Sunday, November 28, 2010

She said "Penis"

The girls sat down at the table to wait for EN to return with dinner last night, when Spice suddenly grabbed a stick that had been attached to a balloon, stood on her chair, waved the stick around and said, “Bippity, boppity, boo, I’m going to turn you into a penis.” Of course the self-righteous Sugar was appalled at her sister’s potty mouth. She glared at me, clearly waiting for me to address the bad behavior of her devilish little sister. Spice, on the other hand, was delighted to have gotten a reaction and twirled on her chair (still standing) while waving the magic wand.

I was at a loss as to how to handle this one, so I asked, “Where did you learn that word?” Still twirling, she chirped, “Nicholas told it to me.” I told her that in the future, she should not make any attempts to turn her sister into a penis.

This is an area of mothering where the rules aren’t clear. Of course it’s not nice to try to turn your sister into a penis, or a frog, or a bug… no one wants to be turned into something with a negative connotation. So we have a rule: you can only “bippity boppity boo” your sister into something pleasant.

It’s the use of the P word that concerns me at this point. She obviously knows what it is. I know this because she shared her new-found knowledge with me in great detail. Is there supposed to be a ban on proper terminology? I could list off 1,000 other words that mean the same thing and certainly, those words are not appropriate. I wouldn’t let her use them EVER. I just don’t know how to address the vocabulary that Spice obviously uses for shock value alone. That mothering handbook isn’t helping me out here… How do you handle it?

The word has not been used again. This morning though, she bent her arm, pointed her elbow in my direction and said, “Doesn’t my elbow look like a boobie?”


Ice Princess 

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Messing Around

Instead of doing what I was supposed to do (homework) while EN took the girls ice skating today, I messed around with this blog. I changed all sorts of things and had many a temper tantrum while doing so. It wasn't pretty... Some of you fell victims to my rants via text. I thank you for texting back and telling me to JUST WALK AWAY. Instead of doing that, I picked up the damn laptop and shook it like an Etch-A-Sketch. That seemed to work.

So... tell me what you think of the new background, colors, etc. I've heard from some of you that the comments section isn't working properly. Please try again-click "Comment" and post as Anonymous. If that doesn't work, text me and I'll shake this computer again. ;o)

Now I'm off to do something productive. Like stalk the innocent via Facebook. I mean HOMEWORK!

Ice Princess

A New Leaf

Sometimes it sucks to be right about something. Normally when I’m proven right, I gloat a little. I might let a “tee hee” slip out, or even a happy dance. Sometimes I feel bad for being right, only because I occasionally say something really mean-spirited and don’t want it to be right, but…

EN told me earlier this week that Thanksgiving dinner at his mom’s would be at 1:00. I was a snide bitch and said, “Sure. We won’t eat until 3:00. We’ll go there early and be held captive in the house with your sister and her husband.” Sure enough, dinner was served around 3:30. I was a polite and pleasant guest, I said nothing untoward to anyone, not even to my brother-in-law, who drives me batshit crazy almost the instant I lay eyes on him.

This is all in effort of turning over a new leaf. I am opinionated and will sometimes let my opinions bubble to the surface and the innocent know what I am thinking. Not any more. I am doing my best to keep my mouth shut. For example, yesterday when my sister-in-law wasn’t paying attention and her baby’s head hit the table, I said nothing. When she told a story about her husband dropping the baby off at daycare with poop going up his back (he didn’t know diapers could leak?!), I said nothing.

I’ve taken this stance with my own family as well. When my mother rants about the argument she’s had with her sister, I murmur sympathetically. When my sister’s son behaves rudely and is still up at 1 am, I say nothing.

Nor will my friends get an earful from me when they say or do something I disagree with. When they treat their spouse in a way that I don’t like, then come back to the marital home expecting sunshine and roses, I smile and nod. The next time a friend sleeps with another friends husband, I will say nothing… until that friend starts working over my husband, then the gloves are off!

You get the point.

This doesn’t mean, however, that my opinions aren’t rumbling around in my head, ready to spew forth. That’s why I have EN. He is aware of my opinions, thoughts, rants. He’s the only one that REALLY knows how I’m feeling about things. And if there ever comes a time that my friends stop hearing from me altogether, all the polite, thoughtful, fluttery niceties that I vow to say, it’s because EN has stopped listening and I’ve spontaneously combusted.

Or maybe I'll just keep blogging.

Ice Princess 

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Not Home for the Holiday

With the exception of two Thanksgivings, I have never hosted or cooked the entire dinner. The first time was the year that I met EN. I cooked dinner for the two of us and we ate and watched movies all day. What’s memorable about that day is that I made EN wash out the turkey, which he did, then proceeded to dance it around my kitchen. A floor show for my two dogs. I swear they sat there and laughed. The following year, we hosted Thanksgiving for all of our friends that had no place else to go. That year goes down in history as The Year that EN Locked the Turkey in the Oven. It’s a very funny story now, but I wasn’t so amused when he did it. To this day, I think long and hard before asking for his help in the kitchen.

Since then, we’ve had some great Thanksgivings, and some that left much to be desired. The year I was pregnant with Sugar, we went to Alabama to spend the day with EN’s dad, stepmother and half sisters. The holiday wasn’t terrible as I really enjoy his dad and sisters. The worst part was that I was pregnant and really craving my mother’s cooking and yummy desserts. Every dessert his stepmother served had pumpkin in it. Of course in this fancy house, one does not decline dessert entirely. I mashed up that pumpkin cheesecake until it looked like I had eaten some of it.

Two years ago, we went to Disney for Thanksgiving. We spent nearly ten days there with ENs dad and family. EN Senior had gotten remarried a year or two before and there was a new stepmother on the scene. We love this woman madly so the vacation was fun for everyone. We planned on going to Perkins for Thanksgiving but one of EN’s sisters balked at the plan. My new mother-in-law (given that we are very close in age, she LOVES when I call her that!) stepped up and made us all a fabulous dinner. AND we got to have cake for dessert, no crappy pumpkinish substances that year!

It should be noted here that we alternate Thanksgiving every year between my family and ENs. It should be further noted that ENs mother was pissed that we dare spend “her” year with evil EN Senior and his Evil Family. Holidays had never mattered to this woman before. As a matter of fact, many of ENs friends’ wives were shocked to learn at our wedding that he actually had a mother in the local area. He had always been the orphan that they brought along on their own family holidays. Suddenly, she’s decided that she is the Queen Mother and needs to be treated as such.

This year, we get to go to the Queen Mother’s house for dinner. I am less than thrilled with the idea, but fair is fair. I will prepare my contributions and we will go. We will eat, drink and be merry. And when all is said and done we will beat feet out of there and have dessert with my family. Maybe some leftovers too, because no matter where we spend the holiday, it’s just not Thanksgiving unless I get to have some of my mother’s stuffing.

Ice Princess

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Soccer Moms

Soccer Moms: a bullshit statement. Work with me here folks, I’m channeling Marisa Tormei’s line in My Cousin Vinnie… “that’s a bullshit question!” And yes, when I typed that, I said it out loud in my head, New York accent and all. Now back to the Soccer Moms…

As I’ve mentioned before, Sugar has been involved in many team and individual sports. The only rule is that she has to stick with the sport for the time period we sign up for. Within every single one of those sports, I have seen the dreaded “Soccer Mom” behavior. The adult that complains loudly to everyone near them that the cherub they’ve come to see isn’t being played enough, not given enough chances, other kids are less talented and being played more, the list goes on… Again, this is every sport, not just soccer.

And it’s not just the moms, there are soccer dads, aunts, uncles, grandparents, nosey folk who stop to watch the game in progress. Kids see that level of competitiveness and I’m sure they feel it.

On Saturday, Sugar skated in her first solo skating competition. As far as I am concerned, she did fabulously and she placed in third, out of three. A disappointing finish, I whispered to myself in my head, but I’m not going to get in a frenzy over it. I didn’t see the other skaters she was up against. I was too busy congratulating Sugar for competing, remembering her routine, smiling and not peeing on the ice, crying or falling.

However, Soccer Dad, Soccer Auntie and Soccer Grandparents, had a few words to say. Nothing was said in front of Sugar, of course, but everyone was upset. Even her coach pulled EN aside and complained about the judges. I am forever thankful that the adults that came to watch Sugar behaved themselves in front of her and cheered on her 3rd place finish like she had just beat out Nancy Kerrigan and Michelle Kwan. 

Sugar attended the awards ceremony and she and her mother smiled happily at her bronze medals. I glanced around at the other people watching their own children and couldn’t help but notice one mother in particular. Her daughter came in third in her group and the mother had a frosty “not good enough” smile pasted to her face. This was the same mother that tortured her daughter in the locker room, fluffing her hair, redoing her makeup, not letting her eat or play with the other skaters… When did we stop having fun? Isn’t that really the point here? In my jaded view, it’s all about letting the child perform to the best of their ability and celebrating their success in making it through. We have years to go before we worry about Qualifying At Important Events, or whatever it is that comes next. For now, lets choose a fun song, practice a routine that makes us smile and skate like no one’s watching. 

Ice Princess

Friday, November 19, 2010

Secret Addiction

I find it endlessly annoying that retailers are now putting up Christmas items BEFORE Halloween even. Can’t we buy our vampire blood without some plastic Baby Jesus looking over our shoulders?

Over the last week we have also been inundated with “Super Duper Early Black Friday Specials.” C’mon folks, Black Friday is the Friday after Thanksgiving. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. If you want to have a sale, have one, but leave Black Friday for next week. Please.

While I hate that the shopping madness is creeping into our lives earlier and earlier, I must confess that I love Christmas music and could listen to it all year long. It was very exciting then, when I heard on my Sirius station that they have two channels of Christmas music. I tuned right in.

I’m particular about my Christmas music. I don’t like songs about donkeys named Dominic or grandmothers getting run over by reindeer, but I’ll laugh hysterically at Adam Sandler or Jeff Foxworthy.

I like modern versions of songs and will only rarely listen to Bing Crosbyish music. I don’t think there’s a single version of “Little Drummer Boy” that I don’t like and “Mary’s Boy Child” by Boney M is one of my favorites. Two years ago I was lucky enough to see Trans-Siberian Orchestra, and they are now a favorite too. And Jon Bon Jovi is welcome to beg me to come home this Christmas any old time, but he better answer the damn door the next time I do.

Sugar and Spice are also huge fans of Christmas music. Sugar will even play one of her Christmas CDs through the year. “Santa Baby” in July… why not?

I don’t know what it is about Christmas music, it’s not that I’m wishing for all the busy-ness that comes with the holidays, getting gifts, anything like that. I won’t be trite and say that it’s “the message” from the music. I think it’s just the mood… it’s calming and peaceful. It just puts me in a good place.

Christmas music… heroin for my soul.

Ice Princess 

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Public Flogging

I’m the first to admit that I fly off the handle quickly, but do not always stick with the punishment that I set. I’m terrible at “punishing.” Mostly because I don’t like it. I don’t like to spank and I usually freak out enough that further punishment is not necessary. What I hate more than anything though, is the use of public humiliation as a form of punishment. Without even giving much thought, I can think of three instances in my life where I was publicly humiliated for doing something wrong:

  1. In 8th grade, I yawned in the face of my teacher without covering my mouth. It was rude, I was a polite kid, I don’t know why I did it. She screamed bloody murder at me. To this day, I’m a very polite yawner.
  2. I worked at a supermarket for a short time and made the grave mistake of giving an elderly woman two grocery bags, so she could be balanced. The owner of the supermarket screamed at me in the front end of the supermarket. I walked out that day and never went back.
  3. Another boss one time screamed down the hallway at me, “What are you, STUPID?”
These are very vivid memories, still painful after all these years. There’s a right way and wrong way to take someone to task. Those three examples are just WRONG.

Today I picked Sugar up from school and she tells me a long, rambling story about how she got in trouble at school and her teacher ripped up her homework, and the homework of eight others, in front of the entire class. At first, with Sugar’s constantly changing story, I was pissed at her for lying to me. Her story did not make any sense, especially because I had checked the homework the night before and it looked fine to me.

There was an event at school tonight and another parent approached me about the incident. Her child’s homework was also ripped up, but she was friendly with another mother whose child is in the class but not one of the nine that got into trouble. She called this other parent and found out that the teachers behavior bothered the entire class.  

Now that I had a bit more information, I got the straight story out of Sugar. Turns out, she misunderstood the second part of the assignment. She *thought* she did it right, but was wrong. The attempt was there, at the very least.

So now I’m pissed. This teacher humiliated my child (and others) in front of the entire class. Kids went home and cried about the incident. On so many levels, that just isn’t right. Of course, homework should be done completely and accurately, but is this really a way to teach a fourth grade class that they really need to get it right the first time?

Do I send in a note? Do I talk to the teacher? Do I chalk it up to the teacher just having a bad day? I’m at a loss.

Excuse me while I peruse the Mother’s Handbook that was given to me when my children were born. I’m sure there’s an answer in there somewhere.

Ice Princess

Sunday, November 14, 2010

It's All Good

It truly was a beautiful weekend. The weather was gorgeous and many things happened that just made my heart feel really good. The fact that we had wonderful company definitely had an impact on my mood.

I started adopting soldiers through about a year ago. Our first adoptee was a match made in heaven. We have been in touch for a year now, even though she’s been back from Iraq for most of that time. We’ve had the pleasure of spending time with her over multiple visits. This weekend was bittersweet, as she will be leaving our local (ha! six hour drive) area to another base… in Hawaii, poor thing. It may be the last time we see her for a very long time.

She came to have a last visit with her adopted sisters and also to see me present a speech that I originally gave in May as part of my Public Speaking class. I asked her to attend on a whim, never dreaming that she’d say yes. And on Friday, she asked me if I wanted her to wear her uniform for the presentation. I don’t know why, but the question overwhelmed me emotionally and made me cry. I wanted to ask her to wear it, but I didn’t want to seem pushy, she must have read my mind.

I gave the speech today and she attended along with a friend that had come along for the drive, and Sugar. As Sugar is due to skate in her first solo competition next weekend, I thought it would be good for her to see her mom do something that makes many people (including me!) very nervous. Of course I feel like the speech didn’t go very well: every “um” echoed through my head and I know I fidgeted a lot. The audience, however, seemed quite taken by the story I shared. Sugar and Soldier Girl both crabbed that I almost made them cry.

If their presence wasn’t enough to make me smile, I smiled even broader that one of my classmates from my Public Speaking class came along to hear the speech again. She’s a wonderful person for giving up part of her Sunday to attend. I am blessed to have friends that go out of their way for me.

What is simply astounding is the very generous donation she and her husband made to my “Christmas for the Soldiers” shipment. They handed over two large boxes filled with a variety of items AND a cash donation to help cover shipping charges. If my heart wasn’t full already, it’s overflowing now. It’s not often that a girl can reach out to friends with a crazy dream of sending a “taste of home” halfway around the world, and have them all pitch in like it’s something they want to do.

I am surrounded by some very good peeps. I hope they all know how much they mean to me.

Ice Princess

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Justice is Served

They say she felt every single one of the 32 stab wounds to her body.

They say that she attempted to use her body to shield her child from the attack.

They say the man that did this was euphoric after he left the scene of the crime.

This case eats away at me. Things like this just don’t happen where I live. And this happened oh, so close to home. I never met the victims but their story is agonizing to me as a mother.  

Because this case scared me as much as it did, I tried not to follow it too closely. I remember pictures of the victim and thinking how beautiful she was. I remember hearing that the child who was present during the attacks was hospitalized for a very long time afterwards. I remember wondering then, and I still wonder today, will that child ever be the girl she was before she saw her mother attacked? Before she herself was attacked by these teenaged boys?

This crime took place a while ago, but the trial didn’t wrap up until today. Again, I still didn’t follow the case much, mostly because I was too scared to want to know what happened in that house. If there could be a “rose-colored glasses” version of a murder, it was that this victim never woke up through the attack and that her daughter never witnessed it.

I have started reading bits and pieces of the testimony and found that  this was not the case at all. That woman fought for her life and the life of her child. She died in agony, trying to save herself and her daughter. Of all the ways in the world one could die, is there anything more painful than being scared for the life of your child? I can’t even breathe when I think of what that must have been like for the mother, or for the child who saw it all.

And the child, she will be forever scarred both physically and emotionally from what these boys did. She won’t have her mother with her when she finishes high school, gets married, has her own child. Those boys robbed that little girl of her childhood and her mother. They made her scared to be alive. No child should ever feel that. My heart aches for her.

It is with great delight then, that I read today that the ringleader was convicted after 90 minutes of jury deliberations. Now it’s my turn to feel euphoric. I’m saddened that this monster will live the rest of his life in a facility bought and paid for by taxpayers like myself. I’d rather see him rot in hell. He does not deserve to take another breath.

I hope that beautiful lady is up there somewhere, smiling down today, knowing that the teenaged boy will never be free again. If there is a good God, as we are taught, I have faith that somehow she’ll still be able to be a part of her daughters life… be it a ray of sunshine when she’s feeling down, or a gentle wind guiding her daughter in the right direction.  

Rest in peace, beautiful lady. 

Ice Princess

Friday, November 5, 2010


This house is in my town and it’s been for sale for over a year. We pass by it frequently and somehow the girls started calling it “Mama’s House.” I guess I must have said that I loved it one too many times.

I’m a girl who likes new stuff-house, car, clothes, furniture. My love of this house is unexplainable. It’s old. It’s huge. It needs a ton of work. It is all the things I don’t like. The exterior trim is painted the color that I hate the most, but that doesn’t stop me from dreaming about this place.

I go to on a regular basis and look at the pictures of this house. They have mostly exterior shots and none of the kitchen, which leads me to believe that it’s awful and would need to be redone.

This house is over 5000 square feet. A family of four doesn’t need something that large. A house of that size practically begs for a monster-in-law to move in. There are seven bedrooms and five bathrooms. Who would want to clean that? Who wants the heating bill? It even has an elevator for God’s sake!

But still… I drive by the house and dream about what I would do to it. I will be the woman that decorates the porch for every holiday and changes the wreath hanging on the front door seasonally. Granted I don’t do that now, but with a porch like that, how could I not? I see the interior, not as it’s shown in the photos, all the walls done in hideous wallpaper, but freshly painted in light, bright colors. The rooms are filled with comfortable furniture, perhaps even an overstuffed chair next to the fireplace. A chair that begs to be curled up in with a good book on a cold day.

The sellers are offering financing at a rate that’s practically non-existant and the price dropped quite a bit over the last few weeks. The numbers are starting to look affordable and my daydreams of owning this mansion are becoming more frequent.

Today I drove by the house and the For Sale sign is gone. My heart broke just a little. I rushed on to work and immediately checked for it online. The dream still lives.

I am haunted by this foolishness.

Ice Princess

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Turn on the Charm

I got pulled over today on my way home from work. It occurred to me when I shared the story with a friend that I have had some funny interactions when it comes to being pulled over… and I rarely get a ticket, which infuriates EN. He could sneeze in the direction of a cop and get a whopping fine… which I find amusing. I’ve never cried or offered sexual favors in return for a warning instead of an actual citation. It must just be my good looks and charm that keep me from paying a hefty fine. I hope you are all rolling your eyes and making gagging noises at that last sentence. I know I am.

I was first pulled over right after graduating from high school. I was in the car with Kate and Shannon. We were on our way to a pool party. I got an expensive ticket and my dad said, “Why didn’t you cry?” I had to explain to him that I was pulled over by a gigantic, manly-looking female cop. I don’t think she would have appreciated my tears.

The next time, I was about 25 and going through the difficult time that I referred to in my last post. Kate, my sister and Kate’s two kids were in the car with me. I was crying even before I got pulled over and kept my sunglasses on through the entire exchange with the officer. Another huge fine.

Shortly after that, I was driving to work one morning and was barely speeding. The officer informed me that I was SPEEDING, going 60 in a 50 mph zone. While tapping my freshly manicured nails on the steering wheel, I told him that I didn’t realize it was a 50 mph zone in that direction. He said, “Nice nails” and sent me on my way. My luck with the boys in blue was starting to turn.

There were a few more incidents after that… once I yelled at the cop that I was late for work and it was my husbands fault. I think he might have peed a little and didn’t even check my license, just handed everything back to me and said “try to have a better day.” A year later, again on my way to work, I was pulled over by a prison transport vehicle (how humiliating!) and got a very stern lecture from the sheriff. I can only imagine what the prisoners in the back of the van were saying to each other.

Today’s incident really surprised me, I saw the blue lights and had no idea what I had done. There’s a road closure on the route that I don’t normally take home, so I followed instructions from EN, or so I thought. I needed to take a left across a very busy two-lane road. I barely paused to look around, decided I had time to go before the swarm of oncoming cars would cross my path. I booted it. Too bad I didn’t notice the No Left Turn sign, or the cop that was leading the pack of oncoming traffic.

The officer starts our conversation with the usual “do you know why I’m pulling you over?” question and I told him that I had no idea. He informed me that left turns are not allowed there, then asked how my driving record was. I told him that I couldn’t remember the last time I got a ticket. I may have giggled a little, maybe batted an eyelash (there could have been something in my eye). He told me that if I was being honest, I would only receive a warning. He came back to the car after about five minutes and waved the warning in a flirty little way and said, “Now isn’t this better than a $100 fine?” HELL YEAH!!!

I guess my advice is this: be honest with the boys in blue. They look kindly upon that. If you aren’t convinced that will work, bat the eyelashes. If things still aren’t going your way, shake what your mama gave ya… isn’t that what they are there for? ;o)

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Cool Change

Fourteen years ago today I met EN. I was out at the skankiest bar in the town that I lived in. My sister talked me into going out to drown my sorrows, it was the third bar we hit that night.

I was minding my own business, drinking a beer when this guy came up and asked me if I would go over and have a drink with his friend because it was his birthday. I said, and this line has been repeated many times over the years, “he’s not my type, but you’re kinda cute.” That was it. EN spent the rest of the evening at our table while his friends glared at us from across the room. One by one, they joined us at our table and a delightful night was had by all. EN bought me a shot of tequila and we danced to “Cool Change” by the Little River Band. What a charmer he was! ;o)

He was a Harley dude, completely not my type at all. It didn’t occur to me to be impressed when he told me that he worked at the local Harley dealership as a mechanic. Motorcycles weren’t my thing. Then he asked if I had ever been on a Harley. When I said that I hadn’t, he said “maybe it’s time you put your ass on some class.” Again, what a charmer.

I was going through a difficult time and wasn’t looking for a romance but I will swear to the day that I die, the moment I saw him walking towards me I thought, “that’s the man I’m going to marry.” Everyone warned me that he was the “rebound guy” and this relationship would be a passing thing. For some reason, we stuck together and made it work.

In the beginning, things weren’t easy. His friend (also his coworker) was mad that I had chosen EN over him and told everyone they worked with what had occurred. EN had months of torture at work, but still we stayed together.

I like to say that since we met, EN has done laundry once. The one time he washed a load of jeans, he shrunk them. When I mentioned that my jeans were tight, he said, “well, baby, perhaps you’ve gained a little weight.” Aren’t you all impressed that he lived to take another breath? When he tried to put on his own jeans, he realized that he had in fact shrunk the entire load of laundry. Hello Fatass!!!

A year after meeting, we bought our first home together. A year after that, we got married and we just celebrated our 12th anniversary. Yes, all the friends that were with him the night we met attended the wedding.

Life’s not all sunshine and roses. While EN is certainly the nicest man I’ve ever met, he also knows just how to drive me crazy. Of course, he’s still not trusted to do laundry. He rarely cooks, never handles the finances and doesn’t clean because he just never notices what needs to be done. He’s exasperating and ditzy and quite the daydreamer. But he’s the love of my life and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Ice Princess