Thursday, October 28, 2010

Five Questions for My Children

Here are five questions I would like to ask my children.  Because I don't get it.  But it wouldn't matter if I did ask them about this stuff because all the same things would just happen anyway.

How is it that you don't understand how car doors work?
When it's time to get in the car, why do you grab the door handles and attempt to wrench them off the car 42 times per minute? Given the slowness with which you got ready to leave the house, how is it possible that you can yank on the door handle with the approximate rapidity of a hummingbird beating its wings? At least three times a day I drive you somewhere and we have the exact same conversation every single time and it always ends with me shrieking: "FOR THE LOVE OF PETE! WAIT FOR THE CLICK! DON'T TOUCH THE HANDLE TIL YOU HEAR THE CLICK! GAHHHHHHHHH!"

Also, when asked to close a car door - why is it that you're unable to use anything close to the approxiomate force required to actually close it.  Either it looks closed but isn't - causing me to have unlock it, re-close it and then re-lock it or risk finding a dead battery in the morning.  Or you slam it closed like there were snarling, rabid wolves on the other side about to leap on you and eat you for dinner. But there are no wolves. So I don't understand.


Whuck about your socks?
Why are there socks scattered across my floor? Why am I forever picking up filthy, sweaty kid socks? Are socks supposed to drift across the hardwood like tumbleweeds in your world?  How is it you can remember to put away shoes but not socks?  How do socks end up on the dining room table?  In my purse?  Under the front passenger seat in the van?  In the guest room closet?  Under the stove?  Why are they always turned halfway inside out? And out of curiosity - how do you get the bottom of all your socks to turn black, son?  Is it difficult? Is it because you break the Cardinal Rule of Socks ("Don't Go Outside in Socks and No Shoes") when I'm not looking?


Why do you have to act like mini-litigators all the time?
Why do you even try and argue about certain things?  Your father is a lawyer.  This family does not need any more of them.  My toddler says "NO" to every question you ask her.  Is this blue? NO. Is this the number 3? NO.  Did you go shopping with Daddy today? NO. And the big kids pick the oddest things to fight with me about.  It is not possible for the new Karate Kid to fight the old Karate Kid because the old Karate Kid is actually 49 years old. Then they yell at me because they don't believe that he is older than Daddy. They think I'm just making it up because no one is actually that old.

What is going on in there?
What do you do in the bathroom that takes so long? For the love of Maude, you were sent in there to brush your teeth and 23 minutes later you walk out with the Little Bear toothpaste telling me that you can't get the cap off. Have you been trying to get the cap off the toothpaste this whole time? Did a bipartisan dance troupe of elves trained by Randy Jackson sneak in and entertain you by clogging for 22 of these minutes? Did you watch an imaginary TV show in that time? Did you fall asleep while peeing?

Because here's my other question, you say that you went to the bathroom and yet I did not hear a flush... 

Seriously, what do you do with them?
We hate to beat a dead horse with this, but WHAT THE HELL HAPPENS TO YOUR UNDERPANTS? 
The boy's underpants disappear to the degree that we have had to add a "Size 6 Spiderman Underwear" line item to the family budget.  Meanwhile, my daughter's underpants seem to multiply in the wash (do they reproduce when they get wet - like Gremlins?) so that each load of laundry contains approximately 37 pairs of pink and purple My Little Pony drawers.

(c)Herding Turtles, Inc. 2009 - 2010

48 comments:

  1. Obviously there's some kind of Law of Conservation of Underwear going on there. As the boy's divide their numbers, the girl's multiply.

    My kids have trouble putting their shoes away. (I don't even want to talk about socks.) My 4 year old actually has about a dozen mismated shoes in her shoe basket. Their mates are all lost somewhere in our house. Where? Darned if I know. I can't find them, nor all the missing pairs belonging to my 6 year old (who is also the one who's always losing pants...) My 8 year old is managing to keep up with her shoes at the moment.

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  2. I was reading this to my husband and by the underwear part we were both laughing so hard we were crying and I had to stop a few times to catch my breath before I could finish.

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  3. LOL on the car door! Mine does that and starts shrieking like I'm going to drive off and leave him there or something. Neighbors must love us at 7:30 in the morning.

    Same with the bathroom thing. Getting dressed is my issue though. I actually bribed him other morning, telling him if he got dressed in 5 minutes he'd get some M&Ms (he's 7 so this is more than enough time) 15 minutes later he was still in his pajama bottoms organizing his markers on his desk and didn't understand why he couldn't get his M&Ms.

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  4. omg...the sock monster lives in my house too! wth? I find them crushed between the cushions of the couch...waded up like little balls. I sometimes catch my little wonder taking them off and tossing them high in the air and as far as he can chuck them. No matter HOW MANY TIMES I tell him that mommy does NOT like it....he still does it! I have a drawer full of matchless socks. I somehow keep thinking that one day they will materialize out of thin air...or the elves will return them. Whichever.

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  5. LMAO.

    God I love you. Although I also hate you. Because I want to be as funny as you and I am so. not. that. funny.

    Thank you for this. The socks like tumbleweed? LOVE

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  6. I know where your son's underpants are! They're hanging from the bushes, trees, and the fence in my backyard. I have been WONDERING how my one little boy managed to deposit so many undies! Now I know the answer: Spiderman Underpants MIGRATE.

    --kate in Michigan

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  7. You are spying on me again! Love this whole thing. The car nonsense has to be one of the universal truths of motherhood, a rite of passage as it were:

    http://www.mamajulep.com/2010/01/every-time-we-get-in-car.html

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  8. Okay you two, today you described my house to a T...to a TEEE I say! Every single thing, right down to the Little Bear toothpaste! Okay, my husband isn't a lawyer, but everything else is same-y same-y.

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  9. ummm...car door thing? When you get an answer let me know. My youngest is 13 and she always tries to open the door before it is unlocked. She usually grabs it at the EXACT second I unlock and hers stays locked. Then she gives me that sheepish look and shrugs her shoulders. AND my husband does the same thing. He's 52. Just sayin'.

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  10. Thank you... that got my morning off to a smashing start. LOVE the car door. Really?? I don't drive a CHEVY! Of course that reference is completely lost on the wee varmints because they don't remember the days of my Grandmother who drove a Chevy tank. Or my mother's Magnum of which she slammed my foot in on more than one occasion as I crawled into the back seat that had no seat belt..

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  11. I would like to say it gets better as they get older, but no. Mine are 14, 12, and 8 and the socks are going to be what finally drives me to the looney bin. I found socks in the pony tail holder bin the other day.... WHUCK??? They were left there by my 12 yr. old! And don't even get me started on the pony-tail holders. I don't have a line item for spiderman underwear, I have one for hairbrushes and pony tail holders. How in the world can a house full of girls and 6 hair brushes, and yet we can never find a hair brush or a pony-tail holder every. stinkin. morning.

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  12. This is so us, too. I especially like when I find Littlest Pet Shop critters *inside* the socks, because now they are "sleeping bags."

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  13. Exactly! I ask the same questions, but all of mine start with "Sweetie, help me understand . . ." and they all include a visible twitch.

    "Sweetie, help me understand how a gifted, straight-A student like yourself would leave a half-eaten candy bar on the floor of her closet?!" ::twitch::

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  14. Loved the sock part! My 15 year old (15 for Maude's sake!!) still leaves his socks scattered about. As a matter of fact, I just passed a pair on the den floor this morning. If he doesn't break this habit I am envisioning a college dorm room with a carpet of socks. At least I won't have to look at it.

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  15. When I'm laughing so hard at RfM that my neck hurts a little and the kids ask, "Mommy, why are you waffing?" I just say, "I'm laughing at YOU, Sweetie. I'm laughing at YOU."

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  16. Ours in the car door thing too. And the house door. I say to them 217 times a day... way "Uh, I LOCK that door...no point reefing on it...I.locked.it. No matter how many frikken times you whale on it, it is not going to open! Wait.until.I.unlock.it and then you can go inside" FUHHH!k.

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  17. The socks, oh the socks!!! My daughter who is almost 15 years old must have 100 socks. You notice I did not say "pairs" of socks. I used to go through them periodically looking for matches so that she wouldn't look like she had a mother that didn't care. Notice the phrase... used to. I do not care anymore because she does not care. Yesterday she had on one hot pink sock and one white sock. It does not bother her that they are different thicknesses, different brands, different heights. It makes me cringe. All I have to say is WHUCK?!?!

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  18. Are you sure you're not talking about my kids? Because the car door thing? That's them ALL.THE.TIME. Bathroom? My five year old every day. Underwear? Both my boys. Socks? Found one on the kitchen counter this morning and a *dirty* pair in the console of the van yesterday. Seriously? When and for what purpose did you take them off and manage to get out of the van without me noticing? Arguing about whether the sky is indeed blue? Even yesser!!! Thank you for being two of the most awesome mom friends in this bat s**t crazy world and being able to put into words everything that the rest of us go through. Always love both of your posts, but yesterday and today? My life in words that I cannot seem to find the wittiness to describe the way that you do. <3

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  19. The car doors are definitely a universal problem. My van has power doors -- all the kids have to do is push a button to close them -- and yet I often find my older two buckled in with their door still wide open. Whuck? Are we driving with the doors open today?

    I have found a semi-solution for the socks: charge a fee for picking up other people's laundry. My fee is $1 per item (making a pair of socks worth $2). So far, there has been no exchange of money, because I'm nice enough to warn them...but they always get an option: "you need to put your socks in your laundry basket, or I will be happy to pick them up for you while you are at school." Uh-oh. Mommy also knows the combination to your cash box. This whole transaction can take place without your assistance. :-)

    As for the underwear, it may be time to have Hawk wear My Little Pony drawers. That would solve two problems at once! :-)

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  20. According to my sister my older brothers used to hide her underwear, bury it in the woods actually, so she would get in trouble for missing underwear.

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  21. Clearly...CLEARY...you need the put Hawk in My Little Pony Underpants. That will cause them to start disappearing and they will magically be replaced with the Spiderman ones. It's physics.

    Also he might need black socks. Just to see if he can turn the bottoms white. Science wants to know.

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  22. Car doors... yessssss... and how about knocking on the door or ringing the doorbell to the house before I get to unlock it. I keep telling them the stuffed animals ARE NOT going to open the door to let us in, and the fish and hamsters are contained and won't, either.

    And socks... and arguing... I swear, send all our kids to the UN and there would never, ever, be another world conflict or unresolved issue... 5 minutes and whoever caused the problem would cave.

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  23. At least I have confirmation now that it's not just my kids! What IS it with the socks?! And the pointless lawyering? And...yeah, just all that other stuff? And my new question for the last couple of weeks: What makes you think that you can run a bath for yourself WITHOUT bothering to put the plug down? They just sit in there, with the water running right down the drain, staring at me like frightened and confused squirrels.

    And yeah, I'm right there with you, Amy - one of them gets STRAIGHT A's, for the love of Pete! How do both things happen in the same brain?

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  24. uhmm. . . Ralph Macchiato is 49? He's older than my husband? How did THAT happen?? Need wine . . .

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  25. OMG! OMG! The socks! Still can't breathe... laughing too hard!

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  26. OMG... I.love.it. I need all those answers too. Except the multipling undies. Ours just disappear. And the car door? She is 3 and can't open it herself most of the time. But she tries anyway. Soon I will have no handles on the outside of my car doors because she insists on yanking on it repeatedly.

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  27. OK Here's the question I ask my boys every night... WHY IN THE HECK DO YOU INSIST ON DRINKING THE DIRTY, MIRKY BATH WATER YOUR BUTT AND JUNK ARE STEWING IN?? Everynight... maybe it's a vitamin deficiency??

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  28. So true!! Especially #4...I think the same situation occurred in our house last night at bedtime. It's all very surprising, because I can guarantee you that there isn't anything entertaining in our bathroom!!

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  29. There are 3 (mis-matched) toddler socks on my couch right now. And one on the TV. Whuck?!

    I think the most awesome ass-kicking team of all time would be old and young karate kids paired WITH Kate and Lydia! They could teach you to wax on/off and you can teach them to square up.

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  30. We needed to move the recliner the other day and had to take it apart first. When we pulled the back off out fell two kid socks. One girl sock and one boy sock. No wonder I have a huge pile of mismatched socks.

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  31. Lovin' this post, ladies! Been there, still there...may NEVER get out of there...sigh.

    Here's our latest: My 7th grader was "forced" to go with me to pick up the 5th grader from an after school activity..."aww, Mom...not fair". Anyway, while we're waiting in the car, another mommy pulls up and we're talking through the windows...the boy feels it is now necessary to turn UP the radio and was totally offended that I then chose to turn it off. Insert more harumphing here. So, a few minutes pass and suddenly this loud male voice starts speaking and I look all around and think that he's turned the radio back on, but NO! He's decided it would be brilliant to play with the On Star buttons! Mind you, we don't subscribe to On Star (never had), so we don't touch those buttons. He just couldn't resist. Of course, there is no OFF button, so I'm freakin' out. I turn off the car, but it's still talking...ackkkkk! Anyway, he's laughing hysterically, and so is my friend who looks at me and says "I sure hope the car will start again..." WHUCK??? Never even considered that! Thank goodness, it did, but sheesh...really?
    When asked "why"...the boy said he was bored and curious. ackkk. Next time he stays home!

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  32. Re: Car Door
    My question for my three girls is:
    "Why can you open the car door when I am driving down the parkway, BUT when we pull into the driveway... I have to open it for you???

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  33. Do you have my house wired with cameras? Because this is my life. These are my questions. These are my children. The car door thing? Oh my heck, I just want to smack them!

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  34. My pet peeve is the front door. We get home, and I have seven children standing between me and the locked front door. Each one has to yank on the handle to try to open the door while I'm standing there with the door key in my hand telling them if they will just move out of the way, I will unlock it!

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  35. I told my 7 yr old to put his socks in the whites hamper and he answered back, they are actually beige, mommy. Thank you south carolina red clay.

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  36. oh, the socks. my HUSBAND does this is. without fail there are 2-3 pairs of his nasty, crusty socks in the living room at any given moment. the little ones actually pick them up ('cause i got smart after the first one & trained'em real good.) and i, too have a bag devoted to unmatched socks, hoping in vain for their mates to return.

    and i know what they're doing in the bathroom - caught mt 8 yr old just making faces and staring at herself in the mirror - apparently THAT'S what she does every. single. time. i tell her to brush her teeth.

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  37. Wow, so all kids are as annoying as mine??? Fantastic. I have taken to yelling "hands in the air" before I try to unlock the car doors. It annoys them but they have proven time and time again that they need the reminder to keep their hands off the damn door until AFTER the click.

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  38. Oh for the love of Maude you guys kill me! By the time I got to the part about going to brush your teeth for 23 minutes I was laughing so hard I couldn't see the screen. You know, the one where no sound comes out and tears are streaming down your face? Because THE.EXACT.SAME.THING. happens in my house on a daily basis! Next time instead of getting mad I'll imagine Obama and Bush dressed as elves doing a kick line and the kids will for sure put me in the nut house. Hmmm, wonder if they have wine there....?

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  39. Huh. I thought it had been a little more chaotic and hectic at my house, now I know that you're living here too. Every. Single. One. of these things happens at my house. Every damn one.

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  40. OMG! Enough with the sock situation! I'm ready to start making my children wear flip flops year round!

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  41. The socks! I just don't understand it. We had to add a "socks" line to our budget. My son HATES socks so he hides them everywhere and I'm always finding old dirty socks in places I couldn't even think possible, like the ones on the fridge ... seriously. Right now I have like 15 socks without a pair so I decided to only buy the exact same old navy socks in blue so there's no more missing pairs. They are all the same, all dark blue and as a plus they don't get black :) (or I can't see it) haha.

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  42. Okay - just shopped at Justice the other day - they are selling mismatched socks and mittens - on purpose!!!

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  43. in the same manner as your kids disbelief over the karate kid's elderly status...my kids did not believe me that the terminator is governor of california. even when i showed them pictures. i think they think i was scamming them with photoshop...but i am wondering who they think i know on tv news who would keep such a scam going. they finally believe me-once they became preteens and realized that mom is certainly not cool enough to know anyone on tv...Caryn

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  44. omg I am crying, I'm laughing so hard. I'm SOOO glad it's not just my daughter....!!!!

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  45. I swear I'm taking notes as I read through all your entries...!
    I've been steadily working my way through them over the past 2 weeks, occasionally sharing your writing on my FB profile.
    My first daughter is 18 and out of the house, but her little sister is only 14 months old. (how crazy was I to think starting over was a good idea?)
    They are night and day...#1 - quiet, calm, sat still.
    #2 - screaming drama baby, climbing into everything, grabbing everything, head-butting, smacking, etc. Then she smiles and throws her arms around your neck and you melt...

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  46. I sent my 4-yr old in to brush his teeth before bed. 10 minutes later I found him completely naked, standing on the step-stool, and lifting one leg sideways up in the air to look at his junk, then lower the leg and lift the other one - to get get a different perspective I guess. Whuck?

    And people wonder why I threw out all the baby/toddler guides. They just don't cover this stuff! On another note, my mom has a baby guide from the 70's that covers gunshot wounds. Super whuck!

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  47. I'm super bummed that I found your site only a month or so ago. I wish I would have known where to go when my first was little to get the laugh until you can't breath and are peeing your pants truth! I always thought something was wrong with him! (and some days still do hahaha). But now that I read these entries from years ago, I'm glad that I'm not the only mom wanting to know the answers to these kinds of questions! Because they don't answer you when you ask them! They look at you like you have 3 heads! The car door, the socks, the whuck is going on in the bathroom for 23 minutes? HAHAHAHAHA So. Freakin. True.

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  48. The boys underwear morphs into little girl underwear when it gets wet. Its a weird marketing gimmick. Just like that one sock out of every pair that disintegrates after the third wash/dry cycle so you have to buy socks all the time. Haven't you ever wondered where all the dryer lint comes from?

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