Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Titanic

Did you know it took 3 years to build the Titanic Boat?  And on the first trip it's over.  Scary. 

And people laugh at me when I say I'm scared to fly.

Stopping Traffic

What recession? The malls are packed.

Out of nowhere all these people that had all year to shop, decide to come to the same mall. (Of course I was there because my kids wanted to see Santa and I did need one more gift!)

On the way out I was right between 3 cars backing out at the same time. A angry-rushed man in his 50's, a lady who must have slept with the devil and an old woman well into her 90's and probably shouldn't have been behind the wheel of a car let alone outside in the holiday shopper chaos.

My kids were behind me as I stopped them and at the same time screamed to halt a triple car collision. The drivers all looked at me as if I was crazy and then the angry man, seeing the other cars stop, took his chances to get out first. I stopped him. "Hey!" I held up my palm and stood in his way as I directed the older woman (I swear she could barely see above her dash) to back out and drive off first. I chose her because she needed the most help and at this time in the world, we should really be treating older people with massive amounts of respect.

The man grumbled, the lady started swearing at me and the little older woman took a good 3 minutes to back out and pull away, rolling down her window (another 30 seconds) to say, "God Bless you dearie..." before she pulled off.

My kids watched with wonder as their mom directed the last two cars out of the parking lot and get the finger from the nice lady showing her appreciation.

My almost teenager son saw the mean gesture and was embarrassed, "Mom, why do you even bother?"

"What do you think would have happened if I didn't?" I said to him as he turned and then finally smiled up at me.

Yes it was none of my business, but by screaming, I stopped a massive accident, insurance rates going up, someone going to the hospital and maybe someone even dying. Yes, it wasn’t my business, but I did the right thing. And that is worth the trouble…even if I got people mad at me.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Holiday Weeping...

My kids don't want to leave my side during the holidays.  Maybe they think they'll miss something fun, maybe they don't want to get lost, maybe they're afraid I'll leave them on purpose?

Today I dropped my little ones off at my gym's babysitting.  When I turned to hug them and say, "Be back soon, I love you!" another little boy, about 2, looked up at me and stretched his arms out for a hug. 

I went with it.  Someone wants a hug, I do not deny!  I bent down and hugged him, telling him (laughing to myself) "I'll be back soon..."  Instantly I had two kids crying.  One of my own (mad I was giving attention to a total stranger his size) and the kid I hugged who was now screaming with his arms raised trying to get me to pick him up and hold him. 
Oh boy...I thought as I looked around for help.

The gym babysitters glared at me like I just ruined their day (maybe I did...nothing worse than a crying kid)

I held my youngest child calming him down promising I loved him and wasn't trading him in for another kid.  Meanwhile the other kid was so unhappy, they had to call his mom.   Before I could create any more drama, I headed for the bikes happy Christmas is only days away.

Something about the holidays makes everyone super happy or on the verge of tears.  Be careful out there!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Lovely Nurse

Last night I met a 33 year old beautiful lady who said she is a pediatric hospice nurse.


I had her repeat it. One more time? She laughed and sadly I understood: This woman is a nurse to children that went to their own home to die.

It took everything I had not to burst into tears. I couldn't imagine anything more horrible than being a nurse a dying child, yet alone be that mother.

I studied this brave girl; she was blonde, oh so pretty and beyond full of life. In just a few sentences I understood she 'got' the fragility of life as she daily gave of herself to children that would never see puberty or adulthood.

My heart ached as I wondered how one approaches such a meaningful yet heart wrenching job? Did she cry often? Did she feel sad? Did she think about these children at night as she lay in her own bed?

I told her I hoped I never saw her working in my house. She laughed her contagious laugh and I knew the families that saw her in their homes were lucky to have such an angel.

I then went home, let the tears bust and hugged my children. Sick or not, hugs yours. Tight.

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Messy Car?

Here are the facts: I'm a mom of three kids (4 if you add the husband). For survival, we must eat and drink in our car....often. Today after school my son runs up to the car in a panic, "John is coming with us! Can you please CLEAN YOUR CAR!!"

What? It wasn't that messy? It was....disruptive...? Papers from school, backpacks, kid books, magazines for the gym, unused coupons, articles of clothing from the kid’s sports and playground activities. What's the big deal? It's not like I had sour milk soaked in the carpet (that happened many times before, and even I don't want to get into my car) So I did my best cleaning up everyone’s things. In a car with no cabinets to hide stuff, I piled the crap nicely into sections.

My son and his friend climbed into the car. My child had an embarrassed attitude. I waited 5 minutes before I asked our guest, "Hey Johnny? Does this car smell funny to you?"

My son went into a zesty vent, "Mom! You can't ask him that! He's not going to tell you! I was with Mr. Maren and he asked ME the same question and I said, 'no, your car smells great!' But in truth his car smelled like CRAP."

My ten year old was behaving like a bitter sensitive man of forty. I wanted to laugh, I wanted to argue, instead I let the silence lay there.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion," I told my ten year old later. "If you help an do your share all the time consistently, it's only then you can complain about the lack of others helping."

Course I said all this to him as we stood over his dirty clothes 3 feet from the hamper. He said, "Okay" turned and stepped over his clothes on the floor as he walked away. "Excuse me?" I pointed back to his clothes. "Oh..." he said as he bent over to pick up his things.

Really? It’s true. I’m raising a man.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Homework Hell

I hate homework.  I hate the idea.  I hate the word. 

When my kids get home from school and sports, I want family time.  Since they've been gone all day, the last thing I want to patrol the kitchen yelling things like, "Can you sit down?!"  or "Focus people!!"  or  "If you have to pick your nose, don't wipe it on your homework, use a tissue!"

When I was a kid I had homework but it wasn't much and it was easy.  (not cause I was smart, but cause the world was easy).  "Fun" is all I remember...playing outside for hours. 

I try to make their homework fun or when learning complicated boring spelling words, every word with a letter F, you have to say "fart." (doesn't work with PH!)  It's fun, ridiculous, but at least I can break from being police lady and have a giggle too.

Any more creative homework ideas to cease the inner-yelling-boss?

Bad Santa

My four year old has been talking about Santa and what he wants for Christmas.

Last Sunday we went to a party where Santa comes and brings a gift for each child.  My four year old opens the gift, runs to me and shouts, "I didn't order THIS!"

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Whoa to the Holidays!

Nothing like a death in the family to make you wonder why relatives have to die around Christmas.

Can't they wait a few weeks?  Don't they realize we have crap to do?

Grandma always compared her life to Jesus's...maybe this was her way of saying, "Ha, told you!"

Either way, a death at the holidays reminds us this visit is short.  So...go hug those you love and as you do tell them how much they mean to you.  In a blink of an eye, you may not get another chance, and if they check out early, you'll know, while they were here, they knew they were loved.

laurie mcdermott is a comedian, host and commentary.   

Thursday, December 02, 2010

At the Mall...

My husband came home from the mall and was excited, "Hey I saw Doug and Judy at Starbucks!"

"No way!?  How is their daughter?  What were they doing?"

"...oh...I didn't talk to them.  I said I saw them."

(And that is the difference between Men and Women.)

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Man Talk....

Last weekend we went to a party for my middle child's grade. My husband, on cue, complained the whole way as if trying to convince me to turn around and go home, "Who will I know?" "What is it for anyway?" "Why are they doing it on a Saturday?"

When we arrived I sent him into the wolves to get us drinks. He comes back fifteen minutes later and said he met a really cool guy and we should have them over for dinner soon. He then goes back outside to finish their conversation.

An hour later, he's still talking to this same guy, laughing and having a great time. I then see who he is talking to....oh was Tom Bradey. The Tom and Jane who with all their kids are moving to Georgia in two weeks. Everyone at the party as well as the school knew for months...except my husband.

On the ride home, after my husband spent the whole party talking Tom, he was so happy, "I had such a great time. That guy, Tom, reminded me of all my friends back east."

I asked him if he mentioned where they lived. "No..."
Did you talk about how many kids he had? "No..."
Did you talk about where he was from...? "No..."
What did you talk about? "Football...mostly...."

I couldn't even bare to tell him his new friend was moving across the country and would be gone before our next gas bill arrived.

So I didn't. I just said, "See what happens when you listen to me? You will always have a good time...."

He's such a man.