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parenting

Music, shots, and crying…

If I was a betting woman, I’d have lost, lost, lost this past week! It was a big week for all my kids; all sorts of milestones going on. And I did a poor job in guessing all of the outcomes!

 SONORA

The birthday girl!

My firstborn turned 21!! I can’t help but say (in an oh-so- verklempt-cliché-way) it seems like yesterday that Sonora was born.  I can’t believe that we’ve already traveled through her terrible two’s, hit double digits, traversed through the treacherous teens, and now, here she is… officially an adult!

Sonora’s reaction to sparkling wine… she’s not a fan!

To celebrate Sonora’s birthday, we thought it would be fun to bringin her 21st by taking her out and letting her order her first drink at midnight. Before I write about how that went, a little backstory: Sonora is very low key, she has never been into loud parties and stuff like that. When I mentioned toasting in her 21st year with a drink at a bar, the only way I could get her to agree was to assure her it was going to be a swank quiet bar and not a sticky loud one.

I myself am not a night-life person, so I had NO idea where to take her. We’ve only lived in this area for a year, so I’m not familiar with most places around here, especially any bars! So it was after much digging online that I settled on taking her to the Flamingo Hotel. After all, the couple times I’d been there for dinner the bar was NOT the happening place.  Plus, as an added bonus it had a web cam, so Scott (who was pulling baby-sitting duty) could sort of participate. We said we’d wave at him.

Fast-forward to September 2nd, 11:53 p.m…..

Sonora: There are a lot of cars in the parking lot…

Me: I read it was Flamenco Night, probably a bunch people leaving soon

Fast-forward to September 2nd, 11:56 p.m….

 

Sonora: um…

Me: Wow, it’s sort of loud…

Me: Wow, it’s sort of crowded…

Me: CRAP! There’s a $15 cover charge!

(I manage to talk our way in by explaining we were just wanting to get a birthday drink and leave… after checking Sonora’s ID and seeing it was in fact her birthday, the bouncer guy let us in free of charge!)

Fast-forward to September 2nd  12:01 a.m….

The lounge was louder than loud and the Flamenco dancers were pretty intense.  We barely are able to order our drinks because the bar tender couldn’t hear us. We yelled and yelled and yelled, until finally we walked away with drinks. Poor Sonora didn’t get the frou-frou drink she had intended on getting and it was out of frustration that she walked away with the $5 sparkling wine special that the bartender pushed on her.

We went to the back of the bar hoping we’d be able to hear each other talking. Scott texted and asked why we weren’t dancing. HAHAHA. He then texted and told us to go and wave at the camera. He was going to take a screen shot of us. We went to the middle part of the bar and just sort of waved our drinks around, because we didn’t know where the web cam was. All of a sudden Sonora starts pointing excitedly and saying something that I couldn’t hear because all the noise. I turned to see where she was pointing and there is a guy staring right at us with the biggest grin. I turn around and finally make out her saying, “there’s the web-cam, over there. Look, it’s over there…” and I lean in and yell at her, “you know that guy in the BRIGHT RED top thinks you’re pointing at him, right?!?” That is when she decides it’s time to go!! So down went our almost untouched drinks and we headed home.

Fast-forward to September 2nd, 12:10 a.m.

We’re in the car driving home!

I promised Sonora that I’d take her out to Applebee’s, or somewhere similar, and get her a proper frou-frou drink.  We’ll go in the afternoon and sit outside, it will be perfect.

 

DUBLIN

Dublin and Scott at The Wiggles

We took Dublin to see The Wiggles. His first concert! I just knew he was going to love it…um…  I was so wrong!!! The second we sat down, he was trying to escape. It was a work out trying to out maneuver him. He wiggles more than The Wiggles wiggle!

Though we did manage to last through the whole concert, it wasn’t without Scott having to take him screaming and crying into the lobby a couple of times. He did venture down to the front of the stage, where there were tiny-tot groupies singing and dancing… And falling down, as Dublin did, hitting his head and resulting in another crying filled trip to the lobby.

By the end of the concert Scott and I were ready for a drink and I’m not talking the juice boxes they no doubt were serving in the lobby!

 

JUNIPER

And lastly, I would have bet that my little June-bug is at the top of the growth charts, it just seems like she’s gotten so big in these last two months. But nope, I was wrong again… she’s still at the bottom of the growth chart, though VERY healthy and strong! AND has quite the temper. She was as mad as a two month old can get at having to get immunization shots. NO FUN!

 

Worn out after the concert!

So there you have it, a week filled with music, shots, and crying.  Toddler tunes and Flamenco madness. Immunization shots, not vodka shots. And thankfully only two of my kids were crying, though I was almost crying with laughter over Sonora’s inadvertent flirting moves in the lounge!

Adventures in Weaning

Dublin and Juniper

My D-Man and Juniper

It was some gawd-awful hour in the middle of the night and I was nursing my little D-Man for the 3rd time—that’s right THIRD TIME—and that’s when it hit me, it was time for me to wean him for reals. I’d been threatening to do it for a few weeks before that, but hadn’t managed to pull the trigger yet. He’d been teething and refusing solid food, so he was relying on nursing more than usual. But that night, THAT NIGHT I decided that despite his teeth not being all the way in, IT.WAS.TIME.

Extended nursing isn’t for everyone.  I do not blame a woman one bit if she decides to close up shop after the first bite. Having your boob used as a teething ring, not so fun, I totally understand, I totally get it. Nursing a baby is one thing, but nursing a toddler is a lesson in endurance, patience and pain management.

I want to come clean and admit something: I didn’t do the extended nursing thing because I’m some sort of wonder woman, no… I did the extended nursing thing because boobies are the BEST TOOL EVER! They fix boo-boo’s, they are sleeping pills, they are anti-depressants…. They are magic. Take that away and I am left with an almost empty bag of tricks! That is why I nursed so long. However, that night I reached the point where I was willing to give up the magic boobies , because they were no longer worth getting beat up over…

On that particular night I had my pony-tail pulled, like he was ringing a dinner bell. “WAKE UP WOMAN, I NEED A SNACK!!” is what I think he was trying to tell me, but since he still doesn’t say much, I think he was improvising and the hair pulling got my attention pretty fast. He was in fine form that night. I got kicked in the face several times during his nursing gymnastics; my nursing equipment experienced the painful twists and turns that happen during that sort of circus routine.  Though he wanted to nurse, he was being very particular about where my hands were, so my hands kept getting swatted when they touched him. I think they were getting in the way of his wiggling. He so LOVES to wiggle!! He also didn’t want to be looked at, so he kept pushing my face away. FINALLY, after much kicking, wiggling, twisting and PAIN… when he fell asleep, I did my usual freeze-in-position-for-the-count-of-twenty and then rolled over and tried to fall back to sleep… but couldn’t, because that’s when his little sister woke up and it was her turn to nurse.

It was while I was nursing Juniper that I researched online how to wean a toddler… I came up with a game plan and this is how it played out:

Night one:  LEMON

I started the night out as normal. He nursed to sleep on my lap downstairs and Scott later carried him up to bed. I was tired and didn’t feel like dealing with the weaning thing, so like I said, it was business as usual. He woke up and nursed once, twice… and it was during the third time that half way through, I said with determination, “I’M GETTING A LEMON!!!”  So I went downstairs and squeezed lemon over my nursing bits and headed back upstairs to my little D-Man. He went to nurse, pulled back and made the I-just-tasted-a-lemon-face, tried it again, pulled back and made another face and then….  he rolled over and went to sleep!!!

Night two: LEMON

I lemoned up and it was pretty much a repeat of the first night and he went to sleep, sans nursing.

Night three: LEMON

“Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me…”

He latched on, but what… WHAT?!? He DID NOT STOP NURSING!! Noooo, he nursed, he only pulled away to spit out a bit of lemon pulp, but other than that, it was nursing as usual… apparently he somehow built up immunity to the taste of lemon!

 

Night four: BANDAID

20 years ago I was in a similar situation, trying to wean a persistent nurser.  The magic tool I used to dissuade her from nursing?? Bandaging up and telling her they were broken.   Sooo, I decided to give that another try and found the biggest bandaids we had in the house, bandaged up and when it came time to go to sleep, I informed him that mommy’s boobies were broken. He didn’t believe me, so I let him see for himself. After giving them a once over, he opted for cuddle time instead.

 

We are two nights in and so far we have had two nurse free nights… Tonight will be a biggy, will we make it three nights in a row?? I sure hope so. Juniper is a GREAT sleeper and if we can just get Dublin to sleep on his own, I might have some solid night sleeps in my near future!! YAY!!!!

If we tackle the weaning, what’s next on the agenda?? Adventures in solo-sleeping… coming soon! 😉

Two under two…

My two under two.

I’m no stranger to being a parent, having been one for 20 (almost 21) years. I’ve been a married parent, a single parent, a step parent, a surrogate parent… yeah, I know parenting.  Or, so I thought!

When I was nearing the end of my pregnancy my partner in crime, Scott, kept telling me, “You’re going to need help… Seriously, Sandy, you’re going to need help.” In my hormonal state, every  time he spouted that sentence at me, I wanted to slap him. I am an independent, fully capable, woman… help?! *SNORT*

I had a plan. A well laid plan. In my head, not on paper, because everyone knows everything looks easier on paper.  ANYway, about the plan: I would continue breastfeeding Dublin and perfect tandem nursing, thus achieving my goal of breastfeeding each of my kids until they turn two. I was going to get up every morning by eight. I was going to have a clean house.  My days would be filled with productivity… from playing structured games with my almost two year old, Dublin, all the while I would be baby wearing my newest addition, Juniper, in one of the many baby carrying devices I recently acquired.  We would go to the park, we would play on our patio, we would walk to get Starbucks… oh the fun we would have, the three musketeers!  And why shouldn’t I be able to achieve this, after all I’d been able to do it two times before!

Here is where the universe has a hearty laugh at my expense; as well as all the other moms who have more than one child under a certain age. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA…. And they laugh and laugh and laugh! This is where they say, “Sandy… it doesn’t really count when one child is 20 years old and the other is 20 months. That’s sorta like cheating.”

Two under two… it’s a new game, with new rules.

I know that there are wonder-moms out there; I’ve seen them in pictures. I’m pretty sure they exist. I, however, am not one of them….

On a good day I get up around 8. But on a bad day, it could be 4 a.m., 2 a.m., noon, 3pm, or any other random number that resides on a clock.  My new translation of a good day is when I get 4 hours of consecutive sleep, I don’t have many of those kind of good days.  A good day is when the family room floor is toy free for 2 hours (that usually happens during nap time). A good day is when the dishes are done and the laundry has made it out of the dryer and as far as a laundry basket. My bedroom floor currently has about 5 filled baskets. I think it’s time to buy more baskets.

Most days I feel like a cow… no, not in the traditional “I feel fat” sort of way, I’m too tired to care about THAT right now. No, I mean literally… I feel like a milk supply outlet. If I’m not feeding Juniper, I’m feeding Dublin. And sometimes, when I’m feeling adventurous and ambidextrous, I’ll feed both at the same time. Maybe I should say when I’m feeling adventurous and amBOOBextrous! Haha. ANYway,  I seem to constantly have a boob out. Don’t get me wrong… I’m a happy cow; I come from California after all! I’m a thrilled and happy cow, except when Dublin bites me. Then I’m not so happy. Or when he drags his teeth… oh my friggon lord, that HURTS!

**On  a side note: I’ve lost ALL of my Juniper weight!! Just don’t get me started about how much Dublin weight I still have to lose! Ugh! **

So, after all my firm and unequivocal “NO, I WILL NOT NEED HELP!!!” it is with a enormous relief that I hand off Dublin to Scotts mom when she arrives several mornings during the week to watch him while I run back to bed and try to catch a couple of hours more sleep, Juniper willing. Or, while I clean the bathroom… Or, while I try and catch up on any number of things I’m currently behind in!!

I have a new found respect for all women who have performed this juggling act before me, those who can do it with grace and style. I’m 5.5 weeks into this parenting two under two and have not found my groove yet, but when I do… I hope to join the ranks of those other fabulous mommy’s out there that actually make it beyond their front door with spawn in tow. (I have ventured out by myself for walks in the double stroller, but the thought of going to Target BY MYSELF accompanied by both kids has me breaking out in a cold sweat.) While I’ve not found my groove yet, I have to say this new chapter in life is a challenge that I am feeling so blessed to be venturing in to. Bring on the spit up, the poop, the crying, the tantrums… because at the end of the day, when I get a toddler hug or a newborn smile… my heart melts with joy.  Yup, I’m feeling very blessed to have the opportunity to do this two under two thing.

Music Class

My spirited Sonora-nora-bug. Check out the shirt-- she modified it herself.

My spirited Sonora-nora-bug. Check out the shirt-- she "modified" it herself.

I’m sitting on the floor, in a circle, with all the other moms. The instructor sits on the floor too, playing a guitar. All the other babies and toddlers sit on their moms lap, quietly. I look around at these moms and wonder what the hell they’ve been giving their children?? Melatonin in their bottles?? Valium laced teething biscuits?? I want to know their secret… because, as I look into the middle of the circle and see my spirited 17 months old, he’s about to break out some of his finest dance moves.

When I signed my little D-Man up for music class, I had visions of his giggling delight at learning songs and playing with all the toddler instruments. My vision didn’t include me having to get up-and-down, like a very pregnant teeter-totter, from a sitting position on the floor to running around the room to referee my sons wild curiosity of all the other kids, the music instruments hanging on the wall, the blinds, the light switch, the piano, the taller-than-him bongo drum…GAH! I’m suddenly exhausted just having this flash back!

After a few classes of the above scenario, I convinced Scott that it would be GREAT bonding time for him if he started taking Dublin to music class. After all, Scott was a music major in college and the only one who knows how to read music and play instruments in our family. What better bonding experience would there be than one where he shared the love of music with his son. HA! I was persuasive and he did start attending music class with Dublin…for a few weeks. Somehow the ball got bounced back to my side of the court and after complaining about Dublin freaking out in class, he persuaded me that it would be good to see if Dublin’s energy was different when I attended with him and again I found myself working up a sweat in music/my-aerobics class.

This is where my “advanced maternal mom” perks kick in. Poor Sonora, my practice child, taught me that this spirit doesn’t go away. You can try to tame it, but working against it just ends up frustrating you and your child. When Sonora was young (and for that matter, I was young too) I was so worried about what other people thought. Why was mine the only child who couldn’t seem to sit still on the piano bench during music class?? Why was mine the only child who seemed to race through the song and didn’t keep up with the rest of the class?? Why was mine the only kid not reading?? Was she a trouble maker?? Was she just in need of one time out after the other?? Again, I have to say: my poor Sonora, having had to carry that burden of being my first child! In retrospect I can see things much clearer and now that I have a son who seems to be following his sister’s footsteps, I can confidently move forward knowing that if I nourish his spirit, I’m not going to be morphing him into some kind of hooligan. How do I know?? Because Sonora turned out awesome! She went on to make Honor Band in her middle school years, after finding her love of classical music by way of the flute. Sure she may have been dragging her feet and had many crying episodes while trying to learn how to read, but seemingly overnight she seemed to have a light go off, where she saw how reading might be fun and went from NOT reading to having to be skipped up three reading grades and landing in the 4th grade reading class… she’s never looked back. She became an avid reader and at it continues until this day. She now works in a book store and is well versed in so many books; she has no problem directing her customers to books of their interests. Yeah, she’s all that!

I don’t know what this next kid will be, this one brewing inside of me… but I have a feeling that she’s going to take after her siblings. I think I better buckle up, because I have a feeling it’s going to be a wild ride!!! As for Dublin and music class… I think I need to find one that plays “house music”, has a bubble machine and allows free access to the drums!

Progeny on the move…

Recently I went house-hunting with my daughter. I know it’s uber cliché of me to say this, but it truly DOES feel like just yesterday I was bribing her to eat breakfast… Just yesterday that I was braiding her hair and picking out her clothes… just yesterday that I was wondering when the hell her feet would stop growing and bugging her about whether or not she finished her homework. And now… we come screeching to the present, where I’m helping her find a new place to move into with her… with her… with her…boyfriend!

I leave the little one with Scott… and off Sonora and I go to inspect this potential new abode.

First off, I notice, it is NOT on the beaten path- score, 1 point.
Second, it’s a water tower – score, 10, points.

Water Tower House

Water Tower House

It seems as if we drive over the river and through the woods to get to the water tower. We arrive and the second she sees it, she’s in love. (I will take a brief moment to gush at how much she is like me. I too would have loved this very weather-worn house.) I see the house through her eyes and with all my heart I immediately send out messages to the universe that this NEEDS to be my daughters first house. It’s so full of character, I can almost see the creative energy seeping through the nooks and corners of the interior.

We are greeted by the grounds keeper and he’s like a character out of a book. He too is weather-worn and full of character. He shows us into the house and we walk into a very small bottom floor. There is a small kitchen and small (as in micro-mini) bathroom. The bottom floor can easily be taken in with a glance. We then climb a small staircase, to the middle section of the house. It has been labeled as the bedroom, but only out of necessity… because no mattress could venture up beyond this point. This small area has a mini-gas-stove stuck in the corner. A double sized mattress would engulf the entirety of this room. Then, there is a ladder that leads you through a hatch in the ceiling to the third, and final, level of the house. On the top story, there is a closet and views of the surrounding rural area… oh, what views!

This room longs for shabby chic!

This room longs for shabby chic!

She’s in love… and I’m in love. That’s when it hits me…. I’m unemployed. The funds that I have to help furnish any new place have suddenly become very limited. Last year, when Sonora lived in Florida for a couple months, I sent many-o-care-package. That’s what moms do. But now, this time around, I’m unemployed and I need to conserve my spending and remember that my savings needs to remain dormant for a while.

This unemployment is a bit of a fart in a quiet room… it stinks!

What to do, what to do… Thank gawd I was poor in a past life. I’ve totally got this. I know how to decorate on a dime! I’m having flashbacks of my first apartments…. and suddenly I’m having an epiphany moment: I’m going to give Sonora the ultimate gift for those who need to decorate on a limited income– a high temperature glue gun! Though it may just be the espresso talking, and not an actual epiphany, I’m feeling like I’ve got a plan. And I always feel better when I have a plan. All hail the mighty glue gun, making 2nd hand objects look all funky and new!

Now I’m all excited and raring to hit garage sales… but I need to pull back the reigns and acknowledge that the espresso has hit my blood stream, because I’m getting way ahead of myself. After-all, I suppose I should let her turn in the application first…

Reverse and Rewind….

When I first met Scott, I was still riding the high off of my overdose on relationship self-help books. I was going through my “put it all on the table” phase. I was determined to show him all my cards and for him to show all of his too. The theory behind this is: if you let it all hang out, sure you might scare off a few, but you’re more likely to find THE someone who will love you for exactly who you are…. thus avoiding the awkwardness of being 2 year into a relationship and finally admitting that you never really liked football and you prefer to cook once every two weeks.

A real convert of the I’ll-show-you-mine-if-you-show-me-yours thinking, I took every opportunity to NOT hide who I was. Where some (sane) 38 year old women might try to hide their age from the hot 28 year old they find themselves lucky enough to be on a date with…. I compulsively dropped my age several times during those first few dates. I just didn’t want him to ever say, “You never told me you were THAT old!” Because I did….over and over again. Also, with no fear I broached the subject of children. I was able to get out of him his expectations for children in his future and I remember telling him that because my tubes were tied and I was 38, it would take medical intervention or adoption for us to ever have kids together.

Yes, I know… nothing like a little playful-flirty, “You have beautiful eyes…. by the way my tubes are tied and my eggs are old, so we might need to see a fertility doctor….gawd, you’ve got a gorgeous smile too….”

Fast forward several months…..

I knew that having kids was very important to Scott. I enjoyed having my daughter and was not against doing it again. Hell, she was almost 18… so I knew I could get a kid to the finish line without screwing them up too bad. And that was on my first go at parenthood, imagine what I could do on my second try!

I decided to talk to my doctor about whether or not having kids was even an option for me. Blood tests were ordered, needles inserted, blood work sent off…. and then finally the results were in. My numbers were pretty damn impressive for a woman of 38. In fact, if my stats could go to bars, they might just get carded!

Fast forward several more months…..

He’s THE ONE. I’m THE ONE. We’re blissful. But time is not on my baby-making side. So instead of a few years of uninterrupted-by-poopie-diaper happiness…. we decide to jump into the baby making.

Fast forward a several weeks……

I researched my insurance options for getting my tubes reversed (none), I researched doctors who perform the surgery (several), and narrowed down my choices (few).

Fast forward several more weeks….

If you want to feel old at 39, sit in a fertility clinic, next to your younger paramour and listen to how old your woman bits are.

Fast forward a few more weeks….

I get wheeled in, I get wheeled out….. they could rebuild me, they had the technology!

Fast forward to present……

If something interests me, REALLY interests me, then I’m all over it. I will research that puppy to its death. Some might call this “obsessing”, but I prefer to call it “getting educated”. Fertility and pregnancy have become my new area of interest. True, I already have been pregnant before, so you’d think it’s like riding a bike…. but this is not the case since there was no planning with her. She was my serendipity baby and a happy surprise.

This time it’s going to be different….. this time it’s going to take some work!

To be continued…..

THE BIRDS!


Walking from my car into my office has become quite treacherous! For they’re everywhere…. the… BIRDS!

Parent birds that have taken up habitation in the bushes next to my works parking lot dive bomb anyone who would dare to tread near a nest. I actually had birdie feet touch-down a few weeks ago. The bird made contact with my head! I nearly screamed, because I didn’t see it coming. That little bugger was uber stealth like!

I sometimes think about those birds and their fierce instinct to protect their young. Their bravery to go up against creatures of all sizes and species. Their consistency makes me wonder if they even believe in lunch breaks! I’m beginning to doubt that they do.

Yet when it comes time to let the little birdies learn how to fly, they hover, all the while allowing the little birds to hop about autonomously. I wonder what sort of pep talk they give…“Fly higher than a cat leaps” might be a favorite chirped saying.

I see a lot of similarities between the birds and their human parent counterparts. As a parent I know I’ve gotten my feathers ruffled several times. There have been many-a-situation where I would have loved to dive bomb…. if only I could have been able to fly!

Watching our children grow and leave the nest has similarities to birds…. we watch, we hover… we hope they fly above the cats claws. But it’s not easy being a spectator, there’s still that dive bomb instinct. But we don’t….. we just hope and pray that we have given our children enough know-how to figure things out…. Or, to have good enough communication with them that they don’t hesitate to yell at us, “Need a little help here!!”

I look at my daughter and am amazed. Over night she’s turned into this mini-adult. True, in a few weeks she’ll be legally an adult, but she’s in those early stages of adulthood and barely through the doorway that separates her from her youth. This 18 year adult is going to be very different from who she’ll be when she is walking through the 21-year-old-adult doorway. And that is still just the start of the metamorphosis into the full fledged adult she’ll someday become.

I’m hovering….. in the background, letting her start to make her own decisions. And it’s more intense than any sporting event or horror movie. Yet this hovering is allowing me to observe this most intriguing young adult. It’s like this chess game and I’m impressed by her thought, surprised by her reasoning and proud…. very-very proud of her deductive skills.

I wonder if birds ever look at their young and think, “Wow! That was some good-crazy-arse flying! Way to dodge the claw, bird, way to doge the claw!!” Or, if they’re just happy that they’ll be able to get to go back to their favorite perch and scout out some worms.

Leaving the Nest…. without going splat!

“Oh gawd, she’s not ready!”

Last Christmas my sister gave me a beautiful incense holder. It was a tall wood tower that you lifted off of a platform. In the platform was a small hole where you’d place the incense. Once lighted, and the tower in place on the platform, the incense smoke would stream out of the holes located on the roof of the tower. Lovely. Well, it WAS lovely, until I went away for a weekend leaving my 17 year old daughter in command!

I noticed it right away. As I walked in the door and placed my bags down on the living room floor, my peripheral vision and the eyes in the back of my head were all a flutter checking the place out and narrowing in on the table which holds the incense burner. I walked over and KNEW something about it was askew, but since it was newly acquired I couldn’t quite figure out what was missing….. Then I saw it! I turn to Sonora and ask, “What the heck happened to the top of my incense burner?!?!?” To which she calmly replied, “It sorta burned off….”

This is the first time I found myself uttering inside my brain, “Oh gawd, she is not ready….” A thought I’ve been repeating, like a mantra, several times since what is now referred to as the ‘incense incident’.

My heart races… the panic has set in…. it’s the last inning and while it appears that team Competent Parent is ahead, the inning is not over with yet…

The realization that my BABY girl is months away from being legally old enough to vote, buy tobacco, get married, get divorced, rent a house, work full-time, finance a car, get a tattoo, or bungee jump out of the nest WITHOUT parental consent…. is enough to make me hyperventilate, let alone question if I’ve really done a good job in the life-prep-work called parenting. I find myself throwing at her “last minute” tid-bits of “life lessons” that has her no doubt convinced that I’m preparing to change all the locks the moment the clock strikes midnight on her 18th birthday….

The race is on to impart all of that knowledge that must have slipped through the cracks. I mean, if I never properly taught her to light an incense (SONORA…. you BLOW OUT the fire on the end of the stick!!!) what else have I neglected to share?!

Perhaps I should prepare a Final…. A test she must pass in order to earn her 18-year-old-I-am-an-adult-and-don’t-need-no-mamm’s-signature status? I think this is a good idea!

I will quiz her on candle lighting, dishwasher loading, turning off the oven remembering, do not spill bleach on the carpet technique-ing, and how-to-keep-your-animals-alive multiple choice questions….

Oh gawd, she’s not ready!!