17 June 2010

Fam Damily

It's 4.12pm & Ben has been asleep for almost 2 hours. Normally I make sure he's up by 3.30 or 4pm ... because that's when the baby books tell you to wake them up. Otherwise they'll never go to sleep. EVER. Or something like that. I think rules are meant to be broken when you're dealing with a sick kid. I kind of loved being sick when I was young - not in some weird attention-seeking way, just because staying home from school with my mom was the ultimate treat! I got to lounge around in my pj's, watch Regis & Kathy Lee with her (this was pre-Kelly obviously) & she always spoiled me a bit even though I could probably have managed to get things for myself, even when suffering from a cold. I felt like a princess on the couch all day with my mom. I'll be honest, she let me stay home once in a while even when she knew I wasn't really sick. Don't tell Ben but I can't wait to share that particular tradition with him. I might have to give in & have myself a daughter so I can download some Regis & Kelly episodes that we can watch together on sick days & make some macaroni & tomato, which was Mom's go-to quick lunch recipe. I still crave pasta with tomato sauce when I have a cold, which is what this is all about - my cold is setting in. I've just realized this post probably sounds like some tribute to my mother but don't worry, she's not sick or anything. I just miss my folks & it's funny the way it comes out sometimes!

So sick days remind me of my mom - what moments in life bring my dad to mind? He has taught me some extreme life lessons that as I get older, I find weren't always so true but apparently kept me under control. Here's a quick glance at my personal favorites:

1. Upon surprising me with a Jeep Wrangler when I was a teenager, he informed that if I went over 40 mph around a curve with said Jeep that I would tip over. Not that I could tip over but I actually would tip over. Many moons later when I was driving with Marcel (hmmm ... I think it was Marcel but it could have been some other dude whose memory I have replaced with my handsome husband), he asked why I slowed down so much around every curve. I was not pleased to learn that my darling father had made me look the fool every time I went cruising in my awesome Jeep that I'm pretty sure my mother chose for the sole reason that it was just like Cher's Jeep in the movie Clueless & she secretly hoped that I would transform into a little Alicia Silverstone & fall in love with Paul Rudd. And the movie Dinner with Schmucks looks so good I just might fall in love with Paul Rudd so victory on that one.

2. The car battery will die if you leave the door open, light on or radio playing for any amount of time. This is another quirk that drives Marcel crazy that was drilled into my head by Dad. I don't know if he had a bad history of car batteries dying & he had an irrational hatred of jumpstarting cars but there would be hell to pay if we didn't shut a door properly or just sat in a car with the radio running. I don't know why we wanted to do that anyway, now that I think about it. But anyway, to this day if we are sitting in the car for any reason & we have the doors open for a breeze or something I can not handle that tiny little light being on! I have to turn it off immediately, even though I know Marcel's ridicule will follow.

3. Opening house doors costs us money. I don't think Dad ever realized what a trailblazer he was in the green movement but he did not care for us wasting energy around the house. The summer & winter months especially were punctuated with his shouts of "CLOSE THE DOOR!" lest we let the air conditioning or heating out. I imagine there were many times that we would just leave the door open like hooligans but most of the time he would shout it even if we were actually going outside or telling someone something quickly. It was like an automatic reaction - door open, "SHUT THE DOOR," roll eyes, close door. But you know what? I don't care to waste energy in my own home now so lesson learned & it warms my heart to hear him yelling it at a whole new generation of hooligans.

I could go on about the lessons I've learned from my hilarious parents but I should go check on my own little guy. I just hope that I am lucky enough to find the balance that my parents found where they were awesome parents that protected us but managed to be great friends to us & let us learn most of life's lessons the way we needed to learn them. Except for the above few because let's face it, I could get my heart broken the old fashioned way or skin my entire stomach from an unfortunate skateboard accident but a girl needs her father to know that leaving that radio on in the car means trouble.

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