Perpetually Peeved


Jr. Peeves

Everyone knows Smalls has a little body and a big personality.  So, what pisses off a 4 year old?  You’d be surprised.

Say what you mean, already!

Smalls’ pre-K class is gathered around for circle time and they start off the activities by playing the alphabet song on the CD player.

Smalls: (sticking fingers in her ears) I am so over this song.

Teacher:  Smalls, what’s the matter?  Why are you sticking your fingers in your ears?

Smalls:  Because, Ms. Teacher, I just don’t get it!

Teacher:  What do you mean “you don’t get it,” Smalls?

Smalls:  Well, I just don’t get it.  Is LMNOP one letter?

Teacher:  No, it’s 5 letters.  (writing on board)  See…  L… M… N… O… P.  Five letters.

Smalls:  Then why do they say it LMNOP, like it’s one letter?

Teacher:  Because it goes with the music of the song.

Smalls: (sticking fingers back in her ears)  Well, that’s just silly.  If it’s five letters, they should have made the music fit five letters!

 

Image from lmnop magazine

 

Never underestimate a four-year-old.

Smalls and my sister-in-law are were walking to the ice cream shop in town the other night.

BabySister: Smalls, you have to hold my hand.

Smalls:  Why, Aunt BabySister?

BabySister:  Because, you know, there are cars on the road and there are strangers…

Smalls:  If I see a stranger, I know what to do.

BabySister:  You do?  What’s your plan?

Smalls:  Well, I would run away as fast I can and I would climb a tree and I would hang upside down like a sloth and then they wouldn’t even know what to do!

BabySister:  Hmm… good plan.

 

photo courtesy of brazilianfauna.com

 

Don’t try to label me.

Driving home from work on our nightly commute together, I usually ask Smalls about her day…

Peeved:  So, what did you do today?

Smalls:  We learned about animal doctors.

Peeved:  Oh, that’s fun.  Would you like to be an animal doctor when you grow up?

Smalls:  No, when I grow up, I’m going to be Smalls.

Peeved:  No, I mean, what do you want to do as your job when you get older, Smalls?

Smalls:  Job?  I don’t want to WORK!

Peeved:  Well, most people have to work.  If you have to work, what would you want to do.

Smalls:  I want to be a colorer and a painter… NOT an “artist”!

Peeved:  Well, good.  Because being an artist isn’t a job anyway.

 

photo of a Pollack from ibiblio.org

 

Are you there God?  It’s me, Smalls.

Smalls:  Mommy…  God makes everything, right?

Peeved:  Yes, honey, God made everything in the world.

Smalls:  Then, why did God make me a human?

Peeved:  Because, you were a gift to mommy and daddy and we are humans.

Smalls:  But, I really wanted to be a cheetah!  I didn’t ask to be a human!

Peeved:  Well, I’m sorry honey.  That’s how God made you.

(silence for about 3 minutes…)

Smalls:   Mommy… God is in heaven, right?

Peeved:  Right.

Smalls:  And when you say prayers, they go up to heaven, right?

Peeved:  Yes.

Smalls:  And God is supposed to hear your prayers and answer them, right?

Peeved:  Yes.

Smalls:  (tearing up and whining) Well, then, how come every night I pray that I will wake up as a cheetah and every morning I’m still a stinky human!??

Peeved: Um… (stifling laughter)

kids courtesy of Peeved, cheetah courtesy of... God?



Redux reflux

Christmas is over, the goose done got fat, and you can tell which presents weren’t such a big hit by the fact that they’re still under the tree. Yes, all of my decorations are still up.  Let’s just blame that on an unfortunate series of events and not my overactive lazy gland. 

ecards.com

I learned how to re-gift from my mother.  She’ll recycle just about anything.  When Biggie was a baby, she pulled out the clothes from the late 70s… um, thanks mom.  Another time, I was eating ravioli in what I thought was a brown sauce…

Stepbrother (let’s call him Stepdoucher – more on that another time): What are you eating?

Peeved:  Ravioli in brown sauce.  Mom made it for me.

Stepdoucher:  Ew.  I bet it tasted better last week when it was ravioli with red sauce.

Peeved: [spit, cough, choke] What??

Mom:  Oh, stop.  It’s fine.  I re-worked it.

***** 

Last year, her and AJenda had a ridiculous re-gift exchange that went something like this:  AJenda buys overpriced bowl set from one of Mom’s hairbrained catalog schemes.  AJenda is pissed that she paid so much money for what she thought was a set of stacking serving bowls big enough to hold chips.  Turns out, they are big enough to hold about two handfuls of peanuts and a couple of MnMs.  AJenda regifts the bowls to Mom for her birthday – “I thought they would look nice in your house.”  Mom, in turn, regifts the bowls to AJenda for her birthday 10 months later – “I felt bad, you ordered them and they go so nice with your house – I hardly used them.”  You can imagine, this did not fly with AJenda.  Come Christmas, there was a familiar looking package under the tree with Mom’s name on it.  My mother, who is the queen of Christmas shopping at Big Lots and Kroger but expects her own gifts to come in small packages and sparkle, just says, “this better not be those damn bowls.”

Alas, this year, there was no reappearance of the damnbowls and Mom did a great job of picking presents.

Mom:  You girls really liked your presents?

AJenda:  Absolutely, the scarf is lovely.

Peeved:  Yep!  I liked mine, too.  My favorite was the little change purse that looked like a vintage purse.

NotBonJovi:  My favorite was the sweatpants!  Thanks Ma!

Mom:  Ha!  I just want to let you know that out of all the gifts, only two are regifts…  the scarf and the little purse!

Peeved:  Well, your regift skills are improving!  Thanks Ma!

Later that night NotBonJovi went to put on his sweatpants.  They were a little short.  They were a ladies XL.

I guess it could have been worse... (photo courtesy of codeodor.com)

For those of you that care where I’ve been for the last three weeks, it went something like this: 

Dec 17 – 22:  Last minute Christmas shopping and decorating the house.

Dec 23: Bieber!  Smalls gets the gift of a stomach bug that keeps on giving.

Ignore the rest of those girls, he was only singing to HER!

Dec 25:  Blessed temporary reprieve from illness and a white Christmas in the South – thank you Santa.

Dec 26:  Peeved gets the gift of a stomach bug that keeps on giving.  Mr. Peeved gets it, too.  You know, just to keep things fun.

Dec 27 – 29:  Netflix!  There is a reason some movies go straight to video.

Dec 30: Sickie remnants, but must clean house and go food shopping for company coming over.

Dec 31 – Jan 2:  House guests!

Jan 3 – 4:  Actual work in the office.  (How do I do this again?)

Jan 5 – 8:  Trip to NY for Grandpa’s funeral.  (Even stuffing my face with pizza and bagels couldn’t make me feel better – believe me, I tried.)

And, now, I’m home and work was cancelled today because we have a blizzard (READ: 3 inches of snow).  I’m about to improvise some sleds, but thought before I do, I better take a moment to check in and give all of you your Christmas presents.  It’s a regift, of course:

... and to all a good night.



Hey Elves – You’re Fired!

I’ve been trying to wrap up all my Christmas shopping by the end of this week.  I plan on spending the time off I have doing fun things around town with the kids, not last-minute running around in crowds.  I HATE crowds.  LOATHE crowds, actually.  I also can’t stand shopping unless it involves margaritas or shoes for me.  So, I’ve been doing a lot of lunch-hour power shopping and stopping in to a single store between picking up the kids and heading home.  The other day, I needed to run into Macy’s for three very specific things:  handbags for Smalls’ teachers.  I knew exactly what I wanted.  I was a woman with a coupon and a mission.

Peeved:  Okay, girls, Mommy has to run into Macy’s real quick and pick up some presents for Smalls’ teachers.

Smalls:  Are we getting them Zhu Zhu Pets?

Peeved:  No, Smalls, I think they’d like purses better.

Smalls:  Oh.  Can we stick a Zhu Zhu Pet in the purse?

Peeved:  No.  Let’s just get them purses and then you can make a nice card for them.

Biggie:  Where are we going?

Peeved:  Macy’s.

Biggie:  Oh, cool.  I totally need skinny jeans.  Macy’s has the best skinny jeans.

Peeved:  We are not shopping for skinny jeans.  We are going to get out of the car, go directly to the purses, select three purses, pay for them and leave.  Understood?

Biggie:  But the skinny jeans are right next to the door closest to the purses. I could just…

Peeved:  Here’s the deal.  Ready?  I just need to grab these things real quick.  You all need to behave because Santa is watching and if you don’t behave you’ll get coal in your stocking.  Smalls, you’re in the stroller.  Biggie, you’re pushing the stroller.  You both stay right next to me and offer your opinions if and only when asked.  I need you to be my elves tonight.  We are not shopping for ourselves, we are shopping for gifts for others.  Got it?  Elves.  Helpers.

Biggie:  Fine!

Smalls:  Fine!

I love elfyourself.com - check it out. :)

*****

A condensed version of the events that took place inside Macy’s on December 13th at approximately 7:03 p.m.:  touch, touch, touch, drop, yell, whine, whine, whine, yell, disappear, reappear, yell, skootch, skootch, skootch the stroller, heart attack – where the hell did Smalls go?, yell, cheer/dance, cheer/dance, cheer/dance, yell, stroller derby, near fatal collision with purse rack, yell, don’t touch your sister-stand right there and don’t move-Smalls get your feet off of the stroller wheels, purchase of the closest three purses, step routine, step routine, step routine, yell, time out in the corner, whine, whine, whine, yell, touch, touch, touch…

****

[In the car on the way home]

Peeved:  I don’t want to hear a word – A WORD! – from either one of you.  Biggie, that was embarrassing and disrespectful.  You are twelve years old and I had to put you in time out in the corner of Macy’s.  You should be ashamed of yourself.  How hard is it to stick your hands in your pockets and behave yourself for five freaking minutes?  I asked you to help me.  You did exactly the opposite.  You think it’s okay to misbehave now because I’ve already done my shopping for you?  Well, you have another thing coming.  Santa doesn’t bring trampolines to kids that don’t behave.  Get my drift?  You need to learn to listen.  I told you not to touch anything and I don’t think there was one item in that store that you didn’t leave a fingerprint on.

Smalls:  Yeah, and she…

Peeved:  I don’t want to hear anything from the Peanut Gallery!

Smalls:  Yeah, well I don’t want to hear anything from the Peanut Butter Jelly Gallery!

Peeved:  Oh no you don’t.  I’m mad at you too.  You were not wearing your listening ears.  Mommy told you to sit in the stroller and what did you do?  You skootched halfway across the store.  I look away for one second and you’re over in Petites walking around with the stroller hanging off your butt.  When we get home, it’s dinner and bed for you.  No show tonight.  Biggie, it’s homework and bed for you, too.  Give me  any lip and I’ll take away your electronics for a week.

****

Peeved:  Here, eat your dinner.

Smalls:  That’s not dinner.  That’s cereal.  I want dinner.

Peeved:  Well, we don’t have anything in the house.  And, after the way you acted in the store, I’m certainly not going food shopping with you.

Smalls:  I want dinner. [lip quiver]  Cereal is not dinner.  [start of cry]  You need to have something with bread for dinner.  [full on crying, now]

Peeved:  Fine!  I’ll go make something out of nothing.

*****

[in the kitchen]

Smalls:  [sobbing in the other room - then... silence]

Peeved:  Smalls…  what are you doing?

Smalls: [in the most pathetic four-year-old voice you can imagine]  Looking at a picture of you [stifled sob] …  when you were happy.

Peeved:  What?

Smalls:  You’re with daddy… [stifled sob]... and …  you’re smiling [full on crying again]

*****

Dear Future Therapist of Biggie & Smalls,

It is all exaggerations and half-truths, I swear.

Sincerely,

Peeved



When good intentions go bad

I think whether parenthood is something planned or not, that most people go into it with good intentions.  When people find out they are going to become parents they secretly think they are going to be the best parent ever. 

Our parents?  They knew nothing.  I mean, they let us run around until the streetlights turned on.  We would drive hours on the interstates with no seat belts and at least one sibling lying across the hump on the floor of the car.  Baby teething?  Slip him some whiskey.  Teenager backtalking?  Feed her some soap.  Broke your arm?  Quit crying or I’ll break the other one. 

Yeah, I think most people’s’ visceral reaction to finding out they are going to have a child is, “I’m going to do it so much better than my parents did.”

So, what the heck happens?

photo from belch.com

Not too long ago, I was at the zoo with Biggie and Smalls.  A lot of people had those cute little monkey leash backpacks for their children.  Which, I will be honest, I’m not a huge fan of.  I mean, call me old-fashioned, but I just always held my kid’s hand or strapped them in the stroller.  That wasn’t my problem, though.  I understand why people have them.  It’s a scary thing to bring a non-verbal, squirmy toddler out to a crowded place where they could disappear in a heartbeat.  I get it.  I still watch my 12-year-old go to the top of the driveway to get the mail.  The thing that made me literally bite my tongue was the sight of a mother dragging her toddler behind her.  Pulling away like she was towing a wagon or something.  Um, lady, you dropped something.  Oh wait, that’s YOUR KID!  Cripies!  I’m thinking she didn’t see a little pink plus sign on a stick and think, “I’m going to be the best mom ever.  When little Timmy gets tired at the zoo, I won’t rent him a stroller, I’ll use my super-mommy strength to drag his ass from cage to cage.”

Hmm... I wonder why Timmy can't focus in school.

I was getting Smalls into the car at her daycare one day and was having a conversation with a woman who had a young son (about 4 years old or so).  She was complaining about how he just wouldn’t sit still and he wouldn’t stop talking and he can’t pay attention to anything for more than a few seconds.  As she’s saying this, she is loading him into a carseat positioned directly in front of a 10 inch DVD screen which she promptly turns on (with her remote start button).  “It’s just so difficult,” she shouts over the cries of the Wiggles, “is it possible for a four-year old to be diagnosed with ADD?”  No, darling, it isn’t any more possible than diagnosing his mother with a bad case of stupidity.

Clean up on Aisle 9!

See that angelic four-year-old holding on fiercely to a freshly Clorox-Wipe’d shopping cart, minding her own business, humming a song for her mommy?  Okay, now see that hooligan child lying on the ground kicking over the end cap display with her feet and mopping the dirty linoleum with her hair?  Okay, now see that lady halfway across the store, seemingly by herself minding her own business and shopping?  Isn’t she doing a great job of ignoring the toneless WA HA WA HA WA HA fake ambulance sound emitting from the mophead?  She’s not even looking around like I was to see where in the world the little critter’s mother was.  Hmmm…  she must be shopping for mirrors. 

And the nominees for Mother of the Year are…



Wednesday “What the…?”

Yesterday was full of weird stuff I didn’t have pictures of.  Today, I’ve got proof.  It’s the weird, wacky, wondrous, Wednesday “What the…?” – Enjoy, folks.

1.  What the… are you trying to say?

That might be hard to read, let me tell you what it says.

          XXXXXXXX@YAHOO.COM

          Is this a valid email address for you (for your protection, the email address has been partially masked)?

Um, there is no X in my email address.  So, by partially masked do you mean completely obscured?  WTF Your Security Levels Are So High You Even Tell Me I Got My Father’s Middle Name Wrong On The Security Questions?

2.  What the… are you wearing?

Have you ever been going through old photographs and come across something that makes you go WTF?  Well, here’s a classic case.  Even Smalls is trying to figure out what’s going on there.  I guess stereotypes have to come from somewhere.  WTF Mr. I Buy My Outfits Out Of a Catalog Called DING!DING!DING!?

3.  What the… is that?

I sure hope they’re paying you.  WTF Hello Krazy Kitty?

4.  What the… kind of school do you go to?

(driving home from school yesterday)

Biggie:  Aren’t you going to ask me what new Connections (this is a fancy word for electives) I got today.

Peeved:  Sure, but the last 3 times I asked you, you told me you didn’t know yet and to stop asking you.

Biggie: Well, I got Music Appreciation and Family and Consumer Science.

Peeved:  Family and Consumer Science?  That sounds cool.  What’s that?  Budgets and stuff?

Biggie:  No.  You cook stuff and you get to carry around an egg and stuff and, like, pretend it’s a baby.  It’s really cool.

Peeved:  You mean you got Home Ec.

Biggie:  No, it’s called Family and Consumer Science.  Home Ec is, like, when they teach you budgets and stuff.  They don’t call it that anymore, Mom.

Peeved:  Family and Consumer Science?

Biggie:  Yes.

Peeved:  Where’s the science in it?

Biggie:  Cooking is science.  And, so is having babies.

Peeved:  Sounds like Home Ec to me.

Why does everything have to have a fancy name now?  It’s no longer English, it’s Language Arts.  It’s not Gym, it’s Exercise Science.  WTF Fancy Pants School – Why Don’t You Try Teaching Them How Eggs Get Fertilized Now That You’re Calling It Science?

5.  What the… kind of backwater town are you from?

 
 

This is what you get when you cross a mullet with a helmet bang.

 

 When wearing flip-flops with pants and no pedicure is the least offensive thing you’ve got going on, you’ve got issues.  WTF Ms. I’m So Country Even My Hairdo Is Inbred?

6.  What the… is wrong with you?

Some days, I wish I had one of those jobs that don’t do random drug testing.  You know, like pizza delivery guy, waiter, Xfinity writer, garbage man.  Either someone likes to wake and bake, or they have a sick sense of humor.  WTF Is Afroman Doing As My Garbageman?

I’ve got $50 that says the owner of the gold Toyota would, in fact, jump off a bridge if all of his friends did first.  WTF Doublemint Douches?



Biggie, Smalls & a Smart-Ass

BIGGIE

One only needs to look back a few posts to know how I feel about eyebrows.  So, the other day when I noticed something funky going on with Biggie’s eyebrows, I had to get to the bottom of things.

Peeved: Biggie – what the heck happened to your eyebrow?

Biggie: Nothing.  What are you talking about?

Peeved: That – right there.  That eyebrow did not always start almost at the middle of your pupil.  And, the other eyebrow doesn’t match.  What did you do to your eyebrow?

Biggie: Nothing, mom.  Geesh! [eyeroll, foot stomp]

Peeved: [grabbing Biggie by the chin for closer inspection]  OH MY GOD!  You shaved your eyebrows!?

Biggie: No.

Peeved: Well, somebody did.

Biggie: Well, I was in the shower and I was shaving my armpit and I got soap in my eye and when I went to wipe it off I accidentally shaved off part of my eyebrow.

Peeved: You ACCIDENTALLY shaved off part of your eyebrow?

Biggie: Yes!  I had soap in my eye!

Peeved: Well, you are not allowed to shave anymore.

Biggie: What?!  Gosh, mom!  You’re the worst! [eyeroll, foot stomp]

Peeved: Obviously, you can’t be trusted to keep razor blades from accidentally coming near your eyeball.  No more shaving unless you tell me the truth.

Biggie: I am telling the truth!  Don’t call me a liar!

Peeved: Well, what happened to the other eyebrow?

Biggie: Well, I had to try and even them out a little bit.  Am I going to be punished?

Peeved: No.  I think living with those crazy eyebrows will be punishment enough for shaving them.  However, you will be punished for lying.

Biggie: I’m not lying!!!  It was an accident!!

Funny, when I was younger my stepmother always used to say, “Do you think I was born yesterday?” and I would wait until she walked away and whisper, “No, the day before.”  She also said I’d get back everything I ever gave her.  Who’s laughing now?

Who knew shaving your armpits could lead to Lasik so easily?

 

SMALLS

There are many sacrifices we make as we become parents:  the ability to run around the house naked, curse loudly, sit down for an extended period of time, sleep in, and go to the bathroom alone are just a few.  It’s Saturday morning, Mr. Peeved has been sick for the last few days and I have the beginning of a nasty respiratory virus.  All I want to do is sleep in.  Alas, 8:20 brings this conversation to my ears:

Biggie: [in the bathroom]  Get out!

Smalls: I have to go!

Biggie: Well, I’m going.  You can’t go.  Get out!

Smalls: Biggie! I have to go!

Biggie: Smalls!  I’m going to the bathroom.  I need privacy.  Get out!

Smalls: I don’t have to get out.

Biggie: Yes, you do.  You can’t just come in the bathroom when someone is using it.  I need privacy!  Get out!

Smalls: I am giving you privacy.

Biggie: No, you’re not.  You’re still in here.  Get out of the bathroom!

Smalls: Biggie, privacy is when you don’t look at someone when they’re going to the bathroom.

Yes, Smalls, when you have a 4-year-old in the house, that’s exactly what privacy is.

 

A Smart-Ass

My father always tells me I’m a smart-ass.  I always tell him I’d rather be a smart-ass than a dumb-ass.  My nephew, he doesn’t fall far from the Aunt Emma tree.  At the age of three, this kid could tell you the difference between a bucket and a pail.  By the time he was four, he knew what sarcasm was and had perfected his deadpan delivery.  Here’s a text I received from my sister on Friday:



Peeve podge…

The last few days have wrought plenty by way of inspiration, but not much in the area of motivation.

I finished Smalls’ Halloween costume.  Sewing is tied for third on the list of things that make me happy (food and bad reality TV being numbers 1 and 2, and the tie for third being shoe shopping).  It’s mathematical, but creative at the same time, and at the end of the day you have something to look at and say, “I made that.”

That is one scary cheetah.  Besides the fact that the pattern was made for Umpa Loompa and I had to take it in about 2 inches all around, it came out relatively good. It didn’t hurt that I just got a new sewing machine.  An awesome new sewing machine.  A sewing machine that makes me wonder what the heck I was doing wasting my time on that dinky little one I had before.  Ignorance is bliss, indeed.  Now, I just have a poodle skirt to finish up, a Lady GaGa (we finally found one appropriate enough for Biggie to wear), a Sonic the Hedgehog sidekick, a kitty cat, a zombie cheerleader and either a tiger or a hot dog (she just has to make up her mind – I’m voting for hot dog!).  Wish me luck, I will need it.

*****

Friday night,  I spent the entire evening cleaning my house.  Saturday morning, I spent the entire morning re-cleaning my house.  Sigh.

*****
Saturday I decided to host a dinner party at my house.  It was a potluck, but I was making the appetizers and the main dish.  And by “I” I mean me.  Mr. Peeved was working.  Don’t ask me what I was thinking, I won’t have an answer for you and I’ll just change the subject real fast.  I figured if the Irish in me can let me get away with drinking whiskey and not getting a hangover, then the Italian in me should let me make an edible dinner.  The kids and I went shopping at the farmers market.  I remembered their jackets and everything.  I remembered all the things on my list.  I whipped together an Italian Nachos sauce, a caprese salad and a tray of baked ziti all with an hour to spare.

Full cream, asiago cheese sauce with onions, peppers, Italian sausage and olives that you dredge over nachos and top with banana peppers. Mangia!

Are you impressed?  Yeah, I was too.  I was so proud of myself.  Whistling away, cleaning up.  What?  What does that empty cheese container say?  Shredded asiago?  Who the heck sells shredded asiago and, puts it right next to the shredded mozzarella?  Dagnabit!  Back to the store for baked ziti redux.

*****

Sunday, Biggie had her first gig as a babysitter/mother’s helper for my friend (let’s call her Brave Soul, shall we?). Biggie would like me to make a public announcement on her behalf, it goes something like this:  I AM SO COOL.  Anywho, she took the assignment very seriously, packing a “do bag” and getting pointers from her more seasoned friend.

Biggie:  Don’t worry Brave Soul, I am so prepared.  I have coloring books and a tea set and a lot of fun activities that I can do with Little Brave Soul.  And, my friend, she, like, babysits all the time, and she told me all the tricks of the trade.

Brave Soul:  That’s great.  Little Brave Soul will love that.  What did your friend teach you?

Biggie:  Well, she said you just have to play whatever they want to play and make believe it is the most fun in the whole wide world even when it’s the most stupid and boring thing ever.

Brave Soul:  Yep, that’s pretty much all there is to it.

There is a rule in my car that is violated at least twice a day.  The rule is nobody is allowed to touch the radio until we are out of the driveway and even then, they are to ask first.  Biggie can’t grasp the concept.  Yesterday afternoon, we get into the car and she whips this CD out of her bag.

Biggie:  Mom, can I play this? [waving it in front of me]

Peeved:  What is it?

Biggie:  It’s my babysitting mix.  It’s all my favorite songs.  You know, for when I’m babysitting.

Peeved:  Biggie – it’s spelled wrong.

Biggie:  No it’s not, ma.  Gosh, that’s like, slang.  No one puts the G on the end of ing words anymore.  Can I put it in?

Peeved:  Sure, I want to hear this.

[Biggie inserts CD, turns up volume and it starts playing]

Biggie: Oh.  [hits disc skip to track 4]

Peeved:  What are you doing?  Just let it play.

Biggie:  Oh, I can’t.  Tracks 1, 2 and 3 aren’t appropriate for Smalls to hear.

Peeved:  What?  I thought this was a babysitting mix.

Biggie:  It is.  It’s just music I like.

Peeved:  But, the first three tracks are inappropriate for your little sister?  Why?  What are they?

Biggie:  It’s mostly Lady Ga Ga.  The first one is the one with the Christmas tree and the second one is the one with the disco stick.

Peeved:  I don’t think either of those are appropriate for you.  What are you doing downloading these?  And, what’s wrong about a Christmas tree.

Biggie:  You know, when she says “light me up, put me on top, let’s fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la”.

Peeved:  Give me that thing.  Right. Now.

Biggie:  Guess I’m not allowed to listen to it anymore…

You think?  It’s bad enough Katie Perry is melting Elmo’s popsicle.  Now I have to worry about the sanctity of yuletide carols.

photo from msn.nz

*****

This morning, I couldn’t find my soapbox.  Which, is a shame, because apparently people have completely forgotten the art of manners.  Simple things, like hold the door open for the person behind you.  And, say thank  you when someone holds the door open for you.  And, if you see me running (or hear my heels clicking) towards the elevator, don’t pretend you can’t find the door open button.  Jackknives.

*****

I will be appearing on Animal Planet's "After the Attack" next month.

Smalls:  Mommy, thank you for my cheetah costume.

Peeved:  You’re welcome, honey.  I’m glad you like it.

Smalls:  When are you going to make your costume, mommy?

Peeved:  Well, Smalls, I don’t know what I want to be for Halloween yet.

Smalls:  But, you need to make a gazelle costume.

Peeved:  I do?

Smalls:  Yeah.  What am I going to eat if I don’t have a gazelle?



Cleaning house

It’s not that I don’t like cleaning.  It’s that I loathe it.  I have texture issues that prevent me from wanting to touch anything that has been sitting in the sink longer than 30 seconds.  I’m deathly allergic to dust.  I have a not-so-mild case of ADD mixed with OCD.  So, I will start cleaning the living room and three hours later, my DVDs will be arranged categorically and alphabetically and the rest of the house will still look like a bomb went off.

oooh.... colors... organization...

Every night when I see the first star in the sky, I close my eyes tight and whisper, “star light, star bright, first star I see tonight, I wish I may, I wish I might, have the wish I wish tonight…  I wish for… a cleaning lady.” 

Well, Princess Tiana, I’m not.

I’m left winded and disappointed every time.

With no fairy godmothers showing up to my parties, my adventures in housekeeping leave me pleading to my husband to let someone else come over and do the work.  My husband is the type that works more than full-time and still wanted to build the backyard playset for the children from scratch.  You can guess what his response was.

Phooey.

Then, there is the issue of budget.  Nowadays, everyone is on a budget.  Cutting back, getting out of debt, preparing for the future…  In order to justify the expense of a cleaning lady, I would need to to some serious cutting back in other areas.  Hmm…  TV/Cable?  No way.  Glee just had it’s premiere tonight.  And, Survivor: Nicaragua is pretty rockin’ so far.  Cell phone?  Dream on.  That iphone is my woobie.  I literally sleep with it in my hand.  Don’t even mention the word that starts with “sh” and ends with “oes.”  So, what would I give up in order to get a cleaning lady?

Oh yeah, you can hear it now... "Don't stop believing..."

1.  THE DVD COLLECTION:  Let’s start there.  Because, really, how many times can my husband make me watch Gladiator and Braveheart? Unless it’s Grease or Dirty Dancing, it’s not worth watching over and over.  And, those two are on TBS at least twice a month.  So, we’re good.

2.  MY FIRST BORN CHILD:  What?  You spend just thirty minutes in a mall with her and then we’ll talk.  Besides, she’s the one making most of the messes.

3.  MY PINKY TOES:  What are they good for anyway?  It’s not like the big toes that we need for balance.  Sure, they wouldn’t fetch as much as a kidney, but a family like mine will drive you to drink.  I’m going to need all the internal organs I can get later in life.

4.  TEETH:  I have 20 baby teeth and two adult molars I could hock.  Baby teeth fetch a pretty penny these days.  Come to think of it, Smalls will be losing hers soon anyway… we could make that 40. And, I have to assume that molars are worth something.  Why else would the dentist give them to you after he yanks them out of your mouth?

Here's an idea... maybe a nice strand of baby teeth could fetch a buck or two.

5.  SOCKS.  I have at least 10 socks.  They could be re-knitted into a sweater or something.  So what if none of them match?  I’m sure I’ll find the mates as soon as I get rid of them.

6.  FOOD.  Tons of it.  All stuffed in my kitchen cabinets.  I have no use for it.  I can replace it all with Ramen Noodles and Birdseye Steamers because, really, that’s all I know how to cook.

No?  Okay!  Fine!  I’ll sell the kidney.  If I need one when I’m old, well, that’s what kids are for, right?



10 things I learned from camping…

1.  Ants bite.  

Upon our arrival to the campground, Mr. Peeved set about getting a fire started, Biggie grabbed her chair and fishing pole (coordinating colors, of course) and headed to the “beach,” Smalls found the nearest downed tree and started to climb all over it, and I set about unloading the car and hauling all our stuff 50 feet down a 45 degree slope covered in loose rocks.  Just as I was taking my third slide down the hill with provisions, I hear an ear-piercing screech.  Smalls, who was playing nicely by herself (this should have been the first warning sign something bad would happen) had been bitten by ants.  

Smalls:   EEEEEEEeeeeeeeeEEEEEEeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!  

Peeved:  Okay, Smalls, let me see. It can’t be that bad.  It will be fine, I’ll kiss it.  

Mr. Peeved:  It’s an ant bite.  Those are the worst.  They hurt like hell.  

Smalls:   EEEEEEEeeeeeeeeEEEEEEeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!  

Peeved:  It’s okay.  It will be fine.  That’s not an ant bite – it’s not a little white bubble.  It looks just like a mosquito bite.  

Mr. Peeved:  It’s not a red ant bite, it’s a regular ant bite.  Those are worse.  

Smalls:   EEEEEEEeeeeeeeeEEEEEEeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!  I got bit by an ant!!  EEEEEEEeeeeeeeeEEEEEEeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!   It hurts worse than a red ant bite!!!  

Peeved:  Maybe that’s not helping, Mr. Peeved.  Smalls, mommy has lotion, let me put some lotion on it.  

Mr. Peeved:  That’s not going to work.  Do you have that after-bite stuff?  

Peeved:  No, I have bug spray, sunblock and lotion.  

Smalls:   EEEEEEEeeeeeeeeEEEEEEeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! I need the bite stuff!  

Mr. Peeved:  We are going to have to cancel the trip if you don’t fix it.  Don’t bother putting up the tent yet.  Can you go to the store and see if they have that stuff?  

Smalls:   EEEEEEEeeeeeeeeEEEEEEeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! I want to go home!  I hate camping!  EEEEEEEeeeeeeeeEEEEEEeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!   

Well, something tells me this has happened before because the campsite store was fully stocked with after bite lotion.  A few dabs of that, an hour of coddling and a Coca-Cola later, Smalls was off fishing with her sister.  I put up the tents, inflated the air mattresses, put out the chairs and lost 3 pounds of water weight while Mr. Peeved made the most perfect camp fire, ever (or at least, that’s what I’m told).   

2.  It’s all fun and games until you run out of clean clothes and marshmallows.  

This cartoon and a bunch of other totally awesome cartoons can be found on this site: http://www.nataliedee.com. Think I found a new source of entertainment!

Around 7:30 pm on the day of our arrival, we were almost out of marshmallows and, aside from pajamas, almost completely out of clean clothes.  Apparently, after bite and Coca-Cola don’t do much to improve a nap-missing 4-year-old’s disposition.  Smalls spent most of the afternoon throwing rocks at the ducks and stomping off into the woods when we tried to talk to her.  Finally, when the first signs of dusk started settling in, we decided it was time for the kiddo to hit the air mattress for the night.  Smalls melted down faster than a marshmallow hit by a blow torch.   

Smalls:  I don’t want a smores pie!  I don’t like graham crackers!  I don’t want just marshmallows!  I just want marshmallows and chocolate!  No, not like that!  I want marshmallows and melted chocolate, but no bread or crackers!  Mommy!  Biggie is eating my smores pie!!!!  WaaaaaaaaawaaaaaaaWaaaaawaaaa!   

Squirrels scurried off like roaches when you turn on the light.  Nature wants nothing to do with a whiny, screaming preschooler and neither do I.  So, I do what any resourceful mother would do – fling her over my shoulder, strap her in the car and try to drive around until she falls asleep.  

Smalls:  You left Biggie and Daddy! They’re all alone!  Turn around! Turn around!  You can’t leave them!  

Peeved:  I wonder if the campsite store has Benadryll…  

Smalls:  Hey, maybe they have marshmallow and chocolate ice cream.    

3.  Tents were invented by the Department of Torture.  

They make it look so easy.... (www.coleman.com)

4.  The ability to fish is not genetic.  

spicy, crispy minnows... who knew?allthaicooking.com

The only time I ever caught a fish growing up was when I was sitting on the dock and got up to move farther down the way.  Completely coincidentally, just as I stood up, a fish bit my line and I “caught” it.  Yes, we can add fishing to the long list of things I’m not good at – right after cooking and just before passing driving tests.  Biggie did not inherit this gene.  She caught six fish.  Granted, they were all slightly larger than minnows, but still it was quite an accomplishment given her DNA.   

One would think that the children would want to throw the poor little fishes that were too small to eat back into the lake.  Not my kids.  

Mr. Peeved:  Okay, we have to let them go now.  

Biggie:  No!  You said we could eat what we caught!  

Mr. Peeved:  There is no meat on this fish, Biggie.  

Smalls:  Daddy!  You said we could eat them!  I wanted to cut its head off!  

Biggie:  Yeah, and I was going to gut it!  

Guess you could say the kids like to eat.  That, they may have gotten from their mother.  

5.  Everything tastes better with white bread.  

Next time you go camping, buy yourself one of these babies! vtarmynavy.com

Smores pies, ham & cheese pies, salami & cheese pies, steak & egg pies, cherry pies, pizza pies…. I could go on in the spirit of Bubba Gump all day.  

6.  It’s okay to ban technology for two days.  

  

I turned off my iphone for two whole days.  Guess what?  No one suffered except my ego.  Apparently, I’m NOT that important.  

7.  The firmness of an air mattress is directly proportional to the heftiness of your bed mate.  

What this picture doesn’t show is the way the poor lady gets catapulted to the other side of the tent when her husband climbs on to the air mattress.  What it also fails to capture is the way her ass goes slamming into the ground in the morning when he gets up to pee.  

8.  Children who can’t read also have trouble listening. 

 

There were “no swimming” signs posted all along the shore of the lake.  This, of course, meant nothing to Smalls because unlike those phonetics phenoms you see on the TV at 6 in the morning, she can’t read.  Apparently, reading and listening go hand in hand.  I told Smalls she was not allowed to go in the lake unless she wore her water shoes, rolled up her pants and stayed on the opposite side from where her sister was fishing.  I may as well have written it on a sign for all that she paid attention to me. 

Smalls:  [skipping barefoot in the "fishing section" of the lake with her pants soaked up to her underwear]  What, mommy?  I didn’t hear you. 

Peeved:  Smalls, I said it five times.  Put your listening ears on. 

Smalls:  Oh, sorry.  What did you say?  la la la…. [skipping barefoot in the "fishing section" of the lake with her pants soaked up to her underwear]  

9.  Nothing makes a 12-year-old happy. 

Peeved:  C’mon Biggie, we’re going exploring. 

Biggie:  Ugh, I don’t want to go.  I’m busy.  I’m fishing here, mom. 

Peeved:  Okay, stay here.  We’re going to the campsite store.  Smalls, you want to see if they have ice cream? 

Smalls:  Let’s go! 

Biggie:  Gosh, you guys can’t even wait for me to get my shoes on?  You’re so rude! 

***** 

Biggie:  Is that a pool?  Is it open? 

Peeved:  Yes, but I didn’t know it was here, so you don’t have a bathing suit. 

Biggie:  I can’t believe you forgot our bathing suits. 

***** 

Biggie:  Oh my gosh!  They have slushies.  Mom, can I have a slushie? 

Peeved:  Sure, but that’s it.  One treat.  Either ice cream or slushie. 

Biggie:  Okay, thanks mom. 

Peeved:  You’re welcome. 

Biggie: [sipping on slushie at check out stand]  Oh!  Mom!  They have sour straws!  Please, please, please? 

Peeved:  No, Biggie.  You got your treat. 

Biggie:  Come on!  You are so mean! 

**** 

[pout, moan, whine, repeat x5] 

**** 

[checking out at the campsite store later that night] 

Peeved:  Mr. Peeved, can you get those sour straws for the girls for the ride home, please? 

Mr. Peeved:  Sure. 

Biggie:  Yay!  Sour straws. 

Smalls:  Sour straws! 

Biggie:  I am not sharing with her. 

Peeved:  Yes, you are. 

***** 

[chomp, chomp, gobble, gobble for all of about 5 seconds] 

Peeved:  Are you done with those already? 

Biggie:  Yes, because I had to share them.  And, I can’t believe you didn’t bring our bathing suits! 

10.  You should always unpack your camping gear immediately after arriving home. 

 

 

This was on the ceiling of my car this morning.  Good thing I’m not a complete arachnaphobe!  I have a good friend that’s probably doing the heeby-jeeby dance just looking at it (hey – you made the blog!).  Smalls thought it was “cute” and wanted to name her Charlotte.  I guess it’s better than a gerbil or a dog…



Mommy’s Law

There’s this thing that happens when you become a mother.  This magical, torturous transformation that turns your butt (or, what’s left of it), into something akin to the bat signal.  Somehow, the nanosecond my ass hits a seat, a phone starts ringing in my family’s brains.  Ring… ring… ring…  time to need something from Peeved.

The other night, after a long day at work, a long drive home, a long getting the kids to eat dinner process, an even longer checking the homework and getting them to bed process, I finally got a chance to sit down.  Deciding not to get too ambitious (you can’t really relax until they’ve been down for a good 30 minutes), I reached past my book and picked up a magazine.

This is not just any magazine.  This is the best magazine ever.  A dear friend renews my subscription every year for Christmas and it’s my favorite present.  It only comes once every two months (or, at least it feels that long between issues).  Bookmarks magazine is to book lovers what Cosmo is to trashy 20-year-olds.  I have picked up some killer reads based on their recommendations that I ordinarily would not have even looked twice at.  As you can tell, I was writhing with anticipation to get my hands on it. 

I tiptoed out of the bedroom, down the hall, quickly past the kitchen (where my husband was cooking up some yums) and quietly as I could, sat down on the couch.

[Ring, ring, ring...]

Mr. Peeved:  Hey, Peeved, come here for a second.

Peeved:  What?

Mr. Peeved:  I need to talk to you.

Peeved:  What do you want to talk about?

Mr. Peeved:  I can’t talk to you from the other room.

Peeved: [then why are you trying? Maybe if I pretend I don't hear him.]

Mr. Peeved:  I know you can hear me.  I also know you just sat down.  Now, stop being lazy and get in here.

Peeved: [Dammit!]

 Other Mommy’s Laws?

  • They never volunteer to go to the bathroom until right after you say you have to go.  Then they are racing to get there first.
  • The baby always wakes up right as you’re about to put the first bite of food in your mouth.
  • If you order them a kid,s meal, they won’t eat it.  If you don’t order them a kid’s meal, they’ll eat all your food (usually while perched atop your head and rubbing BBQ sauce into your shirt).
  • They’ll never remember they need three bottles of dishwashing liquid, a can of coke and a squeegee for science class until 10:00pm the night before and after you’ve already had 3 beers.
  • The second the opening credits for your show are over, WWIII will break out in the next room and you’ll have to play Switzerland.
  • If you try to close the door to the office and play around on the internet, the child will stop whatever game she was happily playing and demand that you play with her.  If you stop and go play with her, she will inevitably tell you that you aren’t doing it right and proceed to play on her own without you.

Please, just bury me with my Bookmarks magazines and a Kindle.  Looks like that will be the only “me” time I see in my (hopefully, distant) future.




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