Weekend Open Thread

It’s a holiday weekend, y’all!

DD’s school district gave them Friday and Monday off, so it’s a 4-day weekend for us. Dropped the kids off with my parents last night and went to see Django Unchained. It was like a modern spaghetti western. Funny and gory and thrilliing and uncomfortable, all at once. And I learned that I would watch Christoph Waltz read the phone book, he was so brilliant and magnetic. It was highly entertaining.

That leaves Lincoln on my pre-Oscar “Must See” list. Going to try my darndest to squeeze it in before next weekend.

ALSO: over on facebook, we have been discussing the possibility of a Mass MotherTalkers Meetup. M3, if you will. Front-running cities are Chicago and Las Vegas. I am stoked at the possibility! If you’re not part of the facebook group and want in on the ongoing discussion, have one of us add you. I am sure we will post more details here once some firm plans start to take shape.

What are you up to this weekend? Chat away!

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76 thoughts on “Weekend Open Thread

  1. Lucy has been begging to have a sleepover and I think she’s not ready. Last time we babysat 1 family friend overnight, they didn’t go to sleep until after midnight and Lucy was a complete a$$ the next day, throwing the mother of all meltdowns as we were getting ready for church. So we came up with an alternative–a pajama party from 5-8pm. She invited 3 friends to wear pjs and brings sleeping bags. They are going to make pizza, do a craft, have a dance party, and watch a movie in their sleeping bags on the living room floor.

    This is a test for Lucy. She’s been getting a lot better at saying goodbye to friends when time together is over, but I think her difficulty has cost her invitations to playdates. We’ve been doing a lot of talking about being a good hostess today and about saying goodbye gracefully. Crossing my fingers that she can stay calm and have a great time!

    • I hope it goes well! When my second was too young for a sleepover, we had a morning birthday party for her one year. The girls came at 8 or 9 in pjs with stuffed animals and we had pancakes. I loved that party.

      • SO far, so good! Girls have had a dance party, ran around screaming, painted picture frames, made and eaten pizza, and devoured some cookies. All in 90 minutes. Now they are snuggled in their sleeping bags munching popcorn and watching a Monster High movie for the next 75 minutes. Whew! After it’s over, it’ll only be about 10 minutes until pickup time. Everyone is getting along well, not a single fight or cross word yet. Lots of squealing and giggling and yelling, “I farted!” Crossing my fingers that Lucy can hold it together when everyone has to go home.

    • that’s what we did for Jess’s birthday last year; like you, we felt that she was just waaaay too young to handle the full sleep-over experience. It worked out really well and she wants another this year.

      • Maybe you are the one who mentioned it? I know I didn’t come up with the idea on my own, but I don’t know who deserves the credit. 4 kids (incl. Lucy) was good, but I actually think there could have been a couple more and it would have also been fine. We have a small house, so more than about 6-7 would be just too many. Here’s my question, I knew there couldn’t be 3, because of the problems that sets up with 1 being excluded. Do you think it needs to be an even number? Or would 5 or 7 be fine?

        • I got the idea from Aussiegeek, so I can’t take credit.

          I think 5 or 7 sounds like a manageable number. I’m not convinced it “has” to be an even number, because you can still have exclusions even with. More than three, less than 10 are my boundaries, and it works out ok.

  2. DD2 is taking the SAT this morning. Fun times.

    DD1 is overwhelmed and had a bit of a meltdown on the phone with me yesterday. I’m hoping she’ll come home home next weekend for a break. I’m also hoping she’ll rethink some activities she’s doing just for the resume.

  3. M went to a sleepover last night. It was a birthday thing first, at the bowling alley. I misread the invite and got her there an hour late. #MommyFail Then at 3:45 this morning I got a call from her that she wanted to come home. Got over there and all of the girls were still up- except the mom. Maybe I’m crazy, but when you have a house full of 9 year-old girls, don’t you make sure they go to sleep at some point? M had ben trying to go to sleep since midnight and she was hysterical and exhausted. Got her home and settled down by about 4:30, but was so angry at the other mom that I couldn’t got to sleep until about 6. She’s missed dance and gymnastics today because she’s exhausted and I get madder every time I think about it.

    Am I nuts to think that this other mom was irresponsible for not supervising more closely?

    • Coming out of lurkdom to say THAT IS CRAZY. Also, why did I think it was so hard to log in? I really just pushed a button!

      Ah, Mothertalkers. I can’t quit you ;). Nice to be back! I wanna join the FB group, too. How?

    • I’m not sure I’d go so far as to call this irresponsible or a failure of supervision – staying up far too late on a special occasion may have been kind of the point. At least in the kids’ minds, but parents accommodate this to different degrees – not everyone is a rigid enforcer of sleep hygiene on non-school nights. 9 seems a bit young for this degree of freedom, though. Even with slightly older kids I wouldn’t let them go to 3 myself – I usually chase them into bed by 11 and check back by 12 to insist that the lights are supposed to be off, though it’s not necessarily quiet in there before 1. But that’s me – one of my son’s friends is considered the best host for a sleepover because his parents are more tolerant. (I’ve noticed that kids with teen brothers get more latitude; perhaps parental resistance has already been worn down.) In any case, M clearly needs a solid night of sleep so now that she’s entering the sleepover age you probably should clarify the groundrules with the parents first.

    • When you say “make sure they go to sleep,” what do you mean? If you mean, make sure they spead out their sleeping bags and turn out the lights, then yes. I think that’s responsible. If she just went to bed without even getting them set up for sleep, that isn’t cool. But you can’t make sure they sleep. I remember staying awake long after lights out, talking, playing light as a feather, freezing the underwear of the ones who fell asleep earliest. My poor mom would come out and tell us to quiet down several times, and I do remember once when she was pregnant that she finally laid down on the couch in the room with us. Total buzzkill. No other mom had ever done anything beyond telling us to settle down and my friends made fun of me about that.

      I think it’s pretty typical that kids are exhausted the morning after, right? Maybe the expectations have changed since I went to sleepovers.

      • When I went to pick her up, the sleeping bags were still rolled up by the door. They were in PJs but that was it, the TV was on, they’d been playing tag in the basement and listening to music according to M- it was too loud to even try to sleep. I thought we were clear with the mom about what the sleep schedule was and that M had a full day today. (When other parents have told us that, we’ve made sure we understood what the expectation for the kid’s sleep was and done our best to enforce it.) I suppose we just need to not allow sleep overs anymore unless they’re at our house.

        9 just seems too young for a totally hands-off approach to sleep overs, but maybe I’m a curmudgeon.

        • Okay, yeah. That seems pretty ridiculously hands-off. As I said, I guess I would assume that the parents would have a time (10? 11?) when kids need to at least be ready for bed and lying on their sleeping bags so sleep is possible. If the kids just don’t go to sleep because they are too excited, so be it. It sounds like those parents didn’t even try.

    • What I don’t understand is how people can sleep through it. If anyone is up in my house it wakes me up, let alone a bunch of kids making noise.

      I am not nearly tolerant enough of not sleeping myself to let them be up after midnight.

      • That’s my thinking. How were they able to sleep through that craziness? Plus, when M said she told the mom she wanted to go to sleep and the mom said that M should work it out with the other girls.

        I can see staying up late- like 11 or 12 even- but this seemed excessive.

        • It would have been nice if the mom had said something like, “The basement is for people who want to stay up late, but if you want to go to bed earlier you can sleep in (some other location like the kid’s room).” I can see that it is hard to make a group all go to bed earlier because of one guest if the birthday girl, the mom, and the other guests all are fine with people staying up late.

          In any case, sorry you and she ended up with a difficult night!

    • Wow, that totally reminds me of a birthday sleepover I went to at 7 or 8. I was tired and I wanted to sleep, and the other girls all wanted to stay up and do fun things. I think I could have slept if I had moved my bed stuff out of the path or their partying, but I was all self-righteous about sleeping at a sleepover and ended up getting my hair stepped on and getting a bellyache from staying up so far past my bedtime. Looking back, I think of myself as an obnoxious party-pooper type. But I also think it’s important for the hosts to provide a good alternative for kids who need their sleep.

      • She had an awful day yesterday- lots of tears and tummy aches and an unreasonable need to be held. It was like having a toddler again. She’s better this morning- slept for about 14 hours last night- but the first thing she said this morning was “I wish I’d never gone to L’s sleepover. I’m never doing that again.” I told her about Katie’s Liza and her lifelong dislike for sleepovers, just to show her that you don’t *have* to love them. She seemed so relieved. Next time we’ll do the “stay until 9 or 10 and then come home to sleep” thing.

        • Awww…. yeah tell her to do what I used to do with Liza- go to the party, stay til like 11 and then have me come pick her up. Liza as 12 before she got ok with sleepovers… this past summer when she went up to the lake cottage of one of her acting loft pals with 8 other teens and there was a threat of thunderstorms I said ‘I. can. NOT. come get you this time. it’s 90 minutes away” she said “i know..” they went swimming at night, stayed up til 3, woke up at noon and had breakfast for lunch. .she was in heaven.. but NO WAY could she have done this at 9.. NO. Freaking. Way.

            • Hmmm…our situation may be a bit tricky. Lucy is a very very social kid. She would *love* to attend a slumber party, or even just to sleep over at someone’s house. I don’t think there’s any way she’d be calling and wanting to come home. I think at the party, she’d be fine and maybe overly excited and hard to settle down (which wouldn’t be that unusual for kids at a slumber party). I *think* she’d cooperate with the other parents and not be too much of a pain as a guest. The problem is that she is really affected by lack of sleep. It would just be dealing with her the next day that would be the problem. I anticipate conflicts over whether we need to hold her back from what she wants to do to because of the consequences.

  4. Erika, I think the early-morning contingent is pushing hard for Chicago! Especially since 3 of us (lilianna28, Rocky, and Cornflake Girl) live there and can help with planning–and Rocky has offered the use of a 1BR apartment she owns. It’s also way more friendly if we bring kids.

    My vision is sort of, plan several activities (meals, field trips) over Friday-Sunday with downtime in-between, and having a hangout space as well, and people can drop in and out, some things would be MT moms-only and some for spouses and/or kids, etc.

    What would everyone think about a voluntary contribution system for (1) things like cleaning Rocky’s apartment and maybe renting a van or two, and more importantly (2) a sort of scholarship fund so people who can’t afford the full cost could get some help from people who have some to spare?

    Mom of Twins suggested roommates, which is a great idea, but people who are traveling as a family might not want to.

      • Interesting idea–I hadn’t thought of it, because I had figured that people would either leave the kids home or bring the kids *and* partner/etc. Probably a good idea to keep in mind, although if there are only a few extra kids, the extra adults might be able to just absorb them, so to speak.

  5. Infinite Rothko: I wrote you a long response commiserating on the whole parenting of adult-type children on a previous thread. But I can see that it didn’t actually post. Suffice it to say that I sympathize and I find this stage to consist of taking a giant step back and then having to take two small steps forward again in letting them make the big decisions, but still having to take part in them. Ugh.

  6. Thanks HC! I see (above) we are in the same place as far as kids hitting the wall at this point in the semester. DS said yesterday he’s feeling muuuuuch better because the sun came out, so for him I think there might be some SAD-type stuff we haven’t dealt with before as So Calians.

    Negotiating the supportive-but-not-intrusive boundaries is definitely tricky. I’m very glad your DD got a solid 12 hours. We are hoping DS will do nothing but sleep and eat on Spring break. I can’t tell him “don’t schedule any shows” but I sure do want to. He had 2 weeks at Christmas and did 2 shows, plus catching up with everyone, which seemed to take until 4 a.m. most nights, and he went back exhausted :-(

    He moved his radio show so we are listening from 11 – 1 on Sunday mornings. It’s a nice time for DH and I to sit together and do hobbies (he sketches, I doodle). Last semester it was later in the day and we had one of his co-hosts parents over for drinks and chats, which was also nice. DS usually gives us a shout-out and we beam. We’re so dorky.

    Good luck on your DD’s interview! Is it for a summer position, or ???

      • Right?

        I know I’m behind the times but I’m also absurdly happy to finally have a (hand-me-down from home) scanner in my office. I’ve spent far too many hours fighting with the office copy machine, and now I can scan and email a lot of what I was formerly copying and mailing. It’s the little things.

    • I love that you can hear his radio show! That is so great, and totally not dorky- I would feel the same. I really don’t hear DD’s voice much as she mostly texts me so I would enjoy that part too.

      She applied to be a Resident Assistant in the dorms. She won’t find out until March I think, but it would be for next year. It was a two phase interview and that was a lot of her stress, finding out if she made it though to the 2nd interview. She did, and felt good about it- but has no idea how many positions will go to sophomores vs. upperclassmen.

      • Very cool! I think that’s a tremendous experience for kids. Leadership, diplomacy, pragmatism — lots of good stuff for the resume, plus a break on room/board, right?

  7. Today is the first time in 3 weeks I’ve felt like myself. My cold/flu/cold thing is finally lifting and I think I may actually be back to my old self. Is it crazy that I’m actually looking forward to having the energy to do laundry and clean my nasty a$$ house?

  8. My high school class had its 25th reunion last night. It was 3000 miles from here so I didn’t attend but my BFF did and called me with the news. Mostly it was locals but there were some people who flew in to attend. She said it was really hard to recognize people, especially the men. It does seem like women tend to be a bit better preserved at our age. Not losing your hair helps.

    • Well, and also all the time and energy we spend to look better than we do naturally. So are you also 1987? My 25th was in the summer and I didn’t go. Went to the 20th, though, and the report is about the same. The women pretty much looked fantastic and the men really varied a LOT.

      • Yes, ’87 also.

        My parents don’t live there any more – or even in the state – so I almost never go back. I was last there in Oct of 2001 for my friend’s wedding.

  9. L is home for the long weekend. It’s great to have her around, but also she’s very busy, so I”m not sure how much time we’ll have. Friday night she got in just in time for dinner – that was wonderful – I ended the evening sitting on her bed wrapped in quilts, just listening to all that she’s thinking about. Saturday, she went to a TedX conference in Manhattan that was focused on Food Issues. She talked to a lot of like-minded people, and even got some ideas about post-graduation work. She met two friends afterwards, and they (she and one friend) got “home” close to 4am. By coincidence, both DH and I had woken up around 3:15 or so, and he turned to me and said “have you heard from her?” . About 10 minutes later we heard the door open.

    Today we had a lazy morning. I love sitting across the dining room table on a slow weekend day! I walked her and friend to the subway, and they went into Manhattan for another full day in the city. It’s really cold and windy today – I wouldn’t be shocked if their day is somewhat shorter than they had planned – it’s exhausting to walk in such cold wind.

    This has been a tremendous growth year for both of my kids – Seeing L go off to a professional conference, and knowing she can hold her own there; listening to S tell her about what he’s learning in school…..it’s not always easy, but when things click it is so awesome!

    • It makes me so happy to read about your life with both your older kids and get a glimpse into what parenting will be like in a few years. *I* will be much older than you at that point, however. Maybe I won’t hear the door open at 4am…

      • Math homework can suck it…

        It’s funny as an adult to realize how little of it you use in day to day life beyond about 7th-8th grade level, unless you use it for work.

  10. The good news: my flu was probably food poisoning (leftovers, near as we can figure). DH let me sleep the morning away to regain dome strength while he played with little monkey.

    The bad news: our beagle slipped out of our side door, which somehow was ajar. He’s still missing. DH set out a blanket and some food and we’ve called every organization we can think of. DH and I are both heartsick. M keeps calling, “Lee-lee!” and it breaks our hearts.

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