I left my home this week with six kids in my car. The five that always follow me around and one from next door. I was taking them all to the pool to swim because I mostly wanted them to stop wrecking my house.
As I pulled out of the driveway, I didn’t look out the back window. Nor did I glance at the rear view mirror. Nor did I check out the rear view camera.
What I did find time to do was slam into a car parked on the street.
I could have just sped off but I believe in owning up to one’s mistakes. And I had 6 eyewitnesses in the car. Although I don’t think 6 month old Cash would have said a word. He knows where his bread is buttered.
The important thing to do when notifying your spouse about a fender bender is to really make it out to be much worse than it is.
First, you send a photo of the damage..
And then you send a real photo of the damage…
Now it doesn’t seem so bad, right?
Rick was great about it and said, something like, “Well, this kind of thing just happens. Don’t beat yourself up.”
The thing is – it never just happens to Rick. It’s like he has some sort of magical power (like looking out his windows) to avoid other cars.
I mean, I was the one who messed up our Highlander about two days before we were scheduled to trade it in for the glorious, golden hued minivan.
And no offense to the entire state of Florida, but I really thought someone would hit me first here. I’ve noticed that Floridians like to drive fast and furious. Add in the fact that dead palm tree leaves are always crashing unexpectedly to the ground and someone was bound to side swipe me or something.
But no. I beat them all to it. I’ve always been an overachiever like that.
Now of course, my kids are all about the back seat driving. Every time, we pull out of the driveway, 3 1/2 year-old Chase says, “Mom, don’t hit anything.”
Preschoolers should really teach driver’s ed.
When Rick and I moved to Florida, we pretty much had one friend in our new town. And we can’t even remember how we met him. We think one of our real estate brokers put us in touch with him when we were considering a Florida move about a year and a half ago.
If I remember correctly, we wanted to talk to people who actually had families and lived here without getting eaten by alligators or disappearing into sink holes. We’re thorough like that.
We ended up becoming friends with this guy and he is truly the Julie McCoy of South Florida. (I know I once said Rick’s cousin Wendi was the McCoy of Florida so they might have to share this coveted title.)
This friend, let’s call him Julie, seriously knows everything going on in South Florida which is really helpful when you are new in town. And he’s pretty much the reason we ended up at a country bar called the Honky Tonk Tavern on Saturday night. That’s actually not the real name of the bar. I don’t know why I’m protecting its identity.
This place is just like the bar in Footloose except I couldn’t find Kevin Bacon anywhere. Mostly because he lives in New York.
There were some serious dancers at this Honky Tonk Tavern – like 70-year-olds who throw their cardigan sweaters on their bar stools so you won’t even think of stealing their seats when they get up for some line dancing.
Of course, we wanted to get in on the fun so we headed out to the dance floor when they had a brief tutorial for the beginners. I was wearing 3 inch heels which may not be the ideal footwear for line dancing but my pseudo cowboy boots are in the attic.
I’m not doing the “wear boots when it’s 80 degrees in Florida” thing. I mean, I could do it. But then I would probably end up cutting them off my feet in a fit of hot foot rage.
The line dancing tutorial went okay but then there was a little incident as I was exiting.
I was hugging the side of the dance floor as to not mess with any of the Footloose dancers but all of a sudden a couple smacked right into me, causing me to teeter dangerously on my heels, practically knocking me down and sending my clutch purse flying across the dance floor.
Do you think this couple stopped to offer an apology and help me collect my belongings?
No they did not.
Because country is apparently very fierce. They continued to whirl around the floor while I dove for my belongings and attempted to not get crushed in a sea of western wear.
I made a mad dash out of that place. But let it be noted that this girl did not spend a year living in Montana to be knocked around by some Floridian two stepper. I will be back. Probably without the 3 inch heels.
mama bird notes:
You guys are a smart bunch. Rick was the one who did this to Cash.
It’s hard to be a baby.
Because you want to just get up and get yourself dressed and not deal with this B.S..
That’s nearly 6 month old Cash with his pants on backwards.
So who’s to blame for this humiliating baby moment?
Here are the possibilities:
The dad: Seen here holding the baby so he’s certainly in the vicinity of the crime. And Rick did once admit to forgetting to give the kids lunch, despite eating lunch himself. So one could argue there is a pattern of questionable behavior.
The mom: Woken up at night between 5 and 6 times by children needing things so she is obviously not operating at full capacity.
The siblings: Have been known to use Cash as a play toy. Putting his pants on backwards could definitely have been an activity because “mom made us shut off the TV.”
The nanny: Cash’s grandmother has been known to hike a baby’s pants up to the armpits. Poor Harlowe is still talking about this day…
The Tommy Tom: Cash’s grandfather, although a very kind man, is not exactly a fashion icon. The backward pants could have been a style misstep from the popular child whisperer.
Bubbie & Zaydie: Cash’s other grandparents recently moved from New Jersey to Florida for the winter. Maybe backward baby pants are sweeping the North?
So who did it?
I’m in a desperate search for girlfriends. But it’s really hard to make people your friends. They always want to get to know you first.
Or they are head to toe in Lilly Pulitzer and that just won’t work for me. I don’t mind a splash of Lilly here and there but a full outfit is a red flag. Unless you are really funny. Then you fall under the LOL Lilly Pulitzer exception.
I am also a little suspect of people who have ever run an Ironman Triathlon because why would you do that when there is good TV to watch? (I would now apologize to anyone who does Ironman’s except they don’t read my blog because they are always out running.)
When you move somewhere new, people already have friends so it’s not like they are looking for new ones. Plus with every potential friend, you have to be on. You know really wow them with your sparkling personality. Which is of course exhausting.
I wish I could just walk around with some reference letters from my New York friends and be like…. here you go. You can read it right there. It says, “Kelcey is super fun to have around. She’s a very caring friend and will add to your life in immeasurable ways. Scoop her up before she has too many friends. Yes, the five kids thing is daunting. But don’t worry. She doesn’t make her friends take care of them! Well, hardly ever.”
I try to be proactive about it. Every time someone mentions their Aunt Bertha has a hairdresser whose drycleaner’s son’s 3rd grade teacher’s sister-in-law lives in my town and is around my age, I always call and see if the person wants to grab coffee or a glass of wine or just to cover our bases, both simultaneously.
I did receive a basket of muffins from a woman at my twins’ preschool. Never met this mom before. But she left me a basket of homemade muffins with the sweetest note. How nice is that?!
When I have friends someday in Florida and someone new comes to town, I am totally going to bake them muffins. Well, buy them muffins. Well, think about buying them muffins. And then feel bad that I didn’t follow through.
I don’t want you to feel sorry for me because eventually I will find my tribe. And meanwhile, it’s 80 and sunny. So if you’re going to be a bit lonely, it’s nice not to be freezing your ass off.
mama bird notes:
So am I a mom? Or a personal assistant? Sometimes I’m not so sure. Check out my piece on The Mother Company.
And it might just be time for Charlie Sheen to take care of his own kids. You know, instead of his ex-wife Denise Richards. See my post on Lifetime Moms.
There are a lot of cool things about technology but my one of my favorites is the accidental text.
Like sometimes you write one thing but autocorrect sends something totally different.
Or then there is the right text sent to the wrong person.
It can happen very easily when you are texting with more than one person at the same time.
Like you mean to text you husband, “I totally popped out of work early. No one noticed.” but you accidentally send it to your boss instead.
Well, my handyman and I have a good rapport but I was still surprised to have this exchange with him the other night. My text is highlighted green…
I was not at the pool. Nor did I realize the handyman and I were calling each other pet names like “bears.”
I made a mental note to tell him that I’d prefer something more like “Honey Bear” or “Sexy Bear” and then I just texted him back, “Luv u 2!”
Not totally a lie because he is super reasonable and does great work.
Turns out the text was meant for his daughter and he was very embarrassed. Like “OMG” embarrassed.
It seems like I might get that grouting done for free.
mama bird notes:
Looking for some awesome old school gifts this holiday season? I reviewed some of my favorites on Alpha Mom.
And thanks to Miley Cyrus and all those other twerkers out there, some high school students now have to sign an an anti-twerking contract for their school dance. Check out my piece on Lifetime Moms.
Finally, have you like The Mama Bird Diaries on Facebook? It’s free and fun!