Friday, February 22, 2013

Awesome Mom

Every once in a while, I get inspired to be Awesome Mom.

Who is Awesome Mom, you may be wondering?

Awesome Mom is the mom version of Proverbs 31.  She makes three course lunches, bathes the kids daily, bundles everyone into the car for a weekly trip to the library (never screwing up which day is storytime), keeps the house not only tidy but clean, makes sure everyone sits down for family dinner every night, and is generally all around Awesome.

Awesome Mom does not forget to do her daughter's hair all day, ever lose patience, let her children watch television, or drink too much . . . . . coffee.

Most importantly, Awesome Mom is cool.  She is always planning the next fun adventure, whether it be a nature walk, trip to the orchard, a simple playdate, going to the fair, or something really cool like a scavenger hunt.

The problem with trying to be Awesome Mom is that when you try too hard, the attempt is doomed to fail.

Check out this past Awesome Mom adventure . . .



You're probably wondering what adventure these pictures of 20-month old Sophia outside in a stroller (in a snowy landscape, no less) could possibly be documenting.

Why, the first ice cream of spring, of course.

I had just read this post my favorite blogger had written about making memories with your children, and how she and a friend took hers to the orange grove.  The pictures were so beautiful, and the description of their time was just magical to me, and so it happened.  Awesome Mom decided we just had to go on an memory-making adventure.

What Awesome Mom forgot is that we live in Maine, not Florida.  So the fact that the ice-cream stand is opening that day does not automatically mean that you should walk the mile-plus there (and back!) while five months pregnant with a toddler in the stroller.

Apparently my sister Kristin was also on some wise-decision-altering substance as well, because she decided to come along with her brood of five kids (stroller #2).  To give us a little credit, it was a very nice day for March.  The sun was shining and the snow was melting, and everyone was very excited to taste the first ice-cream of spring.

We started out very optimistically, despite Kristin having to run back to put their dog in the house.  We marched off confidently, my nephew pushing the other stroller until Kristin caught back up with us.  What fun . . . we chattered pleasantly as the sun warmed our faces, anticipating that first sweet lick of ice cream.  The time it takes to walk a little over a mile at a five year old's pace, however, is plenty of time for it to change from cool but pleasant to downright cold and snowing.  Funny how the first ice-cream of spring is not quite as exciting when you are shoving it in as a blizzard sets down.  The walk home was not so chatty, with a little crying thrown in instead.

Hence a few pictures of Sophia before we set out, with none mid- or post-adventure.

Turns out Awesome Mom is not very practical.  She seems to have some idea that adventures have to take place outside to be real adventures (despite the whole Maine not Florida thing).

Awesome Mom struck again this past December.  Again inspired by my favorite blogger (this time to create traditions), I decided we just had to go on a walk to check out our neighborhood Christmas lights.  Do you need a rundown on all the reasons this was a bad idea?

1.  It is cold in Maine mid-December.

2.  We live in Auburn.  Only about 10% of the houses have lights, and there were just two really awesomely lit houses in our 'hood.  Most of them were a single strand wrapped around a porch pole, or else just a random blowup Santa in the yard.  Why go on a walk to see lame lights when you can drive to see great ones?  In a warm car!

3.  Cold.  December.  At night.  FRIGID.

Yes, cold counts twice.  Because it was that cold the night Awesome Mom decided that we had to go see the lights.

It was a Saturday night, just before dinnertime when we set out.  (See how impractical Awesome Mom is?  Who goes adventuring on an empty stomach?)  I couldn't find Jude's mittens, so I decided we'd just bundle him up extra in the blankets.  Coats weren't going to cut it, so we lined the kid's wagon with one blanket, while reserving another for on top of them.

FYI, getting the blankets you are planning to keep the kids warm with out of the car just before you leave on your walk is stupid.  Not very warming, but a great way to make the kids extra frigid.

Frigid blankets in the equally cold plastic wagon we have been storing outside?  Check.  Underdressed kids tucked into said frigid blankets?  Check.  Time to start walking.

We started out at a nice sedate pace.  "Ooo, look at the pretty lights!"  Walk past another ten unlit houses to pause at another lone strand . . . "Yay, more lights!"  This got old pretty fast as Jude had immediately untucked his hands from the blanket upon being placed in the wagon and it was about -27 degrees outside.  So he started crying, and all of a sudden our Christmas Light Walk was more of a run, and involved a break at my sister's house to warm the kids up before venturing the final 1/8 mile home.  (Ahem, the final 1/8 mile of a 1/4 mile walk.  Pretty cold.)

After each debacle of an adventure, Awesome Mom decides that being Adequate Mom is just fine . . . until amnesia sets in and off we go again.  Having been a few months, I'm just waiting for the next inspiring pics from sunny Florida to get things cranking . . . perhaps a picnic in the park?  Nice, mud and cold.  Or we could attempt a little hike, maybe get lost or break a leg?

Awesome Mom can be a lot of fun, but I'm starting to figure out that it's better to just enjoy the everyday moments instead of trying to manufacture artificial great times.  So today's adventure was an extra long storytime, by the end of which Jude was sitting on my lap "reading" to himself as I read Sophia and her little friend A some Sandra Boynton books.  Not very exciting, but much more refreshing than chasing all over town for out-of-season fun.

I do have some adventures planned for the next few months, and into summer.  One adventure is a road trip with the kids next month.  Adequate Mom is going to make sure that Awesome Mom tempers those plans with a little common sense, and I'm sure we'll have some tales to tell!


Don't forget, the March 1st giveaway is coming up!  One lucky reader will win a one-of-a-kind pencil/toiletries bag.  Just become a follower of my blog or "like" Ad Libs on facebook to automatically be entered!

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