Friday, May 3, 2019

7 Quick Takes about Realistic Organization Systems, the Secret to Raising Kids Who Love Music, and Infinity in Picture Book Form

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?


You know those moments when you realize you're turning into everybody's mother? Here's an actual excerpt from a conversation I had with a friend this week:

Me: So then they played that song  oh, what was it called? The one by that band that was popular in the 90s?

Friend: [blank stare]

Me: They were kind of punky?

Friend: Pearl Jam?

Me: No, they were a little more edgy.

Friend: Limp Bizkit?

Me: No, not quite that edgy... ummmm, they sang that other song that went [singing] "if you don't rate, just overcompensate, at least you know you can always go on Ricki Lake?"

Friend: [blank stare]

Me: Oh! It was Pretty Fly for a White Guy!

Friend: That was the song they played?

Me: Well, no. That's what I was just singing. It was that same band, though. Do you remember who sang that?

Friend: No.

Me: Huh. Well, anyway...

(FYI, the band was Offspring, which turned out to be one of those things you forget all about until possessed with an urgent need to know after going to bed for the night and have to get up and Google at midnight.)


I didn't pay much attention when my 1st grader told me she "needed to get organized," but she wasn't kidding.

She took matters into her own hands, bringing down a plastic chest of drawers and labeling them all with Magic Marker.

I thoroughly enjoyed that the top two drawers were labeled "Random."

Laughing out loud at this week's 7 Quick Takes, full of parenting fails, funny toddler stories, and hilarious truths about mom life. #7quicktakes #7qt #unremarkablefiles #funny
Drawers are respectively: random, random, necklaces, bracelets, and Shopkins figures.

Everyone's got a junk drawer. Even when you're 7 years old.


Our kids are learning piano from Phillip so they've never had a real recital, but a piano teacher friend of ours invited us to participate in hers.

The kids did a nice job on their first recital, and I was equally impressed when they did well as when they messed up and kept going.

The 2- and 5-year-olds, who haven't started piano yet, just listened so I asked what they thought on the way home.

When I asked the 5-year-old if he liked the recital he just shrugged noncommittally, but the 2-year-old exclaimed, "I  liked the recital!"

"Oh, yeah? What was your favorite part?" I asked.

Immediately he answered, "The cake."

Of course it was the refreshments afterward. What else would it be? How silly of me.


My 7-year-old got an ant farm for Christmas but we never filled it up because I was worried the ants would freeze in the mail (yet another reason why moms can't sleep; we can worry about anything.)

Now that it's warmer, though, we ordered the ants!

Unfortunately they came earlier than we expected, and by the time I got to them the kids had already gone to bed and the ants had already sat in a pile of unopened mail for at least a day.

They were still alive, but I was worried (again with the worry) about them starving to death because who knows how long it had been since they were last fed.

My plan was to wake my daughter early and put the poor things in the ant farm before school, using sand from the sandbox, but when I woke up the next morning it was pouring rain. Of course.

I was this close to making a 7 A.M. trip to the hardware store to buy a bag of play sand when I decided to try the wet sand, since the instructions said the sand needed to be damp, anyway.

It worked well enough, and now the kids are just as entranced by the ant farm as I remember being by mine when I was a kid.

Laughing out loud at this week's 7 Quick Takes, full of parenting fails, funny toddler stories, and hilarious truths about mom life. #7quicktakes #7qt #unremarkablefiles #funny
If the ants survive this week without getting knocked over or shaken, I will be seriously impressed.


At pack meeting for cub scouts this week, one of the boys kept burping on purpose and making fart noises.

Ordinarily, this would be my kid. But my 10-year-old was being uncharacteristically well-behaved that day.

It wasn't until the boy leaned over and started making strange noises to my son that I heard him whisper back, "Don't try to out-weird me. It won't work."

That's the boy I know and love.


My preschooler checked out the most awful book from the library.

It's Thomas the Train, which first of all I don't even like because they have a million words per page and my boys don't even understand what's going on because of all the British English.

Laughing out loud at this week's 7 Quick Takes, full of parenting fails, funny toddler stories, and hilarious truths about mom life. #7quicktakes #7qt #unremarkablefiles #funny
My kids have no idea what this even means.

But this is no ordinary Thomas the Train. This is one of those 2-in-1 books with a story on each side. The story ends on the middle page, at which point you turn it upside-down and go to the opposite cover of the book to start reading the second story.

It's pretty much the meanest thing anyone could do.

Just imagine finishing a very long and boring story and saying "the end," only to have your 2-year-old look at you like you're an idiot, say "not the end," and flip the page. So you turn the book upside-down, read it and say "the end," and your 2-year-old says "not the end" and turns the page again.



Speaking of library books, my little boys are quite fond of this book of vehicles.

The other day I they were "reading" it to each other (i.e: pointing to the pictures and repeating the words they remember me saying) and when they got to this picture, called it a "fire cheese truck."

Laughing out loud at this week's 7 Quick Takes, full of parenting fails, funny toddler stories, and hilarious truths about mom life. #7quicktakes #7qt #unremarkablefiles #funny
The chief is the guy in charge of handing out mozzarella sticks in an emergency.

In other funny toddler/preschooler misunderstandings, last night's dinner was "basagna" (pronounced: buh-ZAH-nyah) and we also learned a lot of facts about Paris, France at preschool so now my 5-year-old wants to go on vacation to see the "Rifle Tower."

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Jenny in WV said...

When I saw Pretty Fly for White Guy, I thought Weird Al? But his parody was Pretty Fly for a Rabbi.
When I moved I labeled boxes "Stuff".
Are you doing the fake trip around the world this summer? Have you been to France?

Kath said...

I have two boys, young men actually. Despite my own complete musical ineptitude, both are fine musicians. They each started with electric guitars (cool factor, no other actual reason) and moved on to acoustic guitars. My younger son then learned to play saxophone in school (unlike you I stupidly rented that instrument thinking he would give it up after a semester. I kept up with that impressive strategy until we owned the damned thing, paying roughly three times its worth) and he then moved on to piano. We even have a piano. An old and quite lovely antique once belonging to my Great Aunt. I have kept it glowingly beautiful for years, lovingly placing it in my home in a spot where any visitors could admire it, and placing a few precious decorative objects on it for beauty enhancement. I never thought it would serve any actual musical purpose.

And, not only does my son play that piano, my step-son's wife plays it as an accompaniment to their daughter's (my beautiful grandbaby, age 8 in a couple days) violin.

Naturally I take full credit for the musical abilities, talent even, of all four of them (yes, even my daughter-in-law).

And, oddly, cake was never involved. Never involved in the playing of instruments. It was involved plenty of times in the listening to them playing those instruments.

All of which is to say that cake is a fine musical instrument enhancement. You may well be raising a prodigy.

PurpleSlob said...

#3 of course the cake!!
#6, because the British secretly hate us, and want to drive us insane!

Jenny Evans said...

We're planning on doing our around-the-world trip, the kids ask for it every year. We did France our very first summer of that, before I had a blog so sadly there's no record of it other than pictures. I think I had a 5, 3, and 1-year-old then, so they remember nothing. Maybe in a few years we'll start repeating countries for the benefit of the youngers.

Emily Gibbons said...

My four year old loudly came to tell me yesterday (while I was outside) that his brother's package had been shipped by Amazon. But he misheard the word and told me the package was from (s-word).