Saturday, November 17, 2007

odor...smell and synonyms

I always wanted to be a mother even as far back as when I was a little girl growing up on Long Island New York. But, I took my time. After working more than a decade in Manhattan for book publishing and public relations firms, my husband and I got married and had our three kids close together when I was 32, 34 and 36 years old. Through gaining and losing the “baby” weight, these numbers are far from my physical measurements. I quit the public relations profession for a while and hunkered down knee-deep in diapers and feeding cycles.

Now at 42, I’ve been fanning the flames of my career again working from home as a freelance writer and budding musician trying to keep up with life. It seems the older we are all getting and the more stuff we’re all doing, our home life is in a state of constant chaos—like running a mini business. I get a slight reprieve during the day with Robert 9, Kelly almost 8 and Melanie 5 ½ all attending public school in Syosset, New York (Long Island).
Except this past Friday, on my husband Tom and my 11-year wedding anniversary, and in the middle of finishing up a food column, I had to traipse to three different classrooms observing my children in “education day.”

“Mommy, come see my new chair at the orange table,” said Melanie
“Mommy, come to Project Beyond and see our experiment,” said Robert
“Mommy, come to science and mush clay with us,” said Kelly.
“Help,” said mommy!

This was one of the rare days where my husband, who works seven minutes away as a Manager of Cablevision television, couldn’t help me out visiting the school. Tag, I was it.

After sitting cross-legged on the carpet in Melanie’s Kindergarten class to chart the weather; blowing bubbles with Robert to determine if the most expensive soap was indeed the most effective, I was thirsty, tired and my sciatica was beginning to act up. I finally found Kelly’s classroom.

The children were adorable, visibly excited that parents were there and played up to us like actors mugging for the camera. Parents stood awkwardly behind each child as they paired off to do a synonym matching game. I chit chatted with a father in Friday casual dress clothes who looked like he just escaped from work to partake in his daughter Ann’s class.

Ann, Kelly’s partner, selected two words. Odor and Smell. With innocent big brown eyes she looked up at her father, turned to me and said, “Daddy makes a smell like when he farts and doesn’t say excuse me.”

His face turned bright red. I didn’t know where to look. It took every ounce of the last bit of my energy not to burst out laughing. You gotta love kids!

After eleven years, this is how a busy mom spends an anniversary and I still had the article due and to rush to the store and buy my husband a card and present. Yikes! Happy Anniversary Tom!

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