family, humor, kids, motherhood

I Would Walk 500 Miles (T.Puzzle Out)

Where we live, while awesomely close to downtown, having a yard is unusual.  Giant houses that take up every square inch of their lot are the norm.

I treasure my small backyard.  With so many statuesque trees flanking our streets, songbirds abound.  If I am really lucky, I might see a deer:


Just kidding.  Our alley is being reworked so the only deer(e) I see cause quite a ruckus.

Besides the mild annoyance of construction noise, where we live is very fun.  We are a few blocks away from excellent restaurants.  We try to walk to meals out as much as we can.

Most of our family loves this.

T.Puzzle hates this.

He hates to walk anywhere.  To him it is slow, boring and ultimately pointless.

Seated at lunch last weekend, the four of us had walked to a new taco joint.  The food was great and the weather perfect for our outside table.

We debated if we would walk to get ice cream before hitting Target (yes! we can walk to Target!).  We didn’t want to push T.Puzzle’s attitude because we know better, and he is only a mild fan of ice cream, weird, I know.

“You up for walking for ice cream?” said Mad Dog.


Then, slowly, T.Puzzle formed a response as his shoulders lifted in a slight shrug.

“I guess so.”

I read the meaning behind his words.

“Basically, T.Puzzle is willing to walk with us but he will be super depressed about it the whole time,” I said.  “Did I guess that right?”

“Yep,” said T.Puzzle.

This boy sugar coats nothing.



children, eyesight, mommyhood

School Supplies

Full Speed strikes a GQ pose before our Polynesian Resort luau at Disney

Is it normal to want to cry when you purchase your soon-to-be-kindergartener’s school supplies?

I am so not a fan of change.

In order to counteract my anxiety about his approaching kindergarten start date, I purchased Full Speed’s supplies early.

It hasn’t really helped that gnawing edge of dread in the pit of my stomach.

At least I tried.

The cashier was thankfully a mother and did not seem to question my slightly erratic and emotional behavior. It took a lot of concentration to keep my tears at bay while signing the electronic credit card apparatus at Target.

I also didn’t want to self-disclose too much since I know how uncomfortable it can be to have to listen to someone else’s issues. I’m the kind of person that seems to elicit strange, personal confessions from random people I meet during the day. It’s usually awkward when someone in the post office line starts telling me about their recent toenail surgery in detail or how their boyfriend won’t claim paternity of their baby (both true stories!).

So, I kept my thoughts of change to myself. I didn’t share that Full Speed would be starting kindergarten days after little T.Puzzle has his first of two eye surgeries. I didn’t share that I hoped that by simply gathering up all of Full Speed’s needed supplies early, that this would somehow make these two enormous events less intimidating for me.

Little T.Puzzle hams it up as one of his cousins places frisbees as ‘mickey ears’ on his head

Now, what else can I attempt to micromanage in the next couple weeks?

Any suggestions?

gratitude, happiness, humor, kids, life in pictures, mommyhood

Goodish Things Will Happen

As I was getting little T.Puzzle dressed for the day, he is always curious to know what kind of character underpants he is going to wear. He is delighted when the characters are Thomas the Train related.

“Don’t peep or poop on Thomas!” he exclaims. I love that he says peep. It never fails to entertain me. I will be sad when he finally figures that one out.

Our day was action-packed as usual. We started at the sprinklers, headed out for pizza and then topped it off with Target. Mad Dog even had additional plans for our evening but I quickly nixed them. I told him I needed a break.


He then offered to take the boys to the grocery. This left me with some peace and quiet.


When my trio of men returned, Full Speed was the first one through the door.

“What kind of report am I going to get from your Dad?” I asked referencing his and little T.Puzzle’s behavior at the store.

“Goodish and badish, Mom.”

It was goodish that he told the truth I guess.

bad day, children

Duck and Cover

As mother to T.Puzzle and Full Speed, I know what it takes to get through a day. I have to be strong, set lots of stern boundaries and not give them an inch. If I can’t do these things then I have to be prepared to duck and cover.

We were down to our last pull-up and I had to take little T.Puzzle with me to Target. If I am in the right frame of mind and he is too, it is a reasonable task. If I am tired, crabby and not feeling up to being a drill-sergeant mommy, then we are in big, big trouble.

I just was not in the mood to fight him at every turn. He kept tossing everything I had in the cart onto the floor. Normally, I would stop no matter if we are in the food isle or near ladies’ lingerie, and reprimand him. He would be placed in time-out and would wail to the high heavens but most likely would get his act together. I just couldn’t do it today. I wordlessly kept placing everything he tossed on the floor back in the cart. I chose to ignore his behavoir and that was the first of my mistakes.

By the time we had reached the cashier little T.Puzzle was ‘helping’ me push the cart. It was my weak attempt at distracting him from his naughty behavior. It didn’t work (another mistake). He decides now is the time to run away from Mommy and giggle. I grab him and place him in the cart’s seat and he starts screaming ‘no!’ at the top of his lungs. To complicate matters he keeps getting up in the seat dangerously teetering over the side. He looks ready to jump. I try my best to unload the cart and to make light of his insanity to the cashier. She looks wholly empathetic and mortified at the same time. As I lean down to grab something off the base of the cart, little T.Puzzle makes his move. He grabs a heavy box from the counter in front of him and proceeds to chuck it at my head. The cashier lunges forward to save me and in the process her knee hits the counter with a sickening thud. It’s her bad knee she tells me. Well, of course it is. Why would it be her good knee? That would make this story less upsetting and as you can tell, I wasn’t catching any breaks today.

I effusively apologize for the misdeeds of my child and the unfortunate injury he caused. Of course, he hasn’t let up screaming ‘no!’ yet either. I take my cart, my wobbly self-esteem and my overtly aggressive child and exit. I manage to strap him in his car seat, get my things unloaded and put the cart back. As soon as I reach the car I dial Mad Dog. I cry and he listens and when my crying gets really desperate sounding, little T.Puzzle switches his ‘nos!’ to ‘sorrys’.

It didn’t help because I was very sorry, too.