how to talk to your twenty something

Ha, I have no idea.  Today my step son Oliver is 22!.   Good for him, but that means I”VE AGED TOO.  Kids are cruel.   He is a wonderful young man who has been very patient with my loud, outgoing ways, which are not his.  A few years ago he even played  along with me on a video, “How to talk to your teenager”.  An experience that was probably close to running through bees while dripping with honey.  But, performance is like restaurant work in this family.. it’s hard not to be brought in ( or brought down.

So happy birthday to the first person who made me a “mom like” person.  I love you Oliver.

 

Daphne Dished raw

Okay, this ain’t pretty, but it’s what’s happening.  A little vlog on my life with pneumonia.  I know I’m not the only one suffering with this now, so maybe it can put a smile on someone elses’ face who has a pale, ugly face right now like moi.

Thanks to those who have been asking if Daphne Dishes is coming back for a third season.  I sure wish it would I day dream recipes ( unable to cook right now).  I have heard it’s going to be repeated in Jan.  So maybe that’s a good sign?  My recipes are still at www.foodnetwork.com/daphnedishes

I hope you are well and healthy and I hope to return to being funny and cooking and LOOKING BETTER.. oh and feeling better.

I am SO humbled by the help friends and family have given me and my kids the last few weeks.  We are all in this together.

New-mon-ya

So, this site has been in bed for the last couple of weeks along with me and now I know why.  I have Pneumonia.   Skipped Thanksgiving.  Been challenging.

I’m sure all kind of wit and wisdom will come from weeks of bed rest and tripping on steroid drugs, but until then.. wash your hands.  Check out my friend Shannon’s blog about your brave trip to assist Syrian refugees in Greece  ( spoiler alert Greek helpers and Syrians all seem to be gorgeous.) Shannon is very funny and once guested as my “Stunt Mom”.

Clearly she is a tough cookie, but her writing is informative without being pedantic.

Since I’m in bed and sleeping or watching screens Any suggestions of favorite binge shows?  I’m up to date on Empire ( storylines starting to go south), Indian Summer on Masterpiece Theate, everyone is depressed, but I just want to see the young Indian lead get naked.  Jane the Virgin, good, not as stellar as first season. Watched River on netflix. good, dark.  Grandfathered, loved, funny dead pan, my favorite.  Watching some John Adams, but small pox hard to watch right now.  So, please leave any shows you like… no zombies or vampires or game of thrones.  thanks.

a pee too far

here is a TBT.  I was super pregnant with Rex.  There are always some issues that bother us more than others… for me.. a wet towel on a rug  (grr), kid who want go to sleep when you are beat (everyone)  and then the good old pee on a brand new couch.  It does remind me why I still get this couch steam cleaned every three months..

The Bacon effect

First kids can’t run around a car while it’s in motion.  Then a lover can’t greet you when you get right of the plane, now they are taking bacon.  I’m of course referring to the latest report from World Health Organizations (kill joys) that processed meat specifically, and meat in general are a tiny notch above asbestos for causing cancer.  I just enjoyed the heck out of hot dog on the 10th hole the other day at a golf tourney.. who knew it would be my last!

I can’t take it.  Even though I had no make up only my phone I felt compelled to record this moment

Oh and ham!  What next sex?

what if you have the “bad” kid

 

As a parent who volunteers more at her kid’s school than people who draw a salary I get to see all sides to a school.  So often parents find the fault with a school and lay it a teacher or principal or a child that is not theirs knee.  When maybe, it is their kid.

I heard a mom a while back talking about how some teacher wasn’t stimulating to her little genius.  Then I was volunteering and saw this kid and thought I would need a lasso and a muzzle to deal with him.  ( Hence, I didn’t go into teaching).

As it was one day when I thought my little precious, angel might have the makings of serial killer

Child’s educational needs vs. your ideals and anxieties

–Couldn’t figure out a pithy short title for this one.

As parents know there is nothing like having a child to make you review your own childhood.  From the “I had to make my bed every morning so should you.”   To, “I was sexually exploited by family members and I will never let that happen to my child.”

It’s not really accurate for us to compare our childhoods to our children’s when it comes to the new world order of the economy, education, social mores, etc.  I am still jarred by seeing a tattoo covered lady, but no one else is.  I’m gladdened that it’s not okay for kids on the playground to say some of the racist things I use to hear when I was a kid.  I can’t believe how much harder schools are now then when I was a kid.

is this what I want for my kids?

is this what I want for my kids?

I recently had an ah, hah ( is that how it is spelled?) moment when I was hearing about a charity that supported underprivileged kids gain entry into private high schools.  My knee jerk reaction was “why do they have to go to private schools?  Why can’t public school be better? Is that the only way for poor kids to do well is to go hang with the snooty snoots?”  They talked about having to get their academics up in middle school, laudable.  But, also take them to the beach, because many had never been.  To take them to museums.  To coach them that when they are in these high schools they will have friends who get Italian sports cars for their 16th bday and know that they will not.  The reasoning is something like this, to succeed in the world, really do well, you have to be comfortable in the milieu of the rich and educated.  The high schools, the college, the social arenas.  My leftist, child of boho upbringing, middle class, went to city college than to a public university self was stunned.  I think I thought because I was a sophisticated, educated white lady that I was in the the In crowd.

But, really.  I’m not, never have been.  I’ve been invited in for glimpses, but that’s it. Ditto my husband.  He is a public school educated, middle class outlook kind of dude.  So, that is the trajectory we set for our own children.  But, is that a good idea?  When the world is different than when we graduated from high school.  My tuition was $650 a quarter.  While my kids are not strangers to the beach they aren’t kicking it at country clubs either.

Barack Obama was raised in a middle class, single mom with help from his grandparents apartment.  But, they got him into the best prep school in Hawaii.  It has given me pause.

I’m such a proponent of the egalitarian society and education, but maybe I’m wrong.  Is this one of those things were I should do something different for my kid than was done for me?  Besides, trying to figure out how we could pay for a private high school, but I’m struggling with this philosophically as well.  I know it’s harder in LA where are public schools are not great and private schools are pricey.  It would be different in other areas I’m sure.

But, what educational path are you chartering for your kids?

 

volunteering at school lunch

So, When Viv was first in Kindergarten I volunteered, but as this video shows it didn’t quite go as I had planned.  I tired a few more times, but it always seemed to be school lunch time just as Rex fell asleep so I’d be looking for parking right outside of the school when he would nod off.  I test the mom in charge, “Sorry, can’t do it, Rex asleep.”  An unreliable volunteer, what are the chances?

So, last year when Rex started Kindergarten I started again.  Daphne Dishes.. up food.  There is a lot of running back and forth so I always get a lot of steps for the day.  I learn a lot, not so much about my kids, but which kid is going to flip out if I make him/her take the required veggie/ fruit.  How anyone below 3rd grade can’t be asked a complex question like, “with cheese, or without?”  Sometimes I’m standing there in my hair net thinking, you know, I host a Food Network show?  But, no one cares.  They just want another glass of milk.

The sweep up at the end of the shift is the worse.  Mashed food on the ground.  invariably piled high in the trash cans big chunks of the fruit and veggies we made the kids take (federal law).

 

children’s music class

I just popped in to my neighborhood book store to get some books for Vivien.  I do my very best not to buy books online from the place that rhymes with parmesan and go to our locally owned small book store full of charm and questionable profit models.  I was clearly doing the right thing because in the back of the store they had a toddler music class going on.See, a store in the community cares about community.  I smiled.  Transported to those years,  not that long ago when I took my children to music classes.  Sitting a in a circle with an earnest adult playing guitar.   ( sidebar, there was one kid there who looked about 5 or 6 and I thought if I brought Rex to something like that now I’d be a victim of matricide).

With my first kid I trucked all over for little kiddo classes.  I thought it was good for her.  Was it?  Good for me!  Naw, truth is if you stay home and don’t stress that they fell asleep for a nap right before you get to the class you spent $200 on it’s easier on mom.

So, when Rex came along I was wiser and poorer so I did my own music class.  It turned out great!

 

The Italian Tampon

As I’ve written about we we lucky to go to Italy this summer.  What can you say about Italy that hasn’t already been said?  The food is sublime, the language is beautiful.  Contribution to the art world is deep.  The lifestyle, the wine!  Bellissimo.

However on my trip there was one Italian thing I did struggle with.  This is my story