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Friday Funnies: How to Get Yelled At Over Food

No matter how much food I stuff in the kids before we go outside, you can bet the second we get outside, they will start asking for things. The following cartoon depicts what typically happens if I try to sit back with my feet up while we are outside– which is what I do these days because I’m 35 weeks pregnant with severe hip pain and lots of Braxton Hicks contractions. Once I’m sitting, getting up is a HUGE effort. I’d be annoyed by as many requests as I get if I were able-bodied. At this point in my pregnancy, annoyance doesn’t describe what happens when the following scenario takes place.

This happened just yesterday. The girls had gotten up really late and probably finished eating breakfast at 9:30, so I thought we’d be in the clear to go outside to play at 11 without too many hunger issues. Still, I made sure to ask if they were hungry BEFORE we went outside.

They claimed they were full. I shouldn’t have believed them.

The next thing I knew, Lily had actually gone in to get her own cookies, which was fine by me. Anything to keep sitting. However, her sister followed her inside and took off her buckled sandals. I still had to get up to help Rose put on her shoes again.

So, yes, I had to haul my pregnant ass back inside to get some juiceboxes. While I was there, I got myself a snack. Considering the children had JUST eaten cookies (and, really, BREAKFAST), I thought I’d be ok. Just in case, I asked everyone if they wanted any more food while I was inside. Everyone said no.

But they lied.

Back inside I went to get Rose a cereal bar. Lily claimed she didn’t want anything else and that she was “so full”. Five minutes later she wanted a graham cracker. I sent her in to get her own stuff. Rose followed her.

I got up again to retrieve Rose. I asked again if anyone wanted anything else. Everyone said no.

And that’s when I lost it and ranted on and on about how people should have asked for EVERYTHING they wanted at once and how next time I’m only getting up ONCE and after that you don’t get other snack. I have trouble denying my underweight child (Lily) food, especially when she asks for an apple, but she will NOT be getting one the next time this happens.

And yes, I should have just fed them before we went outside, but they’d JUST eaten. In the future, I’m taking a bunch of snacks out with us no matter when they just ate so I can just SIT there as planned instead of attempting to induce pre-term labor.

We’ve been having a lot of episodes like this even inside and I’ve been mulling over instituting a rule that Lily can not have food for at least 30 minutes AFTER I asked her if she was hungry and she said no. I’m not a 24/7 line chef.



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Friday Funnies: I like kids!

In our experience, most playgrounds, McDonald’s Playlands and Chuck E. Cheeses come equipped with a 7-10 year old girl who likes to play mommy to whatever toddler happens to be roaming around. This can be REALLY helpful in those kid gerbil tunnels where a toddler sometimes needs a boost climbing or help down the slide. A couple years ago when we were traveling, blonde 7-10 year old girls would show up at every Playland across the Midwest to help Lily up the gerbil tower and into the tunnels. My husband and I used to joke that it was the same girl at every McDonald’s. Perhaps she was a robot they activated when they saw our kid was having trouble so my husband and I wouldn’t have to climb up the tunnel? Lately, the girl has been missing and things like this have been happening.

That's about as comfortable and convenient as it looks.

I guess the old 8-year-old mommy got too old to play in kid gerbil mazes?

We were amused yesterday when the latest model of 8-year-old mommy showed up at our park and decided to take on Rose as a special project.

Does this mean the next time we go to Chuck E Cheese, this girl will be there to lift Rose through the mazes?

The girl cracked us up when she turned to us and said

As an 8-year-old, she was clearly no longer a “kid”, right?

Rose was happy to play along with this girl’s mommy or baby-sitter fantasy. Rose, who sometimes doubles for Buckwheat from “Little Rascals”, kept saying “O-tay” to whatever the 8-year-old wanted to do. She thought this 8-year-old was the greatest.

But for whatever reason, the 8-year-old REALLY freaked Lily out.

Lily burst into tears going on and on about how she “needed” Rose and wanted her “back”. Keep in mind, Lily hadn’t really been playing with Rose before this all went down. The famed Ollie (Lily’s male name twin) was at the park, so she was very busy chasing him around and trying to be his BFF. She was doing great until she realized some other girl was pretending to be her baby sister’s big sister. In her little world, this was absolutely unacceptable.

I kept telling Lily that Rose would be ok, but Lily just kept getting more and more hysterical about it. “I NEED HER! ROSE! ROSE! COME BACK!” *Wail* I explained Rose would come back when she was done playing, but Lily wasn’t buying it.

Even though Rose really wanted to play with the “big girl”, I had to go retrieve her before Lily got too upset.

Later when we talked about why Lily got so upset, she told me that SHE was Rose’s big sister, not the other girl. The other girl crossed the line by acting like Rose’s big sister and it made Lily upset and possessive.

No one can act like Rose’s big sister but Lily! Many things can be shared, but not Rose!

Ok then.


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Friday Funnies: Favorite Parent

I apologize in advance for how crude these cartoons are even for MY crudely-drawn cartoons.

Anyway, Dr. Toy Warden and Lily are on spring break this week from the university. Did you know that Lily goes to college? It’s true. If you live near a college with a child development program, I highly recommend checking out its early childhood education training programs to see if it has a preschool. The program here is outstanding.

We’ve done something fun as a family just about every day this week. Yesterday we went swimming. I feel I was superbly brave participating in this activity considering I am nearly 27 weeks pregnant, huge and uncomfortable. Going swimming means flaunting my gigantic body in a swimming suit. While we were swimming, my maternity suit kept floating up and revealing my giant belly! It’s definitely the most attractive I’ve ever been. I think I deserve some Mommy Bonus Points for agreeing to all this.

Neither of our girls knows how to swim yet. Lily was in a swim class last summer, but she utterly failed it. As a result, the kids need to be held in the pool most of the time to “practice swimming”. The thing is BOTH girls wanted ME to be the one to help them swim. Given that I’m gigantically pregnant and my hips are a complete mess that neither a chiropractor nor a physical therapist have been able to help, dragging kids around the pool is exhausting and sometimes painful for me! BOTH kids insisted on hanging off of me. They actually got in a fight over me.

I kept begging them to go swimming with their eager-to-help, physically able, non-pregnant, actually quite fit dad, but they weren’t having it. In fact, mid-”My Mommy Fight” this happened.

That’s right, they actually fought over NOT having to claim their father as their own after fighting over sole ownership of me.

Dr. Toy Warden and I cracked up. I mean, it was pretty insulting for him when you think about it, but we know the girls really love him. In fact, at this very moment they are curled up with him watching their favorite music videos on youtube. They just prefer swimming with me for whatever reason. Considering how slow and cumbersome and huge I am right now, I can’t imagine why, but whatever. I find as a stay at home mom I get a little preferential treatment from the girls sometimes even though I think their dad is much more patient with them and deserves more of the love. I guess this is my payment for staying home: utter adoration until they turn 11 and decide they hate me.

So, after this little display of daddy disloyalty, tonight Lily insisted that her daddy come play catch with her. In fact, she said “I don’t want MOMMY! I want YOU, Daddy!”

To which her dad promptly and properly retorted, “Since when am I your daddy? I thought I was ROSE’S daddy. Isn’t that what you said at the pool today?”

But she didn’t get the joke.


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Friday Funnies: A Night at Bob Evans

Last time we were at Bob Evans, Rose ran her own comedy show. First she cried about a couple of things, though it’s been a couple weeks since this happened and I can’t remember what. It was probably not wanting to take her coat off and not liking her chair. After we finished eating, Rose got territorial about the toddler at a table near us. There was an empty table in between us and Rose got VERY upset when the other toddler started playing with the chairs.

Rose hates other toddlers. I’ve written before how she yells “NO! This is MY Mommy!” to them the second she sees them. How dare this other toddler be in the same restaurant as us? How dare she touch the table near ours? Clearly all the empty tables belonged to Rose!

Shortly after this showdown, Lily and I went to the bathroom. While we were gone, Rose went rogue and started running around the restaurant looking for us. Her major stop was at a table of truckers.

For some reason, I wasn’t at the table of truckers.

Dr. Toy Warden: “I don’t think they’re her.”

My husband herded Rose toward the bathroom and soon I could hear Rose outside.

“Where is my Mommy? I lost my Mommy!”

She kept knocking on the bathroom door.

This happened at my last OB appointment too. The girls waited with their dad in the waiting room after they watched my ultrasound and while I was seeing the real doctor. I could hear Rose freaking out about my whereabouts the entire time and it was all “I lost my Mommy! Where is my Mommy! Mommy? Mommy?” and knocking on the door that separates the waiting room and the hallway where the exam rooms were. That whole thing escalated into a tantrum to a level that Dr. Toy Warden had to take the girls out of the doctor’s office altogether!

Anyway, both the restaurant patrons and the people at the doctor’s office were telling Rose they hoped she found her Mommy soon. I’m not sure why Daddy isn’t good enough, but clearly he wouldn’t do. I don’t remember Lily causing this much comedy and drama over my whereabouts at this age! It’s a hassle, but it sure is funny after the fact!

When I emerged from the bathroom, Rose cried “I found you, Mommy! I missed you!” and gave me a big hug.

Clearly I can never go to the bathroom or the doctor without two to three little girls with me again. It was crazy for me to even try leaving one of the girls behind! What was I thinking?


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Friday Funnies: An Underwear Tale

I got Lily underwear for Hanukkah. Wait! I swear my intentions were good! I know it sounds like the worst possible presents– like one of those horror stories of what your parents’ got you as a present– but I swear I was given a million not so subtle hints that she really really wanted new underwear.

Now, Lily’s pre-existing underwear were fine. They still pretty much fit her even though she’s been wearing them since we started potty training. Despite this, every single time we were in a store near underwear, she’d seek it out and declare her lust over it.

This happened REPEATEDLY. For months. She wanted Tinker Bell, My Little Pony and Disney princess underwear more than anything. She would go on and on about how she would get this underwear when she grew a little and was bigger. She could not wait to get this underwear.

So even though her old underwear still pretty much fit, I upgraded her a size and bought her four packs of new underwear for Hanukkah: Tinker Bell, Rapunzel, My Little Pony and classic Disney princess underwear. I gave them to her all on one night– it was one of our more expensive nights because each pack of underwear was about $10. Because of all pre-Hanukkah excitement over underwear, I imagined we had viral video material when she opened these things. I mean, who the hell thinks underwear is exciting but a 4 year old? Or a Victoria Secrets designer?

This is what I thought would happen when she opened it:

And this is what actually happened when she opened it:

After all the hype in the store, this was pretty disappointing.

I mean, you’d think she’d be at least a little bit excited about something she’d been asking for with enthusiasm for MONTHS. I began to question my judgment as a mother. Did I really just get my daughter underwear for Hanukkah? Am I THAT mother? Surely I can do better than that. I wouldn’t have gotten it for her as a gift if I didn’t think she REALLY wanted it.

I was sort of glum for the rest of the night as she enthusiastically helped her little sister put her new puzzle together. Later when I took her up to bed, I finally got a hint that she did indeed want the underwear. She went through her drawer and looked at each and every pair of new underwear, proudly announcing what she would be wearing on her butt later.

And then, the next day she said something that confirmed I was not crazy after all.

I knew it! I KNEW she wanted underwear for Hanukkah.

I just wish she’d given us that viral video when she opened it.

Hope your gift-giving garners more initial enthusiasm than mine has.


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Friday Funnies: Prison Break

Ever since we put 4-year-old Lily in her big girl bed, she’s acted like there was an electrified force field around it. She never ever gets out of bed by herself. Ever since we potty trained her, I’ve been begging her to get out and go to the potty in the middle of the night. She won’t do it. She won’t come out in the morning, even if I call her from downstairs and ask her to do it. She will only get out of bed if I am in the room with her.

Two-year-old Rose has been in her big girl bed for several months now. She seems to have figured out that there is no force field around her bed. Or maybe she found the button to turn hers off.

Whatever the case, she does not always stay in her bed. At first we had a baby gate on her door, but she learned how to open it so we took it off. So, if she wakes up in the middle of the night, we don’t hear her if she wanders off somewhere she doesn’t quite belong. Now, most kids would figure out pretty quickly that middle of the night means Mommy and Daddy are in their room. Not Rose.

One night, I woke up at 3 am to hear screaming coming from Lily’s room.

I think it was a shock to her that everyone was still asleep.

About a week later, I woke up in the middle of the night to hear crying. I had to look for Rose a long time before I found her in our living room on the first floor. She walked downstairs in the dark, walked down the hall and got to the living room before she freaked out and realized she was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Where was I at 3 am? How could I not be awake and playing in the living room? Isn’t that my job?

Stuff like this happened for a while until this week, when she finally caught on and this happened:

I was about to kick what I thought was Lumpy, our dog, off my feet. Luckily, I looked down first to discover Rose.

Amazingly, thanks to the force field in Lily’s room, this is the first time I’ve woken up to discover a child has put herself in my bed even though I’ve been a parent for 4 years. There were times when I was nursing at night that I claimed that a baby must have jumped out of her crib and put herself in bed with me because I didn’t remember going to get her, but this was the first time I know for sure I didn’t put the kid there myself.

And because this was the only force field deactivation event that didn’t end in tears and my having to be awake for at least an hour, I’ll take it. A king-sized bed would make tolerating this turn of events a lot easier, but I can deal with being crowded in bed over being forced to watch an hour of 3 am cartoons to calm down a traumatized child.

I have to say, though, I much prefer having a child without a force field to having one with it. In the morning, Rose comes cheerfully downstairs by herself to get her breakfast. Meanwhile, getting her 4 year old sister out of bed still requires the amount of effort on my part as it did when she was a baby.

Oh, Lily, when are you going to break out of your force field? I’d REALLY like to stop buying pull-ups. Among other things.


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Friday Funnies: Bananas

My kids pretend like they LOVE bananas. When they see that we have bananas, they freak out and demand to eat them.

I would split a banana between them, but neither one of them wants a banana that’s cut up. They both insist on starting a banana from the top while it’s still in the peel. All other forms of banana are absolutely unacceptable. Apparently, they taste horrible if you eat them from any other point than from the top. So I give them each a whole banana even though I KNOW it will be a bad idea.

No matter how excited they were to see the bananas, no matter how hungry they claimed to be, I always get the banana back like this.

That’s right, all that excitement about a banana, but in the end, a good 90% of the banana ends up uneaten. And my children will only eat fresh whole bananas.

Often after I get this abused, neglected banana back, they will ask for another snack. I will direct them to the wasted banana. I mean, I guess I could eat the rest of the banana, but sometimes I’m not hungry. Besides which, I only vaguely like bananas. I have to be in the right mood to eat one. I could save the banana, but I really have no use for it later. The kids won’t eat it because it already has a bite out of it. It doesn’t matter that it’s something that particular kid bit herself, neither one of them will eat it. I guess if I were really ambitious, I would cut the bite off the banana and save it in a plastic bag until I had enough to make banana bread. That sounds like an awful lot of work to me.

And so, our garbage can becomes a banana graveyard. It’s ridiculously wasteful.

As of this week, I have instituted a new rule with Lily. If she asks me for a banana, she has to eat at least half of it or the next time she asks for a banana, she won’t get it. This rule seems to be working well. Her bananas are far more respectfully eaten than they once were. Unfortunately, this isn’t a rule that works well with a 2 year old.

Me: Eat more of your banana please.

Rose: NO!

Me: You have to eat more of your banana or I won’t get you one next time you ask. Eat it.

Rose: NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! *screams*

So… yeah. We waste a ton of bananas at our house and it drives me crazy. I suppose I could stop giving them bananas, but bananas are so good for them and sometimes they eat the whole thing. It’s just so hard to tell when I hand over a banana if it will actually be eaten or if it will get wasted.

Wow, I just said banana a lot.


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Friday Funnies: How to Lose Your Bedtime Story v. 3.0

It’s been a while since anyone has lost her bedtime story at our house, but SOMEBODY did that very thing tonight giving me fuel for a long overdue Friday Funny.

How to Lose Your Bedtime Story

Even if she was hungry, we were talking about MAYBE 20 minutes of pick-up tops even if she worked slowly. The house is inexplicably in order this week. We’ve been home most of the time, so really the toy spatter should be more chaotic than usual, but it’s not. I don’t get it. I shouldn’t question it. It won’t last.

Rose rarely does much to help clean. I mean, she’s newly 2. I don’t expect much from her in the cleaning department, but she was totally into it tonight. Meanwhile Lily just stood there doing nothing. I repeated my orders several times and was picking up toys myself. Nothing from Lily.

I asked her this several times. Repeated my instructions. Asked again. She again claimed she didn’t know. I sent her to time out. When she came out, I asked her again what she should be doing as she stood there not cleaning. She said she didn’t know. I repeated myself AGAIN.

I asked her where she thought it was. She said she didn’t know so she couldn’t help. Meanwhile, her 2 year old sister is putting food in the oven.

And that’s how you lose your bedtime story, snack and tuck-in service at our house.


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Friday Funnies: The Manipulator

The last couple weeks, Rose’s tantrums have looked something like this:

Yes, she says “Not I” while screaming at the top of her lungs and holding her hand out to me. She’s very prim and proper while she’s having a tantrum. I’ve been trying to get a “Not I” on video, but she of course stops the tantrum the second I take out the video camera. Not that I WANT the tantrums to continue, but man, this “Not I” stuff has youtube sensation written all over it.

Anyway, as it says, mid-scream she will declare that she needs to kiss me. And she will. And then the tantrum goes away, perhaps because the kiss softens me up. I am not made of stone. When a 2 year old declares she needs to kiss me, I melt a little inside, even if it’s mid-scream.

Well, she’s caught on to this. Now whenever I start to scold her, she declares that she needs to kiss me.

The manipulation works. I stop yelling at her and she comes over and gives me a kiss. Everything is forgotten until her next misbehavior.

On the plus side, she’s screaming a tiny bit less (but not much) and launches immediately into her “Kiss you, Mommy!” routine the second I tell her not to do something– which means she stops doing the bad behavior for as long as it takes to kiss me. On the minus side, the girl is totally using her kisses to get what she wants (a not-cranky mom). This does not bode well for her teen years.

I’m working hard not to react too much to this kiss ploy of hers, but man, it’s hard. I’m slowly desensitizing, but I doubt I’ll ever be hard enough not to be swayed by this “Kiss you, Mommy” stuff at least a little bit.


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