Tag Archives: kids

Boo Boos and Bogeymen

100_4290It’s that time of year again. Halloween.  All Hallows Eve.  A day that lives under many other names too.  It is a day where kids of all ages from young to old dress up as something they are not.  Where age becomes relative to how young or old you feel, and the little goblins run amok from door to door begging for sweet candy bliss.

It is a celebration of both life and death, and of all the worlds that strike the imagination.  It is a celebration of celebrating the imagination.

Halloween has always been my favorite holiday and it feels like defeat to say that I am just not feeling it.  Apparently I’m not the only one.

Driving home, I could not help but notice that I did not see a single house with Halloween decorations.

100_4325Maybe, like me, it started with the rash of break-ins two years ago.  With the gradual decay of our Halloween decorations from the ravages of time and lack of extra money to replace them over the past years, that climaxed with the theft of the only good one left, and my favorite, my Halloween spirit has been in decline.

Or maybe the town is just tired.  It has been a hard few months.  The bridge that is one of the two main entrances into town has been closed indefinitely with no plans to replace it.  Days before school was set to start the elementary school and only daycare serving the surrounding area caught fire, displacing all the kids for most of the school year while it is repaired.

2009-10-31-53This is not about whining and moaning about our problems.  The kids are resilient and because they are we all will be.

With resilience something grows.  Right?

Maybe.

While my Halloween spirit seems to be missing, I felt a bit giddy anyway.

The day after Halloween in November 1st.  The start of National Novel Writing Month.  A global event where crazy writer geeks pledge to write 50,000 words in a month.  A new novel from scratch, writing mostly from the seat of your pants.

Why am I giddy?

20150809_211733I might have started something magical.

Every year I encourage my girls to embrace their imaginative capabilities.  This year my eleven year old shows an interest.  My eleven year old told her teacher a story about a magical month of mayhem and wild imaginative writing.

She was intrigued.

She asked questions.  She was interested.

Time will see.

We might see some renewed energy in a tired town, a classroom, maybe two, embracing a month of wild abandon and imaginative freedom in that strange phenomenon we call NaNoWriMo.

New writers born and new stories.  It can only be a good thing in a tired place.

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Filed under L.V. Gaudet, writing

Almost there…

As I write this, there are only three days left in the school year.

Three long days.

Three very early mornings.

Mornings that require me to get up at O-dark-thirty in order to get my eldest child to the bus stop in time, then come back home and drag the younger child out of bed. It’s a battle each and every morning. So much so, that for the sake of my own sanity, I’ve resorted to dressing her while she’s still half asleep. Frankly, it’s the only way I’ll get to work on time.

At this point in the school year, I’m not even sure why I go through this arduous process every morning. There are only these three, tiny days left. Testing is over and the students are simply watching movies, having parties, and participating in field days. There’s no actual learning going on. This late in the school year,the students are simply attending school to reach the required 180 days of the school year.

Well, I’m rebelling against this 180 day thing. It’s a tradition I started last year after my eldest child passed her end of grade testing. I took the day off from work and let her stay home from school. We spent the day together…we went to lunch, did a little shopping, and even stopped at the library so mom could score some books (You know, because I need more books in my house). It was my way of telling my daughter I was proud of her; that she’d worked hard all year and deserved a day off.

This year, I let both kids take the day off. We went to Chick-Fil-A for lunch, did a little shopping, then stopped for shakes on the way home. The kids got to sleep in and have a fun day…

You know, before the remaining grueling three days of school.

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Filed under fun, life, musings, writing

To Be Tattooed

I woke up this morning with a tattoo. It’s a fluid , graceful horse head sitting delicately on my right ankle. It’s lovely.

It wasn’t there when I went to bed and I don’t remember going out and getting drunk. If I did go out and get drunk, I would  remember some of it – wouldn’t I?

I stumbled out of my room blurry-eyed and headed for the coffee pot. At least my new body art didn’t hurt. Or maybe I was really really drunk. As caffeine coursed through my blood, I became aware of giggling coming from the living room.

There sat my eight year old son and seven year old daughter.

Or at least I think it was them.

It was hard to tell through the tattoos covering them from head to foot, but the giggles sounded familiar. My husband reclined on the couch, his right arm tattooed clear down to the hand holding the remote. I guess I should consider myself lucky that only my foot and ankle were accessible to the tatoo bandits giggling on the living room floor.

When they saw me watching, the little tribal covered beings chased after me , each with a sponge in one hand and slips of plastic coated paper gripped in the other. I barely escaped into my bathroom with my coffee before the sponge slapped wetly against the door and the giggling fiends went in search of another victim.

I think I heard a cat yowl.

Should I tell them I don’t have any rubbing alcohol to remove their decorations?
No more sleeping in for me if it means my husband has to take the kids to the store with him. Who knows what they will come home with next.

Knowing my luck, my husband will decide to let them play doctor and I will wake up strapped to the bed by bandages. And with my luck, the tattooed cat will be in there with me.

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Filed under life

TIME TO WAKE UP!

My oldest child is technically an adult. He isn’t the kind of adult who is legally old enough to drink or gamble, but he is old enough to vote.

This adult lives in my house because technically, he’s still a kid too. MY kid. This man-child doesn’t have a job, but he does go to mechanics school at night. He also doesn’t drive because neither my husband nor I will let him near our vehicles. This “adult” has issues with responsibility.  Come to think of it, I know a lot of thirty-something adults who have problems with responsibility.

Anyway, back to what I was saying. My son, my child, my spoiled rotten brat. He isn’t allowed to drive our cars. There’s actually a car sitting in the driveway and we told him if he got a job and paid for the gas and the insurance, the 95 T-bird would be at his disposal. He’s never driven it. Not once. The tags on it expired last year. I didn’t bother renewing them.

Where was I? Oh that’s right. I remember. So, four days a week, as soon as I walk in the door from work, my husband leaves to drive our young adult son to school. Every night at 11:00, I am in the parking lot waiting to pick my son up and bring him home. Sometimes I don’t fall asleep until after one in the morning.

There are two alarm clocks in my bedroom. The first one goes off at an ungodly 4:30 am to wake up my husband who has to be at work at 6 am and the second alarm goes off at 6 am so I can get my tired ass to work by 8 am.  Both alarm clocks wake me up. We both push the snooze button as long as we can. I’ve learned to sleep in 9-minute increments.

Back to my son. Before summer vacation started, I would wake up the three younger children and get them all ready for school before I went off to work and the oldest child (adult) stayed in bed until after we’d all left.

Now the younger kids are out of school and summer vacation has begun! The older two are responsible for watching the younger two. Let the good times roll!

Except, I called home at eleven in the morning a couple of days ago and discovered that the older two children were sleeping. I gave the younger children permission to beat the hell out of the doors until their brothers woke up.

I have no idea why the adult in my house was irritated when I spoke to him on his cell phone that I pay for. Employer’s are supposed to be calling that phone, not girls. No potential employer has called that phone. Ever.

I was on the phone at work, speaking with my grouchy, irritable, spoiled rotten son of a… um me. Uh. yeah.

Anyway, While talking to my son, he complained to me that he was tired.

HE was tired.

Poor baby.

I had a moment of inspiration while I was sitting there with a pile of work threatening to collapse and bury me. The light bulb over my head zapped then lit up with a blinding realization as I spoke to my adult child on the cell phone I pay for. And  I KNOW he was lying on my living room couch, staring at my big screen tv, eating the last brownie that I was saving and complaining about how tired he was.  

I get him from school. We ride home together. We enter the house at the same time of night. I drag my tired ass to bed and he stays awake. I drag my tired ass out of the bed and he stays asleep.

So I’m a little slow sometimes. It’s because I’m SO DAMN TIRED.

But.. I got it now. Guess what, kid. Son of mine. You’re about to be tired too, because your ass is getting up every morning when your dad’s alarm goes off.

Okay, maybe not when the alarm goes off, but once dad stops pushing the snooze button and actually gets out of the bed, you’re getting up, too. You better be awake when I stumble out of the bedroom on my way to the coffee pot. If you aren’t, you can kiss that cell phone goodbye.

Tell me how tired you are then. Welcome to adulthood, Son! 

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Filed under Humor, life

One-eyed One-Horned Flying Purple People Eater by Claire Collins

My seven year old daughter came home from school very excited to show me the new song and dance she learned. The song was “One-eyed, one-horned, flying purple people eater.” As a child, I had the record of the song and it always made me laugh, it also made me wonder where the creature found purple people. I looked at my daughter and asked her that very question.

“Addy, you’re so cute. I love your song and dance, but where did he find purple people?”

She stopped and looked at me. She didn’t question why I didn’t find fault with this amazing creature to begin with since obviously she’s used to my quirks. She laughed at me.

“Mom, the people aren’t purple, the bird is purple!”

Okay, now I never imagined this creature as a bird, but her imagination is her own, and not mine. I just imagined him as a big fat furry purple thing with wings. She sees him as a bird. She sang the song again with the proper movements while she sang.  

“One-eyed, one-horned, flying, purple people eater.”

“Right Addy, he’s a one-eyed—“

“Right”

“One-horned—“

“Right”

“Flying—“

“Purple people eater!”

“No Mom!” Addy sighed and rolled her eyes. She’s very dramatic for a seven year old. “He’s a flying…purplepeople eater!”

“Okay, honey. Fine. He doesn’t eat purple people. Why do you think he’s a bird?” She left me there pondering that question and went to show daddy her new song and dance.

This exchange happens in books all the time. I recently read over a rough draft someone wrote. Okay, since she is usually the victim of my blogs, I will go ahead and admit that it was my sister, Suzette Vaughn.

While reading through her wonderful prose, and looking for misplaced commas and typos, I came across the following sentence:

He pushed his glasses up his nose.

I stopped reading immediately. He did what? Then I cracked up laughing because while reading the scene, totally into the dialogue between the characters, the lead man suddenly stops, takes his glasses off, and shoves them UP his nose! Through my fits of hysterical laughter, I managed to wake my husband up and reword the sentence. I suggested she write something more like: “He situated his glasses on the bridge of his nose” or “He slid his glasses into place on the bridge of his nose”.

 

The intended meaning is obvious, but while reading, the original words gave me a completely different meaning than what was intended. Just remember it is very important to have the correct wording and order of words while writing. You don’t really want your character to shove things up his nose do you?

 

Claire Collins, author of Fate and Destiny and Images of Betrayal, will be in the Greensboro, North Carolina area over Valentine’s Day for Second Wind Publishing’s Author Event.

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Filed under books, fun, Humor, life, writing