Monday, April 27, 2009

The Many Faces of Demon Baby

As a writer, I don't take photos of my kids like normal moms. No . . . I tend to take a picture and then think "What does it SAY?" This top one, to me, says, "Yes, I am cute and I know it."

While this one says, "HEY LADY, I told you ONE picture, not two!" [He is camera shy.]

But this last one is classic Demon Baby, "Come near me with that camera and I'll knock you out with my shovel and bury you until the tide comes in."
True story . . . I think it would not be normal if I didn't occasionally wonder . . . "Am I doing ANYTHING right with this kid?" After all, this weekend alone, he painted my bathroom with blue toothpaste, found a hole in the family room couch and pulled ALL the stuffing out of it to make "snowballs" with it, broke one glass candleholder (this is what I get for not having a house made entirely of rubber with him), and tried to freak me out by pretending to swallow a handful of marbles. Ha, ha. Yeah, he keeps me laughing all right. If he does THAT at age 4, I wonder what he will pretend to do at age 12. I shudder.
Anyway, this weekend, he took a bath (but didn't wash his hair, which is something I only do once a week since it involves my wrestling him like a WWF fighter). As I toweled him off, we went and sat in the big chair in my bedroom and I wrapped him up and we snuggled for a while. As we did, I kept putting my fingers through his wet hair, which caused it to spike straight up--and I said, "You look really cute with your hair spiked."
"STOP!" he shrieked.
Suddenly there was a torrent of tears.
"What is the matter, Demon Baby? You don't like your hair spiked?" I started flattening it down.
"I don't want you to spike my hair."
"How come?"
"Because then I won't look just the way I am. And you always say you love me JUST the way I am."
After I brushed away a stray tear, I thought, "All right, if that's the message he's getting . . . I must be doing something right."

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Music: Demon Baby Style

Unless you live under a rock, chances are you have heard Lady Gaga, the newest superstar of music. Demon Baby is QUITE fond of her. Given that she is a total eccentric who doesn't wear pants in public, it makes perfect sense to me. What better woman for a Naked Demon Baby than a woman who usually wears her underwear while walking down the street?

She is the woman for him. In fact, he tells me he is going to marry her.

Not only that, her number-one hit is "Poker Face." Perhaps you've heard in a few million times on the radio.

When we're in the car and it comes on, Demon Baby SHRIEKS, "It's LADY GAGA!!"

And then he sings along.

But given his propensity for mayhem, he does not sing the real lyrics, "P-p-p-p-poker face, p-p-poker face."

No, as sung by Demon Baby, the words, my friends are:

Poke-poke-poke-poke your face, poke-poke your face

I want to poke your face!

Ahh . . . music Demon Baby style.

Monday, April 20, 2009

A Conversation No Mother of a Non-Demon Baby will EVER Have

Naked Demon Baby approached me today. "MOM! My penis hurts."

"Hmm . . . maybe you just need a shower. After breakfast, it's bathtime for you."

"No, it really hurts."

"All right, well, after bathtime I'll check it out."

"I think it might be from the box."

"What box?"

"I put it in the box."


"The candy box."

"Let me get this straight, you put your penis in a candy box?"

"Yeah. And it hurt."

"What kind of candy box?"

"You know, the one that you fill it with candy and it pops out . . . the one that the Easter Bunny gave me."


"Yeah. The Pez dispenser."

"Just so I've got this straight . . . you put your penis in a Pez dispenser."

"Yeah. And it pinched it and hurt."

"So don't put it in a Pez dispenser, okay?"

"All right."

Penis Crisis of 2009 . . . Solved.

Five Things I Love About Being a Mother

Merry tagged me to blog about five things I love about being a mom. Only five? All right . . . here goes:

  1. I love the miracles. I am one of those women who loved being pregnant. I loved settling down to go to sleep at night and being kicked like mad as a reminder there was a PERSON inside me. I loved pushing and laboring for yes, 24 hours, to deliver a little infant and that first cry. I loved breastfeeding for a grand total of eight years spread over four kids and realizing my body could provide everything a baby needed. It's really an amazing thing when you think about it. Being part of a miracle? Priceless.
  2. I love the reminder that most of the time, not much else matters. Like everyone, I stress about the economy. About finances, bills, and paying for college. I have a leak in my kitchen ceiling. The Suburban Nazis (a.k.a. the homeowners association) patrolled this weekend for their once-a-year inspection of the community where I live (and had I KNOWN about this before I bought my house, I NEVER would have moved here). I get aggravated by petty people and tired and stressed. And then I can watch my kids sleeping, or hear them laughing upstairs and be reminded . . . frankly, that none of it is as important as having happy, healthy children.
  3. I love that they still love me. Imperfections and all. I mess up a lot as a mom. I'm too tired, I'm too stressed, I'm too impatient, and I am a lousy cook. I hate housework, I can't keep up with the laundry. But they seem to love me anyway.
  4. I love their souls. Children raised in loving homes have not yet been crushed by life. They believe in possibility. They believe in wishing on stars and imaginary friends with magical powers. They believe if they want to be the next Steven Spielberg that of course they can be. They believe they can be musicians and artists and impractical professions (heck, their mother is a writer, which is as impractical as you can get). They are filled with hope and belief. In themselves. In the world as a safe place.
  5. I love the stories. Yup, I'm a writer and a blogger, and frankly, they give me a lot of good material. All right, so number 5 is kind of selfish. But I did say I was an imperfect mother.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Gardening with Demon Baby

I like to garden. And today was the day to get rid of the detritus of winter leaves and overgrown grasses and set about fixing my flowerbeds and all my potted plants. Demon Baby LOVES to help me garden. It's a chance to:

1) Play in dirt
2) Turn dirt to mud with a watering can
3) Collect earthworms, which he tries to keep as pets

In reference to #3, I was sitting on my formal living room couch last night and spotted a worm wriggling across my hardwood floors. It was midnight. I was tired. I couldn't decide if I was hallucinating, but upon closer inspection, yes, it was a real live fat earthworm.

In any case, gardening with Demon Baby is, like EVERYTHING, quite an adventure. However, we have some very, VERY basic problems as far as his understanding of the garden. Hence . . . the conversation today.

"Where is the wand from my bubbles?"

"Inside the jar of bubbles. Why?"

"I need to plant it."

"It's plastic."

"But then bubbles will grow and blow over the garden all the time and it will be really cool."

"But it's plastic."

"It's a magic bubble wand."

"All right, Demon Baby, plant it."

So he embedded his pink plastic bubble wand in the middle of my basil.

"I need popcorn."

"Snack time is later."

"No. I'm going to plant it so I can have popcorn whenever I want."

"Popcorn doesn't grow, Demon Baby."

"It's magic popcorn."

"Plant away, Dude."

So I am growing, this season, tomatoes, parsley, oregano, basil, lots of flowers, arugula, bubbles, and popcorn.

I'm a cross between an organic farmer and Orville Redenbacher.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Top Ten Things You Learn on a Fifteen-Hour Car Trip with Demon Baby

1. There is an exponential equation, invented by Demon Baby himself, for how often you will hear the phrase: "Are we there yet?" The equation begins about three minutes after you pull out of the driveway and accelerates from there.

2. A Demon Baby who has now learned to pee standing up is fascinated by the idea of pulling to the side of I-95 in five states to leave his mark on the grass. Happy news for you citizens of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Goergia, and six places in Florida (it's a long state).

3. Demon Baby has two volumes. Loud and so loud it breaks the sound barrier. Neither of these volumes agrees with his 75-year-old grandfather. At all.

4. The engineer who invented the DVD player in the minivan deserves a Nobel Prize.

5. About hour ten into the trip, Demon Baby's mother will question her sanity.

6. After said 15-hour-trip the inside of a Demon-Baby-carrying-minivan will look like a nuclear test site.

7. Demon Baby will have to pee one mile PAST the rest stop. Not before it. Not at the exit. AFTER it. Despite being asked for the five miles leading to it, "Do you have to go?"

8. Pertaining to #7, this will always be at a point on the highway where the next rest stop is 79 miles away.

9. Truck stops and I-95 gas stations do not cater to families anymore (if they ever did). There is also an exponential equation between how badly your child needs to use the potty and how filthy the restroom will be.

10. The morning after a 15-hour car trip with Demon Baby generally feels like I have been attacked in my sleep by an assailant wielding a sack of rocks.

Easter with the grandparents? Priceless.

Sort of.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Top Ten Signs That You Are the Mother of a Demon Baby

1. You have a shop vac for both upstairs and downstairs. You never put them away. You don't even bother to unplug them.

2. The carpet cleaning man is on speed dial.

3. You start to believe you really HAVE grown eyes on the back of your head.

4. Silence, which you used to enjoy, now means it is too quiet and he is obviously up to something.

5. When you go anywhere in public, complete strangers come over to you and remark something along the lines of, "That is the smartest, most talkative, cute, energetic boy I have ever seen. He should be in commercials. But I feel SO sorry for you."

6. You start thinking naked is the new normal. And CLOTHES are odd.

7. Exhaustion is your new normal.

8. You take great comfort, and tuck away in your brain, stories from mothers whose kids were a lot like Demon Baby but grew up to be successful people with no trips to reform school or the state penitentiary. You want to hug these mothers when they tell you their stories.

9. You buy more of these than any human being ought to.

10. When he's sleeping, you occasionally look for the telltale 666 behind his ear, but finding none, you usually lie down next to him and just watch him sleep, knowing he is the most special boy in the whole world.