Monthly Archives: October 2010

The Birthday-less Years

Wow.  It’s been awhile.  I’ve been off trying to earn a living, parenting and figuring how not to get committed to an insane asylum before my hormones even out.  They do that, eventually, right?  Yesterday I kinda thought a nice stay in…wherever they put menopausal women without good health insurance…might be restful and, therefore welcome.  If the asylum has a jetted tub, it could even be, you know, preferable to where I’m staying now.

But I digress.  What I really what to say is HAPPY BIRTHDAY.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY to all you older moms of young children.  And many happy returns.  You’re tearing up right now, aren’t you?  It’s okay, we toohotmamas understand completely.  Like us, you probably haven’t had a birthday since you were forty-one or had your first child, whichever came first.  When you have young children, forty-one to fifty  are the birthday-less years.  Last October, my husband was working out of town, and I didn’t even realize it was my birthday until my 6-year old handed me a wrinkled sheet of typing paper with HAPY BUTHDAY MOM written on it (and on the tablecloth) in red Sharpie.

This year, she’s a very aware second-grader, my husband was home, and they both wrote nice notes.  My daughter wrapped every single thing I ever bought her and re-gifted me, making sure I opened each present under her watchful eye.  (She took back the ones she liked, but I still have the broken squirrel jaw that was a science project.)  Then she said to me, “What do you want to do today, Mom?”

“You know what I’d really like, honey?” I replied, “I’d like to finish painting and organizing your room.  It could be a family project.”

Taking my face in her firm little hands, she looked at me with a surprisingly mature mix of compassion and disgust.

“Mom,” she insisted, “IT’S YOUR BIRTHDAY.  Birthdays are not for painting or fixing up rooms.  Birthdays are for YOU.  What do YOU want to do?”

I was touched.  I was moved.   I was gratified.  I was about to answer, but then she added, “So can Kate come over now for a play date?”

Oh, well.  Maybe next year.  In the meantime, I’m diggin’ the look of that squirrel jaw on my nightstand.

What have your kids given you for your birthday???

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Help! I’ve been mugged and I can’t get up! A sick contest…

Donna's mad as hell.

My sister called not long ago, telling me about how she got an email from a friend who’d—gasp—been mugged in Europe and for my sister to PLEASE SEND MONEY! 

My sister (after freaking out) came to her senses and called her friend here at home and… lo and behold!  Her friend was not in Europe!  She was here!  In the good old USA.  Unmugged.  Hadn’t ever been to Europe.

 Luckily, my sister mentioned this to me because–okay this is so weird– the next day, I got a similar email from one of my friends!  Mugged!  In Europe!  What are the odds?!  OMG!!  After I’d made arrangements to wire over a gogillion dollars to my friend, I suddenly remembered my sister’s friend hadn’t been mugged and maybe, just maybe there wasn’t a sudden rash of European muggers targeting our friends! 

The email letter (below) is now the third one I’ve gotten in the last few weeks.  I’m sorry to say, I don’t even know who poor Donna is…probably someone from my Facebook list.  Have you gotten your letter from Donna yet?  Better yet, are YOU Donna?  DONNA, ARE YOU OKAY??!  Talk to me, Donna!


This had to come in a hurry and it has left me in a horrible situation and I’m really going to need your urgent help. Some days ago, unannounced, Jeffrey and I came to visit a resort here in London England but unfortunately we got mugged by some gunmen and lost all cash and credit cards, we are financially stranded right now and our return flight leaves in few hours .I need some money to clear our hotel bills, I didn’t bring my cell phone along since I didn’t get to roam it before coming over. So all I can do now is pay cash and get out of here quickly. I do not want to make a scene of this which is why we did not call home this is embarrassing enough .I was wondering if you could loan me some cash, I’ll refund it to you as soon as we arrive home just need to pay the  Hotel bills and get the next plane home. I promise to refund you back as soon as we are back home, please write back so I can let you know how to send it

Okay.  I’m sick, but these kinds of letters bring out the dark humor (and editor)  in me.   “Donna” I get that you are “in a hurry” but does the last sentence really need three ‘backs’?  Anyway, I can think of about a dozen different snarky responses to the goons who are trying to extort money from me.  Hello?  My husband and I have FIVE CHILDREN WHO ALL NEED BRACES AND COLLEGE and have I mentioned, I HAVE YET TO HIT ‘THE LIST?’  Yer barkin’ up the wrong tree, “Donna”, unless you want a handful of Pillsbury coupons and a token to the Bullwinkles Family Fun Center.  Plus, I may be menopausal, but I’m still strapped into the old turnip truck.

So, I’d like to have a little fun and open it up to you, our hilarious readers and comment posters.  Yeah.  A contest.  Respond to poor “Donna”.  Go on.  You know you want to.  Don’t be shy.



Filed under Anxiety, Marriage, Menopause, Motherhood

Drinking games


I'm so proud

  Wow.  Good old mom.  Has she ever changed.  Yesterday, I was standing in the grocery line, waiting.  The woman in front of me clearly knew the checker.  I couldn’t help but overhear this inspiring tidbit.


 Mom:  Yeah, that’s my beer.  Well, my kid’s, actually.  I let my son and his girlfriend have beer at home.  They’re in high school now, so it’s…

Checker:  Better than having them go drink somewhere else.


Mom:  Right.  Oh, this is so funny.  The other day, they were playing the f-word drinking game.  You know what that is, right?  The F-Bomb?

 Checker:  Gotcha.  Don’t have to spell it out for me.

 Mom:  Well, the kids were watching this movie, and every time they heard the F-word, they had to take a drink.  (Mom laughs indulgently).  Yeah, they got plastered.  Put ‘em to bed in my son’s room.

 Me:  (thinking as I drove home) Golly, I was watching Ozzie and Harriet just the other day, with my eldest (high school age, sweet, loving, adorable, virginal, drug-free ooo, I love her so much I could eat her with a spoon) daughter, and I realized:  I’m such an old-fashioned dirt-bag of a mom.  Geez, what a loser. Here I thought I was doing her a favor by steering her away from the harrowing foibles of my misspent youth.  My poor kid.  How the bleepity, bleep is she going to learn to drink?  Neither Ozzie nor Harriet dropped the F-Bomb once!  When I got home, I immediately threw that DVD out.  Then, I took inventory of our cupboards and realized, if she’s gonna get high, she’s gonna have to settle for tablespoon of vanilla on the rocks.  Couple the vanilla with Ricky Nelson and her seven-year-old brother (who will occasionally crawl into bed with her when he has his recurring bad snake dream) you ain’t got much of a partay, know-whut-ahm-sayin-ma-man?


 So, I’m headed back to the store for a copy of Bruce Willis’s Die Hard with a Vengeance, a case of Bud, a pack of smokes and a bag boy or two.  We’ll giter up to speed.  That way, she’ll be more acceptable in today’s society.  After all, I wouldn’t want her to be…different.



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Filed under Anxiety, Children, Health, Marriage, Menopause, Motherhood, parenthood

Another Get Rich Quick Scheme Down the Toilet

Heeeeeellllppp meeeeee!

Ohmigosh, Wendy!  Last night I had a dream that J. Lilly, President of Pillsbury wrote us a letter.  It was so terrifying!  So real!  I woke up in a sweat (could have been a hot flash) and scribbled down what I remembered on a candy wrapper I found lying near my bed: 

To TooHotMamas:

(Whoever you are and whatever your racket is)  

 Stop harassing me about winning my contest, or I’ll be forced to take out a restraining order against you both.  The only reason I haven’t contacted the authorities yet, is because my sister is menopausal and tells me you are both out of your minds. 

In answer to a few of your many and varied accusations:  No, the contest was not rigged, nor am I related to the winners and yes I eat Pillsbury products in my home and have no signs of these ‘pathogens’ you allude to.  

Also, since Jack Bauer is a FICTIONAL television character (24), I cannot take the threat that you would report my contest to the Counter Terrorist Unit seriously.  I can’t believe Jack Bauer would take it seriously.  In a shoot out, everyone knows the doughboy has no vital organs and can withstand intense heat.  Jack Bauer, though impressive, would never survive a pre-heated 350 oven for more than 30 minutes. 

TooHotMamas, I will not be bullied into, and I’m quoting here, “Taking you to the stars with your two-ingredient Pancake Sauce”, and must reiterate: Winning my contest will not solve your myriad problems.  In fact you both may wish to consider counseling.  I’ve heard this stage of life is hard on many women and can lead to delusional behavior.  

Thank you for including the pictures of your children in your missive of terror and yes, aside from needing braces, they are all exceedingly attractive. 

You will be contacted from my lawyers for your issues with our contest protocol, and must sign sworn statements to hold Pillsbury harmless, if you wish to participate in the future. 


John Lilly, CEO Pillsbury Corporation

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Filed under aging, Anxiety, Children, Cooking, hot flash, Marriage, Menopause, Motherhood, Pillsbury Bakeoff, Weight gain, Weight Loss

THE GIRL WITH THE SEXUAL TATTOO—Part three in a jealous harangue

Had any "Drunken Chicken" lately?


Yeah, sure, probably another reason I’m not on the “LIST” (said with a snarky, envious, mocking tone) (besides being a non-cussing hack) (and ignorant of the proper uses of parentheses), is that I won’t do explicit or erotic sex…er…in books.  And let’s face it.  In order to break new ground in this arena, my hero would have to fall for a chicken.  Not natural.  And, as our reader(s) know(s), I don’t use offensive verbiage  (unless my hero is seriously threatened, and then only sparingly–see the DDH bomb in my last post). 

 Plus, if I stick to the old adage “write what you know” my love scenes would have to include sweat socks.  

 Whatever happened to the good old days of escapism?  Now all anyone seems to care about in their literature is realism.  Bah.  I get plenty of realism, just driving down the road.  (People really don’t seem to enjoy being cut off by a harried, menopausal mini-van driver and are very ‘real’ about expressing themselves).   

Wendy and I are always blathering about how we wish the entertainment world was still Frank Capra-land.  Mayberry.  Mitford.  And not constantly dripping with blood and demons and other such “realism”.  Excuse my French, but Fooie on realism.  I long for Lucy and Ethel.  For humor that’s not centered on the crotch for once.  For good guys who are not named Lucifer.  For a world where being a hero includes being there, staying there and taking the trash out to the can and not taking out trash, buying it a drink and having sex with it.  

 So.  To review.  Not on NYT Best-seller list because:   Won’t swear.  No explicit (or poultry inclusive) love scenes.  Find taking out the garbage erotic.   (And, of course, don’t understand proper parenthetical usage). 



Filed under Changing Genre's, Marriage, Menopause, Motherhood, Older writers, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Writing