A Manic MOM-versation

downloadMOM:  Slow down.

ME (unloading groceries from the car): What?

MOM: Slow down.

ME:  This is my speed.

MOM: You and Jeff move too fast; it’s not healthy.

ME (pausing): What?

MOM: It’s not good. Moving that quickly is unhealthy.

ME: Where do you think we learned it?

MOM:  Your father.

 

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A Visit from Saint Keri

‘Twas the night before my first day of school, when all through the horde, all the creatures were stirring, chewing, and digging.

Honey, in all her puppy cuteness, decided to dig while I sipped what I thought would be my last weekday wine for a while.

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(See, she is cute.)

Dirty paws and a dirty nose meant that the two of us would take a bath. So, I filled the tub in my lavatory. After wrestling Honey into the tub and into the water, I realized the puppy shampoo was in the guest bath.

I told her to stay.

Yea, right.

She did not stay.

While I dashed from the bath, through the bedroom and into the guest bath, Honey followed. Well, it was more like she chased me — dripping wet and shaking water EVERYWHERE.

Diesel, Houston, Booker, Gus and Betty White let me know that someone was at the door.

Snatching a towel, I wrapped it around myself and darted down the stairs.

Saint Keri was at the door with  a BACK-TO-SCHOOL Survival Basket!

What was inside the basket will make me a better teacher.

First, I’ll be happy because I ate a delicious cookie after re-wrangling Honey into the tub.

 

The “My cat is a Democrat” magnet is already on the back of the Element. People are always shocked to learn that I have cats. They won’t be surprised that they are Democrats.

I’ll wear “Love Wins” tomorrow. (How perfect after #Charlottesville!)  I am grateful for empathetic friends that make me a better teacher.

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Gum, lip balm and hand sanitizer — classroom essentials. No one likes a teacher with dragon breath and dry lips.

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The wine and drinking buddies will stay at the Hooker House. Coming home to tea, bath ice cream, facial products, and aromatherapy will make every day a holiday when I return.

 

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Another Maltese MOM-versation

The Newsroom RING TONE calls to me from my phone at 9:30 pm.

MOM CELL (because she refuses to give up her landline and only calls me on her cell phone because my 435 area code is long distance) appears on the screen

ME:  Is she okay?

MOM:  Julie?  Julie? Can you hear me?

ME:  Yes.  Is Betty White okay?

MOM: I have to tell you that I’m spoiling your little girl.

ME:  Good. She deserves it. What are you doing?

MOM:  Well, she didn’t eat all of her food and I remembered how much Diesel like graham crackers so I smashed a half of graham cracker into crumbs and she at ALL of it.

ME:  I bet she’s happy.

MOM:  Well, she didn’t cry as much today. But, when she wakes up, she puts her nose in the air and just cries for you.IMG_1424

ME:  I don’t believe that. I don’t even think she likes me.

MOM:  And, she’s so good about going outside. She just went outside and did a poo.

 

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A Maltese MOM-versation

 

MOM (holding Betty White on her lap in the car):  Do you have any idea how old she really is?

ME:  Dixie thinks 20. We thought she was 15 when she came to live with me.

MOM:  Well, I hope she doesn’t expire while she’s with me.

ME: She is going to outlive all of us.

MOM:  What would I do if she expired?

ME:  She won’t.  Her little joints a fluid and her heart is strong.

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A Medical MOM-versation

Most often, a MOM-versation makes me laugh — hard and for a really long time.

Growing up, when I whined, “That’s not fair,” my dad asked, “Who said life was fair?”

Now I believe that life grows increasingly less fair with each passing year.

Nine days ago, mom pulled up next to a mailbox. However, her “next to” was a little too far away. So, she opened the door, put her left foot on the ground and reached to put her envelope inside.

Having forgotten to put the Honda in park, it started to roll — dragging her with it.

40 feet later, the Honda mounted a curb and stopped at a second curb just outside the Kentucky Fried Chicken. (Ironic? Perhaps. My second job was at a KFC. I lasted five weeks. But, thank God for the double curb at the Colonel’s on 33rd South.)

A pair of good samaritans scooped mom up and drove her home.

Since mom didn’t want to tell her children, “dear Cousin Lynn” (yep, that’s what mom calls her) drove up, dug the gravel out of mom’s knee and bandaged it.

The next day, mom told me because “dear Cousin Lynn” said, “If you keep secrets from Jeff and Julie, they will keep secrets from you.”

To celebrate the 24th of July, Pioneer Day (Pie and Beer Day), mom and I visited the Urgent Care. There, she received antibiotics and a tetanus shot.

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One week later, the bandaging was still sticking to the open skin and making it bleed. Mom wanted to see her “wonderful doctor.” So, we did.

Wearing the same house dress because she can “pin it and my garments up to keep anything from rubbing against my knee,” she didn’t smile as they peeled back the bandage.

Doctor:  Tell me what happened.

Mom:  (Reviewed the accident; see above.)

Doctor:  Any other accidents?

Mom (hesitant, but honest) described the accident that totaled her Toyota Camry, the milk incident, etc.

Doctor:  Let’s talk about your driving. I think you’re a nice person. You don’t try to hurt people, but it looks like you hurt people when you drive.

Mom was quiet.

Mom:  Julie doesn’t think I should drive. But, Jeff, our son, said I can drive if I stay off the freeways and don’t drive at night.

Doctor: It’s time to stop. I’m telling you this because I care about you.

The doctor said he would notify the DMV.

Mom thanked him profusely.

But, I saw a few tears. I heard a sigh.

Mom:  I won’t be able to drive to Cafe Rio to get my tostada salad by myself.

Me:  I’ll take you.

This MOM-versation hurt both of us.

Me:  I’m proud of you.

Mom:  You were right.

Me:  I wish I wasn’t.

Mom:  I know.

Me:  Dad would be proud of you.

Mom:  Oh, no. He’d be disgusted.

Me: No. He is proud. You are brave.

 

 

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In Our Element (with vomit)

Loading four dogs into the Element with mom seemed like a good idea. After all, who wouldn’t want to go for a scenic ride down the canyon to play in her grass-filled backyard?

Booker T. Washington Hooker sat on mom’s lap. Houston and Diesel enjoyed the view from the back. Honey kept trying to peak out the front window and leaned over the console.

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MOM:   Oh, I hate to ask, but could you get off at 39th South so I can cash a check at my bank?

ME:  No problem.

HONEY (at the light):  BARF.

Up came Honey’s breakfast — a mix of pumpkin, kibble, yogurt, and coconut oil — all over the middle console that doubles as a cooler, the emergency break, the cupholders, and the seat belts.

Since it was nice and chunky, I grabbed it by the handful and hurled it out my window. However, I didn’t have a wet wipe to clean my hands. So, to my mother’s horror, I wiped the chunky bits on the inside of my strapless dress.

After helping the dogs into the shady backyard and filling up bowls with water, I began the kibble cleanup. Mom pulled out a box of “rags;”  turns out, they were my old floral printed panties and Jeff’s tidy whities.  Who uses 30-year-old child’s underwear for rags? MOM.

The Woolite fabric cleaner in the garage cupboard was so old, it wouldn’t spray.

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Pulling out the floor mats, cupholder, and cooler, I wiped and hosed down the parts of the Element.

Still stinking of the vomit wiped on my dress, Mom offered me a house dress.

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ME:  I can’t wear one of those!  What if I get pulled over in the canyon?

MOM:  Well, if you borrowed one of my house dresses, you’d be more modest.

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Summer School Lessons for a Middle-Aged English Teacher (Lessons #1 – 16 plus a question)

  1.  It is a bad idea to start painting the deck at 1:30 in the afternoon.
  2. A better idea would have been to write the graduation card that I couldn’t write because I was too emotional.   18951397_10155403543839451_3446220325217752634_n
  3. Another better idea would have been to unload the dishwasher.
  4. An even better idea would have been to fold and put away the piles of clothes on my dining room table.
  5. It is a bad idea to start painting the deck with less than a 1/2 gallon of stain.
  6. It is a bad idea to go to go to WalMart in sweatshorts, a t-shirt, a hat, and big dark glasses because you boycotted HomeDepot because the co-founder endorsed Trump.
  7. It is a bad idea to buy stain the color of red cedar wood; turns out it is a stain with a color.
  8. It is a really bad idea to paint the top railing of the deck and then bend over to paint the sides.
  9. Painting and impatience do not go together.
  10. Sticking a big brush in a small ruins separates the bristles and makes it so the brush can’t hold paint.
  11. Paint splatters.  Paint flips. IMG_2128Fortunately, the dogs think the drips, the flips, the splatters look like a Jackson Pollock. Since it is their backyard, I’ll just leave it.
  12. Painting barefoot is a bad idea. When you walk on the paint, it tracks inside.
  13. Stain resistant carpet is not resistant to stain.
  14. Vegetable oil removes stain from your skin.
  15. Vegetable oil is slippery.
  16. If I slipped and fell in the bathtub, covered in vegetable oil, would the dogs eat me before my friends found me?
  17. Cut your losses. Just put it all in the garbage.IMG_2120.jpg
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