Tuesday, September 9, 2008

And I was so looking forward to getting Mother of the Year

So today I was vacuuming crushed shredded wheat out of my dishwasher. Dinner was almost done, 20 minutes after my husband and daughter left for church. And my 7 year old was spread eagle on the floor getting disciplined for slamming the door on his little brother and leaving a mark. That is when it hit me, "There goes the Mother of the Year award." And then I remembered that I was out of the running a long time ago.

Case in point:

A couple of weeks ago, my youngest wanted to go on a walk. Since my other kids were all planning on walking and/or riding around the block, I asked them to throw him in the wagon and take him along. "Just make sure you put some clothes on him," I warned (not that he is in a diaper a lot or anything). All was fine until they came back a few minutes later. This is how my children were dressed as they paraded around the neighbors homes with bikes, scooters, and wagons:

(This is the middle of summer when it is hot outside)

(this is what Ryan looked like 1.5 seconds after he came in the door. Lest you think he is normal, he was the one I asked to dress Frog Head)

Just in case you're not convinced yet:

Joseph met a neighbor boy only a few months older than himself. This is wonderful. I envisioned play dates and school buddies. But Joseph just envisioned walking over ALL THE TIME, BY HIMSELF wearing WHO KNOWS WHAT to ask if the child could play. Which is bad enough on its own, but he always had a diaper clad 2 year old shadow trailing behind him. I tried telling him no. I tried punishment. I tried locking the screen door.

But the other morning, as I was using the restroom, I heard the door shut. 8:30 in the morning, wearing PJ's, with a brother who was not changed and wearing only a diaper, my kid knocks on the that child's door. It took a couple of minutes to register that I heard the door shut, and a couple more to get decent. By the time I got out to get them (also still wearing PJ's and barefoot with bed head) the child was on the front lawn talking to them and the horrified father was looking on (this was about the 4th time it had happened).

Needless to say, I doubt that child will ever be allowed near our home. (And I made Joe cry by scaring him about all the evil strangers waiting to grab him and his brother. And I may have mentioned that anyone driving around could call the police and put him in jail, too. At least he hasn't gone out on his own again.)

My Solution:

So, because I so want to be Mother of the Year, I suggest we make some new categories (ones I am sure to win) like the following:

  • Loudest yeller
  • Best able to tune out crying and/or whining
  • Biggest laundry pile
  • Best able to allow children to express their creativity in clothing choices
  • Best able to pretend you are fostering creativity in clothing choices when you really weren't paying attention
  • Best able to "hold it" because you don't know what will happen if you take 2 minutes to use the bathroom

I expect a nomination any day now . . .


  1. Do you know what I thought when I saw that pic of Matthew? WHAT?? Charlotte has a Yoshi costume and she didn't tell us?! but I guess it's a frog?

    I would SO win "Best able to tune out crying". seriously.

  2. Wow- this is absolutely hilarious! You should have taken a picture of your son talking to the neighbors for this post- then the father would have really looked at you in disgust!

    I LOVED how the kids dress- you have to admit- that was pretty creative and funny! I showed Joe and he was cracking up to... aren't you glad you're real-life stories amuse us??!?!


  3. Charlotte, you crack me up every single time. You are so good at writing this stuff in a way that I can just picture myself there while it's happening. I totally would take loudest yeller. Someday when I come and visit, we'll have to have a yelling match!

  4. I think my award would be for best lecturer of children who aren't paying any attention whatsoever to what you're saying.

  5. I could put up quite a good fight for Loudest yeller, able to tune out not only crying or whining, but kids trying to show my pictures they colored while I am blogging, and Biggest laundry pile.....so WATCH OUT SISTER!

  6. I give you the vote for Mother of the Year because:

    Your children have learned the love of reading---from their mother

    Your children have learned to do their best at school ---from their mother

    Your children love the gospel and have learned the gospel--from their mother

    You spend time doing things with your children not letting outside distractions get in the way.

    You are creative in the way you teach your children

    Your children are your top priority and you do all you can for them.

    You always give 150%

    I think you could have my vote. Now if you ran against your sibblings I will have to not vote at all.

  7. I remember when kim, tami and I did the 'dress up in summer' thing. It was fun.

  8. I laughed out loud almost the whole time I read this. It is awesome! I love the "Are you a Kindred Mom" quiz and I believe I am invited to stop by anytime we are in your neck of the woods:)

    My children love to quickly leave the house when I am on the phone. I hate to get on the phone and be rude by talking to my children the whole time...and they have figured that out. I try to threaten them that if I'm on the phone everyone has to freeze for the duration of when I'm on the phone, but since I sometimes have long conversations relating to my calling, I can't reinforce this threat.

    I think part of being Mother of the Year should also include not wanting to fit in. (AKA- your children tell you at least once a day that "So-and-so did it, why can't I" and your response is something like "Just in case you haven't caught on, I'm not (So-and-so's) Mom." or, "Just in case you hadn't noticed, I'm not all that interested in what other kids are doing."

  9. The frog head is the best! I wouldn't try to "hold it" if I was at your house because I would pee my pants when I saw him come in like that! Em is pretty traditional with what she puts on her head: pots and blankets.

  10. Contender for tuning out and fostering creativity! My daughter spent the summer wearing two left shoe flip flops. One purple, on turquoise. I found true delight in pretending I had no control over it.

    This is a great post, you are very funny. And I love what Tucker Mom said. The last line definitely made me laugh.

  11. I have already told you that you are a saint. You have 6 kids. They are all well behaved, they look cute and are sweet. You are a great mother!!!

  12. I think you'd have a lot of competition in your categories for mother of the year. May I add a category? Just based on yesterday alone, I could win Fished the Most Things Out of Toilets! (No photos; I'm not that desensitized about normality yet.)

    A friend of mine who moved to a small Oklahoma town had Child Protective Services show up one day. Someone had called them because one of her five small children was riding a toddler bike in the gutter. !!! I am so glad I live in a neighborhood where people can relate to the stunts my kids pull because their own kids have done it too! It's a good thing your neighbor is at least partially understanding. How many kids do they have? If it's more than three, you're probably safe. :o)

  13. They have one 4 year old and look to be in their mid-40's. I expected a call from CPS.

  14. Oh and I fished my car keys out of the toilet once after they were lost for 2-3 weeks. After 2 days of bleach soaking, I still used them. I think I would win that category, too.

    And Andrea, if you think you can adapt my frog costume, I will mail it to you.

  15. I love those costumes. They rock. It did make me laugh to see. I remember, Gordon, when we went trick or treating in the summer too, unfortunately we were in our teens...I guess some things you never grow out of! We were just talking today about kids escapting the house and having CPS called on them...too funny.

  16. I LOVE LOVE LOVE reading your blog. I laugh so hard I cry more often then I should. You could write a book and make millions.

  17. You are going to have some stiff competition from me with those first 3.
    My husband came and started reading over my shoulder after I started laughing. His response? "Wait. I'm confused." Reads some more, "Are you sure you want more kids?"
    You know what I think? I think you are hilarious and are like the Erma Bombeck for a younger generation of moms.