Mothering Out of the Box

Boys? Boys I’ve got my down in spades. I know how these little buggers tick, and I’m a good mom to my boys- I’m fairly confident. Case in point: The other day, we were all in the car driving home from school, and Jeffrey was talking about some friends of ours. They happen to have a mom who is textbook wonderful- she is June Cleaver personified- and we love her.

Jeff looks at me and says “Mom, Sister T would never forget to buy hamburger buns, and she makes treats for Family Night, and she folds socks.”

Hmmm…. I look cockeyed at him in the passenger seat next to me. “Well, yeah, she’s pretty awesome, isn’t she?” I toss this off without a trace of malice, because really, Sister T is that cool. I never fold socks.

Leaning far over the center console, Jeff screws his face up and has a wicked twinkle in his eye. “Yeah, but I’m glad you’re my mom. You’re good at lots of stuff and we laugh a lot.”

From the backseat, Bean, who has been listening but pretending not to, lets out a huge belch and dissolves into a fit of wild giggles. “I like mom because she doesn’t wash my mouth out when I say CRAP!”

Jeff, immediately, pipes up “Mom! I want to say CRAP!”

I’m trying not to laugh, but it’s not working. Even Abby is giggling, and I give up. “Okay, eveyrone- all at once- just this once- I’m cutting you some slack; everyone yell CRAP together. One… Two… Three.. NOW.”


Everyone in the car yelled and screamed the pseudo swear-word in unison, including me.- and then we all laughed until we had tears on our pink mirthful cheeks. I don’t know about you, but that was better than soap in the mouth any day… and it might even be better than folded socks.

13 thoughts on “Mothering Out of the Box

  1. In my book, laughter beats folding socks. So while you may not be “June Cleaver personified,” you are one awesome mama!!

    (Besides, you make me feel good because I’m not June Cleaver-esque, either. 🙂 )

  2. Yay for the mama’s who don’t even try to be June! And, really, yay for the mamas who manage to pull off June… I envy you- but there’s room for all of us. 😉

  3. Being one who has often been referred to as “June”, I am here to say that it is just an illusion and that Sister T probably feels just as inadequate, if not more so, than any other mama out there. She may make FHE treats and fold socks and cook wicked dinners but she may not be living up in other areas and she may not have the relationship you do with your kids. No one has it all and we all struggle in one way or another. *I* envy the moms who just hang out with their kids and laugh and laugh – I envy YOU but there is room for all of us 😉

    • Good points, DD. Sister T is a dear friend of mine, and as good as she is at almost everything, I know she too has her own struggles. There IS room for all of us- some of us have our messes on the outside, some keep them tucked away. We all need to err on the side of loving each other. I hope I didn’t sound like I was putting down the June’s- I’m so not. I love them… wish I could be more like them. As I get older though, I’m learning to appreciate differences more and more. 🙂

  4. When my then three-year-old yelled out “What the CRAP?!?” in frustration, my mom gave me THE LOOK. And I replied by simply stating, “If that is the worst thing he has heard and repeated, then I’m doing a pretty darn good job.” She hasn’t commented on any outbursts since!

  5. There’s a box?!

    Love the example, Tracy.

    My girls have to be careful not to say or do outside our home some of what they say and do inside our home. Nothing vulgar or obscene, but, for example, some people can’t handle a girl passing gas and saying, as she looks around with an innocent and blank look:

    “Who farted?”

  6. Ray, our family secret is the old Saturday Night Live banter: “Guess what?”
    “Chicken Butt”
    We’ve had to tell our kids to keep that within the walls of our home because some uptight friends thought it was inappropriate.

  7. My visiting teacher was over once and I said that something sucked. So her 3-year-old repeats “sucks!” She sweetly told her daughter “we don’t say that word” so then I had to say “oh crap.”

  8. I’ll take laughter over “june” any day (though I do love and look up to those of that variety). My kids best joke always ends with the punch line “eureka!” and guess who taught them it?
    Fun story Tracy.

  9. Aw the struggles we have…but the struggles will always be’s all in how we manage them. quoted from bob the trainer on biggest loser tuesday night….it was an epiphany for me.

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