What did those kids do to that nice lady?

Monday, February 12, 2018

Brain Freeze

I’ve been trying really hard lately to be funny. 

That sounds weird.

What I mean to say is I’ve been trying to figure out funny stories to tell you about My Offspring being assholes or why I disdain Teslas or why it is that there is so much pontificating over organic, whole grain, coconut oil, hemp seed dinners when One: nobody wants to hear about it, especially Your Children, so just have quesadillas and call it a day and Two: these are the same people who have faces filled with Botox. It confuses me, this Organic, Whole Grain, All Natural Botox Person. But I confuse easily so it's probably just me.

But all of my thoughts are so entrenched in current Life Situation and Unknown Future that it’s hard for me to try and force my fingertips to stray another way. My brain is frozen in this sort of melancholy uncertainty that to try and be more lighthearted feels like a betrayal to my thoughts. Don’t get me wrong…I haven’t completely gone off the way side. I mean when That Lady came 10 minutes late to yoga this morning and made me move my mat over in the middle of my downward dog because for some reason her time is more important than my time and it’s totally cool to just disrupt the entire class, and then not even mumble an apology as she forces me to move all my stuff over even though I was there 15 minutes early because to be early is to be on time….I mean That Lady is clearly a horrible person who has zero awareness and I kinda wanted to kick her while we were in fallen triangle. 

See? My brain is still full of snarky.

But then my brain goes back to…ugh….That Lady is so not worth my time or effort or snakiness because I’ve got all this other stuff going on….and she doesn’t know she’s an asshole because otherwise she would have apologized so I can’t change her. Carry on.

But then I’m like NO! The world needs to know that you don’t just come 10 minutes late to a packed yoga class with complete disregard of EVERYONE! The world needs to know they shouldn’t be That Lady! 

But then I’m like…eh. I’ve got more important things to worry about. Like…how do you pack crystal stemware to ensure it doesn’t break? And also-where am I going to live? And does anyone know how to remove a Fathead off of a wall and preserve it? Because I’m scared of The Wrath of Son if I can’t figure out a way to do this. And oh yeah…I need a job and like…. health insurance I think and…some other stuff I can’t be bothered with right now…

So then I’m like…let’s think about That Lady again and how much we hate her. Much easier on the brain. I’ll just bury my head back underneath all this sand and stare down jerks at stop signs who try and run over My Children all while contemplating why Son loves steak but complains every time I make steak stir-fry for dinner. It just makes no sense. Like that snow pea with the steak is going to kill him. 

See? It’s so much more fun when my brain works the way it was intended to. 

What I do know about a freeze, brain or otherwise, is that it will melt eventually. And then it will freeze again, just when you’re used to the spring sunshine on your face. But…you wait and you are patient and the freeze gradually slips away; perhaps you will not even notice it has left. Perhaps you will just be going about your day when you notice you feel warm again. The freeze has finally surrendered to the season you have so desperately been aching for. 

What I also know is that…everything will be okay. Things will be resolved. A roof will cover our heads, I will pack the stemware to perfection and I might just have to buy another Fathead. But things will be okay.

Just a little freeze to work through.  

Monday, January 29, 2018

Ski Day

Is this a blue run? Why is it so steep? Did I do this one last year? Why can’t we just do Easy Rider all day? Crap. God I hate this part. Okay okay okay just turn and breath. Turn and breath. Oh crap! Damn, Gina, that was close. You are too close to me, Sir!! Shit! You got this you got this. Holy shitballs that’s fast. Oh shitballs I am going really fast. Fooooocus. It’s fine.  Ohhhhhhh shitballs. Oh my god please don’t hit that kid. What the HELL!!!! Who let these goddamned snowboarders on here??  I hate them! I hate you!!! HOLY CHRIST STOP SNEAKING UP ON ME! YOU ARE CRAZY PEOPLE! Where are my kids? Good god they are fast. Whoa whoa whoa which way are they going? Why are they going two different ways? YOU GUYS!!! WAIT FOR ME!!! Holy shitballs what the hell crap crap crap why are there so many people here? LOOK AT MY TURNS PEOPLE! STAY FAR AWAY FROM ME!  Can we please drink beer now???

This is me skiing.
This is me skiing each time I ski, which is only one or two days a year.
This is me skiing after learning how to ski as an Adult-which from watching the experience The Children are having- is a very different thing than learning how to ski as a Child. As an Adult I understand that it is unnatural to be moving at such an undesirable speed down a mountain covered in snow, ice, twigs, and Asshole Speed Demons. As a Child, moving at such an undesirable speed down a mountain is like super fun and only goal is to become Asshole Speed Demon. Also-as an Adult, skiing is fucking expensive and as a Child-skiing is free. It’s a compelling argument to begin skiing as a Child, isn’t it? 

Although it’s sad to admit that Son is by far better than me and Daughter will soon be on her way, there are a couple things I excel at over The Children when skiing. First-I am aware that although ski boots are highly uncomfortable and can be challenging to put on, I will not die while doing so. This is the opposite opinion of The Children who both do their damnedest to win Best Dramatic Performance by a Child at a Ski Lodge while inserting foot into boot. 

Second-I am better at Carrying All The Shit. So much shit. So so so so so so many things to carry up the two flights of stairs to the lockers to put on the murderous boots to then only be raped financially by Whitney from Nevada as she gleefully takes my credit card to charge me $300 for lift tickets for ONE day as I stand there hoping I’m hallucinating but quickly realize, nope, I’m totally lucid. Beginning to wonder how skiing is such an elitist sport…yet such a pain in the ass at the same time?  And why don’t I have a flask in this jacket? That’s what all the pockets are for….right? Flask would be so superior to this Fiber One Bar I must have left in my jacket from last year….

I don’t love skiing; I don’t hate skiing. I enjoy it. It’s challenging for me; in fact it challenges me in almost every way. My patience. My strength. My patience. My balance. My patience. My courage.  But what I appreciate most about it is how it forces me to be extremely present, moment to moment. How I can feel every muscle in my body working and hear every swoosh sneaking up behind me. All of my five senses are are high alert, ready to prevail. Each detail surrounding me is amplified; even the quiet is thunderous. Skiing reminds me that I can do something even if scares me; I can settle into the discomfort and figure it out. I can do it, me alone. I can do it and I can even enjoy it. I appreciate that sense of satisfaction, at the end of the day, releasing my feet from those barbaric boots, unzipping and stripping a jacket that suddenly seems to warm, my face flush with cold and sweat alike. I appreciate that I get to share this experience with The Children; that they see a Mama who is a little scared but she is The Adult and The Adult must lead and even though they got down the mountain faster than her, she is there, right behind them, keeping a close watch. While yelling Holy Shitballs. 

And also-the beer. I appreciate the beer. 

Happy trails. 

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Double Ones

Dear Son,

Well…here we are. Again. December is here-which means, Son, that you are another year older. The third day of the twelfth month of the year will mark your 11th year of life. And while I marvel at this, I can’t help but recall that when I was 11, I got my period, so….at least you got that going for you. 

Is that too far?

Nah. You’ll see the video later this year. 

This past couple of years I’ve had to become accustomed to not getting to wake up each day with you and also spending what seems like month-long weekends away from you and Daughter. I gotta tell you that as much as you drive me absolutely mad, I just miss you so. damn. much when you’re gone. Well…I mean…like after you’re gone for a couple of hours. The first couple of hours are okay. But then I start to become agitated and aware that nobody is beating up Daughter and wait-where the hell is she?….oh yeah she’s with you and Dad so I’m pretty sure you’re out there fighting somewhere….. which means that you’re probably driving Dad absolutely mad but MAN-it sure is unsettling when I’m not yelling at someone every 7 minutes to keep their hands to themselves. That’s basically what my resumé is going to say: Job Experience: yelling every 7 minutes, followed by excessive bear-hugging, and snacks.  I feel like this is a major selling point to any prospective employer. 

One thing that has never changed with you, Son, is how much you like your hugs. And your back scratches. And being thisclose to me as we lie on the sofa together at the end of the day, watching some god-awful show. You must admit that you have horrible taste in entertainment. It’s true. You’re basically the worst. Why, just the other movie night I had to pry the remote from your sweaty little hand and remind you that I AM THE BOSS and WE ARE GOING TO WATCH FIELD OF DREAMS, NOT some crappy Henry Danger rerun, which was followed by our yell/hug/snack routine. The very fact that I had to force one of My Offspring to watch the greatest baseball movie of all time was a tough one for me to take.  We all know baseball is the best sport and also that Iowa is, in fact, Heaven. 

But back to you.

Each year when I take out the Christmas decorations, there is a small photo of you in a holiday themed frame. I remember receiving the frame and picking out the perfect picture of 3 week old You to put in it. I remember thinking how much I was going to love taking out that photo every year and be reminded of how you’ve grown and how small you were and how magical and scary it was to become your Mama. Each year, I unwrap it carefully and run my fingers over your baby face and shake my head at the seemingly impossible fact that you are more of a young man than a baby. I look at that photo and I am instantly transported back to that moment of being a new, young mom with this Beautiful Baby Boy and no idea what to do except love you like crazy. I mean, I fed you and changed your diaper and all that-have a little faith, please, Son. But the moment you were placed in my arms, the moment I heard your sweet cry, I knew that all I really knew was to love you. And even though I’ve gotten a few things right and a few more wrong, it’s still pretty much all I know to do with you. Love. And put bacon in your lunch sometimes. 

Because remember how we do it? Yell. Bear hug. Snack.

I am proud each day to be your Mama. The days you’re with me. The days you’re away from me. All the days of all the life, I will always be forever grateful to you for making me Mama.

Happy Birthday, Baby Mine. 


Thursday, September 7, 2017

Ready or Not

It’s almost as if it never happened.

I mean…it DID. I know it did. I was witness to almost each and every second of each and every day. Surely, I could not have imagined all those seconds of all those minutes of all those days. So…it happened. Summer. It was Summer. I know it was. 

And suddenly…it’s not anymore.

I had this strange, unfamiliar feeling come over me the last couple weeks of Summer.  The usual cheery countdown to The First Day of School was feeling more like the countdown to an unwanted event; instead of gleefully marking off all the days and making up songs to sing to The Children about their impending doom while they politely yelled at me to shut up, I…felt…like…I wasn’t ready for that first day. I wasn’t ready to jump back in. And then I had this flashback of myself, many years ago, pushing a double wide stroller with two Toddlers and overhearing a conversation between two Mothers who were clearly much older and wiser in their mothering than I was. They were discussing how great their summer was and how bummed they were that school was going to start. It was like I was hearing their conversation in slow motion…my head turning towards them, my mouth gaping open, my ears disbelieving the very words they were hearing. I looked down at my own two Toddlers and thought of how I only fantasized about school days. How school days seemed like this unreachable goal I was just striving for, minute after minute, day after day. I felt as though I was still years away from these Magical School Days and the thought of a few hours of personal freedom seemed better than a sex dream starring Ben Affleck and I just could not understand what these women were talking about. Not ready? For SCHOOL? What the hell is happening in their world?

And then…it happened to me. I became those women. I didn’t want Summer to end this time.

Don’t worry, it’s not like I became mentally insane over the summer and I wasn’t looking forward to school starting at all. Because of course there was a little skip in my step as we all headed back the first day. I like schedules. I like routine. I like to settle in and write things on my paper calendar. I like to not have to brace myself for THE END OF THE WORLD each time I announce we have to run an errand. Oh GOD! NOOOOOOO!!!!!!! An ERRAND! Not an ERRAND! Anything but an ERRAND!!!!  Help us! Help….us…..we’re meeeellllttting!   MELTING!!!!!  Worst…mom….ever….help….us…………(And…scene.)

Because of course The Children drove me crazy over the summer. They were consistent in continuing their self proclaimed challenge of fighting about literally everything. (One day, they were fighting over a piece of garbage. A PIECE OF FUCKING GARBAGE.) They were once again confused if I was their Mother, or their Cruise Director. When I asked them to do their chores, it was as if I accidentally lit their bodies on fire at the same time. Son upheld his persistence of always being bored but never wanting to do anything. Daughter upheld her persistence in just being…well, a little bit insane. At times I felt suffocated by their ever growing desire to be reallyclosetomeallthesecondsoftheday. I became a short order cook over the lunch hour. I became confused about how they actually survived on seemingly so little food during the school year because every ten minutes someone needed a damn snack. These are all the predicable things that happen to the Mothers of the World during summer. 

But other things happened, too. We had a lot of quiet time together. We didn’t rush around. We watched lots of great movies. We worked on our suntans every week, our toes in the sand. We took advantage of such warm Pacific temperatures and Son and Daughter delighted in their Mother duck diving waves with them. We’d go to the park for 20 minutes, and decide to come home. Then maybe we’d go back for 20 more. They probably had too much screen time, but I stopped giving a damn. They started a car washing business one day, and a lemonade business the next. We got to see our family. We got to go to a Cubs game. And a Dodger game. And play a pick up game. We got to decide each day if we were going to do something, or do nothing. And while some of those days where we found ourselves doing nothing ended with me pacing the house like a caged animal, I tried my very best to remain present and enjoy the fact that The Children still wanted to hang out with their Mama. Even if she does yell sometimes a lot about shoes and why they aren’t in the basket she has so thoughtfully acquired for them. We had way more good days than bad. We really did.

I spent last night looking at the calendar that is full once again. I wrote in all the soccer schedules and the baseball schedules and the dinner schedules and the guitar schedules and the schedules of the schedules and prepare again for Fall weekends being owned by….the schedules. I don’t mind. It can be therapeutic to stay busy. And I know it’s good for The Children to once again have places to be and people to see and Common Core for Mom to cry over.

But….man….I just wasn’t ready. 

It was a great summer. 

Monday, June 19, 2017

...and the living is easy....

Last night was a pretty quiet night here in the Gelato House. With the school year winding down, The Children didn’t have homework to fight over (and if they did, all three of us follow a ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy this time of year), we had no after school practices or lessons to run off too; I mean we basically had….nothing…to do besides bug each other and complain about dinner and watch American Ninja Warrior. Evenings like that always sort of throw me off balance; while it’s nice to have a chill night, it makes me feel a little antsy; like I’m not being a productive enough human because I’m not yelling GET YOUR SHOES ON IT’S TIME TO GO 37 times in five minutes. (And really, how productive am I being if I have to repeat something 37 times?) I had already declared it was Clean Out The Fridge week, so dinner was leftovers; the laundry was done; the house was clean. Daughter was playing in her room quietly. Son, after my repeated efforts to quell his proclamations of boredom by offering to play catch or go to the park or play cards or Yahtzee, rejected my ideas and instead sat on the sofa and read his book. So…with nothing pressing to do….I turned on my favorite Pandora station, grabbed my Vanity Fair, and read right alongside him. And as we sat there, side by side, with our chosen reading material, I realized how productive I actually was being. This moment of silent solitude; this quiet, yet effective time spent with my Oldest while my Youngest was happily occupying herself with nary a device in sight…it was so much more productive than running around and feeling overwhelmed; this notion of being busy for busyness sakes always trying to smother the beauty that lies in a book and a sofa and a Son. 

As The Children grow older, these years I have with them seem so much more valuable and precious because of Time’s stubborn defiance to slowing down. And as Summer once again approaches as another school year becomes a thing of the past, I am desperate to find a way to enjoy all the minutes, all the hours, all the days. It’s almost as if a Ghost of Gelato Mama Future is hovering above me, whispering in my ear to slow down and look around. She’s telling me to hug them tighter, laugh with them longer, listen to them more intently, be gentle with my words to them and to be graceful in my actions. I’m doing my very best to honor the murmurs gracing my ears. Because while I love that My Children get to play baseball and take swim lessons and go to soccer and try football and play with their friends and always have another idea, another thing they want to try, I also want them to be able to sit in silence and appreciate how very valuable it is to be present in a moment that most would not even stop to notice. I want them to believe in the magic of normalcy; to relish in it’s mundane beauty.  I want them to grow older and remember a Mama who sat on the sofa and listened to their stories while tickling their backs. 

I clearly don’t always succeed at this ideal image I have of the Mother I want to be.  I obviously get frustrated and impatient and yell and feel defeated as My Children can drive me absolutely mad and they are experts with all the buttons on all the parts they can push. But I am determined to keep trying to diminish my faults with my strengths. And I can be called a lot of things and I’m certain I have but the most important name I get called each day is Mama and the most important thing I can do is just keep trying, each day, to be better.

So here we are, at the edge of Summer, peering over the cliff. It somehow feels cute to be excited about all the long days that loom ahead, knowing full well The Children will be bored within two hours of waking on their first day of freedom. But after we jump in and climb up the other side to the early fall days of another school year beginning, we’ll be staring wistfully back at Summer, wondering how it all went by so quickly. And while I know the next eleven weeks or so will be full of laughter and fighting and yelling and fighting and adventures and fighting and boredom and fighting, I’m going to do my best to…enjoy?…survive?…soak up?…no. I’m going to do my best to just be present. To believe in the magic of normalcy.

I think there might be a book or two in our future this summer.

Happy Summer.
May the force be with you.
We’re in it together.
Send wine.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Traveling Light

I was on a flight recently….by myself.

The End. 

Seriously, this could be the whole post. Because if you’ve ever had the distinct pleasure of flying with Young Children, you know that your shit is GAME ON the second you set foot inside that airport. And having dozens upon dozens of flights under my 10 year old Parent Belt with The Children, I can tell you I’ve done quite a few things that are more fun than flying alone with babies and toddlers. It’s hard work. Just sitting here typing this I have dozens of images flooding my brain from flights past. Here's a cute little sample.

That one time I nursed a three month old Son while sitting next to a 27 year old Australian man who’s eyes pretty much looked STRAIGHT FORWARD for 4 continuous hours. 

Having to get creative for diaper changes when for some godforsaken reason, the luxurious airplane bathroom isn’t equipped with a changing table. (Don’t.Get.Me.Started.) 

That one time I left Baby Crack, aka Puffs, in the bottom of the stroller that was checked at the gate and my only thought was-Kill me now. I’m not strong enough without the Baby Crack. 

Being cramped into one seat with a 1 year old on my lap and a 3 year old trying to climb on my lap because I’m not paying for that damn seat until I have too. 

Finding myself frozen in some sort of strange, cirque du soleil position for hours so THE BABY KEEPS SLEEPING.

Apologizing for my ass being in your face while I stand in the thin aisle trying to rock a restless, irritated, really-over-it Baby Girl to sleep. (Nevertheless, she persisted. In crying. The entire flight.) 

Having to wake Children who decide, without fail, to ONLY fall asleep upon descent to destination. 

Convincing The Children that yes, they can indeed HOLD THEIR POOP while we stand in the endless security line, taking the time to remind Son that one time, he held his poop FOR 6 DAYS, so 20 more minutes shouldn’t be a problem.

Realizing that someone is about to barf on the bouncy bus shuttle, and they’ll have to do it in their sippy cup. And also my hand. 

The one time I said, Fuck It, and handed my 6 month old Daughter to the woman behind me in the security line so I could break the stroller down with two hands instead of my usual chin, pinky and foot maneuver. (I mean, to be fair, she DID ask if she could help me and come on-even though it was obvious she had never held a tiny, live human in her life, I figured it was easier than trying to explain to her how to break down the stroller.) 

When I finally learned how to always say yes when someone asked me if they could help. Or buy me a drink. And I can happily say that the side-eye from the bitchy flight attendants when I order my double Tito’s and soda doesn’t bother me anymore because for every old, bitchy attendant, there is

the one that gives you your drink, a wink, and carries on without asking for payment. 

So, yeah, getting on a plane by yourself…it’s pretty exciting. Just walking through the airport without having to make the inevitable bathroom stop with all The Kids  and all The Stuff and not negotiating which $26 bag of candy they have to share and then there’s not even a wrestling match to break up while we sit at the gate and wait to board in Group 18….it’s…nice.


I miss them. 

That’s the fucked up thing about being a mom. 

There you are, sitting at an airport bar, having a pre-flight cocktail and reading a book, and whizzing by you is a busy mom with her unruly crew and you….okay, you kind of laugh at her a little because you know she hates you sitting all smug at the bar by yourself, but then you also….start to have this funny feeling….that you wish…The Children were with you. And even as you try to shoo that feeling away with another glass of wine and another chapter of your book...nevertheless...it persists....and you want your buddies with you.

The Children are 10 and 8 now. I’ve learned that as kids get older, many things get much harder, but other things get much easier. Like flying alone with them. They carry their own stuff, we play cards, we all settle in and watch our own movies. We still fight about who gets to sit next to me, but I’ll happily listen to that fight anytime because I think it means they like me as much as I like them. And if I’ve learned anything while going through Divorce, it’s that I am addicted to my Children. I gave them life, but they are the life that beats inside of me. And every second that I have gotten to be with them and get to be with them, is one better second of my life. 

Even the seconds they spent puking in my hand on a shuttle bus. 

Happy trails to you and yours. 

Here's a picture of us surviving another security line while holding our poop.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Wanted: Roommate. Must Like Dance Parties

For a full decade, I have lived directly next door to a duplex that houses small, one bedroom apartments. Two things here: when I say directly next door, I mean that if you open my front door and just sort of… stick your arm out and lean forward, you can touch the front unit’s door. Also-when I say small-I mean, they are very small, outdated little hotboxes that do not benefit at all from our cool ocean breezes and mostly sunny skies. But what is truly amazing is that in the last ten years with the seemingly revolving door of new tenants entering our lives-I can honestly say there was ONE bad tenant. One. It turned out she really valued her privacy, didn’t like children or people in general so it’s no surprise she hated every second of her year as my neighbor. The TWO locks she had secured to her front door when she moved in did tip me off that maaaaaybe we wouldn't be sloshing sav blanc together on the front stoop like MOST of my neighbors like to do, but her pure disdain for her living situation was apparent to even The Children who would run and hide every time her car pulled up. (To be fair, they were just taking my lead.)

Mean, Privacy-Loving, Person-Hating Lady aside, the relationships that I have formed with my Roommates, as I like to call my Duplex Neighbors, have been some of the richest in my life. Not because we all become the best of friends, although that has certainly happened, but because of how intertwined our lives become. When you live thisclose to people, you have two choices: get two locks on your door and pretend it’s not happening or fling your door open and let the life around you come in. And considering that pretty much my entire neighborhood knows the code to both my garage AND my front door, I think you know where I stand. Our door is always wide, wide open. I try to close it when it’s Time To Yell, but even then, fuck….that’s just the way it is so get used to it. (And do you know what a good Roommate does when Mama is losing her shit? They bring her alcohol.)

But all good Roommates do come to an end. As it is about to again. Back Unit Roommates have decided that Sunlight and Grass seem like a good idea and hence…they are moving out. When I was told by Roommate  that they were moving out he said-Don’t worry; we’re telling everyone who comes to check it out that they aren’t just moving into an apartment, they’re moving into a family. And I had little tears in my eyes and I said that’s so sweet. And so true. And after a tender moment shared I looked him squarely in the eye and asked: But you are warning them about Daughter, aren’t you? He laughed because he knows he can’t explain what it’s like living next door to an invasive, somewhat inappropriate 7 year old girl, he can only warn any new potential tenant that the second you start moving your shit in, Daughter will be all over your ass like white on rice. The best advice I can give with regards to Daughter? Don’t resist. Lean into the crazy. She’ll break you down eventually so it’s better to just get on her good side right away. 

A few tips if you happen to find yourself our new Roommate in the Back Unit;

One: Have a few interesting books for Daughter to look at when she wanders into your place unannounced; this way she won’t talk as much and you can continue whatever it is you were doing before she invaded. (Where’s Waldo has been very popular over the years.) Also, if you plan on handing her your device to get her to be quiet, please make sure there are some age appropriate educational games on it. And a basket of some art supplies within easy reach is not a bad idea either. 

Two: She likes dance parties. A lot. It’s probably easiest for you to have some sort of streaming service so every song is at your fingertips for her aggressive demands. Turn it up loud and give her some space because she’ll probably bust out some splits. And it’s not a bad idea to make sure you’re working out so you can do the lifts and the twirling she has lined up for you. 

Three: Be prepared for some completely invasive questions. Are you married? Why? Why not? Are you having a baby? Do you want a baby? Why don’t you have a baby? Where were you? What time are you coming back? Why don’t you have a job? Do you like your job? How old are you? 

Four: If your door is open, it means, Come on in! (This also goes for our door, and once you’ve been properly vetted by Daughter, you, too, can have the code to the garage and the front door.) Although there are clearly some boundary issues with Daughter, she’s pretty respectful of the Closed Door. She’ll pepper you with questions about it later, but you can have peace if you so desire it with the Closed Door Policy I’ve been forced to implement.  

Five: Don’t be afraid to put her to work! Need help walking your dog? She’s your girl. Locked yourself out of the house and need a Small Person to climb through your window? Look no further. Need a hand with a little light house cleaning?Give that girl a dust rag and tell her to get on it! Somewhere in there she knows she needs to earn her keep with you and will happily oblige. 

Each new Roommate that has entered our lives has left an impression on me and My Children. Some impressions have stood the test of time and others slip away silently as they tend to do. But every now and again, I think of each of them, having come and gone in our lives and I wonder if they ever stop and think of The Gelato Family. I hope they do. I hope they are as grateful for the year or two they watched Son and Daughter grow as I was for their random acts of kindness towards them; the Christmas and birthday gifts bestowed upon them, the games of catch in the street, the sheer willingness to let Crazy enter your apartment at free will and actually enjoy the company of Small Children. I cannot imagine a life without knowing my neighbors. I cannot imagine emptiness beside me. I mean, sometimes I can, but 87% of the time, I am forever grateful for the lives that are lived beside me.

So if you find yourself in that back unit, remember those two choices: close up real tight and pretend we’re not happening, or fling that door open and let us in. And considering I’ve had to help my Roommates break into both of those units before….just go ahead and let us in.

Daughter is waiting for you. 

(She actually is.) 

((I think she’s back there right now….))