Luke’s (18 mos) Mom’s Day Out class hosted a humorous Christmas program yesterday. It consisted of all of the kids sitting on a stage and singing Christmas carols and/or crying. Luckily my video camera was on hand to capture the riveting footage of Luke sitting in his teacher’s lap while he sucked on his fingers and/or put them in his nose.
An announcement was made that Santa would be there, but would be unable to do individual pictures because he had COPD and didn’t want to get sick. I knew Santa was getting old, but he is definitely not as magical as I remembered. I couldn’t help but wonder if Santa’s pulmonologist was on “the good list” this year. Let’s hope so.
When I picked Luke up that afternoon we headed straight to the mall to get a picture made with Santa. While waiting in line, Luke got a little antsy and had to get out of his stroller. Once free of his cumbersome wheels, he took off running. He ran directly into the North Pole exit and fast tracked it to Santa. He managed a “ho-ho-ho!” before I caught up to him and put him back in line. About ten minutes later we got our turn, but stage fright had set in and Luke refused to look in Santa’s vicinity. I held Luke as I recounted to Santa, everything that Luke “wanted” for Christmas while Luke looked in the opposite direction, whispering “no way, no way, no way.”
I wasn’t about to get out of there without a photo op, and since Luke refused to have his picture made solely with the fat man…
It was hardly the Red Ryder BB gun from A Christmas Story. “This is what I want for Christmas,” I told Brantley as I dropped the Hammacher Schlemmer catalog down in front of him.
Brantley: “I’m not getting you a marshmallow gun.”
Me: “Why not?”
Brantley: “Because you would use it even less than the night vision goggles you wanted last year.”
Me: “I had a reason for not using them but I never told you because I didn’t want to talk about it.”
Brantley: “Talk about what?”
Me: (in a whisper tone) “One night I heard something outside. You were asleep and I didn’t want to wake you, so I quietly opened the blinds and put on my goggles. That’s when I saw him. Standing in the woods behind our house was a man who was also wearing night vision goggles. He was staring back at me.”
Brantley: “I can tell your lying because your eyes are open.”
Me: “Alright, fine but the infrared function is all crappy. It’s not military grade.”
Brantley: “No, it isn’t military grade! Why should it be?”
Me: “If I had that marshmallow gun I could stalk through the woods behind our house at night WITH my night vision goggles. Not to mention I’ve always wanted to be able to say, hand me my gun…Sure do wish I had me a marshmallow gun.”
Every night after supper Luke (18 mos) is covered in food (read: ketchup) and requires an immediate bath. He and I have been taking baths together since he was able to sit up. He splashes, plays with his toys and puts his mouth directly on the faucet and drinks like a gerbil. Bath time has always been fun time…until recently. Don’t get me wrong, he’s still having fun. It’s me that is having some problems.
As Luke has gotten bigger he has begun bringing some “baggage” to the bathtub. It irks me beyond measure to see anything foreign floating past me, and trust me there is no shortage of sock fuzz. If that’s not enough to get me going then Luke standing up and peeing against the side of the tub is. I can feel my blood pressure rise as the fuzz circles me like a hawk and the water turns a pale yellow.
Last night in addition to the usual, I discovered a piece of chicken floating in the water. The rogue chicken bite had apparently been stuck to his skin only to break free after being submerged. This was my breaking point. I tried not to panic and called for Brantley to get Luke out of the tub. He complied and sweetly asked, “Do you want to stay in the tub and relax for a while?”
“Thanks but no thanks. It’s hard to relax in a petri dish.”
In a related story I’m considering adopting the YMCA’s policy of making everyone shower prior to getting in the water. You rarely see chicken floating there.
Get out the cocoa because it's about to get warm and fuzzy up in here, circa 1988!
I have fond memories of going to pick out a Chrsitmas tree as a child. My parents, my two sisters and I would load up in our hatchback and head out to what seemed like the wilderness. Most people bought their Christmas trees from a vendor in the Kroger parking lot or went to a tree farm, but not us. Years later I would realize that we had actually been tree thieving trespassers on some strangers land, but what the hay. It was quality time together and that’s what mattered.
One year in particular, we found the most perfect tree. It was just right in size and shape. My Dad cut it down and strapped it to the top of our car and the five of us loaded back in. We were on our way home when my dad slowed down and pointed to a different tree on the side of the road. “I think that one might be better than the one we just picked, but I’m not sure if it’s big enough. Lori, would you go stand next to it so we can see how big it is by comparison?”
“Sure, Daddy.” My sisters and I had been singing Christmas carols in the backseat but I was happy to stop singing and oblige my father. I even felt special that he had asked me, rather than my older sister. I jumped out of the car and ran across the dirt road. When I located the particular tree I turned around to face the car. At that moment I knew I had been set up. My entire family waved out the window at me and I could hear them laughing as my dad sped away.
I was eight years old and all alone, standing next to someone else’s tree, on someone else’s property like a big jackass. It doesn’t get much better than that. Down the road I saw my dad backing the car up to come back and get me. I considered not getting back in, but I didn’t have a lot of options. My family had a good laugh at my expense. “You should’ve seen your face,” and “That was so funny!” was heard a few times.
Yeah, I thought. Real funny. I wish the police had driven by. I would’ve told them what happened and my parents would’ve been in big trouble. I made the ride home as unpleasant as possible for everyone by singing Christmas carols non-stop at the top of my lungs. An hour and twenty minutes later we arrived home and they all clamored out of the car. It may not have been abandonment on a deserted road, but I had gotten under their skin and I took solace in that. My real revenge would have to wait, though. I knew there was a jolly fat man watching and I needed to act the part.
Flash forward about twenty years to a slight fear of abandonment. I can’t imagine why.
Happy holidays from my dysfunctional family to yours!
Like what you've been reading on Loripalooza? Give someone you love, or kinda like, the gift of laughter this holiday season by directing them to Loripalooza.com. It's sure to put a smile on their face. Happy Holidays!
Luke (17 mos) inherited a pitching machine from our neighbors. You push a button and it spits out wiffle balls one after another. Luke isn’t really into it yet, but I am a wiffle ball rockstar. I’ve hit the ball onto the roof and over our fence several times, requiring a trip to Target to replenish our ball supply.
Over the weekend, Brantley, Luke and I were playing ball in the backyard. Luke had the plastic bat and was swinging at the balls on the ground as if he were playing hockey. The following conversating ensued.
Me: Strike three. He’s out. It’s my turn to hit.
Brantley: Are you seriously not giving him another chance? He’s learning how to swing the bat.
Me: Rules are rules. I didn't invent the game and he’s gotta learn sometime.
Brantley: Don’t you dare take that bat away from him.
Luke swung the bat again, completely missing the ball this time.
Me: (under my breath) We want a hitter not an underwear sniffer.