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She’s as crafty as the rest of us

23 Jul

Today, I bribed Maura into taking a shower by promising Starbuck’s. She prefers baths over showers, but I didn’t want to devote our whole morning into luring her out of said bath tub, so bribery it is.

Okay, selfish bribery because I like Starbuck’s too.

So we get all cleaned and groomed and brush our teeth and do our hair, and then she wanders to my room, comes back, and hands me my sandals.

Then shows me a receipt.

“Look! Starbuck’s!”

But it’s a Target receipt.

“That’s Target.” I say.

“Yes.” Maura agrees.

Realization dawns. “You want to go to Target…which has a Starbuck’s.”

“YES!” Maura replies happily.

“You just conned me into taking you to Target. Wow. You’re craftier than even I give you credit for.”

Collin, sitting by us, pipes in. “Well, she IS part of this family.”

Yes…yes she is…and we’re a shifty lot…

But since I abandoned Maura with her brother for three days while I went to a writer’s conference, I guess I shall indulge the girl. Even if she’s a bit shifty in her ways. It’ll be a sacrifice, going to Target AND Starbuck’s, but these are the lengths a Mom will go to ensure her child’s happiness.

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The one where I try to leave the house

26 May

Monday nights, my friend Not Jenn and I have a standing date. Sure, it’s because her kid has a thing near my house and she has time to kill, but that’s just how us parental units roll these days.

So Monday, I got ready to leave. My eldest looked at me, looked at Maura happily watching tv, and asked “You couldn’t possibly leave via the side gate?”

Me, for one second – Son, I will leave this house however I dang well please.

Also me – realizing that Maura has a tendency to reenact the platform scene from “Sophie’s Choice” as she begs me not to go – “You have to go move the brick from in front of the gate.”

Yeah, we have high-tech security to ensure Maura’s safety – or in this case, a cement block on the outside of the gate so she can’t escape the yard. (Yes, there’s also a latch. But some OT taught her how to manipulate latches.)

I make my escape unbeknownst to Maura, and go to the other side of my car to hide from here while I wait for Not Jenn to come get me. Which is a bit silly as my car is a Fiat 500 and I’m actually taller than it. But not by much, so it’ll be fine.

As I play on my phone, I suddenly hear terrified squeaking. I look up and across the street from me, a scene from Wild Kingdom has decided to play out. There is a tiny baby bunny, a mama bunny, and a crow. The crow is trying to get the baby bunny. The mama bunny hops at the crow. The baby bunny then hides under mama. The crow still tries to get the baby.

So I step into the street (we’re on a side street, it’s not that wide) and do the whole “Not today Crow!” thing while yelling shoo and waving my purse.

The crow leaves.

And I realized I’ve just been loud.

I hear Maura’s voice through the open window. “Mom? Mooom? Where Mom?”

Crap.

So I ducked behind the car.

 

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me, hiding behind my tiny car, looking perfectly normal

 

Meanwhile, I’m watching the bunnies. Mama bunny hops back up onto the curb. The baby bunny – who’s like the size of a large hamster – tries to get up the curb. But the curb is huge compared to him.

Now I’m trying to figure out what to do. If I go over and scoop the baby bunny up, will mama bunny run off? Will mama bunny launch herself onto my face? I don’t really know. So I watch and wait. Baby bunny tries the curb again, and manages to stretch its tiny little self up enough to reach the top and then scoots its little bunny butt up over the curb and reunites with mama bunny.

Hooray!

But then they just stay there.

I’m like “Woman, take your baby home for crying out loud!” But she won’t. Maybe because I’m there. Then baby bunny crawls under her for a while, and I’m like “Awww…baby’s still nursing.” And then mama bunny hops to the side – knocking her baby right back off the damn curb and onto the street again.

And now I’m crouched on the side of my car cursing at this failure of a mama rabbit under my breath. “Get on the street and take care of your baby!” I hiss.

Because obviously, I don’t care what this might look like to the neighbors.

You can picture it –

Neighbor – “Honey! That woman across the street is crouched behind a car muttering to herself. Is that normal?”

Neighbor’s Wife – “Does she have kids?”

Neighbor – “Yes.”

Neighbor – “Then yes, it’s normal. She’s probably just hiding from her own children.”

Meanwhile, mama bunny finally chose to go see what her own offspring was up to, and hopped down onto the street, following the bunny until it wiggled its tiny bunny butt back up onto the curb, and then they disappeared finally into shrubbery. Hopefully to where the mama bunny had some sort of bunny playpen to keep her offspring in.

And then my friend finally appeared, and I slinked into her car, disturbing neither bunnies, nor catching Maura’s attention.

And that, my friends, is how I leave the house.

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crappy cell phone pic of mama bunny – baby bunny is just to her lower left, on the street. Yes, he was tiny, and thank goodness, blends well.

 

 

 

Teenagers, ammirite?

9 May

So…I have that heard of teens and that one who dared to turn 21 this year. Which, in retrospect, is great, because I can send the 21 yr old on a wine run for me.

Never leaving the house for the win!

I love my teens. But I’m no fool. I know not to trust them with anything. I mean, if my grown siblings and I still can’t be trusted together, why should I trust my teens?

Case in point –

Sean (the second eldest, the spare to the heir) was blowing bubbles in the house the other night. Mainly to get the Zoey dog in a lather. Because Zoey is an idiot for bubbles and leaps about biting them all.

Collin (the heir to our kingdom) thought this was hilarious. And then thought “Why not drive the dog crazy by holding her?”

The dog was like “No sir! You will not keep me from killing every bubble!” and leapt from Collin’s arms to do so.

 

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Zoey chasing bubbles outside. See that crazy look on her face? Yeah.

 

I find out about all this as I walk in the next day with groceries. Because they’re blowing bubbles for the dog to attack. In the living room.

Then Collin produces a balloon. “I can’t believe we still have one left.”

See, Sean decided to cover someone’s bed in balloons on April 1st. Then the balloons were scattered over the living room. I don’t know who enjoyed it more – Maura or Zoey. Between the two of them, they eventually died.

Except one.

Which Zoey was now chasing between snapping at bubbles.

I, of course, ignore all this. Because this is what passes as normal in our house. As I walk away, I hear someone say the words “water balloon”.

“NOT IN THE HOUSE!” I yell back.

And the boys died laughing because they didn’t expect me to hear it.

Fools. My brother¬†and I – as teenagers – had an epic water fight which ended in a truce (he with the hose at the gate, me with a super soaker pointed into the window of his brand new pick up truck) and then having to mop the kitchen floor (it wasn’t me who was using the sprayer from the sink.)

I’m a gypsy raised by wolves, who produced her own carnival. We invented shenanigans, dear offspring of mine. I know all, see all.

And remember, Mother’s Day is coming. Buy me something hard to break.

 

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