I Blog. Therefore I Am.

It’s that time of year. Kids are back in school. The leaves begin to fall. The weather here in New England gets a little nippy.

And people start wondering what I am going to do with all my free time.

Exact words: What are you going to do now that the kids are back in school all day?

Exact reply: The Bon Bons are certainly not going to eat themselves, now are they? No. They are not.

Har. Har.

If I was a different kind of person, maybe one uncomfortable with her own self, I might take issue with this comment. After all, one could take it to mean something along the lines of “get off your lazy butt and get a real job.”

Hey. I blog, remember? That means I attempt to entertain the masses with some witty prose I’ve come up with ALL by myself. For free. Cause I want to. For free. Kay?

Maybe I could have reminded this person that sometime in the recent past, “they” said that us stay-at-home moms should earn about $250,000. I don’t know who the “they” are, but hey, 250 thousand clams is nothing to sneeze at. Being a stay at home mom is a pretty good gig worth that much. Isn’t that like more than our president makes? And he doesn’t even do anything.

(Sorry. Had to.)

But since I have no plans to quit — the little people who I work for really are nice and they have a lot of hugs and kisses they throw my way –I’ll continue to work for the going rate of Zero.

I won’t dare delve into the Mommy Wars. That ship has sailed. We’ve beaten a dead horse. Use whatever colloquialism you want. Why can’t we all just get along? I’m happy. You’re happy. We’re all happy, right?

Whatevs. Doesn’t even matter.

The point is, I have a blog and I can share if I wish. Sometimes I wish and have lots of stuff to write about. Other times, well, not so much.

But today I will, just in case you were waiting with bated breath to see just what it is that I am doing with all the free time I have now.

So get ready. Turn up the yawnometer and have a seat.

Yesterday I had my head in the toilet for a number of hours. I wasn’t sick or anything. No nothing like that. It was just me and a can of Bon Ami tackling really mean toilet stains that have accumulated in the three bathrooms here over the last few months. Now don’t go believing that my toilets are dirty or anything. They are clean. Ish. But I do have children who think flushing toilets must be someone else’s job. And I don’t always know that the kids have gone off and done some business.So the two johns on the second floor end up with.. Let’s just say that toilets under a sunny window are no fun. So yeah, me, a pair of rubber gloves, a can of gritty cleanser and my daughter’s Disney Princess toothbrush did the job. (Please don’t tell her I took it. It was the first one I saw.)

Activities such as dance and soccer require things like cleats, ballet skirts and three different kinds of  shoes for tap, jazz and ballet. And since I forgot to measure the feet of my children before I headed out to make purchases like these, I spent a lot of time guessing and second guessing sizes. Sure. I could have waited until they got home from school to measure, but then they’d be the ONLY ones without the proper equipment for their activities and we all know that being the ONLY one without something pretty much equals future life disaster. So I guessed. And I took a lot  of time with it so I can tell my children that I spent hours trying to get it right. A guilt card thrown their way can sometimes trump their lack of proper equipment/attire dilemma. Sometimes.

Speaking of soccer and dance. My daughter has one hour dance classes at 4:30 and 5 on the days her brother starts soccer at 5:30. His goes to 7. So since they get off the bus at 3:30, I need to make sure they eat dinner before. And this, my friends, is quite a task. Who the heck can think of dinner at 3 in the afternoon? Well certainly not me. Well at least not before. So now I panic and head to Trader Joes for prepared meals try to cook a well-balanced meal and feed them right when they get off the bus.

And this week I also donned a HAZMAT suit to tackle my 10 year old’s closet. I kid you not. Head to toe I covered myself. I did not want to take any chances. We haven’t seen the floor of the nice closet we gave that boy in six years. Six. But I came out unscathed. But there are some items that may need to go to the DEP or FEMA just to be on the safe side. Now before you ask the question “Why didn’t he do it himself?” let me tell you. We had this discussion and I threatened no computer games if it wasn’t done. So like a good little man, he marched up and did the job. Well, it wasn’t THE job, but it was A job. Let me just say the kid is really good at burying the evidence. I stared at the half clean floor knowing full well that the rest of the crap was buried beneath a sleeping bag and a body pillow on the other side, and looking at that beautiful kid, well, I just had to smile. He’s good. And somethings require a kid at school and a garbage bag.

And then, someone scheduled all of my kids’ doctor’s appointments for this week. Okay. It was me. But I don’t know what the heck I’ll be doing a year from the time we were there the last time. Anyway, my mistake I know. One that had me picking children up from school, driving many miles to see doctors and then taking the children back to school again. Sort of like a cab service.

So with all that tiresome work under my belt, I decided to finally take my good friend up on her offer to join her at Zumba. I thought shaking my booty would do me some good. And shake it I did. Zumba is hard. I rattled and shook my booty so hard that it actually fell off. Ok, not really, but my poor body feels like it did. Zumba is hard.

But I do like it. Maybe I will go back. Or maybe I will continue trying to figure out what exactly “homemakers” are supposed to do.

And of course, I will blog too. When I don’t have my head in the toilet, of course.

Because I blog. And therefore I am.

 

Hear It Today, It’s Gone Tomorrow

Maybe it’s the end of the world scenarios that seem to crop up every couple of months, or a pending storm that has everyone hunkering down and buying up the last of the milk, eggs and bread on the shelf because this is the “Big One.” Or like yesterday, where international news was that we are all being slowly poisoned by the arsenic in our rice.

It amazes me that the whole world can be scared to death, running in circles because of a news report, where some part of the truth may be there, albeit under a mountain of misleading or false information, rumors and facts completely blown out of proportion. And then, in a New York minute, it becomes yesterday’s news, buried beneath the publishing of the Duchess Kate’s topless photos or Lindsay Lohan’s latest escapade.

Here today, gone tomorrow. Or rather, hear it today, it’s gone tomorrow.

What an emotional rollercoaster. And it’s hard to explain it to my kids.

My 10-year-old came home from school yesterday asking about the rice thing. He was worried because his mother, that would be me, has recently found a store in town that makes killer rice pudding and I had brought some home for the joyful consumption for my family. I am not punning here. This rice pudding is the best darn thing I have ever tasted. I called it killer rice pudding and now, with the FDA coming out with these scary statistics about rice and arsenic, well, shoot. I wasn’t trying to be literal when I spoke. It was just damn good. To die for even. Sorry. That was punny.

Well now he is scared because the kids in school are saying “you’re gonna die if you eat rice!”

It was hard to try to explain to him that the media sometimes shoots first and then asks questions later. Don’t eat the rice, it’s poison. Well, not really but here are the facts…..

Same thing happens every time the media plays up the end of the world scenarios or the big storms. And then when they don’t happen, my kids are just a little bit more confused.

When I worked in the news, many moons ago, I remember times when my editor took a very small part of any news story that was provocative and made that the shout out headline. I would try to argue that it wasn’t the meat of the story, that this other part was. Sometimes I would win. Most times I did not.

Provocative sells. Sex sells. Life is boring and no one reads boring. That was what I was told as a green reporter. I certainly didn’t agree with it and don’t now. I realize that in a world of thousands of news outlets vying for the same story, competition is fierce, but blowing news out of proportion is just bad journalism.

I wish they would stop.

As a parent, I feel for my kids. The challenge of trying to make heads or tails of the world news in a time of instantaneous consumption of it is nearly impossible. And the elementary school playground can be a free for all, a cacophony of points of view depending on which network or website from which their parents get their news.

All I can say is Yikes.

I remember when I was a kid. We had one tv, maybe six stations and I only read the newspaper when I had to bring in an article for current events. Every place was a far away land. We didn’t hear about children gone missing, school shootings and hostage situations. Celebrities were worshipped, not followed around with cameras everyday to the point of wanting restraining orders. When there was an emergency, it was a real one. You hunkered down or evacuated before a hurricane. You didn’t stay because you were sure the news was “wrong again.”

Sometimes I think life would be easier as an oblivious non observer. I would sit blissfully listening to the sounds outside and not think about the ticks giving me lyme disease, the allergens in the air or a mouse that may or may not be carrying a 14th century disease.

I could eat that huge bowl of rice pudding, and I surely wouldn’t know if it was laced with arsenic because I’m not paying attention.

Don’t worry. I won’t bury my  head in the sand. For my kids’ sake.

But I am gonna eat that rice pudding. Arsenic or not.