Posts tagged as:

things kids say

Many would be mightily disappointed by the misleading title of this post. My apology.

By Tardis, I mean the awesome Tardis fleece blankets found on ThinkGeek. Each of the boys got one for Christmas. I was blue with envy as soon as I touched it. So soft and fuzzy.

Tardis blanket

AND it’s bigger on the inside! My son who’s holding the blanket in the picture is 6’2″. I decided to keep the two extra ones back home that I had ordered for my Whovian friends. I of course promptly forgot about them. The blankets. Not my friends.

Since Monday, Chicago along with the rest of the Midwest fell into the evil grip of Polar Vortex (Great name by the way for 1. a band, 2. a Bond villain, 3. an X-Men member, 4. a super powerful blender). I have proof:

20 below zero


This was why this happened at Lake Michigan shore:

Chicago ice town

Photo credit: Getty Images


Our school districts were closed for two days and the kids were suffering from cabin fever. As an argument was about to break out over who owned the Tardis blanket that’s downstairs (as opposed to the one upstairs), and I was about to step in and declare that it’s, surprise, surprise, MINE! I remembered and brought out the extra two Tardis blankets. Peace was restored. The boys and I wrapped ourselves in the deep blue plushiness and walked around the house like royalty.

Naturally, they’re late getting ready for bed again.

“Seriously. I am the worst parent.” I added, after I threatened to really enforce discipline this time if they did not go upstairs straightaways.

My 11-year-old boy turned to look at me in the eye. “You are the best parent,” he said quietly, “from a child’s perspective.”

So. Yup. There you have it. Definitely the worst parent.



Story of My Life

March 16, 2013

in random

One of my 10-year-old’s favorite conversation starters with me is the fact that I have a Ph.D. in theatre (and from a very prestigious program and school too. Please allow me to brag. I kind of need a little bit ego booster lately. In addition, I am reading Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In and felt vindicated when she said that women do not share with others our accomplishments often enough for fear of not being liked. But of course, I digress)

Perhaps because children are more honest and straightforward, they instinctively know the most vulnerable place to aim? Or perhaps my child, Mr. Monk, is a future David Frost in the making. Either way, he has a talent of asking me questions that make me feel cornered. I have no answer to any of them, or perhaps I simply don’t want to answer. Afraid to.

“And you are not using your degree at all? Then why did you get it?”

“Isn’t it a waste?”

“Do you remember anything?”

“Is anything that you learned useful?”

“What good is your Ph.D. degree then?”

“Why didn’t you do something with it? Why didn’t you fulfill your potential?” Yup, he said that.

We would be doomed if our kids ever turn the table and ask us to assess our lives with the encouraging words that we use to inspire them.

“Have you reached for the stars and followed your dreams?”

“Have you lived your life to the fullest?”

“Why not?”

And we’d have to bite our tongue.

Finally, after much pestering which at that moment felt more like missile attacks, I looked him in the eye and confessed, “The reason why I refrain from answering these questions of yours, about why I did not do more with my life, is because anything that I want to say, if I am being honest, may be misinterpreted as I regret having ‘this life’.”

How apropos then that soon after our unavoidable heart-to-heart, we moved everything out from the basement and I decided that it’s time I threw away the research material for my dissertation.




The box contains three years of my life and more than ten years of secret self-delusion that I am a research scholar/academic/intellectual at large.

Farewell to secret double life that never was. I only wish that I could have set it ablaze to send it off in style instead of unceremoniously dumping it into the recycling bin.

Story of my life.



Bad mommy confession: I hate playing board games. I still have horrible memories of spending hours playing Monopoly that would not end, and of course I went into bankruptcy half way through the game followed by a streak of bad lucks. Five hours later I was exhausted and bitter. That’s why even though my 9-year-old has been begging me to play the game of Life for weeks, I did not grant him this one tiny wish until this afternoon.

And, as you could guess, I am glad I did and we had great fun playing it.

Things I learned from playing the Game of Life:

1. You start out with a bank loan of $100,000 if you choose the “College Career” path.

2. Teacher’s salary sucks because it starts out at 40K and maxes out at 70K.

3. See above. College Career does not necessary pay, unless you are a doctor or a lawyer. But since you have no idea which career path you would land in — a card is randomly drawn, you are better off going on the “regular career” path.

4. Being an entertainer has great potential of making a steady, 6-figure, income. I am sold!

5. Spending a lot of money buying a flashy house does not get you anything in the end. You get to sell your house back to the bank for the exact same amount of money that you paid for.

6. See above. A double-wide RV costs 300K. Therefore I am not sure why I traded my starter home, a log cabin, up for a RV. “It’s just for bragging rights, mom. You are so dumb.”

7. My kids are risky gamblers: They are not allowed into any casinos. I am submitting their names and pictures and retina scan data to the Secret Casino Bouncer Club (there is one right?) so they would be barred from entering any casino.

8. I set out playing the game determined to NOT get married. But I was dealt the card so I had to bite the bullet (or lie in it or something). With lots of whining.

“Mom, get a pink one! Be a rebel!” My oldest encouraged me.

“Oh, that would be weird.” My youngest said, unsurely.

“Well, that’s a good idea. We should represent all different types of families!” I put another pink pin in my car. So in this game I was in a same-sex marriage, and my wife and I ended up having three children (with two of them being twins).

I did have to apologize (to nobody in particular) when I mumbled, “I wish my wife is good at raising kids because I ain’t doing all that.”

See? Gender roles. I can’t get pass the stereotypical thinking even in my pretend Life. Ugh.



Easter Bunny no more

April 8, 2012 no manual for parenting

Dear Easter Bunny, please accept our sincere apology for banishing you to the land of creepy holiday creatures where you will reign supreme I am sure. You were slayed when 9-year-old Mr. Monk declared that he no longer believes in Easter Bunny. Rejoice! The Husband took the boys to Wal-Mart last night because I had […]


Old Soul

October 12, 2011 no manual for parenting

My 8 year old, Mr. Monk, is on a “Back to the Future” kind of mission lately. He’s acquired two rotary phones earlier this year for a buck each at a garage sale. Probably my fault for I might have explained to him, with too much excitement, how we used to hate folks’ phone numbers […]


What caused time space discontinuum…

September 26, 2011 no manual for parenting



Raised by My Child

September 2, 2011 no manual for parenting

  “All children alarm their parents, if only because you are forever expecting to encounter yourself.”   — Gore Vidal   This is going to make me sound like an awful mother, ok, more than usual. I know many of you who are kind enough to read my blog on a regular basis adore my precocious youngest child. […]


The Ice Cream Index

August 8, 2011 Making sure you know I read the Economist so you know I'm not dumb, just obnoxious

Earlier today I learned of these numbers today from Mature Landscaping: Salary of retired US Presidents ……………$180,000 FOR LIFE Salary of House/Senate ……………………..$174,00​0 FOR LIFE Salary of Speaker of the House …………….$223,500 FOR LIFE Salary of Majority/Minority Leaders …… $193,400 FOR LIFE Average Salary of a teacher ……………….. $40,065 Average Salary of Soldier DEPLOYED IN […]


The Lesser of Two Evils

August 6, 2011 no manual for parenting

Yet another interesting conversation with my 8-year-old that makes me worry… [In the car] Mr. Monk: Mom? Me [Distracted by This American Life on NPR]: Huh? Mr. Monk: What’s the drug that starts with an M? Me [Paying attention now]: Eh… You mean Methamphetamine? [Crap! How did he know about Meth?!] Mr. Monk: You know what […]