Reluctant Mother Is Tempted To Sleep With Another “Man”

Those eyes!  That hair!

My heart beats a little faster when I think about him.

He’s cute!

Charming.

Smart too.

Should I?

Should I give into my temptation and just do it?

It’s sooooooo tempting.

No one has to know.  

Maybe just once?

One time?

I could cuddle him so hard!

NO!  NO!  NO!!

What am I thinking?

STOP IT!

It could ruin your marriage.

Banish the thought!

DO NOT LET THE TODDLER GET IN BED WITH YOU!!!!

It’s so very tempting!

He’s adorable and snuggly.  He nestles himself into my arm and presses his chubby face into my shoulder and says “I love you” and then lifts his (momentarily) angelic face and puckers his lips anticipating a sweet little kiss.

For the past two nights, when I’ve put him in his crib he begins wailing, desperately clinging to me between the crib rails.  “No, no, no,” he protests mournfully.

My heart breaks and I wonder if perhaps he couldn’t just climb in bed with us for the night?  It would stop this terrible mommy guilt I’m feeling.  It would also allow me to get in bed (already!)

But I can’t.  I just cannot give in.

He’s not going to sleep when he gets in the bed.  He’s going to demand to see the blinking baby monitor, the phone, the TV ‘mote.  He’s going to bounce around and laugh and play and yank on the huge framed art hung above the bed.

When he does finally pass out from exhaustion, he’s going to squirm, and shift, and wiggle, wedging his little monkey toes under my ribs. . .Poke.  Poke.  Poke.  I’ll awake with a disgusting drool-covered Wubby over my eyes, head pounding, feeling nothing but regret for my poor decision.

Worst of all?  He’s going to expect it.  He’s going to want to sleep with us EVERY. NIGHT.  That prospect doesn’t bode well for my marriage.  I’ve noticed my Husband doesn’t function well when sleep (or sex) deprived.

I try explaining this to Mac as I pace with him in his Sleepy Wrap. . .and just before he drifts off to sleep, I hear him say in his sweet, sleepy little voice “Okay.”

And then I really want to cuddle him SO HARD!

Ahh. . .these were the days. . .

Aww. . .these were the days. . .

Can You Afford to Be a Stay At Home Mom or Dad?

Let’s say you are seriously considering becoming a Stay at Home Mom (or Dad) after the birth of your first child.  Certainly, doing what’s best for your child is your top priority.  However, like nearly every other parent faced with this decision, your mind quickly shifts to finances.

Can we afford it?

It’s a question you will fearfully ponder for months.  Perhaps you’ll make spreadsheets.  Perhaps you and your partner will decide what little luxuries or conveniences you are willing to sacrifice in order for one of you to stay home.

Maybe the numbers are so, so close but you aren’t quite there yet. . .Maybe you’re not even sure where to begin?

Good news, I’m here to help!

Here are a few of the MONEY SAVING STRATEGIES I’ve learned since becoming a SAHM:

1.  TOILETRIES:  You can save a mint on these pricey items!  Once you become a parent,  you will seldom have a free minute to shower and brush your teeth, let alone use deodorant, a razor, deep conditioning treatments, or even beauty balm.  You can count on using only about 1/8 of any personal hygiene products you used as a well-groomed, fully functional member of society once baby arrives – maybe even less if you have multiples.

EXCEPT toilet paper.  You’re going to be trapped at home all day swilling coffee and booze.  Expect the toilet paper budget to increase.  Of course, it won’t increase much as most times you’ll barely have time to take care of business let alone fully address the “follow up.”

2.  CLOTHING:  You can claim this will “never happen to me” but trust me, it will.  THE NEXT TIME YOU ACTUALLY NEED WELL-MADE, WELL-TAILORED CLOTHING WILL BE THE KID’S COLLEGE GRADUATION OR YOUR OWN FUNERAL  – whichever occurs first.

Until said time, you will rotate the same four pairs of yoga/sweat pants and six tee-shirts for EVERYTHING, EVERYDAY.  You will exercise in them.  You will spend the day in them.  At night you will put on a fresh set and sleep in them.

You will no longer have any need for dry-cleaners, tailors, or even accessories. (Um can someone please remind me where I put my wedding band three weeks ago?)

Sure, one day you new mommies might slip into a pair of pre-pregnancy jeans and a nice silk blouse in an attempt to pull yourself out of the emotionally draining, life-sucking vortex that is motherhood.  The kid WILL puke and you will NEVER make that mistake again.

Trust me, SAHM or SAHD, your clothing budget is going to be just a fraction of what it was.

Your Pre-Parenting Wardrobe. . .

Your Pre-Parenting Wardrobe. . .

Clothes You Actually Wear. . .

Clothes You Actually Wear. . .

3.  HOUSEHOLD MAINTENANCE AND DECOR:  Oh I know some of you blissfully pregnant couples are still operating under the false premise that your sofa will remain pristine; that you can child-proof around your favorite toss pillows, stereo components,  and knickknacks.

Listen to me: YOU ARE SCREWED!!

Your house WILL be TRASHED.  It doesn’t matter if you have one baby or triplets; if you have a boy or a girl.  Your house will look like shit by the time your little bundle of joy celebrates their first birthday:  baby gates, toys, yogurt splatters, vomit, poop on the baseboard moulding, fingerprints EVERYWHERE!

It’s amazing how quickly it comes to this.  It’s even more astounding to acknowledge you no longer give a flying flip about any of it.

You will no longer have the time or energy to trawl your favorite stores for charming household decor or fabulous surround sound system upgrades.   Resign yourself to the fact that you will likely just wait for the kid to turn 18, burn whatever is left, and start over.

*Bonus Tip:  You might want to start a separate savings account for this specific purpose.

We've trashed our 113-year old hardwood floors!

We’ve trashed our 113-year old hardwood floors. . .Sigh.

4.  SOCIAL – Pre-baby, did you have routine happy hours with friends or colleagues from work?  Did you have brunch and get a mani with a girlfriend every Sunday morning?  Did you play golf twice a week?  Did you enjoy movies or concerts with your partner?  Fancy dinners at the “hottest” restaurants?

DONE.  YOU’RE SO DONE!

Slash that healthy, happy, relaxing “me-time” shit from your budget.  It ain’t happenin.’

5.  ENTERTAINMENT & HOBBIES – Do you enjoy TV, using the phone, reading books or magazines?  Maybe you love watching movies in bed?  Embroidery?  Stamp Collecting?  Painting?  Baking?  Falconry?  (really, falconry?!  How are you still reading this post?)

Ummm. . .I’m sorry to break it to you but. . .

You might as well, just cut the budget for your personal entertainment and hobbies to damned near ZERO!

You’re not going to have ANY time to use the phone, watch TV, read magazines or books.  DO NOT KID YOURSELF.  Kiss your leisure time long and hard.  You won’t meet again until you are quite possibly too old to enjoy it.

Cancel your landline.  Cancel the premium cable package.  Cut your magazine subscriptions by three-quarters.

* Bonus Tip:  While you’re at it, convince yourself that your new exciting and rewarding hobbies include folding laundry, assembling bottles and sippy cups fresh from the dishwasher, and scraping dried banana off the floor with your unmanicured fingernails.

6. PERSONAL – Sex, sex, (NO MORE SEX IS LESS SEXPENSIVE!)  If prior to conceiving you were using birth control, don’t worry about spending money on it after the baby arrives.  THE BABY IS THE BIRTH CONTROL!  The crying, the feeding, the sleepless nights.  Heaven really help you if you choose to co-sleep!

Once the baby is older?  Their behavior should also serve as sufficient birth control.  No one feels amorous after the kid flushes 67 Legos down the toilet or demands 6 drinks of water during a 1 hour nap.

* Bonus Tip:  Be sure to also remove from your non-fixed expenditures anything related to intimacy. . .lingerie, flowers, chocolates, champagne, oysters. . .or um. . .whatever else floats your boat.

7.  FOOD & DINING –  Forget it.  For months you don’t want to take the newborn into a crummy restaurant where s/he could come in contact with the filthy public.  Shortly thereafter, you don’t want to subject the filthy public or crummy restaurant staff to your raging toddler.

But what about cooking fresh organic meals at home?  We want to serve our baby only the best quality food and that can be expensive, says you.

Trust me, after your kid goes on hunger strike and refuses to eat anything that IS NOT orange or heavily salted for 3 weeks straight, you won’t give a damn.  You’ll feed your kid ANYTHING.  ANYTHING s/he will swallow. . .Even if it’s canned soup and generic potato chips. . .

8.  TRAVEL –  BAH-HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!  It’s hard enough to get across town.  I DARE you to book a week-long vacation.  Good luck, sucka!  I hear Disney has great deals.  BLERGH.  Traveling with children sucks.  It’s a waste of money.  Trust me, stay home and be miserable.  It’s way more cost-effective.

9.  KID – If you’ve followed me this far, I can tell you’re committed.  So listen carefully:  KIDS DO NOT NEED A BUNCH OF STUPID TOYS!!  If you’re worried you cannot adequately provide stimulation and amusement for your child on your budget, rest assured you can.

Still not convinced?  Give a toddler a brand new toy in a box.  See what gets more action:  The Toy or The Box.

Cut out the middle man and toss the kid a new box every couple of days.  It’s environmentally friendly too.

When the box trick gets old, start making up games:  match the socks, pick up crumbs off the floor (count them), scrub the toilet while wearing something stupid on your head.

Kid’s are easily influenced by your enthusiasm and delusion.  Trust me.  I have experience.

All this fun stuff and he'd still rather beat together two muffin tins!

All this fun stuff and he’d still rather beat together two muffin tins!

10.  EXTRAS – Are you worried about “extras”?  Will you have the budget to get friends and family gifts and cards for special occasions?  Chances are you won’t always.  Equally certain?  You won’t remember the special occasions anyway due to the mental eraser that is parenting.

Who has time to worry about swapping $5.25 cards and $20 gift cards anyway?  Enact a “no gift policy” immediately.  (You’ll be happier, and so will everyone else.  Trust me.)

What about all the extras for the child?  You wonder.  What about birthday parties and extra curricular activities, etc.?    True.  These sorts of items can add up.  They not only cost money, they also cost parents a lot of time.

That is why your supreme parenting goal should be to raise a DORK.  Yes.  A dork.  A kid that far enjoys hanging out in his or her room alone reading.  Books are free to borrow from the library.  You avoid stupid soccer practices and birthday parties and the associated costs.  Plus, everyone knows dorks grow up to be the most successful folks on the planet.

Adorable Dork in Training.

Adorable Dork in Training.

There you have it. . .10 extremely useful cost cutting strategies for a Stay at Home Parent’s budget.  I hope you found it helpful!  Now, go edit your spreadsheets!  Maybe you’ll even find a few extra pennies for some cheap booze or a lottery ticket!

 

Happy Friday!

I’m skipping the funny today.  A lot of things going on and I’m pluggin’ along with those projects.

I’ll be back soon.  Until then, HAPPY WEEKEND!

DSC_0109 - Version 2

Fear you’ll miss me?  I’m certain I’ll be Tweeting barely intelligible somethings all weekend!

See you Monday!

Possibly the Grossest Thing I’ve Ever Witnessed. . .Twice.

This isn’t about my kid or what we did yesterday.  It’s a story from when I was younger. . .but I’m hoping you’ll read it anyway.  I promise it’s gross-funny.

In December of 1992, I reached the magical age of 15.5 years, this was the age kids in my area could get a part-time job.  Despite my field hockey practices, ballet and piano lessons, a bevy of other extra-curricular activities, and a respectable academic load, my Mother and Stepfather decided it was a magnificent idea that I also have a part-time job.

As you can imagine this displeased me greatly.  I was already stressed out enough and the idea of adding something else to the mix was terrifying.  Despite my protests, my parents “helped” me secure a work permit, and shoved me out of their circa 1989 Ford Aerostar minivan in front of the Wendy’s Hamburger joint on a routine basis.

I can’t say I enjoyed working there.  It wasn’t awful though.  And when I got older, I discovered one of the managers was perfectly happy to buy me beer so long as I basically did his work while he drank beer out of a Jr. Frosty cup.  Win-win.   Thanks Mom, this gig was a super great idea!  

I worked there all through high school.  And when my ahem Parents decided that I should attend the (pretty reputable) private liberal arts college in the same town I grew up in, I didn’t have any need to seek out other employment.  I already had a job.  By this time, I had secured multiple raises and was also getting bonused in copious amounts of really bad beer, it wasn’t like I could just walk away from all that for some minimum wage campus gig.

My first semester Freshman year, I scheduled ALL my classes for Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.  (Why I did this I can’t recall but it seemed like a good idea at the time).  On Wednesdays and Fridays I had a Chem-Bio lab that began at 1PM and lasted until at least 5. . .or whenever you stopped exploding shit you shouldn’t have exploded. . .

My morning classes ended sometime about 10:30 or 11. . .which gave me a narrow window to race to Wendy’s, work the lunch shift and secure myself some adult beverages for the weekend if necessary.

This particular Wendy’s is located on a State Highway in an area that a good number of folks “pass through.”  The area is crawling with tourists in the summer so we saw no shortage of new customers.  This was particularly true on Fridays when truck drivers and tourists would be moving through at a steady pace.

One Friday during the lunch rush, I was working the front register.  Back in my day, a designated employee would take the orders, handle the cash, and get the beverages, while other employees assembled the order.  Physically between the employee at the front register and the employees making sandwiches and fries, was a manager, who was responsible for pacing everyone and making sure all orders were properly “coordinated.”

On this Friday, the Manger was Tina.  (For the record, Tina never bought me beer).  Tina was a tiny quiet woman with the most glorious mullet I’ve ever seen – short and feathered in the front, down to her waist in the back.  She smoked these super long skinny cigarettes during breaks and liked everything neat and clean.  We got along very well.  She was a kind person, but pretty much “all business.”

We were doing our thing, banging out order after order, when we noticed a very short, very thin, man who was maybe 55 or so come in the door and head straight towards the men’s room.

The restrooms in this Wendy’s were single person. . .there were not multiple toilets or sinks.  They were located down a hallway directly behind where Tina and I were standing at the front register.

Of course, heading to the restroom first isn’t uncommon, especially for truck drivers, travelers, or tourists so I thought nothing of it. . .

Until about 45 seconds later when I was overcome by a stench worse than death.  Whatever that man had done in the restroom was so terrible it had managed to overpower the ubiquitous smell of grease and burnt chicken nuggets.  I cannot even begin to describe how offensive this stench was.

A few minutes later I noticed the guy walk out the front door.

But he didn’t take the stench with him!

It persisted.

I looked at Tina.

Someone had to go in there.  

At the time, I firmly believed winners were willing to do what losers weren’t.  And I very humbly considered myself a winner.  After all, I was slinging burgers full-time and carrying a full academic load.  I had been recently offered a management position and though I had to decline due to my academics (and good sense), I knew I should suck it up and offer to go into the men’s room.

Tina, being the Manager, had no choice, she HAD to go in there.  And being a decent human being, she probably understood she shouldn’t allow me to do it,  even if I offered.

As um luck would have it, there seemed to be a lull at the front register so I offered to go WITH Tina.  You know, for moral support. . .and to catch her in case she passed out.

We walked through the hall and stood shoulder to shoulder in front of the door.  She was wearing a pair of disposable plastic food-handling gloves.  The smell emanating from beyond the closed-door was enough to make you see stars.

Tentatively, she placed one gloved hand on the handle and turned it. . .

What we witnessed was like something out of CSI. . .except with poop, not blood spatter.

Every surface in these restrooms were white. . .white tile walls and floors, white fixtures.

Now they were splattered EVERYWHERE with the contents of Skinny’s cannon colon.  How did this man still have his colon intact?  How did he get it so far up the wall?  It was up the wall higher than I could reach without standing on tippy toes.  I stood in awe of the velocity his colon was capable of.

The shit spatter evidence was damning for certain.

But that wasn’t ALL the evidence Skinny Cannon Colon left behind.  Oh no.  He left us something extra special.  There on the floor, BESIDE the trash can were his UNDERWEAR!!!  His UNDERWEAR!!!  (which were nearly unrecognizable as underwear as they were so caked and covered with the offending substance).

Tina and I stared at one another speechless.  We didn’t have custodial or janitorial services.  We had to clean this up.  It. Was. Disgusting.  The sheer volume alone was astounding but to make matters worse, the stuff had a viscosity, the likes of which I have never seen since.

The following Friday, Tina and I were back at our positions at the front counter when we noticed Skinny Cannon Colon swagger back in the front door.  He made a beeline for the men’s room again.  And like clockwork, 45 seconds later, we were assaulted with a familiar stench.

This time?  He came running out of the bathroom sprinting for the front door hollering and laughing, “I did it again!  I did it again!”

Skinny Cannon Colon had indeed perfectly recreated his crap crime scene from the week before, right down to the underwear he left beside the trash can.

I never asked to work the Friday lunch shit err shift again.  No amount of free beer could convince me. . .

Just Another Walk in the Park (Reluctant Mother Style)

We all know I adore Patterson Park.  I like to think of it as my gigantic backyard.  A backyard I never have to mow, weed, or otherwise maintain.  The playground is nice.  The birding is very respectable, especially for an urban environment.  During workday hours, the place feels nearly empty. . .but over the last 21 months of nearly daily park visits, I’ve had some interesting experiences. (here, here, here, here)

The most recent experience occurred last Thursday (before we met Psychopath Panda Hat).  I was doing my usual loop through the Park looking for birds.  For a few weeks now, I have been specifically (and unsuccessfully) looking for woodcock and sparrows.

I had heard from several reliable sources they had seen a few different sparrow species and woodcock near the community gardens and maintenance facilities way up on the north side of the Park.

My typical loop involves cutting off from the northern-most walkway that parallels Baltimore Street and diagonally making my way in front of the gardens and maintenance area.  However, I decided this time, I’d take the path that paralleled Baltimore Street to get a full view of the backside of the gardens and maintenance area.

As I started along the path, I caught a very fleeting glimpse of something flitting about outside the community garden.  I knew it wasn’t a woodcock but it might have been a sparrow?  I couldn’t readily relocate the thing, but I was keen to do so.

As I was rapidly approaching the spot where I had last seen the bird, I heard someone yelling over the din of traffic on Baltimore Street.  Normally, this wouldn’t strike me as odd, but this time it seemed a little off.  The screaming was a man’s voice:  “I can see you!”

I looked around and there was definitely no one else in the vicinity.  So I felt as if the screaming was certainly directed to me.  I paused searching up and down Baltimore Street looking for some idiot who was likely just mocking me because I was wandering around with a pair of binoculars.

That’s when I noticed a man in a truck parked at one of the cross streets that runs perpendicular to Baltimore Street (so his view was facing directly into the Park), waiving around a pair of binoculars.

What. The. Hell?

I’ve always believed avoidance and ignorance are excellent life skills, so I put them to good use and pretended I didn’t hear any of the commotion.  I veered off the path a little, through the grass closer to where I originally saw the bird.  A decent amount of  ruckus continued to emanate from the general area of the truck but I kept my back turned away from it.

Then I felt a little panicked.  Birders are a notoriously odd bunch.  What if this Man was for some inexplicable reason birding from his truck, (parked across a busy street?) and was on a good bird, which I spooked by walking through the area?   That. Would. Suck.

I searched in vain for the bird but couldn’t relocate it.  Why would he be birding from across the street?  Why wouldn’t he come into the Park?  Could he even have seen a small bird from that vantage point with just binoculars?  He definitely wasn’t scoping anything.

I glanced nervously over my back.  He seemed to have settled down a bit, but I was afraid to look for too long for fear he’d realize I KNEW he was there!

Then, I started looking for a bigger bird.  Perhaps he was looking at a Cooper’s Hawk or even a Bald Eagle.  People get all jazzed about seeing Eagles.  (Yes, they are magnificent but honestly, they are quite common these days) and he was worried I was going to spook it with my presence?

I couldn’t locate a “bigger” bird anywhere either.  So I walked back to the path that parallels Baltimore Street and proceeded west behind the maintenance area.  I had gone perhaps 15 yards and paused to check the area for birds.  I glanced over my shoulder, and caught the Man from the truck, clutching his binoculars racing towards the area where I had originally caught a glimpse of the mystery bird.

And. This. Freaked. Me. Out.

Yes, Birders are a quirky bunch, but most of them are not anti-social.  Typically, they are pleasant and ask if you’ve “Seen anything good?”  (They don’t typically start getting indignant until they suspect you are withholding information regarding “good” birds.)

This Guy?  I don’t know what he was up to, but it was weird.  He dodged traffic, crossing in the middle of Baltimore Street to get into the Park as fast as he could. . .(Including an uphill sprint, as the Park is pretty well elevated from Baltimore Street in this location).

My crazy over-active imagination went on high alert!  Oh my gawd! This is straight out of The Wire!  That guy is a plain clothes cop!  They are staging some elaborate surveillance operation!  Why else would I have seen that other police car circling the Park so many times this morning?  I’m in the middle of some dangerous situation with my KID!!!  There’s probably drugs or other contraband hidden right here!  Something’s going down.  I always knew it would end this way:  A freak birding accident!  

Run, You Idiot, Run!!

Except I’m not in nearly good enough shape to sprint up the hill pushing Mac in the stroller.    Plus I had to pee pretty badly and I didn’t want to pee my pants and have to skip the playground since I promised Mac we would go. . .

So I made the decision to continue to act clueless and briskly headed towards the northwest corner of the Park as I originally planned.

That was a close one!   

But then curiosity got the better of me. . .

I slipped Mac a piece of cookie to ensure he kept quiet and then I risked ahem life and limb to cut back along my typical route around the front of the maintenance area and gardens to see if I could check out the Man without him seeing me again.

My heart was racing as I crept along the edge of the garden fence.  I wondered if I shouldn’t hunch over more to try to obscure my identity (As if that was going to be possible with the kid, stroller, and my bright yellow hat).

Try as I might, I couldn’t see the truck from that vantage point.  And unless the Man was hiding, I couldn’t find him. . .He was gone that fast!?

I acted all cool pretending to look at a mockingbird while I was really using my binoculars to scout out the area around me.  The man was nowhere to be seen.  Poof. Vanished.

And that weirded me out even more!!  

And that’s when I decided running wasn’t such a bad idea – especially since it was all downhill to the playground.

Completely oblivious.

Completely oblivious.

Mac Met His First Psychopath!

Ball 1Last week, we made a few trips to the playground.  Of course, my favorite time to visit the playground is when it’s only being used by a few children – easier to keep an eye on everything that way. . .stroller, kid, etc.

So when the wind was whipping viciously but the sun felt warm-ish last Thursday morning, I had high hopes we would have the playground nearly all to ourselves.

Conditions looked optimal as we approached.  There were three other women there with a total of 4 children – all of whom appeared just slightly older than Mac – (ages 3 & 4 most likely).

As we approached, I also noticed that two of the women were very young, well dressed, impeccably groomed, and very disinterested.  I can spot them from a mile away:  Nannies!!!  

Both were sporting just the perfect-amount-of-puffy down jackets, skinny jeans, and riding style boots.  They had large Tory Burch totes slung over their shoulders and stared intently at their iPhones while they quietly gossiped to one another in what I believe was Ukrainian.

They were standing close to my typical “stroller parking” location.  (Chosen for my ability to see it from both sets of playground equipment in case it comes under siege from squirrels or other unscrupulous kinds).

I glanced down sheepishly at my fat thighs looking even less svelte in a pair of faded yoga pants layered over a pair of leggings for warmth.  Why didn’t I at least put some tinted moisturizer on?  

Nothing I could do about it now. . .

So I wheeled the stroller into my preferred location, engaged the brake and smiled my warmest smile at the Nanny with blonde locks worthy of a hair care product campaign.  She gave me a fleeting but dismissive glance, never once pausing her discussion with the other Nanny.

No worries.  She’s probably a miserable whore.  Ok.  She’s probably not.  She’s probably a very happy whore.  Stop judging her! This is why women get a bad rep!  Ok, she’s a BEAUTIFUL whore. . .Ahem. . .

I proceeded to crouch down to get Mac out of the stroller hoping the seams in my yoga pants held firm.  I placed him beside the stroller ready to follow him wherever he wanted to wander.

We didn’t get far.  In fact Mac hadn’t even taken a step.  He had turned his head slightly to the left to survey the Nannies and the wagon they were standing beside.  It was a matter of seconds. . .and when we turned our heads forward again there was a little boy standing about two feet away, directly in front of us.

He was wearing one of those huge knit hats that looked like a panda bear head.  He was clearly older than Mac but not much bigger.  I smiled at him, assuming he was coming over to check out a potential playmate. . .

We made eye contact, I smiled at him, and he said “No.”

What?

Two more times he declared “No!”

I crouched down beside Mac putting my arm around him.  Looking at the Nannies to see if one of them might intervene.  I don’t necessarily have a problem suggesting to children they should be behaving better, but my preference is to give their parent or caregiver the first opportunity to do so.  

When I crouched down, the little psychopath took three steps towards Mac – who was just standing beside me clearly confused as hell – “No!  No!  No!”

Ummmmmm. . .I’m glaring at the Nanny now, drawing Mac closer to my body.  I can see crazy in the kid’s eyes!  CRAZY!!!!

The kid is now inches from Mac’s face.  Panda hat flopping about as he viciously screams “No!  No!  No!  No!”  

Come on Deni, do something!  You’re an adult.  The Nanny doesn’t care.  We’re not going to take this crap from Psychopath Panda Head!  What to do?  I’m not prepared to handle this caliber of crazy from a three year old!  

Then, Mac predictably, burst into scared and confused tears.

This finally caught the Nanny’s attention and she ushered Psychopath Panda Head away from us.  No apology.  No curiosity as to what happened.  Nothing.

I scooped Mac up and explained to him he hadn’t done anything wrong and that the little boy was probably just having a grumpy day.

But I knew otherwise. . .I saw that kid’s eyes. . .Psychopath.

Mac settled down and we played on the distant playground equipment avoiding Psychopath Panda Head.   Every once in a while, if I turned my head quickly, I caught him lurking around a corner watching us. . .Creepy.

At lunch I explained to Mac that he should be very proud of himself for not acting out in anger at Psychopath Panda Head.  Sometimes people are just having a bad day and they make poor decisions about their behavior and often it’s better to walk away from the situation rather than further provoke them.

But the truth is, I was really happy Mac didn’t haul off and hit or bite Psychopath Panda Head because he’s not the kind of crazy you want to mess with EVER.

Ball 2

Shut Up Already Sunday! Run!!!

Friday morning was brilliantly clear and brutally windy in Baltimore.  Yet, if we don’t get outside for a while most days, Mac and I both start to get a little punchy.  So I piled on pants and shirts and jackets and marched us to the Park for our usual walk and playground time.

Mac has recently become very excited about running.  Running with his arms fully out-stretched to both sides airplane style while gleefully screaming “Run!  Run!  Run!”

He was a few steps behind me when I said “Run” and started running myself face first into the wind.

After a few short steps, I turned around to see Mac joyfully charging forward into the wind, arms outstretched, huge smile on his face.  The clouds rushed by rapidly above us in the perfectly blue sky.

And for just a moment, I was so overcome, it seemed to me that if something should go horribly wrong, and I was never blessed with another breath or another moment. . .THIS would be enough.

I hope you are having a wonderful weekend!

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