I Only Exaggerate Excessively

Dear Kid,

Some folks never exaggerate -- they just remember big. DearKidLoveMom.comSomebody said yesterday that I am given to exaggeration. I prefer to think that I give exaggeration to the world.

Puppy: What does that mean?
Me: It means it means that when I said that dinner was the best meal I’ve ever eaten, it was really only the second best.
Puppy: So when you say I’m the best puppy in the world, I’m only second best?
Me: Of course you’re the best—I never exaggerate about you.


Some are born to exaggerate; some have exaggeration blogged upon them.

As I started thinking about exaggeration, I realized that there were zillions of words crashing around in brain, making it hard to even begin to consider concentrating.

If you add to the truth, you subtract from it. The Talmud. DearKidLoveMom.comPuppy: What does that mean?
Me: That I have a lot of words fighting for priority order in my brain
Puppy: Don’t you usually?
Me: Are you interested in being fed today?
Puppy: Napping. Saying nothing

That sounds like an excellent idea. I believe I shall take a 17 hour nap.

Love, Mom

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When the Utterly Brilliant Idea Doesn’t Work

Dear Kid,

It’s one of those days.

One of those days when I had an utterly brilliant idea for today’s letter. I know it was utterly brilliant because I said to myself, “That is an utterly brilliant idea!”

My fingers however did not exactly agree.

Never miss an opportunity to make others happy, even if you have to leave them alone in order to do it. ~Author Unknown DearKidLoveMom.comMy fingers looked at each other, rolled their eyes, and refused to have anything to do with typing about the utterly brilliant idea.

In fact, my fingers suggested that there was no way on earth the Utterly Brilliant Idea could be turned into a blog unless Albus Dumbledore himself got some serious magic involved.

Since I don’t have access to the aforementioned headmaster, my fingers decided to nap.

Do you know how hard it is to get all ten digits to wake up and work together?

I tried again. I tried to convince my left should and some seriously influential brain cells to take up the cause. They laughed and went out for coffee.

Clearly, there is a revolution afoot. (Technically, I didn’t get my feet involved in the discussion since they tend to have fairly base ideas.)

Perhaps tomorrow I’ll find a way to make my brilliant idea work.

Perhaps it will take longer than 24 hours.

Either way, I love you.Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for a kindness. ~Seneca DearKidLoveMom.com

Love, Mom

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A Day Without Pooh is a Day Without Sunshine

Dear Kid,

A day without a friend is like a pot without a single drop of honey left inside. Winnie the Pooh. DearKidLoveMom.comIf you had been around on January 18, 1882, you would not have notice that a particular baby was born in England. Fortunately, Alan Alexander Milne’s parents noticed even though this was their third child.

Have you figured it out yet?

I refer of course to A. A. Milne, author of all things Pooh bear.

Milne first wrote adult material like the play Mr. Pim Passes By and the mystery novel The Red House Mystery. It wasn’t until his son, Christopher Robin (yes, really) was about one-year-old that A. A. began writing for children.

“Sometimes, if you stand on the bottom rail of a bridge and lean over to watch the river slipping slowly away beneath you, you will suddenly know everything there is to be known.“  ― Winnie the Pooh. DearKidLoveMom.comFirst he wrote When We Were Very Young (the first book of poems), then Winnie-the-Pooh (the first book of stories), followed by Now We Are Six (poems), and The House at Pooh Corner (stories). Like a literary layer cake.

Christopher was insufficiently grateful for being a well-known children’s book hero, but that’s a story for a different day.

Love, Mom

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The Speaker Can Make All The Difference

Dear Kid,

I had the great joy of eavesdropping on a conversation today. It was in a public place and while there were open tables for miles around the conversatees chose to sit directly behind me. So I felt totally justified in listening.

One person was a teenage boy, probably a junior in high school. The other was a retired school teacher who I see frequently at the gym. She now tutors students especially for improvement in their SAT and ACT scores. She’s a strict sort, not one to put up with nonsense, excuses, or mumbling. Probably one of those teachers who made her students do a ton of work and they loved her for it.

What struck me was how different people in our lives can speak to us in the same way but with totally different results. (This is not news, but it is worth repeating.)

Any fool can know. The point is to understand. Albert Einstein DearKidLoveMom.comTeacher: Did you read the parts I told you to?
Student: Yes, but I had a little trouble with one
Teacher: Let’s look at it. (They talk.) How do you know x?
Student mumbles
Teacher: No, don’t tell me, show me. Where did you find that in this passage? Here? No. You have to look further.

An alternate scenario:

Mom: Darling, you mentioned you didn’t understand x. Do you need help with your homework?
Kid (rolls eyes): I can do my homework, Mother. Leave me alone.
Mom: Well, I’m here if you want to review anything
Kid: I SAID I’m FINE and I DON’T NEED HELP!! (storms off to text 4,000 people about the injustices in the world)

Thank heavens parents aren’t the only people in the world who care.

Love, Mom

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Fabulous Football Predictions and Great Football Quotes

Dear Kid,

You got one guy going boom, one guy going whack, and one guy not getting in the endzone. ~ John Madden

Tonight is the Homecoming Football Game (High School) between Our Heroes (YAY!) and the Other Team (also known as Them).

When I went to Catholic high school in Philadelphia, we just had one coach for football and basketball. He took all of us who turned out and had us run through a forest. The ones who ran into the trees were on the football team. ~George Raveling

Our Heroes (Yay!) will be wearing green (unless they are wearing black—my usual informant on the subject is doing homework and I have been told Not To Interrupt) and the Other Team (OT) will be wearing something else. Probably white.

The reason women don’t play football is because eleven of them would never wear the same outfit in public. ~Phyllis Diller

Since it is Homecoming, we expect the game will be exciting, the stands will be full, and the crowd will be loud.

There are several differences between a football game and a revolution. For one thing, a football game usually lasts longer and the participants wear uniforms. Also, there are usually more casualties in a football game. The object of the game is to move a ball past the other team’s goal line. This counts as six points. No points are given for lacerations, contusions, or abrasions, but then no points are deducted, either. Kicking is very important in football. In fact, some of the more enthusiastic players even kick the ball, occasionally. ~Alfred Hitchcock

Sycamore HS Aviators Point After Touchdown! DearKidLoveMom.comAlso since it is Homecoming, the band will be out in full force and the Court will be Crowned.

The thing about football – the important thing about football – is that it is not just about football. ~Terry Pratchett, Unseen Academicals

Note: Being that it’s a Terry Pratchett quote, it’s probably about soccer not American football. But being that it’s a Terry Pratchett quote, one can never be 100% sure. I read the book and I while I’m reasonably certain, I can’t be 100% sure.

It is supposed to rain. This is likely to dampen some of the enthusiasm.

Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can’t. ~Jerry Rice

We expect that Our Heroes (YAY!) will win. Expect some degree of excessive celebration.

Anyone who’s just driven 90 yards against huge men trying to kill them has earned the right to do Jazz hands. ~Craig Ferguson

Have you ever noticed that there are a lot of football/life analogies?

The game of life is a lot like football. You have to tackle your problems, block your fears, and score your points when you get the opportunity. ~Lewis Grizzard

We will be at the football game. With any luck we will be warm(ish) and dry(ish) and celebrating the victory of the Homecoming.

Football combines two of the worst things in American life. It is violence punctuated by committee meetings. ~George F. Will

Love, Mom


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Listen My Children and You Shall Hear–But Not Necessarily What You Expected

Silent and listen are spelled with the same letters DearKidLoveMom.com“Silent” and “listen” are spelled with the same letters. ~Author Unknown

Dear Kid,

Often when someone says something, our instinct is to jump in with a response, comment, opinion, or something that shows a) we’ve been listening and b) we know a lot of words.

The problem with that is that we’re busy formulating a response, clever bon mot, retort, or smart-ass comment rather than actually listening to the person.

And the problem with that is that without listening a) we don’t really know what they are going to say and b) they might not know entirely either.


‘Tis true, oh young one.

Sometimes as people are talking, they are working out what they are thinking. By interrupting, we deprive them of that processing time. And it’s important time they need to really work though (perhaps more slowly than you might like) whatever they’re thinking about.

Back to point A. The second A that is.

As mighty as your brain is (and it is) and as perceptive as you are (and you are) sometime (even if it is very occasionally) people say unexpected things. And if you already have your response ready, you may miss their point entirely.

As is often said (and if you haven’t heard this, allow me to be the first to add to your repertoire of clichés) we have two ears and one mouth which means we should spend twice as much time listening as talking. This is especially true when the subject is shoes and the other conversational participants are female.

Love, Mom


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