If your obsession with electronics is giving you a head start on a lucrative career in electrical engineering, Mommy is 1000% supportive. And she definitely appreciates that you helped her discover 90% of her iPad’s functionality. She just wishes you could at least pretend to be interested in the mountain of age-appropriate toys lying untouched on the living room floor. Unfortunately, these days, your ideal plaything meets at least two of the following criteria: 1) Has lots of buttons. 2) If broken, will cost Mommy lots of money and/or threaten her job security. 3) Ceases to function when dropped in the toilet. Mommy thought Full House had finally jumped the shark when a pivotal storyline involved Mary Kate/Ashley Olsen repeatedly calling Tokyo, until you actually started racking up long-distance charges on Mommy’s phone. And now Mommy’s learned that the hours she wasted trolling Toys ‘R Us and Wal-Mart aisles for a plastic model that would appease you should have been spent downloading the latest and greatest apps for babies. How did Mommy miss this memo? Now you’ll have to burn the midnight oil to catch up to the other 1-year-olds, who can already read, sign and speak Mandarin, and Mommy’s depressed that your cohort will render her generation obsolete by 2020.
DRINK: Creamy Caramel Appletini. 1 oz. Caramel Irish Cream. 1/2 oz Green Apple Flavoured Vodka. 1/2 oz Green Apple schnapps. Shake with ice and strain into a martini glass. Garnish with an apple slice and caramel. When life hands you Apples™…
The wonderful thing about spending $22 on a pair of baby chinos is that you outgrow them before we even leave the mall. At first Mommy was proud of your growth chart results as the pediatrician revealed your percentile for height and weight. Now the only thing growing faster than you is the mountain of outgrown onesies causing a fire hazard in the basement. She can’t give them away in case she has a second, even though “One and Done” is the Dr. Seuss book Mommy is considering ghost-writing. In an effort to cull back on trips to Babies R Us, Mommy has been cramming you in to clothes that no longer fit, just like Christina Aguilera. At this rate you’ll soon be wearing Daddy’s clothes. Mommy hopes late-century modern becomes a fashion trend ASAP because Daddy’s closet is the wardrobe that time forgot and includes every striped button down sold at The Gap in the 90s. Your growth spurts are giving you major mood swings and you no longer sleep through the night, but Mommy is happy you’re growing and healthy – plus you look rad in that oversized argyle skull sweater. For the next five minutes.
DRINK: A tall drink of water.
Mommy’s lucky if she makes it to her annual physical once every three years. But now every other month she’s trucking you to the pediatrician, forcing her to confront some of her greatest maternal fears head on. Fear of side effects resulting from your vaccinations. Fear of that rocking horse circa 1952 in the waiting area. Even the 25-year-old receptionist with the perma-frown frightens the hell out of her. Mommy honestly can’t think of a more physically and emotionally taxing way to spend a Friday morning. And she’s not even the one getting a needle shoved into her thighs. After an excruciating hour in the jam-packed waiting area (spent desperately trying to keep you from manhandling the toddler with the hacking cough), Mommy’s too drained to remember all the burning questions she prepared. Like should she have called poison control when you drank some of your “No More Tears” baby shampoo during bath time last week, and will you still become a Rhodes Scholar if the only thing she can get you to eat for dinner lately is cheese? At least Mommy can satisfy her inner nerd with the height and weight percentile charts. Finally some pay off for those 3 a.m. feeds!
DRINK: The Doctor’s Order. 1 oz vodka, 4 oz orange juice, 2 oz Dr. Pepper. Enjoy with an apple and WebMD.
As if she doesn’t feel guilty enough when she leaves you for work every day, now Mommy’s got to TCB in a different time zone. After an embarrassing incident at security involving her breast pump, she makes it to her destination and compulsively checks her phone in case of an emergency, spending your university tuition in roaming charges. A day of meetings is followed by a night of client-schmoozery, but all she wants to do is jump on Skype and judge what outfit Daddy’s put you in (please God not that Trish Stratus tracksuit again). When she finally gets back to her room to deflate the Dolly Partons her colleagues have been ogling, it pains her to flush that liquid gold down the drain because anything more than 3oz of breastmilk is on the no-fly list. At the airport, Mommy hits up the duty-free to get Daddy a cheap bottle of scotch, which he’ll need after his foray into single parenthood. Following some light turbulence where she was convinced she was going to die in a fiery crash so she hastily wrote out a will on the back of her boarding pass, Mommy arrives home to find you sound asleep and not missing any limbs. It takes every fiber in Mommy’s being not to wake you. It’s the one time she hopes you won’t sleep through the night.
DRINK: The In-Flight cocktail. 1 oz Skyy vodka, 1 oz crème de cassis, dash of simple syrup, muddled raspberries. Combine with a squeeze of fresh lemon and top with champagne. Garnish with a swizzle stick, cocktail napkin and a child kicking your seat.
Teething is the Get Out of Jail Free card bestowed to babies. Up at midnight, 2 am and 5 am for a week straight, after you’d finally learned to sleep through the night? It must be teething. Bit Sofia’s finger at swim class? It must be teething. Your entire breakfast ended up on the wall? It must be teething. Bad case of baby PMS? It must be teething. If you actually sprouted a tooth every time Mommy and Daddy uttered those four words, you could buy the family the 2017 Dodge Grand Caravan with the jackpot you’ve got coming from the tooth fairy. Mommy only wishes the misery ended when those pearly whites poked through your little gums. Unfortunately, even though they are merely stand-ins, those baby teeth need brushing – a process which goes down something like this. Mommy comes at you with the toothbrush. You and Mommy play tug of war with the toothbrush. Mommy wins because she’s bigger. Mommy attempts to pry your lips open long enough to run the brush at least once along your top and bottom gums. You let out a blood-curdling scream. Mommy loses because she has a headache. You lick the berry tooth gel off the brush and fling it under the couch. Mommy gives up and adds “baby gingivitis” to the ever-growing list of things that keep her up at night.
DRINK: White Cloud cocktail. 1 oz vodka, 1 oz white crème de cacao, 3 oz milk. Shake over ice and strain into a large highball glass over crushed ice. Your drink can be the perfect shade of white, even if your baby’s teeth can’t.
Before you were born, Sparky was the centre of Mommy and Daddy’s universe. Sparky was the Test Baby and was spoiled as such with free-range bison meat, monogrammed Alessi dishes and endless affection. Sparky had a Facebook page with funny status updates like “Chasing tail tonight, look out ladies” and “It’s Friday? Feels like Thursday.” Now poor Sparky is pet-sona non grata. This has led to some bad behaviour, including chewing all your baby toys and Mommy’s entire collection of Aldo shoes. Never mind the fact that Sparky completely failed as the Test Baby because we can’t just leave you for a night by turning on The National Geographic channel and putting out a bowl of kibble. Speaking of kibble, when you were crawling around yesterday Mommy caught you eating some off the kitchen floor. You won’t eat homemade, wholesome food but you will eat dehydrated cow testicles or whatever else is in pet chow. Not only is all the Ikea EKTORP either clawed or covered in spit up, but it seems both you and Sparky are in a literal pissing contest to mark your territory. These days, Mommy’s always cleaning up someone else’s pee: yours, Sparky’s and Daddy’s. Maybe when you grow up, you’ll have better aim.
DRINK (FOR CAT PEOPLE): The Cat’s Ass. 1 oz Blue Curacao, 1oz Triple Sec, 5 oz Cream Soda. Garnish with two cherries skewered on a toothpick. Which looks like a cat’s bum. Yeah, yeah, it’s juvenile humour, get used to it. Your child will at some point be in grade 3.
DRINK (FOR DOG PEOPLE): A Salty Dog. 1oz vodka, 3oz grapefruit juice. Rim the glass with salt and serve on a short leash. Between baby and Sparky, you’re always someone else’s bitch.
After a month of hearing “She’s so cute” or “What’s her name?”, even on the days she’s made a conscious effort to dress you in head-to-toe blue (or any clothing item adorned with a truck or a football) it’s clear the time has come for your ceremonial first haircut. Yes, Mommy’s been avoiding this day, but, no, it’s not because she’s using you as a pawn in any gender experiments (not that there’s anything wrong with that…) It’s just that, thanks to the booming baby industry, any milestone in your life always makes Mommy feel like she’s got I’m a new parent: Overcharge me tattooed across her forehead. Mommy considered taking matters into her own hands, until Daddy pointed out that anyone who outsources her own eyebrow maintenance shouldn’t be trusted with a pair of scissors and an infant’s head. So now Mommy finds herself at what is known in Yuppie Mommyland as a Children’s Hair Salon. It’s great to see that, despite your haircut costing twice what Daddy pays (and taking all of five minutes), the salon is equipped with some great family-friendly features like zero parking spots and bathrooms equipped without change tables (!!!) When Mommy asks the salon owner where she can change your diaper, she’s given a look like she’s just asked the Queen of England if she wouldn’t mind stashing your dirty diaper under her crown. At least Mommy leaves with an action shot and a First Haircut Certificate (hot tip: they’re available free online), both of which will get prime placement in the “Look! I’m really a great parent!” album that you’ll be forced to review on your 13th birthday. At which time, in a cruel twist of fate, Mommy will be begging you to cut your hair.
DRINK: High on Irony cocktail. 1/2 oz rum. 1/2 oz vodka. 2 oz fruit punch. 1 oz soda. 1/2 oz lime juice. Add ice and top with a cherry. Toast to Alanis Morissette and the famous chopping of her waist-long locks, circa 2003.
The time has come for Mommy to head back to work. Going to a place where people listen to her ideas, she is compensated financially for her efforts and she can enjoy a coffee without it going cold first because someone peed on her is, incredibly, filled with mixed emotion. When people ask her how she’s “handling the guilt” of leaving you, she goes into full Renée Zellweger as her face contorts into that of a screwed-up sad person. As she squats in the supply room pumping milk next to extra pens and industrial-grade Windex, she misses you like crazy (and misses midday naps, track pants and not trying) but she feels proud to support her family in a job she genuinely loves. No one asks Daddy how he handles the guilt. They only ask him when he has to “babysit”. There are some Mommies who quit thriving careers with expense accounts and elite status Aerogold to be stay-at-home Moms. These women are bat-shit crazy! Or they’re saints. Staying at home is the hard. Then again, balancing motherhood and a career means that no matter where you are, you should be somewhere else. Uh-oh. Here comes the ugly face again. Damn you, Zellweger!
DRINK: A Zombie. Juggling 3 a.m. feedings and 7 a.m. conference calls will make you feel like one. ½ oz dark rum, ½ oz cherry brandy, ½ oz light rum, 3 oz orange juice, 1 oz lemon juice, dash of grenadine. Shake over ice and serve in a highball glass after a long day of Trying To Be Awesome At Everything.