Changing My Luck

Posted by on Mar 18, 2014 in Family Life, From My Perspective, Musings from the Mayhem, Twins | 1 comment

I should not be writing.  I have way too much to do.  But I NEED to write.  So the rest will just have to wait.

Last night Taylor woke me up at 1:45am.  “Mommy, my belly hurts.”

“Okay,” I said.  “Climb in.”

An hour later, Taylor’s identical twin sister Sydney nudged me awake.  “Mommy, I woke up because I knew Taylor was gone.  Is she okay?”

“Yes, she’s fine.  Go back to bed,” I grumbled.

Sydney didn’t budge.  She was hesitant to speak, but clear that she was going nowhere without her sister.  I sighed with tired defeat.

“Get in,” I succumbed.  There was no use fighting Twin Mode.  It’s a battle that can not be won.  Especially at 3 in the morning.

Another hour later, I left my overcrowded bed and moved to the couch.  There I slept like shit while Craig, Sydney and Taylor slumbered peacefully.

I awoke at 6:15 – to a dog that needed to be rushed to the Emergency Vet because she was choking and having difficulty breathing.  Also, Taylor’s belly still hurt, and she would be staying home from school.  Again.

$350 later, I left the vet with two prescriptions to treat either kennel cough or pneumonia.

I came home and went to the fridge.  I was hungry.  I noticed something wet on the floor.  It was brown.  I opened the fridge to find the bottle of Worcestershire sauce on its side without a lid, and its contents spilled everywhere.  I wanted to cry.  Craig could tell, so he offered to help clean it up.

I sat down at the table where Taylor was eating her breakfast.  Apparently her belly was feeling better.  Which meant a forty minute round trip to and from the school was now in my near future.  I took a deep breath.  Then I heard a thunk.

“What was that?” Craig asked.  “It’s the second time I’ve heard it.”

“I think there’s a bird in the house,” Taylor said with her mouth full.  “I swear I saw one earlier.”

“Are you serious?” I asked.

“Yeah,” she said, nonchalantly.  Birds love our house.  Unfortunately, this was not anything out of the ordinary.

Craig walked upstairs to verify the truth Taylor told.  We trapped the bird in Sydney’s room and let it fly out the open window.

Another deep breath.

“Okay, T.  Let’s go to school,” I told her.

Halfway there, I glanced at my gas tank.  My eyes grew wide with surprise when I noticed the needle was not only on E, but almost on the wrong side of E.  I looked at the passenger seat to find my purse.  It was not there.  I had taken it in the house with Bella’s medication.

“Great,” I muttered.

“What’s wrong, Mommy?” Taylor asked.

“I have no gas and no money,” I told her.

“Uh-oh,” she said.

“Yeah.  Uh-oh,” I agreed.

I dropped her off at school and then scoured my van.  I found one single dollar bill.  That’s it.  The kids had wiped my change compartment clean for the last “donate” day at school.

So I went to the gas station and handed the clerk my one single dollar bill, gassed up all 8 seconds worth, and then prayed to make it home.

Thankfully, I did.  Now I pray I make it back to the gas station.  Even as I say it, I feel like it’s asking a lot.

So, I’m writing.  Writing with the hope that if I get it out, my luck will turn around.  And if it doesn’t?  Well, then I guess I’ll have more to write about later.

So at least there’s that.

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Last Night’s Near Death Experience

Posted by on Feb 24, 2014 in Family Life, From My Perspective, Musings from the Mayhem, Twins | 1 comment

I was tired last night.  Or so I thought.

I crawled into bed, plopped my head on my horizontal pillow, wrapped my arms and legs around my vertical pillow, and snuggled under my fluffy down comforter.  It was time to catch some zzzzz’s.

PING!  My heavy eyes unexpectedly popped open.

Wait!  What was going on?  This was not happening.  Not tonight.  I needed to sleep.  I wanted to start Monday off rested, not tired.  Then Craig started to snore.

Annoyed, I flung back my blanket and headed straight for the Melatonin.  I popped a pill, returned to bed  and fell asleep with ease – well aware that it was more of a placebo affect than anything, but I’m cool with that.

Fast forward a few hours… 

I awakened with a start.  Scratch that.  That’s not nearly descriptive enough.

I was viciously jolted from my peaceful slumber by the strange and horrifying intruder that loomed above me.  Her eyes were wide with patient wonder.  She hovered in eerie silence, just waiting for me to wake so I would know the fear of my impending – more than likely violent – doom.  It was obvious this evil monster would take great pleasure watching the life drain from my terror-filled eyes.

AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!”  I shrieked loud enough to scare myself all over again.

“What’s wrong?!” I heard Craig awake with a start.  He was now panicked by the murderer in our room too.

His voice nudged my logic.  Wait.  I started to recognize the evil villain, but still did not feel safe.

Taylor!” I shouted at my daughter.  “What do you want?!!!!”  Now I was scared and angry.

“I’m. Not. Taylor.”  Her voice echoed with disgust.

AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!”  I screamed again.  Who WAS this psycho maniac?!!!  And why did she want to kill me?!!

“Kristin!” I heard Craig say.  “It’s Sydney!”

My heart threatened to beat right out of my chest.  Finally I woke enough to process this information.  This person called Sydney – whom I mistook for a girl named Taylor – did not want to slice me into a million little pieces.  Nor did she want to be mistaken for a girl named Taylor.

You see, Taylor is Sydney’s identical twin sister.  The only thing Sydney was guilty of was having a bad dream.  She had come to me, her mommy, for comfort.  I’m the one person who knows her best in the world.  The person with whom she feels the safest.  So when I didn’t recognize her, my 9 year-old was scared and irritated.

“Oh Sweetie!  I’m sorry!  Climb in,” I instructed as I threw back the covers.  She nestled her head underneath my chin.  I wrapped my arms around her and squeezed her tightly.  “You almost gave Mommy a heart attack, Syd!  You scared me so much I pooped my pants!”  I giggled, trying to make her feel better.  She didn’t respond the way I had hoped, but I couldn’t blame her.  I’m sure her feelings were very hurt.

This morning on the way to school, I was still feeling guilty for the sleep-induced mishap.  I felt the need to address it light-heartedly to make sure Sydney wasn’t still offended.

“Hey Syd!  Tell Gabe and Taylor how crazy Mommy was last night,” I encouraged her.  I was anxious to hear her side of the story.

“I had a bad dream.  So I went down to tell Mommy.  When I woke her up, she almost had a heart attack.  Mommy was so scared she pooped in her pants!” Sydney belly-laughed as she retold the story.

“You did?!” Taylor and Gabe asked in shocked unison.

“Not really” I clarified.  “It was just an expression I used to let Syd know I wasn’t mad at her.”

OHHHH!” Sydney exclaimed.  “I was wondering why it didn’t smell!”

Giggle.  Giggle.  Giggle.

Laugh.  Laugh.  Laugh.

All was forgiven.

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“But it’s true…” A tribute to my Grandma on her 84th Birthday

Posted by on Feb 15, 2014 in Family Life, From My Perspective, Musings from the Mayhem, Raising Great Kids | 0 comments

Today is my Grandma Barb’s 84th birthday.  I woke up smiling about the fun evening we spent celebrating with her last night.

She sat at the head of the table – as always.

She ate mostaciolli until her heart was content, and then asked for “just a little bit more” – as always.

She fired off her most honest opinions, which required me to interrupt and provide necessary clarification to my wide-eyed children, “Kids, you are not allowed to say that about other people.  Ever.”

My Grandma sighed with great reluctance.  She even went so far as to agree with me last night.  Then she added a firm, “But it’s true…”

As always.

My grandma has no filter.  She gets straight to the point, without wasting time on fluffy cushions to ease the blow.  I’m a lot like my Grandma, only I have a great appreciation for accent pillows.  Carefully placed cushions deliver the hard truth with soft love.  Too much fluff feels staged and fake.  But enough soft edges put in just the right places?  Well, then you feel safe enough to kick your feet up and stay awhile.

In light of my Grandma’s birthday, I’d like to share a blog that I’ve posted before.  I have learned so much from her, and I am very lucky to have her in my life.

Here’s to keeping it real, Grams.  I love you.  And I thank you.


The Naked Truth

Posted by  on Feb 12, 2013

Ten years into parenting, you would think I’d have it all figured out.  But every day presents a new challenge, unknown territory, and foreign hurdles.  Parenting is never as black and white as what you script it to be in your head, so it’s impossible to be fully prepared.

Like when you’re eating dinner with your kids – You never expect the next innocent question out of your son’s mouth will be, “Mommy, why is ‘pussy’ a bad word?”  Nor do you envision having to tackle a question like this in front of your eight-year-old twin daughters.  You also don’t picture your husband absent from this momentus occasion due to a late appointment.

The biggest parenting moments are always surrounded by gray area.  From household to household, not one situation is ever exactly the same.  Thus, the reason there is no handbook.  You are forced to think on your feet the best you can; knowing that whatever explanation you offer is going to be followed by at least fifty “Why’s?”.  So you’d better be prepared to back-up your answer.

In moments such as these, I always head straight for the truth.  As my children discover the harsh realities of life, I prefer the information come directly from me.  I want them to learn to trust that Mom is a good resource when it comes to talking about the big issues.

So after taking a deep breath, I explained that “pussy” is an inappropriate word used to describe a girl’s private parts.  The “Why’s?” came rolling in.  I explained the specific private part that the term applied to, followed by more questions.  We had more than covered the basics, so I brought the conversation to a close.

Gabe understood more quickly than his little sisters.  I could see their little minds spinning.  They love to be in the know.  But they’re too little to understand the need for a filter or censorship.

“Girls, the p-word is just as bad as the f-word.  You are not allowed to talk about this at school.  If you do, you could get suspended,”  I warned them.

Their eyes grew wide.  Their mouths fell open.  They got the seriousness of the situation.  The discussion was finally over, much to my relief.

I know there will be more conversations like this to follow, because now I have established my credibility.  Just like my grandma did with me when I was ten – I asked her what a blow-job was, and she told me.  I have never forgotten the conversation, or the gratitude I felt when she treated me like a person instead of a porcelain doll.  To this day, I can talk to her about anything because she thought on her feet, and went straight to the truth.


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More Time

Posted by on Feb 4, 2014 in Family Life, From My Perspective, Musings from the Mayhem, Raising Great Kids | 0 comments

Last year when I learned the kids’ elementary school was moving, I was bummed.    Our quick and easy 10 minute commute doubled to 20, and the morning start time bumped from 8 o’clock to 7:45.  Ugh.

I dreaded the loss of time.  30 minutes less to sleep.  10 minutes less at home and instead on the road.  Bummed I tell you.

I’m not gonna lie…many mornings the new location feels just like that: Less.  Especially with the persistence of Snowmageddon, rush hour traffic, and driving in the dark because the sun has yet to rise.

But not today.  Today was more.  More that started with a mishap.

“Oh crap,” I heard Gabe say from the back seat as he let out a hiss of frustration.

“What?” I asked, knowing it wasn’t going to be good.

“Just forget it,” he said.  He exhaled another forceful breath of disgust.

“Gabriel.  Tell me what’s wrong!” I commanded.

“I forgot my iPad.  It’s my fault.  I know you won’t go back to get it because it’s not fair to make the girls late, so just go!” his regretful sentences all ran together.

Gabe forgetting his iPad was not good.  His whole academic day would suffer because of it.

Much to his surprise, I put on the brakes and made a u-turn in our sub.  I was proud of him for getting it.  For assuming responsibility.  For considering and valuing the time of his sisters.  For respecting the previous examples of ‘sink or swim’ I have enforced with him already this year.  Middle school is right around the corner – it’s time for him to step up.

“Oh thank you, Mommy!” he burst with relief.

“You’re welcome.  It won’t happen again.”  It was a promise.

“I know,” he said with great conviction.

“But thank you for admitting your mistake and thinking of someone other than yourself,” I praised him.

“You’re welcome,” he said.

I pulled into the garage.  He sprinted into the house and retrieved his iPad.  When he hopped back into the van, he said, “You know, Mommy?  I was just thinking.  There’s a lot of kids out there who could use a dose of Mickey Myers.  You’d whip ’em into shape real fast,” he declared with confidence.

I beamed.  It was the biggest compliment my son could pay me.  He recognized and appreciated my ongoing discipline, even while referencing me as Mickey Myers – a fun nickname bestowed upon me by the littlest Beaudoin girls who had yet to tackle the tongue-twisting alliteration of Mrs. Myers.

“You think I could handle ’em, huh?” I asked with a chuckle full of pride.

“Oh ya,” he said. “And I don’t care how tall they are.”

“Hey!” I pretended to be offended by the reference to my mini 5’1″ size.

“I’m just saying, Momma!” he giggled.  “You could handle ’em.”

The girls agreed.  We all laughed.  We continued to chat the whole way to school.

We talked about college – a conversation that comes up daily.  Which led to a conversation about being a grown up and having a job.

The girls were very impressed when they learned I worked as a dog groomer.  Gabe thought it was hysterical.  Even though I’ve told him this before, I suppose it’s the first time he’s been old enough to envision me wrestling with a mangled mutt.

“What?!  It was fun!  I made friends at the shop, we laughed a lot and I made money.  What’s wrong with that?” I defended my honorable trade.

“Nothin, Mommy, nothin!” Gabe smack talked.

“Hey…Mickey Myers can talk smack with the best of ’em, so watch out buddy!” I warned him.

He stopped laughing and looked at me like I was crazy.

“What?!” I probed sarcastically, recognizing the nerd alert look on his face in the rear-view mirror.

“Even if you could talk smack, Mommy…You gotta know the right time to do it.  And that was not it!”  My all-knowing 11 year-old made his best attempt to school me.  I couldn’t help but laugh.

From there it went to geography – a subject the kids know I’m horrible at, so they love to quiz me.  Luckily I was on fire this morning, and they were very impressed with my improvement.

We got out of the car laughing.  I followed them into school carrying four stuffed animals for a project of Gabe’s I know nothing about.  I have a feeling he asked me to carry them for a reason, because I felt pretty ridiculous as I walked down the hall.  I gave him a little shove.  He knew why and snickered back.

“Oh my gosh, Mommy!” the girls giggled dramatically.  I gave them dirty looks.  They giggled more.

We kissed.  We hugged.  We said our goodbyes.  I wished them all to have great days.

I got back in the van happy.

Today’s commute was more.  More time to talk.  More time to get to know each other.  More time too tease.  More time to laugh.  More time to share.

I was thankful.





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