My friend and I took our kids to the movies. Between us we have three girls and two boys. Or rather - three walking hormones and two daredevils. In a range from the ages of 7 through 10, there are five of them beside us - and a thousand Minions in front of us. So what mother wouldn't try and sneak in a little beverage or two to find some personal enjoyment in a situation that was set up to be quite the opposite. Between fights about who was sitting next to who, who had more snacks, one fallen bag of popcorn and a spilled Slurpee, we were screwed way before the 15-minutes of trailers even began. But in fairness to our beastly, little gang, once the movie started, they were all behaving. It was my friend and I who were the two to get us in trouble. With the lights dimmed and the movie well underway, I opened the first small bottle of wine. It was a travel-size, personal bottle. We had four, four ounce bottle between us and a long way to go. As I opened the first bottle, the metal casing around the twist-off cap made a loud cracking sound. To an avid drinker like me, I would have guessed what that noise was from the back row of the theater - but no one seemed to notice. Glug, glug, glug our glasses filled. This all sounded so loud and so familiar to me - but again, not one person paid any mind to us. Woo-hoo! We sat there with our chilled Pinot G's watching the movie, periodically checking our texts or popping online to shop (OK, the second part of that was me. But how could I not? I was comfy, I had my wine, and my kids were quiet and preoccupied. This was fantastic!) Naturally, just as I was about to hit send on the order for a new (must have!) pair of shoes - one of the kids had to go to the bathroom. As I stood up, I totally forgot about the two empty wine bottles on my lap. They didnt just crash to the floor as I rose from my seat. No - that would have ended things. Instead they rolled....and rolled...and rolled. Making a clattering noise along the way. They stopped at the front - literally right up to the screen. I couldn't have done that again if I tried....it was nearly seven aisles! People turned to look to see where the bottles had some from. If I wasn't holding my breath, I'd would obviously be me since I could probably start a fire with a sharp, alcoholic exhale. My oldest daughter would be the other thing that would give me away since she pointed at the bottles and yelled "Moooooom." OK. So much for discretion. I whispered to her that they weren't mine but everyone knew they were. I swear even that one-eyed little yellow character was looking down from the screen at us. Just as my friend and I were whispering frantically about what to do, feeling like we did when we were five years old and getting in trouble, a loud part of the movie grabbed everyone's attention. We let the moment pass....and it passed throughout the final hour of the show. When the lights came on we dared not move. Beside us, the kids were yammering that they wanted to leave. We needed to wait and walked out of the empty theater before the staff came in to clean the place. As we were walking out, I tossed my purse high onto my shoulder where the two remaining mini-bottles of wine were kept for the duration of the movie. The bottles in my bag clinked loudly together as one of the staff was walking by me with a sweeper set. He and I both paused for a beat. "Do you have any recycling?", he asked. "Nope. I'm good" I said. And my friend and I hurriedly left with the kids, saving the remaining drinks for the drive home. Just kidding. Not really. Yes I am. We opened them once we were in my driveway and the kids were babysitting themselves in the house, causing havoc of uncertain proportions (thank you movie food!). Forget the movie, I'd give our parenting "two thumbs up."
A few years ago Adam and I were vacationing in the Dominican Republic and we were happily getting our drink on at the pool. As with any good resort - afternoon pool games were planned! At the encouragement of Adam and strangers around me (because I really need to impress people I will never see again apparently), I agreed to enter a poolside Arm Wrestling / Beer Drinking competition. Not wanting to seem like an outsider, and honestly thinking I was cool in the moment (Ugh, when I look back on this now) I got out of the pool and walked on stage while trying to get everyone around to chant with me “Nuevo Jersey!” . I think I actually thought that whoever was called up next to compete with me, would feel intimated by my massive support system of earlier mentioned, strangers in DR. (PS – I don’t really speak Spanish so let’s just imagine how annoying I sounded saying “Nuevo Jersey” over and over again in an intoxicated, Jersey girl accent. ) And clearly – I was annoying to the monstrous German woman who was now my challenger. Shit. I am tall – an “eek” under 5’8” and overall big in size – but this woman cast a shadow on me. I think the one piece bathing suit she had on was actually one of those horrible looking wrestling outfit things that I find to be more like pornographic lederhosen. Anyway – the game was to chug a mug of beer while being in the hand-in-hand position and as soon as the first empty beer can hit the table, the guy holding our hands in position would release them. You know where this is going, JA?! (That’s German for “yes” – BTW). That woman drank her beer faster that I can inhale air and slammed my arm down with such ease, it was like I was made of rubber. The announcer guy felt bad – or was just an evil person – and told me he’d give me one more shot with this woman who looked like Flash - Fucking - Gordon. I didn’t want to admit defeat so I did the challenge again. Rumor had it she opened her second can of beer with her teeth before guzzling it down, while I was busy trying to chug as fast as someone with a past full of funneling experiences at frat parties. Needless to say, I didn’t win and while he claimed her victorious, I just sort of toppled over into the pool…which had to look just pretty….to drown myself. But Adam and my new stranger friends convinced me to just drown my embarrassed feelings instead. For the rest of the trip, I was fondly greeted around the resort as “Nuevo Jersey”. Sorry Jersey!! I really should do us all a favor and promise NOT to represent our great state while traveling outside of the US.
When Ella was in first grade, every Monday she had to write in a journal about what she had done that weekend. Every other month, the teacher would then send home the journal for the parents to read. The Monday after Super Bowl in the year that the NY Giants won, my jaw dropped a little while reading her story about Adam having a party to watch the Big Game. She had started off with all the regular details – friends and family were over, everyone was wearing red, blue and white, there was a ton of food and a cake shaped like a football. It all painted a picture of a nice and vanilla Super Bowl party. The closing to her story made me cringe as I imagined what the teacher might be thinking when Ella shared the detail that when “Dad’s team won, he sprayed ‘bear’ all over the house.” Yes, this was true. Adam had acted like our home was a locker room and he was literally on the team when he shook up a bottle of beer in each hand and sprayed it around while screaming with joy over the win. I was just praying that with her spelling error mistaking bear for beer, the teacher might go so far as to think he was spraying “cheer” around the room or “bear” hugs – or something that didn’t make us seem like a bunch of drunk, nut jobs with sports fever. As I signed the bottom page of her story to show that I had read the journal entry, I thought that I probably couldn’t even imagine the things that the teacher got to read – Ella’s journal alone could give her a weekend recap full of crazy. It might have been like “Quick Strips” through the eyes of a child. Eeek! That’s scary stuff. If she starts drawing naked people with weird hands and feet on her stories, I will have to step in and start doing some damage control…..
While traveling for work, me and several others from my office, went to find a bar after a long client meeting. Being from out of town, we chose a bar near the hotel. When we walked in, it was old, dark and dingy. Shady enough that we didn’t want to call attention to ourselves by walking out. While my normal drink of choice is always Pinot G, this was the type of place where you only drink bottled beer and never order food. Maybe you even have a few shots just to forget where you are. And it’s definitely the kind of joint where you go to the bathroom in pairs and never, ever sit on the toilet seat – hover ONLY! Which I must say is hard….if you are having said beers and shots and wearing stiletto heels. So please ladies, be prepared. If, like me, you happen to fall onto the seat while trying to squat over it while a little tipsy, don’t feel bad about using hand sanitizer on your ass cheeks. Whether you bring it, ask another woman or use what the place might provide, it may be all you can do to feel a little better about having your rump touch the seat in a dump.
We have had many guests over for holiday celebrations and with each gathering, I have lit several seasonal candles. I love the smells from Bath & Body Works the best! The other day the kids were out with Adam at the grocery store while I was cleaning the house in preparation for our little party. As they walked into the kitchen with their hands full of evil, yet wonderful, things for us to serve – Ella says “Mom, it smells like ‘Fireball’ in here.” Adam started laughing but I was a little freaked out that my young daughter knew the familiar smell of the latest cinnamon shot craze. Ok – so maybe we are having too many parties?! If my baby, Vanessa says anything about ‘Rum Chata’ – 2015 should be a dry year for this house. Between us….thank God she didn’t say anything! Saying we’d stop drinking is like saying we’d start working out in the New Year. Yea -that ain’t going to happen….this year or ever.
During the holiday break, with the kids up our asses constantly, Adam and I needed a little adult time and went out to a restaurant in town for a date night. Seeing as we both can drink without issue, we thought to go to a BYOB right around the corner to keep the bill down and be frugal for like, a second. We brought what we call a “double bottle” of red – which means it isn't one of those skinny little things but a bottle that would pour anywhere from 8 to 10 glasses. When we walked into the local Italian place, it was fairly slow and they sat us in the back near another couple from town who were also having dinner. Between the four of us, we were kid-less and they too had a nice bottle of wine – but theirs was a much smaller bottle. Some might even say, a "normal" size for two people. We traded hellos and went about our separate romantic evenings. They got up to leave and said goodbye to us. Adam looked over my shoulder and then looked at me and said “Ha – look at that, they didn’t even finish that little bottle of wine.” I looked over at it, then at Adam and with a gleam in my eye, I said “should we take it and finish it?” I felt like a jerk asking but I loved that Adam was apparently a jerk as well because he said "hell, yea we should take it. And we aren't leaving until we finish both – theirs and ours!” I looked around to make sure the coast was clear of waitstaff and reached over to quickly grab the bottle; Adam texted the babysitter to say we’d be a little later than planned. And look! All the money we saved racking up the drinks at dinner, we could now give to the sitter to stay longer. Everyone wins! Pass the vino - either bottle will do!
I went to open up a champagne bottle and the cork was being really stubborn. As I struggled, I moved the bottle closer to my chest so that I could get a stronger pull. Within a minute the cork came loose and with a loud pop - it smashed me in the face. I felt like an alcoholic and a blonde when I had to explain my bruise to anyone who asked what happened. Ugh - who wants to admit they got into it with a champagne bottle and that the cork won?! However, I could brag that I was clearly the victor since I drained the bottle of it's bubbly (to help with the pain, of course) and then smashed it into the recycling can. I am going to be so bad-ass this year!
(Oh and um - I was too scared to smash the bottle at all really and screamed like a little bitch as I threw it into the most responsible receptacle. OK, so maybe I am just going to be an ass this year....not so much on the bad part....)
‘Tis the season when Adam and I have several holiday parties to attend and the kids aren’t always included on the guest list. His work, my work. His college buds, my college gals. Our friends, our neighbors. Finding a babysitter for all of these events is sometimes a challenge and it is then that I need to rely on my mom. The other night as my kids were leaving to head to grandma’s for an overnight stay, I was having a pre-dinner drink while waiting for Adam to finish getting all of the gifts in the car for a party (again, no kids invited! Gotta love that kinda event!). Maybe it was the drink in my hand that reminded Ella of something my mom had said to her or maybe she was just pissed she had a sitter again – because she turned to me and practically gloated when she said - “Gram thinks you need to grow up with all these parties. And that you don’t dress your age and that you are an idiot.” And she turned to walk out the door. If you knew my mother, you’d know that is exactly what she would say. Yea well, I agree that I don’t act or dress my age….the idiot statement is fairly generic but that too is pretty much true. I guess I have a few things to work on in 2015….or not. Cheers!!
Last year, Adam wanted me to go with him at twelve o’clock on Thanksgiving night to partake in the Black Friday Midnight madness. I honestly couldn’t imagine doing this after sitting by the fire, drinking wine and pigging out on food all day but he was determined to get me to come with him. We left my cousin’s home after family dinner and dropped our kids off at my parent’s house. Being still buzzed, I chatted his ear off the entire ride about everything and nothing. I then stumbled up the stairs, twirled around in my holiday dress and fell onto the bed only to be woken up about two hours later by Adam gently shaking my shoulder. After being pulled from the small food/wine coma I was in, I lifted my head - totally sloth like and disheveled. Adam asked me if I was ready to go. I smiled at him and he jumped back – not only were my teeth practically stained gray from the red wine, my lips were also sucked dry from alcohol dehydration and now bleeding. Yeesh. I would make a fine shopping accomplice. Maybe I’d get good deals out of pity. Wellllll, we would never know….I woke up the next morning still in my party dress, with blood caked to my pillow and red wine soaked lips. OK, so full price holiday shopping from Amazon it is! At least I can drink my wine and shop online – a purple and snarly smile would make no difference at all.
Adam takes the kids to the pet store and my youngest looks over at the wall of fish tanks and spots one with a heart. She yells "a fish with a heart on it for Mom!". Later, they go to the liquor store and Ella sees alcohol with a fish on it and says “Hey! that is for Mom!". I love my kids for knowing me so well. I love love and I love wine. I whisper to each of them - unbeknownst to either - that they are my favorite kid. They smile with pride and I walk away to go drink my gummy fish drink while watching my heart fish swim by.
Collection of comic strips that illustrate the madness of my life - career, marriage, motherhood...me!
Click on any of the categories above or the "previous" link at the end of the page to see some moments that have stripped me of my sanity.