Tag Archives: children

Catching Moments

7 Aug

I catch them more often now.

The moments.

I catch them and they stay with me. Sometimes they’re amazing, spectacular, fireworks type of experiences. Other times they’re quiet. This one was simple. It was a pretty simple moment, something that might not be significant to others, something that might not even be Facebook or Instagram-worthy to others, but it mattered to me.

And the fact that I knew it mattered made me smile.

I didn’t miss it and that made me think of my Dad. He would have been happy that I didn’t miss it. I sat there and held onto it …

Do you see the jaguars? :)

Do you see the jaguars? ūüôā

We hiked up hills and walked through sunlit pathways checking out zebras, orangutangs, hippos, silverback gorillas, meerkats, and elephants. We explored all kinds of animal behavior but it wasn’t until we reached a quiet spot in the rainforest area near the jaguar exhibit when it happened. That’s when I caught it.

We decided to sit on the bench, a place we all looked forward to, seems that with all that walking we developed a deep appreciation for the shade. I opened up the Batman lunchbox and passed out the mortadella sandwiches, Goldfishes, and CapriSuns. We talked about the favorite parts of the day and sat still in this man made environment that felt pretty real.

Then in mid conversation my daughter stood up and walked over to the glass for a closer look at a rainforest ambiance and then the Jaguars that everybody had been wanting to see, but couldn’t because they were hiding in their own awesome shade walked on over and stood in front of my daughter. She didn’t take a step back, she took a step forward. She didn’t turn away, she looked closer.

Jaguars are pretty amazing animals, they provide you with the stop-and-stare kind of moments. And just then things went in slow motion and I was grateful for it. Happy that my kids were discovering something that mesmerized them, happy that they had front-row seats (something that rarely happens for us), happy that I was part of that and grateful that I had noticed, I had caught the moment.

Here’s hoping that you keep catching yours.




Sandy Hook Elementary

14 Dec


Image via quotablecards.com

Image via quotablecards.com


Labor Day Stay-cation

3 Sep

Every year I tell myself I’m going to be one of those vacationers that escapes on Labor Day Weekend. A traveler that takes an airplane ride, or most likely a drive to an adventurous or laid-back destination, which may possibly lead to a Griswold Family type of vacation, but at least that would be an adventure. I’d like any kind of adventure any destination that’s not the inflatable pool in the patio.

Did this happen?

No. No put your seat backs. No put your tray tables in their full upright position. No securely fastening your seat belts and making sure your carry-on luggage is stowed underneath the seat in front of you or in the overhead bin. No, none of that. But at least no hostile customer service agents. No lost luggage. And no angry passengers because they can’t smoke on the plane. No Griswold Family adventure.

So what did I do instead?

A Labor Day Stay-cation.

Something that required unleaded fuel and a twenty mile radius.

Whenever you’re on a budget and need a vacation, you seek a destination that will bring you a little peace, fun, and relaxation at the same time the beach is the destination for you. It’s a cheap date, that shows you a good time.


Unfortunately the masses crowding the beach also felt like having a stay-cation.

However we were able to find a nice spot.



We built sand castles.



We destroyed sand castles.



We played sports.



We forgot our volleyball so we watched other people play sports too.



We people watched … and then I wondered when the last time was that I laid back and relaxed like this chick right here … reading a book in peace. She looks like she has no gray hair.



So I sat there and looked at the sky for a minute, but only one minute as we needed to do some boogie boarding and pretend surfing with my son.



While pretend surfing with my son,  I noticed this dude paddle-boarding. He looked bad-ass. I added this to my bucket list. But then I heard about some great-white shark encounters with paddle-boarders off the coast of California just recently and thought about it again.


But then I got distracted when this dude came out of the water. My dude laughed at me and said why don’t you just take a picture. So I did. Then surfer hottie dude took off his wet suit. I would have taken a picture but in that moment I forgot how to work the camera … in fact I think I forgot my name.



I got inspired for some reason and we went back to “pretend surfing,” but the waves got too big. Falling down with wet sand everywhere as I was trying to keep my son from giant waves was proof enough that pretend surfing time was over.



It was time to pack it up and leave. Luckily, this time I had some help. Usually I’m the one that looks like a crazy garage sale walking down the beach.


Even without the airplane ride or long drive to far away places, it was a good stay-cation.




Green Scooby-Doo Balloon To The Rescue

21 Apr

I thought I had it all. I’ve become accustomed to thinking ahead. That’s what you do when you’ve got kids, or cranky adults. You prepare.

Festival of Books

The Festival of Books. It’s a huge event with massive crowds of book loving people who also like freebies and samples from the corporate sponsors. I’ve gone just about every year for the past eight years. But now that I have a three-year old and a nine-month old. The trip becomes more like a mission to avoid any meltdown from any child.

Coppertone Water Babies UVA/UVB Sunscreen 50 SPF.

Three Cuties oranges.

Two Ziploc bags of Cheerios.

One container of Gerber Puffs.

Two juice boxes.

Three pacifiers.

Two sippy cups of water.

One bottle of milk.

One apple.

One banana.

One Clif Kid Bar Z Crispy Chocolate Chip.

Two Clif Kid Z Fruit Ropes

One peanut butter and banana sandwich.

One diaper bag filled with baby essentials.

I thought I had it all, but it was out of my control.

After a meltdown-free morning of construction, train, and dinosaur book exploring, arts and crafts doing, and music loving under a blistering heat for three hours, we encountered the balloon. We had it for five minutes. The red balloon from the Chinese Dragon stall. Then it popped. Thin layer I guess.

I saw it coming. I got the look and then the shoulders slumped. The eyes got watery, the lower lip did the I’m-about-to-cry pucker. Then his voice cracked, and¬†I knew it was coming.

I forgot to pack an extra balloon.

The crowd at The Festival of Books.

No worries we’ll get another one. After fifteen minutes of weaving in and out through the crowds, we found the stall. Sweet. No one was in line. However no one was in line for a reason. No more balloons.

I got the look and the shoulder slump …

I saw someone with a purple Scooby-Doo balloon. We raced back through massive pedestrian traffic past the Mystery Machine and found the chick passing out the balloons. There was no red. Just Mystery Machine colors.

Scooby-Doo Balloon

“Green. Mom. Green is my favorite. Red is no good.”

So after three Cuties oranges, one banana, one apple, half a peanut butter sandwich, two juice boxes, two bags of Cheerios, one container of puffs most of which trailed behind us courtesy of the baby, one bottle of milk, one Clif Bar Z Crispy Chocolate Chip, and two Clif Kid Z Fruit Ropes, it was the green balloon to the rescue.

We lost one sippy cup and two pacifiers in the process, but the green Scooby-Doo balloon is still in tact.

The green balloon that saved us floats among the crowd.


Note to self: pack an extra balloon.


Jellyfish and Testicles

26 Mar

Considering that my son¬†is on a preschool¬†sabbatical due to my economic technical difficulties I decided to expose him to some of the same experiences he would’ve had if he remained in school.

Here Come the ABCs

Here Come the ABCs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I didn’t get all crazy home school regiment, but I did apply some of the same guided discovery situations that allowed for¬†play-based,¬†thematic¬†learning zone.¬†The Guat Learning Zone.

Ocean combined with marine life¬†became the first “theme” I explored.¬†So we read books like Eric Carle’s A House For Hermit Crab and The Rainbow Fish by¬†Marcus Pfister. We talked about all the animals the different shapes and body parts like the gills, tentacles, fins, teeth, blowholes, and tales.

We got chalk and drew out all kinds of fish, octopus, whales, and dolphins in the back yard patio. We¬†put on our snorkel gear¬†and went “scuba diving” and then¬†went “deep-sea fishing” with our makeshift fishing poles. Since we don’t own a pool, and I chose not to got to the public urine filled¬†pool that reeks of chlorine, we¬†grabbed our swim trunks¬†and gear¬†and headed to¬†the¬†bathtub. It was a little crowded.

We resurrected the old Discovery Channel jellyfish tank that my son loved so much. It created a mini tidal wave when my aunt decided to move it thus, putting the computer out of commission a couple of months ago (you can read about that little incident here).

And then the field trip. The Aquarium of the Pacific. My son was so excited to see the diversity of marine animals live and in action, as well as the water play area that featured life-size oceanic animals squirting water at you. Needless to say, we spent a lot of time in water battles that day.

We experienced the awesomeness of the tropical pacific gallery that featured multitudes of colorful fish and coral reef.

One of our favorite exhibits proved to be the scuba divers swimming in a ginormous tank modeled after Blue Cavern Point, a kelp forest near the Santa Catalina Island Coast. It was a massive tank-like aquarium with scuba divers feeding hundreds of fish species trolling the waters. He was able to name some of the sea creatures and body parts, like their gills and fins. He was excitied about all this fish knowledge he acquired. I was pretty proud.

At the shark lagoon we petted sting rays, which were quite slimy and a couple of bamboo shark. But the best part of the field trip adventure was petting the jellyfish. My son was a little hesitant, but after explaining and seeing the similarity to his jellyfish-like creatures in his Discovery Channel tank, he was up for the adventure.

He pushed up his sleeves and plopped his hand right into the water. As I guided his hand over the jellyfish, he smiled and tripped out on the rubbery and slippery texture.

He was not scared, but amazed. He saw them swimming everywhere and yelled:

“Wow … look at all the jellyfishes everybody! They’re swimming. They’re swimming! And look they have many testicles, look at all the testicles, but we can’t touch because they will sting us.”

Amazing fish knowledge indeed.

The Aquarium guide lady and a couple other adults couldn’t help but smile and giggle.

“Yes … I see many tentacles.”

“Yes, mom. Many testicles.”

I smiled. I was still proud.

The Prince People: Awesome Customer Service

18 Mar

Most of the time, they suck. You know it. I know it. They know it.

They put you on hold and make you dials 15 digits before you can speak to an actual human being. Most customer service agents suck. Other than the Big Island Candies Chocolate¬†people (who are¬†awesomely¬†fantabulous)¬†I’ve run into nothing but aggravation from this species¬†… that is until I met Ken from Prince Sports— Tennis Racket Division.

Prince Sports

Image via Wikipedia

¬†¬†We recently went to something called the Racket Doctor to pick out my son’s first tennis racket.¬† He’s got golf clubs, a baseball bat, a football and a soccer ball. We figured … might as well make sure he likes what we like, or at least gets exposed to it. So many choices, but we narrowed it down to the Babolat, Rafael Nadal personal favorite, or the Prince.

We were both torn, Customer Service Agent¬†Ken … he was awesome.

Nadal vs Federer en la final de Roland Garros 2007

Image via Wikipedia

But Rafael … C’mon¬†now. He plays with Babolat.¬†It’s Nadal. The King of Clay. The awesome Spaniard. One of the few who’ve completed The¬†Grand Slam.¬†One of our favorite players. But then I reminded him of the letter I wrote for him … the letter!So we stood there debating …¬†¬†

Dear Prince People,

I have owned various Prince Signature products and enjoyed them immensely throughout the years. Despite their constant usage, they have served me to the best of their ability on the tennis courts. However, recently you ‚ÄúBuilt Equipment that DID NOT Rule the Court,‚ÄĚ but ruined my tennis cache. I had cache, but alas on the fateful day‚ĶPoof! Gone.

I play a regular game every Tuesday and Thursday at our neighborhood park, with a motley crew of overweight (mostly divorced) fifty+ year olds. Premier athletes, if you will. I’m the young stud … the ringer. Although regardless of my age there are a couple of guys who run me up and down the court in spite of their luscious physique. But for the most part, I’m victorious.

So the day my cache was gone, I kept telling the overweight regulars that it was my tennis racket. My tennis racket! But they continued the constant ridicule: ‚ÄúIt‚Äôs not about the equipment, it‚Äôs about how you use it.‚ÄĚ This attack on my manhood put a hitch in my get-along and rattled my conviction in your product. ¬†¬†

I was up 4-3 in the set when my opponent ‚Äď Mauricio the wife-beater ‚Äď hit a lob. I widened my stance and prepared to smash it down his throat, when¬†IT happened. The sun. The God-dang sun turned my smash into a missed-hit overhand.

It was only until after my demise on the court and the purchasing of a six-pack of Coors for the victor that I realized my racket had been fractured. I was devastated! How the hell can a tennis ball, something crushed in half by the Bionic Woman, splinter my Prince Tour Diablo?

I almost had a John-McEnroe moment. But I maintained. I took it to the Racket Doctor. Stat! But they could not restring it or bring it back to life! The frame was cracked. I was in mourning. Still am.

I have enclosed the tennis racket for your inspection. I have always trusted in your product and it has never failed me. Whether it’s been tennis shoes, shirts, caps, or rackets. You have always come through for me with fine quality and craftsmanship. But you left me hanging.

The workmanship flaw caused me to lose the match to Mauricio … Mauricio the wife-beater and that humiliation deserves redemption. This guy was exiled for over a year from the park because of his extra curricular activities. I could not lose to someone with such poor character. I needed redemption, and I pray that you will be able to remedy my situation, as Ken from customer service left me hopeful.

In Disappointment,

¬†The Guat’s Dude.

About three weeks later he got a new Prince Tour Diablo¬†… Factory fresh.

¬†We stood there thinking of how much we loved Rafael and his Babolat, but then there was Ken … Which tennis racket do you think we bought?


Bedtime Battle Showdown … My Salvation: Framboise

16 Mar

Normally I’m not a raging alcoholic, but after¬†two weeks of consecutive 13-hour days with both kids and minimal “me” time, other than the two-minute¬†“time-out” sessions¬†I took for myself in the bathroom, I was about to drink the two bottles of Lambic¬†Framboise¬†in hopes of relieving the¬†stress from Friday Night Bedtime Battle Showdown. Normally I’d drink Patron, but I thought that’s a little too raging, Framboise a little more subtle.

When exercise doesn't cut it ... my stress reliever

In that corner: 36-pound basketball-pajama wearing three-year old accompanied by his 21-pound onesie-wearing sibling with sneaky smiles.

In this corner: The Guat, usually an upbeat sporty-spice who’s become a worn-down mom¬†that’s accumulated more gray hairs and wrinkles this week.

If you have kids you may be familiar with battle of the bedtimes. Prior to being a guest at my mom’s house this wasn’t really an issue … maybe once in a blue moon my three-year old would act up, but I wouldn’t say it was a problem. However,¬†recently bedtime has become such a frustrating battle¬† that the vein in my neck has a permanent imprint from where it bulges out.

It’s not like he refuses to go to bed.¬†We have our routine. Always been the same.¬†Eight o’clock comes around he’s¬†showered and ready for some¬†Dr. Seuss,¬†Laura Numeroff, Sandra Boynton, Tony Mitton, Ant Parker,¬†or Eric Carle books. After we’re done, he gets into bed all comfy, cozy, but it just¬†takes longer for him to fall asleep.

And if I don’t get him showered on time … forget about it … He’s watching Dave Letterman. A few times he stays there awake, moving around, talking to his teddy bear until ten o’clock, sometimes later. Thus leaving me with little time to wash dishes and bottles before trying to relax¬†in front of the television.

It’s not like¬†I like to wash dishes. In fact it’s the chore I hate the most. Some might say just leave a dirty kitchen and let it go, but I’m the type of person that needs to have an empty sink and clean kitchen before I can relax. If only my mom believed in dishwashers, but apparently those are for lazy asses. So my hands aren’t too supple, more like the hands of a carpenter who’s been on the job twenty years.

It’s been difficult to say the least. I felt like breaking down like those mom chicks from Sex & The City 2. Have you seen this?

Yeah … but they have nannies. I have myself. I am the nanny, the cook, the diaper changer, the milk producer, the bottle-go-getter, the bath time giver, the baseball pitcher, the funny-face maker, the golf caddy, the Play-Doh¬†creator, the dancing partner to the “I Like To Move It, Move It” song,¬†the Lego’s construction builder, the co-pilot on my son’s imaginary airplane/fire engine/submarine that fights crime, and the dog walker. That’s me … all before lunch.¬†No nanny. No cleaning lady. Just The Guat.¬†

So¬†by the time I get to¬†bedtime I’m just ready to have them pass out and go into a deep, deep sleep so that I can somehow enjoy television or just enjoy a quiet moment where nobody says anything¬†… just silence.¬† Quiet is awesome.

So when bedtime becomes a battle or¬†either of them just gives me issues I get so frustrated. I don’t want to be that mom that constantly¬†tells their kid¬†if you¬†don’t go¬†to sleep right now, you won’t be able to play with any cars, monster trucks, trains or sports stuff ever again! I mean it! I’ll take them to the trash.

I tried that … it doesn’t work.

I was so desperate I was about to Google “bedtime problems with three-year olds and seven-month old¬†babies” and hope¬†some self-help¬†answer would come slap me in the face.

But alas … there was no super-secret answer other than some crazy note about slipping some Children’s Benadryl into their night-time sippy cups. I don’t like having crappy frustrating¬†endings to pleasant days. Sometimes it just sucks the awesomeness out of the day.

It has to be a phase.

That’s what I tell myself, or at least that’s what I’m hoping. After the Framboise, I tell myself¬†tomorrow will be better and he’ll get back into his normal sleeping pattern.

I hope tomorrow gets here soon. The stores are running out of Framboise.

Making Mount Everest Out of a Molehill …

2 Mar

¬†Movie night was supposed to¬†be simple. But nothing in The Guat life is simple and nothing turns out the way you thought it would … well sometimes parking spots.

Mount everest

Image via Wikipedia

The Lorax was supposed to be a stress free-outing, with popcorn — a¬†celebration of what I call my son’s preschool graduation. I know it wasn’t his graduation, more like his termination because of the raise in tuition and his teacher going on maternity leave. But graduation sounds better.

So in celebratory fashion I wanted to secure our entrance to this Dr. Seuss extravaganza and get tickets ahead of time, not wasting any time standing in line, or risking the show being sold out.

But buying movie tickets online is tricky. You need to be sure that you’ll be going at a designated time. I thought I was going on time. I thought I had picked a time suitable for everyone’s nap schedule and snack schedule, including my own. I had lined up a two babysitters: 1)¬†A friend of the family who offered to do¬†it seeing how I constantly watched her kids when they were younger,¬†and 2) my mother, who found out the friend of the family was watching the baby and got all possessive over her grandkid and decided to assist. But even with that time was not on my side.

I called our first babysitter three times reminding her of when we’d be arriving. The plan was to hang out for about fifteen minutes to make sure the baby was all right, and then go to the movies. We had never left her with anybody other than my mom or aunt, so even though this was a friend of the family, we were still pretty worried and filled with a little anxiety. But¬†it would only be for two hours. So we thought we’d¬†get the baby settled, she’d be fine.

My other half was supposed to meet me at home so we could drop off the baby, then pick up my son from school, take our time saying our final good-byes to his preschool buddies, take a few pictures and be on our way.

No. Not even close.

Movie started at 5:20 p.m. We were supposed to drop off the baby around 4:30 p.m. I’m waiting for my dude to show up, as he¬†suggested I wait for him because he was getting off work early¬†and wanted¬†me to buy the 5:20 p.m. tickets, instead of the 6:30 p.m. tickets. He insisted.¬†Said everything would be fine.

4:00 … No dude. Phone call, no answer.

4:15 … No dude. Phone call, no answer.

4:30 … No dude. Phone call, answer. I’m waiting for you, I haven’t picked up our son from school. His response: what are you waiting for, you should have picked him up a while ago. I hang up.

4:40 … Drive like Speedracer and arrive to pick up my son.¬†Didn’t bring the camera to take pictures. Didn’t think to bring an extra shirt to replace the mud stains and paint. Didn’t have enough time for proper good-byes … had to make time for potty …glad I brought the cards and thank you gifts for teachers the day before.

5:00 … Arrive at the babysitter’s. No dude. No babysitter.

5:01 … Call babysitter and found out she’s at karate¬†class with her sons. Could I wait 15 to 20 minutes?

5:02 … Exasperated.

5:10 … Dude shows up.

5:15 … Babysitter shows up. I give her the rundown of the baby’s schedule, give her the bag of toys, and leave the diaper bag on the couch. We hang out for about five minutes, baby seems o.k.

5:20 … She mentions she needs the base to our car seat because she’s going to pick up her sons from karate.

I’m sorry what?

I thought babysitting meant sitting in your house (or mine) and watching the baby. Not carpooling or traveling.¬†I was not o.k. with this, in fact this seemed to stress me out considering this was the first time she was babysitting for us. My dude and I hesitated. One of us was on the verge of not making it. But she assured us everything would be fine … we were sure it wouldn’t be. We knew she’d start crying and it freaked¬†me out. She pushed us out the door assuring us the baby would all right.

I was worried and freaked out. I was a neurotic parent. I was frustrated¬†that the situation I tried so hard to avoid came to pass: felt rushed everywhere, dumped off my kid with no hey-get-used-to-this-lady-and-her-house-because-you’ll-be-here-for-a-while time, late to the movies, and probably wouldn’t find parking or seats in the theatre.

5:30 … Arrive at the movies, get tickets from kiosk, go up the escalators, ticket chick takes our tickets … get a text from the babysitter: We think you took the diaper bag by mistake, couldn’t find it … no worries we bought diapers. ūüôā

5:31 … Taking deep breaths

5:33 … Dude assures me that he didn’t take the diaper bag. I know¬†I didn’t take it, but he still assures¬†me it was him¬†… apparently it did an Andy Dufresne¬†from Shawshank and “vanished like a fart in the wind.”

5:35 … Enter the theatre. No seats in the back or middle. Still taking¬†deep breaths.¬†Sitting in the second row center. IMAX indeed.

Movie starts.

I felt like I added a couple of gray hairs on that trip. At first I couldn’t concentrate, I was so stressed out and worried about the baby. She must be losing it,¬†I thought. My gut ached. I felt bad because I couldn’t fully enjoy the movie experience with my son because I was worrying about my other kid.

And then my son turned to look at me as he ate his butter-flavored¬†popcorn and chocolate covered raisins. He smiled and said … Here he comes mom, The Lorax!

So in that instant I decided to commit to the moment. The baby would be¬†fine. If I didn’t trust the babysitter I wouldn’t have bothered to ask for the favor in the first place. Besides, my mother would probably show up in forty minutes, so I’d have two babysitters working to entertain my kid. I needed to calm down. She’d be fine. I realized this was not a Mount Everest¬†problem, this was a hill. I’m glad I came to my senses in¬†the middle of the movie.

I’m glad I wasn’t climbing Mount Everest¬†anymore, otherwise I would have rushed out of the theatre as soon as I saw “THE END.”

I would have missed my son jumping up out of his seat and yelling: “Come on let’s dance! Let’s dance everyone!”

As the credits rolled and the¬†Lorax’s humming fish began singing and dancing, there I was … dancing and doing spin moves with my son … second row … center aisle.

The Lorax (film)

The Lorax to the Rescue

1 Mar

As a parent I’ve come to understand that I will fail from time to time.¬†Doesn’t¬†matter that I have a Bachelors or Masters degree I will fail¬†in some way, shape, or form.¬†I feel wretched. But¬†it happens, that’s why Lambic¬†Framboise¬†was invented. But it’s only temporary … just until he turns four … and well … the teenage years.

Friday will be my son’s last day at preschool. I’ve had to pull him out for a couple of reasons. His teacher is going on maternity leave and may not even come back.¬†It took him a long time to successfully transition into her classroom. It was a week and a half of watery eyes, tight hugs, and long good-byes¬†… and this was just me. Seeing my kid break down because he thinks I’m shafting him¬†has that effect.

The school¬†added a new teacher, which meant a¬†new environment, new rules, new scene.¬†It would¬†only¬†be¬†temporary because¬†he would be moved again to the “big kids” room in a couple of months once he turned four. Then the teary-eyed good-bye cycle would return. I¬†¬†think I’d have to buy a case of Lambic¬†Framboise¬†to get me through these phases, and I really didn’t want to turn into a raging alcoholic at 10 a.m.. So I thought might as well just do the good-bye cycle once and put him in a classroom when he turns four, which is in a couple of months.

Then there’s the¬†move. Since I’ve been a guest at my parents’ house, the trek to his preschool has gotten a little longer, and gas prices are a little higher. I see about twenty preschools on¬†our way to my son’s preschool. I figured once we were settled and moved into our new place, wherever that would be,¬†I would find a quality school … you know, one with no¬†pedafiles or perverts within a ten-mile radius.

But the primary reason:¬†pisto. They’ve raised the tuition and I got no more pisto.¬†Cash.¬†I don’t know how much preschool is in other cities or states, but here in The Guat’s neighborhood the¬†least expensive was $825 per month.¬†I did a lot of research and looked into different places. Places that gave me a good vibe and the highest $1200¬†the¬†lowest $825. And now it would be $875. I should have been a preschool mogul, instead of a writer. Maybe we’d be in our place by now.

Well with the raise in price and my income not being very incoming, I’ve had to pull the plug and finesse the situation. I felt like a terrible parent. Total downer. I prepared him¬†for two weeks, letting him know when his last day would be, how school was ending, and¬†how he’d be taking a little vacation with mom and then he would return to his new school. The “big boy” school. This did not go over very well.¬† So¬†I had to be a little more¬†tactful in this delicate situation¬†… a little more politician.

I told him he was graduating.

I told him we had to celebrate his graduation. He did a great job in school and learned a lot of new things. Now he was graduating and we would celebrate. That’s what you do when you get bigger and succeed in school. You graduate. You celebrate with goodies, such as cake.

That seemed a little better, but not yet. He didn’t quite believe me.

Then I said we will have our weekly movie night at the movies. (Thanks to Netflix, we see a movie every week.¬†We cozy up on the couch with Orville Redenbacher and watch¬†Disney, Pixar, Dreamworks,¬†Muppets, Nickelodeon¬†or Charlie Brown¬†like films.) I told him we’d make a special field trip to see The Lorax. We will see the Lorax as your graduation present.

The Lorax

Image via Wikipedia

“The Lorax is not a movie mom. It’s a book, see?”

He shows me his worn-out hardcover version of Dr. Seuss‘s The Lorax. We must’ve have read that book at least six hundred times these past two years.

“They made a movie. See?”¬† A commercial for The Lorax plays on the computer. Then as I close the screen, another commercial appears on the television.

“The Lorax! They made The Lorax Movie for my graduation?”

Yes … yes they did.

He smiled. Lorax to the rescue.

Do You Have The Tickets?

11 Feb

My son loves monster trucks…it’s one of his passions. Monster Jam to be specific.¬† Superman Truck¬†… got it. Batman Truck … got it. El Toro Loco Truck … got it.¬†Monster Mutt Dalmatian¬†… got it. Grave Digger…got three.

Monster Jam (349420409)

Image via Wikipedia

Since they happen to be in town we made plans to visit the stadium. However the baby was not welcomed as it was definitely an ear-plug event.  So as we waited for my mom to arrive we scrambled to get everything set for a stress-free babysitting adventure.

All was set, we were ready to go. Ready to make the hour-long drive to the stadium and we had 45 minutes before the vrooom-vrooom began. As we jumped in the car I did the mom-thing. The checklist.

Son’s Jacket–Got it.

Son’s Beanie–Got it

Backpack diaper bag with emergency underwear, pants, shirt, pull-ups, wipes, socks¬†and ¬†pajamas–Got it.

Gas in the car–Got it.

Entertaining toy for car ride–Got it.


What do you mean, what?

Apparently we’ll just get them at the stadium. Last night of the event and he says don’t worry, we’ll get them at the stadium. Just walk up to the box office and purchase them … just like that.


I didn’t want to be “Debbie Downer” but I’m in the habit of always getting tickets before the event. Having them in my hand, smelling the cardboard, feeling the grooves of the bar codes, assuring the row F, seats 20, 21, and 22 are mine. But I wanted to stay positive so I maintained silence and just had the vein in my neck bulging and blood pressure rising, because I sure didn’t want to tell my son we weren’t going.

After sitting in traffic we arrive at the stadium fifteen minutes after the first race began as we pull up I see it in big red letters…SOLD OUT. TONIGHT’S EVENT SOLD OUT.

English: Superman up and away at the Monster J...

Image via Wikipedia

I give him…the look.

For the past hour and change my son has been raving about which monster truck would win the race, which one would go the highest, and where we would park.


“Don’t worry…I’ll get tickets.”

“How you going to get tickets. It’s sold out and you’re going tell him.”

“I’ll get tickets.”

“I don’t think they have alternative methods at this stadium.”

“Every stadium has alternative methods. I’ll be back.”

So I sit and wait in the car with my son. Trying to convince him that bowling is just the most exciting event to do right now.

Ten minutes later with a little less cash in his wallet, he taps on the window.

Apparently we did need our earplugs that night.¬†Considering our last-minute purchse methods, our seating arrangements were surprisingly pleasant. No nose bleeds. No¬†obstructed view.¬†Row F. Seats 20, 21, and 22 … and a happy son.

Earplugs needed indeed