Friday, May 6, 2011

Flashback Friday

I'm stealing the idea of Flashback Friday from my SIL, Kristen, who has a fantastic blog. On Fridays she writes about something, usually hysterical, from the past. So I'm adopting this ritual as my own, and here's the 1st installment. To celebrate the 13th anniversary of the day my sweet Ethan came into my life, this one takes us back to his toddler days.

Some years ago when my eldest was but a tot of 2, we were in that fun phase with him where the most entertaining thing you can do is get him to copy something you've said. Ethan has a sense of humor similar to his dad's, so if he thinks your laughing at the things he's saying, it just adds fuel to the fire. We spent countless hours giggling at him and teaching him to say things like "gimme five". Of course, in the language learning years we don't have much control over what they repeat, and we've had plenty of backfires. "Oh cwap!" in the middle of a church meeting comes to mind. And naturally not everything a toddler says comes out just the way they intend. For instance, there was a time when Ethan, watching out the front window, announced that the neighbors titties were in our yard. We knew he meant kitties, but come on, that's funny. And we've all met the toddler who can't quite pronounce the word "fork". So it was during this tender phase that Bryan decided to teach Ethan something new. "Who's yer daddy" was a popular cliche at the time and dearest husband thought it would be so funny to hear the little man say it. I wasn't quite as enthusiastic about this one but they were having such a good time I didn't think it necessary to squelch all the fun. I figured he'd forget about it soon enough anyway. As it turns out I grossly underestimated the length of a 2 year olds memory bank. Only he didn't remember the saying quite the same way, he had his own version. It all started at Safeway. I lovingly placed my handome boy in the seat of the shopping cart and began my journey down the first aisle. The store wasn't very crowded, so the excursion began innocently enough. I was so engrossed in the vast varieties of pickles in front of me, that I hardly noticed the old gentleman pushing his own cart toward me. Just as he passed, my sweet boy blurted out, "Who's my daddy!?" My head snapped away from the pickle jars as I starred at my child in disbelief. The old man looked at Ethan, then glared at me. In a pathetic effort to redeem my good name I said "You mean WHERE's my daddy." To which Ethan then repeated "Who's my daddy!" The old man shuffled off on his way, leaving me to stand there completely frazzled and embarrassed. I tried to calmly explain to Ethan, who didn't understand or care, that I didn't want him to repeat it. The fact that he got a reaction out of me was all he needed. The next lucky stranger who passed by got the same greeting, much to my dismay. This continued with each and every person we passed, up to and including the pubescent bag boy. Most of the shoppers had a sense of humor about it, but I had to wonder what they were thinking. All I knew was that I was completely and utterly horrified. I might just as well have had my name spray painted on the water tower. I don't recall the conversation I'm sure I had with Bryan when I saw him later, but he probably had very little sympathy and thought it was as funny as Ethan did.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Toilet Trophies

Ok, this post is not about what you think it is. We aren't celebrating any special...accomplishments. At least not yet. Our business was running a Groupon today, so I was on the phone with prospective customers for most of the day. At lunch time I was right in the middle of preparing a great PB&J for Mr. T when the phone rang yet again. A quick glance at the caller ID told me it was someone I'd been trying to connect with so I opted to drop the jelly and run to the office to grab the phone. Tyce was none too thrilled at my choice and made sure I knew it by standing outside my office door, (childproof doorknobs are very useful) to pound and scream at me. About halfway through my conversation I had the realization that it was suddenly very quiet. Then I heard the toilet flush. Hmm, Tyce isn't potty trained yet, so why would he be flushing? Maybe the better question is WHAT is he flushing? Another flush, now I'm bracing myself for a disaster. Visions of Hotwheels and Polly Pockets floating in the bowl begin to flood my imagination. Naturally the customer on the phone needs to tell me in great detail about her carpet/puppy misfortunes. Then she feels the need to explain, again in detail, where her home is located in relation to the Great Wall of China. Finally, we wrap up the sale and I'm able to politely disconnect myself from the telephone and run to the hallway. There stands Tyce, his arms are definitely wet from the elbows down. I'm immediately feeling sick to my stomach, as my older children cannot be bothered to flush the toilet on a regular basis. Please please please be clean water, I'm thinking to myself. Finally, the moment of truth as I peer cautiously into the bowl. Phew, water is clear, at least we're not talking about sewage here. And what is the object that required so much flushing? Shelby's soccer trophy. Thank goodness it was too big to actually go anywhere. The poor Polly Pockets would not have been so lucky. A change of clothes and a good arm scrubbing later, Tyce got a nice lecture about why we don't play in the toilet. Again.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Over Exposure

New family rule: No pulling mommy's dress up with you when she stands up in the middle of church to take you out because your being too noisy.

Usually praying in church is something that's done outloud, today I was praying to myself that nobody noticed me. During a moment that was supposed to be quietly reverent, Tyce decided to announce to not only me, but everyone around us, that he was NOT interested in eating the snack I had brought for him. In my effort to tame the untameable 2 year old, I was trying to offer him some yogurt, thinking he might sit quietly for a few minutes. After all, he can only make so much noise if his mouth is full right? Wrong. So so wrong. So to avoid the dirty looks from the people around us that might actually be trying to absorb some spirituality from the meeting, I wrapped my arm under his body and swooped him up. Making sure to also grab the very important blankie, as to not make more a scene than necessary, I stood to make my way out of the aisle. It was at that moment that I noticed that while I had Tyce in one arm, he had the bottom of my dress in his hand, which was now at my waist level. For a brief moment, everything under my dress was exposed from the waist down. I hope, (I really really hope) that nobody was looking at us in that moment. I fear however, that since we were causing a bit of a scene, that was probably not the case. I quickly sat back down, forcefully removed my dress from his clenched fist, and regained my composure. Then we stood to try the whole thing again. At least on the second attempt we were able to sneak out without further embarrassment. Oh well, it's not the first time I've unwittingly exposed myself, but that's a story for another day.

Friday, April 29, 2011

The Family Rules

Our "family rules" started on Facebook. Early on I decided that I was only going to post on Facebook if I could make people smile. Each new rule is the result of an action, comment or blunder on the part of one or several of our family members. The first family rule that started it all?
New family rule: "We don't give wedgies during family prayer."

Now some may think this should go without saying. We are a spiritual family, we pray every night together before the kids go off to their respective dreamlands. Usually there is a certain decorum associated with prayer time, but it's not uncommon for this formality to be more of a wish on my part than an actuality. One night in particular, as we were kneeling in prayer, my lovely daughter who was 7 at the time decided to stealthily reach behind her big brother and give his undies a yank. I have to give Ethan credit for not yelping right in the middle of suplication. He waited until we said "amen" to announce that he had received a wedgie. Shelby, ever the innocent, quietly grinned as only a child with great gratification can. You see, it's usually Shelby who is on the receiving end of most teasing and torture in our house, and sometimes payback is sweet.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Cast of Characters

What happens when the class clown meets and marries the funny girl? You end up with bunch of goofball babies. The things that happen within the four walls of this house can provide the avid humorist with years of family fodder. Three goofy kids ranging in age from 2 to 13, allows for a steady stream of offbeat situations and anecdotal humiliation. Don't worry about being a Peeping Tom, your invited to take a peek inside our wacky Winkel world. Just don't leave any nose marks on the windows, it creeps me out.

Meet our cast of characters:

ME! (Laurel): I'm The Mom. It falls on my shoulders to make sure this gaggle of gigglers gets fed, washed, educated, shuttled, and otherwise supervised in all workings of the world. I also work full time from home in our family business making sure all the $$$ gets to the bank on time.

Bryan: Husband magnifique! Not only is this handsome man the love of my life, he's also handy around the house. Bryan has a sarcastic personality blended with the ability to not only see the humor in things, but also point it out using little to no verbal filter.

Ethan: A smaller version of his father, in almost every regard. This kid keeps me on my toes, and constantly reminds me that life doesn't have to be so serious. He also needs a haircut.

Shelby: As much like her mother as Ethan is like his father. Shy...until you get to know her. She can make me laugh and make me pull my hair out, all without taking a breath. Sweet as pie, as long as you don't release the Kraken.

Tyce: The perfect combination of the best and worst of the other two. He's my little shadow, as long as its on his terms. As far as he's concerned, he's the boss around here and nobody better say otherwise. He's responsible for most of my tears of joy, and frustration.