Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Pizza Man

My son is in that phase that most 3-year olds go through when they only eat one food. (At least I tell myself they go through this.) I wish I could I brag that his one food is avacado or sardines, but it is CHEESE PIZZA WITH CHEESE.

That's how he asks for it.

At every meal. For days and weeks and months now.

When my cravings co-exist with his, I let him have it. I order a salad and sneak bites of his when he isn't looking. That way, I can't possibly gain weight since I personally didn't order it. Do you see an empty pan with several discarded crusts in front of me, do you? DO YOU?

He always catches me nibbling at his precious pie. This is the ensuing scene, everytime:

"What's in your mouth, mama? What's in there???" As his sharp nails attempt to rip my lips apart.

"Eet's sawad." I say with my lips closed as I gulp the unchewed portion and the boiling cheese scars my throat. Again.

Then he sees some renegade sauce.

I hold my breath as he throws his head back and wails like his puppy just got run over. Today, it was so bad I had to lie to the panicked waiter and tell him BB had pinched his finger in the chair. (That got us a free dessert, so note-to-self...)

Afterwards, I wrapped up the rest of the pizza for him to take to school tomorrow. He flipped out that the teachers would all try to sneak bites, therefore he couldn't possibly bring it for lunch.

I have ruined this child, and more importantly pizza, for us all.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The List

I asked Baby Boy what he wants for Christmas.

"A new kitty," he said.

"Daddy won't let us have anymore pets until these guys go to Heaven," I explained.

Five minutes later I caught him trying to let our quite alive Janet Cat out onto the busy road.

(I am asking Santa for a dead-bolt installed six-feet up on the door.)

"Is there anything else you want?"

"A baby sister but not as a baby as a big girl," he answered. "And a penguin. And a snake. And a new red house with a dog."

Whatever happened to asking for cars and candy?

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Jamma Jamma Jamma PJ!

Today was "Jammie Day" at Baby Boy's preschool. I may dub everyday as such since it chopped twenty minutes off of our morning routine.

We walked into the school and ran into an administrator and a group of parents.

"Oh! Look how cute you are in your striped jammies!" They cooed at Baby Boy, who quickly offered the following,

"My mom can't do jammie day because she sleeps naked."

Ah, the era of TMI is upon us.

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Basement Magician

We recently moved into a town house where one bedroom is on the third floor and the other is in the basement, or what the Hilton would optimistically dub The Garden Level.

There was no way I was letting my first born sleep in a cave two floor below me, so he got the top floor, or what Darling Husband bitterly refers to as The Penthouse.

My BFF stopped by the other day for a tour. As we descended into the subterranean realm, she said, "So, this is where the magic happens, eh?"

Guess who now wants nothing to do with his room because he is convinced that Criss Angel lives in my closet and when we put him to bed in the comforts of his suite, The Greatest Mindfreak Show on Earth is raging on without him?

Abracadabra! Go the ^%#$ to sleep!!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Music to Her Ears

I always had wanted to play the cello. Pre-Baby Boy, I took lessons. Then with everything that comes along with the first three years of life, my poor cello gathered dust with the ferocity of an ab roller.

This fall, I started playing again. For me, it was the opposite of the "just like riding a bike" sentiment I had hoped for. My teacher scrunched her face. "I hope you hung on to your beginner books."

But I have been practicing every night. I didn't know my neighbors could hear as I squeaked through Bartok until today.

"Well, it sounds like someone is learning an instrument!" Horrible Woman chirped.

I was about to say yes, until I saw she was addressing Baby Boy.

"If you keep at it, I'm sure you will sound so good in ten years or so," she continued as BB shoved a finger up his nose. "Practice, practice, practice...but not after 8!" She glared at me.

I pushed him toward the car as I lugged the cello which is easily three times the size of him, "Best be getting you to your lesson, Little Bach."

I can't wait until we see her after I do flat scales next to her bedroom wall at 6 am.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

For the Love of Soccer

When Baby Boy was born Darling Husband and I pinkie swore he would never play soccer. We had lost scads of friends because all they do on weekends is drive 500 miles to Worchester or Hartford or Newark so their kids can sit on the bench in hopes that one of the good kids sprain an ankle so they can play and also sprain an ankle.

We couldn't imagine a deeper circle of hell.

All BB asks to do now is play soccer. I have no idea how he learned about it. But just in case, I bought him a ball and net. After I set it up, he burst into tears.

When he calmed down he sobbed, "Where are the swords and giraffes?"

Now that is a style of soccer I WOULD drive 5oo miles to watch.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

A Riddle for Moms

Remember that old, "How many licks does it take to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Roll Pop?" ad?

(Just in case, here it is

I have a new one: "How many wipes of the Magic Eraser does it take before I have to repaint?"

The world may never know--but I am sure Darling Husband is bound to notice sooner or later the light patches in the kitchen, bathroom, bedrooms, halls and living room where I have scrubbed away evidence of everything not allowed in those rooms.

Including Tootsie Rolls.

Big Hair, Big Plans

I recently dyed my hair very dark and got bangs. I love it but still haven't found a style that works. The dark red isn't suitable for the "messy beach blonde" I could (almost) get away with before.

Darling Husband and I had a date a few nights ago. I dug out the hot rollers and decided some big, sexy curls would set the tone for a fun eve.

Of course Baby Boy's dinner and bath time took over. An hour passed. When I finally took the curlers out, my hair was frozen in giant boxy angles 4-inches in every direction.

"Holy Sh*t!" I screamed. Baby Boy threw that right back at me. (I didn't know he had come in for his toothbrush.) He skipped out singing his formerly favorite phrase that took us months to cut from his repertoire.

I had bigger things to worry about.

I went to work with a pick and a can of Big Sexy in hopes of smoothing it out.

I looked like an extra from Dynasty.

Darling Husband knew better than to tell me to dunk my head and start anew. So we drove in silence to the restaurant. With the top down.

He dropped me off close to the street the restaurant was on so he could grab a spot. I ducked up a dark hill and felt daggers scrape my skull. Convinced the demons were psyched they had found a suitable trollop for Satan and were dragging me to the underworld, I flailed my arms twisting the branches of the low tree I had walked into even deeper into my rat's nest.

I stayed hunched over and completely stuck until a group of 20-somethings pried me out. I am not even going to tell you what that escapade did to my hair, but needless to say we ended up with take out.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Poking Holes in Condoms isn't the Answer

Dear Maggie,

My husband doesn’t want another baby and I am a mess about it. I am 32 he is 41. We have a healthy 2-year-old boy and I really want to give him a sister. I have begged and pleaded (and even done more devious things) and he won’t budge. Now he won’t even touch me for fear that I am tricking him. I don’t know if I just suck it up or leave him for someone who wants a bigger family.

Thanks, One-and-So-Not-Done.

Those are your options? Be a One Baby Martyr or get divorced?

(Besides, you are too late for her to be the seven billionth person on the planet with all the glamorous Time magazine covers and lucrative Coke deals that comes with. You can wait and try for the eight billionth but I think a Kardashian already bought the rights for that.)

Imagine this scenario: You get your wish for a Baby Girl. She is up at 3 a.m. with colic. You are exhausted because Son has been up all night with croup. You shake Hubby awake to get some help. He says, “Why should I? You’re the one that wanted her.”

Resentment about a child does not a healthy family make.

“Oh, fiddlesticks!” you argue. “The minute he saw her he would love her.”

You wanna take that chance? God forbid she had health issues or some special need that required lots of extra time, attention and money. How would you co-parent with someone who was (potentially) not invested in it?

David Schnarch wrote a book called "Secrets of a Passionate Marriage." (A must read!) He states that in a marriage, when it comes to money, in-laws, sex and children, the lower-desire partner has the control. In this case your husband.

You can squeal, scream and seduce, but at the end of the day it is slim that he is going to make an authentic change about something so important. He is 41. The majority of men I spoke with are planning for retirement in their 40s not getting psyched about washing diapers.

You are almost a decade, and a generation, younger than your man. It is natural that your ovaries are ready to party. But you still married someone older. Did you talk about your vision for a family before you spent months finding the perfect dress?

I don’t want to stomp all over your dreams for more kids, but it is massively unfair when your husband is saying NO loud and clear for you to keep harassing him. “No” doesn’t mean “keep asking every hour or so for the next year and eventually you will kill all of my confidence that my opinion means anything.”

And for heaven’s sake, don’t be poking holes in condoms or flushing pills down the potty. That is Crazy Town.

You also do not have my blessing to throw away a man who was perfectly suitable to marry and have Baby No. 1 with so you can get knocked up by some new guy. Grow up.

However, you do have a maternal instinct that needs more stimulation. That is perfectly wonderful. You can channel that excess energy into volunteering at any of the child-centered organizations like Big Brothers, Big Sisters, the Boys and Girls Club or the Center for Grieving Children. When your baby is four (I wouldn’t take on anything too stressful until he is out of the three’s. You will be covered in gray hair) consider fostering a child whose parents are not capable of giving them the love that you can offer. There are SO many kids that need support, guidance and love. We need to start spreading good energy around to the people that are already here.

Your void could also be filled by giving birth to something other than a baby. A woman’s womb center is not only where life germinates, but also her creativity and fire. What is your passion (besides having another kid)? Are you a dancer, artist, chef? That pull you feel may be the drive to create a new business, endeavor or to acknowledge a talent that has been dormant for too long.

If you expand your thinking beyond, “I am only a mother” you may feel less pressure to procreate. One role, regardless of how vital, doesn’t define everything you are.

Be grateful for the healthy son you have and the husband you chose to make a life with. There are plenty of women that don’t even have that.