I told them not to make me room mom… because stuff like this happens. By the way, there’s no Thanksgiving party. I just couldn’t help myself. What else am I gonna do on a Saturday night?
Category Archives: Tales of Room Mom Failure
So I’m going to be out of town at the end of the week. Monkey Boy’s class will have their Thanksgiving Feast while I’m away. We’re signed up for juice boxes.
Baby Daddy does a lot of things well. Class parties, however, are not really in his bag of tricks. If I left this chore to him, a package of juice boxes would be purchased at the store and delivered to the class the day of the party. You know, like normal people behave. That is not acceptable when you’re a psychocrafter.
This weekend I decorated the juice boxes as turkeys and Pilgrim hats. It is possibly sad how happy it made me to do this.
I showed them to Monkey Boy. He got super excited, “You made Batman juice boxes, Mommy! You’re awesome!” Seriously. He thought I spent my morning making super hero snacks.
And then I had a flashback to one of my favorite episodes of West Wing, when Sam Seaborn decided to write a crime-fighting Pilgrim television series.
One of the advantages to living in Little Rock is the Clinton Presidential Center. This center is an amazing asset to our community. Full disclosure, I have dear friends who work there and I think they are the bees knees. The latest example of how nifty they are: an exhibit of Dr. Seuss art.
On Dr. Seuss’ birthday, the Center invited area children to come and tour the exhibit as well as listen to an amazing woman read Dr. Seuss and see selected songs from Seussical the Musical performed by a local high school theater group. Monkey Boy’s school decided to take them up on the field trip. Monkey Boy wanted me to go, or rather, the last time I did not go on a field trip, he acted as if I’d tried to sell him on the street for crack money, so once I again I set off to prove my worth as a parent.
Just to up the ante to a nice insane pitch, my doctor put me on steroids for an ear infection. I was having what can only be described as “roid rage” leading up to this blessed adventure. I.was.angry. I was jumpy. I was pissed off. Now that’s exactly the kind of woman to send into a confined space with 300 preschool kids.
For reasons I’m sure a perfectly competent child psychiatrist could explain, when parents are introduced into the teacher-school mix, without fail, the children of those parents immediately turn into raging terrors. Monkey Boy wanted to be held, bossed other kids around, whined, complained, pouted and then told everyone I was bee-u-tee-ful. (OK, the last part was a shameless ploy to get back in my good graces and it completely worked) My new favorite mother at the school finally had her fill of her own daughter’s behavior and snapped at her, “Why are you being such a brat?!” I love that woman. Keep in mind, all of this had happened before we ever even entered the front doors. Thankfully, after I issued one of my better threats in Monkey Boy’s ear, things shaped up pretty quickly.
We managed to get through the place and not to break anything, which is no small accomplishment. Monkey Boy did knock over an old lady’s cane. Then when I went to pick it up, I knocked it over again. So we are probably on some AARP watch list for elder abuse. I called one child from his class the wrong name the whole time when speaking to his father, who was entirely too polite to correct me. So my flake factor remains high in the eyes of other parents, which was to be expected.
The exhibit is pretty cool. You don’t have to be a kid to enjoy it. If you’re in the area, go see it. I don’t really recommend going with that many children… well to anything… ever, but that’s just me. The kids said they had a great time. So we’ll let that be enough.
I was asked to be a parent volunteer to go to the pumpkin patch on a field trip. Monkey Boy was super excited about going. He said he wanted me to come along. It seemed like a perfectly lovely plan, so I agreed.
Except, we didn’t go to a pumpkin patch. We went to Wildwood Park. Now every other mother on this field trip seemed to have bits of information I didn’t. It’s possible they actually read the notes that are sent home. First, they seemed to know where Wildwood is. So right away it was clear they looked this up in advance, which is cheating. Second, they all seemed to know that Wildwood isn’t a pumpkin patch, but a hay ride “resort.”
Side note: I am severely allergic to hay. I have been on exactly one hay ride in my life and it very nearly sent me to the hospital. So when it came time for the Monkey Boy’s class to pile up on the trailers, I had to tell his teacher that wasn’t really gonna work out for me. This woman already believes I’m derelict. My opt-out plan I cooked up on the fly was less than optimal.
Having failed to do anything but deposit my child at the non-pumpkin patch, I decided to make the best of my unplanned alone time. I walked around a bit and snapped some photos of the property. It really is quite lovely. I met up with the kids and respectable mothers at the hay fort. Everyone seemed to be having a good time.
Then it was time for a group photo. Monkey Boy wasn’t done playing. According to the clock in his head, he should have had more time to jump off hay bales and run around like a wild child. So he did what any rational 4-year-old would do: he melted down. In the yearbook, approximately 39 preschool kids will be smiling happily for the camera on their super fun field trip. Monkey Boy will be in the death grip of a teacher wailing because his life.is.over.
The situation never really improved after that. He cried because he didn’t like his snack. He cried because he hit his head. (Actually, that probably really did hurt.) He cried because someone got to pick a better pumpkin than him. (After snack, the kids get to pick from imported pumpkins to take home. Because our trip to the pumpkin patch was to a place that doesn’t. grow. pumpkins.) We finally piled up in the car and mercifully went back to school. I’m not sure Monkey Boy wins the prize for biggest fit ever on that property, but he’s easily in the Top 10.
Baby Daddy asked me how I enjoyed my first field trip as a parent volunteer, “It could have gone better.”
At the beginning of the school year, I went to “New Parent Meeting” at Monkey Boy’s school. The good part of this meeting is they explain car pool, lunch schedules, rules, regulations, fines, penalties, etc. The problem with this meeting is by attending you are identifying yourself as fresh meat. They have lots of opportunities to volunteer. I should never, under any circumstances be left alone with women who know how to use guilt effectively and sign up sheets. Baby Daddy WAS. NOT. THERE. He was out of town earning a living to pay our mortgage or something stupid like that. I left that meeting as a room mother. In my defense, it was very hot in there.
I have done essentially nothing as room mom so far. There have been things to do. I just haven’t managed to get them accomplished. I did attend a meeting where they used the words “fundraiser” “Kroger card” and “collect” a lot. There was a freakish level of knowledge about Kroger cards in that room, actually.
So now it’s Halloween time and the class needs a “special snack” to celebrate. I decided this was my chance to redeem myself from total room mom failure. I ordered cookies from Kelli Marks because she’s awesome. I picked up some cute plates and napkins. Nothing scary, of course. All that was left were the juice boxes. I saw this as my chance.