Category Archives: That Came out of His/Her Mouth!

Have your children ever said anything that left you shaking your head? Share those moments here with me!

Oh, Be Careful Little Tongue…

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When I first found out I was pregnant, I thought it would be nice to have a girl.  And then I remembered how girls were a strange package deal.  They were cute candidates for dress up, adding bows and frills to just about everything.  I completely forgot about the immense amount of unnecessary drama that was included in that cute package. The parental instructions don’t inform of massive, limitless meltdowns for absolutely no reason, crying because the sun was too hot or attitudes that were accompanied by pouting, arms crossed and body language suited for “The Nanny.”

Girls can also be very messy. No, I don’t mean the messy where you have to force them to clean or wash.  Messy, as in drama! I was on vacation, and while there, the friend with whom I stayed was invited to her girlfriend’s house.  I accompanied her on the trip,  and after being there for a while, we could hear the screaming of “Stop it!” coming from a room at the rear of the house.  The mother of the two did what most of us do, and shouted for her two kids, one boy and the other a girl, to quit doing whatever it was that was beginning to irritate her.

We heard it again.

“Stop iiiit!” This time, it was followed by a few whimpers that resembled a small cry.

When no one physically appeared at the door, she screamed out louder, “You’re hurting meeee!”

The mother jumped up, walked to one room and saw her son sitting alone on the floor playing with his trucks.  She walked to the room next to it and realized her daughter was sitting in the corner with a doll. The little angel’s back was turned, so her mother waited to see if this was a game she was playing.

“Stop, it Tyler!  Mommmmyyyy!!!!”  The fake tears turned to real tears and she worked herself into a fit.  Her mother went into the room with arms folded.

“What’s wrong, Christina?” She couldn’t wait to see what would happen next.

“Tyler keeps hitting me! He ran into the other room!!! Waaaaahhh!!!”

“Christina, you have been sitting here all this time and Tyler has not touched you. I have been standing here watching you.  Now, you are going to apologize to him for trying to get him in trouble! And you better not make a sound!”

Defeated in her attempts, she walked with her mom to the next room, where the unsuspecting Tyler sat up, ready to watch her eat humble pie.

The same type of dramatic exchange takes place in my home on a daily basis. I promise you, I have boys.  They are supposed to do the normal kicking, spitting, fighting, boxing and occasional biting.  I get that.  What I can’t wrap my brain around is the tattling.  I have tried to explain to my youngest that his list of friends is going to be significantly shorter than his brother’s because he tells it all.  On the bright side, nothing gets by me, because he will always provide a full account, with a few glorified details of his own, of course.

I was tired one day, as I usually am, and the boys were doing their usual acrobats on my couches.  I did my routine three times of telling them to stop (one calmly, one with rising temperature, the other with veins about to pop.)  My head was pounding, and I was not in the mood, so I lost it.

“If one more person jumps on my couches, I am gong to punch you in the chest, rip off your toenails and throw you into oncoming traffic!!!!”  (No, I have never been featured on the show ‘Snapped.’ Don’t search for my profile.)  My youngest son came upstairs with eyes widened.

“Mom! Guess what your son just said.”  He waited.

“WHAT!” I shouted.

“He said you need to chillax.  That’s not good, huh? Is he gonna get his toes ripped off?”

Once again, I had lost my temper and been taken literally.  “No. I would not do that.  Go and get your brother.”

Anticipating him at least being punched in the chest, he raced downstairs.  “Mom said to come up here RIGHT NOW, and don’t take your time, because she is really, really upset with what you just said!” (I didn’t recall saying all of that.)

With fear and trembling, my oldest child crept closer to my bedroom with his brother close behind him, almost nudging his movements.

“Yes, mommy?” His voice trembled.

“Did you say you needed me to chillax?” I was calm.

“NOO!  I said I wish that mom would RELAX! I know you’ve been tired, and all of that screaming is a lot of work, so I said you need to RELAX so that you don’t make your heart burst! Don’t you take blood bills?”

“Good try, dude!” The Tattler was not satisfied until he saw some bodily damage being done.

“Look,” I started, “both of you are trying my patience.  You know the rules in here yet you seem to ignore what is said. So, what do you think I should do?”  They were accustomed to deciding their punishment and were getting good at it.

The Tattler decided to speak up. “Throw us into traffic?”

I’m done.

Laugh, people. It’s good for the soul!

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Good Spoken

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Pronunciation and enunciation are important in our everyday conversation with others. As an English teacher, my spine tingles when I hear words pronounced incorrectly or used in the wrong context. I especially can’t stand it when the error comes from a fellow educator. Then, it is time to pray for the children. Spelling errors compromise my mood and I live with a red pen in my purse. Imagine your child being in Pre-K, and you receive a note from the classroom instructor that states, “Please schedual a confrence with me as soon as possable.” Uhh, CHECK, PLEASE!

Children are forgiven. Their faux pas are the cutest things, but you have to listen closely to catch them all. I recall my one and a half year old sneezing one day, and I didn’t respond quickly enough for him. He looked at me and shouted, “Bwess me!” I chuckled, because his attitude was firm. It was as if his body language communicated if I didn’t “bwess him” again, he would move out.

As children grow, they listen to our conversations. (That was free information for those of you who were ill-informed!) They often repeat things they have heard in the company of those whom we have talked about in private. I am not fond of smoking, and have made comments about individuals shortening their lives due to the effects of it. One day, while driving next to a car with the window open, my son bellowed to the driver next to us, “ Oh, boy. You’re gonna die! Then the ‘abrulance’ is gonna take you to heaven!” Either the man was tickled by this outburst or he was embarrassed, but he put the cigarette out the minute he heard it, laughing as he drove away.

While in heated debates in my home, I love to listen to what my children are saying. I check to see if they are using advanced vocabulary and try not to laugh when they are incorrectly placed. One day, while rolling around on the carpet, my oldest son started choking my youngest one in their usual playful mode. Things got a bit serious; I could hear the youngest shouting, “Get offa me, fool!” When his brother released his chokehold, the child jumped up and blasted him.

“What! Are you tryin’ to burst my esphalus?!” He stormed away, still holding his throat to produce a dramatic exchange. It’s not valid until I could see him doing it.

On another occasion, I took my oldest son with me to a toy store when he was about four years old. His brother, only two at the time, was riding in a stroller next to us as we shopped. We got to the aisle with the Lego blocks, which at that time was one of his favorite things to do. He went from box to box and could not make up his mind.

“Hurry, honey. I have a lot of other things to do today.” I pulled a box and hoped he would accept it and leave.

“Wait, mommy! I’m contempraying!” He placed his finger on his temple and closed his eyes. Yep, he was doing exactly as he stated.

There is a lot of drama in my home, and I placed my children in acting for a minute, because they could have been wealthy displaying a wide range of emotions. While playing outside one day, my eldest ran upstairs, opened the door, and clutched his chest. He was crying, but there was no sound coming out of his mouth. You know, it’s the kind of cry that takes a minute to come out because it is nestled deep within the throat? His younger brother, who followed him stood without offering any explanation.

“What’s wrong?” I screamed. “ You need to calm down and breathe, child!” The breaths came quicker, yet no sound.

“ I think he’s having a heart attack.” The blanket look on his face told me that his brother was irritated and wanted to return to his fun outside.

“ I am NOT—uhuh, uhuh, uhuh— havin’ a –uhuh, uhuh, uhuh—heart—attack!” Well, that was a relief!

Throughout the years, they will begin to correct their own mistakes. They will know that things that are ‘absonutely ridicalus’ can also be quite ‘flustrating!’ Until then, I will continue to enjoy the cuteness of it all. As my youngest would say, “Let’s forget about it and go get a Fraggachino!”

Laugh, people. It’s good for the soul!

Schizophrenic Eaters

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There are certain foods that I simply detest.  My taste buds have not been trained for anything slimy, grainy or mysteriously gooey.  I don’t do creative mixtures and have issues at times with certain foods touching.  Call it anal retentive, and I would totally agree.  Like many people who suffer from this self-imposed disorder, I hate to see things that are out of place. I am one of those persons who will visit your home, and if the toilet paper is going ‘under’ it will be changed to ‘over.’ Toothpaste MUST be squeezed from the bottom; no questions asked.  I might be caught rearranging a few things on your table or mantle to make it aesthetically pleasing to the eye.  If I ever make an excuse to leave your home early, it is probably because the clutter is giving me a migraine; I am assigning each item a place in my head.

These idiosyncrasies were compromised the moment I had children.  As a baby, my oldest child would literally spit Gerber fruits and vegetables into my face.  He eventually learned to love both, because he realized he would soon starve without them.  No, we didn’t do organic by force; it is what happens when you see that a small package of anything costs more than a Venti latte’ at Starbucks. It would only last a minute, but the money is long gone.

The child grew and learned to say, “No!” and decided that he had a preference of what he would and would not eat.  He had a daily standoff with fruits and stare-down with vegetables.  I had to get very creative with him, and creativity in the kitchen was just not my thing.

The second child came along and craved fruits and vegetables, eating them like the stores would never carry them again.  So the battle began.  His older brother would throw nauseating looks his way, as though he would somehow barf just watching him eat. Cooking becomes interesting when children are complete opposites.  While they both liked chicken, one likes it with the skin, the other would just as soon cry if he detected any part of it on his plate.  The only way I could get one to finally eat broccoli was to smother it with cheese; the other would simply take it with a dash of salt and pepper.  This presented a problem, especially when making a meal like chili.  The recipe calls for vegetables!

One day, I made a huge pot of chili, and accidentally included chopped tomatoes instead of petite diced ones. My eldest received his food piping hot.  He sat there and picked out every single piece of red he could find until his food got cold enough to resemble anything from the frozen food section of the grocery store.  I learned then that creativity in the kitchen was a mandate, and to avoid pulling my hair out, I would have to learn to, dare I say, camouflage the mixture? The anal retentive part of me could not imagine it.

I recall a time forcing my eldest son to eat carrots.  He refused to even taste it and I was getting more and more irritated, thinking that he was just being stubborn, eating what he liked and throwing away what he didn’t.  He made it clear that he could care less about the starving children in Africa or any other part of the United States.

“You are not to move from that table until you eat those carrots! I am so serious!” I screamed, and figured he would comply. He cried uncontrollably, and stared at those orange slices with utmost disdain.

“Mommy, please!!! I promise I will eat anything else! I just can’t eat these things. I can’t even stand the smell of them!” I could tell that this was going to be a dramatic display of emotions.

“Oh my God, dude!” His brother chimed in. “It’s no big deal!” He grabbed one of the carrot pieces from his brother’s plate, shoved it into his mouth, swallowed shortly thereafter and smiled sarcastically.

“See? No big deal. Just eat it!” He returned to his food, clearly bothered by the interruption.

“No!  I CAN’T!” The cry got louder as my patience waned.

“Look, put the carrots up to you mouth right now and take a bite!”

His hands shook as he gathered two pieces onto his fork.  He started to gag before it hit his mouth.  I overlooked it.  He was going to eat it if it was the last thing he did. He placed it into his mouth and refused to chew.

“Chew! “ I commanded.

He chewed, and a few seconds later, regurgitated everything he had eaten for the evening.  Carrots, chicken, rice, toast and Kool-Aid came pouring onto the table, causing my meal and that of my youngest son to be prematurely finished.  I could not bring myself to clean up unplanned vomit.  I would only add to it, as it is the mysteriously gooey feel that does a number on me.

Some things, I have learned, are perfect the way they are, even to the anal retentive eye.  I am a supportive parent of popsicles, ice cream cones, cookies, pizza, popcorn and McDonald’s.  I could care less how they’re arranged.

Laugh, people. It’s good for the soul!

Eye of the Tiger

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Although Sylvester Stallone was noted as one of the top worst actors in the entertainment industry, he became my child’s hero!  I love the Rocky series and my child is obsessed with boxing.  One day, I decided to rent one of the movies to see how he would enjoy watching it with me.  From the very first one, he was hooked.  Most children request that parents fast-forward to the favorite parts, forgetting that there is a story line.  Not my son.  He watched from the opening lines to the rolling credits.

After a while, children begin to memorize the scenes that they have loved.  I watched him rehearse scenes with his brother, insisting that he played the part of Rocky Balboa and his brother accepted the role of the person being beaten to a pulp.  He had no idea, however, that Rocky would ever lose a fight.

“What the heck?” he shouted at the television one day. “He’s getting the snot kicked out of his butt!” He was shocked and appalled and did not know how to process such a beat down.

His brother looked up at him and responded, “Yeah.  Let’s pretend now!  You are still Rocky. I am going to be Clubber Lang!”

He was a great sport.  He gracefully got knocked out and laid on the ground for quite some time to signify that he had matched getting the snot kicked out of his own butt by his brother.

By Rocky IV, he had memorized lines so much that he began using them in his everyday exchanges with others.  One day, he came home and told me about the day he had at school.

“Mommy, I almost got into a fight today.”

“You did?” I asked.  “What in the world for?”

“Well,” he continued, “this kid came up to me and tried to make me a punk.” I crack up when they are not quite sure how to put sentences together.

“Why did he want to do that?” I inquired.

“I have no idea.  But you know what I did?”  He had a huge smile on his face.

“Please tell me you didn’t hit him.”

“Nope. I said, dude, I’m a lover, not a fighter.”  He had a stern look on his face at the moment and I knew that he was serious about his approach. Withholding laughter, I had to figure out why he said it.

“Where did you hear that?”  I had literally forgotten about the series he had watched.

“ I got it from Rocky.  When that dude came to beat him up, he said that.  That was pretty cool to say too, huh?” When they wait for approval, think before you give it.

“Uhhh, well honey, you’re not actually a lover or a fighter.” I didn’t want to encourage the child in any way.

He remained silent for a minute. I could tell he was thinking; about what, I had no clue.

“Well, I don’t know what a lover does, but he left me alone ‘cause I gave him the Drago look.” (Please roll the ‘R’ when you say it, or it doesn’t sound right.)

“Huh? The Drago look? What look was that, baby?” The man had several looks and I could not recall any of them being a smile.

“You know the part where he says, “If he dies, he dies?  That one!”

Oh my God! For those of you who have never seen the film, the look was like this…

To use that look with “I’m a lover, not a fighter” must have scared the poor boy to death!

“Pumpkin, you can’t go around mad doggin’ people like that!”  I said.  “You don’t wanna start getting into fights!”

“He won’t bother me again, mommy.  I had the eye of the tiger!”

By the end of the week, the two boys had become the best of friends. Either he was afraid of my child, or petrified of tigers.

Laugh, people. It’s good for the soul!

Kicked Out of Preschool! OMG!

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As an educator, I have often believed that foul language is the attempt of a feeble mind to express itself creatively. However, there is something to be said about stretching oneself beyond a four-letter vocabulary; it allows me to see the intelligence individuals possess.  My children know that this type of vernacular is not allowed in my home.  From an early age, I tried to instill within them the elementary phrase ‘use your words’ to encourage conversation.  A shrug of the shoulder does not suffice. If either of them was crying, I would ask, “What’s the matter?” The response would have to be a sentence, explaining why the tears existed.

“I fell down, mama!” That is a complete sentence.

“She hurt my heart!”  Cute, and yet another complete sentence.

“ Mad at chu, mommy!” Well, OK.  That is a fragment, but I get the picture.

Times were a little bit tough one year, and before things went really crazy, I decided to leave the children at home with their father so that I could save money on a sitter.  I left creative activities for them to do, and made sure that my eldest had a tablet on which to practice his alphabet.  Being a stay-at-home anything is hard.  Their father did not enjoy the new position and I continuously arrived home to a very famished, frustrated individual.

After only two months of this charade, I decided to take them back to the sitter, whom they missed terribly.  One day, I picked them up and she asked me to step outside for a minute.  When we got the car, she began to tell me that my now 13-month-old had anger issues. In her crisp, English accent, she described to me how he would throw a toy in frustration for not getting his way.

“ I do suspect that he is saying a bad word as he throws these items, but I can’t be sure!”  The look on her face was one of grave concern.  I assured her that I would watch him at home to see what the problem could be.

A few months later, I separated from my husband and moved to a new area of town.  It just so happened that a preschool was directly across from where we lived, which was extremely convenient.  I woke up each morning, got them dressed, walked them across the street and made my way to work.  It was the perfect setup.  The honeymoon lasted about a year, and the little one decided to act up.  He began kicking and fighting any kid who had a dad that picked them up.  He started throwing things and muttering under his breath as he did.

One day, the Director of the school pulled me to the side to inform that my child was being released because he was out of control.

“He throws things and then says, “Puckit” when he is done.” She was embarrassed, and I was, in turn, quite confused.

“Puckit?” I said to myself. “What in the world is “Puckit?”

“ I hate to say this, but I think he is trying to curse, because he uses it all the time.” She began to demonstrate his behavior and then it hit me. He had seen this behavior and heard this language from his father and remembered that was the way to express deep anger! Oh, my God! My child was being expelled from preschool based on something he mimicked from someone else!

I had never been so embarrassed in my life!  I took both of my children home and had to engage in an immediate intervention.  I decided to watch my youngest to see if he would demonstrate the same behavior with me.  I got my answer as soon as he became upset that a toy would not work they way he expected. He tossed it onto the couch, gritted his teeth and said, “Puckit!”

“HEY!” I ran over to him and tapped him on his mouth. “NO! We do not say that! No more Puckit! Understand?” My look was stern and unchanging.

His lips reached the bottom of his chin as he stood there, clueless of the crime he had committed.

“Ok, mommy! No Puckit!”  He sobbed as I consoled him.  This poor, unsuspecting child had been caught in the act of his father’s misleading.

With one child expelled from preschool and another on his way to Kindergarten, I had my work cut out for me. It was time to find a place that would take him with all of his issues.  It was best to leave out the details of the kicking, the biting, the fighting,  and of course the cussin’.  After all, they would find most of that out soon enough!

Laugh, people.  It’s good for the soul!