In the interest of both sharing and hot-weather-holiday-weekend-induced laziness, I bring you a blog post of bullet points concerning some of my guilty little secrets.
• I love modern country music. I don’t just love it; I turn it up, I sing along with it, and it frequently makes me either laugh or cry. Darius Rucker’s “It Won’t Be Like This for Long” turned me into a weeping mess in the office parking lot, and Brad Paisley’s song with the refrain, “I want to check you for ticks” made me giggle like a fourth-grader.
• I have no idea really what it means to be on Team Jacob or Team Edward. But I am definitely on Team Jason Stackhouse. For some reason, I can’t get into the Twilight madness, but I have been devouring the Sookie Stackhouse novels on which True Blood is based at an alarming rate. And recently, when Ruby had fallen asleep on my lap, I switched the television from Wow Wow Wubbzy to True Blood and was so into it that I didn’t notice she’d woken up until I heard a tiny voice say, “Mama, why is that lady crying blood?”
• I am not all that concerned about high-fructose corn syrup or really much of anything else that my child eats. Most parents drop their standards by the second kid; I dropped my standards by the second year. For the first year, I nursed and pumped so that she got only breast milk, and when a summer storm knocked out power and ruined a freezer full of stored milk right before I had to leave on a business trip to Chicago, I freaked out and more or less made my mom come to Chicago with Ruby in tow so that I wouldn’t have to give her formula. And yet last night? She ate marshmallows and part of a hot dog with ranch dressing for dinner.
• I was talking to some other moms at day care the other day, and they all said pretty much the same thing: “We’d love to stay home full-time, but we just can’t afford it.” And I said, “Even if we could afford it, I wouldn’t want to stay home. I love my kid, but I also love my job. I need adult conversation during the day, and I don’t have the patience to be home with her all day every day.” They looked at me like I was crazy. I was completely prepared to be devastated when I went back to work after maternity leave … but no. Instead, I was in heaven. After three months, it felt as blissful as a day at the spa to be able to drink a cup of coffee or write a thank-you card without having an infant in my arms.
• That said, I do have the same working mommy guilt as anyone else, and I sometimes try to appease it by sending ridiculously elaborate snacks to school with her. I made an under-the-sea cake with rocks (yogurt balls) and plants (fruit leather cut into strips) and gummy fish. For Easter, I made Rice Krispy treat nests that I filled with Cadbury Mini-Eggs and topped with Peeps. Last week, we made “World Cup-cakes,” cupcakes with soccer picks and red, white and blue sprinkles. For today, we put marshmallows on lollipop sticks; dipped them in melted chocolate; sprinkled them with red, white and blue sprinkles; and then put them in cello bags and tied them with red, white and blue ribbons. I normally do not have the slightest crafty impulses, but apparently when there are preschool-age children to impress, I go all out.
• As much as I love the restaurants in New Orleans, I have to agree wholeheartedly with Marcie Dickson about Chipotle. I miss Chipotle like crazy. I also miss Panera. When I lived in Missouri, I had lunch at both of those places at least once a week. I hate being nostalgic for chain restaurants, but there are just some times that I want a 1,000-calorie burrito for lunch, you know?
• I realized on my way into work that the pants I’m currently wearing, the ones that I thought were so comfortable, are maternity pants. So maybe it’s good that I don’t have frequent access to 1,000-calories burritos.
The floor is open for other guilty confessions in the comments below. Otherwise, Happy Fourth!