WA, I miss you!

Dear State of Washington,

I miss you today. I miss you so much it hurts.

I miss your flannel shirts and tan colored boots. 

I miss the beautiful scenery of Snoqualmie pass.

I miss Pike’s place market.

I miss Starbucks (omg I miss starbucks! I’ve been trying to copy your guys rooibos vanilla latte for 2 years but nothing taste the same)

I miss elephant’s ears.

I miss fourth of july by lake Sacajawea. (I love how I now can spell it without asking google first)

I miss Fred Meyer and Super 1 Foods (I will NEVER take your organic produce section for granted ever again Super 1 foods!)

I miss 3 dollar movies (they’re on average 20 here ūüė¶ )

I miss there being a church member around every corner (that sounded so much better in my head. The convenience of having friends close by, not the possible stalking vibe you might have got from that sentence)

I miss you WA

I¨ll see you again sooooon!

OMG, get that child a jacket!

“What’s wrong with you?! A 2 year old in 43 degree weather without a jacket?
And no snow pants? What’s your problem?”

No…excuse me…but what’s YOUR problem?!

I know you, I saw you looking at us at the park. Your eyes got to the size of dinner plates and your jaw dropped. I mean it literally dropped. You could’ve parked a mid size toy truck in your mouth.

We shrug it off though. We’re used to it by now. The judgmental looks and sometimes the comments.

My favorite one being:

“Why isn’t he wearing a beanie?!”
Or
“You shouldn’t let him walk down the stairs by himself he’s gonna fall and get hurt”

Well.

Dear concerned citizen,
It is true that my son was at the park today wearing a flannel shirt and jeans and a “baseball style cap” with ear flaps.

However, please know that he ISN’T cold and he isn’t going to die any time soon.

Here is why:
Despite your worst fears I am a good mom, I just don’t force my kid to do stuff he doesn’t want to. So if he doesn’t want to wear a jacket he doesn’t have to. BUT, I’m also not stupid. Therefore he already has a long sleeved 100% wool sweater on underneath, and 100% wool long johns. His “baseball hat” is double wind proof fleece fabric. So even though what you see is a two year old in a fleece shirt, jeans and a hat, trust me, he is SNUG AS A BUG IN A RUG!

So take your snarky comments and your condescending looks and put your energy on something worthwhile. (Like actually engaging in play while at the park instead of texting on your cellphone.)

Regards

The mom and dad playing on the jungle gym with their perfectly warm 2 year old.

Hatred isn’t innate behavior – it is learned

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(Text says: “…and everyone love and respect each other…”)

What do you want your legacy to be?
What do you want your children to remember about you?
What do you want people to say about you behind your back?

You can’t force people to think a certain way or act a certain way. People have tried but failed. (Hitler – remember him?)
What you can do is try your best to make who you think you are and how you think you act, how you perceive yourself match the real you, the person you want to be.

If you don’t want your mother fcking child to be cursing so goddamn much when he’s friggin four years old then watch your own language.

If you want your child to be well mannered – lead by example. Actions always speak way louder than words. Help you neighbor, carry groceries for someone or help someone across the street. If you’re new to it, set a goal of doing one good thing a day. In a year you’ll have 365 good deeds to be proud of.

If you want people to speak well about you behind your back – you can’t. (Wait what?!) The first thing you have to remember is that people are individuals. Just as you probably don’t like everybody you meet, everybody’s probably not going to like you. And what did I say in the beginning? You can’t force people to do the things you want them to do (at least not I the long run) People will be saying what they want behind your back but if you choose to do good and choose to be good you strengthen the odds of that being something good.

WWJD – what would Jesus do? If you’re in doubt or don’t feel like you have what it takes to do something or you just “don’t wanna”. Take he time to ask yourself “what would Jesus do?”. Jesus would choose to do good and he would choose to go the extra mile. You can too.

Start with something simple. Start with yourself and your children in you have any. If you want the world to be a better place teach your children that it is. If you want the world to be more loving teach your children to be loving, lead by example.

Hatred begets hatred. I’m not saying that you should lie to your kids and tell them the world is a perfect place. I’m simply saying that if all they hear is negativity and how bad the world is and how bad they are, they going to start believing in it and it’s going to turn into a self fulfilling prophecy. 2 year olds don’t need to be watching the news live broadcast from the latest war zone. 7 year olds need not be playing R rated video games. Don’t expect your 9 year old to truly understand the concept of divorce or know how to deal with it if you as a 22, 35 or 45 year old don’t understand or know how to deal with it.
Don’t leave your infant crying alone in a crib and don’t lock your child in his/her room at night so you can go grocery shopping in peace. Don’t tell your 4 year old that she can’t play with Lisa cuz Lisa has two mommies. Don’t scold your 5 year old for talking to a “scary biker”.

If you want the world to be a better place, show your children that it can be, show them that it is.

What do you think? Can we change the world for the better or are we already screwed? ūüėČ

Ps. I may not make the cutest drawings in the world but I really enjoy doodling. So if you must comment on the doodles – be nice!

Doing the right thing isn’t rocket science! – Just don’t be a jerk

Being good and doing the right thing isn’t about being like Mother Theresa. It’s about choosing to do the right thing even after you fail, after you do something you shouldn’t have done. It’s about setting things right.

I read a blogpost on¬†Huffingtonpost.com¬†by Josh Misner, Ph.D. It was an apology letter to the ticket agent at the Delta Counter¬†and I quickly realized that this blogpost embodies much of what I want to convey when I say “always do good”, “always be good”. It’s not about trying to be flawless by any means. I don’t think anybody can. It’s about trying to make this world a better place. Leave this world a little better than it was before you came into it.¬†

The blogpost is about when Misner was out flying with his kids, after being delayed and missing his connection flight he comes upon what he perceives to be a very snarky customer service representative at the Delta desk who tells him he cannot help him and that he has so go to the automatic kiosk. Misner has reached his limit and starts going off much like a soccer mom at at peewee game when the ref makes an “unfair” call.

Realizing what he’s done and that he didn’t exactly set the best example for his kids, and that his kids were looking at him for guidance on how to deal with the situation he decides to go back to the counter and deliver a heartfelt apology. Come to find out the reason the customer service representative couldn’t help him was because he was on his way to help a passenger by delivering an emergency kit. In the end the customer service guy accepted the apology and told Misner he had just made his day.

This is what it’s about. Misner could definitely have handled things better from the beginning but I’m sure we’ve all been in situations where we wish we would have handled things the right way from the beginning and didn’t. What defines us, what defines our character is what we do when we find ourselves having shortcomings, when we find ourselves acting less than desirable. Do we cower in a corner ashamed of our actions? Do we justify them by saying that we were stressed/tired? Or, do we take the proverbial “bull by the horns” and face whoever we did wrong and apologize? Needless to say, the latter is the better option. The latter option is the one that defines doing good, being good. It is my hope that we can all learn from situations like this, blogposts like Misner’s and start acting, do a little better, be a little better.

 

Just lemme pee alone!

The house is under siege…well you know, not for real but the toddler’s sick….and anybody who’s ever had a toddler knows that if the toddler ain’t happy…ain’t nobody happy.

So for the past two and a half days I’ve been peed on, puked on, feverishly hugged like only a boa can hug its prey. I’ve been pillow, mattress and blanket. I’ve been entertainer and food dispenser. And when that wasn’t enough I was the shoulder to cry on and the person that got blamed because “put the movies back in order or not at all or I will keep screaming and by the way blu-rays aren’t DVDs you nincompoop”. Of course junior didn’t actually say that. It was implied in his rant, tears and flailing arms.

In other words. I’ve been a mom. And in the past 2.5 days I’ve done my very best to be super mom. So I hug and I change the sheets and lay next to my little ball of fever and ick and pat his head. I whisper softly “mommy’s here” and hear a short whiff and a sigh of relief….and I pray that I did it right. I do it because it’s the only thing I know. The only thing I know how to do. I cannot not be there for him. I cannot not lay on a mattress in his room to be closer when he needs me.

Last nigh I slept 4 hours. The night before that 3. If I can make it 5 tonight I’ll be golden. Or I’ll take 3 and junior can have my other 2 without fever and without a tummy ache. About 30 minutes ago junior managed to fall back asleep with just a pat on the back and me pulling down his blanket so he doesn’t get too hot. That means it’s time. Time to sleep. Take it or leave it. Now or never.

Ask potential play date if they have guns in their home?

Is it ok to ask the parents of your kid’s potential play date if they have guns in their house? Would you?

I’m a supporter of the 2nd amendment even though I gee up in another country where citizens don’t have the same rights. I could write a whole essay on it but I doubt most of you want the long version so the short version is that I support the 2nd amendment because I support the constitution of the United States (very simplified). But I came across somebody today asking if it’s ok to ask a play date’s parents if they keep guns in their house because she wanted to know they are securely locked up where no children can “accidentally stumble upon them”.

I know it’s naive (and probably because I’m from a culture that does not have the same rights) but I’ve always kind of assumed that “normal” people keep their guns in a safe place, such as a gun safe. But yeah, I read the news too and I know that all too often that’s not the case and sometimes it does end badly and end up on the news.

I really can’t answer the question though. Cuz sure, as a mother I want to know that my kid will be safe playing with your kid. But at the same time it’s none of my business wether a person owns guns or not.

Hubby and I have always said that we will teach junior (and any sibling if he has any) to respect guns and if they see one laying out, not to touch it but always go get an adult. I think that’s the most responsible thing to do. I’m thinking if someone gets asked that question out of concern for the kids’ safety and they’re part of the people that leave loaded guns in unsafe places, drawers, night stands etc….would they really tell you anyway?

I guess my stance would be along the lines of “You can’t protect your kids from other people’s stupidity, what you can do is teach them what to do when they encounter it.”

Olympic Games 2014….and the winner is…

I’d like to say that today has been productive. I’ve done a lot of things but at the same time ended up doing nothing.

I was suppose to prepare for a potential interview coming up.

Instead I entered what must be the Olympic Games version of procrastination.

So. Starting tomorrow I’m going to organize my life. I’m going to make a battle plan and by God in going to read through that stupid paper even if it means having to lock myself in the bathroom to do so.

It has always amazed me that I am amazing when it comes to helping people remember things, running errands for other people etc but trying to organize my own life has always seemed as daunting of a task as asking a slug to climb Mount Everest. So, I’m going to see if it’s possible to trick myself into becoming organized by becoming my own personal assistant. Tomorrow I’ll work out a plan of attack.

…and a plan on how to stick to it….

Update:
You know it’s bad when you find yourself googling “how to organize your life” followed by “how to remember to check your planner”. Yep. It’s that bad.

Sochi – heaven and hell

I love the Olympic Games. I love elaborate shows, galas. I want it to be grand, to captivate me and to figuratively blow my mind. Needless to say I had great expectations for the Sochi games….and O.M.G!!!
It was the most elaborate awesome celebration, kick off for the Olympics I have ever seen. Everything was meticulously planned and carried out. Everything had a bit of Russian history to it, even the Swan Lake cauldron to hold the Olympic fire. It was grand and majestic and captivated me in a way I haven’t been captivated my anything on tv for years. It was amazing!

You can call it an informative lesson in Russia’s history or well performed propaganda. One things is clear, if you didn’t know anything about Russia before the Sochi games, you would be on a plane going there by now. Well played Russia, well played.

Still. I can’t erase the memories of Russians being tortured while building the Olympic village. Threatened, blindfolded, sodomized. How the workers were at first promised a ridiculous low wage and then most of them ending up with no wage at all. Russia. Sochi. It is heaven and hell all at the same time. The adult in me hopes that Putin heard the chairman of the Olympic committee when he said that all participants, no matter what country your from can live in the Olympic village in peace without discrimination for whatever reason. The teenager in me want to paint my nails in the color of the rainbow to support the LGBT community. But the little child in me just wants to savor the moment, if only for a few minutes of an opening ceremony for the 22nd Winter Olympics in Sochi that not only lived up to my grand expectations but far exceeded them! Well played Russia. Let the games begin!

How not to greet at child

Pet peeve of today: People that make me see giant AMBER alert signs and causes visions of child abduction in my mind.

We all know them. We’ve all had to face them. The complete strangers that come up to you on the street, at the supermarket, postoffice what have you, and tries to engage your child, stroke their cheek or even worse, pick them up.

Dear sir/mam, You are currently invading my child’s personal space and he does not approve of your action. Please refrain from such activities in the future.

I’m pretty sure I’ve never actually said that out loud even though I’ve often wanted to. Instead my answers include blank stares, no, just walking away or the juvenile versions of “Hell no” or “fucktard”. I do apologize but I’m pretty sure I’ve used the latter expressions at least once.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m a pretty laid back person (most times), but as everybody else I have my pet peeves and one of them is people who do not know how to greet a child. Last holiday season I wrote an open letter which I never ended up publishing but it went a little something like this:

Dear sir/mam,

Holiday season is upon us again and this is the time when people often want to share their love with others and the “christmas spirit”. All too often it includes a lot of strangers (people we do not yet know) wanting to say hello to junior, especially when we are outside. Junior is very cute and very flirty when he wants to be but also has very clear limits on what and who he allows into his personal space. Therefore please be advised that a no is always a no, wether it’s him shaking his head or actually saying no. That means “back off, you’re invading my personal space and I do not appreciate it”. It is not going to change by you persisting. It is not going to change just because you talk to him or worse, say out loud that he doesn’t seem to like you or seem scared but it’s ok because you have kids ¬†yourself (alternatively you are a grandparent).

Excuse me but it is completely irrelevant.

I’m sure you are a wonderful parent/grandparent. I am sure your kids/grandkids absolutely love and adore you. But I’m also sure that’s because they already know you. It doesn’t matter how lovely others think you are, to my son you are a stranger. So when he says no, don’t get all butt hurt, just back away and give him some space.

Please realize that wether my child is in the comfort of a wrap being carried by me or in a stroller covered in a blanket that does NOT mean he wants you to poke him, pinch his checks or stroke him on the cheek. (Again, I’m sure you mean well but you are a complete stranger. Btw I don’t know a single child in the world who likes having their cheeks pinched.)

If he doesn’t seem interested in talking to you he probably isn’t. And it probably isn’t “just because he’s shy”. Most often it is because he has made a conscious judgment call that he just does not want to talk to you. You do not interest him.

Do not try to explain away my son’s behavior. He needs your understanding, not for you to patronize him or treat him like he doesn’t know what’s best for him. (Newsflash, in this case he does, you don’t!)

When my son is walking next to me, for the love of everything that’s holy, do NOT pick him up! Unless he’s running into traffic and I’m too far away to catch him in time, whisking him off his feet is NEVER ok! It will automatically trigger the mama bear response in me. I will go all warrior viking on you. Understand that when you whisk my son off his feet I see AMBER alert and think of people like¬†John Wayne Gacy, not innocent stranger who wants to hold a cute child. It’s not because I am overly nervous, it’s because you, a complete stranger, just picked upp my dearest child.

So, to keep the holiday spirit please know, that unless my son openly engages in conversation with you or tries to shake your hand he is off limits to you. Remember, a no is always a no wether the person saying is is 2 or 72.

Sincerely yours,

The mom