That time I had to call Poison Control – a Flashback Friday post

23 Jan

Sometimes, I feel bad for all you readers, because when my teens were just rugrats, well, they kept me on my toes!

Like the time I had to call Poison Control.

No, not that time..

…not that time either…

That particular time I called Poison Control was when Sean was a toddler.  Sean was an amazing toddler who walked at 8 months, who could maneuver his little 50th percentile self up and over the crib rail at 14 months, who inverted the crib tent once, who wiggled an arm out of the papoose at the ER to slap the doctor stitching up his forehead after he fell “surfing” on the gliding ottoman…

Needless to say, I kept everything really high or locked up.  The top of my fridge was a ridiculous mishmash of knives and scissors and Sharpies.  If I wanted to clean something, first, I’d have to get a stepstool, because all cleaners were put up higher than even I could reach (okay, low bar, I’m short.) He was the sweetest kid though, which made up for the fact that I could never rest while he was awake.

Meanwhile, I have always had a water bottle for my hair, just a little sprayer to tame my hair down or revive my curls now.  Sean thought the little spray bottle of water was the coolest thing, and would walk around the house spraying water into his mouth.  Which was a step up from when he would lick everything.  Yeah, he was a sensory seeker, that toddler.

So that day, as I was sitting on the couch, I heard the sound of a spritzer – which was normal – but then I heard 2 yr old Sean go “Ew!”

I turned, and saw he was holding a bottle of Fabreeze.

I didn’t even question how he got it.  I never left anything low, but the boy was a magical monkey child who could get things he shouldn’t, despite my best efforts.  I sighed, took the bottle of Fabreeze from him, and dialed 1-800-222-1222.

Yes, I have that number memorized.

“Poison Control, how may I help you?”

“Yeah, I think my two year old just drank Fabreeze and I need to know what to do.”

“Are you sure he drank it?”

“Well, I didn’t see him do it, but his breath is really fresh.”

There was a snort, some choking, and then an apology from the nice Poison Control Center man for laughing.

“No, it’s okay to laugh.” I said.

At the time Fabreeze was still new, so he looked it up, and said to give Sean milk or something, and then just watch him for vomiting, etc.  Sean was fine, he figured out after a spritz that Fabreeze didn’t taste good.

When I told my friend that I was going to start buying all natural cleaners so that when my kids drank the stuff, at least it would be natural, she laughed – because she thought I was kidding.

I wasn’t.

And Sean did survive his childhood and grew to be a really laid-back teen who is more selective in what he ingests.

monkey boy

monkey boy


Following the leader

22 Jan

Maura has this weird habit in the mornings.  We get her up, we get her ready, etc…and then she follows me about the house.

I don’t know if she learned it from the dogs, or the dogs learned it from her, but on any given morning, I could be rushing about and have one child and two dogs hot on my heels.  We live in a split level house, and so it’s five stairs up to bedrooms, five stairs down to family room, main level in the middle.  Which means it gives Maura multiple levels to, say, hide her shoes.  I’ll go try to hunt them down, only to turn around and find a traffic jam of girl and dogs on the stairs.

It’s one of those little things that drives me batty.  Absolutely batty.  Every time, I’ll say “Wait here.” and every time she’ll follow me.  The dogs I can kennel or put outside at least.  But Maura will always follow.

Part of the problem I have with it all is that I’m trying to rush and hurry and get the thing we need quickly.  Maura doesn’t do quickly.  I will be down the stairs, grabbing the thing, and halfway back when I run into her as she tries to keep up.  So then I must herd her back to the main level.  If we’re cutting it close to the bus’s arrival, it’s especially frustrating, because I was trying to do that one quick last minute thing and now, time has to stop so Maura can follow me back.

Granted, when she decides to go get something, she can disappear instantly.  It’s one of her tricks.

This morning, I realized I reached a new parenting low.  Because after having to climb around both Maura and the little dog, and losing Maura because she was trying to find her new book to bring to school, and figuring out that it was the book she wanted to find, I told her “Wait here, I’ll go find it.”

I started down stairs, and she started to follow.

“No…stay here….stay here….stay….good girl.”

And I realized what came out of my mouth.


Bad mom…bad!


It’s our Monday, So Let’s Go

20 Jan

Since yesterday was a day off (thank you MLK, for everything!), today is sort of the first day of the new week.  And boy, we made it a Monday, by accidentally sleeping in, and an argument in the school parking lot.  Oy.  Coffee me!

I have also seemed to have gathered a lot of new followers, so welcome to the blog!  I hope I don’t scare you off!

If you’ve been on my Facebook page may have seen my new photo up there.  If you haven’t, here it is…


from the top of my bookshelf…


Yes, there’s a Velveteen Rabbit and a British phone box light, a peacock and a vintage typewriter, and my most precious Kermit the Frog Muppet News mug that my grandma gave me as a child…but…

See the sign?


Yeah, it’s there to make me laugh.

See, once upon a time, I was visiting a friend who just had her second baby, helping out for the week.  There was one afternoon where I had to take the screaming newborn as she wrangled the two year old, who was also screaming, and out of my mouth popped the words “Oh yeah, you’re just living the dream!”

And we laughed, and laughed, and laughed.  Because the moment was ridiculous, as only two year olds can make it.  And wrangling screaming children is no one’s idea of a dream.

After that, it became our catch phrase for when life got ridiculous.  Which it does, often.  So when, a couple years ago, I walked into a store and found this sign hanging on a rack for sale, I literally, honestly, burst out laughing in the store.  Then bought two, and sent one to my friend.

This hangs right behind my desk, with my other precious yet ridiculous mementos, as a reminder that it’s okay to laugh about the ridiculousness that is my life sometimes, but also, in a way, to remind me to keep dreaming.  My life?  It’s pretty darn good actually, even with the occasional shit storms and stress.  And the times it’s not, well, I have friends who’ll help me find a way to keep laughing, no matter what.

And in that perfect segue…

Me, Alan, and Miriam (how adorable is my daughter???) Nov '14

Me, Alan, and Miriam (how adorable is my daughter???)   Nov ’14

So Alan Doyle, one of my favorite singers, and from the band Great Big Sea, has a new solo album is out today, and the first track, “So Let’s Go”, is just one of those songs that remind you, life is short, so get going.  Make the most of it while you can.  Which is something life with Maura has taught me – how to make the most of it, embracing the ridiculousness as we go along with laughter.

If you like the song, go buy the whole album!  Support your artists, buy their stuff! 





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