Yes, My Daughter And I Love Kinky Boots And OMG, TODRICK HALL!

I was excited to have been invited to attend an evening performance of Kinky Boots The Musical on Broadway last week, and absolutely thrilled about my being allowed to bring a guest, so I asked my 15-year old if she would like to join me, you know, for a Mother/Daughter Broadway date, or something.

Todrick-Hall-as-Lola-in-Kinky-Boots-2-cJenny-Anderson
Todrick Hall (c)Matthew Murphy

OMG!!!...was her response, followed by...TODRICK HALL!!!...and then...OMG, TODRICK HALL!!!...and this is about the time I started to feel really, really excited about these tickets...beeeeecause...OMG, 15-YEAR OLDS ALMOST NEVER SMILE...and...OMG, MY 15-YEAR OLD CANNOT STOP SMILING!!! 

 

Rainstorm or nah, #KinkyBoots here we come! #motherdaughtergoals

A photo posted by Liz Thompson (@thisfullhouse) on

So, whose idea was Kinky Boots, and why should EVERY teenager (and future parents of teenagers) see it?

Aaron-C-Finley-Todrick-Hall-and-Cast-2cMatthew-Murphy
The cast of Kinky Boots (c)Matthew Murphy

I'll be totally honest with you, not having read the book (written by Harvey Fierstein) and never having seen the British movie (inspired by true events, which were broadcast in a British television documentary in 1999), I was a bit nervous about the story line, because...you know...kinky boots. So, I did what EVERY parent of most teenagers would do -- I hit up Google. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that there is a fascinating human story behind those red and awesomely-glittery kinky boots...not to mention, the music and lyrics were written by...OMG, CYNDI LAUPER!!! 

Aaron-C-Finley-Todrick-Hall-and-Cast-cMatthew-Murphy
The cast of Kinky Boots (c)Matthew Murph

In Kinky Boots, Charlie Price (at the time of our showing, Aaron C. Finley) reluctantly takes over his family’s failing shoe factory in Northern England, following the sudden death of his father. Help comes from the unlikeliest angel, a fabulous drag performer named Lola (OMG!...TODRICK HALL!). Together, this improbable duo not only revitalizes the nearly bankrupt business, but helps one another grow into the men their fathers always dreamed their sons would become and transforms an entire community through the power of acceptance.

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Todrick Hall and the Angels (c)Matthew Murphy

I was raised on Broadway show tunes, and so were my kids -- I feel it safe to say all four can name (and sing) quite a few family-favorites, in 5 notes or less -- and the choreography behind Kinky Boots was indeed stellar, it did NOT disappoint, plenty of Broadway glitz and glam for everyone!

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Haven Burton (c)Matthew Murphy

HOWEVER, my friends, here's the thing. The thing is, Kinky Boots is more than just a Broadway show...it's a lesson in humanity, this show has a HUGE heart, plain and simple. I found myself SO WRAPPED UP in the story line, I mean, the characters were SO VERY relatable, I felt as if I knew each and every one of these people, for real -- Haven Burton, who played Lauren, had me snort-laughing, I wanted to be her new BFF, throughout the show. 

Todrick-Hall-cMatthew-Murphy

Todrick Hall (c)Matthew Murphy

I kept looking over at my 15 year-old, to see if she was enjoying herself, but her face was blank (just so you know, 15 year-olds excel at blank-face), and then I basically sobbed through Todrick Hall's entire solo performance of Hold Me In Your Heart -- this song speaks to ANYONE who's ever struggled with acceptance (raises hand), or who's fighting with forgiveness (raises other hand), and this is where I decided that...YES!!!...Todrick Hall is absolutely BRILLIANT!

The best part of the evening? Thanks to my friend, Holly (who also invited us to the show and is responsible for this magical experience -- thank you, Holly!) who pointed out the stage door and suggested Hope and I make time to wait and see if we could get an autograph (and possibly a photograph) from Todrick Hall.

 

I look kinda rough in this but i met Todrick Hall yesterday!!! Kinky Boots was such an amazing show spreading the idea of just be yourself and dont care what other people think. Now for the sentimental part: Todrick Hall has been my idol for years now. Todrick was the person who taught me to be myself and to stop caring what people thought and to not be afraid to be unique and different. He signed my playbill and smiled at me and looked in my eyes when talking and put his arm around me for the picture!! I got ten steps away and had to go to the side wall cuz i was shaking and hyperventilating from just meeting my role model and idol 😂 not gonna lie i cried when i got home and im still trying to wrap my head around meeting him and just oh my god last night was the happiest and best day ever! Walking ten blocks from penn to broadway in the pouring rain was so worth it! #kinkyboots

A photo posted by Hope Anne Thompson (@hopeannne) on

And I would walk another ten city blocks...in the pouring rain...wearing a pair of kinky boots...just to see my 15-year old smile...not to mention, my having been a part of her happiest and best day...EVER!!!

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Here's the really best part, we get to share our love of Kinky Boots and offer a special discount code to you (yes, YOU!) you should really go see it:

Save up to 40% on select performances through 2/12/17!
 
Visit kinkybootsthemusical.com and use code BOOTS3
 
OFFER DETAILS:
Mon, Tues, Thurs performances through 2/12/17
$87*
Select Orch/Front Mezzanine
(Reg. $99-117)
 
$45*
Rear Mezzanine 
(Reg. $79-$97)

Friday, Sat, & Sun performances through 2/12/17
$107*
Select Orch/Front Mezzanine
(Reg. $109-$147)
 
$75*
Rear Mezzanine
(Reg. $79-$97)

Conditions:

Offer valid on select seats. Blackout dates may apply. Offer valid for all performances now through 2/12//17. This offer cannot be combined with any other discount and is not applicable to previously purchased tickets. Regular Prices $55-$147. Limit 8 tickets per order. All sales are final. No refunds or exchanges. Offer subject to availability and includes a $2.00 facility fee. Normal phone and Internet service charges apply. Offer may be modified or revoked at any time without notice. 
And please, for the love of all things red and sparkly, take a moment to check out the True Colors Fund, because creating a world in which young people can be their true selves is totally worth a minute...or twenty...thank you!
 
Disclosure: I received two tickets to see Kinky Boots. No other consideration or payment was received for this blog post.
© This Full House 2003-2016. All rights reserved.

Eggs Are Stupid, Let's Throw Husbands At Them!

My husband, Garth (not his real name) and I have been married for...uhhhhhh...okay, so we've been married for nearly...ummmmm...a lot of years, however, we still sometimes experience ah-HAH moments, you know, liiiiiike enjoying a quiet morning walk before work, while I try and figure out my travel schedule and my husband goes through our meal plan for the week, and...whoa...we're both all...maaaaan, but how our lives have changed, eh?

My husband has taken over a lot of the cooking and it's not like I don't know HOW to cook (been doing it since I was 10!), now I just sometimes forget.

"You want me to hard boil some eggs for breakfast?"

Two of our kids are home sick and, trust me, I know that they're old enough to take care of themselves, NO DOUBT, but I was raised by a Hungarian Grandmother (and Mother), who...at the first cough or sniffle...would break out their mental list of old world remedies, half of which my kids should be VERY happy I've forgotten about.

"Des, pleabe!"

I put up a pot of water to boil and then grab an entire dozen...of eggs...because there are half-a-dozen of us currently living here AND my kids have mastered the art of sharing...especially, viruses!!!...and then I break out my fool-proof hard boiled egg recipe:

  • Put eggs into a pot of water
  • Bring eggs to boil
  • Remove pot from heat
  • Cover and let the eggs sit for twenty minutes

"There's a trick to peeling these, watch!"

I grab the pot to show my middle girl the trick to peeling hard boiled eggs, and then my husband walks into the kitchen.

"You know, there's a trick to peeling those..."

Here's the thing.

"YES! I KNOW THE TRICK!"

The thing is, I know my husband has been doing A LOT of the cooking, and the food shopping, and the everything else-ing that I used to do, and yes, I am blessed he wants to help...BLESSED!...but I already KNOW the trick to peeling hard boiled eggs!

"Empty the water, cover the pot, and shake the eggs around, like this!"

And it WOULD have worked, if I had remembered to set the timer.

Fool-boiled eggs
Aaaaaand, THIS is what hard boiled eggs are NOT supposed to look like!

*DROPS MIC*

The end.

© This Full House 2003-2016. All rights reserved.

Why Did I Let My Kid Shred My Hair?

Our youngest cut her own hair when she was 3 years-old (the only one of our four to ever do that, by the way), because being the youngest can be really hard, you know? Unless you have (and know how to rock) a pair of pink cowgirl boots, of course! 

Garth (not his real name) and I have always tried really hard to help our kids cultivate their own sense of style (i.e., point them toward the clearance racks and just get out of their way), however, Hope had fully-grasped her sense of...um...uniqueness at a very young age.

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Still, it's hard to be the youngest, feeling like you're constantly following along in someone else's footsteps can be a bit lonely, even in a houseful, sometimes. Our baby girl has gone through many transformations in her 15 years of being...ummmm...Hope.

Her Goth stage was the most...errrrr...interesting...and don't EVEN think about bringing up her shockingly pink hair...because, well, it's just not shocking enough, anymore, DANGIT!

"LORT?!? Why did you EVER let me wear my hair like that?!?"

As if I ever had a choice. Hope has always been a free spirit = she is my hippy-child. Still, it's real difficult for her to NOT allow her free-thinking to feed into all the draaaah-maaaah and, well, YOU COULDN'T PAY ME ENOUGH TO BE FIFTEEN, AGAIN or GO BACK TO HIGH SCHOOL, am I right?!?!

Hope

After 20+ years of parenting, I feel it safe to say that self-esteem issues are best cultivated when you try to look like everyone else. And I may have mentioned this to my kids, once or twenty times, every day, especially to my girls.

Still, behind all the selfies and Snapchat filters, you can't hide the fact that growing up female is complicated enough (why IS this STILL happening?!?), especially when you're a Mom.

On the one hand, we preach self-esteem to our children, and on the other hand, our own confidence eludes us, the moment we see it in someone else. Why IS that?!?

On the OTHER other hand, intellectually, most of us already understand it to be a defense mechanism...LORT!!!...how we women compare ourselves to each other...eh?

"And I am in desperate need of a haircut!"

Hope aspires to be a hair and makeup artist and, well, somehow she doesn't believe that my husband and I think it's a worthy-enough profession, because teenagers tend to put words into their parents' mouths and they really do think the silliest thoughts, sometimes.

Hair  by Hope

"I love the idea of helping other women feel good about how they look AND maybe feel a little better about themselves and myself, too!" ~ Hope

And that's why I let my kid cut my hair.

The end.

P.S. It's actually "shred" not "cut" and I stand (I mean, sit) corrected, yo!

© This Full House 2003-2016. All rights reserved.

Grounded Until Boot Camp

It's been 36 minutes, since I hugged my son and wished him luck, reassuring him "not to worry," and "you got this," as I followed him through our front door and watched him get into his recruiter's car. I then proceeded to spend the next 36 minutes reliving the last 17 years, as parents do, with every passing milestone, I suppose.

However, this time, Garth (not his real name) isn't home to reassure me that "he'll be fine," and there's really "no need to cry," because he's staying at my parents' house, helping to take care of my Dad and getting him to his dialysis appointments, and then taking him to visit with my Mom in a sub-acute facility (she's recovering from a real bad fall), while I continue to work from home, until the weekend, when we switch places and, well, the last six weeks haven't been easy on any of us.

"I don't feel like you guys are here for me."

Most especially, our son.

"I talk about my enlistment and all you do is shake your head and look sad."

I have had sooooo many thoughts and opinions about my son's imminent enlistment into the Marine Corps, but I've been pretty much keeping them to myself.

"I don't feel like you support my decision."

Until now.

Needless to say, my husband and I are very proud of Glen and, as an American born of immigrants, I'm humbled by our son's dedication to "honoring his Grandparents and all their hard work, wanting a better life for future generations" (those were my son's exact words, when explaining his desire to enlist, during our interviews with each of the military branches).

"We've done everything we can to help you get here, haven't we?"

Keeping every deep, dark and terribly awful fear imaginable from creeping out of my heart and slithering its way up onto my face, not so much.

"So yes, I'm sad. And afraid. Just as your training will involve learning how to protect others, while protecting yourself, you're going to be a pretty tall target, and there will be people whose job will be to try and kill you."

I was being brutally honest with him, and myself, because it's been 60 years since my parents first set foot on American soil and danged if it doesn't seem like the world is moving backwards, we're ALL standing on shaky ground, right?!?!

"As your Mom, my first and foremost wish has always been for you to be happy."

It's hard sometimes, you know? Pretending to be fearless. Especially for someone who wears her heart on her sleeve...[raises hand]...not without leaving a permanent dent on my face, I mean.

"And your father and I will always fear for your safety (okay, mostly me), but do NOT mistake that as our being unsupportive."

So, I set my alarm for 4:00 a.m., which every parent reading this will undoubtedly understand it to have been unnecessary, as I was awake for most of the night and I finally gave up on sleep when my son's alarm went off at 3:00 a.m., as we sat together, in a mostly dark and quiet house, waiting for him to take his next steps towards gaining his independence and logging in another sleepless night for me and his Dad.  

36 minutes later, I became >this< much closer to graciously accepting my new role as a military mom...as reasonably and as calmly as possible, at 5 o'clock in the morning, I mean...so, yeah, there isn't a parent prouder than I am of you...RIGHT THIS MINUTE...my son...AND DO NOT EVER FORGET IT...or consider yourself grounded until boot camp!!!

Edited to add text received from my husband, GarthNHRN: Your post sounds like he's going now. You should make it clear this is a medical and he doesn't go until next summer.

Okay?!?! Soooo, we good?!?! Good!!! Which pretty much guarantees you guys another post, next August, you're welcome!!!

 

© This Full House 2003-2016. All rights reserved.

Blogging Under the Influence of Teenagers; It's Constipated!

If you were to ask me, as a social media enthusiast and OG blogger (never mind, just exactly HOW old gangstuh, you whippuh-snappuh, you!), hey Liz (psssst, that's me!), what IS the MOST difficult part of blogging...wait, I KNOW THIS!...for me, it's typing out this introductory sentence. This first paragraph is crucial, as it serves as a mini-outline for the blog post: It tells the reader what the blog post is about -- the hook, if you will.

Here's mine: Life with teenage/adult kids does NOT get any less complicated, in fact, I haven't performed THIS many face-palms in the history of This Full House and I've been blogging for...wait, WHAT YEAR IS IT?!?....holy Hannah Montana...I've been over-sharing for 13 years!?!?!

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The kid formerly known as Mini-me -- she's MUCH prettier and smarter all growed up and everything, if you haven't already figured that out!

GAWD, I'm old. But I still look good, yo. Anyhow. These last six months have been...what's the word...hang on, there was a tried and true old blogging adage we used to use...wait...I KNOW THIS!!!...oh yeah, nucking futs!!!...okay, fine...technically, it's two pretend words...unless I type it like...NUCKINGFUTS...yeah, works for me, how about you?!?!

[blows bangs out of eyes, scratches at underground zit on chin]

Aaaaaanyway. Life is moving REAL fast, like in...wait, what do you MEAN you're a senior in high school...sort of crazy, and, well, I have a funny story to tell you.

But first, here's a picture of the newest high school senior in da house. Cute. Right?!?! He's also working part-time at the fast food restaurant that shall not be named (that one is for Melisa's husband!) and "making bank" <--- not sure if that is even a relevant term any more, but whatevs ---> and, for the folks who are JUST catching up, Glen has been preparing to join the military, since the age of 3, BUT he's made a final decision about exactly which branch of the military. 

 

Soooooo, this is happening. Researching his choices, I'm holding it together pretty well (sort of), you guys.

A photo posted by Liz Thompson (@thisfullhouse) on

It's not the Air Force (although, they did have the prettiest recruitment center and I realize that pretty recruitment centers should NOT have anything to do with his decision, but it was nice to be able to visit a pretty recruitment center, just saying), or the Navy (visited them on an off day, I think), or the Army (like his Uncle Bud).

This week, my husband and I will sign the early-entry papers, allowing my son to enlist as a Marine -- which probably should have been the first sentence of this blog post and welcome to my brain, lately.

I have sooooo many thoughts and opinions about my son's imminent enlistment into the Marine Corps., but I'm actually saving those for another blog post...or twenty...along with my transition into working full-time and becoming the sole-breadwinner...although, my husband makes a real pretty Mr. Mom...also blog-worthy, for another time....you're welcome!!!

Glen: How could you joke about something like this?!?

I don't remember EXACTLY what we were talking about...because, I am the mother of two teenagers and two twenty-somethings...brain cells are at a premium...but, I was cracking an inappropriate joke about it, so it must have been pretty heavy.

Me: Because it's either laugh or cry, my son.

[blank stare]

Me: Sometimes the only thing you CAN do is to laugh, to keep yourself from crying, my son.

[BLUB,BLUB, BLUB, GRRRRBLUB] 

Garth(NHRN) [hollering while running out the front door]: GAH!!! Friggin' house is constipated, AGAIN!!! 

Moral of the Story: Maaaaaan, boot camp is going to seem like a sabbatical (okay, not really) and is this boy going to miss us, or what?!?

May the road rise to meet you, may your backflow be nominal and may you NEVER run out of toilet paper, my son. In the meantime, if anyone needs me, I'll be right here, trying NOT to cry and pretending like this blog post ACTUALLY made SOME sort of sense to you, yo!

© This Full House 2003-2016. All rights reserved.