Tag Archives: problems white parents have

Potentially Cheesy Thankfulness Post

The last few weeks have been tough. Not seriously tough, like terminal illness or death or any really horrible things. Just day-in, day-out, demanding job and sick toddler and traveling husband and multiple expensive house repairs tough. We’re tying to juggle our jobs and Boopsie’s multiple (mostly not serious) illnesses and still trying to have a life… not easy. Oh, and I’ve been peed on twice in two days.

This afternoon I almost cried. At work. About things like PowerPoint slides and an over-abundance of meetings. And because Daddy-o and I had to split the day to stay home with a sickly Boopsie. And because I didn’t know which dairy-free, nut-free, soy-free sweet potato recipe to make for Thursday. I think it’s safe to say my priorities have been knocked out of whack.

It’s Thanksgiving week. What better time to try and get my head put on straight again? So here we go…. the many things I’m thankful for (in no particular order…):

Thankful? Hell yes.

  • It’s almost time to listen to Christmas music (day after Thanksgiving through Christmas Day)
  • A healthy family
  • A healthy me
  • A job that enables me to afford (mostly) to pay for the raft of unexpected home repairs
  • Recovery (I think) from a sh&tty knee injury without surgery
  • A little girl who love, love, loves Christmas lights
  • My Amazon Kindle. (Geeky, I know.)
  • Having a two-car garage (Holy moly! No scraping the windshield!)
  • Raspberries
  • My favorite afghan
  • Friends… old ones, new ones and all the ones in between
  • Health insurance
  • Along that line, living in a city with rapid emergency response and not just one, but three children’s hospitals to choose from (more on that another day)
  • Having my parents around. Grammie and Grampie are not only fun to be around but they also save our butts on a regular basis.
  • The marriage amendment was defeated in Minnesota… woot woot!
  • The Amazing Race — Daddy-o and I watch it (via iTunes) every week. It’s the one TV show we both enjoy and we have fun watching together. Totally worth the $20 iTunes season pass. Plus, I wager on it at work. Go Dave and Abba!
  • Listening to Boopsie sing. The current repertoire: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, ABCs, Rock-a-Bye Baby, Old MacDonald, De Do Do Do, Skip To My Lou… I can’t wait to introduce her to Christmas Music.
  • Red wine
  • Our cats… even though they puke on the carpet and meow when we’re trying to sleep
  • Movember – all those moustaches crack me up
  • The Internet. Seriously, how did we function before we had all that information at our fingertips?
  • Clean water, accessible and affordable food
  • Working with people I like to be around
  • Travel, especially to visit loved ones
  • Daddy-o. With Boopsie. With me. Funny and kind and a great partner.
  • Hot tea on cold days
  • Sleeping through the night (usually… how cool is that?)
  • Fitting into (finally) my most unforgiving pair of skinny jeans. Shallow? Yes. But still reassuring.

There. Not an exhaustive list, but just some of the many reasons I’m feeling thankful these days. Here’s to not crying about PowerPoint slides and conflicting demands.

What are you thankful for?


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Filed under adventures, mom guilt

The Campaign

I think Boopsie is running a secret campaign to ensure she never has a sibling. (That, or she read my post “Clicking.”)

The evidence:

1) Pooping in the tub. Pooping. In. The. Tub. Three times now. And I’ve tried to help Daddy-o clean up after time #2 and time #3, but I retched. (By the way, what’s going to happen when he’s on a business trip and she poops in the tub? Is there a service I can call for that? I mean, you can hire a poop-scooper for your dog, why not your kid?)

2) Willful defiance. This is how it goes down: I tell her no. She responds by looking at me, smiling, and then doing exactly what I just told her she shouldn’t do. It’s kind of exhausting. I know it’s a toddler thing, but damn… really?

3) Waking up. She’s decided (in the last week) that 5 or 5:30 a.m. is the new ideal time to wake up and party. It doesn’t matter if she’s up later, she gets up early. Really. damn. early. I am not a morning person, and this is trying.

We sold our house and are just on the cusp of buying another. This is not a small deal. (Disclaimer: It’s time for a good ol’ white parent/first-world problem) I’m already trying to figure out how to best manage the move (approximately two miles) such that Boopsie feels as calm and secure as possible. (Yes, I am that anal.) I’m also trying to figure out day care…this gives us the opportunity to explore new day care options… though it’s not smart to switch day care at the same time as we move because that could be too much change for Boo. It all sounds stressful. Hell, it IS stressful. So it would really be helpful if Boopsie would sleep a little later!!!

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Filed under adventures, firsts, problems middle class parents have, problems white parents have

Someone get me a muzzle

Not for Boopsie. For me. And make it a muzzle for my brain.

In recent days she has been really interested in letters. She’ll point at letters on the covers of books and look at me, asking me to tell her what each one is. I’ll tell her the letter , the sound it makes and use it in a word. Then she’ll point to another.

Here’s the thing…. this THRILLS me. I can’t even explain how excited I get. And it’s everything I can do to not get waaaaay too into some sick daydream about getting her to read early. The not-so-healthy part of me wants to buy flashcards and make storyboards and start working to help her read. And then the more sane part of me kicks in and says “Stop this right now. Stop.” And (but for the grace of god or the universe or whatever) I do. I remember that she’s 18 months old, and I’m just happy she loves books. I can tell I’m going to have to work to keep my craziness reined in. Now and later.

We will read as many books as she wants. We will look at letters when she wants to. I will step away from the idea of the flashcards and stop obsessing about early literacy. She’ll be literate… in her own time.

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Filed under books, firsts

Taking a Thrashing

Well, the rest of our little weekend getaway was rather uneventful. I realized that I had also forgotten to pack socks for Boopsie… I brought four outfits for two days (be prepared!) but somehow forgot to bring any socks, so she wore the same pair for three days in a row. We took her in the hotel pool, which was fun… watching her go from very skeptical to enjoying herself.

It was when we returned that all h-e-double-hockey-sticks broke loose. I pulled Boopsie from the car seat and she was a burning hot little rag doll. She’d had a fever on Saturday, but we didn’t have a thermometer. I took her inside and took her temp… 102.7. Add a degree… it’s 103.7. That, combined with her totally lethargic demeanor (she could barely lift her head) made us decide to get right back into the car and head for our first trip to urgent care.

Ahh… urgent care on a Sunday in January. We waited 1.5 hours. We did get some interim help from a nurse who took her temp again (still about 104) and gave us ibuprofen, which seemed to perk her up a lot. Anyway, saw the doctor and he diagnosed a double ear infection. That’s when things got interesting:

My wild banshee from last week? Double it. Actually triple it.

She also decided that all medicine sucks… event the stuff she used like (such as Tylenol and ibuprofen). Currently, the protocol is amoxicillin twice a day (HATES it), and tylenol or ibuprofen about every three hours (dear god… it’s like the toddler apocalypse every three hours).

Food is also a problem. Today I pretty much fed her yogurt and graham crackers. Thankfully, we took a trip to my parents’ house where she had a bit of the omelette my dad made me.

Last night I was up with her at 11:30 p.m. 12:30 a.m., 2:30 a.m. and 3:30 a.m., at which point I brought her into bed with me. This morning when Boopsie woke up she immediately started kicking and hitting me. I tried very hard not to take it personally, but the less than awake, less than mature part of me thought, You’re welcome, my love.

I had the day off (Thank you Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., for all the awesome things you did for our country and I hope you are resting in peace), so I stayed home with my crispy She-beast. And let me tell you… it was a mental and physical thrashing. When Daddy-o arrived home from work I basically ran out the door. I took refuge in a grocery store — how lame is that?

Anyway, the whole way there and back all I could think about was how hard this has been, and how much of a freaking wimp this makes me. I am spent. I’m exhausted and I’m burnt out. From one day… ONE DAY! How do stay-at-home moms do it? How do parents of children with health problems do it? How do I keep going? And how long until those damn antibiotics make her feel better?

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have an important date with a Grainbelt Nordeast. That will be all.

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Filed under lessons, sleep

Some “Noble Truths” About Toddler Travel

Right now, I’m sitting on the bathroom floor of a hotel room, waiting for Boopsie to fall asleep. Being the uber-extroverted girl that she is, she can’t go to sleep if I’m in there working on my laptop. So here I am. It’s making me think about the three “Noble Truths” of toddler travel that I’ve discovered so far.

  1. As a parent, you will have to pack a ton of stuff for your kid. They will have four bags and a pack-n-play and you will have one. You will have to carry them all. And in spite of packing a ton of stuff, you will invariably need something you didn’t pack. For us tonight, it’s Aquaphor. Her cheeks are chapped and it’s at home. Damn.
  2. People will think your kid is cute and this will buy you some good will with strangers in hotel lobbies, elevators and at restaurants. It is probably not enough good will to save you from dirty stares when your kid has a meltdown in a restaurant and starts crying and shrilly screaming “Noo! Noo! Noo!” because you are trying to help her get food onto her fork.
  3. Traveling with a toddler is nothing like traveling on your own or with another adult. It has nothing to do with relaxation or adult-ish fun. You’re lucky if you can even get your hands on an adult beverage because you are in a hotel room bathroom and can’t leave your sleeping kid to go procure a beer. It’s exhausting, but it’s also rewarding. Right? RIGHT?

More tales to come…

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Filed under lessons

Christmas Recap

Christmas was a blast this year. Boopsie was spoiled over and over and over. She literally has toys spilling out of her closet, her toy box(es), etc. Here are the funny bits.

1) Boopsie’s Favorite Gift: A dancing monkey that sings “Dynamite” that she received from my sister and her children. I have to “disappear” the monkey every once in a while into a closet to get a break (and the batteries are starting to go… by the way, it’s only been two weeks since Christmas). I found a random video of the same thing on YouTube:

2) Boopsie’s Second-Favorite Gift: A deck of cards we had in our basement that has a different cat breed on every card. She looks

Pile of kitty cat playing gards

Super Fun!

at them, talks to them, dumps them out, picks them up and throws a class-A, hard-core hissyfit if we try to take them away. (Good times.)

3) Boopsie’s Least-Favorite Gift: The rocking horse we gave her. It’s a beautiful rocking horse, that neighs and winnies when you squeeze its ears. She’s afraid of it. On Christmas morning we showed it to her, and demonstrated how to squeeze the ears. Her response?


I lifted her up and put her on it to show her how it rocks back and forth. Fun, right?

Brown and White Rocking Horse

The Devil's Pony


She actually ran away from it. We put the horse in our basement storeroom and let it rest for a few days. A couple of days ago I was putting something in the storeroom and Boopsie was supervising. We saw the horse, so I stopped and petted it, and said, “Nice horsey. Oh, nice horsey. I’m going to give the horsey a kiss.” Boopsie watched all this with some interest, so I said, “Do you want me to bring the horsey out?”

“No.” And she turned tail and split. *sigh*

I guess we should have stopped at the kitty cat playing cards.

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Filed under adventures, lessons, problems middle class parents have

French Fried Onions (Or why I am DONE with SuperTarget)

I have been anticipating this week for a while. I had a distinct vision for this week. Primarily, my vision had to do with a quiet work

French's French Fried Onions

Really, SuperTarget? This is the MIDWEST. Frech Fried Onions practically ARE Christmas Dinner.

week… I envisioned time to clean up my e-mail, do some busywork I needed to take care of and generally sort things out before a nice break from work. In the evenings I would calmly proceed through my remaining holiday tasks, perched in front of our lit Christmas tree. (Those tasks? Christmas cards, craft project, final shopping, wrapping, cookie-baking. Yep, lots.)

Would it surprise you if I said that my vision did not come true?

Well, it did not. Work was hell. A special sort of hell filled with IT craziness and corporate America ickiness and just general annoying crappiness that all came together and meant I didn’t get squat done that I’d hoped to. And somehow I’m still “on call” while our company shuts down between Christmas and New Year’s. Awesome.

And at home? Frantic. And no sitting in front of the lit Christmas tree. And no cookies baked and still several presents to wrap. And increasing crabbiness.

So tonight has been the pinnacle of banal craptastic annoyingness (at least I hope this is the pinnacle): I spent two hours trying to send a stupid e-mail (IT mess). So I took a break and set out to check grocery shopping off the list. I trotted off to SuperTarget with my list, which included French Fried Onions for two batches of green bean casserole.

I found everything I needed at SuperTarget except those crucial French Fried Onions. If this were a one-time occurrence and I hadn’t had such a stupid week, this wouldn’t be a big deal. Unfortunately, this is a recurring theme with SuperTarget: They often don’t have a basic ingredient that I need. I’ve run into this same issue before with breadcrumbs, frozen squash, and other commonly-needed items. So here it is, two days before Christmas and SuperTarget doesn’t have French Fried Onions. Seriously, SuperTarget? No French Fried Onions? This means I have to make another trip to another grocery store tomorrow. When I wanted to hang out with my family and sit in front of the lit Christmas tree. GAHHHH!

On my way out to my car, I decided: I’m done with SuperTarget. Indefinitely. I might only last a week. Heck, I might only last a day. But I’m done with SuperTarget and their capricious lack of important items.

I know this isn’t *really* about SuperTarget. It’s a bigger issue than that.

I’m so tired of being the “it” person, the “go-to gal,” the organizer, the runner, the keep-it-together and keep-it-all moving person… at work and at home. I want to stop. I need to stop. I am mentally and emotionally fried..done done done. Unfortunately, I can’t be done. I don’t get to stop everything and retreat. So for now I’m going to have to settle with being done with SuperTarget.


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Filed under drudgery, problems middle class parents have, problems white parents have