Today was the best day ever (well, maybe not ever. My birthday weekend was probably the best ever...
And it was not due to anything special. We went to the Georgia Aquarium. Then a haircut for shaggy snuffle-saurus, James. Then naps for the kids, while Jason and I did P90X Yoga. Then we went to Mall of Georgia and had dinner super late (7:00!) at a little hole-in-the-wall pizzaria on Buford Drive. Still, today was the best day ever. There were only two James temper tantrums. Stella was happy as a lark. Jason and I managed to volley back and forth some adult conversation. Best day ever.
Recently, I have found out some interesting truths about a person I considered a friend. Well, the truth is... this person is a liar. And the scary kind of liar. The look-you-in-the-eye-shed-tears kind of liar. The quick on the feet with a cover-up lie kind of liar. The freaky kind. Whatever. For me, this friendship was on a "three-strikes you're out" budget. One lie can be overlooked for the sake of team friendship. Two lies can chop away at the soul of the thing, just ever so little, make the conversations a little more grating, one-sided. But three lies, well, that is simply the end of the friendship road for me (and henceforth, the end of bad friendship analogies in this blog post!)
So I thought I might be devastated, but the freedom to release this liar from my life feels euphoric, right and downright special. Instead of dwelling on a parasitic situation, I will forget about it. I will hug and love my little fireball babies to the best of my non-child-centered-parent ability. My husband and I will attempt another P90x workout tonight (oh, the humanity). I will work diligently and carefully and at all hours of the night (and morning). I will take care of those who really matter.
And finally, I will spend a teeny-tiny amount of energy blogging and trying to allow people to find humor in the not-so-sunny side of parenting. And for those who think parenting is this static, serious situation -well, the "ESC" key...it's the top button on the left side of your keyboard. Push it.
If only there was an "ESC" key in the day-to-day....
I find it incredible...the self-righteous parent. You know 'em- those who think their children do no wrong, need no discipline, should be given everything under the sun. The parents who find no humor in the ridiculousness of a two-year old temper tantrum....those that think poop is improper to discuss. Really? Since when is poop not funny? Oh, right. You think it's not funny - you, the self-righteous parent.
Ah yes, the parents who really believe that they have raised the perfect child (that children really are not born sweet/difficult/colicky/strange/silly; that it is all about their excellent parenting only); that it is acceptable on some planet to let their child dictate his/her own bedtime, birthday presents, family vacations... that it is some sort of crime to spend a weekend away from the children.
To you self-righteous parents, I say: good luck. I am staying tuned to see your self-righteousness come to full fruit during your perfect kid's teenage years. Whooo-hooo. A funny two-year old temper tantrum is temporary; a lifetime of a disappointing, spoiled, ill-disciplined child living at home because you have created an emotional imbecile... well, that's forever.
But incredible. Awesome flavors like Sweet Potato and White Beans, Peach Rice Pudding, and Pasta with Lentil Bolognese... they really are good enough for the big folks to consider eating.
Drawback? They make fewer flavors than I would like (at least ...only a few are carried here in the South), but the few flavors I can get my hands on... are great. Stella loves these flavors, considerably more than the run of the mill green beans and peas.
Runner up? Earth's Best Organics. All of the characteristics of the above, minus Tyler Florence and trendy packaging.
After switching to vegan myself, and turning our family to organic and mostly vegetarian (still working on Jason!), I cannot stomach Gerber or Beech Nut. I'm an official baby food snob. Oh well.
So Dictionary.com defines family as "parents and their children, considered as a group whether living together or not." While I think this a bit close-minded definition (hello, what about grandparents, cousins, etc)... I am revising this definition to fit with the health of our family lately.
Family is: "parents and their children, considered as a group, bonded together through each one's designated role as a 'germ incubus,' spreading cooties to each other through fingers in mouths and noses and ears and eyes... and acheiving said individual roles by unintentional (or often intentional and slyly) planting said fingers in others noses and mouths and ears and eyes, resulting in days and days of misery and wailing and nashing of teeth."
We just returned from a kid-free weekend. Our relaxation tank has been near full for the first time in two years, and our love tank is overflowing. We walked in the door, and James came running: "Mommy! Daddy!" Yay... it was so very sweet. We received excited smiles and spitbubbles from Stella, with a bit of dadadadada, and bababababbaba. It is fantastic to be home.
Friday started out awesome. Massages and lunch at World Peace Cafe in Sandy Springs. We checked into the Ritz in Buckhead around two o'clock and then took a three-hour undisturbed nap. Amazing. We had a bit of a Top Chef foodie themed weekend. All we did was eat and sleep. First on Friday night, we had drinks at the Lobby Lounge then went to Craftbar - chef Tom Colicchio's Atlanta restaurant. Craftbar was incredible. I had a cauliflower, collard green and black truffle oil soup and salad. Jason (being a terrible vegetarian, I might add) had the pork belly and bone marrow. Ick. But he loved it. The atmosphere at Craftbar was incredible. Very woody and amazing and warm.
At 9:00, we hopped a cab to Woodfire Grill, restaurant of Top Chef's current contestant Kevin Gillespie. Our reservation was for 9:30, and by 10:30, we had still not been seated. This did not bother us at all because we were seated in the bar area and they fed us complimentary snacks. Snacks make everything better. And wine doesn't hurt.
By 10:45, we had been seated at an incredibly cozy table in the corner... on our way to the table, there he was - Kevin! Now, I had my hopes that we would see him. Afterall, this season of Top Chef had not quite wrapped yet, so I could assume that he would be back at his job. But these were just Top Chef hopes. But there he was, right in the open kitchen and going to prepare our food. I was so stoked.
By midnight, after a five course chef's tasting menu, with special vegan dishes for me (yay!) and scallops, quail and more pork belly for Jason, Kevin Gillespie came to our table to check on us. After apologizing repeatedly for the wait (as if we cared! we had a blast!), we chit-chatted about Top Chef, the new notarity of Woodfire Grill. So cool. Nicest guy in the world. He took pictures with us, and sometime around 1 am, we were back in a cab to the hotel. This night was the most amazing date. Ever.
Saturday was much more laid back and uneventful. Lunch at Sunflower Cafe, followed by a ridiculous nap. Dinner at Bluepointe, drinks at Twist, back at the hotel by 11. Nightynight.
I started to miss the babies pretty bad come Saturday evening. By Sunday morning, I was throwing clothes into any suitcase I could find... I was ready to come home.
Seeing James and Stella after three days apart was amazing and delicious. Sometimes I miss the "single" life, just me and Jason. But all it takes is a day away...and I miss those babies with all of my heart. Thanks to Staci for giving us this amazing weekend. I started my 30th year with a bang, and with a cup full of love, joy and gratefulness.