Tag Archives: single parenting

It’s MP’s world. I just live in it.

I usually have Friday’s off, but last week was crazy busy, which meant I had to run into work for a few hours Friday afternoon. Which meant I had to bring MP with me. Which meant helluuuu Happy Meal. I figured it’d keep her occupied for at least 25 minutes.

We were sitting in the McDonald’s drive-thru when MP made an observation.

“Heeeey … the McDonald’s sign looks like a big ‘M.'”

“Yep. And you know why? Sound out McDonald’s. What does it start with?”

“Mmmmmmm. M!”

“That’s right.”



“So if it started with a ‘D’ it would be DickDonald’s.


“And the sign would have a big ‘D’ instead of an ‘M!'”

(Uncontrollable laughter) “Yes, it WOULD.”

“Whoa. Aaaawesome.”


Hooked on Phonics. Mommypie gives it two thumbs up.

WAY up.


Filed under Make Me Laugh Monday

God speaks.

I’m sitting in the livingroom, just outside the bathroom, where MP has been for awhile. She calls to me in her best deep voice.

MP: Hello? Mommypie? This is God speaking.

ME: Hi God.

MP: Your little daughter … has … peed … like … a … boy.

(Mommypie gets up and runs to the bathroom.)

ME: What?!? (scanning the area around the toilet) You didn’t. DID YOU?!?

MP: (smiling) I was just joking.

(Mommypie exhales and exits the bathroom.)

MP: That wasn’t God talking either.


Filed under Piecing it Together, Uncategorized

A day at the patch with Al.

Yesterday, as is customary this time of year, MP and I made our way to the Pumpkin Patch with Grammy and Poppy.

Shortly after arriving, we ran into one of MP’s friends from school. Together, along with his 2-year-old brother, they were inseparable.

Just like MP’s hand and butt.

It’s the latest phase. The Hand-Down-The-Pants one. It’s constant.

When I asked her to please take her hand out of the back of her pants, she replied with an amiable “okay,” and moved it to the front.

Al Bundy’s got nothin’ on this kid.


Filed under A Little Piece of My Heart

I knew this day would come.

Sunday morning, MP let me sleep in a little bit while she watched cartoons. When I woke up and emerged from the bedroom, she was shuffling around with the kitchen broom.

I asked her what she was doing and she mumbled something about sweeping up the bathroom. Not sure what she was talking about, I peeked my head in the doorway.

And saw this.

Mounds and mounds of hair.

And when I looked closely, I saw the damage. All in all, I have to say, she did a pretty good job perfecting the Crack Shag. She was SO proud, I couldn’t help but smile.

“Mommy, I did it just the way the Hair Cutter Lady does it! I squirted with this (Johnson’s No More Tangles), just like the lady, then combed it and cut it! Just the way I’m supposed to!”

So last night we made a visit to the Hair Cutter Lady for a little damage control. MP now has a bob.

Which is actually pretty cute.

We have agreed that from now on however, do-it-yourselfers are off limits.


Filed under Piecing it Together

It ain’t no Pickle Car. Just an obscenely long post.

If I’d have been disciplined and posted during the Denver trip last week, I could of avoided this painfully looong recap. If I lose you halfway through, I completely understand. I feel the need to post details for posterity’s sake, however. It’s the little things I love remembering.

Saturday morning: News from my handyman.

Yes, I have a handyman. In Denver. Not the bow-chicka wow-wow “Oh my it IS hot please DO take your shirt off would you like some lemonade” kind of handyman. Not the 25-year-old porno pizza delivery guy variety. No, he’s a Vietnam Vet who’s logo is a giant red octopus. A giant red octopus with a tool in each tentacle and a face that looks eerily similar to his. A giant red octopus smokin’ a cigar, which is accurate. It’s actually pretty funny.

Anyhoo, the news. My house — the house I bought two months before MP was born; her first home; the tiny 1923 cottage I put so much work into; the place that’s now a rental — was left an absolute pigsty by the latest tenants. Two college guys. I am officially a WANKER for convincing myself they couldn’t do much damage in nine months. Which is comical, considering the gestational significance of the lease and their correlating level of maturity.

The mess wasn’t the worst part. Apparently, in the three weeks it had been sitting vacant, the washing machine was continuously filling and spilling … all over the mudroom floor and down into the basement. Not only did I need to have the washer repaired, the resulting moldy carpet needed to be ripped out; as did the warped wood floor beneath, and subsequently, MY HAIR.

Oh yeah, the boys broke the electric garage door, too. A nice little $750 parting gift.

I LOATHE being a landlord. (A long-distance landlord, no less.) Unfortunately, considering the current market’s sorry state, I can’t afford to sell. And truth be told, I have a strong emotional attachment to the place. When I finally DO sell it and say goodbye to all it’s ghosts, admitting that chapter is REALLY, TRULY closed is going to be more than impossibly tough.

Between dealing with carpet cleaners, numerous trips to Home Depot and lots and lots of sweaty yard work, I DID actually manage to do a few FUN things.

Saturday night: Sleepover and vodka lemonades at Tattoo Daddy and Corporate Mommy’s new house. When did my friends become the kind of people who live in 4,300 square foot homes? In the ‘burbs no less? It pains me somewhat to admit it was actually quite nice. So nice, in fact, I think it took them — consummate city dwellers — by surprise too.

As strangers living across the street from one another in one of Denver’s very urban neighborhoods, our infant children brought us together. Their son, FDR (logic behind this real life nickname is too politically incorrect to post, trust me), and MP are two months apart in age. Tattoo Daddy was MP’s first, if not unlikely, babysitter.

Together, they’re the coolest couple I know.

And just good people. Case in point: later that night, when MP’s eye swelled shut in violent protest to their cat’s dander, Tat Daddy happily ran to the store for Benadryl. Good peeps. I miss ’em.

Oh yeah, almost forgot about this.

For the first time, I have appliance envy. ‘Crushed ice machine’ has always been on my list of frivolous things I’d buy if I were fabulously wealthy.

Turns out, there are actually refrigerators on the market that DO THIS. What?!? Something on the Fabulously Wealthy List may actually be within my reach??

Ice is my vice. My dentist’s nightmare. I chew it ALL. DAY. LONG. Yes, I’m aware of the whole supposed sexual frustration connection, my fellow junior high friends, and trust me, that’s one explanation that wouldn’t be a stretch for this single mama. However, I don’t think that’s the case. It’s more of a full-blown addiction.

The monkey on my back.

Which brings me to …

Sunday morning: The Denver Zoo. Quote of the day: “Mommy, those monkey’s tushes are GROSS.”

Yeah, about that. Remember how you wanted a pet?

Have some cotton candy instead. A “food” first. Had it not been for Spongebob, this little undesirable would’ve gone virtually unnoticed.

As in, “Huh. That’s weird. A big ball of pink lint on a stick. Meh.”

Okay, it WAS mind-numbingly good.

The corndog was pretty tasty too. Another “food” first.

Sunday night: Grandpa Bobo wakes me up at 12:30 a.m. to tell me there’s an alarm going off. Clearly spooked, he makes me get up and investigate with him. Turns out to be my brother’s travel clock in the living room.

Bobo later admits he’s freaked out in my brother’s 100+ year-old house and confesses his temptation to tiptoe into the guest room while MP and I sleep, and camp out on the floor.

The next night my brother baits Bobo (who, as expected, buys every word) by telling him strange things have happened in the house — always at 1:20 a.m. — and then predictably sets the travel alarm to 1:20 a.m., leaving it by the couch as Bobo lay sleeping.

I had to intervene. I had to get some sleep.

Monday night: MP touches a light bulb. Says she wanted to see if it was hot. It was. Glad we cleared that up.

Tuesday night: Out to dinner with the fam. The drive downtown finds us stopped at a light behind some fancy-schmancy car. Bobo oogles and asks (like I’m an authority) what kind it is. I, of course, have no idea. I reply, “It ain’t no Pickle Car,” which he adopts as a catch-all phrase for the remainder of the trip.

For those unfamiliar with the genius of Richard Scarry, THIS is a Pickle Car.

Add it to the Fabulously Wealthy List. I’d SO enjoy driving to work each day in this.

Turns out the car was actually some kind of crazy Acura. That looked like a Kit Car. That looked like a hairy Italian.

Later, at the restaurant, all hell breaks loose. MP finally cracks under the continuous stream of excitement. Once home, I send her to bed with the iPod and her Princess tunes. Along with the cotton candy, the corndog, and the lightbulb-touching incident, the iPod is indeed another first.

Two important new discoveries: Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe. Deadliest Catch, also with Mike Rowe. Did I mention he’s my new secret boyfriend? More on that later …

After a busy five days, the best part of the trip, hands down, was watching MP interact with her younger cousins. I mentioned last week she insists on calling them her “brothers.” She wants siblings so badly. And I do wish I could give her a few. Maybe, with more visits, this will be a happy medium.


Filed under Piecemeal

Feelings of graditude on Grandfather’s Day

This is Bobo, my dad. MP’s grandpa.














He brings me things. Like bags of laundry. Because not only do I owe him for the college years when I dragged 20 tons of my own dirty laundry home, he’s now a full-time RVer and afraid of getting lice from the communal laundry room. I’m fairly certain hot water and a spin cycle would take care of any issues, but I’m totally on the same page. The familial phobias, they run deep.

And just the other day, he stopped into my office and brought me this.








He also clips articles he thinks I should read — torn pages from Money Magazine and USA Today and other random publications from the coffee shop or the dentist’s office, with topics ranging from finances, food, health and single parenthood. For MP, it’s the Sunday Funnies.

Bobo’s favorite catch phrases include, “THAT’s gonna itch when it dries,” “Bull ROAR!” “Drier than a popcorn fart,” “Love me, love my dog,” and the constant crowd-pleaser, “I’m not picking … I have an itch.” MP thinks he’s absolutely hilarious.

He’s nothing if not a character.

He comes to watch her at gymnastics each Friday, and afterward we go to lunch. She has come to count on Sunday night dinners with Bobo. Family meals are a big deal at the Pie House.

Come summer, we fish.









And she loves him. And he, her.

Then there’s Poppy, my stepfather and MP’s other grandpa.









Poppy lives next door with Grammy. We all have dinner together a few times a week. He loves MP with the intensity of a thousand suns. The two are kindred spirits. They talk about all kinds of things — sometimes without speaking a single a word.

They take tractor rides and watch the sunset. Or in this case, giant piles of dirt.










And when he shoots gophers from the porch, MP begs to collect them. I don’t let her. (We’re not COMPLETE savages.) She DOES make the rounds with Grammy, however. I provide surgical gloves and masks.

Ah, the bonding opportunities country livin’ affords.

Mostly, he is her constant. In the absence of a father, he is the one who’s there every day, just a few paces away, right next door.

MP adores him. And he, her.

So, this Father’s Day, as is tradition, we will be celebrating Bobo and Poppy, and Grandfather’s Day. MP will make cards and we’ll split the day between the two. And I’ll say a little prayer of thanks that MP has two wonderfully colorful male role models in her life. They provide important things her single mama doesn’t.

Grandfatherly things.

Man things.

Like fart jokes and dead gophers.

Okay, like dead gophers.


Filed under A Little Piece of My Heart

How to get smacked upside the head.

Say this to any female over the age of 10.

Wow, you’re getting bigger!

We need to get you new underwear. Your tush is getting bigger!

(Clapping and smiling won’t help.)


Filed under Piecekeeping

Nog Duts. The post in which I lose a few readers.

I’m feeling a bit of the parent-of-an-only-child guilt. MP’s lonely. And the number of times she’s expressed wanting a companion is heartbreaking.

So, I’m thinking about getting her a dog. Been thinking about it for awhile, actually.

It’s not that easy, though. Because of her asthma and allergies, our selection is pretty limited. My personal criteria narrows the choices even more. Put it all together, it spells:

No barkers.

No biters.

No yippers.

No lickers.

No shedders.

No jumpers.

And no males. Because if I had to narrow my requirements down to two things …


I do not want them in the house.
I do not want them on the couch.

I will not have them on my bed.
I will not have them near my head.

I will not eat them in a box.
I will not eat them with a fox.
Wait. That’s not right.

I do not want to look at dog nuts.
(Nor do I want to look at dog BUTTS.
Which is why I’d NEVER have a Pug.

In a nutsack nutshell, I don’t want those things swingin’ around the Pie House. And if I’m being honest, which clearly I AM, it’s really the whole junkage that’s an issue. The whole <insert one jazz hand> area. It’s straight up p*rnographic. (See how I did that? Try to find me NOW, Google Pervs.)

Especially on the larger breeds. Great Dane? Super!! While we’re at it, let’s get a baboon with a big ‘ole ‘roid butt and call it a day. I always did want a monkey.

At least they wear diapers.


It’s hopeless.

More and more, I’m seriously thinking …



Filed under Bits and Pieces

Mother’s Day Conversation

Earlier today, MP saw something on TV mentioning Father’s Day along with Mother’s Day.

Heeyy … there’s a FATHER’s Day too?

Mmm hmm. But we celebrate GRANDfather’s Day instead.

Oh yeah.

(big smile)

Is there a KID’s Day?

Yep. Every day.


Filed under Life Lessons

Help Me Doogs!

I have some exciting news I’ve been dying to share — the folks over at Capessa have invited me to join the team as their single mom blogger!

In case you haven’t heard of it yet, Capessa is a new women’s social network owned by Procter and Gamble Productions. (The guys responsible for The People’s Choice Awards. And Guiding Light. Cool, huh?) Specifically, they have asked me to blog about “maintaining my sanity and social life while cherishing single parenthood.”

More blogging??!? Yippee!! (Sleep, shmeep.)

Of course, I had to make sure I would be allowed to jack up perfectly good photos. (They said yes.)

Here’s where I need your help, doogs. I have to come up with a catchy name for the blog. And fairly quickly. It should probably have something about being a single parent in it. Of course, my creativity chooses NOW to go on strike.

I figure you all are the most creative, witty folks I know, and a bunch ‘o heads are better than one.




Filed under Thrilled to Pieces