Archive for the ‘Benzilla’Category

Conversations With Ben: Continuing the Tradition of Embarrassing the Hell Out of Me In Public

Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to my very first installment of “Conversations with Ben.”

If you’re familiar with my blog, you know that I used to (and will still, from time to time) maintain a segment called “Conversations With Jake.” Most of the posts were dedicated to how my oldest son, now eight years old, could take an embarrassing situation and make it worse by screaming something out loud in public about it.

Not to be outdone by his older brother, Benny (now almost four) has begun to rise to the occasion when I have been faced with these unfortunate circumstances.

Which, lately, usually has something to do with his total lack of desire to fully potty train.

Yes, I know. Benny is four. He’s taking his sweet time getting his shit together (no pun intended) because he’d rather crap in his brand new Spiderman underwear than actually STOP PLAYING AND USE A TOILET. But he’s coming along . . . albeit at a pace that will have him toilet trained just prior to his wedding rehearsal dinner.

The other day, we were at a very busy Costco. (I know. I know. These things always happen to me when I’m at Costco. You think I’d learn . . .)

It was Fourth of July weekend, and on top of it, we were having a late birthday party for Jacob, so we needed to pick up his birthday cake.

With Benny in tow, I proceeded toward the entrance and asked, “Do you have to pee or poop?” and he replied, “No.”

I checked his pants to be sure he didn’t decide to take matter into his own hands on the way over. When I saw that things were clear, we made our way in.

And about every ten minutes or so, I would ask him, “Do you have to pee or poop?” And he would always answer, “No.” And then I would repeat the looking-into-the-underwear thing, because I have no sense of smell and I certainly didn’t want anyone thinking it was ME who’d stunk up the joint. Not that I’ve never let one fly myself and then totally blamed him and said out loud, “Oh my GOD Benny! What did Daddy feed you?!” Kids are good for that kind of stuff but don’t go having kids solely for the purpose of BEING ABLE TO BLAME THEM FOR YOUR FARTS.

Anyway, just when we had found an awesomely short line for checkout, Benny decided that he needed to go.



07 2011

Summer Tradition

As a kid, I love LOVED going to the state fair. I was a food eating, ride riding, sweaty mess of a girl that dragged my mom through every inch of that fairgrounds.

Now, I’m a food eating, ride riding, sweaty HOT MESS of a mother, being dragged through every inch of the fairgrounds by her kids.

And I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.


Boys at the State Fair Eating a Corn Dog

Yes, I made them wear red shirts on purpose. Red hides ketchup quite nicely.


Jake pets the baby goat



Benny Drives the Mater Truck

Benny is riding the Mater Truck. But you can't really see Mater, because Benny was stage-directing the composition of this photo. "No mama. Closer! Get CLOSER. MAMA, I RIGHT HERRRE!!"



08 2010

And on the 1,103rd Day, He Made Her Cut the Boy’s Hair

I’ve always wanted a little boy with long hair.

Growing up and all the way into my adult years, I’ve been a “rocker chick.” I liked my dudes to have longer hair than me. (Until I met the LOML, of course.)

And during those years, I envisioned having a little boy with super cool long hair and a leather jacket and a name like “Dominic” or “Thaddeus.”

I could not have been happier after having Jake — he actually CAME OUT OF THE WOMB WITH LONG HAIR. It was like the metal gods smiled down upon me and said, “Ye shall possess a first-born son with locks that Metallica themselves would be jealous of.”

But then the LOML intervened and Jake got his first haircut at 5 months old. Because the poor kid had hair so long that we had to pin it up “samurai style” to keep it out of his eyes and mouth. It’s been short ever since. And sometimes the LOML goes so far as to shave it all off at the beginning of summer, which irritates the crap out of me because it makes Jake look like “Vern” from Stand By Me.

Then along came Benny. WHO WAS BORN BALD.

It took him three years to get his trademark hair — the hair everyone likens to that of Dolly Madison.

The LOML has been threatening to get his hair cut since Christmas. Then in April, I decided that I thought I’d be ready to go through with it by Benny’s third birthday.

Which came and went with no scissors in sight. I thought I was home free.

Until this past weekend, when the LOML called me on my bet, loaded the car with my camera gear, and said, “Let’s go.”

There were a few moments before we even went in where I thought I might cry or vomit or grab Ben and make a run for it.

But I acquiesced, grabbed my rig, and started to shoot. It was the only thing that kept me from having an out of body experience.

Below is the before picture:


Benny Gets a Haircut

Benny, ROCKING the Dolly Madison look and waiting patiently for his turn in the chair.


The noise from the clippers drew Benny’s attention to his older brother. Who HATES getting his hair cut.

Benny Waits to Get His Hair Cut

Benny looks on as his older brother is subjected to the clipper treatment.


I probably should have promised him something cool, but all he got after he was done was a root beer sucker.

Jake Gets the Clipper Treatment

Seriously. Do I *REALLY* need a caption here?


Five minutes later, Benny would get in the chair.

Benny in the chair . . .

I love this image. He sat down in that chair as if we had said, "We'll buy you some ice cream if you sit still." Oh, wait . . .


I have a photo of the “First Cut,” but I couldn’t bring myself to post it. Here’s what became of the first cut:

Baby hairs . . .

Remnants of the "First Cut."


And finally, the “After” pictures:

Jake's "After Picture"

This image makes Jake appear to be TWELVE YEARS OLD. Next week kids will start asking him to buy their beer.


Benny's "After Picture"

Here's the 'Zilla with his new 'do. His shoulder action reminds me of Schroeder from "Peanuts."


He seems to think that, now that his hair is shorter, he can run faster. If I had made that argument before going in, the LOML probably would have kept his hair long.


08 2010

The One With the Picture That Makes Everyone Think He’s All Sweet

Benny turned three in July.

And, poor little guy, he didn’t get a party or balloons or even a CAKE.

Because he’s the 2nd child. And second children get the shaft until they’re old enough to know better. And, not only that, but he’s ONLY THREE. All he cared about was that someone sang him the birthday song and gave him ice cream and a toy that made lots of noise.

Photo of three year old Benny, sharing ice cream with his daddy.

It looks like a tender moment, but what you don't see here is Benny flinging the spoon at his brother 10 seconds later.


08 2010

A Clockwork Benny

This is a Mother’s Day post about noise. Or lack thereof.

And if you’re a mom, you know EXACTLY what I’m talking about.

Experienced mothers understand that there’s one noise that they never, EVER want to hear in their house (or even worse, SOMEONE ELSES” house). We call that noise “The Eerie Silence.”

It’s the silence that lasts a few minutes longer than it should. It’s the long, freaky silence that makes you pop your head up and tilt your ear and move your eyeballs around the room because you KNOW that there’s something going down and it can’t be good because it probably involves the dirty clothes basket and your toilet.

Yes, THAT kind of silence.

Busy, tired, and overworked moms love a moment’s peace when they can get it. But there’s a difference between what we know as “a moment’s peace” and “the eerie silence”: about 90 seconds.

A lot can happen in 90 seconds.

Walls can get drawn on. Jewelry can get broken. And even iPods can get flushed down the toilet. (I’ve experienced all three.)

This past Friday, however, Benny decided to stir it up a bit:


"Dude! Your mascara's on my toddler." "No! Your toddler's in my mascara!"

LOML: “What the hell is on his FACE?!”

ME: “Calm down. I think I know what happened. Don’t spook him . . . I need to get my camera first.”

Because only a mother with a blog would reach for her camera instead of a washcloth after discovering her toddler has been experimenting with mascara.


"I getting into mama's stuff."

It’s hard to see because I went all willy nilly in PhotoShop, but there’s mascara all over his blanket and hands . . .

Little boy playing with makeup; Toddler; Boy; Makeup

"How'd I look mama? I look handsome?"

There’s also a big clump in his hair.

Little boy playing with makeup; Toddler; Boy; Makeup

"Like this, mama?"

He’s concentrating so hard that there’s drool coming out of his mouth . . .

Little boy playing with makeup; Toddler; Boy; Makeup

"I doing it, mama! I doing it!"

Here’s to having an “Eerie Silence”-free Mother’s Day . . .


05 2010