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Punkins & stuff

October 26, 2010

This past weekend, I subjected myself to my second annual weekend of pumpkin carving.

On Saturday, Lemon had her friends come over, pumpkins in hand, and they chatted about the high school and the people they’ve met from other schools, and they carefully carved their pumpkins.

Then they went thrift store shopping, where Lemon had her first ever independent awesome thrift store find.  She texted me a photo along with the price, and eventually gained my approval.  A cute pseudo preppy jacket in a tartan plaid.  When she got home and put it on,  WD and I approved even more (it looked tight in the photos, like she’d outgrow it within a month, but not the case in person).

Then they came back, and I ordered pizza for the world.

Then I almost had to kick the guests out because of rudeness and mean conversation about a classmate.  Fortunately, my Lemon continues to stick up for people when her friend (one in particular) insists on being nasty.  Often, I let Lemon do it, and just sit in the other room listening, feeling proud of her kindness, and willingness to assert herself with her peers.  But this time, the banter included conversation about chopping a girl up and strewing her body parts around (!! I do not jest !!) and so I intervened.

The speaker-child said, “oh, actually, I’ve had this conversation with my mom, and she’s fine with it, so we’re good.”

To which I responded, “but that’s when you’re at her house.  Right now, you’re at my house.  And it’s not okay with me, and so you need to change the subject.”  They weren’t happy with me.

And I heard them continue to whisper, and I was convinced they were still talking about it, so I LEAPT up off the couch in the other room to stop them …

and kicked a full glass of wine (which was going so very well with my white 4-cheese, garlic-covered pizza), sending it flying.  When I say flying, I mean that most of it created a puddle on the rug, but some of it ended up on the wall! and the picture on the wall! It was a mess.

Fortunately, only WD and I were witness to my accident, and he went into crisis mode while I went in the other room and threatened to send everyone home.

Interestingly, they weren’t mad at me.  They came back over the next day, just as happy and chatty as before my group-discipline.  Of course, my theory is that the poor speaker-child is really starving for decent parenting. Hence her statement:  “Suzie, you know that show Wife Swap?  Well, I think we should invent Mom Swap, and I should switch with Lemon.  Maybe for more than a week.”

Of course, that statement came before the lecture and threat.

And even more interestingly … it came up as I was serving her a salad, and offering many toppings and dressings.  She said she wanted to swap houses because at our house, we have “better food.”

Funny part?  Almost every day that she doesn’t have a scheduled activity, Lemon asks to go to this friend’s house.  When we pushed about why there instead of our house, she cited “better food.”

Turns out, the “better food” at the friend’s house is junk food and snack food, and the “better food” at our house is salads … the grass is always greener.

Sunday was Mouse’s pumpkin-carving day.  Turns out, twelve year olds create much more chaos, lots more noise, and lots more help needed.   Also less gossip and more … craze.  I worried for fingers.  Hence the “more help needed.”  Or rather, forced upon them.  And they were so all over the place, I don’t have pictures.  A few of the designs kind of failed, and one of the unfinished, but partially-carved pumpkins is still in my kitchen (not Mouse’s).

Still, I am always so happy to have both girls’ friends in the house.  I love knowing them, especially as they get older.  On Sunday, with the younger kids, I sat in the kitchen with another mom while the kids were in the dining room – and we could barely carry on a conversation because of the “Suzie, can you come help! I can’t get the nose out!” and “Suzie, are you listening?  I’m telling a joke – I want you to hear it.”  Very satisfying.

But not so satisfying that the second they were done, I didn’t shoo them to the park.  They were just so very loud.  And I got to sit down and finally watch an entire Patriots Game, except for the 15 minutes during which I dozed off, which was also nice … since before I could host five 12 year olds, I spent 7 a.m. until Noon at the office, wrapping up some deadlines for work.

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