Puppy Conversations | Mom Explains Weeding

Dear Kid,

Puppy: What are you doing?
Me: Weeding
Puppy: It looks like you’re making piles
Me: I’m making piles of weeds
Puppy: What do you do with piles of weeds?
Me: Daddy will pick them up
Puppy: Daddy likes piles of weeds?
Me: No, but he’s very nice about cleaning up the piles I make
Puppy: What is that?
Me: It’s called vinca
Puppy: Why are you pulling it out?
Me: It’s a weed
Puppy: But you didn’t pull it out over there
Me: Right
Puppy: But it’s a weed
Me: Over here it’s a weed
Puppy: It’s not a weed over there?
Me: Right
Puppy: This is confusing
Puppy: You’ve been weeding for a long time
Me: You think?
Puppy: Usually you hate weeding
Me: Well, I don’t know about hate
Puppy: Usually you have the attention span of a drunk fruit fly when it comes to weeding
Me: When have you ever seen a drunk fruit fly?
Puppy: Fruit can fly?

Puppy: What was that noise?
Me: That was me
Puppy: I’ve never heard that noise before! I’m coming to check!
Me: I’m fine
Puppy: But you made a NOISE!
Me: Well, yes, I was surprised
Puppy: What surprised you?
Me: A spider. A BIG spider. A really BIG spider. That was moving.
Puppy: So you were saying hello to the spider?
Me: Not exactly
Puppy: Are you supposed to make that noise when there’s a spider?
Me: I don’t know about “supposed to”
Puppy: Do you like spiders?
Me: Not especially
Puppy: Then I probably shouldn’t tell you there’s one on your leg
Me: (Yelp!)
Puppy: There’s that noise again


Puppy: You missed one
Me: Missed what?
Puppy: A weed
Me: Yeah, I can’t get that one out
Puppy: So you’re just going to leave it?
Me: Daddy will get it later
Puppy: When he picks up the piles?
Me: Maybe. Or another time
Puppy: How will he know it’s a weed?
Me: He’s pretty smart about that sort of thing

Love, Mom

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An Entirely New Approach to House Cleaning

housecleaningDear Kid,

I think I am going to try a new approach to housework this weekend.

In the past, I’ve tried tackling housework projects head-on. It’s never worked out as well as I might hope. But I’m pretty sure I’ve figured out the issue.

The problem as I see it is that the housework is fighting back. When I tackle projects straight-on, the housework sees me coming, marshalls its considerable resources, and stages a successful counterattack. While some of the dust acts to distract me by jumping on the Swiffer, most of the dirt scatters before I get to it and then reaccumulates after I’ve moved on.

Result: Dust Dragons: 3. Me: 0.

I think the correct approach must be to sneak up on the housework. If it doesn’t see me coming, I might be able to lob in a squirt or two of Windex or something before the barriers go up. I might be able to corral some of the Tupperware and shove it into the cabinet before it realizes it is no longer going to be free-range plastic. I might be able to get the laundry done and folded before it takes root.

I envision a home with a new score: Me: 1; Chaos: 0.

Then again, I might decide to get a pedicure and a blindfold.

Love, Mom

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Do You Know What a Cicerone Is?

Dear Kid,

If you think a “cicerone” is a type of Italian food, you clearly haven’t been watching enough Food TV.

This is a good thing since you are supposed to be studying things other than food. And, being the kind of mom I am, I am here to provide the small bits that are missing in your more formal education.

A Cicerone is one knowledgeable about beer. Prost! DearKidLoveMom.comA Cicerone is a beer expert. Not just any beer expert. A tested and certified beer expert. Specifically one who has been tested and certified by the Cicerone Certifying People.

Although it sounds like an excellent Italian meal.

Becoming a Cicerone involves learning about beer and taking tests. If it were an Italian meal it would involve cheese and sauce.

Becoming a Master Cicerone involves more learning and more tests and blind taste tests. Only about 2 people per year qualify for Master Cicerone status.

Drinking slightly flat beer in college does not qualify one for Cicerone status.

It might however qualify one to eat Italian food.

Love, Mom

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Do Not Try to Compete With This Teen

Dear Kid,

No one on the planet can convey emotion (especially disgust, derision, and general put-upon-ness) as wordlessly and effectively as your sister.

It was an innocent question. Actually, it wasn’t so much innocent as expected. Moms have to ask certain questions; it’s in the rule book.

Just don't roll your eyes so hard that you sprain an eyeball. It's so hard to explain to the ER staff... DearKidLoveMom.comApparently, teenagers have to react over act over over act in reaction to certain Mom questions.

Pi had borrowed my computer for a small moment. “Maybe,” she said in a reasonably loud, conversational tone, “I should just take the next one.”

To clarify, by “loud” I mean normal-ish tones for her which could be heard 3.4 miles away with the clarity of ringing crystal.

Normally, I can keep up with her when she jumps topics. This time I spoke before giving due time and consideration to what she’d just said.


She was unimpressed with my response. “Nothing. Never mind. I’m not talking to you. Don’t. Worry. About. It.”

This recital was accompanied by a sigh so heavy the house’s foundation sank 6 inches.

At that point I realized what she was talking about, but in the face of turning our first floor into a subterranean split level I chose “B. Never Mind.” and never minded.

A few minutes later she gave me back my computer. We still had 15 minutes before evening devotionals (America’s Got Talent) came on.

That’s when I made the Mom Mistake.

I can’t say it was a rookie mistake because I’m not a rookie. And I knew full well what I was doing. I completely understood the risk involved but figured with the approaching AGT I was well within my parental rights.

“Is all your homework done?” I asked gently.

Pi looked up from her phone. Clearly, these were fightin’ words not a question worthy of response. There was eye-rolling. There was a look of complete disbelief combined with a heavy dose of “Seriously?”.

I waited.

She continued to not answer.

The silence sat.

The air dripped with unspoken sarcasm.

Her eyebrows screamed, “You are completely ridiculous and I am showing great restraint by not explaining this to you in detail.”

All I wanted was an answer.

I didn’t get one.

But that homework better be done.

Love, Mom

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Puppy Conversations | National Dog Day

Dear Kid,

Puppy: Mom
Me: Yes, sweetie
Puppy: Do you know what today is?
Me: Wednesday?
Puppy: No
Me: Yes, it is definitely Wednesday
Puppy: It’s National Dog Day
Me: It is?
Puppy: Most assuredly
Me: It’s also Wednesday
Puppy: Pay attention
Me: Of course. Should we talk about National Dog Day?
Puppy: Do you know what National Dog Day is about?
Me: The dog days of summer?
Puppy: No
Me: Doggie bags?
Puppy: No. Wait, dogs have bags? What are you talking about?
Me: National Dog Day is about working dogs and rescue dogs
Puppy: Yes. How did you know?
Me: I read the same posting you did
Puppy: But it’s still important
Me: Absolutely
Puppy: I am a working dog
Me: You are most assuredly NOT a working dog
Puppy: I’m not?
Me: No. Working dogs do things like guide blind people, and sniff for bombs, and rescue people. You sniff for fun and nap.
Puppy: I do important sniffing!
Me: But National Dog Day is about more than working dogs
Puppy: It’s about treats!
Me: It’s about rescue dogs
Puppy: And I rescued a dog?
Me: You are a rescue dog
Puppy: So National Dog Day is about me
Me: It’s about all dogs
Puppy: Which means I should get a treat
Me: You have very interesting logic
Puppy: Can I have a bag too?
Me: A bag?
Puppy: You said doggies get bags
Me: I love you, baby
Puppy: Love you too Mom

Love, Mom

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Swimming the Channel | The First Hashtags

Dear Kid,

If you happened to be around on this day in 1875, you might have noticed something interesting in your Twitter feed. Like that you had a Twitter feed. #TimeWarp

Sea Turtles eat jellyfish and are great swimmers. DearKidLoveMom.comYou might also have noticed that the Big News was that Captain Matthew Webb became the first person to swim the English Channel. #ChannelSwim

Training in Those Days was different than it is today. Webb drank brandy, coffee, and beef tea during his 21 hour and 45 minute swim. #SwimDrunk

He also smeared himself with porpoise fat for insulation. #WetSuitsAreBetter

This story does not have a happy ending. #FairWarning

After surviving jellyfish (long live sea turtles!!) and whatnot, Webb was celebrated as a hero. Not too long after that, Webb discovered that his accomplishment was “so yesterday.” #NoOneCares

But Webb liked being in the spotlight #BadChoices and decided to be an inventor. #NoOneCaresAgain

Eventually, Webb came to the US because we love crazy people. In order to prove himself hashtag-worthy (#NotSoMuch), Webb decided to swim a treacherous part of the rapids at Niagara Falls (a part known for its people-eating whirlpool). #CrazyStoopid

The locals #PeopleWhoKnowOfWhatTheySpeak told him it was suicide because over 80 people had died there. #NotAPopularTouristAttraction Webb declined to decline and 5 days later his body was found. #WeToldYouSo


Love, Mom

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First Day of College Classes

Happy First Day of Classes! DearKidLoveMom.comDear Kid,

Happy first day of classes for the college year!

Today is a day full of possibilities. It’s the day when anything can happen. It’s a day still in all its cellophane and waiting to be unwrapped.

Today is the day when expectations are high. When no homework is late, no assignment unread. When you believe you will love all your classes (which I hope is true).

Today is the day when you meet new people in class. When you might be sitting next to someone who might turn out to be your new best friend. When you might change someone’s life. Or have someone change yours.

Today is the day to start your good habits for the semester. Writing down all assignments and completing them ahead of time. Studying daily. Reviewing material every day. Going the extra mile in everything.

Today is the day you’ve never been late for class. You’ve never skipped breakfast to get to class on time.

Mom note: Do not skip breakfast.

Happy first day, kiddo!

Love, Mom

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