Archive | January, 2014

Use the Dictionary: When Mommy Mispeaks

19 Jan
Thanks a lot Oxford!!!!

Thanks a lot Oxford!!!!

Growing up a bad speller will spark a love a words if pushed in the right direction. My dad (I thank him daily for this) would NEVER help me spell out a word no matter how nicely I asked. “Look it up in the dictionary” was his response. A horrible speller himself he would watch me spend hours trying to figure out how to spell “notice” or “Arkansas”. My mother on the other-hand was a champion speller and would yell at me for selecting a less complicated word out of pure “lazy spelling.”  The end result was that I fell in love with dictionaries.

I became that teenager, like Ione Skye in Say Anything, who would check off words I have looked up in my massive dictionary. Ironically most of those braincells that were used to absorb that information were wiped away later in my Junior year. The greatest college graduation present I received was a massive hardbound Oxford Dictionary. So, of course when my children were born I aimed to pass on this little obsession to my kids.

I set up rules about making up words, looking up words you can’t spell and the use of a Junior Scrabble board. Well thanks to Oxford Dictionaries and my own mistakes along the way my kid has started to use the term “Selfie” and jumps up when ever anyone is taking a photo and shouts “photo bomb”. The two words have made it into the dictionary along with “fauxhawk”, “digital detox” and “phablet”. I know that they are used everyday, but it is just hard when your 5-year-old asks to have your phablet to take a selfie to not place judgement on society, or myself for that manner since I have now begun saying selfie out loud (I am ashamed of my behavior) – the photo bomb I can blame on my nephew.

It all reminds me of an episode of the late 1990s Disney cartoon Recess. In one episode T.J. and the kids get busted by the adults for saying “that whomps”. The parents and teachers get all up in arms over the use of the word and accuse the kids of swearing, the kids argue that it is just a way to explain something negative without swearing. I remember making up words as a kid. It was fun. But I also remember discovering a new word in the dictionary that perfect described something and adding it into my everyday conversations.

I guess it is time to purchase a new dictionary and start discovering more words that will have my kids’ approval.

Goodbye 2013: An Open Letter to My Children

1 Jan

Dear Kiddos, 

The beginning of the new year means a lot to adults. Each year adults get a kick out of sitting around and talking about their resolutions (things they hope to do) for the coming year. Most of these resolutions or wishes are lame and feature notions like saving money, loosing weight (no one says they hope to learn to love themselves for who they are), quitting a horrible job, etc. But since you guys are not bogged down by adult worries I decided to put a new spin on the resolutions and write down all the amazing things you have done and how being your mother is one of the greatest experiences I have ever had. So since I am fond of lists, here is a list of the rad things and funny things that happened this year. 

1. You both learned how to ride a bike in a day and proved that I have what it takes to be a kick ass mom. 

2. This year’s tantrum highlights: “I just want to meditate!” “I don’t want to get out of the car!” “I just can’t do it!” “You are always picking on me!” “He/she started it.”

3. Someone started kindergarten and begin to read, while someone discovered that the word “balls” is possibly the funniest thing ever heard by a third grader. Both very proud moments for me. 

4. I have learned to be careful what I wish for. I am now the mother of a child with a lightning bolt scar on his forehead…. 

5. You both have learned to love Harry Potter and Dr. Who, which proves that I have good taste and you are going to push me in a wheelchair around Comic-Con when I am 83; and you will love every second of it. 

6. Kisses. There will be a moment when you both decide that kissing your mother is lame, but until then I am taking all the kisses you can give. 

7. While I couldn’t afford to take you to Europe, I did manage to take you to Las Vegas – and to Paris to boot!

8. This was the year that I let my daughter cut her hair short and didn’t cry. This was also the year that I let my son fall in love with three girls and didn’t cry. 

9. Table manners! Tone of voice! Tattle Telling! All things I hope to curb in 2014. 

10 and the most important: You played with each other. I am not sure how much longer this will last but it was the sweetest thing to hear you two play with each other, read stories to each other and put on shows for your dad and I.