August 2007 Archives

The grocery store trip


This week's column concerns the hellacious experience endured by every parent at one time or another: The Grocery Store Brat Attack. Whenever I approach a grocery store with my two children my ovaries scream and shut down.

I've gotten a lot of e-mail over this piece already this morning, but an alarming amount of it scolds me for "not disciplining" my children. Rest assured, I do discipline my children.

While Liam's antics were relatively minor, the kid had just received a shot of adrenaline not thirty minutes prior to stem off an allergic reaction to his shot. That figured into consideration. See? I do have some mercy. Ewan was also disciplined. However, any parent that says their children listened and obeyed in the store immediately after discipline is a lying liar and I call BS on you. If you have magical talents, screw you for not sharing with the class!

Lastly, I'm sick today. It feels like I've gargled razors.
Also, I've been really slow responding to e-mail last week because of all the VBS stuff. Please don't take it personally, I try to reply to some but am just not able to do so with all. I love that you write and I read every bit in my inbox. Thanks!

Going home


Andi left this morning with a barrage of backpacks and carry-ons in tow. She's headed back to that wooded little crevice in the Ozark hills, the tiny little town that time forgot, with its one stop sign, small restaurant, and alcohol problem, back to where the majority of my family lives. Her school starts in a little over a week and she'll resume her varsity volleyball duties. In the meantime, her album will go into the hands of music executives. While I hate for her to return to that town where opportunities are few and so many become trapped by alcohol and drugs, it's still the hub of her adolescent life.
She'll finish her senior year in January and then she's moving back to St. Louis permanently.

I will miss having another girl in the house for completely selfish reasons; it's much easier to get your way against a man when you have another female on your side because generally, men are too terrified to take on more than one female at once. I'll miss the way that she noticed when I wore eyeliner on my upper lid, or how she appreciated the difference in the many heel heights. I will not miss how her dead car has been in our driveway for five weeks and her parents have not moved it and I'm going to scream. I will EMPHATICALLY NOT MISS the way the boys! THE BOYS called at all hours of the night to talk to her, nor will I miss how her brains seeped out of her ears anytime she was in close proximity of another 17-year-old male. I will not miss how she likes the hoosier-looking, mullet-esque bad boys instead of guys like Scott here (foreground). Seriously, who would not like Scott? Oh, that's right, ANDI WOULDN'T. Because she wants to kill me.

I will not miss the interesting dichotomy created by her virtually rule-free world and our parenting style. Uh, yeah, no you can't go to such-and-such party with this 23-year-old guy who has a girlfriend where I seriously doubt that you will not drink any beer, do I look stupid to you? Seriously. Do I? Do you think that I was NEVER 17 once? And 23-year-old guy: Hi! You don't know who my family is because if you did you'd be running for the hills, where they'd all most likely be waiting for you anyway, swinging ball bats that they keep in their cars. Those are just THE WOMEN. I've already told you to tread lightly because some of us own pig farms.

The town where she comes from, where my family is, is such an odd little country town. It's not sleepy; it just looks the other way. During her two-month stay here we tried to expose her to as much of the city as possible, to show her that cool things lay beyond the reach and shadow of those Ozark hills. I also laid it on thick about how she should not get knocked up and stay away from this fellow she's been talking to, a boy with a bowl haircut, who looks as though Moe from the "Stooges" cut his hair. Chinstrap, we call him, because Chris always makes himself laugh hysterically by asking if the fellow's hair came with one.

She'll be back in January. Lots of things will be happening by that time.

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