Sunday, June 23, 2013

Training Ground for Bullies and Hookers.

Apparently, when you reside in the hottest effing place on earth, the summer isn't as sweet as were you, oh I don't know, in New England.

The Northeasterner in me cries at the thought of spending the summer inside. You see, my people get three months, TOPS, to enjoy jacket-free weather. We jump into an ocean that's 65 degrees and a pool that's 72 and are simply exuberant we're not wearing long johns.

In Texas, this does not appear to be the case.

Forgetting how hot it is, I've come close to killing the dog at least four times by leaving him outside too long. This may have been a Freudian mistake, but he's still alive so my sub-conscience hasn't yet overtaken my conscious thoughts and actions.

I've also made the mistake of agreeing to go outside with my little boy at 2:00 in the afternoon. He screams "hot" as soon as we step into the sun. Quickly, we retreat so our skin didn't burn off our bodies.

Yesterday, we gave in to the disgusting Texas summer and headed to an indoor playground with some friends. The window cling on their front window screamed, "ICY COLD INSIDE!"

"Good," I thought, "we don't die from exposure here."

Sun exposure risk was replaced by the risk of exposure to other nasty elements, namely future bullies and future professional strippers.

Let's start with the bullies.

Our little boys gasped with excitement at the giant blow-up slide. Trepidation was quickly replaced with screams to join the fun. Together, they started the steep ascent up the inflated stairs.

Cue the kids.

I now know how Simba felt.

Behind my son, a pack of what looked like wild boars, charged up the stairs and did not let him get in the way. My friend and I then shot up the stairs to fend off the wild beasts and help our little ones to the top. We then had to go down the damn slide which is steep, scary, and leaves blisters.

On the next go round, a little boy went out of his way to shove my little boy to the ground. I almost punched him in his little face and almost really enjoyed it. He was 4. We left the slide lest I become the bully.

Sitting at a picnic table, feeding our little boys Cheez-Its and Goldfish, we saw the future stripper.

She was clad in a tight white tank-top, light pink Cheekies that I swear came from Victoria's Secret, and a perfectly mussed bed-head ponytail. She was 8.

Her jam came and she went. to. work. Her little booty shook in ways mine never has nor could and her chest popped out at what would have been revealing angles were she not 8.

It was the eyes, though, that completed her transformation to Misty the Stripper Junior. She did her dance in front of a card table where her dad and her dad's friend sat drinking beers and tried to seduce them with come-hither eyes. The dads, playing perfectly the part of stripper watchers, appeared uninterested and continued sipping their beers and talking about sports.

She shook harder, they looked away further.

With this type of disinterested dad training, this girl is going to OWN her first pole.

As we left, all aware that this had been an unsuccessful experiment, my husband said, "I don't think that was our demographic."

I said, "I sure hope not."

So, here's to a disgusting, hot, bug-filled Texas summer.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Boy Moms Don't Rock.

Ladies, we are kind of d-bags.

Actually, not all ladies, just moms.

And even more specifically moms sporting shirts that say, "[Gender of my child here] Moms ROCK!"

You do understand that you have no control over which gender you mother, right? Proclaiming that you rock because you are a boy mom implies that you put in more hours, worked harder, worked smarter, and were rewarded with a little boy while the lazy-ass ladies got girls.

If this were the case, you'd have every right to wear a shirt that says you rock because you have a boy(s). I am ALL ABOUT sharing your awesome achievements, but the gender of your child does not fall within this realm.

You had less than nothing to do with it. Technically, your husband is responsible for gender, but even he couldn't choose, regardless of what he may tells you about his virility.

You are responsible for tying the gender of your child to a self-value that doesn't exist and now walk around the playground inciting the Mommy Wars.

Congratulations on taking all of us to a new competitive low. I'm relatively confident you'd meet my comments with, "I think it's cute!" but you are doing us all a disservice.

 Being a mom is HARD and we all deserve a tour bus and groupies. So take off the shirt and stop using your kiddo's gender as a vehicle to make yourself feel like you're winning at Momdom.

Why not leave the shirt at home and focus on being a mom that rocks instead of a mom who wears a shirt making the mothers of the other gender feel less rockstarish. If not, I'm going to make you one from puffy paint (I don't rock at crafts) that says, "I'm Kind Of A D-Bag." It's much harder to explain, but so much closer to the truth!

Happy Friday!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Questions for the 18 Month Ages & Stages Questionnaire.

18 Month Ages & Stages Questionnaire (ASQ), let me ask you this, are you real? In front of me are six pages of judgmental and absurd questions to which I am only given room to respond "Yes, Sometimes, or Not Yet."

Were I a more crazy, 2013, responsible parent, I may have had you all filled out before we arrived at the doctor's office. Hell, I may have even read and/or printed you before then, but I didn't. That's not how I roll.

Instead, I did my best to choose your terse response options all-the-while wanting to add context for you and get needed clarification on the more obtuse and/or asinine questions.

Since there are no forced choice bubbles here, I am going to use this space to add some context and ask some clarifying questions. I filled you out, so please, do me the courtesy and read what I have to say.

When your child wants something, does she tell you by pointing to it?
I responded "Yes" but feel you need to know he doesn't just point. He whines, jabs, screams, and eventually shrieks the object's name like a hyena in heat. For the full experience, ASQ, please meet me in front of the cookie aisle at Target.

Does your child climb an object such as a chair to reach something he wants. For example to get a toy on the counter or to "help" you in the kitchen?
I responded "Yes" but need to confirm, in order to take you seriously at 24 Months, that the help in quotes was ironic. You don't think 18-Month-Olds really help, do you, ASQ?

Does your child make a mark on the paper with the tip of a crayon (or pencil or pen) when trying to draw?
I answered "Yes" but this isn't limited to paper, right? My son rarely writes on paper with the tip of a crayon, but he's got walls, windows, and tables covered.

After a crumb or Cheerio is dropped into a small, clear bottle, does your child turn the bottle over to dump it out?
I left this one blank. What the hell kind of toddler science experiment is this? I didn't know I was supposed to be dropping Cheerios into small, clear bottles and watching the outcome instead of reading books or going to the park.

Also, is this questionnaire backed by General Mills? Seems suspect that Cheerios is the only brand mentioned in this entire survey. Holy $hit, their Brand Team is good.

Does your child get your attention or try to show you something by pulling on your hand or clothes?
I answered "Yes" and want my son to receive bonus points for pulling my pants all the way down if I'm wearing my drawstring pajamas.

Does your child drink from a cup or glass, putting it down again with little spilling?
I answered "Sometimes" which was a bit of a fib. I was afraid a  "Not Yet" would be an express ticket to remedial math but I'm ready to come clean. The answer is No. There is no flipping way my 18 month old ever even gets a chance to drink from a cup and set it down himself. Seriously, do you spend ANY time with toddlers and/or do you enjoy cleaning up spilled lemonade and milk? Get it together, ASQ.

Does your child copy the activities you do, such as wipe up a spill, sweep, shave, or comb hair?
This is simply outlandish. There is no need to comment on my cleaning ability, shaving freqency, or hairstyling status, ASQ. Stop trying to make it about the parents.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Splashpads Are Only Worth The Effort When They're ON.

Yesterday my little boy and I went to the playground/splash park with a friend for an afternoon of fun in the chlorinated sprayers.

Texas, I first found the proliferation of splashpads a bit odd, but I get it. It's HOT and no mom wants to go through the hassle of getting in the pool with her children. We'd much rather sit in the shade, sip lemonade (or something stronger) and watch our little ones spray each other in the face with the water guns.

Upon our arrival to the park, my friend said, "Why isn't the water on?" to which I replied, "Oh, I think there's a switch somewhere," to which she replied, "but there are kids running all over the playground in bathing suits."

She was right.

Our little boys are much too young to understand that the pick-up truck over yonder contained a city worker, using more than will, to start it up so the gaggle of sunburned suburban moms would just GET OFF him.

Our boys screamed and squealed and flailed in their little shorts and mock turtleneck swim outfits (why do we dress little boys like 1930 female sunbathers?) trying to reach the place where water was promised to freely flow.

At one point, a loud hiss came from the splashpad and my little boy, blinded by a frenzy that only shooting water can bring, ran from me to the other end of the playground platform on which he stood, missed the first step down, and rolled down each subsequent step until he reached the wood chips with a thud.

He cried, but kept one hopeful eye on the dry splashpad.

For 90 minutes we played on the scorchingly hot playground equipment and distracted the boys from the disgusting standing water that they would have gladly subbed in for a working splashpad.

Needless to say, the water never appeared and as we retreated I felt a like a defeated Confederate soldier leaving Gettysburg for home. (Being a Yankee I identify more with the Union side but we live in Texas now where "Yankee" is sometimes a derogatory term. I don't understand this since the Northeast is the center of the universe, but hey, when in Rome...)

I wanted a splashpad on a Friday afternoon, not defeat. Ok, in this scenario I actually don't care about defeat as much as the effort I wasted to get my little boy in a swim diaper, a 1930s style swim outfit, a hat, and sunblock; get a towel; bring water and snacks; get out the door without the dog; and then tackle him every three seconds as he ran for the mosquito filled water like he's a duck. He does love to quack; I might be onto something.

I mean really, splashpad, don't do this to us  me again.