Parenting Stories

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VR u kidding me?

Published March 9, 2018 by sarcasmica

VR. When you just don’t have enough shit holding up your television set, VR!

When game consoles and controllers and amiibos have all achieved a layer of dust, VR!

When your children already have a healthy dose of sunlight fear and societal misunderstanding, VR!

When you want to manage a constant timetable of allowed VR time …say it with me now.. VR!

Can you guess what item has joined our family entertainment rotation? That’s right, Nintendo NES!

Just kidding, we now have virtual reality.

Guess which game my 11 year old likes the most? Job simulator. At least we have learned from the entitled millennials that have made living with their parents a nearly-but still not quite- acceptable situation and began training the up and comers sooner.

This game simulates thankless jobs like cubicle jockey, mechanic, cook and server.

This is how he likes to spend his short stints in a virtual world.

If we train them early to see everyday jobs as a game, what possibilities will this open up for the future?! What can we make next, virtual chores? Cleaning toilets with an actual snake! Maybe make a dishwasher a là Flintstones and make it a dish-licking dinosaur?

Virtual marriage- fighting over the budget has never been quite so interactive! Changing the toilet paper/paper towel rolls with a stick of dynamite?

Virtual taxes. clue how to make that fun, sorry.

The possibilities are endless!



Published February 28, 2018 by sarcasmica

How many pieces of celery cancel out a girl scout cookie?

If I cut the celery into smaller pieces, is it still considered one piece?

What if it’s covered in peanut butter? Thats a protein, right? It adds nutritional value, not more sugar.

Can the cookie-erasing properties exponentially grow the more celery you eat?

…asking for a friend

Tweendom du dum dum

Published February 20, 2018 by sarcasmica

It has hit. Tweedom. My kid is a tweenie. A tweenster.

He is 11 and the emotions and sass and backtalk and under-the-breath muttering and door slamming and behind-closed-doors cursing (undoubtedly accompanied by flipping the bird) has begun.

This week on Tweens of Our Lives the story line is sharing. Sharing and how it directly feeds poison into the brain causing epileptic fits complete with spitting and tears.

No, this isn’t a toddler, it’s a preteen. The culprit: Legos. Not the built, colossal lego set left untouched after fighting through the manual. Not the Minecraft built out level. I have implemented a shared lego bin from the tens of bins left untouched for over a year.

Evil bitch mom.

Apparently I don’t understand how special and important each individual lego piece in the dusty forgotten bin is!! Im a monster!!

It has been 2 days of bitter resentment and acting out over this fucking lego bin and I’m not ashamed to say that it’s causing me to see bins of colorful prescription pills instead of plastic interlocking bricks. I’m about to be committed over my nearly twelve year old son flat out refusing to see any reason when it comes to sharing without resentment.

*two hours later*

To his credit, after using props and trading places with his sibling he has finally conceded that my forced decision of a community lego bin was a reasonable one considering the amount he still gets to keep for himself. But only after a full out internal combustion, brain-imploding fit of nearly swallowing his tongue. This is not an exaggeration.

Stubbornness is a super power that runs deep in this family.

The Gun Thing

Published February 17, 2018 by sarcasmica

Freedom. I get it. Freedom is intoxicating. Freedom is invigorating and empowering.

I was raised knowing guns. My dad took me shooting when I was a kid. I shot a 357, I shot 22 rifles, a shotgun, a 45.

I am not a gun aficionado, I was a kid. I did not keep up with a passion that was my father’s. He owned guns, he bought and hid guns from his second wife because they were broke, but somehow my father always found a way to buy a gun. Child support was questionable, but money for a gun? He was on it!

So I realize that it’s easy for me to sit here and type from my computer that gun freedom is not a requirement of humanity. It is not an essential part of life. We do not need to hunt food. We can go to the store and buy chemically engineered food for ourselves, thankyouverymuch. But I understand the heated debate of the second amendment. I have family that are vehement about their rights to bear arms. The guns mean something to them. It’s a hobby that brings them enjoyment, so why should a bunch of tree hugging, granola crunching hippies be able to take them away?!

Because the freedom of that right is being horribly brutalized. There is no sense of responsibility among the whole of gun owners. There is no secret brother/sisterhood where gun owners communicate among themselves and make sure everyone is in their right minds. There is not a responsible overseer who regulates the mental health of everyone who picks up a weapon and loads it. There is no sense of community within the arms-bearers to take care of their right.

Unfortunately, the only time gun owners want to huddle and take care of each other is in the shadow of the possibility their guns will be taken. I have yet to hear about any movement of the gun owners to weed out their own dysfunctional members. They are happy to hang out to dry offenders and those that bring heat down on the second amendment, but zero suggestions on how to make it work.

It’s time to take ownership of the weapons you hold so dear. It’s time to take yourself out of the equation and look at the big picture. If i’m not mistaken the second amendment is about protection of state and community.

“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed”

Militia is not an individual collector. It’s not representative of someone who likes to hunt. It’s about a community coming together to protect -under highly unlikely circumstances- their country and community. To defend our country against those that might try and take it from us.

Hmmmm… pretty sure our current climate has vastly outgrown the purpose of the amendment in the first place.

When individuals with questionable mental health can easily get their twisted hands on weapons and cause mass devastation of innocent bystanders it’s time to question gun control.

When mass shootings happen week after week, month after month, and year after year, it’s time to take hard action.

How will your humanity suffer from lack of a gun? How will your life be incomplete without access to a weapon? Is that greater than the thousands of parents who no longer have access to their children? Families who are now incomplete because a life has been taken for no reason other than someone with an imbalance made a plan and acquired weapons for no reason other than to kill innocent people?

Is your right more important than those lives? Now close your mouth and table your defense long enough to actually consider that any one of those inconceivable atrocities actually happened to your own family. Your own child in a classroom, or your own spouse at a concert or movie theater.

I fail to understand why so much effort goes into protecting the guns and not the people they were only made available to protect.

This country has far outgrown the second amendment principle. We have abused and neglected that right to the point that is is now destroying the cities, communities and people it was put in place to protect. Consequences must be had. In taking responsibility for the rights, you also take responsibility for the actions. Every person defending his/her right to own their firearms also takes ownership on the people who have used the same weapon to kill children, civilians, students, teachers, innocent members of the community.

Do you want to own a gun? Then join an organized, monitored, cooperative group of trained, licensed individuals who can also be responsible for how each weapon is used. Other than that, no guns should be permitted. At least until we have had a marked amount of time without tragedy related to a firearm. Don’t like my suggestion? Come up with a solution, not a defense.



Published February 13, 2018 by sarcasmica

Today’s title is a twofer. I landed on that title because #1, I’m feeling a bit like a patient today. My kids have been doing their best work in attempting to have me commit myself soon which leads me to #2: patience. As in I have none. Oddly enough, kids don’t care how much you have, when you run out, or when they’ve run up a negative balance. Even with announced warning, my son continues to test the limits of my sanity.

So what do you throw into that mix of disaster?!


A new pet! But not just aNy old pet, a rescue pet from a shelter you know virtually nothing about!

Winner winner!

Yup, so this guy happened

See how happy he is to bite that bar? He gets equal enjoyment if that bar is replaced with my finger. Lucky for him I am familiar with much larger beaks doing much worse damage, but it’s still not fun.

I have had cockatiels before, so I know the patience will be worth it. Currently, however, this patient is running out of bandaids. This morning when I went (slowly) to take his seed container to refill it, he nailed me. My son said, “Mom, he’s just like everyone else in this family. He’s grumpy in the morning.”

Touché, son. Touché.

The poor bird has zero instinct to step up onto my finger. He did not know what millet was. (bird crack for those who aren’t aware) He didn’t have a safe or proper perch or toy in his cage either.

After one week he will tolerate my finger, but only if millet is present. He will step up to reach the treat, but I have (gently) pushed my finger into his belly, and he will not step up. Kind of like waving a hand in front of a blind person. Zero recognition. It’s the strangest thing.

He has at least now begun to step up on a perch. This helped immensely when he had his first out-of-cage adventure today.

I’ve never seen a creature so happy to return to a cage!

So we are making progress, but my son is so impatient with it all he tends to push me to push the bird before either of us is ready.

My kids have been watching funny youtube videos. I think my son thought the minute Squirt left the cage he would somehow be transformed into a talking, pleasant, grocery cart-pushing performer. Such is not the case.

We have all had to take a step back and evaluate our patience levels. It’s been a good experience for the kids to see how much work goes into these guys. (Spoiler: it’s a lot) It’s paying off, and for that I am hopeful and thankful.

Sucking It Up

Published January 25, 2018 by sarcasmica

I know I’m a bit of a whiner. I get it. I’m the youngest of 3 and the only girl, so it was my job to make things big and dramatic and exciting growing up.

Nearly 2 years ago (21 months in ‘toddler time’) my kids and I were in an accident. It was fine in that we all walked away from it. People like to remind you of that when it happens. It was terrifying for my kids and not exactly a cake walk for me, but yes we all walked away from it. After 5 months of seeing our chiropractor and painful massage therapy for me, my kids and I were deemed “as good as it’s gonna get”. (More for me than the kids, they healed fantastically)

Just before the accident I had started getting into swimming as an acceptable non-torturous exercise. I could be weightless, no sweat to deal with, no wiping down of soggy crotch after someone else was on a machine. It was great. Unfortunately my whiplash and shoulder pain did not agree with said exercise.

Recently my husband has been gung ho on swimming at our new gym. I tentatively join in here and there but still have shoulder pain when I swim. Coupled with the nightly sleep interruption from the same pain and I decided to see someone after my lawyer coached me to get checked out.

The appointment was today. I have a hard time with these things because if my bones are still on the inside of my body and there is no blood to be seen, I feel like 2 advil, a hot shower & I should be good to go.

That whole “What number is your pain on a scale of 1 to 10″ chart makes me cringe every time. I dont like to put down anything over 3. I can suck it up. But this shoulder stuff has been everyday for almost 2 years. I did my best.

I did the X-rays. I did the exploratory evaluation. I wanted there to be something to show I’m not crazy for feeling this, but I didnt’t want anything substantial either.

It turns out that my collar bone was pulled away from my shoulder joint in the accident. ..”but just a little”

A little. A couple of millimeters.

“Nothing substantial.”

This immediately reminded me of being told my cough was just a little bit of pneumonia last year.

Now in the grand scheme of things, of course this is inconsequential. This doctor sees massive issues and injuries in people all day long.

But what that means for me is “no big deal”. Take a couple aspirin and suck it up.

He did suggest an MRI due to the length of time it’s been an issue but racking up that cost when it’s unknown if it will pay off is not really a thrilling notion for myself or my husband.

Getting old sucks. Getting in car accidents sucks harder. I’d like to say these old lady aches and pains are from snowboarding or parasailing or rock climbing but no. Just your everyday run of the mill car accidents and minor bone-joint separation.

Parenting Is Not For The Weak

Published January 24, 2018 by sarcasmica

We have been adjusting around here. Adjusting to my mom getting ready to move into her own apartment after living with us for over five years. My daughter only knows life with Gramma around. I’ve been talking to the kids prepping for the actual moving day so it’s not a big “Surprise! Today’s the day!”

I figured this was the culprit for my son’s behavior of late. After two weeks of back to school with fairly decent mornings and getting off to school fine, suddenly he is an emotional, defiant, argumentative, sputtering mess. And not in the pre-pubescent way. No, it’s a bratty, fit-filled, moody way.

Did I mention the husband is away on business? Yes, we specialize in this kind of timing in this house.

Anyway, speaking to one of my son’s teachers today I find out there is a report due next week that involves reading an entire book. Something I have not seen said child actually doing. Later I ask, “So what’s going on with your report?” and am met with giant sighs and falling to the floor. I am assured that reading is being handled and report writing will be 100% taken care of.

He is on page 30 of a 152 page book and it’s due next Wednesday.

We pinpoint this as the source of some of his anxiety. No problem. It’s handled. The evening routine is all drama and tears and emotions still, however. Head-scratcher.

After reading to my daughter peppered with my own tears thanking my seven year old for being so kind-hearted and understanding when all of mom and dad’s attention feels like it’s focused on the big dramatic kid, I tuck her in and get her to bed.

Next up, big kid bed time. My son has a mini meltdown over a snack, lies about brushing his teeth, and finally heaves himself onto his bed giving up any hope that the day will include ice cream and video games. We begin what is supposed to be a quick convo about the day and it turns into something I did not see coming.

“Mom, I think I know part of why I feel so depressed.”
I hold back my cringing at the buzzword and try to focus my energy on an open mind and face. (my face is something I have very little control over)

“(best friend) has been really sad lately and says he’s depressed.”
“Hmm … i wonder why. Do you know what’s going on?”
“Well, I think it’s because of his dad… he died.” (the best friend’s bio parents are divorced and mom is remarried with 2 more kids)
“He died?! When?” (this is news to me)
“His parents got divorced and his dad was really sad so he … you know… killed himself.”

Holy fucking shitballs.

Right. So now go ahead and roll with that, Supermom.

“Wow. That is heavy. That is a lot for (best friend) to deal with, certainly. I wonder if he feels like talking to a counselor would be helpful.”
“He goes to therapy every week.”
“Wow. Ummm, i’m really glad that he has a friend like you to listen and support him. …. that is a lot for you to deal with as well. As important as it is to be there for him and listen and help him work through how he’s feeling, I want you to find a way to leave that at school with him. When you walk away from that kind of interaction, it’s really important to try and center yourself around (yourself) again. Empathy is important, but those are not your problems to work out. That is not your reality.”

“Ok mom.” and he seems to get what I’m saying after some more brief coaching.

We work out the reading math problem of barely read pages minus total pages divided by procrastinators time frame left before adding actual report writing time and then…

*giggles* “Mom?”
“Mm hmm?”
“So what is the point of the cover for a penis? You know, that thing…?”
“A condom?”
“Yea, that.”
[to avoid situations like this one!!]
“If you don’t want to make a baby, you use a condom.”
“So then does that mean that – sputtering giggles- sex is … fun?”

And that, my friends, is how the evening went in my house. From depression and suicide to homework and concluded with a painfully masked conversation about sex and why it’s not just for makin’ babies. Now I have to figure out if the whole best friend depression father’s suicide issue is actually real. How do I handle that?! The best friend, to my knowledge, has limited friends at this school where he is a new student. I don’t know the parents all that well. What does THAT conversation look like? We really only text. Do I text the mom, “Hey, heard your ex offed himself and the boys have been talking… anything I need to know?”

And I thought the pre-sleepover conversation asking if there were guns in the house would be the hardest question to ask.

Conclusion: Use a rubber if you are unwilling to mask your extreme discomfort speaking to an eleven year old boy about anatomy and copulation.

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