February 2016

I Just Talked My Kids Into Eating McDonalds

th Is the phrase “pink slime” in your kids’ vocabulary? It is in mine…all thanks to my stinkin’ health-nut husband.

I’m not sure if it’s been mentioned on here yet but I am a slight Diet Dr. Pepper addict. Well guess who has THE BEST fountain Diet DP? You guessed it, McDonalds. When my oldest, Brighton, was an only child I was bored. Honestly, I was. I had come from working full-time, so all my friends were my co-workers, so I was a bit lonely! So when she got old enough to toddle around the play-land at McD’s I’d take her there with my iPod touch (Before I had a smart phone) and I’d sip Diet DP and let her play. It was a glorious escape even if it smelled like toddler feet. (Or hamburgers…I’ve realized they pretty much smell the same.)

Fast forward to Brighton’s Kindergarten year. I had Deacon by then. So EVERY DAY I’d drop her off at afternoon Kindergarten and swing through the McD drive-thru for my pick-me-up and once in a while I’d get Deacon something to eat. Not excessively, but once in a while. So my point is, I was there a lot and when it was convenient I’d let the kids eat there.

About a year ago my husband started indoctrinating my oldest with the idea that McDonalds was full of PINK SLIME. I could tell she was slightly grossed out but he’s such a health-nut he thinks everything is going to kill you. We take everything he says with a grain of kosher all-natural sea salt. It’s kind of a personal joke in my house. Like if we told someone to imitate Aaron they’d say something like, “Who wants some of my green smoothie? Full of Kale!” or “Sure, eat that (insert unhealthy food here) if you want to DIE!” Literally. He’s literally that dramatic about it.

So Brighton’s been on the edge with the Golden Arches for a while but it all went downhill when he showed her AND Deacon a YouTube video of the pink slime seen here.  That was IT. Every time we drove by they’d yell, “EW! Pink Slime!”

I should have been ecstatic! I should have bragged to the PTA moms like, “Dude, my kids are SO much healthier than yours. I bet your kids still ask for McDonalds right? Not my kids!” Okay, I kinda was. Then my friend Ashley wanted to take the kids out to dinner last week when our husbands were both out of town… to McDonalds. Her little boy had been asking to go there for two weeks and since it’s a rare treat for them she agreed. I wanted to go visit with my friend and not cook dinner, so I told my kids we were going out with friends.

When we pulled into the parking lot you would have thought I was taking my kids to a 1920’s dentist office!









“I don’t wannnaaa DIIIIEEEE!!!!” -3-year-old.

Finally I convinced my kids that eating there twice a year will NOT kill you. I even had to tell Deacon that the pink slime is in the hamburgers, so he could get McNuggets instead, which he did. (They’re actually so much worse!)

What the heck, man? I talked my kids into eating at McDonalds! What’s wrong with me? Honestly, their food totally grosses me out. Except the fries. MMM good, for about 2 minutes while they’re hot and fresh. After that they may as well be old sponges.

I don’t think we’ll be eating there for quite a while and I’m actually really glad my kids know enough about nutrition to recognize what’s real food and what’s not! It’s just so ironic!

Disclaimer: I think McDonald’s actually took the pink slime out of their food…  but may have snuck it back in while we weren’t looking. We were too busy eating McFlurries. Not entirely sure the accuracy of this. I’d kind of rather just not know.

Tears Over The Finality of it All

Me and my adorable niece, June

I’m sad. And on days  I’m sad my blog won’t be very funny. So move along if you wish. Or go ahead and read if you want to relate to someone’s sadness over infertility.

It’s over.  My child-bearing days are officially over and it feels so final. Last week I had an endometrial ablation and a tubal…something or other. They removed my tubes. My baby factory has been demolished. It also coincides with the year anniversary of when I “lost a baby” in an unconventional way and I’m still not 100% over it.

Not many people know, not even some of my closest friends, we tried to adopt a baby last year. We almost adopted a baby last year. The birth parents chose us and after a lot of ups and downs decided they would place the baby. We met the parents, one of which was a close family friend and introduced them to our kids. We were so thrilled to have our family complete.

The interesting thing about this, is that after I had Piper via IVF (my 3rd) I had the distinct impression that we would adopt a baby. I had always been open to the idea but when deciding if we should put it out there and create a profile with an adoption agency it was very clear to me that someone we knew would place their baby with us. So I waited… When this family told us it was a possibility shortly after she found out she was pregnant I just KNEW it was going to happen. I had no doubt in my mind. It felt so right.

Fast-forward to last January, about six weeks before she was due, and the birth mom changed her mind and decided to keep the baby. I know it was an incredibly hard decision for her and she had to do what she felt was right. I sobbed in my bed for 24 hours like someone had died. That’s what it felt like to me. Then had to get up and take care of the three precious babies I did have. I’d been picturing our future one way for the last four months and I had to deal with this loss. And for the first time ever had to cry with my kids over a sadness we shared. That was the hardest part.

This week I cried again with my most sensitive, middle child when I told him to be careful with my stomach. He excitedly asked if I was pregnant and I told him no, I just had surgery. I told him I would never be pregnant again and his sweet face sank as big alligator tears spilled out of his brown eyes. “You mean there will be no more babies?”

“Nope, buddy. I won’t have any more babies.” Tears. More tears.

The hard thing about secondary infertility is that it’s kind of not talked about. The support and sympathy isn’t there for moms who have one or more children, but long for more. We hear “Just be grateful for the ones you have.” I AM grateful. I’m incredibly grateful. I cherish every moment with them but I have more love in my heart for more children. And the fact is, I didn’t get to choose when to be done. I didn’t get to say, “I feel like we should have a 4th. And then have a 4th.” It didn’t happen for us and now it seems so final.

In the last year I’ve been able to look at my family with a sense of completion. I know what our future looks like and I relish the opportunities I’ve been given. It’s only with this surgery and the finality of it all that I’m brought back to that longing for more. So to those moms who never quite felt like their family was complete, but for whatever reason had to be done having babies I say “I’m sorry.” I’m sorry you have to feel that bittersweet sadness when you hear a pregnancy announcement. I’m sorry about that twinge of envy you feel when you see a family with five kids together at the park. I’m sorry you didn’t get to make the final decision on your family size. It’s not an easy thing to go through and I’m sorry for your loss.

I Tortilla-Bombed a Mexican’s House

tortillaIf you think that title sounds completely racist, you’d be right. But wait! It was all a misunderstanding, I promise!

Let’s back up a bit.

Last week I flew to Seattle to help my sister Heather move here to Boise. Yay!!! We spent days packing,  boxing and bubble wrapping while listening to early 2000’s R&B. It was glorious. Then the night before the move Heather’s husband declared that keeping anything from the fridge would be completely disgusting. So we gathered it all up to give or throw away.

Heather has a neighbor who is probably the sweetest person on planet Earth. She’s Mexican-American and from everything I’ve heard from Heather she couldn’t have asked for a better neighbor. We decided we’d take all the non mystery-meat fridge food to this neighbor, Josi, to see if she wanted anything. There was good stuff in there! Salad dressings, cheese, olives…. tortillas.

“Josi was telling me how it drives her crazy when people assume she makes great Mexican food and asks her to bring it to parties,” Heather told me upon seeing the tortillas. “For a church function, the Relief Society president asked her to bring homemade tortillas and it really bugged her!”  Apparently Josi does make incredible homemade tortillas, but the assumption is still irritating/racist.  Then she told me a story how at a “favorite things” party at church Josi happened to open up a bag of tortillas that someone else brought and everyone (except Josi) thought it was hysterical.

So after hearing these stories I gather up two half gallons of milk, bags of cheese, some bottles and a bag of tortillas in my arms and we start walking down the street in the dark. We ring the doorbell and knock on the door but no one is home, so we head back to Heather’s. When we get close to Heather’s house I look down and my tortilla bag is upside-down and empty.

“What happened to the tortillas?!”- Me.

“Oh my gosh! I heard something fall on the doorstep but my arms were so full I couldn’t see anything and the bag of tortillas was still in your arms so I thought we were fine!”- Heather.

“You mean to tell me, we just dropped a bag of tortillas on your Mexican neighbor’s doorstep and ran?”- Me (through fits of horrified laughter.)

“Yes!” -Heather.

At this point we’re about to pee our pants from laughing so hard and our arms are still full of food.

We decide to go back into Heather’s house to unload our arms and then go back and get the tortillas off the doorstep.

We make it back to Josi’s house and upon seeing tortillas spread all over the front porch we erupt into more pee-inducing laughter. (We’ve both had 3 kids, laughing must be done cross-legged.) So we rush up to destroy the evidence and just as we’re bent over picking up the mess we see a car round the corner and suddenly we’re blinded by headlights.

We freeze.

“What are you guys doing?” – Sweet Josi.

I don’t know if I still thought it was funny or if I was so horrified I couldn’t control my emotions but I could still barely talk. I could see how this looked!

“We were bringing over armfuls of food from the fridge and we dropped tortillas on your doorstep!”- Heather.

(We had no armfuls of food.)

“You dropped tortillas on my doorstep?”- Sweet Josi asks doubtfully.

I finally compose myself enough to explain that we DID have armfuls of food and only noticed the tortillas were missing when we got back to Heather’s…. this is not looking good for us! Suddenly I feel like we’re on an episode of Seinfeld or Modern Family!

We could only explain ourselves and hope Sweet Josi bought our story but what are the odds people!?

I guess maybe it’s a good thing Heather moved? She might have potatoes hurled at her house next week.