Monday, November 22, 2010
  The Photo Would Have Been Worth 1000 Words But I Didn't Want to Get Arrested

My first impression on Saturday was that it was too warm, and too crowded. I was corralled shoulder to shoulder with others who gathered for a singular purpose, their eyes on a prize. Sensing the mood was every wo(man) for them self, I steeled myself for the competition.
Not at the Rothman 8K run. That was a blast, and I would definitely do another race. No, this was later Saturday. At the mall. I am not used to Saturdays at the mall. I am usually at work, and hit the stores on my Wednesdays Off. It's a totally different experience. One that validates my choice to shop online this Christmas season.
The CP wasn't too happy about being at the mall either. Like many males of any age, he would rather be playing than shopping. Making matters even worse in his opinion, we were shopping for clothes.
The childrens apparel store was a mob scene. There was so much merchandise packed onto the racks you couldn't squeeze between them. Trying to maneuver a stroller was out of the question so Sarcas-sis took the ZM out into the mall to get a pretzel. The CP and I were left to pick out an outfit for the annual Santa photo op. He quickly picked out a sweater, a shirt, and a pair of pants. Surprisingly I got no argument when I said he had to try them on. We pushed our was to a doorway in the back of the store where it said FITTING ROOMS in big blue child like letters. Or perhaps it said fitting ROOM as there was only one. And on this Saturday , the fitting room was doing double duty as a storage area. One side was taken up with boxes, a couple of child size mannequins, and some spare parts . The CP thought a set of unattached legs set upside down on the floor were hilarious.
I locked us in the room and gave the CP the clothes to try on.
"Mom Mom, turn around" he said.
What was this? Modesty? Where did that come from all of a sudden? How cute he is !
I turned my back to him and heard the clothes rustling.
"Mom Mom , look at me"
I turned, expecting to see the CP in his Christmas finery.
Instead, I saw the CP, wearing only a pair of socks and a smile, striking a pose in among the mannequins.
"Hey Mom Mom ! I look just like this guy !' he said nodding at the nearest one.
Well, yes, except that only one of you is anatomically correct.

When I told Sarcas-sis, she laughed. When I told Sarcasdad he said I had to blog about this so we can remember. And so we can tell the first girlfriend he brings around. Sarcasmo Jr. agreed and said we could just give this future girlfriend my blog URL so she can read this, and the air guitar post. I had forgotten about the air guitar.

Let me leave you with this. Last years Christmas photo. I don't think we will ever top this one, no matter what the kids are wearing.

Rhys. & Zoe

Monday, November 08, 2010
  The Difference is in the Extra Mom

I have a pantry closet in the breakfast room, that our 1 year old ZM loves to visit. She likes to clear off the bottom shelf, most likely because it is the right level for her to reach everything. She takes the paper towels and the tissues and carries them to some other part of the house. When she gets to the Ritz crackers she shakes the box at me until I get her one, and when she gets to the chocolate Cheerios she helps herself. If I don't get to her quickly enough she turns the box over and dumps them on the floor. So I though it prudent to merely keep the door closed.
The closed door did not thwart the ZM. Nope. Finding it not ajar, she stretched herself until her hand was on the doorknob. Either she did not know to turn it, or her hand is still too small to manage it. Denied access she tried another tactic.
She stood nose to door, curled up her left fist, and ever so softly, but insistently, knocked on the wooden door.
You know I opened that door for her.
When I told the story to her Mom, she said that the difference between us is that she wouldn't have opened the door.
When I was Mom I wouldn't have opened the door either. But Mom Mom's heart apparently melts at a much lower degree of cute.
I have told this story to lots of people now. When I get to the part about her knocking on the door, all the grandmoms say "awwwww". All the Mom's jump in with horror stories about food stains on furniture and rugs.

Sunday, November 07, 2010
  The Magic Dollar

When you work in retail you are provided with a front row seat to the best and the worst in human interaction. Parent-child relations are no exception. I have seen things that made me angry, made me sad, and made me worry for the future. And then I saw this:

Yesterday, a father and son were in the checkout line at the store. The boy was about 3, and had a mop of blond curls and an angelic face. He was captivated by the crane machine that stands in the front of the store. The father said that if the boy was good and patient while they finished the shopping he could have a try at winning a stuffed toy. Not another word was said until the father had his receipt and change in his hand. Making good on the deal he walked the little boy to the crane machine. With a bit of a flourish he pulled a dollar bill from his pocket.

"See this?" he said to the boy. "This is a magic dollar. Because whether you win or not, you will have fun playing"

I think the machine give you two tries for a dollar. As far as I am concerned it is full of dust collectors, and I have been known to tell small children who cannot yet read that it is out of order so they stop badgering their parents for money.

They put the dollar in and pressed start. The Dad offered advice and encouragement, but let the boy work the crane and push the button. Two tries , but no toy came tumbling out of the chute.

"Did you have fun?" the father asked. The boy nodded enthusiastically and skipped out holding his father's hand.

All of us who bore witness voted it the best moment of the day.

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