockets. I’m pretty sure was a rainbow or a unicorn shirt happening as well. There I was skating my little heart out, jamming out to the tunes and singing at the top of my lungs while fluffing my Dorothy Hammil haircut. (which was way out of style by the way).

Suddenly my childhood came to a crashing end. Some guy, about 25 or so…so practically ancient, was laughing at me as I clapped, skated and sang the words. The wrong words.

For the record, I still sing the words wrong.

I love Rock and Roll put another dime in the jukebox baby I love rock and roll come sweetie pie and dance with me.

I went from free abandon enjoyment to devastating self conciousness. Embarrassment practically stopped my orange glittered wheels from rolling. I made a quick escape off the black lit rink and into the corner of the locker bank, my hot tears burning as they ran down my face. Mumsy tried to explain that the young man (probably a father there with his own kid that was jamming out and skating too) wasn’t laughing AT me but rather was enjoying how much I was enjoying myself.

Far too complicated a concept for a 7 year old.

Nope. He was laughing at me because I was clearly  stupid.

Back in the real world, I found myself bemusedly laughing at the Boss’s free spirited rendition of the song. Especially the ‘so we can be alo-wo-wo-wone’ part. He was putting his heart and soul into it, clapping and kicking his feet…I stopped laughing. I started car dancing. Shut it, you know you car dance too.

When the song ended I told Boss that was flat out the best singing ever and if Joan Jett heard him she would hand that song right over and never let anyone else ever sing it. He beamed with pride crying out and signing  “AGAIN! AGAIN MOMMY!” Unselfconscious as ever, childhood innocence still in check.

Thank God.

 

Abbey Road on the River 2011- It’s Beatles Disneyland for my kid!

First, let’s just take an adorable walk down Memory {Abbey Road} Lane:

I die. For reals. Check him out, at two, jamming along with. the band! Remember when we took him last year? Well this weekend is ABBEY ROAD ON THE RIVER and of course, we are going. Duh. Obviously we are a family who lurves The Beatles, but truly it is The Boss who leads us to seek out things like this festival. Last year Max lost his mind at it, he just couldn’t believe it was actually happening and he is now a year older and wiser I expect him to have just as much fun. I mean he asked for an “Epiphone ‘coustic and Rickenbacker ‘lectric like John” for his birthday and recently corrected TOTT that it was a 12 string Rickenbacker that George played the most famous chord ever on…The opening to Hard Day’s Night. But usually he played a Gretsch, says our toddler.

What the ham sandwich? He knows all that stuff and yet remembering to tell us when he has to use the potty escapes him. Priorities.

It will be Huck’s first time and The Boss keeps trying to teach Huck the songs and how to play back up guitar nd Huck just smiles and blows bubbles. I think a good time shall be had by all!If you’re in the DC are this weekend you guys should check it out and make sure you say hi to us. Just look for The Boss trying to rush the stage and demanding one more rendition of Helter Skelter.

 

S’now more snow, I’m begging!

First off let me just tell you that wearing an elegant open toe orthopedic shoe in a snowstorm sucks more than being forced to watch Dinner for Schmucks on repeat for 24 hours. So then, what does one do when there is a huge snow storm of fabulous sledding and snowman building snow and one has a two year old who cannot.wait.to.get.out.there.and.play? Well if one is like me, one industrial strength wraps ones broken tootsies and crams them into an appropriately named UGG boot and heads out with your Love Bug anyway! Darn you broken toe I will not miss my baby playing in the snow!

And that’s just what I did. It was so worth it! Last year he was a mite bit too little to enjoy the big snows but this year he loved it! Next year will be even more fun. He pounced, he fell, he laughed, he had a grand time taking a tour of the neighborhood in the sled while TOTT patiently pulled like an ox. 35 pounds of toddler can get pretty heavy in the snow!

Me? I hobbled behind enjoying the giggles that floated by on the cold wind and snapping pictures are quickly as I could trying to memorize it all. To us the snow is a big ol pain in the booty, but to the Boss? it is magic!

We even the wild Arctic Puppy Bear frolic for a bit, until his fragile little paws said let me inside in front of the fire and give me a chewie!

Thusly my toes have turned such a beautiful color of plum that I have half a mind to take them down to Home Depot and ask them to color match it. It would be a great color for an accent table. I never really fancy purple, but  this shade of plum should really be preserved. It’s gorgeous! (and painful)

Father’s Day when you never knew him.

TOTT and The Boss {1/2 hour old}
It’s Father’s Day. Until I married my husband I never really even noticed when this day was. We never celebrated it growing up, because my father passed away when I was very young. 18 months old to be exact. And no one ever talks about him. My mother will, when pressed and in the right mood. And as my grandparents get older, every once in a while they will let a story about him slip out.
I hold on to those stories like precious rubies. How my mother and he were on dates with other people when they met. How when he was at the Louvre someone walked up to him and just started chatting at him and he had no idea who it was. How every payday he would bring my mom Mums, because those are her favorite flowers. How silly he was and how much he wanted me.

Those few things are held close to my heart. He wanted me. He loved me. I don’t have a single memory of him, having been so young when he died and I try so hard to replay those few moments when his LIFE was shared with me, those stories of him alive.

I know almost every detail of his death, I’ve gone over and over it. I read all the articles, I’ve read as much as I could take crying til I vomited. Such a young man, such a good man and such a horrible end.

The effects of a violent crime wave through more than just one person who is killed, and echo through a generation I feel those ripple effect every day and to say I was messed up over it as a child and teenager would not do it justice. But as I grow up I feel his loss in a new way. The loss as a mother. What my grandmother must have gone through. The loss of her baby boy…who brought her joy as The Boss brings it to me.

Along with that comes a healing and a happiness brought to me by my son.

The Boss is 23 months old now, but by 18 months I knew his favorite song (something in the way she moves) his favorite toy (elmo, natch), how he liked to be rocked to sleep, his favorite book (sweet dreams mimi), his favorite food (avacado), his favorite everything. I knew what every noise he made  meant, the real ones and the ‘I’m faking it to get your attention’ ones, how he loved to help me vacuum the house and how he was afraid of ketchup bottles. I knew how to make him laugh and soothe his tears. I knew him.

And so it stands to reason that my father knew me. My son has brought me a greater joy than I even knew could have been possible. He has opened my heart up a million-fold. I cannot remember life before him having as a great a meaning as it does now, with him in this world. My heart nearly bursts every time he races to me and throws his chubby little arms around my neck crying “Mommy!” It explodes when I see him do the same with TOTT. He waits for TOTT to come home and cheers when he walks in the door. I hope I did that for my Dad.

I can only hope that in those 18 months I brought half as much happiness to my Daddy as The Boss has brought to me.

So if you’ll indulge me:

Happy Father’s Day Daddy, I love you. I always will. Memories or not, I love you. I can only think that you brought me to TOTT, and to his father who is a good man. I’m well looked after now by the both of them. Thank you. I hope you know that I will tell The Boss all about you, everything I know about your life when he wonders where his other grandfather is. I’ll tell him how much you would have loved him, how much we all do. I feel your loss every minute of every day. I will never forget you.

I love you Daddy, I’m proud to be your daughter.

The Lessons of Childhood

So I’m chatting with my girlfriends, who dare I say it (yes, I do dare) are some of the most brilliant funniest, snarkiest and most awesomest (it is too a word!) hookers I’ve ever met. (I know, I know…feminism back 100 years but that’s what we call each other and if you want to be a part of our vicious gang- and you do, it’s fun- then jump on board! )

And of course the conversation turns to Little House on The Prairie, it was totally applicable to the previous topic at hand.*saarcasm* Which of course had nothing to do with television or anything of the like, we’re big on tangents, the lot of us.

I learned a great deal from this conversation. Many of my girlfriends had crazy Pa Ingalls crushes, one or two dug Almonzo and all of us agreed that Albert was creepy.

Most everybody wanted to be Laura (although one was was so devoted in her Pa Ingalls love she wanted to be Caroline!).  Not me. None of that climbing into the loft in the cold Little House for this gal. I wanted to be Nellie. I’m pretty sure that if I spent as much time on my multiplication tables in the 4th grade as I did trying to tunnel curl my hair and fashioning a huge bow out of…something and trying to convince my mom to let me wear my slip over my sunday dress to school (what? it totally looked like a pinafore.) I would have gotten a scholarship to college. I totally blame multiplication and Nellie for my lack of scholarship opportunities.

Laura had chores, she only had one pair of shoes! I mean, yeah, she was the lead and was clearly adorable but no matter how much she wanted to wear blue she had to wear red, because red was for brunettes and blue is for blonds. Duh. She was seriously deprived.

I really didn’t care what a total ass Nellie was. My little mind only saw this:
Laura worked hard and had braids. Nellie flounced home from school whilst wearing the fanciest dress with her hair all curled and bowed, stomped into the store grabbing gobs of candy and headed up to her room with the wrought iron bed and played with her fancy dolls.

So to recap:
Nellie: tunnel curls and bow, fancy dress, candy, fancy bed.
Me: bowl cut-no bow, Garanimals, candy at Halloween, twin bed- no headboard.

Obviously Nellie was more fashion forward (or backward) than me. And then? She got all injured and was in a wheel chair and then remember she was FAKING??? Gossip Girl had nothing on Nellie Olsen.

It’s amazing how all of us from all over the country had this same molding experience from this show. The morals and lessons of the show were not lost on me and I did want to behave more like Laura…just dress more like Nellie, that’s not so wrong is it? (I should say I didn’t want to be mean like Nellie, just rich and full of candy!)

What lessons will Max learn? If I have a daughter will she grow up wanting to be on the Bachelor? Will Max think the whole world exists in CGI?

I think the days of everyone stopping what they are doing to watch ONE show are kind of over. There’s just too much out there now. And DVR. And Netflicks. Sigh. Must remember to create my own weekly rituals for my children. They’re not coming ready made these days.

*Cue Closing Credits*
Music swells
Laura runs down that hill.
it’s a very big hill that hill
she’s still running down it
yellow flowers around her
still going….
I know you can picture it…
and…
The End.
Oh…added just for fun:

Celebrity Sighting!

I had to run into the mall just for a minute. I had a gift card that was  burning a hole in my pocket and I knew exactly what I wanted to use it on! I was going to let Stinker walk around but as we entered Nordstrom’s,  sitting all alone in the alcove, practically lit with God rays was one of those red car mall strollers.  And while I thought: Yuck! Germs, ugh! Stinker thought: yes, yes YES! I NEED TO GET IN THAT RIGHT NOW!!

Guess who won?

Max pretended to drive and beep the horn and had a grand old germ infested drive through Nordies while I quickly acquired what I desired. (hee) He was having such a good time, I thought I might cruise around the mall a bit and show him some of the decorations. And okay fine, you caught me I might have also planned on stopping at Caribou for a peppermint soy latte.

Stinker was busy driving and pointing at everything red asking “Memo?” which in Stinker speak is Elmo, how could you not just get that? Duh.  🙂 When all of a sudden there he was. Walking toward us, smiling and being basically just totally awesome. I squeaked with delight and Max turned around abandoning his all important stroller driving to see what I was bubbling over about.

I couldn’t help myself, it was so exciting. He was so tall, so powerful so…SANTA like!

Max, look! It’s Santa! Santa Claus, right here! (uh, note to self…Santa is frequently at the mall in December, no need to lose your mind over him. Oh, too late!) Max stared up at him eyes wide and this huge red figure, who was clearly NOT Elmo, (Stinker himself said Memo in a decidedly you are not Elmo tone of voice) and warily gave Santa a smile. Baby was cool as a cucumber.

I however was not.

I continued babbling excitedly saying Santa Max, it’s Santa!  And Santa, bless his heart, took the time out to make a Christmas crazed new mom’s day. He walked right up to us bent down to Max, who’s eyes got wider and wider, and said

 “Hello little one~! Ho ho ho, how are you today?”

Stinker said “oooooh nana”

Santa responded with “You love bananas? Oh good, they are so good for you! That puts you on the nice list!”

I squeaked again, and may or may not have teared up a wee bit.

Stinker said “Memo”

Santa said “Oh, you like Elmo do you?”

OH. MY. GOD. SANTA IS A GENIUS!

I totally lose it at this point, I am completely aware of the ridiculousness of my reactions and yet I cannot.stop.myself.

Me “Santa, he loves Elmo!”

Santa “Well, that is good to know! You be good little one!”

I say “Max”

Santa says “Max, you be good for Mommy and I’ll tell Elmo you love him”

Stinker’s eyes get even wider and says “Memo!”

Santa says “Yes. Memo!”

Then he turns his cheery eyes to me and says sincerely “Merry Christmas! Ho ho ho!” and turns and heads into his Santa area where all the little boys and girls and their parents are patiently waiting to sit on his lap and have their picture taken, and maybe one or two of them might ask for a Memo of their own.

We are planning to take Stinker back this week to get his picture taken. I am hoping two things: 1. Stinker will be as cool as a cucumber while actually sitting on Santa’s lap for a picture and 2. Santa won’t remember me or will at least remember me fondly. Sweet guy.

Lesson? Max is totally cool, Santa is frigging AWESOME and I am a huge dork.

It was so neat.