Posts Tagged ‘mother’s day’

Several Truths And One Big Lie About Mother’s Day

Tuesday, May 12th, 2015

I did not have an excellent Mother’s Day. I’m not saying that to make my family feel bad or shame anyone. I’m saying that because there’s a pretty good chance YOU didn’t have an excellent Mother’s Day either and I want you to know you’re not alone. Those perfect, smiling, happy families on Instagram and Twitter probably didn’t have flawless Mother’s Days either. They might have had a very nice day. A spectacular day. But it was not perfect – perfect is the lie. Kids – even kids big enough to understand the concept of Mother’s Day – don’t stop being kids just because it’s the second Sunday in May. Not once has saying “But it’s Mother’s Day!!” to a tantruming child solved the problem. They do not suddenly stop being tired or hungry or frustrated and pull a bouquet of flowers out from behind their back and say “Oh dear mother, I had simply forgotten! Shall I fetch you a coffee or a glass of wine?” If that is your life, Mother’s Day or not, I hate you.

The problem as I see it is that Mother’s Day is supposed to be Special and things that are supposed to be Special just lead to disappointment. That is why women become bridezillas about their One Special  Wedding Day and freak out that every single second doesn’t go according to plan. The pressure of that ONE DAY is just too much. Mother’s Day is the ONE DAY a year we are supposed to be indulged and pampered and appreciated above ALL the other days. Sleeping in and breakfast in bed and champagne brunch and a family picnic and a manicure and a relaxing nap and a romantic dinner date and a thoughtful gift and a homemade card and flowers and a bottle of wine. If you family really loves you, they will do all of that. Except no, they won’t. And even if you don’t really need them to…even if you try really really hard to keep your expectations super low…even if you say “I will be happy if all I get is a card the kids made at school”…it’s hard to stare into the face of social expectations and be OK with not having a perfect day.

I actually would have had a pretty good Sunday if it had just been a Sunday. I got to lie in bed for an extra hour. My husband picked up lunch for all of us. I got to buy and plant flowers with the kids. And we finished the day by having s’mores for dinner on the newly cleaned patio. But I also did laundry and dishes and changed diapers and made decisions (ugh, DECISIONS) and dealt with tantrums and took the kids with me to run errands and bought paper towels. I really didn’t want to have to buy paper towels on Mother’s Day.

Let me tell you what I really want for Mother’s Day. I want to be a dad on a regular Sunday. I’m making generalizations here for the sake of simplicity, but in my social circle moms are almost always the default parent; the one the kids go to first for everything no matter who is closer/more available at that moment. On Mother’s Day, I want to be the dad. The fun parent. I want to say “Everyone jump in the car, we’re getting ice cream!” and not worry about if it’s too close to dinner or if we need to stop at the grocery store later to pick up stuff for school lunch the next day. The fun parent pees alone. The fun parent has time to read a book or a magazine or the back of a cereal box without being interrupted. The fun parent doesn’t always have one ear open for children’s whines or screams or cries or problems or squabbles 24 hours a day. The fun parent says “We’re out of mustard” into the fridge and, magically, mustard appears 24 hours later.

And then MAYBE on Mother’s Day all of us default parents will get a card and a bouquet and a nap not because it’s our One Special Day but because the fun parent wants to do something to acknowledge being a mom is kind of a tough job.

But since I am not a monster, I did in fact enjoy many parts of my Mother’s Day. The big kids – Caroline especially – remembered it was Mother’s Day and reminded me constantly I was supposed to be having The Best Mother’s Day Ever. There were s’mores. And now whenever we sit on the front steps for the bus we can admire the flowers we planted, together.

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She said the plants needed love to grow.

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Mother’s Day Gardening (and A Giveaway!)

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

This post was written as part of my partnership with MiracleGro.

Growing up in New England, Mother’s Day = planting day for my mom. Any sooner and you’re pretty much guaranteed to get a late frost that kills everything, and then you have a dead garden and an empty wallet. So she would wait for early May and then spend Mother’s Day in the garden putting in plants and flowers.

I’ve been planting with the kids on Mother’s Day since they were old enough to help and they love it (OMG just LOOK at tiny 2012 Evan and Caroline planting with me!!) This year Caroline asked every day if it was Mother’s Day yet because she wanted to plant “her” garden. She requested “pink and purple and pink and purple and red” flowers.

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Sunday, May 18th, 2014

This week felt really, really long. But in a good way. A full way. Something about going away for the weekend to Mom 2.0 changed things at home – maybe we ALL needed a break from each other – and we’re all happier to be around each other. Despite spending an awful lot of the week in various waiting and exam rooms, we ended it in NYC proving our kids are really good sports (we made them walk everywhere) and really fun (when they aren’t driving us crazy).

Sunday:

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These are my “before” flowerpots, but that didn’t stop her from trying to take care of them.

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She asked for purple flowers to plant (I don’t even know what these are).

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Mother’s Day at Chili’s (again) calls for finger guns

Monday:

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Freezing, FREEZING cold water

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The gingers are unphased by cold

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So excited about her chocolate frog she forgot to take the plastic off.

Tuesday:

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She tied that all by herself.

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Thank God for iPads (during my NST)

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Wishflowers

Wednesday:

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Pweeeese we swim some more Mommy? Pweeeeeese?

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We bought cat food and paper towels and batteries at Walmart. She is hugging the batteries.

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Fawkes Phoenix is Evan’s new BFF

Thursday:

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Looking pensive about the rain

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In case you thought they were GOOD at posing for pictures.

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Sleeping Beauty

Friday:

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What is this weather even??

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Next year, SHE is going to be coming home on that bus.

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Another day, another visit to L&D

Saturday:

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When you get the Metro-North seats with the power outlet, you get to play Angry Birds all the way in to the city.

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Shake Shack is actually as good as everyone says.

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I think our last family picture (selfie or otherwise) was in October. We heart NYC.

And now I am literally going to crawl upstairs to bed because my left hip is broken (out of joint? sprained? can you sprain a hip?) and I can’t walk. I finally found my sense of direction in New York, but unfortunately it was because we walked EVERYWHERE. I’m pretty sure even the gingers are going to sleep in tomorrow.

Although I did get a super awesome new stroller that’s inspiring me to get back to Stroller Strides. Maybe if my hip pops back in we’ll actually make it this week.

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Mother’s Day in Photos

Friday, May 18th, 2012

Yeah, yeah, I know, Mother’s Day was like a zillion years ago and all the moms who REALLY appreciated their families already posted their recaps. What can I say, except maybe mine will remember to get me something next year.

The blankie she's wrapped in was my baby blankie, knit by my grandmother

Pallet petunia garden - we'll see if it holds up when I stand it against the fence

corona garden tools

Srsly, the greatest swag anyone has ever given me - Corona garden tools are the BEST

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Super Hero Evan!

Monkey-see, monkey-do

Super Hero Caroline!

Grill tray for nachos on the grill = genius

NO SAD FACES ON MOTHER'S DAY

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Giant marshmallows might have been the highlight of his year

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How Does Your Garden Grow?

Monday, May 9th, 2011

One of the drawbacks of living in New England is the RIDICULOUS AMOUNT OF TIME it takes for us to get to the flower-growing part of spring. Most years I jump the gun by about a month and all my flowers end up dead by the first of May, thanks to a late (and by late I mean not at all late because it happens every damn year) frost.I convince myself it’s totally normal to have to hack through a layer of frozen earth to get my pansies in the ground and not being able to feel my fingers because they’re so cold is just one of the joys of gardening. I can be a very convincing delusional person when I want to be. Especially on someone as gullible as myself.

This year I managed to wait until Mother’s Day – the unofficial start of flower season – before I wasted spent any money at the local nursery. We’re going to be doing a lot of planting in a few weeks when we put in our patio (I hope you’re ready for a billion pictures of bricks and rocks! And listening to me complain about how tired I am of having dirt under my nails! And how much my back hurts! GOOD TIMES AHEAD!) so I stayed away from the gorgeous hanging baskets and containers and stuck to stuff I’ve been able to keep alive in the past.

Some day, planting flowers will be a family activity on Mother’s Day, right after my husband brings me gourmet breakfast in bed and puts away all the laundry while the children play me songs on their violins and read poetry about how much I mean to them.

But until hell freezes over, I’ll settle for playing in the dirt with my kids.

She's participating by supervising. This is also how I help do things like install tile and mow the lawn.

Hobo baby is BACK for 2011

Look, he's helping! Just ignore that it's taking both of my hands to keep him from stabbing that poor basil plant with the trowel.

Dirt flinging is part of gardening with toddlers. I just embraced it.

Wow, my flowers aren’t the only thing with roots in those photos huh? HEY-OH! Time to grab a box of Nice’n’Easy.

Pansies & verbena by the back door

Pots on the front steps. My color theme for this year is yellow and orange with purple accents. Yeah, my flowers have a THEME. SUCK IT MARTHA STEWART.

I'm trying herbs again - basil and thyme and chives - but I'm not getting my hopes up. I've killed more basil than I've eaten in my entire life.

Freshly watered...um...orange flowers. I was going to say zinnias but I don't think that's right. Clearly I am a master gardener.

We had a wonderful time outside – all of us – and it was a nice reminder that fresh air is available right here in our own back yard! I often think about going to the park for some sunshine but talk myself out of it because it involves the car and driving and people and strollers and a potential screaming fit when it’s time to go home. But walking ten feet from my couch to the back steps is so easy I can do it even when I’m too lazy too put on real pants. I really can’t wait until we get our patio built and some nice loungy furniture to relax on while Evan rips my garden apart.

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