Monday, July 18, 2011

I am turning into my mother.

My Swiss cheese memory retained a few nuggets of my youth. One particular memory the was recurring: Dad, sister and I sitting in the truck, ready to go, waiting on Mom (then Dad, thinking himself a comedian, would lay on the truck horn until she appeared.)
We would sit in there and joke; "What IS she doing in there?"
"She is probably running a load of laundry"
"No, I'll bet she is vacuuming"
We were total buttholes.
And then we were late to whatever it was that we were trying to get to....

Of course, once again, The Great and Powerful Karma has shown me the error of my ways.

My mom probably was doing our friggin' laundry or cleaning our mess from the house, or maybe, just maybe she was sitting at the table, drinking a Diet Pepsi and watching 10 minutes of As The World Turns IN PEACE. Who knows? All I can now assume is that she was laughing at us, the people that she had corralled into the vehicle who were usually constantly bugging her for her time and attention, the people that she literally "waited on" all day, every day, because she had us waiting on her. Brilliant, mother. I am humbled by your silent irony and unassuming manner. I have yet to master anything that requires me to be silent or unassuming.

I was reminded of this piece of my past as my family was waiting on me in the vehicle the other day. I was in the house, taking two desparate minutes to maniacally pick up toys, because my carpet monkeys (who were strapped into the vehicle with their father) weren't present to follow behind me in their typical Tasmanian Devilish fashion, leaving a wild path of destruction behind him. The feeling of joy and accomplishment of being alone in my home and getting a minor task finished was so overwhelming that I was practically whistling.

And then we pulled into church 15 minutes late, only to realize that yes, we did indeed miss the entire Baptism of our friends' baby.

I didn't cry. Almost.

On the way to their home for the post-Baptismal reception, we of course had to get fuel (because the low fuel light had already been illuminated for quite some time), some food and a gift. As I was meandering sprinting through K-Mart, enjoying my alone time looking for a Christ-like photo album to hold the photos of the Baptism (you know, the ones that I wasn't present to take), I realized that I needed some gift wrap or a bag. I saw a cute bag that said "Love" all over it, which seems Christ-like to me, and snagged it, then I turned it over and realized that it was half the price of the photo album, so I put it back and went on looking for a less-expensive one. When I had selected my purchases, I headed back out to the vehicle (where once again, my husband and children were caged up) and I declared to Brock "The gift wrap and card are as much as the gift" and he agreed and told a story of his own about the ridiculous price of gift wrap. Then I said "My mom used to save the Sunday Funnies (that is what we called them, don't mock me) and wrap birthday gifts and such in those. I am going to start doing that!" and Brock agreed with one word "Brilliant!"

And so the cycle continues....

This is my gender-neutral, pre-wrapped, emergency gift for a largely
forgotten, then suddenly remembered kid's birthday.
Just like Mom had in her closet.
The ribbon was tied around my bedroom rug and the wrapping
paper is from the Sunday Comics.
Thanks Mom.
See? I do pay attention.
Now I am off to quilt a cozy for my toaster.


  1. Oh yes, the "Wait a minute I need to go to the bathroom before we leave." technique. Really honey, I had to go baaaaaaaaad.

  2. loved this. and i think the sunday comics make GREAT wrapping paper! for kids of all ages!

  3. Some child will adore that gift. Kids still love the funnies, a forgotten (cheap) pleasure. Reminds me of the first time Andrew had ramen noodles - at my sister's house, because I refused to buy them in my post-college days. He asked me "Mom, why can't we ever have these noodles?" They've been a staple at my house ever since.

  4. The ribbon was genius! I need to start collecting them. I have wrapped in brown paper and accented with scrapbook die-cuts and stickers.

  5. Sunday Funnies? Isn't that what it IS called? What else do people call it? I love the wrapping paper idea. I've used aluminum foil to wrap presents before. True.

  6. I love the Sunday funnies idea!! ...Stealing...

  7. I love this post!!!! We used the comics or aluminum foil or a colored on brown paper bag to wrap the only gift we were allowed to give friends as gifts when we were growing up....a gigantic baking sized plain Hershey bar! I'm sure the parents appriciated that one! HA!

  8. I am avoiding turning into my mother by becoming EXACTLY like my father.

    It gets a little worse every year. And the more like him I get, the less I mind it ...

  9. i can't believe you just exposed one of my biggest secrets, yo. i do this ALL the time. "go get in the car, i'll be RIGHT down."

    i will even "forget" things at the store so i can have a reason to go back out, get in my car ALONE, listen to my own goddamn music that doesn't involve any damn teeny boppers, park really REALLY far from the store, walk really slowly, pause to read the labels and fish around for change.

  10. @Bobbie- Awesome. I'm using that. Except I'll be sitting in the corner in silence, maybe licking the window...
    @Tex- thanks! Good thing I just started a subscription for the Sunday paper!
    @Tortoise- Did you answer "Because I ate them too much in college and they remind me of poverty?"
    @Tina- the rug was an expensive way to get the ribbon, but I'm sure ribbons come on cheaper items!

  11. @Furry- I love it that you use foil. Are you and Simple Girl from the same town in KS? :)
    @Brandy- Good! Steal away!
    @Simple- You know that MY birthday is Feb 21 and I like DARK chocolate, right?
    @Tova- lol! Your dad must be one funny dude that draws cats and robots really well!
    @Elizabeth- I so wish that I could come to BlogHer and meet you in person. How much fun would we have? seriously?