Wordless Wednesdays: Clever Children

Oy, A gezunt dir in kepele! Are you ever a clever child!

If we keep eating the jelly beans in the back, Mommy and Ema will never notice
If we keep eating the jelly beans in the back, Mommy and Ema will never notice
Learning some new dance moves from our new friends Fara and Mercedes
Learning some new dance moves from our new friends, Fara and Mercedes
So long, farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, goodnight...
So long, farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, goodnight… Thank You O’Malley’s! ❤
I don't want to smile. I want to be grumpy and I will be grumpy all day
I don’t want to smile. I want to be grumpy and I will be grumpy all day
Charlotte's house flooded...
Charlotte’s house must have flooded Mommy…
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Mommy, look at me…

L’Shona Tova! Happy New Year!

 

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Bedtime, in 4 hours or less

It somehow energizes them...
It somehow energizes them…

I know, you’ve been thinking, Lisala, it’s been so long since you shared your parenting perceptions and insights. Sure, a nice rant, a beautiful pic, sweet tender mishpocheh (family) moments. Today, we revisit bedtime. How on earth do you get the kinder to gai shluffin (the kids to go to sleep)? Well my readers, I offer you our thoughtful child rearing insights, in the form of a song. Hum along if you like, to the tune of Let It Be, you know, by the Beatles:

 

When I find myself in need of slumber

Trying to act sensibly

The whole world feels chaotic, fretfully

Retiring Big and Little takes too long

I doze off first expectantly

The kinder, they’re nocturnal, devilry

Empathy, empathy

Empathy, come and see

What, like our bed is the only bed on earth?

Their own room is so beautiful; come and see

 

I wake up to the sound of squealing,

Maidelahs have taken all control

The Mrs. voice is loudly fuming, testily

I muster up some words of wisdom

Pleading with veracity

Yet my babble is not in sentences, regrettably

Remedy, remedy

Remedy, eventually

We need a two bedroom like we need a luch in kop (hole in the head)?

They’ll sleep in their own bedroom, eventually

 

My Mrs., she chortles at my jabber

The kinder loudly laugh and giggle

Reveling in my senseless banter, splendidly

Minutes have slowly ticked to hours

Empty threats thrown about with leniency

We’re a helpless parent fail, professedly

Sleeplessly, sleeplessly

Sleeplessly, hopefully

Other kids go the fuck to sleep without such a gantseh megillah (long drawn out story)

Tomorrow night will be so much better, hopefully

 

Sleeplessly, sleeplessly

Sleeplessly, hopefully

Other kids go the fuck to sleep without such a gantseh megillah (long drawn out story)

Tomorrow night will be so much better, hopefully

 

Well, you know what they say:

Der shlof iz der bester dokter. Sleep is the best doctor.

Is there a doctor in the house? Oy vey iz mir.

 

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Wordless Wednesday: Let’s have fun!

Butterfly birthday...flutterby
Butterfly birthday…flutterby
In the 'hood
In the ‘hood
Toga Party!
Toga birthday party for E and Z!
Mini toga's too
Mini toga’s too
The Minotaur waits in the maze
The Minotaur waits in the maze at the Goddess toga party
Me and Little
Me and my Little

The kinderlech (children), they should play and be happy! Us too!

 

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And then, in a flash, My Little was Six

How on earth…

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Six years ago tonight, our second, known to you as Little, sailed into this world, our world, like greased lightening. She was truly ‘herself’ from the moment she took a breath outside of the warm comforts of uterine living. When she ‘eye-spied with her little eye,’ Big, her shvester (sister) it was love at first sight. We were two proud mommas (I of course was much less sore, stricken only with awe and true love at the strength, power and beauty of my Mrs.). It’s one of the benefits listed on the gay agenda when  a lesbian couple – sharing clothes, shoes and birthing.

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My Little, what to say… She speaks her mind and she claims her space. Sure, she learns and emulates Big, but she is not at all afraid to look outside the box, color outside of the lines and speak her mind, all while singing a merry tune, real, or made up. This girl, she has pipes. She can croon with the best and if cultivated, may just be the next Adele. She will anthropomorphize any object in hand into a family and immediately play imaginary games.

My Little, a sweet little jokester
My Little, a sweet little jokester

Dogs – don’t even get me started. Oh how she tortured loved our two pugs, Atticus and Eli, as they watched our family add two-legged creatures begrudgingly. Enter a room and Atticus was dressed in pearls and a bike helmet while Eli sported an outfit from any of the American Girl dolls. Oy vey, they tolerated loved her well. And now Gatsby, poor Gatsby… let’s just leave it at that.

Ready, steady, go!
These boots were made for…swimming?

My Little has style and flamboyance that is all her own. She embraces her spirit and wears it well and out loud (apologies to neighbors on all sides, up and down). She is a boisterous life force that can fill a space with her oomph and enthusiasm. She fills my heart!

Today, my Little bubelah (darling), she is grappling with getting bigger, older (like I don’t know from this). She has said several times this past week, “I’m gonna turn six, but after that I’m not doing it anymore. I don’t want to go to college. I just want to stay with my mamas.”

My girls...
My girls…

Join me today in this simcha (joyous occasion) as we celebrate my Little! L’Chaim! (To Life!)

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Spinach!

This vision of real life is brought to you by Big. No spinach was injured (or eaten) during this display. Big, oh how I love you my bubbelah (sweet girl)!

Spinach! I don't like spinach!
Spinach! I don’t like spinach!
It's not fair!
It’s not fair!

*Es nisht di khale far a moitse. Don’t eat the challah before you’ve made the blessing. (*McKay and Gabe, this is for you!)

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Car Seats and Kids: Both the 2-legged and 4-legged kind

My Little being silly
My Little being silly. Oh how she loves her Gatsby!

Injury prevention in cars is a big deal. Seat belts really do safe lives. People on the roadways are especially meshuggeneh (nuts) and have too many reasons to take their eyes off the road. They are texting, shaving, applying make-up, taking conference calls, checking their noses for schmutz (dirt, like bears in the cave) and managing to find the teeny, tiny toy the kinder (children) have dropped to the floor with the one free arm that isn’t holding a scalding hot, freshly brewed latte. It’s a nightmare, or day-mare, depending on your driving routine.

By law, kids today will be in rear facing car seats until we take them for their driver’s permit. Then, and only then, will they be front facing and in a belt-positioning booster. As we drop them off at college or university, they will hopefully meet the height and weight criteria to be properly belted in as an adult. Oy!

I have a pretty good view here
I have a pretty good view here

Thinking further about car safety for Fido (or in my case, Gatsby), this Yiddisher Momma believes that kinder (sweet children) of all kinds need protection too. Enter the K9CarFence.

A hunt iz a mol getrei’er fun a kind. A dog is sometimes more faithful than a child. 

I had the pleasure of meeting Ira Stahl, owner and inventor of this harness-free, crash-tested, made in the USA, pooch protection when he was making a service call as an electrician at my work. Who knew this mild-mannered mensch (good guy) was electrician by day, and K9 superhero by night! We all got to schmoozing (talking) as people do, and this electrical maven (expert) mentioned his groundbreaking invention to help the doggies of the world travel safely in cars. My eyes lit-up! Gutinue (OMG)! I must have one for my Gatsby! After much nachas (joy and pleasure) shared over my 4-legged boychik (little boy) and Ira’s two little loves, it was agreed Ira would give my Gatsby the safety and security of his own K9CarFence TLC-2X in return for a product review.

What the, what the???
What the, what the???

I said, Ira, “I gotta be honest to my readers.” He was confident, and came within the next few days to install a brand new K9 CarFence in my car. Five minutes, he was done! He explained every step of the easy installation, and off he went.

We have now had this gem for some 3+ weeks and I have only great things to say. In fact, I’m kvelling (bursting with pride) over this safety fence. The first time in my car, Gatsby was not a happy camper and tried desperately to escape. He was used to laptop sitting (dangerous!) and snuggling. By the second ride in his enclosure, he was much more at ease. He could see us through the mesh and look out the window. By the third time, it was his throne! He owned it and walked in with pride. I lowered the window a bissel (bit) — he happily sniffed outside, and then settled into his ‘circle pose’ of rest. Canine shavasana! I added a blanket that he nuzzles, settles and snuggles, safe and sound. My Gatsby hound.

Look at that sun!
Look at that sun! I wouldn’t have noticed that before on Momma’s lap

Canine babies need their own place in the car too. Who would dare let their tiny human flop about in the back seat like I did as a kid? My Big and Little, shana maidelahs (beautiful girls) that they are, have been restrained by the very best. Now, they are bubbellahs (sweeties) in boosters. We strap in and click. What, the Gatsby’s of the world don’t need such protection? Of course they do! Dogs are good people!

The benefits of enclosing your pooch in the car with a K9 CarFence is very much like that of your kinder (children) in their car seats:

  • Holds them in one secure place as you drive
  • Confining comfortably protects them from acting as a projectile in case of a collision
  • Prevents them from climbing into your lap and stealing your sanity nudjing (pestering) you
  • One less thing to be distracted about while driving
  • Safeguards them from the impact of sudden or unexpected stops
  • In the case of an accident, kaynahorah, pthui, pthui, pthui (it shouldn’t happen), they stay confined, preventing further catastrophic incidents like running into traffic and possibly causing another crash pthui, pthui, pthui
  • Traffic violations for driving with a dog that is not properly restrained/confined range in price from $25 to $1000. Ouch!

The K9 CarFence is like a comfy den for your dog. Have a bigger dog? They have options my lovers of furry friends. The TLC-2X fits both front and back seat. As an added bonus, its durable and lightweight construction protects your car interior as it comforts your fur-baby.

I heartily recommend the K9 CarFence for the safe ride and peace of mind you have while driving alongside everyone’s best friend. My Gatsby, he gives a hearty 4 paws up! And the Mrs. and the kinder, they love it too! In dog we trust.

Please know, as in all of my writing, all opinions are my own. If you should agree with me, we are all the better! Either way, I’d love to hear read your comments! Nu? I can take it!

Ven dos mazel kumt, shtel im a shtul. If fortune calls, offer him a seat.

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Wordless Wednesdays: Last bits of Summer

The tire swing

Proud frog Mama

Eva and the Frog

Morning

Neko

Nona's things

Checking

School Shoes :)
School Shoes 🙂

The Mrs. at Work

Morning drive

Oib di velt vet verren oisgelaizt, iz es nor in zechus fun kinder. If the world will ever be redeemed, it will be only through the merit of children.

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The Rule of Kind

teeny, tiny terrorists disguised as dainty, delightful maidelehs (sweet little girls)
Do not be taken in by the glitter and glee. These are cute, covert, teeny, tiny terrorists disguised as dainty, delightful maidelehs (sweet little girls) that rob us of our sanity ❤

By midsummer, things were getting a bit unsteady around the Manor. When I’d get home from work, the Mrs., she would have ‘the look.’ You know the one. It’s mostly in the eyes, but her face, oy vey; it gets so ashen and screams of defeat. It’s as if her pupils’ turn into little waving white flags, I give! Uncle! Calgon, take me away!” (Note: if you are not living life as a baby boomer, Calgon was marketed to females only as the answer to life’s woes in the form of a bubble bath). It’s a strong tell for me that the Littles had spent yet another day as tiny behavioral terrorists, ignoring all forms of vocal messaging from the mother ship until things got bat-shit crazy. Tears have fallen from all six eyes, Gatsby hides under the bed, and then, only then, do apologies abound from two miniature mouths.

Life without the chaos routine of school and all it’s afternoon extracurricular activities was affecting us all. The Mrs. and me, we needed to lay down the law. While not outnumbered, and still holding a slight edge in altitude, we needed some household rules. Over dinner, a purely shpilkes (anxiety, ants in the pants kind of feeling) producing activity referred to in a past post, I broached the topic of developing martial law some guidelines to help us all through sanity our cohabitation. I needed ‘buy in’ fast, so I said to Little and Big, as I made those eyes to the Mrs., you know the ones that say please, please, please… just go with me on this, “You two get to set the rules on how we are going to get along. Mommy and Ema need your help.” I begged, “Think about it now and let’s discuss how this is going to work.” And the Littles, they spoke, excitedly:

  • Always listen to Mommy and Ema
  • Don’t interrupt when anyone is talking
  • Clean up after we play
  • Answer your questions and look at you in the eyes
  • Clean our room after our friends come over or we made a mess
  • Don’t hurt Gatsby, or pull his tail, or poke him or yank his ears or put our hands in his mouth
  • No kicking or hitting or spitting
  • Share more and don’t say ‘mine’
  • No screaming because we have neighbors
  • Don’t jump on the sofa
  • Say I’m sorry like we mean it
  • When Mommy and Ema say it’s bedtime, we have to get ready for bed

They do listen. They just don’t do. We both applauded their thoughtfulness and went about our evening foolishly thinking, we rocked this! And then two minutes later… not so much.

I sadly looked over all of our house rules, and then came up with an idea. At the next meal (Jews, we always have to eat while doing important things, or at least talk about where we will next eat, or what we just ate), I bring it up:

All of the rules we discussed are wonderful and I think there are too many to remember? Why don’t we start with just one rule?

  1. Be kind

And don’t you know, about two weeks in, we are living life so much better, with two simple words…

Even with this killer watch dog, those thugs came after us!
Even with this killer watch dog, those thugs came after us!

Now, mittendrinnen (in the middle of) this mishegas (craziness), my Mrs., she loses both her credit card and her bankcard. Now, was it not just two weeks ago when I shared with you the struggles of the missing wallet? Oy vey (sheesh). In a freakish, ominous ‘take 2’ moment, we found ourselves at the same movie theatre, to see the same movie, Pete’s Dragon. This time, the hooligans who found her goods were not as nice as the previous Good Samaritan. They bee-lined it to Best Buy and did some substantial ‘best-buying.’ Over $2000 worth… enough damage to give us our own detective!

We are now without a credit card or cash and are fighting fraud. Our frugalista status has reached a record new low. The Mrs., she is distraught in a new way. I remember it is not her fault.

There is a genetic marker on her very DNA strand, aligned with both her mother and her sister – a truly unfair predisposition to the mis-placement of important items. Latin name, ‘vitalgoneastrayitis.’ They suffer.

Me, I thankfully also remember our house rule, be kind.

A shtikel mazel iz vert merer vi a ton gold. A little bit of luck is better than a ton of gold.

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Wordless Wednesday: Oh the places we go

mt airy fest

big at the fest

music

little in car

look whose tooth came out...
look whose tooth came out…

Wiss 1

log play

log play color

what is it

Gat

wiss walk

cicada season

mush

Oib di velt vet verren oisgelaizt, iz es nor in zechus fun kinder (If the world will ever be redeemed, it will be only through the merit of children).

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You gotta have heart

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Oy. It’s only Tuesday and it’s already been some week. Little and Big, they are getting a little bit of shpilkes (like ants in your pants when it’s the littles) as summer winds down. The Mrs., and me we are a bit unnerved to say the least. These little shana maidels (sweet, beautiful girls) of ours, truly are wonderful little humans. And like all of you out there, we have our moments. You may have read about our dinner table tsuris (troubles) a couple of posts back. As they say, a work in progress? Nu?

I understand now why all adult characters on the Peanuts, you know, Charlie Brown, Lucy, and Linus, they all sound like,”Wah wah wah wah wah, wah wah.” It was an actual trombone they used to make the sound. That trombone is what our voices sound like to the kinder (kids)! Charles Schultz, he knew this way back when, that the kids drown out our voices with selective hearing. Snoopy is now 66 years old and lives in a retirement village with Peppermint Patti in Boca.

Until yesterday, it has been 192 degrees in the shade. Walking from the apartment to the car was enough to make you plotz (faint, or even drop dead). The water at the pool was near boiling, less than refreshing. My Mrs., perhaps inspired by the Olympics, she set up a gymnastics area in our hallway here at the Manor. The mini indoor trampoline leads into the ‘exercise mat,’ also known as the bottom of the trundle bed. The girls, they bounce and jump and kick and land in cartwheels, somersaults, flip-flops and triple double axles. It’s a lovely release of energy, a heart-starter and somewhat quiet in comparison to the,”Wah wah wah wah wah, wah wah” that has been going on, and ignored. My Mrs., a genius!

Mittendrinnen (in the middle of everything), I have been experiencing heart palpitations for the past thirty-six four months. It’s not enough to just have chronic pain and all the joy that comes along with that… I had to go ‘all-extracurricular’ and add a new medical ‘–ist’ to the team line up. After meeting yesterday with the cardiologist, they ran some tests, looked at my blood and ordered a halter monitor for me to wear for 2 weeks. Things look okay, but who’s to say? The doc, he says, “Do you have a lot of stress? Are you sleeping well?” What a jokester he is!

Ven tsores laigt zikh nit oifen ponem, laigt zikh es oifen hartsen (When distress doesn’t show on the face, it lies on the heart).

Apparently, I’m a chaleria (nervous, anxious wreck) on the inside only, from this thing called life, or at least the last couple of years. And it may be manifesting in the lub-dub, lub-dub of my very own Tell-Tale Heart. I get a call a few hours later from the heart monitor people who are setting up my delivery. They tell me my out-of-pocket expenses after insurance for this little device will be only $860 and change. Are they fucking nuts? We don’t have that kid of loot! This baby is a beauty, she records every blip, 24/7.

Elizabeth, this is the big one. I’m coming to join you!” (For all of you non-baby-boomers, this is a television reference to Sanford and Son.)

The 'Post-It Note' model, easy and affordable
The ‘Post-It Note’ model, easy and affordable

This fabulous pain point delivered directly to me from my brand new –ist! Is he kidding me? Who makes this MCOT unit, Rolex? What’s a frugalista momma to do? I dry the sweat from my forehead and dial-up Dr. Fancypants. I have to ask if there is another option? Of course, he has left for the day. Nu? I speak with his nurse and she tries to help me out. Lub-dub, lub-dub. A few moments later, I get another call from the monitor people. I’m still breathing, barely, and they tell me what good news they have for me! There is a cheaper version! Azoy (really)! It’s called the ‘Event’ monitor. It only records when there is a not so hotsy-totsy incident, like a skipped beat, added beats, or maybe a flat line. This one, a real bargain at only $187. Oy vey iz mir.

A bei gezunt (as long as you’re healthy). Lub-dub, lub-dub.

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Loose tooth, Lost wallet, Lots of drama

Big, Little and the Mrs. Photo credit: @willowandsage1 on IG (my Mrs.)
Big, Little and the Mrs. Photo credit: @willowandsage1 on IG (my Mrs.)

This week, oy vey, has been kurtser prolog tsu a lange drame (a short prologue to a long drama). Did I mention it’s only Thursday, in the very early, dark hours of morning? So far, we have had too many fits of tsuris (troubles and woes). Here, I share only two of them… I’m certain the others will find their way to you soon.

  1. My Big, oh how I love this madelah (sweet little girl), such a tender, sensitive soul, just like my Mrs. The other day, she realizes with some excitement, that another tooth in front has become wiggly, jiggly. The top two have been missing since early spring and maybe, just maybe, one of them is budding through the surface. The very small chiclet just next to the gaping hole, it teeters just a bissel (little). In my classic ‘glass half full’ style, I talk about readying for the pending tooth fairy visit. I even channel grandpa from Hotel Transylvania 2, and comment how she is a “late-fanger, just like Dennisovich.” My Little, she laughs. Big, she becomes nervous and taken in by the pain that may occur at some point, may not. The tears, they pour like a river. The moans, academy award winning whimpers these are! And mittendrinnen (just in the middle), we are struggling through making our best effort at dinnertime (see post about mealtime).
My Big, with the gaping whole...
My Big, in happier times with the gaping hole…

The Mrs. and I, we attempt to soothe the suffering with little success. The food hurts. The water hurts. The tongue in her mouth hurts. Little, she offers up an ice pack to chew on. I whisper to the Mrs., “I think for this one, I should get the crutches, nu?” After the piercing screams of anguish dust settles, she eats. We eat. And that Little, she whispers to us both, “Try not to remind her about her tooth tonight.”

Wink, wink, nod.

Matt and Brooke, who live right below us here at the Manor, please accept this blog post as an open apology for the noise. We feel your pain too!

My Little, a sweet little jokester
My Little, a sweet little jokester madelah!
  1. Next up, Wednesday morning at work, I get a frantic call from the Mrs. She has lost her wallet. Have I seen it? Please note: I am not at all alarmed at this point. My Mrs., she misplaces things. Her iPhone, her keys, her credit card. It is not her fault. There is a genetic marker on her very DNA strand, aligned with both her mother and her sister – a truly unfair predisposition to the mis-placement of important items. Latin name, vitalgoneastrayitis. They suffer.

We retrace her steps. Together, we realize she has not reached for her wallet since Sunday. Three days ago. This news makes my inner frugalista do the happy dance at work, right in the conference room a little bit happy. That is a big mitziah (huge honking deal). After she and the kinder (kids) toss the house like the feds searching for Hillary’s emails and come up empty, we talk again. We narrow it down to the only two places on earth it must be: The movies or the diner. Now, I am staying very calm, while visualizing the process of recovering our soon to be, or already stolen identities. Poor schleps (fools), when they realize who they are stealing from, oy vey. Pick someone a little more moneyed, wontcha? Little, in the midst of the madness, gets all of her hard earned gelt (cash), and offers it to a very upset Mrs. These kids are just too sweet for words. Such nachas (joy) they give me.

She calls the diner, gornischt (nothing). Simultaneously, I am preparing a gentle and composed catalogue of all the places, people and institutions she will need to call in order to make this right in the world, within the next 5 to seven minutes. She dials the Plymouth Meeting AMC Mega-Metro Movie theatre, where we saw Pete’s Dragon (such a wonderful movie!). Would you believe, she finds a person, not a recording? She asks, they answer (cue the band). Whoever cleaned the theatre after the 3:30 pm show, found her wallet, fully intact, and placed it in the lost-and-found. A real mensch (truly a good-hearted person) in the midst! We are sending a gift once we find the name of our hero!

Oy, how I can go on… But for now, let’s all rest easy knowing all is temporarily in good stead. A bei gezunt (may health be with you)!

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Wordless Wednesday: Walk this way…

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Der emes ken arumgain a naketer; dem lign darf men baklaidn (The truth can walk around naked; the lie has to be clothed).

Thanks for walking with us!

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Oh the places you’ll go (if you’re a germ)

These teeth, I have to protect, nu?
These teeth, I have to protect, nu?

It’s no joke! This blogging thing, it takes you places and introduces you to some wonderful, amazingly talented people. I’m having the time of my life! Nu?

Along this theraputic journey of mine, I met up with Lisa and the good people from Intellident. They asked me if I would do a product review of their Disposable Toothbrush Shields, mittendrinnen (in the middle) of my writing therapy. Who am I to say no to a new opportunity? The little box of free goodies arrived, and my mishpocheh (family), we got busy and tried it. So here I go with my very first product review. Stay with me, please…

Now, it must be said: I was raised by a militant, neatnik mother, who truly put OCD on the map. As an unfortunate repercussion, I like things to be a bit clean and neat. Tidy would be a word to describe me, sure. I am also married to my Mrs., have two beautiful shana madelehs (sweet little girls) and a puppy, Gatsby. We share 900 square feet here at the Manor. Together, cleanliness is next to dogliness. Walking in, I always have a sneaking suspicion that we may have been robbed, or at least the apartment was maybe tossed by the feds? But hey, we live here, we love here, we play here and we have fun here. Making memories, right?

Enter the bathroom. For my friends across the pond, I’m referring to the loo, the water closet. Here in the good ol’ U.S. of A., the library, the throne, the porcelain pot. In this room, no matter how often you clean it, lurks germs, noro-viruses, mold, E. coli, fungi, MRSA, your run of the mill surface and airborne ‘disgustingness’ and other toxic nasties. This is also where, we the people, clean up, clean out, shower, floss and brush. Oy vey.

Every time you flush, a literal mushroom cloud of poo, bacteria and beastly biohazards are thrust into the air by the cleansing flood of water. Our toothbrushes, that sit simply atop the sink in a shared family cup, absorb contamination and contagions that are ready to enter our bodies by any means accessible.

Location, location, location
Location, location, location… Right next to the mushroom cloud, oy vey

So for the past few weeks, armed with the new nasty knowledge of toxins brewing atop our toothy bristles, we placed disposable toothbrush shields on each of our 4 toothbrushes. The company says it’s like, a little surgical mask for your toothbrush. Me and the kinder (children), we called them hats. We were each in control of our own chapeau, and we changed it after 7 days as suggested. I must tell you the emmes (the real deal, the down low) truth when I say, I feel safer. It’s like my brush has its own hazmat suit. 

When Little had the sniffles and sneezes after swimming, or the Mrs. had the telltale signs of sickness, I didn’t think for one second, not one, that influenza would overtake our house. For all I know, it was allergies for both, but regardless, I was chill. My TB had a hat!

4 thumbs up (and a paw) from this family
4 thumbs up (and a paw) from this family

Our toothbrushes cuddle in our cup and we are protected. This my friends is a mitzvah (a very good thing)! I can’t wait to see how these little masks/hazmat suits/hats shield us from the dreaded startofschooleritis; when nose picking, water bottle sharing and free-falling ahhhh-choos spread from youngest to oldest before the first school bell tolls.

Negatives:

  • Not reusable/washable
  • Not recyclable

Positives:

  • Surgical mask for your toothbrush
  • 99.9% effective barrier against airborne and surface bacteria
  • Replaces those clunky plastic boxes that serve as breeding grounds for germs
  • Perfect for home, travel, work, gym, backpack, purse, etc.
  • Disposable
  • Inexpensive: click here to see (and I’m a forced frugalista)
  • Women owned business (yeah!)
  • Made in the USA, really it is!

So for you dear readers, there are two things I must recommend:

  1. When you geh in der klozet (go to the toilet), shut the lid before you flush
  2. Use Disposable Toothbrush Shields from Intellident

Please know, no toothbrushes were harmed during this test. No monies exchanged hands for this review. We are going to continue to use this ingenious product. 

A gezunt ahf dein kop (Good health to you)!

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Wordless Wednesday: Why Not? Nu?

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I thought I was ready for shock, anger, disappointment and fear

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Gutinue! (Jeeze Louise!) WTF What is going on? Last week, here, in the good ol’ U. S. of A., the Republican National Convention officially nominated the ill-equipped, narcissistic, racist, sexist, violence provoking, psychopathic, tax evading, reality TV star Donald Trump and his poisonous partner in conservatism and hate, Mike Pence. Please forgive me if I may have left off an adjective, or ten. Gonifs (thieves, dishonest people), the two of them are.

Donny and Mike do not think (I could end the sentence perfectly well here):

  • That the Mrs. and I should be married (How do I tell that to Big and Little?)
  • That #BlackLivesMatter
  • That borders should be open for Muslims, and that every Muslim here, needs to go
  • That Mexicans should live in our country, so we need to build a great big wall
  • That any country should send us their tired, their poor, their hungry, especially if there is a history of terrorism
  • That anyone with a uterus should have a choice over their own body
  • That guns are a problem
  • That climate change exists
  • That debt can be fixed with the Art of the Deal

Mr. Trump, he ended his goliath gathering with throngs chanting, “lock her up” and “build the wall.” Nice. I’m certain their mothers are all very pleased. This Yiddisher Momma is having all sorts of ‘Hitleresque’ feelings and will steer clear of any showers built or ‘camps’ created in the terrifying event of a Trump win.

Today, Hillary and Tim are here, in my city, for their big soiree, the Democratic National Convention. Admittedly, she is flawed. Server-gate was not a good move, and I can get past that. Email-gate? Trump will no doubt thank the Russians and his pal Putin for this latest wiki-leak.

The main reason people HATE (yes hate) Hillary, is blatant sexism. She is held to a standard that those who stand up to pee are not. While by no means perfect (as if such a thing exists), she is smart, aggressive, influential and well equipped to seek the highest ‘glass-ceiling shattering’ power office in this country. If a man with her same qualifications, experiences and credentials were running for the very oval office she is running for, they would have been applauded from sea to shining sea. Even by Bernie.

And for those of you who are still feeling the Bern, whether he is an atheist or a Jew, GET THE FUCK OVER IT! He didn’t make it. There was no great big conspiracy.

Nu? So you’re united in your unhappiness about whose left?

To quote Ted Cruz, “Vote your conscience.” Vey iz mere (holy shit!), I just quoted a very hateful man as he spoke live from the RNC floor. And he is right. On the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, get the hell up and VOTE. Hold your nose, stuff a sock in your mouth if you have to, but vote you must.

And if you don’t vote, voo den (what the fuck heck) do you expect to happen? Madness. Chaos. Anarchy. And a power-hungry man with his finger on ‘the red button.’

If you don’t get out and vote, than we all will be no better than vi a fortz in rossel (a fart in a barrel).

VOTE please. I was with her in the primary. And #ImWithHer now. #ImWithHer

 

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The simple truth about my guilt packing a pistol

Anyone who knows me knows that I despise guns. I believe the right to bare arms has been totally misconstrued from a constitutional amendment that stands for a well-armed militia, hundreds of years ago, vs. ‘I’m scared of you and your pack of skittles,’ or, ‘your tail light is out; get me your license and registration.’ ‘Nuf said. You can read many of my other posts pontificating on the excessive violence, racism and hate in our world.

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I feel quite the hypocrite. I have a puppy. His name is Gatsby. Yes, after the Great Gatsby. He is the first real dog we have had. He chews on the wood trim and doors. He buries and hides his bones throughout the apartment. He digs holes outside in the common areas. He climbs the sofa and leaps to the kitchen counter (really) to eat the scraps of a peanut butter sandwiches left over from Big. He puppy-nips at Little for, well, being Little. He scavenges for food as we walk around the neighborhood.

Enter this pistol packing, gun-toting, and charlatan of a Yiddisher Momma. To clarify, the arms I carry is a water pistol / squirt gun. It is used purely for correctional puppy purposes. It shoots sprays a stream of water from afar, alerting my dear, loveable mutt that he is acting less than the stellar boychik (little boy) we need him to become.

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A happy puppy is a well-exercised puppy. This also fits in with the lifestyle of this Yiddisher Momma. As we gad about the ‘hood, Gatsby is an incessant barker when he spies another pup. He is fantastically friendly, yet simply desperate to meet a new buddy. The yapping, more like a geshrei (quite loud and piercing), ceases the moment he is nose to nose with a new canine comrade. Where their noses go after, they should live and be well. But until that point, vey iz mer (OMG!)…

I hadn’t yet mentioned that he is a rescue. Here, the term is dual in nature. We rescued him because he was in need of a loving family and a home, and he rescued us, as our family was in dire need of an affectionate and playful pooch. We all make a nice family.

The boychik (little boy) of the family!

As a rescue, he rummages for food, no matter how many times we fill his bowl with healthy, raw, canine cuisine. If left to his own devices, he will eat pure dreck (trash, poo, bugs, vomit, grass, and dead things), along with anything else in reach. Just last week, I pulled from his mouth, a small dead bird, 4 chicken (oh my, I hope so at least) bones, many wood chips, and did I mention the deceased fowl?

After much reading, and searching our memories of pugs past (Atticus and Elijah), we remembered the squirt tactic. I searched high and low for an affordable ‘squirter’ that did not resemble a G-U-N. Fifteen years ago we had an alligator and a snail, or a flower… that delivered the same watery lesson. But the lifeless, leathery bird was too much mishegas (craziness) for me to bear. This frugalista had to do something fast and furious. I entered the Family Dollar, and found 3 shiny, colorful water guns: red, green and yellow. They were small enough to carry, big enough to do the job. All for one dollar.

We can now walk for an hour or more, and have maybe, 2 squirts, mostly related to over-barking. We can walk right past that mummified mouse, covered in ants. Newfound wisdom allows him to dodge the remains from the Colonel’s chicken bucket. It’s a remarkable transformation for which we are all kvelling (bursting with joy)!

But I am still packing. So if any of you are aware of some affordable arms that hold no resemblance to those ghastly items I loathe, do tell! Gatsby and me, we are a work in progress.

 

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I can fry a couple of eggs on my abdomen, can you?

sizzle, shmizzle
sizzle, shmizzle

I can also pop corn on my face. Pretty impressive you’re thinking, ha?

Warning to all male readers: I am about to delve into the anatomy of a hot flash. This may mean talk of lady parts (though doubtful), cycles that coincide with the moon, and all things related to estrogen, and the natural biological process of what I call, estrogen-not.

You’re still here. Nice. After all, you have wives, moms, and daughters. You’re a real mensch (good-hearted person) for staying! So, as I was saying, my body has run cold my entire life. Blue fingers and lips when it’s 89 degrees in the shade…no joke! I wear many layers of clothing all year round. And yes, I’m at that age where that mysterious metamorphosis  materializes.

I remember back in the day, getting happy when I got carded before entering a bar. It’s the exact same feeling now when the doctor or lab technician says, “Do you still get your period honey?” Go Girrrrrrrrrrrl!

It’s crazy, from the moment that first red dot appeared, I despised it. My parents, they made such a taka mitziah (big fucking deal) out of it – took me out to dinner? My mother, she told the waitress. Attention Judy Blume: you, God and Margaret did not help me to prep me for a scenario like that. “I’ll have the nova platter with an everything bagel, toasted lightly, cream cheese on the side; Morty, he’ll have the stuffed cabbage, and my daughter, she got her period today!” That was a long time ago, but the memory is etched in my brain.

And now, look at me, saving energy by cooking on my sizzling body parts! I’m finally one hot momma! At first, I had maybe 3 hot flashes, and that was it. I thought, well that was easy! Today, I get my schvitz (a deep, heavy sweat) on maybe 8, 9, 23 times a day (and night). This schvitz emanates from the subterranean parts of my core and rises both up and out simultaneously. Toxins and impurities run scared from every molecule of my being.

While this little body convection oven starts cooking, my heart, she races. Archetypal fight or flight heart palpitations, like the saber-toothed tiger is running after me, mittendrinnen (in the middle of ) every fucking thing. My fingers, they tingle (which is good, because I have to flip the eggs to cook evenly). And a perfect coating of sweat covers every single square inch of my person, from the waist up. I’m lichticheh (lit-up) and radiant. They don’t call this a flash for nothing! As quickly as she starts, she’s over. After, I get a little bit chilly. Oy vey iz mer.

Does this mean I’m an alta kocker (literally, the term means an old shit, but over the years, pleasantries have reduced the term to more akin with, ‘old fart’)? Hell no! I think age is a just a state of mind. My Little and my Big, they keep me young. I’m reliving the childhood I missed get with them, and loving almost every minute of it. And, I gotta stay young to take care of my Mrs.

For now, I’ll make eggs, or pop popcorn, and take solace in knowing that I am still being responsible and frugal for my family. Spa, shmah! For a schvitz like THIS, it would cost an arm and a leg.

Note: no eggs were harmed during the writing of this post. And Alannis, isn’t it a bissel (little bit) ironic that when my eggs cease to produce, I can scramble, poach, sunny-side up and over-easy like a pro right atop those ovaries? Next up, omelets. 

Nu?

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How awesome is the spreading of Happiness?

Big thanks and hugs to Ms. Mango, at Gain Through the Pain
Big thanks and hugs to Ms. Mango, at Gain Through the Pain

Ms. Mango of Gain through the Pain, she ‘happified’ me! Me! And she did it on a day I r-e-a-l-l-y needed it. On a day I wrote about hatred in our world. On a day that wasn’t a Monday, but felt like the mother of all Mondays. On a day that genuinely needed some bliss and delight, she gave me the HAPPINESS TAG!

Normally, I’m kvelling (oozing with joy), holding my glass half full and needing sunscreen SPF 50, for my very own sunny disposition. Thank you ever so Ms. Mango for literally lifting me out of a place I seldom go anymore. You pounced in time to prevent the pity party protocol! I am so very grateful, and, well, Happy! You my dear, make me happy!

To know that my therapeutic writing blogging helps put a smile on Ms. Mango’s punim (face) gives me extra nachas (joy, not to be confused with ‘nachos,’ which can be joyful if made exceedingly well)!

Official Rules, sanctioned by the blogosphere honor guard:

  • 5 Things that make you happy
  • 5 Songs that make you happy.
  • 5 Bloggers that make you happy — Let them know you nominated them, then, a light nosh (snack) perhaps, and you are done

So here goes.

Happy x 5 (How lucky am I, having a real list of totally nachas inducing (happy making) things, that far exceeds the one below. Oh, how I can go on!):

  1. The Mrs., Big and Little
My girls...
My girls…
  1. Rescuing the Great Gatsby
The boychik (little boy) of the family!
The boychik (little boy) of the family!
  1. The sound of the Mrs. laughinggets me every time! A picture doesn’t do this one justice. Plus, in case you haven’t noticed, the Mrs., she likes to stay behind the lens and the scenes. Just know that even the thought of her laughter as I am typing, so vivid in my mind and in my ears, is filling my heart and I am grinning like the Cheshire cat!
  1. Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream: No picture. I tried, I really did. Twice actually. But, it’s gone now and it was delicious! A nice nosh (little snack) any time of day or year.
  1. Blogging with Yiddish on WordPress: oh what fun I am having, sharing my thoughts and feelings, meeting real haimisheh (warm, down-to-earth) people in this wonderful community, experiencing catharsis and actually knowing that I have readers friends who read, and smile. Forgive me; I’m kvelling (bursting with pride) inside again! Oy!

blogger mommy

Songs x 5 (Another tough one to limit!) Pipes, piano and lyrics all matter:

  1. And I’m telling You, I’m not Going, Jennifer Hudson from Dreamgirls
  1. Piano Man, Billy Joel
  1. The Power of Two, Indigo Girls
  1. Philosophy, Ben Folds Five
  1. When we were Young, Adele You tube wouldn’t let me play it from my little blogging site, so please, give a listen here. Pipes! Vey iz mere! (OMG!)

My 5 Bloggers (hard to limit!!!) that give me nachas (make me Happy)

  1. Donna at yadadarcyyada
  2. Su at Ethan&Evelyn
  3. Trista at DomesticatedMomster
  4. Renee at LifeInTheBoomerLane
  5. Louise at PinkPearBear

Happiness and Nachas to all! I wish I could list all of you! Mwah!

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Why is there so much hate in the world?

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My heart, it hurts, a lot.

Help me; I feel a bit discouraged today. I’m not my usual sunny self.

My kinder, Little and Big, are growing up in a culture that is so riddled in hate. And it is growing overwhelmingly, and at warp speeds.

Me, I’m out looking for the fairies tossing pixie dust, playing harps (really cool ones), planting trees and lighting the path to eternal sunshine, love, peace and happiness? Others, they put on vests voluntarily and enter crowded airports and tourist hot spots, or purchase firearms and forever change what safety means.

Such brokkh (disaster and misfortune) I refuse to get used to!

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Hate, the worst of the four letter words, is learned and it spreads like a contagion.

I have a friend whose family came here to visit, leaving from the very same Turkish Airport that the terrorists blew up, less than 24 hours later. Someone was shot in our parking lot just a few weeks back, and just minutes before, he killed another human being.

I’m sorry, but moments of silence and prayer are bullshit not cutting it for me. I do not mean to offend those who believe, but there cannot be a God whose plan is that we strategically pick each other off the planet to see who wins; most often, one by one — and too often, en masse. Poo, poo, may they all rest in peace…

Why the hell can’t we find a way to all live in peace? Is that so farshlugineh (crazy, irrational, mixed up)?

Did we just throw away our moral compass?

How did the bar get so low?

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This post is filled with questions that I do not have the answers to. What I do know is that:

  • I’m all for gun control, background checks and mental health checks
  • I don’t think my neighbor, or yours for that matter, should have the right to bear arms. I have shpilkes (panic) when I consider that he or she may – what if my shana madelahs (sweet little darling girls) are there for a play date?
  • Color me crazy, but mental health is and should be valued as highly as physical health, whether you want a gun or not
  • I think we all should feel safe going to school, the movies, a dance club, the airport, at work and anywhere else the fuck we want to go
  • I think everyone should be able to pee without showing a birth certificate
  • I want to love out loud, fearlessly

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Do we have the chutzpah (balls, yes balls) to make change out of this unconscionable tsuris (troubled, mayhem) of a world?

Won’t you help me? Please? My kishkas (intestines) are in knots at the thought of us not joining together with empathy in our hearts. Don’t we all deserve so much better than this? For the kinder (children), we make it better?

Alevai (It should only happen)!

Das hartz hat mir gezoght (My heart told me) it would.

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How did You Welcome the Summer Solstice?

Little, Big and I were invited to an amazing summer solstice celebration with a group called, In Sacred Balance. A real mitzvah (joyful event), this was! The Mrs., she was invited too, but, becoming quite the macher (big deal), she was off on a photo shoot!  (You can find her at willowandsage1 on IG – follow her!)

It was a gorgeous day to celebrate the sun!
It was a gorgeous day to celebrate the sun and all of its glorious energy – the most powerful day of the year!
These pigments are made from all natural materials from the earth. The boats are from tree bark.
These pigments are made from all natural materials from the earth. The boats are from the tree bark
An alter created to honor all those lives lost in Orlando at Pulse.
An alter was built to honor all those lives tragically lost in Orlando at the Pulse nightclub – A brokkeh (blessing) for all
Part of the alter
more of the alter
Boat making is serious business
Boat making is serious business – these boats made of bark will contain our blessings
My handmade boat with two flowers
My handmade boat with two flowers
Place 1 of your 2 flowers in a community boat, and set what you need to free
Place the first of your two flowers in the community boat, and send your hardships, feelings, anger, anything at all that you need to let go – the second flower is for our personal boat, and holds our blessings, bringing luck and love to those who find them
We then made our way over to the creek to release our boats
We all made our way over to the creek to release our boats, with the community boat guiding the path
An image of our boats as they sailed downstream
An image of our boats as they sailed downstream
Healing time. As a culture, we all need this
Healing time – something we all need so desperately
It starts with one - Healing hands begin in the tunnel over the creek
It starts with one – healing hands begin in the tunnel over the creek
And then we all join in
And then we all join in, as many times as needed
We put our healing energy from the strongest parts of the sun, into healing our planet
We put our healing energy from the strongest parts of the sun, into healing our planet
Our fearless keeper of the Sun
Our fearless keeper of the Sun – a haimisheh (down-to-earth) mensch (good person), our friend, L.
And little R., who soaked it all in
And little R., who soaked it all in
After the healing, we all walked up the creek and had a nice nosh (we ate) together
After the healing, we all walked back up the creek and had a nice nosh (we ate) together – a feast!
Little R., wearing the events of the day and blowing bubbles
Little R., wearing the events of the day and blowing bubbles

For us, it was the longest day. In other parts of the world, it was the shortest day. For me and my kinder (little girls) it was a beautiful, spiritual, healing day with friends, old and new.

Thank you Sun! Thank you L. Thank you In Sacred Balance!

 

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*Botox Brief: No more smiles for me, and it is Awesome!

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I cannot smile since this Sunday past

My only hope? This result will continue to last

When I look in the mirror it’s absurd, quite inane

That my lips can’t curl up, they will only abstain

 

I did not smile when I arose before sunrise

Not in the kitchen with coffee; these lips still were lengthwise

I simply do not look that amused at all

Not in the Manor, nor down the hall

 

I will not grin while commuting each and every day

Not a beam or a chortle when I look your way

I will not smile while I am doing my work

Signing the big deal, there’ll be no sign of a smirk

 

This flytrap of mine won’t turn its way ‘round

I’ll look much more serious, even a tad bit profound

When I leave in mid-day for a lunchtime siesta

My lips won’t crack upwards, yet it’s a real mitzvah (good thing)

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Shuttling back to the Manor before turn of night

My mouth doesn’t snicker, at all, in delight

When I swoop in to hug my Big and my Little,

You’d think my facemask was looking a wee bit too brittle

 

The Mrs., I’ll give her a peck on the cheek

Ask about her day, my grin passed its peak

As he dances and barks, Gatsby’s wagging his tail

I’ll bend down and squeeze him, my punim (face) in jail

 

But don’t you have shpilkas (worry) about my lost grin

The Botox, it’s working; chronic pain must not win

Losing my smile is not at all saddening

Life filled with pain; that is what’s maddening

 

So if you should see me and think it quite odd

Just know in your heart, I feel better in my bod

The pain in my neck that reaches a thunderous level

Has temporarily been frozen, this poison’s no devil

 

Botulinum toxins injected into my skull

Has diminished the pain, left me much more agile

My mishpocheh (family) is kvelling (happy) with my newfound freedom

Just know that inside, I’m grinning eardrum to eardrum

 

*Cervical dystonia, occipital neuralgia, neck and back spasms, chronic migraine, pain in the effin’ neck, and associated awful side effects

 

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Can we raise our children to be heroes, not rapists?

No one is allowe to steal those smiles. SHE IS SOMEONE
No one dare steal these smiles. SHE IS SOMEONE

“You took away my worth, my privacy, my energy, my time, my safety, my intimacy, my confidence, my own voice, until today.”

These are just 22 of the words, pulled from seven pages, written so eloquently, so bravely, from the victim of the Stanford rapist, to her rapist, Brock Turner. These words that I have read, have heard on the news this week, literally, took my breath away. This is not about me. This is about a woman wounded so cruelly and ruthlessly, that her world will never be the same.

As for Brock, he will sail through this. His storm will pass. It started with his ridiculously lenient sentence from a judge that responded to his father’s reckless statement regarding ‘20 minutes of action.’ She will live out every day of the rest of her life dealing with the horror and terror she experienced.

“You took away my worth, my privacy, my energy, my time, my safety, my intimacy, my confidence, my own voice, until today.”

I’m a mom in a two-momma household, raising two shana madelahs (beautiful, sweet girls), in a world that is so scary in too many ways. How on earth can we change this deplorable behavior?

If it takes a village, then people, we need to unite now.

We need to raise our kinder (children) to have respect and empathy for every person around us. The onus is now on us to see that our boychiks (little boys) and girlchiks (little girls) grow up knowing that SHE IS SOMEONE; that all girls are SOMEONE. We need to raise all of der kinder to be like those two mensches (decent, good human beings) on bicycles, who came to her rescue. They knew, SHE IS SOMEONE. They were prepared to take action, to stop the heinous wrong. We need to nurture our kinder to speak up and speak out about the evil that lives among us. We need not ever see or hear about another pathetic, nogudnik (one with no morals or ethics) like Brock Turner.

“You took away my worth, my privacy, my energy, my time, my safety, my intimacy, my confidence, my own voice, until today.”

The onus is on us.

What are you doing to raise kinder that know, SHE IS SOMEONE?

 

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What are the Teachable Moments on Zoo’s and Animals in Captivity

Big and Little, at the Philadelphia Zoo, a few years back
Big and Little, at the Philadelphia Zoo, a few years back

We are all talking about it, the tragedy, a real shonda (shame), that happened this week at the Cincinnati Zoo.

  • The world lost Harambe, a western lowland silverback gorilla, critically endangered
  • A crowd of people witnessed a horrific killing
  • The zoo is feeling the heat of anger for their decision, the loss of a dear friend, and a meaningful failure in conservancy of this species
  • A little boy hopefully learned from a very painful lesson
  • and a Mother is being vilified around the world

Many witnesses at the scene say that the beautiful silverback gorilla was acting in a protective manner. Actually protecting the curious boychik (boy toddler) who climbed over and through barriers to fall 10 feet into the den of Harambe.

Harambe, he held the boys hand as the crowd screamed in fear, panicked at the situation. Harambe helped the boy pull his pants up…

Who knows? Nu? But as a mom, a parent, a caregiver, we have all had that fleeting flash of time, where we have lost sight of our kinder (kid(s)), when our hearts beat loudly in our chests, and our throats could barely swallow. Thankfully, kaynahorah (the evil eye was not with us) our outcomes were different. Relief delightedly poured over us at the safe sighting, of our wee ones.

This mom is no different from is. She had that same split second stint in time.  But hers resulted in a tragic, global loss. A farshtunken (stinky, smelly, awful) outcome, no matter how you see this.

At our home, me and the Mrs., and Little and Big had a conversation about the zoo event during dinner. Big was visually disturbed. She hid her face with her hands. Screamed, “No! Why?”

Little, a real animal whisperer she is, was pensive, quiet. Then, she spoke. I asked her again to repeat it the next morning:

Some things we talked about further:

  • Zoo animals are not pets, nor are they tame in any way
  • Some view zoos as wonderful institutions of conservancy and propagation of endangered species
  • Some view zoos like “Black Fish”

Either way, whatever your point of view, talk to the kinder (children). Hear their views. Share yours. Reinforce the importance of:

  • Listening ears
  • Mommy’s (enter appropriate caregiver title here) always have your best interest at heart
  • We need to be gentle, tender stewards of this planet we live on

We will miss you terribly Harambe. We all tear a cloth in your honor. I know here in our house, we hope that conservancy work continues. That this beautiful creature that was Harambe, has a legacy.

And for this momma, who is now broken and battered, we wish you some peace and clarity from a crushing visit to the zoo.

A bei gesunt (We should all live and be well).

 

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