I’m Going On A Cruise

I’m going on a cruise. Today. By the time you read this I will be T minus 2 hours from leaving for the airport (that’s if you dropped everything and read this immediately after you saw I posted it. Which I assume you did.) I can’t tell at this point if I’m totally excited, or completely freaking out. All I know is that I am a ball of nervous energy and I feel like I’m going to throw up.

I’m going on this cruise without my kids.

I’m going on this cruise without my husband.

I’m going on this cruise with my friends.

Oh my God, I’m so freaking excited. And yet, as I mentioned, somewhat aghast that I am actually doing this.

My husband hasn’t gone away for a long weekend in a while, but there was a time, when the kids were all littler, that he would go away once a year for a ski vacation with his brothers and some of their friends.

I don’t remember him pacing the floor like I have been doing. I don’t remember him thinking that maybe he suddenly has the stomach bug, or the flu. I don’t remember any kind of emotional freak out at all.

Clearly we handle this kind of thing totally differently.




October: OMIGOD!! I booked a cruise! With just my fellow moms. No kids. NO. KIDS! Wheeee! I can’t believe it! I can’t wait! This is the best thing I’ve ever done. I. Can’t. Wait.

November: My cruise is in 4 months. FOUR!!! I can barely sleep at night I’m so excited! I can’t stop imagining just lying on a lounge chair, sipping a fancy drink, perusing through a gossip mag, and chatting and laughing with my friends. No kids to worry about. No one to take to the bathroom 8 gazillion times. No one who is hungry but hates all the food that is offered. No one having a meltdown because they are overtired. I can’t wait. This is the best thing I’ve ever done.

December: 3 months until my cruise. I’m practically giddy! Should probably start my diet…but that would be ridiculous to start during the holiday season. Yea, I’ll def start my diet after the new year. I can’t believe I’m going on a cruise! Moms only!! This is the best thing I’ve ever done!

January: 2 months away. Sailing to the Bahamas. Blue water, sunny skies. No kids. I’m so excited that I can’t stop eating! No worries, I can get myself into tip top shape in 2 months. Easy peasy. This is the best thing I’ve ever done.

February: My cruise is next month! This doesn’t even seem real! I’m so lucky! I’m so happy! I’m so excited! Wow, February is a REALLY short month. I should def start eating better. I’ll start next week. This is the best thing I’ve ever done.

March: My cruise is at the end of the month? 30 days? How did that creep up on me? I’m so excited! I can probably still lose 10 pounds if I try really hard. Most of it is water weight anyways. Probably.

End of March: Oh. My. God. I’m going on a cruise in ONE week?! Why am I doing this? What was I thinking? I’m not ready! I’m not prepared! The kids have school, and sports, and homework, and all kinds of stuff. I need to make a list. I need to make a schedule. My poor husband. How is he going to do it all? HOW? Wait, calm down. I do it all. He can do it all. He’s not even worried or concerned. He’s just like, “write stuff down so I know where to be.” Okay. Don’t panic. Shit…I’m panicking. Why did I think this was a good idea? Why? There is so much to prepare. Soccer is starting. Baseball is starting. Everyone needs their respective sports clothes, and cleats, and shin guards… I’m going to have to do all the laundry in the house. It is the only way. And I need to grocery shop so that there is plenty of food. And I need to scrub the whole house top to bottom so that it is more organized and everyone can find what they need.  Oh, shit! Shit, shit, shit.  My car! It is a disaster! I need to clean the whole thing out. I was supposed to get an oil change and get my tires rotated. Damn it! There is no time! What if I forget something?! What if I leave a loose end that needs to be tied up?! What. Was. I. Thinking?! This is the stupidest thing I’ve ever done.




October: Oh, by the way, my ski weekend is booked.




February: (Throws a few items into a bag) Alrighty, see you Sunday night. Kiss.





Running Away From Home


When your 10-year-old runs away from home (for 15 minutes), you think it is going to be pretty straightforward. But it’s not.

Yesterday my 10-year-old was mad about something. I don’t really know what. He may have been over-reacting…but whatever. I figure he is entitled to be mad about something even if it is an over-reaction. However, for some reason he ran outside and locked himself in my car. Which isn’t the best idea, so I made him get out. Which made him madder.

So he said he was going to run away.

So I said okay.

I dutifully yelled after him to stay on the sidewalks and to be careful of cars, as he took off running down the street (but on the sidewalk, yay for safety!) And I skipped back into the house to finish getting dinner together.

No biggie.

The way I saw it, it was just a matter of time before one of them fake ran away. (Yes, I briefly wondered if I should pull a Carol Brady and fake run away with him…but, no.)

I expected the fake run away. I barely batted an eyelash.

What took me by surprise was when all the other kids turned on me angry-mob style.

Angry Mob: Where’s Joey?

Me: Huh? Oh, he ran away.

Angry Mob: What?!

Me: Yeah, I know right? He took off running down the street.

Angry Mob: Why’d you let him run away?

Me: I didn’t let him. He just started running.

Angry Mob: Why didn’t you grab him?

Me: I don’t know. He was running. I would have had to run to catch him. It would have been ridiculous.

Angry Mob: So you just let him run away?

Me: Yes. Well, no. I mean I told him to stay on the sidewalks.

Angry Mob: WHAT?! It’s dark out!

Me: It’s not dark. It’s getting dark. It’s more like dusk. Plus, He didn’t really run away. He’s in the neighborhood somewhere. He’s probably hiding in the woods.

Angry Mob: We’re going to look for him.

Me: Okay. Just, um, you know, stay on the sidewalks. And don’t talk to strangers. And if you see a coyote you should probably run.

They’re so cute!

So there I am thinking about how I am SUCH a good mom that I raised these kids who are so nice that they formed a posse to go look for their brother (who I let run away.) All of which brought a tear of joy to my eye, quite frankly.

And it would have been all fine…except they couldn’t find him.


So my husband jumped into the truck to join the search. Which, again, would have been fine…except he couldn’t find him either.

So I joined in the search. Because I am his mother. And I will find that child.

And I did.

He was hiding in the car.

Isn’t that how this whole thing started? I was like, “Get out of the car. Now.”

And he did.

The search was called off, we all went in the house, and everything was quiet for 5 minutes.

Until Jess tripped over an ice cube (I’m serious), and started hysterically (fake) crying because she thought that she may (or may not) have stubbed her toe.

Which was immediately followed by Cooper and Harry discovering (simultaneously) that they each had at least one tick on them (from their search in the woods.)  Which was immediately followed by clothes being flung everywhere. (Even though I was yelling at them to put their clothes into one neat pile — so I could wash them, or burn them, whichever made the most sense.) Which was immediately followed by Cooper saying. “There was just a tick on me right here. Now I can’t find it.”


And it became perfectly clear that I SHOULD have pulled a Carol Brady. And I SHOULD have run away with Joey. Only not fake run away. For real run away. (Not “away” away. Just, like, to Target or something.) Yes, I should have packed up a red handkerchief, tied it to the end of a long stick, and run away to Target.

carol brady.jpg


Graphic Organizers in Real Life

I don’t usually talk politics. And I’m not about to start now. Except to say, “wow”. That’s it. Just “wow”.

What I really want to talk about is how I have finally found a use for the Venn Diagram in my every day life. I never thought I would need that snazzy little graphic organizer after middle school. But I’m delighted to say that it has finally come in handy.

A few weeks ago it was a beautiful day, so my girls and I went for a nice hike in the town forest. A nice short hike. Really more of a stroll. When we emerged from the woods I quickly realized that my (somewhat dramatic) 6-year-old daughter had clearly had a completely different experience than me. Or her sister. Or anyone really for that matter. Were we even ON the same walk? That is when I knew that a Venn Diagram was in order.

Venn Diagram2

You can clearly see that the only thing these two experiences have in common is that we both went for a walk in the woods. My walk was fun and leisurely, and really quite fab. Her walk was all chaotic and somewhat torturous filled with attacking dogs and extreme thirst.

This all got me to thinking… perhaps there were other graphic organizers from my middle school days that would come in handy now that I’m sort of an adult.


Cause and effect. Yup.

chain of events

Chain of events. Every single time.

This is fun! More! More!

KWL chart

I could really use a KWL chart throughout my day, as I have SO many questions that I would like to learn the answers to.

Last graphic organizer. Here we go…Character Map

Character Map

If only I knew how entirely fabulous graphic organizers where I would have paid WAY more attention in English class. Graphic organizers would have been my jam (that will only be funny to you if you watch The Bachelor. If you don’t watch The Bachelor then just try to forget I even said it.)