Parents Say the Darndest Things

My baby boy is about to turn three!

I keep hearing “Oh, that’s the best age!” regardless of what age he is, but this time I’m inclined to believe it. He’s actually quite funny and charming. He loves slapstick humor and stories about monsters and bad guys (who rampage other people’s stuff. Never his.) We have real conversations. He has definite opinions. He tells me he likes my ponytail and hates my cardigans.

Every day I find myself questioning the things he’s learning, as in “Holy cow, who taught him that amazing thing?” (Usually the answer is daycare.)

I try to write down the adorable things that come out of his mouth, but always forget because they’re usually followed by something horrifying and cringeworthy. Those things I always write down.

Lately I’ve been paying attention to the words I find myself stringing together in response to my dear, sweet child. Things I never thought I’d have to say. Things I never thought I would have to explain. Things I never thought would be compared to a bounce house.

Here are just a few of the highlights of the past few days:

  • Because I don’t need a penis, that’s why.
  • Honey, please don’t call that nice family, “butt guys.” We don’t even know them.
  • Don’t say “doody butt.”
  • Don’t say “booty butt.”
  • Don’t say “booger butt.”
  • Don’t say “butty butt butt booger butt guy.”
  • Would you want your name to be,”Toilet Butt?”
  • Yes, GOD DAMMIT is potty talk so stop saying it.
  • No, you can not say GOD DAMMIT when you’re at home. It’s potty talk here too.
  • How did Jacob get a toilet on his head?
  • Honey, please stop licking Princess Leia.
  • I don’t think the dog wants you to rub your butt on him.
  • No, I don’t want to tickle your nipple.
  • Can you tickle your own armpit, please?
  • Is that shaving cream on your penis?
  • No, your penis is not a bounce house.
  • Because people don’t like it when you point at their bodies and say, “I can see your penis.”
  • No, I don’t know what superpower Naked Toddler has. Do tell.
  • Mommy did not say that. You must have imagined it.
  • Don’t tell your dad Mommy said that.
  • If anyone asks, you heard that from your dad.
Oh man, that better be shaving cream.
Oh man, that better be shaving cream.

Mother Rose Best- Save the Drama for Bahamas

Oh man, The Bachelor sure doesn’t lack for writing fodder. It’s like a two-year old that way. Also in other ways like the fearful, petchulant, moody behavior of the contestants. Also the gullibility and belief in fairy tales. Also… wow. Maybe that’s a whole separate column.

As if I didn’t love In the Powder Room already, I love them even more every Monday when I write the latest Mother Rose Best and every middle of the night Tuesday when I turn it in (because I’m slow. And a bad editor. And easily distracted by shiny things on the internet.) Please read the latest installment, Save the Drama for Bahamas now. Take your time. I’ll just be shopping for plant stands on the internet.

Are you back? Okay. So much more to discuss about this season and I’ve been remiss on posting my larger recaps. I KNOW you’re dying to find out what happened. So here’s some of the highlight from where we left off.

  • Olivia was mean to the girls
“Talking crazy shit is my jam, bitches. I mean, bros.”
  • She called Amanda “Teen Mom” and greatly offended EVERYONE
  • Olivia still thought she had a psychic connection with Ben and that he sent her positive affirmations through his body language and secret hand signals
  • Ben’s virginal tongue still hasn’t kissed anyone
  • Twin Emily can NOT get over Olivia calling Amanda Teen Mom and claimed it was the most offensive thing she ever heard.
    • Twin Emily is grossly sheltered. Clearly.
    • As a 40-something mom with a toddler, I welcome any and all comparisons to Teen Mom. Bring on the offensive comments, Olivia!
  • Caila is still super annoying and acts like a ten year-old girl who still plays with Barbie. And she’s scared to death of a relationship. Ben apparently likes that in a girl-woman.
  • Jubliee melted down and got the inevitable boot. “Inevitable” because she is African-American, not because of her meltdown. I liked her. This made me sad.
  • Leah went bat shit cray cray. She lost it big time and tried to take Ben’s favorite, Lauren B. down with her.
  • Emily told Ben that Olivia was a meanie. Ben pretended to be surprised and saddened to hear this.
  • Ben pulled Olivia aside to ask her why she was such a bully
    • Because the girls are jealous of her
    • Because she has a target on her back after getting the first impression rose
    • Because she has ugly toes
    • Because she’s a victim
    • Because the girls are dumb and she is smart and wants to “talk smart things.” Like, right?
Like, fat toes and cankles, you dig?
  • Ben thought Las Vegas was a great place to fall in love
  • Ben thought Mexico was a great place to fall in love
  • Ben thought the Bahamas were a great place to fall in love
  • After the girls on the Bahamas group date bitched out and ignored him, Ben started questioning the reality of finding his wife on reality TV
  • Ben pondered throwing himself off a cliff in the middle of a hurricane
“Maybe face-planting on these rocks would be less painful than listening to women I have no desire to tongue kiss sob all day. Hmm…”
  • Pigs swim in the Bahamas (real pigs, not a metaphor) and nearly drowned the girls over some chicken hotdogs. It was fabulous.
“It’s chicken, I swear!”
  • Olivia was dumped on the worst private island ever and apparently left there to die.
“I wore my best Mom jeans for this?”
  • Some other girls went home crying in black SUVs. Later!

And that’s basically what you missed. Are you asking yourself why you’re not watching this gold? Put down that book and get cultured for goodness sake!


All’s Fair in Love and Parenthood

Bart and I are way too fair.

Those first few months with a newborn when we were both terrified of being left alone with him really scarred us. Sometimes one of us had to out. Like me to get my six-week postpartum check up or Bart to go to work. We felt awful leaving the other to have to care for this…baby. What if he cried? What if he needed something. We all saw Child’s Play. You. Never. Know.

Two years later, Bart and I are constantly policing our “away” time and figuring out ways to repay each other when we vacate the premises. This is not intentional. In fact, we didn’t even notice we were doing it until a friend pointed it out.

“You guys are so good at supporting each other,” she said. “You’re just so fair.”

Support? No. Scarred? Yes.

The thing is, we both really love spending time with Quinn now. He’s a little real, live person. He talks. He has a wicked sense of humor. He likes hanging out at cool places like bounce houses and Starbucks. I assure you he is not a burden. Which is probably why we feel guilty not being with him.

But yet, we still police our time away. And it’s not in a  passive aggressive-I-spend-more-time-with-our-child tug of war deal. We honestly don’t want the other parent to feel like their taking on more.

ME: Okay, so I went grocery shopping alone for what? 39 minutes? Do you want to maybe go for a run after work or something?

BART: Maybe. But then again, you walked him home from daycare on Tuesday and that took you 25 minutes. Technically I only have fourteen minutes.

Saturday mornings are my time to sleep in (which I never do because Quinn always ends up in our bed yelling MASHA BEAR at me while I pretend to sleep) and Sundays are Bart’s mornings to sleep in (which he never does because Quinn always ends up in our bed beating him with the remote control and yelling, PERCY FALL DOWN!) But for at least two hours every weekend morning, one parent removes the child from the household so the other parent can experience that very rare phenomenon: Being alone in your own home. It’s amazing. Even emptying the dishwasher alone is amazing. Despite our best intentions to encourage one another to the contrary, our family unit doesn’t separate that often.

So when we do it’s a big deal. A parent’s night out is a good thing. It’s healthy. It’s normal. It’s needed. But alas, we feel guilty. Case in point: Bart met up with some friends at a bar to watch the Seahawks game. Quinn and I had dinner a friend’s house which was lovely. When we returned, we saw this:

All hail the Mighty Elmo, patron saint of lost fathers.
All hail the Mighty Elmo, patron saint of lost fathers.

That’s Elmo, on a Cars throne, holding a croissant from Bakery Nouveau, sitting high above a gaggle of Thomas and Friends trains.

“Oh cool!” Quinn said, bellying up to the shrine.

Almighty, Elmo, please grant ME some freakin' alone time. I can't shake these two nut jobs!
Almighty, Elmo, please grant ME some freakin’ alone time. I can’t shake these two nut jobs!

So yeah, it’s a slippery slope from “co-parenting” to “co-dependancy.” Whatever.

Uh oh! Got to go. The eight minutes I earned today taking care of Quinn while Bart was in the shower are up.

Because 16 Year Olds Can’t Sleep in Cribs, Right?

And this is?
And this is?

Yeah, yeah, I know. That’s a really dumb, obscure picture. But it’s all I could get to capture the moment. Tonight is Quinn’s first night sleeping in a toddler bed. We converted his crib this afternoon after much debate about his readiness. Of course we asked him if he wanted to ditch his crib and sleep in a bed.

“Would you like to have a big boy bed?” we asked.

“Really? You wouldn’t?”
“Yes! I would!”

So, okay. We’ll take that into consideration.

This past week he’s been getting up at the crack of dawn (because Daylight Savings is a childless witch) and yelling that he, “wants to come out!” When we finally stagger into his room we find him with at least one leg hanging over the side of his crib. There are only so many pillows I can stockpile on the floor beside his crib before you just bite the bullet.

I was all for the move because unlike toddlers, I love change. I was curious to see what would happen just like I was curious to be alone with newborn Quinn for a full day after my parents returned to NY and Bart went back to work. Curiosity almost killed the cat and by “cat” I mean “my sanity.” Also, the cat. But maybe this will be a better experience. Maybe it will be awful. Isn’t that just the crux of parenthood after all?

This afternoon, once the conversion was complete, Quinn was delighted with the change. He climbed into his new bed on his own and demanded covers and a pillow so he could sleep. Great sign! And then he jumped up, stepped out, walked past us into our room and shouted, “HI MOMMY! HI DADDY!” and then got back into his bed.

Hit repeat. A lot.

“He’s practicing for 3:30 AM,” Bart said.

“We’re the dumbest people alive,” I said.

Good night and good luck.