We all say we will not be like our mothers, but I’m starting to see this is inevitable. At least in some ways. Growing up, I remember watching my mom lean over the bathroom sink to get close to the mirror. She has always trimmed those tiny, unruly hairs on her upper lip and chin with a cuticle scissor. Truth: I do it too. I trim my mustache and my beard. Maybe I should be a normal person and get it waxed, but I never do. Shaving my legs is a real pain in the ass, too. I’m kind of lazy about it so I just shave from my knee down – even in summer, unless I have somewhere fancy to go. Then when I wear shorts on a nice, sunny day the light dances across my fuzzy-what’s-it upper thigh and I look like part of a wooly mammoth. Sexy.
I have a travel guide post in the making that I’m looking forward to sharing but for some reason I can’t help but write about the minutiae of my life. I hope you don’t mind…
This first nugget was something I overheard at the playground today:
Three boys were crowded around a girl who was holding an uninflated, blue balloon. The kids all huddled in close and the girl whispered, “I have poop in here.”
She said it the way Haley Joel Osment said, I see dead people, and I wasn’t about to stand there and find out if, in fact, this girl had somehow managed to funnel poop into an uninflated balloon. I walked away doubled over with snorting laughter.
Later on, I came back from a run while my husband was on dinner and pajamas duty. Thank you, darling.
“Mommy, sing Gummy Bears!” Madeleine shouted as soon as I stepped in the house, apropos of absolutely nothing.
Red-faced and sweating profusely I sang, “Gummy Bears…bouncing here and there and everywhere….” (If you’re a child of the 80s I expect you’d remember the theme song.)
Madeleine clapped, “Again, Momma! Again!”
“Gummy Bears….” I sang again.
I stretched on the floor in the kitchen as the kids finished their dinner. Madeleine copied me, splaying her legs and trying to balance herself.
“It’s almost time for bed, guys.” Michael said.
Luke was being agreeable for a change but Madeleine quickly went over to her corner of the living room where her dollhouse is set up, surrounded by baskets of her other toys. She has this need to bring every toy she can possibly carry into her crib to sleep with.
“No,” Michael said, “you can’t sleep with your dollhouse.”
She began collecting smaller items, “My baby, my Angelina Ballerina, my Polly (FYI that’s Angelina’s sister), Polly’s bed, my piggie, my butterfly…” She looked around, “My flossers!”
(And yes, by flossers, I mean those plastic things you use to pick food out of your teeth. They have ones for kids that do not have that pointed edge on them and they’re fruit-flavored. She carries them around everywhere and sleeps with them.)
“Ok, bedtime.” Michael said.
“No! I playing!”
“You can play tomorrow,” he said calmly.
She looked around the room again, “My flashlight…my spoon!” She also spotted a car that she wanted to add to the bedtime hoarding ritual.
“You’re not bringing that car into bed, Madeleine. It’s too big.”
“Yes I do!” she protested.
Michael scooped her up and plopped her down in her crib. She must have been satisifed with the menagerie that she chose to sleep with because she began singing, “Soft kitty, warm kitty, little ball of fur….” (Any Big Bang Theory fans here?)
Moments later she began crying, “I need my toothbrush! Care Bears toothbrush!”
Naked and about to get into the shower, I grabbed a pink toothbrush from the medicine cabinet.
“No! Care Bears!” she cried and thrust it back at me.
I had grabbed Dora the Explorer. Clearly, I won’t make that mistake again.
PS: What have you overheard at the playground lately?