03 Jan 2011

Target Bags Suck

15 Comments Personal Crap, Toddler

Okay, so today was a great day. I took G to school and he did SO WELL! Neither of us cried! I then proceeded to have an incredibly productive five hours:

I shopped at Trader Joes.

I wrote.

I did dishes.

I straightened up.

I planned a road trip with my husband.

I lovingly made some brothy, vegetable-filled chicken soup to help me with my quest to eat better. It took a long time. I nursed it all day while I was doing all these other things.

At 3:00, I tasted the soup. It was very good. But the carrots weren’t cooked enough. So I left a flame underneath the pot and left to pick up G-Man.

He was having a total blast when I got there, so I stayed with him about thirty minutes and chatted with the teachers about his day. He was playing with the new kid, and they were running back and forth pretending to be gorillas. It was cool seeing him embody something that wasn’t a dinosaur.

Then we went to Target and I gave him a blueberry sucker. We were having a great time shopping. He’s always so good at reminding me what I need to get, “Mommy, don’t forget we need milk!” We like shopping together at Target. He asks for things. I say, “No.” He reacts well to that most of the time. We were there for about 45 minutes. He was almost done with his sucker, and his lips and chin were bright blue.

We finished shopping and checked out. Remember my “Jesus Lady” at Target? Well, this was the second time I’ve gone through her line recently when she’s been PISSED! I mean, PISSED OFF, man! Remember when she was all, “I’m happy and blessed every day!”? Apparently, she is no longer happy or blessed. She’s pissed. That has nothing to do with the fact that she sort of bagged my stuff crappily. Is crappily a word? If it is, that’s how she bagged my stuff.

I had parked out front and the carts lock if you try to take them to the sidewalk, so the guard was kind enough to unlock the wheels for me. Garrett and I got the cart out to the car, and I started unloading. About half-way through the ten or so bags, one of the bags broke open. It just broke open. No reason, except for the fact that Target bags suck. They’re thin and lame and if you put anything heavier than a feather in them, they break. This particular bag had a glass bottle of maple syrup in it, and a box of Kix.

At this point, there was a puddle of syrup, glass and a box of Kix on the sidewalk by my car. I needed that syrup, and that box of Kix. So I had to go back inside and talk to a manager who told me to go back upstairs to get a new box o’ Kix and a new bottle of syrup so he could replace them for me. I was a bit frustrated at that point, when Garrett handed me what was left of his sucker. There was maybe three licks left, so I thought he wanted me to throw it out, which I did. That is NOT what he wanted me to do. He wanted me to hold it while he had a sip of water. But now it was too late. Said sucker was in the trash.

Cue loud, painful, sad, pathetic, angry-at-mom crying. He was sobbing as we went up the escalator, begging me to get the sucker out of the trash. I couldn’t believe it. Things had been going so well. We were having so much fun. Then the syrup, and the sucker in the trash, and the manager and the sweating. Did I mention the sweating? I sweat when I get nervous or frustrated. It’s attractive.

I managed to get us out of there in one piece, giving G another sucker, this one banana-flavored. I apologized for the misunderstanding, and he adorably said, “You don’t have to be sorry, Mommy.” I took a deep breath. I drove us home.

When I brought all the bags into the kitchen, something smelled weird. There was steam coming out of the pot on the stove. It had been on all this time, about two and a half hours longer than I had already cooked it. I tasted it. It had an odd aluminum flavor that wasn’t there when I had left the house. Understand, I took a long time to make this soup. It was made not only with love, but also with entirely organic ingredients: Organic chicken, organic broth, organic tomatoes, organic carrots, organic celery.. .You get the idea. So it was pricey. And it was precious to me because it was going to help get me through this initial week of not eating like shit.

Now I was trying not to cry. First I sweat, then I cry. Those are my coping mechanisms. I’ve been sweating, crying and eating a lot the last six months. Now I’m trying to just cry and sweat.  I didn’t cry, but I did bang the cabinets a lot as I was getting out the ingredients to make pasta with homemade sauce. I was pissed.

I let the soup cool and put it in a container in the fridge. I’ll try it again tomorrow. I’m just hoping whatever that taste is, isn’t something toxic or poisonous. Because I’m probably going to force myself to eat that damn soup.

My mom came for dinner, we all watched some of the Stanford game, and now G is in his awesome robe about to get into bed. All is right again. I just wanted to share with you one of those hilariously frustrating “Mom” moments that I’ve become so familiar with. And I’m blaming it all on the frigging Target bag. Did I mention they suck?

21 Oct 2010

Jesus Loves Target

5 Comments Personal Crap, Uncategorized

Yesterday I was at the Church of Target, getting my staples: cereal, bread, bunny grahams. You know the drill. Garrett and I were having a really good time, running down the aisles and eating food out of boxes we hadn’t yet purchased.
When it was time to check out, a lovely African-American woman said, “I can take you over here!” I have to be honest, I’ve never heard those words uttered at Target before. Usually the lines are long and slow, but I deal with it because I love it there. So I made my way over to her register and said, “Thanks! How are you today!” “I’m great”, she replied. “I’ve gotta keep it light and happy around here, there are so many angry people coming through.” “Oh. I bet you get a lot of jerks”, says I. “Well, that’s why I turn to Jesus. He makes it all good.”

This is where I usually stop listening. I’m Jewish and I probably am not going to be converted by a woman in a red polo scanning my Cottonelle toilet paper. But she kept talking. “I’m 56 and I’ve been married 21 years”, she continued, “Jesus transformed me. If anyone ever asks how I do it, it’s because I keep my eyes on the Lord and he transformed me. I’m happy and blessed every day.” I said, “Good for you!” And I meant it. This 56-year-old didn’t look a day over 40 and she clearly was living what she was preaching. “He cured me of Lupus.” “He did?” “Yes Ma’am, he did. I had it since I was 23 and he cleared me of it. My doctors couldn’t understand. But I knew it was Jesus.”

Well! You can not argue with those results! This woman was happy, youthful, obviously enjoying her job, and was rid of a horrible disorder. “That’s amazing”, I said as she finished bagging my stuff. “Good talking to you. Hope you continue to have a blessed day!” A BLESSED DAY???? Did that just come out of my mouth? I never say, “Have a blessed day” to anyone! But the truth is, she was awesome. I felt uplifted. I had already been in a great mood, getting to spend the day with my son, getting errands done… But she made it even better. Happy people do that. Whether they’re happy because of Jesus or chocolate cake is beside the point. However you can find that happiness, without hurting others or yourself, is good enough for me. Frankly, I wish more people would find something to believe in that makes them kind to people, makes them laugh and makes them joyful.

I’m not a huge fan of organized religion. I think a lot of it is bullshit and financially driven. But I am a huge fan of enjoying life and living it to its fullest. So if there’s a Jesus and he’s looking down on this woman, I’m very pleased for her. I pray to my own God and I pretty much keep it to myself. But my God and her Jesus have a lot in common. And they were both at Target yesterday around 11:00 AM.

02 Oct 2010

Three-Year-Old Birthday Party

No Comments Toddler

In the decade leading up to having my son, I went to plenty of kids’ parties that I felt were way too lavish for someone who’s still pooping in their pants.  So when it came time to throw our own parties, I’ve tried to keep things within my own budget… both mentally and fiscally.  Last week was Garrett’s third birthday party.  With that in mind, I’ve come up with a few suggestions for making children’s party planning as stress-free as possible, while still giving your child a day to remember.

PICK A THEME:  Whatever they love at the moment, go with it! Once you have a theme, it’s easy to build around. Originally our theme was Iron Man, but I found there was not a whole lot of Iron Man-themed stuff readily available, so I coaxed and prodded until Garrett agreed that a dinosaur party was the way to go.  He freaking loves those extinct giants! Then you can go to a site like celebrateexpress.com. We were able to get the plates, cups, silverware, napkins, balloons, streamers, party favors all at one place.  It was affordable and everything had a dinosaur on it!

MAKE THE ADULTS FEEL SPECIAL: Order food for the adults, and make something to eat for the kids. We order sandwiches, empanadas, and a big salad from a local place called Portos.  If you’re local to Los Angeles, you have to try it. It’s amazing, and they also make the cake!! If you can consolidate your errands that day by getting a bunch of stuff at one place, do it!  Then, I made a giant mac and cheese for the kids. Here’s the recipe I use, and I double it.  (Yes, I realize it’s Rachael Ray.) Since Read more

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