Tuesday, September 13, 2016

We are the Winners!

"I just can't believe we won," Senia Mae said, both hands holding on as she peeked over the tailgate at the folded green and metallic pile in the truck bed. Yes, we were the lucky winners. I had totally forgotten that we had placed a silent auction bid at
Shenanigan's last week until I got the call this morning.

Who would actually buy that? I laughed to myself as we walked up to the brightly colored double dog stroller during the Shucking for Shamrocks fundraiser Labor Day Weekend. I was more interested in the tour posters signed by the Indigo Girls or the sterling silver wrist cuff with the turquoise cross inlay, but the Best Pet Double Dog Stroller seemed like a useless item that would just take up space in the garage. My six year old daughter thought differently. She was instantly mesmerized.

"Oh, Mama, look at this!" she said enthusiastically. "Birdie and Luna would just love it!" She glided her hand over the mesh zipper enclosure looking longingly at the device that would basically force the dogs into going everywhere with her. They may love it if they were miniature Yorkies, but Birdie and Luna were both twenty pounds and usually ran the roads with us. For Senia Mae's sake they might tolerate the stroller, but they definitely wouldn't love it.

"I don't know," I said trying to guide away from the Best Pet.

"Mama, please, it would be just perfect. We NEED this!" We definitely didn't need this, I don't know if anyone really needed this, but it was cute. I looked at the sign up sheet and only one other person had placed a bid. It was still early in the auction, so I thought if I bid $5 over the first offer I would certainly be outdone by some other crazy person yearning for a double dutch pooch pusher.

I heard giggling on the other end of the line as the girl read the auction item we had won. "You are the winners of the Best Pet double dog stroller!"

"Please tell me you're kidding," I mocked sarcasm. "I didn't win the tour of the winery or the barbeque grill?"


"My daughter is going to be beside herself when she hears the news that we are the winners of such a major award," I said.

"Well I'm glad it went to you then."

"At least now the poor dogs won't be shoved into her doll carriage." I said. "I'll pick it up today so she'll be surprised after school."

She spotted it in the back of the truck as soon as we pulled into the driveway and her look of pure joy made a useless purchase completely worth it.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Mama, Guess What I Learned at School Today?

It's that time of year again, the kids are back to school learning reading, writing, arithmetic, and other forms of education that we as parents seem to never know about. The other day Senia Mae screamed from the bathroom as I was in the kitchen preparing her peanut butter and jelly for lunch.

"Mama, Mama, I've got lice," she shrieked.

"What? How do you know it's lice?" I yelled through the house.

"The nurse at school showed us a video yesterday."

"Are you sure it's lice?" I asked nervously, trying to remember if we still had the special shampoo from last year when the little critters were running rampant at school.

"Yeah, I saw it flying around the sink in the bathroom."

"Honey, lice don't fly." I said as I walked back to investigate. "Show me what you are calling lice."

"See?" she pointed to a minute black fly that landed on the mirror of the medicine cabinet. "Lice." From the enthusiasm in her voice it almost sounded as if she was proud to be the carrier of lice.

"That's a fruit fly. Remember, I've been trying to catch them since we found that rotten potato in the kitchen?"

"Oh, yeah," she said.

"You probably shouldn't be parading around claiming you have lice. People kind of freak out over that," I said.

"Oh, OK." she said, moving onto the next conversation before I had time to check her scalp!


Today's hot tub conversation started with:

"So Ms. Purdy, the school counselor, came into class yesterday. Guess what she talked to us about?" Senia Mae waited for us to guess.

"I don't know," I said.

"What?" Kim asked.

"Concussions and empathy," Senia Mae said proudly. "Mama, what is a concussion?"

"Well it's a traumatic brain injury," I said, thinking how advanced the school counseling system was to be teaching concussion education in the first grade. It was kickoff week in college football and I planned on sporting my pumpkin orange Tennessee Vols shirt that Saturday. "The counselor was talking about concussions?"

"No, that's not what it was," Senia Mae said.

"I did think concussions and empathy was a strange mix," I said more to Kim than Senia Mae. "Although it is very important to have empathy for people suffering from concussions. Those injuries are serious and can be permanent."

"Was the word caring?" Kim asked.

"Ummm, no, I don't think so," Senia Mae said.

"How about love and empathy?" I asked.

"That doesn't sound familiar."

"Well what did she talk about?" I asked.

"Like how to be nice and care about each others feelings."

"Oh... did she talk about compassion and empathy?" Kim asked.

"Yeah, that's it! Compassion and empathy!" Senia Mae said. "Mama, what is compassion?" and the conversation started all over again!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Does Mae Mae's Mom Got It Going On?

Just for the record, I'm no Mrs. Robinson. I know my limitations, I realize that I am in my early forties and happen to be stumbling upon my much anticipated twenty five year high school reunion. But today, for a brief moment, I felt what she felt.

It had been a long day, the first after the Labor Day Weekend. To help myself feel better I decided to wear something that screamed summer, a pink and orange above the knee prAna razorback dress, because even though it is September, the temperatures here are still climbing into the mid nineties and every year I mourn the end of the season.

My theory has always been that hard days don't feel as bad if you know you look good and for some reason it seemed like I just couldn't catch up with my schedule. When I finally I stepped out of the office a few minutes after six, I still had no idea what I was serving for dinner, thinking I would just run into Kroger and it would come to me like a thought cloud above my head.

For once I didn't have a six year old hanging off my hip or droopy mom hair and I might have actually passed for a bustling twenty something double stepping it into the dairy to pick up some half and half for tomorrow morning's coffee. As I was trying to get through the milk aisle I got stuck behind another mom who was equally as annoyed that Kroger was sold out of the half gallon creamer cartons. That's when I noticed I was being sized up and down by a trendy young man on the other side of the refrigerator section.

A second earlier he had stepped back to let me pass and I caught him peeking at me while I opened and closed the glass doors. As I walked on past, I heard the woman call out to him and realized that he was her son. He had stepped away from her to make it appear to me like he was shopping on his own, not with his mom. I tried to contain my laughter as I walked away, realizing that he couldn't have been older than nineteen or twenty.

I can't remember the last time I turned the head of a teenager and even though I am probably old enough to be his mom, that boy put a spring in my step and was the highlight of my day. Walking out of Kroger with a satisfied smile on my face, I felt myself put on a little strut as the words to "Stacy's Mom Has Got it Going On" ran through my mind!