When Spiders Attack

I’m afraid of spiders. Like, deathly afraid. Ever since I watched the movie Arachnophobia as a kid, I’ve been terrified. I spent a year constantly searching for spider bites on my body after watching that movie. Usually the “bites” ended up being some of my smaller freckles. Unfortunately for me, I’m covered with freckles, so the whole “oh-my-god-I’m-dying” terror thing happened a lot. Not fun.

As far as I’m concerned, all spiders are either brown recluses or black widows (or something else that is equally deadly). Doesn’t matter what color or size they are; as long as they have eight legs, they should die. Sometimes my son brings up how great Charlotte from Charlotte’s Web is when I’m hating on spiders — he thinks he can bring me to the other side because of a fictional character. Newsflash, son — she doesn’t get a pass just because she saved Wilbur. And by “saving Wilbur,” what we really mean is she deprived the people of their bacon, and that’s much worse than lurking in a corner.

My husband is usually the one who handles spider business around the house. The first few times I screamed for him to come help me because I found a brown recluse, he dashed in, ready to save me and slay the beast. He was my knight in shining armor, just of the “wears boxer shorts and a wife beater” variety. And his sword was a flip flop. Otherwise, he was exactly like a knight in shining armor. Once my husband began realizing that my brown recluses were usually something less lethal, he stopped being so quick to run to my side. Now he comes when he pleases and grabs my shoes to kill with. Clearly we aren’t in the honeymoon phase any longer.

Look at that spider’s teardrop tattoo and tell me he ain’t about killing folks.

Now that you know I generally don’t care for spiders, let’s get into what this post is really about.

Thursday didn’t start out great for me. I went to bed the night before with heart palpitations and an on edge feeling, presumably from anxiety. Anxious about what, I don’t know — sometimes anxiety disorders like to keep you guessing. And then I woke up that morning with a sharp pain in my upper abdomen that went through to my back. That combined with the still present heart palpitations concerned me a bit since I had recently read an article about how women’s heart attack symptoms can be different from men’s. I took some Tums, ibuprofen, and aspirin to cover my bases and decided to wait and see if it got better or worse.

The pain eased up after a few hours, and I was able to go about my day. My husband, who works from home most of the time, had to drive in to Charlotte, so I was home alone with the toddler. We colored, we played house, and we made stuff with Play-Doh. After making 524 Play-Doh pizzas, I decided it was time to move on. I put on a Daniel Tiger in the living room for Baby Girl to watch while I started tidying up. The first thing on my list was sweeping up all of the Play-Doh bits from the floor. Well, Play-Doh bits and the Lucky Charms bits and Cheerios bits that didn’t get swept up earlier, because of laziness.

I reached under the table with the broom to slide out some of the cereal and PlayDoh bits, and as I looked down at what I was sweeping out, a big fucking spider dashed out and began running at me.

Considering the heart concerns from earlier that morning, this was very clever timing on behalf of the spider, who was clearly hellbent on killing me.

I’m not going to doodle what happened next, because we have surveillance cams in our homes. The camera in the kitchen caught pretty much everything, including my blood curdling screams. Typically I wouldn’t post a video of myself in a public space in a million years, for many, many reasons, but I think the funny in this video is worth it being put up for a day or so. (Bonus: this video will verify that I look just as much like a bum in real life as I do in my doodles.)

Now that you’ve made it through the video, let’s continue, since there’s a little left to this post.

Immediately after the eight-legged creature was murdered, I started texting my husband about the ordeal.

It was definitely a wolf spider. Since my husband likes to act like wolf spiders aren’t anything to worry about, I’m gonna leave this right here —

Like wolves, they chase and leap on their prey.

Chase. Leap. That’s the stuff nightmares are made of. Maybe their bites won’t kill you or cause your skin to rot, but the next time you feel something brush against your face in the dark, just know it could be a wolf spider leaping on you.

My children are both having fun with this ordeal. Baby Girl has teased me about being afraid of the spider, showed Little Man how I screamed, and even told me that the dead spider was alive and moving towards me. What kind of three-year-old am I raising? Little Man watched the video a dozen times before bedtime last night. He went back and forth between saying I’m the [unintentionally] funniest mom ever and that I’m too dramatic. Hmph.

For further funny spider fear stories, check out Becca Barracuda’s Bug Juice post

I know I’m not the only person to freak the hell out over a spider, so what’s your story? 

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I Really DO Love Him

I have an obsession.

You might think it’d be blogging, but relatively speaking, blogging is just a blip on the radar where my main obsession is concerned. Star Wars? Lord of the Rings? They’re all in the same boat as blogging.

I’ll give you a hint about my obsession — it’s a group of guys that were once popular for being a blonde haired singing trio from Oklahoma.

Still stumped? I’ll give you another hint: MMMBop.

Assuming you haven’t blocked out that period of 1997-1998 when that song was played nonstop, then you surely know who I’m talking about now — Hanson. I was 13 when they came on the scene and instantly became infatuated took a liking to them. I was never one of the shrieky girls, but my room was basically wallpapered over with Hanson posters and pinups (let’s just say that my dad was less than thrilled with the fact that I used thumbtacks to hang and rehang everything), so I definitely had it bad.

It’s been 20 years since Hanson released that single (and they’ve released a few albums in that period on their independent label, lest you think they disappeared), and they’re having a worldwide tour to celebrate the anniversary. Since it had been 10 years since I saw one of their shows, I bought tickets for my husband, my son, and myself as soon as they were released. The fact that it was going to be Little Man’s first concert made it extra exciting. (Assuming we don’t count the Hanson concert he was present for in my womb, anyway.)

And then we found out that Little Man’s soccer jamboree was going to be the day after the concert. Since the games are usually in the morning, it didn’t seem like going to the concert would work out. We’d either get home at 2:30 in the morning, since the venue is three hours away, or have to get up super early and head home. Neither of those were desirable, obviously, since either one would leave Little Man exhausted — not exactly how you want to feel when playing a soccer game. Gah. I told my husband to cancel the hotel room and that I could sell the tickets.

Fortunately, my husband isn’t so quick to throw up his hands and admit defeat. Being the awesome person that he is, he contacted the person over the jamboree scheduling and got us a late game, ensuring that Little Man would be able to get reasonably rested up. The show must go on and all of that, right?

While talking about the concert and jamboree plans with Little Man, my husband mentioned that I had thought about selling the tickets and not going. His reaction totally cracked me up.

Now we know that my love for people is measured by my willingness to miss a Hanson concert.

I had planned posting this earlier in the week, but life got too busy. The concert was Friday night, and it was amazeballs. Little Man was able to stand in the front row and had a couple of cool moments with one of the guys in the band. It was a great first concert for him, one that will be hard to top. Also in case you’re wondering, women in their late 20s and early 30s don’t shriek as loudly as they did 20 years ago, but it’s still bad enough for a hard-of-hearing person to have to cover her ears at times. Yeesh.

I’m not going to bother doodling the concert, so here are some pictures from the show:

So, what’s the best concert you’ve ever been to? 

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Your Vagina Doesn’t Work That Way

Kids can be frustrating. Mostly they’re amazeballs, but they can also be frustrating. They have little quirks that can make getting through the day a little tougher than it has to be. Take Little Man for example. He’s a selective germaphobe. I say “selective,” because he chews on his fingernails and will occasionally eat off the floor. Otherwise, he’ll wig out if he thinks someone has taken a drink from his bottle, has touched his food, or so much as sniffles in his direction. I completely get that, but still — be consistent and keep your hands out of your mouth! He also lines the toilet seat everywhere he goes, even in his own house (and I do clean), which is frustrating mostly because he goes through so much toilet paper and makes a mess.


Now for Baby Girl. Mealtime with the toddler is a struggle because of how picky she is. Even though I know many kids are like this to a degree, especially during the toddler stage, it’s still a source of constant frustration. I understand when someone doesn’t like something, since I’m rather picky myself, but she usually won’t even try whatever it is.

At the behest of our doctor, we’ve tried everything — pleading, bribing, guilting. (“Daniel Tiger will be sad if you don’t try those green beans!”) The promise of a sweet treat doesn’t remotely faze the girl. And don’t bother suggesting the not-so-wise advice of “She’ll eat it when she’s hungry enough” — that’s a big nope. (And the same is true with me — I’d be more likely to cut off my foot and roast it than eat zucchini.)

This is truly difficult for my husband and me, because not only do we worry about nutrition, it has us questioning ourselves as parents, What did we do wrong? Thankfully, though, it has provided a few humorous moments. Always, always look for the humor. It makes everything a little bit better, or more tolerable, at least. One thing that amuses us is when Baby Girl doesn’t want something, she’ll cover her eyes. Yes, her eyes. I’m not sure if she can’t stand the sight of the food or if she genuinely thinks that covering her eyes is the equivalent of covering her mouth, but it’s still pretty funny.

We also recently learned that she has developed some allergies.

She has no allergies that I’m aware of. But I’ve gotta give the kid credit — allergies is a damn good excuse for not eating something.

As I’ve written about before, my kids aren’t too big on the healthy, which came up again a couple days ago.

Girl, that was a fried chicken tender — whatever health is in it is canceled out by the breading and oil!

And just when we thought we had heard everything, this came up:

We pointed out that she actually is a big girl. We told her that if she really isn’t a big girl, then she definitely couldn’t watch Daniel Tiger or go to gymnastics. Naturally she had a comeback for this.

Your vagina prohibits you from eating peas? Nope, it doesn’t work that way. But obviously I’m gonna use that the next time someone tries to get me to eat zucchini.

See? Humor. It’s not enough to weigh out the frustration, worry, and parental self-doubt, but thank god for a little bit of it mixed in with this phase. (I hope it’s a phase, anyway.)

What’s the best excuse you’ve heard for someone not eating something?

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I’m going to try the whole “make a little money from the blog” thing now via the Amazon Affiliates program. If you’re an Amazon addict like I am, then use this link to do your shopping. I may earn a small commission that will go towards my kids’ college education new Converses. *Full disclosure. 

Directionally Challenged

Remember those drug commercials from when we (those of us around 30ish, anyway) were kids? They’d show an egg and say, “This is your brain.” And then a skillet would smash the egg to bits and then they’d say, “This is your brain on drugs.” Or something to that effect. The point was drilled home — drugs make your brain explode.

That’s me.

Except without the drugs. Instead, that’s my brain when trying to process directions. The whole “yolk splattering” thing and ensuing rage definitely resonates.

I like to think that I’m a pretty bright person. I always did well in school, I can usually learn new things easily, and logic and I are besties. (Except for when anxiety takes over, so it’s more like logic and I are a step above being casual acquaintances.) Unfortunately, all of that goes out the window when I try to wrap my mind around driving directions. Put a map in front of me or try to tell me how to get from Point A to Point B, and you might as well be speaking a different language.


That in a nutshell.

I’ve lived in the same town for 30 of the 33 years that I have been on this earth. Yet if you asked me for directions to Walmart, I’d likely falter. And, heaven forbid, don’t ask me to read a map.

My husband finally figured out the answer to my problem one Christmas — a GPS! I was about 7 months pregnant with Little Man, and I didn’t know how to get to the hospital that was 20 minutes away. Since he was concerned about me going into labor while he was at work, he figured I should probably know how to get to the hospital, so he got me the GPS. He was pleased with himself until I called him at work crying a month later because I was lost in the town that we lived in.

“Did you use the GPS?”

“Yes!” I said between my dry heaving. “It told me to turn at a median! There was no road!”

Eventually, my husband finally figured out a way for me to get from point A to B without a) having to drive me or b) me getting utterly lost in the process — write out the most detailed directions in the world. You think the instructions for that bookshelf from IKEA you had to put together were long? You haven’t seen my driving instructions.

I might still have to call to clarify one part of the directions, or for driving back (I don’t do reverse directions well, either), but that’s it. Great success!

So, yeah, that’s me — Mrs. Directionally Challenged. Can any of y’all relate?

Bonus:

Here’s the This Is Your Brain On Drugs video. When I saw this as a kid, I was a bit terrified — who wants to turn into a dishes smashing lunatic, right? But now the mom in me — whose family mostly uses the nicer plastic take-out cups to avoid broken glasses — is going, “WTF, Baby-Sitter’s Club chick?! Stop that shit now!”

Want to connect on social media? You can find me on Facebook, Twitter,  Instagram, and Bloglovin.

I’m going to try the whole “make a little money from the blog” thing now via the Amazon Affiliates program. If you’re an Amazon addict like I am, then use this link to do your shopping. I may earn a small commission that will go towards my kids’ college education new Converses. *Full disclosure. 

Making Things Worse

Sometimes kids know exactly what to do or say to make you feel better when you’re sick. Sometimes. Most of the time, though, they just unintentionally make things worse. And not only will they make things worse, the severity of the things they do directly correlates with how bad you’re feeling.

Got a nasty cold and can barely raise your voice above a whisper? Then they’ll fight like cats and dogs, making it necessary to use your Parent Voice (which is a nice way of saying “yell”) to get them to stop. Maybe a migraine has you down for the count? Then obviously this is the time to get out every musical instrument they own and start a band.


(And then you’ll probably wonder why the heck you thought it was a good idea to encourage creative expression.)

Or maybe you’ve got a stomach bug that renders you unable to move outside of trips to the bathroom? Then they’ll fight like cats and dogs, beg you to make special treats, and need you to help with a school project (and this project will be one they’ve known about for a month, but just told you about, and it’ll be due tomorrow). And only you and you alone have the power to help them. All of these scenarios have happened, by the way.

I often have sinus troubles and get excruciating headaches as a result. At one point last year, I was having an especially bad sinus headache and was lying on the couch when Little Man checked on me.

My beautiful boy is checking up on his mom…clearly he’s perfect, right?

Much like my kisses having healing powers for the kids, hugs and cuddles from them make me feel better momentarily.

Unfortunately, he wasn’t feeling the “help Mommy feel better” vibe at the moment.

Thanks kid.

And for the record, he wasn’t lying.

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Calling All Dorks: There Will Be Blood

If you’ve ever spent any amount of time with a toddler, then you know that they’re prone to having…I would call them “outbursts,” but “shitfits” has a much nicer ring to it, so let’s go with that. Toddlers have shitfits over just about everything. Food too cold? Shitfit. Shoes not the right color? Shitfit. You gave them exactly what they wanted the first time they asked? Shitfit.

Sometimes these little outbursts are understandable — not getting fed on time would make just about anyone cranky — and other times they leave us scratching our heads. Today’s Calling All Dorks story comes from Darlene, who writes at Baby Costs Money, and her toddler’s outburst definitely left her a bit bewildered.

Last night at bedtime, I was sitting on the bed with the ToddlerMonster and I mindlessly scratched my knee. I had cut myself shaving earlier that day, so when I scratched my knee, it started to bleed again. Not ideal.

The ToddlerMonster didn’t even realize I was (barely) bleeding, but she did brush her hand against my knee while climbing all over me trying to get comfortable with her books. She then brushed her hand against the white sheet and that’s when she noticed the BLOOD.

And she freaked out. She could not handle, I guess, that I was bleeding. She started screaming ‘NEED BANDAID NEED BANDAID!’ My teenage daughter ran into the room with a bandaid.

There wasn’t that much blood, by the way. But you could not tell that at all from the way the ToddlerMonster was screaming. You might have thought that I cut off my entire leg.

As soon as her sister came into the room with the bandaid, things got better for ToddlerMonster. She took the bandaid and very carefully pulled off the sticky bits.

And then she placed the bandaid very carefully on the sheet. The sheet, that had a bit of blood on it. The SHEET. WHAT.

Poor Mom! Leave it to a toddler to be more concerned about a sheet than her mom.

Be sure to check out Darlene’s blog here. You can also find her on social media by clicking the following links: Twitter and Instagram.

If you have a funny/dorky story that you’d like to see poorly illustrated, then send me an email at dorkymomdoodles@gmail.com. (Old posts are fair game.)

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I’m Having A Hot Flash WHERE?

People with anxiety disorder know how it is — the least little thing can mean impending doom health-wise. Headaches are brain tumors, stomach pain from that questionable taco you ate could be cancer. Bluish colored streaks on one’s neck are only God knows what, but surely awful (or it could be getting your recently dyed hair wet).

Several months ago, I was driving to pick up Baby Girl from preschool when my bottom suddenly felt hot all over. Alarmed, I tried to feel around to see if I was suddenly bleeding out or something. That would be bad, because not only would I be bleeding out, the car seat in my husband’s car had been dismantled because Baby Girl had puked all over it the night before. As such, my husband would have no way of getting her because I’d be at the hospital with the non-puked on car seat. Shit!

After swerving off the side of the road and determining that there was no blood, I continued panicking. Why was my butt having a hot flash? Was I on the verge of death, or maybe it was something less serious, like experiencing a side effect of one of my medications? Or maybe I had an infection that I would have to figure out how to deal with on my own, since there was no way I was going to a doctor to discuss an infected butt region.

I freaked out some more, trying to come up with more explanations for my bottom being hot all over. I debated on going into a gas station bathroom, which I rarely do because that definitely makes me feel like I’m dying (seriously, I’d rather risk an accident than use most public restrooms), and checking myself out. Maybe I could use my phone camera to get a good look, only what if I accidentally hit the wrong button and went live on Facebook or something? Gah.

And then it hit me — we have the ability to heat the seats in our car. Being someone who suffers from chronic swampassitis for 6 or 7 months of the year (screw you, humid South Carolina), and having only bought the car a few months earlier at the beginning of the swampassitis season, I had never used that option. And I probably never will. So, maybe it wasn’t that I was dying, but that my husband had turned on the thing that heats the seats.

I called my husband. “How do I check to see if the heated seat thing is on in the car? Is there a button or something?”

“Oh, yeah, sorry,” he said. “I turned it on. The button is underneath the radio and all that stuff.” I found it, saw the green light was lit, and turned it off. The heat on my bottom quickly went away. Crisis diverted — Baby Girl could be picked up and I wouldn’t have to go to the ER to discuss my hot (for once in my life) ass.

Have you ever gone into crisis mode over something silly?

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Maybe, Maybe Not

While looking through my doodle folder last night, I found a few things that I had forgotten about. Aside from there being no money in dorky doodling, that’s kind of like finding a $20 bill in a coat from last winter, bonus!

I was in graph/charts mode a few weeks ago and drew up a bunch of them. I have no idea why I didn’t actually post any — especially since I’ve been short on time and haven’t posted as often as I like — but here we go. And, nope, I’m not gonna post them all at once. I’m gonna save some for a rainy day, which will probably be next week, unless I forget again. (And if y’all see me comment about not being able to think of anything to post or having time to come up with anything, remind me that I have these, okay?)

So, my kids are always asking for something. They want a snack, they want to watch TV, they want to go to Sports Connection tomorrow, they want to go to the park, they want to go buy toys, they want, they want, they want. Like any good parent who wants to delay the whining a straight up “No” will cause, I’ll usually answer, “Maybe,” as long as they aren’t asking for something completely ridiculous. (“Can I eat all the marshmallows out of the Lucky Charms?” Uh, no. Oh wait, you’re going to your grandparents’ house today? Then knock yourself out, because payback is a bitch.)

As most of y’all know, anytime you answer “Maybe,” that means it’s usually not happening. I mean, sure, there’s a slight chance that I’ll hate myself enough the next day to willingly subject myself to the torture that is Chuck E. Cheese, but probably not. And being the procrastinator (and hater of headaches) that I am, I prefer to put off the “Aw man” and “Why not?” whines until later. The next day I can answer “Maybe” again, and we’ll keep that going until they either forget or realize it ain’t happening and stop asking. (Nine times out of ten, it’s usually the former.)

This is probably the part where a couple folks will skip to the end and tell me that they always tell their kids “No” and give an honest explanation or some crap because they’re parenting rock stars. In which case, I’d remind you that my kid gave me a coffee mug that said “(Mostly) Okayest Mom Ever” on it and move along.

Still here? Then here’s the doodle chart I promised.

See? There is a tiny sliver of hope in there.

What would you add to the pie chart? 

I’d like to give a shout out to Candy at GeekMamas.com for including me as a guest poster! Check out the post here.

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Oops, No Doodles!

I’m pretty sure that every blog post I’ve written has been accompanied by one of my poorly drawn doodles. I’m changing things up today for two reasons: laziness and awesomeness. The first image I’m sharing would take too long to doodle, so I’m not going to bother. The second image shouldn’t be tarnished by my shitty doodles, because it’s just that great.

Earlier this week, I was reviewing Little Man’s homework, which was a worksheet on inference. Halfway through it, I was at the “almost peed my pants” stage of laughter.

You can zoom in to read the story, but I’m going to put the questions and Little Man’s answers below, since his handwriting isn’t the most legible in the world.

2. Describe Alice: She has O.C.D.

3. What relationship do Paul and Alice have? Wife & husband…because Alice is making him put everything in a certain place.

Little Man told me that I’m just like Alice. He’s right in a way, but not the way he thinks. My asking people not to wear shoes on a floor I just mopped is not akin to not letting someone in the house until their dirty clothes are off and in a garbage bag.

The same day as the inference sheet, we were walking through Walmart looking at clearance toys. He had gotten a Jyn Erso (Rogue One) Lego figure for a whopping $3 the last time, and we wanted to see if they had any more on sale. They did have a storm trooper and a couple other male characters from The Force Awakens, but their sale price was $15.

“That’s not fair!” Little Man exclaimed. “Why did they mark down someone as awesome as Jyn Erso for $3, but keep the boy ones at $15? What are they trying to say, that girls aren’t as good as boys?”

After telling him that it was possible that they just had a surplus of Jyn Erso figures, our conversation led to talking about some of the challenges females face in our society. Little Man is one of those kids who is always asking the hard questions, so we’ve talked a bit about inequality and some of the privileges that he was born into before. Later that evening, he was doodling on a sheet of paper and showed me this:

That’s Little Man and Baby Girl.

Like the Grinch, my heart grew three sizes. ❤

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My Toddler Aspires To Be Banksy

As discussed in another post, Baby Girl goes by a lot of names — Ona, Kate Kate, Batman. It’s now time to add another name to that list: Banksy.

Technically I can’t count the number of times on one hand that Little Man drew on something he wasn’t supposed to, because that never happened. He was the most responsible toddler ever — he would never touch an outlet, climb on things that he shouldn’t climb on, put things in his mouth, or draw on things not intended to be drawn on. (I can’t say all of those things are true now, though.) He was basically Benjamin Button without the wrinkles.

Baby Girl is a different story. She is Little Man’s opposite in every way, which — aside from making for an interesting parenting experience — has given me a few gray hairs. I always expected for the second child to be different and have her own personality, of course, but not to be that different. Like most toddlers, she needs every single child proofing gadget, all markers stashed way out of reach, and a leash harness screw it, leash. She’s shoved things in her nose, tasted things she had no business tasting, and can throw a temper tantrum that rivals those of the current president’s.

Back to the art. Baby Girl’s drawings have appeared all over the house. No matter how many times we tell her that crayons should only be used on scrap paper/coloring pages, she continues to pursue her dream of instilling a little culture in us with her art. The door to her room, walls, and the floor have all been decorated. Books — including the parenting book on discipline — now have extra illustrations. While taking a break from writing this post, I noticed that she had personalized the ice cream cart she got for her birthday. (“It say ‘Ice cream cart!'” she told me.)

I’m sure you’re thinking, “Put the crayons out of her reach!” but she hides the damn things around the house. For the longest time, we kept finding blue scribbles on things, but couldn’t find the blue crayon. Whenever we were busy with cooking, laundry, or phone calls and couldn’t have 100 percent of our focus on Baby Girl, she’d take the blue crayon from its hiding place and get to work. The only difference between her and Banksy was her lack of political statement.

Baby Girl had been doing a little bit better about drawing on things lately. Had been. Last week before I started cooking supper, I printed off a few coloring sheets to keep her occupied. It worked, or so I thought — she was very quiet and didn’t go terrorist mode by interrupting me with her list of demands while I was cooking. Shouldn’t I have learned by now that quiet is never, ever a good thing when it comes to kids?

Later I found out why she had been so quiet, and it had nothing to do with her coloring sheets.


Yep, that is her pink Little Tikes car colored in blue.

“Oh my god, what did you do to your car?!” And how did your short little self color on the top?!

Was she rebelling against my skipping past the “screw gender stereotypes” thing and getting her a pink car? Because the only reason I did that is that it was on sale for $20 less than the standard version. I can be “Screw princesses and pink and flowers for girls” all day long until money comes into play. And then my principles are out the window faster than Donald Trump clicks the Tweet button. Maybe she truly had a little Banksy in her after all?

Maybe not. Her explanation —


I didn’t find the scribbled over car funny at all, but I was amused by the fact that she had attempted to make a joke. Hopefully next time she can do it without defacing private property.

Was/is your kid a budding artist, too? Any funny stories to share?

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