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Thank God for the RV Trip!

Thank God for the RV trip, I thought to myself packing toiletries one-legged, remembering RV freedom on the open road mired by our family suffering without generator power. A bittersweet memory, I now find myself hobbling on crutches, a torn MCL and ACL, amidst an ice storm. Thanks to last summer's RV tour of ten states with a broken generator, I've lowered my expectations and anxiety, and learned new survival skills. 'Less Is More' is my new mantra and I'm sticking to it come hell or high water, or 'ice apocalypse', as per our current situation. Just when I thought snow days were in my favor, with online learning plowing ahead to occupy my children, mother nature upped her ante, raising us a power outage to challenge our 'forced family fun' quarantine game. Somewhere between clutching a flashlight in my teeth while crutching my way upstairs to bed, our cold house backlit by the moon, and ice dark-thirty in the morning, I raised the white flag surren

Parenting Forced Family Fun In Quarantine

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I've always been an overachiever, to a fault. Four children plus two Schnoodle dogs is frickin' crazy, pardon my teenage French! If the ghost of Christmas future had projected my life online schooling four kids in Covid-quarantine, I'd surely have re-thunk Cancun vacations with my husband, where one more 'all-inclusive drink' made another powdery-sweet baby sound easy. Damn, if I’m not cursed by over-shooting my goals! Forced Family Fun has taken on new meaning in quarantine. Family hikes and bike rides? Screw you mom; more screen time! Plus online schooling four kids is borderline insanity.  Mom school. Who am I kidding? I worked in the CIA but never wanted to be a teacher or school principal in disguise. My students are savages and my undercover persona doesn't hold up to children who know I'm just their mom.  My 8th grade son is mainly in detention. He sneaks YouTube while hiding behind a dark camera 99% of students refuse to turn on. Snapchat, Reddit and

Putting My Foot Down!

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I put my foot down. My good foot that is, on principal that no mother should be left to languish incapacitated in her bedroom from sun up to sundown. Suffering pain from both MCL and complete ACL tears following a skiing accident, as if birthing four children wasn't enough, my life consists of RICE, (rest, ice, compression and elevation), and my en suite bedroom my natural new habitat. The days of 'alone time' sounding dreamy are not gone; they are merely on hold as the risk/reward of hurling myself down a flight of stairs for a Grub Hub delivery is questionable insanity. Covid-quarantine has apparently rendered my family especially deaf to my pleas for help. Mainly confined to my bedroom for my own sanity, the five other family members are unable to hear my cries for help with headsets affixed to their skulls diligently 'working' online.  What child responds quickly to a mother's call? I've gone through all their names, from "Gavin please come, are you

Numb

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Painkillers are the bomb. Stone cold sober following an icy skiing accident, my meds have made me numb and not just my ice packed knee. Other than the excruciating pain when my knee went crunch and pop while jumping the cross-country ski tracks to avoid a four-kid pileup ahead, my skis catawampus in a position that cracked my right knee like a wishbone, I've been numb.  My numbness is almost robotic as I'm forced to sit on my ass all day, my leg elevated quivering and spasming when moved. Supermom is not an option and there's no arguing my catatonic state or immobilization brace. I'm numb to pangs of hunger. By noon yesterday I hadn't even had a warm cup of joe. "Hello, it's your mother, I'm still here," I call in an echo chamber, my five family members deaf from headsets they wear working online. Perhaps I'll 'Postmates' my lunch, I thought to myself, seeing my incapacitation as liberating.  For the first time in my life, I've beco

Jedi Mind Tricks of Reptilian Proportions

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I prefer to admire reptiles from afar, so scaly and cold-blooded, with unpredictable movements that give me the heebie-jeebies. I'd sooner have another baby than one more pet to remind my kids to feed, until now. It seems our 10-year-old son made us an offer we couldn't refuse like my husband on our Cancun vacation, and now I find us with one more mouth to feed and wondering how we got here! It's key to put the question up front, or was that the answer? Regardless, he had my attention. Employing basic salesmanship 101 techniques, the kid hit us right between parenting guilt and Covid-19 pandemic. Though I'll admit I'm a sucker for a Google Docs presentation during 'summer brain drain' with more facts than the White House press secretary.  Sure, my youngest son and his 15-year-old brother had tried before, from snakes to lizards. The answer was always Hell No. We had no time for that!  Honestly, when you got down to brass tacks, the fourth child was vying for

The Natives Are Restless - RV Life Day #21

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The pooch ate our breakfast. With dwindling supplies, the muffins I made yesterday would've sustained us another morning until we restocked our wagon. The bitch is a thief and you think we'd have learned by now not to store food on the gas stove next to the pleather couch when the natives are restless! During our month-long RV trip, Mayzie, the middle-aged black Schnoodle with the gap-tooth smile, has consumed a half-loaf of bread, two dozen of grandma's chocolate chip cookies, my son's Doritos Locos taco from Taco Bell and a dozen cinnamon sugar sweet Raisin Bran muffins, wrappers and all. I can picture our two-year-old, eight-pound Schnoodle Ozzie watching her peruse the veritable buffet from below, lacking the fortitude to jump that high. I'm sure Mayzie didn't allow a scrap to fall as there's only one Schnoodle who needed the outdoor shower to shamingly hose off her hindquarters. Did she learn her lesson? No! So much for doggie FOMO (fear of missing ow

Making Covid Quarantine Look Easy - RV Life Day #16

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What was I thinking? RV life for a family of six makes Covid-quarantine at home look easy. I’ll admit, I viewed traveling to national parks, visiting 10 states  in 26 days  and logging over 4800 miles with rose-colored glasses. Like Julie Andrews in the Sound of Music I pictured us hiking Yosemite mountains and biking Glenwood Canyon along the Colorado River, in harmony. Other than the techno music from my son’s iPad game, the RV is barely humming on day 16 and the whine more plentiful than wine.  RV life is even more confining without a working generator and air conditioning on the road. An $800 consolation prize concession from the RV owner no longer worth the inconvenience when forced to reroute and forgo simple pleasures like the Glenwood Hot Springs pool, unable to leave our barking Schnoodles to overheat in an RV.  The novelty of hauling 30 pounds of panting tail uphill on bike (both ways) was beginning to wear off when Annie damn near accosted me on the Glenwood Spr