Posts Tagged ‘you’re asking me for parenting advice?’

  1. Ask him to wear his boots so it will be easier to walk from the car to daycare. (You know he hates being carried anymore.) Concede to sneakers, but tell him he can’t walk in the snow then.
  2. Put his milk – which he wasn’t drinking anyway – in the fridge to save it for later. Only once it’s gone will he decide he wants it.
  3. Attempt to stuff him into his jacket (which wouldn’t have been necessary if he would have just put the damn thing on the first time you asked instead of running away from you).
  4. Strap him into his car seat after explaining that it’s too cold to walk that far [to daycare] and Mama has to get to work and you’re already running late.
  5. Carry him from the car to daycare because you’re wearing boots and he’s not, even though you explained the concept of boots and snow to him rationally just 15 minutes earlier.

If you follow these 5 simple steps (in any order, for your convenience), you, too, can ruin your child’s life* to the point that he shows up to daycare with tears on his face and your daycare provider asks you what you’ve done to him, you monster.

You’re welcome.

*Or morning, whatever. Same same.

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Well, I did it. I went to see Harry Potter this past weekend.


I went to a 5:30  showing on Friday, totally underestimating the number of people who also had summer hours. But, despite the packed theater, there weren’t very many children – no one under 13 that I could see. Except for the little boy, two seats to my right. “Little” as in 5 or 6 years old. As in, he couldn’t sit through the previews without listening to his mom’s iPod. As soon as I saw that, I had misgivings about spending the next two and a half hours next to them, but by then it was too late. My only other option was to sit all the way up front and risk straining my neck.

In hindsight, that may have been the better choice.

First of all, there was the mom. Apparently she had some very important business to attend to, because her phone was buzzing like crazy. I would hear the buzz, see the screen light up as she checked the text, then hear tap tap tap as she replied.

Once? Okay. Annoying, but I can deal. Consistently tap tap tapping for the entire movie? Get the hell out of the theater. I saw the screen light up with an incoming call at one point, and I swear she contemplated answering it.

If only...

When she took her son out of the theater, about half way through the film, I breathed a sigh of relief. But then, they returned; he was crying, she was frustrated. Call me crazy, but usually you take a crying child out of the theater. You don’t bring him back, still in tears. But what do I know? I’m no parent.

I had initially been skeptical about this kid watching the movie considering that, even though it was rated PG, it had some intense and possibly nightmare-inducing scenes (especially if you’re still at the age where you use a night-light). Apparently, that wasn’t an issue, because he got bored with Harry Potter and demanded (in an outside voice) the iPod back, in order to watch a different movie on there.

It’s times like those that I wish I were a confrontational person. I wish that I’d had the guts to actually say something, instead of shooting death stares to my right, every time another electronic lit up and clicked. I rationalized that 1) to say something would have made even more noise,  and 2) if the mom got feisty (which looked like a possibility), there was nowhere for me to move.

But honestly, if I can pull myself away from my Blackberry for two and a half hours, lady, I’m pretty sure you can do the same.

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I don’t know about you, but when I was a child, I was absolutely brimming with confidence. (Which lasted right up until middle school.) I had no fear. I was so sure of myself. I knew I was the bomb…or something like that.

And sometimes I miss that feeling. But I LOVE being reminded of it when I hear the comments of the kids I babysit. Two of the little girls I used to nanny for were confidence queens. But Sophie, well, she took the cake.

One afternoon, I was out with DG (the mom), Ben, Sophie, Brooke and the baby at Pizzeria Uno’s. DG and I had strategically placed ourselves around the table so that we could help any of the kids easily enough, and ended up sitting across from one another. Our waitress came over with the kids’ meals, delivering them with a smile and clearly at ease with a table of young and rambunctious children.

As she left, Sophie continued to color in her placemat, but commented: “Our waitress is really pretty.

DG looked at me, clearly proud that her daughter was saying something so nice, so genuine, so –

Then Sophie looked up: “But not as pretty as me!” And she did the cute little-kid-smirk. You know, it’s the I-know-what-I-said-was-kind-of-wrong-but-I’m-cute-so-you’re-gonna-let-me-get-away-with-it.

Me, not Sophie. But similar to the smirk she gave.

Me, not Sophie. But similar to the smirk she gave.

Just as quickly, the look on DG’s face turned from pride to something just shy of shock. “Liebchen, what do I say to that? I want to laugh, but I shouldn’t let her think she can say things like that, should I?

Seeing as I was trying hard not to laugh myself, I had very little advice to offer her. That, and the fact that she’s the mother of four, and I was a 21-year-old college senior.

Minor details.

But the fact was, that Sophie was still at an age where a) she was supremely confident in herself (at least in her appearance), and b) she could get away with saying nearly anything that was on her mind.

It just proves that you really can get away with anything when you’re that adorable.

Hey, Sophie, wanna trade places for a day?

*John Mayer, “83”

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