Photo: This child. Seriously. I don’t know where he came from. My husband and I aren’t ugly people, but we aren’t beautiful people… we will never be super models. We clean up nice, but you aren’t going to see us on the covers of magazines. This child, though… from time to time, he really takes my breath away. I know that I’m biased, but still.


Little Boys had their first ever Show & Tell at school today. The school sent them home with a little blue suitcase to fill with toys. Unlike other siblings, who got the suitcase one at a time so that they could share as individuals, circumstances made it so that my two boys had to do their presentation together, the one suit case for the both of them.

That meant that Major called the shots. You know, because he’s Major.

“We both like this [Matchbox car]. Right, [Minor]?”

Minor shrugs. “Yeah, I like that car.”

“We both like this school bus toy. Right, [Minor]?”

Minor shrugs. “Sure. I like that yellow school bus.”

Me to Minor: “[Minor], do you have something you’d like to put in the suitcase just for you?”

Major: “I think [Minor] wants me to put in this [whatever] because–”

Me: “[MAJOR]! I was asking [Minor]!”

So it went all weekend. The suitcase came with a set of suggestions: a picture of the family? Something that represents their favorite thing to do? The toy they go to bed with? A special trinket given by grandparents?

I did my best to steer them in these directions.

I was rejected at every pass.

“What about this map of Maryland?” I offered, showing them a small one I printed out.

“Why?” I was asked by Minor.

“What about your one of your favorite books? I’ve got Good Night, Maryland and I’ve got the one about the Chesapeake Bay, too! Just to share where we’re from. Wouldn’t it be nice to share a reason why you’re so special?”

“What? No. That won’t even fit!” I was scolded by Major.

Good Night, Maryland will absolutely fit. See? I can put in right in–”

Simultaneous “No! Don’t!” followed by being shooed away from the box. No Mommy influences. No foreign objects.


No pictures of Mommy, Daddy, either of the three sets of grandparents, nor either of great-grandothers (of which there are also three), nor pictures of Maryland of any kind. I couldn’t even sneak in a little toy crab, or a little Orioles’ ball that a friend gave them.

The suitcase contained 2 toy school buses, a bunch of Matchbox cars, the light-up cars that Nana and Pop-Pop gave them for Christmas (I wouldn’t let them pack the racetrack), and the two magic wands the boys got at Great Wolf Lodge (“Because they are so cool.” “Yeah! So cool!”).

When asked about their presentation (I wasn’t there to witness), little boys said there was a lot of laughter. But then came the pride:

Major: “Everybody liked the wands. They liked mine the best!”

Minor: “They liked mine, too!”

Major: “Some people liked [Minor’s]. But everybody liked mine!”

There was some argument back and forth about that. I tried to move them along.

“They liked the little cars, too. They thought we were funny,” Major said.

“That’s because we are funny!” Minor stated with a laugh.

“Yeah. Mommy! We’re funny!”

Oh yes, and then some! Lordy.

What a wonderful reminder that what makes your Thirty-Something Mama proud doesn’t make you proud. What your mama wants you to show off is not what you want to show off. And what a fantastic reminder that they are, in every way, separate entities from myself!

It’s a good thing, really. Their happiness is wrapped up in the millions of adventures they make for their little toy cars, and those adventures involve building, climbing, screaming, running, flying, jumping and otherwise driving me crazy. That’s exactly what I’ve been going for.

Unfortunately, thanks to the snow day on Monday and Good Friday, I only got 3 hours of child-free time this week. It’s been brutal. I decided to spend it writing instead of going to the grocery store. This was a glorious decision and a terrible mistake all at the same time. While yes, I did accomplish a huge amount of work during my time, I also had to take two little boys to Wegmans after school today. And no, we didn’t get the race car basket, so it was the worst. Minor whining in the kid seat up front, Major hanging on for a ride in the back (but jumping on and off, leaning backward and forward to upset the balance in the cart)… awesome.

Worth it? The jury is still out.

And don’t get me started on the $10 organic apples I just bought like a buffoon…

No matter what, I can at least say that I got this blog post done today. I will get up from this desk to cook dinner (cheese steaks and fries tonight because I have a craving. Why yes, I do know how to make french fries from scratch! Don’t you know me by now, Dear Reader?), then come back upstairs to get laundry put away, keep plugging away at my freelancing work and transcribing the fiction I wrote today into my file. Two chapters down, at least another 23 to go!

Or maybe I’ll have a glass of wine and go to bed? Hahaha…

It’s Wednesday, Dear Reader. Are you exhausted, too? We’ve gotta finish strong! Stay with me! Keep going!

I’ll see you Friday for some sort of Quiet Thoughts. I hope! 🙂


The both of them. Gonna destroy the world, I swear!


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