Saturday, November 29, 2008

Worst. Experience. Ever.

Well, I guess that might be exaggerating just a tad, but after I get into this you will be completely horrified. Trust me.

My youngest, the lovely Lena Lemon (daycare nick-named her that. Stupid nicknames are fine. Nicknames you can give up when you out grow them. Sorry Bronx Mowgli, you’re screwed forever), is a lucky lass because she has the most beautiful hair ever. It is a perfect strawberry blonde colour that holds the exact right amount of curl. You can give her one pony or two and her hair will immediately obey by forming perfectly soft and bouncy ringlets. She is SUPER cute.
She also goes to daycare with other people’s children who are not nearly as cute as she is. I can understand why these kids would feel jealous. Wouldn’t you be jealous if you had to spend all day with the most adorable person ever? I know I would be, but I don’t think I would feel the need to infect the beautiful person with BUGS. That’s right everyone, my beautiful little lady caught the lice.

As it turns out I am the worst mother of all time because it took the daycare to inform me Lena had lice. They phoned me at work to let me know that my daughter is super gross and I was to come and pick her up immediately. After throwing up in my mouth a little I left work, drove to the daycare and was immediately shamed. The director lady sat Lena on her lap, flipped her hair up and sure enough – tiny brown bugs crawling all up in my baby’s head. How did I miss that? Her hair is long, but it’s not super thick or anything. Surely if I was paying any attention whatsoever to this child I would have noticed the BUGS in her HEAD, right? I guess not. I suck.

Lena is only two years old so I had to give some thought as to how I was going to tell her about these bugs. She’s the kind of kid that could really go either way with that little bit of news; she would either (a) think it was cool, or (b) have a complete melt down and go totally hysterical for hours. As it turns out it was (c) – she couldn't have cared less. She was just so jazzed to be sprung from daycare early and was already planning an afternoon of riding the couch while eating her pudding cups, picking her nose and watching Treehouse with her buddy Elmo. Anyway, on my way home I stopped by the pharmacy and spent an obscene amount of money on lice killing paraphernalia in hopes of clearing this little problem up that afternoon. Yeah, not so much.

Not only did those little fuckers survive the first dose of ‘Lice Killing Shampoo’ (seriously – that is what it’s called. I naively assumed it would kill lice when you used it. Nope.), they managed to live through the hours of combing, laundry, picking at each individual strand of hair, more combing, more picking, some crying and screaming (from us both), more laundry, selective hair trimming and on and on and on. We went through this nightmare for seven solid days before I had to wave the white flag of surrender. Lena couldn’t deal with one more day of me picking at her head, I couldn’t stay up doing laundry and vacuuming until midnight anymore and I was totally out of ideas. I had also missed about five days of work trying to deal with this because she was banned from the daycare until she was declared cootie-free. Our lives had to go back to normal for the sake of us all so I came to an extremely painful conclusion…… I had to shave this girls head.

Here is Lena before –

Here is Lena after –

Still cute, yes, but I really miss her hair. The upside to this story? Lena sat perfectly still the whole time I was shaving her head and when we were finally done and she saw herself in the mirror sans hair for the first time do you know what she said? “I LOVE IT because now I look like JAKEY!”. My little strawberry blond princess was thrilled to bits because now she had the same haircut as her seven year-old brother.

I guess the ‘girl’ must not kick in until you’re three.

Friday, November 28, 2008

A sappy Christmas tale with a moral to bash you over the head

Now that November is drawing to a close I’m starting to feel all Christmas spirity (that is so a word). I really, really love Christmas. It’s definitely the best holiday by far, and it lasts for weeks. Most people start getting a little twitchy when they hear Rudolf the Red-nosed Reindeer for the hundredth time around December 20th, but I still sing along every time and I don’t even care if everyone feels like punching me.

This holiday seems to bring out the best in people, and I find that most people are much nicer and more giving this time of year. This is a pretty friendly town anyway, but the holidays seem to make people extra friendly. We even have a group of volunteers armed with quarters and Santa hats who wander around downtown during the month of December plugging parking meters that are about to expire. How cool is that?

I love Christmas every year, but there were a few years in the ol' FoN household that were pretty lean, to say the least. I remember a few times making the kids eat their cereal one at a time because they needed to share the bowl of milk. The argument in my house wasn’t whose turn it was to play on the computer; it was whose turn it was to get the fresh bowl of milk at breakfast.

This one Christmas was particularly bad and I was really sweating how I was going to make this holiday fun for the kids without gifts. Now, they wouldn’t have been totally deprived, the hubby and I both have fairly well-off extended families who always give the kids nice gifts at Christmas, but it REALLY sucks as a parent to have to choose between keeping the phone on and having something under the tree for your children come Christmas morning.

I didn’t exactly advertise the true dire straights of our financial position, so I’m not sure how many people really knew how poor we actually were (luckily I didn’t have many visitors for breakfast). At least one of our friends clued in though. I’m going to call her Donna.

Donna and her then husband Shit-for-Brains (he turned out to be quite the fucktard, but that’s a story for another time) called us up one night and asked if they could come over for a Christmas drink. I was initially panicked because not only did I not have any booze to offer them, I didn’t have ANY beverages to offer them. What was I going to say? “Sure! Come on over for a glass of tap-water cheer!”? Hearing my, ummm, uhh…..she quickly followed up by saying she had a bottle of rye and some coke she would like to bring. We didn’t get to see her very often so I said sure, come on over (a bottle of rye will get you in the door at my house every time).

Donna and S-f-B showed up about an hour later with a bottle rye, some mix, and a big bag of something. “What’s in the bag?” I asked. “Are you going to do your laundry while you’re here?” “No”, she said laughing. “We brought a few things over for the kids”.

In the bag that Donna brought were gifts for my kids – three gifts each, actually. She had them beautifully wrapped with their names on each, but nothing filled out in the ‘from’ tag. She then told me that she and Santa were buddies and that sometimes he gets her to help out on the extra busy years by delivering gifts for him a few days before Christmas if he doesn’t think he’ll make it to certain houses Christmas morning. The other four gifts, she said, were for me to give the kids because she knew how ‘busy’ I was and that I might not get a chance to go shopping.

I was so grateful to this woman that I almost started bawling right there; I didn’t even know what to say. Donna is not the type who goes looking for accolades, so she then promptly poured us all a stiff rye, put on some tunes and started dancing in my kitchen. We had a great night; had a few drinks, played some cards and didn’t mention the gifts she brought for us again.

I don’t see her that much anymore, maybe once or twice a year, but I will always remember what she did for us that Christmas. She probably doesn’t even remember doing it, but I will never forget the random kindness she showed us for no other reason than to make sure we had a good Christmas.

We’re not poor anymore, thank god. Not only do my kids all get their own milk with their cereal at breakfast time, but they have about four different types of cereal to choose from. My oldest daughter kind of remembers being poor, but my son has no recollection of it at all. If I told him he had to share his cereal milk today he would laugh hysterically at such a thought. The baby wasn’t yet born so she will grow up a privileged south-ender having no idea what going without whatever she needs is like. I’m simultaneously happy and horrified by that thought.

So the next time you’re in the store ready to go postal because the crowds and the Christmas carols are making you a little stabby, think of Donna and her bag of toys and bottle of rye. Then look around at your friends, neighbours, strangers, whoever, and go pull a Donna. Figure out what their bag of toys and bottle of rye is to them and go all Santa on their ass.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Whom doth rocketh??

Hey internet! J just earned 88% on her final Macbeth exam! Not only is she very clever but she has impeccable timing because about 30 seconds after I got the email from her English teacher (we were emailing anyway and she decided to share the good news) J called to see if she could have the new boy over. For the two hours that she's home after school without parental supervision. I was so loving her at that moment I said yes without really thinking. I kind of regret it now, but I do have a built in seven year-old spy on retainer so hopefully he'll keep me in the loop. I get the feeling sometimes he's a double agent though because whenever I ask him what went down while we were out and he says, “nothing” he usually has a ring of dried chocolate around his mouth.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Random Tuesday Thoughts for Keely


Why do some people not flush the toilet in public bathrooms? What makes them think I want to see their pee? Is it just straight up laziness, or are they in someway ‘proud’ of their discharge? We're women for god sakes - only men can get away with that kind of thing because they don't know any better.

Why do celebrities give their kids such ridiculous names? Ashlee Simpson just named her new son Bronx Mowgli. Unless you’re a cartoon character or a puppy that name is stupid. Can you imagine coming into this world the son of Ashlee Simpson and being named Bronx Mowgli? That kid is going to have it rough. She could have named this poor child Haywood Jablome and he would have had it easier.

I’ve been selected for jury duty! This is not really so much something to ponder as it is TOTALLY COOL. I know most people dread this kind of thing, but I have always wanted to be on a jury. I’m not asked my opinion much at work anymore and I really like giving it so jury duty is perfect for me. I also have very clear, self imposed rules regarding fairness so I will be a perfect juror. Hopefully I can be the foreman. Do they really have those or is Law and Order not exactly accurate? I hope not because I get most of my legal knowledge from that show.

I think the Beatles were talking about JC’s unit when they said “We’re bigger than Jesus”. Where do you think the phrase ‘rock out with your cock out’ came from?