2017 total: $12105.73


Double-Edged Art Projects

I genuinely enjoy a good crafty project here and there, but there's something about "required" craft projects with real deadlines that makes me go nooooooope. I extra noooooooooope when the days are fullest, which they all are lately. I've been running day and night and day again and it will be that way for a few more months. And then I'll collapse into a pile of uselessness.

I'm really super looking forward to it.

In the meantime, I'm doing most excellent things like remembering Valentine's Day at 11:00 the night before. GREAT TIMING, MOM. That's how you make sure your kid doesn't have to do any of the work, which whatever. Mila is a super good "helper" but those quotes are very deserved. It's for the best that she was asleep long before I stuffed tiny little cards into envelopes and wrote names on them all.

Like, for real. All of them. Apparently I let Mila pick out Valentines that had a quantity of 16 in the box while she has 19 kids in her class. THAT is a great thing to figure out at nearly midnight. Fortunately, I never know what to do with the extras when there's like 400 cards in a box. That's a thing, you know. Valentine's boxes either have 16 cards in them or 400. There's never a quantity that actually makes sense. So one of the years when there were 400 cards in the box, I happened to stick the extras in a bag and place them on a high shelf in a closet.


That's the real victory. Somehow I remembered that they were there at a time when I needed them. It might only be because I desperately didn't want to run to a store and I DEFINITELY didn't want to make a few. Still a win.

So once I finally finished the cards and candy portion of the festivities, it occurred to me that I hadn't seen boxes in Mila's classroom. Apparently Western PA doesn't believe in having kids decorate boxes during school hours, which, COME ON. I grew up decorating an oversized envelope or box as an art activity every year. But nope, that's a home activity around here.

Normally I play along.

Normally I'd happily decorate a box.

But, uh, Alexis. Alexis is officially too old for holiday parties at school and she didn't need a box and waaaaaaah! Meh baaaayyybbeeeee. SHE'S BIG NOW. Without Alexis needing one, it seemed like a lot to do one just for Mila (Alexis has made her own since kindergarten because I RULE at teaching independence when it will save me from having to be competent).

So I didn't.

I grabbed an empty shopping bag out of the pantry and I sent that sucker to school.

Two things happened:

1. I learned that I was one step ahead of at least one mom. While the classroom was magically filled with fancy homemade boxes, there was a shopping bag in the cubby next to Mila's. A Victoria's Secret bag.

I guess you could say that since it was pink and Victoria's Secret has things for people who like each other THAT way, it was perfect. But I'm going to say that far more 3-year olds understand the love that is Target than they do Victoria's Secret. So, point me!

2. Aw, hell, Mila noticed. She spent the entire ride home from school telling me about everyone's cool boxes and how much she wanted one, too. She couldn't decide if the dinosaur egg one or the robot was her favorite, but maybe we could make a puppy one? With a soft tail?

If days were just a little less full right now, we would have made a box just so I could make up for not pulling things together. Instead, I'm going to have that twinge of guilt as I simultaneously celebrate that I didn't lose hours of my life to decorating a silly box for preschool.

Jan18 034



Making Plans. BIG Plans.

I don't know when my own kid is talking to me.

I'm earning the daily Best Parenting award for that fact because Mila is in a phase where she never. stops. talking. But, she genuinely isn't talking to me some of the time. She has long conversations with a multitude of people I can't see. I like to think she keeps tiny humans in her Tiny Human pockets because if anyone would collect miniature humans, it's Mila.

She's wandering around having conversations with invisible people, but apparently I'm supposed to be involved in these conversations, I just can't hear all sides of the story. We will be driving down the road and Mila will be talking talking talking talking talking talking talking "Right, mom?" I don't know what to do when it happens. Do I nod and agree and hope I didn't just guarantee a pony? Do I ask her to repeat? Oh, wait, doing that might mean that one of the other people who are apparently in the conversation might have to do the repeating and THEN WHAT?

I'm so lost so much of the time.

Tonight's random conversations that I only half heard, maybe by design and maybe not WHO KNOWS, involved a shopping list. We need to go buy the stuff to build a treehouse, some new dresses with kitties on them, and a baby brother.

"We need to go to the baby store and buy a baby brother." I still don't know if I'm supposed to do the driving, Mila is hitching a ride with her invisible friends, or what. If a male infant comes up missing in the next few days, we'll know she did it. We'll also know that I will have no clue because I'm not listening when my kid tells me things.

Feb18 003


Allosaurus Was Here

If you are a human with eyes, you are aware that the potholes are taking over the universe. They're multiplying faster than a bunch of 4th graders rattling off the answers to math problems. They are EVERYWHERE.

The nonstop rain all weekend made them worse. They're everywhere + infinity right now. And they're filled with water so you can't really see them.

Alexis, of course, has all of the opinions about my new habit of driving suuuuuper carefully so I don't drive off a cliff and into a deep pothole. Some of them are big enough to swallow my car whole and I'm not willing to take the risk. For some reason, the kid that frequently reminds me to obey the speed limit has a problem with me driving below it.


The other kid has no problems with anything because if I do drive off of a pothole cliff, it's going to be fun going down. Can we blow a tire while we're at it? Because then a big truck might show up to fix it and that would be SO fun. Bonus points if tools are involved.

That is exactly why it is no surprise that the younger sister found herself standing in the middle of the street, carefully studying a pothole. We were in Oakland on our way to the library, so I was pretty insistent that we shouldn't hang out in the street, but whatever. Mila is her own person. It's better to see her perspective and then try to adapt with it.

So we took advantage of a well-timed red light and stopped to look at a pothole. It's like stopping to smell the roses, except that it comes with a little adrenaline because WHAT IF THE KID DECIDES TO JUMP IN? Will you be able to stop her? Do you have a boat big enough to sail all the way over to her? If you do manage to stop her, will it be worth it when she screams in anger for three days? These are all the sorts of questions I have at these types of events.

Fortunately, Mila didn't jump into the pothole. It's really good that she didn't because I think it may have been big enough for her to fall to China. Instead of falling through the Earth's core, though, Mila turned to me and with charm oozing from her every inch of being said, "Ook! It's a dinosaur pool!"

Yes. It's true. The potholes are big enough for the dinosaurs to go for a swim.

Feb18 012