Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Follow My Lead

Last weekend we had a wedding to attend. I packed the car and drove an hour to the city to pick my husband up from work. Due to my lack of direction, he would drive the rest of the way.

The bride and groom's car breaking down wasn't part of the plan.

When we caught up to the bridal party caravan, squeezed on the side of a windy road, in the pouring rain, the groom's car was finally running. Still not willing to chance it, my husband decided we should drive their kids in our car to be safe.

No problem.  Then...

"Hey babe," my husband said.  "I'll ride with the groom, you take the bride."

The expression on my face dropped. I had a bad feeling, this wasn't the best idea.

"Oh, that's right, I was supposed to drive,"  he remembered.

"Well, it's not ideal...but, I guess I can handle it..." I replied sarcastically. Thoughts of, I don't know where the hell I'm going, were flashing through my mind.

After everyone was crammed into random cars, my husband tapped on the driver side window. "The grooms parents don't know where their going, so let them follow you." 

Great!  So it was the blind leading the blind. What could go wrong?  I had a stressed, panicked bride riding shot gun, twin toddlers in the backseat, and two senior citizens tailing my lead.

"Weddings always have a glitch,"  I reminded the bride.  "This was yours, nothing else can go wrong."

When the exit approached, I turned my blinker on early signaling the car behind me to follow. Then a semi truck cut in front of me, it slowed down and blocked my view of the road ahead.  The exit appeared to be a two lane off ramp, so I switch lanes. 

I was wrong! I cranked my steering wheel right and switched back at the last possible second clipping the off ramp median with my front left tire. I looked to my right with a gut wrenching feeling, I just lost the groom's parents... 

...and in slow motion, I saw the faces of two elderly people drop in disbelief as they missed the exit..so what do I do? 

Wave good-bye.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Goldfish Crusade

The goldfish bowl teetered in Rio's arms as he stood, sobbing over the toilet.

"Okay ...it's time to say good-bye." I nudged.

"But I love him!" Rio cried.

"Honey, he's been dead for a week," I explained. "It's time to let him go."

Reluctantly, Rio tilted his fish bowl over the toilet.

"Wait!" My husband snatched the bowl from him and held it up. We stared with disbelief.

"He's alive!" Rio's prayers were answered.

"Tell me that didn't happen," I mumbled. "I haven't fed his fish in two months..."

"Why won't this fish die?" My husband chuckled.

Friday, March 18, 2011

The Magic Rule

This was the face of utter anxiety.  Sadly for Rio, I'm stone cold and cannot be broken.  While standing in line, for the majority of  rides at Disneyland, Rio had complete meltdowns.  

"Do I have to go on this ride Mom?"  Rio cried and pleaded, before every ride.

"You know the rule,"  I explained for the one hundredth time.  "If we come to Disneyland, we go on ALL of the rides."

His tears were convincing, and random people in line were sympathetic, shooting me dirty looks and shaking their heads.  I know, what kind of mother am I...forcing my child to do something he doesn't want to.

"Mom...my stomach hurts," Rio held his stomach in agony. "I don't feel good!"

The dirty looks quickly turned to looks of fear. It  was understandable, there was a chance he wasn't bluffing, but it was a chance I was willing to take.

Does this look like a kid who didn't benifit from my magic rule? 

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Happiest Place on Earth

The Magical World of Disney is the happiest place on earth.  It was the perfect place to celebrate Amaya's birthday.  Ten!  How the heck did that happen?  Her first double digit age! 

I weaseled my way into an exclusive deal not meant for us, and after the price was quoted I couldn't pass it up.  Our six day Disneyland Resort package was a steal, and I was the sneaky thief.  

My husband and I rationalized the price.  According to our calculations the price of a Disney Vacation equaled the price of an elaborate themed party.  Minus the planning, the set up, the stress, the clean up and the ponies. 

What we hadn't planned on: Amaya and Rio's endless need for water. Thirty-two dollars and 8 bottled waters later, I insisted they save their empty bottles and refill them in the drinking fountains. Community water fountains do make me cringe, but Rio practically licked the entire park anyway, so what did it really matter.

I was prepared for the  four dollar per gallon gas prices, due to the increased cost of a barrel of oil, but how much does a barrel of water cost?  Is water being imported from the desert as well?

"Mom I'm hungry," Amaya complained.  "When are we going to eat?"

"Me too," Rio followed his sister's lead.

"Ugh...I have to feed you too?"  I joked.

I was scared, and you'd be scared too!  What would it cost to feed them? 

I'm happy to report that a family of four can eat for the bargain price of $29.96, without drinks, of course.  Food is cheaper than water.

Now that's magical.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Umbrella Assumption

Packing for a trip is no small task.  I'm neurotic, I'm not one of those people who can throw a few things in a bag and go.  If I were, traveling would be easier.  Instead my process involves check lists, charts, to-do lists, paying the bills in advance, cleaning, and multiple trips to the store to buy last minute items I don't use at home, but somehow can't live without on vacation.

My husband doesn't see what the big deal is, after all the only thing he was responsible for was the umbrellas.  If Rio can handle three tasks, surely my husband could remember one.

Three days into our vacation dark clouds formed and then it rained. My husband informed me that he left the umbrellas in the car, so we hiked a half mile through the self parking lot to retrieve them.

"The umbrellas aren't in here,"  my husband said as he rummaged through the trunk.

"Yeah okay, very funny."  I thought he was kidding, until he approached me empty handed.

"Where are they?" He asked sternly.

"I remember asking you to pack them...and you were like...no problem hunny,"  I mocked him.

"I assumed they were in the trunk,"  he stated.

"Well you know what they say about assuming..."  I rolled my eyes with irritation.

"They're always in the trunk, who took them out?"  His defense: it was my fault.

"It's been raining, so the kids take them to school."  I pointed to the sky.  "Umbrellas won't keep them dry sitting in the trunk."

Next time, I'm assuming he packed his underwear. 


Thursday, March 3, 2011

Numb Tongue

Every time I tried to swallow I would gag on my tonsils, but my only other option was to drool instead.

My numb tongue felt fat and swollen. When I spoke I slurred my words similar to an uncle that liked to polish off a bottle of Gin discretely in the back bathroom at Christmas.

The left side of my face was asleep, and when I smiled I resembled a stroke victim. My teeth were big and the inside of my cheek was bleeding.

As karma had it, I broke a tooth the other day while flossing. And that broken tooth, broke my seven year boycott of the dentist.

I forgot how fun it was to get a Novocaine shot.  My dentist kindly reminded me.

"Mom, thoo you wanth me thoo thake a thower afther thinner?"  Amaya asked as she imatated me.

Yeah, she's a hoot.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Kid Cuisine

I used to love to cook, but lately...I have to admit, cooking isn't my top priority. So I let my kids make dinner last night. But really, they insisted on helping and then took over. 

Amaya did the potatoes and Rio was in charge of the griddle.

"Mom! I'm bleeding!" Amaya panicked. "It stings! It stings, it stings, it stings." 

"Stop being so dramatic. Go get a band aid," I told her.

"Rio! Go get me a band aid," she ordered.

"No...you go get it!" he responded back. "You're not dying!"

The second Amaya left the sink, Rio was in her spot, peeling her potatoes. Amaya came back to the kitchen to find her little brother doing her job.

"Mom!  He's in my spot!"  she protested. "Fine, Rio...I'm going to do your job then."  She tried to control the situation. "Rio, where's the spatula?" she demanded, holding out her hand.

Rio didn't answer, he just kept quietly peeling the potatoes. This infuriated her.

"Rio, the hamburger patties are burning! I have to flip them! Mauuuuum..."

"Someone please flip the patties," I demanded.

"Rio, don't use that!" Amaya bossed. "Mom he hid the spatula on the floor, under the cabinets...gross."

"What?" Rio answered the look I shot him, while he wiped the spatula off on the front of his shirt.

"Wash it," I told him. "We don't use cooking utensils that have been on the ground."

The end result. Well done hamburger patties, unevenly cooked potatoes, burnt corn, and a gallon of lumpy gravy. 

"Why does my stomach hurt so bad?" My husband moaned after our chefs were in bed.

I cited the obvious. This could do wonders for our waistlines.