Flickr/Barbara L. Hanson
Nothing makes Mommy want to have a meltdown like watching you have a meltdown. Mommy wishes she could predict the onset of meltdowns so she could at least be emotionally prepared when they strike. Unfortunately, unlike tantrums which are usually provoked by something momentous like a piece of fuzz, meltdowns can appear out of nowhere and, usually, at the worst possible times. Like five minutes into a ten-hour road trip or when Mommy runs into her boss in the frozen food aisle. When a public meltdown happens, Mommy is faced not only with the challenge of trying to soothe you, but doing so while darting judgemental stares and responding to Mommy Perfect-Kid’s unsolicited parenting advice. Mommy wishes that she could learn how to rationalize with you during a meltdown, but she’s too busy battling avocado stains on the weekends to crack open The Happiest Toddler on the Block. Which is why, in desperate times, she is forced to resort to less sophisticated solutions, like cookies. Unfortunately, this hallmark of bad parenting, besides racking Mommy with guilt, only serves to delay the meltdown by approximately 12 minutes. Which is thankfully just enough time to make it to Grandma’s house for a spontaneous visit. YAY!
DRINK: The Super Wine. 1 bottle chilled white wine, 1 lime, 1 lemon, 1 orange, 1 cup sliced strawberries, 1 cup sliced peaches or apricots, ½ cup lemonade, 2 shots berry-flavored brandy, 2 cups ginger ale, sugar. Pour the wine into a large pitcher. Cut the citrus fruits into wedges and squeeze into the pitcher. Add berries, lemonade, brandy and sugar to taste. Complete with ginger ale and ice. A great beverage to serve at parties. (Or to consume, the minute Mommy Perfect-Kid shows up.)
Every day you’re becoming more of a real person, which, like all real people, means you’re quickly becoming an annoyingly opinionated asshole. Mommy used to be able to outfit you for success, a living Dress Me Up Prepster doll thanks to the toddler Ralph Lauren line. Now you stubbornly insist on layering a threadbare hand-me-down plaid shirt over rainbow-coloured Elmo pajamas tucked into oversized winter boots. Mommy is sure you’re going to end up on the “Hipster or Homeless?” tumblr, mainly because she’s moments away from uploading a pic. You have strong opinions about everything now, from what to eat (“COOKIE!” hurls gnocchi on the floor), where to hang out (“NANA’S HOUSE!” read: where the cookies are), and when not to go to bed (“PLAY iPHONE!” discovers new functionality Mommy didn’t know existed, yesterday you showed her the volume control can act as the camera shutter button? WHAT?!). As you slide into deeper levels of self-absorbtion daily, Mommy wonders if this is the preview to the teenage years or whether this just means you’ll go into the banking industry.
DRINK: Mommy’s Thyme to Shine: 1 tablespoon of sugar, 1 sprig of fresh thyme, 1 strawberry sliced, 5 oz lemon juice, 1 oz gin. Combine all ingredients and serve over ice. Use any remaining ice to wrap in a washcloth and put on your head to soothe the throbbing headache from hearing NOOOOOOOOOOO all friggin’ day.
Before you were born, Mommy used to live her life with as much spontaneity as possible. This meant only buying disposable (read: IKEA) furniture, never owning a plant, and booking 99% of her travel on lastminutevacations.com. Now Mommy has heart palpitations if the entire family’s Christmas flights aren’t booked by June. It’s not just travel that now requires an Excel workbook. Even a trip to the park demands hours of preparation. Mommy doesn’t understand why such a tiny little person requires SO much stuff to travel two blocks. After running up and down the stairs for an hour collecting your diapers, wipes, snacks, thermos, bib, sunscreen, clothes, extra clothes, hat, sunglasses, shoes and sand toys from 26 different areas in the house, Mommy finally understands why all parents eventually bite the bullet and build Little Tikes play structures/eyesores in their own backyards. Occasionally Mommy lives on the edge and takes you somewhere without a diaper bag. Unfortunately, this is akin to investing one’s life savings in a Ponzi scheme, except riskier.
DRINK: Manhattan. You can no longer fly there on a moment’s notice, but at least you can enjoy this classic cocktail without leaving home! 1.5 oz rye whiskey, 0.5 oz sweet vermouth, 2 dashes bitters, 1 cherry. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add all of the ingredients and a few ice cubes to a cocktail shaker and stir. Gently shake and strain into a chilled martini glass, garnished with a cherry.
Everybody is having a pleasant time at The Home Depot until we have to do something like not buy you a table saw and then it’s HELL HATH NO FURY LIKE A TWO YEAR OLD SCORNED. WATCH DEAR MOMMY AS I SCREAM BLOODY MURDER AND DEMAND SATISFACTION. OH THIS PUBLIC SHAMING ISN’T WORKING AND YOU STILL WON’T LET ME PLAY WITH A DEATH TRAP? WATCH AS I HURL MYSELF ON THE GROUND AND MY FACE GOES RED AND TEARS STREAM DOWN AND SNOT FLIES EVERYWHERE AND STRANGERS JUDGE YOUR PARENTING OUT LOUD. YOU CAN TRY TO GENTLY COAX ME OUT OF THIS BLIND RAGE BUT EVENTUALLY I WILL BARF ON YOU. EVEN THOUGH YOU SWORE YOU WOULD NEVER DO THIS YOU BRIBE ME WITH CANDY WHICH LEADS TO MORE JUDGEMENT FROM THE CASHIER AND AN EPIC SUGAR CRASH WHEN WE GET HOME. BA HA HA HA HA HA! Mommy has been coping with the stress of The Terrible Twos by doing calming yoga and journaling nightly. Just kidding, she’s having a drink.
DRINK: The Ginger Peachy. One shot of peach schnapps for your nerves served on ice with gingerale to settle your stomach. Have two and it won’t be so terrible.
Every inch of storage in Mommy’s house is bursting at the seams. Mommy has stopped inviting people over because she fears an innocent play date will turn into a hoarding intervention before your impressionable young eyes. Back when they were searching for real estate, Mommy and Daddy failed to account for the 500 square feet in additional storage they’d one day require for the baby gear, clothing and toys you’d outgrow before your second birthday. And Mommy’s convinced that the day she trucks it all to Goodwill will be the same day she discovers she’s pregnant with baby #2. And who knew Mommy’s wardrobe would one day include pre-baby wear, maternity wear, maternity-leave wear, back-to-work wear, and replacement wear for all her baby-stained wear? To be fair, you’re not totally to blame for Mommy’s storage woes. At some point, Mommy may want to consider parting ways with her teenage diaries, a decade’s worth of stolen office supplies, and her collection of Cindy Crawford VHS workout tapes. And it’s not like Daddy’s tacky lamp collection, bench press and Kegerator could be seamlessly incorporated into the living room décor when his Man Cave was dismantled to create your playroom.
DRINK: The Pack Rat. 2 oz vodka, 5 oz grapefruit juice. Fill a cocktail glass with ice and pour in vodka and grapefruit juice. Stir well. Serve one to Daddy before you gently suggest that he donate his tabletop Air Hockey game to charity.
Mommy wishes she was able to fully max out her vocabulary to appropriately colour how much being bashed in the head by a Mega Block REALLY FUCKING HURTS. But now that you’re repeating everything she says, she’s got to pull back the profanity full stop, even when it’s super warranted like when she can’t find her Starbucks card or Daddy forgets to put the seat down. Mommy now finds herself spelling out words at work, this meeting about a meeting is b-u-l-l-s-h-i-t. However, it’s not just Mommy’s potty mouth that needs a bar of Ivory soap. On the last car ride, Mommy cranked the Kiss FM and thought it was cute how you were rocking out along with her. Until you announced your arrival at Nana’s house by yelling “It’s Britney, bitch.”
DRINK: The Bleeped Out. 1oz Limoncello, 1oz vodka, teaspoon of sugar, a few raspberries and a basil leaf. Combine all ingredients in a highball glass and let sit in the fridge for 30 minutes or more. Add ice cubes and top with sparkling wine. Garnish with a slice of lemon, which you may need to suck on to stop you from saying holy fucking shit this is delicious.
flickr/Robert S. Donovan
Spring is in full bloom! Which means Mommy’s supposed to spend her boatloads of free time either cleaning, tackling her tax return, or googling “What does aerate your lawn even mean?”
DRINK: Spring Fever. Throw your to-do list to the Spring breeze this weekend and enjoy this refreshing, seasonally inspired cocktail on a sun-drenched patio. You deserve it! In a mixing glass, muddle 2 strawberries, 1 tablespoon (chopped) basil and 2 tsp sugar. Add 1.5 oz gin and 1 oz fresh lemon juice. Shake vigorously. Transfer to an ice-filled highball glass, top with club soda and garnish with a strawberry. Note: Does not pair well with TurboTax.
Mommy heard urban legends about children who self-potty trained and actually believed them. According to a woman she met once in a park for eleven minutes, if she put a Cheer for Me! Potty out and talked positively about your bowel movements you would magical get the hang of numbers one through two. Tomes like “My Potty and Me”, “The Harlem Potty Shake,” and “Stop this Crap and Crap in the Toilet Already” now adorn your bookshelf but it’s like you’re not invested in the protagonist struggle at all. What you are really good at is explaining that you have, in fact, shit your pants. Usually loudly in public and nowhere near a change table, something to the effect of “ATTENTION SHOPPERS. I HAVE DEFECATED. PLEASE GIVE MY MOMMY LOOKS AS DIRTY AS THE CURRENT STATE OF MY PULL UPS. THANK YOU.” As you climb the upper echelon of diaper sizes, and prices, Mommy is actually considering the hippie bare-bottom method and letting you run around naked. She just needs to do a quick cost analysis on re-carpeting her entire house vs. Pamper Points. Uh oh, you’re doing the squat and smile in aisle four. Mommy knows what this means: It’s my potty and I’ll cry if I want to. Mommy is convinced that by the time you get the hang of potty training, she will probably be in Depends. Oh the irony.
DRINK: The Potty Mouth. 1oz white rum, 0.5oz brandy, 0.5 oz Amaretto. Shake over ice with orange juice and a squeeze of fresh lemon and strain into a glass. Garnish with sprig of fresh mint under your nose.
This is Mommy’s worst nightmare: “Mom, I just want to dance / paint / sing / act / write haikus about my general state of malaise.” To avoid this devastating life-choice known as A Career In The Arts, Mommy has been making every effort to make things like long division seem super rad. Of course, Mommy can’t just tell you that the new math is the new cool, so she has been sneakily turning playtime into nerd camp. Just this last weekend she encouraged you to play a rousing game of investing in high-yield dividend stocks hoping that your thirst for financial sovereignty would skyrocket. Too bad Daddy intervened when she suggested taking you to a morgue to learn about the inner workings of the human body. Of course it’s not just about your future MCAT scores. Mommy has also been encouraging sports, especially if you learn golf and can play a solid back nine while discussing the volatility of exchange trade funds. Obviously Mommy will support your choices and nurture your interests no matter what. The one thing Mommy won’t do is sign you up for Improv classes. That’s the gateway to permanently living in her basement.
DRINK: Mentos and Diet Coke. Combine in your backyard and watch as your child’s eyes light up with the joys of science.