Thursday, June 30, 2011

Jump For Joy

I think every kid has a list in their head of the coolest toys they wish they could have. For me that list consisted of a Power Wheels, a tree house, a cool bike, Moon Shoes and a trampoline. My parents did eventually grant my wish for a cool bike which was so cool in all it's purply shininess that I rode it right into adulthood and never passed it down to either of my brothers like all of my previous bikes.

Now that I am a Mama I can live vicariously through my kids and so my boys have Power Wheels which have provided countless hours of enjoyment, a climber with a sort of tree house, very cool John Deere bikes and just recently, a trampoline. - Moon Shoes just don't seem as great now as they did then and I'm not completely sure they even make them anymore.

I have wanted a trampoline since I was about 5 and a traveling group called the Tramp Champs visited my public school and put on a performance of high flying acrobatics completed on a series of giant trampolines assembled in our gymnasium. Since then I have rarely passed up a chance to jump on a trampoline when the opportunity has presented itself. Now 20 years later (give or take a few years ;)) my boys are getting to the age where a trampoline is appropriate for me...I mean them. The other day I purchased a 12' trampoline with net enclosure (safety first!).

It wasn't they easiest thing to assemble but I persisted and made Papa Bear help me because I was just to excited and wanted to have it together by the time the boys got home from their visit with X. I couldn't wait to get on it and hurl myself into the air over and over again. My first bounce on the completed trampoline was just as I hoped it would be. That was until I realized that jumping on a trampoline after a certain (unmentionable) age and having 3 babies posses some problem. That problem being that your bladder doesn't really hold tight like it did before...and I may have peed a little.

Little Bear was in awe. "AAAWWEEESSOOMMEEE" was the first think out of his mouth. Wee One also loved the trampoline from his first bounce. Fuzzy was terrified. 2 out of 3 isn't bad. After a few times of watching his brothers having a blast jumping, Fuzzy too warmed up to the idea and it wasn't long before I got a call while working from him to tell me he jumped all by himself and loved it. He has been on the trampoline several times a day since.

It may have taken several years and 3 kids to use as an excuse to buy the items from my wish list but my kids have got every bit as much enjoyment out of them as I imaged I would have. Now when my kids ask me for some sort of lavish toy I can say with confidence, "when you grow up and get a job you can buy a _________ yourself" just like my parents told me.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Tr@$hless Tue$d@y

Trashless Tuesday is something devised by the environmental group at my sons' school. The idea is for all students to bring a completely trashless lunch every Tuesday. I'm all for doing what I can to help the planet but Trashless Tuesday makes for Manic Mental Meltdown Monday Night.

I make school lunches the night before to save myself the time and stress of packing them in the midst of our fairly smooth morning routine. I can not imagine packing a Trashless Tuesday lunch Tuesday morning while trying to get Little Bear up and ready for school and keeping him from hearing some of the choice words that come out of my mouth while trying to get the trashless lunch to fit in the lunch bag.

The typical children's lunch bag is not designed to hold dozens of tupperware containers. It is meant to hold prepackaged apple sauces, granola bars and yogurt containers. The producers of these products have likely done research on how their product should fit in a lunch bag. I don't think Tupperware does the same amount of research.

I do consider the environment when packing my kids' lunches. We use tupperware reusable drink containers in place of milk cartons or juice boxes, sandwich containers in place of sandwich baggies and containers for many fresh fruits, veggies and dips. There is a point however where no more containers will fit in the lunch bag and baggies are necessary in order to get everything in there. There are also those occasions where there just aren't enough clean small containers to complete the lunch packing process.

If the Trashless Tuesday mission is not completed then a very disappointed child has a big "X" placed beside his name on the Trashless Tuesday tracking sheet and I am bound to hear about how Little Johnny doesn't have an Xs on the sheet because his mom is a super duper tupperware packer...or Johnny starves. To avoid these situations I try my darnest to accomplish the task. Sometimes it is necessary to go to great lengths to evade that dread X even if that means emptying a yogurt cup into a container or peeling open a cheese stick just to stick it in its own bulky container which totally voids the purpose of Trashless Tuesday.

This year I only have 1 lunch to make on Tuesdays. Next year I will have 2. If the environmental group decides Trashless Tuesday will be a good way to torture parents...I mean help the planet I think I will have to invest in tackle boxes in place of lunch pails so I don't have to stress about how I'm going to fit all that Tupperware. I guess the silver lining is there are only 4 more Trashless Tuesdays left this school year.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Good Advice

"Eat bacon whenever you can, always have dessert, don't worry about the small stuff and never, ever exercise." This was Johanna Quints answer when asked, on her 100th birthday, what is the secret of a long life? That is some GOOD advice or at least I like to think it is. I worry a bit too much but I'm doing a pretty good job of following the rest of Ms. Quint's recommendations so I think I'm on my way to living to be 90ish. I also think Ms. Quint would have been a pretty cool lady.

Eat bacon whenever you can - ABSOLUTELY! No problem there...except when trying to fit into last year's summer clothes.

Always have dessert - Don't mind if I do and I don't have a problem skipping a meal to make room for ice cream or cupcakes either.

Don't worry about the small stuff - If I could avoid it I would. There are lots of times when an off switch for my brain would come in handy.

Never, ever exercise - Other than the most inescapable physical activities associated with being a Mom like bike riding with the kids, walking around an animal farm and some Wii game workouts I try very hard to never, ever exercise.

Thank you so much Jay Leno and the Tonight Show staff for including Johanna Quint's good advice in Thursday nights addition of Headlines (also my favourite feature on the show). Her words might just be my new motto. Thank you for instilling confidence that my life is likely to be a lengthy one and I should never give up loving bacon.

RIP Johanna Quint April 1, 1911 - May 9, 2011