My Grown Up Birthday Wish(es)

Hug-me,-I-m-34-today!

I turn 34 today.  La de frickin da.  Not a really momentus age.  I’m not really a birthday person.  Some people treat it like the whole earth should shut down on this the day of their birth.  I guess I got over it pretty quick because as a kid being a summer birthday means no one at school ever really cared because you didn’t bring cupcakes, didn’t get balloons, and got lumped together with the 5 other kids on the last day of school for an unexcited rendition of happy birthday.

Summer birthdays do however, get to throw kick ass parties.  We get to go swimming, throw water balloons, drink frosty drinks, eat ice cream and not get the shivers, and have our parties outside.  Plus, no matter where you fall in the summer, you essentially get presents every six months – once in the winter and once in the summer!  So overall, not such a bad gig.

I thought I would share with you a few things I’d like for my birthday this year.  Feel free to help out if you can.

I would like my daughter to not have to go potty at every single public place to which we travel.

I would like to not have to wear Spanx today.

I would like to be able to eat an entire cookie cake and lose weight.

I would like to spend the day with my kids in the pool without having to reapply sunscreen constantly.

I would like my husband to be able to find work within a 20 mile radius of our house.   With awesome pay and benefits.  That brings him home at 4:30 promptly each day with no weekend work.  And to which he likes going.

I would like airline pilots to tell you the exact reason and specific timeframe for their delay.  Not everyone, just me.  It’ll be our secret.  (This is more for my husband.)

I would like my kids to wake each morning cheerful, motivated and on task to be ready at 7:15 a.m.  (Monday thru Friday).

I would like same kids to sleep each Saturday and Sunday until at least 9:00 a.m.  Then wake cheerfully….

I would like to not have the pimply skin of a 13 year old and the paunch of a middle age beer sluggin man.   But, I still want to eat brownies whenever I feel like it.

I want water to taste like the most fantastic drink on earth (IDK, margies, wine, pop, anything but nothing).

I want healthy food to actually fill me up (I’m talking to you fruits and vegetables).

I want people to stop dying of cancer (woah, that got heavy).

I would like to love exercising and not get assaulted by disgusting birds whilst trying to do it.  (See my FB Confessions of an Introvert page.  Then like the page.  Come on, I need you to like me!!!)

I would like unlimited funds in my Amazon and iTunes accounts to support my porn and music habit.

And the usual, personal chef, trainer, maid, nanny, and so on.  Oh yeah, and world peace, end to hunger, cure for AIDS and cancer.  All that’d be great.

Can we all get on that purty please???

Birds vs. Monkeys!!

So last night we had a knockdown, drag out fight at the house.  Over what?  Tinkerbell sheets.

My son had a rare accident the night before so I had stripped his bed that morning, and when I went in at 7:30 to change his sheets I realized the only sheets I had available were his sister’s very awesome purple Tinkerbell sheets, since his sister had no problem using his second set of sheets on her bed (complete with race cars).

It pretty much melted down into this conversation.

Why are you putting THOSE sheets on my bed? 

 Because Bear, they’re all I have left that’s clean that will fit on your bed.

Begin face melting, pouting bottom life, and real tears forming.

BUT NOOO!!  I hate those sheets! 

 Why? What’s wrong with these?  I know technically they are your sister’s, but can’t you live with them for a few days?  What’s the harm?

I HATE THEM!  (tears streaming, feet stomping)

 They are the SAME EXACT SHEETS as the ones I usually put on except they’re purple and have fairies on them.  You love the Tinkerbell movies, what’s the big deal?

They’re girl sheets!!!! 

 Pfft.  There’s no such thing you know that.

YES THEY ARE!  

 Why, do you start to feel like a girl when you sleep on them?

No…

Do you think your penis will fall off if you sleep on them?

No…

Then what’s the big deal?  They are actually a bit softer than the ones you usually have.

NO!!!! 

He then proceeds to grab them from me while I am pulling the fitted sheet on the bed and tries to run with it.

FINE!  SLEEP WITH NO SHEETS, I DON’T CARE!  I WAS JUST TRYING TO MAKE YOU COMFORTABLE.

I’ll sleep on the couch!!! 

No, you won’t because your dad’s getting up early and I don’t want him to wake you up at the butt crack of dawn too.

This debate went on for several minutes.  Bear is getting more and more hysterical by the minute.

Seriously kid, I don’t know what the big deal is.  There is no such thing as boy and girl stuff.

So, we compromised.  I took our queen size red sheet and put it over his mattress, tucked it in, and gave him a down comforter that we use as a living room blanket to sleep with (which is purple by the way).  I topped it off with the manliness pillowcases I could find, which (thanks to Grandma Mary) were handmade brown flannels with power tools on them.

Good Lord.

What the heck did I do wrong?  I have been a fairly strict gender neutral mother since before I had kids and I took Women’s Studies 101 my senior year of college.  There I read Gloria Steinem, Betty Friedan and a slew of other awesome women who informed me of the way we separate our children from birth to act like “girls” or “boys” is horrible.

You will never hear me say, “That’s a girl toy,” or to G “You’re so pretty.”  OK, OK, maybe I do say this a lot, but come on…she is and, in fairness, I say this to Bear too all the time.  I just try hard not to define her by her looks and my son by how strong he is.  I try to balance it out, which usually just turns into awkward run on sentences, much like this one.  So, I end up saying to G, “You’re so pretty! Ah….errr….and smart and funny…”

I am so careful not to tell my boy to “toughen up” or that “boys don’t cry” which leads my husband to accuse me of coddling.  Well so be it.  To tell a boy he’s not allowed to have feelings is ridiculous in my eyes.  Now, I try not to encourage crying as a standard reaction (both tend towards the melodramatic when trying to get their way), however, I do allow either of them to cry if they are sad, scared or hurt in some physical way.  There’s nothing wrong with that.

I want my son to experience whatever he finds interesting, whether it be machines, trucks or ballet.  If the boy wants to put on toe shoes and kick it in tights, I would be overcome with joy.   If G takes up an interest in football, I’d be happy too.  OK, not football, that’s super dangerous.  How about karate where she could learn to kick ass and take names with ample amounts of headgear and mouthguards?  That’s better.

But no, I get two kids who are pretty standard boys and girls.  My daughter is the toughest princess you’ll ever find.  She thinks nothing of donning a pair of fairy wings and a Nerf gun and going after the boys.  My son loves Tinkerbell and has a soft spot for Benji movies, but would rather figure out a Star Wars lego set than color pretty pictures.

Nobody mess with the FAIRY!

Nobody mess with the FAIRY!

Only real men can handle a hose.

Only real men can handle a hose.

So, I guess to sum up, I am doing an OK job of it right?  I want to achieve the right balance of making them tough enough kids for this sadistic real world they will one day be entering and making them comfortable with their feelings and interests and to never be limited by their gender.  My girl plays with cars, Nerf guns and trains. My boy plays with Barbies, dress up clothes and My Little Pony.  If you don’t want yours to do that, then I wouldn’t come to my house, because here they get to play with anything they want.  Except football, because that’s just dangerous.

PS – Happy birthday to my husband, who is on Attempt #2 to get back to work tonight.  So far only an hour delay… Wish him luck, and non-trainee pilots pretty please.  I’d like to keep him for a bit longer….