gina valley

The Glamorous Life Of The Modern Day Soccer Mom

gina valley - The Glamorous Life Of The Modern Day Soccer Mom

Top 10 Vital Preps Before My Kids Start Summer Break …Gina’s Favorites

Top 10 Vital Preps Before My Kids Start Summer Break …Gina’s Favorites

by Gina Valley

Laugh along with this timely Gina’s Favorites post.

Top 10 Vital Preps Before My Kids Start Summer Break

In about a week, I’ll be under full time siege.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Vital Preps Before My Kids Start Summer Break ...Gina's FavoritesThat’s right.

My kids will be on summer break.

I love having them home. I love getting to hang out with them. I love not having to mess with homework.

But.

A few issues have come up in the past during the summer occupation, so I know I need to be proactive and take vital steps before my garrison of gigglers ends its daily constitution in the halls of education.

Top 10 Vital Preps Before My Kids Start Summer Break

#10.  Round up a dairy cow – On a hot summer day 6 gallons of milk is easily inhaled by my kids. When their friends have joined our circus we need a keg of the white stuff daily. I figure having our own cow has got to be cheaper than buying jugs by the pallet full at Costco.

#9.  Get a HazMat suit – And, it needs to include asbestos gloves and a breathing apparatus. I don’t know how bathing suits and towels used in a chlorinated pool turn into alien life forms so quickly, but they do. It’s like my off spring drop their bathing suits and towels off into a pile, and the fabric springs into an instant mildewy mess.

#8.  Remove the doors from the refrigerator & freezer – They aren’t shut once the entire summer any way. At least this way there’ll be fewer heads and fingers slammed in them. It’s worth the perpetually melted ice cream if it saves me even one trip to the emergency room.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Vital Preps Before My Kids Start Summer Break ...Gina's Favorites#7.Hook the power car washer onto the hose to shower the kids – When it’s light until well past a decent bedtime, no one wants to come inside, much less do so to bathe. This way I can do a quick turbo wash as they run by in the midst of a game of tag. I might get the wax cylinder to, so they’ll be extra shiny and water repellant.

#6.  Stock up on swim goggles – I’ll start with about 50 pairs. That should almost last us through the first week. Where do all the goggles disappear to? If we ever move I think we’re going to find a hidden room full of swim goggles. And, how come my kids consider diving into mud puddles totally hygienic, but need protection from the clean, bacteria-free water in a pool?

#5.  Purchase 3 identical pairs of flip flops for each member of my pack - That way they should be able to come up with at least one pair of shoes when required to. It’s ok to wear flip flops to a cousin’s black tie wedding as long as they’re sparkly, right?

#4.  Hide the snow parkas - Why does someone always think it’d be cool to play Arctic Explorer in the mid-July heat? And, why do they think rolling around in a giant mud puddle in their dry clean only parkas simulates the arctic? I think the school district should be held responsible for that dry cleaning bill.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Vital Preps Before My Kids Start Summer Break ...Gina's Favorites#3.  Install revolving doors at all entrances - It’s our only hope for having even a semi good chance at a closed door. It’d be nice if we could at least keep the dumber mosquitos and June bugs out.

#2.  Procure a case of MRE’s – Or, maybe several cases. Those nasty nutrition packs from the military surplus store are “Meals Ready To Eat” (also known as “”Meals Refusing To Exit,” according to some of my favorite soldiers). Hopefully, they’ll be better than the nothing I’ve prepared on those many nights when I forget to make dinner because it’s light until nearly 9:30pm. Who thinks about dinner while it’s still light?

#1.  Buy snow boots for everyone - This is the only time of year stores in SoCal have them in stock. Gotta get ‘em while it’s hot.

Now that I think about it, I should probably stop by Costco for a barrel of sunscreen, even though I know my kids will refuse to use it all summer.

I wonder if they make a sunscreen cartridge for the power car washer.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

How do you prep for the summer? Did you miss school during the summer when you were a kid?  Shoot me a comment. You’re here anyway, and I’d love to hear what you have to say.

Photos courtesy of Stock.xchng – Used with permission.

Stop Stepping On Their Heads!!! …Gina’s Favorites

Stop Stepping On Their Heads!!! …Gina’s Favorites

by Gina Valley

As we celebrate Memorial Day, laugh along with this timely Gina’s Favorites post.

Stop Stepping On Their Heads!!!

One year we decided, because we are stupid, stupid people, that it would be fun, educational, and inspiring to take our 7 children, 6 of whom were 6 years old and under at the time, to the Veteran’s Cemetery for the Memorial Day service.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Stop Stepping On Their Heads!!! ...Gina's FavoritesEach Memorial Day Boy Scouts place a flag on each and every grave there.  You have to see it in person to grasp the grandeur of the gesture.  It gives you pause.

But, let’s be honest, nothing gives a preschooler pause. Preschoolers don’t pause.

I don’t know why we were thinking our littles would somehow undergo a miraculous, if temporary, transformation, into people with the desire to sit still and do as they’re told.  We must’ve had concussions from being kicked in the head by our two year old each night, after he’d wander into our room to sleep with us “’cause Matthew’s snowin’ again.”

We should have remembered our kids have always prided themselves on taking all instructions under advisement.  Of course, they define “taking under advisement” as “ignoring.”

Standing in the center of the vast, green acres with my pack, surrounded by headstones and people there to honor what those headstones stand for, reminded me there are people, many of them in fact, who put their lives on the line for what they believe in.

It reminded me, as my 94 year old WWII veteran Great Uncle says, freedom isn’t free.

And, it reminded me to leave our kids at home the next time.

I could see our six year old eyeing the neat rows of head stones, and I knew what he was thinking before the little human monkey even said it.  There is no good answer when your 6 year old asks you, “How many [headstones] do you think I can jump to in a row without falling?”

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Stop Stepping On Their Heads!!! ...Gina's FavoritesI wanted to say, “Well, I’m not sure, but please don’t try it until I have one, OK?” But, that seemed inappropriate.

As the speaker mentioned soldiers “making the ultimate sacrifice” my 5 year old asked if Ultimate Sacrifice was one of the X-Men.  Before I could answer, my 6 year old blurted out, “No, Stupid. It means they’re dead people.”

“Are the dead people here?” my 5 year old daughter asked, excitement rising in her voice.  I knew she was thinking about silly zombies, like on Scooby Doo.

I noticed my 4 year old daughter, who was not at that point a fan of zombies, Scooby Doo type or otherwise, immediately pulled her dangling feet up onto her chair, and surveyed the surrounding grass for disturbances.  We were the only disturbances

I smelled a strong, repugnant odor, and immediately suspected my one year old.  Despite his loud protests and claims of innocence, I lifted him and performed the traditional fanny sniff check.  I found that he was not the offender, and slid him back into his stroller.

But, I didn’t have to wonder who was responsible for very long. My adorable 3 year old daughter, Charlotte, announced loudly enough for everyone in attendance and in residence to hear, as she pointed to the man standing next to me, “Mommy, that man farted!”

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Stop Stepping On Their Heads!!! ...Gina's FavoritesTo which, my 4 year old, Gemma, responded even louder, so as to call upon her full authority, “We don’t say ‘fart,’ Charlotte. That’s crass.  He tooted. He made a stinky, stinky toot!” At which point, I wondered if it was possible to enlist and ship out within the hour.

Charlotte showed her appreciation for her sister’s guidance by knocking Gemma down.  Gemma then, the more agile of the 2, wriggled out from under her bigger, younger sister and socked her right in the left eye.

As The Professor and I pulled apart our delicate, feminine, brawling flowers, we realized it was time to surrender.  We each slung a screaming sister over one of our shoulders, and each grabbed a stroller to push on the long walk back to our van.

Our 5, 6, and 11 year olds all followed along.  Our 2 year old turned and ran in the opposite direction.

I called after him to come get into his stroller. He ran faster. In the opposite direction.  He didn’t seem the slightest bit concerned that we’d started the long march back toward our van without him.

But, when I waved the bag I’d filled with Fruit Roll Ups, he came running.  He had his priorities. He might not have had them straight, but he definitely had them.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Stop Stepping On Their Heads!!! ...Gina's FavoritesOur one year old, a big fan of Fruit Roll Ups, who spoke only in sign language at the time, immediately, threw his head back, opened his mouth like a hungry baby bird, and repeatedly made the sign for food.

And, the sign for ceiling fan. He really loved ceiling fans.

I noticed that our 11 year old was slowly, but ever so purposely, moving himself further away from the rest of us.  I was glad he didn’t have keys to the van, fearing he would take off and leave our embarrassing family circus behind. Our 3 year old noticed his progress across turf, also, but she wasn’t happy with his course.

She screamed to her big brother, “Stop it!  You’re stepping on their heads!”

Every person and most of the squirrels in the entire cemetery turn in our direction.

I scanned the surrounding area, hoping to spy an open grave I could climb into.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Have you ever caused pandemonium in a cemetery?  How do you observe Memorial Day? Shoot me a comment. I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

Photos courtesy of Stock.xchng – Used with permission.

Top 10 Signs My Brain Needs A Hard Reboot …Gina’s Favorites

Top 10 Signs My Brain Needs A Hard Reboot …Gina’s Favorites

by Gina Valley

For Throwback Day this week, laugh along with this Gina’s Favorites post.

Top 10 Signs My Brain Needs A Hard Reboot

Bear, our boy puppy, came into our bedroom and barked at me at 3:00AM this morning.  This might not have been quite so jarring had I not been up until 2:00AM waiting for my 17 year old to arrive home from Disneyland.

I can’t sleep when my kids aren’t home. Of course, if last night is any indication, I can’t sleep when they are either.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Signs My Brain Needs A Hard Reboot ...Gina's Favorites Sleep DeprivationApparently, Bear, our giant pup, was lonely.  He finally settled down about 4:00AM, at which point his sister, Ziva, jump onto our bed. I think she was there to complain about her litter mate being so loud. Then, she remembered how much she likes to bounce on our bed, and proceeded to work on her technique, on and off, for the next hour.

At 5:00AM, our youngest son proved he was right last night when he said that he could get up early, even though he was up 2 hours past his bedtime, by climbing onto our bed to chat.  “Since we’re both awake, mom,” he said, “can you play Colossus on the piano for me again? I forgot how it goes, and I have a test on it during band today.”

I explained to my young son that, no, I would not play the song right then.

It was 5:00AM. We’d already had both barking and bouncing dogs. If I started pounding on the piano, I was sure that not only would all of his brothers and sisters turn into zombies, but that our neighbors would likely storm our house with pitchforks and torches.

I did not explain to him that I also could not play the piece right then. My lack of sleep was making it nearly impossible for me to get both of my eyes to stay open at the same time. There was no way I was going to be able to coordinate 2 hands along with my eyes to produce the song written on the page.

I tried humming Colossus for him, but it came out sounding like Oh, Come, All Ye Faithful.

A few minutes later he was blasting Colossus on our TV, having accessed the internet through the Xbox, and I was pretty sure I could hear our neighbors groaning.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Signs My Brain Needs A Hard Reboot ...Gina's Favorites Sleep DeprivationI finally got to sleep for about an hour before I had to get up to get my pack moving for school. But, an hour just wasn’t enough sleep to let my body, much less my brain, reset.

I had tossed the bowls my kids used for breakfast into the trash can, and loaded the empty cereal box into our dishwasher before I realized what I was doing.  Of course, that’s not the only telltale sign that my brain is exhausted, and needs a hard reboot.

Top 10 Signs My Brain Needs A Hard Reboot

#10.  I was yelling at my children to hurry or they’ll be late to school even though they’d already left for school.

#9.  I keep catching myself typing with spaces between syllables, instead of between the words.

#8.  I just spelled “between” wrong. Three times.

#7.  I also spelled “syllables” wrong. Many, many times.

#6.  I was yelling at the dog to come downstairs. Turns out, he was sitting on my feet, and I was downstairs at the time. I think the dog rolled his eyes at me.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Signs My Brain Needs A Hard Reboot ...Gina's Favorites Sleep Deprivation#5.  I have been seriously considering using a fork to stab the guy whose truck keeps making that stupid back up beeping noise I’ve been hearing on and off all morning. Make up your mind. Park your stupid truck, and get away from it. Some of us have had no sleep.

#4.  I was completely immobilized while trying to put on my bathrobe because a sleeve was inside out.  This is why it’s important to have 911 on speed dial.

#3.  I keep needing to Google simple facts, and then forgetting what I was gonna Google before I can open Google.

#2.  I asked a client, who I know lives less than an hour away from me, what time it is where he lives. To his credit, he immediately asked me what color the sky is on my planet.

#1.  I just now, an hour after she left, realized why I liked the black jacket my 16 year old daughter was wearing when she left for school.  Because it’s mine.

Is it nap o’clock yet?

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

How can you tell when your brain needs a hard reboot?  Have you done anything goofy because you were tired?  Shoot me a comment.  I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

Photos courtesy of Stock.xchng – Used with permission.

These Do NOT Cause Brain Damage!!!

These Do NOT Cause Brain Damage!!!

by Gina Valley

Dear Family,

Clearly, you are safety conscious.

Very safety conscious.

Granted, you haven’t let little things like leaving skateboards on the stairs or Legos on the floor or swinging a bat inside our house cramp your style.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley These Do NOT Cause Brain Damage!!! Chores

Nor, do you allow climbing the sides of buildings, jumping from tree to tree, or launching yourselves out of a soaring swing to give you pause.

But, I have, nonetheless, come to the conclusion that you are taking extra care to stay away from things you truly believe can cause you irreparable harm.

I used to think you were just slovenly. Now I realize you’re just trying to avoid causing yourselves brain damage.

Somehow, though, I think you’ve become a victim of misinformation, because you’re avoiding certain things in your never ending quest for safety, which, and I’m sure this will be shocking news to you, are not in fact actually harmful.

Contrary to what you have been led to believe, the following will not cause brain damage:

Changing the toilet paper roll. I’m aware that the only time anyone other than me puts a new roll of toilet paper onto the spindle is when my mother is visiting, and she swaps out that ominous paper tube for a fresh roll of derriere dabbers. But, trust me, you can do this, and do it safely.

The trick to it is to never point that spring-loaded spindle at your face. No one wants to lose an eye in a toilet paper changing accident.

Closing the refrigerator door. Perhaps this seems more dangerous to you than it actually is, because it’s a two-part task. But, once you have determined that the door is in fact open, a state notable by the light emerging from its openness, pushing the door closed is actually quite safe.

Just be sure not to allow any body parts, yours or anyone else’s, to remain inside the refrigerator while you attempt to close it. It’s already messy enough in there.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley These Do NOT Cause Brain Damage!!! Chores

Putting a clip on an open bag of chips. The key here is to keep a firm grip on the clip while attaching it to the bag of chips, and to actually attach it to the bag of chips. Clipping your sister’s nose or your brother’s behind will not help to keep the chips from going stale.

Placing dirty laundry in the dirty laundry hamper. Contrary  to popular opinion, opening the dirty laundry hamper does not open some sort of inter-cosmic galactic worm hole and allow hostile alien life forms to invade our planet and to feast on your gray matter. There is nothing dangerous in the dirty laundry hamper. Not even dirty laundry.

It is in pristine like-new condition, as it has never been subjected to a piece of dirty laundry. It is, at least it was the last time I checked, occupied by stray Legos, last summer’s over-due library books, an AWOL lacrosse stick, and the only functioning CD player in our house. Please remove these items prior to placing dirty laundry into the dirty laundry hamper.

Deleting what you’ve already watched from the DVR. I know that ending a relationship is difficult, and potentially traumatic. But, I promise you, your favorite TV series, sports game, and or movie will not hold it against you if you delete it after you’ve viewed it.

I know that funny pizza commercial is in that recording. I know that episode has you friend’s cousin’s dog walker’s niece as one of the 200 extras in the crowd scene. I know that game has the worst call ever in the history of sports. But, you’ve got to be strong and click “delete.” After all, I need space to record House Hunters. The couples on there aren’t going to hate themselves.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley These Do NOT Cause Brain Damage!!! ChoresFeeding our dogs dinner before they whine, bark, and chew on the kitchen table leg for an hour. Much as it will confuse them, and it will, feeding our dogs at their dinner time instead will save our furniture, your privileges, and my sanity. Your mind will likely be clearer when you don’t have to pretend not to hear them barking and whining 4 inches from your head.

Returning the gallon of milk to the refrigerator. I get it. Obviously, several of you are hoping to become artisan cheese makers, but you’ve got to trust me on this. You’re way off. Milk-congealing-on-the-counter is not the kind of cheese true artisans make.

Now, if what you’re trying to create is a new life form, you might be right on the money. I’m pretty sure that gallon on the counter right now has a pulse.

Wearing a coat on a cold day.  Wearing a coat is not a punishment. It’s not an attempt to embarrass you or to destroy the cohesiveness of your carefully selected outfit. It is, in fact, a way to keep you warm, so that your body doesn’t have to work so hard to do so. This frees up some of your body’s energy to work on other things. Like hanging up a wet towel.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley These Do NOT Cause Brain Damage!!! ChoresPutting used paper plates in the trash can. Only very rarely has garbage flown out of the trash can when someone opened it to deposit a used paper plate. If you are truly concerned that this rare, but not unheard of in our home, phenomena might repeat itself, were you to attempt to place your used paper plate into the garbage receptacle, feel free to don the paint ball mask and a biking helmet.

And, smile, because I will totally be taking a picture of that.

Hanging up a wet towel. I understand that you’re scientifically-minded, and enjoy conducting experiments on the bathroom floor. But, I just don’t think you’re breaking any new ground with the towel-turning-into-a-smelly-moldy-heap experiment. Let’s face it, that’s been done to death. Death of our hardwood floor. Death of your favorite t-shirt. Death of the cells inside my nose.

Perhaps you’d care to investigate counter-acting the forces of gravity by hanging a wet towel on the hooks attached to the bathroom wall for just that purpose. Just don’t stand too close to the hook while you do it. We don’t want to have an ear-on-the-hook situation. Again.

Not brain-damager in the bunch.

Probably.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

What simple things does your family seem afraid to do? Do they think it causes brain damage? Shoot me a comment. I’m looking forward to hearing what you have to say.

Photos courtesy of Stock.xchng – Used with permission.

Top 10 Things I Did NOT Know About Parenting …Gina’s Favorites

Top 10 Things I Did NOT Know About Parenting …Gina’s Favorites

by Gina Valley

Laugh along with this Gina’s Favorites post.

Top 10 Things I Did NOT Know About Parenting

They don’t tell you a lot about parenting before you join the cult.

People joke a bit about losing most of your sleep while your child is an infant, and all of it when your child becomes a teen.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Things I Did NOT Know About Parenting ...Gina's FavoritesThey point out the pregnancy fat they’re still carrying from their now 264 month old child.

But, no one mentions the truly mind boggling aspects of parenthood.

Here’s some of the things I did not realize would happen when I became a parent that keep my head shaking and my eyes rolling more often than I care to admit.

Top 10 Things I Did NOT Know About Parenting

#10.  How often I would step in something wet – from the benign puddles of melted ice cubes and dribbled milk to the nefarious spectrum of bodily productions, which mysteriously appear where they never should (this job really should come with galoshes).

#9.  How often someone would scream at me that he or she was not tired or grumpy and did not need a nap (funny how I always need one).

#8.  How every semblance of sophistication would be quickly and completely stripped out of my life. Leaving the house in unstained clothes, arriving on time, a clean car, an uninterrupted thought, all gone.

#7.  How often I would utter the phrase “I’m not missing any of this movie to take anyone to the bathroom, so you better go now.”

#6.  How I would cave in every time & take every kid to the bathroom during the movie (I get more steps in during a movie than at the gym in an hour on the treadmill).

#5.  How often I would offer bribes to small people to poop or sleep. Or, to let me poop or sleep. Alone.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Things I Did NOT Know About Parenting ...Gina's Favorites#4.  How much time and effort other people’s shoes would suck out of my life. Explaining why shoes must be worn. Again. Asking where the shoes were last seen. Again. Hiking halfway back to the waterfall in the dark by the light of my cell phone to retrieve a shoe. Again.

#3.  How much time I would spend admiring captive insects, and negotiating for their release back into the wild.

#2.  How many times I would give up my jacket, my water, my snack, my sanity to the child I reminded not less than ten times to bring his or her own, who, nonetheless, forgot to bring it.

#1.  How great I would get at silently opening crinkly candy wrappers so as not to tip off my children to my clandestine date with junk food.

I don’t share chocolate.

It’s really for their own protection.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

What aspect of parenting surprised you once you were actually in the trenches? What’s harder than you imagined it would be?  What’s easier?  Shoot me a comment. I’m looking forward to hearing what you think.

Photos courtesy of Stock.xchng – Used with permission.

They’re NOT GROSS – They’re Activists

They’re NOT GROSS – They’re Activists

by Gina Valley

My friend DeAnne and I were discussing our children the other day, and we had an epiphany.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley They’re NOT GROSS - They’re Activists Kids’ Hygiene

Kids are gross.

They are. They really, really are.

I know it. You know it. We all know it.

After our chat, I felt like I should immediately call my mom, and apologize for any and all grossness I perpetuated on her while growing up.

I was slowed in my attempt at the belated apology, because our phone was cemented to our kitchen counter by a puddle of maple syrup and a pancake, with two bites missing and 3 finger holes pushed through it.

Gross.

But, the more I thought about our kids’ anti-hygienic behavior, the more I wondered if perhaps we were overlooking the true cause of their grossness.

What if we’re wrong? What if we’re all wrong?

What if it’s not that our children are gross, but rather that they’re misunderstood?

What if what appears to be slovenly ways is actually them answering a higher calling?

What if they’re not fungus-spreading, bacteria-building urchins re-wearing yesterday’s dirty garments because they’re too lazy to put on new clothes? What if they’re thoughtfully attempting to reduce the mountain of laundry produced by our household, thereby saving me work and reducing the strain on the environment?

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley They’re NOT GROSS - They’re Activists Kids’ Hygiene

What if they did not bring the giant package of chocolate chips, the bag of Cheez Doodles, and the jug of Gatorade into the bathroom to input while they…output? What if they were stocking the room that has easy to access fresh water with food, so we’d all be well fed in the event of an earthquake?

What if they’re not stinky, self-absorbed people who refuse to take my advice, much less follow my instructions, to apply deodorant at least once a day? What if they’re protecting our family from the ever present and growing encroachment into our lives, and their armpits, by complicated chemical compounds?

What if they’re not mess-blind to the nacho cheese sauce they dribbled from the kitchen through the dining room, and halfway up the stairs? What if they’re instead working to provide a welcoming environment for any endangered species of ants that might, perchance, be living nearby?

What if they have not been trying to reschedule their daily shower into a biweekly event because they’re anti-shower-ite, caked-on crud lovers? What if they’re choosing to conserve water to save us from our giant SoCal water bill, and to ensure the next generation of Californians has a shot at a green lawn?

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley They’re NOT GROSS - They’re Activists Kids’ HygieneWhat if they’re not too lazy to throw away the sticky, stinky paper plate they used while eating their peanut butter and pickle sandwich? What if by leaving it on the kitchen counter, right next to where the garbage bin is, they’re instead attempting to save the next hungry family member from the time and trouble of having to open the cupboard to retrieve a paper plate for him or herself?

What if they’re not filthy, dirt hoarders hell-bent on hanging onto every molecule of mulch they’ve ever come into contact with, in order to blend in with the mess that is their bedroom? What if they’re ever so politely saving the soap and shampoo for other members of our household, lest we be caught unprepared in the event of a sudden soap or shampoo dependent emergency?

What if they’re givers?

Nah.

They’re just gross.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Any givers in your household? Are you living with any activists? Were you neat and tidy when you were a kid? Shoot me a comment. I’m looking forward to hearing what you have to say.

Photos courtesy of Stock.xchng – Used with permission.

Top 10 Worst Gifts For Mom

Top 10 Worst Gifts For Mom

by Gina Valley

If you think it’s stressful trying to get the mom in your life the right gift, you should try being the mom.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Worst Gifts For Mom Mother’s DayThanks to Facebook, InstaGram, and the entire host of internet life invaders, the pressure to receive the perfect physical manifestation of appreciation for all that you do as the mom has been bumped up to nearly unreachable heights (do not give mom a step stool to help her reach unreachable heights).

Come noon (do not give mom a watch, so she’ll know when it’s noon) (unless it’s jewel encrusted and returnable) on Mother’s Day any mom without a photo of a hand-drawn card or beautiful bouquet of flowers or artful plate from a fancy buffet to post is all but facing certain ridicule from the mom community.  I can’t be posting a pic of an ironing board cover or a hedge trimmer or a plate from The Trough without facing some serious social media shaming.

I know my family means well, but sometimes they seem to forget who I am and that they know me.

So, to help my family out, here’s some things they can cross off their list now.

Top 10 Worst Gifts For Mom

#10.  Breakfast in bed – It’s awkward. It’s messy. And, even if you were a 5 star chef (which you are not) or our kids were child chef prodigies (which they are not), I still wouldn’t want breakfast in bed. In fact, I don’t want anyone to cook anything for anyone. Cooking equals mess, and I don’t want the mess (if you want to spend time in the kitchen, after you order in dinner and make brunch reservations, feel free to clean out the fridge. I do recommend a HazMat suit, though).

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Worst Gifts For Mom Mother’s Day#9.  A Chihuahua – No puppies. No kittens. No freshly caught tadpoles. Not even a cricket for luck. No pets of any kind. If I wanted something gross to clean up after I’d have kids. Oh, wait…

#8.  A Rhododendron  – Yes, it’s lovely. Sure, it seems like a plant I can put in the ground, and have forever, is a much more sensible choice than a bouquet of flowers I’ll toss in the trash in a week. BUT, getting to toss them in the trash in a week is the second best thing about a bouquet of flowers. I get the beautiful, but I don’t get saddled with the responsibility of something else to take care of. I’ll take the love-it-then-toss-it bouquet anyday.

#7.  A Goat Bra – Giving any lingerie to a woman is really a gift to the man who presents it to her, and a big mistake. BUT, a goat bra is even worse. A friend of mine received one of these for Mothers’ Day from her well-meaning, but clueless husband. Her pet goat was pregnant at the time, and the feed store guy had advised her husband that the goat, for its comfort and protection, would be needing some support wear. Her husband decided it would be a delightful, practical gift. Turns out, it was neither. Even the goat didn’t like it. No mother, of any species, wants  gift of lingerie for Mother’s Day.

#6.  A “Fun” Outing For The Whole Family - When Jerry Seinfeld said that there is no such thing as fun for the whole family, he was right. Do not take me to the zoo or Disneyland or the beach for Mother’s Day. I’d love to go some other time, but not on “my day.” No family outing is a celebration for mom. It’s another work day for mom. If you want to take our children, though, and leave me home to nap in peace, go for it.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Worst Gifts For Mom Mother’s Day#5.  Glow-In-The-Dark Organic Cleaning Solution – No matter how cool, no matter how cutting edge, no matter how much I swore I wanted it when we saw the infomercial in the middle of the night after that Bono concert, do not get me that magic vacuum or space age dust rag or glow-in-the-dark organic cleaning solution or any other item to clean anything. Feel free to give me that on National Dirt Day or even on a Tuesday, but never on Mother’s Day.

#4.  That Necklace Your Mother Says I’d Look Great In - Anything your mother (or sister or anyone but you and our kids) picked out is a big no-no. There’s nothing worse than enjoying something I think you chose for me, and hearing your mother say, “I told him you’d just love that.” If you don’t want to make the effort for me yourself, I don’t want you to present me with the gift. And, believe me, you don’t want the resulting cold front I’d be presenting you with in return.

#3.  A Photo Of The Whole Family – I want to pick out which picture to enlarge of our family. A framed blow up of that horrible family photo my cousin took of us last Christmas where I look like a cow chewing its cud is not my idea of a charming family memento. You might as well get me a case of SlimFast Shakes. Which reminds me…

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Worst Gifts For Mom Mother’s Day#2.  A Case Of SlimFast Shakes – Yes, I might buy something like this occasionally. Yes, I mentioned I need to get a new FitBit, since my last one seems to have been less than sturdy (apparently, stomping on those because you only made 5083 steps that day breaks them. Who knew?). Yes, my gym wear is so worn out people occasionally think I’m homeless. BUT, if you give me anything fitness related, even though you’re sure I’d love it or I’d buy it for myself anyway, I can guarantee that my next cardio activity will be making sure you won’t live until Father’s Day.

#1.  A Hooked Rug Maker – Anything with the word “Maker” in the name is a huge fail in the gift world for me, because it’s a lie, and I hate lying. It’s not a Cake Pop Maker or a Quesadilla Maker or a Hooked Rug Maker. It’s a Spend All Day Trying To Make Cake Pops Maker or a Spend All Day Trying To Make Quesadillas Maker or a Spend All Day Trying To Make A Hooked Rug Maker.  I do not need something else to do. This is not a gift. It’s a chore. Leave it at the store.

Remember, all I really want is for my kids to make me a card, anyway.

And, a sparkling, clean house.

And, for everyone to get along.

You know, simple stuff.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Have you ever gotten a real doozy of a gift?  Have you given a crazy one? Shoot me a comment. I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

Photos courtesy of Stock.xchng – Used with permission.

Top 10 Reasons To Hate Silent Saturday

Top 10 Reasons To Hate Silent Saturday

by Gina Valley

Today was Silent Saturday on the soccer fields.

It’s also known as All The Parents Complaining About Not Getting To Cheer For Their Kids Day. I noticed some grandparents getting in on that, too.

In case you aren’t familiar with the Silent Saturday Movement, just think of it as a kind of glorified time-out for the over-zealous (i.e. people behaving like jerks) at youth soccer games.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Reasons To Hate Silent SaturdayDuring Silent Saturday no one (not parents nor grandparents nor coaches nor spectators) is allowed to yell or say anything (positive or negative) to the players during the games. No whooping. No hollering. No sound of any kind is allowed, other than clapping.

I’m all for helping people curb their negativity and protecting kids from helicopter parenting, but this Silent Saturday thing is not working out for me.  My friend, Pesky Pippi, put it well when she said, “I HATE Silent Saturday!”  I’m with Pippi.

In theory, Silent Saturday should create an environment similar to that which children experienced before organized sports took over all their informal neighborhood games. The idea was for kids to play without worrying about what adults thought about their game. The initial plan was for this to recreate the freedom kids have to play without adults around.

In reality, Silent Saturday makes people go insane.

Top 10 Reasons I Hate Silent Saturday

#10. It causes confusion. The quiet clapping after plays sounds like golf, and I keep looking for Tiger Woods.  Or, Happy Gilmore.  Someone.

#9. It causes blindness. We were encouraged to make signs to hold up during the game, in lieu of hollering our good sentiments. My children used our signs to engage in physical attacks upon one another while they “watched” their brother’s game.  Nobody lost an eye, but they might have, if the game had gone into overtime.

#8. It encourages tattooing. Not only did my kids take time out from making our cheer signs for Silent Saturday to draw mustaches on each other and on our blonde dog, they also drew faces on each of The Professor’s toes while he dozed on the sofa (he can sleep through anything, obviously), and an alien on their teenage sister’s knee (see? Napping is a bad idea, teenagers).  The discovery of their handy work resulted in Frantic Friday in our home. And, since we were using permanent markers, all of their creations lasted well beyond Silent Saturday.

#7. It promotes illicit drug use. The people along the sidelines mumbling to themselves what they would normally be hollering sound like a bunch of addicts. Or, zombies. It isn’t good.

#6. It encourages Facebook bullying. I love to cheer for the kids, mine and everyone else’s. I get that there are some people who are morons and need to shut up. But, if we can’t talk directly to them, you know, like adults, someone will end up bashing them on Facebook or talking behind their backs at Starbucks. We don’t need to encourage that.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Reasons To Hate Silent Saturday

#5. It makes kids lose faith in their parents. Without the parents hollering at one another, how are we parents, who are busy chatting with one another, supposed to know when our kid scores?  All the players are dressed alike. It’s a mob in front of that goal. We all need that one eagle-eyed parent to holler out the shooter’s name, so we can tell our kids, “Of course, I saw your goal.”

#4. It makes kids join gangs. The quiet conditions cause the players to forget they’re allowed to talk to each other during the game. So, they tend to communicate by using all sorts of weird hand gestures that look like a cross between gang signing and giving the bird.

#3. It produces boredom. How are we supposed to giggle about Timmy’s “mom” using his name at the beginning and end of every sentence if she isn’t allowed to talk? We’ll miss “Timmy, do you want water, Timmy?” “Timmy, are you hungry, Timmy?” “Timmy, get the ball, Timmy!” “Timmy, why are you pretending you don’t know me, Timmy?”  By the way, Timmy is her husband.

#2. It teaches kids to take candy from strangers. The refs tossed candy to kids along the sidelines when their parents remain silent. So, if you obey the edict and sit there quietly, you are punished because a stranger gives your kid candy, and then you get to deal with a toddler on a sugar high. While remaining silent.  Of course.  In keeping with the day’s theme.

#1. It makes communists attempt world domination. By the time I get home after a day of Silent Saturday, I need to yell at someone. I’m guessing everyone else at Silent Saturday has some pent up aggression, too. I’m not sure, but I think that Russia had a Silent Saturday at their soccer games right before Putin decided to invade the whole world.  Not sayin’ that’s why he did it, just pointing it out.

Let’s all say “No!” to Silent Saturday.

Or, “Nyet!”

Quietly, though.

I don’t want to get kicked off of the field.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Have you taken part in Silent Saturday? Do you think Duct Tape Day might be more effective? Shoot me a comment. I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

Photos courtesy of Stock.xchng – Used with permission.

I’m NOT A Modern Woman!

I’m NOT A Modern Woman!

by Gina Valley

I’ve been trying to buy some matte eye shadow.

I’m happy to have a glowing personality, but I don’t want to have it on my eyelids, in the middle of the day, when I’m working hard to stay awake during a staff meeting or the PTA election speeches.

I think the sparkles make my eyes tired. All that glitter must weigh a ton. And, I certainly don’t need any help getting my eyes to droop.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley I’m NOT A Modern Woman! Make UpMatte eye shadow. Eye shadow, no sparkles. Sounds simple enough.

Heck, I’m pretty sure that if I rub my thumb over the top of our refrigerator it’d come up with the perfect mix of dust and grease I could rub on my eyelids for that sultry, smoky look. It might be more a sooty look, though, due to the burned toast crumbs. But, it’d be trendsetting either way, and organic and gluten-free. Perhaps, I have the makings of a new business.

I mentioned this to my friend, Joan, who’s been providing me with sage advice since the third grade. Joan told me that I do not have the makings of a new business, that rubbing refrigerator dirt on my eyelids was not an acceptable option for eye shadow, and that maybe I should clean off the top of the refrigerator.

I told Joan that I thought it would be easier to get a new refrigerator, and that I’d been to 4 stores searching for matte eye shadow. And, none of them had any.

Joan told me that was because two of the stores I went to were grocery stores, and the other two were the blue and the red big box stores. I told Joan that I was already heading to those stores for errands, and I didn’t have time to be making special trips to the make-up counter at our local department store – Condescending R Us – every time I decided to try to look like a grown up.

Joan told me that maintaining our appearance is as important as going to the doctor. I told Joan that I didn’t think we could be friends anymore.

Nonetheless, I found myself standing at one of the makeup counters at Condescending R Us.

I picked this particular counter over the other half dozen options, because the person working behind it had on a lab coat. I figured that was a good sign. After all, the associate at one of the other counters seemed to be wearing some sort of smock made out of cobwebs, and another was wearing what can only be accurately described as a Slutty Candy Striper costume.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley I’m NOT A Modern Woman! Make Up

I reasoned that this person in the lab coat was likely to take a scientific approach to facial decoration issues. Obviously, I had sniffed too much complementary perfume on the way in.

The lab-coated person smiled, and floated over to me. I’ve always admired people who can “float” when they walk. I can barely pull off not tripping while I walk.

She introduced herself to me as “Lawn, your cosmetics concierge.” I didn’t even know I needed a cosmetics concierge, much less had one. She then told me that it was her goal to make this the best day ever for me.

She looked a bit confused when I pointed out that I’d need her to do all of our laundry and to make dinner for that to happen.

I told Lawn that I wanted to buy some matte eye shadow.

Lawn shook her head, clearly pitying me. She steered me toward a tall stool at her makeup counter, and draped a prickly towel around my neck. She told me that it was vital to have a solid base for my beauty routine.

I contemplated explaining to her that the base of my “beauty routine” is hitting enough red lights while driving carpool to have time to fish my mascara out from the bottom of my purse. And, that I have to hit that one really long light near the high school, if I want even a chance at swiping a little across my lashes.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley I’m NOT A Modern Woman! Make Up

Lawn explained to me that matte is not en vogue. Sparkly is. So, they have “shimmer” (a little sparkly) eye shadow or “shine” (super sparkly) eye shadow. She didn’t mention “Strobe” or “Laser,” but I’m sure they have those, too. You probably need a special “Paint & Carry” permit before you’re allowed to apply them to your face. Safety first.

“This,” the 20-something (I assume she wasn’t still a teen, even though she looked like one, as it was 10am on a school day) 96 pound make-up concierge, explained to me, as she held out a giant palette of eye shadow, “is the way we modern women highlight our eyes.” I noticed her eyes were “highlighted” with orange sparkly eye shadow and purple liner, both above and below. It looked as though a pair of Elton John’s eye glasses had somehow melted onto her face.

After she swept a gob of blue “shine” eye shadow across my eyelids (isn’t blue eye shadow illegal?), Lawn quickly outlined my eyes with blue “shimmer” eye liner. She then explained to me that this shimmer with the shine is what all the modern women are wearing, and it’s “a very subtle, sexy look.”

I looked in the mirror. Neither subtle nor sexy sprang to mind.

Creepy clown in a horror show, maybe. Three year old, who got into her mother’s make up, possibly. I hope this washes off, definitely.

I guess I’m just not a modern woman.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Are you a modern woman? Do you trip the light fantastic across your lids? Or, do you prefer the natural look? Do you shimmer or shine? Shoot me a comment. I’m looking forward to hearing what you have to say.

Photos courtesy of Stock.xchng – Used with permission.

I Lost My Phone!!! …Gina’s Favorites

I Lost My Phone!!! …Gina’s Favorites

by Gina Valley

Since I feel like I’ve misplaced my mind this week, I figured my I Lost My Phone!!! post would be a perfect choice for Throwback Day.
Laugh along with this Gina’s Favorites post.

I Lost My Phone!!!

I met my friend, Janelle, for breakfast. We’ve been friends for years, and, as always, we talked so much we forgot to look at the menus.  The poor waiter had to come back three times before we both decided to get the same thing we get every time we meet there.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley I Lost My Phone!!! ...Gina's Favorites Cell PhoneWe laughed and talked through our meal, and all the way out to our cars, which were parked in a tiny strip in the alley behind the dive we love.

As Janelle drove off, I reached into my purse to grab my phone. I’d heard the tiny beep indicating a new voicemail at least 5 times during our breakfast gabfest, and I wanted to be sure the world had not ended, before I drove away.

But, my phone was not in its special slot in my purse.

I chose not to panic. This is floppy purse. It tends to flop over. Surely, it had flopped, as it so often does, and had dumped my phone into its depths.  I felt around in the cavernous bag, but did not feel the solid, cold, rectangular shape indicating my phone’s presence.

I felt my heart race a bit, but was pretty sure the sweat on my forehead was just from the heat of the day.

I started to unpack my purse, in search of my phone.  This purse is quite large. In fact it’s too large for me to use most of the time. I use it when I travel, because it holds everything. I was still using it this morning, because I hadn’t bothered to switch it out since returning from my last trip. I’m the worst un-packer ever.

Surely my phone, the tiny organizer of my life, holder of my photos, umbilical cord to my children had simply become lost amongst the extra napkins, bags of trail mix, and packets of catsup stowing away in my purse.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley I Lost My Phone!!! ...Gina's Favorites Cell PhoneI placed each item I pulled out of my purse onto the passenger seat. Why was I even carrying 8 tubes of lip balm? Do I really think SoCal is dry enough to make my lips peel off? Am I expecting an epidemic of runny noses? Do I really need 6 of those cute little packages of tissue? And, who threw all of those candy wrappers in?  I don’t even like Heath bars.

I was so distracted by the mess I was pulling out, that I forgot about my urgent phone search and rescue mission.  When I stuck my hand into my purse one last time and pulled out nothing, I remembered the true purpose of my excavation. I searched through the mound I’d made just to be sure I hadn’t missed it.

I was sure it was in my purse. It has its own special pocket. I’m OCD. It always goes in its special pocket.  I figured it must have slipped out and somehow gotten wrapped in the lining of the purse.  That’s why I didn’t find it when I pulled out the other contents of my purse.

I reminded myself not to completely freak out.

I’d just turn my purse upside down and give it a shake, and my beloved telecommunication appendage would gently tumble out onto my lap.  Then, I remembered all the crumbs and trash I had discovered in the depths of my purse, and decided to let my beloved connection to the Universe tumble out ever so gently onto the pavement of the alley, instead.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley I Lost My Phone!!! ...Gina's Favorites Cell PhoneI was careful to hold my purse close to the ground. Even though my phone was wearing the latest greatest anti-breakage cover, I didn’t want to chance a cracked screen.

I shook gently. A flood of crumbs rained down. Had I been storing loaves of bread in my purse? No phone.

I shook it again, slightly harder. A few more crumbs and 4 gum wrappers sprinkled out. No phone.

I blinked hard.  Not to push welling tears of panic away. Just because it was windy. Honest.

I shook my upside down purse as hard as I could. I heard someone let out a loud, “Aaaaaaggggg!”  It might have been me. No phone.

I sat back down in the driver’s seat of my son’s car. I’d borrowed his tiny car, knowing how hard it is to find a decent sized parking space in this neighborhood. As I refilled my giant purse with the mountain of vital items I had taken from it, I mentally retraced my steps with my dear phone.

When was the last time I was sure I had my phone? I’d thought I heard it beeping with voicemails in the restaurant, but half the people in there probably have the same phone. Maybe it was someone else’s phone I’d heard.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley I Lost My Phone!!! ...Gina's Favorites Cell PhoneI knew I’d used it to text Janelle that I was leaving for the restaurant. I kind of remembered putting it down on the seat of the car after that. I could almost picture myself putting it down on the black seat. Maybe it slid into the seat. Or, between the seats. Or, under the seats.

I quickly performed what I’m sure the car found to be a truly invasive exam of its every nook, cranny and orifice. I even checked in the back seat, in case I had temporarily lost my mind and tossed my phone in that direction. No phone.

A big sigh escaped me. I heard some growling. That couldn’t possibly have been me.

Then, I remembered the chair I pile my stuff on when I’m coming and going at home has a black seat. Maybe I’d finished texting Janelle that I was coming, and had inadvertently left my phone on that seat while I put on my shoes, and had left without it.

That made sense. It was probably still sitting safely right there.  Luckily, Son#1 was home (where could he go? I had his car!).

I’d just call him and ask him to look on the chair.

Except that I didn’t have a phone!

Then, I felt doubly moronic for losing my phone and attempting to use the missing phone to locate the missing phone. Thank you, God, that my thoughts aren’t broadcast to the universe.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley I Lost My Phone!!! ...Gina's Favorites Cell PhoneAt that exact moment, the moment when I was feeling pretty much as dumb as I thought was possible, I remembered where my phone was. And, I felt even dumber (is that even a word?).

I’d left it on the table in the restaurant. I’d pulled it out of my purse to make sure it was on silent, and had put it on the table next to my plate. I hadn’t bothered to put it back into its special pocket in my purse because I couldn’t possibly miss it sitting next to my plate like that. I remembered thinking that only a complete idiot would fail to see it there.  I guessed I’d at last become complete.

It had been 20 minutes since we’d left the table. How could I have stood there talking and laughing with Janelle while my poor, defenseless phone lay alone, a helpless victim? How could I have been so irresponsible? What kind of a phone parent was I?

Full blown panic swept over me.

Anyone who happened by that table could have easily absconded with my dear iFriend.  Surely it was long gone. They had probably stripped it for parts and shipped it off to the boarder by now.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley I Lost My Phone!!! ...Gina's Favorites Cell PhoneAll my notes, my moments of brilliance, gone.

All my contacts, my friends and business peers, gone.

All my photos, my children’s childhood memories, gone.

Oh, why didn’t I do that weekly back up my IT guy keeps telling me to do? Why didn’t I hear my own voice chastising my children for putting their belongings down on restaurant tables? Why didn’t I embrace my OCD and put my phone where it was supposed to be?

Frustration and regret swept through me as I got out of the car, slamming the door.

Then, embarrassment flooded over me, as I shoved the car keys in my pocket.

Because the keys wouldn’t fit.

Because my phone was in my pocket.

Now, has anyone seen my glasses or my pen?

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Have you lost anything recently? Have you found something?  Shoot me a comment. I’m looking forward to hearing all about it!

Photos courtesy of Stock.xchng – Used with permission.