I’m not a huge fan of horses. It’s not really their fault. I just find them gigantic and I would prefer if they would stand still like statues.
My mother and sister adore horses and are great riders. I’m the kid who tried to learn to ride, fell off and thought maybe I’d taking acting classes instead.
But of course, my 10 year old daughter Dylan inherited this passion for horses. Over the weekend, we participated in a Mitzvah Day which is a day of service and giving back to the community. I took Dylan and her sister Summer to a horse rescue farm. It’s an incredible place that rescues and finds homes for old racing horses and horses that have been abused.
As soon as we arrived, I tried to find the espresso bar (which apparently horse farms don’t have). Instead, a volunteer coordinator told me to sign the waiver so that if we got “kicked, bitten or stomped on” by one of the untrained horses, the farm wouldn’t be liable.
Even as I signed it, I knew I would totally sue because I’ve been obsessively watching old seasons of The Good Wife and I know you can get any legal document thrown out of court. Especially when you are forced to sign without even being supplied with a morning espresso.
During the volunteer training, the coordinator taught my kids words like “douche bag” and “a–hole” when describing horses we should stay away from. Got it. And then she told us more than I ever need to know about a horse and her period.
Then the volunteering began and we started by raking up horse poop (which curiously doesn’t really smell) and then brushing the horses. Here’s Summer who is afraid of dogs but apparently not animals that are much much bigger than dogs….
That horse is wearing something to protect his eyes from flies. He apparently can see through it. Plus I think we can all agree it’s very chic. As to why he’s standing in our wheel barrow, you’d have to ask him.
Of course I kept getting all fidgety and nervous every time one of the animals started stomping around and acting too horse-like. But my daughter Dylan absolutely loved it…
There is something so amazing about a child connecting with a passion. Because they light up in a way you didn’t even know was possible. Horses might not be my love. But it’s her thing. And in the end, that makes it my thing too.
At some point in life, you are likely to find yourself at the doctor’s office with a child or more in tow. And chances are – this won’t go well. At all. Know that going in and you won’t have to suffer through crushed expectations.
I remember going to my doctor when my first daughter was just a baby. I arrived at the appointment with 3 month old Dylan safely strapped into the Bjorn. I had really figured out this motherhood thing! Right up until the doctor wanted to examine me and I had nowhere to put my baby.
Hmmm… a stroller could really come in handy right now. They finally brought a nurse to hold the baby. It takes a village. Or at least a really nice nurse.
Just recently, I had to bring my almost 2 year old son to the GYN with me. In case you can’t remember what it’s like to have a toddler, they never stop moving, climbing or breaking things. My son really likes trash cans.
So Cash spent the time in the waiting room trying to sort through the garbage cans. Then we moved on to the urine sample in the bathroom where things got very tricky. It’s actually not all that easy to entertain a toddler and keep him from destroying things while trying to pee in a cup. By the time I was in the examining room, I had strapped Cash into the stroller and was just throwing him lollipops and anything else that might appease him.
And because I never like to end one challenging experience without upping the ante, I took all 5 kids with me to my daughter’s allergist this week. Things get a little rowdy when I have all five kids out with me. Here’s an example from a trip to the grocery store…
At the allergist, Cash learned the joys of the water cooler in the waiting room. I couldn’t keep him away from it and despite his intention of actually drinking the water, he really was just pouring the water. All over the floor.
My other children were acting as if I had given them ten boxes of Lucky Charms intravenously. One woman with two very quiet children was staring at us like we were an one act play she had just happened to catch while driving through town.
I don’t know what she was thinking but I’m guessing it wasn’t – “What a fun, spirited group! I’d like to roll with them.”
They finally called my daughter’s name and we moved our performance group to an examining room where I immediately had to remove the trash can because Cash tried to take gum out of it. Even after 10 years of parenthood, a kid touching stranger gum is still incredibly hard to shake off.
We got through the appointment with some crying, coloring, whining and almost ripping down the shades.
I get to bring my daughter back in two weeks. Obviously, I need to find a sitter.
Maybe Justin Timberlake will come out. His first time ever at a Boca Raton gated community!
Nope, it’s the balloon guy.
Oh the corny jokes! The lame magic! The kids aren’t really going for this, are they? They’re too smart for this.
My kid just fell out of his chair laughing. I guess he isn’t too smart for this.
They just made an announcement that they aren’t selling alcohol at this event. Who is making the calls around here?
The ballon guy checked his watch. He’s either bored or trying to keep himself on schedule so he can get home in time to watch Dr. Phil.
My kids are still laughing. At everything.
The balloon guy is doing a competition to see who know the words to the Sponge Bob theme song. Children are failing miserably. A kid wearing a Sponge Bob shirt can’t sing it at all. False advertising. Takeaway: Kids today need to watch more TV – specifically Sponge Bob.
Wait, the balloon guy says for the grand finale, he’s going to get inside a balloon. Now I’m very interested. Okay, he blows up a gigantic balloon and dives head first into it.
The balloon breaks. He’s trying again.
The back up balloon breaks. The show is over.
Damn, that looked potentially awesome. I want my money back.
Apparently the event is free. I think I still deserve some money.
I’m going to follow him across South Florida until I get to see the grand finale.
P.S. I found a photo of him on Facebook to show you how he somehow fits himself into a balloon…
Sometimes at night when I’m just about to drift off to sleep, I start thinking… What happens to us after we die? Is our universe part of something greater or just endless black space? What is the purpose of our lives? If something happened to me – just how messy would my house be?
That sort of thing. I can make you a relaxing meditation tape of these questions if you’d like.
Of course, this isn’t all I mull over. Sometimes, I spent time deciding which coach I’d pick on The Voice between Adam, Pharrel, Christina and Blake. I would definitely pick Adam or Christina… Adam (because he’s adorable, funny and I’ve never spent time with someone with so many arm tattoos) or Christina (because her voice is amazing and well, girl power).
Obviously, I really need to decide between the two of them as soon as possible in case I suddenly wake up with an amazing voice and buckets of free time to dedicate to auditioning and the knock out rounds.
I’m also a little concerned about whether I’ll ever get the closed captioning on my TV to turn off. It’s already been three days and an hour call to Xfinity and still nothing. I’m trying to embrace reading the TV dialogue before I hear it. It really spiced up the Justin Bieber Comedy Central roast. Nothing makes a lame joke funnier than reading it first!
While I’m thinking about this, nearly 5 year old Harlowe is fiercely worried about the next time she will have to get shots. She already got her shots for Kindergarten next year which means the next time she will need to get immunized is when she is… twelve.
She got herself in such a panic over these future shots that I finally told her, “You know what, you don’t have to get them when you’re 12. We will work something else out.”
I mean, is she seriously going to hold me to this in 7 years? If she does, I’ll tell her I was on the edge of a nervous breakdown listening to her crying and decided to save myself.
I don’t know why people worry since we have control over pretty much nothing and most of what we worry about, never happens. I’m prone to it myself. I’ve cornered the market in worrying about little things while my husband specializes in big picture worrying. It’s the yin and yang of a beautiful marriage in harmony.
I wish I could be one of those people who lets things go and gives it all up to God’s will or a higher power. My mother (who is also prone to worrying so maybe it’s genetic) used to have a saying… “Put it in the God box.” She would write down her concern or worry on a piece of paper and literally put it in a special God box. It’s a way of letting go.
But this idea of giving it all up to God’s will is a bit too esoteric for me. Maybe if it was Adam Levine’s will – that would be something I could support. Maybe I’ll just take my worries and put them in the Adam Levine God box. I’ll leave it up to him to do my worrying.
This post is sponsored by Knorr and their flavors of home. All ideas are my own.
When I first arrived in Montana with dreams of being a very famous and very fabulous TV reporter, I knew immediately I was in trouble. It was minus 30 degrees, I had no friends and I didn’t know how to cook anything. I had moved there from Manhattan where you didn’t have to cook because it all got delivered to your door within an half hour.
I was so homesick and so lonely and so hungry. I cheered myself up by going to see The Titanic. Alone.
Luckily, I kept busy reporting on things like the opening of the Lewis & Clark museum (3 part series!) and the opening of the first cineplex (with stadium seating!). And thank goodness an anchor girl named Jen showed up and ended up being my best friend and savior.
I bought bear pepper spray (because you can never be too careful), ate a lot of beef jerky (because I adore sodium) and drove really fast (because hot damn there was no speed limit then!)
I think I even learned how to cook a few things but I can’t remember what they were because I had brain freeze most of the time from the frigid weather.
But even though I learned how to live in Montana and survive, it never felt like home. So when I watched this video from Knorr about a young girl who lives in the Arctic and gets an incredible surprise… it immediately brought me back to how it feels to be so far from the people you love.
And the video will make you cry. I know because it made me cry and I normally only tear up when I hear news that a teenage heartthrob is leaving a popular boy band.
Here’s the video…
You’re teary, aren’t you?! I can’t wait to surprise one of my kids like that some day. (Disclaimer to all my children: I’m not willing to travel to Montana or the Arctic.)
This post is sponsored by Knorr and their flavors of home. All ideas are my own.