Archive for the ‘Style’ Category

June 29th, 2011

Don’t Be A Tease

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I feel like everyone is teasing me lately. And I don’t like it one bit.
I was out for dinner recently and when the server went over the specials, I picked one that sounded dee-lish. I was very excited for my dinner because I am kind of a loser in that way and I look forward to my feeding time much in the same way a hippo does. When the server came back to my table, she told me that she was very sorry but they were out of what I wanted. What? Wait. What? You’re out of what I wanted? Um, how about, I don’t know, how about maybe taking it OFF YOUR LIST OF SPECIALS?
When I told the youngest Front Boys’ cabin (B-2) that I would come by during Rest Hour to play some cards and partake in a little candy eating, they told me that they didn‘t know too many games besides “War.” War? Really? I don‘t think so. That game sucks. I told them that I’d bring four of the older boys from the Back Boys’ cabins to teach them a really fun, legendary Camp game called Squares. I found four very cool older boys at dinner that night and they were totally into it. (Damn right they were into it, I did it for them when they were little and it’s time to pay the piper). The older boys got the “OK” from one of their counselors and then asked me if I was going to pick them up. I laughed so hard, I busted through all the botox in my forehead.
Are you joking? Pick you up? Hell to the NO. I’m not going into Back Boys.

Meet me at the B-2 cabin. Rest Hour. Tomorrow. Be there.
They were pumped, but did they meet me? No, they did not. TEASE.

I ran into six campers that I adore in our Camp Store earlier today. They used to be in Front Boys and now they are in Back Boys. Knowing how I feel about going to Back Boys, do you think I will be spending much quality time with them? They were sad too. All of the sudden it was like I stepped into an 80’s movie montage of memories: Euchre, tootsie pops, me telling them that their cabin is stinky and yelling at them about how wearing the same shirt over and over is not cool, but rather quite disgusting…that kind of stuff. We shared a laugh and a hug and we all swore that we’d still hang, but the moment I turned around I knew it would never be the same. Then, as I started walking away, one of the campers called out:

Don’t worry, Robyn, we’re just in Back Boys for first session. We’ll be back in Front Boys for second session and then we can all hang out again!

Could it be? Would they be back up in Front Boys for second session? I was very excited about the prospect of getting some of my boys back, but when I asked Cody about it that night he just looked at me like What are you talking about? Why are you listening to the campers?

So, I guess that is a “No.”

But the straw, the straw was this: I was looking through People, Style Watch magazine and I saw a dress that I had to have. I was very excited about how cute I planned on looking in my new dress so I Flo Jo’d it to my computer and went to the website listed under the dress in the magazine. Would you believe that the site is  just a showcase for the store items? You have to physically go to the actual store to buy the dress which is exactly what I would do IF THERE WAS A STORE SOMEWHERE AROUND HERE!

I mean, Come ON.

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June 21st, 2011

On Turning 40

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I turned forty last week. That used to seem so old to me. Forty. I don’t feel old though. At least not in the head I don’t. It’s not like I woke up on my fortieth birthday and instantly started referring to The Salon as The Beauty Shop; I didn’t grab a Redbook, throw on a housecoat and cover my couch with protective plastic. It wasn’t like that at all. I, in fact, haven’t changed much from when I was in my thirties, or even my twenties. Each one of my toes boasts a different color of nail polish and if you say the word “trim” I will start cracking up because I think it is the funniest thing ever.

My body feels kind of old though. Maybe that is what forty is all about. Body/old. Head/young. But as soon as I mention anything like that in front of a legitimately old person I get this: “What do you know from aches and pains?  You think you know from aches and pains? What do you know? You’re young.” Oh yeah, old person? Tell that to my 4 year old daughter. She informed me earlier today that she can jump out of bed in the morning because she is young and I can not because I am old.

So, what’s the real deal? Is forty old or is it young? It can get pretty confusing and the following three sayings are supposed to lend comfort to those of us making the jump, but I have found the opposite to be true.

Life begins at Forty. I hate to be the one to tell you this but if your life is beginning at forty, you missed out on A LOT of really good years. I can’t imagine discounting all the years before I turned forty. I loved them all. Those were the years when I could eat cake without a second thought while now I might as well bypass eating it and just tape it to my ass since that’s where it’s going anyway. The years before forty were the years when I woke up with a hangover because I actually HAD A HANGOVER. Now, if ‘m up past midnight I wake up with that same horrible, lingering hangover—and that’s without drinking.

Forty is the new Thirty. No it’s not. Thirty is Thirty. I don’t care how sweet your body is, there is nothing worse than checking out someone who looks great from behind, but when they turn around you’re like “Holy Moly, what the hell is that all about? Is that Judi Dench?” It’s probably time to ditch some of the items inhabiting your closet. I know it hurts, especially if they still fit, but just because you can wear something doesn’t necessarily mean you should. Bazaar magazine separates what they feel is appropriate by decade each month in case we need guidance. I think that is a little severe, but it might be a good time to reassess the closet and perhaps bid a fond farewell to the leopard print super-tight mini dress.

Forty and Fabulous. Fabulous? Come on. I can name several things I find to be NOT so fabulous:

-While assessing my closet (as instructed above), I tried on several pairs of pants and many of them were short. How in the hell did that happen? I haven’t gotten any taller.

-The gyno doesn’t only go in through the Front, he hits the Back as well. (Some sort of prostate check). That was an unexpected violation I wasn’t quite prepared for.

-When someone says “You look good,” it really means “You look good, for forty.”

-Young people who say that 80’s music is old and it sucks. You know what? YOU SUCK.

-Grey hairs, forehead lines and spider veins. Oh yeah, there’s a whole lot of “fabulous” in that trio of terror.

-Sometimes when I wake up in the morning, I need an iron to get the pillow lines out of my face.

-I can’t do much anymore without stretching and steroid injections. I’m thinking about mugging the Tin Man for his can of oil.

-I actually have to put some thought into the location of any new tattoos because I don’t want it in an area that will be all nasty and wrinkly when I’m older than I already am.

Of course, there are some great things about being forty. Lots of great things, but you’ll have to find that list on someone else’s blog. It’s past my bedtime and I can’t remember where I put my bite guard.

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May 13th, 2011

Bullying?

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Yesterday when I was doing the morning drive drop-off, I got to hear a little Drew and Mike in the Morning in between snippets of a song coming from Sweet Pea, my 4 year old, in the back seat. Sweet Pea was singing something about how her daddy likes to eat bagels in the bathroom (he doesn’t) and Drew and Mike were reviewing audio of a kid from a Milford, MI high school. The kid was talking about how his days are filled with relentless bullying. (The Justin Bieber t-shirt he insists on wearing probably isn’t doing him any favors.)

When I got home, I grabbed the mail from day before and although I was short on time, I somehow found myself flipping through the latest issue of People, Style Watch magazine. I landed on Tim Gunn’s Who Got It Right? segment. It was then that I realized that bullying doesn’t necessarily only happen face to face and it doesn’t necessarily end when we become adults. It seems to me that there is a “Bully Spectrum” and it ranges from “Horrible” to “Acceptable.”

In the magazine, Tim Gunn complimented Keri Hilson’s outfit (whoever the hell she is) while shredding Vanessa Hudgens’s. He said that Hudgens’s printed dress and jacket were “fighting with each other.” Admittedly, he was right–and even I sighed while looking at Hudgens’s outfit— but I’m not putting it in print for thousands of people to see. I was thinking it to myself and then yes, I may have mentioned something to my younger daughter, Lovey, about how Hudgens might want to invest in a full length mirror, but that doesn’t really count because Lovey is 23 months old and she doesn’t even know what freakin’ day it is.

I felt bad for Hudgens. I’m sure she thought she looked really cute before Tim Gunn gunned her down. I imagine her feelings were hurt when she opened the magazine to see herself next to Hilson with a comment about how Hilson’s outfit worked and hers didn’t.

Just because Gunn’s hurtful (albeit truthful) comments are placed within the pages of a magazine, does that mean that it‘s not actually bullying? Or is it a form of bullying, just a more “acceptable“ form?

What if he had done it like this instead? What if he had put up a picture of two people wearing tiaras and let the reader decide who got it right while leaving his own comments out?

WHO GOT IT RIGHT?

Is that a better idea? I truly don’t know. I just know that bullying is everywhere and if we can’t figure out where it starts, I don’t know how we’re going to make it stop.

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May 5th, 2011

You’re Not Alone (V)

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I’m not saying these are all about me. I’m just saying if you feel the same way, you’re not alone.

You’re not alone if…

…you don’t belong to a country club. Just make sure you have a friend who does. That way you get to have all the fancy fun with none of the demanding dues.

…you can’t fold a fitted sheet.

…you accidentally stepped on a toy and broke it, and then you acted all sorry even though you really weren’t because secretly you hated that toy.

… your reason for not driving a Minivan is because you know random guys probably won’t check you out any more.

…you use the 3 second rule for more than just food–like that car in front of you that hasn’t moved even though the light is green. Tap that horn and give that car a little reminder. “Let’s get it on, pal. That light ain’t gonna get any greener.”

…you are steadfast about your bra and undies matching everyday. You could get into an accident and you don’t want to be remembered by the fireman and police officers as the lady whose bra and undies didn’t match. That is just no way to be remembered.

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April 7th, 2011

Gavel Grabbers

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The other day I was pulling out of my daughter’s pre-school when I noticed a car pulling in. Pick up is at 2:00. That driver was late. I couldn’t tell if she was stressed and anxious or if she was calm and apathetic. I just knew that she was late. I shook my head slowly, sighed softly and proceeded with the judging process. I’d like to know what she was doing that made her so late to pick up her kid? What is she so busy with that she can’t be there at 2:00?

I drove away doing the hair flip of self righteous complacency since I was, of course, on time. The fact that I was late the day before has no relevance here. I’m sure some of the moms judged me that day, but whatever. I had a good reason for being a little late and also, it was me.

Before I became a mother, one of my friends let me in on something very interesting. She said: You will never feel more judged than you will as a mother.

Now that I am, indeed, a mother, I feel I am in a good position to report the following:
1. I agree.
2. I don’t care.

I believe we are all guilty of grabbing the gavel every once in awhile. It’s human nature to judge. And if, in fact, we all do it– it stands to reason that it’s going to come back our way at one point or another.

Who among us doesn’t judge, and who among us is free from judgment?

Who hasn’t lifted their eyebrows at the grocery store, questioning parenting techniques while some kid is having a total freak-out in the candy aisle? Who hasn’t been at a school play thinking that lady over there should have given that gingham midriff top a little more consideration before leaving the house?

We all do it. And we’re all susceptible to it.

Some people care that they are being judged and some people do not. For those who don’t care, as long as you’re not stepping on others to get what you want or ignoring the basic standards of common decency, good for you. High five. In my opinion, not caring is a much easier way to live.

For those of you who do care, be nice. I have found that if you’re a nice person, people are less likely to judge you. Being nice is judgment kryptonite. It’s harder for judgers to judge nice people because if the one judging has even the slightest conscious, they will feel bad ripping on a nice person. Wear those white patent leather boots to a PTA meeting, show off that tramp stamp during parent/teacher conferences, it doesn’t matter—you’re safe behind your shield of niceness—and if someone dares to judge someone as nice as you, that person is a B. And trust me, everyone knows it, including, but not limited to, the B herself.

B’s use judging as a pastime. I know people like this; people with really bad energy. They’re out there. Judging is one of their basic traits. Smugness shows on their faces, criticism permeates their social interactions, and for the most part, what they have to say (about pretty much everything) is negative. But know this, B’s—you’re also getting shredded right and left. You’re getting it because there are so many who feel you deserve it and let’s face it, you probably do. You started it. B’s!

I don’t know why some of us care about what others think and why some of us don’t. Not caring may come with age and exhaustion, or it could be that it’s just an innate part of certain personalities. For many (myself included) as our families grew bigger, our social circles grew smaller so now the only people we truly care about are those coveted few in our inner circle. And those are the ones who love us for all that we are, and all that we come with, without passing judgment.

But some people just can’t help but care what the peripherals think. It does seem that caring what others think would be a very natural response, but speaking from a purely cognitive and logical place, I have to ask: Why?

Besides wasting your time and energy, what’s it doing for you? If you’re a good person, who cares what anything else thinks? Chances are, the person judging you doesn’t know you and you’re just the unsuspecting victim of a drive-by judging—or maybe the judger is a miserable bitter sister who is trying to make herself feel better about her own life. Who knows? Who cares?

Bottom Line: If you feel the need to judge someone, I‘m not going to tell you not to do it, it’s human nature, we all do it a times (me too)—but also know that you are vulnerable to the same thing. You’re going to be judged whether you ask for it or not. If you’re a B, you’re asking for it. If you’re not, you’re a bit safer, but still, not totally safe.

We will never change the fact that people judge, but we can control how much or how little we actually care.

 

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March 14th, 2011

You’re Not Alone (IV)

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I’m not saying these are all about me. I’m just saying if you feel the same way, you’re not alone.

You’re not alone if…

…you didn’t like the book The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. You’re also not alone if you didn’t read it,  if you tried to read it and didn’t like it or if you can’t figure out why everyone said it was so great. You’re not alone if you read some of it, thought to yourself that there are just too many people–people with crazy ass names– and saw the movie instead. You’re not alone if you have never even heard of these books (but it might be a good idea to go out a little bit).

…you don’t feel sexy after a day of work and/or carpools and cleaning up after your kids. Just give your spouse the heads up that you are exhausted so he’s not disappointed when he gets to bed and you’re drooling, but not over him.

…you have an excuse all ready for the cop as you run that yellow (borderline red) light. You might not get pulled over, but it never hurts to be prepared.

…you buy a bag of  jellybeans and pull out the red, purple and pink ones for yourself. Everyone knows that the other colors suck, so no one will suspect you.

…your purse and shoes don’t match. That’s a dated fashion rule and it’s stupid.

…you can’t afford to buy all (or any) organic food. It’s expensive, I know. If you want to do something, pick a few things that you really believe in. I like to buy organic milk and chicken. I think my girls won’t have Double D boobs when they’re 8 years old if I only give them organic milk and chicken. Do what you can do, but don’t beat yourself up. Especially over the bananas. Everyone knows those are a scam.

…you go to get a pedicure and you forgot and/or didn’t have time to shave your legs. Just tell them that you have an upcoming leg wax appointment and you need to grow it out for that.

…you hit your horn when some idiot pulls out in front of you and then proceeds to go 15 mph under the speed limit. That is BOGUE and it’s OK to convey that message through your horn. If you are able, you should try and see what the other driver looks like. It’s good to know if you can take them or not, just in case they get mad.

…you are a day or so late on changing your kids’ sheets or giving them a bath. Nothing bad will happen.

…you have no interest in meeting your favorite celebrity. Chances are good the reality won’t the same as your reality, and then you’re not only crushed for life–but you’re also stuck with a ton of memorabilia from someone who was an ass to you. Live the dream. It’s bound to be better.

…sometimes you don’t shower after working out. You still have to throw on something on though: body spray, lip gloss, deo… I mean, come on–we’re not total neanderthals.

…once in a while you find yourself out of poop bags when your dog poops on someone’s lawn. Just promise yourself that when you get home, you’ll get a bag and come back to clean it up. If the neighbor comes outside and busts you, tell him that you had every intention of coming back to get the poop. If, however, that’s not enough for him and he starts yelling and going nuts, threatening to call the police and asking if you and your dog “do this all the time?”–it’s OK for you to tell him to up his medication before you turn and walk away waving  “Bye, Jack!” and when he (within 3 seconds) yells to you that his name’s not Jack, tell him it is WHEN IT’S SHORT FOR JACK ASS.

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March 10th, 2011

Monkey See

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Every now and then, my soon-to-be 4 year old daughter, Sweet Pea, lets loose with an “Oy…Jesus.” She has never been to church and to my knowledge has no friends named Jesus, so it’s pretty safe to assume she heard it from me.

I say it. I think I might even say it a lot. My mom said it when I was growing up so I probably picked it up from her. I certainly don’t say it with any trace of ill will or offense, I actually say it with loss. Jesus used to be on our team. I’m not entirely sure why he left. It seemed like he had a good thing going with us, but I wasn’t there so I can’t speak with any definitiveness. I guess eight days of presents and potato latkes weren’t enough to keep him. Good for him for starting his own thing. That shows motivation and initiative. Plus, it’s proven to be a pretty successful endeavor. Sometimes I feel the need to call out to him though. I guess I do it fairly often because Sweet Pea, my soon-to-be 4 year old, did it today.

Our kids are watching us. It’s like being in a reality show, but without the cameras and diet pill endorsements. If you weren’t one of the cool kids when you were growing up, now is your chance because you’ve got your very own built-in captive audience of followers. I don’t know how long it’s going to last, because I don’t know how cool you are, but you’ve got them for at least a little while so during that time, it’s a good idea to try and do the right thing.

It all starts with us. That is not to say that waving a cigarette while running around your house yelling and popping pills is not a good idea, it’s a great idea, just not in front of the kids. Watch and learn, practice what you preach, monkey see, monkey do… you‘ve heard them all before; they’ve been around forever–and they’ve been around forever for a reason–they’re true. As parents we need to use discretion because our kids pick up on everything. We are their leaders and while they’re young and impressionable, they’re going to follow our lead whether we’re channeling Rosa Parks or Genghis Khan.

It’s impossible as parents to always set good examples so there will, inevitably, be times when our kids see and hear us do questionable things. I like to try and keep everything balanced. For instance, I say “I love you” and “Please” and “Thank you” and “You’re so beautiful to look at, it almost hurts my eyes,“ to my girls as much as possible not only because I want them to say those things to me, but also because it helps to maintain the equilibrium in our house when they find themselves on the receiving end of “UGH. You’re killing me and I’m beyond done with you.

We can only do the best we can do, and though we may slip up at times, we need to be conscious of where our words are landing. In other words, the next time your neighbor, Trampy McTramp, pops in wearing ALDO shoes that are two inches too high and a bebe top that is too sizes too small, remember that although there may not be any cameras rolling–you are being watched, so before you shred her ensemble upon departure, remember that one never knows when your kid may decide it‘s a good time to repeat your words. And when she does, you can blame it on TV or the kids at school, but we both know there is a good chance she heard it at home–and I will be right there with you as you close your eyes, let out a big sigh and quietly say: “Oy…Jesus.”

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March 4th, 2011

You’re Not Alone (III)

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I’m not saying these are all about me. I’m just saying if you feel the same way, you’re not alone.

You’re not alone if…

…you decided  to get scissors and physically cut stuff out of your kid’s hair because it’s just too sticky and too much of a pain in the a$$ to brush it out. You can’t get away with this forever, but if she’s only 19-months-old, you still can.

… sometimes you have to confer with a calendar to remember the last time you showered.

…someone gets your kid a present, and then you put it away because your kid has enough crap, and then you bring it out one day when your kid is being really good, and then you take all the credit.

… when your kid says “Look at me! Look at me!” you sometimes reply “That’s great!” without even looking because you are busy and whatever they’re doing probably isn’t anything all that great.

…you secretly hope that you win at Candyland even though you’re playing with kids.

…you see the people who work at the market more than you see your friends.

…you ate cake for breakfast and justified it by telling yourself that it’s OK because cake has eggs in it.

…you are jealous of your little one who has no issue walking around with her belly hanging out.

…you agree to accept the Facebook “friend requests” of your friends’ kids because your friend wants you to spy on them. You’re also not alone if you neglect to tell her that you are a worthless spy since you hid those kids from your Facebook feed because their status updates are stupid and annoying.

…you throw down a little “BECAUSE I SAID SO!” every now and then, even though you always swore that you never would.

…you think it’s OK to leave your kids in the car, strapped in their car seats, while you run into a restaurant to pick up carry-out. OK, that is really not OK–but it used to be, a long time ago, and it’s OK to sometimes wish that it still was.

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February 17th, 2011

Big Dogs and High Horses

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I used to have a Golden Retriever named Barney. He was not our family dog; he was my dog. He was named after the store in NYC. Barney was very handsome and very regal–and he carried himself as such. He wore a Burberry collar, he stayed clear of lake water and he made me blow dry his fur if he got caught in the rain. Barney was my guy throughout my single years and when he died (the night before I got married) it broke my heart.

A month after our wedding, my husband (Cody) and I adopted Floyd. We found him at a Golden Retriever foster home. We were taken with his big head, stubby tail and kind eyes. We didn’t know he was completely out of his mind. Floyd chases cars like he’s in a video game. He’s the first to jump in the water and he will roll in anything–he doesn’t care whose ass it came from. When I feed him, he eats like he just got out of prison and if it’s thundering out, he will rip down an entire door frame. Floyd is nothing like Barney. He is, however, the cutest dog ever (that’s what it says on his dog tag) and I don’t know of a sweeter dog anywhere.

My girls are lucky to be growing up with Floyd. He’s big, but he’s harmless. He’s by their side if they’re crying and under their feet when they’re eating. I have always said that Floyd is the best dog for your kid to meet if your kid is scared of dogs. If you’re still unsure, then don’t come over. Just kidding. You can come over. You even can ask me to put Floyd away, and I’ll do it because you’re the guest, but I won’t be happy about it–and neither will he.

If your kid is scared of dogs, I’m not suggesting that you take her to a dog park and leave her with the dogs as you run away pointing and sticking out your tongue. I’m just saying it’s a good idea to help abate her fears. Maybe think of someone you know who has an awesome dog (like mine) and go visit that person (but not me, unless you know me–I’m not running a petting zoo over here). Go and hang with the dog. Walk your kid in slowly and have her put her hand out so the dog can sniff it. Keep her hands down though. No one is “under arrest” and dogs sometimes jump when little kids hold their hands up high. A love affair might not emerge from the first date, but it’s better than avoiding the issue all together. Plus, you have to start somewhere.

No one wants to be scared of dogs. Cautious is OK; cautious is smart. In fact, I’m actually a little worried that my kids aren’t cautious enough. I don’t think they know that they can’t go up to every dog and take a bone out of their mouth while they’re chewing. Not every dog is as patient as Floyd. I’m not as patient as Floyd.

Floyd is our poochini. He’s our poochikins (Cody hates when I call him that, so I say it all the time when he’s around). I love Floyd like he’s my child so I have no problem admitting that I’m on a high horse when it comes to him. I’m going to get down and not just because you’re done with me—but because if Floyd were to see me, he’d probably hump the horse.

 

 

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February 13th, 2011

You’re Not Alone

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I’m not saying these are all about me. I’m just saying if you feel the same way, you’re not alone.

You’re not alone if…

…you tell your kid that your “ears are hurting”  because you want her to stop talking for one second of her life. Just one second. Of her life. ONE second with no talking. Please. I beg of you.

…when you get a mani/pedi you get a fun color on your toes and a conservative color on your fingers. I keep the party on the bottom while my fingernails are all business. The mani/pedi is really the “Mullet of the Millenium.”

… you think it’s OK to let your dog sleep in the bed when your husband is watching TV in another room. You’re also not alone if you think it’s OK to  let your dog sleep in the bed when your husband is in the same room, and in the same bed.

…you think it’s OK to tell your daughter that today is Mini Skirt Day because that is the only way you can get her to wear the skirt she always says “NO” to.

…you take an hour or so every once in awhile to get your hair colored, get highlights, or do something just for you, that YOU want, that is not truly necessary. If my approval is not enough, you can justify the time spent as setting a good example for your kids. If they see that you keep your shit up, they are likely to do the same.

… you are out to eat and your kid is unable to communicate what she wants, to take that as her “OK” to order two things that you really want and give her some. If she knew better, she would want those things too.

…you take a full day off work on your favorite celebrity’s birthday because you feel it should be a holiday.

…you borrow the awesome necklace you set aside for your daughter because she’s not old enough to appreciate it anyway.

…you are just as excited as your kid when it’s time to pick a toy from the treasure box at the doctor’s office. There is good stuff in there. Who wouldn’t want in on some of that?

…you let your pooch help clean up after mealtime. It’s him or it’s you.

…you were so happy that you weren’t the one home when your baby crapped herself and then happily distributed the goods to her crib and sheets.

…you know the words to many of the songs your kids like. What’s In The Fridge by the Imagination Moviers is a jam. It is, however, a little odd to still be listening to the CD when the kids are no longer in the car and then, around 5 minutes into the drive, realize that the CD is not only still playing, but you are singing.

…you finish what you are doing while your child is wailing and the baby monitor colors are hitting rainbow status. You know your kid. You know the different cries. You know she’s fine and you know she’s safe. She’s just ready to get out. TOO BAD. Finish what you’re doing. You’ll get there soon enough. A little patience is a great lesson to teach early on. Do you really want her to turn out like…well… like me?

 

 

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