Sunday, June 28, 2009

It would have been fine if there were NO instruction...

I am completely confused by this ant bait by Walgreens. It should have been very simple, until I decided to read what the sticker says:

"This surface is TOP. Bottom should be placed against floor or stuck on wall."

The problem is, according to the photo on the package, the bottom is supposed to be the top, and the TOP here, flat surface and therefore why the sticker is conveniently placed there, should be the bottom.

I started humming this Mother Goose rhyme after I was sufficiently confused and amused to take pictures of the Ant Bait. (I can't believe I took pictures of Ant Bait procured from Walgreens!)

Oh, the grand old Duke of York,
he had ten thousand men,
he marched them up to the top of the hill,
and he marched them down again.

When they were up, they were up;
and when they were down, they were down;
and when they were only halfway up,
they were neither up nor down.

Sunday breakfast: somebody loves me!

Mr. Monk surprised me with a nice, healthy breakfast, much healthier than I prepare for them...

He has been trying to mother me lately:

Are you driving over the speed limit?

Why do you drink so much coffee?

You should have brrrkfast every day you know.

And, this is the best one:

Why are you returning those shirts? I bet they look lovely on you!

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Thursday, June 25, 2009

"Mommy, is tweeting bad?"

Nope. Didn't make this up. This came up in my conversation with my 6 year-old, Mr. Monk, in the car today.

Most of our conversations happen in the car now, it seems. Could Mr. Monk be that smart so as to figure out that when I am driving, I am cornered and hence have to provide some sort of answers to the hard questions he throws at me?

"Mommy, why do you tweet?"

Gee. He got the lingo right. Many adults are still struggling with when to use Twitter and when to use Tweet...

"Hmmm. Why SHOULDN'T I Tweet?"

That's a complete cop-out. I know.

"Is Tweeting bad?" See? He got that it's a VERB!

"No. Of course not. Why do you ask?"

"I am just wondering why you do it."

Hmm. Why did he assume it's bad just because I am doing it?!

"..... Ok. It's just like how you and your brother play on Runescape? it's just something fun that mommy likes to do. Mommy enjoys talking to people on Twitter."

Suave move, mom. Comparing Twitter to Runescape?! Let me turn the table on him...

"Now, why does it bother you so much that mommy is on Twitter?"

"I don't know. Because you get to do it all the time, without having to ask. We have to ask you or daddy when we want to play Runescape..."

I wonder if I HAD a regular hobby like sewing or knitting whether he would have been so bothered by it.

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Monday, June 22, 2009

Now the Fedora is gone, we are into Berets...

For the longest time my youngest had a Fedora, and he did wear it throughout the last winter despite my initial prediction that it would only last one week. It was adorable when he tipped his hat to greet the ladies,
"How'd you do, Ma'am?"
You are allowed to do all these things when you are only 5 or 6. Even wearing a beret...
Since we left our fedora behind on our trip to Taiwan, Mr. Monk has been on my case of getting him a replacement. Recently, he started a campaign of acquiring a beret.
"Mom. I want to be an artist when I grow up. How am I going to be an artist if I don't have an artist's hat?"
Finally I capitulated since I did not want to be the mother who stifles her children's artistic aspirations. Thank goodness we found one on for $5 that he deemed acceptable.
Now he has been wearing that hat every single day. At first he also insisted on wearing his black turtleneck, complete with a plastic, colorful, "pipe" that came with the "bubble blowing kit".
Like I said, when you are 6, you get to do all these role-playing make-believe things, even in public.
I did finally put my foot down and said NO! to the turtlenecks when it was so hot this weekend that his face was all red from the heat...

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VeggieTales: Faith + Clean Sense of Humor sells OR Marketing Lesson 101

Ah, VeggieTales. After more than a decade, I am still marveled at their success. I am sure a lot of people watching their explosive success, have banged their heads against the wall, wailing, "Why didn't I think of that?" Since 2006, the animated veggies (with very expressive eyes and mouths since they have no limbs!) have also been part of the NBC network Saturday Morning Cartoon line-up.

So now they have expanded to selling seeds in the gardening section. Amazing! But if you think about it, this is probably one of the few marketing / branding efforts that actually make sense. Who better to sell vegetable plant seeds other than Bob the Tomato and Larry the Cucumber?!

Even though I am not Christian, I can see the draw of morality tales cloaked in cartoons full of catchy songs and silly jokes for parents who are at a loss in finding a moral compass in this world dominated by mass media. (Wow. That's a long, and probably grammatically incorrect sentence....)

Plus it really does help that Larry the Cucumber is completely insane and the champion of non sequitur humors, as can be witnessed in his perennial favorites: Silly Songs with Larry. The song that always makes me laugh and want to dance is Barbara Manatee...


Friday, June 19, 2009

Others collect snow globes or coins. I collect airline barf bags...

Actually, my collection started as a joke from my husband . I had asked him to bring souvenirs back for me from abroad. He decided that a barf bag is just as exotic and representative.
"Honey! I have NO space in my carry-on bag!"
What's very exciting is that someone reached out to me who actually DOES collect barf bags, and he is not alone (just do a google search: it's eye-opening!) He has as of now 281 bags in his collection. Very impressive. It does seem that he somehow does not have American Airlines barf bag in his collection. I think we should try and get him one!


Mother fail

Mr. Monk (my 6 yo boy) and I got into a fight tonight. The source of it is as always: his need to be close to me whenever we are home. Especially when it is close to bedtime and he's tired and I am exhausted. I finally lost my marble today and lashed out at him. Yup. Lashed out. I am still feeling shame and guilt from it, and am absolutely convinced that I will go to hell for hurting a 6 year old's feeling so deeply...

The funny, sad, guilt-inducing thing is? He still asked for mommy when it's time he go to bed.

In the midst of crying, sobbing, hiccuping, he said, "I am going to run away tomorrow."

Hell. Is. Waiting. For. Me.

I apologized for being really mean and we were on our way to reconciliation.

"Please don't run away. I would be very sad and worried if you do. How about the volcano of love?"

"It's shattered."

Those were his exact words.

Hell. Is. Waiting. For. Me.

"Oh honey. I am so sorry..."

"There is only one left now. But I am rebuilding them."

Sometimes I believe that I do not deserve Mr. Monk as he is more mature than I am. He is an old soul. It awes me and worries me at the same time. He seems to know how his mind works is different from his peers. While crying about how he's going to run away from home, he made this statement,

"I don't fit in. I am different. I don't fit in anywhere."

Other than holding him very very tightly, I was utterly lost for words. Motherhood fail.

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Tuesday, June 16, 2009

In praise of "Fallen Princesses" Photography Project by Dina Goldstein

Courtesy: JPG Magazine: Snowy

I am absolutely in amour with this picture and actually, all the pictures by photographer,
Dina Goldstein. She is currently working on a project, sort of like an alternative story telling, "Fallen Princesses." In her own words:

"These works place Fairy Tale characters in modern day scenarios. In all of the images the Princess is placed in an environment that articulates her conflict. The '...happily ever after' is replaced with a realistic outcome and addresses current issues."

"I began to imagine Disney's perfect Princesses juxtaposed with real issues that were affecting women around me, such as illness, addiction and self-image issues."

This is one of the best examples for:

Motherhood does not make you stupid. It makes you THINK!

p.s. I found this picture via
@god, thank goodness he has a great sense of humor!

p.p.s. For a critique on how these pictures do not deliver the expected
Punch, not subversive enough to destablize the stereotypes, please see Bitch Magazine

Cough cough, though I do love
Bitch Magazine's "Feminist Response to Pop Culture" and agree with the perspective here, have to say I haven't found anything subversive enough to do exactly that, i.e. destablize stereotypes substantially long enough to have the destablizing take roots, other than cutting off our own tits... even at that, we would still be labeled as "Suffering from hysteria". The world will continue to stereotype any group of less power at will because that's how power is gained and maintained. Ever wonder why stereotypes come in pairs?...

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The Ability to be Oblivious OR Is there a manual for the multicutural world we envision?

Warning: The following text contains ruminations on the color of our skins. If you feel uncomfortable discussing skin colors, wish that people would just stop obsessing over skin colors and go on with their lives, or believe that the insistence on talking about the colors of our skin makes the originator of the conversation a racist him/herself, there is nothing much I could do about it. But I thought I'd let you know since you may not want to read the following...

Like most kids, Mr. Monk, my 6 year-old, is fascinated by people that look different from him. The problem is, even though my children are half and half, Mr. Monk is able to “pass” if I am not around. His older brother, however, stands out distinctively and has experienced name-calling at school and at extracurricular activities, much to my chagrin and surprise.

Seriously. Which century are we in? BUT I also believe that my oldest will grow up to be stronger and more compassionate. It’s funny, or disturbing rather, how my children will grow up differently, shaped by how the outside world view them differently…

Despite my being an annoying PC Police, to my best intentions, I am utterly confused when it comes to educating the very young, especially my own. Even though I always wince whenever Mr. Monk refers to someone who is apparently not white by the color of their skin, I fear I may have lost my bearings…

The other day while I was trying to demonstrate to him that we do not refer to people this way and also to challenge why he does not refer to someone of Euro descent by saying, "The White Lady" for example, I asked him,

"So what color is your skin?"

"I am white." He said without even a pause.

Shock. I did not expect this answer. Well, when we discussed this before, in the context of Crayola rainbow of colors and how we, thank goodness, no longer refer to the “Peach” color as “Skin”, we had agreed that his was “Tan”…

"Hmm. No. You are not white. You are only half."

He started protesting. "I am white!"

“Ok. So what do you think mommy is?”

“You are white too!” (I am very obviously not and we both know it)

Now here came a moment when part of me thought, “I really should drop this. Maybe I should go back to school, take more child psychology and postcolonial theory classes, before we continue this discussion…”

Yet the other part of me insisted, “No. We have to discuss this especially when they are young and malleable and forming their self-identities.” Sometimes I think that if I were my mother I would hate me.

“Ok. Could you please tell mommy why you think you are white?”

“Because we learned in school there were slaves…” he stopped abruptly and would not go on.


“Mommy. Are there still slaves in the world?”

Oh, gee. What is going on in that tiny head of his?

In the midst of trying to explain to him that in some parts of the world, yes, (WHY do I have to be so brutally honest with my children, I do not know. Damn liberals I guess…) but not in this country, Oh, god no, he does not have to worry about ever being enslaved, we dropped the discussion on the color of his skin.

Here is what I wish I had sometimes, with guilt of course, for myself and for my children:

The ability to be oblivious.

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Saturday, June 13, 2009

Nothing cures narcissistic self-pity better than a rabid case of road rage OR how I found reality

After Starbucks, which seemed to be closing since even the cops outside were leaving, I continued to wander in the night. Blasting Sarah Betten's Scream, I mindless drove first on 53 N, which turned out to be a stupid move since it goes nowhere and ended even before the end of the album.

I turned around and moved onto 90 E, downtown Chicago here I come!

Sarah started singing

I used to know how to change the world
I lie awake at night and envy that girl.

This got me going. For the first time on this fucking crazy shitty day tears came. Flood gate. Cliche always true. I sobbed uncontrollably. Fuck fucking fuck. I am not going to be anybody ever am I ? I will never be truly happy will I ?

All of a sudden, traffic stopped. What the fuck? It is 12:30 AM!? And I was sandwiched between giant trailertrucks. In one second, road rage took over the sobbing ruminating mess. Proustian stream of consciousness self-narration is not a match for

Get out of my way you fucking brute

As I passed by the truck who cut in front of me right before the lane ended. I got in front of him just in time being THIS close to the orange cones because I drive a tiny car.

Yeah! Reality!

I did drive all the way downtown, enjoyed the moment when you get to the end of Ohio facing Sears Tower. I always love that 5 second stretch. Then I turned the other direction.

Thank goodness for highway oasis. 24/7. Otherwise wayward mothers like myself would have nowhere to go...

I could in theory check in a hotel. But I would cross some sort of line, wouldn't I?

Wandering in the night I am just the insane me...

Friday, June 12, 2009

How I got a girl night out OR I walked out of the house Part III

"You are an asshole." I yelled into the phone before I hung up. Because nothing gives me more pleasure and later more regret by having the last word, NOW!

When I got home with CHILD, husb was sitting in the comfy chair reading a comic book. Looking very relaxed. Which irks me more than anything since I can't remember the last time I ever relax at home. I am such a bitch.

I looked over, he was giving me a finger!

"What is your problem?"

CHILD looked in his direction, he smiled and said, "Hey! Nothing."

Then said, "Maybe you should leave now. Don't come home. Since you don't want to be home."

After ignoring him and giving CHILD a banana, I thought to myself,

"Hey, he's offering to watch CHILD!!"

So I grabbed my semi packed bag (I travel for work quite often) and a change of clothes, all the while thinking,

"Ok. I am going to do this now. What do I bring? Where do I go?"

How does one walk out of one's house?

How do you walk out on your children?

"A hotel? I can Hotwire it maybe?"

I remembered that I have some free tickets from when I got bumped.

"New York?"

I remembered that I have NO family in this frigging country.

All these happened fast in less than 5 minutes.

While I was rummaging for the tickets, I found some discount gift cards for Aveda from Costco. Maybe I'll go get a facial?!

In denial.

Big time. Since before I left aveda, I made an appointment for a massage next Friday for husb for Father's Day.

God. I am completely insane and unstable...

This is how I got a GIRL night out, notice there is no S...

Tis 10:30 pm. Starbucks open past midnight because this one is where the cool people hang out... Maybe I will go catch a movie or two...

Parents behaving badly. Parenthood never guarantees maturity, does it?

How I got a girl night out OR I walked out of the house Part II

Went to lunch and this guy followed me back to the office... LOL on Twitpic

The Culprit

How I got a girl night out, OR I walked out of the house Part I

First of all, I am typing this out on my iPhone which does not have a SIM inside a Starbucks. A hip & happening one, not like the one at my train station.

What is up with people being young and cool and happy and beautiful and hanging out and happy and talking and laughing and no children in sight and happy...

Anyway, I seem to be the only person here alone and typing on my iPhone AND Blackberry. Trying to compose a blog entry. Struggling with tiny letters and resulting typos. Wishing I had a book with me.

So it all started from La Bamba downtown which has the burritos as big as your head. It's true: it's their tag line. I went there for lunch today. This was a restaurant that my husband and I loved when we were still at school. There was one on campus. We didn't know it's a
chain... Till recently. So I went to the La Bamba downtown for lunch and was very excited. They have their 20 year anniversary bobblehead "doll" for sale. Ok, it's not a doll. It's the Burrito Man. I thought,

"Wow. That would be cool for Father's Day!"

My co-worker who usually thinks I am a crazy ass spaz actually agreed this time.

"I would think it's cool shit if someone gives me that for Father's Day!"

As Murphy's Law would have it, because I had set up my mind to give it to husb tonight, can't wait for another week, I forgot it as I was rushing for the train home. I made the split second decision to go back to the office to get Burrito Man and take a later train...

When I finally got off the train and got to my car, it's already 6:15, and daycare closes at 6:30. I called husb just in case he had got the boy. I know a phone call from me that close to "deadline" is going to put him on alert and defense, so I softened my approach,

"Hi, I was just calling IN CASE you have got CHILD..."

"No." Brusquely. "You are supposed to get him." and then,

"B-y-e." like he couldn't be bothered with.

My temper flared, after my softened approach backfired. Before I hung up, "You are an asshole!" I yelled into the phone...

How do we learn Hip Lingo if we don't watch TV, OR What you don't know won't hurt you

6 yo offered to make me a "pocket" with paper.

"Is it ok if I use pink paper for you?"

"Pink will be great! If you use pink it would be HUGE!" Channeling my inner Paris Hilton for a second over there.

Puzzled look. "What do you mean it will be Huge?"

"Uh. I meant it would be awesome..."

Relieved look. "Oh. Great. I thought you meant the pocket would become Really Big if I use pink..."

Bonus Round: My son, the Statistician...

"Mom, I think you will be the first in the family to die."


"Because you are the oldest. So there will be a 100% chance you will be the first to die, and 90% chance for daddy to be the first to die, and 0% chance for me to be the first to die."

Bonus Round II: Learning human anatomy...

Overheard 6 year-old to 11 year-old:

"Do you know your wiener is not your guts? Your guts are here" (pointing to his tummy)

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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Are we really at odds with each other?

This is an age-old debate and for sure I am opening an ancient can of worms. And for some, this is probably opening up some disappearing scabs from long-since-forgotten battle wounds as well...

But I don't know why something this trivial bothers me. It leaves my working-mother-core shaking. It makes me question myself whether my being a working mother is truly ruining my children's childhood.

Guilt is a bitch.

It all started when my 11 yo was invited to a friend's house for a "playdate".

(They are probably too old to have something called "Playdate"... For lack of a universally understandable term to describe an event when a child goes to another child's house, usually against the latter child's mother's quiet wish while granting the mother of the former child, if she otherwise stays home with the child, some much needed respite, I will use this term for now).

... and the earliest train I can take does not allow me to be there in time to pick him up at the said end of playdate.

The problem with being a working mom with regarding to playdates is that: it is next to impossible for me to reciprocate. And I do feel guilty about it. I do. And I let the mothers who are kind enough to invite my non-reciprocating child to their houses know how much I appreciate it, and how guilty I feel.

You know that I work, DOWNTOWN. My kids go to a childcare facility. I am sorry. I cannot come home during lunch hour to do that. I cannot take off from work just so I can drop off my child at your house to play with your child.

I did that once already: I took a day off from work once just so I could drive my kid, in less than 5 minutes, from the daycare to your house. I know I should not expect you to offer to pick up my kids from where he is and bring him to your house. You do not owe me that. And I am totally sounding like an ungrateful bitch to some, if there is anyone out there reading this, actually.

I contemplated hiring and PAYING someone to drive that 5-minute stretch so he can have the playdate with your child. I did. Would you be terribly insulted if I asked to pay you? You would, I guess. I know the point is not the money, or how easy it is. The point is "the principle" right? That we working mothers are so used to being granted all these special treatments and considerations. We should not take it for granted. I should not even be writing about this on my blog right now.

So I guess our children will never have playdates again.

It is a shame. They apparently played quite well together and that's why you invited him back. Thank you. And sorry that we had to cancel the playdate scheduled for today.

p.s. The irony with this whole crazy shit incident is that I am so shaken with guilt, doubt and undeserved self-righteousness that I may as well go home early. Calling in sick.

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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

My apology to Kathleen Parker. Frank Gaffney is way crazier...

Now I feel bad for lambasting Kathleen Parker for hinting at a tenuous relationship between Obama and Osama because of the rhyming last names.

(This reminds me: is it now a good time to resurrect the old Internet sensation the Llama Song?)

I was alerted to an article by Frank Gaffney, "America's first Muslim president?" Turns out Ms. Parker's criticism is quite reasonable compared to Mr. Gaffney's read of Obama's Cairo speech.

Is he for real? It's got to be a parody. Simply too good to be true. But it is. I. Don't. Know. What. To. Say.

Read it for yourself.


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Tis a low ball to insinuate anything via someone's family name...

Kathleen Parker of the Washington Post Writers Group commented (criticized, no need for euphemism on my own blog) on Obama's latest speech to the Muslim world at the Cairo University on June 4.

Granted that most of Ms. Parker's columns leave me fuming, I have learned to agree to disagree with her and her fans. There is no arguing in politics and religions. That's why when people get together, they watch sports. (Or so I assume. We don't watch sports in our house, and therefore we are not popular on our block... Oh, that and the fact I have an Obama sticker on my car...)

I can see her point in "Obama's Muslim campaign": that Obama in his speech to the Muslims quoted too many lines from the Qur'an and criticized the errors in the U.S. history just a tad too much to make audience back at home squirm uncomfortably. But here is the sentence that really got my attention, not in a positive way:

"To delegitimize the man whose name rhymes with his, Obama had only to show up and not be George W. Bush."

1. Yes, I tend to obsess over one tree and ignore the forest. I get to do this in my personal life. So there.

2. I am not about to defend W.

What I have an issue with is this insinuation of a relation between Obama and Osama, "the man whose name rhymes with his."

Come on! Give me a break!

We are guilty by association of family names now? Great! Remember during World War II when all the Japanese Americans were rounded up and sent to the concentration camps? (Oh, I am sorry, RELOCATION CAMPS they were called), many non-Japanese Asians in the U.S. hastily proclaimed their non-Japanese-sounding surnames for fear of guilt by association of family names. So we are going back to that now?

Here is my advice for all the non-mainstream citizens in this multicultural only in theory society, name your kid Brandon and Emily, and if you can, change your name to something less foreign sounding. For the sake of your children, in case they run for important public office one day.

Although the definition of "Foreign" is arguably faulty here. Basically anything that does not invoke a Western heritage...

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Monday, June 8, 2009

My mommy cooks. My mommy cleans. My mommy loves me.

It is almost a month since Mother's Day and therefore I figure it is safe to ruminate out loud what I thought when I saw these loving and lovable pictures drew by my 6 year old, with lots of love, without the risk of being accused as mean-spirited, bitter, spoiled, jaded, or worse, unfit-to-be-a-mother…

Turned out that my 6 year-old was more excited about Mother's Day than I was. The weeks leading to Mother's Day they had made so many arts and crafts projects at school to celebrate this day, and he was instructed to keep all these projects a secret until THE day so he could surprise me. Bless his heart. I am surprised that he did not burst from all the secrecy, and the trouble of keeping a secret from your mother when you are only 6 years old.

We had gone to the store in April when he decided that he needed to get me a Mother's Day present. He was rather upset since he couldn't figure out a way of getting anything without my knowing it.

He burst into tears when I saw the bag of chocolate he's holding.

"You are not supposed to see this."

"What? I don't know what you're talking about…"

"This! This is your Mother's Day present. Now Mother's Day is ruined! And it is all YOUR fault!"

"Honey. How about this? Mommy will pay for it and then you can hide it and I promise I will forget about it."

"No, it won't work!"

It took me an hour to calm him down, to convince him that yes indeed, I would erase the memory of this exchange from my brain.

When he proudly presented me with the book that he made at school, a book comprised of "Things my mommy does, and therefore I love my mommy" vignettes, I was really moved. Really, I was. He was beaming with pride, and naturally, I was beaming with pride too.

But later, it did give me pause to think my role as a mother. How I see myself and how I am perceived by my children, others, the world.

1. After 20+ years of education, this is what I am boiled down to: cooking and cleaning.

2. My job sucks, at least in my child's eyes. If I were a hod dog vendor, or a street musician, it would probably be easier for him to draw "What my mommy does at work." Truth be told, and in all fairness, he has attempted many times to understand what I do at work.

"So you work on the computer... But what do you MAKE?"

A conversation with him about my job always results in days of self-doubt in me...

3. Perhaps in all fairness, cleaning and cooking could be what he sees me do all the time. Is it telling that he did not draw "My mommy does the laundry" since our floor is constantly covered with laundered clothes transported straight from the dryer? And bless his heart that he considers grilled cheese and mac&cheese straight from a box cooking. I guess it is true that what you don't know will not hurt you...

4. On the other hand, what if this is his ideal of a mother? A mom that cooks and cleans, while wearing an apron with a BIG smile on her face. So happy. So content. Perhaps this is a mother that he yearns for and not the harried, reluctant one he's stuck with? Staring at the big smile in these drawings, I somehow feel ashamed. Guilty.

5. This is the conclusion I am most reluctant to draw; it took me a whole month to admit to myself: Maybe, just maybe, I am not spending enough quality time with my children. None of the pictures showed me doing things with him.

If I had made more efforts in doing arts and crafts, if I were more willing in playing Go Fish, if I had offered to go to the zoos, the parks, the playgrounds more often, if I had said, "Let's go fly a kite" out of nowhere.

If. Perhaps he would have something other than cooking and cleaning to draw with.

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The best ramen noodle ever. Hands down!

Even popular in other Asian countries! That should mean a lot... Find
it @ your friendly neighborhood Korean grocery stores...

I've never got kicked in the head. Is it me? No. It's you.

This morning my youngest was sent to his room for a timeout because he kicked daddy in the head.  Upon further investigation, and actually I witnessed the entire episode, I am not quite sure he deserved the punishment.  
What would a normal healthy human being do when they are being tickled on the feet?  
They kick.
What would happen if you are the one administer the tickling with your head bent towards the said feet?
Your head will be in the path of the kicking feet.  
It is simple physics. 
This incident makes me ponder why, compared to my spouse, I am seldom "hurt" by the children. 
It is true I do not roughhouse with the kids.  It's a daddy thing.  I tend to get the crying, hungry, wounded, tired, cranky, punished kids, whereas my husband gets the happy, tussling ones.  That's why I tend to get the crying, hungry, wounded, tired, cranky, punished kids.  Tis a vicious cycle. I am seeing a pattern now. 
It is also true that I realize everybody's limits and I stop as soon as I see that the kids are being whipped into a frenzy, and if you continue to sit on them, for instance, their survival instinct would kick in and they would use all the little strength they have to fight back, and you get hurt. 
AND, let it be known, TICKLING IS BULLYING.  If someone is laughing against their will, then they are NOT having fun. 
Yes. I am the FUN KILLER.  But, let it also be known, I have never been kicked in the head by my kids. 

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Proof for Santa's existence is everywhere...

6 yo is listening to the Personalized CD (which guarantees that you can "hear your name more than 80 times!") that Santa gave him last year.

With great excitement, he came to me and proclaimed,

"Mom, do you know how I am so sure now that this CD is from Santa and MADE by Santa himself at the workshop?"

"Oh. How?"

"You see the back is glued to the cover with sticky tacks! What kind of stores would use sticky tacks to glue their stuff together?!"

So crappy quality is actually the evidence for Santa's handmade items.

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A volcano of love... tis the cross for me to bear

"My bounty is as boundless as the sea,
My love as deep; the more I give to thee,
The more I have, for both are infinite."
- Juliet

Always thought this is one of the most beautiful descriptions of what it means to really love someone. (By the way, Romeo is an idiot. Juliet clearly is a better poet. But I digress...)

When I became a mom, I was surprised by the truth in these words. The love I have for my children is such that it hurts to think of the possibility of ever losing them. And unlike other kinds of feelings, a parent's love does not depend on reciprocity. We will always love our children no matter what.

But that love does not prevent us from getting impatient, annoyed. It does not stop me from becoming a mean witch from time to time to the boys. Stealthily self doubt creeps up sometimes: I wonder whether I do truly love my kids selflessly and unconditionally, whether I am fit to be a mother, after a particularly difficult day of dealing with bickering, whining, willfulness, obstinacy, and flaring up of the mild case of OCD, with too little time. My exhaustion more often than not stems from my youngest's refusal to let my husband take care of him.

Mommy is the only person he always wants.

Mommy is the person he loves the most, no matter what.

In this regard, I feel extremely guilty and am deeply saddened since there are more than one person for me to make the same claim of. Juliet's words aside, I lack the time to show the love equally to each.

On those days, when I put him to bed, I would hold my 6 year-old tighter and ask him to forgive mommy's temper earlier. And Mr. Monk, my 6 year-old, who has a way with words, would say something that at the same time shames me and absolves me.

"I just want you to know that mommy loves you." (even when she was behaving like a banshee...)

"It's ok mommy. I just want to show each parent a volcano of love."

Laughing out loud, I held him even tighter, trying hard to stifle the cry that's surfacing from my chest.

Sometimes I believe that he loves me more than I love him. And it worries me so....

p.s. Yes yes I know. Wait a couple more years and then he would not want to have anything to do with mommy any more... I will write a new post then....

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