Playground Uprising

This blog has moved
August 15, 2012, 9:04 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Greetings Readers,

This blog has moved. You can find us at …


The Bike
August 12, 2012, 7:34 pm
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The Bike

It really is a balancing act ~

The red head boarded his red wheels with his black helmet and looked at me to zoom and zap him into the natural dexterity required to take the handles and soar towards independence.

And so I held on ~ let go ~ felt an impending crash ~ held tighter until the request came ~ “I am heading inside to watch ninjago.”

July 18, 2011, 11:31 pm
Filed under: boyd, brothers, fighting, Life, parenthood, parenting, Uncategorized | Tags: , , ,

Velcro ~ it holds the dust ruffle onto our four poster bed, and sticks the nametags to the desks in my fifth grade classroom, and the bodies of one four year old to another eight year old as they watch television, sit in the pew at church, or pass each other in the hall. The force is strong and immediate, as if when in each other’s company there is simply no other course of action but to throw one’s body wildly onto the other while peering over the shoulder ready to throw up hands in utter exasperation and proclaim “_____ stepped, slapped, scratched me” ~ accompanied by a look of outraged suffered from this complete and unsolicited indignity. And so I send them both to their separate rooms ~ a consequence whose effectiveness resides within the margin of error ~ but accomplishes an air of peace and allows me to reconsider the benefits of getting my own apartment down the street (which I am still thinking is an excellent idea!).

Academic Transfer
May 20, 2010, 2:23 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

“I am going to Florida. We are staying at the Breakers.”  “Excellent, I am staying in Richmond where I will watch your children break things (preferably your things).” It is like we are living this parallel life, except I am hosing crap off of our patio and you are having drinks by the pool. Comparisons aside, tonight was peaceful. Mac went to bed at 6:58. I of course told him it was way past his 7:30 bedtime – feeling perfectly content in this fallacy –  as I quietly whispered to myself – this is your way of encouraging him to actually apply the knowledge he learns in school to his everyday environment. You see, the fib is actually a lesson in academic transfer. And – I know this is in fact possible, because in Mac’s short two year tenure in school, he has learned a variety of peppy renditions of the Barney song (all including references to automatic weapons) and  is convinced that fruit snacks are a legitimate fruit that grows on the fruit snack tree – growing just left of the new Martin’s grocery store (don’t get me started). In the meantime, I am able to eat a veggie burger in peace and watch my taped episodes of The Hills and The City, which is vital to my fashion sense (obviously I don’t tune in often enough) and my understanding of how to base your self-worth on how blond your hair is and the expense of your shoes. So you see – Mac and I both learned important lessons today as our father figure sipped martinis by the outside bar. Ain’t life a beach.

The Great Wolf Lodge: Toenails, and Bikini’s, and Wolves Oh My


I have not written on my blog for a while and though I have made lofty, yet sporadic attempts to rectify the situation – life just seems to get in the way. But – as all writers know there are experiences that run you over and just yell WRITE ME! I had one of those this weekend.

It began something like this:

“Mom I want to go to the Great Wolf Lodge for my birthday.” To which I responded, “Their closed.” “For how long?” “Until 2021 -which is around the year you turn 18 and can take yourself.” “Mom, – that is impossible- I just saw an advertisement on TV.” Curse all forms of technology. Think, Think, Think. “Well if we go to Hell and Swaller, I mean the Great Wolf Lodge, than that will have to count as your birthday party and you won’t get the opportunity to have lots of friends over to give you expensive plastic things that break.”  “I’m in.” “Call your grandparents.”  “No!” “How about the new neighbors that just moved in – perhaps they will take you.”  “No – mom you and dad have to take me.” “Damn!”

And so we did – and as we headed down 64 East I tried to convince myself that Hell and Swaller could not possibly be as awful as I remember – but this fleeting crash with optimism was quickly averted as we got off the “well marked” exit in attempt to follow “the signs” – that led us 5 miles down the road to an old gas station and an exasperated husband yelling “where the hell is this place” to an unassuming gas attendant that appeared to be counting his blessings that he did not have to accompany us into the darkness.

And as we arrived – we found that check-in time was at 4pm, but you can kindly come at 1pm and rent a locker in which to store your stuff. The locker only costs a week’s salary or an unborn child. We tried to offer Charlie, our second child, – but the temper tantrums dampened the sale. Fortunately for us – we were able to sweet talk the nice lady into letting us move into our “nonsmoking” – smoked fill room a bit early so that the boys could throw their clothes around the room, wrestle, and get their bathing suits on in anticipation of the water park.

Yes water park – because if you are going to spend 24 hours in hell what better way to capstone the experience than being wet and in a bathing suit with 300 other people that missed the memo that there is a certain age and a certain size in which bikini’s are no longer an inalienable right.

And after the germ infested water drained parents’ energy and good humor (ok we never had any of that) – we were off to dinner. A steal to be had at $18 a person – allowing you to feed the fam a nutritionally void meal for around $100. And don’t forget the plastic –no not utensils  – I mean the plastic wand, and plastic toy, and plastic tasting pastry that are all yours for the remaining part of your retirement.

And as the evening waned and we hopped on beds and big brothers practiced karate moves on little brothers – Mac comes out of a small body slam holding an unidentified, sasquatch like white thing and exclaiming – “look dad  I found  your toenail.”

Only that one wasn’t ours.

Next year I am sure the Great Wolf Lodge will be closed in October and we will no longer have access to any form of technology that connects us to the outside world.

Game Over
June 26, 2009, 2:14 pm
Filed under: Children, potty training, teaching, Uncategorized | Tags:


He’s two and a half. The economy’s downward spiral is not helped by our weekly purchase of diapers. AMVETS is now the proud owner of a pack and play. Our crib has gone down the road to a young woman who just had triplets (God bless her). We are moving into Big Boy territory and that terrain calls for underwear. It’s true. Ask anyone.

So – two weeks ago on an obligatory Target run I found myself spouting, “Charlie – how about we look at underwear. How cool would that be?” “NO” And so the story should have ended there. But in my mind I am thinking “GAME ON.”

Think….. think … “Charlie – I bet if you went potty I could spot you a M&M.” Never mind that just last night I shared with my graduate students the perils of extrinsic rewards.

The red head is not impressed. “NO.” Hmmmm, Hmmmmm – “Well the economy is slowly coming around – I bet I could score you a whole bag.” “NO.”

He looks at me with a “this woman is obviously not riding my wave so let me break it down for her” kinda look.

“Mom, I wear diapers. I am not wearing underwear. No. No. No. No” (Now close your eyes and imagine the red head stomping with hands on his hips and a noncompliance eye). All children have gifts. Mine is extremely verbal and he never loses an occasion to use it against me.

“Greg – he is not ready. We cannot rush these things.” I say over dinner using my calm educator’s voice, but inside I know that I am a “my schedule kinda girl” and whooooo hooooo we are jumping on the underwear train.

Later that night Charlie and I pick out several books and climb into bed. We have the terrible trio – Wheels on the Bus, Machines at Work, and Big & Little. He has meticulously picked each book out with an anticipatory grin that says “yes I know I pick these same books out every night, and yes I will continue to have you read them to me though the year 2011 – which by my calculations is the precise year I will entertain wearing underwear and at a minimum it is going to cost you a crate of M&Ms.”

Well Little Mama had some trick of her own – and as we closed the cover to the last book – I pulled one last treasure from under the bed. POTTY TIME. “No, no, no, mama I DO NOT LIKE POTTYS THEY GO IN THE GARBAGE TRUCK.” “Oh silly boy, this book is not for you – I am just itching for a read and you can listen to if you want.” Score one for mom. Sure enough the little man snuggles up with me and as I victoriously read the last page in which Michael pees on the potty, Charlie gleefully says – “Look mommy it is our family, there is you, daddy, and look there – Mac (aka big brother) is on the potty peeing. Good for Mac.

Game over!

I’m Going for A Run …
March 7, 2009, 6:43 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

My husband has been in Honduras for the last week. In short – we are a proud but mournful family unit – who misses their third ill behaved kid. So –today I broke down and actually paid the gym daycare $10 so that I could have an hour on the treadmill and elliptical machine in an effort to get my groove back. Sometimes a girls got to break bad in order to retain her Saturday sanity– a feat I usually accomplish on my neighborhood runs. But despite the chaos – I understand that leaving one’s young children unattended in the house may result in an unexpected visit from our friends down at Social Services. Not to mention – that besides soccer and matchbox cars – Mac’s favorite pastime is setting up the redhead for an inevitable fall which he is the first to plea – not involved. It goes something like this. I say, “Mac, please do not stick that very strange suction cup toy – plucked from the overpriced, nutritiously void, environmentally hazardous Happy Meal –on our freshly painted walls.” This request is promptly  translated to “Oh mom does not want ME to stick this thing THERE but – the red head over HERE lacks forwarded thinking and craves catastrophe – so I think we have ourselves a winner – CHARLIE ………”  Screech – laugh – paint chip falls to the floor – “MOM look at what Charlie is doing, bad Charlie.” This scene has repeated itself approximately 11 times over the last twenty four hours – and has only ceased because strange toy mysteriously found its way to the trashcan and then a landfill – where it will sit for the next quadrillion years to torture future generations.  So imagine the apocalypse that could ensue with an hour of no parental guidance? Come to think of it – a quiet night in the slammer isn’t looking so bad about now.  I am going for a run.