Mood of the day: Real or Faux ?

When temperature hits -27c you know that your skill in layering clothes will be useless because the only thing you should do is layering 4 thick sweaters and thus look like a piñata. However, when you have 2 business meetings that morning you have to improvise your ass off. Here we go…

First layer
Bottom: thermal legging
Top: thermal tank top and tee
Head: faux fur hat

Second layer
Bottom: Zara navy skinny trousers
Top: Vintage yellow gold blouse
Head: hubby’s grey wool hat

Third and fourth layer
Top:
Real vintage rabbit fur vest from BFF who since she no longer has any idea what winter is living Down Under has generously lent long term one of her most precious belongings to her slob ‘yours truly’ friend. That is real friendship for you.

Faux fur vest from the slob friend/me.

Fifth layer
Grey coat not seen on pic because … I am sweating enough as it is.

I have an unfinished debate (mostly with myself because DH simply rolls his eyes calling me an hypocrite) about real/faux fur. One side of me screams outrage and the other side tries to justify myself ‘it is really, really old so there’s no much I could have done about it back then, right?’. It just feels so warm and soft arggggh

Anyways turns out that I could not have chosen a better outfit for the day because the freaking day sucked. Today I learned the hard way about ethics and work standards in business. It’s not because you care to the point of bankrupting your family and alienating everyone about a comma on a slide that others care too. Fakers and ‘all talk, no show’ are everywhere. And they are going to try to fuck you.

So here I was in a cab wondering ‘why the fuck am doing this to myself?’, ‘why am I so arrogant to think that I can win it all?, ‘how can you avoid sweat marks on blouses? ‘, ‘do I need a big slap on the head as a reality check?’, ‘am I doing this just to piss off my mom?’

69 blocks and at least 3 imaginary assassination plots later, I decided that I, me, myself was real. What I want to say and do is real. Fuck the fakers. Mark these words: YOU WILL NOT BRING DOWN (think of the #wickedmusical I.e. High pitch, looking all green, angry and fucking mental).

Special thanks to Natasha who when asked ‘why should I keep on, girl? ‘ simply answered ‘because you’re too fabulous’ #reallove

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P for President

I write a blog so I don’t forget things; like how much I hurt, how much I worked, how much I laughed, how much I loved…Bla Bla Bla

Today, I do not want to ever forget some precious moments with my daughter. A day will probably come when her smart ass attitude will frustrate me to no end, when I will ‘expect’ her comments and when I will no longer stop in my tracks because the words coming out of her mouth just silence me and blow my mind. Sorry if this sounds pretentious but I am too proud of her not to share. OK, I will now pass over the vomit bucket 🙂

Anyway, here are some keepsakes from P, age 4.

On death

‘Mom, we are all getting old and we are all going to die, right?’

Yes…’ I replied, choking lightly and thinking ‘Shit I AM going to DIE!!!!’

‘Why?’

“Eh…to make place for you and your family. If we all stay and hang out, there will be too many of us and you won’t have space to grow and do stuff’.

‘I don’t like that you have to die’.

‘It’s OK; I will always be somewhere watching you.’

‘Do promise you will watch me, OK? Because if you stop watching (as in looking at me), I will be lost.’

My heart really tightened at that moment because it was so innocent, simple, and genuine. Of course, children grow up obsessed with parental approval. So, what do I need to do not to screw it up?  Me and so many of my friends grew up always feeling that we were not and will never be enough. Adult happiness becomes so evasive. Of course we cannot put all the blame on our old folks but I wonder when parents stop watching and start judging. When do parents turn from being ‘compasses’ into unsatisfied coaches ?

On her favorite books

I always thought that kids had this one book they cherished for ever and would carry everywhere; books about pigs, princesses, dogs and so on. A kind of literary comforter.

P changes ‘I cannot live without them’ books every 2 months. Among her recent obsessions: the illustrated Bible, the French – Lao pocket dictionary and the signed memoir by Condoleezza Rice ‘No Higher Honor’…Difficult to imagine these books as comforters.

She turns pages after pages, ‘reads’ intensely, nods, closes the books, re-opens the books and nods again. This stuff has officially freaked me out. That and when yesterday she told me ‘Mom when you decide to learn the guitar, I will tune it for you. I know how to do it, I saw Dad do it, it has to make a special sound when you pull the string.’ She has to be the world’s biggest bullshit express or what???

On being nice

‘I don’t understand why you ask me to be nice. It is not easy; it is very difficult to be nice all the time! How can you do this? What you ask is not fair.’

I am still pondering what to respond to this.

On logic

G & P’s new passive aggressive jousting is calling each other ‘Poop’. It absolutely drives them nuts and really upsets them. I mean it. They kick each other’s heads and they’ll be fine. They strangle each other and they’ll be fine. They steal each other’s food and they’ll be fine. But if the word ‘poop’ comes out, all hell breaks loose. Yesterday morning, P was bawling her eyes out: ‘G told me that I was poop’.

Me:’Well, he is your TWIN brother so if you are poop, he is poop too.’

DH was assuredly playing along: ‘Yes it is true. If you are poop, you get it from us so Mama is poop and I am poop and thus HE is poop too’.

We were feeling very smug about our stellar common sense but P started crying even louder. I tried her to calm her repeating: ‘Stop crying and just tell him he is poop too like everyone else.’

To which she screamed: ‘But stop it!!! I don’t want to be part of a family of poop!!!!’

DH and I turned crimson from embarrassment. She did make an awfully good point. As for the two us, a bunch of idiots…really hahahaha.

On race

We live in a culturally very diverse neighborhood and from time to time some racial tensions just ignite on the bus or the subway. This morning an African American woman called some hispanic folks ‘cockroaches’ and ‘immigrants’ preaching a revisionist take on American History in which Africans were the indigenous population of America. Profanities ensued. L was confused like hell and I was just relieved that it was not older P or G who was riding the bus with me. So yeah, I wonder every day about what is my kids’ understanding of cultural and ethnic differences. I tried to start a conversation by asking P:

‘Do you think Mama looks more like your friend I’s mom (who is Asian Korean) or your friend K’s mom (who is French Caucasian)?’

She paused, smiled and said: ‘Mom, you are beautiful. That’s it’. DH looked at me beaming and we both concluded that she just understood it all. She has just cracked international conflicts and world peace.

Just like that.

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Picture below by Helene McGuire

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To Heart or not to Heart

I hate valentines day. I don’t think about valentines day because I don’t do valentines day. Every year I only get reminded about it when I suddenly realize that I am walking on streets that are pink and red like…hmmm…like the opening of a bad erotic movie from the late 70s or something like that. Or when suddenly my local grocery store looks like a rose greenhouse.

That’s when I really get annoyed because my Friday routine of buying myself some flowers generates a ‘aww she is the one giving the flowers’ look. It really pisses me off. You see, DH very rarely buys me flowers not because he does not think about it but because I am so anal about floral arrangements that he learnt a long, long time ago that he very rarely can get it right! Buying myself flowers gives me a strange sense of empowerment and valentines day just ruins it for me this year! Argggg.

This year I was also reminded early because the kids teachers kept telling me about valentines cards and after 2-3 friendly reminders I understood that it was not optional but actual homework. Of course I refuse to buy stuff for something we hate celebrating so I decide that the kids/I will do homemade cards …whining all along. And that’s when having twins just takes it to another level.

Especially when each twin says ‘NO mom!!!! I really, really, have to do a card for all (19) my classmates and my teachers because they will be sad if they don’t get one!’

To which I reply :’ Aww that is so sweet and generous of you! I am really proud of you!’

But what I really think is: ‘Little fucker. Really? You cannot seriously like ALL of them and our cards suck anyway so believe me it is not a TREAT!!!’

On a high note, DH told me: ‘my (male) colleagues are so jealous of me.’

Why?’

‘Because we don’t do valentines and my wife does not give a fuck about it’.

And that makes me very, very happy. Having wealthy bankers who have everything be jealous of us for one night is priceless 🙂

Happy #valentinesday for all who celebrate it; for others tonight wear some earplugs for the loud sex next door and we’ll be fine!

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Mood of the day: lady LEGO

It is weird that I never did a MOTD post on color combos because I have been obsessed with color blocking since I was 6 year-old. Of course back then, my classmates thought it was color blindness not color blocking…. Idiots.

This morning, I was in a rather happy mood and decided to go for a daring combo of petrol green and red which may well lead to a ‘hello, Mrs Christmas troll’ reaction but hey who cares? It is #NYFW after all and everybody has moved to Lincoln Center and whereabouts to watch some eye candy and fashionistas strutting around with much swag (yeah!) and self-awareness (yikes!).  I read somewhere that (stylish) peeps get paid for just walking in the street (and no, they are not hookers) in the hope to catch street fashion photographers. So I am basically safe and sound here up in Harlem.

Anyways, here’s the result:

– Petrol green faux leather leggings from Caribbean Queen which I thought I would never ever buy from because 1- I cannot help feeling like an idiot/fraud wearing anything called Caribbean Queen (I mean, seriously only Rihanna should be called that), 2- I am way too old to wear their stuff, 3- their aesthetic is so not mine (floral prints, nope, nope, nope)…but as I always say, one should never hold a prejudice (especially when the stuff is on sale) ….Well, after 2 weeks of trial the verdict is ‘I LOVE these fucking leggings!!!!’: my legs almost look like pre-kids legs! I still should not bend but I will take any small victory 🙂

– a navy turtle neck wool dress by Theory, which is one of my ‘grown up’ go to outfits

– a red GANT corduroy jacket

– a hand beaded sans cuffs leather bracelet that has a very place in my heart. I always feel so humbled when I wear it because it was designed and made by my cousin 30 years ago. The bracelet was her final project for her embroidery and fashion techniques qualification. A year before she had dropped her accounting studies much to her parents’ dismay because she sat down in the Parisian metro near a woman who was hand weaving and told her to check out her Fashion institute. Followed her heart and passion. After her graduation, she went on working for Maison Lesage …and Jean Paul Gaultier, Karl Lagerfeld, Nicolas Ghesquieres etc. #mostinspiringjourneyEVER

– and because it is ‘brain freeze’ cold season in New York, a white wool hat purchased during summer on a Philipp island off the coast of  Australia. My shopping habits are so random.

Happy Fashion Week! A little gift too, the new Rag & Bone menswear F/W 2015 with Baryshnikov and Lil Buck (L-O-V-E)

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Out of spectrum

‘Anyways, Hank says I have to start taking pictures of people now. Cause they may be a pain in the ass, but they pay to get their pictures taken. If I keep taking pictures of bugs and lizards, I’ll end up poor and homeless.’ Max Braverman, Parenthood

If G hadn’t been sick with a stomach bug forcing me to hold his hand for hours while he was passed out on the sofa and thus forcing me to think about stuff, I would probably have never written this post.  The last two months felt like running on an ice bank, wearing 20 lb. of winter gear, sweating like a pig, while trying to escape a pack of famished snow wolves. Oh wait, replace snow wolves by kids and yeah that’s about right. I am NOT kidding. I woke up this morning and it was -19c outside; is that even possible ? Not only it was -19c but when I complained about it to my building doorman, he laughed as if walking with a brain freeze was the coolest thing in the world. Fucking New Yorkers, what is wrong with you  🙂 ?

Anyway, I was thinking about the last 2 months. What happened?

– Meltdown free Christmas with my in-laws (looks like I am growing up)

– Me screaming Total Eclipse of the Heart standing on a chair at Thor & Archibald’s NYE party (looks like I still have some growth to do)

– Talking to some investors about Another Garde half expecting to be told Fuck Off but instead got told ‘Keep talking, I am listening’

– Deciding that L will definitely be our last child even if none of the three makes it to an Ivy league college or becomes a chef or plays in the NBA which means talks of sterilization are raging at home and made us realize that, after all is done and said, we are all bare mammals. Yikes.

– Organizing a batman and cinderella birthday party for G & P for a dozen old and new friends, feeling very proud of not dropping anyone while dancing with  swinging the kids on Chandelier by Sia

– Keep talking some more to investors who are still not saying ‘Fuck Off’ (yeah)

– Overcompensating for the fact that my parents never volunteered for any class field trips or fundraisers by saying yes to everything the teachers ask: mystery reading, French culture workshop, chairing the Marketing & Fundraising committee for the school’s gala (in hindsight, Papilao & Mamilao = genius and RLM = fucking loser needing a life)… Note to self: for future reference, ALWAYS read properly papers that are given to you else you WILL end up going to the Gala committee chairs’ selection night with 5 other morons thinking that you were going to a general parents/teachers assembly meeting.  And boy did you get fucked.

Despite all this, what occupied my mind the most while nursing G was this phrase:‘You should read the ‘Out-of-Sync child book’.

3 early intervention evaluations did not do it.

Conversations with his day care staff team did not do it.

Months of frustration and wondering ‘Why this? Why that?’ did not do it.

Weeks of speech and occupational therapy did not do it.

Out-of-Sync. 3 words did it. They opened my eyes: yes L, my baby boy was wonderfully quirky but yes, there are things we should be doing about it and that’s OK. Everything will be OK. I think. I know. But let’s backtrack for a moment.

First, it all started as a running joke: L the ‘indestructible’, the ‘kingpin of Harlem’, ‘the clumsy giant’. Gradually questions started to pop up ‘he is still not really talking, is he?’, ‘why the fuck is he always head butting us to show love? It really hurts, doesn’t it?’, ‘he really never listens, does he?’

And then, there was a little bit of sadness: ‘how come he does not have any friends besides his siblings?”, ‘how come he does not know his brother’s name?’ 

Finally it was more questions, more often… And with these questions, my prejudice against American childhood professionals being way too eager to diagnose Hyper Activity Attention Deficit disorders, multiple forms of autism and so on started to falter. So we accepted evaluations.

After hours of being under the microscope, dozens and dozens of ‘can he do this/that?’, ‘what does he do when this and that?’, my heart started to tighten from worry but also from guilt. Guilt from stuff I thought and said like ‘he is fine, he is just a little asshole!’, ‘he can do more stuff I am sure but he just wants to piss us off’, ‘he is not violent, he just has siblings’, ‘he’s too smart, that’s why he does not talk and slave people’s asses instead’‘I am too busy, he can miss another baby gym class, right? I mean, he does not do much there anyway…’

Fucking Mom of the Year. It’s OK, I’ll get over it but still it stings.

Anyway, for the last month he has been receiving free speech therapy, occupational therapy, special instructions therapy (thank you New York Early Intervention program; you rock!). But still I could not understand any of it. What is it about L? Is it because we are a bilingual home? Is it autism? Is it just a phase? Will I be able to communicate with him ‘normally’? Will he stop biting my belly like a fucking vampire? Am I crazy to actually find him extremely intelligent while I cannot understand a fucking word he says and that specialists tell me he is atypical? I wanted to play it cool to no avail. I wanted to understand what the fuck was going on without giving in to paranoia.  I was at a loss… until I heard these 3 words ‘Out-Of-Sync’.

They brought me peace because I am fine with ‘out-of-sync’, actually. I can do ‘out-of-sync’, I can deal with ‘out-of-sync’, I can live with ‘out-of-sync’, I can support ‘out-of-sync’, I can be proud of ‘out-of-sync’, I can find bliss in ‘out-of-sync’, and in hindsight I probably fell in love with and married ‘out-of-sync’. And to be honest, aren’t we all wonderfully a little ‘out-of-sync’? I shall hope so.

PS: Sensory Processing Disorder is the exact diagnosis L was given.

PS2: I need to stop binge watching Parenthood. Worst tear jerker EVER. And I am not a cryer. And also L. is not Max. So I really need to stop crying every time Max is on the fucking screen. Idiot mama.

PS3: L has increased his vocabulary in the last week including words like ‘caca’ (‘poop’) which makes me run around even more as I am attempting to potty train him. The devil is using it OFTEN and then laughs saying ‘No (c) -omin’ 🙂 I am telling you, he is a mastermind.

 

Heavenly creatures

After my downer of a post 3 weeks ago, I have been slowly putting my shit together, regaining some stamina for my project, talking more openly to DH, and most importantly appreciating better my accomplishments as a mom.

A friend without children recently told me: ‘you are losing your head about achieving stuff, making something out of your life but you do realize you have achieved a lot right? You have a big family and a functional one too. You will always time for the rest.’

I don’t know if it is her comment or street Christmas lights or the fact that I am still digesting my thanksgiving dinner but I woke up in a disgustingly sappy mood, my heart full of love for my 3 ‘creatures’, as my friend Levon calls them. So this ‘awesomely crazy and cute stuff they say’ post is for you monkeys. Even if I often complain about you, I am thankful for you. I am. Enjoy this post because tomorrow I will be back to my bitchy self.

G: ‘So there is this house and there is a lion in there and a wolf knocks on the door and the lion is so scared he locks the door …brrrr’

Me thinking: I see that family membership to the Bronx zoo has been a good investment.

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G:‘L is a silly baby but he is too cute …sigh.’

Me thinking: Awww.

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P: ‘I want to be a big person when I grow up but a big person like Daddy not a big little person like Mommy.’

Me thinking: Fair enough.

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G:
(When peeing first in the morning) ‘I have to hold strong because I have a big zizi (‘willy’), so so big.’

Me thinking: boys will be boys 🙂

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L: (when prompted to say ‘Thanks’) ‘Ti tyou’

Me thinking: Awww.

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P: ‘I hate all boys at my school…except for one.’

Me: ‘Who is THAT boy?’

P: ‘It’s G (her twin brother) because he is really so sweet and so, so cute’.

Me saying: ‘Awww’ and thinking:’Remember this next time you try to strangle him’.

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P: ‘Why are you sad Mama? There are no reasons for you to be sad because you have me, papa, G and L. You cannot be sad. We are all here.’

Me thinking: Nobel Prize.

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To finish here’s a snippet from my conversation with P yesterday. I was talking with DH about old times and P asked:

Was I in your belly then?

‘No’.

‘Where was I then”

‘Well …you did not exist then’.

‘What?????’ shell-shocked I could have a life without her in it 🙂

‘Let’s just say you were a wish’.

Her eyes lit up and she screamed: ‘Yes I was a pink wish!!! But then you prefer grey…would have it been better if you had a grey wish instead of a pink wish?’

I was not sure what to say. I finally answered: ‘No, because you, my pink wish, are here. I have millions of wishes including the grey one but they are not here and it is ok. I am very happy about it.’

And then P flashed a kick ass and proud smile. Melt.

Have a great week end!!!

Photos by Helene McGuire, LN Photographie

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Bare

I pondered about whether or not to share this post. I initially wrote this as an email to DH but before hitting the ‘send’ button I thought ‘every single mom probably goes through this. It is all fucked up sometimes and I wish I had the courage to lay bare these moments and surges with other women as they happen and not 1 day after I (somewhat) processed the feelings and tried to make sense of them’. That is when instead of the email being sent to DH it went straight to redlipstickmama.com

Hey,

Hope your day is going well and that the jet lag is not too bad.

I need to share with you that I am having a burnout as an entrepreneur, a mom and a wife.

I am getting paranoid/paralyzed about failing, not doing enough or at least not well enough. I feel like everything, everyone around me is putting pressure on me. Which probably is inaccurate and I (and maybe also our parents) am the only one who put these pressures on me. On my fucking own.

What annoys me is that I am numb today. Like I don’t care anymore of what people think, like I don’t care anymore about raising to my own expectations. It is so not me. But I am tired.

I know I have to take it easy and take positive and constructive time for me without guilt but to be honest I don’t know how to do this. 
Today I just want to crawl into bed and sleep (although I haven’t been able to for weeks now). I have a meeting but I cancelled it ; I don’t want to the garage* because I think it will make me cry and I just want to hide. I just want to be a slob, a lazy person without being terrified that I might be depressed. Can anyone do this?

There is nothing you can do about it; I just need to say it.

This makes me look like a cry baby but today I just don’t give a shit.

*my co-working space

S

NB for my readers: as I am sending this, I saw on the Instagram feed a 20 year-old friend this: ‘We are born to be real, not to be perfect’. How fitting. So wise.
No lipstick mama

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Mood of the day: 3 Squared Denim

I haven’t done any of these MOTD posts in a while because we swapped rooms with the kids and I de facto lost my ‘photo shoot studio’. Yes, after 3 years of hearing G plead for a bigger bed, we gave in, upgraded them from their cribs and surrendered the master bedroom to G, P and L. The war is done and lost. How do I feel about it?

People have been telling us things like:‘you are such amazing parents’, ‘you are better parents than we are etc.’ And I just smile in silence because the reality is ‘I feel Shit’. I MISS my big room!!!! Every night, I now bump my shin against the AC unit when I stumble out of bed as P wakes me up screaming ‘Pipi PIPI!!!!’ while standing in the dark like a freaking ghost. Every morning, I have to run naked from my bathroom to my new room where my underwear drawer is. I always try to do this very quickly but G often manages to intercept me to pull my belly fat…which just cracks him up to no end. Petit con.

I did keep 1/5 of my old room for my clothing/fashion craft closets (very Carrie Bradshaw with no Manolo Blahniks and more GAP sweatpants) as one of the terms and conditions of the peace agreement. But I eventually caught L playing with my leather hole punch…Not cool. You can pee on me in the middle of the night but MY tools belt is OFF limit.

Anyway, I was saying, I can hardly move in my room without knocking down a dirty laundry basket or bumping into the printer so I thought MOTD posts are O-V-E-R. And then DH said: ‘Why did you stop this? That was kind of cool..’ So here’s a trial. Apologies for the over saturated pics #smallandbrightroom 🙂

Top: battered denim men’s shirt , previously owned by DH

Bottoms: battered GAP jeans

Jacket: fake denim jacket with a handmade scottish plaid bow on a black safety pin; this tiny stupid red thing always makes me happy because I am imagining the spirit of kick ass Dame Westwood watching over me…ha.

Warby Parker sunglasses

PS: I also recently decided to have the collar up every time I wear a men’s shirt or men’s jacket as ‘my thing’/’vague attempt at a signature look’. Awesome or Get A Life woman?

 

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(Kind of) mellow Fall weekend

We always have busy week ends because staying in the house is barely an option with 3 hyper active tots and 1 ‘cannot stay inside’ husband. There is this underlying fear that if we don’t do anything we may really kill each other. It is a little bit like a retired couple whose kids are off to college and start crazy bunny booking all these AirBnB places all over the world to avoid getting a divorce.

‘Me on my own’ weekends would look like this: sweatpants, slippers, comfort food, TV shows marathon (I would watch anything, absolutely anything… I once got addicted to a girly teen show titled ‘Make It of Break It’, I am such a LOSER), wine, and planning (but failing) to wax.

But this weekend, we actually had no plans.  Absolutely none. Or so I thought…

Saturday: Black is Beautiful.

Breakfast and lunch: no recollection of what we ate. We are now eating all together at week ends and to be honest it looks more like: kids drop-eating, mama swallow-eating and papa scream-eating. People write books and articles about French families taking their time to eat together while calmly talking about Ebola or Bernard Henry Levy…yeah right, not fucking happening in my house.

Time I took my shower: 1pm; which is so ghetto since we did actually have something we had to go to. How could I forget about P’s first class play date??? Some parents had organized a gathering in Central Park to get to know each other outside the stressful morning school drop also known as ‘please don’t talk to me cause I haven’t brushed my teeth yet’ awkward morning meeting.

It was great to see all the kiddos play together and actually see that P knew their names. It is impossible to have any idea of what is happening at school because every question we ask my ‘usually cannot shut her mouth’ daughter  is answered by a ‘No’:

‘Do you have friends? No.

Did you enjoy your soccer class? No

Did you play soccer? No.

What songs did you learn? No.’

It got so bad that I seriously started to think that the whole school, after school and extra curricular activities were a big Ponzi scheme because:

‘What do you in school then? Sleep, go to the restrooms and eat.’ Okayyyyy then…..

The plot thickened when many parents shared similar intel. Everyone laughed it out ‘Ha ha these kids are nuts’ but I could feel it, I could see it…Some of us were getting the Carrie Mathison crazy/million of thoughts look ‘Oh my god, what if it was not a school but a cult?’ Mouaaaaa.

After running 20 blocks after my kids on their scooters, I looked at DH and silently implored ‘let’s get a beer at our local’. Two hours later, we are barging with 3 tots wearing scooter helmets into the anniversary of Bebe noir, a clothing retail store, where African beats are blasting and gorgeous shop assistants are showing us their new collection. P is busting some devil moves on the dance floor, G is ransacking the clothing racks and stealing a blue nail varnish and L…well he has decided to peek into the fitting rooms…Initial high pitch screaming was then followed by a huge ‘Awwwwww’ followed by L finding firm breasts to rest his head on for the rest of the evening.

Let’s be clear here. I keep telling people that L is not as social as his siblings and very clingy with his mom. Obviously if you do look like Rihanna, he’ll pretend he has no mother nor father. Poor little orphan.  Come to think about it, I should ditch his ass in this store each time I need to do grocery shopping on the other side of the road. I am SO doing this.

Can I also say that 3 little helmets running around women with long legs in high heels is very stressful??? I kept thinking: bowling, strike, …oh shit!!! I did have 2 pints of beer…I know.

Time we all went to bed: 11pm

Sunday: Nikita, I will never be.

DH got a nasty bug so Black Ops today is Me on My Fucking Own. OK, he did set up a CIA assets bootcamp in our courtyard using all the tents, tunnels, outdoor tricks we have before signing off for the day…but still. It was a lonely, very lonely mission.

DRONES. EXPLOSION. NO EXTRACTION.

What did I do? I stared at my legs for a long time thinking shit like:

 ‘I will never buy again from H & M because the sweat pants I got last month were basically disintegrating in front of me (and last time I checked I do not have freaking invisible lazer beam mutant eyes!). ‘

‘How long will L keep this fake tattoo on his arm? It’s been 2 weeks. Freaking ridiculous.’

‘Who sings that song I have been obsessing about on Spotify? No, no, I cannot ask anyone about it because my taste in music is shitty at best. It is so embarrassing how shitty it is.’

‘I am addicted to Instagram.’ 

‘Why am I wearing Penelope’s Halloween golden tiara?’

‘I wonder what BP (Business Partner) is doing now in Joshua Tree Park?’

It got really scary when after an hour, I started to have the same thought popping back in an angrier mode like: ‘I am never fucking buying SHIT again from H &M!!!’ 

Yeah, could never be a spy. Would NEVER pass the solitary confinement test.

Oh also… time I took my shower: N/A.

Have a great week everyone!!!

Some random pics from my weekend…

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The End of the road ?

I waited for all this to happen for a long long time. The day my three kids would start pre school/day care and will no longer camp out in our living room. The day DH would start a new job. The day I would be a full-time entrepreneur. This day was also earmarked as the potential end of Red Lipstick Mama.

Last month was a hot mess of emotions, stress and unexpected new truths.

First stop: DH
After 3 months of ‘That’s the best time of our lives/I cannot wait for it to end/What did we do?/What are we going to do?/Where are we going to live?’ turmoil, many questions were put to an end with DH’s job offer. I probably got a couple of ulcers over this one: from 3 maybes, to a very long radio silence, to 2 maybes, to a long radio silence, to 1 yes and ‘please wait a bit’, to ‘why is no one talking to me anymore?‘, to finally ‘I am very sorry, I really like you guys…’ AND ‘yes, yes, and yes I am accepting your offer’.

Watching (and supporting) DH call, text, go back and forth between prospective employers and sweat profusely was more painful than watching a Michael Bay movie. One thing I know now for sure though is that my man will never be able to have an affair behind my back. He does not have the stomach for it: cannot withhold intel when being grilled, feels like a traitor when two-texting and…stammers way too much under duress. Yeah, the minute he’ll start flirting with someone I’ll sniff it out of him within seconds.

Second stop: L or ‘Blu’ Gunderson
We registered ‘le bebe’ at a French day care. He was beaming with pride on that September morning when we told him ‘that’s it, L, it is your moment’ . DH and I got all emotional; our baby was taking off. We are talking about ‘my lump’, the critter that still crawls 4 times a night into our bed to pull my belly fat and kicks his dad.  He is the one (L, if you read in your twenties and are pissed off, tough shit. You were a little sucker) whom, we are convinced, would end up living next door, crashing our dining table every evening and asking us to act as matchmakers.

I felt a lot of relief and a little bit of guilt. I never quite managed to kick away the feeling that I have somehow failed him. I have never offered him the same stimulation that his siblings received by having a devoted nanny caring for them since they were 3 months old. L only had one friend; he missed zillion gym classes, never attended French classes, very rarely had music classes. Instead he would ‘hang’ at the local supermarket, entertain himself by knocking down the nuts tubs and get dragged away from the cookies aisle.

Therefore I was over the moon about his new ‘life’ . Of course after 1 week, the day care asked if we could pick him up earlier in the day because he could not stand seeing other kids leave before him. He apparently is just LOOSING it Chucky style…Story of my life.

Third stop: G or the boy in denial
I tried to talk to G about his beloved nanny no longer coming everyday. I tried to talk to him about pre school. I tried to talk to him about not being in the same class as his twin sister. And every single time I was met with either a long silence or the same sentence: ‘OK, can I watch TV now?’ I was thus unprepared to see my independent G crumble down, scream, cry, kick back, pull my hair so I would not leave him behind on his first day of school. Not prepared at all. Children and adults were crying and I had no clue what to do. Part of me wanted to hug G and flee with him and part of me felt ‘happy’ he was reacting and crying…The teachers were handing out some packs of tissues and mine is still full and stapled in the kids’ pre school folder. Every time I see the pack, I feel proud that ‘I did not cry’ and ask myself ‘Am I a heartless bitch?’

Fourth stop:P or the Ninja Princess
I can be tough(er) on my girl. God knows why. But I am going to say this now: with all the shit the family has been though lately, this girl is BOSS. No tears. No drama. Solid like a rock. Still totally nuts. She has been nagging me for a week now about me asking her very catholic teacher from her very catholic school if I, her atheist mom, could paint her finger nails with black varnish. Okayyyyy…

Fifth stop: Moi
I have finally time to focus on my startup Another Garde, my project and actually justify how I dilapidated our family savings for this venture. Turns out I don’t have a ‘my project’.  There’s nothing, I realize, I can compartmentalize anymore. It is everything together in a hot mess (L’s speech delay, G’s ‘I don’t want to go school’, P’s peeing in her pants in class, doing financial projections, managing a programmer when I just very recently learnt what UX meant :/). Yes, it is all meshed together and it is all fine until…my chest starts hurting and I have some tingling in my arm.

Next thing I know, I am looking over Central Park with pads on my body wondering how I even got there. EKG results are normal but I am being asked:

‘How do you handle your anxiety?’

‘What do you mean? I don’t really feel anxiety. I am always the same. Like a flat line’

‘No breathing exercise? No meditation? No exercising?’

‘Nope. Maybe, I used to write more.’

‘Like a diary?’

‘Well I guess, a blog about a crazy mom. But stopped for a while…’

WHAT??? No blogging = heart palpitations?

Is my body telling me I can never let my alter ego go because she is MY only true project?

Strange shit happens.

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