Sometimes I Really Love Four-Year Olds

Super Girl is a natural-born comedienne. Just when I thought nothing could top, “You giving me side-eye??” this morning…

♬♪♩ McDonald’s 🍟 had a farm. E I E I O. And on that farm he had a dog and Bingo was his name oh. B-I-N-G-O. B-I-N-G-O. B-I-N-G-O. B-I-N-G-O. And Bingo was his name oh ♩♪♬ 

“Wait! B-I-N-G-O sounds like it should spell a word that means “farty”!

♩♪♬ B-I-farty-O! B-I-farty-O! B-I-farty-O! And Tooty was his name oh! ♬♪♩ 

   

I am Officially a Narc… And I’m Okay with That

I’m now officially that mom who calls the police non-emergency number on other parents. 

Some woman was going 40 in the school zone this morning, weaving in and out of traffic. I tried honking at her and flagging her down several times. All that got me were dirty looks from the driver. I assumed she didn’t have kids and was ignorant about school zones, even though there were several children standing on the corner and a crossing guard at one intersection. But, no, she was on her way to the school, which I discovered as she rushed to jam her car in between others in line at the school. This was all so that she could get her kid to school at 8:02 rather than 8:05. The first tardy bell had already rung at 8 anyway, but doesn’t count until 8:15. I hope the perfect attendance award was worth it, lady. 

I memorized her license plate to report it (as we’ve been encouraged to do, even after the potential for danger has ended). My six-year old memorized her license plate number. She has been reported. I will also report her to the school so someone can have a talk with her if the police decide it isn’t worth the time. 

Leaving the school, I noticed several parents who were cautious when their own children were in the car suddenly speeding, talking on the mobiles in no-handheld-device zones, running through stop signs, and otherwise just being generally reckless. Honestly, had they been on a highway, I would only have been a little peeved. But this kind of behavior, in a school zone, with children actively present and on the corner, and by people who are parents sends me raging

What the hell is wrong with you people?? Are other kids not as precious cargo as your own??

So, I’m now a narc. And I will continue to be a narc until other parents treat random children on the street with the same human decency and courtesy they would expect others to give their own children. And I would encourage you all to do the same. 

The Birth of a Playroom

Once upon a time, Pop Culture Dad and I had a formal study. It was a beautiful and rich red, drybrush-painted by yours truly. It was such a fantastic room that it housed many of our family pictures. Actually, that’s pretty much all it did unless we were throwing a party.
Ah… Sigh… So adult…
Two of many family pictures taken in this room
Then one day… I got tired—not of the room, mind you—of picking my kids’ toys up from the living room floor and dragging them upstairs to the playroom. Suddenly, I had an idea: Wouldn’t it be awesome if we had a playroom downstairs?? Granted, this wasn’t an earth-shattering idea, but, still, it took me four and a half years to figure that out.
So one day when I was home alone, I moved most of the study furniture upstairs to the play area and moved all the toys downstairs to the former study. But something still wasn’t right… So I decided to give my kids a magnetic chalkboard.
Before
After
They love it!!
But me being me [an ADD mind at rest can be a very dangerous thing], the chalkboard wasn’t enough… So I decided to paint a meadow on the back wall and a beach on the front. 
And that still wasn’t enough, so I decided to… well… see for yourself:
Yes, that’s brick (well, Flexi-Brick). And, yes, I did that ♬♪♩ all by myseeeeelf ♩♪♬ (as is kind of apparent from the workmanship, ha ha)

And somehow, the murals, the magnetic chalkboard, and the awesome brick were just not enough for me. So Pop Culture Dad and I enlisted the help of a couple of my uncles, who do a lot of construction work. We had them add a wall and French doors to the previously open room, along with some molding. Once we had a brand-spanking new wall, I connected the meadow and the beach. We’ve added some furniture (comfortable seating for adults, a thick rug from Home Goods, the train table Super Girl got for her second birthday, and toys, toys, and more toys). 
An earlier stage of “completion”

“Where did that come from??” (Little Diva on the morning of her 2nd birthday)

Now that we have less (okay, NO) adult parties and more (alright, ALL) kiddie-friendly ones, this downstairs room really comes in handy!

partygoers in “Marina’s Makeover Salon” at Little Diva’s Fresh Beat Band-themed 5th birthday party

This transformation took me quite a bit of time. I started in late March and have been slowly making changes whenever I could find the time. I did all of the painting and bricking myself. Most of the decals and stickers (the Disney Fairies, the flowers, the little girls, and the owl) were done by the Pop Culture Girls [and by “done,” I of course mean they fought over them, ripped them, put them in hopelessly illogical places, and then eventually asked me for help putting them somewhere normal].

You’ll also notice that I am readily sharing pictures of a non-tidy playroom. It is a playroom. Yes, the Pop Culture Girls are required to put their toys away (to the best of their two- and five-year old abilities). Yes, the adults come in later and really clean the room (not every day, geez!). But this is the room in its natural and intended state. The whole purpose of this room was to keep these toys out of my living room. While that goal has not been met 100% (and I have the Lego-related foot injuries to prove it), the situation has improved 1000%. Not to mention, this room has become a pretty amazing conversation piece whenever someone enters our house for the first time (or the first time in forever).
Huzzah!!

To recap…

But If Gay People Have Families, What Will You Tell Your Kids?

One (ignorant) argument I always hear against marriage equality or adoption equality is that if gay couples get married and/or have children, the bigots some people don’t know how to explain the concept to children. Well,bigots confused people, be confused no more! We addressed that issue in my house tonight with our four year old, and I would like to share with you how it went.

There’s a boy in Little Diva’s class we will call B. B and Little Diva have known each other since they were 18 months old and went to The Little Gym and then eventually preschool together. When they were in the same class at The Little Gym and at their first school, one of B’s mommies was always with him. Same when they had swim class together. Since the kids started their new school last year, B’s other mommy (who stopped working when she had twins) has been the one we see all the time. In the three years Little Diva has known B, it has never occurred to her that she used to see one lady all the time and then she started seeing another lady all the time. It didn’t even occur to her when she saw them together and heard mention of B’s mommies.

Flash-forward to tonight: At dinner, Little Diva is telling us how B’s older sister got sick, so his mommy came to pick her up, but he stayed at school. And then she paused for a minute and started marveling at how big B’s family was. When trying to count his family members, Little Diva said “Omigosh! He has daddy and his mommy and his older sister and his baby sister and his baby brother! That’s, like seven [sic] people in his family!”. When she said “his daddy,” Pop Culture Dad and I looked at each other, and he gave me a glance that said “you take this one!”.

When Little Diva was done with her (erroneous) counting, I first corrected the number and then the family structure. “Honey,” I said, “[B] doesn’t have a daddy; he has two mommies.” So how did Little Diva react to this earth shattering news? “Oh! Okay! So he has two mommies and his older sister and his baby brother and his baby sister and him. Six. That’s six people. That’s a big family!” Yeah, I’d say she handled it just fine.

So if you’re one of those assholespeople who thinks that others should be denied the basic and fundamental civil right of marriage and family simply *because you’re worried about how in the world we’re supposed to explain this kind of thing to our kids, worry no more. Chances are, they’ll probably handle the issue better than you apparently have.

*Side bar: If you’re one of those people who thinks we should deny others the basic and fundamental civil right of marriage and family (and the thousands of legal benefits granted in this country that come with the status of marriage) simply because your interpretation of your religion forbids it, then might I remind you: (I) of the anti-establishment clause of the First Amendment and that we don’t live on a theocracy [try Iran. I’m sure you’ll love it there]; and (II) no one’s forcing you to marry someone of the same sex.