What's That Smell?

If you were to ask me, as a parent of older kids, "What do you believe has been the MOST effective aspect of your parenting style?" I would need to be allowed some time (at least 48 hours) to be able to verbalize a coherent answer...BECAUSE TEENAGERS...and then...after thinking about it for 72 hours more...I would have to say...HUMOR!

What I've lost in patience, my funny bone has grown exponentially, over the years, but NOT as much as my improper grammar usage <---- although, I nailed this run-on sentence (the misplaced modifier was unintentional) and my over use of comma splice is stellar, yo!

Grammar
Yesterday, our oldest had a doctor's appointment to discuss an issue that could've been much MUCH scarier (turns out, it's not as serious as we first thought, THANK GAWD!) and she asked me if I would go with her...you know...for moral support, because (raising four kids, and all four of their grandparents now dealing with a plethora of health issues, as well) I'm good with waiting room banter.

"Phew, what's that smell?"

Although I was asking the wrong person, because our oldest daughter has a terrible sense of smell, I really didn't need any validation -- hello, my name is Liz and have you seen the SIZE of my nose?

A few minutes pass, and my daughter is doing her best to pacify my insisting the whole room MUST smell what I'm smelling!

 "THERE! You smell it now?"

I also have a bad habit of thinking out loud.

"I don't smell anything."

Now, I'm beginning to doubt myself, because the smell sort of comes in waves. I start stealthily sniffing myself. Nope, not me.

"Honestly, it smells like poop!"

I begin to look around the waiting room that is now filled with soon-to-be Moms, remembering how everything smelled absolutely awful when I was pregnant, I mean they HAVE to smell what I'm smelling!

"Maybe it's just my imagination."

THERE IT IS, AGAIN!

"Okay, you guys HAVE to smell that!"

[sound of crickets, chirping]

Clearly, these poor women are not accustomed to waiting room banter, but a couple of trips to the pediatrician should ease them into it, nicely.

Or maybe I need to add "phantosmia" to my ever-growing list of weird crap my body has been going through, literally, lately?

OH WAIT, then I remembered the woman who walked by us with her little boy to use the bathroom.

"I'm going to go check the bathroom."

AH-HAH!

I walked up to where the receptionist was sitting, knocked on her window and whispered, "Someone left a soiled diaper in the bathroom," to which EVERYONE chimed in:

  • So, THAT'S what that smell was!
  • Ohhhhhh man, NOW I SMELL IT!
  • I was trying to breath through my mouth!
  • Smells like that kid has a healthy appetite!

And my favorite, being:

  • "OMG! I thought maybe it was "our" imagination."

Moral of the Story: Never underestimate the power of our olfactory receptors, because we Moms are bound to become the collective brain trust of bad smells!

[sound of crickets, choking]

Stupid nose, dumbass diapers.

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

Desperately Seeking Adultier Adults, Since 2003!

I've been blogging for a while -- like the equivalent of a Jurassic period of time, in Internet years -- and man have things changed since those early days of dialing in and waiting more than a nano-second for your modem to connect, I could:

  • Clean up breakfast
  • Take a shower
  • Or not
  • And then eat MY breakfast, for lunch

And I'd still have time to pick my two oldest up from pre-school, before FINALLY getting online!

via GIPHY

For my first blog post of 2017, however, I'm going to attempt to do what I've done for the last 13 years -- THIRTEEN years, that's a WHOLE teenager, you guys! --  I'm going to continue to share stuff that will hopefully help OTHER folks feel WAY better about themselves.

via GIPHY

Because adulting is hard, right?!?! Not to mention, when you're already sharing valuable head space with other adults, successfully adulting adultier adults, RIGHT?!?! 

[passes remote control, hugs throw pillow a little tighter]

Riiiiiiiiiight.

[cracks knuckles, blows side bangs out of eyes]

You've heard of Pregnancy Brain, right?!? How about Mommy Brain, or maybe Momnesia?!? Yep, I feel it pretty safe to say we've each experienced bouts of forgetfulness; however, did you know that the severity of these bouts increases exponentially by the number of kids you have living in your house, at the time?!? For example:

  • Kid #1: Note to self -- remember to order multiple copies of school pics, one for each season, because...OMG!...soooooo cute!
  • Kid #2: Note to self -- maybe order the Spring pics only, because...well...they've GROWN SO MUCH since September...and they seemed to have gotten a little more pricey (the pics AND the kids) and the Spring pics really DO have the prettiest backgrounds.
  • Kid #3: DAYUM, SCHOOL PICS ARE 'SPENSIVE!!!
  • Kid #4: Wait, what grade are you in, again?!?!

So, today I remembered to order Glen's (a.k.a. Kid #3) senior photos.

Glen As A Senior, I think
Glen's senior pic, I think!

Because I just found the reminder (hiding on top of the printer, with the rest of the incoming mail) and we're late (with ordering pics, not like late late, because NO MORE PREGNANCY BRAIN FOR ME!), we're 2 months past the DEADLINE, but I felt ZERO guilt when hearing my husband on the phone with the studio, because DAYUM SCHOOL PICS ARE 'SPENSIVE!

Garth(NHRN): I paid them the balance and they're going to mail the pics to us!

[blank stare]

Me: Great, and if the grandparents happen to ask about them in a couple of months, I'll know EXACTLY where to look!

Long story, short: I'm sorry to have to tell you that adulting does NOT get any easier, especially when adulting adult and almost-adult kids, BUT you DO become more forgiving, especially with yourself, so there's that!

On the other hand: Don't let someone make you feel like you're not doing this whole adult thing right, because THEIR KIDS will probably grow up to believe they've been doing it ALL wrong too, anyway -- YOU'RE WELCOME!!!

On the OTHER other hand: My kids feel real lucky whenever I do get their names right AND thank goodness Kid #4 has made it to her sophomore year...in one piece...or at least, I'm pretty sure she's a sophomore...ahem.

[sound of crickets, chirping]

Stupid school photos, dumbass adulting.

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

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.

Todrick-Hall-and-Angels-cMatthew-Murphy
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!

Haven-Burton-cMatthew-Murphy-email
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.

3693478723_91f2806c5f_b

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.