Category Archives: goals


Since the summer is about half over (and there are less than six months until Christmas), I thought it would be a good time to evaluate my summer goals.  After careful deliberation and on the advice of my legal counsel*, I’m invoking my Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate myself, especially as it pertains to #1 Keep the garden alive, #3 Make a scrapbook of Dylan’s preschool years, and #5 Paint my bedroom walls.

In my defense, I’ve read one chapter book to Dylan.   Captain Underpants has become an unlikely (and strange) hero in our house.  I’ve lounged in the pool at least once, and I actually finished a book (“Bossypants”).  By the way, Tina Fey is my new hero.  I don’t have a Vitamix 5200 yet, but a girl can dream.  (And it’s practically Christmas!)  In the meantime, I’m eating tons of kale…and the boys aren’t.   Finally, I’ve successfully avoided hurricanes so far, but I can’t take any of the credit.  As a Mama, I can control a lot of things (wait, can I?), but not the weather.

* I don’t actually have legal counsel.  If I did, I’d have a proper will and a plan for the guardianship of my children** should Mike and I simultaneously combust.  I’d also cleverly trademark The Runaway Mama so the brand wouldn’t end up on wine bottles, sneakers, or cruise and hotel packages without my permission (or profit).  And because postnuptial agreements are so hip these days, I’d also have my legal counsel draft one of those.  It would stipulate a maximum number of loads of laundry that I’d be required to wash, dry, fold (ugh!), and put away (the worst!) within a seven day period before someone would have to take over until the next seven day period began.  It would also specify that I’d receive compensation for every pair of socks I picked up off the floor that weren’t mine (they’re never mine) and for every single “tattle” I was needlessly told by either of the children.  It would also instruct that no one was allowed in the bathroom with me if I made a specific hand gesture (raising one finger…the one in the middle).

** I know, I really need to take care of this.

How are you doing on your summer goals?  Have you started your holiday shopping yet?


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Summer Goals

How was your Memorial Day weekend?  Did you host a barbeque, lounge in your pool, or go to the beach?  Maybe you went on a weekend getaway or hosted friends on theirs?  We hosted a barbeque on Monday afternoon, but spent the rest of the weekend gardening.

Editor’s note:  Parenting is hard work.  Gardening is harder.

We finally got around to dealing with the overgrown landscaping jungle that was swallowing our backyard.  We cleared the land, pulled up weeds and roots, put down fresh soil, and planted a Meyer lemon tree and flowers.

The jungle:

The garden helpers.

The point of no return:

Phase One complete!

We’re sore, blistered, and a little bit sunburned, but we’re eager to get started on Phase Two: The Herb Garden…just as soon as we’ve recovered from Phase One.

All of this planting and the next few weeks of events, including Dylan’s pre-Kindergarten graduation, the start of camp, and the countdown to our summer vacations (Legoland and San Francisco), got me thinking about what I’d like to accomplish this summer.  Here’s my list so far:

  1. Keep the garden alive.  Thankfully, my track record for keeping small children alive is better than my track record for keeping plants and flowers alive.  I once killed a cactus.
  2. Read chapter books to Dylan.  I’m thinking about  “Charlotte’s Web” and “Captain Underpants” to start.  If you have any book suggestions, let me know!
  3. Make a scrapbook of Dylan’s preschool years, which includes pictures, progress reports, boo-boo grams, and some brilliant art projects such as yellow triangles glued to red construction paper and cotton balls glued to a drawing of a bowl of matzo ball soup.  This is a big project – the kind I like to make a lot of excuses for never finishing – but procrastination is not an option because Riley will have a similar pile of masterpieces that need sorting in a few years, and, sadly, the last family photo book that I finished was for 2009.  Poor little Riley doesn’t think we took any pictures of him as a baby.
  4. Buy a Vitamix 5200 and start juicing!  Okay, I know this isn’t supposed to be a shopping list, but ingesting more kale is a worthy goal.  And imagine if I could secretly get my boys to eat something green besides cupcake frosting!  That would be worth the $449 price tag, right?  Maybe.
  5. Paint my bedroom walls.  Last summer, I settled on a few different shades of grey.  Little did I know how on-trend my color selection would be!  (For the record, I haven’t read the “Fifty Shades” books, and at this point, I can’t.  The frenzy annoys me.  I’m protesting by happily reading Tina Fey’s “Bossypants.”)  Back to the paint.  I got so close to doing it last summer that I actually painted a few sample squares on one wall.  Those sad little squares have been staring at me for so long that I don’t even want to paint the walls grey anymore.  Sigh.
  6. Relax!  Wouldn’t it be nice if, for once, I lounged in the pool reading a book?
  7. Avoid hurricanes.  This isn’t so much a goal as it is a wish.  We’ve been hurricane-free since 2005, during which time I developed a debilitating fear and loathing of power outages. We’ve been fortunate since then, but there have already been two named storms this year – Alberto and Beryl – and the season doesn’t officially begin until Friday.  Oy.

That’s all for now.  If the list gets too long, I’ll start to feel anxious and then I won’t accomplish any of it.  Do you have any summer goals?

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