Thursday, August 20, 2009

My Dealer Turned on Me

My beloved drive thru turned on me today.

I pulled into the Starbucks as I do every day, ordered my grande non-fat no-whip mocha, as I do every day, and waited for the barista to tell me it would be $3.84, as they do every day.

But today, something interrupted the flow.

“There’s been a little price increase” said the voice inside the speaker. “That’ll be $4.06.”

Wait, huh? Excuse me? Baking powder?

Starbucks must not have gotten the memo. There is an economic crisis going on. We are entering a recession. People are still losing their jobs.

Seattle is a part of this country, right?

But Starbucks decided now is the time to raise prices.

I tweeted about this immediately. Oh, take that! I’ll tweet you! And then I’ll blog you! And you’ll see!

I asked the barista at the window, after handing over my $4.06 if this was a national increase or local. And if it was on the entire menu or specific items. She clearly hadn’t been having a good morning thanks to the news. She informed me it was national and on almost every item and that her store had just been informed of it THIS MORNING. And then she instructed me to get online and send a complaint to corporate!

I considered doing a little math and figuring out exactly how much extra this will cost me over a year’s time and how many regularly priced mochas that amount would equate to and... Ugh, math.

(Which reminds me, my finance class starts tonight. Ugh, finance.)

But still.

Dear God, Starbucks, I feel guilty enough that I buy a grande mocha from you EVERY.SINGLE.DAY and how much that takes from my family’s budget. Why don’t you twist the knife a little more? Why don’t you pour some lemon juice on my paper cut? Huh? And while you’re at it, why don’t you just draw up the divorce papers my husband will be signing when he decides he can’t support my addiction to you anymore?!??

Consider it complained, barista.

Friday, August 14, 2009

A Whole Lotta Love

Lately I’ve been concerned about how much gunk may or may not remain on the Hawklets’ teeth after they’re “brushed.” It just doesn’t seem possible that they’re ever truly “clean” and after several wrestling matches, where I’m cradling a Hawklet in a half nelson with one arm, toothbrush positioned in front of his sealed lips in my other hand, trying to persuade him to sing “E-I-E-I-O” ( the best thing I could think of that requires them to flash their teeth, at least every other letter), it’s easy to conclude that, yes: there has

Either that or I resign to the assumption that their teeth are still too new to start rotting already and surely there is some built in protection against cavities in such new teeth? Surely?

I mean really. What DID those cave babies do?

So last weekend I took a tip from Mimi. I got battery-powered spinning toothbrushes with awesome characters on them that are plaque fighters and make cool motor sounds and have on and off buttons!!

It worked.

It worked too well, in fact.

Now, I cannot get them to stop brushing their teeth. I am reminded of a book called The Wish Giver I read in elementary school in which a boy wishes to “put down roots” and starts to turn into a tree. Wish granted! You want toothbrushing children? Sure thing – how about they do nothing but brush their teeth! Problem solved!

They can’t bear to leave the toothbrushes in the bathroom. They brushed their teeth all over the house that first day. They put their toothbrushes inside their cars and drove them around. They rinsed them in every sink in our house – these new beloved toys called TOOTHBRUSHES.
Reid spin-brushed the inside of his ear. Eeeww.


I explained that we leave toothbrushes in the bathroom by the sink. I assured him the very first thing he could do in the morning – just as soon as he opened his little eyes – was brush his teeth. That his toothbrush would be in the same spot where he left it, anxiously awaiting his next use.

This just wasn’t reassuring at all. Because when so deeply in love, nothing really can alleviate the pain of separation.


It’s an expression of love I haven’t seen before. For the battery-powered spinning toothbrush. If only I could bottle even a bit of that passion and sprinkle it on myself in the monotony of day-to-day life. Like when I’m Swiffering or driving to work or, well …

Brushing my teeth.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

60 Reasons

Celebrating 60 years of my mom today, with 60 reasons why I love her:

1. Because of the look on her face the day she was anointed “Mimi” by my son.
2. Because of how sweet it sounds to hear my boys call my mother “Mimi.”
3. Because she never tells me how to mother, tells me what I could be doing better, or compares my style to anyone else’s, even though I know sometimes I could use the advice. Sometimes.
4. Because she made me collect "points" growing up to cash in to do fun things, and she gave me a clothing allowance and expected me to stick to it.
5. Because she cares for my boys during the day so that I can pursue a meaningful career with a little less stress. Nuff said?
6. Okay a lot less stress.
7. Because when people point out how generous she is to do this for us, she actually tells them that she’s the lucky one to get to spend so much time with her grandsons.
8. Because she’s always got wine.
9. Because she cooks the BEST Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners, including special requests from picky sons-in-law.
10. And without help from us lazy children with zero cooking skills.
11. Because she kept all of mine and my sister’s artwork from elementary school and it now decorates the grandsons’ playroom at her house.
12. Because she has a playroom for her grandsons at her house.
13. Because she told me once, in high school, that money actually does not make the world go ‘round.
14. Because she taught me about faith, then stepped back to let mine blossom in its own way.
15. Because she put me on a plane to Madrid so I could go see the world. And she knew I’d come back.
16. And when she came to visit me, she brought me my favorite American shampoo and snacks.
17. Because of the look on her face when I, at about 16, asked her if she’d ever smoked pot in the ‘60s.
18. Because she somehow managed to raise two girls by herself, on a rural Missouri farm, while retaining her sanity and her calmness.
19. Because when I was in kindergarten, she was the mom who supplied apples for snack time, instead of cookies.
20. Because she still has a great relationship with her childhood best friend.
21. Because she dedicated her career to the success of children with both special needs and special gifts for too little income.
22. Because she still receives letters from former students telling her what a difference she made.
23. Because without meaning to, she taught me about the realities of marriage and what I wanted in a husband.
24. Because she ensured we were able to take family vacations every year to fun and interesting places.
25. Because she is so darn sentimental.
26. Because she ponders for so long about what to get my husband for Christmas every year.
27. Because she loves to read.
28. Because she forced me to listen to NPR every day growing up, against my Debbie Gibson-loving teenie-bopper will.
29. Because she always let me decorate my room however I wanted, including rearranging my furniture weekly.
30. Because she told me a story once of being at a Janice Joplin concert and leaving a bottle of liquor on the stage.
31. Because she bought me of the Babysitters Club books.
32. Because she appreciates nice things without being pretentious.
33. Because she loves my husband as if he was her own son.
34. Because after she and my dad divorced, she did her best to ensure I maintained a good relationship with his family.
35. Because she has more toys at her house than I have at mine.
36. Because she’s a California girl.
37. Because she taught me about politics.
38. Because of her spaghetti sauce, fried rice, gravy and rice, and even crockpot chicken.
39. Because she let me bring friends to the beach every summer in high school.
40. Because she totally put up with my screening her calls in college.
41. Because she leads by example.
42. Because she is so giving of her resources to others in need.
43. Because in junior high when my sister and I just wanted to win the class can drive contest, she would not allow us to get food items that we would not personally want to eat.
44. Because she has cared for so many animals in her life, from pigs to chickens to cows to cats to dogs to a horse - many of whom were like children to her.
45. And she guided us through the heartache of umpteen pet deaths growing up.
46. Because she bought us the Ronco food dehydrator and never asked why we never made the fruit roll-ups or beef jerky we promised.
47. Because she introduced me to Jane Fonda and low-impact aerobics.
48. Because she dropped me off at Sandstone Amphitheater to meet friends for my first-ever concert at 15, on a wing and a prayer I would make it home later.
49. And I did. And she still asks herself why she did that.
50. Because she’s 60 and she just joined Facebook.
51. Because her middle name is Posey. It’s just loveable!
52. Because she took care of all of my tiny wedding details when I no longer had mental capacity for doing so.
53. Because she slapped my face the one time I ever used the “f” word in front of her.
54. And I deserved it!
55. Because she let us bring the baby chicks home to the farm after they hatched in our third grade class incubators.
56. Because she was such a Murder She Wrote fan.
57. And Dallas.
58. Because she believes in me, my abilities and my potential.
59. Because I know she is proud of me.
60. Because making this list was a breeze.

Happy birthday, mom! I love you!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Peanut Butter

“Mommy! Peanut butter!” he demands out of nowhere.

Daddy has just heated up some spaghetti.

“You want peanut butter instead?” I ask.

“No! Mommy! Peanut butter!” his demands are just as curt as before.

“Okay, I’ll make you peanut butter, sheesh!”

“No mommy,” now whining ever so desperately, “peanut buuutterrr.”

He points to the floor and my light bulb goes on.

“Ooooohhhh, you want to BE peanut butter! Okay!”

A sweet, sweet smile slowly takes over his porcelain face as he realizes I understand.

I lie down on the floor, arms outstretched, and he runs into them. I’m the bread. He’s the peanut butter. We are stuck together.