Ah, the fall season! A new October and a chance to start over! Time to shed old leaves in preparation for stunning springtime transformation into calm, serene, poised, confident goddess. Steps to said transformation shall include:
- Meditating every morning. (So as to maintain calm, serene, goddess-like status, as opposed to becoming easily flustered by other people’s fu- I mean fudgewittage).
- Hydrating properly.
- Buying locally sourced, organic foods. (Will eat ALL vegetables purchased and not let them rot in crisper until look like fifth grade science experiment.)
- Not forming relationship with any of the following: Pumpkin Spice Lattes, Dark Chocolate Pumpkin Mochas, Pumpkin Cake Rolls, Pumpkin Date Nut Rolls, Pumpkin Bagels, Pumpkin Walnut Crunch Bagels, Pumpkin Cream Cheese, or Pumpkin Cupcakes.
Will be poised, mature, beatific, saint-like Auntie to 5-year-old Brady and will NOT:
- Contribute to stuffed animal population control problem.
- Buy LEGO minifigures with tiny removable hair helmets.
- Purchase books with drawings of bear poop. (Drew Daywalt’s “The Day the Crayons Came Home” v. funny, but Dadat – B.’s grandpa, my Dad – suggests bear poop drawing is in poor taste and poss. grounds for having Auntie book-buying privileges revoked.)
B. has decided to be Superman for Halloween. Ask B. what he thinks I should be. He says Wonder Woman. Humph. Wonder Woman costume requires bustier top and and teeny tiny swimsuit bottom. Oh, well. Must cheer up, as B. will probably forget before Halloween.
Books purchased with drawings of bear poop: 0 (excellent).
Purchase B.J. Novak’s “The Book With No Pictures.” As the book has no pictures (per title), there can obviously be no drawings of bear poop. Read book to B.; he laughs and laughs and laughs! He especially loves the “Robot Monkey” and “Boo Boo Butt” parts.
Gra (B.’s grandma, my Mom) and I take B. to Red Robin for dinner. He giggles every time I say “Robot Monkey.” Am comedic Auntie Genius!
Couples on double date glare at us every time B. laughs. Consider offering helpful advice that best time and location for quiet double date is prob. not on Saturday at Red Robin at 5:30 p.m., but decide to keep mouth shut. Am total saint-like Auntie!
B. wants to make his own book of silly words. Am providing inspiration to the next generation of writers! Am female Joseph Pulitzer!
B. keeps saying, “Boo Boo Butt.” Might not be female Joseph Pulitzer after all. Hope that B. does not repeat this at school.
During Auntie play date, B. peels off socks, puts them in a used cup, and announces that it is a “Stinky Sock Slushee.” Actually v. funny, but prob. should not encourage, esp. while attempting to manage potential “Boo Boo Butt” crisis.
Ask again what B. thinks I should be for Halloween, hoping for different answer. He says I should be Batman. Hmmm. Possibly an improvement, as Batman costume has sleeves and slightly roomier bikini bottom. Politically correct thing to do would be to maintain gender neutrality, but cannot help self from asking, “Really? I should be Batman? Even though I’m a girl?”
“No,” he says. “You should be Wonder Woman.”
Stuffed Animals Purchased: 0 (please don’t ask about tiny humanoid Sesame Street characters).
Lego Minifigs Purchased with Removable Hair Helmets: 1 (v. bad).
Travel to Chicago for work event. Pop into souvenir shop at Midway Airport. Pick up teeny tiny stuffed Count Von Count that fits in palm of my hand. SQUEEEEEEEEE! No. Must NOT contribute to stuffed animal population control problem per October 1st Resolution. But wait – have identified a loophole. The Count is a tiny stuffed PERSON, whereas Resolution only mentions animals. So purchase of stuffed Big Bird or Kermit the Frog would constitute clear violations. However, the Count, although poss. vampire, is obviously some sort of humanoid form. Hurrah! Take the Count to the register, and consider future career in tax accounting.
Not used to taking the train, as public transit in home town v. poor. Must look like professional commuter, projecting poise and confidence! Purchase one-way trip and confidently tap card at fare gate. Push professional-looking wheeled spinner carryon ahead of me through turnstile. Turnstile allows carryon to go through and then locks up again. End up standing on one side of locked turnstile with luggage on the other side, looking somewhat flustered and slightly less professional than per original plan.
Must decide whether to (a) crawl under turnstile to join luggage, which could potentially result in evacuation of train station or (b) pull luggage underneath the turnstile back to my side and purchase another ticket.
Am leaning towards option (b) when am rescued by nice CTA worker who taps his own card at the gate and manages to not laugh out loud (v. professional) as I pass through turnstile and am reunited with luggage.
Arrive downtown, check in to hotel, and pop into Books-A-Million. Find a Ninjago book that comes with a “Jay” LEGO minifigurine, complete with removable hair helmet. No. Must not purchase, per October 1st Resolution! But on the other hand, the main purchase would actually be a BOOK (v. educational), and technically NOT a LEGO minifig. Situation clearly resembles the purchase of a Happy Meal at McDonald’s, where one has no control over the included prize, which could potentially be, say, a LEGO minifig, a large can of spray paint, or a book with drawings of bear poop. Obviously, one cannot be expected to take responsibility for acquiring said items via the purchase of a Happy Meal. Having fully rationalized the Happy Meal Loophole, purchase the Ninjago book and head back to the hotel contemplating future career in politics.
Caffeinated Pumpkin Beverages: ??? (Lost count).
Excessive caffeine consumption due to work conference starting at 6:45 a.m., which is 4:45 a.m. in own time zone. Personally believe that business should be conducted starting at more civilized hour, say, 1:00 p.m..
Arrived back home. B. likes the tiny Count von Count and loves the Ninjago book. Hurrah! But turns out that in addition to removable hair helmet, Jay comes with a sword, a sword holder (might not be the exact technical ninja term) and a microscopically tiny ninja scarf that must be inserted with near-surgical precision underneath the head. Humph. B. immediately drops the teeny ninja scarf, and it rolls away. I spot the scarf and thank the LEGO gods for whoever came up with the idea of putting air vents in the ceiling instead of on the floor. Clearly, this individual’s contribution to society (obviously of Nobel Peace Prize-winning caliber) has been overlooked. I pick up the tiny scarf and after several attempts, manage to get the scarf, sword holder, sword, head, and hair helmet assembled correctly.
While B. is distracted with Jay, ask again what he thinks I should be for Halloween. B. has forgotten about the Wonder Woman idea and instead says I should be a Girl Ghostbuster! Hurrah! Ghostbuster costume involves long sleeves and long pants instead of bustier and bikini bottoms! (Possibly some Slime as well, but can live with this.) Am clearly some sort of child psychology savant, able to subtly influence thoughts and behavior of tiny humanoid life forms. Only a matter of time until have own bestselling book, maybe even a TV show!
Ask B. one last time what I should be for Halloween, just to make sure, as do not want to disappoint. He says I should be Wonder Woman. Humph! Turns out am not child psychology savant after all. V. sad about not having bestselling book or own TV show.
Dollars spent on Wonder Woman costume, headband, pretend pull-on boots, belt, wig, and golden Lasso of Truth: $111.80.
Costume includes star-spangled skirt instead of teeny bikini bottom (v. good). However, bustier is somewhat flimsy and could potentially cause scene in public. Add a red t-shirt underneath. Am Superhero fashion genius!
Decide to test golden Lasso of Truth during the presidential debate. Wrap lasso around the TV, but both candidates obviously still lying. Lasso of Truth possibly defective. Or perhaps works better when used in person.
Dinner at B.’s house and planned debut of Wonder Woman costume! I get out of the car and strike a Superhero pose in the driveway, feet planted and hands on hips. Can see B. in the window laughing and jumping up and down. Total Auntie triumph! (Except that headband and wig are v. itchy.)
Walk into the kitchen, where B. has a new LEGO creation that includes a teeny tiny black scorpion, complete with upraised tail. Pretend to be scared of scorpion in hopes of getting a laugh. B. sighs dramatically and says, “Wonder Woman isn’t scared of scorpions.” Oh, right. Am Wonder Woman instead of Auntie Kimberly. Although suspect that even the real Wonder Woman would be scared of stepping on a tiny LEGO scorpion tail in middle of night.
After dinner, discover that B.’s Dadat has allowed him to watch YouTube videos where characters poop out Kinder Surprise Eggs. Situation is in clear violation of General Mommy’s Unilateral YouTube Ban – and particularly unfair considering Dadat’s criticism of book with drawing of bear poop. Humph.
Einstein Pumpkin Bagels Purchased: 13 (v. bad).
Was only going to purchase a half dozen pumpkin bagels, but helpful cashier informed me that I could get 12 for only $6. Plus an extra bagel totally free. Am financial genius along the lines of Warren Buffett. Hurrah!
Times used the expression “Boo Boo Butt”: 10 (poor).
Play date with B. and Gra. Gra not up to speed on Superheroes, so B. and I come up with some quiz questions to impart critical Superhero knowledge in a fun way. For example:
What is something that Robin would say?
a) Blippity Bloppity
b) Boo Boo Butt
c) Jumpin’, Jupiter, Batman!
When I say Boo Boo Butt, B. laughs and laughs. Might have said it one or two more times (poss. more) for additional comedic effect. Slightly scolded by Gra, which was v. unfair. Where was she when Dadat was showing poopy Kinder Surprise Egg videos?
Times used the expression “Boo Boo Butt”: approx. 18 (v. poor).
Ride to Trunk or Treat at B.’s school, with B., General Mommy, and B’s Daddy and Grandma Sandy. B. is wearing Superman costume with perfectly sculpted abdominal muscles. (Hmmm…wonder if additional ab muscles can be sewn into Wonder Woman costume).
“Boo Boo Butt” spoken in car multiple times. Pretty sure that B. started it.
Arrive at Trunk or Treat. Nice people have decorated trunks of their cars in numerous themes – pumpkins, football, Frozen, Star Wars, Harry Potter, Peanuts, Monsters, Inc., etc. and hand out treats. Hope that nice people all have full car batteries. Or AAA memberships. Receive several compliments on Wonder Woman costume (hurrah!) although cannot help but be slightly jealous of Princess Leia and Rey.
During drive home, B. announces that he wants a snack. General Mommy reminds him that he already ate dinner – and further states that B. has been consuming large quantities of candy out of his Superman-themed Halloween bucket all night. B. denies this.
Use the magic Lasso of Truth on B. and ask him to state exactly what he has eaten out of his Halloween bucket. B. goes old-school Ronald Regan and says he can’t remember.
Hmm…clearly, B. has a future in politics. Would definitely vote for him for President.
Local Farmer’s market is having costume contest. Was planning to go anyway to shop for locally sourced, organic produce (hurrah!) and decide to wear Wonder Woman outfit, as winning $50 first prize would be v. good.
Arrive at Farmer’s Market and register for contest at Information Booth. As I do my shopping, adults shout, “It’s Wonder Woman”! Children laugh and wave. I smile beatifically and wave back. Am local celebrity, along lines of news anchor or mayor!
Load purchases in the trunk and hop in car to drive home. Accidentally shut golden Lasso of Truth in car door. Humph. Open door and pull lasso back in car. Not v. Superhero-like. The real Wonder Woman would no doubt be much more graceful getting into the invisible plane.
Arrive home and check phone messages. First message is from presidential candidate who would not vote for, even if running against a stinging jellyfish. Next message is from a candidate in a local election race. Make note to vote for local candidate’s opponent out of spite, as do not appreciate unsolicited phone calls. Really no sodding point to HAVING a “Do Not Call” Registry when politicians have given themselves special permission to ignore it. Humph.
Final message is from lady at the Farmer’s Market. Wonder Woman costume has received third place in contest! Hurrah! Winning $50 would have been nice, but third prize is a free meal at next week’s market. V. good. Much better than a participation award.
Times used the expression “Boo Boo Butt”: 27 (poor).
Times used the expression “Stinky Sock Slushee”: 12 (also poor).
General Mommy drops B. off for play date. Have purchased adorable height chart that indicates B. is 46”, which, according to the chart, is approximately the height of a 747’s wheels. However, skills with measuring tape and hammer not v. good, so actual height prob. somewhere between 34” (world’s largest French fry) and 54” (the nose on the Statue of Liberty).
Tape strand of orange crepe paper (leftover Halloween decoration) across living room and have “slow-motion race” where winner gets to break through the tape. Am usually v. competitive, but allow B. to win. Am total saint-like Auntie! After crossing finish line, B. does a dance while singing, “I’m the winnnnner! I’m the winnnnner! Who’s the loooooser?” Hmmm. Prob. something he saw on TV while watching cartoons. Or an NFL football game. Or the presidential election coverage. Have discussion with B. about the importance of good sportsmanship and tell him that we must shake hands after the competition. He does shake my hand, although gesture seems slightly hollow after “Who’s the Loser” dance.
Drop B. off at home and give him a hug. He says, “I have to tell you something.”
With his tiny arms wrapped around my neck, B. whispers into my ear (loud enough for anyone within a three-block radius to hear):
“The secret password is…Boo Boo Butt.”
Sigh. I love this little guy.
Plan is for B., B’s Daddy (Batman), and General Mommy (Supergirl) to stop by Gra and Dadat’s for pictures before leaving for party and then trick-or-treating. B. gets cranky about too many pictures being taken with multiple cameras, and stomps back into the house. I would never have done this at B.’s age. Instead, I preferred to employ the “making horrible faces for the camera” strategy once my picture-taking patience had run out. Hmmm. After further consideration, B.’s approach is better, as does not leave lasting evidence that can be pulled out decades later.
Superman, Batman, and Supergirl leave for party, but promise to text before they return for official trick-or-treating, so that we can be fully prepared to capture candid photos and video (to make up for shortened picture-taking session). Receive text from Supergirl and prepare camera equipment as the doorbell rings. Turns out that this is just a drill and not an actual trick-or-treating visit, as B. accidentally left his Superman bucket at Gra and Dadat’s. As B. is now fond of saying, “I didn’t see that coming.”
B. returns for final trick-or-treating stop with his Superman bucket overflowing. Take photos and video, but have forgotten to turn on ruddy flash, and everything turns out dark and grainy. Humph. Happy Halloween.
- Pumpkin Flavored Units Consumed: 4,582 (v. bad, but also v. tasty).
- Hydration Units: Unsure. (Do Pumpkin Spice Lattes count?)
- Meditation sessions: 4 (poor).
- Vegetable Units turned into scary-looking science experiment in crisper: 1 (possibly started as a cucumber or zucchini. Or perhaps large carrot. Happened during Chicago work trip, so am technically not 100% at fault.)
- Gifts purchased from restricted list: 0-2 (somewhat open to interpretation, although definitely no items with drawings of bear poop).
- Times used the expression “Boo Boo Butt” for cheap laugh: 327 (v. bad).
- Super Awesome, Smart, Funny, Adorable, Lovable Superhero Nephews: 1.
Poor progress on October Resolutions negated by B.’s priceless reaction to Wonder Woman costume. Was excellent investment (esp. considering free meal from costume contest), even if v. itchy and not entirely age-appropriate.
Now must move forward and consider Resolutions for the Holiday Season, in effort to continue on path to becoming serene, saint-like Auntie Goddess! First resolution, of course, will be to NOT teach B. how to sing “Jingle Bells, Batman Smells.” Although now that am thinking about it, might have sung this once over the summer in attempt to get cheap laugh – and B. has an excellent memory. Blimey! This could be v. bad, along lines of “Boo Boo Butt” crisis. However, surely B. could have learned song from a neighbor, classmate, or cub scout pack member, so with proper planning, might be able to dodge responsibility.
Hmmm. Might just nip out for Pumpkin Spice Latte while working on cover story.
(Editor’s Note: Sincere apologies go out to Bridget Jones as well as to Helen Fielding, Drew Daywalt, and B.J. Novak. Their books are v., v. funny, and you should definitely buy them).