On a hazy, 114-degree Friday afternoon—while hiding away in the house with blinds pulled and fans blowing on full-blast—one can still experience so much of life and learn a few lessons along the way. Here’s what I learned today:
A perfect Friday afternoon can be simple. It can mean work is slow, Netflix has a good limited series, and there’s plenty of Diet Coke in the fridge. #LetsRockThisSummer
Naps are sacred in our house…so when we were ALL awakened from a mid-afternoon nap only to discover that our mini American Eskimo had dragged a pigeon into the house for a late lunch buffet, the sacred silence was broken by maniacal, shrill barking. Certain “talking” breeds are not conducive to peace…or naps.
No vacuum is meant to handle pigeon feathers. It wasn’t pretty. Nothing more to add to this one.
Bonus learning: Always block the doggie door before any sleeping occasion—or you, too, could discover random wildlife in your home at the most unexpected time.
I’ve recently discovered that you can tell a whole lot about a person—and a family—simply by reaching your hand down into the side of their sofa and rooting around for treasure. Now, you have to be brave and reach really, really deep…like up to the elbow, so if there are kids OF ANY AGE in the home, say a little prayer and cross your fingers that there’s nothing alive in the crevices.
We Are a Clean People
I feel like I need to put that out there, because what I’m about to tell you might land us on an episode of Hoarders or, at a bare minimum, on some sort of shameful internet list mocking families who find pizza crust in weird places.
That being said, it’s become clear that the contents stuffed into the depths of your sofa can say a WHOLE LOT about what’s going on in the house. We have two teenage boys at home. Here’s are 3 things I found in our sofa today:
17 mismatched socks. Contrary to popular belief, we DO have a laundry room with a fully functioning washer and dryer. However, our teenage sons seem to have either forgotten its location and/or how to work the very complicated machines.
Miscellaneous snack wrappers and 3 plastic drink bottles. And a whole LOT of crumbs. I can’t adequately describe the sensation of reaching deep into the sofa only to have your fingernails impacted with stray (and likely weeks-old) crumbs that were left wholly for my enjoyment. It was a special moment.
4 dead batteries…and the wrapper from the new package of batteries. We could have zero food or drinks in this house, and as long as we have batteries, the boys would be happy. Especially in the summertime, batteries are the lifeblood of existence. Games must be powered at ALL times.
I have questions. So many questions.
When did our sofa turn into a trash can? And do my kids have some sort of disorder that prevents them from walking from the living room to the kitchen to throw away their trash? Should we see a physician about this troubling inability to…ummm…physically MOVE during the summer?
Is it wrong to throw all couch-debris into their beds? Can I volunteer them for some sort of neighborhood cleanup?
Mostly though…HOW LONG is this summer vacation going to last??
My dog isn’t a Mensa dog, but he knows a few very important things—3 things to be exact.
Dudley (aka Dumbley when he runs into walls or forgets how to escape from underneath a pillow, Muffin when he’s rolled into a nice, fluffy “pit ball,” and Hunky Monkey when he’s being my big, goofy chunk) is a good boy, and one of my favorite things to see is the look on his face when the lightbulb comes on and he realizes something awesome is about to happen.
He’ll just be going about his day and suddenly realize we’re going for a walk…and boom!…one of his floppy ears perks up and he gets that big pittie smile on his face and his tail starts whacking everything around the house like a prehistoric beast lashing a path.
Dudley doesn’t know a whole lot, but he knows 3 things—and those things are enough to make life pretty doggone good. Here’s what he knows:
When in doubt, walk it out. When I say, “It’s your turn,” it means it’s Dudey’s turn to go for a w.a.l.k., so clear a path because this big boy will barrel straight toward the door and the hook where his harness hangs. He may not be a genius, but he’s figured out the value of a good stroll around the neighborhood. No matter what’s going on or how stressful a day may have been, there’s nothing a good walk can’t fix. (Hey, wait…I think I learned that from my dog.)
A good nap can fix a lot. Feeling groggy, grumpy, frumpy, foggy? Need a pick-me-up or a calm-me-down? A nap is the best medicine in town. And trust me, Dudley has perfected the fine art of being able to sleep anytime, anywhere. Now that’s a pooch after my own heart!
It’s important to show your friends you love them. Sure, when we walk in the door, Dudley is overjoyed, but it doesn’t stop there. At the vet, on the walking trail, at the park…no matter where we are, when Dudley runs into a friendly face, his tail wags at lightspeed and his slobber production goes into overdrive. If you run into Dudley, you may get covered in dog saliva, but you’ll know—without a doubt—that you’re loved.
Now that I think about it, maybe Dudley’s not so dumb after all. He’s getting to be a bit of an old man now, with gray around his eyes and a snore that can be heard through the house, but along with all that comes a bit of wisdom he’s sharing with us all.
3 Totally (Not) Legit Reasons My Kid Flunked Geometry
Please note these are NOT legitimate reasons for failing any class, so this is me throwing the bullshit flag on my teenager. Yeah, I know, my kid is 15 and like totally cool, but here’s the thing:
Ain’t no trick he’s tryin’ to pull that I ain’t tried before.
(That’s me, Mom Dude, with my best gangster line. It’s usually good for an eyeroll or two.)
In other words, been there, done that. Know what’s worse than the boat my kid’s in? My mom was a teacher in the small high school where I attended. Most of the time, she knew how I did on tests before I did. Now, that’s rough.
Apparently (unbeknownst to me), my kid had it very rough time in geometry this school year. I had no idea! You’ll probably be shocked to read about the 3 things his teacher did that MADE him flunk the first semester…resulting in his attendance at summer school.
Shocking classroom incidents that led to my son getting BELOW a 50% for the first semester include:
The teacher graded all the packets—except for his. Of course he turned it in, he assured me. And he absolutely completed the entire packet. He had ZERO idea why the teacher might overlook his packet. Hmmmm… #Sus #ISmellARat
The teacher won’t put anything in the gradebook. So it just shows up as a zero, which is why his grade looks so low…but it really isn’t…it’s just that darned lazy teacher. #ItsGettingDeep
The teacher hasn’t given any extra credit yet. But, like, she totally does…that’s what everyone says, so if you just scrape together 500 extra points from the imaginary homework fairy, you might have a chance in hell of passing. #Reassuring
I don’t even know where to start. First of all what is WRONG with this teacher? What is she even DOING? I mean, aside from getting carpal tunnel from red-marking all the crappy, half-assed work that crosses her desk. Aside from that, what is she up to? Because…wow, she seems kinda lazy, right?
(Disclaimer: It’s unfortunate that this needs to be a disclaimer, but here goes. It must be said. In NO way do I think that my child’s teacher is lazy. I was being sarcastic.)
So, if your kid is in summer school—or just barely missed the distinction—be on the lookout for a few of the hidden signs. Is the teacher overlooking all the hard work your kid is putting in? Is your child a prodigy who merely forgets to put his name on ALL of his papers?
I’ve learned from my 15-year-old that there are so many ways one can fall through the cracks, so be alert, parents. Be alert.