Category Archives: Parenting Humor

Wow, This Place Stinks!


The tween was recently invited to his first boy/girl birthday party.  Of course attending a birthday party requires the purchase of a gift.  Birthday parties and gift purchasing isn’t anything new to us but the tween buying for a girl turning 13…well that’s a whole new ball of wax.

I suggested we visit Bath & Body Works for a girl appropriate gift.  The tween agreed that it would be a good place because ALL the GIRLS in the seventh grade use hand sanitizer like it’s free.

For some crazy reason, the tween and I got to slip off on the gift buying adventure alone.

The fact that it was sleeting and the door to the local Bath & Body Works store was propped open should have been a clue that entering may not be a good idea.  However, we were on a mission and we pretended not to notice.  A wall of fragrance met us before our feet had made it on the doormat.

Tween:  Oh, mom this place stinks beyond belief!

Me:  Hang in there!  We just walked in the door.

Tween:  Grab something quick and let’s get out of here.

I should add here the sales staff has overheard this and are cracking up.  They offer their services but the tween wasn’t happy with their choices.

He found lots of little hand santizer choices and they were a bargain to boot.  I’ve taught them early to be savvy shoppers.  Believe it or not, they even sell little holders that light up…for a boy who is all about tech stuff, he was stoked to find this gadget.

Tween: I’ve lost a little of my manhood being in this store.  Plus, my eyes are starting to water.  So glad we’re getting ready to leave.

Me:  It’s not that bad.  Look, there’s a really manly guy behind us (super tall with 1.5 inch gauges in each ear).  As we are walking out the door I point out another man.

Tween:  Mom, they are married or boyfriends, they have no choice.  I on the other hand am 12 and have lots of choices and one of them is to not come back to a store like this.

We had a little extra time so I suggested a quick snack at the coffee shop next door.  The coffee shop was having a school event so there were several young girls sitting on stools waving to the tween as we walked by.  I suggested he should wave back.  He declined and explained that he is a hot commodity and those girls are at most in the third grade and he can’t be leading them on just because he is small for 12.

Sweet giblets, him becoming a teen is going to be an interesting journey!



Picking Up and Dropping Off


I don’t know about the rest of you but when I had that first little bundle of joy, I didn’t expect to later be picking him up and dropping him off at various activities six times a week.  Then came two more bundles of joy, which multiples those activities and shuffle time.

This past Friday the queen and I picked the tween up from a school dance.  We were listening to all the goings on of a middle school dance as we drove down the road.  I decided if the teen was going to have to be picked up much later, I was going to need a drive thru for some quick caffeine.  As we drove, I could hear the queen begging for some Skittles from the tween and the tween continuing to turn her down.  By the way, Skittles smell so goodEvery wish you could get some in only red?

Me:  Those Skittles sure do smell good.

Tween:  They sure do.  Would you like some?

Que the queen grumbling that she has been asking and not been granted a few.

Me:  No, thanks though.

Queen:  Oh, you’ll give some to Mom but won’t share with me?

Tween:  Of course, she gave me life.  You can’t ask for more than life.  What have you given me besides a hard time and a headache?

Queen:  Are you serious?  How can I give you life?  I’m the little sister.

Oh the joys of driving with kids in the car.  The sibling rivalry just doesn’t stop.  And neither do the filled up spaces on the family calendar.



Who Has Homework?


I have homework and I’m not even currently a student.  Then why homework you might ask?  Because I’m a mom of three kids.  I’m not sure when homework started being the responsiblity of the parent but I’m ready for it to revert to the 80s when my parents didn’t have anything to do with homework.

The tween came home the first week of school with an essay he needed me to edit.  Having been a teacher, I’m slow and picky editor.  I’m sure my kids would rather do anything than wait on me to check written work.

At the start of the second week, the queen comes home with a reading log.  She is to read 75 minutes every week and not just to herself but to someone.  This does not fit into our daily list of activities and other homework that must be done.  Don’t get me wrong, I believe all children should practice reading but reading to me every day is just gas on the fire.  Plus, I have to record all the titles that she reads, do some kind of reading strategy exercise with her and then sign off Sunday night that we have logged the expected minutes.  Being a creative mom, I have decided the tween and tween get to take turns being the listener.  Oh, how I love coming up with new ways to have them help.

Our community participates in a program called Spread the Hope where they collect peanut butter from every living body to distribute to food banks in our local community.  Two of our three schools are participating in the peanut butter drive.  The teen asks for a jar because he wants some extra credit in algebra.  I have already donated two and then I get the request for another jar for his world history class today.  Really?  I feel like we are buying a grade and it makes me a little hot under the collar.  Figuring I shouldn’t try to explain this to my 14-year-old boy and just buy the peanut butter and move past my quirks.  I guarantee they are going to ask me at the market if I would like to contribute another jar to cause when I check out the groceries.

Last week, the queen came home with the fill out ten addresses for our school magazine sale.  What did the assembly host tell the kids?  Take this home to your parents!  It’s their homework for the night.  Isn’t that cool?  Homework for Mom and Dad!  No, it is not cool because I’m already doing reading, editing, and buying peanut butter.

The last straw was pulled this evening causing my homework rant.  The queen presented her Draw and Solve math problem.  It was my job to draw dollar signs for one minute and then the queen’s job to count by 2s, 5s, or 10s to figure out how many I drew.  I did a record 74 dollar signs–this is according to the queen who had already done the activity at school with her classmates.  I hope I get the gold star because I do believe I’ve earned it.

If you don’t hear from me until May, it’s becaue I’m doing the homework assigned to Mom.


Another Crazy Wednesday


Wednesday in our school district is late start Wednesday.  This mean school starts 15 minutes later than any other day.  One would think this was a great thing…extra time to get ready, sleep in, catch up on a chore.  This extra time does nothing but wreak havoc on any routine that may already be in place.

Here is just a glimpse of my most recent late start Wednesday.

I had agreed to prepare a French toast casserole for a teacher breakfast at the tween’s school.  I have the husband preheat the oven at 5 a.m.  I slide the casserole into the oven a little later.  Casserole comes out of the oven and it is time to wake the tween and teen.  The normal grumbles sound…18 extra minutes of sleep makes them a little more grumpy than normal.  I cover the casserole and head to the middle school.

I arrive back home to see that both boys are dressed and ready to head out to the bus stop.  I’m relieved they have managed to get dressed and eat breakfast without me.  My happy reprieve doesn’t last long.  As they head to the bus, a little brotherly scuffle has ensued which has me racing after the teen down the street.  Why?  Because he doesn’t have his shoes tied.  Should I really care at his age whether or not he ties his shoes?  Probably not.  It was the principle of the whole moment.  I’m sure my neighbors got a huge kick out of my running down the street in hot pursuit.  His shoes were tied when I finally left the bus stop and the boyhood battle seemed to have dissipated.

As I reach the driveway, I notice that the queen is standing in the garage (overhead door open), topless, holding her backpack.  Her school is doing a magazine sale and she realizes I didn’t do my homework (each student was supposed to come back to school with 10 complete addresses).  I really wasn’t planning to do my homework but the queen most have known I was going to aim for the recycle bin and she was ready to take on the fight.  She of course doesn’t like that I decided to sort of make her happy and fill in a couple.  While I’m in the shower, she take the time to write in a few more people.  I have no idea what was really turned in but it probably isn’t good.  Will she get the cool prizes?  I don’t know but she can take that up with someone besides me.

At some point, I took the time to post to Facebook that next time a list for food items goes out I want to sign up for bananas or juice…something that doesn’t require me to bake so early in the morning.  A friend commented that I really needed to learn to say NO.

Took the time out of planning for a Brownie meeting that happens this afternoon to have breakfast with some great ladies.  I come home to 50 million emails.  One of the emails has the subject CONGRATULATIONS.  Not as in congratulations you have just won a free Dell computer but you have been chosen to be the 6th grade co-representative for the PTA.

I didn’t even get the chance to try out my new word.  Some sweet soul simply decided I needed one more thing on my plate.  Fun times are happening at my house this week.

To all those readers out there, how do you manage multiple schools and multiple children?  I seem to be struggling this week and could use some guidance.  Until next time…

School Supplies, School Supplies, School Supplies


Let me start this entry by explaining that I was once a high school teacher.  I understand kids need supplies for class.  I also understand that the older the kids get the less intensive the list becomes (unless of course you are in the 6th grade and need 8 rolls of Scotch tape).  As a teacher, buying supplies was the cost of doing business and I liked buying supplies (this was before I actually had three children with three different lists).  Let’s just say I’m a little grumpy about the whole community supply thing that happened by surprise this past week.

My tween has hit the middle school and came equipped with a huge list of supplies.  Eight rolls of Scotch tape (of which I only purchased two).  What they plan to do with eight is beyond me but I’m not buying more until we use the first two.

The tween arrived home on the first day to explain that his teacher would be collecting his tape (needed for two classes), loose leaf note paper (needed for several classes), composition notebook, tissues, hand sanitizer, and highlighters (also used for several classes).  I asked how he was going to use some of these things for other classes when she had them all…he didn’t really have an answer but could read my unhappiness about the situation.

I debated sending an email to ask.  I tossed the thoughts many times with my husband who is totally against community supplies.  Today I asked my friends who basically told me to suck it up and take one for the team.  I didn’t want to but decided I’d let it go.  Just get some more highlighters, tape, and paper.

Turns out I didn’t have to spend so much mental energy on my supply issue.  The tween solved it all by himself.  He decided to share with his teacher that his mom wasn’t happy that she took all of his supplies and now he can’t use them for other classes.  She explained how she doesn’t want to upset any parents, that she is an understanding teacher, and wants to do her best to get along with everyone…so she gave him back his supplies!

I don’t know what we did to raise an 11-year-old boy willing to confront a teacher about his supply issue but I’m really proud of him today.

I am a little worried because the same teacher is his Language Arts teacher and he caught her using the word good rather than well .  Hopefully, he will keep that one to himself.  However, he is a little steamed under the collar about it.  I guess you could say the apples don’t fall far from the tree.

Aftermath of the Party


Well, they all made it through the first day.  All returned with happy smiles.  No one missed a bus.  The teen figured out the maze of the massive high school.  The tween is rockin’ middle school.  And, the queen, well she is always the life of the party.

I’m pretty sure the teen didn’t sleep at all the night before this glorious event.  I could hear him opening and closing his bedroom door.  At 4:45 a.m., I decided there was an intruder in the house and almost called the police but am glad I didn’t because I would have done nothing but reported a teen up on Facebook.  We are going to have to set some time limits on when it is appropriate to be logged on and the butt crack of dawn is just not the right time (not in the CST zone anyway).

The queen was up exactly two hours before the arrival of the bus.  We had plenty of time for viewing TV, getting a snack (for school), having breakfast, getting dressed, and putting on socks and shoes (no flip-flops).

After six hours of alone time, most of which I spent sobbing in the checkout lane at Jo-Ann’s, they finally starting stagering home.  The teen getting older really hit hard today.  Then I spent 45 minutes signing my name and making a list of all the things the teen needs for school.  For all my readers who aren’t at the high school stage just yet, they don’t give supply lists before school starts.

We had a great dinner of carry-out pizza.  We could have used a talking stick because everyone had so much to share.  The queen had to even raise her hand for a turn.  Normally, it is she who rules the conversation.

As I made my way through all the paper and signatures, I had a great conversation with the queen:

Me:  Queen, you need to come print your name.

Queen:  Why?  It goes back in my folder.  My teacher will know it is mine.

Me:  Because you are agreeing to follow these rules.

Queen:  What rules?

Me:  You are agreeing to do your best, to get plenty of sleep, turn your assignments in on time, eat healthy foods, be quiet so others can learn, and respect yourself, teachers, and classmates.

Queen:  Yeah, I can’t agree to that.

Me:  Are you serious?

Queen:  Yep, I can’t promise I can always do my work on time.

Me:  It says to do your best, they understand it might not always happen.  Plus, if you don’t sign this, there is lots of reading you are going to do about the not signing process and then you will have to sign that you don’t agree to the terms.  I sometimes wonder where this kid came from…the boys never questioned this kind of stuff.  They didn’t even ask what they were agreeing to do.

Queen:  Fine, I’ll sign but I’m not putting my last name.

And she wonders why I have a headache!  Bring on the Avil (queen speak for Advil)!

Let’s Get This Party Started


The big yellow buses will be rolling through my town tomorrow.  If it were up to me, they would come today, right this very minute.

It’s a little tough that the teen is headed to high school.  Wow, where do those years go?  But, it is time.  My house will be my own come tomorrow at 8:27.  It will be quiet and still–just the way I like it.

  1. We have purchased the shoes.
  2. Paid the book rental.  I think in the state of Indiana they do this to help prepare you for what it might be like when they start college.  Book rental is pricey.  Pricey like almost $200 per child pricey.
  3. Purchased the supplies.  A great feature of our elementary school is the price of supplies already being added to that book rental.  I will take paying $25 any day over hunting for school supplies.  However, the tween had eight rolls of Scotch tape on his list.  He’s a little miffed that he won’t be taking that many with him.  I feel two is a good number.  Seriously, how many rolls of tape can one kid need?
  4. Clothes are laid out.  For the teen and tween this is so super easy.  For the queen, we’ve been working on this outfit for at least a month.  The realization that today is the last day for flip-flops has sunk in.  Is it bad I told her the principal sent us an individual email reminding us that she can NOT wear them to school?
  5. Lunch accounts all have money available for those school lunches.  Finger prints have been scanned.  Nothing like a finger print being needed to purchase a school lunch.
  6. Locker combos have been practiced and all have been successful.
  7. Orientations have been attended.  Pretty sure we are now up to date on all things school related when it comes to attendance.
  8. Family meetings have been held.  Want to make sure we are all on the same page for those early morning starts.  The teen and tween will be sharing the bathroom and the same bus.
  9. Bus routes and numbers have been scouted.

What have we not done?  Oh, just the summer homework packet.  Not that we didn’t work on it because we did.  Somehow throughout the summer parts of it were left unattended.  Just letting you know that the day before school starts is not the day to try to finish all that has been left behind.  So, as I’m writing this it is a constant stream…how do you spell kick, why, and the (which the queen sounds out as thee, that’s from learning to read on the East coast).

As my husband said early today, just 22 hours to go.  I’m down to about 18 now.  So let’s get this party started.  Put on those new clothes and pack those fresh notebooks.  The bus to learning is headed down the street!