Awesome Convos I’ve Had with my Kids and Things I Never Thought I’d Say or Do Until I Became a Mom

This is a collection of hilarious interactions with my kids and things I’ve said and done as a mother that would’ve seemed very strange– or unthinkable– to me before the birth of my first child.


Convo with my daughters, R and G, when they were ages six and three years, respectively:

R: (pointing to a picture of me as a baby) Mom, I look just like you!

Me: Yes, you do, baby.  You look just like Mommy.

G: Do I look like you, Mom?

Me: No, you look more like your dad (referring to my ex).

G: (without missing a beat, loudly and furiously) HEY, I’M NOT BALD!!!!

Me: laughing hysterically


My son, age three years, sits down to pee on the toilet at my grandparents’ house where, for some reason, the bathroom is carpeted:

Me: Make sure you point it in the potty.

J: Point what?

Me: Your tallywhacker.

J: What’s a tacky-whacker??

Me: Your penis. Weiner.

J: My penis is named tacky-whacker???!!!


The following illustrates more than anything else how very much I love my son:

J was going through a phase where bugs and snakes were the most fascinating things in the world. And I could handle the terrarium with the benign grass snakes in it and the mason jars full of snails (that bred and laid 5,000 eggs and had to be released at our local park before they took over the house) and the caterpillars that we raised to butterflies. But then came the nightmare creature.

My ex and I were up in the Texas Hill Country, which is home to all sorts of horrible bugs and snakes. One morning we found a 6-inch long centipede on the porch, so the ex trapped it in two Styrofoam cups, and we took it home to J. I could hear it skittering around in the cups the whole ride home and was terrified that it would break free and eat us. We put it in yet another plastic terrarium and gave it to J, and he lost his mind over it and named it Slasher. I literally had nightmares about it escaping its cage and munching us all to death with its appalling mandibles. I researched it and found out that it was a common and very aggressive red-headed centipede.  So aggressive, in fact, that it would stand up on its very back legs to snatch bugs from us when we opened the lid to feed it, so we resorted to feeding it with tongs.  Its diet consisted of enormous, green katydids that we caught in the garden.  It occasionally molted and eventually grew to be nearly a foot long– no exaggeration.  It lived for a year in that terrarium, consistently horrifying all of us, except for J, and giving me nightmares on a semi-regular basis.  I’m reasonably certain it was actually spawned by the devil in the deepest bowels of hell.


My middle child has always been very independent and insisted on doing everything on her own, frustrating the hell out of herself from time to time.  Potty-training and switching to big-girl underpants was no exception.  I was once interrupted while putting away laundry by the sound of a tiny voice grunting and whining in the hallway.  I peeked around the doorway to see R rolling around on the floor, red-faced and struggling with all her might to pull on a pair of her new undies.  At first I was confused as to why she seemed unable to get them up past her thighs, and she was so furiously pissed off that she was starting to scream in rage.  When I sat down next to her and put my hand on her to get her to quit squirming for a second, I saw that she had actually stuffed one leg is the waistband and was trying to get the leg-hole up around her waist (basically she’d put them on sideways).  When I got her calmed down, I showed her how to find the waistband by looking for the tag.  I will never forget her cute, little self, rolling around on the floor and squealing like a piggy as she tried desperately to get that leg-hole up over her butt.

The following are actual statements I have made (some more than once) since becoming a mother:

  • Don’t ride the cat.
  • Stop licking your armpit.
  • Don’t feed the cat popcorn.
  • Stop farting on your sister.
  • Don’t strip in public.
  • Please stop headbutting me in the tailbone.
  • Please don’t burp like a trucker at family gatherings (this to my seven-year old daughter).
  • Stop throwing bananas.
  • Please stop lifting my shirt in public to look at my tattoos.
  • Quit banging your head on the shopping cart handle.  We’re getting looks.
  • Get your fingers out of your sister’s nose.
  • Please don’t take off your diaper and throw it across the room after you pee in it.
  • Tossing your plate upside down on the floor is not the proper way to tell me you’re done eating.
  • Popsicles are not dinner food.
  • No, you may not go out in public wearing a purple unibrow that you drew on your face with my eye shadow.
  • Please do not ever again sneak into bed with me at 5:00 a.m. to cut my hair.
  • If you ever again fart in yoga class and then blame it on me, I will stop letting you go with me.
  • It’s not okay to call out your great-grandma on her farts in public.  She’s old, and she can’t help it.  She probably doesn’t realize she did it.
  • It is not necessary to name your poop.
  • Farting on command is not a talent– it’s a health hazard.
  • The cat’s tail is not a handle.  Do not use it to carry her around the house.
  • Diapers are not fuel– please don’t take yours off and toss it in the fireplace to make the fire bigger.
  • No, the lemons on the lemon tree in your great-grandparents’ backyard are not yellow because you peed on the tree when you were swimming and didn’t want to dry off to go use the bathroom.  You can’t believe everything your great-grandpa tells you.
  • Yes, girls do have ovaries, but boys do not have “underies.”  Please do not believe– or repeat– anything your uncles tell you.


I was once riding in the car with my son, my grandmother, and my aunt.  J was about two years old and was singing “Old MacDonald Had a Farm” to himself as he looked out the window.  After a few verses he sang, “Old MacDonald had a farm, E-I-E-I-O!  And on that farm he had a dick-dick, E-I-E-I-O!  With a dick-dick here and dick-dick there!  Here a dick!  There a dick!  Everywhere a dick-dick!  Old MacDonald had a farm, E-I-E-I-O!”  I glanced at great-grandmother, whose eyes were round with shock, and at my aunt, who was shaking with barely contained laughter, and sighed and closed my eyes.  “Well,” I shrugged, “at least he knows Old MacDonald is a dude.”




How my Son Destroyed the Living Room and Other Adventures in Motherhood

My son, who is also my oldest child, is extremely creative when it comes to instigating catastrophic messes.  Like the time he crawled into the fireplace at the age of 14 months and proceeded to empty every piece of ash, one tiny fistful at a time, into the living room.  I had left him unattended on his playmat for no more than five minutes while I went to get dinner started.  I glanced up when I smelled something odd and saw a huge, gray cloud billowing from the den.  I rushed around the corner in horror to discover my adorable child sitting in a pile of ashes.  He had carefully dispersed them throughout the living room, with almost inhuman speed, and in such a way that no surface was left untouched.   He smiled gleefully at me, waving his tiny hands and kicking at the filth around his feet.  It took two baths to get him completely clean and three full weeks before I stopped finding random piles of ashes that I thought I’d already cleaned up. 

After the fireplace catastrophe, I stopped leaving J alone, unless he was in his playpen, and even then only for about two minutes at a time, while I brought groceries in from the car or had a dangerously brief shower.  It made no difference.   My son still found ways to fabricate wildly unique messes for me.  I once came from using the restroom to find that he had done the same.  Only he had removed every stitch of clothing, as well as his diaper, and painted every square centimeter of his playpen– and himself, from the neck down.  As he grinned impishly and held his poo-covered fingers up at me, I choked back a gag and briefly panicked.  How in the living fuck was I going to clean it without touching it???  I grabbed a towel and wrapped it around him, pinning his arms to his sides, and ran as fast as I could with a squirming,  shit-covered toddler to the bathroom.  I unceremoniously dumped him in the tub,  towel and all, and turned on the shower.  After I’d hosed him down, I cleaned out the tub, then re-bathed him.  The best part was dragging the playpen into the front yard and spraying all the poo off with the hose in front of the neighbors. 

You’d think I’d have learned from these incidents not to leave my son unattended for  longer than it takes to do a “Mommy Pee” (the 25-30 seconds it takes a mother to entirely empty her bladder, wash her hands, and get back to her disaster-prone children), but I am, admittedly, dismayingly hard-headed.  So I inevitably left my child alone again about a year later, just long enough for him to empty an entire bottle of lotion on the couch and thoroughly massage it into the upholstery.   Lotion doesn’t stain.  It also doesn’t EVER EVER come out.  He also managed to find a bottle of nail polish that same day and refinish the entertainment center. 

These were just a few in a long line of horrible and occasionally traumatic messes  my precious son made.  He taught himself to vomit on command when he didn’t want to go to bed at night.  (Try ignoring a toddler who just regurgitated 8 ounces of chocolate milk into his crib.)  And he once sleep-walked into the kitchen,  where he proceeded to drop his britches and wee all over the refrigerator.  I used to yell at his father for not helping me clean these bodily fluid-fueled outbursts until the time he good-naturedly attempted to help me clean J after he had barfed in his playpen, apparently because I had looked away from him for 10 seconds.   But that ended so badly that I never asked again.  J’s dad was so grossed out that, when he bent over to pick up J, he puked.  Trying to keep from barfing more on our son, he covered his mouth with both hands, ran to the front door, spewing barf between his fingers– passing the bathroom– and flew into the front yard, where he finished barfing in the flowerbed.  (Our neighbors were outside playing with their children.  Our neighbors did not speak to us for about three years.)  So there was poor J, looking up at me in astonishment,  his own barf dripping down his front and his dad’s barf dripping down his back.  And I looked at the playpen, at my son, and at the trail of puke leading to the front yard, all of which I now had to clean, and cried a little.

I survived a lot in those first few years,  and so did my son (mostly because about 99% of the time I had no idea what I was doing).  And I learned that it really expresses how much you love someone when they make a horrible, stinking mess that will literally make a grown-ass man vomit, and you can’t even be angry.  They look up at you, covered in something disgusting, and smile or look endearingly surprised, and you love them so much it feels like your heart will explode and make another gigantic mess for you to clean up.   My son is sixteen now, and instead of worrying about diapers and how to get him to eat something besides chicken nuggets,  I am now worrying about him driving in big-city traffic and going to college.   And how to get him to eat something besides chicken nuggets.  And I often wish I could go back to when he was little,  just for a day, because it goes so fast.  I do, however, look forward to the inevitable phone calls that will go something like this:

J:  Mom?

Me:  Yes?

J:  Remember that time I tried to jump down the stairs, and I fell instead and bit through my tongue, and there was blood everywhere, and you had to call an ambulance, and then you had an adrenaline crash and cried for an hour, but I didn’t care because I got to eat nothing but popsicles for two days?

Me:  Yes…

J:  Sorry about that.

Me:  Son, did one of your kids just scare the living shit out of you?

J:  Maybe…