Rant, shmant…Cell Phones. WTF? Week 11

As you see, the parents are not paying attention to the kinder (child)
As you see, the parents are not paying attention to the kinder (child)

 

Cell phone courtesy: Please turn ‘em off – therapy is in session

Answer: 60 to 125 times a day

Question: On average, how many times do we check our cell phones each day?

So, I ask you, are you average, above average? Stellar perhaps? Just how tethered are you? Can you give it up? Would you? I have to admit, mine goes everywhere with me. Apple had me at, “iHello.” And to be honest (we are in therapy after all) the phone is my least favorite feature. It’s that dreamy camera—the ability to capture my kinder (kids) in every escapade imaginable. Kodak moments? Not so much (who prints when we can swipe?). Between the Mrs. and me, we record every waking moment of our lives with Little and Big. Second children no longer have to grow up unnoticed (and needing therapy); Little is in just as many pictures as Big.

please watch this short video…my mishpocheh (family) in action. That Kenny, he’s got the making of a star! Nu? Thank you to my nephew, Max-a-lah,  for making such a video!

What on earth did we all talk about before everyone on the planet got a smart phone? I vaguely recall long, lovely, limitless, uninterrupted time to myself. I walked the dogs (furry first children) and was totally one with them in nature. I could run to the store and pick up a script without a care. I actually peed without bringing a phone in the bathroom. The Mrs. and I, we schmoozed (chatted) about everything, snuggling on the sofa watching Olivia Benson kicking some major butt!

There were no electronic farts, noises, beeps, or music telling me about a new email, a tweet, a status update, a news alert, or a lightening strike within my immediate proximity. I was not instantaneously answerable to anyone. I think I was still okay? I managed to meet with friends and family and not call if someone was 10 seconds late (of course, I’m Jewish, so I imagined them dead by the curb, or on a respirator in the hospital, but which hospital? Oy). I knew how to dress for the weather because I walked out the front door to check. I was up to date on the news and current events; I definitely held my own during many a ‘water cooler’ conversation. My landline rang and I let the answering machine get it. Yes, I was a proud screener.

I’m positive we talked more before smart phones. I used to take time out of my day to write letters and send cards to people for special occasions. Now, I can text or instant message birthday wishes, Mazel Tov’s or even my deepest sympathies. Why even say how I feel? There is an amazing array of emoticons for every expression. Feelings? Feh!

Oh Siri, how I love and hate you so… Like Google on crack, so many answers you have? This techno age is meshuggeneh (crazy). Being connected is so easy, yet I look around at restaurants, on the train, even walking, and everyone is looking at his or her phones. Talking to each other? Not so much.

Was life better before? Is life better now? I don’t know. I do know life is faster now. Yet, somehow, it’s a lot easier to feel disconnected, being so connected. It’s a shonda (a shame). WTF?

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin or right here, where you are, on WordPress!

#BloggerPitStop you rock!
#Blogger’sPitStop you rock!
linky 4-1-16 #FabFridayPost Linky #24
linky 4-1-16 #FabFridayPost Linky #24

Rant, Shmant, at least I can vent…Week 6

 

Shhhh. Please be quiet...therapy again! Yup.
Shhhh. Please be quiet…therapy again! Yup.

My rants of the past few weeks have been a little on the ample

Like politics and racism, just to give you an example

Today I’ll take it down a stretch and act a bit more tranquil

And leave my lefty, liberal thoughts and opines, for some of you will be thankful

 

I despise it, laundry the charge that never ends

Despite the amount you do, it continues and transcends

If we had one, we could bagroben (bury or hide) it all deep within the basement

Then the Mrs. and the Kinder (kids) would look at me with such amazement

 

The clothes are always inside out and the bin is overflowing

The stench gets rather pungent and the hallway somewhat glowing

It’s never in the hamper rather scattered all about

What is dirty, what is clean? Is something regularly I shout

image

Please use your towels more than once do you think this is my only job?

Pick up those scattered dirt-drenched things and stop living like a slob

It’s almost time to essen (eat) so we can’t change our clothes anew

And there are only three out of four of us who are neat enough when we chew

 

As for sorting out the colors from the others in the bin

When something is mis-washed or spun, it’s deemed a venal sin

If something should be hanging but somehow makes it through the dryer

You’ll find me running for the hills as if my hair were lit on fire

 

Darks and lights, black or white, what about the stripes

Lately there are too many categories and subsequent subtypes

Fancy little outfits, sheets, knits, towels, maybe a sweater

Farmisht (befuddled), I just put everything on delicate-cold, I’m trying to be better

 

As for the lone socks, I alone will simply not accept the pressure

For mix-matched wearing is quite fashionable, a real wardrobe refresher

Fargessen (forgot) and doing the same load for two to three days makes me go berserk

Yet heeding that annoying buzzer has not yet become knee-jerk

 

She who does the wash and finds gelt (cash) in the washer/dryer

While fun and gleeful, it’s just a bissel (little), not nearly enough to inspire

What is the point of folding when all the drawers are a complete mess?

Well, at least not mine, one out of four, of that I can confess

 

Putting away the farkakteh (pain in the tuchas-butt) laundry is a struggle I abhor

Perhaps clean clothes and such should be in a jumble on the floor

A baleboosteh (great housekeeper) I am not. And laundry, fun? No way

Nudist? Naked? Maybe? Just think of all those hours saved each and every day

linky 2-26-16 #FabFridayPost
linky 2-26-16 #FabFridayPost

 

always-dream-big-orlando-espinosa1

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin, or right here on WordPress!

Our house is STILL covered in sick! Oy Vey!

Can these two really be the carriers?
These two, can they really be the carriers?

The Mrs. mentioned that our flat here at the Manor has become somewhat of a convalescence home. I added that we don’t seem to be restorative or showing any signs of improvement since last November when the first ‘–itis’ hit our mishpocheh (family). Our little petri dishes, Little and Big, share their cooties a bit too freely.

Keep the tune of a Hard Day’s Night in your head as you read this little ditty…

It’s been a hard long night, and we’ve been feelin’ just like dreck (crap, ca-ca)

Our skin has turned a dulling white we really are a pain in the neck

And when we get out of bed we feel the pain in our heads

Won’t let us see daylight

 

You know we work every day to eat real healthy and exercise

But no matter what we do or say

The microbes make us just wanna cry

Despite the Lysol clean wipes we can’t unclog our nose pipes

The bugs just won’t go away

 

When we sneeze, germs discharge all around us

When we cough, its like we were hit by a bus, bus yeah

 

It’s been a hard long day, how long can we endure this lack of zest

And the feeling of proverbial brech (to vomit) can leave us emotionally so depressed

The tsuris (heartache) is too much to take, what’s the point of awake

When we feel so feh (physically and emotionally disgusted)!

 

It’s been a long four months hosting germs ‘n feelin’ so unkempt

And it’s worth it just to hear you say

You must be overwhelmed and so farhklempt (emotionally choked-up)

So let’s get out of that bed and get our clothes on instead

It’s gonna be okay

 

When we sneeze, germs discharge all around us

When we cough, its like we were hit by a bus, bus yeah

 

May our homes soon be rid of these invisible nogudniks (bad guys, in this instance, germs) that lurk in our air. May our kinder (children) really use soap and sing the A,B,C’s twice as they wash their hands. Let the schmutz (dirt and grime, in this case, mucus) stop dripping from our many orifices.  Gutinue (at last, with exasperation), enimageough already!


A bie gezunt
(as long as we are healthy!)

 

May there be hope!

 

 

 

 

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin, or right here on WordPress!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beauty and the Beast, Theatre Adventure!

Off to the Theatre!

image

Finally, after much ado and a very long wait since Santa left them for us, the Mrs. and I took Little, Big and their Toffey (Grandpa—self proclaimed name that means The Old Fart) to see Beauty and the Beast. The traveling cast came to our fair city and we soaked in the culture like a plant thirsting for water.

First, as we waited outside for the doors to open, we grew beholden to the splendor that is The Academy of Music, located on the Avenue of the Arts in downtown Philly. Big, maven (expert) that she is, had been going on and on to Little about theatre, the stage and live performances. Just over 5 years ago, we took Big to see Mary Poppins at the very same place. She was plotzing (exploding with excitement)! We stood outside and took in all of the buildings’ magnificence, while purchasing soft pretzels the size of yardsticks. Theatre watching can bring out the ‘hangry’ in the best of us, and when in Philly, nosh (eat) like a Philadelphian.

image

We had tickets in hand and made our way up to the (nosebleed) seats, aptly called, Family Circle. We were sitting among young dapper dressed dudes and the many ‘Belles’ of this ball. Despite our ears popping and slight signs of altitude sickness, our seats were awesome. The kinder (kids) didn’t know what to look at first…the columns, the people, the orchestra pit, the curtains, the lights…sponges, they are! Once the play began, many kinder (children) kept twisting their necks to see the main spotlight and it’s keeper, located right behind us.

image

The noshing (eating) took place immediately, which led to the insatiable thirst, which permeated throughout the performance. Toffey, always a mensch (warm, good soul), made the journey to the water fountain, many times.

The orchestra started tuning up. Big asked if they were practicing, and if they knew we could hear them. Soon, the magic of Broadway began. The most adorable thing from Little was this exchange:

Little: Mommy, are they for real, like for real live people singing for real live songs?

Me:     Of course they are sweetie, isn’t it amazing?

Little: No Mommy, I mean, like really. Are they alive, like us? Do they have for real families?

Me:     Yes honey. They are alive like you and me. And they have families and people who love them.

Little: Wow. I can’t believe they are for real life! This is so cool.

The show was fantastic fun. As you probably know, the Beast, he’s not such a bad guy. After a serious bout with vanity, and endless time as a nasty nebekh (poor soul) he becomes a haimish’a (warm and loving guy) schlemiel (dolt, oaf) to our Belle. Belle, kaynahorah (without an evil eye), saw the wonderful goodness and worth in this threatening-looking brute, and they become friends, and then later, friends with benefits. Everyone in the castle becomes human again and the evil spell cast his way was broken.

image

When they sang, “Be our Guest,” we roared! When they sang “Beauty and the Beast,” we ‘awwwwwwwed.” The girls were dehydrated and hangry despite the pretzel-ators and the water fountain visits. They twisted and fidgeted all over the Mrs., very unusual behavior for my little madelahs (girls). Toffey loved watching the girls enjoy this experience, almost as much as he enjoyed the show. Me too

Later that night, after a nice, early dinner, we dropped Toffey off at his house and starting talking about the play on the drive home. We kibitzed (gossiped) about our favorite scenes from the play and what we learned. We talked about being good people on the planet, treating people with respect and dignity and knowing that beauty is so much more than skin deep. No one had to start a social media campaign stating that #BeastsMatter?

We landed just where most of my posts on this blog end up: #HumanityMatters.

image

Follow my blog with Bloglovin, or right here on WordPress!

Linky Live a la agent spitback! @MrsGrohl
Linky Live a la agent spitback! @MrsGrohl14

Rant, Shmant, as long as I can vent week 5

image

Quiet please! Therapist is in session (with a loon!)

Privacy is driving me meshugener (crazy). Who has any? As a mom, or a parent/caregiver, when was the last time you went to the bathroom by yourself? Showered without interruption? Little and Big are always asserting and inserting their presence, no matter what seems to be happening. Last week, the Mrs. And I snuck away in the middle of the Parent Trap just to have a conversation. Nothing secret, sacred, or even sordid! We thought for sure that Lindsay Lohan as a kinder (child) would hold their stare. We were in the bathroom with the door shut, kibitzing (talking). Don’t you know, that not five minutes into our conversation, we hear a geshrei (scream) from Little, “WHERE ARE YOU?” Mittendrinnen (in the middle of) the scene where the parents see each other after all those years, they are banging on the door. Mind you, I’m still kvelling (overjoyed with pride) over how sweet they were, their genuine concern of the Mrs. and me, but c’mon!

After reading the news, I realize we have no privacy anywhere. There are cameras everywhere! One can receive a speeding ticket by mail with a picture of your offending car! There are satellite and surveillance cameras capturing our every move. Is my computer watching me type right now? Probably. What about the cloud? How many snoopers and cyber-yentas (gossips) are sifting through all of that stuff?

Do you read the terms and conditions every time you get a new app or open an online account? Not me! I read bubkas (nothing) and blindly click ‘accept!’ They are all in 8-point font and go on and on, using legalese, forever. They are designed to be unreadable. A shonda (shameful)!

image

Somehow Facebook knows when I by something on Amazon. This changes my algorithms (is this what they meant in elementary school when they said we’ll use math our whole life?) that create my timeline feeds, and suddenly I see other things similar to or accessories for what I just bought. Is this kosher (legit)? Google knows more about me than my parents (well, that’s for another posting, I promise).

Which brings me to Tim Cook and the pressure cooker he seems to be schvitzing (sweating) in. Stand your ground Tim! Don’t give up the goods to the Bureau! You have gotta know that I’m all for stopping really bad, bad guys and terrorists. But this very big ask by the Elliot Ness’s of the world is one slippery slope for our freedom and liberty.

How many big corporations and retail locations have already been hacked? How can we feel safe knowing there can might be one piece of magical code out there in the ether that can unlock our iPhones and let everyone know how many friends we have to play Words with Friends with? This code can simply and easily undermine decades of security measures and advancements that have been taken by Apple and every tech company that we interact with, to keep out the uber-erudite hackers and cyber-gonifs (thieves).

Today, phones house everything that our desktops, laptops and tablets used to hold, or more. They are the gateway to our entire lives. I respect law enforcement and I cannot even begin to comprehend the kind of pressure they are under to keep us safe. But please, please, keep the back door locked Tim. This is one pandora of a box, kaynahorah (geeze-louise) we shouldn’t open! Be the alrightnik (successful) mensch (good person) that you are and continue to protect the world for my kids, and everyone else.

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin, or right here on WordPress!

linky 2-19-16 #FabFridayPost
linky 2-19-16 #FabFridayPost

 

 

Out of the mouths of Babes…Heaven

BFF's at the shore
BFF’s at the shore 

The Mrs. told me a story that I often replay in my head. Mind you, this detail is hearsay. She, Little and Big were at their ‘besties’ house for a play date after the start of the school year.

Big and her BFF somehow got on the topic of discussing heaven. Mind you, the BFF brought this topic up. She said it was the most beautiful place ever, with harps and pearly gates and great scenery. Her Grandma had told her all about it. She mentioned Jesus and angels and all sorts of things. Big, turning pensive for just a moment, replied to her BFF, “Well, I’ve been to Tuscany!”

Now, to be fair, ‘besties’ Mom, a true pragmatist, interrupted with, “Now M, we don’t know if heaven is real. Nobody has come back and told us about it. No one has let us know there are real angels…”

I love this! I laugh out loud every time it comes to mind. What a stunning answer from Big. From my perspective, Tuscany is, well, heavenly. The food. The scenery. The smells. Our time together with family…She just may be right? It was, to say the least, a great response!

For the record, I was raised Jewish. I went to Hebrew school and decided against becoming a Bat Mitzvah (rite of passage into adulthood, still deemed more important for boys than girls—think Barbara Streisand and Yentl; also, a ridiculously expensive party), because quite frankly, I didn’t have the chutzpah (balls) to stand up in front of a big crowd and read from the Torah (Scrolls containing the Five books of Moses), sing and speak Hebrew, and garner all that attention. (Remember, I did not have a voice until my 30’s.)

As a kid, we spent a lot of time vacationing in the Borscht Belt (very popular resort hotels for Jews located in the Catskill Mountains of upstate New York). I use Yiddish in my writing, a very robust language that is dying, because it really drives home the point in a way that plain English can’t offer. I love this language. It reminds me of my very loving, very wonderful, Nanny Helen. A time when I was known as “Lisa-la.” I can almost smell the ruggaluch (wonderful sweet Jewish cookies) baking when I shut my eyes…I’m no maven (expert) with my Yiddish usage, but I do hope to keep it alive buzzing.

I don’t really practice Judaism. I love the culture and the Haimish’a (warm and friendly) feel, but I lost my faith when I lost my Aunt Mimi. No amount of prayer stopped her pain and suffering. No amount of prayer made her get better. No amount of prayer made me feel better about losing her. Prayer didn’t let me understand that she went to a better place. Azoy vert dus kuchel tzekrokhen. (Literally, this means: That’s the way the cookie crumbles!)

Please know and understand that I do not begrudge anyone with religious beliefs. In fact, I am a bit envious. I do practice Tai Chi and being a good person.

 

IMG_1507

All that being said, the Mrs. is a non-practicing shiksa (non-Jewish female). Many would find that alone a shonda (tragedy). I think it’s pretty awesome. Our kinder (the children), shana madelahs (beautiful little girls) that they are, learn diversity and acceptance (#HumanityMatters) right here, under our roof. That translates exponentially to the outside world, where it is so desperately needed. (It also provides the best of the holiday season, with celebrations of both Chanukah and Christmas.)

So that’s my shtick (funny story) and I’m sticking to it. L’ Chiam (To life!) and Zey gezunt (go in good health).

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin, or right here on WordPress!

linky 2-12-16
linky 2-12-16

Thanks to theAnxiousDragonsBlog

Yesterday was a bad day, so today will just have to be better!

What number do I call?
What number do I call?

Warning: Yesterday was a bad day, physically, emotionally, and all the other ‘–ally’s’ you can imagine. Little, Big and the Mrs., I apologize for any shortness or biting sarcasm that you were subject to. I try hard not to have this happen, and I know that I am merely mortal.

It started bad from the get-go. The sleep thief, gonif that she is, must have stolen whatever good was needed from my slumber. My body did not feel good and that made Tai Chi difficult. My balance was off and my neck throbbed. Other body parts didn’t line up to cooperate so much either. I pushed through it. Coffee, made expertly (by me) thick and strong, seemed useless. I needed a day like this like a loch in kop.

Little, she woke up in some state of mind! Unfortunately, it was the same one she brought with her to bed the previous night. Magically, she started right in, not skipping a beat or missing a refrain from the prior cockamamie behavior. Some days, my little pisher can really carry on.

I searched deeply, counting backwards from 10-Mississippi to zero and back again, breathing consciously. My sunny disposition was nowhere to be found. Is there a locator app for that? I was tired and my body wasn’t right. I had one bar left on my occipital stimulator, so I knew that by mid-day, I would run out of power (I did). Not so good for a day before a snowstorm. G’zai gezunt…

I made school lunches from bits and scraps. Our kitchen held a startling resemblance to Old Mother Hubbard’s place. This is no dig to the Mrs., as we are artfully trying a new pennywise purchasing plan by food shopping just twice a month and holding to a fixed dollar amount. We still have some work to do here. (Insert feelings of failure, as said family provider. Some breadwinner…I know, but like I said, I had a drecky day.) Big’s Friday lunch remains were still in her lunchbox. Let’s just say, yogurt that sits ‘outside the box’ for three days does not yield a good result for anyone when the container is uncapped. Not an aroma fit for my dicey stomach. Oy. 10-Mississippi…

Luckily, Nona loaded us up with bagels and some fixings yesterday. It would be PB&J for Big, and due to Little’s allergies, sunflower nut butter and honey. Since I wasn’t spit-spot on, I mistakenly made both sandwiches peanut butter. Luckily, I checked myself, thus preventing a possible predicament of anaphylaxis (phew). I quickly made a third bagel sandwich correctly for my shana Little. Vey iz mer! 10-Mississippi…

The commute to work had its usual share of crummy drivers and folks giving me the finger for going the speed limit. (Really, when was the last time you either ‘shot the bird,’ or were on the receiving end of one?) I shout, “Gai cocken afin yom (go shit in the ocean)” from the top of my lungs in the car, windows closed. 10-Mississippi…hey, no one shot me with a bullet, so that alone was a mitzvah! Sunny Dee, is that you? Nope, just my sardonic wit trying to raise a smile.

NPR and XPN were still in the midst of their radio fund drives. Ugh…Just look at the damned scenery and breathe it in. 10-Mississippi… My commute traces the same locales that make up many Thomas Eakins paintings. It’s beautiful no matter the weather, my mood, or the mean-spirited, speed racers that occupy the road with me daily. Smidgeons of Jonas were still around and I was able to find parking close to the office. All good. 10-Mississippi…

I get to work, fire up the computer and start the day. I completely fake feeling fine and dandy with everyone. No one even raises an eyebrow or questions this; I am that good. As I walk downstairs to talk with a co-worker, I spot a mouse, flat-out dead in a trap in the kitchen. Of mice and women. 10-Mississippi…

Enough already. No more kvetching

Today is Tuesday. It will be a better day. I think Sunny Dee, my inner Mary Poppins, is back. Body still crapy and I’m still faking it, but that’s okay. I’m an expert. Snow dusted the cars last evening, so the 4-8 inch hype (one place where size matters…) from the weather advisory folk was wrong. The kinder will be disappointed. No Olaf building today.

I’m about to try some Tai Chi. Hope you all have a good day.

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin, or right here on WordPress!

Rant, Shmant, as long as I can vent…Week 3

image

Quiet! Third therapy session in progress

The amount of shpilkas I’m experiencing from just the news alone; I could plotz. It’s getting worse as Little and Big are growing and asking more and more sizable questions about the planet and the people who surround us. They are going to have to live in this world, clearly a work in progress (perhaps I use this term loosely), and I am fearful of so many things.

Oy vey, this week. Caucusing! What nudnik came up with this process? We schmooze, we kibbitz, we vote. And then, straight from the clown car, Cruz cruises into the main ring? The top three from that car, vey iz mir! These party leaders, who hold punishing values and regressive perspectives toward women, gays, sick, aged, underprivileged people. And science? They allow for religion to trump science (yes, I used that T-word on purpose). There is an age-old Yiddish curse that I offer to these GOP machers: May every tooth in your head fall out, except one, so you can get a toothache! Then I add to this Yiddisher-spell, deal with the fact you no longer have dental insurance!

Oh Bernie, how I feel you and the tie/loss. I do not believe this country, my country, can or will elect a lantzman. Hillary, you squeezed success by merely a bissel. Everyone please read her emails. The state department releases them in bunches (like your panties) each month because they are public record. See who she really is. Forget the blue pants suit already. A shonda.

While I’m on the government and this merry-go-round of Looney-tunes, I must say the water crisis in Flint, this disgusting, inhumane cover-up—how can we do this to our own people? How can we do this at all, and sit back and deny, deny, deny. How do these politicians and GM corporate gonifs sleep at night? What do you do when your tap water starts to look like coffee and the EPA says, “it’s all good; drink up!” If not Flint, where else? What don’t we know? What are we drinking? Pepsi, the behemoth of bottlers even revealed that their Dasani bottled water is simply tap water. Tap water from where? I’m in Pennsylvania, the fracking epicenter. You think I feel good about our water? A shonda.

Voter apathy. People, if you care at all, please register to vote now. Primaries are looming. They matter. Read about the people seeking the biggest, most undesirable and scrutinized job in our nation, because you have ‘say.’ Make your decision and please, no matter whom you choose, VOTE. I know, the roster has been meh at best…but your voice, it matters. On November 8th of this very year, your VOTE matters. Get yourself ready to vote because #humanitymatters.

image

If not for you, please, for my Little and Big and your kinder too.

#humanitymatters

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin, or right here on WordPress!

linky 2-5-16
TY linky 2-5-16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our House Must be Covered in Sick!

Stick Houses

There was a middle-aged Momma

who lived at the Manor

with two kinder, the Mrs.

Life couldn’t be grander.

 

Little and Big

went to school each day

to learn and experience

the progressive way.

look

The thing that would happen

as in all schools, they do

Farshtunkeneh germs

and dreck like the flu.

 

We were crawling with what

must have been going around

a cure for this mishegas

could not be found.

 

Those microbes are causing such chaos, you see

for Little and Big, the Mrs. and me

with every ‘–itis’ kaynahorah, we all seem to catch

it’s no wonder we sound just like one great big kvetch.

trees

On Sunday we said, “Enough is enough!”

let’s stop this kockamayme condition

Let’s go outside and feel the sun on our backs

We can’t sit here and keep up this bitchin’.

 

So we picked up our meds, we headed outdoors

to meet Nonna at the arbor museum

we laughed, ran and played on this beautiful site

we had fun, we were happy and gleesome!

with Nonna

For those we encountered as we sought healthier ground

Please know we dare not have shared

For Jonas had left us a blanket of snow

Killing germs while we romped unimpaired

 

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin, or right here on WordPress!

 

 

Linky Live a la agent spitback!
Linky Live a la agent spitback!

 

 

linky 2-5-16
TY linky 2-5-16

Rant Shmant, As long as I can vent…Week 2

Have a Seat, Lisa
Have a Seat, Lisa

Quiet….Second Therapy Session in Progress

I gotta say, my kishkas are really in knots over the Second Amendment. I believe, we as a country, are snow-balling towards greater tsuris each day. My Little and Big, shana madelas that they are, will grow up in this world. The Mrs. and I, we brought them into a society spiraling out of control, and I worry, oh how I worry, about their safety and wellbeing. Poo, Poo!

I’m talking about guns. Now, as you may have figured out, this lefty, liberal, jewish, lesbian is a tree-hugging, berkenstock wearing, granola chewing (albeit gluten-free) lover of the planet, and a pacifist. Here, in the US, we are picking each other off at alarming rates for no reason. A real shonda. And it all harkens back to this one sentence in the US Constitution:

“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.” 

Doublespeak? Can you say ambiguous? Masters of grammar and the English language, I think not. Did the Founding Fathers even proofread this very important, horribly written sentence? Did they think about the misinterpretation matrix that ultimately allows those powerful schmucks in the NRA, with their gun-packing followers, to twist and turn these words with such vengeance and fear-mongering?

We can no longer sit back and say Beshert is Beshert. This, my goyim friends, is like when Doris Day would sing Que sera, sera. I say no more to, “whatever will be, will be”…The future is ours. We need to fix this awful mess to make the world safer for our kinder. The boychicks and madelas that so innocently trust, play, and explore, deserve so much more than we currently have to offer.

I can’t tell you how many times, this week alone, I’ve read how a youngster has found a gun in their home, and either accidentally killed their sibling or themselves. Shonda. Think about our president, who has held almost weekly prayer vigils for all of the mass shootings that continue to happen in this country. George Zimmerman is claiming, “Stand your Ground!” and getting off scott-free! People are shooting people. People are shooting cops. Cops are shooting unarmed people. Think about how 30,000+ lives are taken from us here, in this country, due to senseless gun violence. Shonda. Think how nothing has changed since Sandy Hook. Nothing! Shonda. This, they call rights?

Then, we couple these unthinkable acts with the GOP frontrunner (curiously, rhymes with RUMP), a real no-goodnik, who has the chutzpah to so proudly state this week in the news, while holding a rifle, “I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose any voters, okay?”  They call him a candidate to lead this country? Shonda.

People, it’s harder to buy a car or rescue a dog, than it is to buy a gun. It’s harder to buy allergy meds at your local pharmacy! 30,000+ each year. At school. At the movies. At work. At play. Where will it happen next. Who is next? Why doesn’t it stop? Why is it escalating. The answer is always the same. Money. Money. Money. Inspiring fear sells guns. Kindling the misguided news that ‘we’ are out to take your guns, sells more guns. Ignorance, racism and bigotry sells more guns.

So, who among you will help me make this planet safer for the kinder? Help us to STAND OUR GROUND and be safe. We need to VOTE and to use our VOTES wisely people. Our kids depend on it. Humanity matters and should not be stolen so capriciously and painfully.

L’chiam! To life!

FabFridayNewYear1 with  and @ethannevelyn

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin, or right here on WordPress!

Versatile Blogger Award

Photo by willowandsage1 aka: The Mrs.
Photo by willowandsage1
aka: The Mrs.

What a way to start a day! A great big THANK YOU to the extraordinary and brilliant blogger, Amy Punt, over at Insights From the Edge, for her most kindhearted nomination! Amy, such a master, a maven, you flat out made my week. It’s a mitzvah to be recognized for my writing (I’m kvelling!)!

Here are the rules, and I will do my best to dot every i and cross every t. Poo Poo!

  • Thank the person who nominated you and link up to their blog
  • Nominate at least 15 bloggers of my choice, including links to each one so you, my lovely readers can see what I am talking about! (When thinking about The Versatile Blogger, one must keep in mind writing style, technique, uniqueness of  subject matter and the level of love that exudes from the words on their pages)
  • Share seven facts about yourself

So, here are 7 things about me that you may not yet be Google worthy:

  1. By day, I am an artists agent, selling the work of some of the most creative illustrators and animators that span the globe
  2. I get up each day at 4 am so I have time to write, think, and share my blog, all before the din of the day arises with the Mrs., Little and Big. It’s like therapy, only cheaper
  3. I used to own and operate a small pet boutique with the Mrs., and another couple called, In the Doghouse (Because pets are good people!)
  4. I’m a Certified Coffee Master (and I’ve been drinking that delicious nectar of the gods since I was 5 years old)
  5. I love pugs
  6. I’m Jewish, but not at all religious. This Yiddish spiel, it comes from a love of this dying, robust language that oozes expression and flavor
  7. The Mrs., she’s a shiksa, so our kids get the joys of both Christmas and Chanukah, sometimes refered to as, ‘Chanamas’

And now, I present to you, my nominations for this honor, The Versatile Blogger Award. Click on these links and find yourself in the pages of some incredibly gifted folks and all around alrightniks. Everyone has a special point of view, can elicit emotion, and is just pretty awesome. Mazel Tov to you all! (in random order):

  1. All in a Dads Work
  2. lifeexperimentblog
  3. bumbismom
  4. Ethan and Evelyn
  5. kingofstates
  6. lisajakub
  7. Just Me Coloring Outside the Lines
  8. Hugzilla
  9. The Boeskool
  10. Perfection Pending
  11. Self-Actualized Events
  12. Susan Rushton
  13. A Body of Hope
  14. Developing Dad
  15. Peg-o-leg’s Ramblings

And, my dear Amy Punt, you are a rock star! Such a gift, I thank you for!

Versatile Blogger Award
Versatile Blogger Award

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Have a super Thursday all!

 

 

Beauty and the Beast: the real deal

Beauty and the Beast
Beauty and the Beast

Growing up, my mother told us (Shvesters) we were gorgeous. It was disingenuous. Even back then, at a very young age, I knew her words were for her. She would often fish for compliments with total strangers, coyly at the grocery store baggers, at restaurants with wait staff. To her credit, she was, and still remains a very nice-looking person. She took great pains to stay attractive, now approaching eighty years of life. Motivation for her was to look good on the arm of my father. Not a whole lot more going on, unfortunately.

My sister—her beauty comes au natural and is throughout. She favors my mom and has maintained a statuesque 3+ inches over her since the early teen years. Both were, and still are, very attractive. My shvester, she is truly beautiful, inside and out.

As a kid, I looked, and still highly resemble my father, who looks like his father did. Funny, resemblance was never a thing I could see until I became a mom. Likeness via DNA is powerful. I can stand at the airport or a movie theatre, a bookstore, and spot the packs of gene-poolers as they pass by. (Let the record show, that as a mom, I can also now detect fever and/or illness with my bare hand, nose picking clear from another room, and I have become completely desensitized to vomit and other bodily secretions that spout from the kinder. Prior to the arrival of Little and Big, none of these things were possible. I thought motherhood would also empower me the knowledge of how to fold a fitted sheet, but epic momma-fail there.)

Back to the premise here: The Mrs., she is a pure beauty. She even looks good with a paper hat atop her head during holiday dinners (just ask her mom! It’s no joke–and sorry, she won’t let me post one for proof). The kinder, my shana madelahs—together, I have three stunners from their inside core to the outer shell that is our body.

Me? No eye candy here. No meeskait; no train wreck, mind you, just normal. Well, less than average height and weight; run-of-the-mill graying of hair. My face is ‘a bit too well lined with character’ for my baby boomer ‘end of an era’ birthday. And, I will not for one moment, lose sleep over any of this. Why? Because I know I am a good person with a good core. Not just the ‘six-pack’ kind.

I do not fuss with my hair or even use a comb or brush. I had a fleeting encounter with makeup in my sophomore year in college (Bernice, remember?). I saw cotton balls in my home for the first time when the Mrs. first moved (in 1998!). I still have no clue what their main purpose holds. I want to thank Nature’s Knowledge for letting me know I can add some apple cider vinegar to a cotton ball and use it as toner for my face. (I do this now!) My outfit of choice is jeans, Dansko’s and several layers of shirts, and a hoody to keep warm (Blizzard of 2016 Jonas or not). Yes, I’m happiest in a hoody and sneaks, just like big-Daddy Zuckerberg himself. I despise dressing up and find shopping to dress up even worse. I come to you purely, sans schmaltz. What you see is what you get, always. And when you know me, you can see me inside and out. That’s the emmes truth.

Little and Big
Little and Big

My kinder are the ‘girliest’ of girls. I have learned to spy, with my little eye, a dress that has good twirl (this matters)…shoes and leggings that will enhance with sparkle, dazzle and élan, and what will ultimately make my daughters smile like Cheshire Cats. The fashionista-gene has been passed, along with the wherewithal to shop. I have made the case for pink chucks to no avail. Recently, Big announced she wanted a pair of pants! To my ears, such music! Kvelling!

So, not too long ago, that nice chap with the white beard and jolly red suit, he brought us tickets to see Beauty and the Beast (Feb.)! After studying the picture Mr. Claus left with the tickets, Little said, “Ema is Beauty, and Mommy is the Beast!” Okay!

Not long after, I was told that the same kinder, spry little fox that she is, was discussing Harry Potter and said, “Mommy can be Dumbledore.”

Thankfully I have thick skin, a good sense of humor, and the joy in knowing that my kids find me worthy of a Disney extravaganza! How can that be bad? I remain unscathed and well hooded. I embrace my inner and or outer beast and welcome another delightful day in momma’s house. After all, how many kids think their momma is Broadway Bound? Out of the mouths of these babes, right? Nu? 

 

Linky Live a la agent spitback!
This is a Linky Live post via agent spitback! TY!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Rant, shmant. As long as I can vent…

QUIET: Therapy In Session
QUIET: Therapy In Session

A new weekly feature for you (really, for me. Remember, you are my therapists).

Many months ago something happened that gives me such shpilkes, even today. The Mrs., she takes Big to the doctor for her yearly check in. Little tags along, as she usually does. This is usually not too traumatic of an event. We love our doc and the visit is always followed up with ice cream for all! What’s not to love?

First, let me tell you that Big, she is fine. Our regular pediatrician is out on some emergency, so they ask if it’s okay that Big sees a male doc for this visit. This I think is nice thing. We say of course, no problem. We have no issue here.

Mr. Doc comes in, seems pleasant, engaging—all is good. A little doctoring goes on, looking in the ears, listening to the heart, etc. then he says to Big, “Do all of your friends hate you?” Big, (all of seven years old) looks perplexed and worried. The Mrs., she is mortified.

Mr. Doc continues to spew, “Don’t they hate you because you are so beautiful? If they don’t now, they will soon.” This, he says to the most sensitive little madelah on the planet. On a regular day, she is like a sponge soaking in the pain of the world. Really? We needed this new burden added to this thoughtful kinder like we needed a loch in kop?

The Mrs., she speaks up. She says, NO! THAT IS NOT A PROBLEM HERE. WE DON’T WORRY ABOUT THIS! NO ONE TALKS ABOUT IT! With eyes bulging and body language that I’m certain, has this medical macher in need of new boxers.

The rest of the visit is uneventful, thankfully. The Mrs., she has to explain to Big and Little, that the doc, he made a bad mistake. No one will hate her for being beautiful. To be a truly beautiful person means you are filled with kindness, compassion and love for yourself and others. Beauty comes from the inside out.

We have heard about Big’s allure from many, but never put forth in a way so crass, so blissfully ignorant and hopelessly tactless. Of all places, we would have never expected something like this to occur at our children’s medical establishment.

So Mr. Doc and those that surround you and your small thinking, you need to know that both of my girls are gorgeous in my eyes. Both of my girls are so much more than a pretty face. Do not, dear Doctor, ever hold them to such low standing, that you expect them to ride free on their stunning aesthetic qualities. They both will carry with them an appeal that comes from who they are on this planet and how they relate to their fellow human beings. They will utilize their brains in virtuous ways because they are cultivating a love of learning. They will grow up to become whatever it is they want to become, because they will both work hard and know they can. They both will lead and dictate their paths.

Hate is a mighty strong word. Please watch where you use such a term in today’s society; it resonates so freely off the tongues of way too many. Where lives get cut short over senseless violence, racism and bigotry. There are probably countless despicable persons on the planet, yet few deserve such a term as ‘hated’ from another individual, as my Big.

Mr. Doc, you have ticked me off in ways that you will never know or comprehend. And I do not hate you. I do fear and worry that there are more out there that think like you—and, I am one pissed Jewish Mamma.

An InLinkz Link-up

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

FabFridayNewYear1

Aa, Bb, Cc, in pictures

My Nannala
My Nannala, and me, a little pisher…

Aa is for Alte Kocker: an old fart, old and complaining; kvetching. This is a picture of my Nannala and me–I was a young pisher and she was my favorite Alte Kocker. Oh how I miss her unconditional love and sense of humor. My Little, she gets a lot from this one…

Kine-horrah, that is one big ball!
Kine-horrah, that is one big ball! Little, Big, be careful!

Bb is for Ball: 1. kneidlach; matzoh balls, 2. chutzpah; has a set

The only way to brew...thank you to our dear friends Robert and Laura who had the good sense to change our lives forever
The only way to brew a cuppa…thank you to our dear friends Robert and Laura, who had the good sense to help us change our lives forever. Poo Poo!

Cc is for Coffee: You think without my coffee, I can have such a conversation? I’m verklempt; emotionally overwhelmed…Cc is also for ChemEx, the only way to brew. What, you don’t believe, kish’m tuchas! You suffer.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

This post has been inspired by the community event: Alphabet

Reason to Believe? Reason to Question?

Attachment-1

I have a good mind to trust in the fact that things do not happen for a reason. This, despite everything my father has ever taught me. Good stuff would happen. Bad stuff would happen. His response was always, “Everything happens for a reason.” He literally put the kibosh on my investigative, pre-Google era, inquisitive mind.

I tried to grasp this mantra of his around in my mind as a child often, completely unknowing that this was his, and was pure hooey. This was just another way for the sweeper to keep sweeping. I would watch my mother in astonishment from the corner of my eye as she would methodically turn the electric oven in our kitchen on and off for some 45 minutes to an hour daily, ritualistically. “Warm. Off. Off. Off. Warm. Off. Off. Off.” Was there a purpose here that I was missing? Did other oven users do this? Was this behavior described in the manual for best use? Interrupt the ceremony, and it would begin again. Okay, let’s have turning off the oven; TAKE 2—and, ACTION! “Hey Dad, why does she…” “Let her be, everything happens for a reason.”

The front door lock brought a similar practice for her, following the oven. “Click, opened. Click, locked. Click, opened. Click, locked.” I can vividly hear the clicking noise now if I close my eyes. I can see the blank look on her face as she tested that lock without limit. I couldn’t bear to put a time on this this behavior. It felt endless. One evening, after a few too many clicks, the lock stopped working. The emergency locksmith came out that night to fix the overworked doorknob. Once newly installed, “Click, opened. Click, locked. Click, opened. Click, locked.” So the game began again. “Hey Dad, why does she…” “Let her be, everything happens for a reason.”

butterflyTrimming the lawn with scissors, after the landscapers mowed. Raking the carpet after the vacuum left its pattern. Straightening the creases in the sofa pillows after someone sat down. Getting the dust ruffle just right under the bed so that the pleats read evenly. Rearranging the jellybeans in the bowl because someone ate one or three. Hiding the wires from the television behind the leaves of the plants. Straightening our personal desk drawers. Having a trash can in the bathroom that was not to be used for any trash–verboten. These were the things that filled her days. Every day. “Hey Dad, why does she…” “Let her be, everything happens for a reason.”

This response was not saved for just my mother’s mishegas (later known as extreme, undiagnosed OCD). My grandmother was diagnosed with ovarian cancer the exact same week I learned in high school about how cancer begins with improper cell division. “See, everything happens for a reason.” Suddenly, I was terrified to further my learnings about science, health, and biology. Who of my dear relatives would fall next? Was my Nanny victimized to further drive home the point of my father’s absurd refrain? This just could not be so.

The AIDS crisis began in 1981. I had just graduated from high school and this new, terrorizing disease was killing the gay community by the masses. “See, everything happens for a reason.” “But dad, what reason could make this happen? And out came hatred and fear and bigotry. And a greater understanding of the dreck from which he spoke.

politifact-photos-12113317_920729551350503_850292094829865796_oI think now on so many things throughout history, life. Slavery. War. The Holocaust. Terrorism. 911. Racism. Mental Illness. Columbine. Sandy Hook. Aurora. San Bernardino. Oregon. Black lives matter. All lives matter. Ebola. AIDS/HIV. Cancer. Heart disease. Stroke. Hypertension. Driving while texting. Drinking and Driving. Addiction. Chronic pain. Malnutrition. Hunger. Homelessness.

What I have learned was Dad was wrong. He still is wrong. Bad stuff happens. Good stuff happens. Someone, somewhere cannot possibly make these horrid things occur with intention. I have reason to believe that we, as people, are better than that. Oh, and my mom could have been helped with tremendously by medication. Yet she continues, “Click, opened. Click, locked. Click, opened. Click, locked.”

Zie gezunt. They should live and be well.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

This post is in response to the Daily Prompt Reason to Believe

Dear Body, What’s with you?

from my window

To quote Judge Judy (really!), “Du kanst nicht oif meinem fus pishen und mir sagen klass es regen ist.” Translation, “Don’t pee on my foot and tell me it’s raining!” This is no ‘woe is me’ post. I bullshit you not. But c’mon…body? Vus iz dos? Despite it all, I unfailingly (well, 98% mostly) choose the glass half full side of life. Why. Three main reasons (and yes, there are more):

  • The Mrs.
  • Big
  • Little

Hair: I have a lot of hair and for that I am grateful. As a kid, I had light brown hair that would get lovely blonde, sun-kissed streaks. With ah, mmmm, maturity, and less time on the swings, came light brown hair. My crayons began to run out of colors in my mid to late thirties, and so began experimentation in color. I was brown, browner, a touch of red, henna-touched, blonde (very, very bad in hindsight), blonde splashes for ‘softening.’ The Mrs. has had her share of hair-happenings atop my kop. Lucky for us, hair grows out, and I’m pretty easy going. I’ve been my current, au natural, for about the past decade. It’s an overall gray, frosty sheen, with an undercoat (yes, like a dog) of mopsy brown. The result is not the beautiful, white gray coif like Jamie Lee Curtis, Helen Mirren or Kate Moss, but one that is more of a field mouse. You already know how the Mrs. feels about mice…

Hijinks

Eyes: Since first grade you have let me down. If you only knew how mad my mother was at me for needing glasses? Like I had a choice in this gene pool? She didn’t believe that I couldn’t see the chalkboard from my front row seat (geek way before it was trendy) and was mortified when the eye doctor confirmed the prognosis. That was one appointment that I recall very clearly (unlike my vision). Despite mom, I made peace early on with my inner Mr. Magoo. I used to have quite the portfolio of glasses to suit my many moods. Never a lover of clothes shopping, but glasses—hold me back. Those were the non-frugal days of yore. Now, my seamless trifocals come from VisionCrafters. I have but one pair that’s a bit bent out of shape from Little’s rough and tumble play. And, I am now like the Karate Kid working with his mentor, Mr. Miyagi: “Glasses on. Glasses off. Glasses on. Glasses off.” Which is best???

Neck: Oh how I despise you. Not for the usual reasons women hate their necks. You look just fine. Functionally, not so much. I was 18 years old, riding a borrowed bike home from work (“Dermatology Associates, how may I help you?”) when I was hit by (I think it was an old lady, but truth is, only knuckles showed on the steering wheel with a small tuft of blue hair. She drove off, perhaps thinking she ran over a squirrel or something) a car and careened into the center median of a very busy road in south Florida. This was the catalyst for my chronic pain. I got news for you, the borrowed bike didn’t fare so well either. Fast forward a few years into my twenties, and add a few instances of whiplash (Philadelphians perhaps don’t drive so well?). The thirties (maybe why the crayons began losing color) brought on a horrible roller blading accident (who let me on those things) that cracked my helmet in half like an eggshell. As I came to, I recall seeing and hearing cartoon birds chirping over the (three to four versions of the one) man that came running across the street to my rescue. I felt like Wile E. Coyote with an anvil atop my head. “Beep. Beep.” These snowballing concussive events have lead to thirty-two plus years of escalating, loathsome, and agonizing neck pain. I waken each day, 2-3 hours earlier than most, so I can ease out of the cacophony of pain points. I’ll leave out the assortment of accompanying despicable symptoms for now. We’ve got time…Glass half-full here! Lots of visits to countless ‘–ists,’ procedures, meds, surgeries, massages, acupuncture, injections, potions and bionics! Yes, I am a $6 Million Dollar Woman (remember Jamie?) with a remote control for a device placed smack dab in my right tuchas with wiring straight up to my keppie. It actually tricks my brain to think, “hey, that’s not so bad now, is it?” Zap the pain away.

cold

One more thing for now: Hot flashes. While few and far between, you’ve managed to come at every wrong time during the hot summer months. Now, you totally disappear when the temps have dropped to tundra degrees? Nu? As a person who has been cold my entire 633 months on this planet, one would think that just 1 or 2 properly planned convection oven style-flashes would have been nice?

Not a lot of kvetching here because I’m always choosing ‘happy.’ What, like I have another choice? And for those who ponder whether this side of life moves quicker than the first half…I think it’s the same. It feels quicker because of the people we include in our lives, the fun we create, the play we make and the wisdom of our choices. Ennui is no fun. Livin life, staying present is maybe what it is all about.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Timeless, retro PLAY: We all need it!

Meet the Lego's
Meet the Lego’s

Plato said, “You can tell more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” You know what, Plato (sounds a lot like play-doh?), I couldn’t agree more. One of the greatest things now going on in our apartment is P-L-A-Y! I know this is in part due to the amazing progressive school the girls attend, The Miquon School, where I often long to restart my education from the beginning, in nursery school, or even kindergarten. My kinder have it so very good at this magical place where childhood is literally hands-on fun. The kids enjoy learning by doing, exploring, experiencing and well, playing. Independence is vital; curiosity is encouraged; respect for all is absolute. This isn’t just a community; it’s a diverse shtetl for greater childhood development and collaboration!

domino

So, I digress and kvelled a bissel about the magic that takes place daily at our school! Nu! This enchanted, natural, outdoorsy place has an effect that is phenomenal on kids (and their families too). Why? Let me tell you. We live in a crazy, fast paced, over-connected, yet very dis-connected culture. It’s scary how little we really relate to each other now, despite all our techno advances in communications. I remember a time when you met a friend for coffee to ‘tawk,’ or just went to the bathroom in your own home without having to bring your iPhone along. Maybe that ages me more than my now gray-mop of a hairdo. But it’s true. I also remember the delight of receiving a letter by snail mail. No acronyms—all real words, handwritten with intent. How about seeing a photo in print, holding it, watching the colors fade over time. Enough!

jackAbout my kinder and play. The things that they are doing together are absolutely thrilling to me. The hottest stuff from our holiday haul: Classic dominoes, an antique porcelain American Indian doll, who of course, we said was Kaya’s kid-sister (yes, American Girl Kaya), a weaving loom, Lego’s, the original Spirograph deluxe set, and Jacob’s Ladder (yes, the one rumored to be in the tomb with King Tut himself!). Color me silly, but this is the stuff I played with a few too many moons ago. No batteries, no noises, no electronics (not that there’s anything wrong with them), no drones, no bones about it!

 

The giggly-fun that Little and Big have when setting up the dominoes, deciding whose turn it is to tap an end, and starting it all over again. Allo of our right cerebral cortexes are humming the happy dance. Their play is about discovery and the experience. It’s incredible.

jacob

Try if you can to get Jacob’s ladder from the Mrs., who has been dominating that little wooden wonder since the first unwrapping. One night, Big got a hold of it, figured out how it works, and went along to teach the Mrs., Little and me how it works. The gears are spinning in these brains. Curiosity isn’t killing any cats around here. It’s contagious.

 

And Spirograph! How many pens have we been through! The pleasure is all ours! Now, in true Mighty-Girl spirit, we can whip out the snap circuits and Big and Little rush to the floor to get started. Playing with circuitry, light switches, transistors and diffusers, building fans and lights…bring it on and add some more! My little Rosie Revere, Engineers (love that book) can’t get enough. We look around us and easily apply these newly constructed pieces to the ceiling fan, the volume on the radio, the lights. Voila! Questions, inquiry and thoughts are flowing…

 

Most important to this whole equation, I see my bubelah’s growing up to be innovative and creative, critical thinkers who will always love learning. Doctor. Lawyer. Engineer. Who cares? This Jewish momma will not be kvetchin’ or hockin’. They can become whatever it is they want to become, and they will work hard because they know and feel intrinsically that learning is an ‘F’ word—F-U-N. That is pretty damned amazing!

 

As play is concerned, it’s a wonderful time to be a kid. As the world is concerned, well that’s another post altogether.

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Dear Society,

my 4

As you go about your business and relate with people, families, groups, please kindly think before you speak. Do I mean to say this so harshly? Maybe. It occurs to me, that as a culture, there has long been some traditional hardwiring when it comes to the rule of family. Husband, wife, and 2.3 kids have long been the accepted norm. Over time, many of you have even acknowledged the single mom who has one or more kids. Single Dad’s exist too, holding custody of children in a post-Kramer vs. Kramer world.

However my fellow creatures of the good ol’ U.S. of A., please be aware of the ‘rainbow-banner year’ 2015 has been for human rights. (Such naches this year has brought.) Yes, did you notice I didn’t say just LGBT rights? Small thinking must stop. The word ‘family’ is now fascinating and complex. Prejudice and discrimination must stop. It’s time to believe that all lives matter. #HumanityMatters.

You’ve recognized different religions marrying. You’ve accepted bi-racial couples. Let love win.

In June of 2015, Edie Windsor and Jim Obergefell braved SCOTUS and won, making same sex marriage a right nationwide, citing the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. Talk about a Mensch on a Bench! Our mass shpilkes had ended! In a momentous 5-4 ruling, 5 mensch’s struck down the U.S. ban, stating that this ‘liberty will no longer be denied.’ Surely it is a mitzvah for all humanity when love wins.

my 3

Marriage licenses were issued all over the country to same sex fagele’s. Registries and calls to the caterers rang throughout the land. In this same year, more than 450 elected officials served as openly fagele. The transgendered community became visible as Laverne Cox posed nude for photographer, Norman Jean Roy and Vanity Fair magazine led with “Call me Caitlyn.” Kneidlach or not, #HumanityMatters.

With all of this positive change, hear my spiel. Families in your line of vision may appear different from what you are used to — and this difference is good and beautiful and long overdue.

Two dads and their children may eat in a restaurant, shop in a store, walk in a park, play at the playground or catch the new Star Wars flick. Do not have the chutzpah to think (with your outside voice) that one of the adults is the dad and one is the brother, the uncle, the friend, or the grandfather. Don’t assume alte kocker when one parent looks older than the other.

Two moms and their children may eat in a restaurant, shop in a store, walk in a park, play at the playground or catch the new Star Wars flick. Do not have the chutzpah to think (with your outside voice) that one of the adults is the mom and one is the sister, the aunt, the friend or the grandmother. Don’t assume alte kocker when one parent looks older than the other. (Please read this: I am not the Bubbeh, I am Mommy.) Vai is mir.

my two

Because you know what happens when you assume

And guess what, our families are just like yours. Except maybe, sometimes, we work harder than most to birth our kinder.

So please, I beg of you, open your minds to new things, new ideas, and new families, even a bissel. It’s mashuggeh not to. If you can’t, you can kish’m tuchas. Poo. Poo. Poo.

If you can, l’Chaim.

And remember, #humanitymatters.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

 

Linky Live a la agent spitback!
Linky Live a la agent spitback!

It’s Bedtime, by Santa

bed 2

Dear Big, mostly Little

It’s Santa you see

To talk about something not so great

Can it be?

 

By day you are both so mighty, so strong

I was hoping this nightfall report was all wrong

By watching, I noticed the shtick and the struggles

For Ema and Mommy who only want snuggles

 

bed 1

Those 8 crazy nights flew by without a tussle

But Santa you know, has so much more muscle

My powers cover the actions of naughty and nice

You may just get gornisht; you’re rollin’ the dice

 

By mail I’ve read of the things on your lists

Your chutzpah dear kinder must cease and desist

Something must change when you climb into that bed

A time filled with shpilkes and unneeded dread

 

Please know shaineh maidels, that I’ve got your number

After brushing and flossing and primping for slumber

When the last pages of book is read and completed

Your Mommies, the neighbors, are all quite depleted

 

Kicking and screaming is never okay

It’s a shandeh especially at this time of the day

You must stop the geshrei-ing and crying you see

And drinking so much that you just have to pee

bed 3

I know you’re not hungry; your belly is fine

Your eyes do not hurt; oh jeez, stop that whine!

Even boogers need rest at the end of the day

So leave them alone in your nose, okay?

 

Life in the Manor was quiet, serene

Before you two pishers came on to the scene

From now on kinderlech, no more meshugener making

Or your tchatchkes and presents will be mine for the taking

 

Be little mensches, close your eyes and gey schluffen

Leave the rumpus behind and there’ll be no more noodgin’

Nod off, conk out, cop some z’s, that’s my wish

Bubelah’s please, tuches ahfen tish!

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Frugal Schmugal

from Luka
from Luka

The holidays are headed our way, no bones about it. While I do not care to keep track of how many shopping days are left until Christmas, I do know all too well, how many days left until payday. And that is just an icky, new feeling that I must get used to. We managed through those eight crazy nights of Hanukkah; I suppose the big red-suited man will let us fly by too.

from Neko
from Neko

Please, do not for one moment feel bad about us! We are doing the very best we can right now, and I know we are not alone. Tough times, tough measures surround us all. We are very grateful for what we have, and more importantly, who we have surrounding us with love, joy and support both during the holidays, and year round.

Thankfully, Little and Big don’t really ask for a lot. They never have. We are just in ‘Living Lean’ mode, and with that, will come a special frugality to the season that should not be misconstrued as ‘Grinchism.’ We got through it last year, and I guess that means we should be even better at it by this year? This year, the Mrs. and me have not even argued about a budget. We both know its bubkes.

The boys, with Santa
The boys, with Santa

I love the holidays, as viewed through the eyes of Little and Big. I grew up on latkes and menorahs – a jelly donut was a big deal for my Big and me. Of course, a purple tree, blinking lights, ornaments…it’s a huge WOW!

On Christmas Eve, Toffey will spend the night. We will make egg-free cookies for Santa (sorry big guy, Little is allergic) together – a few for him, a few for us. A ‘nice nosh.’ We will sup together. And we will all wake up early in our jammies, and see the surprises that Santa has left for us after his magnificent voyage across the world.

Here at the Manor, luckily men have been outside working on all the chimneys in our building for the past several weeks. I expounded on all the ‘white lying’ of the season by telling the girls that they are readying them for Santa, his elves and the reindeer. Yes, this haimish’a Yid buys in. I hear the bells ringing on the polar express and love the look on their little joyous faces on Christmas morning.

Here is what I don’t so much love:

  • The lack of sleep – in fact, my sleep bank may very well mirror my…well, you know
  • We have less charitable giving to offer this year
  • We cannot yet get the girls, us, an addition to the family in the form of a new pug. We are so very grief-stricken by the tremendous loss of Atticus and Eli.

Here’s what I do love:

  • My kids get to celebrate both Chanukah and Christmas, so the magic of the white haired man rocks in this house
  • When I asked them what they got last year from Santa, they had no idea – but they did remember the experiences we made together and the joy of the people we shared them with
  • Toffey is making a beautiful tradition with us on Christmas Eve, and he swears up and down, and sideways too, that he never, ever sees or hears Santa come in at night with our haul

So, frugal schmugal. We do the very best we can. We make memories, not bills. We enjoy the time-shared.

Wishing all of you, the very best of the holiday season!

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

 

 

Oy Vey, It’s Nutcracker Day!

Nut 1a

Way back in September, when school first started and the chaos of a summer’s day turned just a tad bit more orderly, after school ballet began for Little and Big. What also started was The Nutcracker practice. It seemed crazy to be hearing the ‘Dum da-da-Dum-Dum-Dum-Dum-Dah,’ when just moments before we were splashing in the pool and schvitzing on a walk in the woods. The color of the summer still glowed, like the tans on the wee ones (despite massive amounts of sunscreen applied thick as spackle). And tonight, in the blink of just one eye, is the first performance.

nut 4a

As old Saint Nick is setting his Google maps ready for the minyan of reindeer led by sir Rudolph himself, we prep for several dress rehearsals, a school show, and two ticket-wielding performances.

 

This is serious stuff for Little and Big; and a gargantuan effort for Ema, who packs snacks, waters, books, crayons, toys and and schleps 4 days a week to pull this off. Despite the mishegas of after school extracurriculars, this show brings the discipline of every Sunday afternoon until now.

 

See the big deal is, that hoNut 3aused under the roof of the (dance school) Wissahicken Dance Academy, is a non-profit organization called the International Ballet Exchange (IBE). Professional dancers of the Donetsk Ballet of Ukraine come to the US to perform each year, with and beside my Little and Big! I’m kvelling as I type! My wee ones on stage with the big Ukrainian machers…pinch me!

 

It’s a meshuggeneh time around here. Two moms and two girls clearly get our panties in a bit of a bunch as show time nears. Hairdryers blow. Curling irons curl. Outfits are laid out, and usually argued about. Friends, family, mishpocheh gather outside the theatre. Butterflies dance in our tummies (it’s just us Moms with the kishkas twirling – the girls know no fear or performance anxiety).

nut 2a

And tonight at 6:30 pm, as the lights dim, the curtains rise and the music begins; you will see the naches on my face as I grin from ear to ear for both acts. While my littles perform, with the littles of others and the bigs of the Ukraine, my world is just about perfect.

 

 

 

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

What a night for a good dream

dream 2
What a night for a good dream
a good night to work out my shit
I’ve been rollin’ in tsuris
I think my subconsciousness can handle it
And even if daytime’s been hard to toll
It’s one of those nights to tuck in and roll
close the lids and let the movie begin
figure it out and try rememberin’
Dream 1
I was havin’ a good dream
dreamt for all four hours of eve
the mishegas was all solved for
Mazel Tov’s were handed out to me
And even if days have had my kishkas in knots
at least at night I don’t have to plotz
I’m less ferklempt and more a yiddisher kop
The dreck is gone, no pain and have a pug pup
(whistling interlude)
And I can be sure that if I dream a bit
this alte kocker can be an alrightnick
My bubela’s won’t be screamin’, “Oy vey!”
we’ll get by yet another day
dream 3
What a night for a good dream
the dreck is one and we’re all okay
our problems are bubkes
we can shmooze and sing and play all day
(whistling interlude)
special thanks to the Lovin’ Spoonfuls and for the ability to somehow
channel my inner Aunt Frieda

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

linky 2-5-16
TY linky 2-5-16

The Post Do-Over Days

The days that follow a ‘do-over’ hold unnecessary stress for all of the family. The pain gonif strikes on its own schedule. Azoy. Time was carved out and stolen. It does not come back easily. We stay cautiously optimistic, not knowing when the thief returns…

Sunday 2

“Mommy, are you better?” Four little words. Oh how to answer these sweet little faces. Super Mommy powers to the rescue. Grab your land legs, “Of course sweeties!”Sunday 3

Little, Big, Ema and me need some fun.

A nice day. Crisp, autumn air.

A babbling brook. Discoveries abound.

Crunching leaves underfoot. Running over bridges.

Peeping in windows. Making believe. Making it real.

Bumping into fellow Miquon tots.

Sunday 1Jumping across the creek rocks. Slipping into the cold water.

Oops! Giggling, then freezing. No fear here.

A time like no other.

Beautifully, fantastically brought to you by mother earth.

Guilt free. Gelt free. Frugally fantastic.

What’s not to love?

Little, Big, Ema and I had fun.

Hey pain, “Gay kocken affin yom!

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Quote

This year on Thanksgiving, to quote my Little, we took a do-over. Because chronic pain knows no dates, no holidays, no plans, not even the hopes and joys and dreams of little ones. Grandpa still arrived and swept my Littles and my love off to the theater to see the Peanuts movie. A lovely treat,  complete with lazy-boy recliners and plenty of pretzel nuggets. A good time had by all.

I stayed home to a mixture of brecching, gripping the porcelain pot, mixtures of meds, and an uncomfortableDo-Over ‘sleep.’ It happens. It’s out of my control and it is what it is. It’s a shonda when it affects my children, my family, but we will survive. When it comes, I cannot muster any of my mommy SuperPowers. Chronic pain trumps Super Mommy every time.

I wake the next day, somewhat better and in need electrolytes. Stiff, dehydrated, sad, and rallying. After all, this glass stays half-full. I know that today we can do it all over again today. Little said so, and Big agreed. I should probably wait another day, but I don’t.

That’s family. The kinder, the mishpucha. Love. That’s what I have been and why I am forever thankful, despite my lot.

Love, gratefulness, and thanks, isn’t that what this Holiday is all about anyway?

Wishing you all a happy thanksgiving, whatever day you celebrated.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

‘Twas

image

Twas the night before day
and all through the flat
the creatures were stirring,
we may need a cat

In morn found a mouse
that met with grim reaper
my love is fahrklempt
the Littles falling deeper

I said, call the Manor
to handle this scene!
They schlepped it away,
set another, we’re clean

By day there were challenges
met with delight
surely nothing as dreadful
as in the past night

The narrative went,
Lice or Mice, which is best?
My heart sank so deep
so sullen my chest

We noshed on our supper
we cleaned up the mess
what came next was bedlam
and chaos and stress

At night we don’t wind down
or find peace and calm
Littles dance, play and sing
oy gevalt, like a bomb

Pipe down, we need quiet time
Not shpilkes nor grief
Mommy and Ema require
needed relief

Ema informed me by text
’bout mouse lying in state
in the closet, over yonder,
this can’t be my fate

Drastic measures were needed
for it was after hours
My kishka’s a flutter
I summoned my powers

Super Mommy was needed
to perform the last rite
Dead vermin most certainly
cannot stay the night

As Ema combed heads
in search of the louse,
I tended to dearly departed
dead mouse

With bags two times thick
from elbow to fingers
I must move like a maven
‘fore smell of death lingers

I managed to handle
the worst task yet to date
The kids none the wiser,
pure joy for my mate

Now Santa may wonder why
I write in this verse
This Yid wants a favor
To be rid of this curse

I believe in your magic
I hear your bells ring
Surely Saint Nick can
do us one thing

What we ask costs no money
And it need not be wrapped
Just help with the tsuris
the stress and the crap

We’re tired dear Santa
Our lot has been trying
We lost both our boys,
the house, we’ve been crying

And still we march on
cup half filled with cheer
in hope that the future
is bright and is near

So please Mr. Claus
when you visit our house
please help us loyzem gayne 
this fucking mouse!

Follow my blog with Bloglovin