Axe the Axe

 

 

 

Santa, dear Santa

santa2It’s that time of year

But you showing up

Is now my biggest fear

 

I’m not being critical

Of the stuff that you bring

In fact, I’ll tell you

It’s only one thing

 

Santa, you know

I don’t mean to be mocking

But last time you left

This stuff in the stocking

 

So Santa, my friend

I’ve just one thing to say

Please don’t leave Axe

At my house Christmas Day [Read more…]

Performance of a Lifetime

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Some people know from an early age that they belong on the stage. They are the kids who never hesitated to jump up in front of family or friends and belt out a rousing version of I Just Can’t Wait to be King, don a pair of tap shoes, or recite a Shakespearean sonnet. They are born to be in the spotlight.

I am not one of the people.

So it was a little surprising for me to learn that I’ll be delivering a theatrical performance of my very own. I’ve been practicing diligently since mid-April, when I first learned of my new role. And if I may be so bold, I’m betting this performance will have Oscar written all over it.

Move over, Meryl.

While this show may have the shortest run in theatre history, it in no way will diminish the need for a script delivered with believability and careful attention to detail. In an ideal cinematic world, it should be the perfect blend of Bette Davis and Katharine Hepburn.

It’s gotta be that good.

But not being blessed with a theater gene, I am more than a little concerned. Despite all the hours of rehearsal I’ve put in, I fear my performance will more closely resemble something between Lucy Ricardo and Melissa McCarthy.

This one-woman show opens and closes tomorrow afternoon in an off, off-Broadway venue. It’s a peculiar setting to be sure and it’s difficult to imagine that a performance such as mine has ever been delivered there before.

That’s because it’s happening in Washington, DC in Dulles Airport. Between Baggage Claim #1 and #2, to be exact. That’s where I’m dropping off Younger Boy tomorrow to begin his high school exchange program. For the Whole. School. Year.

Clearly I’m not taking Phase One of my Pre-Mature Empty Nest very well. [Read more…]

Is A Baby Sister Really Too Much To Ask For?

2013-04-20 11.16.56My youth was idyllic.  My days were drama-free. It was so darned peaceful that Mr. Bluebird occasionally landed on my shoulder to whistle a cheerful tune.  I never heard those words so frequently uttered by Country Squire station wagon driving dads on family roads trips: “DON’T make me pull this car over!” But my childhood was agreeable, not because I was the spawn of Ward and June Cleaver.  It was not because I was the Perfect Child.  It was calm for a singular reason – I was an Only Child.

But I needed a sibling.  I wanted a Big Brother just like my two best friends.  I begged my parents for a brother.  Without spilling the beans on the birds and bees, they gently explained that this was never, ever going to happen.  My six-year-old brain understood the word “no,” but not the underlying mechanics that prevented my plan from becoming a reality.

As a more worldly seven-year-old, I decided a baby sister would do.

As a second grader, I launched a full-scale Jack Abramoff-style lobbying effort to secure a sister.  I created a grassroots campaign utilizing the alliances of friends with younger siblings to influence my parents.  In a stroke of perfect timing the teacher asked the class to write a story about our family: the perfect opportunity for a journalistic expose of My Life With The World’s Most Unreasonable Parents.  As I read my story out loud, I watched with joy as my teacher’s eyes widened in what I assumed was horror at the situation known as my family life.  When she told me to stay behind at recess, I thought she would say, “You poor dear!  I can’t fathom that you’re forced to live with such selfish parents who don’t understand your need for a baby sister.  I’m calling them right now.” [Read more…]

Lost – The Home Game

man fridge

By the time I heard the refrigerator door open for the fifth time in less than a minute, I knew what was next.  Footsteps were heading in my direction, just like clockwork.

“Mom,” Older Boy asked, “Where’s the ketchup?”

There are only two possible answers to this question at our house – the fridge or the cabinet. Being in charge of condiment procurement and storage, I knew the correct answer was the fridge.

“Follow me,” I said. I opened the door and scooted the single gallon of milk a mere three inches to the right on the shelf.  This nearly imperceptible move immediately revealed a Costco-sized tankard of Heinz.

“Hmph,” he said grabbing the bright red plastic bottle filled with enough ketchup to liberally douse every French fry served on the 3-11 shift at any McDonalds.  “I didn’t see it.”

The reason, of course, is obvious; I spend my free time moving household items around to confuse him.

But I’m starting to wonder if we need to schedule a family visit at the eye doctor.  Because Younger Boy and The Husband also routinely experience this unique visual disturbance when looking for things.

Just last week, I heard what sounded like cabinet doors opening and closing in the other room.  A few minutes later, Younger Boy entered the room where I was sitting and asked, “Have you seen my tuba?”

Pause for a moment, if you will.

A tuba is not your typical household item.  Nor is it a diminutive and easily misplaced musical instrument like, say, a clarinet or kazoo.  When properly housed in its case, it bears an uncanny resemblance to a Volkswagen parked in a corner of my living room.  So, yes, not only have I seen the tuba, I’ve tripped over it in the middle of the night most notably when Younger Boy deposited it in the center of the room. At those moments in the dark of the night, I’m not usually referring to it as a tuba.

“Follow me,” I told Younger Boy, walking toward the living room.  He nearly tripped over it when we entered the room.

“So that’s where it is,” he said with relief. “I didn’t see it.”

So I wasn’t the least bit surprised the next morning when The Husband walked in the kitchen and asked, “Have you seen my wallet?”

Of course I’d seen it, when I was removing a couple of twenties.

“It’s on your desk.”

“I just looked,” he told me.  “It’s not there.”

“Follow me,” I said.  As we stood in front of his extremely tidy desk, I lifted a file folder to reveal his wallet.

“I didn’t see it,” he said grabbing his wallet and shoving it in his back pocket just before leaving the room.

I don’t know why they come in search of me when it’s time for Household Lost and Found.  Apparently, they believe I’m equipped with a homing device.  Sadly, boys, ovaries are not GPS enabled.

Then it dawned on me, eyesight isn’t the problem.  Their vision is just fine.  And it didn’t take a doctor visit to figure it out.  It’s obvious.

They can always find me.

So I have a plan.  I’m plastering a picture of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Model, Kate Upton, on every object they might need to find. I guarantee I’ll never have to look for anything again.

I speak from personal experience; it worked for me.

Because I haven’t misplaced my car keys once, – since I got my Brad Pitt keychain.

The Verdict on Junk Food

Trouble was brewing in the cereal aisle. And the one about to incur the wrath was me.  As my ‘tween and teenaged sons stood there, it was clear they were about to make their case with the tenacity of Perry Mason and Atticus Finch.  “See Mom, you were wrong!” Older Boy said shoving the box within an inch of my middle-aged eyes.  “Go ahead, read it.” Younger Boy then chimed in. “They’re GOOD for you,” he argued.  “It says so right on the box.”

My bad.

It was hard to argue with the good health claims emblazoned on the front of the Cocoa Krispies and Froot Loops boxes that my boys paraded in front of me like I was a Price is Right Showcase Contestant.  There they were – boxes of an immunity-boosting, fiber enhanced morning indulgence that I’d denied them based on my misguided beliefs.  And boy did I feel pretty stupid. All these years I’ve been making them eat real froot. [Read more…]

Summer Time – It’s A Teen’s Life

School’s out today.  No more studying for finals, no more tests.  Just a long stretch of summer days.

But a lot has changed since the boys were little kids.  For all of us.

Because within a few hours, this is what my house will look like:

Welcome to the hang-out house.  I love it that they’re all so comfortable being here.   [Read more…]

Sock it to Me

With the kids finally back to school, the pressing question during the morning rush is “Mom, where are my socks?” One of my house rules is – if you don’t put it in the laundry basket, it doesn’t get washed. I wash your dirty clothes, I’m not going to look for them too.  I bought plenty of socks before school started.  So I have to admit, I got a little puzzled over the mysterious disappearance of socks on a regular basis.  At first I blamed the washer for eating them.  But upon closer inspection, I have discovered where the blame truly lies. In support of my theory, I present Mom’s Exhibit A – a sockumentary, if you will.
no great surprise here
I suppose it’s thoughtful, really. I don’t have to bend over to pick them up.
I have to admit, I’m curious.
And then, I hit the motherlode: Younger Boy, you are TOTALLY busted.
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